As I continue to evolve my personal magical practice, something which really stands out to me is that the practices and techniques I've learned from various paradigms and belief systems are inevitably becoming blended together. Tonight, for example, I met up with a brother in magic and we discussed ceremonial magic and evocation, Taoist and Tibetan Buddhist meditation techniques, and pathworking methods. We then experimented with my Tesser-act board (which is based on chaos magic) for doing evocation and incorporated some the dissolving techniques we discussed to end with a pathworking. This all worked quite seamlessly together, even though, or perhaps because it was a blending of different esoteric traditions that nonetheless could be of aid to the overall work we did together. While I recognize the importance of being able to distinguish one tradition from another or one methodology from another, I also think it's important to know when to look for complementary connections in those traditions or methodologies in order to fully benefit from them. The effectiveness of a person's practices is dictated to some degree by how that person utilizies the resources s/he has access to. So for me, being able to blend western ceremonial practices with chaos magic and Taoist Dissolving techiques is an effective process. For others it might not be, but from my own observations it does seem that sometimes the main reason a person doesn't blend one practice with another boils down to an issue of being perceived as an eclectic or fluffy practitioner. It's as if each tradition, discipline, etc., should be kept separate in order for the practice to have authenticity. I recognize that doing an eclectic practice for Eclecticism's sake isn't necessarily a good idea and that it's important to study and practice a discipline, tradition, methodology, etc., in and of itself, in order to really understand and appreciate those practices, but I also think there is a place and time for where a person can blend different practices and techniques together in order to benefit from that blend. The effectiveness of that blend will show itself through the mastery of the traditions that the blend originates from. In other words, you need to have a well -rounded foundation in order to pull off a blend of different practices successfully, but the blending of those practices can lead to innovation and experimentation, which in turn can lead people toward learning new skills and methods for helping themselves and others. It's one reason I experiment with magic.