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[Witches' Voice] The Importance of Basic Techniques [Luna]

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UK Pagan

Since I began earnestly looking into Wicca and magickal practices, some of the most emphasized concepts were visualization and psychic hygiene. And, as I think about this now, I canÂ’t see why anyone wouldnÂ’t emphasize them. Much of my own successful magick has been worked with strong visualization of my goal, and IÂ’ve had many a worthwhile meditation session with strong visualization of where I was going, whether I was dancing through a forest in the astral or finding a cave in a waterfall with

 

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Moonhunter

From the last paragraph:

It doesn’t matter whether you are a devout Pagan or are simply interested in new age philosophy and practice. Visualization and cleansing, along with other basic techniques, play a key role in all psychic, meditative, ritual and magickal work

 

Is this true for you? I have to admit that it isn't for me - or not in the sense of the article. I don't do any exercises. I don't think I cleanse, though I'm not sure what the author means by that. :P

 

I first learned meditation in Zen classes, where the object is to clear the mind. Effectively, this is still what I do. I rarely use conscious visualisation techniques - except to go to sleep (where they are extremely effective!) When sights and sounds come to me through working with wights, gods or just in the course of a spellworking, I will explore that and perhaps respond - but i do not try to conjure it. Oh, I will shape a spell, but...um...I honestly don't see the point of sitting around trying to visualise a ball of energy between my hands.

 

What am I missing here? Can someone please enlighten me?

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Pomona

Hmmm. They are fundamental to me, by which I mean that I treat them as key and something I always believe that newbies should learn, even if they don't use them later - kind of like how if you want to play an instrument you need to learn and understand the scales even if you move on into free-form jazz later on.

 

I use visualisation a lot, I do a lot of path working, and I "shape" some spells so learning the visualisation of a sphere etc was, is, important - for me.

 

So, for me, as a basic, I always recommend people learn visualisation, and protection, as some of their basic skills.

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Moonhunter

Hmmm. They are fundamental to me, by which I mean that I treat them as key and something I always believe that newbies should learn, even if they don't use them later - kind of like how if you want to play an instrument you need to learn and understand the scales even if you move on into free-form jazz later on.

 

I use visualisation a lot, I do a lot of path working, and I "shape" some spells so learning the visualisation of a sphere etc was, is, important - for me.

 

Ok, can we explore this? I think the idea is interesting, and I'm not sure (at this point) whether we're at cross purposes or use different techniques. Or similar techniques in different ways. :)

 

I'll clear pathworking out of the way first, as that might be the simpler topic.

 

I've said I started in meditation with Zen Buddhist techniques. I actually attended classes at the main Buddhist centre in London, as I lived there at the time. After that I (eventually) became a Christian Mystic, mainly using techniques from the Western school, though with some of the Eastern school. there are various visualisation techniques, though most are outside the tradition - though I did use them. for example, there is the Ignatian school. Ignatius founded the Jesuits. He used profound and detailed visualisation techniques to explore Bible passages. However, the technique of that sort I mainly used, when leading either a long-running Bible study group or (more commonly) the spiritual side of a long-running religious singing group, was almost exactly the same as pagan pathworking. It's practised in a number of religious houses AFAIK.

 

Outside of that, for myself, I used a completely different technique of 'entering the silence'. I know there are pagans who use this, because I came across some who responded to me, years ago, when I mentioned it on the old Pagan Policy egroup, That some here will remember. Entering the silence is almost the opposite of pathworking - you end up in a sort of warm blank, blank space, with no sound or sight but with huge QUALITY of feeling. I got so I assumed that was where pathworking was supposed to end up so, when I became a pagan and someone told me the group was now going to mediate, that's where I went - and I didn't know why I could hear murmuring in the background. :lol: To me, pathworking was taking the long way round! ;)

 

Just what suits the individual, I expect.

 

Now, back to visualisation. :)

 

Taking the Ignatian school (as the most detailed I used), if we were looking at the passage where Jesus walks on water, we would place ourselves on the ship with the disciples who were fishermen, in the storm. so we would hear the creaking of the ship and feel the rough wood below our naked feet. there would be salt in the air and ozone and the crackle of lightning, as well as the roll of thunder. There was sweat and fear and the howl of the wind and eerie vision - among the panic of losing control of the ship - of someone ON the water, coming towards us. There was that awful horror you feel about a ghost before... well, you get the drift. ;)

 

Now, when it comes to spell-shaping I do stuff almost without thinking. My concern is focus and, I guess, some of that gets directed into Ignatian-type visualisation without conscious control. Most lies somewhere just south of the place of the silence.

 

So, for me, as a basic, I always recommend people learn visualisation, and protection, as some of their basic skills.

 

I've been thinking about this since you wrote it, and I think I'd agree. It is pretty basic. I guess I think of the place of silence as going beyond that - but that might be simply because that's the way round I did things. but not everything can be done there - an element of visualisation is necessary in all spellcraft - IMHO. Even the time I channelled help from a couple of gods (and was therefore - to some extent - a passive partner), I 'saw' what was happening through the medium of the inner eye, not normal vision. Of course that helps one to 'push' it where you want it to go.

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Pomona

Entering the silence is almost the opposite of pathworking - you end up in a sort of warm blank, blank space, with no sound or sight but with huge QUALITY of feeling. I got so I assumed that was where pathworking was supposed to end up so, when I became a pagan and someone told me the group was now going to mediate, that's where I went - and I didn't know why I could hear murmuring in the background. :lol: To me, pathworking was taking the long way round! ;)

 

 

I have to say I find attaining that silence incredibly difficult. I don't practice enough I suppose, but while I find it very, very easy to "journey", I can't empty my mind with any ease at all. I used to think (as did my parents and teachers) that I was just daydreaming but I used to see things and be so far gone that it was, as a teacher once said, like I was having a petit mal

 

 

. Even the time I channelled help from a couple of gods (and was therefore - to some extent - a passive partner), I 'saw' what was happening through the medium of the inner eye, not normal vision. Of course that helps one to 'push' it where you want it to go.

 

That is pretty much how I work :) I always have worked like that and it "flows" easily for me :)

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