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5 years 5 months ago #2512 by jzen
This will be my journal for the Esoterica Guild.

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5 years 5 months ago #2513 by jzen
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Apprentice Core Lessons in Magickal Traditions


Introduction


What is magic? Magic is the practice of illusory arts, much like those performed on stage for entertainment. Magick on the other hand is something much different. Some have come to think that it is an exchange between the spiritual world and ourselves, that through the use of specific actions or rituals, we may gain the favor of supernatural or preternatural beings who will do our bidding. Some think it is a method to violate the laws of physics, changing substances such as lead into gold or some other valuable thing. Finally, there are those that feel it is a very specific, yet secret set of instructions passed from master to apprentice on how to elevate our mundane existence into a spiritual transcendence, one in which we touch the face of God….

I think there is some truth to all of these, however I tend to find myself adhering to those teachings supplied in the last camp I mentioned. It should go without saying the universe or multiverse we live in is hardly understood, and that an element of strangeness lurks in the background. When we rule out all possibility of that which is not rational, in favor of a cut and dry explanation to everything, I think we miss out. Magick provides a very necessary component to our existence, the component that allows us to recognize and appreciate mystery. Not only the mystery of our existence, or other big questions that surround that, but also the mystery of the true nature of reality, a nature that is wrapped up in a divine cloak and exhibits both imminent and transcendent qualities. I feel that the world is indeed full of magick, in all the forms I have mentioned, because I think the world is full of mystery. With caution, I continue onward, not only to seek the truth for myself of the nature of these things, but also discover the philosopher’s stone, that which will indeed change lead into gold, or my lowly existence into the stuff of the divine… I’m looking forward to it.

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5 years 5 months ago #2527 by jzen
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Apprentice Core Lessons in Magickal Traditions

Terminology


Below is a brief list of Esoteric Terminology, Define these in your journal.



Alchemy-he medieval forerunner of chemistry, based on the supposed transformation of matter. It was concerned particularly with attempts to convert base metals into gold or to find a universal elixir.

Animism-the attribution of a soul to plants, inanimate objects, and natural phenomena, or the belief in a supernatural power that organizes and animates the material universe.

Astrology-the study of the movements and relative positions of celestial bodies interpreted as having an influence on human affairs and the natural world.

Black Magick-has traditionally referred to the use of supernatural powers or magic for evil and selfish purposes. With respect to the left-hand path and right-hand path dichotomy, black magic is the malicious, left-hand counterpart of the benevolent white magic.

Ceremonial Magick-is a magical modality involving specific ceremonial actions and magical tools to bring about the desired result. Ceremonial magicians are often working toward self-improvement or spiritual enlightenment.


Chaldean Magick-Magickal system that was the precursor to European magick.

Chaos Magick-Sometimes referred to as "success magic" or "results-based magic", chaos magic claims to emphasize the attainment of specific results over the symbolic, ritualistic, theological or otherwise ornamental aspects of other occult traditions.

Cipher-a secret or disguised way of writing; a code.

Corpus Hermeticum-also referred to as the Hermetica, are Egyptian-Greek wisdom texts from the 2nd century AD and later, which are mostly presented as dialogues in which a teacher, generally identified as Hermes Trismegistus ("thrice-greatest Hermes"), enlightens a disciple. The texts form the basis of Hermeticism. They discuss the divine, the cosmos, mind, and nature. Some touch upon alchemy, astrology, and related concepts.

Draconian Magick-magick that is fueled by the symbolism and energies of Dragons.

Druidry-is a modern spiritual or religious movement that generally promotes harmony, connection, and reverence for the natural world.

Enochian Magick-is a system of ceremonial magic based on the evocation and commanding of various spirits. It is based on the 16th-century writings of Dr. John Dee and Edward Kelley, who claimed that their information, including the revealed Enochian language, was delivered to them directly by various angels.

Esoteric-intended for or likely to be understood by only a small number of people with a specialized knowledge or interest. Hidden.

Faery Faith- is both a belief system and a tradition. In its most basic form, it is a belief in, and almost a symbiotic relationship with, the Faerie Folk or Little People.

Free Masonry-consists of fraternal organizations that trace their origins to the local fraternities of stonemasons, which from the end of the fourteenth century regulated the qualifications of stonemasons and their interaction with authorities and clients.

Gnosticism-a prominent heretical movement of the 2nd-century Christian Church, partly of pre-Christian origin. Gnostic doctrine taught that the world was created and ruled by a lesser divinity, the demiurge, and that Christ was an emissary of the remote supreme divine being, esoteric knowledge (gnosis) of whom enabled the redemption of the human spirit.

Green Magick- is that unexplained energy and force, the natural magic that occurs in nature; it’s there all around us but perhaps not everyone is aware of it, or open to it.

Hermes Trismegistus-"thrice-greatest Hermes"; is the purported author of the Hermetic Corpus, a series of sacred texts that are the basis of Hermeticism.

Hermeticism-also called Hermetism, is a religious, philosophical, and esoteric tradition based primarily upon writings attributed to Hermes Trismegistus ("Thrice Great").

Hoodoo-is a traditional Black American folk spirituality that developed from a number of West African spiritual traditions and beliefs.

John Dee- an English mathematician, astronomer, astrologer, occult philosopher, and advisor to Queen Elizabeth I. He devoted much of his life to the study of alchemy, divination, and Hermetic philosophy.

Magic-the power of apparently influencing the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces.

Magick-in the context of Aleister Crowley's Thelema, is a term used to show and differentiate the occult from performance magic and is defined as "the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will", including both "mundane" acts of will as well as ritual magic.

Martinism- is a form of Christian mysticism and esoteric Christianity concerned with the fall of the first man, his state of material privation from his divine source, and the process of his return, called 'Reintegration' or illumination.

Natural Magick- n the context of Renaissance magic is that part of the occult which deals with natural forces directly, as opposed to ceremonial magic, in particular goety and theurgy, which deals with the summoning of spirits.

Necromancy-the supposed practice of communicating with the dead, especially in order to predict the future.

Neopagan-a modern religious movement that seeks to incorporate beliefs or ritual practices from traditions outside the main world religions, especially those of pre-Christian Europe and North America.

Neoplatonism- a philosophical system, originated in the 3rd century a.d. by Plotinus, founded chiefly on Platonic doctrine and Eastern mysticism, with later influences from Christianity. It holds that all existence consists of emanations from the One with whom the soul may be reunited.

Norse Magick (Seider)- is a form of pre-Christian Magick and shamanism concerned with discerning the course of fate and working within its structure to bring about change, which was done by symbolically weaving new events into being.

Prisca Theologia-is the doctrine that asserts that a single, true theology exists, which threads through all religions, and which was anciently given by God to man.

Qabalah (Kabbalah)- the ancient Jewish tradition of mystical interpretation of the Bible, first transmitted orally and using esoteric methods (including ciphers). It reached the height of its influence in the later Middle Ages and remains significant in Hasidism.

Rosicrucian Order-Rosicrucianism is a spiritual and cultural movement which arose in Europe in the early 17th century after the publication of several texts which purported to announce the existence of a hitherto unknown esoteric order to the world and made seeking its knowledge attractive to many.

Santeria-a pantheistic Afro-Cuban religious cult developed from the beliefs and customs of the Yoruba people and incorporating some elements of the Catholic religion.

Shamanism-a religion practiced by indigenous peoples of far northern Europe and Siberia that is characterized by belief in an unseen world of gods, demons, and ancestral spirits responsive only to the shamans also: any similar religion.

Shintoism-a Japanese religion dating from the early 8th century and incorporating the worship of ancestors and nature spirits and a belief in sacred power (kami) in both animate and inanimate things. It was the state religion of Japan until 1945.

Symbology- the study or use of symbols.

Taoism- a Chinese philosophy and magickal system based on the writings of Lao-tzu ( fl. 6th century BC), advocating humility and religious piety.

Tarot- playing cards, traditionally a pack of 78 with five suits, used for fortune-telling and (especially in Europe) in certain games. The suits are typically swords, cups, coins (or pentacles), batons (or wands), and a permanent suit of trump.

Thelema- is a social or spiritual philosophy derived from Western esotericism; is Ancient or Koine Greek for "will." While Thelema is most often regarded as a religion—a new religious movement and contemporary mystery religion in particular—it is also referred to as a philosophy, "religious philosophy," "spiritual philosophy," or "religious matrix." An adherent of Thelema is traditionally called a Thelemite, and all phenomena within the scope of Thelema is termed Thelemic.

Theurgy-the operation or effect of a supernatural or divine agency in human affairs.

Vajrayana- (Sanskrit: “Thunderbolt Vehicle” or “Diamond Vehicle”) form of Tantric Buddhism that developed in India and neighboring countries, notably Tibet. Vajrayana, in the history of Buddhism, marks the transition from Mahayana speculative thought to the enactment of Buddhist ideas in individual life. The term vajra (Sanskrit: “thunderbolt,” or “diamond”) is used to signify the absolutely real and indestructible in a human being, as opposed to the fictions an individual entertains about himself and his nature; yana is the spiritual pursuit of the ultimately valuable and indestructible.

Voodoo-a black religious cult practiced in the Caribbean and the southern US, combining elements of Roman Catholic ritual with traditional African magical and religious rites, and characterized by sorcery and spirit possession.

White Magick- With respect to the philosophy of left-hand path and right-hand path, white magic is the benevolent counterpart of malicious black magic. Because of its ties to traditional Paganism (nature worship), white magic is often also referred to as "natural magic".

Wicca-a form of modern paganism, especially a tradition founded in England in the mid 20th century and claiming its origins in pre-Christian religions.

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5 years 5 months ago #2528 by jzen
Replied by jzen on topic jzen's Esoterica Guild Journal
Apprentice Core Lessons in Magickal Traditions

Ideas of Esoteric Knowledge


Esoteric is kind of a catch all term to describe a broad range of subjects contained within the “Western Esoteric Tradition.” It is composed of the Ancient Mystery School traditions, as well as those that came down through history such as Kabbalah, Gnosticism, Hermeticism, Neoplatonism, and the modern New Age and Neopagan movements. Within them there is a complex set of symbolism deemed magickal, which serves to illuminate the practitioner based on the understanding of knowledge that isn’t available to the public.

It is not a precise term and there are several ways to understand its use. The first way is referred to as “a universal, secret, inner tradition. These are primarily concerned with the spiritual and the secret methods to work within that realm. A second way is to refer to it as an enchanted worldview. This method regards nature as an interrelated matrix that doesn’t need a causal agent for things to occur. It is an avenue explored by Hermeticists. A third method for understanding esoteric thought is related to the quest for higher or hidden knowledge. This may be the result of personal experience or a gift from supernatural entities. Finally, a fourth way to understand Esotericism is with the notion of rejected knowledge. These include theories or beliefs that have become rejected based on newer or better understandings of knowledge. We find this in science quite a bit.

To me, I understand Esoteric as the universal, hidden, inner knowledge. I read most of the contributions to the literature in terms of ways develop spiritually, and to meet with the Divine interiorly. What I like most about it is that it provides an outlet, currently occupied by Eastern religions, for Christians to dig a little deeper in the meaning behind some of the things we believe/or contain. It makes the spiritual pursuit much more fulfilling. I do believe that on the surface, it’s hard to understand the traditions that I espouse. But when you dig deep, and get down to these deeper truths, the reservation or doubt seems to fade away because once difficult concepts make intuitive sense. In that regard, this is a very good thing. It also puts a little magic back into the world, something I think is sorely missing from our overly rationalistic society.

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