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The Publius Enigma — The unsolved Pink Floyd riddle

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posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 02:43 PM
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Does anyone remember the Publius Enigma (Mystery of the people), the riddle surrounding the album the Division Bell put out by Pink Floyd 20 years ago?



To my knowledge, the riddle, likely a marketing ploy invented by Pink Floyd publicists, is unsolved and abandoned 20 years later. In honor of the rerelease of the Division Bell, perhaps we can solve it...

Here's the original post made by someone named Publius way back in 1994:




My friends,

You have heard the message Pink Floyd has delivered,
but have you listened?

Perhaps I can be your guide, but I will not solve the enigma for you.

All of you must open your minds and communicate with each other,
as this is the only way the answers can be revealed.

I may help you, but only if obstacles arise.

Listen.

Read.

Think.

Communicate.

If I don't promise you the answers would you go.


Publius
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
To find out more about the anon service, send mail to he...@anon.penet.fi.
Due to the double-blind, any mail replies to this message will be anonymized,
and an anonymous id will be allocated automatically. You have been warned.
Please report any problems, inappropriate use etc. to ad


Of course, many were skeptical. Here's a follow up post with more info.


AS SOME OF YOU HAVE SUSPECTED, "The Division Bell" is not like its
predecessors. Although all great music is subject to multiple
interpretations, in this case there is a central purpose and a
designed solution. For the ingenious person (or group of persons)
who recognizes this - and where this information points to - a
unique prize has been secreted.

How and Where?
The Division Bell
Listen again
Look again
As your thoughts will steer you
Leading the blind while I stared out the steel
in your eyes.
Lyrics, artwork and music will take you there


At one point Publius even authenticated himself in mysterious fashion:


To validate the trust of those who believe, as well as
to reconcile the doubt of others, I have gone to great
lengths to plan the following display of communication:

Monday, July 18
East Rutherford, New Jersey
Approximately 10:30pm

Flashing white lights.

There is an enigma.

Trust.


As promised, this showed up in the lighting at the concert on that date:




The music, the album art, the lyrics, apparently all play into the riddle.

What do you think?


edit on 24-6-2014 by LesMisanthrope because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 02:56 PM
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I think you're Publius!



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 03:24 PM
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a reply to: olaru12

I won't rule anything out.



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 03:34 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope




posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 03:40 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope


References to the Publius Enigma can be found in various Pink Floyd releases:

P*U*L*S*E, a DVD of the 20 October 1994 televised concert at Earls Court, London, contains footage of the word ENIGMA being projected in large letters on to the backdrop of the stage during the song "Another Brick in the Wall (Part II)". The DVD's authoring company, Das Boot, uses an enigma machine as their logo, which can be seen at the end of the show.
In the artwork for the MiniDisc release of A Momentary Lapse of Reason, the word "PUBLIUS" has been inserted into the photo of the man in the rye field. The word "ENIGMA" appears in the lower corner of the picture of the man standing on the edge of the cliff.
The words "Publius Enigma" can be heard spoken just before the song "One of These Days" on the 2003 DVD release of Pink Floyd: Live at Pompeii.
Storm Thorgerson's cover for John Harris' book The Dark Side of the Moon, published by HarperCollins in 2005 prominently includes the word "ENIGMA" alongside an ellipsis.
Page 13 of The Division Bell's CD booklet contains an anagram of the word "enigma", hidden in third column from the right of the top verse of the lyrics to Wearing the Inside Out, perfectly aligned with the page number "jyusan".[13] Anthony Moore, who wrote the lyrics to the song, has denied that the anagram was intentional on his part.[14]



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 03:41 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

Somewhat off topic but, have any members of The Pink Floyd, ever talked about Dark Side of Oz?
edit on 24-6-2014 by WakeUpBeer because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 03:45 PM
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a reply to: WakeUpBeer




Somewhat off topic but, have any members of The Pink Floyd, ever talked about Dark Side of Oz?


I'm not sure. It would be interesting to find out.

If I was them, I would have produced every album in that manner, even if it was all coincidental.



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 04:01 PM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

"We like to watch old movies while listening to Hotel California to see if it synchs up in a significant way. And so far, no, nothing has" - Mort Goldman

Wish I could contribute to this Publius Enigma. I look forward to reading this thread though. I love the Floyd all the way back to Piper at the Gates of Dawn.
edit on 24-6-2014 by WakeUpBeer because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 04:29 PM
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I need to educate myself in regards to Pink Floyd, however one thing that I have noticed in their symbology, is a likeness to project BlueBeam technology; Triangles, Lights, UFO's... The surrealism in the art depicts an altered state of reality.



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 06:16 PM
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A N E W M E S S A G E


Congratulations to all those who have newly begun the search.
Many of you correctly identified my signal last Monday (7/18). As
promised, this gesture should serve as visible proof of my
truthfulness and of the enigma's existence. Contrary to recent
postings, this beacon has never appeared previously. If necessary,
check your available resources to verify this fact.


For those of you who still number among the non-believers, I
have provided verification of my credentials and I am finished
attempting to appease you. Originally, the newsgroup requested
evidence of my legitimacy and, in fairness to what I was asking of
you, I complied. I believe I have been generous in what I've
offered. I have extended you all an invitation into something
exclusive and unique - a token of appreciation for your continued
Pink Floyd interest. However, some of you still distrust the proof
that has been clearly shown to you.


An integral part of solving this enigma is a willingness to
imagine and speculate creatively. While some of you still seem
resistant to engage in such endeavors, I have no further
inclination to try and prove a claim you will simply never choose
to accept - regardless of what efforts I undertake to convince you
otherwise. I am not willing to engage in a futile battle with
skeptics. You will either have to contend with what proof has been
supplied or return to your regular newsgroup dialogue and discuss
whatever matters you feel secure are within your complete sphere of
understanding. Sadly, there will be no part in the enigma for you.
Stand aside, and let those who have demonstrated the incentive to
embrace this challenge with an eager and open mind pass by
unencumbered by your flames and arrows.



BEST OF LUCK to all who have begun researching the available
clues! I promise that you have embarked on what will ultimately be
an enriching and fascinating journey. Judging from recent
postings, many of you are asking intelligent questions and raising
provocative issues. Progress is being made. Do not be frustrated
in your initial attempts. Recall my earlier caution that the
solution to this enigma will not be discovered easily. It was
designed to be unlocked only with time and healthy perseverance.


Your newfound persistence has paid off and, in turn, let me
provide a few more hints to orient your research. Though the
newsgroup discourse is generally moving in a positive direction,
examine in particular the posts of Matt Denault, mcginni, John Take
and Evan Coyne Maloney for helpful clues. Well done people!


I will also provide some new data to work with:

My friends

* A recipe for a solution

Review the division bell material

Orient yourselves a first time, then

Open your minds again a second time to truly move ahead

Notice everything that has been presented

since all the necessary Evidence has been supplied

Direct yourselves with communication


: and two more -


Leading the blind while I stared out the steel in your eyes
(this clue has already been posted, but has not yet been
thoroughly addressed)

A question: what exactly is a division bell and where could
this lead your thoughts?



Please note that my communication with you will now become less
frequent. Recall what has been previously explained: "I may help
you, but only if obstacles arise." I was not sent to directly
supervise, nor to instruct or acknowledge your progress on a
regular basis. I was only dispatched to begin guiding you in the
right direction. Clearly, many of you have followed my lead and
now the onus is on you to make further inroads into solving this
enigma. Be prepared to travel! Your effort - albeit demanding -
will be rewarded with a treasure waiting to be unearthed. Make no
mistake; this prize is real and certainly very tangible. Organize
yourselves formally, plan a true method of investigation, choose
your leaders. Rest assured that I am always watching and will
certainly return to aid in the event of any serious deadlock.
However, this challenge was intended to be met by you - the Pink
Floyd experts. My role is clearly secondary.


Lastly, for those of you who are still concerned with unveiling
my identity, I have repeatedly stated that this matter is not at
issue. "It is the message that is important, and not who delivers
it." Although this notion seems to cause you endless irritation,
my anonymity is my right (as it would be yours). I have always
understood that the Internet was founded on the precepts of
respecting other community members. I would only hope that those
nay-sayers respect the rights of the voluntary enigma participants
and my continued right to privacy as well. You may not agree with
what I have to say, but I still have a right to say it without
hindrance.



Best wishes to all in your search!





- Publius

- ------------------------------------------------------------------------
To find out more about the anon service, send mail to help@anon.penet.fi.
Due to the double-blind, any mail replies to this message will be anonymized,
and an anonymous id will be allocated automatically. You have been warned.
Please report any problems, inappropriate use etc. to admin@anon.penet.fi.

edit on 24-6-2014 by LesMisanthrope because: (no reason given)

edit on 24-6-2014 by LesMisanthrope because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 24 2014 @ 09:54 PM
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a reply to: WakeUpBeer


have any members of The Pink Floyd, ever talked about Dark Side of Oz?

Yes. Roger Waters said he tried it one day (watching Wizard on video while playing DSOTM) and was surprised at how well the two fitted together. It was completely accidental, apparently.

I'm afraid I don't remember the source, but it was probably an interview in Q magazine.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 06:07 AM
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So what are the clues? Do you have to examine lyrics and album art? From every Floyd album or just a certain one or two? Or are the clues only the cryptic phrases like the one about steel eyes? It would he nice to have all the clues laid out in one place. It said the prize/treasure would be "unearthed" so it could be buried somewhere for all these years?

I think it's amazing they would let it go on for this long without just coming out and saying what it is or giving more clues to speed up the process. It seems like someone is really committed to this.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 09:31 AM
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a reply to: 3n19m470

It all has to do with the album The Division Bell, it's lyrics, music and artwork. Yeah it's very cryptic. My best bet was to start at the wikipedia page. Apparently there are clues in Publius' posts as well. I don't think we are going to solve it if some diehard pink floyd fans haven't already. But it's an opportunity to listen and look at the album again on its 20 year anniversary.

After listening, the album seems to be a lot about language and thought. The page numbers in the cd booklet are in different languages. A lot of the lyrics have to do with communication.

There is actually very little out there on this riddle.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 09:41 AM
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do you have a link that shows the album pages?
I couldn't possibly attempt to solve this with cover art and music lyrics alone since there is only partial information there.
edit on 6/25/2014 by EyesOpenMouthShut because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 09:50 AM
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a reply to: EyesOpenMouthShut

I have the album in my hands. I would wager there is a large scan out there somewhere on the Google. Other than that, I am of little help.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 10:55 AM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope

...all i 'get' out of this (and their other stuff) is social engineering???
the book cover you posted confirms this (afaic)

i don't mind the music & all that embedded content, but it's not as though anything ever came from any of it..
like the female-empowerment of katy perry & pink etc, i say all this "stuff" is not what is seems..

division..
the two faces (facing eachother) are a synthetic polarity union.
they don't necessarily represent individuals, it's more about masses of people
these faces are meant to represent you & i, because at this stage in the game it's ideologies, groupthink & political-correctness that influences the individual anyway..
so they are "robotic" (sculpted) heads for that very reason..
they represent "21st century people"
i think stalin would have loved seeing this album cover (and all the marching hammers etc)
he would've known what it all meant
he would've laughed because everyone associates the scene with liberation, enlightenment & knowledge

the whole album cover itself is dark, mechanical & artificial but enough of that,
the bodies are submerged, all that remains are those heads (those ideologies..)
the two faces also encode a broken heart (which is clever, because love in the 21st century is obsolete)
that's probably why they're effectively devouring their little dwelling in the background
(in the attempt to come together, they are destroying themselves)
maybe i'm just jaded but their future & background surroundings look pretty bleak..

i think 'the mystery of the people' is what is actually *happening* to the people..

the riddle just seems to be something that keeps people busy while the joke is on us?



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 11:28 AM
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a reply to: UNIT76

I enjoyed your interpretation. It sounds like that is the right direction.

The "mystery of the people" is my only conjecture and contribution. I don't think it exists anywhere out side of this thread. In one the of the messages, knowledge of ancient languages is mentioned as an asset. According to some etymologists, Publius has the same root as populus and publicus, meaning "of the people". But i could be way off, for publius itself means praenomen, or personal name in latin. It could very well be the mystery or riddle of personal names.

But I think the first step would be to uncover what a "Division Bell" is:




Leading the blind while I stared out the steel in your eyes
(this clue has already been posted, but has not yet been
thoroughly addressed)

A question: what exactly is a division bell and where could
this lead your thoughts?



It could all be a complete farce wild goose chase.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 11:39 AM
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a reply to: LesMisanthrope
a division bell was used in older times when there was an issue which required a vote. when the bell rang, all came to cast their vote and once the bell stopped, the doors were closed and none were permitted entry.
the only thing i get out of all this is that the world needs to communicate, unify, and produce a solution to the issues of social injustice. Also i think this is the hidden treasure but without being able to look over the album booklet i have no way to know if it even suggests a physical location for anything



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 11:40 AM
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It's opposite; The Division Bell ='s Unity

The two faces represent everybody, but when merged together form one face.

Do I get a cookie?

I loved that album, BTW.



posted on Jun, 25 2014 @ 12:11 PM
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a reply to: EyesOpenMouthShut

nice of you to drop in

an issue which required a vote. when the bell rang, all came to cast their vote and once the bell stopped, the doors were closed and none were permitted entry.

hmmm...



Publius has the same root as populus and publicus, meaning "of the people". But i could be way off, for publius itself means praenomen, or personal name in latin

hmm.. so we've got 'of the people' (many) into a 'personal name' (singular)
my latin's a little sketchy..
E PLURIBUS UNUM?


quad erat demonstradam, res ipsa loquitor?




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