Inner alchemy

How Magic can help with Executive Dysfunction

The other day on the Magical Experiments Facebook page one of my commenters asked whether or not magic could help with executive dysfunction. I asked her to explain what executive dysfunction was because I'd never heard of the term before, and she explained the following,

"Executive dysfunction is a term for the range of cognitive, emotional and behavioural difficulties which often occur after injury to the frontal lobes of the brain. Impairment of executive functions is common after acquired brain injury and has a profound effect on many aspects of everyday life."

"It is often associated with ADHD and other similar disorders. It is basically a clinical form of struggling to initiate any tasks, even every day ones. It's a bit like putting the key into your car's ignition and turning it, hearing the engine struggle to start again and again. Even if you really, really want to, you just can't get yourself to initiate anything."

Month 9 Elemental Balancing Ritual with Movement

Eros 6-30-2013 I've been contemplating the astrological cycle of Pluto in conjunct with my natal chart. It's become a part of my work with the element of movement, an underworld experience of sorts, but more so with movement in my life, and movement around my life and how I handle it. It's interesting how working with an element to find balance with it in your life and really to balance your life can itself be shaped by other variables. I don't know that I would really be aware of this conjunction if not for the fact that a friend told me about it, and the question that comes to mind is: If I wasn't aware of it, would it still impact me? I don't know. The conjunction is ultimately just another pattern and while I think my awareness of that pattern is a factor, I also know that awareness or lack thereof doesn't guarantee anything so much as it demonstrates what you know or don't know about a given situation. My drive to know is part of what informs the movement in my life. I want to know, and I want to share, and that inspires me toward these experiences, which can be both painful and enlightening in terms of what I learn.

7-3-13 I'm feeling off today. There's been a bit of a family crisis of late and I'm doing what I can to support the relevant people, but I also feel some fear for the people involved, a knot of anxiousness and a recognition that what I can do is limited. I'm dealing with another situation right now, where I've brought in a consultant to help me solve a problem. The consultant called me the other day and his advice wasn't promising. I felt anxious about it, but then I chanted the name of an entity I've created to help me deal with this situation and the entity told me to call him back and have him double check the information he'd given me. So I call him back, have him double check the information, and we are back on course, all because I chanted an entity's name and focused all the anxiety I was feeling toward it. And yes I get that it doesn't make rational sense, but I don't need it to make rational sense. I need it to make sense enough to achieve a different outcome and that's what it's doing. Movement isn't always about going the provincial route, but rather about finding the best route even in the most non-obvious places.

7-8-13 I've been thinking a bit about relationships because of a book I was reading which made the point that the romantic relationships we are drawn to are ones that relate to the relationships that were modeled to us as children. And I think there's truth to that. When I look at who I've been attracted to in the past as well as actual relationships I've gotten involved in, I can see certain behavioral characteristics I've been drawn to in the past, and I see how it's replicated certain cycles of behavior as a result. And until I worked through some of those cycles, I wasn't able to break out of the relationships I was getting into. Now I'm in a different relationship than I've ever been in and it's been very healthy for me and has continued to allow me to break out of those cycles, but it amazes me how until you really examine who and what you are drawn to, how easy it can be to essentially be in a similar relationship to the one your parents modeled for you.

7-9-13 Giving up trying to control something that you have limited control over can be incredibly freeing, especially when you feel the tension in your body relax as a result of choosing to let go instead of trying to hold on so hard. Repeatedly I see this lesson illustrated in the lives of people around me, but also in my own life and although it can be hard to give up that sense of control, I also find it helpful, because then I'm not worrying about it or stressing over it. I see now how my stress has really been my feeling of trying to control something and feeling that the only control I could have was to be stressed about whatever. I know this something I'll continually work on, but I also know that continuing to do it will gradually make it easier for me to let go of the pretense of control, which in turn will lead to less stress.

7-10-13 My dad's visiting for a few days. We went to the Mummy exhibit at OMSI, and then got into a discussion about history, including the family history. He's got a civil war rifle and sword that my great-great grandfather used. I'm hoping that'll he donate those weapons and the logbook to a museum. I feel that history such as that should belong to the people, and that if we contribute it to a museum then everyone can learn from it. The visit has been good so far, but I see such a difference in him. I know that at some point it will be the last time I see him. I can accept it, but still feel an odd sense of mortality, recognizing that my time with this person is very limited. I'm glad we are going to the ocean on Friday so he can see it, makes me feel good to make sure he an I have that experience together.

7-17-13 My dad headed back to South Dakota. It was a good visit, but since then I've been playing catch up and there is nothing so frustrating as if feeling that time is slipping away, especially when you feel this need to get things done. Maybe at a different time of my life I'll feel different, but there's so much I want to do.

7-20-13 I haven't been doing much lately, other than reading through the Dragonrealms series and playing the Last of Us. I spend so much time working on projects or writing that taking the occasional break to feed myself brain candy is good as a way of renewing myself. Yes it means I'm not reading or doing anything truly stupendous, but it also means I'm giving myself some down time, which isn't something I've always been good at. I am always aware of the projects I want to work on, but I also know that giving myself over to those projects requires that I also provide myself time to just...be.

Reading Dragonrealms has been interesting, because I see this gradual evolution of the writing, the characters, and the world. It's not the best fantasy writing out there, but the author does an excellent job of bringing you into the writing. I've had this series of books since it came out in the eighties and I'm glad he's writing more books in the series. As for the Last of Us...It's like a movie, wrapped up in a game that hits you with the terror of living in a post apocalyptic world, while also hitting on the relationships people have with each other and how essential those relationships are to maintaining your connection to a sense of self.

7-23-13 Something I've realized about movement, stillness, and control is that the best thing you can do is just let go and stop trying to be in control. I know I've mentioned it above, but it can't be emphasized enough, in my opinion. There are certain experiences where you just won't have that sense of control you think you have, and if you can accept that, be okay with it, you can actually discover possibilities and experiences you never would've thought of because you were so invested in a particular view of the world and your expression in it.

Further Thoughts on Body Enhancement via magic

Dragontat

I read an interesting post by Chirotus Infinitum that was a response to my recent post about body enhancement via magic. He made reference to the Deathgate Cycle by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman, and much like him I have found that particular series of books to be foundational both in my body modification work and in other magical work I've done. In fact, it's fair to say that reading that series inspired at least some of my thoughts on how I might modify my body with magic as well as how to use those modifications to enhance my magical work.

Something I didn't mention in my previous post was how I've used my tattoos in my body enhancement work. While one of the purposes of my tattoos is devotional, used as an offering to the various elements I've worked with, another purpose is also to enhance my channeling of that elemental energy. The act of getting the tattoo allows me to fully embed the energy into my essence. Each tattoo represents a different energy (or energies) that I can access. For example the the hourglass - web tattoo is connected to the elemental energies of space and time, while my blue dragon is connected to the elemental energies of water. The current tattoo I'm getting, another dragon, is being used to connect with the elemental energies of fire and movement. I have plans to get more tattoos down the line, but undoubtedly some of that will also be influenced by what I work with and how I want to dedicate myself to that energy.

There's not a lot of work written about working with the body. My book Inner Alchemy discusses some of my work and I am continuing in some of those directions, but I think that the body is an untapped resource, especially in Western Culture. Eastern cultures emphasize a connection and cultivation of the body's resources that simply isn't found in Western culture because of the spiritual disconnect from the body that both Christianity and Western Science are responsible for. That spiritual disconnect has fostered perspectives about the body that are unhealthy and don't fully enable people to feel empowered to embrace or work with their bodies. Sadly Western occultism continues to foster similar perspectives. For example, Robert Anton Wilson refers to the body as a robot and seems intent on trying to escape it (not surprising given his encounter with Polio).

I was fortunate to avoid a lot of such limiting beliefs in regards to my body because I wasn't raised in overly religious household and had a natural curiosity about my body that I chose to explore so I could better understand it. I grew up sleeping naked in bed instead of having pajamas on (and I can't understand why anyone would want to wear pajamas) and I have always loved my body and appreciated its curves and the various sensations I can feel. I've also had my own experiences of body hate, such as when I was anorexic, but overall I was fortunate to embrace my body in a way that I observe many people don't. I honestly feel that one of the reasons people are so dysfunctional about sex comes right to the fact that Western culture overall has such a dysfunctional relationship with the body.

There is a lot to be explored in terms of enhancing the body with magic, but also in really understanding the body as a universe of its own, with hidden wonders to experience and explore if we are willing to set aside our all too limited perspectives and cultural biases about the body. This work can only occur if more people are willing to explore the body as a universe and allow themselves to be open to whatever experiences are encountered. Certainly I will keep writing about my own work because I realize more than ever how important it is to continue cultivating perspectives and experiences that run counter to the dysfunctional values that mainstream culture embodies.

 

Magical Enhancements of your body

Enhancement The other day I read an interesting post by Mr. Black on human enhancement. I've always been fascinated by how a person can enhance his/her body using magic since I first started practicing magic. In my book Inner Alchemy, I described some of my work toward that purpose, but there's a lot I also haven't shared, so below is some of the other enhancement work I've done with my body and thoughts on how you can apply this to your own work.

1. Enhance your muscles. When I was in college, one of the jobs I worked at was a package factory (similar to UPS). You'd work for four hours packing boxes (50 - 100 Ibs) onto trucks. It's hard work and you get sore quickly. It's a job that has high turn over as well, with up to 50% quitting in the first 2 weeks. When I worked there, one of my solutions was to temporarily enhance my muscles, both in terms of strength and healing. What I did before the shift was to run my hands over my legs and arms, putting energy into the muscles so that I could warm them up ahead of time, as well as help them heal. This allowed me to condition my muscles during the first couple of weeks so that I wasn't as sore as I would've been otherwise. Additionally, the work was easier because I'd enhanced my strength during that time. To this day I still use this working when I need to do physical labor. All you need to do is your own energy to your muscles. Basically you are using your chi to enhance your muscles.

2. Enhance healing by communicating with cells. When I get tattoos, I tend to heal fairly quick because what I do is communicate with my cells and direct energy toward the metabolism functions in order to improve the speed of healing. I've also used this for other injuries. While it doesn't provide instantaneous healing, I have noticed that healing occurs quicker than it normally would. With tattoos the healing time usually takes 3 weeks to a month, but I've been able to heal in a week. To do this kind of work you need to learn how to communicate with your cells, which I've covered in Inner Alchemy.

3. Eye sight enhancement. I have 20/20 vision. Neither of my parents or their parents had 20/20 vision, but I've always had it. One of the activities I do on a regular basis are eye exercises, which include bringing my sight into and out of focus as well as rolling my eyes and looking up or down or to the side for more than a second. Doing these exercises help to enhance my sight, but I've also done some inner alchemical work with the rods and cones as well as the natural chemicals in my eyes, focusing on cell regeneration, so that I can keep my eyesight at its current performance. Thus far it seems to have worked, but time will tell if what I'm doing is working.

These are just a few examples of how I've experimented with enhancement of the human body. I am continuing my exploration of the body, because I feel that learning how to work with the body is an integral key to enhancing and even prolonging life.

 

 

Inner Transformation

In Magical Identity, I discussed at length the importance of internal work to the magical process, and to creating an empowered identity for the magician. I also noted that at least in Western Magic there seemed to be a tendency to gloss over the internal work in favor of achieving practical results. Or on the opposite end, the focus would be on a model such as the Tree of Life, but with little focus on doing internal work. I've found a couple of exceptions, and one of those is R. J. Stewart's work. Actually reading him, in some ways, is like reading William G Gray's work, which makes sense when you consider that Gray was one of Stewart's mentors. But I think the difference I see is a much more articulate focus on internal work.

In Living Magical Arts, Stewart discusses the following about transformation: "Magic begins by changing yourself, but eventually it changes the whole world if enough selves partake of it." He goes onto to note the following about magical symbols (which would includes physical tools such as your cup, rod, sword, wand, etc.: "The main, indeed the only, real function of magical symbols is to transform the magician." This is where he reminds me of William Gray, especially in Magical Ritual Methods, because Gray discusses at length that for the magician to master a tool, s/he ultimately needs to make it part of his/her consciousness.

Now on an aside, one of the reasons I favor a paintbrush as a magical tool is because there is a level or practical work that can be done with it that goes beyond being a symbol. A paintbrush or pen for that matter is a more potent tool and symbol precisely because it offers a level of transformation that goes beyond the symbolic. There is something very magical about touching a pen on paper or a brush on canvas and consequently transforming something into something else. In fact, there's a level of internal work that occurs in such artistic expressions (more on that in a later post).

But getting back to the original topic, I think that magic becomes truly effective when you understand that it fundamentally involves change through intentional transformation, and when you also realize that the most effective magic works by changing the internal reality of the magician first, and then changing the environment around him/her. Results based magic that doesn't factor in the needed internal work is typically reactive magic, done more as a reaction to a problem and as an attempt to solve said problem. Results obtained through a reactive approach to magic don't last long. The magician will sabotage him/herself because some part of his/her internal reality doesn't agree with the obtained result.

To truly understand transformation and change, you must be willing to shape yourself as well as shape the environment around you. It might even be argued that you need to be willing to be shaped by the magic, in order to truly benefit from it. Fundamentally what is being asked is: "Are you truly ready and willing to handle the responsibility of changing your reality?" You can only answer yes when you've done the internal work that allows you to critically examine your place in the universe and willingly change that place by changing your internal reality. Place, or space isn't just a physical placement...it is a metaphysical, emotional, and mental place as well. It is the embodiment of your relationship with the universe. To change your place, work from within, and let it manifest without.

In the majority of the magical work I currently do the focus is on embodying the magic, starting from within, or bringing the desired possibility into my space, and choosing to become it and letting it move me accordingly. Genuine transformation is the understanding that you are moved by the magic and by your own commitment to doing the necessary internal work that paves the way to the new expression of reality that expresses your connection with the universe and the space you embody.

How I do healing work

My approach to healing is multi-layered. When I am working on a person I am working on the physical body, as well as the energetic equivalent, and on the emotional level as well. But more specifically I am working on the area of the body that needs healing.

I'm a reiki master (something I don't discuss much), but one of the problems that I've always had with Reiki is that its energy that is channeled through you and its not necessarily a precise experience. Its useful in its own way, but my approach to healing is about precision.

When I heal I work with what I might consider to be lines of force with the person. Some might call this meridians and that would be accurate as well. Some of the healing work involves pulling negative energy out of the person. I'll feel a string of negative energy and I'll start pulling it out and away from the person. Then afterwards I'll replace it with healing energy. While I'm doing all of that, I'll also communicate with the cells of the affected area, so that on a physiological level healing is also occurring. There may not even be a real difference beyond that of perception. One thing I would acknowledge is that my approach to healing is based in part on framing the healing work in a way that is conceptually sound to me. In fact, with healing and magic in general, I think this is true. We draw on a model or conceptual framework that allows us to understand what we are working with and develop a process around it.

With all that said, whenever I do healing work on someone I check in to see if their experiences match what I'm doing. I'll share intuitive insights that come up in regards to emotional issues around the healing I'm doing and see if what I'm getting is accurate to what the person has experienced. The verification that people provide is what tells me the healing is working and that its not all in my head. Their experience and resolution is the result that I'm working toward with the healing.

I do find that approaching healing work as just a physiological issue or an energetic issue isn't the best approach. Incorporating an understanding of emotional stress and trauma seems to be an important part of the healing, so that even if I'm healing a physiological issue, checking in on the emotional level can actually be conducive to helping with the healing of the physiological issue. I think the reason this is the case is because the experience of a health issue brings with it not just the physical symptoms or energetic issues, but also emotional patterns that may need to be explored in order for a person to fully heal.

 

If I had only one technique I could keep it would be...

Meditation. Jason Miller said much the same thing in the Strategic Sorcery Course. I think meditation is the most crucial skill a magician can have. It's something I do as consistently as possible. Occasionally I miss days, and I can always tell when I miss a day because I'm less focused. Meditation is similar in benefit to exercising on a daily basis: It keeps you toned.

There are some magicians who will say they can't meditate, but I don't buy that. They can meditate, but they're unwilling to discipline themselves enough to do so and they've likely bought into the popular idea that meditation is just about emptying your mind (that's one form of meditation, but not the only kind). The key is to accept that if you do have random thoughts arise, you don't give up. You note them, maybe even follow them, and then return to the breathing, letting it carry you deeper and deeper into an altered state of consciousness. It takes some work, but if you are consistent about it, you'll succeed eventually.

I think one reason people say they can't meditate is that they are so distracted by every thought and emotion, and perhaps even afraid to face those thoughts and emotions. Meditation does give you the chance to work through thoughts and emotions and sometimes its not fun. But doing it frees you of those thoughts and emotions. It gives you clarity, focus, awareness, and perspective.

Meditation teaches you to sort through the chaos of your internal reality. It's doing the internal work, so that the external work of living your life and manifesting your magic is a lot easier. Certainly in taking up a dedicated practice of meditation I have needed to do less overt acts of magic, save on the rare occasions where its really warranted. By doing the internal work, my life has gotten much easier. It didn't happen over night, buts it a cumulative effect if you are consistent.

So that's the one technique or practice I'd keep. What about you?

Magic and Biology

Mike recently posted some intriguing perspectives on energy work in his blog. He noted the inaccuracy around the language that's used to describe how energy work happens, and where it interacts with the biology of the person. He uses a concept from computer programming called scoping to demonstrate the need to differentiate the definitions being used to discuss energy work. I find myself in agreement with him, which makes me then think about magic and biology, as it pertains to cells and what's really happening with energy work.

Mike notes the following:

So, let’s apply scoping to energy healing. There’s bio::energy, for the normal energy that makes cells operate when there’s no magick going on (ATP, electrical impulses, etc.), and there’s magick::energy, for the energy we use that makes you feel all tingly. And, most importantly, they are different.

It's clear that biological energy isn't the same as magical energy perse, but people do conflate the two, which can create an inaccurate understanding of what is being done when healing or working with your physiology in general. Mike argues that increasing the energy  of a cell using magical energy doesn't seem to work. I agree with him, and I'll explain why further below, but he also notes that you can use magic to kill bacteria, decelerate a specific biological function (which doesn't involve adding energy, but could involve changing specific outputs in a cell) and finally that you can use magic to cancel one type of energy and substitute another type of energy, basically bringing in a different energetic signature. My experiences with healing have provided similar observations, so I feel fairly confident that he and I are on the same page with how energy work actually seems to work.

I made my own response to Mike and noted that part of what I think occultists are fudging or portraying inaccurately is how we communicate with our biology (if we do) and where does energy fit into that communication. Mike responded in agreement, but argued that its not communication but influence. I note this because both he and I would agree that word choice is very important in describing how a magical process ( or any process works).

Why do I use communicate? Well for one thing I'm not ready to assume that an individual cell isn't intelligent. It may not exhibit intelligence as I understand it, but that doesn't mean that it doesn't have intelligence...it just may be a very different type than I know. More importantly however, we have to consider if cells are communicating with each other, and I would argue they are. In both Inner Alchemy and Magical Identity I discuss biophotonic energy, which is an energy that cells emit and seem to use to communicate with each other.

If we go with the process that magic energy can be used to accelerate or decelerate biological processes, we still need to figure exactly how that occurs, and just as importantly we have to ask if the cells have any "say" in how that process is being changed, and if so what kind of say they have. The reason I opt for intelligence when it comes to the cells is that if I'm going to go in and make some changes to my biological structures, I want to work with those structures and I need to be able to communicate with those cells, to get input or if nothing else a stop order when enough energy has been applied and they need to take over with the healing work. From my experiences with working with my body on a cellular level, I'd argue that the magician is not merely influencing a cell, but is communicating with it and that the communication is occurring via the interaction of magical energy and biophotonic energy. It turns out that biophotonic energy can accept a variety of frequencies of energy and since magical energy operates on a frequency it makes sense that communication could occur if biophotonic energy accepts that frequency. If that's the case, then what we're dealing with is communication wherein the cell(s) provide information and even notify us when to stop applying energy in order to let them do what they do.

As a final note I haven't even discussed mitochondria or the metabolism of the cell which could be additional factors to consider when it comes to communication or influence, depending on which route you want to go with. Regardless I think its really important to examine the interaction of magic energy and bio energy if you want to nail down a comprehensive process of magic.

 

 

 

 

 

A recent healing experiment

One of the areas of magic that I find most fascinating is healing work, especially the healing work that is challenging and can't be resolved right away. Currently I'm working on an injury my wife had received years ago from a car accident. She experienced really bad whiplash that damage one of her nerves and ended up getting a Titanium plate inserted into her neck. Nonetheless her neck is consistently sore and tense, as is her upper back. It's the kind of challenge I like because I know it involves some detailed work that doesn't deal with even just the physical issues, but also underlying energetic and emotional issues.

I've been working on her for the past few weeks and we've already seen some changes in her energy level and in her muscles, in terms of the stress and tension that is in them. And not surprisingly, I've also helped her work through some emotional tensions that have been locked into the tension and stress she's feeling, including working some of the trauma of the accident that she hadn't faced.

My techniques have included a combination of Taoist massage and energy work, as well as using energy techniques of my own invention. I massage her neck lightly with the tips of my fingertips, while also pushing energy into her neck in order to start dissolving the tension. I pull out unhealthy energy and then replace it with healthy energy, using a pulling technique I've come up with. I've also synchronized our breathing while I'm doing, to put her into a mild meditative trance that allows her to focus on any emotions that come up as I'm working on her. Consistent work has made her muscles much looser, but I'm careful about it, because I am working with her neck and there's ten years of pain and tension that I'm dealing with.

While I'm working with her, I'll sometimes bring up impressions I get from the work I'm doing. A Few days we talked about the accident and how she felt afterwards as a result of impressions I was picking up. This proved to be helpful for her, allowing her to release some of her anger and fear from that experience.

Initially when I worked on her, it made her neck hurt more, which makes sense because we were starting to release both physical end emotional toxins. She's noted that after I work on her there is a release of physical toxins. We're making slow progress, but I figure if I consistently work on her I'll be able to get rid of the majority of the trauma over the next month.

Change starts from within

"Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing themselves" Leo Tolstoy When I think about Western Magic, and one of my problems, this statement from Tolstoy sums it up nicely. In late teens and early to mid twenties, I remember being that person who wanted to change the world, but didn't think of changing himself. That's not surprising because within western magic there is no overt forms of internal work provided, beyond perhaps some pathworking exercises. I had to go to Eastern systems such as Taoism to really discover in-depth meditation techniques. Since learning those techniques and implementing them into my daily practice, I've found that there is much less of an overt need to change the world. In fact, usually where the change needs to start is from within.

Magical techniques such as sigils or evocation aren't focused on internal work. There's nothing wrong with that, but it is worth the magician's time to actually apply some degree of introspection in order to look at the underlying motivations behind doing the work. Such internal work can help clarify the motivations and even ensure that the working will be successful by removing any internal resistance toward it.

Internal work is an essential part of magical practice. When I take magical students on, we spend a fair amount of time initially exploring what their values and beliefs are, how they define themselves and their place in the world, as well as teaching them meditation techniques. I've found that this initial work is crucial because it helps them remove a lot of internal obstacles and most importantly helps them understand how to effectively use magic to make changes in the world around them. Practitioners who actively use internal work will also cut down on the need to do more overt acts of magic...and not surprisingly will also lower the overall level of drama and chaos as they work out their issues. Instead of having such issues come up in their lives, the practitioners are able to identify  the triggers and make changes to their behaviors. The result is a better life and more clarity about what they want and need to live such a life.

Why its not a good idea to destroy part of yourself

The other day I decided to do a meditation technique to work with a part of myself that I thought I wanted to change. I did the meditation technique and basically I ended up poking a part of myself that didn't care for what I was doing and responded with quite a reaction, which showed up both internally and also in my life around me. Fortunately, I was able to sort matters out in my life, but I realized that what I'd tried to do, which essentially was to get rid of a part of myself, wasn't really a good idea. At times, in our lives, there can be a temptation to try and get rid of part of yourself or change it or try to fit it some standard of behavior that doesn't really apply to it. Inevitably, what ends up happening is that the part you try to change defends itself quite vigorously and you realize that it wasn't such a good idea.

This isn't to say you can't change behavior. You certainly can, but trying to do a radical change is never advised, and doesn't make you happy. Instead such changes need to occur gradually, being worked through, and even when such changes are made, they usually focus on behavior, as opposed to identity, which is essentially how you define yourself. You can change behavior, but changing identity can be a lot harder and you genuinely have to no longer want to identify yourself in a particular way to make the change successful. This means you need to work with the values and beliefs that represent that part of your identity and determine if they no longer relevant to your life.

My main point is this: Don't try and get rid of part of yourself for anyone or anything. Better to do the internal work and determine how it really fits into your life. Accepting who you is the greatest liberation you can give yourself.

Book and Video Review: The Lost Secret of Immortality (Affiliate Link) by Barclay Powers

The video is well done and presents a lot of ideas on internal alchemy as its done in both the the East and West. I'd particularly recommend it to anyone just starting out as it has a wealth of information, but even more seasoned practitioners will find it useful. The book serves as a useful complement to the video, providing further information on concepts discussed in the video. I'd have liked to have seen some exercises included in the book, but the author does a good job of pointing to additional sources. Overall a a useful resource guide.

My interview with Mona Magick on Inner Alchemy

Last week Mona Magick interviewed me on her radio show about Inner Alchemy, Neurotransmitters and Space/Time Magic. It's been a while since I've been interviewed, so it was cool to be on this show. Thanks very much Mona Magick!

Some experiments I'm working on

I'm currently working on some different experiments. Some of these are in concept phase, while others are being developed as practical applications. All of them represent ongoing work I'm involved in. 1. Neurotransmitter work: I've been working with neurotransmitters as entities for over 7 years now. The current work I'm doing has involved working with multiple neurotransmitters at the same time, for purposes such as emotional regulation, healing, and related work. I'm writing about this work in Neuro-Space/Time Magic.

2. Web of Space/Time: This is my system of space/time magic. I've been working on it for a while now and its partially related to the work I've been doing with movement and space, as well as exploring time's role in navigating space. There's also some work with possibilities in imaginary time. I'm writing a thorough explanation in Neuro Space/Time Magic.

3. Movement/space work: I've been exploring how to use movement as a form of magical work and expression for a while now. It's another of those current projects that's focused on the book, but also focused on working with the body as the main form of magical expression.

4. Brandscapes: This has been inspired by the class I'm teaching on pop culture magic. At this point it's a concept, but one I want to explore further as a way of working with a company entity in a purposeful, and focused manner.

These are a few projects that are on my mind. What about you? What's something interesting you are experimenting with in your magical work?

Aligning your values with your desires

Over the last six or so years, some of the most significant magical work I've done has involved doing internal work to align my desires with my values. You might think that this would be automatic, but I don't think that's the case all the time. The challenge of the magician is to know him/herself and until you know yourself, you can't really know if your values are in alignment with your desires. Thus if you try to manifest a desire that isn't in alignment with your values, it may not stay with you, because some part of you is resistant to the manifestation. Aligning your values with your desires involves examining what your desires are and seeing if they match up with your values. If the execution of your desires doesn't align with your beliefs and values, then the result will be fleetingly. You will sabotage yourself to stay true to your values and beliefs. Not all of these values and beliefs are necessarily healthy, but they are in place as much to "protect" you, as to provide a moral compass to live your life. But being safe isn't all its cracked up to be, and can sometimes put you in a miserable situation, because part of you wants to protect yourself from taking a risk.

Aligning your values with your desires necessarily means that you need to look at the origins of both your values and your desires. Where do they come from? What influences sponsored your desires and values? Asking these questions can help you understand why you hold to the values you have and why you want what you want. That, in turn, can help you begin to either resolve the conflict between desire and value or recognize if your desire or value is holding you back in some way. Until you question and explore what motivates your choices, you can't know for certain if you are making those choices because you genuinely want to/believe in the need to do so, or if you are reacting on impulse of one kind or another.

The Microbot approach to sickness

I've been sick lately, a weird kind of flu where my temperature has gone below the usual temp. It's not a fever, but the result is I still feel sick. Never being a person to turn aside opportunity, I've been working on a technique to deal with illness that I've been using for a little while now. It's worked to actually stop a fever in the past from developing, and in this case has been used to mitigate the current sickness and speed up the healing. The technique is based off a video game called Microbots. In that game you are a microbot sent into a body to heal it by getting rid of the virus that is in the body. The developers of the game created a stunning environment that looks like the biology of the body. Useful for visualization purposes if you're doing work to contact neurotransmitters, but also useful if you want to combat a fever or flu, especially if you want to use the microbot for that purpose.

When I feel sickness coming on, or in this latest case, when I'm in the midst of experiencing it, I'll meditate before resting and create a health servitor that will go in and start combating the sickness, while also offering support to the natural systems already in place. My microbot servitor is equipped to not just fight the sickness, but also comes with healing tools that can be used to heal the body, where needed.

I like drawing on pop culture for inspiration, and the microbot game has proven to be the perfect inspiration for this work, because its provided a model of internal work I can use with my body. It demonstrates the importance of drawing on such inspirations for your magical work. I can't say I've found anything else that provides such a useful tool for health and healing work. I'm going to continue experimenting with it, and will be sure to share details either here, or in Neuro-Space/Time Magic.

Upcoming Neurotransmitter Entity Class

On May11th I'll be teaching the Neurotransmitter Entity class, and we'll be meeting for 3 weeks via a teleclass to learn about how to work with Neurotransmitters and other aspects of the human body. It should be an exciting class and if you haven't signed up yet, I invite you to, as it's an opportunity to explore your relationship with your body from a different angle. I find the body to be a universe all its own, complete with mysteries. This class provides techniques that can help you start to unravel the mysteries of that universe and develop an entirely new relationship with your body. Most importantly it's an opportunity to have some experimenting with magic and seeing what you can learn about yourself in the process. If you haven't signed up already, click on the link above, or this one here and RSVP for the class. The cost is $60, and what you'll get is a free chapter of Inner Alchemy and a free chapter of my upcoming book Neuro-Space/Time Magic, as well as recordings of our class and access to a members only site.

 

Bune Business advice

I'm starting a new business that focuses on applying internal work to dissolve blockages in a person's life so s/he can discover his/her true potential. That's the gist anyway. If you want to learn more visit the Inner Alchemy website, follow me on Twitter or Fan my new business on Facebook. I'm mentioning this on here, because while internal work is a passion of mine and something I consider an important part of magical work, I want to focus my posts on here on other aspects of magical work, while using the new website to focus exclusively on internal work.

But there's another reason I'm mentioning it as well. I believe in following one's own passion. It's what you feel passionate about that really makes you live your life as opposed to just letting it pass you by. In October I did a working with Bune and the focus of my working with him was to inspire in how I could bring in more business. I've actually done well this year with my core business. I doubled the amount of business, which is really good, but Bune focused my attention on the internal work and asked me why I wasn't doing anything with those skills. It was a tough and good question to ask.

When you bring in outside consultants (in this case the goetic demon Bune) the reason you do it is for their perspective, which will look at what you're doing with fresh eyes and lots of questions. My working with Bune didn't automatically bring me new business to my existing business (though I did actually get a couple new clients in Nov and Dec), but he did inspire me to look at what my other passions are and asked how I could use them to bring more business. The result is a class on magic, which is starting tomorrow (there's still time to enroll and I offer payment plans) and this new business I'm starting.

I have no doubt as I continue to work with Bune and follow through on his suggestions that he'll offer additional advice. It'll be up to me if I follow it, but my working with him illustrates something I've realized again and again about magic: "You always get what you need, even if you don't always get what you want." I'll admit, I had different ideas as to how Bune would help me, and yet with how matters turned out, I can honestly say I'm much more pleased with the results and looking forward to seeing what the new year will bring.

Happy new year and magical blessings to you.

Internal and External Realities

It's tempting sometimes to create a duality between the internal reality of a person's psyche and the external reality of the universe. It's important to recognize however that such dualities are illusions, created more for our convenience. That convenience is ultimately a blockage, and when we get rid of it we find that our understanding of the universe and our places within it is more readily changed.

Corticotropin and Betalipotropin - Taylor's Report

Corticotropin showed up as a white snake. It explained that it helps with the stimulation of adrenalin and helps with the focus a person has in moments of stress. As an interesting note corticotropin also helps with the lipoprotein uptake uptake into cortical cells, which increases the availability of cholesterol in the cells of the adrenal cortex. Betalipotropin showed up as an alligator, easy going but also quick to anger and explained that he primarily helped with the stimulation of anger and related emotions.

Estrogen - Taylor's Report

Estrogen appeared as a snake with a with wide mouth that, when it enfolded me felt warm and moist. My experience with her was one where she had a similar feeling of femininity in counterbalance to the masculinity I experience with Testosterone. At the same time the experience was also of a rhythmic cycle, which was steady in its beat and yet nonetheless powerful in how it moved me. She told me that she helped to modulate the balance with testosterone and provide grounding to his energy.