Iä! Iä! Cthulhu Fhtagn


The Spooky season is upon us.

Based upon some bragging I did on the brachioboard this spring, and some goading encouragement by dave and jocelyn, I came up with a unified theory of Cthulhu.

People like it when you call your thoughts a “unified theory”.


I wrote a paper. 

It’s based off of HP Lovecraft’s story “the call of Cthulhu” (listen here)

specifically,  i was able to describe all of the crazy things which the sailor Johansen sees upon the corpse city of R’lyeh using my mad general relativity skills.

I even did some computing and rendered (not drew. RENDERED) a picture of how the island would look bonkers because of gravitational lensing. @_@

but heres the thing…

In proving the Johansen wasn’t crazy I accidentally figure out that cthulhu is probably real, responsible for the island… and I also figure out what he’s doing down there. Of course, as a brave man of science, i can’t go and admit that Cthulhu exists… but you can tell…

Anyway. It’s wonderful and all general relativity.

I’m putting it on the arxiv as we speak, so it should be making weird waves in a day. but in case power goes out or something, I thought i’d tell the podcast about it.

it’s currently on the Arxiv. so you can go there to download it if you want.

Arxiv Version

16 thoughts on “Iä! Iä! Cthulhu Fhtagn

  1. Hi !

    I just read the Chtulhu paper, this is an amazing piece of work. Not exactly written in totally genuine scientific phrasing, but close enough to sound genuine. Or at least to serve as an amazing hand-out for RPG players (especially if they are into theoretical physics).
    I am sure this nice work will make a big buzz in the HPL lovers circle.
    Thank you for the work you put in this.

    Best wishes,

    Pierre from Paris

  2. Actually taking a look at the ESA GOCE data there is a massive increase in gravity just south of Ceylon. My hypothesis is that Lovecraft changed the location of sunken R’lyeh from the Indian Ocean to the South Pacific to throw off people wanting to follow in his sailor’s footsteps and possibly awaken Cthulhu. A quite sensible thing to do.

  3. I am not a physicist or mathematician, so I can not argue your science. From what I can tell through my own paltry excursions into geometry and mathematics, it is probably sound. However, you are making a statement that this is all coming from actual people. The fact is that they are fictional characters all invented by Lovecraft. One source if information drafted from the perspectives of three fictional mediums. This robs your paper of its credulity significantly. To take fiction, add a dash of fact, and a few confusing (and somewhat convincing) sources, and what do you have? Science-Fiction, my friend.

    I think your work on the effect of curved spacetime as it pertains to Gus’ mysterious island is fun and interesting, and I wouldn’t be surprised if R’lyeh and Cthulhu were real (though I find the mysterious Bloop more convincing evidence than your paper). After all, anything is possible in infinite multiverse’s. I would have given you more credence had you NOT portrayed the stories of Johansen, Thurson, and Dyer as not being the writings of a SINGLE individual.

    Furthermore, I am not trolling. I gave your paper a thorough read and even passed it on to a friend to give a more studious eye to your math. And he says that it seems like good science (he also said he didn’t really pick it apart, however). Though he has not read Lovecraft’s works, as I have. I was an English major, him Geomatic Engineering (so I trust in his opinion here). I was just disappointed in your portrayal of Lovecraft’s works as anything other than what it was and penned by anyone other than the man himself.

    There are many instances of people successfully playing off a lie as fact, and is usually causes a degree of panic (The War of the Worlds original broadcast, the Lusitania, 9/11). People are stupid, friend. They will believe anything. Especially when it looks or sounds convincing.

    The Cthulhu Mythos in particular can be dangerous in this regard for the stupid. Can you imagine Cult’s of wannabe fish-people gargling all over place and getting plastic surgery to more resemble fish-people? James Cameron already has people trying to transform themselves into enormous blue tail-bumping jungle bunnies, so its not a stretch. Just remember, the intelligent have the responsibility to remain truthful and right-minded for the benefit of the ignorant so they cant drag us all down with them.

    Once again, I enjoyed your paper. Thanks for making me think!

    • haha. yeah, I was just having fun.
      I asked myself “Suppose I was in Lovecraft’s world. How would I react to reading Thurston’s work, decades later?”.

      unlike orson well’s prank, though, i’ve wrapped my prank in nice boring science, so people are more likely to fall asleep than panic in the streets. :p

      • Hah! Good point! Stupid people wouldn’t read more than the first page before skipping to your conclusion. If they read it at all. Were it the case that this was real… scary stuff.

  4. I came across Ben’s paper on the arXiv preprint server before I found the Titanium Physicists website — which goes to show that the Internet works as a means of disseminating science, even science that playfully alludes to supernatural horror!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *