THE WATCHERS BY THE GATE OF HORN

Stranger, dreams are baffling and unclear of meaning, and may not bring fulfilment. For two are the gates of shadowy dreams, and one is fashioned of horn and one of ivory. Those dreams that pass through the gate of sawn ivory deceive men, bringing words that find no fulfilment. But those that come forth through the gate of polished horn bring true issues to pass, when any mortal sees them.
— Homer
Unless we again begin to tell fairy tales and ghost stories before going to sleep and recounting our dreams upon waking, nothing more is to be expected of our Western civilization.
— Jan Svankmajer
People think dreams aren’t real just because they aren’t made of matter, of particles. Dreams are real. But they are made of viewpoints, of images, of memories and puns and lost hopes.
— Neil Gaiman
There is some confusion as to what magic actually is. I think this can be cleared up if you just look at the very earliest descriptions of magic. Magic in its earliest form is often referred to as “the art”. I believe this is completely literal. I believe that magic is art and that art, whether it be writing, music, sculpture, or any other form is literally magic. Art is, like magic, the science of manipulating symbols, words, or images, to achieve changes in consciousness. The very language about magic seems to be talking as much about writing or art as it is about supernatural events. A grimmoir for example, the book of spells is simply a fancy way of saying grammar. Indeed, to cast a spell, is simply to spell, to manipulate words, to change people’s consciousness. And I believe that this is why an artist or writer is the closest thing in the contemporary world that you are likely to see to a Shaman.

I believe that all culture must have arisen from cult. Originally, all of the faucets of our culture, whether they be in the arts or sciences were the province of the Shaman. The fact that in present times, this magical power has degenerated to the level of cheap entertainment and manipulation, is, I think a tragedy. At the moment the people who are using Shamanism and magic to shape our culture are advertisers. Rather than try to wake people up, their Shamanism is used as an opiate to tranquilize people, to make people more manipulable. Their magic box of television, and by their magic words, their jingles can cause everyone in the country to be thinking the same words and have the same banal thoughts all at exactly the same moment.

In all of magic there is an incredibly large linguistic component. The Bardic tradition of magic would place a bard as being much higher and more fearsome than a magician. A magician might curse you. That might make your hands lay funny or you might have a child born with a club foot. If a Bard were to place not a curse upon you, but a satire, then that could destroy you. If it was a clever satire, it might not just destroy you in the eyes of your associates; it would destroy you in the eyes of your family. It would destroy you in your own eyes. And if it was a finely worded and clever satire that might survive and be remembered for decades, even centuries. Then years after you were dead people still might be reading it and laughing at you and your wretchedness and your absurdity. Writers and people who had command of words were respected and feared as people who manipulated magic. In latter times I think that artists and writers have allowed themselves to be sold down the river. They have accepted the prevailing belief that art and writing are merely forms of entertainment. They’re not seen as transformative forces that can change a human being; that can change a society. They are seen as simple entertainment; things with which we can fill 20 minutes, half an hour, while we’re waiting to die. It’s not the job of the artist to give the audience what the audience wants. If the audience knew what they needed, then they wouldn’t be the audience. They would be the artists. It is the job of artists to give the audience what they need.
— Alan Moore
old forest.jpg

THE MYSTIC MANIFESTO

Informed by these bright thought-gems THE WATCHERS BY THE GATE OF HORN will craft art-sorcery to arm the human species on its long road to doom. May that doom be filled with glory. Strength. Energy. Hope. Doom. These we will bring. Know our works by our sigil:

This sigil will only be placed on a work, in a work, or on a work's packaging when all Watchers agree that the following criteria have been met:

  • The work is touched by a sense of dream - the mystical, the occult, the fantastical, or the surreal.
  • The work is a hyper-sigil, or part of one. Its specific details will be known to the Watchers and no one else.
  • If the work presents gender, it will present genders on equal terms. The work must not engage in typical gender politicking - it will present a world where gender equality is not even questioned, as we hold this equality to be a self-evident human right. We believe that this must be normalised through art and culture first. This holds true for race.
  • The work has made a genuine effort to be as ecologically just as possible, leaving little to no damage in its production.
  • The work does not dwell on the empty relativism of our age. We watch the approach of the Nothing and prepare our hyper-sigils to catch in its throat. Now that nothing has meaning we are free to create meaning.
  • The work does not glorify, excuse, or collude with the lich-like corporate menace that strips us of our worth.
  • The work values the Left-Hand Path as a paradigm for personal and spiritual freedom.