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Crayola.880

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Daily Practice
« on: June 07, 2019, 10:40:15 AM »
Discussion of daily practice routines.

My regular daily practice presently includes Resh, Lesser and Greater invoking pentagram rituals shortly after waking followed by 20 minutes of meditation, then before bed 15 minutes of silent meditation with roomate followed by pentagram rituals alone, lesser banishing and/or greater again.  I generally meditate with siddhasana and early session includes mantra recitation.  I will sometimes tack on another 15 to 20 minutes of solitary mantra meditation after the late session ritual but not always.

I've only recently begun working the greater pentagram, usually each element in it's quarter in order to get it smoothly memorized.   I have performed Ruby and Reguli a handful of times to get a basic feel for them, but don't plan on working those into regular practice until I am much more thoroughly acquainted with both lesser and greater pentagram rituals. 

Any input or advice is appreciated, I just read various approaches and try them out the best I can until they seem to fit.

Nubti

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2019, 11:52:28 AM »
I just do mantras before sleep nowadays. Been largely focused on my mental health, creating clear boundaries between work and personal time, finding my footing between all the issues present.

As far as advice, I honestly think that journaling and making sure you're getting enough free time to just think and be.

Crayola.880

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2019, 12:22:57 PM »
I've been slowly working back into practice over the last few months, small steps at a time, after about a year of no appreciable practice.  I had taken some time away after getting nearly overwhelmed with a significant life change, but as i regained my footing i've come back to it in a better position all around. 

Journaling and keeping a decent record has been one of the most valuable practices I've taken up.  I've done nothing with spiritual work for years at a time, but I still have the sparse records I took as far back as 2006. I didn't used to keep track of lunar/solar houses or exact time-of-day back then, but a little over a year ago when I began more dedicated work I started taking note of both.

wellrod

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2019, 12:35:47 PM »
I'm just trying to start up my daily practice schedule after a couple years of putting it off. It's a bit unsteady at the moment but I'm trying to ease into it slowly so I don't just pack it in early. Mostly trying to focus on getting the LBRP down at the moment and doing some pretty basic meditation. On that note does anyone recommend any good material for advice/expanding on the pentagram rituals?

As far as advice, I honestly think that journaling and making sure you're getting enough free time to just think and be.
I came up against this a couple days ago when I realised all the time I spent trying to read was cutting into the time I previously spent just sitting and thinking, which threw me off centre more than I would have thought. Better structure and slow but steady progress seems to be the goal now.

Satyr

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2019, 03:03:15 PM »
I've only recently begun working the greater pentagram, usually each element in it's quarter in order to get it smoothly memorized.   …

Any input or advice is appreciated, I just read various approaches and try them out the best I can until they seem to fit.

If you are interested in the Greater Ritual of the Pentagram, you might consider Regardie's, Ceremonial Magic. A PDF shouldn't be too hard to find. You don't have to slavishly follow his examples, but it is useful to understand how the Golden Dawn incorporated the GRP. You might also consider glancing at Liber Chanokh.

Once you're comfortable with the Lesser Ritual, it's probably time to begin exploring the individual elements anyway. And that brings us to the Watchtowers. It should be safe by that point, so long as you proceed with purpose and maintain some sense of balance. You can even gradually incorporate more powerful components like the Enochian keys. It doesn't have to happen all at once. Going slowly is always best.

We can start a ceremonial thread, if there's interest.

Crayola.880

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2019, 05:09:22 PM »
Regardie's, Ceremonial Magic. ... Liber Chanokh.

Thanks, I had never looked through Ceremonial Magic before, but at a glance it looks like just the thing to get a better understanding of what I'm working with right now.

We can start a ceremonial thread, if there's interest.
I'd definitely be interested.  Two days in a row this week I had very brief but rather involved visionary experiences during post-GRP mantra yoga.  the visionary experience itself isn't new to me, but the quality of these was a little different such that I'd like to further develop ceremonial work as a method to explore them.

Satyr

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2019, 05:54:54 PM »
Let me pull some thoughts together and I'll start a thread. Ceremonial Magic is pretty short, so assume that one is on the Cer Mag 101 reading list.

Crayola.880

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2019, 03:09:37 AM »
Ceremonial Magick was a good read.  I liked the introductory basic Opening by Watchtower and the successive elaborations afterwards, i thought it was pretty good format - presented the basic ritual, and then kind of walks the reader through further elaboration referring back to the numbered steps.  Makes it easier to grasp the content a well as providing a basic roadmap for progressively adding to or altering a ritual.  I liked the background and analysis of the Bornless ritual, as well as the material in the appendices.    I'll have to get a physical copy, as I really like this book.


Crayola.880

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2019, 08:26:21 AM »
Better structure and slow but steady progress seems to be the goal now.

also I agree.  Simple things done properly and diligently provide a strong foundation for future complexities that build on it.  It works as an artist or craftsman.

Crayola.880

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2019, 11:37:14 PM »
For anybody who may find this useful as a learning tool, here's a mnemonic I use for the pentagram's elemental attributions as per Golden Dawn: SOPHIA = SWFEA = Spirit, Water, Fire, Earth, Air going clockwise from top.

wellrod

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2019, 10:35:17 AM »
What do people recommend as far as meditation goes for someone just getting into it? I've mostly just been sitting in the best approximate of a lotus position my hips will currently allow and trying to keep my focus on my breathing. Are there any specific techniques or texts recommended?

Crayola.880

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2019, 10:21:20 PM »
I'm only a learner myself with no formal initiations of any kind, so I only offer what I have found effective in my own practice. 

Regarding meditation I began by using the fourfold breath as suggested by Regardie in "The Golden Dawn" and have stuck with it as a basic breathing pattern for a long time, and it is generally what I will use for silent meditation. I practice consciously disengaging from thoughts as I get caught up in them and re-orient focus on the breath, or awareness of other physiological aspects of being.  There are a wealth of techniques out there from a million sources, but I don't have one in particular I adhere to. I've just picked up bits and pieces like a crow and continually adjust my own nest.  I got sidetracked away from Siva Samhita again, and it's been awhile since I looked through hatha Yoga Pradipika but I do recall discussion of various asana, mudra, pranayama technique etc.

Regarding asana, I personally think that crowley was a little too masochistic in his approach regarding his opinion of asana discomfort being okay.  Sitting on a large wallet in your pants pocket can also cause discomfort, but trying to just tough that out will result in back problems.  i've always sat cross-legged at home, so i found it reasonably comfortable to adjust to full padmasana or siddhasana.

I have since taken up the practice of mantra recitation, the one I am currently most comfortable with is the "A Ka Dua" mantra suggested in Liber Aba.  Regardless of it's translation butchery, I find it mechanically effective for restraining at least some part of the consciousness to a point of focus.  It's amazing how the mind can slip out of the bonds of a mantra and continue it's work, though, while the tongue keeps going.  If the mind is particularly resistant to settling itself, I will add an extra layer of participation by using a melody or rising and falling tones while reciting, or slightly increasing volume again or focusing particularly on crisp pronunciation - something of that nature to refocus on the mantra itself.  I experiment with different methods of applying the mantra to different effects.  With this particular mantra, i often mentally recite "I, I adore thee" on the inhale in order to keep overall mantra focus. 

It was rather comedic with my first attempts trying to memorize it, i was using the english at the time and  i got tongue-tied and said "I adore thy terrible breath!" - I found it personally meaningful, as laughter in one's work can be good to keep from being overly rigid when it's not required.


Satyr

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2019, 02:52:54 PM »
Ceremonial MagickI'll have to get a physical copy, as I really like this book.

I bought mine on the recommendation of David Jones, back when I pestered the poor bastard at Thelema Lodge every Sunday afternoon.

Coincidentally, it was this book that led Joel Biroco to give up on ceremonial magic altogether. Small world.

Satyr

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2019, 03:11:46 PM »
What do people recommend as far as meditation goes for someone just getting into it?

The key to the lotus and it's kin is a good cushion, properly placed, and padding under your knees. Traditionally in Japan this means a zafu and zabuton. You can obviously improvise.

What's important is tilting your pelvis forward, balancing your weight on your knees. This helps lock your lower vertebrae into place and, with the crown of your head pushing straight up towards the ceiling, your spine naturally assumes a graceful S-shape. That's how a straight spine is supposed to be.

It's getting long in the tooth, but The Three Pillars of Zen is pretty good for establishing practice. Combine Kapleau with Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind. They suggest a softer, cooler practice than the South Asian techniques Crowley knew. Safer, too.

Satyr

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Re: Daily Practice
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2019, 03:31:43 PM »
Regarding asana, I personally think that crowley was a little too masochistic in his approach regarding his opinion of asana discomfort being okay.

Exactly so. It's important to always bear this in mind when reading Crowley.

Quote
I have since taken up the practice of mantra recitation, the one I am currently most comfortable with is the "A Ka Dua" mantra suggested in Liber Aba.  Regardless of it's translation butchery, I find it mechanically effective for restraining at least some part of the consciousness to a point of focus.

I used this one a lot, and also the Unity or Purity of Faith, from al Qur'an. The latter kicks ass. I have worked with the nembutsu, too, with solid results.

Mantra work is highly recommended and thanks for the reminder.