Push, pull, and flow in magic

In my magical practice, I’ve lately been taking an approach that has incorporated elements of flow, push and pull in magic. Some of this has come about because of my continual work with Taoist moving meditation, and some of it has come about because of my shift toward experiential perspectives that have my embracing a sensual awareness of my spiritual work over a conceptual one.

In a sense, what my magical practice has been shifting toward is a harmonious model of alignment with the universe that works with the universe as opposed to trying to force a desired change on the universe. With all that in mind, I think its useful to define key terms in this approach so that what I’m doing can be more readily worked with and appreciated.

Elemental Balancing Ritual Creativity Month 7

4-23-2019 I’ve been starting to do some work with the sphere of art around going deeper into my creativity, and into exploring how I can use such a state to inspire my creativity. I’ve also been exploring what it’ll take to be successful as a writer, mapping out what my routine ought to look like as well as what to attend to business wise. The true success of any creative is the choice is to be a business owner as well as a creative.

4-27-2019 One of the decisions I’ve made around my writing is that once a year i’m going to re-read the books on book marketing and sales. Being a successful writer isn’t just writing, but learning all the skills around it and what I’ve noticed is that reading and implementing what’s in those books has helped me improve my book marketing skills. So this time around I’ve made a couple of changes and I’m glad I have, because I think it’ll make a significant difference in what I’m doing and how I’m reaching out to people.

How to deal with the dry periods of magical activity

The other day, in Facebook, I commented on a post where the writer was asking what people thought about having periods of time where their magical practice wasn’t very intense or magical. In fact it was just them doing the work and not necessarily seeing anything from it. My response is that its perfectly normal to have experiences like that in your magical work. In fact, when you have such experiences that’s usually when the magic is working in the background, preparing you for more intense spiritual work.

I do a daily magical practice and I can tell you that more often than not my daily practice isn’t all that sensationalistic. I do my meditation and magical work and nothing intense or magical overtly happens at the time, most of the time. Usually those experiences happen later and occur as a result of doing the daily work at a steady pace. What I’m really doing is seeding the garden of my mind with my daily work, preparing the way for the magical work to come through my life…this is especially the case with long term workings, which is what most of my magical work is.

The Spiritual and Practical Ecology of Offerings

In The Spell of the Sensuous, the author shares that when he was visiting Indonesia and learning from some of the Shamans there, he would observe that people would leave offerings outside of their house for the spirits. One day, curious as to what happened with the offerings, the author followed someone, saw them give the offering and then he waited a while. Then he walked over and he saw that ants were carrying off the offerings.

What the author came to realize is that making the offerings had a spiritual impact, but also an ecological one. The ants didn’t show up in the homes where offerings were being made, because the offerings were set far enough away that the ants could get the food and go on their respective way.

Archangels, mediation and cosmology

Over the last year or so I’ve been doing a lot of work with R.J. Stewart’s Sphere of Art ritual. With the Sphere of Art you create a sphere by working with the four elemental archangels. I’ve modified the SOA working to include three additional archangels, one for the underworld, one for the cosmos, and one to tie it altogether. This modification hasn’t been done lightly, but rather has occurred as a result of a careful reading of both the Sphere of Art and works by William G. Gray who references the other three archangels extensively.

Why spirits work with us

I’ve lately been pondering the question of why spirits work with us, prompted in part by reading a book where the author claims that angels have no choice but to do what we ask them to do. I don’t agree with that perspective and my experiences with Angels, and for that matter other spirits, doesn’t fall in line this approach. It also seems pretty thankless for any spirit to work us because they have to. But I recognize as well that I’m making a human assumption about the motivation of beings that is likely not accurate.

Elemental Balancing Ritual Creativity Month 6

3-24-2019 I had a realization today about my passive aggressive behavior. When I am passive aggressive its because I’m in a situation where I don’t feel like I’m in control. The passive aggression is a way to try and get that control back or undermine it for the other person. When I trace this behavior to its origins, I find it goes back to my childhood because I wasn’t allowed to express my feelings of anger or anything else along those lines without getting punished.

Having this realization is helping me look at situations where I don’t feel like I have control and helping me see how that behavior is coming out. And its helping me realize I do have a choice. I can choose how I express my feelings. I can choose to be passive aggressive or I can choose to be direct, even in situations where I may not feel I have control.

How to draw on multiple sources of energy for your magical workings

One of the questions that recently came up in the magical experiments Facebook Group was if its possible to draw on multiple sources of energy, instead of using your own for magical workings. The short, flippant answer is yes, but I want to share in detail what this really looks like, because this is an approach to magic that I specialize in.

In my approach to magical workings, one of the questions I ask myself is how best to fuel my magical workings. I’ve rarely taken the approach of using my own energy, because a person’s energy is limited ultimately, and I’d rather focus that energy on my health and well-being. So when I consider the fuel for the magical working, what I look is how the magical working can be tied into existing efforts and actions already being taken. The reason is because those actions and efforts involve some energy, so why not harness what you’re doing and turn it into metaphysical fuel as well.

How I evaluate my magical workings

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about results and magic and how a person goes about evaluating magical work. The obvious answer is that you look at whether or not you’ve gotten the result, and certainly that is helpful, but what I’ve been realizing about results is that too often we stop short at the result itself and fail to examine the ramifications and consequences of achieving or not achieving the result. The focus is just on the result itself, but not what comes after.

I’ve observed before that one of the tendencies I see in magical workings is a tendency to treat the desired result as the end itself. What’s problematic about that approach is that the result rarely is the itself. Instead the result is typically something just another means to the actual end, but we’ve ignored the actual end to focus on the result, because on the surface the achievement of the result seems to resolve the problem. I got the result and the problem is solved…but is it?

The Place of Ecstasy in Magic

I was recently reading Stealing Fire, which is a book that explores states of ecstasy and how people are harnessing those states deliberately. If I have one complaint about the book its that they never really touch on ecstasy shows up in magical practices, but it got me to thinking about the place of ecstasy in magic and why ecstatic states of being are so important to magical work.

I’d argue that any altered state of consciousness can be lumped under ecstasy of some sort because what seems to be a defining characteristic of ecstasy is an the experience of altered consciousness. And ecstasy of some type seems to be essential to magical practices, because what ecstasy necessarily provides us is the suspension of the everyday conscious mind with its attendant disbelief. I think of an ecstatic state as a state where your perception of possibilities and reality is intertwined, where your awareness of past, present and future combines to create a singular moment where you are, and you can connect a desired possibility and provide it a path toward manifestation. An ecstatic state of consciousness is a state of flow.

Elemental Balancing Ritual Creativity Month 5

2-22-2019 I finished reading The Courage to be Disliked Today. I found it really insightful because it talked about work and about the intrinsic reward of contributing to your community, regardless of whether you are recognized or not. What the authors shared resonates with me deeply, because as I’ve continued to shift away from seeking recognition to doing the work, I’ve felt a deeper connection to my community and a deeper satisfaction about the work I am doing with that community. Doing the work and being in the moment is what matters. Anything else is a distraction. Realizing that has helped me shift my awareness around creativity, my work, and my sense of self-worth in a positive direction.

2-23-2019 Even if with all the work I’ve done around recognition and realizing that being recognized isn’t necessarily as good for me as I’d have thought at one time, there are still moments where it hits me hard that I’m in the background now. When I see a local event happen, with presenters, and no one’s asked me to present, it hits hard. I felt that way today and at one time it would’ve hit much harder, but for the moment I just feel a sense of loss because I realize I’m not being asked to present, and I likely won’t ever be again. Yet I am finding my way around that. I am connecting to my community, having dialogue with the people that need my work and contributing something. Have I really lost anything if I can continue to contribute and make a difference? I think the answer is I haven’t. Yes, may never present at conferences again because I chose to speak up about problems I saw, but I am still connecting with my community, still writing, still making videos, still doing something. That won’t ever stop. So I acknowledge this desire to be recognized and I let it go. I don’t have to be out there. I simply need to do my work and let it speak and find the people that need it.

An example of how Retroactive Magic works

I thought I would share a practical example of how retroactive magic works. This example pertains to the recent move I made at the end of 2018. In 2018 my family and I lived in a duplex. I had lived there for a decade and most of the time it was a pleasant living experience, but we had new neighbors move in in 2018 and they were the kind of neighbors who were loud and unpleasant to be around, and seemed to lack any awareness of how their actions were impacting our sleep or overall quality of life.

The question I had to consider was what could be done. On the one hand, I liked living in the place and had a lot of good memories. On the other hand, my land lord was powerless to do anything, even when issues were pointed out that demonstrated that the neighbors weren’t honoring the agreement of their lease. The laws around evictions favor the tenants even in cases where its clear the tenants are not honoring the agreement that’s been made. When it became clear the neighbors weren’t going to be evicted I began to consider what else I could about this situation.

Book Reviews Jan through March 2019

Book Review: The Poetics of Space by Gaston Bachelard

This is a whimsical book which explores the poetics of space, of the home, and the environment. It asks you to redefine your awareness of spaces you take for granted and provides appreciation and perspective about what space is really about. What I liked is how the author combined poetry, philosophy and design to create this treatise and its one I'll return to from time to time to help me appreciate my own space anew.

Book Review: Processmind by Arnold Mindell

In this book the author explores how to connect with the environment through meditation and internal work. This is a fascinating book which examines not only how we relate to the human body, but also to the environment through our body, both natural and manmade. It provides some useful exercises that can help you implement the practices described in the book. Worth reading if you want to develop a deeper connection with reality.

Book Review: The Courage to be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga

This is a must read book which will transform your relationship with yourself and your community. This book has helped me examine my relationship with myself as a writer and artist, but also as a person and the lessons its provided me have helped me become more confident and focused on doing the work instead of worrying about things I can’t control. It’s a relatively quick read with a socratic dialogue, but take some time to ponder and meditate on what is shared.

Book Review: Zero to One by Peter Thiel with Blake Masters

This is a fascinating, must read book on startups that applies to any business. The principles in this book will help you start a business or change an existing one. Most importantly what this book teaches you is how to focus on making your business successful, without falling into the trap of competition. Instead you learn why its important to do your own thing well and with a plan.

Book Review: Stealing Fire by Steven Kotler and Jamie Wheal

This is a fascinating overview of the ways people are exploring ecstatic practices in modern times. I don’t feel its comprehensive as there’s areas the authors haven’t explored but its a good book, which can give you some food for thought about how altered states of consciousness can be applied to your life to increase your innovativeness and productivity. What it also reveals is the importance of altered states of consciousness for helping us achieve breakthroughs.

Book Review: White Moon on the Mountain Peak by Damo Mitchell

This is an excellent book which explores the alchemical firing process of Nei Gong and how it works. It’s not a book for beginners, and it requires that you already have some experiences with Taoist meditation practices. I read this book and clearly understood some of it, and some of it I realized I needed to go back and get some more experience. The author does present the information clearly, but its important that you have the requisite experience to fully implement and comprehend this book.

How learning Guitar is teaching me about sound and time magic

This past Christmas I received a guitar as a gift, along with online lessons for learning guitar. I had expressed an interest in someday learning the guitar, and my partner decided that it might make a good gift. And she was right! It has been a wonderful gift and opportunity to learn guitar and a gentle reminder to turn someday into something concrete.

I am slowly but surely getting better at playing guitar. I’m finding that what helps me get better is more than just the practice itself (though that definitely helps!); It is the choice to employ the mansion of memory technique which helps me remember what strings to pluck and what frets to touch while I play, as well as working my muscle memory into the playing so that I teach my hands how to get comfortable with the guitar. That, in and of itself, has been a novel experiment in terms of exercising the natural capacities of the body to myself learn something new.

Inner Alchemy of Life is now available

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Inner Alchemy of Life is a guide to the life within your body and teaches you how to spiritually connect and work with that life. Taylor Ellwood shares the practical magic techniques he developed for bio-hacking your body and working with neurotransmitters and microbial life of the body as spiritual allies that can help you enhance your health and overall quality of life.In this book you'll learn real magic techniques including:

  • How to create your own alphabet of desire to work with the spirits of the body.

  • How to use meditation to change the biochemistry of your body.

  • How to improve your body's health by working with the spirits of the body.

  • How to make life style changes using neurotransmitters.

Inner Alchemy of Life allows you to access the sacred mysteries of your body and develop a conscious and alchemical relationship with the life that exists within you and makes your own life possible. Transform your connection with your body with the Inner Alchemy of Life.

The Pop Culture Magic System of Kingdom Hearts

I’m currently playing Kingdom Hearts 3, which just came out, and when I play this series I always end up learning more about the pop culture and it gets me thinking about how it can be adapted to a pop culture magic system. What fascinates me about Kingdom Hearts is that it’s an amalgamation of Disney mythology, classical mythology, and the mythology of Kingdom Hearts itself. The series manages to make all of this work together and ends up creating an interesting cosmos that can be worked with. In my previous post, I shared a bit about why I might work with it, but in this post I want to break Kingdom Hearts down and explore the overall system in terms of what can be done with it.

Elemental Balancing Ritual Creativity Month 4

1-22-2019 Last night I started working with the Affinities. This work felt like I was supercharging myself and the elevations and adding further correspondences that would help me go deeper if I’m doing work with the Tree of Life or even as a way of drawing on those specific resources for ritual work. In a very real sense it feels like what I’m creating are batteries I can draw on when needed, but also guides that can help me take my spiritual work further.

1-24-2019 I’ve been continuing to work with the affinities and what I notice is that they do seem to supercharge the elevation even further while also creating a resonance effect within me, tuning the internal elevation further. I’m not sure what the end process will be but I do feel a stronger connection to the Archangels as well as to the elements, cosmos and underworld, so I’m willing to keep working at it and seeing where it takes me.

How to pick your pop culture for pop culture magic

I’ve recently started playing a game called in Inquisitor-Martyr, set in the Warhammer 40k universe, which a is a dystopic universe where humanity has access to advanced technology, but also a medieval mindset about technology. At the same time, humanity is beset by various alien menaces and the forces of chaos. I enjoy the game, but I would never create a pop culture magic working or system based off the Warhammer universe.

In this article, I want to share some thoughts on how to pick your pop culture for pop culture magic and also demonstrate why a viable option for pop culture magic may not be ideal, for other reasons. At the same time I’m going to compare and contrast the 40k universe with that of Kingdom Hearts (for purposes of pop culture magic), which is on the opposite end of the spectrum when it comes to pop culture based off fantasy.

How Marrow Breathing, Neurotransmitters and Qi gong healed my ribs

On New Years Eve I fell in my shower, and I ended up bruising my ribs. I fortunately didn’t break or fracture them, but even bruising them was painful and for the first couple of weeks it hurt to pretty much do anything. It typically can take up to 6 weeks for bruised ribs to heal and I knew as a result that I was going to have to take a break from my usual exercise routines and just focus on letting my body heal. But I also figured there was no reason I couldn’t also help my body with that process of healing.