Robert Anton Wilson 1932/2007 has passed away after a long illness plagued by financial difficulties, that were in a large part ameliorated by an
online campaign by friends and admirers. Wilson was the author of cult classics as the Illuminati trilogy and the Cosmic Trigger that poked fun at
conspiracy theories and just about every other scared cow.
['Robert Anton Wilson Defies Medical Experts and leaves his body @4:50 AM on binary date 01/11.
All Hail Eris!
On behalf of his children and those who cared for him, deepest love and gratitude for the tremendous support and lovingness bestowed upon us.
(that's it from Bob's bedside at his fnord by the sea)
RAW Memorial February 2007
date to be announced"]
Robert Anton Wilson enjoyed his first death so much; he decided to try it again. As Wilson himself wrote in his 1995 book, Cosmic Trigger III: My Life
This time around, it appears that Mr. Wilson has actually left corporeality, appropriately on 1/11 (at 4:50 am – you hardcore number freaks can get
to work on the meaning of that one… I do see a five in there!).
For this cosmic cub scout, Bob Wilson was the motherload. Books like The Illuminatus! Trilogy, Cosmic Trigger, and Coincidance killed most of what
little dogmatism I had left in me, and opened me up to a world of possibilities as large as space travel and as small as quantum physics. He also had
a razor sharp wit that he skillfully aimed at those who abuse power and wealth. And he was a delightful story teller, whose love of language was
evidenced not only by his own novels, but by his ability to quote virtually everything James Joyce and Ezra Pound ever wrote… backwards, while
explaining what evolutionary level of primate behavior the author was elucidating.
As the result of medical expenses and problems with the IRS, Wilson found himself in a financial squeeze towards the end of his life. Word went out
and the internet community responded by sending him $68,000 within the first couple of days (and undoubtedly some more after that). This allowed RAW
to die with the comfort, grace and dignity that he deserved. Special props go to Douglas Rushkoff and the folks at Boing Boing (and to all the
individuals who contributed) for making that happen.
Robert Anton Wilson taught us all that “the universe contains a maybe.” So maybe there is an afterlife, and maybe Bob’s consciousness is
hovering around all of us who were touched by his words and his presence all these years. And if that’s the case, I’m sure he’d like to see you
do something strange and irreverent — and yet beautiful –- in his honor.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
I remember reading the Illuminati trilogy, one of the longest shaggy dog stories ever written, when I was about 18 and being totally blown away
(or was it the pot and acid?) by the convoluted tale he wove. Later his Cosmic Trigger series provided me guideposts along the way for the questioning
of authority, reality and just about everything else I could think of. His work, while poking a stick in the eye of conspiracy theories (and
conventional wisdom) also pointed out that the world is far stranger, complex and richer than any conjuncture and that the nature of true evil is so
banal that it borders on boring, that it is what is thought to be normal can be the most dangerous and destructive of all.
His type of intellectual gladfly is sorely needed these days and will surely be missed.
Related News Links: