|Asmodeus as in Collin de Plancy's Dictionnaire Infernal. Art by Louis Le Breton. |
Alan Moore: [...] I also had an experience with a demonic creature that told me that its name was Asmoday. Which is Asmodeus. And when I actually was allowed to see what the creature looked like, or what it was prepared to show me, it was this latticework…if you imagine a spider, and then imagine multiple images of that spider, that are kind of linked together–multiple images at different scales, that are all linked together–it’s as if this thing is moving through a different sort of time. You know Marcel Duchamp’s “Nude Descending a Staircase”? Where you can see all the different stages of the movement at once. So if you imagine that you’ve got this spider, that it was moving around, but it was coming from background to foreground, what you’d get is sort of several spiders, if you like, showing the different stages of its movement.
Now if you imagine all of those arranged into a kind of shimmering lattice that was turning itself inside out as I spoke to it, and I was talking to my partner at the time and sort of saying, This thing’s showing us it’s got an extra dimension I haven’t got, and it’s trying to tell me that it’s good at mathematics. [laughter] It’s vain. There’s something fourth-dimensional about this. This is all stuff I was actually saying at the time, while I was having the experience, which was pretty extreme.
Anyway. Over the next couple of weeks I started researching Asmodeus and found out that actually, yeah, he’s the demon of mathematics. [chuckles] Also there is a thing which apparently, traditionally he is able to offer one, and this is called the Asmodeus flight. This is where the demon will pick you up, carry you into the air, into the sky, and you can look down and you can see all of the houses as if their roofs had been removed, so you can see what’s going on inside them. Now that is not a description of being carried through the air. That’s not being moved into a higher physical space. That’s what things would look like if you’d been moved into a higher mathematical space. If you were actually in the fourth dimension, or if your perceptions were in the fourth dimension, looking down at the third dimension, you wouldn’t see places as if the roofs of the houses had been removed, you’d see around the roofs of the houses. [chuckles] In the same way that if you imagine a race of completely two-dimensional creatures living on a sheet of paper, if you draw a square and then put one of those two-dimensional creatures inside it, they are COMPLETELY enclosed, because every direction in their two dimensions is shut off to them. If you then as a three dimension creature were to reach down and pick up this two-dimensional speck because you can see through the roof, which is a dimension that he hasn’t got. So, if you’re a fourth dimensional creature looking at the third dimension, you would be able to see around the walls of a sealed room. This was interesting, because it kind of confirms the fourth dimensional aspect of Asmodeus.
I did a picture, as best I could, of what I’d seen. I did that about a month after I’d had this experience. Dave Gibbons, who’s a very down-to-earth, practical man, had come up to visit me. He’d seen the Asmodeus picture that I’ve got up on an altar kind of shrine type thing, and he phoned me up a couple of weeks later, saying that he’d just got this book called Four-Space which is a book about the fourth dimension in mathematics. This is not a mystical or occult book, this is hard maths. Very hard maths a lot of it, certainly beyond me. But at the end of the book, the guy who’s put it together gets a little bit playful and just decides to have a little bit of fun with speculation, because whereas all of the book has been hard mathematical facts, in the last chapter he lets himself be a little bit speculative and he sorta says, “Alright, if there was such a thing as fourth-dimensional life, how would this appear to us? Well my best guess is that it would appear as a kind of multiple images of itself at different scales arranged in a shimmering latticework.” And Dave said that he felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end, because he’d seen the Asmodeus picture, which is pretty much exactly that! [...]