Various Notes on the Process of Initiation
by One who is called Ben
"Initiation, the raising of a
person's awareness to a higher level, is not accomplished by
putting ideas into a person's mind. Rather, it is accomplished
by changing the foundational structure of the mind in such a way
that it becomes capable of sensing events on additional levels
or with greater scope, capable of organizing those sensations
and experiences in new ways, and of re-organizing their past
experience and thought-patterns to conform to the expanded view.
This is done by introducing new energies from higher levels into
the matrix of the person's being, those energies forcing a
re-structuring so that they can be contained. It is only after
such a change has been brought about that new ideas from the
beings can have any significance, as seeds for the process of
organizing and re-organizing the content of the mind."
Nature of "Channeling"
I knew "trance psychic" Paul Solomon, whose -- I'm not sure what to
call them, "cooperative spirits"? -- claimed that they were the same
ones that had spoken through Cayce. I had a co-op job in college
transcribing the tapes of his trance sessions.
Paul's spirits showed the same mix of right-on information and
apparent fantasy that Cayce's did. In some instances they were able
to provide information that led to the diagnosis or cure of serious
illnesses -- sometimes by means that made no sense at all, but which
performed exactly as predicted when they were tried. And they had an
uncanny ability to get into the heads of querents and speak to their
real questions instead their spoken questions. But they also spouted
the same Atlantean and "End Times" stuff that Cayce did.
I had a "reading" by Paul as part of my pay, and a couple of things
these spirits mentioned to me (unasked, and deliberately without
emphasis) seem to bear directly on the question of why a being with
such access to information should also spout garbage.
The first thing they said was that they were forbidden from
interfering in any way with an individual's "karma" or "life tasks",
the things the person was supposed to accomplish during a particular
life. If the person were supposed to work out a particular problem
on his own, they could not provide any information that would
influence the decisions he would make with respect to that problem.
Nor could they provide him with "advance notice" of any problem he
was supposed to encounter without preparation. So much of the
garbage that comes out of such readings might be a slick way of
distracting the person's attention from things they couldn't say.
The second thing they said was that they could only speak to a
person within the limits of his current world-view; if the person
was convinced that something was true, they would generally not
attempt to contradict it, but instead would play along with it. So
if someone believed in
Atlantis or in a coming Armageddon, and asked
questions based on that belief, they would couch their answer in
terms that fit with that belief.
For example, at the time (early 1970's) there was a vogue for
talking about forthcoming "earth changes" presaging the apocalypse.
He was frequently asked about the nature of these changes, and (in
one instance I recall) predicted that there would be massive
flooding in the midwest for three years in the mid-1990's, and
alternating flooding and destructive fires in the American southwest
during the same period. The information seems accurate in
retrospect, but since the person believed these events were
indications of the End of the World, they went along with that
belief in the way they phrased their answers. In another case where
the person didn't believe in the apocalypse, they gave essentially
the same information, but without the biblical overlay.
Interestingly, the advice they gave in such instances was usually
pretty good, if you made the assumption that the events in question
would come to pass and that the querent would be directly affected
by them. E.g., someone came to Paul convinced that there were going
to be famines in a few years, and asking what they should do to
prepare. Their advice: he should learn to grow his own food and
build a secure storage place for it. They never said he needed to do
this, just that he could prepare for such an eventuality.
Nature of Initiation
As a person whose magickal training has come entirely from
"non-incarnate" beings of one sort or another, I've had
substantially more interaction with them than most people, even
within the magickal community. One thing that has become glaringly
obvious to me is that the verbal content of our contacts, the
intellectually-apprehensible ideas and words, has in many cases been
entirely unimportant to the beings with whom I was working. That
content was intended to hold my attention on maintaining the
contact, and at the same time, to distract my attention from the
levels where they were doing the actual training work.
As human beings-in-the-world, we tend to focus on verbalizations,
"facts", and meanings, regarding these as the most important parts
of any communication. This is natural enough, since it is how we
have to deal with each other and with the manifest world. But to a
being observing us from a higher level, those things aren't real.
Or, if not exactly unreal, are no more than transitory events of no
lasting import, occurring within the structures with which they are
What these beings are concerned with are those structures which are
the basis for our ability to have experiences. That is to say, where
our attention is focused on the content of the mind, their purpose
has to do with the underlying functionality that allows that content
to exist, and determines the forms it can take. Communication, from
their point of view, consists primarily in an exchange of energies
between themselves and those root structures of our being; the
verbal side is secondary.
Initiation, the raising of a person's awareness to a higher level,
is not accomplished by putting ideas into a person's mind. Rather,
it is accomplished by changing the foundational structure of the
mind in such a way that it becomes capable of sensing events on
additional levels or with greater scope, capable of organizing those
sensations and experiences in new ways, and of re-organizing their
past experience and thought-patterns to conform to the expanded
view. This is done by introducing new energies from higher levels
into the matrix of the person's being, those energies forcing a
re-structuring so that they can be contained. It is only after such
a change has been brought about that new ideas from the beings can
have any significance, as seeds for the process of organizing and
re-organizing the content of the mind.
In order to accomplish this goal, it isn't necessary for a magickal
being to give someone verbalizations that have any relation to the
"real" world. They need only to motivate the person to keep
maintaining the "connection" between them, and to open himself to
them in such a way that they can perform the manipulations needed to
induce the change.
The verbal content of the communication would be focused towards
these ends. It would need to be:
sufficiently interesting to keep
the person coming back.
sufficiently complex or full of
possibilities to keep his consciousness distracted from the
activity being performed by the spirits, which would come
into the person's awareness in the form of minor distortions
of perception and odd swings of mood and affect.
sufficiently "inspiring" to keep
the person desirous of contact with higher levels of being.
It doesn't matter if the image of the divine that is
presented has any relation to the world as the beings
perceive it, so long as that image can serve as a channel
between the subject and the higher levels.
This last point is particularly
important. Those magickal "helpers" I have dealt with (who say they
are not unusual as such beings go) are restricted by certain ethical
considerations. They cannot work to initiate a person unless that
person demonstrates a desire for it, at whatever level he is capable
of understanding the process. It is not unethical to offer him a
vision of the divine that attracts him, and so gain his
acquiescence. Along with the vision, they also give the person a bit
of divine energy, a taste of what he can gain; and this energy is
given to the person freely and unconditionally. They "pay" the
person in advance for the opportunity to help him.
In this view, complaints about the absurd nature of most "channeling"
and visions [or the bizarre and foolish delinquency of so-called
"space aliens" ramming probes up people's behinds, all the while
excusing such ludicrous behavior by lecturing them on the
importance of "living green." -B:.B:.] take on the aspect of
somebody complaining about being given a bit of ambrosia, just
because it came wrapped in a cheesy package.
Once a person becomes fully and formally dedicated to the path of
initiation, things become a bit easier. The magickal beings don't
have to dangle a carrot in front of his eyes at every moment. His
"oath of the Path" establishes a permanent thread of contact between
the person and the divine, and also serves as a blanket permission
for the magickal beings in his "inner Lodge" to do whatever is
necessary to increase that contact. (However, they still are
restrained by the rule of non-interference with the person's "true
will".) So the bullshit factor can drop significantly, and they can
spend the time gained on other beneficial activities.
So from all this you can see that grandiose stories, tall tales, and
other nonsense from magickal sources aren't necessarily evidence of
malevolent intent. It is simply that what the author thinks is
important about such contacts is largely irrelevant to what is
actually going on.
And not to blow my own horn, but simply as fact: I am evidence that
sometimes those "grandiose" promises are fulfilled. I was promised
at the beginning of my work that I would become a Magister Templi
within 30 years; it only took 22 years. I was taken from being a
wretched and ignorant fool to being (while still a bit of a fool)
someone for whom transcendental awareness is a continual, joyous,
and undeniable reality. And every prediction or prophecy that my
magickal partners made (save one) has been fulfilled ten times over,
usually in ways that were inconceivable to me at the time the
predictions were made. Absolutely everything I ever wanted from them
I have received, and more.
Aside from this, and speaking as a magician in the Western
traditions, I'd have to say that if anyone's "shamanic" approach is
only putting him into contact with beings who feed on his energy,
then he'd better consider finding a new way of working. Or at least
start looking for a different sort of magickal being to deal with.
Every magickal ceremony (or every series of such to a particular
purpose) ought to end up with the magician receiving as much or more
back from his work as he put into it in the first place. And the
beings worth knowing always end up giving more than they take.
Nature of Memetic Reprogramming
Let's start with an extremely simplified example to illustrate this.
Say you've got a little computer that does certain things when it
gets a signal. Whoever programmed this computer put in instructions
for what to do when it gets the signals "01", "10", and "11". It is
capable of also receiving the signal "00", but has no programmed
instructions for that case. So what happens when it receives a "00"
signal? It either ignores it, or treats it as one of the signals for
which it does have instructions. As far as its internal activity
goes, the signal "00" simply doesn't exist.
On a vastly larger scale, this is what the Ruach is doing. It only
processes information for which it has a hard-wired program, or for
which it can create new programs by adapting and combining older
programs. Any information for which it can't make an interpreting
algorithm simply doesn't exist, as far as it is concerned.
Most of the Ruach's processing programs are software, and some of
them are capable of modification in such a way as to handle the
usually-excluded data that makes up the transcendental experience.
The problem is that nearly all its programming derives (sometimes
through many levels) from adaptations of the basic "hard-wired"
instructions for processing and responding to raw data from the
physical senses. That's why the sephira Yesod, where this processing
takes place, is called "The Foundation" of the Tree of Life.
So the entire structure of our minds, from our basic emotions up to
the most inclusive "intuitive" level, has a built-in bias towards
seeing and processing data in sensory-like ways, and an equally
complete inability to see or process information that can't be fit
into that schema or its more abstract analogues.
Now as I said in another message, nearly all of the path of
initiation is a process of expanding the number of levels at which
we can perceive consciously and integrating each new level into what
came before. When this process is done for a given level, its
functioning becomes relatively automatic, and falls below the
threshold of awareness. Throughout most of the process the expansion
and integration are fairly well-balanced, so that new levels open up
at about the same speed with which we integrate the old ones. The
progress is incremental, allowing gradual adaptation of old programs
to new uses.
Noton's Imperium Website)
[Note: any apparent bumpiness in the flow of this missive is
the fault not of the author but of ourselves alone. In our feeble
attempt to present a robust enough sampling of the absolutely
marvelous buffet of ontological perspectives offered freely by our
dear Brother Benjamin -- who clearly resideth beyond the word and
the fool -- we fear we may've done little more than muddy the waters
with our somewhat stuttery and inept presentation. Alas, we meant
Go Back to Book Eight
Go Back to Rowe