QUOTE(bym @ Jul 20 2007, 09:46 PM)
Interesting posts...but I disagree with the majority of Demonaltry as put forth by its relatively modern origin(s). IMHO, of course.
It should be of interesting note that one may consider the element Radium as not being particularily evil but upon exsposure to it we tend to sicken and die. Not all 'spiritual' presences are safe for human beings to be around without special equipment. (Side Note: In the conjuring of 'demons' one doesn't thank the demon...ever, or, at least, whilst using Solomonic/Goetic Evocation form. That would be acknowledging that the 'demon' was on par with the Creator, which is something that the magician identifies with in order to compell the demons subservience. It is not recognized as acceptable practice within the Judeo/Christian format. I know that that paradigm is contrary to Demonaltry.)
I've often alluded to a Newage convenience that is rife these days, that of intimate familiarity with powerful spirits. In my experience, as human, that when I make contact with various spiritual entities is one of awe and wonder. My brush with Lucifer was terrifying and totally awe-inspiring.(Gee-contact with a ghost have terrified poor slobs to death
!) If it sounds human, looks human and thinks human, it most likely is human. I think there are alot of people that experience mental facets of themselves/human condition that take the image/role of these beings. LOL! I also know more than a dozen of people that swear that they have had tea with Lucifer! Let me tell you that contact with spiritual beings is a rarity rather than a commonplace occurence! I am old fashioned in my thinking. The face of God(or his Angels) supposedly turned Lots wife into a pillar of salt...what makes you think that exposure to a diety would have little to no impact? We, as humans, anthropomorphise nature and spirit. It makes us feel comfortable. These are but Masks used to facilitate communication. Again, IMHO. This debate won't end, it has been revolving for centuries. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/bigwink.gif
I'm kinda necro-ing an old thread here, but I found this post pretty interesting (both out of agreement and disagreement (IMG:style_emoticons/default/wink.gif
I don't think that the "holier than thou" approach of interacting with angels/demons acting though borrowed authority by supposedly being one of God's spoiled brats... is necessarily the only valid approach, or even the preferred one. I realize it is traditional western esoteric cannon, but that isn't (and should not be) the unquestioned last word on anything.
I'm not saying that I disagree with that approach outright. But there are other ways of looking at it. For example, it is normally just 'assumed' that if you use the right symbols and words, you will be granted extended authority via YHWH (or YHVH if you like modern typos). I think that is an intensely naive approach. In my experience, regarding the wielding of another being's authority, you ain't got jack sh** unless you're on fairly intimate terms with the being who's authority you're borrowing, and you have been explicitly told you have said authority. I find that in western esoteric traditions many people tend to view the hebrew god as a sort of equation, "if you plug in the right numbers you get the desired result" and don't particularly bother with interacting with that deity on a more personal or intimate level. And then they turn around and criticize chaotes for just trying to borrow power and not put anything of themselves into the paths they borrow from... oy.
I mean, the people who invented that egregore-deity, actually rather hated gentiles... and I don't think it's overtly programmed to be anyone's personal magical power granting toy either (note that miracles are always implicitly "his will", at least when they work, not joe blow's will).
As a former devout christian, I just find most western esoteric approaches to 'god' as being rather like "dabbling in something that seems kinda cool and ancient", and largely failing to actually engage the potent forces which exist in that paradigm.
Anyway, I am a *former* christian. In my current religious inclination, I actually feel nothing but contempt for the deity of the hebrews. People get suckered all the time, but that paradigmatic virus suckered me for a long time, and I do harbor a grudge. So... obviously I won't be calling on YHWH anytime soon to interact with "demons" (and i use that term loosely). For that matter, I don't even accept the notion of hierarchies in heaven & hell, angels, demons, etc. I threw the baby out because it was rotten and untrue, why would I cling to the bathwater associated with it? I could say the same thing of kabbalah, or even theistic satanism. They are essentially trappings of a western monotheistic belief structure which I do not hold to be true.
Granted, that means that the whole solomonic magical system is basically 'rubbish' in my paradigm. But I do oh so enjoy interacting with nonhuman-nonphysical entities. You could even say I prefer it to interacting with people (not that i'm outwardly antisocial or anything). Let's just say I see eye to eye with most entities' relatively low opinion of my species. So then, if I'd rather flip YHWH the bird than perform a quabbalistic cross, how do I go about interacting with entities?
Well, 'll say that the greatest single tool I have found in summoning, is 'respect'. Respect for the entity, and respect for oneself.
Incidentally the respect for oneself part precludes "worshiping" any being, no matter who they are. So perhaps I'd make a poor demonalatrist.
Bear in mind that I place 'respect' at the very top of the list, even though
i actually DO have a very potent form of extended authority which I can invoke. I consider 'invoking external power' to be "plan b" (actually more like plan 'd' or 'e'). I honestly do not feel comfortable running around invoking granted authority frivolously, it's not a toy. It would be vaguely disrespectful to the one granting said authority, whom I love, and will not dishonor. It is my greatest aspiration to be more like her, and one does not do that by using her as a crutch. One does it by becoming stronger in their own right, and emulating her (not borrowing her power). So I regard borrowed authority as an ace up the sleeve, and a last resort.
As for familiarity in dealing with entities or deities... I say "why not?". I mean, I do understand that if you are leveraging control over a spiritual interaction, through an invocation of YHWH's power (whether based on any actual relationship there, or purely as a magic feather in one's cap), that you wouldn't want to psychologically weaken that position. Actually now that I think about it, being congenial would only weaken your position if you're using God as a magic feather in your cap, a psychological mechanism of sorts. If you had actual authority, there would be no call for being 'bossy' about it. But anyway, I understand that it can be a tool to maintain a psychological facade and not weaken that position. But it's so very much *not* the only way to go about things. Personally, I feel like most western esoteric summoning methods are egotistical in the extreme (and coming from me that's really saying something).
If you can't say "please" and "thank you" even to a servant, then you don't have any real power, you're just playing junior megalomaniac. Brandishing power is generally the realm of hidden (or even subconscious) insecurity. Real power tends to be inconspicuous. And speaking as someone who's worked a great deal in the service industry, "please" and "thank you" will get you a lot better service, regardless of how well you may or may not tip.
As for the 'impressiveness' of various beings... yeah, I get what you mean, but it's something you can kinda get accustomed to. I had 'routine' experience with "demons" (by that I simply mean 'unfriendly entities of nonhuman nature') when I was still a small child. I can remember being psychologically tormented by them relentlessly. It was a nightly occurrence for many years. Basically in me they simply saw someone who could perceive them, and they could "get a rise outa me", so they took full advantage. But you grow up, and you grow out of being fearful. Eventually you may come to discard fear entirely (yes really). So then what? Something comes along which is 'scary' or has a threatening demeanor... what do you say to that? For a while I'd mock it, you know "oooh ahhh, so scary!". But that gets old. At a certain point in my magical development, I took advantage of the ability to be threatening *back* at the entity. I guess you could call that a "scarier than thou" approach (instead of "holier"). But even that gets old. Eventually I got to the point where I didn't care about the retarded chip on their shoulder, and I'd just say "hi". Usually that results in an intensification of them trying to be scary. But if you ignore that as well, then typically they'll either run along, or say "hi" back. And then you have dialog. It's like magick, but without all the being ridiculously pretentious. Some of them are actually quite friendly once they understand you to not
be a hate & fear filled, superstitious, judgmental, egocentric nutjob (ie- typical human).
So I lean towards more of a jeans & t-shirt " 'sup homey?" way of interacting with entities. And it really pisses off some people who have gone through the trouble of wearing a nice robe, and brought their jeweled anathema, and spent 3 days fasting, and have gone through 3 sticks of chalk doodling on the floor, and have been chanting for an hour in something vaguely similar to latin, etc. ...When I was young, for about 6 months I got to drive my dad's old camaro. It was in really really bad shape, torn up seats, cracked windshield, rust on every single body panel, oxidized paint, torn vinyl roof cover, missing front grill, it just looked like hell. But it did have a *very* heavily souped up 400 small block in it, which my dad had originally rebuilt to put in another car. basically the car looked and sounded like it probably contained a rat's nest, and would fall apart if you stared at it too hard. The only clue that it might be something more than a mobile flower planter, was that the rear tires were very wide. It would lift the front end off the ground if you hit the gas too hard, and it would blow the doors off of pretty much anything at a red light. That really pissed off a lot of people with pretty racing stripes, and exotic spoilers, and tinted windows and big subwoofers, and 20" wheels, and the latest 'en vogue' model of car, etc. But racing stripes and such don't actually make your car go fast ...ya know? They call that sort of car a 'sleeper', I don't know what you'd call that in magick, I just call it being pragmatic. And I don't knock the racing stripes, they're fine, i use them sometimes myself, but it's not really the meat & potatoes of the 'doing' magick. I think people who are exclusively ceremonialist magicians, tend to overlook the fact that a lack of having any 'outwardly obvious' method, does not mean there is a lack of method being used. They also need to, generally, get over their over-reliance on external power, and spend some serious time in the metaphysical gym. but I digress
As for the impressiveness of deities, yeah, that's pretty impressive. I mean, true deities are impressive. Religious-egregore-deities are not really all that impressive. I mean i was impressed as a youngin' but really the energy of religious egregore deities is just not that impressive to me these days. I mean I can channel enough energy to make everyone's hair stand on end too, big deal. But true deities, actual infinite beings, not the byproducts of human imagination & belief... those are impressive indeed. I do find that it is very rare for people to actually interact with these though. You can't really approach such a being through a symbol, phonetic label, or the pretext of some religious dogma. Even if such was based on an actual infinite being, originally, you can't recapture that original contact through the ramblings and writings of followers of a faith. Those are all just human trappings, and seeped in misconception, imagination, and butchered storytelling. After someone initially contacts an actual infinite being, the storytelling and retelling and retelling, and labeling, and idolatry, and semantics, and nonsense begin, and in very short order, you have mankind creating an egregore puppet, loosely based on an actual encounter with an actual infinite being. So yeah, it's not a common encounter in my opinion. A religious experience with a deity-egregore? that's common enough, and it can seem impressive depending on what sorts of spiritual things you are accustomed to. But real infinite-being interaction is rare, and is quite impressive.
But just because something is impressive, does not mean that you have to be impressed. Without fear there is no need to feel overwhelmed, and with respect for oneself, there is no need to feel any urge to worship. The being can be mind-blowingly impressive, but you simply do not *Have* to be impressed. You do have a choice not to be. More of a choice, if you intuitively understand how it's energy is affecting you. They give off a sort of non-deliberate glamour, they're just really 'pretty' on a touchy feely level. And so 'larger than life', and potently powerful... its heady stuff, all that energy has a sort of "moth to the flame" effect on people which makes them just want to fall to their knees and adore, or just be swallowed up by awe. But you really don't have to be that way. You really can just fall back on my favorite spiritual greeting "hi".
I can say in my relationship with a true deity, my NOT allowing myself to be overwhelmed, was actually a prerequisite
for entering into a meaningful relationship with her. You don't even have to look outside of human relationships to realize that you can't have a meaningful relationship with someone without self respect and individuality. Drooling mouths and dirty knees don't amount to squat in terms of actually interacting with a deity in a meaningful and constructive way, or in terms of building a real relationship. If I would have reacted with blind adoration & 'loss of self' then she (being omnisciently precognitive) would not have bothered to visit in the first place.
Anyway, if it weren't for the fact that I am pointedly against 'worship', I'd probably be considered a demonolator. They're certainly the sort of being I seem to have the most interaction with. And I have learned how to get along with them quite amicably. I do agree with the original post's idea that you have to accept beings for what they are, not prejudge them and sort them based on expectations.
And yeah, a LOT of the beings people interact with are actually facets of their own psyche. I completely agree. Particularly in some of the more traditional systems... for example, if we assume that the 'need' for being bossy with demons is because we don't want to weaken our psychological frame of reference, then we can assume that this bossiness is sort of a cover-up for the fact that our borrowed authority is a farce, and if it actually works in spite of that, then there's a very good chance that we're basically just bullying a facet of our own psyche which we have managed to manifest through ritual. I would imagine that a sizable majority of deliberate entity interactions performed by occultists, are basically "thoughtform summoning". Which has it's uses, but I like to keep things in a clear perspective and avoid self delusion. It just enhances the potency of one's magick.
anyway, just a lot of rambling thoughts...
KateThis post has been edited by Kath: Jun 13 2010, 04:06 AM