The Rauschmonstrum As Graffiti

As some of you have seen on the Rauschmonstrum’s Tumblr and Pinterest I have drawn what may be referred to as “Rauschmonstrum Graffiti,” taking paintings (public domain of course) and drawing in crude images of our friend the Rauschmonstrum. My favorite of the ones I have done so far serves as the front cover of my book.

The Rauschmonstrum is very easy to draw , which is essential because I am a terrible drawer. I find he always looks awkward in these paintings, yet also in a strange way seems to fit in. I welcome you to take part in your own forms of Rauschmonstrum Graffiti and post them all over the web.

—{The Rauschmonstrum’s Press Agent}—

That Time God Hypnotized Pharaoh So He Could Kill Him

While reading the Book of Exodus for my Rauschmonstrum prequel “The Rauschmonstrum & Moses” I realized something new about the text. After the Pharaoh  (while mourning for his son after God kills all the firstborns in Egypt) lets Moses and the Israelites go,  God hypnotizes Pharaoh to chase after them, specifically so God can show Pharaoh whose boss, which in this case means drowning him in the Red Sea.  As it goes in Exodus 14:4:

“ I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will follow after them; and I will get honor over Pharaoh, and over all his armies; and the Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh.” 

Free will, my ass.

—{The Rauschmonstrum’s Press Agent}—

Things I Learned About the Gospels While Writing My Book “The Gospel of the Rauschmonstrum”

1. It is obvious Jesus intended on returning to Earth once again during his disciples’ lifetimes.
2. It is obvious Jesus believed, much like most others in his time, that physical illness is caused by sin. Apparently being the Son of God wasn’t enough to give him knowledge of germ theory.
3. Anybody who gives out the advice to a bereaved son “let the dead bury the dead” should not be taken seriously as the central figure of altruism, yet somehow he’s thought of as such.
4. Knowing how to slide your way out of a no win situation by exploiting an unseen hidden option is one of the best skills a person can have.
5. The Gospel of John is a bizarre document. It is as though it is the Prog Rock of the bible. I wonder how it became a part of the canon, it seems more at home with the unofficial Gnostic gospels.
6. Jesus is not the “happy hippy” he usually is seen as in modern society. He has a specific vision for how mankind should behave and he spends a great deal of the story (particularly in Matthew) berated people for their failures. He is also relentless in his pursuits. Harold Bloom was right to call the Jesus in the Gospel of Mark an early incarnation of Hamlet.
7. Each gospel is unique, and the characterization of Jesus in each one is vastly different. I think a good alternative title for the collection would be “4 Authors in Search of a Messiah”

—{The Rauschmonstrum’s Press Agent}—

 

My Depiction of Jesus of Nazareth

In CS Lewis’ famous “trilemma” he argued that Jesus must have either been deluded, evil, or actually divine. I believe that if the fellow existed at all then he was deluded. This is as I am near certain he wasn’t who he said he was, and I doubt he did what he did out of malice, because if that were so, I think he  would have avoided getting himself killed.

In my book, I give a fantasized account of just how deluded Jesus really was. However, by no means is he intended to be seen as stupid. He wouldn’t have been able to wiggle out of the types of verbal traps the Pharisees set for him without being exceptionally clever (I’ll detail this use of “third options” in a further post). If I have succeeded with “The Gospel of the Rauschmonstrum” the readers will laugh at the absurdity of the story-line, while saddened by how the Rauschmonstrum manipulates Jesus off to his bloody end.

—{The Rauschmonstrum’s Press Agent}—

Where the Rauschmonstrum Comes From

I was raised Catholic, and my family went to church most Sundays up until I was in college, by which point none of us thought it was worth the time or effort anymore. It was during my junior year of high school when I decided I no longer believed in God, but I didn’t tell my parents at the time because that likely would have been an awkward moment. And so, during the time we continued to go to church I would zone out and daydream (what most people do anyway while there, I’m sure).

One day in church I was daydreaming while the priest was reading a passage from one of the gospels. As he read, the image of a dark figure accosting Jesus popped into my consciousness. This character spoke in an ominous tone and could shape shift at will. When mass was over and we went home, that character would not leave my mind. He and Jesus would engage in dialogues in my head and their contrasting natures were sublime.

As it often is for me, once an idea makes its way into my brain, it doesn’t take long for it to germinate into a fully fledged story idea. I wanted this character to have an otherworldly sounding name, and German words were something which always sounded that way to me. I translated some words to German, found the ones I liked the best, stuck them together, and voila the Rauschmonstrum was born!

—{The Rauschmonstrum’s Press Agent}—

My Experiment With the Ancient Mariner & the Rauschmonstrum

When I was in high school the worst book they had us read was The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. For those fortunate enough not to have read it, it is the story of a sailor who kills an albatross (for unclear reasons) while on a voyage, causing nature to get revenge on him by having everyone else on board killed, and putting the Mariner through a string of hardships. These hardships tend to include skeletons bargaining for souls and other hallucinatory visions. None of this is written with any ambition at all in instilling interest in the reader.

However, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner is put over the top by its outrageousness by perhaps the worst framing device in the history of literature. The Mariner (now an old man) is telling this story to guests at a wedding.  The thought of this senile old man making up hallucinatory nonsense to a confused table of wedding guests was too much for my (often stoned) high school mind to handle. It seemed like incredibly shameful behavior on the part of the Mariner.

Now that I am armed with my good friend the Rauschmonstrum, I decided I could utilize his power in order to give the Mariner a piece of my mind. Also, this allowed me to do some experimenting with schemes by which to use the Rauschmonstrum. As I’ve mentioned before, I think of the Rauschmonstrum as a “storytelling virus,” one who infects stories, and this little number gave me a pass to flex those virus muscles.

And so the finished product is here. I’ve told you the plot-line, so if you’re actually interested in reading it, you may as well skip to the very end to see my addition to the story. If I’ve wasted your time, at least know I did a better ending than Coleridge.

—{The Rauschmonstrum’s Press Agent}—

Reasons To Have The Rauschmonstrum In Your Life

1. He can be anything you want him to be.

2. He loves and hates all the same things you do.

3. He is really easy to draw.

4. He can be a protest vote for your entire life.

5. He could be a cultural icon, and it’s all up to you.

6. He can have as rich a mythology as any fictional character ever.

7. He has absolutely no solutions to any of your problems, and there will be no pretending he does.

8. The memes will never stop rolling.

9. He is an excellent learning tool (you’ll learn more about that soon enough).

10. He is a storytelling virus. He can fit into most any work quite easily and then spread like wild fire (once again, you’ll learn more about that soon enough).