There’s not much I can add to all that will be written about Wednesday’s day of infamy, when a mob of Donald Trump supporters stormed Capitol Hill, but I can perhaps shed light on one aspect of it — the role of “conspirituality” in fomenting the riot and in shaping the man who will go down as its poster boy: Jake Angeli, the “QAnon shaman.”
Conspirituality refers to the overlap between New Age/wellness culture and conspiracy culture. I wrote about it last April, and in August I wrote a piece called “Nazi Hippies” about the overlap between New Age spirituality and far-right theories like QAnon.
Nazi Hippies: When the New Age and Far Right Overlap
Both the New Age and the far right are drawn to conspiracy theories
The advantage of the rioters being anti-masker conspiracy theorists is we often know exactly who they are and what they believe. It doesn’t take any deep intelligence work to uncover these terrorists. They are not hiding.
So we can discover a lot about Angeli, a gullible schmo who was, unfortunately, easy meat for the Q virus. I analyze his beliefs not out of any ill will but because he played a very visible role in an attempted U.S. coup, and his mindset is a perfect example of conspiritualist thinking.
Jake Angeli (real name Jacob Anthony Chansley) is a 32-year-old actor from Arizona, not hugely successful by the looks of it, whose now-deleted Backstage page proclaimed he is a “highly talented” voice actor who can do over 30 different voices.
He was previously in the Navy, then got into psychedelic drugs (mushrooms and peyote), and is now a “self-initiated shaman” who set up something called the Star Seed Academy — the Enlightenment and Ascension Mystery School. He is a big believer in using psychedelic ceremonies for mental health. Somehow all those psychedelics failed to turn him into a liberal.