A writhing mass of words, spoken by many and none. A sermon in the sign of the worm. Bless the coming and going of Him. May His passage cleanse the world. My text is the first two minutes of Mgła’s Presence, played over the space-folding sequence from David Lynch’s Dune. Mystical advice for the voyage: You cannot do better than to place yourself in darkness and unknowing . . . No need to call to Him from afar: He can hardly wait for you to open up: the opening and the entering are a single act.
Worms, hungering for all the dimensions
Eat through my heart and form within my dreams
Spawn of Leviathan flows through my veins
To gracefully poison thoughts of men.
The worm stands, for not standing, for anything. The way of the worm stands in its hunger. Avoid at once the error of reducing the worm to its hunger, as if it were merely a hungering thing. Despite the interesting ontology that would entail – interesting no doubt because it would substantiate your status as philosopher-priest of the worm, as the other-than-worm that survives by occluding worms itself with names – understand that worm is prior to its hunger: worms, comma, hungering . . . Not prior in the negative direction of being the subject of hunger, as if the worm would say I hunger therefore I am. Prior in the positive direction of being the agent of hunger itself, pure and infinite hunger. Absolute prepositionality. The for that tastes and moves in the absence of all the dimensions. Note that Mgła does not say all dimensions, as if the number of dimensions were indeterminate, as if this were a nameless hunger for some unseen totality of dimensions, as if worm-hunger were a form of faith. Mgła sings all the dimensions, indicating the volitional vermicular writhing as a form of dimensional knowledge, a feeling of the t( )tality, the ( )hole. There is no turning back, but only a pressing forward . . . It never rests till it is filled with all being. Just as matter never rests till it is filled with every possible form, so too intellect never rests till it is filled to its capacity. As worms is exactly what emerges in a body’s after, so worms is precisely the corporealization of hunger as body’s before. He can hardly wait for you to open up. Worm is sign of the hunger that takes flesh, the desire that instantly makes it as instrument. It is the self-movement of the essential seizure of embodiment, the spontaneous body of primordial needing.
Remember what happened, your happening – the slimy purity of self-originating appearance. It will be an inevitable memory of what never occurred, an impossible memory of something that still must. In the absence of body, soul could not have gone forth, since there is no other place to which its nature would allow it to descend. Since go forth it must, it will generate a place for itself; at once body, also, exists. Must the sleeper awaken? Will something be born from this restless slumber? The question affirms its answer. The terrible fact of worm says yes. We now know the location of this narrow passage through which thought is able to exit from itself—it is through facticity, and through facticity alone. Specimens longer than 400 meters have been seen in the deep desert. Don’t you see, che noi siam vermi / nati a formar l’angelica farfalla? That we are worms? Like Augustine: Omnes homines de carne nascentes, quid sunt nisi vermes? Et de vermibus Angelos facit. All men born from flesh, what are they if not worms? And from worms he makes angels. Cadaver, in the common medieval etymology, comes from caro data vermibus, flesh given to worms. So what. So what is this monstrous birth, that is vermiformly at once from and to? To be born [says a dead phenomenologist] is both to be born of the world and to be born into the world.
The evolution of individualized corporeal form around the integral cyclonic ( )hole of birth and death is the crawling of WORMS, something neither produced nor created ex nihilo but born from anything, from all things. The worm is an animal that is commonly born from flesh, wood, or any terrestrial thing without any sexual union. . . . There are worms of earth, water, air . . . A something defined by its self-modulating movement, which is what worm signifies. What is my life? That which is moved from within by itself. What is moved from without is not alive. Spontaneous, from sponte, by one’s own free will, by itself. The spirit blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes or whither it goes; so it is with everyone who is born of the spirit. Such is the subtle slithering among forms, the ex-per-ientia or coming-out-of-going-through of individuated identity, the neither-this-nor-that thing for whom there is no distinction between life and being. [I]n due course, the soul experiences and feels that it is metal, vegetable, worm, fish, bird, animal, man or woman. Whatever be the type of gross form and whatever be the shape of the form, the soul spontaneously associates itself with that form, figure and shape, and experiences that it is itself that form, figure and shape. A worm . . . unfolds its motion gradually, in direct line, stretching out the contracted parts of its little body and contracting those extended parts. So set in motion, it glides along. The old doctrine of spontaneous generation is not only biologically incorrect but ontologically true of every entity – a figura or specular image of the life-event that is actually happening to you, a song sung by nothing, my sweetest vermin.
Although the soul . . . is infinite and without form, this partially conscious soul actually experiences itself as a worm in the gross world. This is ignorance. This ignorance persists as long as the consciousness of the soul is not fully evolved, but even when the soul has come to full consciousness, it is still said to be enveloped by ignorance because this fully evolved consciousness does not make the soul Self-conscious instantaneously. On the contrary, when the consciousness of the soul is fully evolved the soul begins to identify itself as a human being. You have made your way from worm to human, and much in you is still worm . . . Behold I teach you the overman . . . The overman is the meaning of the earth. Thus it is that throughout the myriads of universes there are planets on which the seven kingdoms of evolution are manifested, and the evolution of consciousness and forms is completed. But only on the planet Earth do human beings reincarnate and begin the involutionary path to Self-realization.
Earth is the centre of this infinite gross sphere of millions of universes inasmuch as it is the Point to which all human-conscious souls must migrate in order to begin the involutionary path. There will be flowing water here open to the sky and green oases rich with good things. But we have the spice to think of, too. Thus, there will always be desert on Arrakis . . . and fierce winds, and trials to toughen a man. We Fremen have a saying: ‘God created Arrakis to train the faithful.’ One cannot go against the word of God. I beseech you, my brothers, remain faithful to the earth and do not believe those who speak to you of extraterrestrial hopes! . . . They are despisers of life, dying off and self-poisoned, of whom the earth is weary: so let them fade away! Once the sacrilege against God was the greatest sacrilege, but God died, and then all these desecrators died. Now to desecrate the earth is the most terrible thing, and to esteem the bowels of the unfathomable higher than the meaning of the earth! [So] I flung myself into the oily underground river that bubbled somewhere to the caves of the sea; flung myself into that putrescent juice of earth’s inner horrors before the madness of my screams could bring down upon me all the charnel legions these pest-gulfs might conceal. . . .
[now] my dreams are filled with terror, because of phrases I dare not quote. I dare quote only one paragraph . . . “The nethermost caverns,” wrote the mad Arab, “are not for the fathoming of eyes that see; for their marvels are strange and terrific. Cursed the ground where dead thoughts live new and oddly bodied, and evil the mind that is held by no head. . . . For it is of old rumour that the soul of the devil-bought hastes not from his charnel clay, but fats and instructs the very worm that gnaws; till out of corruption horrid life springs, and the dull scavengers of earth wax crafty to vex it and swell monstrous to plague it. Great holes secretly are digged where earth’s pores ought to suffice, and things have learnt to walk that ought to crawl. Where was I?
Lost in the black presence of worms, hungering for all the dimensions, gracefully hammering the idol of my metal head with the poison thoughts of men. Sermo, a stringing together of words, from serere, to join. Regarding the particular opening I am tunneling, object all you want that evolution is not teleological. The point is that you want to. Infinite teleology, terrifying all-willing ateleological teleology flies stratospherically far above plan, has no need for it, nesting only in the endless plan of realizing there is no plan, only the planless plan of which each insane breath coming out your worm-mouth is living, transhumanating proof. For so long as we persist as dammed-up reservoirs of labour-power [says a thirster for annihilation] we preserve our humanity, but the rivers flowing into us are an irresistible urge to dissolution, pressing us into the inhumane. Beneath the regulated exchanges of words we howl and gnaw at our fettered limbs. An impersonality as blank and implacable as the sun wells up beneath us, a vermin-hunger for freedom: If I am inhuman it is because my world has slopped over its human bounds, because to be human seems like a poor, sorry, miserable affair, limited by the senses, restricted by moralities and codes, defined by platitudes and isms. Reza Negarestani – who is here in spirit, as worm – feels this when he identifies worm-space with The Whim: Nemat-space is an ultimate crawling machine; it is essentially cryptogenic and interconnected with Anonymous-until-Now. . . . Incognitum Hactenus — not known yet or nameless and without origin until now — is a mode of time in which the innermost monstrosities of the earth or ungraspable time scales can emerge according to the chronological time that belongs to the surface biosphere of the earth and its populations. . . . In Incognitum Hactenus, you never know the pattern of emergence. Anything can happen for some weird reason; yet also, without any reason, nothing at all can happen. For all the dimensions.
This is the superlative craving, the supreme prepositionality according to which anything is a perfect event, the hunger that comes from everywhere, that unleashes each thing/being/entity as an all-eating void, a ( )hole. Our luminescent, naked bodies dissolve into a swarm of obscure creeping things, and we are a mass of glutinous coiling worms, endless. Whoever walks in this way, whatever he does is all one; whether he does anything or nothing is of no account. And yet the least action or practice of such a man is more profitable and fruitful to himself and all men . . . than all the works of others who . . . are inferior to him in love. This is the continual breath of the Outsider,
the one whose heart-tablet is inscribed with the surviving invocation from the vermiform grimoire (De vermis mysteriis): Tibi, magnum Innominandum, signa stellarum nigrarum . . . To you, great Not-To-Be-Named, signs of the black stars. The one who says: Such a lot the gods gave to me – to me . . . And yet I am strangely content . . . I know not where I was born, save that the castle was infinitely old and infinitely horrible. Eckhart names him: It is one, it has nothing in common with anything, and nothing created has anything in common with it. All created things are nothing. But this is remote and alien from all creation. . . If I were to find myself for a single instant in this essence. I would have as little regard for myself as for a dung worm. All this market-driven herd-talk of ‘turns’ that now infects every culture, of this turn and that turn, is only deferred, perverted desire to become, to convert to the worm you already are, to the multiple singular agency that is culture’s very ground. When we behold a wide, turf-covered expanse, we should remember that its smoothness . . . is mainly due to all the inequalities having been slowly levelled by worms. It is a marvellous reflection that the whole of the superficial mould over any such expanse has passed, and will again pass, every few years through the bodies of worms.
Stop fearing and worrying and fussing. Feast on the flesh that only you can eat, that you must eat. They want us to fear death so much, but we can inhabit it like vermin [says Land], it can be our space . . . we can knot ourselves into the underworld, communicate through it, cook their heavenly city in our plague. Worms is not a self-grooming we. It is the only, unbounded community – a line of openness that slashes through the god, the human, the earth – the unimaginable ever-present perfect abyssal consummation of all and one. A terrible thing is intelligence. It tends to death as memory tends to stability. The living, the absolutely unstable, the absolutely individual, is, strictly, unintelligible. Science is a cemetery of dead ideas, even though life may issue from them. Worms also feed upon corpses. My own thoughts, tumultuous and agitated in the innermost recesses of my soul, once they are torn from their roots in the heart, poured out on to this paper and there fixed in unalterable shape, are already only the corpses of thoughts.
How, then, shall reason open its portals to the revelation of life? Eat the flesh of floating corpses / Heads converted to drinking bowls / Swallow the blood from these rotting skulls / Behold the ritual passage to the infinite / And mutilate oneself for him . . . Wretched flesh eaters / Unholy beggars / Meditate on TOTAL DEATH / Sacrifice of the body / Utmost annihilation of mind / All in the name of The Cursed One (Witchrist, “Devour the Flesh,” Beheaded Ouroboros). Baldasar Heseler, a Silesian medical student, was present at Andreas Vesalius’s first public human anatomy at Bologna in 1540. He wrote: When he had detached it [the cerebellum], he showed us in its end towards the beginning of the medulla the vermis below which the duct leads to the medulla along the spine. And he took out the vermis, and it was as living, like worms that grow in wood and in flesh, wie eyne made [worm]. If a Toradja man sees a worm on the path in front of him, he places his head-cloth on the ground near to it. If the worm crawls on to the cloth, he then knows that it is his own soul-substance. He puts the worm into the head-cloth which he replaces upon his head, so that the soul-substance can enter his body.
In the 14th-century Cambridge brain diagram illustrating Avicenna’s Canon of Medicine, the cerebral worm is represented between the powers of memory (vis memorativa) and cognition or imagination (cogitativa vel ymaginativa). Mediating between the two, the worm works as a valve modulating the active and passive operations of thought, its movement translated in the human tendency to lower the head when thinking and raise it when recollecting. Equipped by the artist with an oculus of its own, the vermis figure captures the identity of life and thought as theoretic, visionary movement, sermo mentis, the autophagous vermicular turning of inner conversation. All life is thought [says the sage of the One] . . . Men readily distinguish the various kinds of life but do not do the same with thought: they call some things thought and others not because they do not try to find out what life really is. . . . all beings are contemplations. . . . contemplation (theoria) and its object constitute a living thing.
Up, abysmal thought, out of my depths! . . . you sleepy worm: up! . . . Once you are awake, you shall remain awake eternally. . . . I, Zarathustra, the advocate of life, the advocate of suffering, the advocate of the circle – you I summon, my most abysmal thought! The eye with which I see God is the same eye with which God sees me. Who is the human being into whose throat everything that is heaviest, blackest will crawl?
Meanwhile the shepherd bit down as my shout advised him . . . Far away he spat the head of the snake . . . Never yet on earth had I heard a human being laugh as he laughed! . . . I heard a laughter that was not human laughter – and now a thirst gnaws at me, a longing that will never be still.
The worm stands, for not standing, for anything. It even knows how to bite off its own head, to swallow itself whole. ‘What should I do now?’ And a Voice said, ‘Eat! Eat Yourself!’ He had no choice but to eat, so He ate Himself! At that moment He found that He was EVERYTHING. It knows how to bring forth from its very powerlessness to do so. The products of putrefaction are to be traced to the Soul’s inability to bring some other thing into being. Enter then into this ( )hole.
Into the void within the planetary body, a place infinitely vaster than that the space surrounding it. Enter the black. This thing cannot be taught . . . I have passed forth out of myself . . . I am no longer an object coloured and tangible, a thing of spatial dimensions; I am now alien to all this, and to all that you perceive when you gaze with bodily eyesight. Fulfill the promise of the Reverend Mother: You will learn about the funeral plains . . . about the wilderness that is empty, the wasteland where nothing lives except the spice and the sandworms. Both are alive. Inhabit the interface and turn into the worm that you are. Convert to involution. Crawl through the blinding space of your own rot.
But You . . . turned me back toward myself, taking me . . . from where I had put myself all that time that I preferred not to see myself. And you set me there before my own face that I might see how vile I was, how twisted and unclean and ulcerous. Embrace your blackening, the corpse bride of yourself. “Any living form will suffer from the plague . . . On this very day, He will chant through me / Anything great is built upon sorrow, through your eyes I see the thousand lives I could swallow” (Antaeus, “Rot,” Rot). In order to really fuck the passions of finitude, in order to actually pierce through the dark passage of facticity, it is necessary to weaponize the correlation, to behead your being-in-the-world. Speculating about the worm is not sufficient. Better to study than to be ignorant, better to feel than to study, better to experience than to feel, better to become than experience. Once when Merwan was banging his head on the floor at home, his mother heard a thudding sound coming from his room. . . . [he] had blood all over his face. Crying she asked, “Merog, have you gone mad? Are you totally mad?” Wiping the blood off with a towel, he said, “I am not mad! I have become something else!” Bang your head into a black hole, make space for the worm to crawl. Black metal is the spice, boring into my skull. Ego . . . sum vermis et non homo (Psalm 22.6), For I am a worm and not a human. As if he were to say [comments Eriugena], I who am more than a human penetrate the secrets of all nature, as a worm [penetrates] the bowels of the earth, which no one participating only in human nature can do.
Or turn away from the transi tomb, read no further in the body-soul debate, the words of the worms ringing in your ears: Wretched soul, go away. How long shall your quarreling last? / Worms are holding their own debate, binding fast their judgments; / Maggots are casting lots on my flesh. / Many a noble body will rot. I am not the last.
Do not mourn the earth.
 Frank Herbert, Dune (New York: Ace Books, 1987), 124.
 Complete Mystical Works, trans. Maurice O’C Walshe (New York: Crossroad Publishing, 2009), Sermon 4.
 Eckhart, Complete Mystical Works, Sermon 4.
 Plotinus, Enneads, 4.3.9.
 Quentin Meillassoux, After Finitude: An Essay on the Necessity of Contingency, trans. Ray Brassier (London: Continuum, 2008), 63.
 Dune, 529.
 Purgatorio 10.124-5.
 In Joannis evangelium tractatus, 1.13; PL 35:1385.
 Phenomenology of Perception, tr. Colin Smith (London: Routledge, 1962), 527.
 “Vermis est animal quod plerumque de carne, vel de ligno, vel de quacumque re terrena sine ullo concubitu gignitur; licet nonnumquam et de ovis nascuntur, sicut scorpio. Sunt autem vermes aut terrae, aut aquae, aut aeris, aut carnium, aut frondium, aut lignorum, aut vestimentorum” (Etymologiae, 12.5, “De vermibus”).
 “Worm. As. wyrm, G. wurm, Lat. vermis, worm ; Goth, vaurms, serpent; ON. ortnr, serpent, worm. Sanscr. krmi, a worm ; Lith. kirmis, kirminis, kirmele, worm, caterpillar; kirmiti, to breed worms; Let. zirmis, maggot, worm. The origin, like that of weevil, lies in the idea of swarming, being in multifarious movement, crawling. Pl.D. kribbeln, krubbeln, krcmelen, krimmeln, kriimmeln, to be in multifarious movement, to swarm, boil. ‘Idt was daar so vull, dat idt kremeled un wemelde:’ it was so full that it swarmed. Up kribbeln (Hanover krimmeln) la/en: to let the water boil up. Du. wremelen, to creep ; Da. vrimle, to swarm ; vrimmel, a swarm” (Wedgwood & Atkinson, A Dictionary of English Etymology)
 Complete Mystical Works, Sermon 13a.
 John 3:8.
 Meher Baba, God Speaks, 5.
 “Vermis non ut serpens apertis passibus vel squamarum nisibus repit, quia non est illi spinae rigor, ut colubri, sed in directum corpusculi sui partes gradatim porrigendo contractas, contrahendo porrectas motum explicat, sicque agitatus perlabitur (Etymologiae, 12.5, “De vermibus”).
 Meher Baba, God Speaks, 20-1.
 Thus Spoke Zarathustra, trans. Adrian del Caro (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006), 6.
 Meher Baba, God Speaks, 292-3.
 Herbert, Dune, 488.
 Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathrustra, 6.
 H.P. Lovecraft, The Festival.
 Nick Land, Thirst for Annihilation, 257.
 Negarestani, Cyclonopedia, 49.
 Eugene Thacker, An Ideal for Living, 13.
 Eckhart, Complete Mystical Works, Sermon 4.
 H.P. Lovecraft, The Outsider.
 Eckhart, Complete Mystical Works, Sermon 57.
 Darwin, The Formation of Vegetable Mould, Chapter 7.
 Nick Land, Thirst for Annhilation, 93-4.
 Reza Negarestani, Cyclonopedia, 207.
 Tragic Sense of Life, trans. Anthony Kerrigan (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1972), 100-1.
 (Invictus Productions, 2010).
 Andreas Vesalius’s First Public Anatomy at Bologna, 1540: An Eyewitness Report, trans. Ruben Erikson (Uppsala, Almqvist & Wiksell, 1959), 289.
 William James Perry, The Megalithic Culture of Indonesia, 150.
 See Mary Carruthers, The Book of Memory: A Study of Memory in Medieval Culture, 2n ed. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008), 68.
 Plotinus, Enneads. 3.8.8, cited from The Essential Plotinus, trans. Elmer O’Brien and The Enneads, trans. Stephen MacKenna.
 Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, 173-4.
 Eckhart, Compelte Mystical Works, Sermon 57.
 Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, 127.
 Bhau Kalchuri, The Nothing and the Everything (Manifestation, 1981), 11.
 Plotinus, Enneads, trans. Stephen MacKenna, 5.913.
 Hermetica, trans. Walter Scott (Boston: Shambala, 1993), 239.
 Herbert, Dune, 30.
 Augustine, Confessions, trans. F.J. Sheed (Indianapolis: Hackett, 2006), 8.7.
 (Battlesk, 2004).
 Bhau Kalchuri, Meher Prabhu: The Biography of Avatar Meher Baba, 14 vols (Manifestation, 1980), 1.251-2.
 John Scotus Eriugena comments Psalm 22.6: “For none of the material things in nature is more lowly than the worm, which is conceived from simple earth. Nevertheless, through this is represented the incarnation of the Word of God, which transcends every sense and intellect [Phil 4.7]. ‘Who will explain his begetting?’ [Acts 8.33, from Isa 53.8, cf. Augustine, Expositions of the Psalms: ‘In what sense “no man”? Because he is God. Why then did he so demean himself as to say “worm”? Perhaps because a worm is born from flesh without intercourse, as Christ was from the Virgin Mary. A worm, and yet no man. Why a worm? Because he was mortal, because he was born from flesh, because he was born without intercourse. Why “no man”? Because In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God; he was God (Jn 1.1)’] It can also be understood thus: ‘I am a worm and a human is not,’ that is, I am a worm and human is not a worm. As if he were to say, I who am more than a human penetrate the secrets of all nature, as a worm [penetrates] the bowels of the earth, which no one participating only in human nature can do. With the sense agrees that which is written in another Psalm, ‘and my substance in the depths of the earth [PS 139.15], that is, and my substance, which is wisdom in itself, subsists in the depths of the earth, that is, the innermost folds of created nature. ‘For the divinity beyond being is the being of all.’ Thus the worm that penetrates the hidden things of all creation is the Wisdom of the Father, which, while human, transcends all humanity” (Commentary on the Dionysian Celestial Hierarchy). [Addam, inquit, praedictis imaginationibus illud symbolum, quod omnium vilius esse visum est, et magis significare, vel ut expressius [Col.0168C] transfertur, magis obscurum vel dissimile. Divini siquidem sapientes, id est theologi, tradiderunt, ipsam sapientiam in specie vermis seipsam formasse, eo loco fortassis, ubi per prophetam loquitur: «Ego sum vermis et non homo». Hoc enim intelligitur de Christo, qui de virili semine non est natus, sed sicut vermis de simplici natura terrae, ita ipse ex visceribus perpetuae virginis et incontaminatae carnem assumpsit. Nihil itaque in natura rerum materialium vilius verme, qui de simplici limo concipitur, et tamen per ipsum incarnatio Dei Verbi, quae superat omnem sensum et intellectum, imaginatur. «Generationem ejus quis enarrabit»? Potest et sic intelligi: Ego sum vermis et non homo, hoc est, ego sum vermis, et non homo vermis . [Col.0168D] Ac si diceret: Ego, qui plus quam homo sum, secreta penetro totius naturae, sicut vermis viscera terrae, quod nullus alius humanae naturae particeps [Col.0169A] potest agere. Cui sensui arridet, quod in alio psalmo scriptum est: «et substantia mea in inferioribus terrae», hoc est, et substantia mea , quae per seipsam sapientia est, in inferioribus terrae, hoc est, in intimis naturae conditae sinibus subsistit. Esse enim omnium est, superesse Divinitatis. Vermis itaque, qui abdita totius creaturae penetrat, sapientia patris est, quae dum est homo, omnem superat humanitatem. Audi Apostolum de se ipso loquentem: «Paulus apostolus, non ab hominibus, neque per hominem, sed per Jesum Christum, et Deum patrem, qui suscitavit eum a mortuis». Nonne ipse est mysticus ille vermis, in cujus imagine quingentesimo semper anno transacto de cinere arabicae avis, phoenicis dico, proprii sui pectoris [Col.0169B] flamma consumptae, vermis nascitur, et ad pristinam viriditatem revocatur? Christus siquidem ardore passionis, quam sponte sua susceperat, consumptus est, et descendit ad inferos mirabilis vermis. Sed mox post triduum reversus est, suique apostoli, qui eum in cruce ardentem viderant, in spirituali corpore resurgentem conspexere, virtutumque pennis volantem, ad Patremque suum ascendentem mirati sunt.]
 “Wrecche gost, thou wen away, hou longe shal thi strist laste? / Wormes holdeth here mot, domes byndeth faste; / Maked he habbeth here lot on my fleyshe to caste, / Mony fre bodi shal roten, ne be y nout the laste” (In a thestri stude y stod [In a dark place I stood], MS. Harl. 2253, fol. 57r)