Friday, November 23, 2007

Carol Maltby

One thing about having blogs is that I meet all kinds of new people (new to me that is.) Carol Maltby, who is also blog obsessed it seems, (she appears to have five) left an interesting comment regarding Richelle Hawks article Yabba Dabble Doo: How Crowely Introduced the Iconic Gray Alien, which I posted about here.

I'll post Carol's comment here, since it brings up a very different perspective and worth thinking upon:
Little Lam, who made thee?

Looking at the Thelemic links that Hawks supplies, I'm struck by the way the writers miss some of the visual aspects of the Lam image.

Lam is a gateway all right. A vulva.

While the version Hawks uses is cropped to fit her Strieber cover art relationship, there are other versions available online that are not so murky. See for example this closeup at

Let's play fashionista for a moment. What, precisely, is Lam wearing? One of Ed Wood's angora sweaters? A garment made out of the pelt of an Airedale? Or is it pubic hair?

What looks like hands pressed palm to palm at the bottom of the portrait in the smaller reproductions online clearly is not when you look at a better reproduction. In context, they are far more likely to be labial folds than fingers. Note the radiating lobes around the mouth, which resemble no normal chin structure, nor one customarily mentioned in descriptions of Greys. Thinking of them as anal ridges fits the vulval aspects, both in location and context.

If you are feeling like stretching the boundaries further, there's a fair argument to be made that Lam's head echoes the Venus of Willendorf.

Consider "his" cheeks to be her thighs, his dark triangular eye area to echo her broad pubic triangle. The highlighted rounded areas just above Lam's eyes show hints of nipples. The highlighted nose area rising up and dividing into two arms that set off the upper forehead echoes the uterus and fallopian tubes.

What might this interpretation mean on any magickal level? I don't do turgid OTO-speak, so I can't supply meaning in that context, other than the self-evident notion that we do all come from an egg, and are of women born.

But I do know that not being able to accurately describe what's in front of us is the downfall of many trying to interpret the strange things they've seen, and really gets in the way of knowledge, especially when these interpretations ossify into the accepted explanations.

I encourage you to check out her blogs as well.


Carol Maltby said...

Regan, I was amused to find another connection that might be relevant to my LAM speculation.

It seems that the levator ani muscle is commonly known by its acronym, LAM. It supports the pelvic floor and anus.

Crowley as Trickster? Or the Trickster having its way with Crowley? :)

I'm not so much blog-obsessed, as realizing that 5 blogs are a bare minimum for keeping my diverse interests in some sort of order!

R. Lee said...

Hi Carol,

Crowley was a Trickster, I believe, and sexuality is a huge part of magick/esoteric systems of course.

I know what you mean about the blogs; that's why I have five myself; to keep my "diverse interests" in order as well!

There's an interesting thread going on about this very topic; Crowley and LAM, on Department 47.
You should go over there and see what's what if you like.

richelle said...

Hi Regan and Carol--Inaccurate description of what is right in front of us is one of the motivations for the article; the developing LAM-as-ET legend has been consistently rehashed with the same caveat 'except for the eyes' while there are obvious, not so subtle areas that can be interpreted as alien bug eyes very prominent in the rendering. Having said that, I want to make it clear that I'm not even a proponent of the so-called LAM hypothesis.
The sexual/erotic/genitalia elements present within the LAM drawing are fairly a hallmark of Crowley's; he even fashioned his own signature into a phallus. I don't discount at all the vulvar aspects of LAM, but because of the context (the artist) in this case, I'm not sure if that should be considered as a quite meaningful, subversive, subliminal, or hidden feature in LAM, either by design or interpretation.