What is the 'Craft'?
For someone just starting out in magick, finding out what the 'Craft' actually is can lead them down all kinds of strange paths. They have seen the Hollywood films and shows about Witches all stood round a big spell book chanting things, and they have also heard horror stories about sacrifices and strange rituals.
Young people are most at risk of being led down the wrong path, and serious Coven's, Groves and Orders wouldn't even consider taking someone in and teaching them things until they were at least 18, and for good reason. They don't want to accused of doing bad things by someone who decides to leave them, for whatever reason, or becomes bitter because it was decided they wouldn't be right for the group. This is to protect the group.
The Craft isn't what most people think it is. The Craft is now and always has been - Science, Technology and the Arts, which becomes much easier for those with an 'Illuminated' mind, high magick creates geniuses. It might be fun to call yourself 'Pagan' or a 'Witch' make wands and broomsticks and dance around fires. But that isn't what the Craft actually is. That might be part of the path, and the way for you to become in tune with nature, which is the starting out part of any spiritual path.
How do I find out more?
If you are walking about through these mazes on your own and call your self a solitary practitioner, don't ever expect to fully understand everything, because the knowledge in real Covens, Groves and Orders is passed down through generations and holds the true knowledge. Before deciding to join a group it is important to ask to see the groups Charter and lineages. If the group doesn't have any of these things available, they hold no knowledge and have no idea what the Craft is themselves, so how could they ever teach you?
There are plenty of groups out there who pretend to be something they are not. Their only purpose is to gain a following, massage the leaders ego and make themselves feel important. They don't have your best interests at heart.
Always ask to see the Charter and lineages, otherwise you are dealing with fakes.
What is the purpose of Ritual Magick?
Ritual magick has a purpose, and that purpose is to focus your mind. Often the very first thing you are told to when joining an order is to make your own ceremonial Tau robe. But why should you make your own when you can just buy one?
Well there are many reasons.
1. It shows the teacher you are serious about wanting to learn and have dedication.
2. It means you are starting on your path at becoming a doer, rather than someone who just sits back and relies on others.
3. Your intent is going into making the robe, so when wearing it during rituals you will feel even more dedicated to the path ahead. You have put real effort in, so this keeps you pushing forwards.
4. If you have never made anything before you will get an amazing sense of achievement, and it will stop you thinking small, and start you thinking big.
It isn't just a case of your teacher telling you to do it to be awkward, everything is for a reason.
You will also be told to make other tools for ritual use too, again if you make them yourself this much better than just buying one.
Ritual magick is hard work, no one ever says it is going to be easy. You have to meditate everyday, do breathing exercises everyday, yoga, learn long and complex rituals. Study a lot. Learn about different correspondences.
The beginning of any magick path starts by tuning you with the elements. Once you have successfully done this, you then work on awaking your true Will - Kundalini - Holy Spirit - Holy Guardian Angel - Higher Self.
Where as low magick will only focus on the psychology of working through the elements, high magick actually awakens parts of your brain and psyche that most people spend their whole lives never even knowing about or tapping into.
There are various systems for this, and once a Magickian has connected with their Higher Self, some will go on to create their own system. Once the inner genius is awakened the Magickian learns at a rapid pace and makes the most of his or her life. They have become a creator, a King or Queen of the Earth, and reached Kether on the tree of life. They have escaped slavery, a place where some, who are unwilling to or too scared to, will never leave. It might seem easier to just go with the flow through life, never realising your true potential, and that is what separates the Kings and Queens from the slaves, and the slaves shall serve.
This might sound Elitist, and most probably is. However it is a choice you make in your life and you can't blame anyone else for you own failings and laziness. Do you have the potential to be great? That is for you to decide, no one else.
Meditation to try out.
I will end on something for your inner genius to meditate on - If you can only think in words, words created by others, how do you know that what you are thinking with those words, is the real YOU?
©Copyright Ordo Infinitus Orbis 15th May 2011