Witch Lesson's # Two
Freeing the Self of the senses

Freeing the Self. What does this mean ? In a few words it means, opening the self up to really experience life and all that entails. Our last lesson dealt with freeing the mind from the tyranny of words, now I propose to take that one step further, Freeing the Self from sense data, to follow the will.

How does one do this and why do you need to ?

Last one first, why one needs to do such a thing. When was the last time you felt the force of the world ? The last time you looked out on the garden and felt the power of the plants? The last time you noticed the small living things that surround us any given moment of the day? Right now I am sure your thinking, she's gotta be kidding right ? :) NO not a bit of it..

We are all part of the life force of all things, every rock and tree and forest, has a life, has a spirit, has a name, to borrow a phase. And as part of it, we can recognize and feel the other parts of the whole. It's no different that feeling ones own fingers or toes. The other parts of the whole are as much a part of us, as our toes are. We only THINK the flow of energy is separate. So job one is coming to terms with this concept as a reality. Ok.. why ?

The Way of the Craft

To work the way of the Witch, means to effect changes. One does the Craft for the purpose of having an effect and what you are effecting, is the very force of which we are a part.

Think of it like this, we are all part of the same stream, the Craft by your will, imposes a direction on where part of the stream goes, to a given end. How one does this, is to reach out and channel that energy where you need it to go and give it directions as to what to do when it gets there.

A plant that's 50 feet from a stream bed may be dying for lack of water, however if we cut a channel over to it and water it, it lives and grows. This is the basics of magick and the Craft to channel power to where you need it to go, to effect the changes you wish to make.

Which is almost impossible to do, if you don't believe you can. Let me say that again, it is almost impossible to accomplish the Craft, if you don't believe it's possible to do it. Which sounds pretty basic, on the face of it. However, you have to understand how deep our conditioning goes, in relation to our separation from the rest of creation.

We are taught sublimely and deliberately from the time we are children, that we are apart from other things. Our individualness is basic to our very thought possesses, it's part of almost everything we think. So to go from " I am a unique thing" to " I am one with all things" goes beyond an idealist concept and becomes a real challenge to accomplish.

Now can one do this? Of course you can... :) but first you have to accept something that your own senses at first, flatly deny!

The Body's deception

The body is a wonderful thing, it's rich with senses that tell us all kinds of information about the world around us. However, these very senses, reinforce what is, in many ways, a fallacy, being that we are apart from the energy flow of all things. This body might be, however , it's also a part of the whole so, the senses in the esoteric sense, lie to you. So said the Philosophers

" The material of our sense knowledge comes from experience. The form, however, is not derived through the senses, The most important forms of sense knowledge, the conditions, in fact, of all sensation, are space and time."Immanuel Kant

In other words... the world of forms and ideas..which is the most important, as it is the only one that is really real..cannot be reached through the senses, they are useless for that.

" If the concept (form) represents all the reality of things, the reality must be something in the ideal order, not necessarily in the things themselves, but rather above them, in a world by itself." Plato

Again as above so below, as we would say...there is an order and we of the Craft access this realm of order , that is above the material realm of matter, in the working of the Craft.

The real world of the Craft, is not the one we see with our mundane senses, as they are geared to work for the bodies good on this plane. However, to work the Craft, you are not working here ... the " rules" of form follows function, do not apply. It is the Astral Plane on which we really work.

What is the Astral plane? And why do we talk about it ?

"Into the abyss, the plane where the individual mind and Cosmic Consciousness meet,
or the space between life and death. The plane that the Witch must cross on their own."

We are in the Universe (macrocosm) and we are the Universe. (microcosm) Paracelsus

The Astral is as much our home as the Earth on which we stand, On the Astral plane we can stand as the true self..the inner self..as we are freed from the limits of the sensory world to a point.

" The Witch must understand that he lives on Earth, and that is only through material reality that he can operate. The pentacle reminds him that philosophy and abstract principles are useless without the body (and the will that moves it *). Though she understands and honors tradition, the Sage creates his own rituals and observances, tailored to his own needs." She does not serve established orders."

Which goes right back to Freeing the self from the established order of the senses and misconceptions they can create, with relation to the workings of the Craft.

What to do ?

Now does this mean cut all the senses in order to do the Craft? No, its simply a matter of realizing there is no such thing as empty space.

" The highest form is that of the Good, which is the ultimate basis of all the rest,and the first cause of being and knowledge.

Ideas derived from the impressions of the senses can never give us the knowledge of true being --i.e. of the forms. It can only be obtained by the soul's activity within itself. There is nothing in the world with any independent existence: all is bound together by an unalterable chain of causation." Aristotle

Which means, open the senses, to real world. Take your average houseplant, and really open yourself to the force within it, and given enough time and dedication you will literally SEE the life force within it. You don't need a Kirlan camera, your own eyes are capable of this. You can hear the spider at your feet, and feel the energy in the wind, just as the birds do.

Once you have tapped into this, working the Craft is simply a matter of directing the forces where you need them to go, to effect the changes you want make. Is this easy? NO, as you can see for yourself the things you have to surmount to achieve it. But it can be done, even if just for short periods of time.

It is why we tend to do so much rite and ritual, these things help us remove ourselves from the mundane world , into the ether world where the true life force exists.

But be warned rituals are tools, NOT an end of themselves. All the Rite in the world will not help you reach this space, if you are just going through the motions. You cannot reach out and twist the energies, by words alone.

To Honor the Gods most certainly rites are meet and correct. However the expectation of some, who seek to find the " right " ritual to make the Craft work for them , is nothing short of foolishness. The magick is in YOU... not the rites you do. You could dance a jig and talk gibberish if that works, to put you in the state you need to be in. The power is there, as it's part of you.

It's always there, but we are not accustomed to seeing it or thinking about it. We limit our world to the touch of our hands. To walk the path of the Witch means to free the Self from the limitations we ourselves impose, and become the true being of light that we are.

Lesson three

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