Posts Tagged ‘magick’
Appropriating the phrase that Bruce Lee made famous I am seeking within the small confines of this post to express an idea that is a little reflexive. That is – I want to write about the limitation to the power of the creative media to express the full impact and experience of magickal processes.
I was made aware, when writing recently about the futility of convincing sceptics - that one of the main reasons why I no longer try to speak to sceptics about magick is that I have rarely got enough time to be able to tell the fullness of the experience in a language that comes close to expressing the content, especially the emotional content of the moment.
I am aware that great literature of capable of creating within us a powerful and even life-changing set of emotions. i am aware that given enough time and space in any work a truly great artist can begin to shape the medium to produce something that may rouse and engender within the audience (at least some of them) a similar response to the original experience. Yet, a blog is a poor medium for such stories as ours. Even poetry is a mere snapshot of words who symbolism is of limited depth, despite the resonances of language and its complex structures.
So what is missing from these tales of magickal adventure? The emotional content, the synchronistic ripples in time whose echo sweeps you off your feet when it hits, that turn your world view upside down to its rightful position. What may be missing is the heavenly glory of the light and shade of the meanings within the moment, and the full impact of the realisations. Remember your first birthday gift of real significance? Remember the impact that had upon you at the time? The joy, the potential!
Now bring that forward into adulthood, into a time where all of the magick is systematically removed from life through processes of levelling, uniformity, reason and ridicule…. and what remains is scant reward for life on a daily basis. Imagine now, that the magickal is re-inserted into your life’s adventure. Imagine that the joy and potential are rediscovered, but now they are no longer simply superficial joy and potential, now they chime within you - the symbols, the links with other cultures around the world, the harmony, the knowing at a deep level of being which overtaken reason’s faltering jigsaw and shows the full picture in one shot.
When I fail to recount the emotional content in the blog, when I fail to deliver the magickal feeling that comes with all of my work on a weekly basis… know that this post is one of my poor attempts at a reminder about the power of this druidical work. Let the magick of the year begin again!
Towards the end of the first day on Iona we walked to the northern end of the island to climb the hill known as Dun I (‘Dun-ee’). It was only a short distance from the abbey’s grounds, and according to the signposts there was only a 600m walk to the top. I was determined to go because there are so few sacred places on this small island that I wanted to see them all, and with no rain in sight this was a perfect opportunity to do such a climb. It was my belief that somewhere up on top of the hill there was a healing pool, and I was keen to find it and use it. Besides, this would be a great place for me to find out what the quest was for the next part of the Wheel of the Year. I was hoping this would be the place to find that information. So it turned out to be,
There are few signposts on Iona. Locals know where they’re going. Visitors should have the time to find what they need without needing direction. There was one small, and I mean small, concession to this rule and that was the inch-high sign pointing out the footpath to the mountain/hill of Dun I, and the sign on the gate alongside it re-iterating the route. Frankly, you’d be hard-pressed to miss it anyway, even in fog! It’s only five minutes walk north from the Abbey.
As we stepped onto the smooth grassy path something ached in my feet - a longing to be free of the shoes that I had spent all day walking around in. I set my feet free. They practically sighed at the coolness of the mossy grass path and delighted in the cooling dew and occasional crossing rivulet of water. This lasted for about two minutes, then they began to get cold. My brain chimed in with a gentle reminder that this was September, and that I was in Scotland. Thanks, Rational Mind – you’re always useful, never superfluous! Another minute and the climb up the hill began – it was slippery, muddy, rocky and cold. Was this a wise decision now? No, but I continued anyway. Sometimes hardship leads to a better insight. Reward comes through effort, as they say (Who says this? They need a smack!).
Does a car have a soul? How can a piece of metal and plastic have anything as ephemeral and mystical as a ‘soul’? What do I mean by this? Let me address some of these definitions before I start my story.
What I am talking about here is the thought-form that is created by a human when they have spent time with an object. The thoughts, the fears, the highs and the lows – the emotional content and its resultant energy – can become imbued into an object, I believe. I believe we leave energetic traces of ourselves all over the place. We leave energy in the objects we interact with (through touch or through proximity or even through applying our attention to something). This energy imprint is renewed and re-energised every time we release emotion inside the car. In this way we build an energetic imprint.
If we choose to give that energetic imprint “form”, say for example by giving the car a name, or even just by considering that the car has a “soul” then we often talk about a car’s “personality”. This is what I am talking about when I mention a car’s soul – its collection of residual human energy frequencies, and these frequencies can coalesced into a single subtle energy form through an act of will.
Right, so now you know what I am talking about hopefully when I tell you the tale of how my old car said goodbye to me recently. Here’s the story.
Full Spiral With A Car
I have been from one end of the country to the other with my last car. It was a Subaru Legacy estate which was great for all the off-road driving that I did down bumpy dirt tracks in all weathers. When the car began to politely inform me that it was approaching the end of its useful life and wanted to be retired from such arduous work (via warning lights on the dashboard, not by any psychic means) then I knew it was time for us to part.
As I drove out to Sherwood Forest the GPS took me down the roads through Buxton and Chesterfield to get to the destination. It seemed the most direct route, and in terms of time it was estimated at 1h 40 from my starting point. On the way back from the forest I again set the SatNav to take me home, as I have only been to this area once before and wasn’t convinced I would be able to navigate my way out. Straight away I noticed that the directions were not the reverse of the way I had come in. The route was different, but still timed at 1h 40 so I assumed it would be the same route back, but perhaps via a slightly different road initially.
As we got further into the journey I realised we were going a totally different way. I was being taken back via Sheffield and down the Snake Pass past Ladybower Reservoir. As we made our winding way down the pass I noticed a solitary white sign on a post pointing up to the hills - “Holmfirth“. My mind jolted. Where did I know that town name from? Then it struck me – that was a town close to the dealership in Honley where I had bought the car, and I had driven through Holmfirth when I first took the car home. This very road was the route I had taken to drive it back! What an amazing coincidence!
I mentioned the coincidence to Kal, and he said, “It’s the car saying goodbye.” M said the same thing later when I relayed the tale. This made me sit and think about the car. Had something at a subliminal level or via some other means brought me back to the starting point with this car? After all – there are only two times that I have driven that route in this car – once when I picked it up, and this last outing to a sacred site in it. Literally the next day I was due to drive the car down to the dealership where I would trade it in for a newer one.
I needed to find out more about this, so I began to think about what the incident might be telling me about energy and ‘inanimate’ materials.
I have been re-visiting some of the essential elements of the magickal work that I do. Sometimes when working I forget various parts of these elements that I have found to be essential components to the success of such work. When I forget to employ all five of the elements in the process of doing energy work or interacting on a magickal level with nature then the likelihood of the success of that work, or rather, the strength of the outcome, is compromised by relative degrees. Often it can cause such work to fail altogether.
Usually one puts failure down to any number of other factors such as tiredness, low energy levels or some other personal or environmental failing. On reflection the work has failed because one of the following five essential elements has been missed out or performed as a gesture.
Here are the five essential elements that I have found contribute to the proportional success of natural magick.
- Prepare for the work by becoming humble and sincere in attitude
- Set your intent clearly at the outset, before performing actions or visualisations
- Engage with the surrounding or called-in spirit forces and negotiate their co-operation in the work. This is another reason why clear intent is useful.
- Provide your own energy into the work at a frequency that we associate with the feeling of love.
- Give thanks to the forces that interacted in the work when you have completed the intention or energy exchange
Every time I work I will try to keep these five elements in mind during my work. How hard can it be?
This is a follow-on post from the Black Altar at Karnak Temple post that I did recently. In this post I recount the last thirty minutes of my free ‘un-guided’ time in which I did a little more dowsing for some of the features of the temple. Little did I know that things were about to get weird.
Meeting with the Spirit of Place
I asked if there was a Spirit of Place in the Karnak Temple and the dowsing rods suggested there was. I asked them to take me to it and they were kind enough to oblige. Sometimes being a stranger in a strange land is a useful disguise and I felt no feelings of cultural weirdness about walking around the temple grounds with a copper rod directing my path, despite the curious stares from just about every single tourist in the place. Sometimes it’s liberating to be a stranger.
I was led back to the end of the Hypostyle Hall – a room of some 134 massive columns one of whose ends marked the third pylon. At a small gap in the main path through the temple the dowsing rods swung off to circle around a small roughly circular pile of insignificant looking small blocks of stone. This, apparently, was the resting place of the Spirit of Place. Time to learn a little more about what this spirit was, so I did my usual preparations – I protected myself, put my rods away, and began to connect in to the energy field of the spirit upon whose place I was standing.
I felt a connection with something, something powerful. I re-doubled my protection, and then introduced myself to the spirit using my druid name and then asked if this spirit was prepared to give me a name. I waited in silence and a name soon emerged loud and proud – “Tutmosis III“. I am not an Egyptian history scholar. At school my preference was for studying the Greek and Roman mythologies, rather than the Egyptian. Even in my magic research I have largely avoided the subject. I don’t know why. To top it all off, I had been pretty much ignoring the guide as he did his tour today because the heat was baking my noodle, frankly! I had had several days of being crammed with lists of Pharaonic lineages and stories about this and that god. Therefore I recognised the name – he was one of the pharaohs – but I had no context in which to place him.
The Gigantic Pharoah and the Supermassive Druid
My ignorance seemed to be interpreted as a lack of respect. No sooner had I connected than Tutmosis was keen to demonstrate the enormity of his powers. Within me I felt a rush of magical energy and suddenly the life-sized image I had of the pharaoh was now gigantic, towering over me as though I were an ant to a human! I saw him laugh at me, drunk with the feeling of power and might.
I think I was supposed to have been over-awed. I think I was supposed to have been frightened. Certainly it made me jump – like someone slamming a door behind you when you didn’t expect it. He was trying to show me who I was dealing with. Well, two could play at that game! I acknowledged his gigantic size, and then summoned as much magical energy as I could, pushing my aura and size upwards with all my power. Now I was as big to him as he had been to me seconds ago. I looked down on him from way above, my head just below the clouds and I laughed at him like a god in Olympus. I quickly re-sized myself and he did the same. He looked at me and acknowledged that his stunt now seemed foolish. I was on a level playing field, I felt. Perhaps now we could begin to talk?
Tutmosis is an angry spirit. As I was tuned into his feeling he was exuding rage . I asked why he was so angry and my eyes were directed to look at the passing human traffic trampling around the ancient monument. I guess many of us were transgressing on areas that old Tut considered were too holy for our un-pious persons. I understood – I had seen the same thing with other Spirits of Place in my own lands.
I made the angry pharaoh an offer – I would upload to him my stories of place and experience, and in return I asked if he had any gems of knowledge that I didn’t already know about. What he showed me made me think. He showed me the power of the serpent energy coming out of the forehead of the Pharaohs via a golden crown. The serpent acted like an antennae or focal point for energy coming into and going out of the ‘third-eye’ chakra.
Now I would need to do some reading and some experimentation to determine exactly what this means – whether it is symbolic or actual in effect?
In later reading I found out some important things about Tutmosis III. He was responsible for the building of the Hypostyle column room outside of which I had found his spirit of place. He was also responsible for the sixth and “seventh” pylons in the temple – the bits the included the small temple with the black granite altar! Wow – suddenly things were beginning to make sense, and the sense of dark magic that I had felt from him, and his antics, suddenly seemed quite consistent with the historical records.
This is the end of the events in Egypt. I was there for Beltane and managed to do some work at Dendara Temple, but that’s not blog-worthy. It’s time to move on to my experiences in Ireland.
In a previous post I talked about the recently discovered information concerning my staff. I had discovered that it had acquired some powers courtesy of the Elemental |Masters that I had encountered at Tinkinswood Chamber near Cardiff. After doing a tarot reading I discovered the nature of those powers. To recap those powers were:-
- Earth – the power to inscribe glyphs and symbols into the earth, and to cast circles.
- Water – the power to energise and invigorate existing energy
- Fire – the power to re-kindle energy where there is none, resurrection of energy
- Air – the power to sweep energy away, to cleanse a place of energy
- I decided that one fine evening, just before it got dark, I would use the fading light of a dry and relatively warm evening to find a place in which I could practise these powers and discover their extent, how they worked and how they might supplement any existing magickal skills I might already have as a practising druid.
To find a suitable place I dowsed for a direction and a distance. I got a north-easterly direction and somewhere within a five-mile radius. I knew what features were in that area – my local hill. I used the dowsing rods to confirm my feeling that a sandstone base was the best ground to test these powers out on. Indeed it was – a perfect mixture of crystalline texture and neutral base. I knew my local hill was at the end of a long sandstone ridge, and that somewhere on that hill would be a perfect place to test these powers out.
Did these powers that I imagined were in the staff really exist? How could they be used and called upon? How well would they work? Time to find out!
A note about this post
This was a difficult post to write, and not just because it is one of the longest I have ever written. It has also taken the longest time to publish! It is the final post in my Nottinghamshire tales [see also: The Hobgoblin of Creswell Crags and The Beech of Clumber Park] , and was the most unexpected of all of the encounters. I say “unexpected”. Perhaps “unbelievable” is more the word. You will see why soon. Some people I have spoken to about it said that I shouldn’t post this information – that it was “just for me” perhaps. I understand why they said this, and I think it was out of concern for me. I appreciate their concern. Rest assured that within this forum I have nothing to protect any longer – those barriers have been down for a while now!
Nevertheless, when good people offer you warnings it is sensible to pay attention. Therefore I have been pondering how to write this post for more than a week and have decided to relate it just as it happened because my subsequent dowsing corroborated the events of the day. That’s good enough for me. If I am being deceived then everything I do must be a lie. I will leave the decision to your good selves on this one. Undoubtedly there is a psychological explanation that might explain things more fully, but that is for someone else to contribute. Here is the story, in its fullness, and without any euphemistic terminology. It’s long. Prepare yourself!
The Wasted Land
As I made my way from Nottingham towards Sherwood Forest I began to see signs that I was entering the land of lore and legend. The number of references to Robin Hood was startling. Every other pub seemed to be called “The Robin Hood”. Every other sign was pointing to something relating to him. “Robin Hood Concrete”, “The Robin Hood Stables”, “Robin Hood’s Knackers Yard”. I slightly exaggerate, but not by much. The commercial potential of the figure is ‘well utilised” shall we say?
Yet, the landscape did not match my expectations. On either side of the straight roads around Sherwood are just clumps of woodland punctuating gently inclining fields of agricultural land that are devoid of hedges or other living boundaries. It was all a bit….open, and…dull! Where were the vast forests that once covered the whole of this county and beyond it? Were these tiny clumps of scattered trees the only remaining bits? Surely not? The farther I drove the more I realised that they were the only remaining survivors of a once mighty landscape. Now the landscape was denuded, dulled and deadened.
As I got closer to the legendary forest I felt an increasing sense of unease coupled with a sense of collective guilt. The sadness coming from the land mingled with the sense of loss I felt while driving through these claimed spaces was heart-breaking. I vowed to apologise for the greed and stupidity of my species first thing once I met some spirit of the trees. I knew instinctively that it would not be enough to make any kind of a difference, but it felt like a necessary first step to redemption.
Now I pulled into the car park at the forest. It felt exciting! A boyhood dream was about to be realised…