western occultism

Occultism in a Natal Chart.

In astrological natal charts, there are numerous placements that indicate an interest in the occult, esoteric arts, witchcraft as well as psychic and healing talent. Of course if you don’t have these placements it doesn’t mean you cant develop these things, or they aren’t latent in deeper aspects.

Psychic Talent/interest in the occult:

Heavy Neptunian placements/aspects. Neptune conjunct the ascendant or in the first house, Neptune Moon aspects, Neptune Uranus Aspects, Neptune Pluto aspects, Neptune in the fourth or conjunct the IC, Neptune in the Eighth, Neptune in the Tenth or conjunct the MC, Neptune in the Twelfth or in a water sign sagittarius, or Taurus.

Sun in a water sign or Sagittarius, Sun aspect Neptune, sun aspect moon, sun aspect pluto, sun aspect uranus, sun in the eighth, sun in the ninth, sun in the twelfth.

Moon in a water sign, moon aspect pluto, moon aspect Neptune, moon aspect uranus, moon conjunct the Ascendant or in the first house, moon in the eighth, moon in the ninth, moon in the twelfth.

Mercury in a water sign, or Sagittarius, Mercury Moon aspects, Mercury Neptune aspects, Mercury Pluto aspects, Mercury in the fourth (intense intuition) Mercury in the eighth, Mercury in the twelfth.

South Node in a water sign or Sagittarius. South node aspect moon, south node aspect Uranus, south node aspect neptune, south node aspect pluto, South node in the fourth, south node in the eighth, south node in the twelfth.

Jupiter in Pisces, Scorpio, jupiter in the first, jupiter in the eighth, jupiter conjunct the MC or in the tenth, jupiter in Aquarius, jupiter in the twelfth.

Pluto conjunct the ascendant or in the first, pluto aspect moon, pluto aspect Uranus, pluto aspect neptune, pluto in the fourth, pluto in the eighth, pluto conjunct the MC or in the tenth, Pluto in the twelfth.

Healing: (spiritual, Emotional,Physical)

Chiron in earth sign or water sign, Chiron aspect neptune, Chiron aspect sun, Chiron aspect pluto, Chiron aspect Moon, Chiron conjunct Mercury, Chiron in the sixth, Chiron in the Eighth(painful), chiron conjunct the MC or in the tenth, Chiron in the twelfth.

Pluto conjunct the ascendant or in the first, pluto aspect moon, pluto aspect Uranus, pluto aspect neptune, pluto in the fourth, pluto in the eighth, pluto conjunct the MC or in the tenth, Pluto in the twelfth.

Heavy Neptunian placements/aspects. Neptune conjunct the ascendant or in the first house, Neptune Moon aspects, Neptune Uranus Aspects, Neptune Pluto aspects, Neptune in the fourth or conjunct the IC, Neptune in the Eighth, Neptune in the Tenth or conjunct the MC, Neptune in the Twelfth or in a water sign sagittarius, or Taurus.

Today we find ourselves in a precarious era. While many of the technological advancements we enjoy make our lives easier and more convenient, we have also sacrificed our relationship with many of the natural processes that must occur in order for us to not only survive, but to flourish. It could be argued that these advances have allowed us more time to enjoy life, since most of us no longer have to toil in forest and field to earn a day’s meal or a winter’s warmth, and we have free time to spend in any way that we choose. However studies repeatedly show that Western peoples are exceedingly unhappy with our existence and sense a great longing for something ‘else’, some unknown ‘other’ that cannot easily be articulated. A portion of our very souls has been lost, something that was at one time a tremendous part of our core being.

In many ways, the grasp that Christianity once held on the Western mind is sloughing off, but in its place we see the dispiriting materialism which has taken root, a profane humanist rationalism which negates all that cannot be scientifically or physically quantified. Our ability to view traditional folklore from an “insider’s perspective” has been grossly impeded, and myth even more so. We’ve placed limitations on our own abilities to truly imagine - to be awed completely and totally by the greater mysteries of our world. The results of this compromise are plain for all to see. In sacrificing this part of ourselves to the gods of an industrial age we have lost a once profound and intimate relationship we shared with the natural - and supernatural - world.

Cody Dickerson, The Language of the Corpse: The Power of the Cadaver in Germanic and Icelandic Sorcery

Axis in Astrology
  • <p> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b><p></b> <b>The Warrior and The Diplomat:</b> Aries/Libra (1st and 7th house) This Axis is all about getting results and exerting yourself into the outer world, yet Aries uses action the other, Libra uses diplomacy. The lesson of this axis is to be individual without being selfish, and to give without loosing yourself.<p/><b>The Gardener and The Mortician:</b> Taurus/Scorpio (2nd and 8th House) This axis is all about polarity, while the gardener symbolizes fertility and creation, the mortician is the end. Both are beautiful, both collect and are stable and unchanging. The lesson is to learn that change is inevitable, but also to remain grounded in the face of change.<p/><b>The Scholar and The Guru:</b> Gemini/Sagittarius (3rd and 9th House)This axis is about wisdom and intellect, the scholar collects knowledge and studies fact and evidence, the guru studies philosophy, esoteric arts and anthropology, the lesson of this axis is to remain clear headed and factual but not loose sight of morality, and to remain moral and spiritual but not forget about rationality and common sense.</p><b>The Poet and The Archivist:</b> Cancer/Capricorn (4th and 10th House)this axis is about outward and inward expression, the poet feels deeply and longs to cradle the world in its arms the poet wants privacy and peace and is deeply touched by familal affairs, the archivist structures, organizes and catagorizes the poems for better understanding to the public, often under scrutiny of the public eye, they thrive on attention. This lesson is to remember what moves you and where you come from, but dont let that keep you from work, and to be in the public eye and work but dont forget who you really are.</p><b>The King and The People:</b> Leo/Aquarius (5th and 11th House)this axis is all about individuality versus the collective. The king is regal extravagant and does not yeild when the people tell them to change the king is creative bright and magnanimous , the people are rebellious flamboyant and united against the authority. They are the same yet different they sre a wealth of knowledge because of their differences and remain detached from one another. The lesson is to be an individual but dont forget the group and to not let the group define your identity.</p ><b>The analyst and The Seer:</b> Virgo/Pisces (6th and 12th house)this axis is all about fantasy and reality. The analyst has faith in the explainable and likes fact and reason, the analyst is health concious and down to earth, the analyst can be cold and unfeeling and overly logical. The seer is magical and relies upon the unseen for truths and guidance, they can be deluded and childish. This axis teaches that we must not let fantasy carry us away, but we must not be closed to wonder and magic.</p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p><p/></p>
Western occultism and egomaniacs

I’ve been doing quite a bit of study & research in the Western Occultism arena over the last month or so (culmination of a few decades of participation). Beginning with the TS, through Freemasonry, RC, Golden Dawn, Crowley and his Orders (OTO, AA), and later spin offs (Chaos, etc.).

One thing that strikes me as unfortunately tragic is the number of egomaniacs and wiseacring impostors that have come out of this machine of ill-repute.

Don’t get me wrong, there was a time, probably a few decades ago, when I really wanted to believe that Western Occultism, WMT, WET, and similar movements actually led to their self-professed goals of scientific illumination, self-knowledge, and Self-realization (or Godhead). The end result of that via dolorosa though, seems unfailingly to end up with splinter groups upon splinter groups with nothing but people (invariably male) hungry for power, fame and self-aggrandizement.

Lofty founding ideals of freedom and enlightenment soon degenerate into either idle distractions such as divination, ineffectual ritual, and personality worship, or into more virulent forms such as slave labor, group hypnosis, and carrot-stick pyramid structures.

Research the history of almost every Western “occult”, “magical” or “esoteric” Order or movement, and one invariably finds nobodies desperate to become somebodies, rather than the traditional Eastern (or Asian) norm of somebodies becoming peaceful nobodies.

Expelled members sit in dark corners gnashing their teeth and exposing dirt or attempting to start their own pyramid structures, meanwhile the controlling hierarchies white-knuckle their positions and tighten down “the rules”.

I’m not sure if this is a Western psychological trait, or rather to do with those attracted to these groups. There are obvious tell-tale signs involved, such as groups offering 1001 self-improvement promises, instant titles, degrees, future rewards and instant social belonging. In contrast, you might find a Zen group or an Eastern equivalent offering a cushion on the ground with the advice being to try ‘siting down and shutting up’ for an hour. No titles, no candy bag.

In order to save time, dear reader, a very simple test may be applied to any group, Order, or society you are looking to join or invest your hard earned life-force: 

'Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.’

On "beginner" Tarot decks

What I want in a beginner Tarot deck is two things: a deck that will teach a seeker how to read tarot by having accessible symbolism that is translatable to reading Tarot and art and symbolism that resonates with the seeker.

There are some decks that are just a collection of pictures without much symbolism relating to the Tarot. No matter how much the seeker loves the art, it won’t teach them to read Tarot. But an excellent deck with great symbolism that is inaccessible to the seeker won’t be much help either.

For me with my educational background in Celtic myth, a Celtic themed deck was great. For someone who has most of their symbolism from TV a well thought out pop culture deck might be best. So much of pop culture is rooted in myth and occultism anyways so good material can be found in there.

The Smith Rider Waite deck is a good deck for decoding western occultism, since it was designed as a teaching tool. Once you have a comfort and handle on reading cards, I suggest doing a reading with your favorite deck and then comparing the pictures with the Pictorial Key to the Tarot by Waite. It can help you learn the symbolism of the Western Occult traditions so when you encounter them in other materials you have a point of reference.

Imagination/Diaphane/Translucid

I honestly think the idea of a Diaphane, as explained by Levi, is one of the most understated, underestimated, and underused ideas in western occult.

What is it? More or less it is our imagination, but understood to be more than just a faculty of perception. Instead the imagination is seen as the very foundation of our perception. You do not see the physical world, you imagine it in your mind. You do not perceive the astral either, you imagine it in your mind. The diaphane is like our own collection of symbols, images, ideas, associations, etc… Any and all signals–whether physicals, mental, or spiritual–are passed in and out through the diaphane, through imagination both conscious and unconscious.

Let us examine now the various points Levi makes about the diaphane, translucid, or imagination.

- Imagination, the diaphane, or the translucid (synonymous) is the faculty by which we perceive the spiritual and therefore exalt the intellect. Will is exalted through imagination by giving it power over the Universal Agent.

- It is through imagination that a magus can heal disease, change seasons, warn off death and raise the dead.

- Imagination is the vehicle by which our belief affects reality around us.

- Imagination + reason = genius

- It is vital for magick to increase the affinity of your diaphane with the great magical agent (train your imagination).

- The imagination creates our physical and non-physical perception. The only difference between a genius and a dreamer or a fool is that the creations of the genius are analogous to truth while the fool reflects through hir diaphane distorted perceptions (ignorance, confusion, karmic tendency, etc..).

- The difference between a true vision and a delusion is the clarity of the ray perceived by the diaphane. Trauma and mental constructs reflect the ray into a distortion and make the truth of the vision more difficult to perceive.

- Distinguishing between clear light and distortion is the job of the initiate.

- Dreams and visions are produced by the diaphane from the symbols always present in the astral fluid. Magick is the art of subjecting these forms to your will by the use of the diaphane.

- Spirits can be evoked into the astral space by the use of their symbol by the diaphane. Once brought into the space the spirit will control this astral form–which is perceived through the diaphane.

- Any idea put into words or symbols then becomes a living astral entity which travels through the diaphanes of other people when they perceive it. Through this the idea grows, evolves, changes with each perception.

- All actions, including ritual and mundane activity, are stored symbolically in the astral fluid and continuously affect our diaphane and through it our reality.

- The witches sabbath and astral travel occurs in the translucid.

- Vague, complex, or shifting patterns can be used to allow the diaphane to focus astral perceptions. Through this divination like scrying, coffee grinds, etc can be performed.

- For the wise magician to imagine is to see and to speak is to create.

- In daily perception the imagination is busy with sense impressions. Through techniques like trance and Gnosis it becomes more receptive to the spiritual and astral.

- Each person’s diaphane affects each other. Through this magnetism is experienced, affinity, affection, love.

- Symbols, incantations, and all other aspects of ritual are used to keep the imagination firmly in place where the will aims to direct it.

- Impressionable people have impressionable imaginations. They are useful in magick.

- Ritual magick is simply an intoxication of the imagination which produces profound effects on the magus.

- The more difficult or horrible the magical operation, the stronger the impact on the imagination. Other forms of intensifying the experience also work.

- Affect the imagination and it will in turn affect the nervous system, which will then affect the whole.

By the way this is all from just part 1 of dogma and ritual. I ran out of time on lunch so feel free to continue from part 2

Christian witches/occultists vs. mainstream Christians

The Christian witches/ occultists vs. mainstream Christian tumblr fight has seriously brought out the worst of ignorance in Christians and has made me facepalm harder than ever before. It’s just become long-winded rhetoric about not judging others while failing to get to the core of the misunderstandings. The occult can be a good or bad thing, just like the study of any philosophy or spirituality. Many Christians don’t know that most western occult traditions stem from Judeo-Christian philosophy and are mere variations of mystical Christianity. Some study it to grow in union with God and draw knowledge from the angels and saints; others use it to conjure demons to do their bidding. Some try to do both.

You can’t just lump everyone together and claim that the Bible preaches against discovering how the spiritual universe works. Let’s not forget that the most prominent of Catholic saints were mystics, visionaries, and healers who used their ability to speak with God and the angels for the benefit of others: writing down their conversations in volumes of books with the good of the faithful. Ven. Mary of Agreda, St. Teresa of Avila, St. Hildegard von Bingen, and St. Julian of Norwich are the first to come to my mind. This isn’t some recent fad that’s come in as a form of syncretism between occult and Christianity; it’s an ancient path that has been paved by the saints which is almost just as old as the Church (other forms are even older). The most prominent of alchemists and herbal healers were Catholic monks and priests who covered massive ground in discovering alchemical and spiritual proceses that would form the basis of modern chemistry. It’s not just about mixing fancy chemicals and chanting around circles with the names of God and angels; it’s about the transmutation of the soul to its highest form to unify with God.

What us Catholics do is almost indistinguishable. Blessing ourselves with salt infused holy water, walking around in glimmering robes and Latin chants, consecrating churches and altars with holy oil, swinging incense, touching sacred relics and icons, and using a variety of sacramentals that range from wax figures to blessed ropes and cords, are all ways we connect with God. Personally, I use the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentegram from the Golden Dawn to spiritially cleanse areas, ask the Holy Spirit’s presence when I’m fixing up some whacky herbal teas when my friends and relatives are sick, cast circles before I do Lectio Divina, read loads on Jewish and Catholic mysticism to deepen my understanding of God, and pray to specific angels to illuminate me with the information and wisdom I need at that moment. What exactly in this contradicts the basic tenats of Catholicism?

What are most mainstream Christians’ definition of Christian occult anyway? Is it necromancy and conjuring Satan? Summoning demons from the Goetia? Is it trying to predict the future? Because I can assure you that the Christian witches and occultists I know don’t do any of those things and focus on hermetic philosophy, spellwork (literally intention infused with ritual- an elaborate form of prayer), and the angels. What exactly are the objections that mainstream Christians have towards this? It just seems to be a knee-jerk reaction without much research into what it actually is.

anonymous asked:

I have been dying to ask: what exactly is BACK, I need enlightenment.

http://backcomic.com/

it’s a fantasy/occult western webcomic by webcomic superstars Anthony Clark (who did/is still doing the timeless classic Nedroid) and KC Green (who did Gunshow, the comic responsible for like, maybe a third of the memes on the internet, among a few other comics)

the art and characters are very cute and the story is easy-ish to follow, a solid read! It’s fairly young for a webcomic too, only 3 years in the making and you can binge the current archive in an hour or two

The Mystery Cult of Forrest Bess (part II)

Ryan M Pfeiffer + Rebecca Walz

Graphite, chalk lead, colored pencil on paper

22” x 30”

2015

Rite to introduce oneself into the elements.

The cosmic sphere is from Basic Sigil magick.  It is based on the qabalistic cross from the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and Aleister Crowley.  I changed it a little bit but I do highly suggest you read this book, as it not only covers sigils in the original Spare’s Chaos magick content it also covers a great deal of energy work.  


Now for the actual rite.  What you want to do is get into a meditative state repeat the words and follow the steps below.  You want to do this while standing up

“From the infinite power of my inner silent center do I construct my inner cosmos”

(visualize the center point in your chest)

“I am connected to the potential of the All-Father principle.”

(visualize a point on the top of your head as the top of the cross)

“I am equally connected to the principle of the Earth-Mother. ”

(visualize a cube or compass around your feet)

“Around me are the four symbols of dynamic power. Before me lies the symbol of perfect intelligence and awareness.”

(visualize the sword)

“To my right lies the symbol of perfect creativity. ”

(Visualize the Wand.)

“Behind me lies the symbol of eternal outpouring goodness.”

(Visualize the Cup.)

“To my left lies the symbol of my being.”

(visualize the shield)

“One is the totality of existence.”

(Visualize the first ring.)

“Two is the reality of potential.”

(Visualize the second ring.)

“Three is the number of power.”

(Visualize the third ring.)

“From center to circumference, all is connected according to cosmic law. Be this Cosmic Sphere declared open.”


Invocation to the four/five elements

I usually do the five elements but I use trad Rromani magick and use the ether/akasa element so for this I am only doing the four elements found in modern western occultism.  Again will we start with east.  I suggest you make your own rite for this as it does get personal but this is a VERY BASIC sketch.

“Through the east I invoke the element of Air”  

(meditate on the element of air)

“Through the south I invoke the element of fire”

(meditate on the element of fire”

“Through the west I invoke the element of water”

(meditate on the element of water)

“Through the north I invoke the element of earth”

(meditate on the element of earth)

When you meditate on these elements you may feel a certain way but you have to finish the ritual in full with the closing to properly shut down the cosmic circle. 


Closing Formula

Say:

“Let there be peace to the highest.”

[See the crown disappear.]

“Let there be peace to the lowest.”

[See the cube disappear.]

“Let there be peace to the east.”

[See the Sword disappear.]

“Let there be peace to the south.”

[See the Wand disappear.]

“Let there be peace to the west. ”

[See the Cup disappear.]

“Let there be peace to the north.”

[See the shield disappear.]

“Let there be peace all around.”

[See the rings disappear.]

“Let there be peace within.”

[See the light at the center disappear.]

“I now declare this ritual complete and this Cosmic Sphere returned to normality." 


After this rite it is important to ground and center yourself, I also recommend that you write everything about this rite down.  How did it make you feel and that type of thing.  


As Always

-Robin

Day 13: The Familiar Spirit Cometh.

AOTH, ABRAOTH, BASYM, ISAK, SABAOTH, IAO. 

The familiar spirit is within as well as without. Some say it begins from the without, and draws to your very heart as you walk down the paths, and become whole within yourself.

Some say the spirit blossoms forth from within you, out of your union of your most innermost self, the root of your spirit, with the otherworld. 

For some it could be one, for others it could be the other, and for many it could be a bit of both. 

In my practice, the Familiar Spirit becomes my supernatural assistant and Holy Guardian Angel when practicing Evocation and Grimoire Magic, showing that sometimes one spirit can encompass various roles. The Familiar Spirit is my ultimate guide, teacher, and companion on my crooked path.

Keep reading

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MYTHOLOGY MEME;
(5/8) Legendary Creatures

LILITH (Hebrew: לילית‎; lilit, or lilith) is a Hebrew name for a figure in Jewish mythology, developed earliest in the Babylonian Talmud, who is generally thought to be in part derived from a class of female demons Līlīṯu in Mesopotamian texts of Assyria and Babylonia. The Hebrew term Lilith or “Lilit” (translated as “night creatures”, “night monster”, “night hag”, or “screech owl”) first occurs in Isaiah 34:14, either singular or plural according to variations in the earliest manuscripts, though in a list of animals. In the Dead Sea Scrolls Songs of the Sage the term first occurs in a list of monsters. In Jewish folklore, from the 8th–10th century Alphabet of Ben Sira onwards, Lilith becomes Adam’s first wife, who was created at the same time and from the same earth as Adam. This contrasts with Eve, who was created from one of Adam’s ribs. The legend was greatly developed during the Middle Ages, in the tradition of Aggadic midrashim, the Zohar, and Jewish mysticism. For example, in the 13th century writings of Rabbi Isaac ben Jacob ha-Cohen, Lilith left Adam after she refused to become subservient to him and then would not return to the Garden of Eden after she mated with archangel Samael. The resulting Lilith legend is still commonly used as source material in modern Western culture, literature, occultism, fantasy, and horror.

anonymous asked:

What kind of witch are you?

What a question! This will take some time to answer, but I’ll do my best.

It has become quite common for witches to take an identifier based on the strongest element of their practices. For example, there are those who refer to themselves as “air witches” because they work primarily with that element, or those who call themselves “Wiccan witches” because they practice witchcraft in the Wiccan tradition. While this works and is helpful for many people, I struggle to choose a single adjective to describe my witchcraft practice. 

I suppose you could call me “eclectic,” but that tells you very little about what I actually do (and I also think the term is overused). Still, I want to answer this question and clarify a bit about what I actually do. So, I’ll choose a few adjectives that most strongly describe my witchcraft practice and talk about each a bit. 

I am an herbal witch.

Much of the work I do on a day-to-day basis involves herbalism. While I live in the city and don’t grow my own plants, I keep a good stock of herbs on hand and use them in a variety of ways. I also keep a variety of oils and other ingredients, which I use quite frequently. Above is a recent photograph of storage for what I call my “laboratory;” it used to be more complex before I moved. 

You’ll notice a lot of the spells I post involve herbs in some fashion. Herbal spells are probably my most frequent magical endeavors. These range from making tinctures and teas to charm bottles and creating floorwashes. Most of my herbal work is based on the systemized study of the magical properties of plants within the context of the Western Magical Tradition, so I draw a lot from alchemy’s long history. A lot of my work with plants involves using them to connect to celestial forces such as the seven classical planetary powers.

I am a celestial witch.

As I said above, the bulk of my herbal work involves using the herbs as a way of connecting with celestial forces such as the seven celestial spheres or classical planets, as well as the forces represented by the zodiac and other astrological principles. I don’t consider myself an astrologer because I very rarely cast charts or engage in astrology-based divination, but the majority of what I do involves celestial powers in some way. 

This goes beyond my herbal work and influences nearly everything. I’ve often said that the majority of symbols and concepts within Western occultism function as a sort of filing system to help the practitioner forge connections with greater realities. Taking this into consideration, I would say that celestial principles are, at present, my most important method of connecting. While I have and still occasionally do work with the raw elements (Earth, Air, etc…) most of the time, I work with planetary intelligences and forces commonly assigned to astrological principles.

I am an animist witch.

Just as my celestial fascination influences almost all of my work, so does my tendency towards animism. I believe that the universe is alive with an infinite variety of intelligences and spiritual forces working beyond and behind physical matter. I believe that, in any spell or working, no matter how simple, I am calling upon one or many of these forces. For example, I believe that when I use fresh basil in a potion or charm, I do so by tapping into the life force of the plant, which possesses a simple yet powerful intelligence of its own. 

You might say that I believe everything has a spirit operating through and behind it, no matter how mundane it may seem. By making connections to these intelligences or spirits, I can affect change in the world around me. This is a cornerstone of my approach to magick, and is manifest in all of my spells, rituals, and workings. Some of them can involve very complex intelligences like those of the planets, but others work with plants, animals, or minerals.

I am a hedgeriding witch.

I believe spiritual forces exist within all things and that there are many layers to reality. By most accounts, “hedgeriding” is a term used to describe a witch’s non-corporeal journeys throughout reality and into other realms. From this, legends of witches flying on broomsticks arose, because quite often flight was an elaborate metaphor for these journeys. 

The term “hedgerider” is a direct translation of an older Anglo-Saxon word, “haegtessa,” which was used to denote a witch or sorcerer. The use of the terms “hedgerider” and “haegtessa” specifically to describe witches who travel between worlds is relatively new, but, in my opinion, quite apt. The idea of a hedgerow is a metaphor for the veil between worlds, and in this case, to “ride” the hedge is to have one foot on either side, partaking of all worlds.

I cross the hedge. The structure, characteristics, and theme of the realities I visit during these experiences vary depending on my inclinations at the time. As the image suggests, though, I tend to posit (as do many other witches) a lose division between our world, an upper world, and a lower world, with the interaction between the latter two making the manifestation of our physical reality (the middle world) possible.

I am a secular witch.

I’ve written about secular witchcraft here. While the term denotes a different style of practice with little commonality between those who use it (it merely means they don’t worship through witchcraft), the article I just linked also goes into some detail about my own perspective and why I use the term “secular witch.” 

My general life philosophy is quite secular, as well, and if it weren’t for the fact that many in that crowd shun the idea of magick, I’d probably be willing to call myself a secular humanist. My family back home is largely comprised of secular humanists, though my mom converted to Unitarian Universalism when I was in my early twenties. It’s funny, because I’ve read reports that suggest most people ultimately return to the religion or belief system they grew up with, and while I’m not sure those studies are accurate, it was true of me! I did experiment with a variety of religions and spiritual paths when I was younger, but ended up returning to something very much resembling the beliefs of my family. 

Some people will ask, “But wait, Eliza - I thought you were a Thelemite? Isn’t that a religion?” Yes, and no. Some people approach Thelema as a primarily religious system and find it fills their personal needs religiously. I myself don’t see it that way, though - for me, Thelema is a philosophy, not terribly different in kind than, say, existentialism or Platonism. It presents a highly developed mechanism of metaphor, but needn’t be taken literally nor elevated to a religious perspective. It’s really up to the individual. Some Thelemites see it as a religion; some don’t. For me, it isn’t, though.

Conclusions

I could continue this list with more and more adjectives that describe my practice. Technowitch, transhumanist witch, continental witch, postmodern witch, etc, but really, the above descriptors comprise the bulk of what I currently do. That’ll likely change in the future, as it’s been changing for all of the fifteen years I’ve been studying and working on magick. For all I know, in two years I might consider myself a sea witch (if I somehow end up living near the ocean)! I hope you get the idea. Thanks for messaging me, and have a good December.

In more recent years, however, sociologists and historians of religion have begun to see the occult as a significant manifestations OF modernity. Predictions about the imminent demise of religion have turned out to be premature, to say the least; and it has become ever more evident that esoteric or occult currents are a permanent feature of modern culture. They have been around since the birth of modernity, and whether we like it or not, it seems that they are here to stay. In current scholarship, the occult is therefore no longer perceived as a marginal and irritating anomaly - something that ‘should not be there’- but, on the contrary, as a highly important manifestation of how religion is continuously being reinvented under new historical and social conditions.
—  Western Esotericism. A guide for the perplexed. W. J. Hanegraaff