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saltonaslug

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General Advice for Newcomers
« on: June 28, 2019, 03:06:33 AM »
Hello everybody,

I am making this thread in hopes that some of the more experienced members of this forum can share their knowledge of performing ceremonial magick with the newer practitioners of the board, like myself. A lot of the times on online message boards, we are told that a many modern-day orders have various issues concerning either legitimacy or malignancy, but at the same time are advised that getting direction from someone who knows what they're talking about can be invaluable for our own practice.

With that being said, my hope is that this thread will be a place for both the cataloguing of general advice that any older or more experienced member could give someone who is still developing their skills, and a place for specific questions to have a chance at being answered as they are posed by learning members of the forum. With that being said, I'll start us off with some questions- if no one objects.

What was the first invocation experience you had? How did you know you succeeded? What precautions did you take- if any?

What types of successes have you had with performing ritual outside of the manipulation of your own consciousness? Any real world application that was immediately evident?

Has there been any point in your practice where you were concerned for your wellbeing, either mental, physical or spiritual? Are there things you would suggest a newcomer stay away from until they have mastered other practices?

Perhaps if any of these discussions gets too crazy we could move them to another thread, but for now I think a place for general questions/answers is needed.



Nubti

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2019, 11:07:08 AM »
I am making this thread in hopes that some of the more experienced members of this forum can share their knowledge of performing ceremonial magick with the newer practitioners of the board, like myself.
Well, there's the Ceremonial Magic 101 thread... but if you're starting from complete zero, sure.

A lot of the times on online message boards, we are told that a many modern-day orders have various issues concerning either legitimacy or malignancy,
Yep. There's good reason for that.

but at the same time are advised that getting direction from someone who knows what they're talking about can be invaluable for our own practice.
I wouldn't necessarily say 'invaluable', but certainly very helpful in speeding up the process. There's a lot that goes into 'getting it'.

What was the first invocation experience you had? How did you know you succeeded? What precautions did you take- if any?
I suppose my first was just the Lord's Prayer. Didn't know if it succeeded. Didn't take any precautions.

Heh. Now that I think about it, I never really took any precautions, aside from doing the LBRP/ Star Ruby in my later years. Could be because I have a very high threshold for 'feeling', due to my chronic depression and the numbness associated with that.

What types of successes have you had with performing ritual outside of the manipulation of your own consciousness? Any real world application that was immediately evident?
I summoned Sitri and told him to find me a partner. Within a day, I had a gal message me completely out of the blue, and within a week I summoned him again and cussed him out for bringing me a really bad one. Within the next few days, my wife confessed to me. Long-distance, sure, but... we worked it out, and we're still together.

Has there been any point in your practice where you were concerned for your wellbeing, either mental, physical or spiritual? Are there things you would suggest a newcomer stay away from until they have mastered other practices?
Hm... no. I've gone through a few "psychotic episodes":
- delusions of grandeur,
- believing KGB psychic spies were after me,
- having A SINGLE astral projection experience, where I was told I was a 'dragon soul' (meaning a 'spiritual commando built of half good and half evil)
- healing a bunch of things with little more than a touch
- having angels tell me answers to questions during exams
- manifesting light to visible form 'by accident'

And all sorts of stuff.
Was it dangerous? No, not really. I wasn't a danger to harming anyone. Was it bad? Some of it, sure. Was it necessary for my further development? Absolutely.

Some of it put a stop to my practice, as it was just too much, but I always found a way to continue - and every time that happened, looking back, I've found that I had reached the very end of where those practices/ philosophies could conceivably take me.

Honestly if there's one thing that was the most rewarding for me overall, it was back in 2009-2010ish, when I was praying for hours each day, and that eventually culminated with a most bizarre experience of remote healing I have ever had. It *kinda* broke my faith, but at the same time, guided me towards Thelema, and the Tarot.

It also clarified some things in retrospect - such as 'nor all life is sacred', and other such.

Satyr

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2019, 01:25:29 PM »
With that being said, I'll start us off with some questions- if no one objects.

I hate to be that guy who answers a question with, “Read my book”, but…

KAOS 14 and The Black Lodge of Santa Cruz.

Black Lodge should answer a couple of your questions.

saltonaslug

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2019, 01:28:10 AM »
Definitely appreciate the responses guys.

Did check out the ceremonial magick thread- will be using it for sure. I was thinking this could be more of a space for practical questions specifically about the literature.

For example- I was reading John St. John and was having a hard time following the section detailing the work behind the ritual named "DCLXXI," and I was wondering if anyone could recommend some supplemental reading or an explanation that might shed some light on this. Or will I just get it later? I believe the pages were 36-39 for reference (I'm reading the Equinox keep silence edition).

Sometimes I just get lost in the symbolic language, especially when relating to ceremony.

Absconditus

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2019, 09:04:18 PM »

I was wondering if anyone could recommend some supplemental reading or an explanation that might shed some light on this.

If you want something that's a fairly good supplemental reading, I'm currently reading David Shoemakers Living Thelema. As of this afternoon I've gotten through a good sized chunk of it and the information he provides is pretty straight forward and easy to understand. The chapters are all fairly short and cover a lot of the basics. I should warn though it's written assuming that the reader has some background knowledge but I don't think it'll be a problem for you. If you find something and aren't positive on what he's referring to, you can find the source material pretty easily. That's what I've been doing anyway and I'm still pretty new myself.

SeLaH

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2019, 02:43:56 PM »
To saltonaslug:
Idk how to quote your post, but here's some info:

Liber DCLXXI is Liber Pyramidos.  It's Crowley's adaptation of Liber ThROA for self-initiation. It serves as the A.'.A.'. Neophyte initiation ritual; in the case of John St. John Crowley was using the Formula for much higher attainment, of course. The supplemental material that I use as a reference to that is the typescript of Liber ThROA and Crowley's Illuminated Manuscript of Pyramidos (both in the Library of Solomon aka Frater K's library). Also the GD Neophyte initiation rite should be helpful. And perhaps GD 5=6 (?)

saltonaslug

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2019, 06:56:25 PM »
I’m not sure how to quote either, so I’ll just say thanks for the contributions instead! All of the literature that has been recommended sounds excellent. At the risk of sounding like too much of a novice, I’ll also say that I’m currently working my way through the first volume of the Equinox in as much detail as I can, but a lot of pieces do unfortunately leave me with more questions than answers.

So I have another question. I don’t want to ask too many, but I also feel like this is maybe the perfect place to ask for anyone else that is interested.
Reading over “A Note On Genesis,” I was wondering if any of you could recommend a book that could cover some basics/applications of Gemetria that would be a little more accessible for a newcomer. Or should I just not bother unless I have the time to learn Hebrew?


Nubti

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2019, 12:37:26 PM »
You normally don't need to know hebrew to use it - you can use this database (from Bill Heidrick) to search for clues:

http://www.billheidrick.com/works/hgemat.htm

And 777 has the tables with the letter-number correspondences, which are also significant.

saltonaslug

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #8 on: August 23, 2019, 05:13:29 PM »
Thank you guys so much for the information. I have another question that I'd really appreciate getting some advice on, and I'm not sure where to post it, so I guess I'll just do it here. I apologize if it's been posted somewhere else before.

What is your experience with the O.T.O.? Is anyone still involved? If you are willing to reveal any information about yourself, where did/do you practice? Do you think your involvement was a worthwhile step on your own personal path?

I only ask because I am having immense difficulty finding some place to get involved where I am located (Upstate NY), and beyond that, I'm not sure if I want to get involved anyway. A quick search on google and a browse through the O.T.O.'s website will show that there is a Pyramid Lodge in Buffalo, NY with a email listed (I have tried contacting this email twice over a few months with absolutely no response). There is also a facebook page listed for the organization, but I don't have a facebook and I would really like to keep it that way. The reason I mention I'm not sure if I want to get involved (and please, understand I mean absolutely no disrespect by this), is their news posting about fentanyl being distributed by members of the O.T.O. on their website, which is a fucking sketchy ass thing to be posting on your organization's home page, just IMO, and I've also heard stories of people in the O.T.O. being abusive/demanding, etc. Also, not responding to an email and only responding to facebook is weird to me as well- if that's what it comes down to.

So I guess my last question is, what should I do to get in contact, and do I have to worry about who I get in contact with? 


Nubti

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2019, 07:37:45 PM »
Oh. O.T.O. The TL;DR is that it's currently headed by Motta's sons. Meaning, madmen.

If you want to read my experience with it, here: https://lvxnox.com/my-adventure-with-the-ordo-templi-orientis/

And K had written "Fair and Just" a few years ago. Sadly, the criticism is still valid: https://lvxnox.com/a-fair-and-just-inquisition/

IMO: not worth it, unless you enjoy lots of politicking and sausage-fests.

And yes, drugs and alcohol are a frequent occurrence.

saltonaslug

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2019, 02:52:51 AM »
Thanks for your viewpoint. I honestly am incredibly disappointed that I could not get a response from the O.T.O. at all, and I think that fact in itself speaks wonders as to the state of the organization currently. I think I am going to take some time and reflect what that means to me personally. From reading the Equinox though, I can't help but feel like there is a large something I am missing here by choosing not to affiliate myself with them- but maybe it's written that way out of the interest of self promotion on Crowley's part.

Nubti

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #11 on: August 25, 2019, 09:15:39 AM »
Have a read here: https://www.reddit.com/r/thelema/comments/ct3ibv/what_happened_at_notocon/

This is a rather amusing situation.

azrael2393

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Re: General Advice for Newcomers
« Reply #12 on: October 08, 2019, 11:43:41 AM »
More on the O.T.O. and why in its current incarnation needs to be avoided at all costs:

https://www.marcovisconti.org/wasteland/
https://www.marcovisconti.org/5-things-to-expect-after-leaving-o-t-o/
https://www.marcovisconti.org/the-aftermath/
https://www.marcovisconti.org/oh-no-yet-another-o-t-o-conspiracy-theory/
http://www.ecclesiagnosticauniversalis.org/concerning-heteronormativity-and-gender-essentialism-in-thelemic-ritual-and-communities/

Signed: someone who spent years in the organisation, completed the Man of Earth Triad, and was a Lodge officer (Treasurer) for several years, knowing the ins and the outs of how the shitshow is actually run.