Healing, harming, and war…

Points along the meridians.Illness in its many forms is a horrible thing.  It is usually hard on not only the one suffering from it, but also on those around them as they watch a person they love in distress.  One of the disheartening parts is when nobody knows what is wrong.  The symptoms may be there, but the underlying cause remains a mystery sometimes, which can kill hope as the light at the end of the tunnel seems to grow dim.

My wife recently had horrible pain, swelling, and a collection of other problems show up suddenly in her lower extremities.  As it progressed we were trying to find an explanation as to the root of the problem.  A lot of the problems were associated with a potential blood clot, so it became a very concerning situation.  To keep this part of the story short (which I rarely do) we finally narrowed it down to a rare side-effect of a medication she was taking.  We eliminated the drug, and about 70% of the pain left in just a single night.

The problem that remained was that she already has liver and immune issues, and her body was just left thrashed over the whole ordeal.  This left her quite weak and semi-ill even after the medication had worn off.  Being a fan of many eastern traditions, I have learned a bit about healing.  These traditions work well with what I have also learned in my own practices, and seem to compliment each other harmoniously.  So, combine a bit of the east, some chakra work, and a touch of the chaos, and you have the makings of successful healing sets.  We did it both for pain management before we found the culprit drug, and afterward to get her system smacked back into shape.

This whole little backstory does eventually come to a point.  First, over the last year I have worked on healing quite a bit.  I’ve come a long way with it, and have now had quite a bit of success.  That’s a long way from where I started, which was a complete lack of understanding about healing, and no idea which direction to head for learning.  Second, it rolls back to the baddie that has been lurking about for a long time now.  If you need to catch up, the last two posts (1, 2) cover a lot of it quite well, with a smattering of things sprinkled throughout some of my past posts just for seasoning.

The short version of the whole thing is this:  A bad creeper has been trying to mess with my wife for a long time.  He’s a remnant of some sort from her sister’s old boyfriend, who was a theistic Satanist.  He is the reason I went from studying magic and the occult to actually practicing.  Since both my wife and I have become more ‘in tune’ with things, he has resorted more to manipulating things from a distance rather than direct intervention.

I think that’s enough about enough about him for now.  I leave the vast storyline involving this entity off of here because it’s just unbelievable, even to those of us who are living in the reality of it.

Moving on:  So, C met this guy last year who had some of the same interests as her, and decided to hang out with him a bit.  We’ve never had a problem with either of us having opposite-sex friends.  We know where our love is.  But, something different happened with this guy.  She noticed there was an abnormal attachment to him.  If you look at my post about love, you’ll see that C  doesn’t feel things quite the way that most other people do.  So this kind of attachment felt entirely foreign to her.  For some odd reason, she was having a ‘normal boyfriend/girlfriend’ kind of connection with him, even though she had never experienced one before in her life.  Without the story getting too long, our little friend (who has become known as ‘The Dark Man’ due to the mixing of divinatory sources) made this connection with this guy when she was vulnerable after the death that crushed her last summer.  This actually happened with two people, but only one of them matters for this story.

We figured out that there was this artificial connection, broke it, and moved on.  C still communicated with him over text (and still does), because he wasn’t a bad guy, he just had a bit of help being overly attached to her.  Even though she broke the attachment, he never did, so that made her have to set some boundaries, but it didn’t mean they couldn’t continue to communicate.  Once in a while he would pop up with some grand idea about the two of them running away together to live in some random place doing a random thing for work (I think crocodile hunting was one of them), but C always politely declines, reminds him that she’s married, has a kid, and isn’t interested.  His most recent push caused a major problem though.

People have a hard time accepting the fact that C is fairly gender-neutral, and our marriage involves very little sexuality.  Our relationship is built on being intellectually challenging to each other, enjoying the quirks and nuances that we each bring into things, and wanting to spend the rest of our lives together as best friends.  We only got married due to familial pressures, tax benefits, and work benefits.  It didn’t change our relationship at all.  Little N was a planned baby, not the result of chance or too much nookie flying about.  But…C does love to tease.  Because of this she has tons of fun online, but people have a hard time interpreting the meaning behind it.  Some interpret it as ‘she’s into me’, others assume she’s a catfish, or they thing she is somewhere between bisexual and lesbian.  The real interpretation is that she doesn’t mind showing who she is, especially if she thinks it might ruffle your feathers.  With the way her brain works it’s nothing more than that at all, but people have a funny way of getting too serious about things online.

This interpretation of her sexuality led the guy she had been talking/texting with to assume that she was bisexual.  So, as a new plan to win her over, he proposed a third person (female) be introduced into things.  He told this new girl (who was apparently very ‘into’ him) that she couldn’t be with him unless she could convince C to come into the relationship as well.  C and I laughed about it as it unfolded, knowing that the reality of it would never come true, and how far his perception of what she actually wanted in life was from reality.  C and this new girl sent texts and got along fairly well, but (even if C was actually interested in things) there were no sparks.  The only thing that C could see going on was this gal getting more desperate as it progressed.

Fast-forward a couple of weeks, and moods are getting ugly around the house.  C and I don’t have a traditional relationship, so we don’t tend to be faced with the same problems that many couples are.  We don’t bicker, we don’t fight, we don’t let the petty shit of daily life get in our way of enjoying our time together.  Yet, there we were, in an abnormal situation where we were both pissy, Little N was acting like a butthead (usually she’s the easiest kid on the planet), and something just felt wrong.  C was born with a fully developed ability to sense things that I have only scratched the surface of.  This has allowed us to test each other in interesting ways that has guided both of us in our spiritual development.  Needless to say, she was the first to notice that there was something going on that was just more than moods and personalities.

All I ever got was a stuffy, oppressive feeling, but she identified that it was something affecting us that she couldn’t quite put her finger on.  It didn’t feel like an entity to her, it just felt like our house was filled with negative energy that was messing with all of us.  I consulted the tarot, and the answer it gave didn’t make sense to me.  The answer boiled down to this:

Someone you know has betrayed you with magic to destroy your love, and ‘The Dark Man’ has made it stronger.

I stay out of her wacky conversations and friendships with others, so I’m almost never privy to the details of what goes on.  I’ve done some blind readings (meaning that I’m totally clueless) about some of her friends and dug up things about them that they wouldn’t even admit to for many months.  It’s a skill I’ve gotten quite good at over the years.  But this reading wasn’t about one of her friends, it was a question about what the hell was happening around the house.

When I told her what the reading said and she instantly scowled and said a few choice words about the gal she had been talking to in the love-triangle situation.  It turns out she is a Wiccan.  So, a simple love spell was probably what was cast.  C is too different to be effected by a traditional little thing like that (see the love post).  The beauty of the whole thing is that ‘The Dark Man’ has had an agenda with the guy and C for a while now, and we keep kicking it out from under his feet.  All of a sudden this ‘we should be together’ magic gets sent out and gets in the hands of the bad guy.  He figured out the last time he tried to create love connections with C that she doesn’t work like that, so the best way to achieve his agenda is to first split up C and me.  So this fairly innocuous spell gets turned into a giant pile of darkness that settles over the whole family to try to tear us apart.

Once we figured all of this out, the problem was still there, but now we had a bit more information to work with.  Since this was obviously something that we hadn’t dealt with before, I prepared for war.

I was already familiar with many of the Wiccan casting traditions, so I didn’t have to do much reverse engineering how such a thing would have been built at its source.  The big problem was how to counter the force that our little buddy had put behind it.  Understanding ‘how’ people cast their spells is the greatest defense against them.  That’s one of the reasons I discuss mechanics very little on this blog.  First, my casting is typically for very personal reasons, so the methods are sometimes very personal too.  Second, I don’t think anyone can be told how to do quality magic, it’s just something they have to develop on their own.  Which brings be to my final point of keeping things secret for your own protection.  Too much info about practices can lead to vulnerabilities appearing, and it’s also a good reason to never cast the same way twice.  Do I use sigils?  Yup.  Every time?  Nope.  When I do use them, do I construct them using the same methods every time?  Nope.  Do I use reagents every time?  Nope.  When I do, are they the same ones?  Nope.  Do I always do ritual magic?  Nope.  When I do ritual magic do I have a set form that I use?  Nope.  Every spell, every intention, and every casting has to be customized to the need and mood of that moment.

This casting too was customized to the need. Since I didn’t know exactly what the need was, I went in with every trick I knew, and made up a few that I hadn’t used before.  I knew the things that I needed to address:

  • I had to learn exactly what it was that was causing problems.
  • I had to deconstruct the way it was cast to gain control over the origin.
  • I had to use that control to get rid of whatever it was.
  • I had to make a big enough showing to make our ‘Dark Man’ think twice before pulling crap like that again.
  • I had to appeal to the same authority that it was cast through to correct the wrongdoing that had been set upon our family.

Simple, right?  Yeah…not so much.

After a full day of planning, waiting for paint to dry (not a euphemism), studying the exacts of some Wiccan traditions, and other preparations, I had myself ready to go for the following evening.  One of the few rules I have is that none of this stuff can go down while Little N is awake.  Hopefully she never has to deal with this kind of nonsense.

The full process was huge.  I’m not sure how long it took me, but the entire thing probably lasted for over an hour.  I knew that I would need astral and physical work for this one, and that much going on simply takes a while.  Just getting into the astral can take a long time (or even not happen) if the mind/soul connection doesn’t want to cooperate that day.  After an unknown amount of mental prep work and slowly deepening meditation, I finally entered the astral.  Holy shit.  I had never seen anything like it.

In my experiences in the astral I have encountered a few places with terrain as we could traditionally consider it, but I find that most of what I am looking for (conversations with unbound entities) happens in the dark places; those places that aren’t designed for me to enter.  Many of these places exist in layers, with scenery and representations of the physical, designed to distract from the true nature of the astral.  There are various techniques to do it, but eventually these layers need to be stripped back to enter the ‘home turf’ of most entities and to be able to interact with them without illusion.  Without stripping away the illusion, a person can get in a lot of trouble out there.

1441175_19243069The…thing…that I saw was awe-inspiring and terrifying at the same time.  It was not an entity, it was the embodiment of an intention, and made of pure willpower.  The spark had started from the original spell, and had become twisted and strengthened into a behemoth.  It laid in the sky like a storm, stretching as far as the eye could see, and crushing everything underneath it with a shadow of oppression and hatred.  Above me was the center of the storm.  It had no eye, it just became pitch black with the thickness of its strength.  My admiration of what had been built quickly turned to rage as I realized the severity of what had been sent against my family for the selfish desires of the ‘Dark Man’.

When one finds oneself in this sort of position, it is good to know about the tradition that originated the spell.  Why?  Because many traditions don’t actually cast spells.  Stay with me now, and please don’t take offense.  I’ll start with the Wiccan belief system as an example.  It’s simple when you think about it.  You gather tools and reagents that represent the aspects of nature, you declare an intention, and then you make an appeal to a deity to make things happen (I know, I oversimplified it).  Christianity is the same way.  They have their 3 primary gods (creator (God), intervenor (Holy Spirit), and Messiah (Jesus)), and their array of demigods (Angels, Demons, and Saints).  When a Christian makes a prayer, they are not attempting to cause the change themselves, they are appealing to an authority to make it happen.  When these prayers, rituals, and other things are appealed to their respective authorities, an entity that represents the nature of the tradition and intention is what can actually do the work.  That’s why so many prayers and spells through pantheism, monotheism, or whatevertheism go unanswered.  There is another authority involved that gets the final say.  When dealing directly with magical forces, there is no intermediary, and nobody to decide what’s best for you.

Casting, praying, or any other type of action in this way also means that you are bound by the rules of the authority you appeal to.  I’ve even seen spells out there that appeal for others to be held to the same kinds of laws.  Ever hear of Christians praying for God’s will/law to cause judgement on a some sort of perceived sinner?  Ever see/read/hear a spell that calls for the law of karmic retribution to be enforced on someone?  These ‘laws’ are not universal, they are only present because people choose to act within traditions that come with consequence.  Some people seem to need that structure in their lives I guess.

The good news about all of that is, even if you’re not a part of that tradition, you can appeal to those same authorities for enforcement of their own rules.  I’m not Wiccan, nor would I choose to cast under that structure, but I can make an appeal to the authority that allowed the intention to be manifested to judge it under their own rules, and ask that those rules be enforced.  Part of Wiccan morality is ‘An it harm none, do what ye will’.  This spell was doing harm to my family.  Any love spell cast that would break a happy family apart for a person’s own desires is harmful, even if there was no amplification of the spell due to Dark Man intervention.  One of the other parts to Wiccan morality is the Law of Threefold Return.  Hopefully if that is enforced on the original caster it is based on the original intent of the spell, and not on the final manifestation.  That would be horrible.

So, that took care of the witch, now it was time for a show of force to let our Dark Man know that I’m not the small-fry that I used to be.  I have been receiving guidance.  Not from a new spirit guide (still don’t have a new one), but from someone who is a long story all by themselves.  This entity forced me to learn how to bring magic from the physical directly into the astral.  It took me a long time to learn it, but it was time for my big debut.

There was a lot of anger.  I have grown tired of being badgered by The Dark Man’s intentions constantly.  I’m tired of having to check out new relationships and happenings to see if they are part of something bigger than they seem on the surface.  It causes me stress in my life, and I don’t tend to handle stress well.  The blast was enormous and punched a hole through the center of the storm.  It slowly started closing back up, letting me know that it was hardly enough to vaporize it, but it had to shift inward to close, which meant that it wasn’t regenerating, it had been damaged and had to shrink to fill in the hole.  To put it in a way that we are more used to, I could make it bleed.

Knowing that I could cause change in something this big, I threatened the dark man and let him know that he was beaten on this round, and that I was going to destroy what he had helped to create.  I then left the astral and started the physical portion of the spellwork.  This is where I deconstructed the original spell.  I used some of my really big guns that I had been saving for special occasions.  Some of them were ‘gifts’ given to me by old friends like Lazarus and parts crossed boundaries that others refuse to cross.  I also made my intention clear to our little nuisance that my fight was in it for the long haul.  Even if it cost me my life, or meant that I couldn’t move on after this one, I would not relent until he was either driven away or destroyed.  Worse yet, I threatened to bind him.  That is like prison for entities.

It took nearly two days for the ‘storm’ to fully clear, but things did return to normal.  My wounds took an unnatural time to heal.  After nearly two weeks they were still mostly open and had developed almost no scab.  There was no infection, it just was just wide open like it had happened that day.  Over 6 weeks later there is still deep scabbing on portions.  Normally I tend to be a quick healer.  I can get a deep laceration and have it be gone in a matter of just a couple of weeks.  This one was different somehow.

I was also exhausted afterward.  It took a couple of days with a lot of sleep and naps to really recover from the ordeal.  It’s the biggest toll I’ve had on my body and mind since I started using magic.  I’m not sure if this kind of thing is like a muscle, where as you use it you gain strength and endurance, or if there is a finite amount that your system can handle.  I plan on building a focus that I can use in the future.  Something to channel the energy through that isn’t my body.  If it works, perhaps it can take some of the strain off of things of this magnitude.

Of course, in a perfect world, nobody would ever need to do things of this magnitude.  Too bad it isn’t a perfect world.

Sorry for the long delay between posts.  As you can see there has been some serious stuff going down, and a lot happening on the personal and work side too.  Life just gets in the way of making blog posts sometimes.  Then you poor devils have to put up with nearly 4,000 words at a clip when I do post.

D.S.

Wand Building: Phase One

As I’m still figuring out what I’m going to build as a lamp for my Illumination, I decided to start constructing my wand last night.  I had a brain-melting day at work yesterday, so I figured something fairly simple was just what my mind needed to unwind for the evening.

I selected the wood for my wand a little over a week ago out in our woodshed.  I found it in a wheelbarrow that just had random wood chunks in it, leftovers from a dead tree removal we had done over a year ago.  This made the wood ideal as it was bone dry, and it hadn’t developed any splits.  I stored my selected piece with my sacred objects while I waited for an opportunity to work on it, hoping it would become accustomed to the other items.

I started by removing all of the bark with my AthamÈ.  Even though it’s still not consecrated, using the AthamÈ in the creation process will help bind the two objects together.  After I removed all the bark I went out to our shop and used a bit of modern equipment to finish the rough shape and the first round of smoothing.  I don’t mind doing things the old way, but using a dull knife on the bark was enough for me.  After basic shaping and smoothing, I did the final steps with plain old sandpaper.  I didn’t try to get every little nick and bump out for a couple of reasons.  First, I think it adds character to something to have those little imperfections in it.  Second, most of the harder to remove marks were caused by my AthamÈ, and I didn’t want to remove its influence from the wand.

Just to keep the wood from getting wacky after I removed its natural protection, I put a single layer of a light oil finish on it.  It’s not the final finish it will receive, but it will protect the bare wood from insects and other harm until I finish it.  I also anointed it with a couple drops of blood to start the processes of binding the wand to my will.

Before I consider the wand complete, I will engrave some relevant elements on the shaft.  I haven’t decided what I’m going to do yet, but both my AthamÈ and the wand will need some form of personalized inscription before the process is finished.  If fact, the other two objects I have left to make (chalice, pentagram) will also have to be etched/engraved before I perform the consecration ritual.  I’m just happy that I don’t have to hurry in this process.  Yes, it is taking me a while to get to everything, but I feel like I’m making more thoughtful decisions, which should help the efficacy of the entire journey.

Athame in my possession…

I’m not usually a fan of birthdays, but when one is really well-timed, they can be pretty handy.  For my birthday this year I got a beautiful double-edged dagger.  How fortunate that I was in need of a ceremonial dagger (Athame) and it all just seemed to work out.

Now I just need to consecrate the silly thing and I’ll have a tool that I can use in some of the rituals that I perform.  The only problem is, I haven’t decided exactly what my ritual will be yet.  There is such a wide array of opinions as to the consecration of magical tools that it makes me feel like I’m at a buffet.  I’m thinking I’ll start with some candles and incense, take a large serving of focused meditation for the main course, perhaps a side of an appropriate incantation, and finish it all off with a bit of blood anointing for desert.

It’s nice to not be bound to one single magical paradigm, as I can pull together the pieces that will make it a meaningful ritual for me.  I have never found any one discipline that I have found all-encompassing, but all of them contain something there I find interesting, and can find use for in the future.