Posts Tagged ‘Spirits’

Energy Healing for Depression

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

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A couple of weeks ago, I started slipping into another depression after a girlfriend broke up with me. This time, recognized the symptoms before the depression could start affecting my judgement, and I got help from the spirits I work with — specifically, an expert in both mental effects and human brains, since many spirits I know are great with magick on spirits but a bit clueless about humans. He did a great job, and today, I want to share some notes on the healing session.

Normally, when I work with spirits, I ask them to teach me how to solve a problem myself. That’s how I learn. But this limits them: They often have to figure out a new, simpler technique that I can learn, rather than using all their tools to just solve the problem. And I just wanted my depression gone. So I asked them to just fix it, and not worry about whether I’d understand their technique. It was pretty awesome to see these spirits working at their best, but it also means I don’t understand half of what they did. Mea culpa.

The healing technique had four stages: Quieting the depression, consciousness integration, activating happiness, and experiencing healthy sadness. I’ll talk about each of them. Also, I think he was debugging the healing energy as he went, adjusting it based on my reactions, rather than executing a standard technique. Not that it really matters, but I like to think that he learned about depression and the human brain as he did this work, and that he got some benefit, too.

Stage 1: Quiet the Depression

We started by showing him how my brain changes from normal to depressed. I got myself into a good state, (like you can do temporarily even in depression), he looked at my brain, then I thought about the breakup, so he could see which areas of my mind had different signatures when I was normal or depressed.

He put several of those areas into the signature they have when they’re healthy, using a healing technique I know to keep them in that signature. (For anyone following the details: He didn’t extend the signature through physical gate and into the nerves, but he did use my own energy to power the new signature.) He did this on fairly small areas of my mind, so each one could get a precise signature, which is one of the identifying features of well-done direct magick.

Then he stayed connected to me as I let my mind wander for half an hour. When a song would come on and trigger some depressed thoughts, he’d find the part of my mind creating those thoughts and add it to the effect, pushing it into a healthy signature too. This shut down most of my depressed thoughts, but not all of them.

Stage 2: Consciousness Integration

Some parts of my mind just wouldn’t quiet down. Really, it was all of them, at least a little: I could feel some parts of my mind shifting, sneaking out of the way he’d set them into healthy signatures. The first stage was just a stopgap until he could do a better healing technique.

The second stage was consciousness integration. I’ve talked about it before, but it’s an advanced technique, beyond what I’ll even get to in the third book, so I can’t teach you to do it. But I can tell you about it: You take the semi-conscious* part of your mind that’s generating unhealthy thoughts, activate an energy channel with your conscious mind, support your conscious mind’s signature (so it doesn’t absorb the unhealthy thoughts), and let the two parts of your mind communicate. If you do it right, the semi-conscious part updates its worldview to the adult world.

(If the idea sounds familiar, it’s because the general concept is fairly wide-spread. Let the problem area out, talk to it, resolve the problem. This is just a way to enable that conversation that works much better for me and the handful of folks I’ve tried it with.)

*I use semi-conscious to refer to mostly-unconscious parts of the mind that sometimes bubble up into conscious thoughts. I reserve unconscious for things you’re genuinely not aware of, like the dilation of your pupils.

We integrated five or so parts, much more thoroughly than I could on my own. Afterward, I felt fixed — not just out of the current depression, but like he’d repaired things that I hadn’t realized were broken because they’d been broken for years. I felt like my mind was functioning properly again.

Stage 3: Turn on Happiness

After that healing technique, I stopped re-hashing the breakup and started thinking about things that make me happy: Projects with magick, upcoming events, that sort of thing. Just let my mind wander. But none of it made me excited.

I asked the spirit, and he said that’s normal, that my brain isn’t ready to experience happiness yet, and that we’d turn my happiness back on after the consciousness integration set in more. (And later, telling friends about this, they mentioned that happiness normally shuts off during depression, that your brain just won’t feel it. They aren’t neurologists, but it makes sense to me.)

Twenty minutes later, he did another energy shift. I don’t know the technique he used, but if I’m ever building this technique on my own, it’s worth knowing that turning happiness back on is a separate step.

Stage 4: Experience Healthy Sadness

Once all those changes were done, I started feeling a normal sadness. I say “normal” because depression feels empty and hopeless, while normal sadness feels, well, just sad. It’s the difference between the bad pain from an injury vs the good pain from stretching a tight hamstring.

I don’t know if the spirit did something to activate this or if my mind was just ready for it, but it was good. I let my mind wander, and after feeling sad for a few minutes, started thinking about ways to meet new people and activities I wanted to do, which are really good signs. Total time: 60-90 minutes of healing work, and around 6 hours after she broke up with me.

One More Bug

The next few mornings, I woke up depressed again, like the effect had stopped working when I slept. Each morning, I’d call the spirit and he’d fix it, but I wanted the healing technique to just work.

Eventually, we figured out the problem: He’d only affected the energy layer of my brain, not the deeper layers of the energy structure. (I used to call this energy layer, “thinking mind,” now I’m calling it “ethereal mind.” Its signature corresponds to neural activity as you think, and it’s central to magick communication. Your ethereal muscles connect to ethereal mind, which connects to brain.)

Basically, he forgot I have a brain made of nerves, because he mostly works with spirits, who don’t. When I’d sleep, my brain would loosen its connections to ethereal mind, and the healing technique on ethereal mind would stop affecting my brain. Note that this is how non-mages normally are: Changes to their brain seem to affect their ethereal mind, but their ethereal mind does not affect their brain, because they haven’t developed those connections by doing magick. This is one of the problems I’ll need to solve to develop better mental techniques for non-mages.

The solution was easy: We sunk the healing energy signature into the deeper energy structures of my brain using standard healing techniques, and I started wake up feeling good.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Meeting Spirits

Monday, June 17th, 2013

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Replying to A Beginner’s Guide to Talking to Spirits, Sam asks:

How do you connect to the spirit to begin with? Or does the spirit connect to you to start?

Good question. I’ll have a few tips for you, but first, let’s talk about why you’re contacting the spirit.

Why Meet Spirits

Talking to spirits is like talking to people. (And like many mages, I include sentient spirits in “people.”) Ideally, you have something interesting to say, or something you want to ask them.

As a beginner, you’re probably interested in contacting spirits just to see what it’s like. For curiosity — and I’m all in favor of curiosity. So, this guide will assume you don’t have any particular goal for a particular spirit, and you just want to see what it’s like.

How I Started Talking to Spirits

I started talking to spirits in my teens.

Well, maybe that’s not quite accurate. I thought I started talking to spirits in my teens, but many conversations I thought were with spirits probably weren’t. For example, I’d picked up ideas about trees having spirits from some new age book, and would connect to trees, absorb their energy, and let thoughts enter my mind. I believed the thoughts came from a spirit in the tree, but years later, I returned to this found that the thoughts were my own, and that absorbing the tree’s energy had given my own thoughts a different feel in my mind. This is one of the reasons I focused so much on determining if the thoughts are internal or external in my previous post.

It wasn’t until my 20s, a decade into exploring magick, that spirits started wanting to work with me. I can’t be sure, but my guess is I was doing something interesting with some ethereal software, the spirits that owned that ethereal software saw, and they told the software to alert them when I was ready to talk to them. It happened when I was doing magick and thinking about spirits — the software must have picked up on those thoughts and decided that was a good time. I asked the spirits about the software, and would return to them periodically with more questions.

(This has happened several times over the course of my magick practice. It seems that, if you’re connected to ethereal software, thinking about the right things can trigger it to have spirits contact you.)

In my late 20s and 30s, spirits started contacting me, wanting to compare notes on techniques and otherwise work with me. That’s when I started working with spirits more, and started really thinking of them as people. These days, I talk with spirits almost every day, sometimes just to socialize and ask how they’re doing.

But this is a beginner post, so let’s get back to the basics. Here are a few options for contacting spirits as a beginner:

Option 1: Contact Ethereal Software Instead

Talking with ethereal software uses the same techniques as talking to spirits. All the tips from the beginner’s guide apply equally to ethereal software, and as a beginner, you probably won’t be able to tell the difference between software and a spirit.

So, contact some ethereal software. If you don’t know how, just use the software for my book. Get used to the communication. This will (1) satisfy your curiosity, at least somewhat, and (2) give you experience communicating so it’s easier for spirits to talk to you later.

Option 2: Perform Standard Rituals

If you want to accomplish something hundreds of mages have done for hundreds of years, use the standard rituals. Work with a group in your area, do some Enochian or other ritual magick centered around spirits, and talk with those spirits. You’ll probably wind up with ethereal software rather than the actual spirits running the software, but the software will project visions of spirits into your mind, which is pretty awesome too.

Option 3: Ask for the Owners

What if you’ve already talked with ethereal software, and you really want to talk to a spirit, just to see how it’s different? You can do that, too. Contact your ethereal software and say, “I’d like to speak to the spirits that own you. Can you connect me to them, or ask them to connect to me?” (Don’t say it out loud. Communicate that message to the software.) It usually works — the spirits can, of course, disable that feature of the software, but they usually leave it turned on for someone who uses the software regularly, or someone initiated into that style. And since you’ve been working with the software for a while (right?), learning how it works and learning to communicate, you’ll be one of those regular / initiated users.

Make sure to have something interesting to talk about. Questions about the software, for example. Treat this like emailing an author — we’re happy to hear from you, but if you say, “Hi, I’ve never written an author before, and I just wanted to see if it worked,” we probably won’t be very interested.

Safety Note

These methods should put you in touch with friendly spirits, but connecting to something / someone new makes you more obvious to everyone, increasing your chances of being noticed by malicious spirits who want to drain your energy. So, I’d recommend reading some posts on protection, and reviewing them if you feel particularly exhausted, or have a headache or nausea after talking to spirits.

(Symptoms might happen immediately, or it might be the next day — sometimes, a slow energy drain doesn’t have symptoms for a while. Also, don’t let this safety note scare you off, we’re talking about the same level of badness as a cold or a hangover.)

Got more questions? Leave a comment.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Talking to Spirits

Friday, June 14th, 2013

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This post is about accurately communicating info to spirits and ethereal software. If you want to know how to contact a spirit in the first place, see this post.

Clarification: Spirits are not ghosts. I don’t do anything with contacting dead relatives. If you came here for that, I’m sorry I can’t help, and I’m also sorry for your loss. Good luck!

A reader asked me how to learn to talk to spirits. This post is my response.

First, what happens when you talk with a spirit: You think, and the spirit reads your mind. Then the spirit places his reply into your mind. For me, this message feels like thoughts in a different internal voice, though it may feel different for you.

(Note that spirits don’t interact with air vibrations. There’s no need to speak out loud, though you can if it helps you focus. And you won’t hear words with your ears.)

There are three main goals in beginner communication:

  • Make it easier for the spirit to read your thoughts.
  • Listen carefully, so you hear the spirit’s reply.
  • Avoid mistaking your own thoughts and expectations for messages.

It’s hard to get all of these goals to near-prefect accuracy. I’m still working on it. But as a beginner, your goal is simply to get better at them. So, here are some tips and techniques.

Note: Communicating with spirits is the same as communicating with ethereal software. These techniques will also help your manifesting, psychic intuitions, and anything else you do with ethereal software.

Making Your Thoughts Easier to Read

First, think slowly. Focus on one concept, hold it in your mind for a second, then move on to the next concept. This gives the spirit a second to pick up your mind’s signature for each concept, rather than having to catch each thought as it passes.

(Pausing for each concept isn’t necessary once you know what you’re doing, but it should help you get started.)

Second, pay attention to which part of your mind you think with. I know, that’s a weird concept if you’re new to communication, so let me explain. You can engage different parts of your mind as you think. The signatures that the spirit reads, (the signatures corresponding to your mind’s state as you think your message), seem to wind up in whatever part of your mind you engage as you think the message. So, you want to engage the parts of your mind that the spirit is connected to.

To do that, quiet your energy and feel in your mind where the spirit connects to you. As a beginner, this will probably be your first time, and you probably haven’t developed this sense of where connections are. That’s OK. Just quiet your energy, notice how your mind feels, then have the spirit connect, and notice how your mind feels different. Try to engage the part of your mind that feels different.

(Quiet energy means that your energy is steady. Not low energy, just stable. If you visualize energy as a white light, visualize the light staying a constant level, and think about wanting to keep your energy steady. For more, see this post on quiet connections, which is similar.)

You probably won’t know what to do the first time, but as you notice the differences, you’ll learn to feel where the spirit connects. So keep at it. Once you can feel where the spirit is connected, keep that part of your mind engaged whenever you send a message.

Hearing the Spirit’s Reply

First, quiet your thoughts. Learn how it feels to have a still mind, and learn to hold your mind relaxed, so you can hear whatever the spirit places in your thoughts.

(Yes, to truly develop a still mind takes years of meditation. But you don’t have to be an expert, you just need to quiet your thoughts for 10-20 seconds to hear a reply.)

Second, once you learn to engage particular parts of your mind to send a message, you’ll feel like you should keep them engaged as you listen. You’ll want to listen intently, and engaging those muscles will feel focused and intent. But don’t do it. Don’t engage those parts of your mind. Just let your mind relax, and let the spirit’s message enter your thoughts.

See, to send you a message, the spirit needs to alter the signature of your mind. Engaging part of your mind holds it tense, so the spirit can’t change your mind’s signature, which prevents you from receiving the message. So, relax your mind to make it easy for the spirit to change your mind’s signature.

(By the way, I just verified this, using beginner communication techniques: When I engage / tense my mind, I can see the message, and I can tell that I’m not receiving it. If I really wanted to hear a message, I’d probably just get my own thoughts, saying whatever I expected the spirit to say. But when I relax my mind, the message is clear and easy to receive.)

Only Receiving Real Messages

This is the hardest part of communication, especially for beginners. There’s no simple answer.

When I receive a message using beginner communication techniques, it’s different than my own thoughts in two ways:

  • The message is more firm. With my own thoughts, I can easily shift images or change words. With a message, it’s more difficult. (Note that, a few seconds after the message passes through my mind, I no longer have a message; instead, I have a memory of a message, and I can shift that memory as easily as any other.)
  • The message has a different voice in my head. Note that this is probably just how my ethereal muscles represent their own knowledge that these thoughts are an external message, and isn’t anything inherent to how communication works. Which means that this may happen for you, or it may not.

(Also, note that receiving a message from a spirit while I think my own thoughts often results in those thoughts taking on the spirit’s “voice.” The spirit’s signature (from its message) gets applied to my own thoughts, changing the voice, even though the info is all from me.)

Where does that leave us? As a beginner, you’ll want to pay attention to the feel and voice of the thoughts passing through your mind as you communicate with a spirit, but neither gives you a definitive check. Learning to quiet your mind will help, also, as will learning to relax your mind as you receive messages. And remember: The goal isn’t 100% accuracy, it’s just to get better than you are right now.

With that in mind, I have one more tip: When you receive a message, say to the spirit, “This is the message I received, [whatever their message was]. Is that correct?” The spirit will then reply Yes or No, which is usually much easier to receive and read than a full-sentence message. Verifying each message will (1) help you get more accurate messages, and (2) get you some immediate feedback on your communication techniques, which will help you learn.

(And if the spirit always says that yes, you received every message correctly, be suspicious. Those Yes’s may be coming from your own thoughts, not from the spirit. Especially as a beginner, it’s unlikely you’ll receive everything correctly the first time.)


Think slowly, quiet your mind, and ask for confirmation. Then practice engaging the right parts of your mind.

I hope these tips and exercises help. If you learn everything in this post, you’ll probably know more about communication than most mages. And if you simply ask for confirmation after each message, you’ll already be ahead of most beginners.

Try it. And if you have questions, leave a comment below.

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If I Didn’t Know Computers

Monday, May 13th, 2013

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Between ethereal software, debugging, and the computational complexity of manifesting, it’s obvious I work with computers. But what if I didn’t? What if I lived before computers? How would I explain magick?

A non-programmer friend asked me that recently. My reply: Probably as spirits. I’d say there were intelligent, sentient spirits, which are the same as what I currently call spirits. Then I’d also say there were less intelligent, non-sentient spirits that you could command, which are what I currently call ethereal software.

If you’re confused by the term “ethereal software,” just think of them as simple, programmable spirits.

Does that help the non-programmers among you?

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Improving on the Spirits We Channel

Friday, May 3rd, 2013

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Another interesting post on Strategic Sorcery, We Are Spirits:

So there are a number of posts floating around about Why Evocation is important. Here is Aaron Leitch. Mike C. The commonality among them is an assertion that magic works through the agency of spirits and that any assertion otherwise is modern and incorrect.


You see, we are spirits too.

Yes, we have bodies, but within those bodies we have spirit and soul. People have power.

This begs the question: What would it take to do what spirits do? What would you have to understand in order to drive the magick yourself, with your own mind, rather than relying on a spirit?

And the follow-up question: If you understood all that — if 100 or 1000 or 1,000,000 people understood that — what else could we create that the spirit hasn’t figured out yet?

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Did Spirits Evolve?

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

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Where did spirits come from?

If you’re a theist, that’s easy: God made them. But I don’t believe in God. I mean, I believe in powerful spirits that non-mages would mistake for gods, but I don’t believe in a self-causing intelligence.

I think spirits must have evolved. But it raises a few questions:

  • If spirits evolved as body-less spirits, what was the selection pressure? And how do they reproduce?
  • If they evolved as embodied, physical entities, then became spirits later, how did that happen, and what does that imply about life after bodily death?
  • Or maybe spirits are a by-product of something that evolved, created from the dreams of man, or from some advanced alien technology.

(Not that I think spirits are evidence for aliens. And I hesitated to mention the possibility because I don’t want to be associated with people fascinated by UFOs. But when you’re exploring possibilities, you can’t discard one simply because some people have irrationally latched onto some aspects of it.)

And one more idea: If sufficiently powerful spirits could easily be mistaken for Roman-style gods, and if spirits evolved, does that mean Roman-style gods might have evolved, too?

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My Work This Week: Energy Healing for PTSD, Improving Psychic Intuitions

Sunday, September 9th, 2012

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Now that I’m back home and back to magick research, let’s resume the weekly posts about my work. This week, I did a healing session for a friend with PTSD, updated my settings with my psychic ethereal software, and helped a friend who was being drained by spirits.

Energy Healing for PTSD

A friend developed post-traumatic stress disorder after a traumatic event in April. I did two healing sessions for her this week, and the results look promising. Look for a full case study soon, once we’ve had time to watch the changes for a bit longer.

The healing technique is advanced. I can’t explain how to do it here, but I can give you the general idea: You separate the memories from their emotional charge. Inside the person’s thinking mind, you find the energy signature of the memories, find the paths from those memories to the person’s emotional areas, and disable those paths. The result is that the memories remain, but don’t trigger their emotions anymore. (Emotions can still be triggered normally by other memories, though.) I’d used this technique on myself earlier this year to get over a fight with a friend, but hadn’t used it for anyone with PTSD.

(Yes, it’s possible this was suggestion and placebo, not energy. But the results were pretty great.)

Like most of my techniques, there’s a gentle version and a more complete version. We started with the gentle version, where you just separate the energy signature of the memory from the emotion, but don’t do anything to prevent it from reconnecting. As expected, the memory became somewhat less emotional, but everything reconnected as my friend recalled the events throughout the day. She was still impressed with the results, though I considered it an (somewhat expected) failure. At least it gave us something of a control condition — this attempt should have gotten the full benefit of placebo, and it had no significant long-term results, so any long-term results we get later will probably be the result of the healing technique itself.

The second technique included a step to seal the energetic paths between the memory and the emotion, to prevent the connections from re-forming. It seems to be working, even a few days later. The immediate result was bigger than the first session:

  • Before the session, reading her recollection of the traumatic events made her nauseous. This was ongoing, and we verified this immediately before the session.
  • The session took about 5 minutes.
  • Immediately after the session, reading those same events no longer made her nauseous.

And it seems to be holding up, several days later. Look for a full write-up soon.

Updating My Psychic Settings

I discussed this work earlier this week. So far, I’ve updated my goals. Next, I’ll re-configure how the ethereal software connects to my mind, and specify the things I’d like it to advise me on. Expect more on this in next Sunday’s weekly summary.

Helping vs Draining Spirits

A friend, S, had severe headache and nausea. Connecting to her, it looked like a spirit had been draining one particular signature of her energy, and when you subtract one signature from a person, they wind up with an unbalanced, unhealthy signature, causing those sort of problems. She’s psychic but otherwise doesn’t know magick, so I helped out.

Normally, this wouldn’t even warrant a mention, except for one wrinkle: The spirits draining her are attached to the ethereal software S uses for psychic intuitions. They own that ethereal software. So, I can’t kick them out without disabling her psychic intuitions.

One option was to disconnect S from that ethereal software (and kick the spirits out), then connect her to some better ethereal software, like the one for my book. Once it set up (in 3-6 months*), she’d get even better intuitions. But S was worried about the delay.

*Why so long? Because she doesn’t know magick, the ethereal software has to handle 100% of the communication. Once you learn techniques to help out with the communication, you can connect to new ethereal software much quicker. But, unfortunately, it also takes a few months to learn those techniques.

The spirits seemed intelligent and generally friendly, and weren’t aware they were hurting people with these energy drains. So I brokered a deal: I got my trainers to show those spirits how to produce their own energy more efficiently, so they won’t have to drain people anymore. Those spirits agreed to stop draining people. It’s working well, S is recovering, I’m in touch with the spirits, and hopefully they’ll do something helpful and productive with their time now.

Detailed results: The problem initially started about 48 hours ago. It went unaddressed for about 24 hours from when S developed symptoms, to S asking for help, to me getting the email, to me trying to chase the spirits off a few times (short-term improvements, but no long-term change), to me figuring out about the ethereal software, to me seeing this solution. Within a few hours* of arranging that deal, S’s headache and nausea went from crippling to manageable, and her condition has continued to improve in the 24 hours since.

*Why a few hours to notice a change? The problem isn’t the drain itself, it’s the unhealthy energy signature, and it takes a while for your energy to return to normal. If you know how to reset your energy, you can reduce this to a few minutes, but S doesn’t know that technique yet, so a few hours is typical.

By the way, if you notice and address the problem faster, before your signature gets too unhealthy, you’ll have a much faster recovery.

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Disabling Malicious Spirits

Saturday, August 18th, 2012

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Today, I’ll answer Ananael’s question about disabling malicious spirits by disconnecting their mental muscles from their thinking mind.

To recap, in Don’t Mock Demons, I said that, to rid myself of a malicious spirit, “I would damage the connections between the spirit’s mental muscles and its thinking mind.” Ananael asked if spirits have mental muscles and thinking minds (answer: yes), and he also asked:

It’s not clear to me that there’s a “connection” between [the mental muscles and thinking mind of the spirit] that would be amenable to disruption. Or have you experimented with this method and found it to be effective in ridding yourself of spirits that are bothering you?

The short answer is: Yes, disrupting the connections between mental muscles and thinking mind is my default method for dealing with persistent malicious spirits. (If I don’t want to injure the spirit, I’ll temporarily disable its mental muscles instead.)

The technique takes me less than 5 seconds at this point. Immediately, I’ll feel the spirit’s connections go limp, whether they were pressing against my shields or had already penetrated into my mind and body. Within seconds, whatever they were doing will stop, and I’ll feel my mind shift back to its normal state. And as the spirit’s magick shuts down over the next 10 seconds or so, its shielding will drop, and it will be unable to resist anything else I do.

In short, disrupting a spirit’s mental muscles, or the connections between their mental muscles and thinking mind, ends the fight, and ends it quickly. Which makes me confident it was this technique, and not something else or some coincidence, that drove those results. I’ve verified this dozens of times over the past decade.

This Feels Different than Banishing

When I’ve seen spirits banished, it amounts to setting up a protected space, removing the spirit’s connections to that space, and erecting some sort of shield around the space.

I don’t like relying on banishing, because I’ve never seen a shield I couldn’t bypass. If I were in the role of the malicious spirit, and someone banished me, it would slow me down, and might even make me decide they weren’t worth the trouble, but it wouldn’t stop me. If I wanted in, I’d get in.

Shutting down a spirit’s mental muscles actually stops them. You can stay connected to them and see things shutting down, see their shielding drop, and see them unable to continue the fight. It doesn’t require the proper ritual for the spirit, either, it simply shuts them down and wins. I like that.

Remember when I talked about exploring the Goetia, and said that I could fight pretty well? This is the technique I would use in that fight, and I would expect it to win.

Incidentally, I don’t make this damage lasting unless I have to. In my first encounter with the spirit, I’ll temporarily disable their mental muscles, release the part of their mind that handles communication, then talk to them and release my hold on their mind. I only make the damage lasting if they come back for a second round.

Visualization Won’t Work

One more thing to mention: If you’re used to visualizations, you might want to imagine the spirit’s mental muscles, imagine some chords going to their mind, and imagine a knife severing the chords. That’s unlikely to work.

The reason is, the mental muscles that drive these techniques are built to awaken your mental muscles. They know how to turn mental muscles on, not how to turn them off. So, when you use that visualization, you’re asking your mental muscles to produce an outcome that they don’t know how to produce, and you get ineffective magick.

Instead, you need to step your mental muscles through the technique until they know how to do it. Which is one of the core skills of direct magick, and deserves a whole series of its own.

Comments / questions? You know what to do.

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Do Spirits Think Like Humans?

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

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In Don’t Mock Demons, I said that, to rid myself of a malicious spirit, “I would damage the connections between the spirit’s mental muscles and its thinking mind.” Today, I’ll answer one of Ananael’s follow-up questions:

Do you believe that spirits have “mental muscles” and “thinking minds” that are in any way analogous to those of humans? The thinking mind as we understand it is almost certainly rooted in the brain, since damage to particular areas can cause much more profound dysfunction than I would expect if the thinking function was rooted in some spiritual process.

Yes. In my experience, the mental muscles and thinking minds of spirits are almost identical to those of humans.

Let me start with that experience:

  • When I communicate with less-skilled spirits, I’ll often connect to their thinking mind and handle all the steps. (I’ve done this with ascended spirits as part of training, too.)
  • I’ve fought spirits, and disabled their mental muscles and thinking minds to end the fight. (More on that tomorrow.)
  • I’ve trained spirits in how to awaken their mental muscles, and how to connect the new mental muscles to their thinking mind.

In all cases, the spirit’s mental muscles and thinking mind were roughly the same as a human’s. (Mostly, I’m talking about ascended or near-ascended spirits here, but the communication was with less-skilled spirits.)

Let’s define “thinking mind” before going any further. It’s a specific magickal structure which, in humans, sits between the brain and the mental muscles. Activity in thinking mind correlates with thoughts in the brain, and so, we use it for communication. But when I say “thinking mind,” I’m referring to that specific structure, not the cognitive facilities of the human brain.

A spirit’s thinking mind connects to their mental muscles in much the same way a human’s thinking mind does. I’m not sure what it connects to instead of the brain, or if it connects to anything at all; maybe the thinking mind does its own information processing, no brain required. But the thinking mind itself seems to be roughly the same in spirits and in humans.

So, what does “roughly the same” mean? Well, it’s like how a human brains is roughly the same as a monkey brain, a dog brain or a mouse brain. Made of the same stuff, operating by the same rules, and possessing many of the same regions. But I’m talking about structure and composition here, not information processing.

Which brings us to the difference between high-skilled spirits and less-skilled spirits. Here, I’ll quote Ananael’s comment:

What the data I’ve compiled seems to show is that spirits do have independent minds and a certain level of power in terms of their ability to produce probability shifts, but the two factors seem to be much more intertwined than they are in human beings.

Exactly. More intelligent spirits are generally much more capable at magick. Sure, more intelligent humans will generally be better at magick, too, but the correlation is much more pronounced in spirits. I think it’s because the spirit’s thinking mind does the actual thinking (whereas a human can rely on their brain), and so, more skilled spirits can use magick to improve their thinking mind, increasing their intelligence.

Incidentally, developing thinking mind to become more intelligent isn’t limited to spirits: When the magick parts of my mind aren’t connected properly, I become slower and less perceptive, too.

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How to Find Good Spirits for Magick Training

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

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Calum, who has worked with energy most of his life and is now exploring direct magick, asks:

What is the best way for me to contact a spirit who could help me in fine tuning my abilities? I’m unsure and wary of summoning anything in case I attract the wrong kind of spirit. Being new to this, I’m aware that my defensive magick is not strong enough to cast out a strong spirit with bad intentions. Any help with this would be much appreciated!

This is a sticking point for a lot of new mages. In the past, I’ve recommended that you treat spirits like you would business partners, slowly getting to know them. I still stand by that advice, but it’s more useful for advanced mages (who can contact a variety of spirits) than someone new looking to meet his first few trainers.

Traditional styles of magick have known spirits, with associated rituals and sigils. The initiate knows how to summon the spirit, knows the ritual to banish them, and so on. It’s a really nice approach.

And when I see really nice approaches, I copy them. So, I’m going to offer access to spirits with my book’s ethereal software. There will be two forms:

For novices, you’ll get a virtual spirit: The ethereal software will act like a spirit, providing visions and messages and training. If you ask a question it doesn’t understand, it will refer that question to a real spirit, who will either respond, or expand the software so it can answer you. This will let a fairly small number of spirits handle requests from a large number of mages.

(By the way, that’s how most of the things we call “spirits” actually work: There’s an actual spirit somewhere behind the curtain, and the angel or demon or whatever is a projection of the ethereal software. If I didn’t tell you what was up, it would just look like we had a bunch of spirits training everyone.)

At some point, you will become too advanced for the ethereal software’s training program, and you’ll get one of the actual spirits. These are guys also train me, so I know that they’re friendly and skilled.

We haven’t decided on the exact trigger for moving from one type of training to the other, but the essence is: Learn all the stuff the first trainer wants to teach you, then you get upgraded.

Thoughts? Requests? Leave a comment.

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