I’ve been reading through Six Ways by A. Wachter (a very helpful book), and he’s talking about how important it is to identify the thinking that arrests our magic. After some years of feeling at a serious low tide point magically speaking, I finally feel like I’ve turned a corner; the current is flowing again, just a little, and I’m feeling a bit like my old self. Still, there’s lots of work to be done. So I got to thinking, what kind of mental obstacles am I putting in the way of my magic?
To start with, I have deep-seated ideas about my own capabilities. I don’t think I’m capable of success. With regards to art, I don’t think I’m capable of making things that people like. With regards to my life, I don’t think I’m capable of crafting the kind of life I want to have. I expect that I must always settle for less because the systems of power that mete out resources are flawed and unfair. I expect that I will always have less than I need, or want, or desire, or deserve. I expect no satisfaction or fulfillment in life. I expect that I will always wrestle with these desires and never really experience peace because desire is a problem with no lasting solution. Basically, I expect failure in every aspect of my life, in some way, eventually.
Laying it out like this, this is a pretty bleak perspective on the world and embodied existence, but it’s one that many people are no doubt familiar with. Life has not given us the experiences upon which we can base a hopeful outlook. Even though I draw strength from spiritual traditions that teach that hopefulness is an essentially necessary trait, I have never cultivated that kind of optimism for very long. I look around me at people who have as little as or even less than I have and wonder why I should expect my life to be any different than theirs – or any different than my life has been thus far. What evidence is there to base hope upon?
Needless to say, none of this is a very good foundation for building magical success on – or success of any variety. Wachter says that a change in thinking is required for magical success, and that magic can help accomplish this change. Now that I’m feeling like I have some numinous potency happening again, perhaps I can actually do some of this work.
But of course, all this thinking is highly recursive and the first thing that comes to mind when considering making this change is, “why should I? why should things be different? shouldn’t I simply adjust my expectations to something matching the current evidence?”
I’m not a believer in abundant thinking or whatever the hell it’s being called now. The one time I managed to get it to work for me I got what I wanted – and was then ripped off for several hundred dollars’ worth of my labor. I can perhaps be forgiven for feeling that the whole business is a big of a monkey’s paw situation.
Still, I’m not satisfied with things as they are now. Since losing one of my part time jobs I’m earning less than half of what I need to really support myself; although there are opportunities on the horizon, they are far enough away that the day-to-day grind really pinches. Even if the practical pieces of this puzzle remain as they are, my thinking needs to change, if only for the sake of my mental well-being.
So I’ll try working some magic and see if I can’t get a few things to fall into place. In the meantime, I’m looking forward to expanding my divination skills to include crystal gazing. I’m pretty decent at scrying already but never thought about trying the traditional crystal ball. That is, not until I finished a massive half-yard embroidery project that is the perfect tablecloth for a crystal ball. Now it seems that will be the next major tool I invest in. A friend is passing along an obsidian sphere that she no longer needs, so I’m anticipating giving that a happy new home. I’m also hoping to find what I want at an upcoming rock and gem fair taking place near me next month. I’m also drinking loads of tea lately in an effort to reduce and eventually eliminate caffeine consumption for the next few months (we’ll see how well that goes!). I’m enjoying lots of great tisanes that I might have never gotten around to otherwise, so that’s actually pretty cool.
Just a reminder, I’ve got a divination sale happening right now to help me raise funds to go on pilgrimage to India later this year. Readings are usually $40 for a 45 minute reading, and are 25% off right now – just $30! Send me a message if you’d like to schedule a reading. My turn-around time right now is less than 24 hours.