Sunday, 08. June 2008
Decoding The Past: The Anti-Christ

How would you recognise the most evil person on Earth? According to many historical texts, you should look for a brilliant, enigmatic public figure who transforms the world for good, for a while. Basically, the last person you'd tap as Satan's human emissary.

While many believe the Anti-christ has come and gone, just as many believe he will soon arrive, if he's not already in our midst. Join us for harrowing look at an evil so obscure that he answers only to Satan.

Our group of prophecy believers and historical experts will help to sort out if the Anti-Christ is real. We follow the emergence of the Anti-christ from pre-Judaic texts, through the Book of Daniel and Revelation, into Christian writings of the Middle Ages, and other religious traditions as well.

Aided by interviewees both religious and secular, comprised of eminent clergy, scholars, historians, psychologists, and culture makers, we'll examine the evil enigma from every conceivable angle.


'Decoding The Past - The Anti-Christ' by the History Channel, 2007.

Part 1 - Runtime: 45 Minutes




'Decoding The Past - The Anti-Christ' by the History Channel, 2007.

Part 2 - Runtime: 45 Minutes


Category: Demons & Devils | Movies & TV |




Tuesday, 29. April 2008
The Art of Travis Louie

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Hypno-Krampus

This fastidious Krampus always has a pair of disembodied hands levitating in front of it, constantly gesturing like some vaudeville magician(at times, even performing "slight of hand" tricks) For the most part, he uses his hypnotic gaze to put children into a trance, convincing them that they are chickens or chartered accountants working for a firm about to be audited by some large, ruthless government agency(scary stuff).



Spooky pop surrealist Travis Louie created his own imaginary world that is grounded in Victorian and Edwardian times.

It is inhabited by human oddities, mythical beings, and otherworldly characters who appear to have had their formal portraits taken to mark their existence and place in society.

The underlining thread that connects all these characters is the unusual circumstances that shape who they were and how they lived. Some of their origins are a complete mystery while others are hinted at.

He's created portraits from an alternate universe that seemingly may or may not have existed.

Travis Louie is also one of 50 Artists featured in the second publication entitled Metamorphosis 2.
Category: Art & Visions | Demons & Devils | Lunacy & Psychedelic |




Friday, 18. April 2008
World Population to Hit 6,666,666,666 in May 08

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To many people, this means nothing. But of course 666 refers to the Beast in the Bible. Heaven knows what ten sixes means.

I don’t know who first noticed this looming numerical curiosity, but it was mentioned today on the Drudge report. To see the projection, go to the U.S. Census Bureau’s World POPClock Projection page [link]. There you’ll find these projections among others:

05/01/08 6,664,737,085
06/01/08 6,671,275,141

So sometime in between May 1 and June 1, the gaggle-of-sixes milestone will be passed. (I say gaggle rather than googol, which is a 1 followed by 100 zeros. I could also have used a gazillion or a jillion or a bazillion, all of which are just figures of speech meaning “a lot.” Clearly, the number of people on Earth is a lot more than umpteen.)

The Census Bureau of course never knows exactly how many people are on the planet, or even in the United States for that matter. It’s all estimates. Just fun.

The last big “six scare” was 06/06/06 (June 6, 2006). We survived that, so I imagine we’ll get through this one.

(For the record, 07/07/07 came and went last year without any documented cases of extreme luck directly attributed to the date, and coming up later this year: 08/08/08.)


Source: LiveScience
Category: Demons & Devils | News & Stories |


Wednesday, 16. April 2008
Hell - It’s Representation Through The Ages

A fiery vault beneath the earth or as Sartre put it, other people - it seems our ideas of hell are inevitably shaped by religious and cultural forces. For Homer and Virgil it’s a place you can visit and return from, often a wiser person for it. With Christianity it’s a one way journey and a just punishment for a sinful, unrepentant life.

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Sandro Botticelli - Chart of Hell - ca. 1480-95 / Click the picture for a larger view


Writers and painters like Dante and Hieronymus Bosch gave free rein to their imaginations, depicting a complex hierarchical world filled with the writhing bodies of tormented sinners. In the 20th century hell can be found on earth in portrayals of war and the Holocaust but also in the mind, particularly in the works of TS Eliot and Primo Levi.

So what is the purpose of hell and why is it found mainly in religions concerned with salvation? Why has hell proved so inspirational for artists through the ages, perhaps more so than heaven? And why do some ideas of hell require a Satan figure while others don't?


Melvyn Bragg's guests are:
  • Martin Palmer, Director of the International Consultancy on Religion, Education and Culture
  • Margaret Kean, Tutor and Fellow in English at St Hilda’s College, Oxford
  • Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum


If you wish to find out more of this subject,
then listen to this programme in full here (43 minutes):



Broadcast was on December 2006 at BBC 4, 'In Our Time'.
Also available for RealPlayer.


You may also like:
Dante's Inferno by The University of Texas at Austin - a multimedia journey - combining images, textual commentary, and audio - through the various regions of hell described in Dante's Inferno.
Heaven and Hell by The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Tyger of Wrath: William Blake in the National Gallery of Victoria.
Category: Demons & Devils | Incarnation & Death |


Saturday, 29. March 2008
The Devil’s Dictionary

The Devil's Dictionary, by Ambrose Bierce, is a satirical book published in 1911. It offers reinterpretations of terms in the English language which lampoon cant and political double-talk. Fun to read as well as thought-provoking. Just because the dictionary is 90 years old doesn't make it any less apropos for modern readers.

Book Description:

History, n. an account mostly false, of events mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers mostly knaves, and soldiers mostly fools. Marriage, n. The state or condition of a community consisting of a master, a mistress, and two slaves, making in all two. Self-Esteem, n. An erroneous appraisement.

These caustic aphorisms, collected in The Devil's Dictionary, helped earn Ambrose Bierce the epithets Bitter Bierce, the Devil's Lexicographer, and the Wickedest Man in San Francisco.

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First published as The Cynic's Word Book (1906) and later reissued under its preferred name in 1911, Bierce's notorious collection of barbed definitions forcibly contradicts Samuel Johnson's earlier definition of a lexicographer as a harmless drudge. There was nothing harmless about Ambrose Bierce, and the words he shaped into verbal pitchforks a century ago--with or without the devil's help--can still draw blood today.

The Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce
Oxford University Press, 1999 | 179 pages | PDF | 1.08 MB
Category: Books & Magazines | Demons & Devils |


Tuesday, 25. March 2008
The Obakemono Project

Aburasumashi

This squat creature, with his grotesque, potato-like head and straw-coat covered body is said to live on a certain mountain pass in Kumamoto prefecture.

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Apparently one evening an old woman was walking along this road with her grandson, when she turned to the boy and said, "A long time ago, a youkai called Aburasumashi lived here." But speak of the devil, no sooner had she said this than the very same little goblin ambled out of the undergrowth and informed the pair that he was still there!

The abura in this spectre's name means oil, and the sumashi refers to his unchanging facial expression, which always looks prim and unruffled. Aburasumashi and many other obake are said to be the transformed spirits of those who stole lamp oil, which in the days before electricity was a very valuable substance. Perhaps spirits are also drawn to oil because of their association with strange fires, and maybe they too need fuel to burn.


Hakutaku also known as: Bai Ze

The Hakutaku or Bai Ze (as he is known in China) appears as a bovine creature with nine eyes and six horns, placed in sets of three and two on both his flanks and his man-like face.
A wise and holy animal, known for his capacity for human speech, the Bai Ze made his most famous appearance to Huang Di, the Yellow Emperor of China, who found him on top of a mountain near the Eastern Sea. To this man the beast dictated the characteristics and abilities of all the 11,520 types of demons, monsters, shapeshifters, and peculiar spirits in the world. Huang Di published his drawings and writings based on this encounter in a fascinating tome, the "Bai Ze Guide", but alas the book is thought to no longer exist.

In Japan Hakutaku is said to ward off calamity and disease, and his image is used as a charm and deified at temples.

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Kerakeraonna

For some people, nothing in life is worse than being laughed at, and for them the kerakeraonna must be the most terrifying youkai of all. Usually her victims hear her cackling first, before they wheel around, startled, only to meet the apparition of an enormous woman looming in the distance, her derisive laughter filling the whole sky. When they try to run, the haunting sound follows them everywhere they go.


Yōkai, or youkai, also known as obake or bakemono, are the folk monsters of Japan. They constitute a hundreds-strong menagerie of bizarre and varied creatures. They are magical, nebulous beings that exist in some strange state halfway between spirit and flesh, and are often the physical manifestations of extreme mental states, or the monstrous alteration of some ordinary object, animal, or person. They are just as varied in temperament as they are in form, and range from strange but personable goblins, to harmless pranksters that love scaring people, to dangerous ghouls that feast on human flesh.

The Obakemono Project
The Gaijin's Guide to the Fantastic Folk Monsters of Japan.
Category: Demons & Devils | Myths & Sagas |


Thursday, 16. August 2007
Stereo Diableries

Diableries are wonderfull examples of the fascination for death in 19th. Century photography and made with a lot of imagination and humour. Death in photography is seen in many different ways but here we see the subject in a less serious interpretation.

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Click the picture for a larger view


Diablerie Introduction by Thomas Weynants.

To my knowledge, only one book is devoted interely on these fascinating views, written by Jac Remise, the same author of the well known "Magie Lumineuse" illustrating the Pre-cinema.

This book mention 72 different Diableries as one complete set. Perhaps this is true, Although I feel that some of the views do not all belong to one single set. Several other views mentioned in the 139 title list could be part of the majority of views depicted in Jac Remise's wonderfull publication.


Diableries : La Vie Quotidienne Chez Satan a la Fin du 19e Siecle. by Jac Remise.
Publisher: André Balland. Place Published: France. Date Published: 1978
Visual index: 72 different Diableries as one complete set.
Same set in stereo examples.

Other Stereo diableries NOT in the book by Jack Remise.

Most of the Stereo Diableries are anonymous, although 25 images depicted in the book have a signature in the plaster. The same names are occasionally also found on the diableries in the extented diablerie list wich proves their connection.

Three different names are found in the plaster of the "72" series. Hennetier (14), Habert (10), Cougny (1). I supose these names where not the creators of the Diablerie series but the sculptors who made the mouldings on demand. Cougny turns up only one time. Hennetier is mostly seen in this set and also in the other Diableries, subsequent to the number 72.



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"Les odalisques de Satan"

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View in 3D

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"Le tribunal de Satan" Sculpture de Habert, 1863


More pictures at La collection d'appareils photo anciens de Sylvain Halgand.
Category: Demons & Devils |


Tuesday, 10. July 2007
Dante’s Inferno - A Virtual Tour Of Hell

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For those of us who have not been forced to read through Dante's Inferno: The Eastern Kentucky University's philosophy department offers an excellent Flash presentation of the geography of Dante's hell, the characters he meets and the delineation of the damned.

Dante's Inferno - A Virtual Tour Of Hell
Category: Demons & Devils |


Friday, 19. January 2007
Demons Central

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Moloch

Demon (Greek daimon and daimonion, Lat. daemonium).

The word demon is apparently derived from daio "to divide" or "apportion", originally meant a divine being; it was occasionally applied to the higher gods and goddesses, but was more generally used to denote spiritual beings of a lower order coming between gods and men. It is now practically restricted to the evil spirits. A similar change and deterioration of meaning has taken place in the Iranian languages in the case of the word daeva. Etymologically this is identical with the Sanskrit deva, by which it is rendered in Neriosengh's version of the Avesta.


For the original meaning of the word is "shining one", and it comes from a primitive Aryan root div, which is likewise the source of the Greek Zeus and the Latin deus. But whereas the devas of Indian theology are good and beneficent gods, the daevas of the Avesta are hateful spirits of evil.

Demon is often confused with devil as both qualify the evil spirits or fallen angels. The precise distinction between the two terms in ecclesiastical usage may be found in the decree of the Fourth Lateran Council:

"Diabolus enim et alii daemones" (The devil and the other demons), means that the chief of the demons is called the devil, also found in Matthew 25:41, "the Devil and his angels". This distinction is observed in the Vulgate New Testament, where diabolus represents the Greek diabolos and in almost every instance refers to Satan himself, while his subordinate angels are described, in accordance with the Greek, as daemones or daemonia. It does not indicate a difference of nature; for Satan is clearly included among the daemones in James 2:19 and in Luke 11:15-18.

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The rich man being led to hell - Detail
David Teniers 1650

Demons Central
Category: Demons & Devils |


Tuesday, 05. December 2006
The Fantastic in Art and Fiction

Magic The Black Arts and the Occult: The basis of many a fantastic tale involves an invisible world of secrets, accessible with a particular kind of knowledge.

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Austin De Croze - Calendrier Magique
Click the picture for a larger view

Magic, alchemy and the occult are thus keys that allow entry into certain zones of the Fantastic. More important, they drive the intellectual engine of the Fantastic; even as they wane, they preside over the gestation of science fiction. The grimoire of the Magus becomes the mad-scientist’s user’s manual. Our selections include depictions of witches and sorcerers, instruction pages from the classic work of secret sciences entitled The Magus, illustrations of alchemical workshops, cabalistic mappings of biblical passages, and cover illustrations from the first issues of Amazing Stories, Hugo Gernsbach’s celebrated pulp journal devoted to science and fantastic fiction.

Weird Science



The religious supernatural recognizes\zed a self torn between transcendent forces that fought for its possession. The Devil and his minions, the Demons, engaged in a struggle for the soul with the angels and guardian spirits. When the religious supernatural expresses the search for salvation in terms of conflict and terror it anticipates the universe of Fantastic anxiety.

A particular interest in this cluster of images is the material drawn from Cornell's extensive Witchcraft collection.


Devil or Angel? Please say you'll be mine


Picture:
Stanislas de Guaita
Le Serpent de la Genèse: Le Temple de Satan

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Click the picture for a larger view


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Johannes Ionstonus - Historiæ Natura
Click the picture for a larger view

An extraordinary compilation where the paradigmatic struggle between observation and vision so crucial to the Fantastic is constantly played out. By the time of the early Enlightenment, the Bestiary, like its more recnent relative the Encyclopedia, participates in the totalizing intent of a catalogue whose purpose is the scientific understanding of the world. Empirical observation banishes from these increasingly imposing tomes any creatures that have not been observed in their environment. So the unicorn and the dragon, the griffon and the sea serpent, and all their relations take refuge in the annals of folklore, until the fantastic and its adjudant, surrealism, release them once more into literary discourse from the prisons where rational inquiry had consigned them.

The Bestiary



This and more: The Fantastic in Art and Fiction by Cornell University Library.
Category: Art & Visions | Demons & Devils | Magick & Witchcraft |


Thursday, 27. April 2006
Medieval Illuminated Manuscripts

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Scorpio

Astrology and theology

The religious feasts are the main contents of the Calendars of Psalters or Books of Hours. Its illustration shows the typical activities of the seasons of the year in the Labours of the Month and the passing of astronomical time in the Signs of the Zodiac.
Ever since man recognized some kind of regularity in the movement of stars and planets, he has believed that the celestial bodies influenced earthly events. Ideas, ultimately dating back to Babylonian times, persisted in the Middle Ages, and even today horoscopes continue to be drawn. In some regions of the world hardly a marriage is concluded without a serious look at the constellations.
Christian theologians were of course most familiar with the astrological ideas of the Graeco-Roman world.


These presented a challenge to their own ideas about the omnipotence of God, and they wrote many pages to reject what was unacceptable in their eyes.

Natural history and bestiaries

Bestiaries and other texts on natural history are populated with animals both actual and fabulous. It is as if they illustrate the story of the fifth and sixth day of the Creation: living creatures each after its kind. The properties ascribed to certain animals made them suitable as metaphors of vices or Christian virtues. As modern books and movies demonstrate, both real and phantasy animals continue to challenge our imagination.

Griffin: Part eagle, part lion, the griffin fuses the two mightiest animals into one. Ruling heaven and earth, immortal and of a double nature, it can symbolize Christ. When a griffin mates with a mare, they produce a Hippogriff: the eagle part of a griffin, hind legs and tail of a horse. The Hippogriff still lives: it is the pet of Hagrid, one of the main characters of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter saga.

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Griffin


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St. Petronilla holding the devil by a leading-string

Forms of evil

As is shown here, the devil may take on different guises in the illuminations we find in these manuscripts, but there are three basic ingredients: man, animal, and pure phantasy. When he tries to tempt Christ in the desert, or when he fools a nobleman, he looks almost human. But the miniaturist makes sure he does not fool us: his feet are that of an animal, or his eyes are burning coals.
The pictures tell us, that he may turn himself into a cat. He may also be a pale, threatening creature taking souls to hell. The colourful monsters pestering saint Pachomius could have been designed by Bosch. Finally, the devil that seduces Theophilus to sell his soul, looks like one of the more malicious Muppets designed by Jim Henson.


Holy helpers: male saints and female saints

The veneration of saints is as old as the Christian church itself. Christians believed that saints could intercede for them with God. Of couse many still do. Where saints were buried, people gathered to celebrate the anniversary of their death. On this foundation an elaborate system developed during the Middle Ages. For specific complaints or dangers people would ask help from a specific saint.

Apollonia: A deaconess in Alexandria. She refused to renounce Christ and her teeth were broken during torture. They threatened to burn her if she persisted. She didn't wait, but jumped into the fire herself. She protects against toothaches and is patroness of dentists.

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Apollonia


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Creation of Sun, Moon and Stars

The Creation of the World

The beginning of Genesis, the first book of the bible, has always given rise to reflection and debate. In the Middle Ages this debate remained of course within the boundaries of the Christian faith. The created universe was an accepted fact, not an opinion to be discussed. Since Darwin and the rise of evolutionary theory, the debate has received an added dimension, and it certainly has not lost its topicality. One only has to search the internet with the combined keywords 'evolution' and 'creation' to get an impression of the occasional intensity of the discussion. This gallery, obviously, is not a contribution to the debate. It merely serves to show how the creation was visualized in the Middle Ages.


The examples above and much, MUCH more you'll find at
Medieval Illuminated Manuscripts by the Koninklijke Bibliotheek (National Lirary of the Netherlands) and the Museum Meermanno-Westreenianum.
Superb!
Unfortunitly it only works in IE.
Category: Astrology & Astronomy | Books & Magazines | Demons & Devils | Religion & Early Cultures |


Thursday, 13. April 2006
DeliriumsRealm

Each world religion or tradition seems to have its own idea of what is considered evil. In some cases, these ideas are similar if not identical, whereas in other cases, these ideas are almost as complete opposites.

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Abraxas

When you begin to look within religions, you find many, many interpretations of what evil is and how it came to be in the world. Religions that have an omnipotent God, such as Judaism and Christianity, have some of the most elaborate constructions for the existence of evil, while religions such as Hinduism tend to have gods and goddesses with both positive and negative aspects. Native Americans personify the destructive qualities of nature, such as the whirlwind.

Demon FAQ


Asmodeus, also known as Ashmadia, most likely originated from the Persian Aeshma-deva ("demon of wrath").

The apocryphal Book of Tobit describes an instance where Raguel's daughter, Sarah, was tormented by the demon. She was married to seven times, each time the Asmodeus killed off the husband before they could have intercourse. Sarah, was about to hang herself in grief, but decided against it after thinking about the shame it would cause her father. She then prayed to God for death ...


Demons A-Z

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Asmodeus


This page is a study in world perceptions of "evil." Thoughout these pages, you'll find descriptions of different "demons." I realize that some of these "demons" can be considered gods or mythological beings. I've chosen those I found to demonstrate the trickster archetype or have been described as possessing "evil" traits in a predominent belief system.
DeliriumsRealm by Krista Baker. (English)
Good vs Evil, God vs Satan, Angels vs Demons
You'll find also interesting articles.
Category: Demons & Devils |


Sunday, 16. October 2005
666: What’s in a Number?

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Are you afraid of the number 666? If you were issued an automobile license plate or a telephone number that included a string of three sixes would you ask for a different number? Do you think the number 666 is inherently evil? Do you believe any number can in and of itself be evil?


The issue of FATE magazine that you are holding in your hands right at this moment is issue number 666. The 666th word in this article is "dead." Does this make you just a little bit nervous?

If it does, you are not alone. There is a name for your condition - "Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia" - the fear of the number 666.

Everyone has at least one or two superstitions that we feel somehow comfortably obliged to observe. My father was a geologist and a high-degree Freemason. He was for the most part a very logical and scientific man. Still, he was oddly superstitious about little things like spilling salt and walking under ladders.

Read more ...
Category: Articles & Essays | Demons & Devils | Numerology & Kabbalah |


Sunday, 24. July 2005
A Woman Possessed?

Shirley Wallace believes as many as 10 demons have possessed her in the past 23 years.

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"It’s like there’s a monster inside you from hell," says the 43-year-old mother of four. "It’s a type of suffering I can’t put into words, but it’s like a natural suffering — something hellish." She believes she was first cursed by a witch from Mesa in 1982 in connection with both of them dating the same man.

A Woman Possessed? by East Valley Tribune.
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Demonic possession is a condition recognized across religions worldwide going back to humans’ earliest existence. Traditional Christianity believes the universe has two sources of supernatural power. First, there is God, along with Christ, the Holy Spirit and angels, who combine to make up the forces of good; second is the power of Satan and his demons, who comprise the forces of evil. A demon is defined as an evil spirit, which can possess a person, or is a malignant supernatural being.

Read also: A primer on possession.
Category: Demons & Devils | News & Stories |


Tuesday, 07. June 2005
The World of Demons - Die Welt der Dämonen

Bedenket der Glaube an Dämonen ist so alt, wie der Glaube an die Götter selbst. Es gibt keine Religion, die nicht Ihre eigenen bösen Geister hat. Dämonen haben Einzug in all unsere Lebensbereiche genommen und manche finden wir gar in uns selbst.

Die Welt der Dämonen
(German version)

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In the following you shall find information about demons in mythology, religion, fairytales and stories of different culture and epochs. Mind that the belief in demons is just as old as the belief in gods. There is no religion that does not have its own evil spirits. Many of these demons have entered the world of movies and literature; and maybe you will recognize some of them within yourself.

The World of Demons (English version)
Category: Demons & Devils |


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