… a thought making crooked all that is straight.

THE BLACK HEART CAMPAIGN

Heads on fire and drunken lights
Oh, days devoured by hungry nights
In love’s secret domain…
– Coil, “Love’s Secret Domain”

The Black Heart Campaign is an art project, marketing initiative and magical crusade raising awareness on behalf of Love. Not the bloodless, homogenized, socialized Love that already gets so much lip service in this world today. Wild Love, Dark Love, Heretical Love, Unpopular Love, Dangerous Love. The Black Heart Campaign aims to acknowledge such Love and to enthusiastically celebrate it.

One immediately thinks of romantic feelings and sexuality. These are Big Things, obviously, and should certainly be taken to their own fullest and most idiosyncratic expressions – but the Black Heart Campaign also encompasses much more. It is total. It encompasses every aspect of life and existence.

The psychologist Abraham Maslow showed that people generally have the same types of needs: air, water, food, shelter, sexual satisfaction, friendship and intimacy, intellectual and aesthetic stimulation and personal growth and fulfillment. The problem is that there are so many people who decide upon specific ideals, models and rules for how these needs should be expressed and fulfilled, and that these ideals, models and rules are correct for everyone. Some of us disagree – and disagree strongly – with these ideals, models and rules. Subcultures form around the alternatives.

Those of us who have travelled through various subcultures that embrace the “dark” or “extreme” aspects of existence can often be characterized by a spirit of pure revolt against the standards, values and aesthetics of Everybody Else. This is completely understandable. However, we must recognize that all of the time and energy that we give to the hating of what we hate is time and energy that is taken away from the loving of what we love. That hate, itself, can be great fun in measured doses – but if we look honestly at ourselves and those around us, we are forced to admit that this is often excessive.

The Black Heart Campaign aims to shift the balance.

The Love that flows from the Black Heart is not sloppy, syrupy or sentimental. It is not a Love that turns the other cheek. It is certainly not an “unconditional” Love, because no such thing can truly exist. We love something or someone because we find it or them to be exceptional and preferable to something or someone else – it or they satisfy a unique need or desire – and this is the condition that can never be absent in love.

Your energies flow in the direction of your attention. Your attention is, itself, an energy. Obviously, psychologically, what you focus your attention on expands and becomes stronger in your mind and in your life. Not-so-obviously, magically, what you focus your attention on expands and becomes stronger in the world. What do you want to nurture and empower with your attention? What nurtures and empowers you or what diminishes and weakens you? What you love or what you hate? Do not dilute your attention and scatter your energies – concentrate them! Lavish your attention and love on what and who brings you joy and watch those things grow.

Furthermore, expressing and pursuing your Deep Desire(s) is the only path that will take you to your kindred friends, allies, lovers and others that share your passions and can help you to fulfill and enjoy them. How else could you find each other? The actions that you take in your pursuit of your obsessions will take you to where the others are. Your forthrightness about them will help the others to recognize you.

So, look deep within your own Black Heart and find the ideas, images, sounds, smells, tastes and feelings that most electrify your soul. Bring them forth, hunt them down, draw them to you and weave a life of wonder from them. Make that life an eternal flame of ecstasy and freedom, the blazing glory of the Black Heart.

Edward Pandemonium, Halloween XLVI/2011

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