For one thing, I moved my temple. I always agreed that a temple should not be in the same room you are sleeping in unless absolutely necessary, but I thought it really was for a long time, due to the lack of privacy in my living situation. It’s not like I cordoned off a section of the room or anything, I just set up my temple cabinet in a corner and did rituals relatively in the center of the room.
Eventually, though, that ended up not feeling effective for me anymore because of some things I’ve been going through. Something had to be done, so I went to the basement. Don’t laugh, it’s been effective! I brought incense with me to clear the space after sweeping. After an initial re-orientation and a few days later I have to say it’s working out really well. Hardly anything goes on down there since it’s mostly unfinished, except the room turned into a hair salon, and it’s closer to the earth . So I feel the effects of the rituals much better there. As an example, I noticed my aura (or maybe it’s my etheric double? since it’s close to my skin) gets electromagnetically charged (a little like static electricity). That could have been happening already, but only then was I aware of it. Yay for no electrical interference!
I’ve joined a Facebook group that is about Solomonic magic and evocations. The mods are very strict about being on-topic, and there is only a token woman here and there. The model used? The literal one, where the spirits exist and take visible form – not the psychological one where the spirits are merely “aspects of our psyche” (or our personalities). Relevant to this is “What do I need to before getting into evocation work?” Some answered that you need to do daily banishings and a middle pillar exercise (check) and on another thread, they said you need to develop the astral menstruum first, which of course can only be done with a lot of practice in astral projection (for those in magickal orders, evocation is done at the grade of Zelator). That answered my question. Also relevant: Does the old magick reject psychology?
I’ve updated the comments on Astral projection, scrying and lucid dreaming with some recent findings.
My pantheon is changing. At first I was thinking about the Egyptian pantheon but it just seems so…stiff and serious, you know? Plus I have no cultural basis from which to relate to them, being a Westerner. My family is mostly Puerto Rican with a little German and Celtic (Irish-English) thrown in. Even though there is some indigenous blood, my mother’s side is a bunch of Catholics, and I know nothing of any Taino religion or even the popular spiritism having been practiced (and spiritism has Catholic imagery anyway, so that’s not for me). My father’s side is Christian and also very New-Agey. Can you tell which side has had an influence on my studies? Since initially it was unconscious, I can only assume it was partly inherited. The fondness for psychic stuff definitely runs in my family, at least my father’s side. My mother’s side thinks it’s evil and dangerous, and while it can be dangerous it’s not a death sentence.
But back to the pantheon issue. I think Crowley included Egyptian god/ddesses in some Thelemic rituals because they were all about being kingly and royal and the king was also a priest. And of course the mummies and their Book of the Dead to help people attain immortality. They definitely have a role in the mysteries and the congealing of the soul. But for my primary or preferred pantheon that I want to work with? Greek. (Maybe I should say “Greco-Roman“?) Oh, I know they look an awful lot like us humans and aren’t part animal (though they do have animals associated with them). So why choose the Greek pantheon? Because they are about ecstasy, and in this case ecstatic magick. Also, some Thelemic rituals have Greek words and phrases.
However, another option for a pantheon has come up: the Sumerian, since they preceded the ancient Egyptians (Kemetians), and they appeal to me because they are primordial-sounding. I am trying to decide between those two. I must admit that reading A LOT of folklore (also mythology) lately – and Aradia: Gospel of the Witches – has been an influence. By the way: there is a free course on Greek and Roman mythology here.
Which brings me to the next subject: witchcraft! Hekate (from Greek mythology) is associated with it, I want to learn it. Eventually I will need someone or a group to initiate me in the traditional practice. Until then I will not feel comfortable calling myself a witch. Probably more out of respect than anything else, but also because I need to be involved with other people in order to have that sounding-board for rituals and abilities. Plus the fact that group rituals are more powerful than doing them alone. I think it’s a shame that ceremonial magick and witchcraft are now two separate traditions (there are some commonalities, with slightly-different tools, yet with different aims that seem to oppose one another) but ceremonial magick could benefit from ecstasy (I don’t mean the drug) as well as animism. Ceremonial magickians don’t chant or sing phrases and god-names; they vibrate them.
There is a group called Coph Nia which is a mystical gathering for gay and bisexual men. I gotta say: There needs to be one for women.
The header picture: This one is of Circe and the enchantment. Odysseus and his men went to her island for a year. Circe, disgusted at their behavior, changed them into pigs to reflect their natures. Very fitting if you ask me.
This fucking thing has me shaking my head: the end result of a long line of pointless debates over “true will” on the internet by a bunch of morons. Thanks, Crowley, for the distraction of this concept instead of Thelema as Will and that’s it. God, I hate consumerist spirituality.