If the Powers and Potencies can be said to have one shared, defining characteristic, it might dynamism. Their ability to effect change manifests in more ways than we are even aware of, though we try to make sense of these sacred personalities by outlining the ways in which their dynamism is most obvious to us and our interests. This is why we say one Power is like lightening while another is like the slow inexorable pace of a glacier. This is why we say one Power is related to love spells and high wild windy places and tiny Shetland ponies and another is related to the depths of computer networks. It’s all just various avenues of potential change.
It’s helpful to remember that this dynamism is a naturally arising property of their being; they can’t not act and they can’t not cause change through their proximity. Sometimes they can be convinced to throw some weight behind a particular magickal working of ours but that’s more a matter of focusing sunlight through a pinhole than turning on a light. You’re not getting something new; you’re getting a focused measure of something that’s already there and active.
Since the Powers effect change and make things happen by virtue of their being, and not necessarily for any specific reason or motivation, we have to be cautious when assigning reason and motivation to them. The Powers have their own motivating concerns and those very rarely have anything to do with us. We as human beings are not likely to be their priority unless they’ve specifically chosen to get involved with us. Even then, but for a scant handful of savior-types, our human comfort and well-being is not a major concern. Do you care about one particular variety of crustacean endemic to a few volcanic islands? You probably care in a general sense of having concern for the welfare of the planet and you might have a more personal sense of concern if those volcanic islands happened to be near and dear to your heart for some reason but you do probably aren’t super concerned about the intimate struggles and concerns of these crustaceans on a day to day basis. Not because you’re a bad person, but just because you have other concerns occupying your mind.
The Powers are generally quite responsive to human attention and will reciprocate when approached with courtesy and kindness. However, you must never mistake affection for altruism. Your welfare is up to you. The Powers will help you and they will do so because maybe they like you and because maybe your goals are in line with their goals or maybe because they owe you a favor or maybe because they’re hoping that you’ll owe them a favor or maybe because you’re working on an interesting project and they want to get involved, or whatever. They will help you for a million and one reasons but not at the expense of other goals they have in mind.
They will, however, help you grow if you’re willing to take responsibility for your welfare and for your own decisions. Getting circumstances to transform into more a more harmonious arrangement is kinda what they do (see above). If you’re lucky and have a good working relationship with the Powers then this arrangement will have a harmony that strongly benefits you. If not, you’ll have to tough it out or maybe find a Power whose dynamism is more in line with yours.
A lot of people don’t want to step up to this responsibility. I know they don’t because I didn’t. I went through the same growing pains of developing a greater sense of spiritual and material maturity. I wanted the Gods or the lottery or a guru or *anyone* to come along and make life better for me – and by better, I meant easier. By better I meant simpler. By better I meant advantageous to me.
I got all this, but not the way I wanted. I got these things because I was given lots of practice taking care of myself. And life got better and easier and simpler and started providing more advantages for me. And yes, I had and still have a whole hell of a lot of help. The help that came my way made such a positive difference because I was already putting in effort on my own. The Gods can help with this but they can’t and won’t and don’t want to do it for you.
This isn’t a bootstrapping philosophy. This is more about recognizing your own power, your own worth, your own ability, and the utter dread power of your own responsibility. The power of choice and consequence is yours. By making choices with the weight of deliberate effort behind them, you can reap more potent consequences. Just make sure you’re actually choosing to do the things you want to do. There will always be unforeseen consequences; the only thing you can control is your ability to choose.
In an effort to make life easier and better and more advantageous people will sometimes shop around for answers. There are countless Powers and Potencies out there and each one of them has all the answers you could ever want to hear. Some of those answers might even be helpful and relevant. You must never bargain your autonomy for answers. Many Powers – even several who would be considered “good” or “benevolent” or “white hat” by those of us on the ground – will feed you answers till you burst just to get you on their team. It’s less work for them this way because you’ll be able to plug in their answers to every question and conflict you ever come up against.
Your number one loyalty has to be to yourself. I’m a Lokean, so I get to tell this particular secret. Any compromise on this point will turn your autonomy into an ante and you will loose the greater capacity for effecting change on your own terms. Without this greater capacity, you’ll never grow into the kind of worker you have the potential to be. And that’s fine – if that’s what you want. Is it?
All my love,