– Janus fresco in the Aula Gotica, Santi Quattro Coronati, Rome
Cinema and the ONA: Everything Everywhere All at Once
Certain dynamics alluded to by the Order of Nine Angles find application in many areas of life. In the world of cinema, these take on complex artistic expressions. They can be found in numerous films, such as Andrzej Zulawski’s masterpiece Possession (1981), which addresses how the little-discussed relationship between the Star Gate and Dark Angle forms the basis for all intersubjective experience (captured beautifully in the expression by Isabelle Adjani’s character, “Because you say ‘I’ for me”); in Tarkovsky’s Stalker (1979), which explores how universal desire is revealed in the constitution of spiritual absence (connecting to the path of Lidagon as one of the three hidden paths on the Tree of Wyrd); in David Lynch’s Lost Highway (1997), which explores the relationship between transformation and disassociation with respect to identity (redolent of what can occur during the journey of the Sevenfold Way at the individual level); in Ingmar Bergman’s Through a Glass Darkly (1961), which addresses the boundary between madness and divinity in the beauty of the ordinary and the everyday (calling into question the use of the term “mundane”); in Neten Chokling’s Milarepa (2006), which explores the consequences of revenge and the infliction of suffering through the story of one of Tibet’s greatest yogis and saints (calling “culling” into question and placing it in its proper mythic context within the Labyrinthos Mythologicus); in Lars von Trier’s Melancholia (2011) and Breaking the Waves (1996), which, taken together, establish a cosmic context for what lies beyond – and what most misunderstand by – the phrase “Insight Role”; and in the comedic cynicism of works like Man Bites Dog (1992) and Trier’s more profound The House that Jack Built (2018), which remind us not to take ourselves too seriously and what can happen in a world without love, respectively.
Though I hope to explore cinema in relation to the Order of Nine Angles further in the future, here I want to briefly note a film that unexpectedly caught my attention this evening: Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert’s Everything Everywhere All at Once (2022). In addition to its parallels to the ONA – [SPOILER ALERTS] such as the possible link between Jobu Tupaki and Baphomet, navigating the multiverse and directing acausal energy through consciousness, and influencing parallel states of existence [END SPOILERS] – the film casts a beautiful thematic shadow over the idea of constituting meaning from chaos. Its heroic approach to making meaningful the statement “nothing matters” also illustrates a curious turn in the current narrative of the ONA with respect to its trajectory, its interpersonal application in the real world, and the underlying motivations of its hidden practice. The film does this in cogent, topical, creative, and highly original way, one that I personally found quite moving. Obviously it won’t appeal to everyone, but the unexpected parallels to the ONA alone make it worthwhile viewing. Top-tier performances from Michelle Yeoh, Stephanie Hsu, and Ke Huy Quan. Recommended.
April 21, 2022