Humanity’s Death Wish

Humanity seems to have a death wish. Not a day goes by without reading someone’s idea that the world is about to end, Jesus is coming back, revelation is about to happen, the planets are all aligned and so on. Even some people that I respect in magical circles seem to be looking for some kind of end. Why?

We do not seem able to learn the most basic of lessons as a species. Throughout known history, people have looked to end times and seen signs and portents of doom all around them. It never happened and yet people keep on keeping on seeing signs and looking for signs of the end times. Sorry, I do not get it. Why? Don’t we ever learn?

These days, there are entire websites and FB groups on the topic of the end times. It comes in many flavors from WW3 and nuclear annihilation to a more gentle spread of some new consciousness that will raise the planet into a new dimension.  Again, I don’t get it.

Change is constant. Without change, the world would stagnate and it would indeed end but it doesn’t. It continues to change. Empires and nations rise and fall, the center of power moves geographically, culturally and socially, wars start and finish. The only thing that is constant about our world is change.

While people continually seek signs and portents of the end times, there are a few who would even work towards making it happen. That is dangerous. They work in Government or they work at a local level and we have seen the results of the mayhem these people can create – mass suicides, mass deaths, people giving their entire worldy possessions away and much more. The world is just a reflection of ourselves. Seeking the end times is like a death wish coming from our soul. It is a sickness and an obsession that originates in a lack of self-love and self-worth.

If you want to look for portents and signs, I will tell you where to look. Inside of your self. Take the time to meditate and look deep.  The changes that you look for in the external world have to happen inside of you first. This is why hearing people in the magical community jump on the end times are nigh bandwagon is so deeply disturbing. Surely, they should know this? Or maybe it is just me. Maybe I am the insane one here, that sees how change is constant and that I must look inwards and change me in order to change the world?

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What If?

In a recent interview, I found myself talking about the idea that if we give a thing our attention then it becomes real. In so many words, I was saying that we create our own reality through mental focus. You can, in fact, more or less prove this to yourself any time that you wish. Simply, think of something – something as bizarre as you wish – and give it your focus. For example, decide that today you will see a mouse dance. Keep on giving this thought your focus and attention throughout the day – keep looking for that dancing mouse. I guarantee that you will at some point during the day see a dancing mouse even if it is just a Disney cartoon on TV.

If you experiment like this for a while, you come to the conclusion that one of two things is going on;

1. You are actually creating reality using thought, or

2. By focusing your attention on something you are noticing it – it was always there, but you never registered it until the point that you gave it your focus.

Now, ask yourself this – is there actually any difference in the two statements above? We simply cannot know whether we created that reality of whether we simply started to notice something that was there anyway and, for us, it is essentially the same thing anyway.

In magical training, we are taught and we practice mental discipline and how to use our imaginative capacities. By learning to meditate for endless minutes with an empty mind or imagining that there is actually a matchbox on the table in front of you, we are actually training our mind to give attention to whatever we want to give our attention to. We may even use some tools to aid our imagination and mental focus in the form of ritual objects – we may even use a ritual to turn our attention onto something. There are many techniques but all are really down to one thing – focus or attention.

On my wall above my desk are two pen drawings. They are geometric shapes whose meaning is long lost to me. They are sigils. Whenever I look up I see the sigils and my subconscious mind focuses on whatever it was that the sigil means. Sigil magic is also about focus or attention but of the subconscious mind.

So, what if I could give something my proper focus and attention? After all, am I not simply a stream of consciousness and is it not the job of consciousness to focus attention? Faith can move mountains it is said. Faith is nothing but giving something attention and knowing that in doing so, whatever I wish will transpire.

So what if today, we gave some attention to our world. What if we all decided to focus our attention on the wonderful, the amazing, the miracle of life on Earth. What if we all sought out the good news and gave that our focus and attention?

Shall we try?

mountain

Lady

She gently brushes my graying face
With her sweet and airy breath
Her musky fragrance pervades
The hallowed space around me
I have plumbed her depths
And I have drank her deeply
Yet, still she is a mystery to me

anima

She gave me life and sustenance
She washed away my pain with her tears
Her embrace is like eternity
She is beneath me and above me
She is always all around me
I breathe in her fragrance deeply
I am hers utterly, completely

250px-Rosarium_Philosophorum_(1550)

Within me and without me
The divine waters ebb and flow
She is my soul. She is my Goddess
She is Life and she will be my death
She is the Grail that I have sought
She is the beginning and the end
She is this life that I have wrought

sheela

She gave me will to use or abuse
A gift from the Lady in the Lake
She waited patiently as I grew away
Wizened, she peeled away the years
And upon my return, I found an unspoiled maiden
Who took me back and lead me on
We danced together back to the one…
And eternity

home-world-tree-revised

Your Life is One Big Lie

One of the central themes of all my writings – even the My Haunted Life series – is the nature of reality and the role that we may play in dictating that. Over the last twenty or so years (if not my entire life really), I have read, meditated on, studied and discussed this topic and the process I have come to several conclusions. One of these is that I now believe that much of our world is an illusion.

It’s easy to draw analogies with movies like the Matrix here and I and others often do but what I mean is a lot of what we think we know isn’t real. It isn’t truth nor fact. I once said (and thought it was rather cute) –

The more I think on it the more I realize that certainty is an illusion. History was written by the winner, the news is provided with a spin and other people are opaque. We know nothing for certain. It used to be that the internet might provide information,but it too is now nothing but opinion and scare mongering. Nothing can be relied upon. We have to look inside ourselves for anything of value – anything that can be relied upon – but it too is colored by our ego and personalities.

So in the end, if the past is a colored view and the future a fancy, what do we have left?

Simply to live in the moment…..” (The Mystical Hexagram (Vasey & Vincent, 2012)).

Life is an enigma and I may never actually understand the answers but I do know this. Everything that we take to be true is probably not. Let me give a few examples;

1. History – history is written by the winner and it reflects a perception or view of what happened. There are alternative histories for everything and the sad thing is, they are all colored by the same issue.

2. Education – Education is partly about providing certain tools – reading, writing, critical thinking, analysis – but only in limited degree. The rest of education is essentially to ‘brainwash’ you with cultural normalities, cultural convention and to ensure you don’t actually challenge the system. Most people accept what they are told as the gospel truth and never for a minute stop to think critically or analytically about things. In this way, the illusion is maintained.

3. Religion – While all religions are probably based on wisdom and spiritual truth, they are all and without exception, subverted to match someone’s political or cultural agenda. They become the basis by which people can be manipulated and controlled.

4. On a more mundane level, the music or entertainment industry can be used to prove its all illusion too. Many singers can’t sing (they use computer software now to ensure perfect pitch), many musicians can’t actually play, many live performances are lip synched. It’s all a lie (It didn’t used to be). Actors and actresses public personas are creations and false often nothing like the reality. Show business is really all a show – an illusion – just like everything else in your life.

5. You are bombarded day in and day out with messages – some subliminal and others in your face – buy this, eat this its good for you, holiday here and so on. The marketing machine uses our ability to imagine and visualize – a rudimentary skill though it is in the  majority of us) and uses OUR magic making ability and equipment to have us make THEIR reality. Our magic has been hijacked!

I could go on and on but I won’t. Don’t ask me who the THEY might be. I have no idea and I am not a conspiracy theorist – that’s just another fantastical dead end. That there is a THEY – whether THEY actually know it or not, I am sure.

I also have concluded this. Given everything turns out to be illusion and that I cannot trust anything, then I must turn to the only thing I can rely on – me. Unfortunately, I have to first clear the Me of all the nonsense I have been conditioned with and am bombarded with daily. As Mark Stavish terms it – I must know my own mind. This is far from easy and may not be attainable at all but I can make progress towards it and, in doing so, I can take control of my life and my reality. I can be a true mage and imagine my thoughts into reality. Of course, I also live in other people’s realities too and I must learn how to interact with their parallel universes too.

You know, if the outer world we call life is an illusion while the inner world is real then surely, the Kingdom of heaven truly is within us and faith – well, it can move mountains.

jesus

 

I was Troubled. Now I am Astonished.

The other day I was participating in a discussion on Facebook. The theme of the topic was the supermarkets here in Brno and one person posted a very long tirade about empty shelves. I was amazed. Empty shelves? Where? When? This was such an opposite to my experience with Brno supermarkets that I responded rather too quickly. I said something like – you must live in a parallel universe…..

Of course, he took this as insulting, not knowing me. I think probably anyone would. But I actually meant it. It wasn’t an insult but an observational analysis that, as I grow older I more and more believe may be true. We all live in our own realities and we reflect back what we expect. It’s not quite that simple of course, but in a nutshell he sees the empty shelves of his own making and I see the full shelves of my making. It’s the glass half empty or half full thing isn’t it. Who would have thought I would be the half full person!?

You see people caught up in their self-constrained belief systems torturing themselves and those around them, whereas others live life full of expectation and optimism. You see people willingly being negative and walking around creating the little cloud above them. Of course, the Matrix is full of influencers and motivators that play on, feed, and drive these realities. The world is really more like that Star Trek episode where they land on a planet and are fed back what they expected, than it is like the Matrix.

It might be simple to manage if it were just me or you, but the real fun comes in how we interact and how our little realities impinge upon others. Your problems become mine and so on – if I let them. We create our own realities, but are influenced by the collective drivers (fear, sex, wealth, love, hate etc.) and, at the same time, interact with the realities of those around us. Surround yourself with happy people….. trust me. It’s the way to go.

How we create that reality is as much about our upbringing, cultural origins and so on – the collective we are a part of – as anything else. To see the world differently, we have to escape that collective for another and another and another, until suddenly it becomes clear…. I am having my creativity dictated to me. It is then that we look inwards for the truth. We get glimpses of that truth and what we see is truly shocking. Rather than purposeful, willful beings creating a meaningful reality, we are robots, slaves or sheep (pick your term) working to help others create their reality!

To get to this point, we have to go through some personal pain because we have to reject so many things that we once accepted, nay believed, to be the truth. Stripping away the chains of bondage and layers of control is painful both to us and to those around us; who just don’t get it and who see their comfortable reality threatened by ours. We end up alone, apart and isolated. But then we understand that we have to interact. We have to replace the collective drivers for everyone else as well as ourselves. The only way to do that is to interact, experience life, have compassion, be grateful and step forward in self-mastery. A very difficult if not impossible mandate.

Let him who seeks continue seeking until he finds. When he finds, he will become troubled. When he becomes troubled, he will be astonished, and he will rule over the All.”

“If those who lead you say to you, ‘See, the kingdom is in the sky,’ then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, ‘It is in the sea,’ then the fish will precede you. Rather, the kingdom is inside of you, and it is outside of you. When you come to know yourselves, then you will become known, and you will realize that it is you who are the sons of the living father. But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty and it is you who are that poverty.”

“Recognize what is in your sight, and that which is hidden from you will become plain to you . For there is nothing hidden which will not become manifest.”

His disciples questioned him and said to him, “Do you want us to fast? How shall we pray? Shall we give alms? What diet shall we observe?” Jesus said, “Do not tell lies, and do not do what you hate, for all things are plain in the sight of heaven. For nothing hidden will not become manifest, and nothing covered will remain without being uncovered.”

thomas

Gospel of Thomas source – The Gnostic Society Library

It’s Just the News

I try not to visit the major news sites except for sport. Why? To be honest, I think they have agendas and they report only bad news that is usually blown up out of all proportion. Their agenda seems to be to create fear. So I really don’t visit anymore as I said. Yesterday though and today, I did visit the BBC and CNN websites looking for news on the fall in the price of oil. I am, after all, an analyst in the commodities space. I have hated the BBC website for some time but now CNN has done a similar redesign – its awful!

Both news sites are now all big color pictures with lurid headlines and short reports. I see this as a part of the same trend to be honest. They no longer (and actually haven’t for some time) offer in-depth news reports from an unbiased standpoint allowing the reader to draw their own conclusions. Now, it’s a lurid photo, sensational headline and two paragraphs of the most biased, on-sided material that appears to be written for an 8-year old’s consumption. I can only think that with print newspapers not selling well anymore, these ‘news’ outlets have hired a whole bunch of Sun reporters with unsurprising results.

I yearn for the days when news was actually news. The BBC is on a crusade around global warming and so every day they have some shallow and sad story pushing this agenda. Pathetic stories most of them too. Fear and control. Take a look at Russia Today to see how propaganda works and then look at the BBC and CNN – similar? Yes, they are.

I have been reading a lot of Mark Stavish’s emails recently in which he discusses the similarities between magic and marketing. It is easy to descend to being potentially a crazy voice in the wilderness on this topic I know, but it is difficult to believe that the people who run this world aren’t a bunch of seriously black magicians. Take that with a pinch of salt (thrown over the shoulder) but these media outlets all use a number of common magical techniques to control how we create reality.

Mind control techniques are used in marketing. It sounds ominous and strange but it is actually true. We are bombarded with subliminal messaging all day long every day. These messages and the environment that we put ourselves into help shape the way that we see the world. By seeing the world in a certain way and thinking/believing certain things we create that reality. It’s a circle of control. To break out of this circuit, we must find time for silence, prayer, meditation and contemplation. We have to dig out our true selves again and listen to the only real voice – that quiet inner voice.

I know I may sound like a crackpot. I don’t mean to. Having studied magic for many years now however, I am certain that this whole reality in which we all live is actually manipulable and controllable via will. Of course I do. That is Magic. I am equally certain that others know this too.

We can’t avoid this bombardment and there are times, like today, I will visit the BBC site. I know however, not to accept what is written there nor to be afraid. Quite the reverse. I just protect myself more than I used to and ensure that I take some time everyday to reflect on things and be grateful for being.

mind

A Journey to the End of the world

I remember one day deciding with a friend that we would explore the very edge of our world. We jumped on our bicycles and set off resolutely in that general direction. After about 15-minutes, we had already entered an entirely new world about which we knew only rumor. Here, there were supposed to be roaming gangs that if they caught you, would carry you off to their secret lairs in the ‘blackgang’. We felt, well, very brave to have gone so far and to be in someone else’s territory.

Parking our bikes by the side of the street, we entered some gardens discovering a veritable paradise of willow trees and grass surrounding a small private pond. It was magical and it was someone else’s secret garden as we had hauled ourselves over a 6 foot brick wall to get there. To me, this was a secret and deeply mystical world. The grass and the drooping willows gently moving in the breeze stirred my imaginative juices and I recall sitting there savoring the atmosphere.

Of course, we were afraid that whatever Giant owned this garden, they would be miffed to find us trespassing there, so we shortly left taking one last long look back over our shoulders, hopping back on bikes and cycling down the street home just as fast as we could. We half expected to hear the thump of feet as we were chased down the street. We half expected to meet the members of ‘blackgang’ on the trek back. Of course, we arrived home safely and enjoyed a sandwich and fizzy drink in front of the TV.

I recall this expedition with clarity. I recall the feelings and emotions. I recall the secret garden at the end of the world. It was magical day in a magical childhood.

Not so long ago, I had an opportunity to go back to my childhood house in Westlands Rd., Hull. A quick stroll up the street, one block essentially, and I found that ‘blackgang’ was now a sprawling housing estate rather than the square of bomb damaged wasteland it was when I was growing up. Another block and I found a block of flats and peering over the brick wall, I was surprised to find the magical garden. It was much smaller than I recalled and there was just one willow tree there and  a small muddy green pond unkempt and overgrown.

Imagination is an incredible thing. Far better than the reality we surround ourselves with. On the other hand, perhaps that reality is created through our imagination? In which case, we simply need to imagine better just like I did as a boy. Just like we all did when we were kids.

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