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Author Topic: How do I build structure into my mystery work?  (Read 222 times)

Eastling

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How do I build structure into my mystery work?
« on: August 09, 2017, 07:21:50 pm »
I'm looking for advice on a specific situation here, one that involves tattoo magic, channeling gods, the establishment of boundaries, and heavy mystery ritual work in general. Strap in for a bit of a story.

In mid-April of 2016, when I was first exploring my spirituality through a neopagan lens, I got a tattoo, rather spontaneously, after a few days' thought. It's a quote from the musical Hamilton, right on my spine at the small of my back, and I got it with the very deliberate intent of it functioning as a magical spell. I thought, "Make me write like I'm running out of time."

A few hours after getting the tattoo, I found myself with the urge to publicly dedicate it across all my social media to my childhood experiences with Broadway theater. So I did that. Several days afterwards, while I was engaged in some very dramatic and intense online roleplay, I found myself visited by a powerful urge to seek out a specific god of dismemberment. He soon identified himself as Dionysos.

I spent the next year working intensely with Dionysos and a mysterious form of his wife Ariadne who I eventually took to calling the Maenad, always on some kind of creative writing project intended to honor them. At one point, in this service, I began to work with a version of Hekate. I got a devotional tattoo to her above the earlier more spontaneous one, this time with the magical intent of helping me get my life in order and turn at least some of my wild writing ideas into actual productive projects. You can see that one here.

Just over a year into my personal mystery practice, my Powers sprung a kind of a lengthy initiatory process on me that involved intensive channeling and a great deal of spontaneous magical and divinatory work.

In retrospect, it's obvious that the first tattoo flung open a doorway in my psyche that summoned a very specific facet of the god Dionysos into my soul (as he is wont to come). The spell certainly worked, but the second one didn't so much. I still haven't managed to set up proper boundaries with all the shapeshifting divine Power I'm working with; I still struggle to channel productively. My writing is a set of labyrinths of loosely connected half-formed ideas, when what I want is a clear path.

I'd like to put together a set of rituals and practices to change this, to establish clear spiritual boundaries and, ultimately, get better results in my life from my relationship with my Powers. To that end, I turn to this board for advice.

I am essentially looking for ideas on how to build structure into my spiritual experience. So, in short: what do you do to build healthy practices around regular channeling, especially for creative ends?
Utterly Pure, a virtual shrine in progress to Ariadne; Someday Comes Back, my general mysticism/pop culture blog.
Everything dies, baby: that's a fact. But maybe everything that dies someday comes back.
--Bruce Springsteen
The words of Dionysos and Ariadne from the mouth of their beloved son: Rule with your heart; live with your conscience; love and be free.

Darkhawk

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Re: How do I build structure into my mystery work?
« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2017, 06:12:32 pm »
I am essentially looking for ideas on how to build structure into my spiritual experience. So, in short: what do you do to build healthy practices around regular channeling, especially for creative ends?

First step:  Have a regular cleansing practice.  Find something that works for you, and stick to it regularly.  I can't find my Mikaharic to doublecheck things but I suspect I would suggest a blue bath or a baking soda bath unless there's something more explicitly appropriate.

Baths are major cleansings; you will also want minor and targetted ones.  I use the Feri kala rite at least twice a day, myself, either on general 'whatever is blocking me and keeping me from true alignment' or targetted, specific 'this thing here is blocking me'.

A regular spiritual cleansing practice will do a number of things for the creative process:
* work on clearing up internal bindings, complexes, and blockages that prevent the creative energy from flowing properly
* clear channels of communication with the numinous and help with discernment
* make it easier to cultivate a solid sense of "Illegitimi non carborundum".

As you work on developing cleansing practices - and I'd remind you that you were looking for somewhere localish to you where you could use the mikveh - you are likely to unearth large messes, which will require targetted attention to unsnarl.  I know you're already aware of a few of these.  Repeated and continual cleansing work can wear those down, sometimes very suddenly if you happen to luck into a spot where the problem becomes tractable.

A good therapist can complement this process nicely, if you have one.  "I've unearthed this giant psychological shitheap, help me deal with it" is part of their baliwick, after all, and they don't care if you discovered it while meditating in the bath.

Next step: balancing and alignment techniques.  Figure out which parts of your life are unbalanced and work on fixing that.  Figure out what parts of your inner flow are unbalanced and work on fixing that.  Connect all your bits together properly.  The esoteric techniques I use for this are part of tradition training and I'm not confident of explaining them properly, but.  You know, things.

With this basis, you'll have a clearer sense of self, and be working on unifying your dismembered elements, connecting them up, and loadbalancing your shit.  You'll be better able to work on unsnarling messes and ridding yourself of adverse external influences.

You'll note I'm not approaching the gods in this - this is all stuff that you can (and arguably need to) do within your own self and personal divinity.  It's also small stuff, in each part, and that's important; you may want, at some level, to have a Grand Gesture that puts it right, but the actual work is in stacking up lots and lots of small stuff.
as the water grinds the stone
we rise and fall
as our ashes turn to dust
we shine like stars    - Covenant, "Bullet"

Yei

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Re: How do I build structure into my mystery work?
« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2017, 06:26:05 pm »
I'm looking for advice on a specific situation here, one that involves tattoo magic, channeling gods, the establishment of boundaries, and heavy mystery ritual work in general. Strap in for a bit of a story.

In mid-April of 2016, when I was first exploring my spirituality through a neopagan lens, I got a tattoo, rather spontaneously, after a few days' thought. It's a quote from the musical Hamilton, right on my spine at the small of my back, and I got it with the very deliberate intent of it functioning as a magical spell. I thought, "Make me write like I'm running out of time."

A few hours after getting the tattoo, I found myself with the urge to publicly dedicate it across all my social media to my childhood experiences with Broadway theater. So I did that. Several days afterwards, while I was engaged in some very dramatic and intense online roleplay, I found myself visited by a powerful urge to seek out a specific god of dismemberment. He soon identified himself as Dionysos.

I spent the next year working intensely with Dionysos and a mysterious form of his wife Ariadne who I eventually took to calling the Maenad, always on some kind of creative writing project intended to honor them. At one point, in this service, I began to work with a version of Hekate. I got a devotional tattoo to her above the earlier more spontaneous one, this time with the magical intent of helping me get my life in order and turn at least some of my wild writing ideas into actual productive projects. You can see that one here.

Just over a year into my personal mystery practice, my Powers sprung a kind of a lengthy initiatory process on me that involved intensive channeling and a great deal of spontaneous magical and divinatory work.

In retrospect, it's obvious that the first tattoo flung open a doorway in my psyche that summoned a very specific facet of the god Dionysos into my soul (as he is wont to come). The spell certainly worked, but the second one didn't so much. I still haven't managed to set up proper boundaries with all the shapeshifting divine Power I'm working with; I still struggle to channel productively. My writing is a set of labyrinths of loosely connected half-formed ideas, when what I want is a clear path.

I'd like to put together a set of rituals and practices to change this, to establish clear spiritual boundaries and, ultimately, get better results in my life from my relationship with my Powers. To that end, I turn to this board for advice.

I am essentially looking for ideas on how to build structure into my spiritual experience. So, in short: what do you do to build healthy practices around regular channeling, especially for creative ends?

What do you mean by structure? Or rather, what level of structure do you want to build? Are you looking at a way to structure the overall ritual cycle? Or do you want a pattern for the individual rituals? Or both?
Either way, it may be a good idea to invest in or create a ritual calendar.

Eastling

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Re: How do I build structure into my mystery work?
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2017, 08:52:49 pm »
First step:  Have a regular cleansing practice.  Find something that works for you, and stick to it regularly.  I can't find my Mikaharic to doublecheck things but I suspect I would suggest a blue bath or a baking soda bath unless there's something more explicitly appropriate.

This sounds like a good idea; I'll go through my own copy of the Mikaharic book to figure out something specific. Against his recommendations, I may tweak something to fit better with my own practice, because that's what works for me. Fetching a small bottle of sea-water regularly from the public beach north of me is an option now, which may be good for cleansing.

Quote
Baths are major cleansings; you will also want minor and targetted ones.  I use the Feri kala rite at least twice a day, myself, either on general 'whatever is blocking me and keeping me from true alignment' or targetted, specific 'this thing here is blocking me'.

I used to regularly draw sigils to ease anxiety; there might be something in that practice I can adopt for cleansing, or I can make some mantras.

You've got a lot of good points I'll have to think over for my practice.
Utterly Pure, a virtual shrine in progress to Ariadne; Someday Comes Back, my general mysticism/pop culture blog.
Everything dies, baby: that's a fact. But maybe everything that dies someday comes back.
--Bruce Springsteen
The words of Dionysos and Ariadne from the mouth of their beloved son: Rule with your heart; live with your conscience; love and be free.

Eastling

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Re: How do I build structure into my mystery work?
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2017, 08:55:30 pm »
What do you mean by structure? Or rather, what level of structure do you want to build? Are you looking at a way to structure the overall ritual cycle? Or do you want a pattern for the individual rituals? Or both?

In short, my practice has very little structure to begin with. I do a weekly meditative/trance ritual every Friday night (although I lapsed from this practice for a while recently). I also have some minor activities I stick to on a daily basis (wearing certain jewelry, mostly), but I wouldn't call them rituals. I suspect I need to find some way to turn my various gnoses into more of a practice than that.

Quote
Either way, it may be a good idea to invest in or create a ritual calendar.

I've thought about creating a ritual calendar, but it's quite a daunting process. Maybe I just need to start.
Utterly Pure, a virtual shrine in progress to Ariadne; Someday Comes Back, my general mysticism/pop culture blog.
Everything dies, baby: that's a fact. But maybe everything that dies someday comes back.
--Bruce Springsteen
The words of Dionysos and Ariadne from the mouth of their beloved son: Rule with your heart; live with your conscience; love and be free.

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