Preliminaries to IIH

Okay, time to get -somewhat- serious with spiritual practices and daily habits. I’m gonna proceed with the studies from the book Initiation into Hermetics. As a first step, let’s review the book “Preliminary Practice for Franz Bardon’s Initiation into Hermetics”.

So, the system of magic taught by Bardon is highly practical. Apparently, he also wrote his books to match the energies of the first Tarot cards. So, something like this?:

The Magician = Initiation into Hermetics
The High Priestess = Practice of Magical Evocation
The Empress = Key to the True Quabbalah

Additional reading:

  • Swami Vivekananda: Raja Yoga, Jnana Yoga, Karma Yoga and Bhakti Yoga
  • Choa Kok Sui: Pranic Healing, Advanced Pranic Healing

Apart from this, make sure to read all the books in Bardon’s curriculum at least once, just a cursory reading, to get the basic idea of the entire system in your head.

Mental Attitude:

  • Know what you do, why, and when. Create a plan to track your results, and include the exercises in your daily schedule. Make a daily schedule if you have none, and find a good way to keep track of it.
  • Venture into the unknown: Make an effort to keep exploring new places and people. Keep learning languages, and make it into a weekly habit (Duolingo, Graded Readers)
  • Will yourself into success: practice strengthening your willpower, and go jogging twice per week. Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
  • Keep silent: the best results are not shared with others but become public through your good work.

Your personal dedication:

A small exercise to improve: press each one of the four element chakras as described:

  • Fire: Press the point between your eyebrows. That is the Ajna Chakra, to train your will
  • Air: Press the point in the middle of your forehead. To train your visionary intuition
  • Water: Press the point right below your hairline. To train your intuitive feeling
  • Earth: Press the crown area. To train your higher consciousness

Other techniques for balancing your soul: homeopathy, Bach flowers, Acupuncture, and Pranic healing. You can also do the chakra exercises using all the chakras in the body, either from the feet chakra to the crown or vice versa.

Physical training:

  • Jog twice per week
  • Read the book “The Inner Structure of Tai Chi” by Mantak Chia

Try to have a balanced diet, and include strengthening exercises in your routine.

This is your time, your opportunity. Don’t waste it!

The Beautiful Side of Evil

Let me tell you about this book I read last week:

Described as “An extraordinary story about Johanna’s involvement in the occult and how she learned to distinguish between the beautiful side of evil and the true way of the Lord” I must have seen this book mentioned in another book related to ghosts and the occult that I read recently, called The Siren Call of Hungry Ghosts. In that book, we read the story of a group of people who came into contact with discarnate entities -spirits- via a medium. The author of the book starts talking to a spirit that claims to be an old girlfriend that he had when, in a previous life, both lived in Greece. She knows many things about him, and she seems to really love him and knows exactly what to tell him to make him feel good. Soon, his real-life relationship with his girlfriend gets cast aside and he starts to develop a closer relationship with the spirit, which calls herself Philippa. He asks the spirits to give him more information about their past lives, and they happily do so. However, when he actually tries to verify some of those facts, it turns out that they are either incomplete or altogether fake. Then, the spirits turn sour. They come up with all kinds of explanations as to why he was unable to verify their claims. They get angry. He finds out that most, if not all, of the historical and geographical information Philippa has given him is wrong. Heartbroken, he decides not to even confront her, and instead he just distances himself from the spirit sessions.

On a similar line then, we find “The Beautiful Side of Evil“. Of a much more religious preachy nature, the book relates the story of a woman who was able to feel spirits and sense ghosts ever since she was a kid. As an adult, she enrolls as the helper of a Mexican spiritual healer, Pachita. At first, it seems like they are only helping people, providing healing where regular medicine can’t. However, when she starts to question the nature of hers and Pachita’s powers, the spirits seem displeased. She gets attacked, she suffers moments of mental instability and only the help of a devoted Christian community manages to save her from going insane. The last third of the book went a little bit too Christian for my liking, and the message is clear: accept Jesus as your savior or suffer the consequences. Nothing else is good, all spiritism is evil…and get this: EVEN DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS IS EVIL.

Yes, that’s right. Here are the relevant mentions:

I’ve lost count of how many individuals, even while under severe demonic bondage, have said to me, “Oh, but I’ve never been involved in the occult! I just played around with the Ouija board a few times!” (or astrology, or tea-leaf reading, or rod-and-pendulum, or Dungeons and Dragons, or seances, or palmistry, or tarot cards, etc.)

Ouija boards are sold in almost every toy store – frequently next to “Dungeons and Dragons,” a game which is occultic to the core, whatever its devotees may believe.

Putting aside the fact that no, Ouija boards are not sold in almost every toy store (I think I remember asking around in my city and never finding one), I found that statement to be extremely stupid. D&D is occultic to the core? How so? Because it takes place in a world of magic, wizards, and spells? I played D&D and other role-playing games with my friends, and I fail to see how they can be occultic. We never tried to talk to the dead, all we did was pretend like we were people who we weren’t. We were actors. Is acting occultic, then? This is the part of the book that just put me off. I absolutely despise most Christian denominations because they just blindly accept that their interpretation is the only one valid, their book is the only one that contains the truth, and they treat you as if you were ignorant, as if somehow you were the only one incapable of understanding those deep truths that they have received from God…only they did not receive anything from God. Human hands wrote the Bible. That’s the undeniable truth. Everything else is just our own addition.

So, personally, I enjoyed the first two-thirds of the book, but I really hated the last part. Whereas the author of “The Siren Call…” does actual research, and tries to verify the information he gets from the spirits, the author of “The Beautiful Side...” just meets up with some hardcore Christians that tell her that everything that’s not in the bible is literally satan, and that’s all. Both authors decided to stop interacting with these spirits when they realize that things aren’t as clear and clean as they were led to believe, but I prefer when people switch lanes for a real, valid reason. Going “I stopped having irrational faith on this thing, and started having irrational faith on this other thing“…just doesn’t cut it for me.

Overall: 3/5. Read it if you are curious about spirits, whether they are good or evil, and what plans they might have for the living, or even if you’re an occultist who wonders whether these practices are good for you or not. But don’t expect to find here much in terms of scientific explanations. It’s just “I saw this and that, and then I stopped working with spirits and started praying to Jesus Christ“. That’s the book, in a nutshell.

PS: The book “The Siren Call…” is fully available on the Archive.org library: https://archive.org/details/TheSirenCallofHungryGhosts. You can also borrow “The Beautiful Side…” if you want to https://archive.org/details/beautifulsideofe00mich I think only for an hour.

Also, the featured image has nothing to do with ghosts. It was just a picture I found in Pixabay that I liked: https://pixabay.com/photos/japan-island-nagasaki-kyushu-725796/

Buddhism – A Short Story

Far from being a short story, this is 150 pages of good Buddhism knowledge. Perhaps that’s nothing when you take into consideration the thousands of books and millions of pages of manuscripts, tantras, and sutras, so well, maybe it’s better not to complain about having to read a book that is actually shorter than 200 pages. I took those lines I highlighted while I was reading, and tried to put them together into something that could resemble a summary. But this is mostly intended to be a reminder of the book’s contents.

Introduction

Violence has to be avoided

The self is responsible for all suffering

Death is an error that can be overcome

Old Buddhism is Hinayana. The second Buddhist period sees the rise of Mahayana. Finally, the third period with Tantra and Ch’an.

The First Five Hundred Years: 500 – 0 BC.

Monastic discipline (Vinaya) and Skandhaka, the document which contains some rules to regulate Buddhist life. The 250 rules of Pratimoksha, ecclesiastical offenses. Some of these include having a chair or bed made with legs higher than eight inches. The basic doctrines include a theory of salvation and a theory of the three jewels (the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha). Searching for security in the material world is futile. In fear of birth and death, Buddhists leave their home lives to attain salvation. To Buddhism, the root of all evil is not sin, but ignorance. They don’t care much to define Nirvana, but rather to realize it within themselves, through effort in meditation. Meditation, which:

  • Aims at a withdrawal of attention
  • Shifts attention to a subtler realm
  • Penetrates into the supra-sensory reality

Mindfulness leads to trance (samadhi) and then to wisdom (prajna). There is almost no limit to the total of different meditational methods reported during the first period.

As for the three jewels: Buddha is the enlightened one. His name was Gautama, or Siddharta (often called Sakyamuni). Tathagata is the spirit of Buddhism, the Dharma-body, or the Buddha nature. “Whoso sees the spiritual law, or Dharma, he sees me“. Buddha incarnated is not really important: what’s important is the Buddha nature. The seven Buddhas. The Boddhisatva theory. Maitreya, the future Buddha. Dharma is the subject of all teachings. It is the one ultimate reality, it is the teachings of the Buddha, and it is also the application of these teachings in our daily life, becoming righteousness or virtue. Sometimes, Dharmas -note the plural- are seen in Buddhist teachings, denoting the individual “things” that we perceive and that give origin to ignorance. Examples of these are the five Skandhas (form, feelings, perceptions, volitional impulses, and consciousness) which constitute the human personality. As per the Sangha (or Samgha) the real Samgha is the invisible church, the Aryans, the holy ones. Of all the Buddhist saints, the Arhats are the most highly prized.

Sects and their disputes

Buddhist sects remained in contact and thus were able to share principles and understand each other. The goal -of enlightenment- may be reached on different roads. Tensions between the elitists who want to keep the Dharma for a small number of Arhats, and those who wish to increase the salvation chances of the common people. As salvation depended on the awareness of certain mental processes, philosophy played an important role in Buddhism. The classification of knowledge, the problems of causality, time, the criteria of what is real and what is not… At this point, a scholar called Mahadeva called into question the holiness of the Arhats. Those who agreed with him separated into the called Mahasanghikas. Those who didn’t were called the Sthaviras, the elders. Buddha became an object of religious faith, more than just a human being. The earth Buddha became then a fictitious creature who was thought to have been sent by the transcendental Buddha to teach the world. The Mahasanghikas taught two important things: 1) that all thought is pure, and 2) that all worldly things are unreal, and that includes verbalized and conceptualized knowledge (even Buddhist knowledge).

The next separation was caused by the question of the person, or “pugdala” (“entity that reincarnates as an individual or person” – Wikipedia). The personalists or Vatsiputriyas claimed that apart from all the impersonal Dharmas, there is still a person that needs to be taken into consideration. “One person, when He is born in the world, is born for the weal of the many. Who is that one person? He is the Tathagata“. For them, the person is a reality in the ultimate sense. Neither identical to the skandhas, nor in the skandhas, nor outside of them.

The third split was caused by the doctrine of Katyayaniputra, who taught that not only present but also past and future events are all real (pan-realism).

The laity

What is the place of the common folk in the scheme of things? There are four avenues for them to increase their merit:

  • observe the five precepts
  • be devoted to the three treasures
  • be generous, especially to the monks
  • worship the relics of the Buddha

The monks, in return, increase the spiritual and material welfare of the community, and also the well-being of the country. Much of Buddhism’s success is owed to its good relationship with Asian rulers. Nevertheless, there was a precarious relationship with the laity, and this invited the development of Mahayana, and the idea that people are as important as dharmas. In the third period, monks were forced to become astrologers, doctors, weather changers, and other professions useful to laymen. “The story of Buddhism becomes unintelligible unless due weight is given to the desires of the dumb common people“.

Expansion

Asoka, his son, and Buddhism in Ceylon (present-day Sri Lanka). Close contact between Buddhists and rulers infused the latter with a sense of nationalism and led the monks to support national wars. Ceylon was home to the Theravadins.

The Second Period: AD 0 – 500

Mahayana, the great vehicle (Maha means big. Mahatma, Maha Kali). Demand for more equal rights for the laity, and fewer arhats. Mahayana Buddhism was able to travel outside India and was influenced by foreign ideas. The importance of the Sakyamuni Buddha was put aside, making room for the Buddha who is the embodiment of Dharma (the Dharmakaya). Among the Mahayana innovations we count:

  • shifting the ideal from the Arhat to the Bodhisattva, who remains in touch with the ordinary people.
  • giving compassion equal importance as wisdom. Paramita, the six “methods to go to the beyond”: giving, morality, patience, vigor, meditation, and wisdom.
  • a new pantheon of deities, composed of more-than-divine persons (Avalokitesvara, Manjusri, Samantabhadra), both mythical Buddhas as well as Bodhisattvas.
  • development of the idea of Skill-in-means (skillful means) the ability to bring out the potential in people through unusual ways.
  • a new ontological doctrine dealing with emptiness, suchness. Although the “beyond” is considered to be, well, beyond the grasp of intellectual and verbal comprehension

The Yogacarin school (“one whose practice is yoga” – Wikipedia) came up with the final formulation of the Three Bodies of the Buddha. The Dharmakaya is the absolute truth, and reality itself. The Sambhogakaya is the body in unearthly realms. The Nirmanakaya is the one that human beings see on earth, the physical incarnation of the Buddha.

Some of these doctrines were forbidden and esoteric, to the point where it becomes hard to distinguish between true Buddhist innovation and just esoteric knowledge being made available to the populace.

Hinayana developments in India

To hold its position, Hinayana adopted some of the Mahayana theories. They stressed more the idea of “emptiness”. Created the Abhidharma.

Ceylon

Is learning more important than practicing? Buddhaghosa, writer of the Visuddhimagga. Discord between the Mahavihara and the Abhayagirivihara. The latter were more open toward laymen. The Mahaviharas were more conservative.

Expansion into greater Asia

As a world religion, Buddhism was born in Gandhara, India. The Mahayanists were more successful missionaries, given their freedom in interpreting the scriptures. Medical missionaries were also responsible for a great number of conversions. The first large country to be penetrated by Buddhist thought was China. First as a religion of the non-Chinese, but by 500 it was well established throughout the whole of China, developing a state within a state. The Chinese Buddhists weren’t shy about quoting Lao Tzu or the Yellow Emperor. Rulers found the Buddhist priests more amiable than Taoist priests, as they relied on donations from wealthy laymen, and were not inciting rebellions like the Taoists were. Among the first works to be translated into Chinese we find the sutras on Prajnaparamita. The problem of being versus non-being, the emergence of the seven schools.

  • School of original non-being
  • Variations in the first school
  • School of the emptiness of matter
  • School of the non-being of mind
  • School of stored impressions
  • School of phenomenal illusions
  • School of causal combination

Kumarajiva, the Book of Chao. Buddhism and neo-Taoism. The Icchantikas (“deluded being who can never attain enlightenment” – Wikipedia) are forever excluded from Buddhahood. Achieving Buddhahood in an instant opposes Hindu thought regarding acquired learning. Meanwhile, popular faith concerns itself with rebirth in paradise. Be it Akshobhya’s in the east, Amitabha’s in the west, or Maitreya’s in the future. Founding of the Fellowship of the White Lotus, which would later evolve into Chung-t’u, or school of Pure Land.

The Third Period – AD 500 – 100

The emergence of Tantra. This is the last creative achievement of Buddhism, which enriched it with magical traditions. Mantras, mudras and mandalas were introduced. Systematized into Vajrayana, and the syncretist Kalacakra, with an emphasis on astrology. Whereas common people use magic to acquire power, Buddhists use it to free themselves from powers that are alien to their true being. No longer distant, Buddhahood is right now, “in this very body”. The ideal now is the Siddha. The ambiguous language of Tantra, and the visions of the yogins which they esteemed as more real than reality itself (which makes it difficult to research Buddhism historically).

The monastic system was weakened and spread into groups of self-sufficient Yogins. The wrathful deities, and their feminine counterparts. Cunda, Vasudhara, Usnisavijaya, Vajravarahi, Buddhalocana…dakinis, consorts of the Buddhas and their erotic rituals. The fivefold division of all cosmic forces, each one presided by one Tathagata: Vairocana, Akshobhya, Ratnasambhava, Amitabha, Amoghasiddhi. Clothing the highest into the form of the lower, shock therapy, the union of male and female in the ecstasy of love.

Royal patronage of Buddhism in Northern India would come to define its direction for the following centuries. The Buddhists developed their logic preceding the Hindus. Formulation of epistemological theories.

China and Korea

Between 500 and 800 AD were the most productive centuries for Chinese Buddhism. The eight indigenous schools. The Mi-Tsung, is the Chinese version of Tantra. The T’ien-t’ai school aimed at a syncretism of all Mahayana schools. The Pure Land school, and Amidism. O-mi-to-fo, and the legend of Sukhavativyuha. Kuan-yin, the Indian version of Avalokitesvara. The strength of Amidism lies in its democratic spirit: just chant the name and you will be free, all that is required is faith. The Ch’an school, and the introduction of working monks. “A day without work, a day without eating”. Practical realization, simplification of the approach to enlightenment. If you are cold, just burn a statue of the Buddha. Kill the Buddha if he gets in your way. “Strange words and stranger actions“. Buddhahood is achieved through instantaneous enlightenment.

Buddhists were becoming impatient with how long it took for Hinayana or Mahayana to produce any enlightened beings, so the Ch’ans worked for enlightenment “in this life”. After the Arhats, Pratyekabuddhas, Boddhisattvas, and Siddhas, we now have the Roshis. Cultivation through non-cultivation. “Only do ordinary things with no special effort“. “To eat all day yet not to swallow a grain of rice“. The great prosecution of 845.

In Tibet, Buddhism found resistance from the Bon religion. The prosecution of 863. Padmasambhava.

The Last One Thousand Years: AD 1000 – 1978

In India, Buddhism pretty much ended in 1200 due to Mohammedan invasions, much as it was also due to internal strife. Monks left the country, thanks to the international character of Buddhism, contributing in this way to its extinction. The creative impulse had ceased. The division between Hindus and Buddhists had diminished, and Buddhism no longer served a purpose as a separate entity. In Nepal, monks gave up celibacy, and lay Buddhism prevailed. In Burma, Theravada orthodoxy was preserved. Build a pagoda to acquire merits (with the consequence that the country is covered with them). In Laos, the story of Buddhism is shrouded in legend. In China, Amidism and Ch’an ousted all other schools. While the school of Ts’ao-tung stressed quiet sitting and silent meditation, the Lin-chi sect favored rudeness and the “shout and the stick” approach. Nembutsu. The Taiping rebellion.

In Korea, the government was entirely in the hands of the bonzes for long stretches of time, but that changed in 1392 with the change of dynasty. Confucianism gained the upper hand. In Japan, Buddhism reached its creative peak. During the Kamakura period, Amida and Zen schools became the two most prominent forms of Buddhism. The Yozo Nembutsu, the Jodo or Pure Land school. In this age of decay, traditional Buddhist morals are no longer effective, and we must rely on a higher power, that of the Buddha Amitabha. The nationalistic school was founded by Nichiren, who replaced the Nembutsu with the Namu Myoho Renge-kyo. As for the Zen schools, Dogen introduced Ts’ao-tung into Japan, insisting that a decadent age was no reason to aim at less than insight into the highest truth. Zazen is carried out as an absolutely pure religious exercise from which nothing is sought, and nothing is gained. All daily activities should be regarded as post-enlightenment exercises. Bushido, the way of the warrior. Mono-no-aware, sensitivity to beauty. After 1500, there was a revival of Confucianism and military Shintoism in Japan. Only the Zen sect showed signs of vitality.

In Tibet, Indian teachers were invited again after a revival in 1000. Atisa came in 1042. His seminal work, “Lamp illuminating the road to enlightenment“. Tsong-kha-pa, the formation of different Tibetan sects. The Bka-ijdam-pa (Kadampa). The bKa-rclyud-pa (Kaguypa) was founded by Marpa. Their monks were not saints, but human beings. The story of Mila-ras-pa, Tibet’s greatest saint and poet. Gtum-mo, magical heat. The shi-byed-pa, the Sa-skya-pa, the Nying-ma-pa. The latter came up with the concept of hidden treasures, or gter-ma. The biography of Padmasambhava was one of these discovered treasures, as well as the bar do thos grol. The six bardos of the Nyingmapas. The ceremony of gCod (Chod) to offer one’s body to greedy demons. They operate similarly to the left-hand tantra practitioners of India. Creating tutelary deities (yidams), controlling the occult body, and realizing the nature of one’s own mind. A well-rounded personality does not suppress lust, anger, etc., but puts them into their own place. Finally, only the Dge-lugs-pa were able to come out victorious over the Nyingmapas. This sect was founded by Tsongkhapa, the last great thinker of the Buddhist world.

Three great achievements: codification of the canon into two big collections (the Kanjur and the Tanjur). Production of a large quantity of indigenous literature. Lastly, the rooting of Buddhism in the life of people. Tulkus, lamaism. The violence of the fifth Dalai Lama, and the shutting off of the country after the 18th century.

In Mongolia, the Dalai Lama converted the Mongols in 1577 when he journeyed to meet Altan Chagan, ruler of the eastern Mongols to show him his magical powers, forcing rivers to run uphill. Shamanistic sacrifices were thereupon forbidden. The Mongols conquest of Iran meant they built many cultural centers in those lands.

The present situation

Buddhism is now just spending its energies on maintaining itself, having lost the initiative it once had. The Buddha Jayanti, the 2500th anniversary of Shakyamuni’s enlightenment. Prophecies mark this era as the time when monks “will be strong only in fighting and reproving“. Northern Buddhism is under communist control (Mongolia, China, Tibet, and then Southeast Asia), and Buddhism and communism seem to be perfect enemies for each other, although Mahayana Buddhism and Dialectical Materialism seem to be surprisingly close.

Modern warfare, Cambodia. Although the country was neutral during the Vietnam war, it was “bombed back into the Stone age“. In Japan, we have seen a growth of nationalistic Buddhism. It is doubtful whether capitalism has been more kind to the Buddhists than communism.

In the West, Buddhism was absorbed on three different levels: The philosophical, Schopenhauer, Blavatsky, Wittgenstein, Heidegger, and abundant literature has been written about the similarities between eastern ideas and those of some of the modern European thinkers. On the historical level, Buddhist manuscripts and documents have attracted the attention of many scholars. On the sectarian level, many Buddhist communities have been formed, primarily in protestant countries. Figures like Alan Watts served as conduits for the spreading of a multiplicity of somewhat disorganized ideas. “How a drop of water could be prevented from ever drying up?

The answer is: “by throwing it into the sea“.

Conclussion:

It was definitely interesting to me to learn about the historical development of Buddhism. Of particular interest was the realization that Buddhism hasn’t been just “the words of the Buddha”, but that the tradition has grown, evolved, and transformed itself into many different things across the span of centuries. Like Christianism, Buddhism was once a well-guarded secret that only a few could understand, with fundamental teachings being written in a language very few people spoke (Sanskrit, whereas Christianism hid behind Latin words). Then, the common folk found a way to open it up, and thus came Mahayana (in Christianism, we got the New Testament).

One thing that is clear to me now is that Buddhism IS A RELIGION. Fine, it is a philosophical religion, and it involves much more debating and thinking about the ontological matter of our own existence, but in the end, you pray to divinities and hope to be reincarnated in another world (be it Samsara or it in a pure land). You wear a uniform (the orange robe) that differentiates you from those who don’t believe in your thing. And you see those others as unintelligent, or incomplete human beings. That’s pretty much what religion is.

Now that I have seen how complex Buddhism is, I have actually lost some faith in it. One of my criticisms of the Bible is how complicated it makes the message of the one -supposedly- true god. He couldn’t just forgive our sins in one swipe of his divine hand, no, he had to come up with an elaborate plan that required him to prepare a specific tribe from a specific location on the planet, and into this tribe, he sent the spirit of the first creature he ever created so that he could give up this very life and somehow fix things up. Why I really don’t know.

Anyway. I really recommend this book, especially if you want to understand Buddhism better. Before you start chanting all those nembutsus, you might want to know where it all came from.

Biddy Webinar Notes

I watched a seminar by Brigit Esselmont, creator of Biddy Tarot, and I’ve had the video sitting on my desktop for the longest time, thinking “I will rewatch it and make some notes”. Well, here they are. All the information and credits go to Brigit Esselmont.

Why learn how to read the tarot

  1. Tarot puts your intuition on speed dial
  2. Tarot helps you make better decisions with greater clarity
  3. Tarot helps you create the life that you want to live

Reasons why Tarot readings are confusing or inaccurate

  1. Rushing the reading (not diving deep into the story behind the cards)
  2. Asking the wrong questions (questions that don’t help the querent!)
  3. Not interpreting the story in the cards (sticking to the surface-level interpretation)

How to create powerful and accurate readings

  1. Create the space. Physically, mentally and emotionally. Like how I don’t like to read when I’m tired. Dress up for it, if you can! Banish the area, burn some incense.
  2. Get to the heart of the question. What exactly would answer the question? What would help the person?
  3. Choose the spread. Decide if you’re going to read 2 cards, 3 cards or a full-blown Celtic Cross.
  4. Shuffle the deck. Put your energy into it. Bring the universal order into your hands.
  5. Read the cards and interpret the story. First, intuitively look and interpret the cards. Write it down. If the cards were a movie, what kind of movie would it be?
  6. Answer the question asked. Don’t forget the person is looking for answers.
  7. Reflect, and ask for feedback. Take a photo, write down the cards you got and your interpretation.

There’s also a very good document with 10 questions you could ask before the reading. Perhaps the querent is not sure what they need to know, see if one of these might help! https://biddytarot.com/10questions

In closing

Let’s not forget to say Thank You Very Much! To Brigit Esselmont for all the quality information she’s put out there for people to learn from.

Paranormal Powers (rating 3/10)

I don’t even remember how this book ended up in my Kindle library, but the book cover was captivating so I decided to read it. I am pretty sure the picture is fake, the proportions are a bit off. But here are my notes:

Introduction.

Talk about physics. Quantum mechanics. There isn’t really “matter”, only different energetic levels. Quotes about the nature of reality from Planck, Schopenhauer, Clarke. Siddhalaya. Notes on the book, translation and the so-called Masters. “If you desire the unseen essence passionately, and strive with dedication, then surely, perhaps in some moment when all the noise of the senses is stilled, you will find yourself one with true reality“. Introducing Lama Karpa, High lama of Siddhalaya. “Let each and every thought, image,word and action reflect what you most desire and nothing else.” Reminds me of something I read once about Milarepa, when he was given some food and then criticized for eating it straight away without praying or offering a song to his patron. He said something along the lines of “I do my praying and offerings in my inner spirit”. No need to share with the outside world, sometimes. “Let not your right know what your left one is doing” are the words attributed to Jesus Christ. God is found inside – not outside.

There is no need to transform anything, only to recognize all that exists for what it really is“. We are already gods. We are already enlightened. How to reach this recognition? Stillness would seem to be a way. Stillness of the mind. “Only when the lake is still can its true depth be known. And only in that depth can the real be found“. Background of the practitioners. Story about retrieving some manuscripts. Kanji, “beyond [the author’s] ability to grasp.” The ultimate nature of reality. Call the siddha. Stopping a storm. “Energy is simply consciousness objectified. This is a key understanding“. You can stop the storm, but you believe you can’t. You know you can’t. A note on masters. “…a master is not…a teacher of information, but rather someone who facilitates another’s ability to access all the answers they require, on their own.” Reality is perception. All masters were once on the same level you’re standing on right now. A master shouldn’t tell you a lot, rather he should teach you how to find your own answers. I think about this now: my friends the Jehova’s Witnesses have never explained to me how am I supposed to live my life. I’ve been meeting with them for at least two years yet I feel they have never really explained to me the do’s and dont’s of their religion. A man is standing on an island shouting at the people on shore: Come here! Come here! And the people on shore replied: How?

The physical world as symbols. Like words on a page, the objects we see in reality around us are not the information. They are symbols of the information. If you destroy a mathematics book, are you destroying mathematics? The realization of this fact and the ability to generate images with purpose is what grant us freedom. The potential of power and knowledge. Consciousness creates everything. Your imagination is your most great tool. Matter is energy in a frozen state. Fundamental understandings. Sari and Lemia. We are creators. “If you do not impose impeccable discipline on your thoughts…you can rely on them to be random and unruly.” There is no problem without solution. Civilization must be transmitted. Culture is taught to us. I wonder: Should we seek for god in those things which are natural, not transmitted? Is good not more accessible when you examine the moving of the tides, the evolution of the stars, than when you are reading the Bible or the Qoran? The masters don’t teach you the secrets of the universe.You will be disappointed if you think they do. Instead, they teach you the secrets of yourself. And in yourself you will find all the answers. Discard old ideas, reach for higher knowledge. As you grow, you leave your old clothes behind. Advanced understanding Use affirmations to detect and transform your deepest beliefs. “Consciousness is all-that-is. I am one with all consciousness; this is my unity with all that exists- hence I stand as one with the sum of all intelligence; this is my wisdom and knowledge. I am one with all consciousness; this is my unity with all that exists-hence I stand as one with the sum of all energy. This is my power.” Kalika-Khenmetaten. Before you acquire and manifest power you need to be aware that this power exists and is available to you. Utilizing etheric energy. The individual person is awareness. The body is a concentration of energy. This energy comes through the centers, known as the chakras. But they are no higher chakras, lower chakras. Each one has a purpose. The first sphere of awareness is physical, the second is the etheric and manasic levels. A visualization to gather energy:

Sit straight. Hands on your lap. Think about the sun above you. Breath in, five seconds. Breath out, ten seconds. Repeat 7 times. Now imagine the sun again. Move your consciousness up until you arrive inside the sun’s aura. Feel the energy of the sun filling you. Imagine yourself as pure light, pure energy. Now slowly return to your body, while still keeping this idea of being a being of light. Imagine yourself surrounded by a sphere of light, generated from this powerful energy. You are a sun. Hold this image in your mind. The important part is to see the light, feel the light, be filled with light, be surrounded by light.

Visualization practice. Through visualization you gather the energies necessary for your image to manifest. Focus on only one purpose at once. Factors that influence this technique: 1) Realization of the fact that images create your reality 2) Conscious and unconscious beliefs 3) Mastery of thoughts and inner images 4) Strength of your intention to create the reality desired 5) Creating the necessary conditions in the world to allow your idea to manifest 6) Available etheric power 7) Certainty of the success of the visualization process 8) Clarity of the thoughts and images 9) Consistency of these thoughts and images 10) Detachment from the result.

(I had a small insight. The step 10, detachment, creates a void. When you drop a big stone in the water, it displaces the water, but it soon rushes back to fill the void, because the energy levels had increased outside the empty space. Water is pushed to the side, but there is a reaction to push it back. Same with images. When you visualize, you create an image and feed it. When you detach yourself from it, it starts to starve. Desperate, it will start to look for places where it can go to feed itself. It will go to places or energetic levels which are most similar to its energetic imprint. Like a magnet. Then it will probably merge with those energetic levels, kinda like a little cell in agar.io merging with a bigger cell. How does that bring you closer to that result? You detached from it, how does it find you back? Maybe it doesn’t need your awareness to find you back? It if’s a visualization of yourself, then it already has your let’s say “energetic address”. It doesn’t need you to agree, it just manifests itself. I’m not sure. The first part makes some sense. )

You can visualize a movie screen, and then imagine that you are watching a video of yourself, doing what you want to do, or getting what you want to get. Imagine the angle, as if you were watching video that someone recorded with their cellphone’s. See yourself looking at the camera, smiling and waving in recognition. (Psychocybernetics would take this one step further and tell you to put yourself into the video, as the main character. See the guy holding the camera which recorded the video you just saw. Smile and wave at the camera. Now see around you, you have what you want. PS: Wine seems to make it easier for me to visualize things). Reflctions on the teachings. The goal is to awaken the adept from the dream of reality, to reality. But there is no dreamer: the dream is dreaming itself, distracted from itself by itself. Only consciousness is real and eternal: The consciousness of the living universe. Planck, Schrodinger, Einstein, Bohr, Pauli, Wheeler. “There is no matter as such” Max Planck. “In truth, there is only one mind” Schrodinger. “We inescapably involved in bringing about that which appears to be happening” Wheeler. Afterward to U.S. edition.

Part III: Additional Material Anthology

Foreword. Excerpts from different books. True experiences with a sorceress of the four portals. Zhang zhung culture. Miwoche and the B’on religion. (note to self: read the diamond sutra. Resume your Lamrim meditations). Table of contents. Kriyasakti. Materializing ice. “I held the ideal of tea in the Universal until it became formed to a lower vibration”. A game of spiritual hide and seek. A great master speaks, immense power of the ancients revealed. Table of contents. About the life of Kalika Khenmetaten. “Each man is already a prince, each woman a princess; they need only to bring that recognition into awareness to realize their inherent ability“. To use these powers, you need to know they exist, and now that they are available at your disposal. Encounters with the celestials, the living part of a timeless legend. Egypt. Earth’s first civilization: Antarctica, 55 million BC. Ancient civilizations. The author has included material from a fake news website about NASA finding ancient structures under the ice in Antarctica. Here’s an example:

As of now we can only speculate as to what these features are, but the launching if ICESat-2 in 2018 could lead to other major discoveries

I tried searching this quote online. 4 pages of results, most of which are websites linking the same article on worldnewsdailyreport.com that is no longer there. Very unreliable information.

Extensive evidence supports the theory that an advanced, non-human species created a civilization including complex structures on the Antarctic continent approximately 55.5 million years ago“5

Evidence is lacking.

Excerpts from Quantum Consciousness, Psychokinetic and Extrasensory Powers. Nothing new or worth mentioning. Excerpt from A Chronicle of Power. Description of the village of Siddhalaya. Village that, as well as many other things in this book, appears mentioned nowhere else on the Internet. Nothing worth mentioning.

The latter part of the book was very disappointing. Quotes and excerpts from other books. In the end, here’s what I learned from this material:

  • Energy is caused by consciousness. This idea makes some sense. Imagine you want to move your arm. How do you do it? First, you need to be aware of what you want. Then, somehow, your brain creates the electrical impulses necessary to move the muscles. But consciousness comes first. So, different levels of consciousness might be able to originate different types of energies.
  • Accepting that these powers are real and at your disposal is one of the requisites to be able to use them. And even if you think you accept this fact, your brain might have its own ideas about how the universe works and what you’re capable of. You might need to work on your subconscious as well as your conscious.
  • Your brain is always at work. If you don’t make it work towards your spiritual ascension, it will work towards something else and hinder your growth. Make of every experience a spiritual experience.

Would I recommend this book to other people? No. Reading online reviews it seems these and other books by the same publishing house suffer from the same problems. Disjointed information, filling material, and unreliable sources. I’m not sure if I want to buy or read any more of the author’s books. Maybe the ones the publishers offer freely from time to time.

As a side note, all the pictures of “Staff” for this publisher are fake. Adds injury to insult.

All fake pictures

Not a good sign

Work in progress: Myth and Reality

But, what is myth? Not just fiction, myth explains the origin of an idea or a physical element. Where do chickens come from. Why does the sun rise in the morning. Where do people go when they die. They explain the creation of a reality. The people that appear in myths are usually supernatural. Because only from the outside world can this one come into being. Or at least, it is of utmost importance because it took place in a very distant far time, a time which is before time.

It proves itself truthful because of the reality we experience. The myth about the origin of the swan’s black beak is true because well, look at the swan! What color is its beak? Where did black color come from? Pigments in bone? What are bird’s beaks made of? *pauses to check wikipedia* Oh, it’s a bone structure covered in hard keratinized epidermis. So a bone with skin. I see. Also, swans don’t have black beaks. It’s their faces that are black. Hell, I fed swans for two months when I was in Scotland and I already forgot about the swans!

Myths explain why you do things. Why do you have to arrange your house in this or that way. Why you don’t plant tomatos during july. Just an example. But why? Because of myth. And myth is so valuable as part of your culture, that you believe in it.

Myths are not fables: the fable of the fox and the grape vine is not real, and it is clearly so. Animals don’t speak, and foxes probably don’t eat grapes. Do they? wikipedia…yes, they do. But they are not very healthy for them apparently.

In some cultures, myths are kept away from the ears of the profane. Fables can be told to children and women. Myths, however, are kept for the religious castes. Today, our myths are called history, but our histories share much with the myths. They explain why we are here, why we do what we do, and we believe in them regardless of the evidence to believe in them (sometimes, familiarity replaces evidence. We believe the earth is round because entities familiar to us also affirm this).

In some cultures , myth is not just knowledge, but rather it gives the knower the power over the thing or creature that the myth is about. The myth of the creation of fire grants the power to start a fire. Hunters who know the mythical origin of the animal they are hunting are expected to be more successful than others who don’t. The people that know the legend about the origin of a healing herb are the only ones that can use to heal.

Magic and prestige of origins

Myths resemble cosmogonies on a smaller scale. They detail the change in the world, which happened in a time and a place that was not ours. Change consequence of each we have what we have today. Since they have a similar origin storyline, sometimes they begin detailing the cosmogony that surrounds the story. How was the universe created, how was the earth created, the animals, the humans, and all the way down to actual kings and families that inhabit the earth. It’s not infrequent to have long genealogies included as the opening.

How to consecrate a book

I share here these notes of mine that I don’t remember now if I got from listening a podcast or watching a youtube video, but I’m doing some housekeeping and the notebook has to be thrown away. I think they are useful and I want to keep them and share them for other people.

Books are repositories of ideas. Maybe they are even alive! Who knows. I have heard of people mentioning that certain books have spirits that you can actually invoke and chat with. For example I remember reading somebody online claiming that the spirit that inhabited the New Avatar Power books had told them that the power it contained was no longer usable, and that it was no longer as effective as it was 20 or 30 years ago. If attention is power, perhaps when the books are known the most, that is when their spells are the most effective, or their knowledge is the most wise.

Here is what my notes say about preparing to read a book. Again, not my original ideas.

  1. Have the author’s name and author’s title printed each on one page, with no other text apart from the names. Stare at them for a little while. What do you think the person looks like? What is his character? Read the author’s name out loud and imagine what they put in the book. What does the title tell you about the content?
  2. Peruse the table of content carefully and slowly. Go from the top to bottom. Absorb the headlines and the basic structure of the book. How do you want to feel at the end?
  3. Feel like the knowledge is food. You have seen the table of contents, now you need to feel hungry for the words. Gaze at the title again, imagine it shining like a sigil. Trace it in the air.
  4. Visualize yourself sitting (or standing, or lying down) reading the book and absorbing the hidden meanings, what hides between the lines. Absorb the concepts from beyond that which is clear. See beyond sight.
  5. Take this visualization into a sphere, make it clear in your third eye, see yourself turning the last page of the book. It is done!
  6. Now you can start reading!

There’s one last part that I don’t understand but I include here in case somebody does.

7. Fold page. Put it out of your view. Consecrate with your blood.

I’m wondering which page do you fold? The title? Why? Put what out of view, the whole book? Consecrate with your blood I guess just means adding a bit of blood maybe to the cover or something I would do would be smear blood over the side of the book, like when you close the book, paint the sides with a colored marker, and then open it again to find a nice colored square around each page. Like that, but blood.

Happy reading!