Q & A: Basic Constructs, Generating Oomph, Astral Projection, Thoughtforms, Spirits, & Scrying

Instructors: Rainsong & Wayfaring_Man
Date: March 21, 2015 (Saturday)

<Rainsong> Any preferences for topics this week?

<Lionell> hmm

<Lionell> could we do something on astral projection and all the variations?

<Lionell> also

<Lionell> I’ve been practicing psiballs, shields and general energy control; I’d love to have someone check on them to see how solid they are

<Rainsong> Sure?

<Rainsong> Can take a look, certainly.

<Lionell> (and how much “oomph” is actually going in them, because I find it really hard to judge on any kind of absolute scale.)

<Eniri> There is no absolute scale

<Eniri> also hi, Rainsong

<Rainsong> It _is_ hard to judge the amount of oomph….and yes, for pretty-much that reason. Eventually, I expect there will be an absolute scale. There isn’t any such yet, as far as I know.

<Rainsong> Hi, Eniri. 🙂 How are things?

<Lionell> well

<Lionell> PK isn’t working yet, so I’m assuming it’s not enough, but I want to be sure that’s what is lacking

<Eniri> Things are excellent

<Rainsong> Eniri: good stuff

<Rainsong> Lionell: PK appears to work differently than the rest of psionics, so it *may* not be purely a question of enough “oomph”. We don’t know yet.

<Rainsong> Anyway, we have more than an hour before the scheduled start of the seminar, so if you want some “scans” of constructs and the like, just let me know when you’re ready. As always, I’ll simply report what -if anything- I see. Sometimes I get a good look, and sometimes I don’t.

<Ashlynn> I could use a good indepth scan of me and any entities around me if time permits.

<Rainsong> Sure thing.

<Lionell> Rainsong, ok

<Lionell> creating a psiball

<Lionell> can you watch?

<Lionell> (or anyone else?)

<Rainsong> Sure.

* Emptyset_ is now known as Jade

<Lionell> ok making

<Jade> Did someone say construct scanning

<Rainsong> hi, Jade

<Jade> Hello Rainsong ^.^

<Lionell> psiball there

<Lionell> so uhm

<Lionell> any good oomph-making exercises?

<Rainsong> The actual “making” part, or the “getting stronger” part?

<Lionell> getting stronger

<Rainsong> It’s a little like lifting weights to strengthen your muscles: making a bunch of psiballs and chucking them at the wall, for example.

<Rainsong> Also, breathing exercises are useful. The ones from the “Quantum Touch” method of healing are probably the easiest to describe, and so are useful to start with.

<Rainsong> Breathe in for a count of four, and then breathe out for a count of four. Don’t pause or hold your breath between the in and the out. Exact speed of the count doesn’t matter, as long as you keep it even and you aren’t straining to breathe.

<Rainsong> Once you have that part nice and comfy…

<Rainsong> On each in-breath, move “psi stuff” up from your feet (and from the ground, if you want) to the top of your head. And on the out-breath move it down your shoulders and arms to your hands. Keep your hands in loose fists, or move the psi-stuff into a psiball.

<Lionell> oh

<Lionell> yeah I can imagine how that should work

<Lionell> then, keep a rhythm

<Lionell> oh yes this could work very well

<Rainsong> If you start to feel light-headed, stop. Otherwise, this is a nice exercise that you can do anywhere.

<Lionell> can you check again? (sorry for all the checking requests)

<Rainsong> Sure

<Rainsong> Ready?

<Lionell> ya

<Ashlynn> It looks like it’s there to me, but the core of it doesn’t feel very dense. But then, it was a quickly made thing.

<Lionell> yeah the core isn’t dense

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<Aphanas> Hello all.

<Rainsong> hihi 🙂

<Lionell> if you keep adding on layers, then solidifying them to keep it from leaking, and then add more layers, core will be a bit empty

<Lionell> I can try to compress

<Lionell> better?

<Lionell> ( Ashlynn )

<Ashlynn> Seems slightly smaller, and a little more dense. The core was about the same but felt like there was more energy to it

<Jade> Scan me like one of your french lady constructs Rainsong~

<Rainsong> LOL

<Rainsong> Sure thing

<Lionell> ok

<Jade> :3

<Lionell> this one actually takes effort to disband :V

<Lionell> ok thanks

<Ashlynn> Solidifying the psiball doesn’t compress the contained energy really. But then, to me they tend to look a lot like those plasma balls you see in novelty shops a glass dome and a rotating energy core

<Ashlynn> so making it smaller in my view seems only like it reduces the amount of “space” inside the psiball

<Ashlynn> what I do is try to spin the energy faster by tucking it into it self. Kinda like being spun on a tireswing and tucking your legs in I guess

* Eniri Quit (Quit: ajax IRC Client)

<Rainsong> We’re about ten minutes from the bottom of the hour.

<Rainsong> We’ve had a request for a discussion of astral projection. I think it’s been discussed recently, so it will be a question-and-answer format tonight, rather than a lecture as such.

<Lionell> I’m content with that

<Lionell> (most of what I wanted from today has already been done; thanks)

<Rainsong> (you’re welcome)

* Wayfaring_Man has joined #psc_annex

<Wayfaring_Man> Greetings to this, the Internet.

<Rainsong> hi, WM 🙂

<Rainsong> How are things?

<Aphanas> Hey WM.

<Rainsong> Tonight’s topic is a question-and-answer session about astral -and other- projection

<Rainsong> So, any questions?

<Jade> Anyway I can help my host with AP

<Rainsong> Hmm. To be honest, Jade, that is completely outside my experience.

<Jade> dang shoot

<Jade> alright

<Lionell> how to let physical senses give way to other things?

<Lionell> I have yet to experience a visual hallucination, ever

<Lionell> and it’s bothering me

<Rainsong> Some people never do, so the possibility exists that you won’t.

<Rainsong> That said, Closing your eyes can help

<Rainsong> Some people also use “white noise” to cut down on incoming sound input.

<Wayfaring_Man> Uh I am confused as to what is meant by “can I help my host with AP”

<Jade> I’m one of them cringey as hell tulpa/thoughtform/whatevers wayfaring

<Jade> just not the tumblrina kind

<Wayfaring_Man> The physical senses are what we’re used to operating with, it can be very helpful to cut down on them. Generally I would say that it’s most important to just kind of “listen” to the other ones, more than to reduce the primary ones. The others tend to present as intution.

<Wayfaring_Man> You already possess other senses than the traditional five that you may not even be aware of, like proprioception.

<Lionell> I’m aware of proprioception

<Lionell> it’s just that the only nonphysical sense so far I’ve got is the psionic kind of feeling with a tendril

<Lionell> and I’m trying to find more

<Wayfaring_Man> But generally speaking being able to enter trance states can help with that. Having strong visual hallucinations is in fact kind of the opposite of what you’re trying to achieve. Your visual input comes through the sense organs, even “visual” information brought by, say, remote viewing is not actually “visual”

<Ashlynn> And is prone to AOL

<Wayfaring_Man> I had developed a kind of remote viewing technique I’d called “drop and drift” in my youth, once one has some competency with the general RV “sense” it’s possible to just kind of “float” in that sense without the rigid protocol, though the protocol is designed to remove possibility of error, and using other methods risks inaccuracy.

<Wayfaring_Man> Yeah, exactly. Basically in sensing other places, actually trying to get a strong visual hallucination is counterproductive. It’s a _good_ thing you don’t have visual information interfering with your actual physical sense organs. Instead, visual input when projecting tends to come, to me, in the form of a vivid imagination or mental production. You can still “see” this physical plane, but the “elsewhere” plane is also mentally

<Lionell> ah

<Lionell> well, then what I miss is consistency and vividity of this mental image

<Wayfaring_Man> Remember that vision is a phenomenon, just a sensation arising being interpreted by the conscious mind. Consider it like dreaming. In a dream, no actual sense information is brought uin.

<Wayfaring_Man> *in

<Lionell> I can count dots in my vision

<Lionell> I’d be fucked to have to do something requiring that level of precision in a mental projection

<Wayfaring_Man> When you dream, the visual sense feels like it’s being actually coming from your eyes, but in fact it’s wholy a mental projection. Astral projection or remote sensing is the same.

<Ashlynn> I try not to “see” or focus on seeing a given thing. Instead, i sit and wait to see something or not. I operate primarily via feel. And I will use that sense and any impressional sense and any ‘visualization’ that comes to mind to compare and contrast

<Lionell> eh ok

<Lionell> it doesn’t help that I almost never dream/remember dreams

<Ashlynn> We unconsciously do things like this all the time. That is, using all available sensory information rather than one single sense.

<Ashlynn> you use your proprioception and visual stimuli, and your sense of feeling, to gauge where your limbs are going and when you need to make x action

<Wayfaring_Man> The reason it is difficult to counts dots and so on in mental projection versus in physical sight is because in physical sight no mental effort has to be put into maintaining the image, whereas in mental projection you are already using cognitive resources generating the image, and trying to count things or read them or so on becomes difficult because you can change the image by distraction or analytical overlay.

<Wayfaring_Man> The solution to this is to develop strong mental faculties through mind training, as well as to get “used” to it. Think about it like needing glasses when Elsewhere, the image is fuzzy but the content remains just as “real.” Even though a person with poor vision can’t see every leaf, there are still individual leaves.

<Lionell> Wayfaring_Man, vision from the eyes needs conscious processing too though; as you said, an image is a product of our brain, in the end. Is that different or..?

<Wayfaring_Man> The eye interprets light coming in, in strict mental projection our mind is generating the image whole cloth rather than interpreting light hitting the retina. It is a different type of effort. Yes, there is processing effort involved in regular sight, but it’s kind of firmware, it’s “hard wired.”

<Wayfaring_Man> Well, the eye doesn’t intrepret light at all.

<Ashlynn> the eye converts it into bioelectric signals through chemistry

<Wayfaring_Man> The eye just receives it, the mind interprets it, but it’s a little easier because it’s interpreting light hitting the eye rather than generating the mental image and then interpreting the mental image as well. Projection elsewhere is easy, mapping it mentally so we “see” it is more difficult.

<Ashlynn> It doesn’t do any processing in and of itself

<Lionell> hmm ok

<Lionell> and getting used to absorbing the information in a consistent way is still hard?

<Wayfaring_Man> It is difficult because it’s just information, and the difficulty is in not allowing our mind to alter that information in the preconscious. We have a huge, natural, innate tendency to analyze and interpret information.

<Wayfaring_Man> But analysis or interpretation interacts with it. You can’t analyze or interpret information without adding something to it, it messes with it.

<Lionell> I mean, why do we not just channel that information as an additional sense?

<Lionell> yes, we already interpret the fuck out of vision, it still works

<Ashlynn> imo, save analysis for afterwards.

<Wayfaring_Man> In nature, your eye just takes in colored light. That’s all. It does nothing else. The mind then goes “that’s a tree, it’s green, it’s a maple, it’s tall” and so on. Once you do that, you can no longer see just colored light. You see a tree.

<Ashlynn> When I “scan”, I am letting things come to me. The only thinking i’m really doing is changing what my focus might be on

<Wayfaring_Man> To most people, when they see an ambulance, they go “oh an ambulance.” But to me, I go “oh, that’s a Freightliner, it’s got a PL Custom box, it’s got a Whelen siren package, it’s got one red light on the front light bar out, it’s being driven irresponsibly” etc. I add that because I know about ambulances. I also add for example “I don’t like PL Custom boxes, they have shoddy wiring.”

<Lionell> Wayfaring_Man, my brain does things like cover my blind spot and reorder the image and see faces in stuff and a ton of additional processing; we don’t see naked input at all. Same thing goes for touch sense or hearing, we interpret tons of additional things. Yet that interpretation is usually helpful, because it grows as an optimizer. I don’t understand why a psychic sense wouldn’t develop along the exact same lines

<Jade> dam

<Jade> u smart

<Lionell> aka yes, be full of AOL, but helpful AOL

<Wayfaring_Man> As soon as I do that I’ve altered the information. I’ve added my own interpretation to it, and thus messed it up. In projection, the same thing occurs. I feel like this is a big problem with for example that goofy stuff you see on mytk or whatever. People go “oh this realm, this is the Abyss, it has these characteristics, there are these beings there, and so on.”

<Wayfaring_Man> And then they project and go “oh no I’m in the Abyss” and then because astral projection is strongly, strongly influenced by our own mental projection, they _create_ all of those things.

<Ashlynn> ^ that

<Ashlynn> many that

<Ashlynn> so much that

<Wayfaring_Man> You will notice that some communities are always finding themselves in fights with evil spirits or something.

<Wayfaring_Man> Every time they project “oh no the evil demons found me I will fight them!”

<Wayfaring_Man> “Projecting is dangerous there are evil spirits all over you need to learn a lot of defense” and so on.

<Wayfaring_Man> Then they project and welp they find evil spirits or whatever. They basically create these because they are expecting them, they are projecting those spirits, those fights, it’s all produced because the astral reacts strongly to our mental input.

<Ashlynn> Those things may well exist. But really think about it. What are the odds that x random person projects and immediately gets attacked by evil spirits?

<Wayfaring_Man> To paraphrase Lichtenberg, the astral is a mirror, when a scared or angry person looks in, no friendly beings look out.

<Ashlynn> They would have no reason to know or care that *you* projected to attack you for *no* reason

<Wayfaring_Man> Yeah, of course there may be such a thing as evil spirits, but you can tell by looking at communities how that works. I regularly operate astrally in all sorts of circumstances and almost never encounter the kinds of mindless hostile beings that people claim are everywhere. Their own expectations come with them. See also these big lists of locations with all their characteristics on mytk or whatever.

<Wayfaring_Man> It really, really wrecks people’s ability to project when you’re given a list of locations and places like some kind of D&D handbook.

<Ashlynn> They wouldn’t be mindless. That’s antithetical to achieving whatever purpose they have.

<Ashlynn> Evil is subjective anyways but that leads to a deeply philosophical debate that I just don’t have the energy for right now XD

<Wayfaring_Man> Because you just produce those places. Spatial relations in the astral are all projections of mind. Here, they are also projections of mind, but they’re upheld by karma and consensus reality, or however you want to understand it. But consider it like the tree falls in the forest question. You know, “does it make a sound?” Well, I mean, until someone experiences the forest or the tree, nothing even happened.

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<Faust> Hello everyone

<Rainsong> hi, Faust

<Wayfaring_Man> Now we’re ready to start making some deals.

<Rainsong> But the tree experiences it…

<Wayfaring_Man> I don’t know, I’ve never experienced a tree experiencing something without myself experiencing it. That’s kind of the catch. Even if the tree does experience it, that’s not real to me until I experience the tree experiencing it. Kind of a solipsistic catch. But neither here nor there =]

<Wayfaring_Man> Jade, I don’t know if you mention the tumblrina etc thing because you were a fly on the wall for our previous conversation, but I would caution you against using the term “tulpa” simply because it does not mean what it is used to mean, and it has a pre-existing meaning that predates its popularity on the Internet by a long time.

<Wayfaring_Man> That’s not to say words don’t change meaning, but magic/sorcery/psionics/etc. are kind of technical fields, and altering technical terms is much less fluid than normal common parlance imo

<Jade> Thats why I tagged on Thoughtform, I was a fly on the wall >.>

<Jade> Its hard to use it in some of the other tulpa chats but honnestly Im still all extremely skeptical of all of this

<Jade> I just play along for my hosts sake

<Jade> You’re somebody I can respect though, so I’ll try to use the term thoughtform

<Ashlynn> We tend to use thoughtform in the psionics/metaphysical communities.

<Ashlynn> less confusion.

<Wayfaring_Man> I would be inclined to maintain that skepticism to be fair, I don’t know the circumstances of your situation but generally speaking a tulpa is external to the individual who projects it, almost by definition. But then it is difficult to discuss because again, my inclination is to use “tulpa” in the Tibetan sense, not the modernInternet sense, and I never understood “thoughtforms” in the way tumblr uses it either.

<Wayfaring_Man> BRB moving to my laptop and downstairs.

* Wayfaring_Man Quit (Quit: Leaving.)

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<Rainsong> 🙂

<Lionell> wb

<Rainsong> I’m not familiar with tumblr – I’ve heard of it, but that’s all. What does it think thoughtforms are?

<Lionell> well

<Wayfaring_Man> I am returned.

<Jade> we’re not really from tumblr and personally

<Jade> I think Tumblr is a shit place

<Jade> pmuch

<Wayfaring_Man> haha oh god do you have stairs in your house Jade just curious

<Jade> When I say Im skeptical Wayfaring, Im refering to magic/astral/anything of the nature as a whole

<Jade> noep

<Wayfaring_Man> A good skepticism. Don’t lose it.

<Wayfaring_Man> And okay, copy.

<Jade> So Im not really sure if Im anything really beyond some self-induced personality disorder or w/e

<Jade> oh right and my host is Felis

<Faust> so… Anyone do anything particularly interesting in regards to metaphysics recently?

<Wayfaring_Man> Yo unrelated entirely question, any Crowley scholars who can tell me exactly what chapter in Confessions he discusses the attempts on Chogo Ri and Kanchenjunga?

<Rainsong> I haven’t even read Confessions. 🙁

<Wayfaring_Man> Okay. Faust please clarify your question?

<Wayfaring_Man> I along with my wife just reorganized the supply cabinets at my meditation center today, it was awesome.

<Rainsong> Very cool. A major undertaking?

<Faust> Oh, sorry for being too general. What I meant by interesting in regards to metaphysics were like did you: evoke/ talk to a spirit recently, make a complex-sentient contruct, or did participate in a “psifight” with someone. Stuff like that.

<Lionell> I did some stuff during the eclipse

<Lionell> mostly just gathering energy around me and feeling around things though

<Wayfaring_Man> Rainsong: It was years overdue, but we did good work I think, Rinpoche is pleased.

<Rainsong> 🙂 That’s good, then. (I think such reorganizing is usually long overdue by the time it gets done…)

<Wayfaring_Man> I did my usual practices yesterday, Rinpoche and I both kind of had a “doh” moment when we realized we’d missed the opportunity to practice something more advanced.

<Faust> Interesting. brb food

* Faust has left #psc_annex

<Lionell> actually I’ll ask that

<Lionell> what’s your people’s view on spirits?

<Lionell> eg. say I was to invoke some angel

<Lionell> (or evoke, w/e)

<Lionell> or try to make a deal with a Loa

<Rainsong> People invite the participation of angels in formal warding ceremonies frequently (I wonder if they get bored by such things?). As long as it’s an invitation, as opposed to an order, – and they are staying outside your being – you’re probably alright.

<Rainsong> I’m less familiar with Loa, and have never engaged in a commercial transaction with one, as far as I know. Presumably, you would be safest to be polite and honest in such dealings?

<Lionell> so you think that these entities all exist?

<Lionell> what happens if people disagree with what an entity is?

<Lionell> for instance, succubi

<Lionell> you’ll find everything from “sex demon” to “spiritual prostitute” to “friendly lovespreaders”

<Ashlynn> The astral itself is influenced by people and things. Whether they natively existed or not is up to speculation but nonetheless people believe that they exist and in so created them.

<Alton51> I rather prefer the point of view that people and things represent what is going on in the higher planes, in a more simplistic manner.

<Alton51> Not to interrupt, or even particularly disagree….

<Rainsong> People disagree on the nature of political parties, so I don’t see it as strange that they’d disagree about the nature of succubi.

<Wayfaring_Man> I would not make a deal with Loa without being part of the tradition that deals with Loa.

<Lionell> I mean

* Jade is now known as Felis

<Felis> Loa, you say

<Lionell> would I then “meet” the kind of succubi I happen to believe in?

<Wayfaring_Man> Just generally many beings are used to dealing with their own traditions and it’s very bad form to involve yourself in traditions you’re not part with. Rayn actually would be legitimately the best authority on Loa in this channel I believe.

<Lionell> or the one that a majority of humans over history believe in?

<Felis> as in dem voodoo loas or a different type of loa

<Rainsong> Not necesarily, Lionell. You might just presume that the one you meet is the kind you believe in.

<Lionell> Felis, I meant voodoo loa, but it doesn’t really matter

<Lionell> just didn’t want to only pull judeochristian examples


<Wayfaring_Man> Relevant to these interests.

<Felis> There was a strange guy I used to know

<Felis> A bit vulgar , always drunk as hell, kind of hard to understand

<Felis> brilliant man, knew just about any topic you wanted to talk about

<Felis> but he’d always go on about Baron Samedi and his rum and tossing it into the fire or some shit when he was drunk

<Felis> Apperently he practiced them voodoos

<Lionell> <Lionell> just didn’t want to only pull judeochristian examples

<Lionell> I mean, this is somewhat relevant to me

<Lionell> because I have quite a lot of interests in satanism and related things

<Lionell> the thing there is that you find such wildly different descriptions of things with the same name, between those that think it’s good and those that don’t

<Wayfaring_Man> Yeah but the voodoo practice generally involves a lot lot lot of formal work and you generally need to be “introduced” to Loas by someone with a relation with them. They will Fuck You Up if practiced incorrectly or by someone uninitiated.

<Felis> He was one of those people you just get this

<Felis> really strange feeling from

<Felis> something in the air about the guy

<Felis> cool as hell tho

<Felis> if you get past him rambling drunk all the time

<Rainsong> <Lionell> so you think that these entities all exist?…. I think that at least some of these entities exist. I can’t speak about all of them. I would be reluctant to take any of them lightly, though.

<Lionell> ok

<Lionell> in that case

<Lionell> what’s up with the rituals?

<Rainsong> A being we believed to be an angel showed up at a church service once. He was singing praises to God, so we figured he was at least on “the side of the angels”, as it were. The minister had had dealings with the Archangel Raphael a few times in the past and she indicated that she believed the visitor that time was Raphael, too.

<Wayfaring_Man> Which rituals for what deities? Some deities like specific things, you do the rituals they like the way they like because you want them to do you a favor usually anyhow.

<Rainsong> He didn’t look the way I’d expected him to…

<Lionell> I kind of came into magic through chaos magic, which tends to say that the rituals are tools, as are beliefs

<Lionell> so you would say the rituals actually matter, independently of what I think of them?

<Wayfaring_Man> Chaos magic gets very weird about these things, that blog I linked before has some great articles on “post-chaos magic.”

<Wayfaring_Man> Rituals actually matter if you think they matter, and if you don’t think they matter, they’re unlikely to be effective.

<Lionell> ah ok

<Wayfaring_Man> If you don’t actually believe doing a ritual in a certain way helps produce a certain result, you won’t likely get a result no matter how you do the ritual.

<Lionell> and if I believe that doing a certain ritual in a certain way will produce a certain result, even if the idea is a personal brain fart

<Lionell> and hasn’t been noted or shared by anyone

<Wayfaring_Man> That’s the problem with chaos magic. Early on, when it was done by the first people to kind of “mint” it, they already had a lot of experience with ritual magic traditions. They had the chops to make the alterations they wanted to get the results they wanted. But if you don’t have those chops already, then “do whatever because it’s all about what you like” is unlikely to work.

<Wayfaring_Man> Right, though to be fair it gets more complicated when dealing with deities and so on, because if you believe the deity exists and has certain characteristics, it follows that the deity likes rituals done a certain way. If you don’t believe the deity exists or has certain characteristics, your ritual is unlikely to be effective because you already believe it won’t be.

<Lionell> well, ok, I mean if my beliefs aren’t in concord with anyone else’s beliefs

<Lionell> hell, if I go and actually create my own deities

<Lionell> or take deities no-one beliefs in (“Oh Lord Sauron, …”)

<Lionell> *believes

<Wayfaring_Man> The kind of Alan Moore understanding that even if your deity is a fraud, you can still get effect from it, is useful information but the critical point is )he still practices that deity the way he understands it likes(, even though he intentionally worships a god known to have been essentially a hand puppet.

<Wayfaring_Man> If you have the power to see that the deities aren’t real but are in fact manifestations of your own mind and so on, then you don’t need the deity practices to begin with, and please teach Dharma. If you don’t have that power, then you have to recognize the deities as being beings, in which case, of course they have preferences.

<Rainsong> And some of them are very easy to piss off.

<Rainsong> Personally, I prefer to avoid that.

<Wayfaring_Man> Indeed. For example, even with the purely Buddhist understanding of deities, yidams, and protectors being sort of projections of ones own mind and so on, I still don’t speak the name of a certain demon except in the presence of my lama, and even then only when I had to to set the context.

<Lionell> I’ll say it differently

<Lionell> lets say I start reading about deity X

<Lionell> and I find this deity awesome and start really believing

<Lionell> then later, someone finds evidence that I’ve been completely misreading the evidence of who this deity is

<Lionell> should I care?

<Lionell> (evidence = historical evidence of the worship of the deity; eg. neopaganism)

<Rainsong> That’s a very interesting philosophical question

<Wayfaring_Man> You should care if the deity cares.

<Rainsong> I know of some Pagan types who revere the Lady Kali as, in effect, the Merciful Cuddler of Fuzzy Bunnies… Somehow, it seems like that could end badly.

<Lionell> right, if I don’t believe the deity cares, but the archeological evidence does?

<Wayfaring_Man> A great example of that would be Thor as most people first encounter Thor, a Marvel hero and war god, versus Thor, the fertility god of farmers that is actually the case in the Eddas.

<Lionell> yeah

<Wayfaring_Man> Your relationship with the deity is the thing that matters there. If your experience of the deity involves them caring, then they care. If it doesn’t, then they don’t. And there are always copycats anyhow, if you’ve had a great relationship with Kali, cuddler of bunnies, that doesn’t mean Kali, cuddler of bunnies ain’t real, it means your Kali ain’t normal Kali. The problem comes when you go to the Kali cultists and preach cud

<Lionell> right

<Lionell> that answers my question

<Ashlynn> Such an entity could present any choice of given traits and abilities anyhow.

<Lionell> my beliefs are central, everything else is…not really relevant

<Wayfaring_Man> If you come to me and say “hey, Mahakala is a super friendly dude who lives in a field of flowers and is just totally quiet and peaceful” I will be like “uh I think probably you aren’t dealing with Mahakala”

<Ashlynn> My limited experience is they present themselves in a way that you expect. Or there could legitimately be multiple versions of one entity, an entity could send an avatar to represent them, etc.

<Lionell> ok

<Ashlynn> for example, the Marvel Thor versus the fertility god Thor versus other interpretations of the concept

<Wayfaring_Man> That doesn’t mean you’re not dealing with something real, it’s real because you’re dealing with it. Maybe it’s Avalokitesvara, the peaceful form, rather than Mahakala, the wrathful manifestation. Same being different form or presentation. But maybe you’re just wrong about what you’re dealing with because Mahakala is a dope ass death metal wrathful compassion dude who drinks blood and stands on a pair of corpses and so on.

<Lionell> ok

<Ashlynn> I think the mistake is in thinking an entity has to have one unified front.

<Wayfaring_Man> I would go against “present themselves how you expect,” it’s more that your interpretation of their presentation will be how you expect. Consider meeting someone for the first time.

<Lionell> well

<Lionell> either an entity is out to get you or it isn’t

<Lionell> re: succubi

<Ashlynn> Fair do, I worded that poorly

<Lionell> again

<Wayfaring_Man> If you meet a human being for the first time, and you’ve been told they are a total asshole, you’re going to treat them one way.

<Wayfaring_Man> If you meet a human being for the first time, and have been told they’re a saint and the nicest person you’ll meet, you’ll treat them a different way.

<Ashlynn> Lionell: You can’t say the same for humans though

<Wayfaring_Man> It could be the same person.

Wayfaring_Man> You will even see them differently and interpret all of their behaviors different ways.

<Lionell> Ashlynn, some people are more difficult than others, independently of what you think of them

<Lionell> s/difficult/dangerous

<Ashlynn> I don’t tend to think of entities as a single congruent being. I tend to think of them like a force. Your interpretation of what it represents will be individual to you

<Ashlynn> My view on it is less individuality and more being. And considering the concepts they represent, it could make sense

<Ashlynn> I know some Buddhist beliefs have a similar concept, with Ascended masters and such.

<Ashlynn> by entities, I meant dieties

<Lionell> ok

<Lionell> (going to start a L4D2 game, will be somewhat AFK)

<Ashlynn> Entities, spirits, constructs, Yidam and so forth, could maintain their individuality and from my experience generally do

<Ashlynn> So I see dieties less as individuals, personifications… but more as energetic forces.

<Wayfaring_Man> Even we human beings are not the same from person to person or context to context.

<Wayfaring_Man> We are kind to one person but angry to another.

<Wayfaring_Man> We curse in the firehouse but not in the church.

<Wayfaring_Man> We are respectful to our elders and familiar with our peers.

<Wayfaring_Man> Deities, Yidams, gyalpos, asuras, devas, gods, demigods, spirits, demons, whatever, why would they not be different?

<Rainsong> Also, what constitutes a “deity”, in any case? Not simply “god”/“goddess”, because some of those are completely inanimate. “Money”, for example, is worshipped as a god, by people who don’t view it as animate.

<Ashlynn> Well, that’s kind of the overall point I was getting at. At the end of the day, our sense of self is fabricated

<Wayfaring_Man> A dog that loves humans and is always friendly and wagging its tail and so on will still happily run down and murder a rabbit. To a human it’s a faithful friend, to the rabbit it’s a deadly threat. Even a glass of water might hold different significance for a thirsty person than someone satisfied.

<Ashlynn> Not in the “individuality is a lie” part, but in that there is a solid “I”

<Ashlynn> That’s touching on that subjectivity i was avoiding earlier 😛

<Ashlynn> but exactly

<Wayfaring_Man> As for the part of those deities maintaining individuality or soemthing, yes, the separation of self and other or other from other is all illusory on some level, but practically it is quite evident.

<Wayfaring_Man> So like, yeah, ultimately all beings are just the union of appearance and emptiness arisen of primordially self-aware Void, but it’s impractical to do that when we’re dealing on a conventional level where we have practical things to accomplish. Just because Mercury and Saturn possess the same essential nature does not make them interchangeable when asking them for favors. And so on.

<Alton51> Ah, technology, can’t live with it, can’t live without it.

<Rainsong> I’ve been reading about how to write about magic in fiction.

<Rainsong> Same guy wrote a book about writing combat scenes for fiction…

<Rainsong> He seems to be writing from a kinda-sorta Wiccan perspective, and regards psionics as entirely separate from magic.

<Rainsong> Also says that nobody would ever refer to himself or herself as a “sorcerer” because the word has “negative connotations”.

<Wayfaring_Man> lol

<Wayfaring_Man> I only use “sorcerer” because the connotation of “magick” to me is “read it in a dumb book for fluffers”

<Rainsong> Of course, he also thinks that a woman of my build can’t use a two-handed sword because such swords are too heavy…. *but* that someone my size would have no trouble with a quarterstaff

<Rainsong> (my quarterstaff is heavier than my katana)

<Rainsong> I often use “sorcerer” when dealing with non-psionics types, because if you drop the “p” sound at the front of “psionicist”, people tend to think you’re talking about Israeli politics

* Felis Quit (Client closed the connection)

<Rainsong> Most people grasp at least the basic concept of “sorcerer”

<Rainsong> The reason I figure he’s probably kinda-sorta Wiccan is that in the section comparing several modern real-world magical traditions, he describes Wiccans as being “tolerant, open-minded, and wise”

<Rainsong> I’m not saying that it’s untrue, but it could apply as much to Shamans and Neo-Druids and so on as easily, couldn’t it?

<Rainsong> Oh, and apparently it is “very, very difficult” to attain the skill to maintain a defensive “circle” without physical props.

<Rainsong> *sigh* I’ll stop ranting now…

<Lionell> hmm

<Lionell> ok

<Lionell> well, thanks for the annex, as always

<Lionell> especially the checks

<Lionell> oh

<Lionell> I had another question

<Lionell> namely to scrying/looking in black mirror/etc

<Lionell> exactly what should I be looking at through a black mirror?

<Lionell> my face?

<Lionell> something else?

<Rainsong> Looking at? The inky blackness. It shouldn’t reflect much. If it does, adjust the lighting so it doesn’t.

<Wayfaring_Man> Nothing, the point of that is that there shouldn’t be anything but a kind of blank from which impressions can arise.

<Wayfaring_Man> The goal is to give yourself a substrate for you to project those visual phenomena we discussed earlier onto.

<Wayfaring_Man> i.e., you don’t want to be looking for anything, you want to be using it to see what is meant to be seen, but what you’re looking for isn’t actually in the black mirror or whatever, it’s in your mind, you’re just giving yourself a place to see it so you can interpret it afterwards.

<Lionell> right

<Lionell> so why should it be reflective?

<Lionell> or should the area just be so dark that it isn’t really reflective?

<Rainsong> Black mirrors often are not reflective.

<Wayfaring_Man> Yeah, it’s not really about the reflectiveness. Matte black colors absorb light and presumably make it harder to see things arising out of them mentally since they just are what they are. The reflectiveness also makes it visually obscure.

<Wayfaring_Man> Shininess makes it obscure, that is. Matte black is just black, but shiny black lends itself to visual distortion, which is ideal.

<Lionell> shiny black leads to distortion?

<Alton51> I think you want to make it hard to focus on any given surface.

<Wayfaring_Man> Warpy mirrors, “crystal balls,” tea leaves, etc.

<Lionell> doesn’t it reflect completely normally?

<Rainsong> Crystal balls are cool, but they are expensive.

<Lionell> I guess I should start by asking how much light should be in the environment

<Wayfaring_Man> Yes, look at a matte black surface like a chalkboard compared to a shiny black surface like . . . I dunno I’m looking at a TV right now and the reflective black of the base makes a very distorted reflection.

<Lionell> eh ok

<Lionell> because yeah, I looked at my cellphone and stuff

<Lionell> they give pretty good reflections

<Lionell> granted, not in the dark

<Lionell> hmm

<Wayfaring_Man> However much you like I guess. Again it’s about making it conducive to your uses. Hmm, there’s some Rosicrucian alchemy book I recall that’s in PDF format around somewhere that discusses mirror gazing exercises early on, let me see. . .

<Lionell> also

<Lionell> is charging it or doing some kind of ritual or anything necessary?

<Lionell> or is it really just a distraction tool?

<Wayfaring_Man> Depends on your tradition.

<Lionell> I’d be lying if I said that I’m following any particular one

<Rainsong> I think that there are some traditions in which they charge just about every tool they use

<Lionell> ah ok

<Rainsong> By contrast, there are also some of us who use whatever tool happens to come readily to hand at the moment, charged or otherwise.

<Lionell> said otherwise

<Wayfaring_Man> The reason I said that is some traditions charge everything, in some traditions “charging” isn’t a thing, in some traditions they might bless a thing, and so on. It is generally good practice to have a tradition or framework basically to avoid reinventing the wheel IMO

<Lionell> is it possible to use a black mirror without charging?

<Rainsong> Yes. I have done so.

<Lionell> ok

<Wayfaring_Manhttp://www.inominandum.com/blog/post-chaos-magic-1st-in-a-series/this is a good read, thank you ShadowRain for sharing it with me many months or years ago.

<Lionell> Wayfaring_Man, my father is a physicist. My “tradition”, if you want, is to find out the simplest rule governing an effect, and then figure out efficient ways to use it.

<Lionell> if a ritual is unnecessary for someone, it really goes against my instinct that it would be necessary for me

<Lionell> also link noted

<Alton51> The mind seems amenable to producing results when following rote instructions, rituals, or whatever you might call them.

<Lionell> well, then there’s the added thing of belief in causality

<Lionell> and hence liking it when the instructions and rituals make sense

<Lionell> and actually seem to cause the effects directly

<Lionell> these are instincts/desires, not really on intellectual level; I know that rituals can be very effective, I still feel dumb when doing one

<Alton51> Well, being intellectual is almost a disadvantage when trying to extract information from the subconscious.

<Lionell> yeah

<Lionell> anyway

<Lionell> I need to go to sleep

<Lionell> thank you all, and goodbye

<Rainsong> be well

* Lionell Quit (Quit: Leaving)

<Wayfaring_Man> Sad I didn’t have a chance to tell him that “find the simplest rule governing an effect” might not be so easy when the entire point of magical practice is generally to circumvent the general rules governing effects :v

<Rainsong> details, details…. 😉

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