At its simplest, what Colin Wilson calls Faculty X is "simply that latent power in human beings possess to reach beyond the present." Yet its existence is evinced in all those phenomena that modernity files under "supernatural" or "occult." As difficult to explain as it is impossible to omit from any honest survey of human existence, the occult haunts the modern, not just as a vestige of the past but also, perhaps, as a promise from a time to come. For Wilson, magic isn't the living fossil the arch-rationalists would like it to be, but a "science of the future." Faculty X is an evolutionary power, innately positive, inseparable from the will to live and the unshakeable conviction that, somehow, this world has some real, ineffable meaning. In this episode, JF and Phil discuss Wilson's concept of Faculty X as elaborated in his monumental 1971 work, The Occult.
Colin Wilson, The Occult: A History
Rick and Morty, American sitcom
Colin, Wilson, Dreaming to Some Purpose
Colin Wilson, The Outsider
Gary Lachman, Beyond the Robot
Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus
David Benatar, Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming Into Existence
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Peter Wessel Zapffe, Norwegian philosopher
Thomas Ligotti, The Conspiracy Against the Human Race
Francisco Goya, The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters
Emil Cioran, Franco-Romanian essayist
Arthur Schopenhauer, German philosopher
At the Fights: American Writers on Boxing, Library of America collection
Joe Frazier, American pugilist
Henri Bergson, Matter and Memory
Edouard Schuré, [The Great Initiates: A Study of the Secret History of Religions](Edouard Schuré, _The Great Initiates: A Study of the Secret History of Religion
Weird Studies, episode 8: On Graham Harman's "The Third Table"
Thomas Merton, American monk
Gary Snyder, American poet