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Thoughts on Cultural and Spiritual Appropriation
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
High Magick Demystified
Article ID: 13160
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 2,750
Times Read: 7,204
RSS Views: 55,292
Author: Panisch Lockelear
Posted: February 15th. 2009
Times Viewed: 7,204
The first thing many Neo-pagans think of when the words High Magick are conjured up is a painstaking order of rules and rotes that are strictly adhered to or a plan of Magick that far out-reaches the realm of Kitchen Witchery and solitary Folk Magick and spells we all dispense on a daily basis. As I have followed my path into the Magickal arts, I have learned that high Magick does not have to be something only sought after by the wicked smart or those who have years and years of sacred study of the Hermetic order under their belts. High Magick is for everyone. All who seek to apply themselves, that is.
The first thing to understand is a few important rules. The first is that you are seeking to allow Magick to conform to your own will. In 1850, Eliphas Levi stressed the importance of the practitioner’s will. Your will is very important. Aleister Crowley said that every intentional act is a Magickal act. A concept that may be lost on some of us today, but one that rings true when dealing with High Magick.
The second rule is that High Magick is formal. By formal, I mean casting circles, Calling quarters, evocations and invocations (found in a lot of Ceremonial Magick) .
The third rule is that unlike mundane Folk Magick that seeks to protect, bless, curse or obtain possessions, High Magick is done to achieve a mystical religious happening or experience. An experience such that the practitioner is united with divinity, or Deity.
Lastly, we must know that pioneer psychologists Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud's studies and the theories of their students confirmed that our subconscious minds do influence the outcome of events in the physical world. This is something that occultists and practitioners of the Magickal Arts have known from ages past.
So, going into your High Magick study, keep this firmly in mind:
* Seek to have Magick conform to your will and that every intentional act is a Magickal act.
* High Magick is formal in nature.
* High Magick achieves a mystical religious experience uniting us with the Divine.
* Our subconscious mind influences the outcome of physical world.
It has long been held that while in the midst of preparing to venture into the High Magickal realm, the practitioner needs very specific tools and supplies. It has long been held that in the day of Crowley, when the High Magickal working called for specific crystals, tools, parts of wild animals, or herbs harvested at a specific lunar phase, these items must not be substituted or strayed from.
I have come to understand that these specialized supplies are very important to be kept intact as they are, only if you really believe them to be. As with most Magickal rotes, spells, and workings these things are mind triggers. They aid us in defining our will and they can also act to concentrate our will, to be sent into the cosmos to tip the scales to our workings. However, most neo-pagans live in rural areas where these things are almost impossible to come by.
It is important to know, here, that I shall not take a side on the stance of the traditionalist or to the notion that these supplies can be changed to suit the practitioner. In my thinking it only matters if you believe it does. Mind triggers are funny that way. For the sake of this article and de-mystifying High Magick, I choose to lean on the thought that the exact duplication of the supplies is not essential and that if the supplies you substitute are justified in your own mind as an equal mind trigger, the substitution will suffice. Magick comes from within, ever mindful of how it comes from within.
Now, moving on, to a path. This is where I lose most traditionalists, but here goes anyway. You may choose to follow a specific High Magickal path, the Jewish Kabala, Alchemy, Hermetic Arts or the Enochian Magick among others. However to do so will commit you to years and years of study and practice.
I tend to believe that Magick must evolve. The old rotes and ways are to be respected and revered. However, exploration of new ways and keeping with our social and psychological evolution throughout the centuries carries weight. Imagine us today trying to put a man on the moon with the technology and thinking of the 1800's. Although this thinking is logical and valuable, it allows for only so much success.
High Magick in today’s terms is less about ancient rotes, spells, and invocations, and more about specifics. In ancient times, Ceremonial Magick was only for the rich who could afford the supplies and had the time and space for the elaborate altars, crystals, distillation equipment for alchemy, and expensive metals and herbs. Some elaborate things still can be used and can be useful however, to achieve High Magick you only need to apply the rules above, but do so with specifics. In other words plan the spell or working while in a specific lunar phase, at a specific lunar hour.
Plan the workings around a specific astrological event that is powerfully lending to the specifics of that working. Curb and choose all your mind triggers to the workings in a very deliberate manner. Colors, Magickal properties, planetary phases, and planetary hours should all play an intricate part in planning and performing your High Magickal Working. This is all there is to it.
Of course calling and using Divine archetypes that best suit your Magickal workings is also essential. Keep fully in mind that this working is a uniting mystical experience with The Divine.
I think it important in our walk as wise ones, that we challenge ourselves. Old traditional thinking and fail-safes, meant to dissuade us from the higher Magickal arts is nothing more than a stumbling block in our own personal Magickal paths. This is not something we should allow to sway us away from learning higher arts. Of course, the application of wisdom with knowledge and study is essential. However, study alone, without practice, is stagnating and of little use.
Imagine where we would be if such Elders as Gerald Gardner simply was content with the "study" of Magick and witchcraft. It was he who said, “Let’s do this and practice this.” That set him apart from those around him in the 1950's. We must evolve as a people of the Magickal Arts. We must keep journals of our findings and success and our failure as well.
It is the bold who gain audience of the Gods.
Location: houston, Texas
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