Thursday, August 30, 2012

Asprem on Sledge's approach to Dee

Drawing on the anthropological theory of “interpretive drift”, suggested by Tanya Luhrmann in her seminal research on 1980s witchcraft in Britain, Sledge suggests that the process of interpretation, experience, and rationalization is not formed by already fixed beliefs, but rather that this process itself may lead to an “epistemic transformation”. In short, action, even in this case a degree of deception, may well be an integrated part in meaning making and construction of belief systems, rather than the other way around:
We would argue that the second Enochian language begins to exist somewhere between being created and being discovered by Kelly under a state of increasingly pronounced epistemological inclusivity between the angelic revelation, his own thoughts, and the dizzying alterations in his consciousness brought on by the effects of the sessions themselves and / or mental illness. (32).
In short, the four types of considerations come together to form if not a mechanism then at least a plausibility structure from which the angel conversations could emerge. This is in itself a welcome and refreshing demystification of the material, even though it is not without its problems.

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