To say that the last few month and a half has been a tumultuous time for me would be an understatement. So much has evolved and changed in my spiritual practice it can definitely feel like I'm in an entirely different place in my life at times, and in many ways I truly am. Yet that unshakable bedrock of support: my HGA, gods, patrons, ancestors, familiars, friends, family, and guides, continue to uplift and push me forward in all the very best ways through each and every transition. Time and time again, I am utterly humbled by the earnest nature of their love: how they always challenge me to do better, think more critically, examine my opinions and beliefs in a Socratic manner, and strive ever beyond. Intellectual stagnation, especially as a byproduct of deeply-enforced comfort zones, make for some of the worst curses.
A good majority of the substantial events fall under the territory of oath-bound, so I will confine them solely to my personal journal and omit vague generalizations here altogether. This blog was from the beginning meant to be a space to share some of my thoughts and experiences while reflecting on changes as they occur, and it's absolutely been very useful at that. Back when I first started two years ago I remember wanting to write down all sorts of things that now I would never even feel the need to: that I met up with my coven, that I attended a lecture pertaining to sorcery, that I performed a conjuration or a spell, that I completed work for a client, and so on. It's not that these weren't exactly "regular" occurrences then, but now my circumstances and magical practices have grown to the point where it feels quite redundant and unnecessary to do so (I'm certainly no longer a wide-eyed first year university student either!) Even my daily regimen of rituals, prayers, and offerings have increased—it definitely wasn't at least an hour a day back when I was eighteen. I have no doubt this too will expand further as I mature.
I definitely want to get back into posting more regularly, which I haven't had the chance to do lately due to how busy I've been. At the very least about things such as conjurations, books, thoughts on various esoteric matters, and other updates—not all, of course, but certainly some, oaths permitting. And there's another area that's evolved: I'm involved with many more oath-bound praxes now that play dominant roles in my life. Gods know how much I work with just the Sorcery of Hekate teachings (I'm actually taking an optional "part two" continuation right now)!
Spirit certainly has a way of swerving you in unexpected directions. I began this summer having freshly acquired Andrew Chumbley's Azoëtia and Dragon-Book of Essex, eager to delve in, earnestly study, and learn the principles behind that particular system of witchcraft. Instead, so many other paths suddenly threw open their gates to me and I was (joyously) led there instead. The Sabbatic Craft texts are absolutely the most alluring gems in my library still, and it is my full intention to commit to their serious study in the next year. The reason for the earlier "joyously" is because had I ignored the alarm bells and rejected what Spirit had opened for me in favour of only working with them I would have missed out on some of the most defining experiences, as well as some of the deepest interpersonal connections I've made recently. Even the cards of other diviners made it clear to me: there is no guilt to suffer over waiting for the right moment; the books aren't going anywhere. I do not wish to be a spiritual tourist with regards to any of the traditions I learn and embark on, sampling but never drinking deeply, taking the spirits of that path as little more than bouncers. I want true connections and mystical insights; that only comes with effort and dedication.
So I will return to them in a few months; my projection is for next February. Instead, my summer was wrapped up in a tradition I had previously only flirted with, whether as an intellectual curiosity, subject of occult history, or because of my friends who are aspirants and adepts along its path: Thelema. Having any degree of fluency with the works of Crowley takes a long time indeed; there's just so much material and commentary to catch up with. I've certainly grown more attracted to it since acquiring a much more layered appreciation thanks to coming into contact and befriending other Thelemic magicians. It was without a doubt a slow process, from my initial knee-jerk reactions as a teenager to some of the worst aspects of Crowley the man's life to a broader affection for the feats and insights of Crowley the magician. But even then a lot of it never truly clicked with me. Chapter three of the Book of the Law just wouldn't sit with me no matter how much I adored one and two, and unlike the majority of the magicians and sorcerers I know Hermetic Kabbalah was just never "my thing". On the contrary, I'm rather used to reading about critiques of its presentation nowadays, historical and symbolic inaccuracies and misconceptions, and I guess a lot of overall burnout from older authors.
Yet here I am, doing Resh four times a day, meditating in Asanas, practicing Pranayama and Dharana, poring over all these new Crowley books, playing around with Hebrew and Greek gematria, and working with Thelemic rituals, making an earnest effort to acquaint myself with them all. (I don't think the LBRP will ever be "my thing" though; I just don't get the same effect from it as I do other rites I know of and use for the same purpose. Star Ruby, on the other hand, is really quite something!) I was also initiated as a Minerval in the O.T.O., and as much as I'd love to gush about the what's and why's of how that came to be there would be no way to do so without resorting to vague rambling. Certainly I could flat out explain why I chose to go through with the ceremony and everything that led up to it, but that would be a novel unto itself. I'm content to leave it for now. I'm extremely happy with how everything has proceeded with the Order, and I absolutely would never have even considered it were it not for the character and company of this lodge's members. Fraternal societies are nothing without the fraternity, after all: what spells home for one may not for another. Whether or not I'll apply to take the first degree will be another matter entirely. Time and breathing room will tell.
So essentially, the Thelemic floodgates opened up around April and completely swept me up in their current. It sort of happened from every direction—the Minerval initiation and subsequent lessons and duties were one of the channels—and I am still quite bewildered by it all. It's really quite something to wake up and see so much nuance and power in areas I completely looked over and shrugged at before. And Thelema and Heremtic Kabbalah are only two out of the many currents that contributed in the "evolution" in my personal spiritual practice that I alluded to in the beginning—so much more has taken place in my witchcraft, deity work, and Kemetic work to name a few. It honestly feels like I hit some sort of weird growth spurt, as so much just opened up all of a sudden from so many different fronts. Adjusting to them and finding my balance was an exciting adventure. I don't think I would have handled it with any measure of grace or patience had this all taken place last year.
I'm truly excited to see where this will all take me and I feel secure and crafty in the hands of my community and court. There's a lot of love and ambition to bring to table as I arrive at the Days of the Cyprians and prepare for my novena and special work with the saint.