Do the Fucking Work was the most popular post I have ever had. I pay attention to these kinds of things. They are signposts for me and how I proceed in my ministry.
I also pay attention when I get really annoyed with something in the pagan community. I learned long ago when I am annoyed, my subconscious is unhappy and that is important. It means that something is rubbing against the spiritual soul of me that 1. I need to acknowledge or 2. I need to acknowledge and address in myself 3. I need to acknowledge and address in myself AND in those I deal with.
Please note that TO KNOW is part of the magickal mantra “To Know, To Do, To Will [or Be], To Be Silent.” There is an entire other blog around TO KNOW. I am realizing that many many pagan magickal practitioners do not KNOW themselves. Oh, they believe they know. They do not KNOW and this inherent lack of knowledge of SELF is a fundamental tripping element to their magick and mundane lives. That might be another post someday called Get the Fucking Knowledge. Right now I am annoyed.
I am really annoyed.
When I ranted about doing the fucking work before, it was directly in relationship to money, jobs and prosperity. However, this inability to do work bleeds into every aspect of many magickal practitioners lives. It is so annoying.
What Christianity Taught You That Isn’t Helpful
I do not have a problem with Christianity. I was a Christian for many years (nearly 27). However, there are thought processes that some (note the dramatic emphasis) Christians use as fundamental tenants that do not serve magickal practice, paganism or Wicca.
The bigger problem is that these thought processes are energetic and bleed into our secular culture, especially in the United States. Even persons who were not devout Christians end up having these unconscious thought processes and then relying upon them when they leave Christianity or interact in any other faith. These unconscious and unchallenged thought processes affect everything from how a person deals with their life to how they approach their own spiritual journey. I would like to take a moment to expose some of them and ask you – are YOU falling for these false thought patterns and are those false patterns keeping YOU from gaining spiritual wisdom?
Throw Out The IDEA of a Ten Commandments
If you leave Christianity, please leave the Ten Commandments behind as well. Do not come to a non-Judeo Christian spiritual path looking for another Ten Commandments to abide by. They do not exist. The search and adherence to these commandments are not serving your spiritual journey.
Do not get me wrong. I still think that killing is unethical. It is also in the Biblical Ten Commandments, “Thou shalt not kill.” However, as a magickal practitioner I am very clear in my spirit, soul, that mystical place in me, when I would be willing to kill and not be sorry or even feel I was living outside of a deep spiritual place. I would also be willing to take whatever punishment the government I live under gives me for that action.
This is the fundamental difference between adherence as a Christian, and adherence and understanding of the world as someone outside Judeo Christianity. As a Christian, God says, “Do not Kill (“Thou Shalt Not Kill” 2016).” As a Christian, there is only adherence. There is nothing to think about or analysis. God said, Christians obey. THE END.
When I left Christianity, the most important work I did was to define for myself my own ethics in great detail. I am clear when I face situations what the ethical issues are in my mind and I am clear about all the various strands of web that inter-relate to that issue. I have learned that action is not one thing – it is inter-related. Much like a spider’s web is.
If action happens anywhere on the spider’s web, the spider will know where that action is simply by the feelings transmitted by the web itself. The web, for magickal practitioners, is our ethical understanding of our world. Just as different spiders create different webs, different magickal practitioners will create different ethical understandings. However, when another spider hits my ethical web, I know whether or not that is a spider that is living an ethical life in tune with my own ethical web. When my web resonates I know rightness and wrongness without the benefit of Ten Commandments.
This is because the very Laws of Nature and the Universe create the construct of all ethical webs, no matter who creates them. I no longer live in a world of RIGHT or WRONG. I live in a world filled with subtle nuances where something right in one situation will be wrong in another. However, even this grey world has a construct based on greater universal laws that helps me know when I meet someone whose web is outside the grayest of gray.
I can only live in the gray, if I know myself. I must know what my personal ethics are and have an understanding of the Universal Laws of Nature and Ethics that cannot be put into words or defined and are no less real for human’s inability to describe them. I had to do the fucking work, by myself, alone with my own thoughts and demons.
There is rightness and wrongness in magickal practice and it is defined by universal laws of nature and those indescribable only experiential things that a practitioner must experience to know. It requires a great deal of work. If you want to stay a sheep, continue to be a Christian. The Great Shepherd will provide for you. If you leave the fold, stop looking for The Shepherd. You left him. He wasn’t for you. Start looking INSIDE yourself.
Throw Out the IDEA of DEFINITIVE ANSWERS
The greatest conflict in Judeo-Christianity comes when there are clashes around the same written works seen as being holy and to quote a catechism “inerrant” (“Inerrancy: Roman Catholic Views on the Bible’s Infallability and Inerrancy” 2016). I will never forget when, as a Christian, I discovered that the Catholic Bible and the Protestant Bible are not the same. It helped me understand the laid back theology of many Catholics. They knew that protestants didn’t have all the books of the Bible, so protestant misunderstanding could be explained. It also explained the vehemence I was raised with that taught all Catholics are going to hell. The very foundation of belief rests on the correctness of the Bible Protestants use. Catholics reject that Bible SO Catholics have to go to hell or the very foundation of belief for Protestants is in question.
Despite the fact that Christians and other Judeo-Christian religions still fight physical conflicts over the rightness of their spiritual beliefs, new spiritual magicians, pagans, Wiccans and witches still walk around looking for The Mystic Bible to tell them what to do. There isn’t one.
On this side of faith and belief, there is an understanding of UNITY. Protestant, Catholics, Muslims, Jews, Gentiles, EVERYONE OF FAITH are all in the Universe of Faith NOT separate universes, as most would assume. Joseph Campbell is my mentor in this understanding. I watched his videos and read his books and found a knowing that all spirituality is underpinned by some Universal energy and laws and basic understandings . This type of understanding is termed monomyth by Campbell (“Joseph Campbell” 2016).
Again this knowledge came through doing the fucking work. It came through reading and studying and thinking and challenging myself. As an adherent to Sacred Geometry I can rest safe in the knowledge the world is based on real and knowable principles that are mathematically precise (“Sacred Geometry” 2016). I can see the sacred shapes of Triangle, Circle and Square in any spiritually aware human or seeker. I can see Christianity at its best and understand how it can go wrong terribly wrong. Again, this isn’t something I can articulate to any great effect. It is something that I live with as a deep knowing, some would call it grokking. In the place where I grok, there is a right and wrong and it is much harder to pin down (“Grok” 2016).
Throw Out “Let Go and Let God” and “Have Faith”
In Christianity, when my questions were too complex for an answer, I would often hear, “Have faith.” Faith was this mystical bandage that held together the incongruency I experienced as a Christian and those mystical bandages eventually failed. Faith doesn’t make a good bandage, like say, duct tape might.
When things were difficult, I would be told, “Let go and let God.” I once asked what I was going to let God do and the response was, “Have faith.”
When you leave Christianity, you leave certainty that comes with one answer: GOD. In Christianity the basic tenants revolve around the idea that God is ALL and the answer to everything. This frees up humankind completely. We have no more work to do but believe in God, that it is it. Mass murderer in life? Ask God to forgive you and BELIEVE IN GOD and POW! You can go to heaven even if the thousands you murdered didn’t have a chance.
This is counter to the Laws of the Universe as I understand them and is one of the fundamental reason I left Christianity. When you don’t tend your garden, nothing grows. When you don’t water a plant, it dies. When you don’t feed your cows, they don’t produce milk. The Laws of the Universe from my time on a farm have taught me all things have a cause and effect. Christianity seeks to circumnavigate the effect from any cause by using a belief in God as a get out of jail free card.
This is where a magickal practice comes in. Suddenly we understand that cause and effect are paramount. We adopt a magickal practice to influence the effects around us and it goes awry. It goes awry because we do not want to do the amazing amount of work required to really and truly affect change. See Money, Magick & Bullshit: Do the F**king Work.
YOU DO NOT NEED A PROXY
Christianity has taught us that if we lose faith in God or need to connect to God, then we can seek out God’s chosen – Priests, the Pope, a Guru, a Preacher. Then we can reach God through these people and borrow their knowledge to adopt as our own.
In the world of magick, paganism, Wicca, witchcraft, shamanism or whatever name you wish to ascribe to this world outside of Judeo-Christianity, that thinking is dangerously inaccurate. Every spiritual journey while having a similar cosmic geometry, is unique. Part of what makes it unique is how someone actually gets there. It is true that some will find getting to those spiritual places easier when lead or part of a strict magickal tradition like the OTA, OTO or strict Wiccan/Pagan traditions. However, even within these traditions that do work to bring spiritual elevation to seekers, there is a uniqueness to the journey of each Seeker. If a Wiccan tradition raises Green Witches, for example, they will not all be the same shade of green. Those raised in that tradition will carry a shade of green with them for the rest of their lives, but they will NEVER all be the exact same color of green.
It is the laws of nature again. You can take trees and mathematically predict how far apart the tree branches of specific trees within a species will be. In this knowledge there is a certain gentle calmness that can be sought. However, you can not mathematically predict the exact color of every leaf on a tree of the same species because nature causes other factors to be at play. Are the leaves on a dying branch that is diseased? How far from the sunlight is that leaf? Are these leaves the first for this tree or the last? Color of the leaves will be in a spectrum NOT a predictable sameness.
Given that, you do not need a proxy to do the real and hard work of spiritual development and magickal growth. You need you. No teacher, guru, witch, grand master, preacher, minister, seer, or person is ever going to be as good as you are at developing who YOU ARE.
This doesn’t mean that the experience of others can’t help you. It does mean that the experiences of others will never help you as much as the work and experiences you have with yourself.
Before you, as a newbie, ask a question, do yourself a favor. Google the answer. Research the answer. Hold that question in your heart and think of an answer for yourself. Seek out your guides, your intuition, your innate knowledge buried under years of deferring to other authorities. Spend time with the question and ask yourself, “If I knew the answer to this question, what would it be?” There is no proxy on Earth or in the Universe that is better suited to answer your question than YOU.
It DOES NOT take a witch to make a witch, unless the witch in question is the witch that needs to be made.