Joshua J. Peabody: Michael, There seems to be a swirling controversy
building about your claim to inventing a form of “subliminal metaphor” as
you call it, that addresses the human mind on a primordial level. Would you
tell us something about that?
Michael P. Sakowski: I think there’s a lot of misunderstanding about what I
have stated about it. What would you like to know?
JJP: Is it dangerous?
MPS: (Laughs) You mean can it be used to subvert one’s will? No, it can’t,
not at all. Just as someone can’t be made to do things against their will while
in a hypnotic trance, one can’t be led to do things that aren’t in their inherent
character using subliminal metaphor techniques. One can be led astray, or
given some very bad advice, but that can be done without subliminal
techniques. There’s no substitute for common sense.
JJP: Then what’s the point?
MPS: The point is that it’s a more efficient means of communication in many
respects. If you can touch someone on an emotional, subliminal level, it’s like
touching his or her soul. Just as hypnotism addresses the mind while in an
altered state of awareness, subliminal metaphor speaks to the mind on an
emotional level. Direct communication with the subconscious mind is possible.
did you discover this phenomenon?
I was always fascinated with the speeches of Hitler, and I had done
lot of research while at
University of Maryland
on hypnotism. At the time,
I was mainly interested in
where one learns to control
the direction of their dreams.
My idea was to investigate techniques of mind
the hopes of increasing my learning abilities. I knew that if I
could even come close to my dream state concentration levels that I
double or triple my IQ. Along the way, I studied
and a few other techniques.
Nothing really came of it, and life moved me to
adventures, but I always wanted to return to experiments with
dreaming and altered states of awareness.
Should we mention that you weren’t a psyche major?
(Laughs) Yes. I was far from it. I took a dual degree program in
electrical engineering and physics. I think most of psychology is
Lots of mumbo jumbo, just to try to legitimize a
very primitive effort. The
human mind is so complex that
it defies self-analysis. My electronics
experience with the EEG had already taught me that there
were a lot of scanning processes going on within the brain. Just as
computers are running many programs and subroutines
in the background as
they work upon a primary task, the
human mind is constantly working on
things at a
subconscious level. Brain waves, as recorded on an EEG are
representative of some of these processes. It’s been shown that
groups of brainwaves are common to certain moods
and certain states of
awareness, but almost nothing is
known about the actual scanning processes
mathematics of the brain. The mind processes information much as
supercomputers process vast quantities of data by running many
microprocessors in parallel. Only the mind is far more
sophisticated than the
world’s most powerful computers.
Thus far, science has little understanding
about the human
mind. We’ve made significant breakthroughs in brain
chemistry, and surgery, but little else. The physical processes of
have always intrigued me.
I left university
and was sidetracked by business ventures, but I continued to
be fascinated by the subject. Over the years, as I became
writing. I studied a lot of the techniques of
authors, who I thought had well-
developed styles that hit
the reader at another level, beyond rational thought.
Sometimes they used metaphor; sometimes prose style or a combination
both. But I never read any analysis that addressed the
true depth of what
they were doing.
Please give us some examples.
Sure. Writers like
Ralph Waldo Emerson
for wit through metaphor in
some of his essays like
“Compensation”. (He smiles and opens a book on the
“Crime and punishment grow out of one stem.
Punishment is a fruit that
unsuspected ripens within the
flower of the pleasure that concealed it. Cause
effect, means and ends, seed and fruit, cannot be severed; for the
already blooms in the cause, the end preexists in
the means, the fruit in the
(Laughs) I could
have recited that from memory, but didn’t want to chance
misquoting him. It’s too perfect to paraphrase. Emerson mixed
emotion, while still maintaining a consistent
rationale. Compare that to
political sound bites, which use
emotion to twist reason into an “emotionale”,
rational thought is distorted by emotions. Emerson’s points were
across logically with metaphor. He was a great writer,
way ahead of his
time. He also had an innate understanding
of word rhythms, which are key
to accessing the
uses a type of subliminal metaphor in parts of “The Old Man
and the Sea”, when he dissects the protagonist’s character by
telling us his
vocalized thoughts. He also reaches us on
an emotional level, albeit implicitly.
was fantastic for what I term “nested metaphor”,
strings two different sensory processes together to evoke a
response. For instance, Philip Marlowe walks into a bar off a noisy
and it’s so quiet he can “hear the temperature
drop.” Obviously one doesn’t
hear the temperature drop,
but you might have experienced coming off a
noisy street on
a hot day, into an air-conditioned store which is very quiet.
The simultaneous cool of the air conditioning combined with the
location plays with the senses, and it does almost
seem like one can “hear the
temperature drop”. But the
biggest talent of Chandler is the way he could
cadence and meter of his prose. His machine gun style prose had
an emotional appeal at a subliminal level. The repetitive beat, the
cadence and timing. It’s irresistible to the
subconscious mind. (Sakowski
opens another book and reads:
“He was a gray man, all gray, except for his polished black
shoes and two
scarlet diamonds in his gray satin tie that
looked like the diamonds on roulette
layouts. His shirt
was gray and his double-breasted suit of soft, beautifully
cut flannel. Seeing Carmen he took a gray hat off and his hair
was gray and as fine as if it had been sifted
through gauze. His thick gray
eyebrows had that
indefinably sporty look. He had a long chin, a nose with a
hook to it, thoughtful gray eyes that had a slanted look because the
skin over his upper lid came down over the corner
of the lid itself.”
The timing is flawless, and beats out a
pattern that appeals to the
we are processing the visual information,
which we now
stand ready to receive.
mentioned this beat pattern when we spoke previously. Please
and cadences are very important to us due to our primate
heritage. They appeal to us psychosexually and are arousal tools.
sometimes use branches to beat on trees to whip their
brethren into frenzy,
and their repeated hoots are again
reminiscent of the sex act, the repetitive
For years, I knew that I recognized something
special that certain writers
were doing, but I couldn’t
quite put my finger on it. They apparently were
of their own techniques consciously, and they just attributed their
success to having found their own voices. While this was true, I
something different too, and certain patterns arose
in the best writings,
almost as if there were secret codes.
Then in the late eighties I studied the
in particular, his theories in
“The Origin Of
Consciousness In the Breakdown Of the
I framed my
first hypotheses concerning the metered verses
Oracles at Delphi,
and of schizophrenics who hallucinated voices. It suddenly hit me
might be a tie-in to some of the scanning
sequences that are always
occurring in the brain.
Suddenly, music, poetry and metered verse took on a
new perspective, and I began analyzing patterns hidden in the art,
which we so hungrily crave. Everything from Robert Frost to
started to reveal itself to me in new ways. I saw secret codes in
of words and music. Codes that were gateways
to the subconscious mind.
it mostly about sex?
(Laughs) Well, when you are talking about the primitive,
mind, yes, a lot of it is about sex. The main
message is procreate. But the
subconscious mind is very
“conscious” in and of itself; it just doesn’t act
rationally as our conscious mind tries to do. That doesn’t mean
it’s a lesser
intellect, far from it. In fact, the
subconscious mind might be a link to
but let’s not go there. We are only concerned here, with
how to get the mind to stand up and take notice at another level of
understanding. How to explain hidden codes that are part of our
(Laughing) You said that, I didn’t. I prefer to think of them as
hidden codes of creation impressed on our overall psyche. Just as
sophisticated computer languages can be reduced to a machine
zeroes and ones, our brain’s hard-wired
structure creates consequences that
are related to the
underlying scanning processes which are always
The codes are there, and they are real. Correlating them to actual
processes, and trying to utilize their sequencing presents the
Certainly, it’s beyond the scope of a brief
interview, or even an entire book
to do justice to the
topic. To the best of my knowledge, it hasn’t been
researched significantly in the current context. That’s part of my
which would you rate higher, Hitler’s speeches or Eminem?
think Eminem is a lot more enjoyable, and less dangerous.
do you have to say to the psychologists who decry your
theories? Or those that are saying you’re trying to capitalize
a theater owner flashing a frame or two
of hot dogs and cokes during a
don’t expect someone to understand immediately a mechanism that I
have studied for over twenty years, so it doesn’t upset me very
to ban my books and research, or compare me to
be a mistake. There are no subversive messages in my
writings. I don’t tell
people to go out and do bad things.
the sex angle? Does reading your writing make one want to have
(Laughs) You can’t seem to get past that part, Joshua, why? Does
listening to Eminem make you want to have sex?
with him. But maybe I listened to the wrong song.
Procreation is so deeply instilled in us that it’s impossible to
There’s nothing wrong with acknowledging its power
over our lives. In
fact, it could be argued that almost
every human endeavor is in one form or
transmutation of sexual energy. However, that’s tangential to our
subject. The main point I’d want to make to anyone who might be
in this subject is that the god codes are real.
I didn’t invent them. They are
just a consequence of the
physical construction and electrochemical
processes of our
minds. Just as epileptics can be thrown into seizures by a
pulsating light, the subconscious mind can be accessed through the
application of god codes. Much of our art has aesthetic appeal to
us for that
Julian Jaynes opened my mind to
the possibility that people longed to return
preconscious mind, and that was what constituted much of the
loneliness of mankind. They were longing for the hallucinated
voices of a
simpler time. He theorized that religion
satisfies man’s longing for the god
voice that he no longer
I read The
I wasn’t cognizant of any artificial
construct. How do you
make the god code interface seamlessly with the
is a book in itself. It’s like asking, how do you write well? And
further, what constitutes good writing? There is no clear-cut
answer. Since everyone is different, results
will vary from one individual to
another. To not seem
evasive, there are templates that I mentally apply, and
these are used in the editing process. Just as a poet writes a
an author composes using his own
techniques. The writing isn’t stilted by
the codes, but is
instead guided by them. What sounds best, what evokes
better, what catalyzes visualizations. It’s all about the story.
If god codes
help tell it better, than they’re welcome.
It’s like adding color to a black and
Sometimes it helps.
do you want people to be affected by your writing?
does a person even write? To share; to offer a view of reality
through another’s eyes? For me personally, as a reader, I hope to
enlarged in some way when I read a novel. I like novels
that take me to
another place, or help me see my world
through a different set of filters. I
don’t want to
control anyone’s thoughts, but I would like to touch them. If
an author does that, I think he or she is happy.
you, Michael, and welcome to
Thanks very much, Joshua.
|Sakowski at the Newtonian