The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'madonna'
It looks like a Madonna-branded iPod Nano is coming out next month. No word on whether it'll come with a length of holy red string to hang it around one's neck on.
A magazine named Radar has the start of a potentially interesting series on Kabbalah (not the Mediæval branch of esoteric Judaism, but the red-string-and-sacred-bottled-water one that's the hottest new celebrity cult in Hollywood):
In December the Guardian of London published a 10-month investigation that revealed the dubious nature of the Rav's qualifications as a religious leader, as well as the Centre's avaricious ways. Then, in January 2005, a BBC documentary caught high-ranking Kabbalah Centre officer Rabbi Eliyahu Yardeni on undercover camera saying that the Jews who died in the Holocaust perished because they weren't studying Kabbalah. The same documentary showed an employee at the Centre's London office selling a man with cancer more than $1,500 worth of merchandise, including Aramaic books he could not read and bottled water with no proven health benefits.
The article promises more details on findings, including:
The false claims the Centre has made about its distinguished origins.
The Centre's use of cultlike techniques to control members, including sleep deprivation, alienation from friends and family, and Kabbalah-dictated matchmaking.
The bizarre scientific claims made by the Centre's leaders on behalf of Kabbalah Water, ranging from its ability to cleanse the lakes of Chernobyl of radiation to its power to cure cancer, AIDS, and SARS.
The Centre's sponsorship of the Oroz Research Centre, a "23rd century" scientific institution that markets a "liquid compound for the treatment of nuclear waste" that also cures gynecological problems in cows, sheep, and other farm animals.
The Bergs' explicit strategy of steering Kabbalah away from its Jewish roots in order to appeal to a wider global market, and their plans to brand both the Centre and family members for maximum popular appeal.
As for steering Kabbalah away from its Jewish roots, isn't that old news, though? There have been non-Jewish self-professed Cabbalists since the time of Aleister Crowley if not John Dee. Though, granted, they weren't peddling overpriced bottled water to celebrities.
(via bOING bOING)
Julie Burchill turns her guns on Madonna's latest album and image-change.
And this is the nub of my argument, the glitch in the seamless, shameless Madonna machine that just won't go away: for all her talk of discipline and dedication, has there ever been a professional singer, with two decades behind her, whose voice has shown not just no improvement, but a decline? Wouldn't the reputed four hours a day spent putting her ankles behind her head be better used practising her scales? And how much disrespect does this show to those who buy her records? Considering how little effort Madonna has put into the very thing she became famous for, her fabled knack for "reinvention" starts to look less like the clever cherry on the cake and more like desperate smoke-and-mirror decoys from her total lack of talent.