Principia Discordia  

From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search

Related e

Google
Wikipedia
Wiktionary
Wiki Commons
Wikiquote
Wikisource
YouTube
Shop


Featured:
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Enlarge
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Principia Discordia is a sacred text of the Discordian religion written by Greg Hill (Malaclypse The Younger) and Kerry Thornley (Omar Khayyam Ravenhurst). It was originally published under the title "Principia Discordia or How The West Was Lost" in a limited edition of 5 copies in 1965.

The Principia describes the Discordian Society and its Goddess Eris, as well as the basics of the POEE denomination of Discordianism. It features typewritten and handwritten text intermixed with clip art, stamps, and seals appropriated from other sources, possibly in violation of copyright laws.

While the Principia is full of literal contradictions and unusual humor, it contains several passages which propose that there is serious intent behind the work, for example a message scrawled on page 00075: "If you think the PRINCIPIA is just a ha-ha, then go read it again."

The Principia is quoted extensively in and shares many themes with the science fiction book The Illuminatus! Trilogy by Robert Shea and Robert Anton Wilson. While Wilson was not directly involved in writing the Principia, both the letter signed "Mad Malik" and the stamps used were his.

Notable symbols in the book include the Apple of Discord, the pentagon, and the "Sacred Chao", which resembles the Taijitu of Taoism, but the two principles depicted are "Hodge" and "Podge" rather than yin and yang, and they are represented by the apple and the pentagon, and not by dots. Saints identified include Emperor Norton, Yossarian, Don Quixote, and Bokonon. The Principia also introduces the mysterious word fnord, later popularized in The Illuminatus! Trilogy; the trilogy itself is mentioned in the afterword to the Loompanics edition, and in the various introductions to the fifth editions.

Kopyleft

The term "kopyleft" with the notation "All Rites Reversed" was also in use in the early 1970s within the Principia Discordia, which may have inspired Hopkins or influenced other usage. And in the arts Ray Johnson had earlier coined the term independently as it pertained to his making of and distribution of his mixed media imagery in his mail art and ephemeral gifts, for which he encouraged the making of derivative works




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Principia Discordia" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

Personal tools