Mind your own business! is the sole sufficient rule.

Tags

, , , ,

Because I suck at wordpress, this post was accidentally published before it was fully baked. Oops.

This post is about divination and magical responsibility against philosophy. There is no morality for the magician. There is only philosophy and mindfulness. Actions are not inherently right or wrong but rather considered against their effects.

Yesterday, someone shored up to me who I sort of peripherally knew but couldn’t place the name. They expressed a desire to learn some ceremonial magic. Normally I just pitch people a reading list tailored to what I believe would be interesting to them and the onus is on them to read it and come back. This very quickly, and with little effort, separates the serious people from folks who just want to perform magic for some paltry end. Ceremonial magic is ceremonial magic because it very specifically requires proper philosophy and observation. This isn’t pick a color and light some candles, this requires an effort. If they can’t put forward the effort to read a book, I doubt they will have the required will to maintain some guard over what enters their minds and bodies. The book is easy. The book is the easiest requirement of magic. The hardest requirement of magic is priming the pump of the subconscious with the appropriate philosophy and imagery. Maybe it’s easier for me since I have kids and no desire to watch Dora the Explorer for the millionth time but I wholly understand people who, given to solitary life, there is a temptation to fill their minds with fiction and pornography. Crowley I think had a novel solution to it – simply make yourself sick of fiction and pornography through indulgence and you’ve bored your devils to death. The trick is to then reflect on the experience instead of moving on to the next immediately.

Rambling aside, for whatever reason (perhaps the name I felt I should have known) I decided to start throwing around the runes. His psychic space is fairly ridiculous and is either incredibly disorganized or he has employed or attempted to employ magic to everything in his life. It was such a consistently close-knit pile when trying to divine for him that I started looking at which runes were not in play just so I could pick out a negative set. This technique is not in the rune guide, I actually haven’t ever seen a spread this busy before. It was like asking “Hello Runes, show me the universe!” and a complete jenga stack of face up runes lands from the bag. The reading was just that absurdly busy. I decided this wasn’t particularly worth chasing, so I started playing the name game to try to narrow down sets of interactions. The name game works by picking a symbol, rune, or card and assigning it a person based on their qualities. Not sure about what the person represents? Pick a card, any card, and stick with it. However that is very last-resort and it is much better to pick something based on known-qualities.

After cycling through a few names and trying to come up with spreads that matched or implied a connection, I happened across a name of a person and she overlapped the center of the tightly knit spread. More importantly, she was actually present in the spread and face-up, while all the other names had been face down or at the edges of the cloth. While it sounds like I’m playing with the Dice of Satan to the casual reader, the symbols matter as much as the position of the symbols, which gives a fairly high significance to individual throws.

And here is where I screwed up. I assumed because there was a connection indicated between these two people, that they were best buddies and friends forever! In fact, they pretty much don’t get along at all. But this was after I had made the assumption that they were interested in working together and friendly. From a hermetic perspective the spirits (or runes) were not deceptive. They did indicate there was a connection there. It was a failure on the part of the operator to not then say “tell me about this connection” and divine that the connection was overwhelmingly negative. This is a really interesting idea to roll around in our heads – if we want to see someone we focus on meeting with them and if we don’t want to see someone, we focus in avoiding them. However that doesn’t mean there’s any less force of will, it simply means the polarity of that force of will is banishing or attracting. This isn’t to say an attitude like “ignore them and they will go away” is appropriate to every situation, but if someone is concerned about things coming down the magical spiderweb, it would be best not to operate on the person but to redirect the forces they’ve expended if there is open hostility. That doesn’t nearly appear to be the case and explores a worst case scenario, but the important takeaway is that effort along the attraction polarity or the banishing polarity directed at someone creates a detectable disturbance in the force.

Additionally to all this divination, everyone but me happened to know they didn’t get along and since I have infrequent interaction with the covens, I didn’t know any of the history. A quick mention and I got the crash course and ten-cent tour from my wife.

What is his reason for leaning ceremonial magic? Immediately, like most people I would guess who take the plunge, he has a need. He has a “haunting” over his friend’s place (in quotes because I haven’t explored the situation) and he’s tried to solve it with ad hoc new age tools and has been unable to bring it to any resolution. Ceremonial magic as a formal discipline means that the operator can (and will be as in the case of last nights divination) be wrong because there is structure and rules and philosophy. There is observation, and there is intent, and it’s bad to confuse them as given in the example above. I gave him the ever popular License to Depart and we’ll see how it goes.

Letters to Phergoph

Tags

I’ve been writing so much correspondence that I actually had a dream I was blogging. Not sure if that’s a message or not but I woke up and realized some of the material might be interesting to people. As usual, topics will be covered in a general sense (not quoting anyone) and in no particular order. These posts tend to be more practical than philosophical. 

Phergoph, people were laughing during magic class! Magic is serious business!

It’s a class. If we don’t make it fun and appealing to people, people will invariably arrive at the “why am I doing magic” question. From an external perspective if people are turned off by the rigid and impersonal nature of Christianity, or Islam (which specifically states that Allah is unknowable but then provides no provisions for contacting or currying his favor aside of duaa or Rightly Performed Prayer), then people are going to get turned off to magic entirely. Spiritual evocation is already an unpopular topic in magic, there’s no reason to make the material painful. Either people enjoy the flavor of the ritual and the equipment or they don’t. If they don’t, then they shouldn’t do this sorts of magic. It’s that simple. More importantly if they don’t enjoy the flavor of the magic, then they will not take the time to preload their minds with appropriate imagery for the spirits, and they will have a poor visionary state. If they have a poor visionary state, then the spirits won’t be able to communicate clearly, so the little bumps which lead us down the correct path and prompt us to philosophize won’t occur. That’s a bit of a lie, the HGA operation I think is a brilliantly designed experiment as put forward by Crowley specifically to see if spirits with little priming can help.

I can’t find red tape!

The tape in the lesson wasn’t a particular color. It just was a happy accident it matched the altar. I actually would have preferred fully white or black. Alternative: Put down butcher paper.

Did you really consecrate the entire box of chalk?

Yes. In for a penny, in for a pound. If you’re going to take the time to do the ritual, make a ridiculous amount of the stuff. You’ll use it, you will feel good about using it, and it will last awhile. However, the box of chalk is correct in solomonic magic where most of the items are blessed or somehow tied into the ruler of that particular age (Venus for purists, Mercury for us now). The idea here is to invoke the highest authority you can since the demarkation is between the sacred and the impure. It wouldn’t make much sense in my mind to consecrate some purple chalk to Jupiter and then use it for a circle. It would make sense to me to consecrate some purple chalk to Jupiter and then use it to make a talisman or something. Except your Solomonic Sharpie is much better than that since people tend to notice chalk all over things you hand them.

(Someone, somewhere is groaning at this idea). If you didn’t hew the chalk from the earth, don’t complain about the solomonic sharpie.

Those candles didn’t look like beeswax. Or Were the candles white for a reason?

My beeswax candles melted into consecrated puddles last time I ran the woodstove. They’re fragile and they burn quickly. I would be interested in suggestions if there’s a particular brand but I am pretty much completely fed up with beeswax as a material. The first SDAs I made were also pure beeswax and the stuff either dries out and gets fragile or becomes liquidy depending on the mix. Maybe I just suck at candlemaking, who knows. The candles were purchased from the Hebrew section of the supermarket, so I am trying to make some concession towards keeping is sacred, but I also realize I’m probably just paying extra for hebrew all over the box. White is the correct color for candles, but this goes into the whole thing about the archangels and colors – our white is different from “white” for them, which is really sort of a dusky yellow color because… beeswax.

Did anything happen after the ritual?

F eventually got a “wait” letter from the college he was applying to overseas, the letter arrived on the day of Luna, the hour of Saturn. I waffle on the idea if these are interchangeable or not, I eventually settled on the idea that it is similar to parenting. It doesn’t matter which parent someone is asking, they should consult each other. Obviously for scrying it is the same as talking – Hour of Luna is hour of Luna, and Hour of Saturn is Hour of Saturn. However the combination is definitely a product of both influences. This would then be an obvious sync. I asked him if he had asked for anything in the ritual circle. He said no, but this doesn’t particularly mean he didn’t have wandering thoughts and accidentally bring it up. This does fly in direct contrast to the meditation technique I was espousing where thoughts come, but they are not important. This is very Alan Watts, but I think Alan Watts is also not a magician. The easy meditation is to acknowledge the thoughts and let them go, but once someone gets to that point they have to learn discernment. The thoughts are either coming from them or originating from the spirit, and there has to be some sorting and testing going on there. If there has to be some sort of discernment, then the goal of this sort of meditation in this context is to not have your thoughts at all. If he was meditating on the spirit and a stray thought did occur, then the spirit addressed that thought and was aware of that thought.

I think this is why I find it very hard to do magic for and with other people. If I think my self control in this way is merely “good”, I worry other people at worst are worse than me at this or at best they are far better but our goals are not in alignment. Crowley would have his students slash their arms when they did this poorly, I personally use a livestrong armband which can be snapped satisfactorily to the point where I don’t want to do it while not raising eyebrows in polite society. This is a wonderful exercise since the conscious mind has to overcome the unconscious desire not to hurt yourself while at the same time making people mindful of their thoughts.

Hows the new material coming?

OK I sent myself that email. The problem is a lot of the information is fundamentally geometric or visual. We live in the age of youtube and the question really became how do I avoid making a series of posters to avoid Death by Powerpoint – Analog Edition. I decided the best way to teach it was going to be to come in with a whiteboard with magnets and just teach it like I teach my kids the alphabet. Look for a video on this one but don’t expect much in the way of notes.

Hello List Members!

Hello List Members! Please find the link at the top to the John Dee page.

I’m actually teaching a few classes in real life at the moment so expect the blog to be quiet, but don’t assume I’m dead. I will cross post materials from the class including youtubes when I get the time.

If anyone wants to help out by reformatting the images to be right side up and individual pictures of pages, it would be extremely helpful.

Enjoy, thanks for stopping by!

You’re Starting in the Middle

Tags

, ,

That’s a really interesting criticism, I thought. That’s an honest sentiment from when I started Enochian, too. “Look at these beautiful tables and strange symbols!” After we got the demons out of the neighborhood at great personal cost, I decided I better hit the books. For me, the approach to ceremonial magic was “lets start at the top” and then after a quick fall and a hard stop at the bottom, I decided I better learn everything else first.

But, there was a second ramp I didn’t quite realize was there until much later – by tracking down Dee’s books and material, and trying to follow around Crowley, there was a ridiculously broad exposure to classical literature. This was stuff I maybe, might have read under great derision in high-school, but certainly never with a critical eye. Sure I remember the stories of the Greek myths and such but somewhere, instead of presenting the stories as morality plays and as science projects, they simply became stories. Who knew Plato’s Republic was really commentary on the soul of man? If you’re asatru, you might end up at the Republic through Tacitus who wrote about runes. The path is not unique to ceremonial magic per se, but the classical era I think has the broadest exposure. Even if someone doesn’t read Roman or Greek works, the Medieval period right before and through Protestantism in Christianity enjoyed a revival of interest.

Vikings Season 2 Episode 6

I don’t normally put videos on the blog, but History Channel’s Vikings has just been fantastic. It follows the Ragnar Lodbrok story and while chasing that story line, it puts a historically accurate face on the history. The [Roman] texts are saved because (what would become) Protestant Europe is interested in conquest, so they’re interested in the old Roman empire, and the only folks who can read are the religious classes. Of course, they translate materials from the time of Christ looking for commentary on their religion and end up enriching the entirety of Western Civilization in the process. This is entirely relevant to the current age – the previous age married religion (or mystical thought) and science. The current age is all for the separation of church and state. The schism was Protestantism which sought to remove the dogma from the religion and in the process threw the baby out with the baptismal water because politics crept in, but at the same time produced thinkers like Giordano Bruno who might never have put quill to vellum were it not for the cultural and intellectual mix of the period.

To actually get here, however, we have to start in the beginning. I think that the last class generated the “You’re starting in the middle” comment because I really start looking at magic around 1000AD or so and come forward. The assumption (and this is the same pitfall Crowley makes) is that the readers are at least as well read as I am. This is poor form, but more importantly misses a very important problem: If I can’t answer a question on the origin of an idea, how can I teach it? Did I not just accept something on faith? And so the bones were laid for the next class – starting with Aristotle, talk about classical ideas of elements and alchemy, link that up with contemporary Qabalah so people have something to relate it to, go back and talk about Pythagoras and his ideas on numbers, then investigate the first six scales.

Feedback on the Class

Tags

, ,

I missed April Fools, I was going to turn this into a food blog or something just for a day. However I would like to plug these guys for their really hilarious video and product pitch.

Feedback on the class was generally positive. If you watch the video with the captions on, you’ll probably get more out of it since I think the sound quality sucked. That was the biggest complaint in private feedback was that I moved a mile a minute and no-one was too concerned because this is all recorded, right? Except the audio sucks, and then youtubes caption editor sucks, so I might just download the closed captions (if I can figure out how) and post them.

The second complaint was “it feels like we started in the middle”. That’s legitimate, I’m not going to say, “Well people had different ability levels”. The class should give feedback to the teacher and the teacher should be able to dynamically reflow the class to the students assuming they’re asking appropriate questions with an appropriate attitude. So far no-one has pulled the “but that’s not wicca” card. No, it’s not wicca. Someone could re-tool wicca to fit historical practice, but is it wicca? Not really.

To that end, I really didn’t expect the evocation to work. I didn’t get the creepy feeling I normally do, I think it’s a testament to the skill level of the crowd if they managed to get anything rolling in their own heads. I assume everyone is germane and honest when reporting their experiences. Another topic which came up for feedback was that we had electrical items in the circle. While Levi cautions against electric light, Poke Runyon loves blacklight and feels it’s important for setting the stage. I personally didn’t throw the mains in the house but did turn off all the lights – if we want to complain about electricity than we would be hard pressed to find a place without even cellphone coverage. I do know people who do evocations in caves, however.

I think the place to go from here when presenting to a broader crowd is to just take a hat-tip from “the beginning” and start with Pythagorean thought. I recently re-read The Loom of God, the first chapter where they start talking about geometric progressions could comfortably be put into the Golden Dawn Cipher Manuscript in terms of making broad associations between numbers. The Pythagoreans would have been more comfortable talking to Agrippa than Gardner, but the first step on arriving at an epic destination is to leave the house. We have to start from a known position. To that end, I think working through the orders of 2, 3, 4, and 5 will get them to the pentagram ritual and still be fun without presenting too much information, then we can do 6 and start talking about branching out in the grimoires. I have to pare down the lesson plan a bit more and I think people will be happier.

Video

The Intro to Ceremonial Magick Class

Tags

Yes there are misquotes, misattributions, unexplored ideas, and poor editing. The captions are good for the first half, then please switch over to “english – second half”. I prefer to blog because I can draft, evaluate, and edit. However, there’s always something to be said for medium and video can express more than I could ever hope to eloquently write.

Predictions for Tomorrow

Tags

, ,

I suck at astrology. How do we get better? We get better by doing it. I don’t anticipate making this a regular thing since I view prognostication as secondary to spiritual work but I woke up realizing I can use each of these as supplemental examples to the class I plan on teaching this weekend.

There is a really important distinction I think to make – a ritual is usually timed at a favorable time for the particular petition someone wants to make, but prognostication is essentially saying “something is changing in the Heavens, will it have any power on Earth?” Well of course, we wouldn’t do ritual without checking the Heavens and we wouldn’t say that the Heavens do not influence the Earth outside of ritual. Two sides of the same coin. But that also means there are going to be days when the Heavens are just sort of meandering around on their course and nothing particularly interesting is happening. In engineering, this is called the edge condition, and it causes two effects: there is ambiguity between states and we usually are only interested in the edge condition. If someone puts on headphones and just listens to a pure tone for some time, they won’t remember what happened three minutes in, they only remember what happened when the tone started and when the tone ended. The time in the middle is essentially lost to them. However the time in the middle, if they can adjust themselves, is also the best time to meditate and see what presents itself. Discussions to meditation aside, the edge condition is why I usually try to start rituals a few minutes after the planetary hour and when I am making my own charts and such I usually add 10 minutes to the beginning of the hour. From a calculation perspective, this is because I can’t set my precise location in a lot of the software since I live at the edge of the sticks. From a practical perspective, I know the trees in my neighborhood at the top of my hill are about 10 minutes tall before I can see the planet over the horizon. I wish I owned a wizard tower but I’m told they’re not up to building code.

Lets look at today. Aside of the normal planetary hour stuff, today is wholly unremarkable. The largest, brightest object in the sky (aside of the sun) is really not doing anything. In addition to that, the moon is void of course. If I were to make some sort of prognostication for today, I would say that today is going to be utterly boring and it would be a good day to go to the park, let the kids run around, have a cigar and read. It is a very good day to simply be lazy, read, and blog. Tomorrow however, looks busy! In addition to a waning moon, the moon is entering the last quarter. The moon enters Capricorn. There’s a void of course start and end, and lunar days to observe. All of those except for the day and mansion are edge conditions which make me think something interesting (or at least observable) might happen. Lets break them out.

Lunar Day 23 - Vronsky says, “The day is very good for completion of any activity, any enterprise. Not only they will be resultful, they can bring honour and glory, popularity and wellbeing. However, one should not start any new activity as it will be senseless and useless.” He continues, “A child born on this day won’t be especially beautiful, so a lot in his life will depend on his ability to gain knowledge and be kind. The illnesses of this day are long, and the dreams are false.”

Goba is steeped in mysticism: “Symbol – the crocodile. One of the days of seduction, of vampires’ bacchanalia. The period of fasting, abstention, carefulness, repentance, forgiveness and self-sacrifice. This day is connected to hounding, manhunt, exile, encounter with a mad crowd. One should guard one’s house: clean it, sprinkle it with holy water, cleanse thresholds with fire, fumigate with Labrador tea and cumin. It is good to make cheese pies and to bake a nut into them. It is recommended to eat dairy products. It is dangerous to give way to anger, to overeat. One should not cut hair or nail, have a surgery, have a sedentary life.”

Oh boy, I write off the top of my head so people can understand the reasoning process that goes on here, but tomorrow seems to directly caution against today. Furthermore there seems to be a theme here of seduction, and sexuality. Right off the top of my head looking at these predictions, I think about Pussy Riot, I think about Yulia Tymoshenko, who also recently made headlines, for both Ukraine and the post release activities, I see krokodil, there’s a lot of things which personally point me towards a region. Had there not been any current political turmoil (can you even entertain the thought?) for a day, I would say clean the house and go outside.

Well, that doesn’t look very nice, maybe the next observation will be more pleasant.

Moon in Capricorn – “There is an increase in formality, strictness and exactitude, with a tendency to reserve and distance. Rules and regulations are dominant. It is a suitable time for all activities which require extra responsibility and discipline, but you shouldn’t rely on someone’s receptivity or emotional pliability.” 

Capricorn is ruled by Saturn, and is of the element Earth. While I don’t normally pick on other bloggers, this is one of the places I disagree with Alex Sumner. Russia is watery (the Rus), Ukraine is Earthy (Wild Field, Borderland). I’m not sure an Earth Banishing Pentagram is the best thing here for keeping the Watery out of the Earthy. It also is worth mentioning that Goba’s notes above mention vampires and wine (blood) and every warlord of that particular part of the world was named Vlad. Vlad is a popular name in the region, however, so lets not read too far into that one.

Lunar Mansion 24 - From John Sandbach, the ruler would be Venus/Libra/Pisces/Virgo. Which means instead of the nice stuff, we can pretty much skip to the unbalanced stuff: “When not in tune with his true self he can become self-righteous and demanding, as well as destructively critical of what other people are trying to do. This can then drive people away from him and cause him to eventually become isolated and misanthropic. At best he is an upholder of what is most worthwhile in society, a fine teacher, an example setter, and a leader. At worst he allows his egotism and feelings of superiority to negate what he could give to the world, and to isolate him.”

Earlier on there is a notion of this eye towards history. If we look at the modern history of Ukraine, that doesn’t bode well. After fighting a war of independence from Poland, the region struck a treaty with Russia. Good portions of the region were in Russian control until the decline of Russia let them slip. Putin of course would want to see them returned to Russia given the pipelines in the region, because if the Nabucco pipeline went north of the Black Sea, it cuts through Ukraine. It’s an obvious political move, but the timing is really what I am exploring here.

Now, we’re done with the daily stuff, it doesn’t really matter where I am on the globe because the Earth rotates, so all of this holds true if I am in North America or if I am in Australia. The scope of the above is limited by day, so a day of wiggle room is entirely appropriate. Also for the hour, I don’t think that the news would report accurately down to the minute if anything happens in the world. The news is a giant rumor mill. Making hourly predictions is sort of moot. That being said, 21h46m is when the moon enters the last quarter so I am going to look at charts for that.

This brings us to a problem. We’ve looked at all that stuff up above, and the chart isn’t terribly interesting. Since we’re doing a chart for the entire day, I’m mostly just paying attention to the positions of specific planets. In this case, Saturn, Luna, and Venus. We already worked out all the moon material, Venus otherwise unaffected (neither in detriment or exaltation), and Saturn is in retrograde which would imply negative associations on top of an already negative reading for the rest of it.

Is any of this going to come true? I don’t know; I suck at astrology. Other predictions such as the Apollo Theatre collapse led to nothing I could point to either as intentional or ominous. Would be I be surprised to hear news from the region today, tomorrow, or Monday? Nope.

Update - While I can’t say I am happy to be correct, it would seem that early today/yesterday the war transitioned into a hot-war where people have started shooting.

2010 – Eclipse Retrospective

Tags

I missed this when it came out on the winter solstice, but I figured it would be a fun thought exercise with the class coming up soon anyway. The link has been popping up on Facebook because the IO9 RSS Feed is terrifically broken.

12th of DEC 2010 was the winter solstice, and the darkest night in 500 years. For my local time, 1:32am to 2:41am was the period of the eclipse. Now here’s a neat thing – the news story which published the eclipse news used the word “tonight”. There is the first gotcha, their “tonight” is really 13-DEC-2010′s morning.

To check on the moon, we use Lunarium. I actually like Vronsky and Globa, so I have no problem using Lunarium’s Lunar Day (8). But the Lunar mansion is number 28. Why are there suddenly 28 mansions? Because at one point, there were either 27 or 28 divisions depending on who someone asked. The Chinese and Arabic mansions both have 28, but if you pick up a book with the Vedic mansions, there might only be 27. Does it change the associations much? Not really. If we look at where all the charts agree, we end up at Gamma Cervi – the wing of the crow. The symbology is “between Mars and Saturn”.

So now we need to know what planetary hour we would be working in if we wanted to work. Another gotcha – most of the software, lunarium included, accepts gregorian dates but the results don’t always make sense. In this case if we were looking for Monday, we find that Monday starts at 7am, which makes sense since planetary days start their light hours at sunrise. Since we’re before sunrise, we have to rewind a day. Jupiter rules 1:03am to 2:16am, but Mars rules 2:16am to 3:30am. While we could peg it as either/or, the moon is turning a deep, deep crimson for this and I think the associations are more strongly tilted towards Mars? But lets check that!

If we run the chart, we can make two observations. The first is that Mars isn’t combust, but its darn close. Mars also won’t be visible, being near the sun, which will be on the other side of the Earth from me. On the other hand, Jupiter is near the moon, and the moon is being eclipsed. Jupiter will then appear brighter than it normally would in the night sky. The previous assumption? Out the window. This is why it is important to run the chart before doing anything with magic. If I had to pick one to go with, I would say that Jupiter will be way stronger in influence than Mars after seeing the chart.

So did anything significant happen around that date? Checking wikipedia for December 2010, Julian Assange’s lawyer released a statement on Sunday, and then Monday, the US ruled the “buy or fine” portion of Obamacare was unconstitutional. Perhaps in an amusing far-view on this, the “buy or fine” became “buy or pay the tax”, and became one of the most divisive topics in the nation.

Of course it is easy to make predictions, after the fact.

Letters to Phergoph: DMK, Healing

Tags

After Jason Miller mentioned the planetary magick and Aaron Leitch linked to the review of his book, Letters to Phergoph has exploded. That’s a good thing. However I will try to group up the questions and answer them broadly.

“You said you were going to write a post about DMK and only told us about an LSD trip. What?”

The trip was the framing of the story. The point of the story was that DMK was an approachable person. The other point of the story was that someone who had little interest in the Occult before getting Turned On could read his book and find new language and ways to relate. Getting two people to agree on anything in this day and age is hard, getting people to shift their mental framing and embrace a new philosophy is impossible. Look at me, I spent the next five or so years in asatru/wicca/druid land.

He did two really good things – he wrote an approachable book without the Christian overtones normal to ceremonial magick and he wrote me back. The second one is a nice gesture, but the first one is an accomplishment. I don’t recall anything out at the time I had access to which covered what I felt I had experienced. Perhaps most importantly, the book wasn’t preachy. No rule of three, no karma, no “don’t summon demons or you’ll have to roll a six to get your alignment back” or any such silliness, he skillfully blended the psychological model with the existential model. I didn’t know it at the time but it really was well put together.

I also think he managed to get the balance right between “what is evocation” and “what work am I doing”. The book talked about how does magic work, and when do we do magic, and how magic can improve our lives without getting into the details. Like talking to teenagers about safe sex, the book wasn’t “you shouldn’t summon demons”, but rather was aimed squarely at the novice magus who probably should be banishing their demons before moving on with other magic. It doesn’t matter who put what where, he created an environment in the book which could relate the information in a way which was approachable without getting into the messy details of how he used it in his personal life. That’s a hard balance to walk, and I only appreciated it after I started blogging about magic and realized there was a difference between technique and pornography.

“Do you remember what you wrote him?”

No, over a decade has passed. I’m sure it was insipid, uninspired crap. I do remember asking him for book recommendations after his book, I don’t recall what he sent me.

“Is the tiki-god a lizard person/angel/ghost/demon/space alien/tiki-god/ancestor/HGA?”

The bottom line is I didn’t test the spirit. I have no idea. It has never appeared to me again (or if it has, it didn’t take that form) and it was a missed opportunity from a ceremonial magic perspective. From a purely spiritual perspective, or shamanic perspective, it was exactly what I needed at the time. I swore off LSD after that one and drugs in general when I finally decided to go to college, get a job, and launch a career. For people who are curious but have to hold down a career and family like me, I highly suggest viewing The Spirit Molecule, or the London Real episode.

“Something something lol u magcians failed he is dead”.

(Yes someone really wrote this). Here’s the thing. I believe Regardi (or Bardon) said if we want a miraculous healing, the first thing we need is a desire to be healed. I don’t know if anyone actually asked him if he wanted a miraculous healing; I don’t know if he wanted it.

I do believe people are fundamentally good, and I believe their intentions are pure. I also think that people who want the good in the world sometimes don’t apply it the best way. It isn’t that everyone asked for a miraculous healing, I think a good majority of people understood that the cancer was both painful and untreatable and wanted him to be comfortable. But most importantly, I think he realized he wasn’t going to live forever on this plane and he understood death is the last initiation. Was it his True Will to pass on at this time? I don’t think we’ll ever know unless he left us a letter. Ultimately, he made that choice.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 129 other followers