Sunday, March 16, 2014

It's Not Horror, it's Welcome To Night Vale. From Personal Consciousness to the Collective Unconscious

In my journey around here, I stumbled upon this little gem that put a big Sagittarian smile on my face. As I grew to love it, I eventually reached that dreadfully painful yellow stage, eons more painful than the black, where I wondered and became highly interested in what others thought of it, as a deep thirst for connection dawned upon me. Then I read this:

Okay, why is everyone falling in love with this? It simply isn't funny, it's just describing random events. It's like some writer decided to jot down whatever he thought of and have somebody read it. It was actually painful to listen to. There is no plot or character development and no attachment to the town. It is bad in every objective way possible.

I struggled with it for a bit, and then decided upon this:

Precisely. The writer(s) DID jot down whatever (t)he(y) thought of and THAT is why it's terrifying and generally appealing. When one writes down like that, it's called stream of consciousness, but I would much rather call it automatic writing. Due to the continuous, stream aspect of it, this technique lets the unconscious seep through the conscious. If used right, and by right I mean often, intensely, and insightfully enough, it enables one to bypass the conscious part of the mind completely and open the door to the hidden region of the self, which has a personal but also a collective side (you know, that place where the fear of death and a bunch of other general stuff are said to reside). The writers of Night Vale masterfully did just that. They pretty much unleash the collective unconscious archetypal creatures (disguised as glow clouds) on you, and you are either repelled or amused, depending on your relationship with that part of the human mind.

Since the unconscious is a very terrifying thing to confront/ become conscious of when unprepared, listening to something created with this technique is at least unnerving. For people who have already confronted and won over the (collective) unconscious, meeting it again is amusing, like meeting an old foe turned friend. If you find that you do not resonate with any of the things described by Cecil, it is because you are too high up in your conscious self to even realize there may be things you are completely unaware of, regarding yourself and anyone else. You are completely unconscious about the unconscious. You haven't reached Nigredo yet. Shuffle along and go on pretending to sleep.