A Tribute To Bruce Duensing – Life Is But A Dream

On Friday May 29th, I received a text message from Bruce Duensing that said “I am in the hospital with crappy WiFi…open heart surgery on Monday.” His daughter posted on his FB page that he passed away on the morning of June 4th, presumably from complications.

This was a shock to my guests “Red Pill Junkie” and “Burnt State” (aka Robert) and to me of course. We were just beginning to communicate on a deeper level with Bruce, sending messages and posts to each other about ideas we had either never thought of or hadn’t developed fully. We got together on the night of June 6th to talk about Bruce Duensing’s ideas and what little we know of his personal life from videos he posted online.

His basic philosophy is the idea that we are not equipped to deal with the paranormal on its own terms, since our perceptions have so many filters before they reach conscious and cultural awareness. The show centered on many concepts:

– You can’t study Ufology with Ufology. UFO study hasn’t kept up with the latest science.
– Energy and information are the same.
– How does the observer effect change what we are thinking about with UFO witnesses?
– Strong emotion inhibits randomness and entropy.
– UFO waves seemingly follow worldwide emotional events.
– Abnormal mental states and shamanism as windows to understanding of the unknown.
– Set and setting as factors in paranormal encounters.

The program opens with a pulled quote from the RM interview of February 1st, and ends with a segment of Bruce from one of his online videos that were located by Robert.

Illustrations of Bruce Duensing’s ideas courtesy of the talented RPJ. The Cafe Tacuba song at the end of the program is Olita Del Atlamar (Little Wave Of The High Seas.)

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25 Responses to A Tribute To Bruce Duensing – Life Is But A Dream

  1. Red Pill Junkie says:

    Today I experienced a bit of a synchronicity, which I’d like to share with all of you –especially considering the image Greg chose at the top of this post:

    Today I decided to write a story for the Grail re. ‘Matilda, the alien cat’ –a freaking-looking feline that has become an Internet sensation overnight.

    Since I felt a bit guilty of using something which has already been covered in a gazillion other websites, I decided to ‘jazz’ the story up by adding more things about the apparent weird connection between cats and what we call ‘the paranormal.’

    One of the extra things I mentioned was an anecdote Whitley Strieber included in his book Transformation –which as you know by now I also mentioned during this show– in which he tells how once the ‘Visitors’ came for him. He was in a weird state of ‘semi-autonomous’ volition and decided to grab one of his cats and take her with him.

    (I was hoping I would be able to find a passage online referring to this story so I could simply copy/paste it, but my search was unsuccessful. I decided then to look for my Spanish version of Transformation and re-read that chapter to make sure I would get all the details straight)

    Strieber writes that after he got out of his house, escorted by the being depicted in the cover of Communion, he ended up somehow inside a normal-looking room, furnished with a big yet-simple desk and behind it a bookcase lining the wall. He saw a volume about the Civil War written by Bruce Catton, a biography of Madame de Stäel, a book by Kafka *wink wink* and partially pulled off the bookcase as if to be noticed above the rest, was Thomas Wolfe “You Can’t Go Home Again.”

    The synchro doesn’t stop there, mind you, because the one thing Strieber asked the Visitors during that particular encounter was to help him be “less afraid of them.” The Visitors said they would try, but that it would be very difficult, perhaps for the reasons we three discussed during the show.



  2. Ally says:

    Sad news about Bruce. Greg, it was apparent that you thoroughly enjoyed taking with Bruce and I was looking forward to hearing another coversation between the two of you. My condolences to his family. Will listen to this show now.

  3. dia sobin says:

    Thanks so much for this tribute, Greg.

    I tried commenting a couple of days ago, but WordPress refused my comment, so, now that I see other comments are finally coming in, I’ll try again. I have a feeling it was something wrong on my end. Hopefully I fixed it.

    Oddly enough, both you and I put up tributes to Bruce on the same day; but had I listened to Radio Misterioso’s first, I might’ve re-thought my own. My memorial now seems like no more than a paraphrase. (By the way, Robert, thanks for identifying the B&W still image on Bruce’s blog… “Wing’s of Desire” is no doubt one of many surrealist masterpieces I’ve missed over the years.) (And thanks, RPJ for the cartoons. I love that: “What am I?”) 🙂
    In any case, this may be one of the most important radio shows you’ve ever done, Greg. Seriously. A mind-blower to be sure, but I mean that in the best possible of ways. After I listened to it the other morning, I had a considerably difficult time re-entering meat-space and dumbing my mind down to mundane matters.

    I’m not sure what was happening – whether it was just the strange alchemical brew between you, RPJ and Robert… or whether the incorporeal force of Bruce Duensing was channeled in some way, but there was a real magic in the air, and I thank y’all for sharing it with us.

    I’m also glad you’ve been in contact with Bruce’s daughter, and hope somehow that more of Bruce’s ideas can see the light of day.

    In any case, you, RPJ and Robert gave Bruce a tribute you should all be proud of. It was exactly what he would’ve wanted: an honest dialogue about subjects that really mattered to him… offering no answers, but building a platform upon which the “still point” can be approached and achieved.

    I’ll miss Bruce. Seems like just too many good people are dying lately.Thanks again for celebrating one of the most remarkable ones – Bruce was an original.

    And thank you, Bruce Duensing.

    • Red Pill Junkie says:

      Thank you for the kind words. And I agree; we 3 had a clear channel that night.

      • dia sobin says:

        You’re welcome, RPJ, but I wasn’t being kind. It was an inspired meeting of minds. I wish there was a transcription!

    • Greg says:

      Hi Dia,

      Sorry it took so long to respond.

      Really happy that you enjoyed the show. RPJ and Robert and I discussed it beforehand and decided that we would concentrate on his ideas rather than him personally. His daughter has since listened to the show and gave it her stamp of approval. She told me that Bruce could not interact in a mundane way with most people, and would “shut off” around anyone who could not talk to him about the things he loved. I wish I could do that.

      I never know how people are going to react, but I figure if I understand what is going on, the audience can too.

      Thank you for keeping Mac Tonnies’ ideas alive and available to us!

      • dia sobin says:

        Actually, Greg, you’re successful a what you do because you can’t really just “shut off” to people regardless of their mindset.

        Which is a good thing! Long live Radio Misterioso!

        Re: Post-Mac Blues. Well, I try. Thanks for the encouragement!

    • Burnt State says:

      Thank you, Dia, for the value added response. Your own dialogues with Bruce makes your compliments extra special as he was not an easy blogger, or essayist as i’m sure he would prefer to be called, to engage with as the ideas were dense and the thinking went many levels deeep. I really appreciated your own comments at your site about him. Ironically, discovering your excellent web spaces came from searching out what the internet had to say about Bruce Duensing following his death. So there was a bit of a gift in his passing: these many new connections created because of his sudden departure.

      The word ‘nexus’ seemed to be very important in moving through his thoughts. Ideas come to fruition out of intersections and reconciliations in Bruce’s world, and dialoguing with the two people I feel have the most creative offerings with regards to paranormality was a real gift. Thank you for your kind words regarding the significance of the episode. It was a heartfelt effort.

      At the end of our recording I went outside to be with the lightning storm that was moving through my region in the early hours of the start of a new day. The energy was electric and mysterious; the outside like my inside, all channels open and ready to receive energy as information.

  4. burnt state says:

    From brief dialogues with Dia, a blogger compatriot of Bruce Duensing, she expressed that Bruce was a little confused as to why more people were not engaging him about his ideas. Was it his complexity that readers could not penetrate or was it his lack of commas that made his work harder to understand? I really hope that this episode helps to expose his ideas to new audiences. It’s a shame that such original thinking gets its bigger notice in death.

    What’s very important about Bruce’s writings is his wide ranging interdisciplinary approach. His ability to draw on so many different areas of knowledge and his dispassionate approach to the subject matter made for absolute innovation in thinking about very complicated material.

    My favourite theme in his work is his capacity to not be affected by common strains or biased by previous limitations imposed on paranormality. Instead, he brings a fresh lens to the discussion, as he was unafraid to state his mind or state his claim. By looking at these issues with new eyes he is able to actually engage in some degree of discovery and the creation of new options when it comes to considering what is involved in these age old mysteries of human consciousness. I sincerely hope his ideas will get better platforms and some longevity to help illuminate new pathways to explore.

    Thank you RPJ for your imagination. Thank you Bruce for being a catalyst. And thank you Greg for your mental flexibility and your creation of platforms to discuss and disseminate unique ideas. You bring very interesting and obscure voices out into the light. It makes for great radio

    • Greg says:

      All I can say to that wonderful comment and your clear thoughts is to bow to you sir. Thank you for listening, engaging and understanding.

      • Burnt State says:

        Well it also strikes me as a little bizarre why you don’t command a significantly larger audience yourself – is it your own “lack of commas” so to speak? Like Bruce you also are able to strip away biases and previous conceptions to stay very open to completely new ideas. I think that Bruce was right – people fear complexity, and sometimes on your show things get really complex, but then you help to synthesize, restate and contextualize for the rest of us. It’s a gift, to be certain. Consequently, I believe/hope there are silent hordes out there who are visiting this unorthodox oracle frequently. It’s good for the brain – keeps things fresh and regenerating.

  5. dia sobin says:

    First off, let me make one thing perfectly clear: I am not a kind person and do nothing out of kindness. I am a cantankerous old witch and merely give credit when it’s due.

    Secondly, all this flattery is making me positively fuzzy-headed. But, rest assured, the above still holds true. 😉

    Funny you should mention electrical storms… we’ve been having them every night for the past two weeks here in The Land of Enchantment. What can this mean?

    BTW, thanks, and it’s a pleasure to virtually meet you, too! 🙂

  6. Kandinsky says:

    I’ve just got around to listening to the show. If nobody can gain access to his first blog, I have copies of every article he posted there. Seems to me that too many of the brightest minds are also wont to wash away their websites.

    Those I value and respect get stored away as a safety measure.

    • Red Pill Junkie says:

      I’d certainly be interested in getting my hands on that archive 🙂

      • Kandinsky says:

        Hiya M and Greg,

        Here are most of his articles as PDFs. I started out by copying his articles and proof-reading them for typos, poor grammar etc. Then I’d send them his way because he sometimes thought about publishing. A couple of the PDFs have been treated like that and the rest have been copied right off the site (typos etc).

        Some of the images are lost and most of the video urls have been added even when the videos are now long gone.

        I chose PDf because it indexes the articles by date. Originally, I set out to present them beginning with the first so the final article would be the last page and readers could follow his developing ideas. It led to an 180 page word document with 80k words and occasional articles were out of sync.


        All the best,

  7. John Randall says:

    Sorry this post is late to the table, regardless was one of the best episodes you’ve done Greg ( and you’ve done many) and Burnt State and RPJ were the perfect guests for this tribute. Well done! I first heard Mr. Duensing on Paratopia back in 2011. I must have listened to that episode 10 plus times ( and will probably listen again, as to your tribute… going on third listen 🙂 ) .I thought RPJ observations( loved your illustrations to RPJ) in regards to Bruce’s comment to Greg’s question “What do you say to people who have had profound and many times disturbing experiences?”
    As Bruce stated “ just to be able to given them a possible other options in their mind instead of pigeon holing their experience to an antiquated or preset notion already out there, as a sort an “open ended life line” so they totally don’t go overboard.
    I had only started communicating with Bruce just recently ( about 2 mos. before his passing) as I’ve always enjoyed and fascinated by Bruce’s blogs,but never interacted with him very much,due to my intimidation of his intellect. However, we both being visual artists ( he being a man with many hats)we were able communicate and appreciate each other’s work on a more level playing field, at least in my mind. Wish I had gotten to know him better and had gotten the nerve to verbalize more and throw some ideas back and forth with him. Life’s too short. Hope you and his family our able to preserve his blog sites. Again, a great tribute to a brilliant and gifted mind.
    P.S. Hope Robert and RPJ are guests again in the near future.4035

  8. John Randall says:

    Hey,it worked! 🙂

  9. John Randall says:

    Don’t know if any of you have read Tolkien’s short story “Leaf by Niggle” about an artist who has to take a journey( which I’m assuming is death)creates his own reality after many trials and tribulations through a painting he had been creating. I always enjoyed and connected with that story.

    • Red Pill Junkie says:

      Ima search that right now 🙂

      BTW Thank you kindly for your thoughts re. the episode and my doodles 😉

  10. John Randall says:

    It’s an overall simple,kind of goofy,but sweet story RPJ ( certainly not Kafka material) but it resonated with me and in the end, only being content with what you’ve created for a little while ,but always questioning and striving to search for other realms,questions, and possibilities 🙂

  11. Chris Barrus says:

    Very good episode. I’ve always resonated with “forget the answers, get better questions” lines of thought and Bruce’s blog was great for countering the empty calories that’s so much of the internet. I suspect I’m not the only one who ran a website downloader on his site.

    When you guys were talking about the triad thought system, I immediately thought of the aliens who “did everything in threes” in Arthur C. Clarke’s Rendezvous With Rama. Maybe logic indeed…

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