Elemental Balancing Ritual Stability Month 1

10-22-2017 On Friday I switched from Stillness to Stability, from working with Zadok to working with Elephant. One of the reasons I chose Stability is because I feel a need for grounding. One might think with Stillness that I'd already be grounded, but Stillness isn't about that. And to move forward from Stillness requires a measured approach.

When I connected with Stability, I felt Elephant step in and communicating with Elephant is quite interesting because part of the communication process is done through vibration and the paths of memory. So today for example Elephant on a journey of memory and used vibration to steer the course.  

A couple of book reviews

Book Review: Tao of Letting Go: Meditation for Modern Living by B. K. Frantzis

In this book, the author introduces readers to the Taoist water Breathing meditation. This book is similar to his other book Relaxing into Your Being. If anything it's a bit more stripped down and focuses on the basics, but its a god book to start with and I'd recommend it because the author takes the time to explore how to apply this technique to internal work and emotional blockages that's a bit more grounded than his other books on the same topic. I found it useful for revisiting what I'd previously learned and it will also be helpful for anyone who wants to learn meditation. 

Book Review: An Outlook on our Inner Western Way by William G. Gray

This is a book I will read again and again and each time I know I will discover insights and perspectives that will blow my mind. Reading it the first time, what struck me the most is how concisely and clearly Gray predicted modern society and the place of magic in society. And he does something so rare for frankly any magician to do and its that he advocates for experimentation. Actually that's one of the reasons I love all his books. And this one is no exception, with amazing insights that will challenge what you know about magic and push you to experiment.

How Pop Culture Magic works: A guide in theory and practice

If there's one perception about pop culture magic that stands out to me as being inaccurate, its the idea that people practicing pop culture magic are winging it. It's as if people think that pop culture magic is an undisciplined approach to magic that's really about wish fulfillment as opposed to a genuine magical practice.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

When I started practicing pop culture magic, I knew that in order to make it work, I needed to draw on my previous experiences with magic. In fact, I wouldn't recommend pop culture magic to someone who didn't have at least a couple of years experience with magic under their belt, because you need that experience to make sure that what you're doing actually works and isn't wish fulfillment on your part.

How I became a Practical Magic Minimalist...

At one time, whenever I would do a practical magic working, I had to break out the bling...

You know the fancy tools, the smelly incense and candles, and all the other stuff we're told we need to have in order to do practical magic (and other types of magic for that matter). 

And don't get me wrong, those fancy tools, incenses, and candles could be a lot of fun to use. They can really set the tone of a ritual, create an atmosphere and experience that whisks you from mundane reality and opens you to the sacred mysteries of the universe.

But as I continued doing practical magic, I began to wonder if there was an easier, better way of doing practical magic, without all the bling and other stuff.

And as it turned out, there was.

How to use meditation for internal work and magic

When most people think about meditation, the first idea that comes to mind is a person trying their best to empty their mind of any thought. And no surprise here, but the idea of doing that successfully can actually be intimidating.

But while emptying your mind can be part of what meditation is about, its not the entirety of it. Sometimes its not even the purpose of the meditation. 

I've had people tell me over the years that they can't meditate, but I'd argue that any person can meditate. However there isn't a one size fits all approach to meditation.

How Magic Works: A guide in theory and practice

If there's one problem that stands out to me about how Magic is taught or explained, its that people rarely take the time to really explore how magic works.

Yet's what really worse is the lack of curiosity in exploring how magic works. Instead we're told, "Don't worry about how or why magic works. Just do it." 

What frustrating advice!

How can you just do magic, if you don't understand what you're doing or why you're doing it? What's being taught is basically push button magic. You push the button and you hope something happens.

That's not an effective way to practice magic and it doesn't empower anyone when they are told to just do something. Additionally, it makes it very hard to personalize magic or experiment with it. 

4 Reasons you aren't getting the results you want

One of the frequent issues I notice magicians experience is they don't always get the results they want, or they get the results, but then the results slip through their fingers. So they went to all that effort to get that result, and yet it hasn't worked out. It's enough to make a person really doubt whether or not magic works.

Yet, so many people do practice magic and do get results, so surely it works. The question is, "Why aren't you getting the results you're shooting for?" And in this article I'm going to share 4 reasons you may not be getting the results you want as well as what actions you can take to remedy that issue.

Magical Experiments Podcast August and September 2017

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Magical Experiments Podcast: Traveling to Sacred spaces with Vyvianne Armstrong

Magical Experiments Podcast: The Magic of Melusine with Annwyn Avalon

Magical Experiments Podcast: Home Herbalism with Victoria Pike

Magical Experiments Podcast: Pop Culture Magic systems with Terra Akhert

Magical Experiments Podcast: The Pop Culture Magic of Digimon with Eryk Adash

Magical Experiments Podcast: Pop Culture Magic Systems 2 with Wild Healer and Coleen Chitty

Magical Experiments Podcast: Opening the Doors to Psychic Perception with Ivo Dominguez Jr

Book Review: The Arch of Heaven by R. J. Stewart

In the Arch of Heaven, the author shares a prayer/working that he has used to deal with lingering ghosts. He then explains the origin of the working and offers some insights on spirits, death, and related topics. It's a short, focused book on a specific type of magical working, within the magical tradition that the author is part of. People in that tradition or in the Avalonian current will find this book valuable. For other practitioners it does provide some useful gems on working with inner contacts and some insights into the tradition the author is part of. I found the material useful and accessible and would recommend it to anyone.

Book Review: Daring Greatly by Brene Brown

In Daring Greatly the author explores what it means to be vulnerable and how being vulnerable can help you become a wiser and stronger person. As I read this book and applied it to my life, I found that I had deeper, more intimate conversations and connections and that I was able to create a space for myself that truly helped me embrace who I am. I highly recommend this book for internal work and meditation.

Book Review: Keys to Perception by Ivo Dominguez Jr

In this book the author shares the keys to perception and walks readers through a variety of exercises he's developed that can be used to cultivate psychic abilities. What I think stands out to me about this book is how the author manages to make the book relateable to people regardless of what their spiritual background is. So while Pagans and magicians will get a lot from this book, so will anyone else who has psychic abilities or simply wants to learn more about them. The exercises are well developed and described and its clear the author has done the work, but he also makes a point to describe the mechanics of the workings, which is helpful if people want to experiment with it.

Why a spirit won't solve your problems

Every week I get a message on Facebook or through email where someone asks me if I'll teach them how to summon whatever Goetic demon is the flavor of the week in the occult community (though usually it's Bune).

And there's a common theme in these requests, which boils down to this:

"I want to summon the spirit and get it to solve all my problems for me and remake my life."

In other words, I want something else to do the hard work for me because I don't like my life or situation and I want to cut corners (I mean isn't that what magic's for?)
 

How is Magic Different from the Law of Attraction?

The other day, a student of mine asked me, "Taylor, what's the difference was between magic and the law of attraction? Why should I practice magic if I can just use the law of attraction in my life?"

It was a good and fair question to ask. Why should someone practice magic, which seems like a lot of work, when they can just adhere to the law of attraction and use that for their life.

Elemental Balancing Ritual Stillness month 34

7-23-17 Sometimes I like to put myself into spaces unconventionally in order to think, but also to meditate. There's something quite mesmerizing about staring at the blades of a fan and letting your mind wander through the fields of probability, while lying on the floor contemplating your upcoming week.

And I feel really vulnerable and open right now. This last month was hard but good because it forced me to hit some hard places and shatter some illusions. Being open as a result has helped me got some help and direction.

July and August Magical Experiments Podcast Episodes

Magical Experiments
Magical Experiments

Did you miss an episode of the magical experiments podcast in July and August? Listen to them.

Magical Experiments podcast: Performance Art and Magic with Hannah Haddix

Magical Experiments podcast: Victor Anderson: an American Shaman with Cornelia Benavidez

Magical Experiments podcast: The Masks of Lucifer with Asenath Mason and Bill Duvendack

Magical Experiments podcast: The pop culture magic of Star Wars with Leni Hester

Magical Experiments podcast:Practical Sales Magic with Dubious Monk

Magical Experiments podcast: The pop culture magic of Zelda with Cloud Jetters

Book Review: The Hidden Adept and the Inward Vision by R. J. Stewart

This is the fascinating story of A. R. Heaver, a little known practitioner of magic and his work with Stillness as well as the western mystery traditions. It's more of a biography and history book than anything else, but there are some interesting esoteric gems in the book and if you have an interest in the Glastonbury well, then this book will have some pertinent history that's worth learning. I do wish the author the author had included some of his own interactions with A. R. Heaver in the book. He only gives a passing mention to them. That said, I've found reading and meditating on some of the material of the book to be helpful with my own meditations on stillness.

Elemental Balancing Ritual Stillness Month 33

6-26-17 I'm reading Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. She talks about the relationship we have with being vulnerable and what do we associate with vulnerability. Until I started doing my stillness work, I'd say my association with vulnerability was that being vulnerable was being weak. But with stillness, I've opened myself to being vulnerable and found that its actually helped me become a better person. When I am vulnerable I can open up and share. Stillness has taught me to become more comfortable with being vulnerable and to become better at expressing it.

6-30-17 There are moments where I really question the point of anything I'm doing. This is one of those moments.

The Possibility you feed is the reality you create

The other day I was having a conversation with one of my friends. She shared she was feeling anxious about the upcoming weekend where she would be doing a lot of vending and she pessimistically said she didn't think she'd sell a lot of product.

Now I'm no stranger to such pessimism, having some of it myself, so after she vented for a bit, I asked her if she was open to some feedback.

Results vs Consequences and how to plan for both in your magic

Recently I was having a conversation with a friend about results and consequences. Often times in practical magic workings we focus on the results that we want to achieve, but what isn't always considered are the consequences that come with the results. Yet consequences are a natural reality of a result. The problem that happens is that the result is treated as a point of closure. You've created and executed the magical working and then the result has occurred and that's the end of the story. But is it?

Elemental Balancing Ritual Stillness Month 32

5-26-17 I had a dream this morning. In the dream was the dark haired, dark eyed woman that had shown up in a couple previous visions. She showed me an alternate life, where I didn't have a lot of stability. I traveled a lot and did work I didn't like and I had no deep connections. As she told me, it was really about showing me what a life without stability would be like. Afterwards I felt this radiating sense of fear in my chest and I sat with it for a while. It's that fear of being too stable, which may seem off, but when you've lived a life where much of it has been chaotic, it can actually feel strange to have stability. It makes me realize again what the next element needs to be, but also what I can do to use stillness to work on that feeling of fear of stability.

The Devil is in the Details: Why knowing how magic works matters

In my own magical practice I'm a real stickler for details. The reason is because I like to figure out what is working and how it's working (or conversely what isn't working). Not everyone feels this way about magic. Sometimes I'll hear people say that it doesn't matter how magic works, as long as it produces a result. I always find this response (and variants of it) to be fascinating and perplexing. "Why wouldn't you want to know how something works?" is one of the questions that I ask, along with another one, "What do you do if your magical working doesn't work or produce the results you were going after?"

I never really get a satisfactory answer to those questions.