During the most recent NecronomiCon (August 22nd-25th, 2019), I was honored to represent the Order of Shub Niggurath by giving a sermon at the biennial Sunday morning Cthulhu Prayer Breakfast. Below is a transcript of my eldritch ramblings.
Cthulhu Prayer Breakfast
“A Sermon Against Simplicity”
Anthony Teth (Order of Shub Niggurath)
Sunday, August 25th, 2019
Thank you one and all, thank you and welcome once again fellow travelers upon the Path of Eternal Cosmic Night to this glorious convocation of Eldritch Prayer and sumptuous devourment. Here at a horrific cosmic rift in the dimensional pathways between various sundry and unsundry nebulae, that the quirky-yet-shambling locals have adorably named Providence.
And now, after what I’m sure have been days (if not months), you can all finally relax and enjoy what I know you’ve all been waiting for with baited respiration:
More middle-aged white dudes telling you our opinions on things!
(I know, I know… It’s very special… So rare these days, really.)
As a humble priest of Shub Niggurath, the Black Goat with a Thousand Young, Mother of Abominations and Savior to all who seek her dread caress, my duties and responsibilities still lie with my Goddess, my initiates, and my covensteads.
The big difference for us now, of course, is that Witchcraft has become trendy yet again! So we of the Order of Shub Niggurath (as well as our many sub-orders such as the Sorority of Eldritch Night, the Pawtuxet Star Wolves, and the Blood Nuns of Exham Priory) have had a massive influx of new recruits, all ranging in magical talent from the “somewhat promising” to the “soon to be exiting the wrong end of a Chthonian” variety.
I mean hell, we haven’t had this many angsty teens with attention deficits in cut-up t-shirts running around our covensteads since the mid-90s, way back when Fairuza Balk first flared her big beautiful nostrils at the Old Manon and the Sea.
In fact, the myriad similarities of the current era to that of the 90s may engender certain Star Vampires placed into torpor during the time period to be rather confused after a couple decades of blissful slumber, though they’ll snap out of it the moment they notice the droves of “weird, flat pagers with screens” everyone appears to be staring at, and the curious lack of safety pins and Chumbawumba.
Ahhh… safety pins. That shit was like Goth Gold back in the day…
But like most things 90s, some initiates will succeed and prosper, some will age horrifically and seem utterly mad when approached, and the rest will quickly perish only to be resurrected decades later when their superiors are bored and trying to make an extra buck on something. But for now, movies and series such as the VVitch, Sabrina, Hereditary and Midsommar (or as I like to call that last one, “Children of the Björn”) are really doing the bulk of our recruitment work for us, it seems.
But it’s not just our cults flourishing, you see. Subterranean catacombs and forgotten temples from Arkham, Dunwich, Blockula, Benevento, Leng, and Carcosa have all been reporting record numbers of cultists as well. I mean, the Innsmouth Film Outreach Society even went and won an Oscar for Azathoth’s sake, with their Shape of Water, or as we down at the covenstead prefer to call it — “Grinding Nemo” — where, much like Reverend Cody, a talented young Innsmouth orphan learns about the eternal pull of Fish Booty.
Even the Great Sam Gafford — the finest Hierophant of Lord Nodens the abyssal realms have ever seen — was forced to shapeshift into his gloriously terrifying amphibious form and return to his oceanic homeland in order to deal with recruitment lines winding around the Marianas trench. We hope to see him again in a century or two of course, after his honorable and prodigious work there is finished.
But though much has indeed changed since we last gathered a mere two solar rotations of this spinning blue orb ago, much has certainly stayed the same. Global corporations still act like the idiot bad guys from Naked Gun 2 ½, the US still appears to have a nasty case of Orange Donorrhea, and Stevie Nicks still bleats her paeans of unholy vibrato in honor of our Great Goat Mother of the Stars (in between awkward cameos on American Horror Story, of course).
Last Prayer Breakfast, friends, I entreated you to ravage and discard the notion of Purity in all its vile ridiculousness.
Purity, which attempts to find an inherent cleanliness within a life utterly saturated with dust, pathogens, esophageal microorganisms, consumption of decaying matter and excrementation, no less.
And though that noxious little bogey is of course far from squashed, I wish to draw your attention to a different hobgoblin of the mind, one just as insipid and simultaneously alluring, if not more so.
This morning, I wish to Banish Simplicity.
Yes, Simplicity, that enchanting little notion that the trillions upon trillions of variations in an omniverse as monstrously vast and mind-shredingly expansive as ours might be happily encapsulated into a series of adorable quotes on a refrigerator magnet or an uncle’s moronic t-shirt.
Simplicity, the mind’s tendency to pare down the multitude of electric impulses, gaseous currents, gravitational forces, and permutations of consciousness to “’s just a vibe, man.”
Simplicity, the vile and purposeful obfuscation of the cumulative interplay between planetary and biological systems from the quantum level all the way up to quasars the size of galaxies, vomiting light into the abominable void, as the quaint magic trick of some buff, bearded sky-faerie.
Simplicity, the dreaded notion that any colony of myriad and multifaceted beings such as Star Spawn, Mi-Gos, Elder Things, Shoggoths, or even we Mongrelized Tellurian Primates should have something as preposterous as an official skin color or linguistic pattern.
Simplicity, the concept that the eternities of swirling dimensional chaos can be properly described and encapsulated into a series of ink splotches upon soft pieces of dead topiary that one can fit in the palm of their hand.
Simplicity is extra pernicious, you see, for he is the father of Purity, Idiocy, Ignorance, and many other things best avoided by any organism that actually cares for its own power and prosperity. Simplicity attempts to place into ordered little boxes the spectacular multiplicity of the cosmos, and we are all the worse for it.
Thus I say strike and shatter all boxes and fetters of the mind which encourage such vile Simplicity. Stamp and stomp with cloven hooves upon its laughable misconceptions and misapprehensions. Grind its bones into a fine dust and feed it to the Shoggoths of experience, for wisdom and madness ride the same Night Gaunt, my friends.
Thus we pray:
Praise be to thee, Yog Sothoth, Azathoth, Nyarlathotep, Abhoth, the mightiest of gates shatter at thy whim.
Praise be to thee, Yig, Shub Niggurath, Tulzscha, Ubbo-Sathla, the jewels of the stars are thine to command.
Praise be to thee Hastur, Cthulhu, Dagon, Chaugnar Faugn, untold generations have knelt to thy might.
Praise be to thee, Y’Golonac, Cthuga, Shudde M’ell, Tsathoggua, for thy kingdoms shall return.