Another interesting post from Mike on the word concepts. The more I read about his system, the more I understand it both in terms of entity work and in terms of using language for magical purposes. He explains the following with concepts:
Communication is actually about concepts, not words. You wouldn’t have a problem sending the concept of “computer” to a modern Frenchman, but it would be incredibly difficult to send it to someone from the 1700s.
I think that’s an accurate description of communication, as well as the limitations of communication, which is probably why I remove the Ethereal Software (What I’d describe as entities) out of the equation for the majority of my workings. I create entities on occasion and the process that Mike describes for ethereal software is similar enough that I’d call it entity work. He’ll likely disagree, which is fine, but that’s my interpretation of his concepts based on his descriptions of the processes he uses to work with ethereal software. And when I create an entity I program it. I define it both in terms of concept and words used to describe the content and when I need to fine tune the entity its usually for the same reason: It didn’t get the concept and the language used to convey the concept was imprecise. Further programming and fine tuning is needed to make it perform up to specs. Or as I like to put it, a more specialized definition is needed in order to insure an accurate understanding of the task that needs to be performed.
In general, people use language to convey concepts to each other. Sometimes ala William S. Burroughs cutup technique they use language to disrupt or attack concepts, while creating new concepts. Language is a useful tool for magical work because it provides a structure of limitation that can be used to sharply define and explore concepts, and then re-present them to the magician and/or entity (ethereal software). You even see this utilized with sigils, which start out as words (in some techniques) and end up as symbols that nonetheless embody a concept. And you see it with symbols that aren’t sigils but nonetheless are used to convey a concept.
Concepts are constructs. They present an initial framework that is used to convey the experience of the concept. Words define concepts, give form to the frame, ground it in ink and white space and verbalized sound waves. Manifestation takes words and turns them into actions performed to achieve outcomes. Outcomes turn into experiences and then concepts…the whole cycle starts again.
When I don’t work with entities, when I do a magical working directly the experience is different. The conveyance of the concept is to the magic itself. It’s a direct experience, no mediator required. Maybe the magic, in Mike’s system is the meta ethereal software, the force that channels all the other forces. In my system, and in the various methodologies I’ve developed over the years, magic is reaching in and pulling out the possibilities and melding them with reality, melding them with my reality. So when I do a magical working and I’m not using language or entities, but instead I am using movement or meditation or some other process less overt when it comes to communication the focus is on embodying the concept, making it a part of me, of reality as it is mediated and experienced through me. Actually even my approach to word magic is really about embodiment. No doubt a result of Burroughs influence, because the cutup method is really about disrupting the message while imprinting your message into the body of the word so that the word embodies your concept. The embodied experience of being as opposed to doing…doing is an echo of being, a way to move through the motions, but not really letting the motions move you to the space you want to reach. When you become the motions, embody them, you let them move you to the conceptual space and time you want to occupy. You become that space and time and in doing so you allow yourself to fully be present with a manifested result that is as much an extension of you as it is an effect on the environment around you.