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Chris Knowles examines the meaning behind our cultures rituals.

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Audio Clip: [00:00:00] We can’t afford to have a Toga party. You guys up for a Toga party? Toga! Toga! I think they like the idea of it. Oh Otter please don’t do this. I’ve got news for your pal, they’re gonna nail us no matter what we do, so we might as well have a good time. Toga , Toga , Toga …

Alex Tsakiris: [00:00:26] That’s a classic clip from Animal House, where John Belushi and his fraternity brothers realize that the only response to the totalitarian rule of the dean is to throw a Roman toga party. I’m going to be going back to the Romans time and time again and to kick it off, here’s a clip from my upcoming interview with Chris Knowles.

Chris Knowles: [00:00:53] And you know one thing that I keep saying and I’m sure maybe a lot of your listeners will just think I’m insane but really, a lot of what this is all about is about restoring a state cults much the same as what we saw in ancient Rome. So when you take that, the ritualism which we see at every Super Bowl now, and every Oscar now, and you combine it with this cultic gas-lighting, with this mask conditioning into like this Invasion of the Body Snatchers reality, and they go together because they’re all moving towards the same goal. And the mask is the annihilation of individuality which is you know, it’s a prime aspect of any cult throughout history.

Audio Clip: [00:01:41] Welcome to Skeptiko where we explore controversial science and spirituality with leading researchers, thinkers and their critics. I’m your host Alex Tsakiris and today we welcome back one of my favorite scally wags of the alternative media and the author of a new book that we’re going to talk about The Endless American Midnight. Chris Knowles is here to join us, Chris welcome back. Thanks so much for joining me, I want to pull up on the screen this fantastic new book because what I want to tell people is you know, a lot of folks are very familiar with your kind of essential read blog, The Secret Sun. And we see on there that you’ve actually started a new Institute jump, jumping on the bandwagon there but some deep state stuff there. But what you’ve done here with this new book, The Endless American Midnight which I didn’t quite get why you would do it initially. But then I thought about it a little bit more and you know it’s like there’s so much stuff packed in The Secret Sun. And those of us like me, who just dive into this and sometimes can’t even get out of it, it’s so deep and it takes you in so many places, that once in a while, it’s good to be able to kind of curl up on the couch with a book and kind of go through this stuff in a different format. Is that, was that partially what you had in mind?

Chris Knowles: [00:03:20] Well people have been asking me for a very long time to do a book of secrets on work. And I just could never really figure out how to approach it because I have 1000s of posts going back 15 years now and it’s just, it’s very intimidating and overwhelming even for myself, even though I’m familiar with the material. So I just had a real hard time trying to put it in context and luckily, sort of 2020 did that for me. Yeah, the material I chose, because I was looking around at 2020, I was just looking at the whole scene, I was looking at politics and the media and society in general and trying to figure out like how do we get here? And then I started thinking is like, well you know, I’ve been writing these essays you know, mixed in with all the secret mystic work for a very long time and a lot of the things that I said you know, this is going to happen, this is coming, came true. And it’s not because I’m a psychic or profit or anything, It’s just the inevitable cycles of history.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:04:35] Let’s not be too quick to dismiss your psychic abilities because as you said, I mean folks, I’ve pulled up on the screen and Chris can see it but he doesn’t have total visibility on this. Here is the table of contents from the book The endless American Midnight. So I want to talk about the flat earth and others strange new rebellions and as we’re doing it, I want to remind people that you wrote this in What 2015?

Chris Knowles: [00:05:09] Well there’s a guy named Eric Dubay, who sort of kick started the modern flat earth movement. And I’ve known this guy for a number years because he used to do synchronistic work for you know, he had a blog on blog spot and he was sort of part of this loose rang of people who are looking at these kind of materials and synchronicities and symbolism and all that kind of thing. And then he got onto the whole Flat Earth thing and he had sent me some information through the comments a while back you know obviously before I wrote that post and I just, you know, like most people, I was just like, I couldn’t put in any context. I’m like, What am I reading here? Is this serious, Is this a joke, Is this a troll? And I couldn’t really get a handle on where this was going. And he did a number of videos and then there was a guy who I write about in the book, this photorealistic artist named Matt Boylan, who claims to have worked for NASA and been let in on the secret by people at NASA that you know, the Earth is flat and all the space stuff is a hoax and everything like that. And he’s a real hard guy to take seriously. He’s got a very obnoxious and unpleasant personality. To be honest with you, I don’t know where he’s been the past few years but I, you know, I watched some of his videos. And yeah, I’m always up for a good conspiracy theory, I’m always up for a good alternative take you know. But after some years I just came to the conclusion that you know, it doesn’t matter, It doesn’t affect the conduct of my life in any way, shape or form, it doesn’t affect my viewpoint on the world. So in one way it was kind of liberating but yeah, this was stuff that was going on back 2014 2015 before it became such a big deal in the mass media.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:07:06] Here’s where I really wanted to take you because it’s where you take us in the blog post. And that is that initial sense that you got when you read this. It’s like, What is going on? Am I being trolled who would say such an outrageous thing and then what the connection you make is this, I love how you connected it to this I fucking love science vibe. And the Phil Platt, that astronomer with his 660,000 followers on Twitter and then how the strange bedfellow thing, how really these lovers of NASA who are these kind of Uber empiricists kind of, science will answer everything, are strangely linked to Verner von Braun who was a brown shirt before those brown shirts were popular kind of thing. And I think you really took us in that post five years ago. It was just a kind of total layer bear, the phony fake scientism agenda. And in particular this cult around, I fucking love science and I immediately understood exactly what you meant because I discovered it much more slowly in my work.

Chris Knowles: [00:08:26] I wrote a lot of those kinds of things, that was like a real big theme for the blog for quite a while. It was just taking apart this whole scientistic worldview and really tracing the roots of it, where it came from. There’s a another chapter where I talk about Carl Sagan’s demon haunted world and how that sort of resulted, how that played out and how that ended up really with you know, Jeffrey Epstein financing a good chunk of the theoretical science being done today you know, had his you know, his claws and MIT and Harvard and all the scientific organizations you know, all these big name people. So I mean this is something that I was looking at for a long time because I really feel you know, when we talk about where we are and how we got here, I really feel that that group of people that movement, the scientismists, as I call them, atheist skeptics, this whole constellation of people who’ve really been marginalized in the past couple of years, but at that point in time they were you know, extremely aggressive, they were extremely online as the term goes. In a way you know, spreading the message very aggressively and then it all kind of came to a halt for some bizarre coincidence that will probably never be you know, solved. Is that it all came to a halt when Jeffrey Epstein was taken to court with Jane Doe versus Jeffrey Epstein.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:10:09] I think it came to a halt before that and I think it’s more traceable to James Randi because like a lot of these things, there’s a kind of cult of personality thing that sometimes creates an inexpiable kind of wake in the water. And I think he did and I think his demise, and then when his own group kind of turned against him initially as he’s getting older, and then he kind of went through the dementia stuff ,and then he came out. Strangely enough, I think he’s coming out as a gay man who had kind of rigged the system to get his boyfriend kind of through an immigration thing, I think the whole thing kind of…

Chris Knowles: [00:10:56] He’s underage boyfriend.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:10:58] Yeah.

Chris Knowles: [00:10:58] His underage boyfriend, yeah. 16 year old boyfriend

Alex Tsakiris: [00:11:00] Yeah because back in the day, but people forget, but back in the day there were these great Randi conferences where there were 40 foot banners with his image on it you know, he had really kind of just slipped into these guys. Exactly what they claimed to be so against, is that kind of cultish kind of personality kind of thing. What do you think about that?

Chris Knowles: [00:11:29] Well I think that that was deliberate. I think maybe, it almost feels like a beta testing of some sort you know, can we construct an alternative mass religion to replace traditional religion. And I think that you know, the people who are bankrolling all this and of course Epstein was a large part of it, had very strange beliefs of their own and very strange agendas of their own. And what really happened you know, we had those amazing meetings which were getting just fawning press attention and critical press attention, when that court case came up with the identity theft with his living lover there. Did the press went to great lengths to either ignore it or to smooth it over for him? Yeah, he was clearly a favorite personality, he was protected, he’s protected by the media. And the thing where it really, I think hit the rocks you know, or hit the iceberg let’s say, the Titanic hit the iceberg was when the woke thing really started kicking up again in the wake of Occupy Wall Street.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:12:42] I think the iceberg incident was, and a few people remember this, but Randy came out as a skeptic on global warming. And he was…

Chris Knowles: [00:12:53] Yeah. I don’t think that really broke, that wasn’t the straw that broke the horse’s back. I mean he had a lot of things that he said in favor of eugenics, all kinds of stuff. I mean, this is all the things that these skeptics or what’s left of the movement are really what you know, the woke skeptics, really, they’ve written all these revisionist history and like, Oh, I should have known about this or I didn’t know about this, then I was blind to it and Mia culpa, Mia culpa, whatever the situation is. But I think that it was definitely because I was watching this pretty closely ,it was definitely what was called atheism plus and atheism plus was atheism plus woke. And it was really the you know, it was predominantly women, people like Rebecca Watson were really at the forefront of it. And they really went to war against you know all these creepy guys and all these creepy guys in the Epstein orbit, like people like Lawrence Krauss you know, I think you know, as toxic as I think woke is they really did the rest of us a favor because they helped stop this thing in its tracks because they were presenting a rejoinder to the dominance of the movement by people like Randy and Plate and Dennett and Paris and you know, on and on and on. They’re providing rejoinder to their sort of, their dominance and you know Harris got it on the terrorism and Middle Eastern stuff. A lot of them really kind of took it in the neck for different reasons. But um, I really believe…

Alex Tsakiris: [00: 14:46] So hold on…

Chris Knowles: [00: 14:47] Let me just finish my thought.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:14:48] Yeah

Chris Knowles: [00:14:48] So it’s like I was looking at the stuff, I was writing about a lot. There’s a lot of pieces that I mean, some of which I put into the the appendix of the ebook version, I put in about 100 pages of new material into that version. And a lot of it was sort of these things that I’d cut you know, in my first draft. But I was reading about this stuff a lot and I was watching, I was paying very close attention to it because they were sort of coming after us you know. People like Randy where sort of dipping their toes into you know, these real fringy things like Tinker mysticism and stuff. So I mean it was you know, it’s opposition research on my part because I knew that they were going to come after us. And I think that they would have had this atheism plus woke schism, not very successful in really crippling the the mainstream skeptical movement.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:15:44] Before I plow forward I want to go back and make sure we fill in some of the leaps we’re making, some of the inside baseball leaps so that people can follow along a little bit if they don’t know it. So we all have the James Randi thing down, the amazing meeting, the million dollar challenge where he said, Hey, anything that is paranormal I’ll pay a million dollars for it. And it was brilliant publicity stunt and that it became the focus. And he had kind of created a false, completely false phony, quasi pseudo scientific experiment and test, but then it became this standard that everyone could kind of push against. Now the other thing you’re alluding to is all these guys and it was 90% guys, were going to the amazing meeting and they were just firing all over you know, James Randi and all these other self made, quasi celebrities. And in the meantime, guys doing what a lot of guys do, at night at the bar was not a pretty scene. So Shermer, Michael Shermer kind of gets sucked into it for you know, maybe some of the things that he did that weren’t so appropriate with young women who maybe had too much to drink or maybe had something else in their drink that wasn’t supposed to be there. And then some other people had some, and then as you said across from Arizona State University, later it comes out but we know it was rumored about earlier, is involved in even slimyer, scummyer kind of stuff. So this stuff is kind of bubbling around the edges and then you have, as you said, which is always kind of an interesting phenomenon in these groups, is that they kind of, there is an element of realness to it that I think the co operators and the social engineers can ever really fully control. So you do have someone like Rebecca Watson or other people who are genuine and believe in the cause and they rise up and say, Hey, this isn’t what we’re about guys. This is what we’re supposed to be against. And it gains traction because there is a certain amount of cultural ethos that’s built into that stuff. So is that, is there anything you want to add as just kind of a backgrounder to all that stuff you just said previously?

Chris Knowles: [00:18:21] Well like I said, I think that this was an attempt or beta testing or an experiment to construct an alternative religious paradigm. And I think that woke ultimately won out because the Randy phenomena, the atheist movement all these things you know, like you said, were predominantly overwhelmingly split of low status men you know, oftentimes single, middle aged single men, often involved in low tier work in stem projects and fields. So I think what happened is that it was probably successful in that they learned how to make people respond to things you know, articles of faith, really like the million dollar challenge is an article of faith it’s a great marketing tool, right? And you know, you saw a lot of these crazy religious or crazy socialist icons being used to make memes and so on and so forth. But I think that it was never going to be successful because it just wasn’t appealing to a demographic that has influence over the rest of the society. And I think the woke thing became so overwhelming in the wake of that second Epstein trial that you know, the atheist skeptical movement was was buried underneath you know, the avalanche and the exciting, well I don’t know if it’s exciting but the interesting thing to me about that as well is that you know, wokeness and all these kind of outgrowths of PC culture and intersectionalism, you know that they’re extremely anti science. And I think a lot of the original battles between these two wings of the movement were over these anti scientific claims that the workers were trying to instill into dogma. And you had a lot of people like Thunderfoot and Carl Benjamin and the Amazing Atheist you know, these are all YouTubers that had pretty substantial audiences really mixing it up with that whole Rebecca Watson corner of the movement. So, but the interesting thing about that is that not only do they have these you know, very strange, crazy scientific beliefs, but they also are really into the occult and witchcraft and all sorts of strange permutations of the supernatural. So I, you know, Randy is not only dead, Randy is you know, spinning in his grave for eternity you know, because everything he tried to build, you know, fell apart. I mean, he was successful in undermining a lot of things you know, he was successful in helping undermine organized religion, he was successful in helping organize a lot of you know, what people would call the patriarchal power structure, you know whatever. I mean however they determined that the terminology changes you know, quite often if you use you know, old terms from a few months ago, you’re suddenly ostracized from the movement. But you know, that Randy failed miserably.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:21:46] This is where I take it. I think this divide and rule thing is always going on in these kind of subcultures. And I think when you can break the scientism and the woke communities into two communities that you now control, and you kind of create another forced choice situation, we’re like, okay, nerd, where are you going to go? You going to go with the scientists and people, are you going to go with the woke people. But the other thing that I think he did that was absolutely, fundamentally important and we still see the ramifications of it today. It was a test run on how to kind of jury rig the emerging science media that was moving to the internet. And I know that because I was right in the middle of it when I was doing all these interviews on like a near death experience. And this stuff was making it through the scientific literature, particularly the medical scientific literature, the Lancet and all these other really important medical journals. But then when it hit the kind of general public science media, it was being completely distorted and completely turned inside out. And it’s sometimes kind of crazy in your face way that was just like, why would you even say something like that? You just make yourself look stupid. And I got about 50 interviews on that if anyone wants to bother and go look, but I think there was a, you know, in terms of laying the groundwork for that. Absolutely, Randy’s organization did that, they found the pressure points, they found the leverage points you know, where to push and also where to lever and all that. And now they’ve reached a point and I think we’re living that and I think two things came out of that, that I want to pull you into talking about because one, I like the way that you kind of had that kind of broader analysis that not all these things work as they’re planned. And I think that’s an important part of understanding how the social engineering game works. Because sometimes in our community, we kind of go overboard on the other side like, Oh my God, they have such control, everything they do is so…

Chris Knowles: [00:23:58] Yeah.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:23:59] I take global warming, what a frickin fail, what a stupid idea. And the reason is because it’s the wrong game, if you want to play the global warming game with science, yeah you can rig the science for a little while and you can get the 97% fake thing out there. And anyone who wants to go and just dig into that for 15 minutes you see that that’s a fake consensus, completely rigged. But then you run into climate gate, all you need is one guy to say, this is really what the data looks like and here are the emails with the group that reveals that they’re rigging the system, but the biggest thing they didn’t plan on is you’re freezing your ass off in the East Coast and whether we are…

Chris Knowles: [00:24:46] The entire center of the country too, I mean look at Texas.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:24:49] So now…

Chris Knowles: [00:24:50] Texas has had sub zero temperatures.

Alex Tsakiris: [00: 24:52] Exactly, so before anyone starts railing on us with emails about like ‘ You can’t tell one year to the next you got to look at the patterns’ It’s like yeah, but both are true. When people experience that they have, it’s a reality check on the science and for them to try and do the New World Order which is why all this shit is about, to try and like piggyback it on global warming was a huge mistake. But even that was a test run for the home run they hit with the pandemic right. Because it was the same principles, get in there, rigged the science, try and get the iidx you know, but they trump that a million times over with the pandemic and I think they had the benefit of one, the Randy you know, jury rigging the paranormal science and suppressing that and turning it inside out. And then that led to their first attempt with global warming, which was kind of a fail, but then that led to the huge success that they hit with the pandemic.

Chris Knowles: [00:25:59] Well, like I said I mean, that’s why I see the whole Randy thing as like you know, beta testing or a B testing or an experiment you know, like a social experiment. That’s exactly you know, what you just described is exactly why I see it in that context because, like I said, it began to receive. What we saw in its place and this began I’d say around 2017 or so was this major gaslighting where science was now unquestionable dogma. That you know, this whole thing you know, trust the science that science settled. I mean there are no two more unscientific things you could possibly say in your life you know, science is never supposed to be settled. You know, you’re not supposed to trust the science, you’re supposed to test the science. I mean, that’s the whole point of science and when you see you know, the simultaneously with this gaslighting was this replication crisis, where all of a sudden people are saying I can’t replicate this published so called peer reviewed experiment and that just grew and grew, at one point it was 50% of the experiments couldn’t be replicated, and then it became 70% ,70% of the published experiments could not be replicated by other scientists. So yeah, this whole gaslighting thing and you know, what Randy sort of planted the seeds for was you know, science is religion, science is a priesthood you know, as if scientists are not all completely beholden to their paymasters in government and corporations you know. Like scientists are not individual thinkers, they’re not independent in any way, shape, or form. If there’s any subsection of society that’s more controlled and more dependent and more subject to punitive measures, if they step out of line, It’s the scientific community. The scientific community has been terrorized into silence and complete uniformity of belief. And that’s why you have to take care of the people like Rupert Sheldrake or the Dean Radians. You know people who use the scientific method in exploring paranormal ideas because that steps outside you know, that opens the door for heresy, basically like that. And you know, even if these experiments were valid, they need to be discredited. Any invective or insinuation needs to be thrown at them until you know, the persuadable the weak, the meek you know, you sort of like your daily Grail crowd, when they roll over and accept it you know, and it’s just like it’s gaslighting. It’s social control and it’s gotten really bare knuckles. And I saw this starting in 2017, I saw how this began to grow, I saw how this began to emerge, I saw the techniques they were using. And I would you know, I goof on them in posts, a lot of those posts and put them back up by the way, on the blog. So I just saw that the methodologies that we’re using you know, the kinds of intimidation, it’s all extremely totalitarian you know, straight out of the mouse playbook.

Alex Tsakiris: [00:29:30] Let’s back up on a couple things before we. So I want to talk about the experimenter effect. I want to talk about the replication problem, both of which you brought up, they both relate back to Sheldrick, they both relate back to consciousness really because it hints at this thing that we’ve known for a long time that consciousness is somehow fundamental and it’s messing up our experiments and our need to kind of measure everything, but that don’t quite work that way. But the other thing I wanted to stitch in here is, then I’ll kind of start with this and then we’ll back up into those other ones. One of the reasons I think you see the connection with the Jeffrey Epstein thing is one, of course, these people can be manipulated the same way that any brown stoning operation, you can manipulate anybody, so why not it’s easy. But the other thing is, I think what all this revealed at some point was how incredibly cost effective the manipulation of science was. It really didn’t take much money at all. These guys are starving. You throw 10…

Chris Knowles: [00:30:41] Well that’s what I said. Yeah, that’s exactly what I said.

Chris Knowles: [01:36:59] Well, one thing that I will say, I mean because we’re getting a little apples and oranges here, because we’re, you know, we’re talking about Jesus, The New Testament then you know, talking about the Bible and then we’re talking about you know, the post biblical period, I mean, there are a lot of things to sort of separate and unpack here. But one of the things that I would say is that, you know, Judaism and Christianity, were really not substantially different than the other religions. Yeah, that’s the mythic comes down you know, the Judaism you know, the Yawei Cult, which is the same figure as Zeus and Jupiter and Baal and so on. That these, this call was substantially different than any of the other cults and it’s just, not true. It’s just you know, somebody like Julian the apostate said that you know, when he was reaching out to the Jews after the exile, he said you know, we’re a lot of like you know, we are Jupiter ceremonies and rituals, and so on and so forth or a lot like yours you know. I mean, you can look this up and this is known and everything that you got to do is realize that any religious text is going to be just glazed over with symbolism and ritual, and you know, particularly star symbolism. The thing that I keep going through is, I just can’t believe how much star sent, when you just look at a simple map, like what I have here and line it up against the Bible stories. It’s just astonishing because the stars you know, we’re heaven. That was what they saw as heaven. That’s what they saw as the heavenly vault with this you know, the stars above them. So I think that you know, there are a lot of different issues here. But really, like I said, what it really boils down to is like, I’m not making any supernatural claims as to Jesus, in that very you know, rather maybe overlarge chapter that you’re referring to. What I’m saying is that I believe and I still believe and I don’t see any reason to disbelieve that he was a real person who lived and died. And his followers came along, because he inspired them in a particular way and then there was a second you know, there’s a second Jesus really, which is Paul, who builds the whole thing up through the data of his own efforts. And it’s just these are real people that just became part of a mythology machine. Just the same way that you know, Mr. T has it as a TV show, where he’s like wrestling with dinosaurs, the cartoon show on Saturday morning, where he’s wrestling with Dinosaurs or whatever. I mean, real people get mythologized. It happens all the time. It’s not unusual and it’s not unique to the Bible in any way, shape, or form.

Alex Tsakiris: [01:39:46] So Chris again, thanks so much all this time it’s just awesome talking with you, it’s just so cool, so fun. That Endless American midnight is great. He will live up in this Guy. Awesome, we talked about it last time Chris was here and you can find a bunch of other of his books on Amazon. Be sure to check out The Secret Sun. What’s coming up for you? Either new books or.. I know you’re coming up with another edition of kind of collections from The Secrets on blog. But what’s got your interest right now? What can we expect to see from you?

Chris Knowles: [01:40:27] I’m working on so many different things right now, my own mind is boggled. My main projects for the new year has been to just go through my archives and try and organize it into more easily digestible portions and so on. You know, what has happen is that blogger changed over their interface. So, I know most of my posts before say like 2012 or so, that all the text alignments are messed up and everything is just a big jumble and I have to sit there and go through and manually, reformat everything. But I have a lot of stuff going on just to check the blog and then of course there’s the Patreon, The Secret Sun Institute of Advanced Synchro Mysticism that.. I just opened it and I’ve got a lot of material up there, mostly podcasts you know, podcast recordings that you can listen to and explore a number different topics. So there’s a lot coming up you know, I’m really just at the beginning of this process.

Alex Tsakiris: [01:41:31] And it’s exciting for all of us and we’ll be sure to be checking back in with you soon. So thanks again so much for coming on today.

Chris Knowles: [01:41:40] Thank you.

Alex Tsakiris: [01:41:43] Thanks again to Chris Knowles for joining me today on Skeptiko. The one question I tee up because it’s just classic Chris, is what do you make of his idea about masks and cult signaling? You know, it sounds like such a stretch. But like I said in the interview Chris, batting average Hall of Fame man. Don’t bet against the Hall of Famer. Let me know your thoughts anywhere you can find me, more coming. Until next time. Take care. Bye for now.

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      Sara and Jack Gorman, Deniers Denying Deniers |515|

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      Nick Cook, Insider on UAP/UFO and Ingo Swann |514|

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