I read Donald Michael Kraig's blog post today. The post is speaks of vibratory technique. I was struck by a few things that he wrote.
On a personal note, early on in my magickal career, I wrote Don and asked him a question about something in Modern Magick. He was kind enough to mail me a letter in reply. Yes, it was THAT long ago. I remember being in awe. I had received a letter from an adept! I still incorporate his reply in my general philosophy. Now, I am writing to critique of one of his blog posts. Wow. Time changes all things.
Well, it isn't much of a critique. Though, you may want to read his post before reading mine.
First of all, Don speaks of Israel Regardie's question to a student vibrating the Q-Cross, "Who is listening?" Shouldn't all student's of magick be asked that? For the record, I was asked that many times by my mentor but in a different way. Apparently, my mentor is more subtle than the late Mr. Regardie.
There are so many ways to take that question. I will settle on one. Basic communication theory is that a message is encoded, transmitted and then decoded. I will encode my message to my audience according to their needs.
"I am very much living with an awareness of my Neschemah," means the same thing as, "I am experiencing very deep connection to the universe right now," and still the same as, "I feel this overwhelming unity with all that is divine." They all say very close to the same thing to me. I can choose to code the sentence in words I feel the listener can decode with the greatest chance of accuracy. After all, what is the point in speaking if one is not understood?
This implies you have a good idea of whom is listening. When we use a vibratory formula the target of communication is the Universe (i.e. the Creative Divine). If we assume the Creative Divine has our immediate best interest at heart and is omnipotent, it doesn't matter how we encode our messages. If we are working within an egregore, we simply ought to know who or what is listening (over time anyway). If we are working within an energy model perspective, with imperfect spriits or spirits that may decode our messages according to their own perspective, we damn well better know how that message will be decoded.
I have seen more than one magician seriously damage their own health and the health of others by not knowing that. This is why I council folks to begin with small thought-form magicks designed to teach themselves lessons rather than doing so-called healing work or large acts of thaumaturgy. Such encoding may look like this:
"Teach me why I am in this conflict."
"Show me what thoughts allow me to remain addicted to..."
"What pain am I masking by this behavior?"
"Show me other places where these forces are at play in my life."
Doing thought-form magick like this allows one to learn how the message is being decoded by your universe or whomever is listening.
Don's words about volume of vibration did concern me a bit. He seemed to be stating that for one's vibrations to be effective they must be loud. I fully disagree. Over the length of his post, he slowly begins to qualify previously declarative statements with words like, "...that while volume does create vibration, the important part of vibrating words is having them cause the universe to vibrate through the laws of resonance. While volume helps in this, it is not required."
It has been my experience that shouting has much less impact than a controlled vibration. Shouting is shocking. Therefore, I can see how in some rituals it could be a useful tool. For the most part, a study stream of vibratory force is more effective. I'm usually to effect simple change or adjustments to the universe not cause an avalanche.
One of Robert's Rules of Magick is that all magick is relational. Ask yourself, how many relationships have you changed for the better by shouting?
That said, Don is a musician. He may have a different meaning for 'shouting' than I. I know a man that can sing at a volume that can be heard over vast distances. It has the volume of a shout but my friend is signing operatically.
Don mentioned that in an effort to get someone to vibrate louder, he literally kicked someone in the butt while that person was vibrating. I almost used the same technique not long ago to get someone out of her own head during such a practice session and I thought I had an original idea!