Monday, December 12, 2016

Taming the Lion (Theurgic Work in Chesed)

In previous posts I have made references to work that I am currently doing to balance out a rookie mistake from my early days in Qabala. Basically, due to fear of being attacked by the unknown, I called upon the forces of Geburah (the sphere of Severity on the Tree of Life) way too often. This caused long-term problems.

The only way I can describe the results is explosive reaction disorder. If people addressed me reasonably they normally (but not always) received a reasonable answer. As soon as they fell into obvious denial, revisionist history, or similar gas lighting they got it with both barrels. If I was frustrated by any given event, even a conversation, people got both barrels. If someone did something to others that angered me, they got it with both barrels! It was easy to set me up to look bad because there was always anger present under the surface.  If you screwed me over, insulted me, betrayed me, etc. you were doomed. Oddly, I was very difficult internally as well. I was just as hard on myself as others. I was brutal to myself. I did not put up with my faults and worked my ass off to heal them even when no one else could tell. When I saw problematic things I sincerely apologized for them.

From time to time I would dream of a nuclear explosion. These moments showed me my anger had cost a relationship. I understood these moments. I knew why people were pissed or, even when I thought they were wrong to be angry, I got it. What really got to me and what I never understood was long-term denial. To this day I still have little respect for denial and revisionist histories. Denial is the cushion of stagnation. It makes being the same as you’ve always been comfortable.
There has been a slow and study improvement of these behaviors. I am much slower to fall into making frustrated outbursts. The biggest leap can when I experienced the Perfection but there were many incremental improvements over the years.

Over the past couple of weeks I have been invoking the powers of Chesed, the sphere of Mercy. While I will not reveal my techniques, I will say that I called upon the powers and prayed to them to balance the forces of Geburah in my life. I never asked for the severity to go away because there are times when a fierce response is appropriate. I have no desire to surrender that ability. This work had produced interesting results.

First and foremost I have people at work going out of their way to compliment me and show me how my work is contributing to the organization. For years it bothered me greatly that I was apparently doing things that had no impact. Being told I am making a positive contribution at work is quite refreshing. I have also had people tell me that other people are saying nice things behind my back. This too is pleasant.

Strangers have gone out of there way to be nice to me in public. When I was hurting due to my back two strangers asked if they could help me to my car. Another gave up her seat for me as I was waiting in a government office. While sitting there I struck up a conversation with the people next to me. That behavior is a bit unusual for me. They asked me what I did. When I told them they thanked me because their adult son is a mental health patient. My job makes their job as his parents much easier.

Secondly, random memories have been resurfacing.  I recalled telling my father I was taking a computer class during my college days. He asked me if they taught about Grace Hopper. She was a great computer genius that created the language COBOL and debugged the first computer...literally. I remember the face of a woman I worked with many years ago. I cannot recall her name or anything about her other than we worked at the same place. I suddenly remembered a violent scene in a television show that made me quite sick to my stomach to recall. None of these memories are connected or appear to have any significance.  I am a bit baffled as to why they are coming up. If they were focused on my own bad behavior, or related actions others that would make sense but these appear to be random.

My only conclusion is that Chesed is related to the sphere of the mind (Hod) on the Tree of Life and there may be some cross stimulation. The other idea is that Chesed in just below Binah, the sphere that connects us to all things. It can be described as a mother’s intuition on a huge scale. Perhaps such things are stimulated by proximate contact. I have no idea.

Lastly, people I know are having conversations with me. They are going out of their way to engage with me, where they did not before. I am guessing that all that defensive work I did with Geburah built a wall that made me unapproachable to some. The Chesed work appears to be removing that wall or at least showing me it can come down. 

At this point,  I am simply reporting what I am experiencing as I have started to invoke the powers of Chesed. I have not reached firm conclusions as of yet. This will be continued in a future post. 

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Chesed Work: Personal Working Notes for the Past Week

What follows are my own working notes on some ritual work I have been doing. These are basically notes that I write to myself. They are mostly unedited and without context, unless you've been reading my most recent posts. Had these not been published they would be slightly different, such as mentioning my wife's name rather than calling her my wife. 

I have noticed in the past week many dreams where my dark side is being pointed out. I am not being provided any information that I am aware of as I know what my dark side is. 


Did a bit more formal work. This time I blessed myself with water just dedicating it to Taliahad and fire just dedicated to Aral. 

Upon reaching Chesed I saw a humble gold crown. It was as if the crown was speaking. It told me that I had done well by doing the ritual given how hard a day I have had. This work is getting me more psychically open and the large family holiday event really got to me. I basically shut down. The voice told me to continue doing what I am doing as it will get harder.

The crown then told me that most of my work is mental as that was all I was capable of years ago when I summoned Geburah so frequently.

When I finished I immediately received a message of joy from a friend referencing luck and water. Both of these are appropriate to the working. 


I am feeling under pressure. There is no angst to it and nothing external. I feel more like I am in a pressure cooker. (5:41 PM)


I had a dream last night that felt very astral. As if someone had come to speak with me in the dream world. I could not quite wake up enough to have a conversation. Moon in Sagittarius.
Meditation tonight. It was reasonably good. Someone did get up and I could feel the bubble of her energy passing around the bubble of my own.

I saw a strange red and white beast that may be my accumulated fears of projection. I ignored it.
I had many visions of events from my past. No, more of random minor players in life. Such thoughts are common in my mind over the last few days.


Performed CHesed Ritual. The crown again appeared. I asked that the powers of Chesed balance the powers of Geburah that I may exhibit strength without impotent martial anger and whatever other lessons you deem fit. Immediately I heard, “There are many.” I repeated my request. I was told that I am ready for these lessons but that from time to time I will still bounce around the Tree of Life. I was given an olive branch with its green leaves still upon it that was a long as the distance between my finger tips and shoulder. “This means more than you know.”


I meditated using the technique my wife taught me. That basically has to do with grounding better beforehand. This felt much better and I was able to hold the meditation much longer. I was prompted to do the Chesed ritual as a meditational exercise. As I am writing this more than 24 hours later I cannot recall what the crown said to me. I do recall in leaving Chesed in Briah seeing a bright blue door above me that was obviously the entrance/exit to that realm.


I simply meditated using my wife’s technique. All I did was stay grounded. I was able to hold the meditation for 40 minutes. This technique holds a lot of promise for me. 

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Personal Struggles – Election Inspired Theurgy

Like many other people I found the results of the current presidential election to be quite upsetting. This post is about my reaction and not about politics. While you are free to disagree please keep that to yourself in this venue, because this post is not a political forum. It's about magick, theurgy, and my personal path. In the past, I have posted some very personal and not so flattering things about myself in part to work those issues out, and in part to demonstrate the process of doing the Work.  So please take this post in that vein and do not default to political thinking.

I am just over 50 years old. In that time frame I have disagreed with presidents. Time has proven me right at times and wrong at other times.  . This is the first time the results of a presidential election have scared me. This is a man that has called for the registration of people of a particular faith. This is a man that has frequently used racist dog whistles that are so blatant that one can no longer pretend not to hear them. He has directly called for violence and has no problem with sexual assault.  These are the reasons he scares me. The registration of Muslims should scare everyone because history tells us where that can lead. Even if I am completely wrong and my fears do not come to pass they are not unreasonable.

In the wake of the election I was freaked out for the first time since seeing the Perfection. I was scared, and had a nervousness that felt much like my old neurosis/obsession energy. It was not nearly as bad as in the past but it was obvious, uncomfortable, and disruptive.

I considered doing nothing. I knew that if I allowed the emotional state to degenerate significantly that it could lead to a break through moment. There is a case to be made for enlightenment via crisis. The Vision of Perfection came to me during extreme crisis. The experience not only changed my perspective but relieved the mental crisis as well. Given it was unlikely this angst would have led to such a severe crisis and release I opted to do something else.

I have developed the skill of dreaming the answers I need for myself. The technique is simple. If you pay attention to your thoughts they appear to be coming from inside your skull. The skull then becomes a wall of the conscious separating your thoughts from the outside world. I imagine that wall expanding several miles around myself. Next I imagine a ball of energy. I mentally tell it answer a question. Perhaps I pray to deity to assist. Then I ‘throw’ the energy as far into that area ‘outside’ of my skull. A dream answer is more likely to appear than not.

In this case I prayed to the biggest conception of deity I have, Aaoz. Aaoz is a name I made up that washes out all associations between the word/name God and that of the angry desert god Yahweh. This form of deity actually came to me in a dream a few months back as a very short friendly fellow straight out of a Terry Practchett novel.

The result of this working was dream in which my former mentor had created a pentagram out of black hose material. I told him that I did not understand how this shape related to the macrocosm. The following morning drinking my coffee it dawned on me to see the election as a macrocosm and apply what I have seen of Trump to the Tree of Life, a qabalistic glyph that shows the structure of all creation. That glyph contains ten spheres or emanations that represent divine progressing downwards into manifestation. Each name I am about to use is the name of a sphere.

The first sphere that came to mind was Chesed. This is the sphere of health, wealth, expansion and kingship. Trump has tapped into the energies of wealth and kingship. Expansion refers to his politically uncommon ideas gaining traction. In a balanced state the kingship in Chesed is benevolent.
My fears come from the next sphere, Geburah. This is the realm of surgery, protectiveness and war. My fears is that the martial energies he threatens to use will trump (pun intended) any form of benevolence.

On the Tree of Life Tipereth (the realm of the ego, reward, and perpetual energy) is next. Balanced this is perfect beauty. Unbalanced this is all about ‘me, me, me!’. Here is Trump’s huge ego, that part of him that simply cannot handle any criticism.

The next sphere is Netzach or in English, Victory. This is supposed to be victory over the lower the self but until that occurs it is the victory of the lower self. Here Trump simply wants to win. He would just as competitive playing a game of checkers as anything he is famous for.
Hod is the mental realm. He is a paradox here. He is a man that has tapped into the mentality of many but his personal ideas seem ill formed.

The last is Yesod. Related to the moon Yesod is full of sexuality and change. We know how the first applies to the imbalanced Mr. Trump. The second reflects how quickly his partially formed thoughts from Hod morph into other things depending upon whom he is talking too. Yesod is supposed to be a foundation but it appears his, at least in the realm of mentality, is weak.
This is a very superficial analysis but it was all I needed to answer the question. Here is how the energies relate from the macrocosm (Trump’s election and the energies he tapped into) and the pentagram or microcosm (myself).

Back in the day I was afraid of the forces that I would stir up with magick. As a result I often called upon the martial powers of Geburah to protect me. Some of you may recall past posts were I have stated there is nothing more dangerous to themselves or others than a talented amateur. Here I prove my point.  In my case all that martial energy inflated my anger and defensiveness, and let my analytical mind dissect other people’s ideas to the point that (correct or not) people could not accept my words. People cannot hear their behavior is a result of some petty desire unless they are ready to hear it. Geburah energy does not allow for such ground work. It simply attacks/defends.
So my fear of Trump and the electorate is that martial forces (Geburah energy) will rush forth unchecked. Given my magickal past this is a problem I have as well. I used to be angry all the time. Now it just comes occasionally. My martial energies are all verbal, but that can do damage as well. Therefore, I will fix myself by balancing Geburah (Severity) with a lot of work in Chesed (Mercy) and the balancing path that connects the two. This means that I will invoke the powers of Chesed and its associated planet Jupiter. I will ask these powers to descend into my being and balance the martial energies. Balance is the key word here. Sometimes martial energies are needed. One should not forgo them, because they also have a role to play.

Since drafting this post I have begun this work. On Wednesday (11/24/2016) I called upon the forces of Chesed and asked for them to balance me. I felt like I had come home. I was ‘told’ that I will need to do consistent work here but I am on the right track to achieving the balance that I seek. I agreed to do that consistent work.

Working Notes

What follows are my working notes as I do this work. They are unedited and thus may be unclear.

That same day (Wednesday) I felt compelled to ask the most ‘connected’ person I know to share with my why I cannot astral project across the physical plane. He said that I do that all the time when doing tarot readings and at other times as I do magick. I am just not aware of it. He provided me with a specific grounding technique to assist in my quest consciously project in full awareness.
That night while sleeping I felt the vibrations of projection but did not actually project.

Thursday (11/25) and Friday, I did not do the ritual but did do the grounding exercise.

Friday night I had a dream in which I was called out from a large crowd of tens of thousands of people. I arrived in a room of 50 or so people. There was a person on a platform in the middle of the room. He was a famous real life singer you have heard of in the Wayne Newton or Neil Sedaka ilk. I cannot recall his name now. He said he was mage. He held his sword out. About this time I realized I had mine with me. He told me to ‘do what I say I will do’. He said this three times. I took this to mean that I need to perform the Chesed ritual as promised.

Saturday, I performed the ritual in the morning before anyone else woke.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Tarot: Can Knowing the Future Alter the Future?

As a professional tarot reader I am often asked questions by first time clients. A while back I was asked if getting a tarot reading can change the future simply by revealing the future.

I damn well hope so!

My goal in reading tarot is to allow the client to see things in a new light. More often than not I suggest steps for them to take to achieve their goals. It is my hope that they will take those steps and create their own future rather than being blown around by the winds of fate. Also when I tell a client something about the negative aspects of their own thinking and behaviour I hope that they will change these for the better. An example of this would be telling a client that she is creating anxiety in her daughter by expressing her own unfounded concerns. Ideally the client will catch herself doing that in future, or become aware of her daughter’s body language, and stop. Even if the client does not immediately to buy into what I say, the reading might cause them to notice a problem later and address it.

As an aside, as a reader I may hope they follow the advice of the universe but it is none of my business if they do or not. I own nothing from the reading. Often I do not even remember what was said to any particular client.

That really wasn’t the answer my questioner was looking for, however. His question is actually incredibly complex, and smarter people than I have opined upon possible answers. I will take a stab at addressing the subjectas generations of philosophers roll over in their graves.

First of all the question presupposes that the future has not already taken your new arcane knowledge into account. Why would one suppose that? The future is a product of its own past even if that past is still in your future. At least one of the client’s potential future paths already take whatever knowledge I provide into account.  After the reading, all of his future paths will have that knowledge as part of their make up.

My editor says this relates to string theory and parallel universes. While she cautions that all occult phenomena cannot be explained by that theory, for those interested she recommends  Kaku's Hyperspace.

Secondly, we do things to alter the future all the time. We have savings accounts to move away from a future of poverty. We get health check-ups to hopefully avoid a future with an early death. We date in hopes of having a future full of love rather than being left alone with nothing for company but a couple of old sock puppets and a kazoo. Getting a tarot reading to help plan the future is right in line with these activities and likely less risky than online dating!

Basically this question is the result of the fear of a loss of an unknown thing. Maybe in one of those futures I met they guy that will employ me to my highest potential and income but if a tarot reading leads me down another path I will miss that opportunity. That could happen. For example, I work at a very well paying job for my community. This job makes me miserable or I make myself miserable doing it. Had I had a tarot reading before accepting the job that advised me that I would be happy working with my hands and restoring furniture I may have done that. I would therefore have missed my highest potential income but likely lived happier for at least eight hours a day. Would I miss this job? No. I would never have known it was a possibility anyway. Would I have known I was happier there than in another job? Maybe. Given that the opportunity lost would always be unknown and fearing a reading based on that is responding to a fear of the unknown I would screw up the courage and get a reading. You are always welcome to ignore it.

As for my readings, sometimes I miss the mark. I normally know that right away and refundthe person’s money. This has happened roughly 10 times since I've started reading tarot professionally. Several times clients told me that I was exactly right, but on a totally different question than what they were intending to ask. It is as if the universe put forward a question and I read the answer to that instead of what the client wanted. It still feels like a miss to me until the client tells me otherwise. This indicates that there is an element of divine providence occurring when I read. The client gets what they need, though at times it isn’t what they think they want.

Lastly, there are indeed ways of seeing the future. I am not saying the idea is preposterous. For example  I have glimpsed the future in dreams but I have never had one in a tarot reading. The glimpses from dreams involving friends, coworkers or others that I see in life more frequently than I tarot client do not lend themselves to being avoided in ‘real life’. They typically involve meeting someone unexpectedly, or are more focused on the emotion of a future event paired with a metaphorical context.

As the question wondered if the future would be altered it implies the asker does not want his unknown future changed. I therefore offer this. In order to avoid the specific event glimpsed in my dreams one would have to be pretty good at sussing out the metaphor and matching it to enough preceding life events to provide a solid insight to act upon. This is not likely. Sometimes I pick up on random information, like the fact that two people I know will sleep together. This is emphatically none of my business and  I have no idea why the universe shares that information with me.
I have no doubt there are people that have experienced deeper recognitions of the future than I. That may give them a different perspective on the answer than my own. Until I obtain that sort of ability this will have to do.

In closing, I really do not think foreknowledge of the future is something to worry about. I would much rather know the energies I am dealing with and finding a wise way to navigate through them than worry about what possible future I would miss out on in doing so.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Do Not Seek Validation

Very often in Facebook groups dedicated to certain gods or paths I see the same questions repeatedly. “Has anyone had [the deity] inspire you to…?” or “Has anyone ever felt this after praying to the [deity]?” These questions are understandable. We have a human need to be validated. We have a need to be connected to others through our experiences. These things bring deeply needed comfort.

The problem is asking these questions to large quantities of random people on the internet will always yield the same answer. If I asked in one of those groups if anyone has seen Hecate with a blue monkey on her shoulder and standing on a turtle someone would say yes. That is not validation. If I said has anyone said has anyone seen Her as a young blonde with deep blue eyes (a common vision of Her) many people would say yes. Again, this is not a confirmation, even when it is completely accurate. The problem is that there is no way to distinguished who is ‘connected’ and who is a well-meaning newb. Worse, self-appointed teachers seeking their own validation as ‘wise’ or ‘knowing’ or whatever will make sure to paint their answer to validate themselves while the seeker sees validation of their own work.

Validation comes when you are not looking.

There was a time when I was first being introduced to One whom I called “The Helpful Deity.” I had many visions of Her and sought to learn more about her. I passed on all the Llewellyn books and purple websites. I picked up some scholarly works which I find boringly necessary. In those books I kept finding historical descriptions of Her that reflected the symbolism I perceived perfectly. I even recalled Her telling me something that I read later as a direct quote from an ancient devotee. There was no way that I had come across that quote before as I had no interest in Hecate and certainly no interests that would reveal such an obscure quote. The difference there is I know no one validated my experience to be nice and supportive. No one had to spin my experience into something outside the original context to figure out how it may relate Her and no one that had different experiences had the chance to tell me that I was delusional.

There is very little more damaging than having a valid experience and having someone that one is foolish enough to believe tell you that you are out of your mind. Even if you are completely crackers a statement like that is almost never helpful. There are much better ways to guide a seeker than telling them they are a thousand miles off the mark or accidentally validating some wild perception.

Another form of validation is comes completely from without. Lately I have been approaching La Santa Muerte, aka Holy Death. She has answered some prayers and in return I have lit a light for Her. That has literally been the extent of our relationship. 

Last Sunday on the disc golf course I was approached by a fellow golfer. Last summer I had given him an old disc golf cart that needed more repairs than I was willing to invest. He was quite grateful. Yesterday out of the blue he gave me a disc that was too heavy for him to throw. The disc was stamped with an image of death wielding a scythe (one of her symbols). This did not yield an overwhelming sense of connection. We do not have that sort of relationship and likely never will. The experience was more along the lines of "I recognize you".

Why did she recognize me? Because I asked the Lady of Holy Death to kill aspects of myself that I was holding onto that I did not need. When she did I did not fight Her by hanging on. I was grateful. In truth, I still have those traits as each prayer was to kill a part of me for that day. This does not build a deep relationship. It forms a relationship a little like a friendly acquaintance.   

Had the relationship been deeper someone may have given me a statue of Her unbidden. Perhaps I would have a waking vision of Her standing outside my office door. Like all things there are levels and it is up to the practitioner to determine the meaning.

Another form of validation is inner change. With Hecate she directly and obviously healed my obsession by showing me how to rid myself of the astral gunk that encased my being. She showed me the gunk and gave me the power to push my physical finger into it. The gunk stuck to my finger. She told me to run my finger along a cyclone fence. The gunk would stick to that and as I walked pull from my body. I witnessed this directly, and I could immediately tell the difference. It took quite while repeating this exercise before I healed enough to change me.

Shared experience can be another form of validation. That is more likely to come from compatriots that experience the same visions in a shared ritual than random people on internet groups.

I am not making an exhaustive list here of every form of validation. This post is merely to point out one that I feel is particularly less than useful and toss in some examples of other ways this can happen. 

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Personal Theurgic Work: Overcoming a Personal Weakness

Back in the day I used to ask my mentor to share his perceptions of my strengths and weaknesses with me. I found this outside view helpful. He told me that I was the only person that ever asked him such a question when it came to doing the Great Work*. I always thought that was one of the basic questions one should be asking.

Someone asked me a question about how to start a path towards one Holy Guardian Angel (HGA)*. I advised him to begin by being brutally honest with himself and make a list of his virtues and faults. The idea being that the work is about getting rid of all those things that interfere with the realization of your divine connections. You have to know your faults. Most people do not include a list of virtues. We need to know them so we can enhance them but also so we don’t feel like complete crap due to an over focus on our faults.

It occurred to me that I haven’t done this myself lately. So Saturday morning I made my own list of strengths and weaknesses. I noticed that a significant proportion of my weaknesses had a common component: I let myself get distracted too easily. I will put aside spiritual work, a book I could learn from, or life plans in order to watch a Dodgers game, escapist television, or cave into my back pain amid a host of other distractions.

My goal is to stop this trend.

I am not a self-help book kind of guy. I find those to be inspiring but the infusion of energy does not last for me and they only help me deal with symptoms instead of addressing the root causes of unhelpful or counterproductive behaviours. Magick will help me find the core issues. I have read that people that are good at what they do often limit themselves by discounting the value of what they offer to the world. I have asked myself who am I to write this book and claim that.... I am guessing that it something like this that I have allowed to be in my way. My guesses as to the causes of my issues are usually wrong. So it could really be anything. Incidentally, this is why I never tell anyone learning from me what their answers are! That is up to them to figure out. A wrong guess on my part could be a harmful time consuming distraction.

To address the problem of my distraction I am going to call upon the forces of Geburah. This is a sphere (world) portrayed on the Qabalistic Tree of Life. Geburah is also known as Strength. It is the martial sphere of war, surgery, power, control and, quite frankly (when unbalanced) that of misery. For those familiar with the tarot it is associated with the fives. In the Thoth Deck these are  Strife in the suit of Wands (the inability to create), Disappointment in the Cups suit (the realization one had the wrong goal), Defeat in the suit of Swords (the realization one is separated from the reward of the goal) and Worry in the suit of Disks (the feeling of being lost and valueless as a result of the other three). Of course those meanings reflect the negative end of the continuum. The other side is creative power, euphoria (in achievement), the mental clarity of success, and Worry is replaced with the four of wands, Completion. In that case the energy of the working towards the goal is waning because the goal, having been met, is no longer able to inspire action.

I will call the powers of Geburah to create an environment conducive to the appearance of the forces of Mars. I shall the call the God (who holds energy too big for man), Intelligence (that which regulates the energy and applies it safely for man) and Spirit (the energy itself) of Mars and tell them to use their martial powers to destroy any illusion that interferes with my perception of the true problem. This will allow me to see what I am really confronting. From there I will magick a solution.
A future post will share what I find and even might share the technique behind this magick.
Eventually I will do magick to resolve whatever core issue I discover. Armed with that knowledge  I will do magick to redirect one of my positive traits, persistence, towards my goals. Getting too distracted is the negative end of the continuum which includes persistence.

*The Great Work is a process by which we return to the creator through our own efforts. We are our own redeemer. The idea comes from Neoplatonism.

** The HGA is one of two things depending upon your school of thought. It is either a higher aspect of oneself or an external deity that is in a position to guide you towards awareness of your highest immortal soul.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Energy Raising Reprise

I have been asked to share my current perspective on a very old post. “Energy Raising” appeared in this space on November 29, 2009. You may want to click on that link and review the post before continuing.

One potential way to approach revisiting the subject is to categorize the way magic works into various magickal models (Energy, Spirit, Information, Psychological, and Meta-Model, respectively). I am not a fan of magickal models because they create distinctions that appear clear but are actually quite muddy. For example, some would say evocation doesn’t raise energy and is not part of the energy model. However, in order to create an environment conducive to the appearance of a spirit you have to use the energy model.

In order to evoke a spirit you need the energy of the space it is being evoked into to be compatible with said spirit. You can call a spirit of water into a desert environment but to be successful you need to have a cup of water there at least. That cup also needs to resonate with the energy of water and welcome, not a trap. You also have to have the energy within your circle (or non-circular sacred space) that allows you to perceive and communicate with the spirit. This can mean fumigation, creating sacred space, or many other things. No matter how you do it the environmental energy is important.

Even when I talk to spirits without any ceremonial preparation all the energy in my head has to be conducive to the process. If I am worried about my wife, thinking my boss may walk into my office, or highly focused on baseball it isn’t going to work. I'll end up talking to myself and thinking I was talking to a spirit.

There are those that would say that this is the psychological model of magick. They are right, but psychology contributes to energy. I used  to be obsessed (psychological problem) and that obsession made it very hard to have the clear my then frenetic mind (psychological problem) and allow whatever energy I needed to take over my mind to create the right magickal mind set. This circles right back to the energy model. See the problem?

There are those that would say that this example of magic is still psychological, and the terminology has just been switched to  to energy. This is not case. The energy I am speaking of is energy that relates to the working. For example, if I am working with a water spirit, I need the energy of my mind to be attentive to images like the undines (water spirits). Basically, the idea here is that you need to create a harmony between your internal self and the type of magick being done. I need that energy to be cool within me like when you feel cool pool water lowering your body temperature. I could not get to a place to allow that to happen in a frenetic obsessed state. The psychology involved would interfere with creating the internal environment conducive to allowing in the right kind of energy.
I am pretty sure that all models come down a method of entering an ecstatic state while maintaining bodily function enough to be a magician. Without that bit of bodily control one is so receptive that one crosses from magician to mystic. For our discussion here the definition of ecstatic state I use is, “a state of mind entered into willfully by the magician characterized as different from one’s normal state of consciousness to such a degree that consensus reality is perceptually altered to such an extreme degree that magick is not only probable but dominant, resulting in a reality shift so great that consensus reality conforms.” For clarity’s sake, that is my definition not anyone else’s. I deliberately removed the normal reference to a religious component. Magickal states are very similar but not always religious.

What does that mean practically? It means that when I am in a circle with others they see this overweight white guy as a swarthy Mediterranean type and that such change carriers into consensus reality to such a degree that their perception of me changes due to their experience. Or, that in such a state the magick done is so effective that those impacted by can make perfect sense out of their changed reaction. Nothing extraordinary happened because reality has changed making the extraordinary thing perfectly ordinary.

So here are the elements of the original post rearranged into magickal model categories. The original state is in italics.

Spirit Model

Solomonic -- Those who practice from the ancient grimories tend to work themselves into a lather (for lack of a better phrase) by building themselves to be "God" as in the Christian G_d. The technique though can be used in a variety of ways to assume the authority of the deity in question. Beware though that you pick one that doesn't mind you doing so. This is basically a specific form of an ecstatic state.

I originally receive some blow back when I said that magicians were building themselves up to be God. Consider this passage from the Lesser Key of Solomon:

I DO invocate and conjure thee, O Spirit, N.30; and being with power armed from the SUPREME MAJESTY, I do strongly command thee, by BERALANENSIS, BALDACHIENSIS, PAUMACHIA, and APOLOGIAE SEDES; by the most Powerful Princes, Genii, Liachidee, and Ministers of the Tartarean Abode; and by the Chief Prince of the Seat of Apologia in the Ninth Legion, I do invoke thee, and by invocating conjure thee. And being armed with power from the SUPREME MAJESTY, I do strongly command thee, by Him Who spake and it was done, and unto whom all creatures be obedient. Also I, being made after the image of GOD,…

This turns into an ecstatic state as defined above with a religious fervor attached to it. There's nothing wrong with that. It works.

Evocation -- while some wouldn't call this energy raising, I am including it here. The point is calling a spirit to visible appearance and asking it to do something. Whatever that is employs the energy of the spirit which is why I mention it here.

Solomonic magick uses evocation but there are other forms. I posted not long ago about a water spirit crawling out of my offering cup. It was just as real as anything I evoked using Solomonic methods. However, I was so focused on my offering I created an ecstatic state that allowed me to perceive the spirit.

Invocation -- bringing a spirit into oneself for communion, learning, and understanding or to use that ecstatic state and the knowledge/energy of that which is invoked to do the work required.

I did this a lot when working with Flower. We entered an ecstatic state using a quatrain as a statement of intent that I received from deity during meditation that immediately proceeded each working. Repeating this over and over took us to another state of consciousness. Deities took us so far over the edge that there were times they literally moved our bodies. They would converse so we could hear. Their strength and love was so intense that we wanted to make love right there. We never gave in and they respected that. They know we are human and for use sexual activity has ramifications.

The energy model came in here in a less obvious way. It was more physical energy. The room was clean, dedicated to magick and a little incense burned. The energy that really mattered was our sensitivity and receptiveness to those deities.

Tap into local spirits, those puppies "know the lay of the land". this may be especially true in small towns with long histories. If you can tap into the underlying force of a small town, you could be a very influential person in local life, should you want to be. Is this energy raising? I could make an argument. I may lose it but I could make it.

I would change this to eliminate small towns. Local spirits are everywhere. Just go out and say a magickal hello. They will present themselves if they want to.

Energy Model

Personal energy -- I hate using the energy word because one sounds like some New Ager but energy it is. As a ceremonialist, we raise our own energy through different processes, the most common of which is a rite called the middle pillar. Having raised the energy one tries to rise to the highest level of awareness one can (see ecstatic states) and then, either through prayer or technique, endeavor to use that energy. All of these change the practitioner's state of awareness but it can also attract a specific being when the proper technique for that being is employed.

The two forms of this that I have seen used a lot are raising a cone of power (which is basically a circular dance) and doing the middle pillar. Both of these use energy generated by the practitioner for use in the ritual. Another common method is taking all one’s internal emotional energy and pouring it out into one’s hands and using that. This is my preferred method.

Again, the concentration required to do these things does create an ecstatic state, if you have that capability. I truly believe (and I use that word because I do not know) that no matter what you’re doing to work magic,  to achieve this you are getting into an ecstatic state.One potential exception is herb magick (discussed below).

Institutional -- Another term I have made up in which one joins an energy flow already in progress. This is like hanging around other creative types when one is learning art or writing or music. Just being around the same type of person you want to be helps attune you to the process. Of course, the inverse can be true. Know who you are hanging out with for you will become them and vis versa. To use this properly one must also contribute to the group. All take and no give results in Johnny being ejected from the energy pattern. Besides that, all take and no give is just selfish.

I would say the same about that now.

Necromancy -- I've never known anyone that did this. However, it sounds it could be related to vampirism in that energy is taken rather than raised. Necromancers can pull the energy from dead things. Anyone that has touched a compost pile and felt the heat knows that dying and decomposing creates its own type of energy.

I would say the same about that now but I likely shouldn’t even mention it as I know little about necromancy.


Prayer -- prayer is very often eschewed in the pagan world and many feel too Christian doing it. Yet prayer has a long standing pagan history and, in my opinion, is least likely to offend the god of your choice. I've never heard of a god that is upset by being prayed to. However, I'm sure someone will correct me.

Prayer is not only responded to by spirits but can raise one to an ecstatic state. It is also a very kind way to do magick, in my opinion.

I put this in a cross-over category because it goes with everything. A prayer can work no matter what you are doing. I would change this to remove the word kind. I have prayed without being kind. Some deities are cool with that. Most may offer some form of ‘correction’. Be careful here. No one wants to be corrected by a god.


Herb magick may be the exception to everything I have said about energy and ecstatic states. You can do this quite effectively by combining herbs and uttering some words. I could argue that the herbs have energy conducive to the magick.

Chemistry -- this is not a term used in the occult but I use it to describe bringing like natural substances together to create a specific magickal effect.

Alchemy -- much like chemistry but with a much more internal goal in mind and using much more scientific-looking equipment in the process.

I wouldn’t say this now. Instead I would say that I do not know enough about Alchemy to offer an opinion or categorize it.

Sex -- Yes, getting off alone or with a partner can do it but there is a lot more to sex magick than that. What? I don't know. I'm not into that but it seems obvious to me that this is the grossest form.

Over the years I learned why I said this was the grossest form. A more sublime sex magick is called Tantra. Few people in the west really know what it is. It is a hell of a lot different from simply having sex to raise energy. Aside from that, I do not know about tantra.

Plays -- you can certainly get into a zone as an actor and take your audience into a different state of consciousness. I've heard of one group that has acted out some of Crowley's rites to find the actresses in certain plays end up a bit whacked. So, if it can be done to ill effect, I'm sure it can be done with positive effect.

I do not know anything more about plays than I did back in 2009.

Meditation -- Until recently, I wouldn't have added meditation. A good proper meditation can raise and/or release a ton of energy.

See my comment on ecstatic states. They all apply to meditation. Though meditation could be applied as much to mystical ends as to magical ones.

That encapsulates the original post. Further commentary follows:

I do not consciously use any of these techniques for the most part. I can simply think of whatever I want to reach an ecstatic state. The longer I focus the stronger the state and the stronger the magick.
My original go to method was the middle pillar ritual. The problem with this is that the middle pillar the ritual comes from the Qabalistic Tree of Life, a glyph that represents the creative forces of the universe. Doing this ritual is participating in that act of  creation. When I relied on that rite I was insecure and felt that I didn’t really know what I was doing. I am sure that my insecurity impacted the effectiveness of my magick and not in a good way. Essentially, I was giving energy to my insecurities and manifesting that with my magick.  Our internal perspectives can be detrimental. Mixing fears and insecurities with  magickal energy can be damaging.

My current go to method  involves seeking an astral place. This combines the ecstatic state with the Qabalistic four-worlds model involving the worlds of fire, water, air and earth. These are not elemental. There are a hierarchal descent of power that mimics all of creation from a single source point.

The place I enter is home to the highest levels of fire. It is abstract and open. It isn’t so much hot as active. I try to absorb this place. Then I say a word appropriate to the spell. I may make myself the word by saying “I am compassion”. (This is actually too big a sentence for the place but I am only human.) Then I drop lower to the realm of water, love, emotions, unity. This place is abstract too and feels like a cool pool in a dark forest. There is no light that falls upon the pool except the light generated by compassion. Here I mightsay, “may love sooth”. Then I find the place of air. In this place you can see things, most of which are recognizable. Here form is given to the work. I may create a vision of a friend being comforted by someone or finding peace through prayer. Then I find myself in normal conscious or a close approximation with my hands on the ground or wrapped around the talisman I am working with.

Energy is contained in each location, with no particular ceremony required to raise more. This relates to the energy model in that each location has an energy of its own that descends through the universe. The mage interacts with the energy as it is slows down into manifestation.

As a starting point for those who are interested: The trick to successfully using this method is focus. If you can pass the following test you are capable of sufficiently strong focus:

Go someplace where you can hear constant traffic noise. This may be in a park, or even your backyard if you leave close enough to a busy street. Concentrate on rising up to meet “G-d” or goddess or whatever divine being you want. Spend some time. Focus. When you simply cannot hold it anymore let yourself move back to normal awareness. If you find that the traffic noise went away and came back as if someone turned a radio off and on you passed the test. If not, work on building concentration and focus.

If you can do that study the four worlds of the Qabala: Aztiluth (fire), Briah (water), Yetzirah (air) and Assiah (earth), and work from there.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Big Magick is Dangerous Magick

Over the years I have heard people say that a test of a magician’s skill is making the improbable happen. My point of view is that making the improbable happen is usually pretty dangerous. In order to make an incredible event happen immediately a lot of probable things have to happen at once. Therein lies the danger.

In a non-magickal life if a woman wants a well paying job the first thing she needs is an education. Some positions do not require a formal education but they all require knowledge of the work and a certain skill set. So the job seeker must obtain some sort of formal training. Then she must apply for entry level jobs that use those skills. After she lands a job and works hard she will obtain experience and more skills. She plays the social game in the organization and people like her. Gradually she will make more and more money. Eventually the goal of obtaining a well paying job is reached.

You would think big magick would skip that process. What sort of event would need to happen to go from a mediocre job to a well-paying one instantly? The answer to that is that even big magick does not work that way.  Instead of one enormous leap a big ball of magick sits on the astral and creates series of smaller events. Each event would be easily possible and not all that exciting. The improbability is the consistent string of occurrences moving towards a single larger goal.

Using the case of our job seeker above the starting point is a position with little likelihood of finding a job with a good salary. The next step for some is using big magick. The result will be that the magick moves the soon to be well salaried person to a place where the unlikely becomes the likely. Magickally this is known as a current. 

Think of that just like you would a river current. If you are on a boat in a river and the current is pushing you south towards the Gulf of Mexico. Since that is where you want to go all you have to do is not capsize and not change your mind regarding your destination. If you are on the Yellowstone moving southwest into the desert you will have a problem reaching that same goal. Big magick picks up your boat and drops it in the Mississippi.  As you improbably sail through the sky towards the Mississippi you may fall out of the boat, freeze to death due to altitude or maybe you are impaled by the bill of an oncoming duck! Whatever the case it is a dangerous way to travel.

A non-magickal person gets out of the boat, finds a way to make a buck to finance travel back to the Mississippi, works some more to secure passage on a boat and reaches his goal.
I used this example because I did this big magick with this same goal. I was in a menial temporary job with no prospects and no college education and decided that I was going to magick myself into a permanent job. The problem was my wording. I didn’t just do magick for a job. I did magick that would “keep me financially comfortable for the rest of my life”. In short, I tried to go from nowhere to a well paying job. Big Magick. I did not know that was big magick at the time.

I did the magick on a Sunday night. Much to the shock of my roommate I received a call from an employer the next day. I had applied with him a year previously but was runner up to the owner’s son-in-law. I was asked to come in for an interview and was hired.  I was later told by all three people that worked there that it was their idea to call me.

I had worked there for about a year when I caught a falling forty pound falling box and injured my back so severely that I had trouble walking for two years. As most readers know I still suffer from chronic back pain. While I was laid up and beginning to heal Ross Perot started his petition drive for president. I was inspired to volunteer despite having never done such a thing before. The timing was perfect. I was just healed enough to be able to work a few hours a day while the Worker’s Compensation case was dragging on. My lawyer told me not to find work yet as that would interfere with my settlement. Very quickly and improbably I ended up running Fresno County’s petition drive.   While working for Perot a mentor latched onto me and began introducing me to people. When Perot took his dive out of the race my mentor took me to work for the Clinton campaign. There I met an up and coming politician that would become the Lieutenant Governor. When I interviewed with my current employer 22 years ago that politician’s best friend was chairing the panel.

I worked my way up in that division. Eventually we came across a problem that no one had the skills to fix. Our order tracking was abysmal. I took a few Access database classes that were offered by my employer at the time. I put together a functional database to resolved most of our problems.

In that job I was a jack of all trades. I could do every job in my division except the manager’s and could help out in the divisions around me. This meant that I filled in for everyone’s vacations but no one could fill in for mine. I was often denied vacation time due to projects that only I could do.

We then came across a problem with my Access database that I did not know how to fix. I obtained some one-on-one time with the instructor. As he taught me how to solve the problem I told him that I had to find a new job. I wanted to be able to take a vacation and be a bit more appreciated. He told me of my current position, how to get there and that I would be good at it.

At this point I am comfortable for life.  My salary is above the median income for my town and my retirement plan is unheard of. Further financial opportunities are now opening up in amazing and unlikely ways.

Please notice that each event was possible. It was possible that someone would not want to spend time interviewing for a new position and would remember me and call. It was possible that I would become injured at work. It was possible to volunteer somewhere. It was possible to be well-liked enough for someone to take me under his wing. It was possible to meet someone important in politics in that situation. It was possible for him to be on an interview panel. It was possible to work hard and create my opportunity there. Big magick isn’t making the impossible happen. It is about making the possible happen with regular progression towards a goal.

That back injury was the magick moving me from one current to another. In fact, that back injury was the most improbable thing to happen. At that time I was a gym rat. I was a big muscular guy and unlikely to injure myself. I could have wound up in the same place or better without the injury had I done any other prep work. As it was I was such a loner for most of my life and relatively unskilled so the only way to get there was to rip me into the new social reality of politics via an injury.

It is much less dangerous to do small magicks to make probable things happen. Had I the wisdom then I would have done magick in the following order:

1.  Obtain any job at all that was not dangerous just to keep me afloat
2.  Reveal an innate talent that I would enjoy developing and using
3.  Engage socially with people of that same disposition
4.  Reveal a path to employment using that talent
5.  Exploit that path into a job with a long term future and retirement plan

There is not a single improbable step in that plan. That course would help me to walk the path to the proper river and easily purchase passage on a boat. The only duck I would see would be flying overhead about to impale some crazy man in a flying row boat!

I did big magick and the improbable happened. Does that make me a good magician? Perhaps. It did reveal me to be an inexperienced and unwise magician at the time.

Figure out what you want and make a plan. Do magick to make the next step in that plan happen. Once that step is taken do magick for the next. Magick is not about impressing people with the improbable. That is just your ego. Magick is about reaching your goals. Most goals are best reached one step at a time.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

The Case For the Magickal Control of Others

When I first started out I thought controlling others was a great misuse of magick. This control can be exercised through energy pulses that stimulate human emotions. A person can send angry energy into someone and watch that person deal with anger engage in damaging behavior. If a person is feeling insecure they can package that and send the energy to another making them feel insecure. That can create similar results to sending anger. Others control peoples’ lives by determining who they are attracted to or whom they will reject. I still feel that if one continually needs to control others that there is something wrong.  At best these actions reflect that the doer feels out of control and needs to control others to compensate. At worst it shows they have no respect for the person they are attacking or the people that suffer collateral damage.

There are people that we cannot tolerate in our lives. Sometimes we feel it is acceptable to reject them using any means necessary including magick. The problem with doing that often is that ignores certain important questions: Why do we keep attracting jerks into our lives? Why do we keep accepting those that take advantage of our good nature? Why do we accept people as friends who make us feel bad? The answers to those questions always lies within. Until we change ourselves we will always attract people that bring us pain. This is why the summary use of magick is wrong regardless of our moral stance on influencing others. We harm ourselves by refusing to learn. We should evolve, do magick ,  and live our lives to the point where we surround ourselves with people we love and respect and who love and respect us in return. Doing that relieves us of the need to perform controlling magicks very often.

That said there are times when it is spiritually and ethically imperative to control an aspect of another’s behavior. This occurs when someone’s behavior draws one into conduct that denigrates one’s spiritual self or one’s mental or emotional peace.  For example, an apartment manager has a tenant that is an ex-boyfriend. She ended the relationship due his toxic belittling behavior years ago. He takes advantage of the proximity and destroys her confidence at every turn. This creates feelings of anxiety and worthlessness. To add to that she feels he may start lodging complaints and jeopardize her job. Making him go away is an imperative.

Being unable to avoid a physically dangerous person also creates a need to exercise magickal control. Such people can be complete strangers to us and still create a danger. A drug dealer moving in next door is a prime example.

While the main goal should be to focus our own behavior sometimes we fail in that. This is part of being human. In any given situation repeated failure can indicate a fixed energy pattern that cannot be interrupted. The only practical way out of this state is to destroy all the energetic connections. In real terms that means getting rid of the person. Repeated long-term failures to properly deal with someone else’s behavior in a constructive way is a sign that it is time to take away their ability to lead one down a negative path. The energy pattern is simply too fixed to allow for any other solution.

This may sound like a cop out and it may be on the short term. Think of it as backing so far off that you get the proper perspective, not only for the interpersonal problem, but for the core internal problem you have. A dangerous person is a good example of this.  A woman gets into a relationship with an abuser. He messes with her head so much that she has no self confidence anymore. This type of person uses the damage they do as a control mechanism. They are very hard to disentangle from. She does magick to get him to go away. He does. Now she has an opportunity to reevaluate what went wrong. She may learn that she is attracted to controlling and domineering men like her father but such attractions are not healthy for her. She decides that she can use a different measure of manliness. That allows her to make better choices. That isn’t a cop out but an act of courage.

Another example is a man that plays the part of rescuer. He sees woman in distress. Helps her. They have a relationship while he helps but that relationship is always missing something. Usually he is used and dumped when she becomes self-sufficient. This time she stays and he is miserable. She is very good at manipulating him and ‘forces’ him to stay in the relationship. He is so compassionate that he cannot say no. He uses magick to make her go away. That way he never had to say no to her. Once she is gone he learns the warning signs and stays away from rescue situations. Again, this is not a cop out but a learning tool.

Even if the core lesson is not solved in the long term the lesson will come around again. If the fellow above doesn’t learn he is going to become caught up in another rescue project.

You cannot -- and should not -- avoid the lesson forever. So there is little chance of not learning in the long run. Should your lesson repeat you will recognize it sooner or later. Instead of feeling helpless you will know there is an emergency way out. That self-knowledge may create a new starting point that helps one learn the core lesson without the use of magick.

Generally speaking humans have an emotional need to feel secure and safe. This is undermined without a certain level of control over some aspect of our lives. When humans do not have that control we will go to ridiculous lengths to give ourselves an illusion of control. This is trick people play on ourselves to obtain emotional peace. A wiser course is to avoid getting caught up in someone else’s coping mechanisms. The first step is releasing your need for control of pointless things. The control freak is incapable of determining what is important and what is not. If you find yourself doing a lot of control magick start asking yourself what would happen if I didn’t control this? If your answer is some nameless fear. Do not do it. If your answer is unlikely to actually occur do not do it. If your answer is so far off the hook that your best friend is flabbergasted into silence do not do it. It is time to look within. If you want to control pointless things you will be doing control magick forever. If that happens overstepping your boundaries is inevitable and you will work yourself into a trap. The long term control of others is onerous.  The second step is to exercise full control over things that truly impact you.  This is second because (until you do the first) it is very difficult to assess what really does matter. If you do get caught in the trap of other people’s illusionary control mechanisms you have to release yourself from that trap.  If you cannot do it by normal means use your control magick.

Here is an example of not getting caught in other people’s need for control:

Not too long ago I was purchasing donuts to bring to my workplace. The shop carries some cake donuts and raised that have blue icing. These are not popular as the icing tastes like a child’s candy. I ordered two dozen and told the woman to include whatever she wanted but not any of those.

I watched her watch me out of the corner of her eye. Curious as to what she was up to I turned slightly away but kept her in view. She deliberately slipped a blue donut into the box! She smiled obviously very pleased with herself and held that expression all the way through the transaction. My response was to say nothing. If someone has so little control of their life that they need to slip someone a blue donut once in a while I let them. Someone eventually ate it. Letting her have her illusion of control was a compassionate thing to do and it really does not impact me at all.

Not getting caught up in other people’s coping mechanism means not reacting to them. Sit back and watch. When you cannot do that you are saying this person is controlling something that controls you. If you react to the blue donut you are out of control. I have since labeled people that do these petty things as sufferers of Blue Donut Syndrome (BDS). It makes dealing with them easier and often more amusing.

Some behavior is not amusing. Imagine the same scenario starting with, “No nut covered donuts please. We have someone with a peanut allergy.” That is something you must to control. You simply cannot let someone jeopardize another’s health. This extends to emotional, mental, and spiritual health as well though these are harder to see than a physical danger. Be careful ‘protecting’ others because sometimes it is inappropriate. Overprotectiveness results inattempting to  control things that are not yours to control.

When someone is controlling something that puts you in any type of jeopardy they become a justifiable target of any sort of magick that will correct the problem. You can drive them off. You can curse them. You can teach them. You can redirect them.  You have every right to create a harmonious and peaceful environment for yourself. That said you should at least try to have an adult conversation before going to these lengths. You’d be amazed by how many people have no idea that they are impacting you when you think it is obvious.

Once you decide that it is time to exercise your personal sovereignty you need to keep your goal in mind. By personal sovereignty I mean that you have total authority to control your own life, to remain healthy, and be connected. The goal is not control of the person. That is the mechanism. The goal is to return to place of peace. You should therefore do magick to that end. Do not do magick that will result in a further disturbance to yourself.

I am sure there is a reader out there that is saying, But what a minute. This guy is always telling us to disturb ourselves into growing. Why the change? The reason circles back to the why we are doing this control magick in the first place, which is that someone is jeopardizing our spirit and all other attempts to grow internally have failed.  The ultimate goal is to put yourself in a healthy place. You can grow more from there but you can’t grow by continuing the original disturbance. 

There are different paths to different magicks.

One school of thought is to control the method of the magick. In the following example I controlled how the person who was my target would exit my area -- by travel. I used hot foot power and charged it with a ceremonial magick ritual of Mars. The entire spell ran “This evil person is driven from this town.” Frankly, while I did not care what happened to this person the spell implies that the person will still be alive. The target did leave town within a week. Had I said, “This person is no longer [where I didn’t want them to be],” that could have implied death. Given the location where this took place that possibility would not be out of the question. Had the person been killed it would have traumatized a lot of people. My guilt for that would have disturbed my peace a great deal more than her presence. This is true even though her being was unbearable to myself and many others. She was not involved in any form of magick so further interventions never became necessary.

This spell worked quickly because so many people were angry at the target (with very good reason). As a result of her mean-spirited behavior she had few friends to protect her and many faults for which she could be blamed. She damaged more people’s employment, careers, and mental health than anyone I have ever seen. All that damage left many avenues through which my magick could work.

Another school of thought is to conjure a spirit and let them figure out what is best. I am not sure what the technical term for this is but I call it the random curse method. Essentially it involves calling a spirit and providing a task to that spirit. “Get this person out of my life permanently without causing me to leave my usual environment and without causing death of or physical harm to anyone.” This gives the magick a wide birth. That charge also would protect the mage from being moved out of the area instead of the target.

This type of spell can work fast because the spirt has a different perspective and can see the other person’s weak point much better than you can.

Given that wide berth you have to consider various scenarios. What if the spirit drives the person crazy and she ends up being locked up long term due to mental illness? What if the person has a propensity for violence that you are unaware of and the spirit gets her to stab someone? She then gets locked up. What if a relative gets severely ill and your target flies across the country to take care of the person?

Some people would be quite upset if these things happened. Other people would see it as the secondary “victim’s” karma. You have to know yourself well enough to know how you will react to these things and word your spell accordingly.

Controlling others is sometimes necessary. Do so while being very aware of yourself and your own well-being. Always keep in mind that your peace is paramount -- otherwise you would not be doing the magick! In order to keep my peace I often curse someone and bless them. For example, may you lose ten times the amount you stole from me and get a job well-paying enough that you are never tempted to steal from me again. I do not do that all the time. Some people just need to be cursed and I am fine with that. Your standards will be different. You know what you can psychology handle. Protect yourself.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

The Everything Question

Don't depend on death to liberate you from your imperfections. You are exactly the same after death as you were before. Nothing changes; you only give up the body. If you are a thief or a liar or a cheater before death, you don't become an angel merely by dying. If such were possible, then let us all go and jump in the ocean now and become angels at once! Whatever you have made of yourself thus far, so will you be hereafter. And when you reincarnate, you will bring that same nature with you. To change, you have to make the effort. This world is the place to do it. – Paramahansa Yogananda

I have made that effort for many years now. I am not saying that I have made myself into someone that will become the next great teacher. I have made some progress though. In doing so I have come up with The Everything Question so named because those answers touch upon every aspect of the theurgist’s life. Answering the question helps you refine your nature.
"What brings me closer to the divine?" was the orignal Everything Question, but it is misleading because being ‘away’ from the divine is an illusion. We are always in a state of intimacy with everything that is divine.
Perhaps a better question is this: "What helps me become aware of my closeness to the divine?"
The word divine can be nebulous. For that reason I will frame my comments with three of the eighteen definitions found on
Definition 1:
Proceeding from God or a god: divine laws;
Divine guidance
 There are divine laws*. The best examples or divine laws are those that we call physical laws. This universe was created with certain physical constants like gravity, vacuums, molecular structures, the list is endless.The fact that we may not know them or know exactly how they work does not make that less true. Gravity works whether we understand it or not.
Physical laws are a subset of divine laws. A non-physical law may be that humans have emotions. This is just part of our existence. As a species (if not always individually) humans have a spiritual/religious drive. Moses gave us a glimpse of divine laws as they relate to behavior. Jesus provided a glimpse of a law of properly applied emotion love/sacrifice. Perhaps I and many other mystics have revealed the law of that regulates the purpose of human existence. If all things perfectly serve to unfold the soul it may follow that the purpose of human existence is to evolve physical energy into the spiritual. While we may find room to argue about this or that law a body of such laws exist whether we understand them or not. Gravity works whether we understand it or not.
Under this definition “What brings me closer to the divine?” is answered with “that which helps me to learn about, understand or work within divine law”. Sometimes this is a spiritual/intellectual understanding, like my view of Perfection, Jesus’s view of Love, Buddha’s view of Awareness.  Other times it is intuition that cannot be rationalized. Perhaps Gibran’s view of thought “There is a place between right thinking and wrong thinking. I will meet you there” applies. Either way, when you follow divine law you feel no resistance
An example of this may be sympathetic magick, the idea that similar things can impact each other. A doll made to resemble a person can be symbolically imprisoned and that imprisonment will impact the person.  If you do such a thing and it works smoothly, quickly and perfectly you have done something so aligned with divine law that no other result was possible.
Frazer [The Golden Bough] broke down the idea further into two distinct parts - the Law of Similarity and the Law of Contact/Contagion. He said, “From the first of these principles, namely the Law of Similarity, the magician infers that he can produce any effect he desires merely by imitating it: from the second he infers that whatever he does to a material object will affect equally the person with whom the object was once in contact, whether it formed part of his body or not”(source)
I interpret my vision of perfection as witnessing a divine law at work because what I saw was so all-encompassing, easy to understand, and immediately life changing that it could be nothing less. That law is that all things serve to unfold our souls. I therefore try to work within divine law as I understand it by living in such a way that the Perfection of the universe is obvious. For example I see the negative purely as a lesson and see the positive in the same way. This has become second nature to the point that I use the terms positive and negative/good and bad merely for ease of communication.
Sometimes in the moment I miss out on the understanding that negative and positive events are teaching moments. This is never fun and I look bad. The upside is that I am usually I am able to regain this perspective given time."
By living a life within the understanding of Perfection I live within that divine law. Even during very rough times that would have been emotionally very difficult, I have been calm and peaceful. This is because I know beyond knowing that the Perfection is doing Its work. I capitalize those words as the Perfection is holy to me.
 Definition 2:
Godlike; characteristic of or befitting a deity
Divine magnanimity
What are godlike characteristics?

Have you seen a miracle lately? Probably not. Actually you have seen them. The question is are you aware of the miracles you see? You have seen people change their lives for the better. You have seen the lazy become suddenly studious, the angry become calm, and the lonely married. Have you seen someone hit bottom and realize they cannot fall anymore? This is the divine at work. One godlike characteristic is the ability to make massive changes without any apparent effort. When the divine interferes we do not think, “Oh the gods (or God) must be tuckered out now!". Those transitions are examples of massive changes whether accomplished of the person’s own will, or the hand of the divine.
Another indication of the divine at work is when one person effortlessly instigates another to move closer to her true self.
My mentor was like that from time to time. People around him would struggle and during a conversation with him they would seize onto a phrase that meant little to him at the time but held deep meaning for them. These people would end up making serious changes in their lives. My mentor was not a god but he displayed a god-like characteristic.
People have told me that my soul and tarot readings have changed their lives. They have left my table crying tears of joy. In those moments, I displayed a god-like characteristic. I am not a god.
Humans that live their lives in ways that have huge impacts on society are also displaying a characteristic of a god. These may include individuals such as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Andrew Carnegie, [which? Several prominent people, I don't automatically recognize the last name]Getty, Thomas Edison, and the like. Some people may see some of these folks as real s.o.b.s.
As humans we can display god-like characteristics and be jerks five minutes later. Gods can be gods and be jerks at the same time. Reading the Old Testament or Greek Mythology will confirm that. That which is negative to our understanding is not ungodlike. There have been some people in history that were real jerks that display godlike qualities.
Another god-like characteristic which is inherentin the definition above is  divine magnanimity. Further defined from the same source as: "generous in forging an insult or injury; free form petty resentfulness or vindictiveness. Also, proceeding from or revealing generosity or nobility of mind, character etc."
Those traits need no further elucidation.
Under this definition “What brings me closer to the divine?” is answered with “that which helps me to embody or manifest a divine trait in my daily life”.
Every time I have a moment of moment of intuitional awareness I am living within a characteristic of the divine. So what brings me closer to the divine? Any exercise that builds upon my intuition.
Definition 3:
Heavenly; celestial: the divine kingdom.
As someone that has seen the chthonic realms I would quibble with the heavenly celestial part being an all inclusive answer. You only have to be down there once before you know the term heavenly does not apply. No one would describe that bleak painful place as heavenly. The divine kingdom part is another story that conjures the ghost of a particular religion. I will use my preferred term of "the divine realm” which is everywhere.
Most would see the difference only semantically. I see the term divine kingdom as a very Abrahamic term. It implies a state of rulership. Realm may sound like kingdom to some but it has subtler meaning such as a sphere of influence in which the divine occurs. That form of "realm" is everywhere. 
The Golden Dawn has a few greats line in the Zelator (earth grade) ritual.
“The foolish and rebellious gaze upon the face of the created World, and find therein nothing but terror and obscurity. It is to them the Terror of Darkness and they are as drunken men stumbling in the Darkness.” And later “The Wise gaze upon the created world and behold there the dazzling image of the Creator.”

When you have that mystical moment and behold that dazzling image you will change. For you will know that the divine is hidden by a single molecule of the physical.
Under this definition, “What brings me closer to the divine?” is answered with “that which helps me to perceive and live within the divine realm.” Sometimes that would be disc golf. Playing three or four days a week a few years back allowed me to perceive the subtle changes that foretold the changes of the seasons. The earth and its processes became alive to my awareness.

Having just one experience in life that answers that question in any way is a success. Doing so helps us live a life that satisfies the quote above by actively and willfully working to refine our nature.

*Please forgive me for my lack of education in such philosophies. I fear my explanation is lacking here but am unsure how to communicate more clearly.