Visualizing Magick vs. Practicing Magick

In many occult writings and texts, both online and in print, there has been an abundance of discussion concerning the use of visualization as a means to successfully using or casting magic.  This is somewhat troubling.

Here are  some examples. One spell calls to run a warm bath and add basil leaves to the bath. The more the merrier. Once the bath is full the practitioner is to step in, lie back and close their eyes. Then the practitioner is to raise their energy and visualize the basil leaves as money floating all around them. They are to repeat the process for seven days and more money will come into the practitioner’s life.

Another example is for a practitioner to close their eyes and imagine energy moving through their body and opening the Root Chakra. As they imagine the Root Chakra opening the practitioner is instructed to visualize the Chakra flooding with white light and energy. Once the visualization is complete the Root Chakra is considered open.

The trouble with these and other examples is that visualizing magic isn’t actual magic. In the same vain, visualizing weight loss isn’t actually losing weight. This isn’t to say that visualization doesn’t have its place! In fact it’s a very important tool; one that can increase the efficacy of any casting. Visualizing in extreme detail will help clarify your specified intent, but visualization is not a means to successful magic by itself.

There are good reasons to separate visualization as a key component for magic. Visualization is a limited system used to crystallize intent. Meaning you see in your minds eye how a spell or ritual will work and its desired outcome. To that end, when in the process of working magic the prime focus shouldn’t be on visualizations but rather on the energies and/or forces necessary to gain the desired outcome. The visualization process should have been worked out prior to the actual working. In essence, visualization is the prep work one would do before the  spell or ritual work begins.

Keeping the visualization process out of the picture, so to speak, is also important because visualization takes a good deal of time and work. For instance, it’s not enough to just see the process and outcome. What does the whole operation taste like, smell like and feel like? What energies  and/or forces (spirits, gods/goddess, elemental forces) will be used? These are all part of the visualization process. Many times the visualization process is not fully completed when the spell work begins which in turn diminishes expected results. On the plus side, a practitioner will generally only need to work through the visualization process once, that is if it is done correctly the first time. After the initial process the constructs for the ritual or spell are in place and the spell can be repeated many times over.

There is also the concern of  visualizing energy vs. using energy. Again the two are not the same. Energy work is something that takes time and practice. The notion that a person can simply visualize their way through it is misleading at best. Yogi’s and monks spend large portions of their lives learning how to manipulate their internal energies. It is not something that is picked up in a day of trying.

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Expanding your mind’s power

Photo by Cynergist

Photo by Cynergist

In my time I’ve developed certain exercises to help better develop my magical abilities. These exercises are akin to a musician playing the scale or playing strings of arbitrary notes. The practice won’t help them learn a new song, but it will make their song playing abilities that much better. These types of exercises are the foundation of my practice, and I hope you find use in them.

Exercise #1 : The Single Thought Exercise

This exercise is simple in theory but difficult in practice.

Objective: Think about a single concept for as long as you can without interuption.

Step 1: Clear your mind and achieve a state of no-thought. Once your brain is completely empty inject a single idea. At first make it simple. Think about a finite straight line or an empty square. How long can you hold the thought before other thoughts work their way in? If you can hold the thought for 10 seconds then do it again and work for 11 seconds.

Do step 1 for 5-10 minutes a day until you can think about a single simple concept for 2-5 minutes without interruption.

Step 2: Once you can hold a single thought for longer then 2 minutes start working on more complicated concepts. As well, assimilate simple concepts into your modes of perception. For instance, if you are thinking about a straight line then what would it sound like? What color would it be or what would it feel like? When thinking of concepts based on our senses, try and isolate each sense and think about it as long as possible.

Complete step 2 for 5-10 minutes a day.

Exercise #2: Changing Your Handwriting

Objective: Change the way your handwriting looks.

Step 1: Pick a commonly used letter (avoid x, z and q) and examine the way you write it.

Step 2: Figure out how you can write the letter differently. For instance, make the letter neater or wider for clarity.

Step 3: Once you have decided on the change always write the letter in the new fashion.

This is going to be harder then it seems. At first you will forget to make the changes to your letter because you have hardwired yourself to write that letter in it’s original way. Keep at it until you write the letter the new way 95% of the time. Once you achieve that pick another letter to change.

Exercise #3: The Emotion Game

Objective: Change your emotional state in minutes

Step 1: Find a quiet place to sit and obtain a neutral emotional state. Once you find yourself in a state of ambivalence pick an emotion that you easily relate with. Once you have chosen the emotion make yourself that emotion. If it’s happy, then make yourself so happy that you practically pee your pants. If it’s angry then get so angry that you want to break something.

At first you might need a concept to get you to the desired emotional state. For instance, if you hate politicians then you can use the thought of them to get yourself very angry.

Word of warning, do this when you are alone. Nothing is harder to explain then why you are on the floor crying in utter despair! Trust me….

Step 2: Once you have gotten into the emotional state of choosing stay in it for several minutes, then bring yourself back to neutral. To bring yourself to neutral simply sit still and breathe deep and slow.

Step 3: Once you are successful in getting in and out of one emotional state, try working on other emotions. Also, when you become proficient with a specific emotion try getting in and out of the emotional state as fast as you can and do it without using conceptual cues.

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Start working on these three exercises. Try working on them everyday for 10 minutes. I would love to hear from you if it did or didn’t help your magic workings. There are more exercises I do which I will post soon.

Good luck!

Introduction to Meditation: Finding the Void Between Thoughts

Note: This entry is for people that are looking for new ways or are having trouble with meditating and or achieving  states of no thought.

In my magical practice being able to instanty enter a meditative state is important. It makes spell casting and energy work all that much easier and time efficent. With the system I use you can easily enter into a meditative state within one to two breaths and maintain it for hours. It takes practice but with time I believe the techniques I will show you can greatly help and or enhance your magical work. Lets begin!

First, focus your awareness on your thoughts. What are you thinking about? How many separate thoughts are you having in a minute’s time span? Is your inner voice speaking in these thoughts? As you literally ponder your ponderings, start searching for where one thought ends and next thought begins. Can you sense it?

In between each thought there is a moment of no thought. Think of it as a break point between two differing thoughts. That break between thoughts is what I call the Void. That moment of Void might be as brief as a nanosecond, but it’s there. Once you can notice, on a regular basis, the moments where your thoughts end and begin, close your eyes.

With your eyes closed track your thoughts. When your next thought ends take a deep slow breath in and try to expand that break  between your last thought and the new incoming thought. Try to make that Void as wide as possible. There should be no thoughts or internal voice in the Void. Then exhale slowly, let the gap close and resume your normal thinking pattern. Repeat during your next inhale.

In the beginning you might find that you make a small gap in your thoughts only to have them flood back in less than a hundredth of a second later. This is completely normal. It just means that you can expand the distance between thoughts for a second or less. When that happens, don’t get frustrated, just find the next Void during the same inhale and repeat the process until you exhale. Every time try to make that gap just a little longer. Eventually, you will want to make the Void last one whole slow inhalation.

Find a time during the day that you can practice quietly for 3 to 5 minutes. Great times are right after you wake up, during your lunch break or right before you go to bed. You can do it once a day or fifteen times a day. Whatever you are comfortable with. The more you do it the easier it will be to create moments of no-thought.

Once you have mastered entering the Void for one whole inhalation, try entering the void during one full inhale and exhale. This should be much easier to accomplish. Once you can do that you can enter the Void at any point in time and maintain it for as long as you wish!

For now get a handle of entering the void and sustaining it. I will soon create a post that will talk about how to introduce energy into the void to begin spell work.

Good Luck!