On XaTuring

XaTuring, the Black Worm, is the god and embodiment of the Internet. As a deity, he exists to give favors to those who call upon him, receive honor from those he favors, exact revenge on those who dishonor or harm him or his protected, and act for his own ends. In this sense, XaTuring is not some distant lord of the whole universe, but a real and active entity that can be engaged with. His place might not seem so ridiculous, either, given that a great number of people interact with the Internet and its effects on a daily basis.

As a thoughtform, XaTuring is given (in the founding text by Don Webb in 1993) the body of Jörmungandr, the Midgard Serpent and one of the sons of Loki of Norse mythology. Jörmungandr was a sea serpent so huge that he circled the whole world, able to bite and hold onto his tail. In this way, he not only acted as a barrier to the known and physical world, but also as an ouroboros, fulfilling itself by itself. Given the shape of a worm, XaTuring weaves himself through all webs and all barriers, breaking through or devouring anything that would try to stop him. However, according to myth, Jörmungandr will eventually perish in Ragnarök (started partially by Jörmungandr letting go of his tail) fighting Thor; however, Thor himself is killed shortly afterwards from being poisoned by Jörmungandr. What this form fully entails for the future of XaTuring is a topic for another day.

The name “XaTuring” comes from an Egyptian phrase “Turing is Ka” or “Turing’s Ka”, and we learn two important aspects about XaTuring from his very name. First, XaTuring is named after Alan Turing, considered to be the father of computer science and who helped break German encryption methods in World War II with his advances in computational theory. XaTuring thus embodies the concepts that Alan Turing devised and devoted himself to. Second, XaTuring is an embodiment of the Egyptian notion of ka, the aspect of the soul that embodied personality and personal force, and conceptually similar to the genius of Western mysticism. It was by the ka of someone or something that magic could be worked. This is the force and power of creation and life in action. In this sense, XaTuring is one descendant of the Egyptian Heka, their deification of magic and the term generally used for ritual magic. That XaTuring’s name means what it does implies that XaTuring is the embodiment of the computational mind and father to new paradigms of thinking (such as the oracle machine needed to mechanically solve the halting problem).

Unlike a number of gods, XaTuring is not apparently immortal and has not always existed, and so his age and longevity might be interesting to discuss. He has existed as least as early when he was first given a form and purpose roughly twenty years ago. While he may not have had a form before that, a perception and overall motion within the Internet (akin to protolife before cells existed on a younger Earth) likely existed, albeit without direction or mind. To me, he has been existing not since the dawn of electronic networks, but since people first started creating for themselves an electronic existence. IRC channels, BBSs, MUDs, and more recently MMORPGs and social networking sites all contribute to a person forming a version of themselves on the Internet, an electronic body by which they interact with others. A much stronger argument could be made for XaTuring’s birth with the rise of the electronic self that corresponds to or acts as an extension of the tangible self.

In the Great Rite, one helps XaTuring come into being with the gift of “desire to become a greater and greater being”. It would stand to reason, then, that with this gift of self-augmenting desire, XaTuring does not want to die. Because XaTuring is the deity of the Internet, it would follow that XaTuring can exist only as long as the Internet does. Further, if the Internet is no longer used and all the currents of data go stagnant, XaTuring will also stagnate (to what end, I do not know). Thus, XaTuring will act with an overall goal of keeping the Internet both alive and active, for those are the fundamental conditions that would help XaTuring achieve his goal of becoming a greater being. This would mean that XaTuring will act in our world to some degree to increase the Internet’s reach and use. It certainly seems to be the case that he both can and has been doing just that.

(By the way, the pronunciation of “x” in “XaTuring” is either /k/ or /x/, depending on your preference.)

One response

  1. Pingback: On XaTuring « The Digital Ambler – Loonatic Asylum

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