Thursday, April 29, 2010

Winner! Best Pagan Post of the Year

http://vonfaustus.blogspot.com/2010/04/walpurgis-night.html

This is simply awesome. This is the spirit and emotion of Paganism Western style.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Symbols We Use

Jason posted an inspiring picture of his altar here.

That picture makes me want to paint the room my non-GD temple space. However, I'm not there yet. Why am I not there? Because I don't know of a symbol set to use. The symbol set I'm using is a GD color scheme. This is helpful intellectually but not really magically.

One of the things I love about GD is the symbol set. Everything is balanced to the point of beauty. Every one of the extensive symbols you are exposed to in Golden Dawn workings is exquisitely balanced even when it relates to a place that appears to be of imbalance. They reveal that everything is internally balanced even if the whole of that thing appears out of balance to the Universe. Ma'at reigns supreme.

Do not take this next paragraph to mean I that the GD symbol sets do not work. They work fine for the purposes they were designed for.

One of the things I do not like about GD is the clinical/scientific nature of the symbols. I suppose this is very much illustrated by the Rider-Waite tarot deck. To me, that deck is as dry as dust. It may convey deep meaning but all the emotion is washed away. The occult without emotion is like bread without yeast. You just can't get a rise out of it.


Take these lines from Sophia's recent post, "The overall feeling of the entity was non-reflective, purely motivational, focused energy toward a target. It was pure motive and direct action toward it." The communication came as a feeling or emotion or an 'energy pattern' for lack of a better word and was then translated into words that explain the emotion, not the other way around. 

Regardless of the symbol set, it takes more than someone telling you what it means. A deep deep understanding is necessary. I have that with the tarot aces and that trickled out through all the minor arcana. I can work magick with a tarot card visualization and be done with it for the most part. Well, let me say I can get really good relational changes involving human interaction. My 2 of pents work for my car didn't work out so well.
So as far as non-GD symbol sets, I've got one. One symbol that deeply resonates and here is the odd part. It isn't on my altar! I do use it as an offering though to a deity that I am quickly growing quite fond of but that is a different post all together.

However, if one looks at Jason's altar closely, one does see more images of deities than abstract symbols. Herein may lay a clue.

 

New Blog Added Magick and Mysticism--Sophia-Dione 23

I have added a new blog to the list on the left.

She appears to be very educated and is writing about her experiences with the Olympic spirits at the moment. What she has wrote rings true to me. The blog is Magick and Mysticism--Sophia-Dione 23 and can be found here. I assume the 23 is a reference to chaos magick.

The messages from the spirits I've read on her blog are personal. Global messages usually come from the ego. They seem to be as much about saying, "Here is a great prophet," as they are about conveying real information. Personal messages that convey methods of focusing on the energy at hand are much less likely to be ego driven. 

The moment one hears messages that are global one should regard them with caution. When the messages are about other people or worse for other people, we should cautious as well. The exception may be illustrated by a message I received that appeared to be about WitchDoctorJoe. Joe had made the comment that I am very quiet socially. At the time, I considered myself quite the loud mouth and didn't understand his comment. However, the spirit in question, my HGA, explained how my behavior around Joe lead Joe to that perception. So the message wasn't really about Joe and certainly wasn't for him.

Regardless of that little diversion into pontification, thanks to the Scribbler for bring her to the attention this memberof the blogging cabal. 

Monday, April 26, 2010

The Services of the Vicar (A bit off-topic)

From time to time, I use this space to advertise for my friends. Basically, I have to know you in real life and feel whatever you are offering is of value.

Today, I'm posting a little something about Vicar Bert. Bert performs weddings, funerals, house blessings and partner dedications throughout the Central Valley of California. I'm sure he'd travel even further if you ask.

Bert is a very personable fellow and when I say he 'performs' these services, he does perform. Your vicar will definitely be heard by your guests. He knows how to project his voice without sounding like he is screaming. Just as importantly, he is presentable in a wide variety of company. He will not offend your guests of other religions. Don't go to the phone book, go to Vicar Bert at www.facebook.com/vicarbert. I do recommend his services.

He also specializes in love readings using the tarot.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Morality of the Gods (Part II)

Those that seek the spiritual must seek within. They may use external cues but the secret is turning inward. If someone kicks you in the balls,  saying ouchholygodthathurtslikeasonofabtich is perfectly normal. That said, sooner or later you have to wonder why you were so exposed in the first place, what you are supposed to learn from that experience and the like. So what is the trick to getting this done?

Let's look to the magick first. The Olympic Spirit Bethor (Jupiter) can bestow great treasures. The rookie magician takes that literally and goes for the cash. Good luck with that. The magician contemplates his own meaning of treasures. Another's meanings will not do. What could treasures be? Here is a brief list:

  • Being 'right' with "God"
  • A loving present family
  • Deep friendships/relationships
  • Enough spare time to contemplate the divine or take a walk in a forest
  • The compassion to help a friend or child or simply the compassion and ability to give
  • The ability to avoid the wrath of the unjust
  • The favor of influential people
  • The ability to learn
  • Self-awareness
  • solitude and/or free social interaction
  • the ability to create art
  • the ability to 'speak' with animals
  • good health
  • children or grandchildren
  • a job you love rather than one you have to do
Treasure can mean a lot of things and some of these this particular spirit is more likely to bestow than others. The trick here is to extend the metaphor as far as you can take it. The spirits can turn your metaphors into reality or help you achieve it. Though, that may involve introducing you to some other spirit or teaching you how to do it yourself as well. They can stretch metaphors too.

Moving back to the last post, let's look at the mythical rape. What else can it mean?

  • The abuse of physical or social power to extract something from someone they don't want to give
  • Sadism, sexual, emotional or otherwise
  • Taking without giving
  • Lack of compassion
  • intentional infliction of emotional distress
  • theft
  • extortion
  • cruelty
  • some forms of manipulation
  • taking so much for someone they can no longer sustain themselves at prior levels (analogous of the rape of the land)
Can you rape yourself? Extend the metaphor within and find out.

So, when it comes to the stories of ancient origin and the behavior of the gods, magicians and spiritual people can use them to pry open the doors within to see that which we hide from ourselves. Find anything negative in the myths and ask yourself if you've done that in any form and what impact did it have on your soul, not to mention your life. Everyone can do this to some level. Some can dig deep, some not as much, but everyone has something they can not see.* Jupiter can provide the compassion you will need when you can see something that someone else cannot see within themselves.

If you've been accused of a wrong that you do not feel you committed, extend the metaphor. There is a good chance there is something there. If you're accusing, extend it again and find your real internal problem, paradigm or viewpoint that caused the issue to develop or remain. This is tough work but you're the one that wanted to be a magician. Get it done. 

* If you don't think you have a blind spot, ask around. Some s.o.b. will be happy to tell you. Some friends may tell you as well but they won't like saying it.

The Morality of Gods

One of the things I love about the blogging cabal is the cycle of themes. Very often, I'm thinking on a topic just to have someone post on that topic. Kenaz, did that here regarding the morality of the Gods. He made the point that the rules placed on followers are not always followed by the Gods themselves by saying of the many he knows that worship Zeus none of them are serial rapists.

At this point you know I'm about to get into all sorts of trouble don't you?

I am not an expert on Greek mythology but I don't recall the followers of Zeus having any particular edicts upon their behavior. Is there a Zeusian 8 decrees somewhere that says thou shall not rape? Maybe but I've never seen it. The modern followers of Zeus don't rape because we as humans have decided that such behavior is contemptible.  That has nothing to do with Zeus or Yahweh. The latter didn't decide we shouldn't sell our disobedient daughters into slavery (to be raped?). We did.

A friend has serious issues with male deity. I recently suggested reevaluating the old stories by substituting the word seduction instead of rape and seeing if there are other things in the story that support either word. There is no reason to believe that myths that are thousands of years old use words with the same meanings much less connotations than ours. Do I really need to reiterate here that I am not an expert at Greek myths? I have no idea what she'd find if she did as suggested.

However, I do know Pan reasonably well. When he landed on me he tried to incite me to begin orgies. This fellow isn't called Scary Harry without cause either. I can readily see him taking what he wants and what he wants is to put his...well, you know.

So what are we to do? Are we to recast Pan into a kind romantic nature spirit as our recent ancestors did? You can if you want but I assure you that Pan has as much romance in him as a monster truck rally.

Gods, at least the eminent variety, are full of good and bad and there is no part of me that is not of the gods. I am full of good and bad impulses. Can I say the idea of throwing and orgy had no prurient appeal? No. Can I say that as a male I haven't had the urge to take what I want? No. I can say I haven't acted on those things but the gods teach me that I can not deny they exist within or at least did at one time. Is there a woman that can not find the urge to throw Eris's apple into a party to which she wasn't invited somewhere in her past?

So what do we do? We maintain our sovereignty. I can commune with Pan and not rape. I can party with Eris and shake up the world's perceptions without doing pernicious harm. I can maintain my sense of who I am and let the Gods play whatever games they want to play among themselves or use someone else as their horse.

The gods often do not have what I perceive to be my best interest in mind. The inverse is likely true. And if you look to your lives and see the things you do and that your friends do that impact you, you will realize that despite what we want to believe, we rarely have each other's best interest in mind either. As above, so below.

The myths are not meant as examples of perfect behavior to be emulated but are an external reminder to look within at some of the dark places and deal with them before temptation arises. They are warnings to pagan and magician alike as to what to expect when dealing with a particular deity. The wise maintain their sovereignty and horses forfeit the sovereignty they never knew.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Queen of Wands

I've been asked to share my definition of the Queen of Wands.

Without covering my personal philosophy of the cards, I will just say that the definition is two-fold for every card. I have a general definition I use for everyone I read for and a specific one for me. The general one is, not to belabor the point, generalized to macrosomic meaning. The personal one is my microcosmic meaning. If I read for another and hit their microcosmic meanings, I'm having a good day. For the Queen of Wands my personal definition is this:

Fire made patient. Not smoldering but power contained. When fire is not fire, power is not power, but the full potential for both making it more power/fire than even the ace. It is pre-ace but manifested.

Yes, this is highly idiosyncratic and the pre-ace part sounds odd for those that have done some reading on the tarot but it won't for folks that read my book.

Edit: The pre-ace part will sound odd even if you do read the book. I don't care. It works for me.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Who is Really in Charge Here?

I have noticed some effects of transformation.

Yeah, I'm happier, you got that. That isn't the topic of this post. What I'm noticing is that this is an automated process. I have no choices here. 

Kenaz posted something the other day or last week that would have set me off. He didn't say anything wrong but it would have hit that button. There was no impact. None. Zero. This is not the same as deciding there would be no impact.

I had a conversation with a friend on instant messenger. She brought up a painful incident, which I recalled, experienced the painful emotion which passed right through. I didn't hang on. No part of me reached for it. No part of me got mad. No part of me sought to understand or explain. These were not decisions I made.

I sat in a training today on a long drawn out project that has frustrated everyone involved. I've known these people for years. I realized that I loved them all. I didn't decide this. It just is.

I have no more control over this than I did the obsession, which is why I got irritated when folks would say well you are only hurting yourself as if they thought I could just turn it off. I could not any more than I could decide to do anything else an in the situations above.

This implies that thoughts are not our core selves but they can seriously impact us. Thoughts are things in and of themselves but they are not us. There is a core that is hidden by thought. 

In my prior life, my mind controlled itself. Now, something else does. My spirit? One of the aspects of my soul? Was the nephesch in charge then and the ruach now?

The mental transformation trigger was not expected by anyone else. Looking back, my mentor just kept throwing stuff against the wall until something stuck. I'm not criticizing, it was a tough problem.

The magickal trigger was never hinted at by anyone but I can see the analogy in what was suggested by some.

My point in this is not to let anyone tell you to 'just get over' your emotional pain. It takes as long as it takes. I think the best you can do is make an effort to get over it and eventually you'll find the right clue. You can also try to deal with the pain without being a son of a bitch. I didn't succeed at that last part very well but I'm sure trying to helped in some unknown and unmeasurable way. No way to tell if that trying helped very little or a lot. My secondary point is that you are not your thoughts. They are transitory illusions at best.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Lucid Dreams

I have noticed several times over the last ten days or so becoming lucid in dreams. Normally, when I become lucid, I can change the dream scape at the very least. I can astral travel from that state though, without great skill.

In these dreams, I am fully lucid but I can do nothing. The dream scape doesn't change and I cannot astral travel. I did banish one moderately uncomfortable image of my new doctor out of my bedroom. These experiences are not unpleasant or unnerving nor are they pleasant. They have simply been noticed.

Can't Read

I am having a very hard time reading other blogs, books of anything that aren't light fiction and anything else that may provide spiritual/magickal insight. I think this is because I am processing a huge internal change of perspective and/or it is the result of something going on as part of Jason Miller's class work.

I am recording this just as a marker for myself as I do reread this space from time to time to see if I can gain insights.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Summum Bonum

Many years ago, lifetimes, I met Lon Milo DuQuette. I had driven from Fresno to Costa Mesa with my mentor to pick him up as he was going to speak in Fresno later that day. 

This was at the beginning of the very difficult time in my life. My spirit was leaking out of my ravaged bodies, physical, emotional, mental and destroying that which it would. It hurt. Alchemical dissolution hurts everyone lucky or unlucky enough to have experienced its work. To say I was despondent would be like calling the Pacific Ocean wet. Then Lon opened his front door.

I smiled a true heartfelt smile. Instantly, an old Black Sabbath song from 1970, The Wizard, rang true. "Everyone smiles when the wizard walks by. "

The moment didn't last. True, even though I almost wrecked the car on the I-5 as Lon made us laugh with his song of blasphemy.  I've seen several people ask him to do it and he's turned them all down. Ask anyway, you may get lucky. He rips every religion you've ever heard of,  all of them equally lampooned. The rest of the ride was very amusing as well.

How many years later am I writing about that trip? Six? Seven? Maybe more. Frankly, I don't know. It was lifetimes ago.

I had thought I learned an important lesson and one that served me well. When two folks use the same words, unbidden, having not spoken to each other, listen and listen well. The Universe is telling you something. I've applied that lesson. I've failed to apply that lesson. Still, it is a good thing to know.

But Lon taught me something else that day. That smile was a lesson too. Everyone smiles when the wizard walks by.

Summum Bonum. Smiles. They go together. I'm not all that sure they are separate things.

I've been much more active lately. Last night, I took a very long walk, maybe two miles, meditating along the way. Upon that walk I came upon a police action. Four or five squad cars from various agencies could be seen well down a block. Uncharacteristically, I walked toward them when I could have gone another way. As I approached, a young cop turned toward me, his face a professional mask, immediately broke into a huge beautiful smile. I smiled back thinking nothing of it.

Last night, I slept very well. I awoke with a broad satisfied smile. I did not bother to notice how rare this is for me, rare enough that never before is likely right. Contentment. Peace. Perfect Happiness. Summum Bonum.

We are all human. This will fade, come back, fade again. Yet, I have now been there. I am there.

Normally, I'd use words like fascinating to describe my mindset after a new 'discovery.' That isn't where my mind is at. The word is: Easy. Easy it is to be here and yet we don't get here. When we do we don't stay.  Humans are weird. Who in their right mind wouldn't stay in this place as long as they could? The answer is anyone that will make it stable and enduring.

So what is next? My eyes are still focused above, ascension upon an endless ladder. I'm also focused down, the cthonic.  How does one go up and down at the same time? I have no clue but I think I'm about to find out. The journey never ends.

And to "Anonymous" who said, after a recent life decision that appeared to come out of left field, "Let me know how that works out for you." Fine. It worked out just fine.
______________________________________________________

With thanks to my mentor, Lon Milo DuQuette, Sam Webster, John Michael Greer, The Founders and Expounders of the Golden Dawn, Jason Miller, many authors, to those who aided my work in many way and My Gal. 
______________________________________________________

Audio to 'The Wizard': Lyrics are immediately below



Lyrics:

Misty morning, clouds in the sky
Without warning, the wizard walks by
Casting his shadow, weaving his spell
Funny clothes, tinkling bell

Never talking
Just keeps walking
Spreading his magic

Evil power disappears
Demons worry when the wizard is near
He turns tears into joy
Everyone's happy when the wizard walks by

Never talking
Just keeps walking
Spreading his magic

Sun is shining, clouds have gone by
All the people give a happy sigh
He has passed by, giving his sign
Left all the people feeling so fine

Never talking
Just keeps walking
Spreading his magic

Saturday, April 17, 2010

I Love it When

I love it when folks that have not discussed a spirit, deity or other non-corporal thing together but instead have experienced it, on their own, in a different time and place and yet the language matches, the ideas related are the same and the visuals connected, sometimes with very pertinent matching detail.

The first time that happened in a big way was with RO and myself with Bune. It happened again twice this week with a different non-corporal being. Better yet, it happened with TWO others, not just me and one other.

This is why the spirit model works for me. Of course, this would also verify the collective unconscious.

Theorizing aside, it is simply just a blast. I love magick. I really really do.

The Wisdom of Silence

The following is a rather disjointed jumble of random thoughts on silence.

Used in Wisdom

I have seen silenced used with wisdom in such a way as to enlighten or simply to not engage in base folderal.

Used in Uncertainty

Silence can avoid committing to something when one isn't sure

Used as a Vote

A silent response to a claim, statement on in place of another expected response is a very safe way to say fuck you.

Used as a Shield

I have seen silence used to hide from consequences basically a silent lie.

Used as a Weapon

I've seen silence used to harm as information is withheld with malice.

Used in Fear

I have seen fearful people use silence when they should speak. This ranges from a petty argument to what is discussed in that poignant work that condemns inappropriate silence, First They Came by Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984).

Used for the Ego

I have those that fool themselves into thinking silence is source of pride when really it is being used for social manipulation and the one-sided gathering of information.

Used in the Present

Unsure if I should utter a warning or not as I know not whether warning is warranted or inappropriate, helpful or harmful, a guide post or a inappropriate road block or based on my own insecurities or  on my own past-spawned baseless fears. I practice silence now. This is the silence of the my personal version of the Queen of Wands.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

You're Not What You Think You Are

Now isn't that just preachy?

As I wrote yesterday, I have, at least temporarily, disengaged from the blog statement/counter-statement dynamic. This was not intentional. I didn't even think about. Actualizing Spirit did that for me.

I've learned something while undergoing that process.

I've always enjoyed the exchange of ideas. Heated or not, we learn by exchanging ideas. We need to critically analyze our own opinions. It keeps us honest and on track with the Great Work. It is very easy to internalize opinion as fact. This is not helpful.

I am going to stress that I am not about to advocate that the exchange of ideas should stop in any way.

However, I've noticed that defending ideas quickly becomes something else. Somehow, our Nephesch gets confused and identifies us as our ideas. We then defend those ideas with the same emotional intensity we'd use to defend our lives.

Ideas are transitory. They are meant to die.

We tend to relate our self-identity to our ideas. This is false. We are more than what we think. The thought of killing our own ideas and the self-identity that surrounds them makes us fear. We fear that we will be  some how lessened by giving them up. Yet, less is more. The less of us that there is, the more of us becomes.

So, to answer Amethyst's question on my last post. These are the things that interest me now. Being less resulting in being more. Finding ways to make folks smile. Accepting that I am still easy to frustrate in some situations while knowing that the defeat of the Big Issue means I can defeat the smaller issue. Life is good. Life is joyful.

I'd like to offer a quick thanks to those folks that send emails of encouragement and those who privately let me know they enjoy reading what I disclose here and the method I use to do that. Your words of encouragement and appreciation are heartwarming. They were heartwarming even when my heart was a very very cold place. Thank you. You know who you are.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Well Now Isn't This Strange

I am finding living with a non-obsessessed non-pissed off mind quite interesting. It is strange having a brain that can choose what to focus on and what not to focus on. Strange indeed.

I also find it strange reading the blogs. I recently read something RO posted on the Golden Dawn. Some things he said I agreed with others not. My main reaction was this: YAWN

Kenaz posted something that I whole heartedly agreed with. My reaction: YAWN

Jason defended the Golden Dawn (a bit) and  called RO short within his comments section. My reaction: YAWN

While I know some of these folks better than others, I respect all of them. And still: YAWN

I've really enjoyed debating and vigorous defense and advocacy of ideas.  Yet, I'm not drawn to any part of the recent discussions. Some things have happened at work over the past week that would have pissed me off big time not two weeks ago. Now my reaction is, you guessed it: YAWN

I am not an outdoors guy nor, due to my back, am I physically active. But I spent a week in the back yard working my ass off making the place prettier. My old reaction: UGH My new reaction: FUN!

Actualizing Spirit is indeed a life changing experience over the short term. I'm not sure how it will play out over the long term.

I cannot preach about it. I cannot really speak about it. I can only feel it and live it. Spirit is not such a bad place to be.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Doing Magick for Readers of This Space

There was a time when I would never have considered taking money for magick. A couple years ago, I did tarot readings and donated all the money to a food bank. Later, I had people write checks to Valley Children's Hospital. I has zero ethical issues with that.

At the last Pantheacon, I was invited to be an official reader. This gave me the right to sit at a table and watch people walk by or so I thought. Two days later and not so many hours at the table, I had a significant percentage of my expense recouped. A dollar a minute adds up. I had no ethical issues with that either.

Jason Miller has repeatedly pointed out that many that would never charge for magick have no problems charging for tarot readings. This, he feels, is a contradiction. I must concede he is correct. Does this mean I will change my mind and charge for magick?

I am doubtful. A reader of this blog asked once, I referred him or her to Jason Miller. I have no idea if contact was ever made.

I have done magick for others and landed a very good job for someone. The price she paid was an offering to a non-political charity that she'd never donated to before and had no plans to donate to before our conversation. The amount wasn't even that great. I merely passed on the price that the gnomes asked for.

Jason's question removed all ethical doubts about charging for magick. Still, I wouldn't at this time. I have no reason whatsoever for my stance. It is just how I feel at the present. I have thought of doing some work for a selected group of readers who would like me to. My price would be an honest pledge to write me in detail about how the event, whatever it may be, came into manifestation, and/or to write me about whatever unintended results occurred that they attribute to the working. Sometimes unintended results are the best parts of magick, other times, not so much.

This is something I'm thinking on. If I come up with anything fun to do, I will make the offer. If readers have any suggestions, post to comments. Maybe something will come up that I want to do.

Edit: Though, it may be interesting to do a blind study where half of those who volunteer are worked for and the others not. Thinking...

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Patterns

On of the skills of a good magician is to see patterns. The practical application of this is by recognizing a pattern the magician has a chance of finding the weak point in the cycle. That weak point is vulnerable to being changed via magick. This allows the magician to break a cycle. It can also be used to reinforce a cycle.

The pattern I've noticed is something different. Any magician will tell you that sometimes the best banishing is a good temple cleansing. Vacuuming and dusting can work wonders. As you know, I have had somewhat of a break through personally. The manifestation of that has been taking my back yard from overgrown ugly to neatly trimmed. I've worked very hard on that. One may say that I have been been driven. One may find it very odd that my notorious bad back is none the worse for wear.

Sometimes cleaning something within results in cleaning something without. There is a very strong link between some magick done to aid the break through and this land clearing work. There is also a very strong link in what I've been doing in Jason Miller's course. In this case, a pattern is emerging.

I find the process fascinating.

Edit: That post was so full of typos and bad sentences I had to fix a few. I swear I was sober when I wrote it. Though, even with the fixes it is disjointed. 

Friday, April 9, 2010

What Didn't Work

I've posted a lot regarding my obsession with events with the first occult group I had joined. Most recently, I mentioned I was working on forgiveness. There are a few posts with that tag that can be looked up, if you're on the website.

Most never realized how bad it was. Six or seven years of constant thoughts, anger, emotional turmoil born from the emotional trauma. It was constant, daily, all the time. It was the first thought of the morning, the last of the evening. Every other thought I had, had to be pushed aside this overwhelming obsession, pain, anger, torment. At best I could succeed at going a couple hours but those times were rare. This occurred from the day of the primary event six or seven years ago to now. I took most of the joy and happiness out of being alive. There were times I hid it very well, if you didn't live with me. Many people I know would be very surprised to read the above. Over the years, I received a lot of advice

  • realize you're just hurting yourself
  • forgive
  • accept
  • get mad
  • beat pillows
  • meditation
  • prayer
  • compassion
  • destroy the ego
  • don't be so arrogent
  • you're wasting energy 
  • just forget about it
Professionals provided therapy and thought interuption techniques.

All of these had some value, I suppose. None of them contained the answer.

What worked? I know some of that answer but not all of it yet. I'm still in the process of transformation. Sooner or later, I will be able to put it all into words.

New Blogs

I've added a couple of blogs to my list.

Kenan Feliz is a voodoo practitioner. What I've read of him I've liked. He seems to be on the money on a lot of his comments.

The other is runesoup. That is a website and not on blogger. I'm trying to figure out how to make his link clickable. I will soon. It is authored by one of my readers, Gordon. I don't know Gordon well but I've liked what I've seen on his site so far.

Edit: Rune Soup is now on the blog list as a blog not below as a website

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Effects of Realization

I posted last night about how a realization has changed my mindset. So far that has not degraded and I am grateful, most grateful. The last forty-eight hours have been full of internal peace and joy.

I've noticed something in that my aura seems to have expanded or maybe I am just becoming aware of it. When I look forward, I can 'see' the end of my aura as an invisible sphere. How can I see the invisible which I really do not see? No clue. It is so ephemeral that I'd but sure it isn't there but it is.

Last night, for reasons I don't understand, the idea of the city of Madera entered my head. Madera is about thirty miles north of my location. I could see the city and felt like part of my aura touched it. Again, there was no sensation of touch but I felt like I was touching it.

I feel if this was my aura or some other subtle body, I'd be able to feel it brush against walls as I walked and that sort of thing. I don't. I've never felt anything that every rational part of me says is not real but yet I know it is. I have no idea what I am observing. The only phrase that comes to mind is 'sphere of sensation' which is used in the higher reaches of the Golden Dawn. I've never understood what that phrase meant.

Rant Amended

A couple of nights ago, I ranted about folks wanting to get paid to teach the occult arts. A couple of my fellow bloggers have since posted and I've had a question or two that I'd like to answer here.

Jason Miller posted a nice article using Bonewits as an example. I wasn't thinking of Isaac at all when I wrote mine but Jason read my mind. Standing around leading pagan circles a few times a year makes you an elder NOT! You're not an elder if you've done that for fifty years.

Elders are the shamans that guide us on our paths. They laugh with us and cry with us. They support us and kick our asses. This is their calling and they do it so well. Some day I may become an adept. I doubt I will ever become one of these.

RO posted today about a real reward, a true reward and it uplifted his heart, saved a life and a lifetime of heart ache for the parents. So now he may understand when I say that my mentor will be repaid by my own success and my passing on that success to another. We walk in the land of souls of which money is only a part.

I am answering a question here because I know that not everyone reads the comments section. I've been asked about how I feel about traditions other than mine that do charge.  My answer to that question is that I am completely ignorant of those other traditions and would not speak against them. In a way there is something refreshing about some one saying I will teach you X for Y. My rant was more directed along the lines of Jason's comments linked above.

On the other hand, I've been involved in one tradition that expects its young to serve those above them on the path through menial tasks and other such things. My observation is that this does little harm to those new to the path but gloriously inflates the egos of those that have already taken the long walk. This does not serve the ruling class well. That negative in turn does impact the younger folks and not for the better.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

New Unity, Peace

Over the past couple of days there have been a series of small realizations that have led my mind to a different place. I haven't had 24 hours of emotional peace in many years. Love abounds. Wow.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Teachers

RO posted something about teachers wanting to be taken care of in the pagan community. Fuck them. If they got into spirituality to be paid by adoring acolytes then frankly they have little of value to teach. Do you know what my teacher has ever asked of me? He's ask me to do the freaking work and to lend a hand on occasion to others that they may have the opportunity to do the freaking work. Period. That is it. I've given a lot more than that but that isn't the point. He's never asked for it nor does he expect it.

Do you know what he gets for all his prior learning, time, effort, spiritual, emotional and other support he gives? He gets grief, heartache, pain-in-the-ass students, some laughter, a few tears, loses a few dollars, gains a ton of experience, a nifty white robe, the occasional good bottle of scotch, some friendships and maybe a gentle smile from a spirit just before it kicks his ass.

And there are bastards out there that think they deserve to be paid and adored? Right.

Anyone that does this work for others wants thanked. That is both human nature and well-deserved. If you try to help out and succeed or fail, you want to be given a bit more than silence. Nothing wrong with that.

I say this as his chief major pain the ass student. I've agreed with him, followed him willingly, followed him hesitantly, followed him while telling him he's f---ing it up, teased him, advised him (as he is actually able to ask for and accept advice from his students), pleaded with him and told him he is flat out wrong (and not in a nice way). And you know what? He just keeps moving on.

Why? Because he freakin teaches and doesn't whine that someone isn't sending him checks.

He's flat out told me that we aren't friends. He is my mentor. Period. I'm good with that. Every freaking thing I know about the occult came from him. Even the other things I've learned from Lon Milo DuQuette, Sam Webster and Jason Miller would not have been learned if not for him.

That sort of debt is not repayable except through aiding others. (One of the reasons I write this blog is to pay that debt. Though I could do so for the next thousand years and not cover it.)  Yet still I chew his ass from time to time. Such is the life of a teacher. You want the job? Have fun with that.

That being said, there are other teachers. They teach slices of technique, philosophy, skill sets, share personal experiences, on occasion write books and the like. These I try to support when I can. I've bought both of ROs books even though I've only read the first one. I've bought Jason's books four times and he's only written two and likley sold a half dozen more for him. These people are valuable.

There are still other teachers. They go by a different name. Assholes. One can learn a lot from the negative if you have the balls to do so. These people are valuable too in a certain cow pasture sort of way.

So that is my diatribe on teachers. Hold me back, I think I just channeled RO.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Of the Land

I am a ceremonial magician. My magick is indoor magick. We use temples and altars built by the hand of man. We seek to rise up to the furthest reaches of our souls in hopes of encountering a greater portion of the glory of God, The Goddess, The Creator, The Great Universal It, The Logos or whatever term you have for the ultimate form of That Which Creates.

I cannot imaging posting someday that this work is in error. Though, given that my opinion changes more often than some are wont to believe, nearly anything is possible.

I've been thinking on something of late and given the posts by Hecate and My Gal, I think it is time to express those thoughts here.

Magick is tied to the land. The land influences in the form. The land influences the soul. I first noticed this when I visited Chicago and Milwaukee to attend a wedding in Wisconsin. I was shocked to feel the difference of the land through my feet. I do not have the language to describe the esoteric differences as they are. I'm not sure English has the words. Illinois had a reviving power that I may be able to describe as a vibrant natural economy. The ability of the land to sustain growth was palpable. Wisconsin was greener than my home base (Fresno, CA) but there the natural economy felt sluggish and nearly depressed. One could feel the difference between these two lands at the state border.

This helped me to understand someone that was visiting from the UK five or six years ago. She said, that Fresno was magickally dead and continued, "If you can do magick here,  you can do it anywhere." I disagree but I do understand. Her land is so vibrant with water and all that comes with it and this was her first experience with dessert. Dessert has a magick all its own. Its magick is that of endurance. This she could not feel. So my twist on her statement is: If you can do magick anywhere, you can do magick anywhere. You simply have to use the resources and tempo of the land you are on.

Reaching up is grand. Those who do not seek to rise to new heights are missing some things like pain, anguish and reward. Those who fail to find That Which Creates working at their feet are missing something too. I can't say what it is as I've missed it. However, I am doing some things to discover that which is all around me.

Look for future posts on the topic.

Friday, April 2, 2010

So You Think You Can Think?

This is a bit long for those of you that have short attention spans but it is a well spent twenty minutes.

Opposites

As a magician, I must strive for balance. For in that state of balance, moving in any direction at all requires much less force than were I leaning to one direction and then trying to move the opposite way. From a place of balance, movements are smooth and directed.

That being said, some folks seek this balance by encountering opposites. They may remove themselves from monogamy and become sluts for a while. Thereby, locating the balanced relationship between their spirit and sex, whatever that may be on the continuum.

However, these things are really not opposites. The opposite of dog is not cat but not-dog. The opposite of love is not hate, but not-love.

I know some that reject society and therefore what society normally calls "good" thinking that behaving in stark opposition to what society expects of them is being enlightened. No, it is merely the inverse portion of the same slavish response. The opposite of a societal norm is the non-existence of the norm within or non-responsiveness to that norm in any way.

Those that feel they must be evil to balance the good are still reacting to good. This is not balance. The opposite of good is not evil, but not-good.

Darkness is not evil, but ignorance. Evil is not darkness but malicious destruction for its own sake or destruction without the purpose of regrowth.

Read not this post to agree or disagree but instead consider the extremes of behavior we engage in and the mislabeled pairs of opposites we use. Contemplating these things may be of value.

Quotes

Sometime ago, I posted about the disbelief in our society about what magicians do and how we cannot allow the societal belittlement of our art enter our own psyches. I had sent a link not an article that I felt placed quotes around the term witch and talked about how the articles about what we do say things like "Mr. X a self-proclaimed witch" when you'll never see someone called a self-proclaimed Christian.

I was blasted by readers for misinterpreting the article. I think only one comment was on the main thrust of the post. So here we go again. Here is another article in which the term sorcerer is in quotes. http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/meast/04/01/saudi.arabia.sorcery/index.html?hpt=T2 I have seen this is a lot in the various news articles about Saudi Arabia's despicable behavior.

So, gentle readers, blast away again.