Peter Carroll

Some thoughts on linkage and connection in magic

I've been rereading Nemesis and Other Essays by Stephen Mace and also reading the Octavo (Affiliate link) by Peter Carroll, which is his latest work.  Both discuss linking and connection, which are activities that are part of the magical process. You could even think of linkage and connection as the same activity, or perhaps the link as the noun and connecting as the verb...or whatever. They both maintain (and I agree) that for a magical working to be successful you need to somehow create a connection between you and the result you wish to obtain. This connection won't be overtly causal in nature, but it is nonetheless a very important part of the process, because without a connection you can't really have a magical process. So what makes a connection? A connection is made partially through the meaning a person reads or imbues into the various elements that comprise the magical process and the situation the magical process is being used to resolve. A person's interpretation, although subjective, is powerful because it is how s/he is making sense of the world and his/her place in it, as well as making sense of the situation, and the ideal resolution of the situation.

A connection is also partially made by the actions a person takes to realize the connection. In other words a person needs to perform some kind of activity that justifies and explains the connection. Thus a magical working is actually a justification and explanation of the connection that a person is working with.

Mace advocates also cutting the connection in order to erase all traces of your participation in the magical working. I can see the benefit from a banishment angle. By banishing the connection you are freeing yourself from becoming overly obsessed with the working. There's also something to be said for trusting in the efficacy of your magical working and allowing it to run its course. By cutting your connection, you are allowing it to run its course without needing to put more of yourself into it.

Personally, I take an approach where I fuel my workings through the associations of the connection I make. So I can remove myself from the connection, but make sure the working is still getting something put toward it by the associations that were created in the magical process. That would be my recommendation for connections in magical work. Use the associations to fuel the work, beyond the initial creation process.

An intriguing phenomenon I've noticed

I just finished reading The Apophenion by Peter Carroll and started a Brief Hirstory of time by Oryelle Defenestate-Bascule and I've noticed a really intriguing in both those books and Farber's latest book. It seems like all these authors have created specific entities that are engaged with, invoked, etc., by the very act of reading the book. It's as if the book acts as a gateway into the mind of a person and then uses that to create a connection to the entity which allows it to manifest. In fact, there's principles of memory which could be worked with in that way. If the entity imprints on the memory, then every time the entity is remembered or imagined it's invoked into the life of the person. I can see some roots of this in Burroughs work and Austin Osman spare's art concepts. With william S. Burroughs, you can feel the character's come alive, and I think his books were his way of invoking himself into the lives of other people, through his use of some of his characters were based off him. And of course a lot of written books inadvertently invoke entities, because the characters are so real to the people that they become a live for those people, but it's only with these books that I've noted an intentional effort toward creating an entity. I imagine too, that if you faithfully do the exercises that this strengthens the connection of the entity to you, as well as how it manifests in your life. It does make me wonder if I could create such an entity myself...Actually I think we do it all the time...but creating one where the book itself activated the entity is fascinating to me.

As is I can safely say that the goddess apophenia is now a presence in my life as a result of reading Carroll's work and I'm inclined to sustain that effort by working with makes the book more efficacious when I read it next time. Although I've decided to already reattribute her as a time goddess, instead of how Carroll treats...which then makes me wonder if the book allows you to create your own variant of the entity, which could even work at cross purposes of the writer's intention.

Book Review: The Apohenion by Peter Carroll

I was really intrigued when Carroll released a new book on chaos magic. The Apophenion is the introduction to a goddess, more space/time speculatation, theory, and practice from Carroll, an exploration of the multi-mind and much more. It is a book worth picking up if you're into chaos magic or experimental magic, or if you're curious as to how someone who has training in math and science is applying that training to magic.

What I liked about the book was Carroll's succinct explanations of his theories about time magic and the multi-mind. I also liked his explanation of Apophenia and how one can work with her. I already consider her a deity of space/time workings from his description of her. I will note that the Apophenion is mainly a book of theory and that it assumes that readers already know a good deal about magic. Any practical applications of it, are left entirely in the hands of the readers to produce.

With this book, Carroll charts new path for chaos magic, while also updating readers on his own work. I highly recommend it as an inspiring and thought-provoking read.

5 out of 5 chaostars