Sunday, July 13, 2008

Bright and Shiny Bait

This post is broken up into two parts. The first is something I wrote without posting. While I would have put it into a personal journal, it sounded way too much like an appeal for compliments, which it was not, to post publicly. Something else bothered me about posting. Looking back, what bothered me was that I was utterly clueless as to the meaning of what I was repeatedly hearing. On rereading the first part, I stated that quite clearly but didn’t notice. Now, I have a clue. I am not sure that I am correct. Time will tell. The second part is a response to conversations about the first part.

First Part

I have a habit of giving more weight to something when I hear two or more people say the same thing that have not spoken to each other on the topic. When I hear the same exact words, I give it more weight. When I hear those exact words repeated by a stranger I pay special attention.

Over the past six months I have had no less than four working magicians speaking of my work as a magician use the same phrase, “I don't think you give yourself enough credit.” Okay, so I am finally listening. I thought about it, considered it, and have reached the conclusion, so what?

What exactly will happen if I give myself more credit? Can I buy a beach house? No. Will I get promoted at work? Are these “credits” the spiritual equivalent G&H trading stamps? No and no. Will the Dodgers finally learn to hit? Even more unlikely.

Should I make bolder statements so people listen to me? No, I find the opposite is true. Should I look in the mirror and tell myself I am great? No, that path leads to delusion. The universe keeps telling me this. There must be some value in it but I am at a loss to determine what that value is.

I do not think I am a great or even talented magician. I think I work hard at being a magician and that my introspective nature helps some with the personal alchemical processes.

Second Part

I sent the post to Fr RO. He thought these compliments were the universe teaching confidence which I would need when people approached me for magickal aid. Without that confidence, I may shy away from my responsibilities. While I can see his point, I thought the message was lacking something. Years of working magick have made me cautious of complimentary spirits, even human ones.

So, I shared it with my gal and told her I had concerns with posting but I didn’t tell her why. She read it and said, “Beware of bright shiny.” I asked her to continue. She said that when the light begins to shine a bit brighter we attract things. The first thing we attract appeals to the ego. I can see how in my case that can be summed up by one word, acceptance. She noted that last night at a restaurant that the waitress stopped and spoke with me. That concerned her then but, like a good magician, she remained silent until my question. I just thought she was a chatty waitress. My gal responded with, “She didn’t chat with anyone else.” So, my gal’s theory is that folks will begin to see my light and get attracted. While a sign of accomplishment, that can be a huge ego trap. She said I should accept it without getting wrapped up in the process. Her advice was every bit worthy of my mentor's. Though, he may have let me fall into the trap first which has lessons too. There are also lessons in avoiding the trap or at least trying. If the Universe really wants to get you, It will.

So, when the odd waitress engages me in conversation for no apparent reason on non-germane topics such as her taste in movies (Pan’s Labyrinth – note the mythical theme) and her major (graphic arts – an art dealing with light and perception which creates an external effect on the public), I am simply going to note this is a human appeal to the divine light for attention, acceptance or help and recognize it is not an appeal to myself or my ego. I can say that now but I wonder how long it will take me to fall into the trap anyway. The Universe can use some very tempting bait. If the Universe really wants to get you, It will.

(picture is an altered version of the Thoth Tarot card Hermit)


Brother Red said...

I think your Gal is right. You shouldn't think that because people tell you you're doing good work as a magician that you are a great and powerful magician who knows all and sees all. You don't. You know that.

But at the same time, you're a practicing magician. That puts you in a very small group of people within even the occult community. Most folks read for 20 years and maybe do an LBRP or a Middle Pillar. Some scribble sigils or go on vision quests, and find out wow, this stuff is really real, but hit the "now what?" stage Lavanah talks about in her post at Practically Magic ( and then they just sort of plateau and never get anywhere else.

What I had said to you was "I tend to think you're a lot further along than you think you are." That's true, but at the same time, I could be wrong about you. You could be wrong about yourself too. We had been talking about Chesed and Binah Work, and you thought I meant at an initiatory level, you were ready to cross to the supernals. I think you're really at about Tiphareth, but that you're still learning what that means. I don't think you've completed your Solar Work by any means. [Neither have I, for the record, but I'm SURE I'm way ahead of you, of course, of course. ;)]

However, that doesn't mean you can't still explore the other realms. I work with the planetary model, and use the terms of the Tree of Life in conversation to talk to magicians. What I had meant at the time was that you were going through some Jupiter-to-Saturn type experiences, and that I thought you'd get some insight into things by Working with the intelligences of those spheres, Tzadqiel and Tzaphqiel. As so often happens in IMs, the conversation went on before we got to that part.

I didn't mean you were "crossing the Abyss," whatever that's supposed to mean. I just meant you have more access to higher realms than you give yourself credit for.

Frater BH said...

Oh, I misinterpreted your comments. I that is why I rejected them so quickly. Now, I will have to think about it.