ecosophia: JMG in lecture mode (Default)
[personal profile] ecosophia
Rudolf SteinerIt's getting on for midnight, so here we go with a new Magic Monday. The picture is of Rudolf Steiner, arguably the deepest thinker to come out of the Theosophical movement of the late 19th and early 20th century, and founder of his own movement, Anthroposophy, which still thrives today. 

Ask me anything about occultism and I'll do my best to answer it. Any question received by midnight Monday Eastern time will get an answer, though it may be Tuesday sometime before I get to them all.

I've had several people ask about tipping me for answers here, and though I certainly don't require that I won't turn it down. You can use the button below to access my online tip jar.  

With that said, have at it! 

***This Magic Monday is now closed to new questions. See you next Monday!***

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Not much of a question but a small anecdote

Date: 2018-12-24 04:58 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
There's two main writings that got me into the occult. Steiner's Theosophy, which made me think "wow, there really is something beyond the material world!", and the well of galabes, which made me think "wow, people actually practice these things on this very day and age. Magic is real!"


Ps. Thanks for your advice on the jupiter talisman!

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Emotions Again

Date: 2018-12-24 05:01 am (UTC)
packshaud: Photography of my cat. (Default)
From: [personal profile] packshaud
This is a leftover from last week.

You said that there are internal and external emotions. How do we tell which is which?

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Mirror Cleaning

Date: 2018-12-24 05:31 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Do you have any opinions on how to clean mirrors? I ask because I use vinegar and you have made comments about vinegar's effects on the non-corporeal. I also ask because of the concepts of vampires and mirror-divination.

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Marian apparitions

Date: 2018-12-24 06:04 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
JMG, Happy Holidays to you -

I'm wondering what you think of Marian apparitions, which have continued to occur through the 19th and 20th centuries, right up until this past June in Knock, Ireland - a 12 old boy visiting Lourdes, I believe, evidently received divine word that there'd be a Marian manifestation at Knock, and when the prophesied date came, sure enough, there appeared - witnessed by many - the "dancing, elongated sun" associated with many modern supernatural Marian events. Though the Church hasn't signed off on all the Marian apparitions, many of the Church-sanctioned ones, modern-day ones included, have evidently involved miraculous healings. I think in some ways, the Marian phenomena is an echo of a Medieval spirituality in which divine miracles occur with some regularity. Talk about flying in the face of modern cultural conventions ...

Harking back to your speculation that the resonating power of Jesus Christ may not be what it once was - a speculation which made sense to me, given everything that's happened to Christianity post- Nietzsche - I'm thinking of some aspiring Christians I've known who've told me that they seem to they seem to receive zip when praying/meditating on Jesus .... but they emphatically receive when praying to and meditating on the figure and image of Mary. So I'm wondering if perhaps Mary is the evolving "new face" of Christianity. This would compliment the relatively recent awareness of the "Eternal Feminine", perhaps a spiritual high point of such in contrast to the risibility of much of contemporary feminism. This might also prove to be a more feminine aspect of Christianity that could eventually result in an ecosophia-friendly outlook to nature, the earth, and our responsibilities therein. Perhaps the veneration of Mary might evolve into something that goes considerably beyond the scope of what has been thought of as Christianity?

Question 2 - Is there such a thing as a "Druid mystic"? Or are all Druids expected to be aspiring mages?

Thanks, Will M

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Day/night cycle, and

Date: 2018-12-24 06:19 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
1: Given the relationship to the day/night cycle and pineal gland, would any occult traditions have anything to say about the implications of regular use of melatonin to harmonize a genetic sleep disorder with the 24 hour day? Alternatively, any ideas about dealing with an internal rhythm that tries to run on a cycle of longer than 26 hours?

2: Correct me if I'm wrong, but you've described druidry as being for people who, loosely paraphrasing, see the creative power of the universe strongest in the nonhuman living world. Are there traditions that take a similar approach to seeing the creative power of the universe at larger scales, the stars and planets et al? Or is that just too big and far removed from creatures such as we to be anything but one's nightly dose of humility?

(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 06:28 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

1. When doing my nightly banshing, I currently stand beside my bed and turn to make each of the pentagrams. (My room is a bit cluttered.) Is this fine, or do I need to walk to each wall of the room to banish the whole space?

2. Earlier this year, I tried Gareth Knights training course and ran into trouble with it, which I talked about on here, and which you attributed to his lack of a banishing ritual. If I did a LBRP immediately before doing one if Knight's workings, would that solve the issue?

2 and 1/2. To what extent are Learning Ritual Magic and Experience of the Inner Worlds similar? Reading your description of the Middle Pillar exercise, tiu say it awakens the body's energy centers, and it seems to me like Knight's initial workings try to do the same thing. He has one working that seems to involve calling energy down, another that involves calling it up from below, another that involves the heart center, etc. It almost seems like he's breaking the Middle Pillar into stages. Am I understanding this correctly? Also, what would you say are the other major differences? I'm trying to decide which one to wirk with for the next year or so.

3. At a family gathering today, my grandfather was talking about a friend of his whose wife recently died. Apparently, this person pulls up a chair next to his wife's grave and talks to her, and claims she answers back. Everyone around the table dismissed this man as delusional, but thinking about it, I wonder if he actually is interacting with his wife (or something pretending to be his wife).

(no subject)

From: [personal profile] robertmathiesen - Date: 2018-12-25 01:18 am (UTC) - Expand

(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 06:52 am (UTC)
jenrichardson: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jenrichardson
Your thoughts on hauntings—a real thing? What actually are they? How to get rid of them? Other thoughts on the subject?

(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 08:30 pm (UTC)
packshaud: Photography of my cat. (Default)
From: [personal profile] packshaud
You can read the ghosts chapter of Greer's Monsters; the first edition is available for digital loaning at The Open Library. There are updates and new chapters in the second edition, but not in the ghosts section.

Ghosts are a complex phenomenon, too large even for a post. You should refer to the book, and then follow the Annotated Bibliography.

(no subject)

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Date: 2018-12-24 08:31 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
What is the current state of the art of warrior spirituality? Do you have any book recommendations regarding it?

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warrior spirituality

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Date: 2018-12-24 10:05 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I'm agnostic on the question of magic. On one hand, I'm not hubristic enough to say I understand consciousness, but on the other, working magic is a pretty big claim. However, it's obvious that a properly focused mind is a powerful thing, and whether magic works or not, what you call Raspberry Jam Principle certainly does.

It seems to me that working with associations in highly concentrated state might, due to RJP, sensitize your mind to those in everyday life. Coincidences that would normally go unnoticed or merely elicit a "huh, that was weird" shrug, would be more likely to get noticed and labeled meaningful. So, the actual question: Is this in your experience a potential pitfall, and how do you distinguish between actual synchronicities and false alarms?

I'll probably start experimenting with blessings once I've trained my concentration some more. In a way it doesn't matter if those actually do anything. Still, I'd rather not get caught up in cosmic dramas of my own creation.

Re: Synchronicity

Date: 2018-12-24 08:39 pm (UTC)
packshaud: Photography of my cat. (Default)
From: [personal profile] packshaud
If something happens twice, it is a coincidence; if three or more times, you should start paying attention.

You can borrow Synchronicity: an acausal connecting principle by Carl Jung from the Open Library.

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Mirror Magic

Date: 2018-12-24 11:49 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

Today you mentioned mirror magic.

(1) What is it all about?

(2) What are the occult dimensions of mirrors?


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Being and becoming

Date: 2018-12-24 01:06 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
In Paths of Wisdom you wrote 'it's possible to be a magician, or to become one-but not both.' I've tried parsing that out, and I'm not quite certain I follow. How do you know you 'are' a magician? Can you claim the title as soon as you start practicing, after a year, whenever you are visited by the Elder Gods [rec'd the first Weird of Hali for Yule, count me as hooked. Can't wait to get my hands on volume 2...]. Happy all, and JMG-thank you so much for Magic Monday. Having someplace to go where this is taken seriously [and not solemnly] is a godsend.


Date: 2018-12-24 01:25 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Merry Xmas Adjmg!
1. Could you give a succinct definition of “occult”?
2. And, I know circumcising on one level is a tribal marker, but could it also be seen as a sacrifice to a Bronze Age Levantine god?


At Last!

Date: 2018-12-24 01:59 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] saturns_pet

I cast some charts about my arts. They showed that I would get an inflow of help that could help me to begin new long journeys in arts. Then, while suffering some Saturday Blues, I found your last post named A Field Guide to the Great Old Ones...

At last you have done it! I wondered if you would. You have seemed to me to be well qualified to match terms from the fiction with terms of the Tree.

I aim to use your great gift to explore the parts and harmonies of the human being and then express my findings in spook-tacular styles of art.

Would you consider your books Paths of Wisdom and The Celtic Golden Dawn to be useful references to use in coordination with your Field Guide and the fiction for such a purpose? Specifically I wish to know if I would err by generally corresponding the parts of the human being in those books with the principles termed in your eldritch schematic. :)

Saturn's Pet

PS: Expect a donation.

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(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 02:18 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
A question regarding the instructions for the inner plane exercise in LRM: On page 231 it says to perform the LBRP while standing behind the chair facing east. If I'm understanding correctly this would place the chair in such a way as to create a barrier to waking to the east to begin the circumambulation of the space to be banished. The conclusion I've reached is that for the inner plane exercise the LRBP is meant to performed while standing in one spot while pivoting on a dimed axis. Is this the idea?

(no subject)

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2018-12-25 12:14 am (UTC) - Expand

Alan Moore

Date: 2018-12-24 02:26 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

I commented on the Cthulhu/Kabbalah thread and referenced Alan Moore. It made me wonder, what are you're thoughts are on that rather public occult author of fiction who has also written in the mythos?


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(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 02:27 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Would you recommend that beginners at magic start by learning a system of natural magic, a system of ritual magic, or one that combines the two? Or, to phrase it a bit better (since the answer probably depends on the particular individual), do you have any advice on how a beginner can determine whether natural magic or ritual magic is a better starting point for them?

question about Grail working

Date: 2018-12-24 02:29 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] slclaire

I find that color breathing is easier to do when I imagine my eyes and at least part of my mind (I'm not sure how much) are located in the solar plexus. Then I can see the color rushing in or out and direct it through the rest of the body appropriately, instead of attempting to see this from above, which never worked very well.

In the last week or so, I spontaneously started doing a similar thing during the Grail working. I think what I am doing is forming the intention into a sort of mind of its own and putting that into the ball of light in the solar plexus, along with eyes that can see out into the ball. Then when I expand the intention out into the cosmos, the eyes watch it doing so to make sure it expands evenly.

Even though it's hard to put what I'm doing into language (I don't know if this is true of other languages, but it's hard to describe some occult experiences in English), I hope I have been able to do so well enough to ask you if this is OK to do. It isn't what I was doing at first, which was the more usual mundane experience of orchestrating events from the perspective of the inside of my head. And while I suspect it's OK, I figured now is a good time to ask, before I get too strong a habit formed around it.

BTW, I was really glad I was reading The Weird of Hali: Kingsport at home when I got to the scary scene, because it was really, really scary, to the point I would not have wanted anyone seeing me while I was reading it. I think your youth was more than sufficiently misspent to be able to write something that frightening. I'm looking forward to the rest of the series!

Re: question about Grail working

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(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 02:33 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Is there any downside to using night vinegar for protection long-term? Does it cause any problems or block out any positive influences you would want to be exposed to?

(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 02:46 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
You've said when people start doing ceremonial magic it makes them visible to some entities, so they have to take steps to conceal themselves. Is the same true for natural magic? I'm under every kind of protection you've described - night vinegar, weekly hoodoo bath, cut and clear spell, witch bottle, and amulet. My most recent was a hoodoo floor wash. There was some mix left over so I used it on the car, hopefully as a kind of Gremlin-B-Gone (trademark, copyright, patent pending). :) What will my house look like from the spirit world now? Will it look perfectly normal until something tries some nefarious deed and gets an unexpected suprise? Or will it look like the house is surrounded by barbed wire and signs saying 'ACHTUNG MINEN!'? :)

Solstice birth

Date: 2018-12-24 04:13 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Is there any astrological or occult significance to being born on the winter solstice? I've always thought it was interesting, but lately have been wondering if there is anything more to it.

(no subject)

Date: 2018-12-24 05:14 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

What is the significance of the difference in layout of paths between the Jewish and occult Trees of Life? The former has Binah-Chesed and Chokmah-Geborah paths, but lacks the Malkuth-Hod and Malkuth-Netzach paths. Was this a historical development or are there deeper reasons underlying the differences?

David BTL

Golden Dawn-Style Druidry

Date: 2018-12-24 05:45 pm (UTC)
wildernesschurch: (Default)
From: [personal profile] wildernesschurch
You wrote The Druidry Handbook as a guide to a spiritual practice of druidry; you filled it with both traditional revival druid material as well as more present-day practices used by the AODA. All of this, as I understand, was mainly designed for the spiritual benefit and growth of the practitioner, and could be practiced alone.

You followed this up with The Druid Magic Handbook, which used much of the same imagery as the DH but re-worked into a strictly magical practice. You mentioned in that book that the magical system was best practiced along with a spiritual druid practice such as that found in the DH, although it wasn't strictly necessary.

My question is, what if someone wanted to do the same thing in reverse with the material in the Celtic Golden Dawn? That is, suppose someone practicing the magical system in the CGD wanted to back-engineer a spiritual system of druidry using the same symbolism and philosophy? Obviously, that person would be already meditating on the 3 rays, the Welsh Tree of Life, the three realms, etc. And it would be simple to add, for instance, practices of nature study and awareness, ecologically sensible practices and so on. Would you suggest, for instance, renaming the sun, moon, and earth paths since that imagery is used in a slightly different way in the CGD? Maybe assign them instead to the right, left, and central rays of the Tree?

One specific thing I'm wondering about is what the seasonal celebrations. The template grove ritual given in the DH is the also the one used in the DMH which is analogous to the Temple ritual in the GD. Yet in the CGD, the equinox and solstice rituals aren't to be practiced until the Druid Grade. If one wanted to observe seasonal celebrations as part of a spiritual druid practice along with their magical work in the CGD, what would you suggest? Just adding a little bit of seasonal material to the temple ritual that is appropriate to their current grade? Or would it be okay to use the full-blown equinox and solstice rituals even if one isn't ready to fully experience their magical dimensions?
Edited Date: 2018-12-24 05:46 pm (UTC)


Date: 2018-12-24 05:56 pm (UTC)
kimberlysteele: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kimberlysteele
When I perform the Sphere of Protection and do the Earth corner stuff, Elen often has a distinctly Mary-ish vibe, for instance this morning. I was raised Protestant, so it doesn't seem to have anything to do with my upbringing. I'm planning on putting a small outdoor shrine to Mary in my garden this year, but secretly it will be a shrine to Elen.

The Fews

Date: 2018-12-24 06:45 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] syfen

So a few weeks ago I had a sudden shift in my magical practice, I thought up four major themes for discursive meditation and I can feel the different variations of prana during my SoP. I'm still struggling with the discursive, since my mind seems unable or unwilling to quite down. However I'm content with small steps, so I'm not getting discouraged. I also started memorizing the Fews to improve my divination. As I memorize them I notice that the Fews each seem to have a distinct personality, is that accurate? Like I try to talk to them, and they seem to respond like people.

I've also noticed that both the Druidry Handbook and the Druidry magic Handbook suddenly have...folds and cracks in them. The books aren't physically damaged, it just seems there's stuff hidden behind the things you've written. I close my eyes over a page and it seems like I'm starting at a wall with a hundred cracks, and peering into each crack seems to open up to a different...something. Is this supposed to happen?


Edited Date: 2018-12-24 09:10 pm (UTC)

Re: The Fews

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Magic and Children

Date: 2018-12-24 06:47 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

I've seen you mention a couple of times that magic and kids don't mix, which makes some sense to me, but I was wondering if there was a specific reason why?

My youngest just turned 4 so I guess I have a while to go still before I do anything. I've never done anything other than LBRP in the house since any of my kids were born, but is even that too much?

Re: Magic and Children

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