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 Post subject: Egotism and Magick
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 1:41 pm 
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Egotism and Magick
By Israel Regardie

One of the great dangers inherent within the practice of Magic and indeed of all the occult arts -- is the development of an enormous egotism characterized by messianic feelings, infantile omnipotence and the utter destruction of any capacity for effective self-criticism.
It appears that as the student becomes more adept in the skills of meditation, skrying, or ceremonial work, he becomes more threatened by an inflation of the ego.

It appears slowly and insidiously, without apparent warning. Only those people who are closely related to or associated with the student become aware of the subtle metamorphosis that occurs.
The student rarely is conscious of the unconscious transformation. Attempting to make him aware of this egotism is doomed to failure; it is like knocking on a stone wall.

It seems to afflict the aspirant who functions outside the borders of an occcult order or legitimate magical school. In this sense, most students come within the jurisdiction of this definition.
Those who practice their occult work under the aegis of a legitimate magical body or under the guidance of an experienced and wise guru or teacher seem to be more protected from this inflation -- unless the guru has himself fallen under the spell of his own messianic fantasies and inflation. if he has, then he communicates his fatal sickness to this students, or else he is wholly blinded to the debacle about to occur to his student.

One has only to look at the history of most modern occultists and I use them preferentially because their history is more readily authenticated than those of earlier times -- to perceive how valid this phenomenon is. So many of them developed fantastice notions of their own unique importance and role in the world or even cosmic picture. Only recently I heard of one who claimed to have been the teacher of Jesus! There are an almost infinite number of variations of this theme.

It is a definite and ever present danger, and all students of occultism within or without occult orders must become conscious of this phenomenon. Otherwise they are doomed.
They experience what appears to be at first an enhancement of life-feelings, a rich harvest of previously unknown information and knowledge, and the awareness that destiny has suddenly acquired a new direction, -- only to collapse later in total frustration, ignominy, and exile from all of society.

From the theoretical viewpoint, the gradual expansion of the confines of the limited ego by magical practices, leads to contact of some kind with the 'unconscious'. A new source of energy is released, an energy which is seen as carrying with it not only new feelings but new knowledge and a greater capacity for self-confidence with the ability to impress and motivate one's fellow man. This energy floods the unprepared ego with almost infinite promise. Unless the candidate is properly prepared for this phenomenon, or is guided and guarded by a competent experienced teacher, he is likely to take this seriously. Effective self-criticism seems to have vanished in thin air.

Crowley seems to have been most conscious of this in some of his earlier work. he himself had a couple of admirable teachers -- Alan Bennett, George Cecil Jones and Oscar Eckenstein.

For example in one section of Liber O he wrote:
"This book is very easy to misunderstand; readers are asked to use the most minute critical care in the study of it, even as we have done in its preparation. In this book it is spoken of the Sephiroth and the Paths; of Spirits and Conjurations; of Gods, Spheres, Planes and many other things which may or may not exist.
It is immaterial whether these exist or not.
By doing certain things certain results will follow; students are most earnestly warned against attributing objective reality or philosophic validity to any of them.
There is little danger that any student, however idle or stupid, will fail to get some result; but there is great danger that he will be led astray, obsessed and overwhelmed by his results, even though it be by those which it is necessary that he should attain. Too often, moreover, he mistaketh the final resting-place for the goal, and taketh off his armour as if he were a victor ere the fight is well begun."


Some few other occultists familiar with the practical side of things also utter similar warnings. Blavatsky in her Voice of the Silence also warns that 'under every flower a serpent coiled.' And in a footnote in this warning, she adds: 'The astral region, the psychic world of supersensous perception and of deceptive sights -- the world of mediums. It is the great ' Astral Serpent' of Eliphas Levi. No blossom picked in those regions has ever yet been brought down to earth without its serpent coiled around the stem. It is the world of the Great Illusion.'

Only a good guru of almost superhuman powers of effective self-evaluation and examination provide the means of avoiding inflation and the consequent disaster. A third means is almost any form of good psychotherapy. The latter appears to be able to drain off the massive uncontrolled quantities of energy that are released and direct them into new and constructive goals. Those Reichians who have an understanding of 'occult' matters would appear to be more effective than most in dealing with the phenomenon.

Jung has also described it most extensively in an extraordinarily good essay in a book entitled Two Essays on Analytical Psychology. However, the methods of therapy described by Jung and practiced by his followers leave a lot to be desired. Every occult student should not merely read this book but own it, in order to provide the opportunity to read and re-read many times the chapter dealing with inflation of the ego.

It is his contention that the analyst and the patient undergoing therapy -- analogous to the enterprising student beginning his occult work -- attempts to identify his ego with the collective psyche. He does this as a means of escaping the pain and anxiety resulting from the collapse of his conscious persona or self, which is one of the primary effects of the analysis.

To free himself from the seductive embrace of the collective psyche, instead of denying it as some others have done, he accepts it so totally that he is devoured or overwhelmed by it, becomes lost in it, and thus is no longer capable of perceiving it as a separate entity.
As another student once put it, instead of realizing that they have become illuminated by "God", they affirm that they are "God".
Thus the inflation begins.
It ends disastrously when the "God" discovers he is not omniscient or omnipotent.
But by then it is generally too late.

- Israel Regardie

8-)


Hmmm.... speaking of egotism.... self pity and attention seeking are both born of the same thing.
Both use the world around them to perpetually acknowledge their own presence, but ironically will never acknowledge another.
Their common pattern is the abuse and exploitation of care...... Violence in the subtlest form.
Both live in a world of justifications, excuses, and low cunning.
More often then not, they project an inflated ego, fearful of what the world may truly come to discover at their core.

Have sight for this, and know who and what you're in contact with.


Regards,
Drache


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 Post subject: Re: Egotism and Magick
PostPosted: Mon Dec 22, 2014 6:10 am 
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" know who and what you're in contact with."

This statement just about sums it all up for me.


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 Post subject: Re: Egotism and Magick
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2014 5:24 am 
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Greetings,

In my own Workings, I keep a healthy sense of detachment from results. While I know that desire can be important in some forms of Magickal praxis, detachment from results (partially connected to the idea of Silence), usually brings the results quicker.


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 Post subject: Re: Egotism and Magick
PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2016 7:01 pm 
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Awesome post! To stop this I consciously remind myself that I am only one person of a great many people, by myself I can only focus on one thing at a time though the storehouse is full, my memory is only shorthand for what is vast. Or something like that :D

I only just decided to register, I found de Vere a few years ago while searching through family history I noticed one of my de Bohun relatives of long past was married to a de Vere and of course I expanded my search and found him. I was born with the ability to see so it was natural for me to seek where it come from, and figure out what I could do with it. I tend to have great empathy for those going through a Crisis and run to their aid, at first I found I was being used a lot but then figured out how to protect myself and still be able to help those with good character. I have tried finding a "guru" to help navigate the ins and outs, and have run into a lot of egotism and pretenders. I didn't want that to deter me from my path, I guess you could say I am driven by innate desire to fullfill my destiny or whatever. I just know that I don't feel healthy unless I am living true to my inner core. Each day I am learning something new and discarding something well worn out in other words, adding new information to expand on the old.

Thank you for this forum. I will contribute more as I read, I have a lot of things I have written down from "experiences" that have helped me to understand the vastness of what I am learning, if it is okay I would like to share and see if you all are willing to expand on the information?


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 Post subject: Re: Egotism and Magick
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2016 7:17 am 
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Welcome aboard Strangebird,

Lovely to have you here.

Please feel absolutely free to add to the existing topics or indeed to initiate new ones as you see fit.

We are always happy to have our Kindred join us here for discussion and exchanges of information.

Cordially,
VeritasVereor
SGM SD


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