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Sex and Rockets: The Occult World of Jack Parsons

Sex and Rockets: The Occult World of Jack Parsons [Kindle Edition]

John Carter , Robert Anton Wilson
3.4 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (10 Kundenrezensionen)

Kindle-Preis: EUR 9,11 Inkl. MwSt. und kostenloser drahtloser Lieferung über Amazon Whispernet

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Kindle Edition EUR 8,64  
Kindle Edition, 31. Dezember 1999 EUR 9,11  
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Taschenbuch EUR 12,30  


Scientist, poet, and self-proclaimed Antichrist, Jack Parsons was a bizarre genius whose life reads like an implausible yet irresistible science fiction novel. Sex and Rockets looks at his short life and dual career as cofounder of Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and leader of the Agape Lodge of Aleister Crowley's Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO). Author John Carter scours primary documents and interviews surviving friends and contemporaries to deliver an intriguing portrait of a dreamy, driven man equally interested in rocketry and magick. From his early childhood and deep attachment to his mother (who killed herself hours after he died) through his nonacademic research and brilliant innovations in solid fuels to his mysterious 1952 demise in a garage-laboratory explosion at the age of 37, the reader gets the impression of a man whose obsession with explosives and propellants was nearly single-minded. Yet this same man found spiritual fulfillment through Crowley's Law of Thelema, conducted magickal operations with L. Ron Hubbard, and signed an oath asserting himself to be the Antichrist--clearly Parsons wasn't a boring guy in a white coat. Carter pulls off the difficult task of integrating Parsons's disparate drives into one compelling story; though there are some rough spots and awkward transitions, one gets the sense that this illuminates the man's life better than a smooth, flawless work would. Robert Anton Wilson's introduction is smart and funny as always, initiating the uninformed into the basics of Crowleyanity while placing Parsons in the context of his times. While it might not be possible to read universal themes into Parsons's life, Sex and Rockets is an excellent study of a passionate life fully lived. --Rob Lightner


Jack Parsons was a brilliant scientist whose innovations in solid rocket fuel were responsible for Allied air victories in WWII as well as early advances in space flight. A cofounder of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the California Institute of Technology, he was honored by NASA for his accomplishments when they named a moon crater after him. But outside the laboratory, Parsons immersed himself in a shadowy world unknown to his professional colleagues -- a world where Parsons practiced occult rituals with his mentor, Aleister Crowley, a self-professed Antichrist. When Parsons befriended L. Ron Hubbard, who later ran off with Parsons's money and his wife, his life became even more peculiar. Ultimately, his increasingly obsessive experiments -- he aimed to create a creature with magical powers -- sparked a chemical explosion that killed him.



3.4 von 5 Sternen
3.4 von 5 Sternen
Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen
5.0 von 5 Sternen 666 WORDS ON JACK PARSONS 21. Februar 2000
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Formulated by British humorist Stephen Potter circa 1950, thedoctrine of one-upmanship states quite simply that it is the businessof every intelligent man, no matter what situation he finds himself in, to be "one up" on the other chap. It is a philosophy that Jack Parsons, who died some two years later, would have benefited immensely by adopting. For a brilliant scientist Parsons was capable of remarkable naivete and as Gerald Suster delicately puts it, often had ideas "in excess of his ability to deal with them." In addition to being a rotten judge of character he wasn't conspicuously overburdened with common sense and had a knack amounting almost to genius for placing himself "one down" in relation to what Aleister Crowley called "our Brethren in California." Chief among these "Brethren in California" was of course Scientology founder Lafayette Ron Hubbard, who bamboozled Parsons with a series of "inspired" messages relating to the incarnation of Babalon, which he claimed to receive straight from the horse's mouth. Nowadays most sensible people associate Hubbard with the other end of the horse, but in the early Forties he was still an unknown quantity and seemingly had no trouble in swindling Parsons out of his money, his wife and his credibility in Crowley's eyes. ("It is the ordinary confidence trick.") Parsons was a potent but wildly erratic writer whose surviving material veers from elegiac beauty to surpassing daftness. If any constant can be traced through his work, good, bad or indifferent, it is that of schoolboy rebellion against "all authority not based on courage and manhood." Among other qualities, he shared with Crowley a conviction that "the key of joy is disobedience," and "conjured up" Marjorie Cameron to help him live it to the full. Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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1.0 von 5 Sternen Tedious, Confused, and Awful 15. Februar 2000
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
After reading the relatively glowing reviews here and in several magazines, I was looking forward to this book. The dual nature of Parsons' work and personal life was, and still is, interesting to me. Throw in some technical jargon (I'm an aerospace engineer) and I'm ready for a good time. However, this book was simply awful, and it's difficult to know where to begin the bad review.
The author makes the classical mistake of the academic or believer to describe the occult or mystical in minute details, spending paragraph after paragraph listing degress, rites, rituals, temples, splinter groups, etc. Background and explanation is good, a college course is not.
The actual description of events is needlessly confusing, with the tiresome use of the "later" approach, i.e., "we will see later why --insert topic-- is important". If something is important enough to bring up, describe it now. I haven't seen this technique used this much since freshmen english. Also, there is a constant tendency in the book to play catch up with Parson's work versus his personal life. The author seems to start with a simple "two path" description, but relatively quickly (approx. chapter 5) branches to Parson's personal/mystical life, and then spends a paragraph here, a chapter there, to finish off Parson's professional career.
The worst aspect of the book is the fact that I don't really have a better understanding of Parsons the man now then I did before I read the book. I simple possess a few more facts, mostly irrelevant, and sense of loss for the time I wasted. The book is far more interested in explaining, possibly promoting, the occult than exploring the different aspects of Parson.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen A Seminal Work and Definitive Biography 2. Dezember 1999
Von "shedona"
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
_Sex and Rockets_, a new book from Feral House about Jack Parsons, is rich with previously undocumented biographical information about this fascinating and talented genius, whose scientific career is no less interesting than his career as an occult initiate. This literal "son of Captain Marvel" (Marvel H. Parsons) was himself given the name Marvel at birth. Later his mother began calling him John, and he came to be known as Jack by his friends. In general Carter's book seems pretty well-researched. I appreciate the fact that _Sex and Rockets_ focuses more on the subject of Jack and his life than earlier literary efforts which have exploited the mythos surrounding Jack and his infamous Babalon Working to propagate highly speculative, only vaguely and loosely associated fringe agendas on the part of various writers. Carter has done a good job sticking to the subject.
The research in _Sex and Rockets_ focuses primarily on Jack's scientific career and secondarily on the Babalon Working itself. Of the former, the author traces a clear path detailing, validating and celebrating Parsons' contributions to the field of rocket fuel technology. Carter succeeds in his mission to carefully excavate and restore the previously almost-buried name and contributions of this scientist to their rightful stature in history. Of the latter, the author draws a clear juxtaposition between Cameron's view of the Babalon Working and Jack's own understanding.
Lesen Sie weiter... ›
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Die neuesten Kundenrezensionen
1.0 von 5 Sternen A surprisingly dull book.
Clearly Parsons was a fascinating character, and yet 'John Carter' manages to be boring. The seemingly endless recitations of the minutiae of various arcane rituals, the terms... Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 30. Mai 2000 veröffentlicht
This book has it all- witchcraft, kinky sex, L.Ron Hubbard,Crowley - the list goes on and on. A TRUE story about the mostimportant scientist of the 20th century after Einstein,... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 23. Mai 2000 von Parsons 210
1.0 von 5 Sternen A dull book with poor focus
I agree with Dr. Matthew Rivas-- this book is a disappointment. I bought it after reading a review in WIRED magazine, and found it to be a rambling biography that offers little... Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 31. März 2000 veröffentlicht
5.0 von 5 Sternen Excellent bio!
A friend bought this for me, and when I started it, I expected a dry listing of Parson's life. What I got was a fasinating unfurling of the life of a truly amazing man. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 12. März 2000 von Raven
4.0 von 5 Sternen A fascinating niche in space history
An absolutely fascinating book for anyone interested in either the history of the US space program, rocketry or the occult . . . or just in the evolution of a disturbed mentality. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 7. Januar 2000 veröffentlicht
4.0 von 5 Sternen A tantalizing view of a misunderstood man
_Sex and Rockets_ is a fascinating look at the mundane and occult experiences of Jack Parsons. The most interesting thing about the book (and the man) is that very juxtaposition:... Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 8. Dezember 1999 veröffentlicht
4.0 von 5 Sternen A Seminal and Definitive Biography
_Sex and Rockets_, a new book from Feral House about Jack Parsons, is rich with previously undocumented biographical information about this fascinating and talented genius, whose... Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 2. Dezember 1999 veröffentlicht
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Beliebte Markierungen

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Terence McKenna's Food of the Gods, which argues that all existing religions evolved from paleolithic rituals using entheogens and group sex to achieve ego-transcendence and cosmic consciousness. &quote;
Markiert von 4 Kindle-Nutzern
Jehovah's Witnesses, predicted the end of the world would happen on October 2, 1914, the day of John Parsons' birth, &quote;
Markiert von 3 Kindle-Nutzern
John Parsons' life would end 37 years later just blocks from the very place where he grew up, at 1071 S. Orange Grove. &quote;
Markiert von 3 Kindle-Nutzern

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