ecosophia: JMG in lecture mode (Default)
[personal profile] ecosophia
John Winthrop Jr.It's getting on for midnight, so here we go with a new Magic Monday. The picture is of  John Winthrop Jr. (1606-1676), one of the first alchemists of colonial America, member of the Royal Society, and important figure in the founding of the Connecticut colony. The next time someone acts as though occultism consists solely of what was created in England between the founding of the Golden Dawn in 1887 and whenever Gerald Gardner finished penning his first Book of Shadows, I want you to think of this gentleman bending over an alchemical athanor and then checking a few lines in the writings of Hermes Trismegistus. 

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. If you're in a hurry, or suspect you may be the 354,219th person to ask a question, please check out the very rough version 1.0 of The Magic Monday FAQ here.

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 week!***

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(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 03:52 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
What are your thoughts on witch's bottles as a form of magical defense? Do you get the sense that they tend to work well?

witch's bottles

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hypnosis and will

Date: 2019-03-11 05:05 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I don't get hypnosis. People, in response to simple, boring commands or suggestions, seem to surrender their free will. From an occult perspective what is happening there? And how does it relate to will?

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The Planes of Magic

Date: 2019-03-11 05:34 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hi JMG

Have read Mystery Teachings and now working through DMH.

On which plane does magic operate?

I am up to the practices of Transform Yourself and Transform the World. I guess the first works on the Etheric plane. But when we take magic outside ourselves, are we working on a different plane?

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(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 05:40 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hi JMG,

I am coming to the end of Learning Ritual Magic (2 chapters to go) and have been pondering where to go from here.

A very quick summary of my progress: I have got a lot out of the meditation and will exercises. I had dabbled in eastern-style meditation before, but it never clicked. The discursive style meditation really works for me. As do the various types of will exercises. I think these exercises and the daily recollection exercise have had by far the biggest practical impact for me in the course.

Although I am from a nominally christian country (Australia), I had a non-religious upbringing and have never found it easy to grasp christianity either in practical terms (I never went to church) or intellectually in reading the Bible. I found the study of Fortune's "The Mystical Qabalah" to be intellectually interesting in that it filled in a number of gaps in my understanding of christianity (and also the Qabalah). However, I haven't felt any particular connection to the Hebrew or biblical names. I have definitely improved my visualisation skills in the execution of the rituals such as the Middle Pillar. But I wouldn't say I have felt anything energetically from the rituals.

I'd be grateful for any advice you have on what's the best way forward for me. In particular, I am wondering whether you think it's worthwhile to continue with self study or is joining a group a better path. Also, is it worth trying a different school at this time? I had a browse through your books on druidry and and the celtic golden dawn. I'm guessing these may resonate better with me as I have Irish ancestry.

Many thanks,
Simon

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Exiting Magical Practice

Date: 2019-03-11 05:43 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
JMG - I am not planning on exiting magical practice. But if one were to leave a regular magical practice, is there some sort of procedure for doing so safely and effectively?

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(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 06:45 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I have two astrology questions: the first is that I have a conjunction between two planets, with one in a conjunction with a third, which is not in conjunction with the first (A-B-C, but not A-C). I feel like all three are mixed together though, as if all three planets were conjunct. Is the middle planet serving as a "bridge"?

Second, you've mentioned each planet is a particular pattern of consciousness in a previous week. Do you know of any sources that discuss the matter in greater detail?

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Date: 2019-03-11 07:12 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
What is meant by "ruling planets" in astrology? I understand they're important somehow, but I don't have the faintest idea why.

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Date: 2019-03-11 07:31 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] booklover1973
JMG, you have written in your essay on reincarnation that the actions and habits in one life influence the bodies you get in your future incarnations - what does that mean? Can you name examples?

And a second question: What does unconsciousness, like during anesthesia, or after a circulatory collapse, mean in occult terms? An unconscious person is, after all, still alive and in his or her body.

(no subject)

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Supporting a clairvoyant 2 year old

Date: 2019-03-11 08:02 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Last month you helped me understand why my 2-year-old perceives people as "being" or having colors. I understand from you that clairvoyance is common in young children, but also that my daughter may have a "considerable" capacity for it (evidenced by her already perceiving emotional patterns as well as the basic tone.)
Over the last weeks I've had much to process, and often started drafting "Magic Monday" questions, only to realize that getting my answers is going to be a journey, or that the questions were better directed to the diety I serve.

I've now landed on a quandry I hope is appropriate to bring to this forum.
My daughter is very sensitive to others' emotions, even if not directed at her. I notice it in the way it influences her behavior.
My family situation is fraught with emotion. Most significant is that my father (who is in his mid-50s and lives in another state) has incureable, but currently stable, cancer; his wife died quite suddenly and unexpectedly 3 months ago; and their two children are still quite young: ages 7 and 14.
Naturally, I find this situation emotionally distressing, but I cope with it well enough. However, when I am talking to a caring friend about this matter, or any unhappy matter, despite all my outward calm and composure, my child becomes agitated, starts acting out to distract me, and if I persist in my conversation anyway, will whine and yell: "Dont talk about! You MAY NOT talk about!" (She doesnt specify about "what", but the "what" is clearly any topic that causes me distress.) Since it affects her so much, I now avoid talking or even thinking too much about unhappy things.(I figure this is an untenable long term solution and that suppressing my emotion is not healthy for me, but for the moment it's the bandaid I'm using.)
Also, my daughter sleeps in the same bed as me, and has since infancy. If I lay awake silently ruminating on upsetting things, it disturbs her. She will flail or even wake up.
1. Is there advice/resources you or your readers can offer, in how to support a clairvoyent child faced with stressful stimuli?
2. Is it possible to do something that could turn down the intensity for her (and if it is possible, is it adviseable)?
3. Are there coping mechanisms that could be applied or taught to a not quite 2.5 year old? She is quite bright for her age but still very much a little child.
4. Am I being excessively concerned? She is a toddler, and many things greatly upset a toddler but are not harmful to them (being told "no" is the principle example here).

Relevant observations/information-
Things that have helped: Long hugs, Singing, Diversions, especially humorous ones (saying a silly nonsense phrase and laughing), Rhyming

Things that dont seem to work at this time: Deep breaths, counting, talking/reasoning

Also- shifts in attitudes/worldviews notwithstanding- because of vows I have made, the following are things I cannot participate in, neither directly nor via proxy: divination, astrology, ritual magic. I would include things like Sphere of Protection/invoking/banishing in the list of things I have barred myself from doing.

I dont at this point feel comfortable with meditation outside of the way I do it for my personal spiritual practice. (Which seems at least superficially similar to discursive meditation. I dont understand discursive meditation enough to truly compare it to what I do)

I apologize for bringing up so many limits, but I feel it's important that I honor my vows until/unless my God tells me I'm free of them.

I am inclined to think that natural magic is fine. Prayer is a very comfortable practice for me.

Thank you again for this opportunity to ask questions.


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Nature's attitude towards humans.

Date: 2019-03-11 08:03 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] sea_spray
Hi JMG and others

I would like to hear if other people are having a particular experience. Several times now when trying to commune with nature, and trying to gauge the attitude of a part of nature towards humans, I got a response like "they're annoying but they'll be gone soon". I'm not sure if it's humans or the annoying actions that will be gone soon.

Has anyone else had similar experiences and/or any insights? I guess it would vary with location a lot though. This was in Christchurch NZ.

Thanks all.

Re: Nature's attitude towards humans.

Date: 2019-03-11 09:35 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Yes! I have a plot of land in the mountain, I inherited from my father, where I have been planting trees for the last 20 years, and to which I had been devoting lots of affection only intervening to plant and protect from forest fires in the summer. Since last year the place have been telling me to let go, not with hostility but I don't fill as welcomed anymore...

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Meditation/Prayer/Journaling

Date: 2019-03-11 08:21 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
When doing discursive meditation, is there a place for listening - to a deity, more evolved being or other voices -, or is it purely about developing your own thoughts?

And, can candidates in AODA use discursive meditation for questions of personal life, or is it purely for spiritual and environmental questions? Is journaling better suited for personal questions?

Saturn Transition

Date: 2019-03-11 08:22 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Dear Archdruid,

I’m currently living through an opposition of Saturn to my natal sun, shortly after Saturn’s second opposition to its natal position. I’m trying to face my issues, and transience in general. I also work on consolidating and cleansing the areas of my life that seem to need it most. What else can I do, on a magical/spiritual level, to help me with this depressing and sobering transit? (Neptune’s up next with Transits to a lot of my birth planets)

Thank you for your help and your immense knowledge

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Goetic entities/ Children and magic

Date: 2019-03-11 09:05 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
1. From your book Circles of Power:

"Finally, many of the older grimoires and a few books that are more recent discuss the evocation of demons. Here the best advice is a single word: don't. " Do you still agree with this? What are your thoughts on the work of Jake Stratton Kent et al who believe these beings are less evil and Qlipothic and more sub-lunary or terrestrial spirits (that is, they belong to a different hierarchy than the celestial, they are closer to the earth and therefore more useful for material matters although perhaps a little wild)?

2. Are there any dangers to a young child occasionally being in the vicinity of a place where magic is practised (Goetic or otherwise)?

3. I know that in your FAQ that you suggest pregnant mothers and parents of children under the age of 3 avoid most magic, but what are your thoughts on them (parents or children) purchasing and wearing consecrated talismans of, say, planetary powers?

Obrigado!

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(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 09:55 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I've recently put my tarot cards into plastic slips to protect them and make them easier to shuffle. Noting what you've said previously about plastic having a death energy, am I harming my divinations by doing so?

(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 10:08 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I just received a set of Ogham cards in the mail (by Liz and Colin Murray), and the order of the fews in the first aicme are different than those in the Druid Magic Handbook. Namely, in the cards I received, Fearn has 3 ticks, Saille 4, and Nuin has 5 ticks, whereas in the DMH, Nuin has 3 ticks, Fearn 4, and Saille 5.

Will this difference affect anything I do in the DMH exercises?

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Date: 2019-03-11 11:00 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hi JMG,

A friend of mine finds herself in a pickle of the kind seemingly best addressed by natural magic, specifically hoodoo, but I'm far too amateur to be able to advise her. Very generally, she's trying to divorce an abusive sociopath, but his delusional behavior and insane demands are making the process extremely difficult; her health has been suffering as a result of the stress. A nine-year old child is involved as well, a very sweet kid by nature, but who is now extremely confused and anxious and subject to fits of anger. She has been using a Venus and a Saturn talisman respectively to wonderful effect, but her successes only enrage the other party further, and he keeps up a steady stream of insults and threats via text message, promising blackmail.

Needless to say, such behavior is fairly illegal during a divorce proceedings, but he's usually been successful at bullying her (and many others, including work colleagues) into submission in the past, and so will never let up of his own accord. There's no question she'll win in court, but that's at least a year off; in the meantime she's just exhausted and needs a buffer. Because shared child custody is involved, however, she's obliged to be in regular contact with him via text message and occasionally physically (such encounters always leave her shaking), so I assume a simple operation for cleanly severing relations isn't possible in this case. The Saturn talisman in particular has enabled her to stand her ground, which she was unable to do before. But what hoodoo operation(s) would you recommend to break or at least deflect her ex's singleminded obsession with making her suffer?

Many thanks for Magic Mondays!

(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 11:45 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] isabelcooper
Is there a specific magical method you'd recommend for staying more in the present moment/physically aware, and/or for shutting down an internal tendency to try and translate everything into words? The internal monologue is very useful sometimes, but there are definitely situations in which I feel like it's doing me no favors--moments where I'd like to be fully present without my mind's usual distractions, or chains of thought I'd really like to stop going off on.

Thanks!

(no subject)

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(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 12:24 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Acrhdruid,

In the DMH SOP, in the first gate you suggest to use the language "my I receive the blessings of air" but on the other elemental gates you use the language "may I receive the blessings of this day."

Is it because air is a tricky element to work with compressed to a single day?

Thank you as always.

(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 01:17 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
John--

On your recommendation to go through an introductory work prior to tackling The Secret Doctrine and Isis Unveiled, I am currently reading The Ocean of Theosophy by William Q. Judge. i'm only part-wayin, but a couple of questions at this point:

1) He references Esoteric Buddhism by A.P. Sinnett. Would this also be something to read prior to attempting Madame Blavastky's major works?

2) More of a comment, I suppose. The mention of the days and nights of Brahman caught my attention, as they paralleled the notion of the Cosmic Days and Nights we are discussing with Fortune. But, as I recall, you'd mentioned that Fortune had drawn from Theosophical teachings, so this ought not be surprising. (Similarly, the seven-fold structure within a seven-fold structure of the root races and sub-races paralleled the seven planes and their seven sub-planes.)

3) Finally, I've come across two other seven-fold structures mentioned which one could aligned with the seven levels of the Tree of Life:

Sephiroth -- Divisions of the Universe (ch 2) -- Parts of Man (ch 4)
Malkuth Life Body
Yesod Akasa/Aether Vitality
Hod/Netzach Will Astral Body
Tiphareth Matter Animal Soul
Geborah/Chesed Mind Human Soul
Binah/Chochmah Spirit Spiritual Soul
Kether Absolute Spirit

Moreover, the description of Man (human) as body, soul, and spirit would suggest a 3-3-1 structure (?) Body = Body + Vitality + Astral Body, Soul = Animal Soul + Human Soul + Spiritual Soul, and Spirit = Spirit.

Are these associations consistent with your understanding of the broader teachings, or am I correlating random noise here? (Admittedly, I tend to look for mathematical structure, in part due to my training...)

Many thanks.

David BTL

(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 06:02 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
My attempt to create a table failed miserably, as the spacing was erased. Here's a second version, perhaps a bit clearer:

Sephiroth -- Divisions of the Universe (ch 2) -- Parts of Man (ch 4)
Malkuth --Life -- Body
Yesod -- Akasa/Aether -- Vitality
Hod/Netzach -- Will -- Astral Body
Tiphareth -- Matter -- Animal Soul
Geborah/Chesed -- Mind -- Human Soul
Binah/Chochmah -- Spirit -- Spiritual Soul
Kether -- Absolute -- Spirit

David BTL

Old Sources

Date: 2019-03-11 01:32 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Dear Archdruid,

I am interested in old Revival Druidry books. Preferably Welsh-tradition-based, but really just looking to broaden my spiritual horizons!
I have the works of Iolo Morganwg, Lewis Spence's writings, and related things like Au Pied de la Menhirs by Ambelain. I've been through The White Goddess and the Mabinogion.

Of course the AODA works with (Welsh) Revival Druidry, as does the DOGD. I've heard that the OBOD has mostly distanced itself from these roots.

Is there anything else you can recommend?

Yours in Druidry,
Brigyn


ps: Archdruid, do you happen to be familiar with "The Kolbrin Book", sometimes called "The Kolbrin Bible"? It drew my attention because it's the first time I've heard the word Kolbrin/Coelbren outside of Iolo's context!

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(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 01:51 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
If you could influence the time and place of the founding of a new nation, what sort of astrological influences would you look for?

just my imagination

Date: 2019-03-11 01:54 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hi JMG
Many years ago I went to a hypnotist who was offering past life regressions. I managed to come up with some lives but I wonder if they were really my past lives. Could they have been someone else’s or maybe just my imagination as I was in a suggestible state? Is the only safe way to access past lives if they spontaneously emerge as a result of meditation? Is hypnosis always a bad idea even when it’s for things like stopping smoking or overeating?

Also, if someone is paying a rootworker to do negative workings does the raspberry jam land on both of them? What if the professional is taking regular hoodoo baths and other protective measures?
Many thanks.

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(no subject)

Date: 2019-03-11 01:58 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Why does Neptune govern socialism but Pluto gets revolutionary Marxism?

This question sounds like the setup to a Radio Yerevan joke. :)

The Inverted Neighborhood

Date: 2019-03-11 02:13 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
No luck finding anything via the web-search route, but perhaps someone here has some insight?

There is a neighborhood in my midsized town that invariably, EVERY TIME I go there, flips my internal compass 180 degrees. This is the town I grew up in; I know it like the back of my hand. I visit this neighborhood semi-regularly, as my Dad's church and a reliable mechanic are located there. It had this effect on me even when I was a small child, and had no sense of direction to speak of, because I was not required to navigate anywhere. But when we'd drive through there, I KNEW, absolutely and for certain, that we were going the wrong way. Right up until we came out the other side.

To this day, when I have to drive that stretch for any reason-- passing through (it covers about six blocks along a main traffic artery), visiting Dad's church, etc.-- I can know exactly which way I'm going and where I'm headed, and as soon as I enter "the zone" I have to white-knuckle it through in order not to turn the car around and go the other way, because I am totally convinced, for that stretch, that I'm going North, when I should be going South, or vice-versa. When I go to Dad's church, I always look for it on the wrong side of the road (and miss the turn, and have to double back), and inevitably turn the wrong way out of the parking lot when I leave.

The place doesn't have this effect on anyone else in my family. Any of y'all had similar experiences, or know what might cause such a thing?

I'm not ruling out that it could be my own neurological quirk. Just curious if it exists anywhere outside my neurons ;)

Re: The Inverted Neighborhood

Date: 2019-03-11 06:40 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Certainly some people can get strange feelings in some places! Personally, I had something somewhat similar: there is a city I once lived in where I had the habit of driving the left side of the road (!!!) because I was sure that I was driving in a former British colony where “left” is “right” (fortunately it was not a busy street). Also, there is a substantial part of the city I live in that I find oppressively dark – all along a particular river valley – which I am certain was the scene of some horrible mass carnage (so far, I have not found historical evidence of it, but there were extremely few settlers here pre-1800 so it could be the Iroquois extermination of the Neutrals and Hurons). The other thing that comes to my mind is John Keel’s description early in The Mothman Prophecies of a stretch of road in the “TNT area” of Point Pleasant where he experienced abject terror for no explicable reason: a few steps before or beyond this “zone” and he felt fine, but within this “zone” he was totally freaked-out.

Ron M

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Hermes Trismegistus

Date: 2019-03-11 02:16 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Who or what is or was Hermes Trismegistus?
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