Angel Tech: Initiation: Chapel Perilous

In Angel Tech (1985), Antero Alli divides spiritual development into eight grades (as if one is going through grade school) based on an 8-tier model of the brain/mind/spirit developed by Timothy Leary. Alli divides the stages into two sets of four – 1st through 4th, and 5th through 8th – and locates the so-called “Chapel Perilous” in between 4th and 5th grade. The term “Chapel Perilous” was coined by Robert Anton Wilson in Cosmic Trigger (1977). Chapel Perilous represents a stage in life when a sense of ordinariness falls away, replaced by uncertainty and paranoia. The individual must pass through this “initiatory” experience in order to access the higher states of consciousness represented by 5th through 8th grades.

Alli thinks of the first four grades as making up a preprogrammed “robot self” that most people never question but which our intelligence can advance beyond through “reprogramming.” Leary, Wilson and Alli all indulged this computer program metaphor of the mind, and Leary popularized LSD as a sure fire way to achieve reprogramming. Chapel Perilous can lead to one’s undoing or to a retreat to the first four grades, but successful handling of the harrowing experience will lead to a new relationship to one’s robot/animal/body, and to greater powers of intelligence.

– G. Lee Young, PhD  

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Chapel Perilous is a name given to that place where “souls” go after leaving their robot bodies … while these bodies are still alive and walking the planet’s surface. Numerous are the reasons for leaving the body, each constituting a “sermon” in CHAPEL PERILOUS. The Sermons of CHAPEL PERILOUS provide the lessons by which each individual soul learns how to get back to their body. Due to the highly ambiguous and elusive nature of the CHAPEL’s terrain, its revoling door is often tricky to find.

The word chapel implies “a place of worship, usually smaller and more intimate than a church or cathedral” and perilous means “fraught with peril or danger”; CHAPEL PERILOUS refers to a place where danger is worshipped. Danger explodes in a kaleidoscope of shocks … haunting, petrifying, beautiful, dreary, euphoric, mechanical and alive. It is this phenomenon of shock that most often sends the soul catapulting out of the body and into the oblivion of CHAPEL PERILOUS, where it gropes aimlessly for its other half. Meanwhile, its body continues on automatic pilot … following its generic, genetic orders like any good robot should.

Shock, as defined here, is that effect initiated by a source beyond our control which suddenly alters our sense of ourselves and the world around us. Shocks arrive in a variety of impacts, ranging from the mild to the severely traumatic. An energetic function of shock is to temporarily disconnect us from our usual, habitual and routine ways of doing things … behavior, language, attitude, etc. It often produces a sense of Limbo, floating feelings and an overall “disconnectedness.” Depending on how traumatic the shock is, we’ll enter into anything from “spaciness” to the Permanent Vocation of Psychosis. Shock temporarily disconnects the soul from the body and sends it to CHAPEL PERILOUS to learn the lesson of its Sermon. This process of returning to ourselves, our bodies, will be referred to as INITIATION.

Initiation is creative response to the unknown. Since shock disconnects us, how do we reconnect and where do we begin? One creative way to respond to shock is by reconnecting ourselves to new habits and routines which increase our intelligence and make us happy. During the phase of our disconnection, we are perhaps most vulnerable to impressions and suggestions from ourselves and others. It is during this time that new directions may be initiated and crystallized when the “gap of our death” eventually closes down again and we stabilize. The contrary is true, as well, but perhaps in a more detrimental way … ask any acidhead. LSD opens this gap and we enter “peak imprint time.” If we’re naive to this effect and don’t reconnect ourselves creatively, we lapse back even deeper into our previous habitual patterns … like them or not. CHAPEL PERILOUS is where we end up if we don’t like them because souls don’t take well to bodies in pain. They just up and leave the robots to their own resources. Ask any body.

Every Sermon in CHAPEL PERILOUS addresses itself to the soul’s need to completely commit itself to living through the body … each Sermon differs, as each soul needs to hear this in its own way. The congregation of CHAPEL PERILOUS is made up of Lost Souls who all wait for the Priest to read their particular sermon so they may leave the terrible redundancy of remaining in church.

***

Alli includes seven such sermons in Angel Tech and suggests that there are more. I will reproduce one of them here (the shortest one). – G. Lee Young, PhD

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SERMON FOUR – SUICIDE AND FREE WILL

As you’ve already noticed, the silver cord connecting yourselves to the umbilical region of your human forms was not made to last. A few of you have probably already severed your ties and drift aimlessly like high-flying kites, set free into an electrical thunderstorm. Of course, this was your choice. However, you are also aware of the karmic implications of suicide and because you are, you understand the consequences of doing it again. From the beginning of time, we were introduced to the enormous debt induced by taking our own lives. Its ONLY “spiritual function” is as an evolutionary inhibitor. Suicide is the emergency brake on the genetic roller coaster. It’s not meant to be used unless all other resources have been exhausted. As you realize, it requires a great deal of commitment to investigate these resources in the first place, without which, suicide becomes an expression of ignorance … of not having the time and energy to see the obvious. For those of you contemplating suicide, there is a terrible humility awaiting you …

As you are starting to understand, the Afterlife is experienced differently by each soul depending upon the beliefs you picked up while living through the human form. I’m sure you can appreciate the humor in this. While we are disembodied, we have as much knowledge of human life as humans do of the disembodied realm … mercifully little. This, of course, is part of the immense fascination shared between realms for the other. For example: Humans think death is a very serious, big event where everything changes. Little do most of them realize how big a joke it actually is! For us, this is common knowledge … death changes nothing and it is because of this spiritual truth that suicide is suicidal … it doesn’t work. We remain ourselves in spite of death. On the other hand, as disembodied souls, we know very little about free will which, as we are beginning to discover, only exists within the human form. In our so-called “spirit realm,” we are subservient to cosmic law and this is as normal to us as free will ought to be to human beings … but it isn’t obvious until we return and claim our human forms to experience the exquisite freedom contained therein.

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