Archive for the ‘psychology’ Tag
From the Llewellyn Magick Blog, August 19, 2014:
Does the Old Magick Reject Psychology?
For some time now, I’ve been writing about the “Old Magick”—such as that found in the African Traditional Religions, the Solomonic grimoires, and indigenous folk traditions. I have described the spirit model of magick—which views the gods, angels, and spirits as objective beings—and I have compared it unfavorably with the psychological model, which views these same entities as mental constructs that exist only within the mind.
Of course, if you’ve been following my work, you’re well aware of that. However, over the past weeks it has become apparent that my dismissal of the psychological model of magick might be misinterpreted as a repudiation of the entire subject of psychology. Therefore, I would like to take this opportunity to set the record straight.
While I certainly do not view magick as merely an ancient form of psychology, it is important to remember that this does not rule out psychology in and of itself! The spirits may be real and objective, with their own personalities and agendas, but the human art that we call “magick” has a lot to do with the mind.
The right tools, the right rituals, and even a literal faith in the spirits’ objective reality isn’t quite enough. Your own psychology is vital. How the magick affects you, and how you (your mental state) affects it, is a huge chunk of the Mysteries.
Read the Rest at: http://www.llewellyn.com/blog/2014/8/does-the-old-magick-reject-psychology/
Oct 16, 2010
Greetings faithful bloggers!
I’m posting this while I get ready to head out to GSG for the workshop today. I wanted to take a few moments to respond to a comment posted this morning on my Solomonic Yahoo Group. Since this is pretty foundational stuff, I thought I would share it with all of you:
In email@example.com, a member wrote:
> > I think we need to study the mind rather than seals. But then seals are
> > representations of aspects of the mind….
Crowley’s intro to the Goetia would agree with you. I would say it is over-simplistic to the point of being dead wrong.
The seals represent the 72 Spirits. Those Spirits represent forces of nature. Those forces of nature have their correspondences in the human mind (example: storms often evoke melancholy). Thus, the presence of a spirit can activate the portions of the human mind to which it naturally corresponds. (And, in fact, summoning a spiritual entity properly involves manually activating the appropriate mental states to begin with, and avoiding the activation of the wrong ones.)
When one suggests that spirits, or their seals, merely represent portions of the human psyche, one is missing out on their true nature. I concede the fact that the names, images, descriptions and seals we have for any spiritual creature (even God) evolved strictly among humans- and represent our unique ape-interface with the spiritual world. *However*, the forces of nature they represent neither depend on humans for existence nor care whether we exist at all.
Great example: Our own Kathy McDonald learned about the personalities of the spirits of the seven planets by working metallurgy. (See her “Pauline Arts Adventure” – which should be in our files section.) She didn’t do it by reading psychology textbooks.
Aug 31, 2010
Greetings faithful readers!
The other day, I was watching a fun little documentary (on Discovery Science) about the human mind. IIRC, it was called “Finding My Mind.”
One short segment of the documentary really sparked my enthusiasm. In it, a scientist sat the show’s host in a chair and placed a head-mounted display (HMD) on his head. An HMD, for those that don’t know, is basically a set of goggles that present sterioscopic (3D) images to your eyes.
In this case, the goggles were not linked to a computer-generated virtual world, but were instead linked to a camera showing live footage of the real world. The camera was located in the same room as the host, positioned a few feet directly behind him.
Here is where it gets really cool. The scientist walked up to our host, obviously holding a bright red pen in his hand. He began to thrust that pen directly toward the camera (the host could see it through the goggles) while at the same time poking the host in the chest with another pen (which he could not see). The host’s brain was fooled – he felt as though he were being poked in the chest with the red pen.
Having established this mental condition, the scientist then went and retrieved a large hammer. He returned and swung the hammer with great force toward the camera. The host – still sitting several feet away from all of this- reflexively recoiled as if he were about to be struck with the hammer.
I found this exciting because it was a scientific illustration (using VR no less!) of a principal I have taught my own studients: The secret to out-of-body projection and astral travel is to simply “trick” your mind into thinking you are somewhere other than where your physical body is located. Do this enough, and the mind will eventually be able to assume this non-local state at will. I developed my method over years of trial and error, and have offered it as a course in astral travel. Students have reported results with this method within as little as a week, though in the lessions I suggest giving it at least a month. You can read it here:
Astral Vision and Travel
To accomplish the “trick”, I make use of visualization (either behind a blindfold or in a pitch-black room) coupled with repeated physical stimuli. The documentary’s virtual-reality version merely replaces the visualizations with the HMD and camera. (The physical stimuli remain.) This increased its effectiveness to the point that an utter layman achieved results after just a couple of minutes in one sitting. This has potential… 🙂
Aug 19, 2010
— In firstname.lastname@example.org, “kathy” .. wrote:
> This distinctly reminds me of something I am sure Aaron has written
>somewhere but I cant seem to find it anywhere to quote (have looked
>a few times for it in the past) about “magic happens in the space
I’ll have to look to be sure, but I’m nearly certain that is in chapter 3 of “Secrets…”
For those tuning in: This is based on the observation that personality is *not* something that resides within yourself. Instead, personality exists between yourself and someone else – literally within the matrix that forms between two minds when they interact. This is why you are a different “person” when talking to your boss than when talking to your kids, or talking to your wife, or talking to a friend, etc. (Daddy, Mr. Jones, Honey and Jonesy are all distinctly different people living in the same head. We all have multiple personalities. Someone with MPD simply has unnatrual breaks between each one.)
A second observation about human psychology is our natural tendancy to anthropomorphize nearly anything and everything. Cars, boats, buildings, appliances, toys, etc, etc, (even concepts) – we can assign a personality to anything at all. Everything has its own quirks and idiosyncrasies, which we humans recognize as personality. This leads us to interact with even inanimate objects as if they were alive- which also means we have distinct personalities even for interacting with objects/concepts.
I think these two things are what make magick possible – especially spirit communication. They say “every blade of grass has an Angel over it bidding it, ‘Grow.'” And it is our ability to interact with literally anything that allows us to communicate with those Angels (or spirits). We form that matrix between ourselves and another- animate or inanimate, incarnate or discarnate- and that allows us to interact with it on an extra-physical level.