Over the course of my life I’ve been searching for a system, a path to spiritual enlightenment and betterment. Raised a Christian, I sidestepped into Buddhism, then joined a plethora of occult groups and religions. Each had their own interesting mythos, and yet often there was an overlapping belief. Looking into different traditions with their different tapestries of belief, I was surprised to find that each tradition was able to produce results. The results I got were real, not imagined or psychological trickery. Years would pass as I considered how different traditions and beliefs would work, each in their own way. This all led to an individual process of finding my own mythos and spiritual system, which as it turned out, was equally valid to those established groups and religions.
Different traditions all seem to produce results, if there’s any doubt, just listen to the adherents. From the traditions of Kabbalah, Goetic theurgy, or religions old and new, each has a matrix of gods, entities, power and ritual. The Goetia and Kabbalah both share a common heritage with the Abrahamic belief system. Like a corporation, these systems use a system of entities obedient to higher authorities. By using the name of the authority figure, the subordinate beings are supposed to obey the will of the seeker. But what are these entities? The Kabbalah speaks of angels, Raphael, Gabriel, Michael, and many more. Demons are attributed to the Goetia. Each system has names, depictions, characteristics, personalities and sigils (symbols). To call upon Michael, the Kabbalist might visualize an angel with a burning sword, standing in the South, holding a strong powerful personality. Visualizing the angel in detail, naming it, burning incense attributed to it, and inscribing its name and/or symbol all dial in the energy to the caller. The religious do similar things. They reference scripture, holy names, prayers, symbols and images to call their own deities. Through prayer, devotion, or magical evocation, these traditions dial into an entity, to bring it forth.
Are these entities real though? Is there really an archangel named Michael just sitting around waiting to be called? Are there angels whose sole purpose is to hold a position of the zodiac, or preside over a time of the day? Seems unlikely. Even if we consider that these beings are outside our concept of time, it seems very strange they have a role to preside over a direction, a time of day, or just waiting to be called. Before dismissing this as fantasy, we have to also consider the results these entities offer. I’ve had experiences (like many others), that had physical results. I’ve seen visual manifested beings, had the spoken word through a speaker, and felt the presence of an entity. In some cases this was witnessed by others with me, to further validate the experience. A ball of light floating in a room, when calling a Kabbalistic angel to appear is somewhat shocking. It doesn’t validate that the entity is self-existent, but it does validate the power is there. It’s very common to assume entities are like people, that they are self-existent people, holding jobs and waiting to be called. But it’s a limited theory, and a more expansive theory exists.
A new approach can explain both why these powers work, and at the same time, how they aren’t self-existent entities. There is a much greater power, it courses through all things. Like a force it binds all things together. Taoism is interesting because it identifies this force exactly and calls it the Tao. It may not be exact to your liking, but it gives a good starting point. There is a force, we can feel it when we meditate. The more we detach from our body awareness, we tune into a more expansive sense of Self and that Self is shrouded in this force. Consider then this field of energy that stretches from two polar extremes and all points in between. On one extreme is perhaps power and strength – the other extreme being compassion and mercy. For others this could be the extreme of Darkness and Light. Each of us swims in this force. At one end we’re limited to our body, but at the other end we’re vast and expansive. That expansive aspect of our nature is rarely experienced, but sometimes called our Higher Self, or even the Holy Guardian Angel. This force, this energy that all things flow in and through, it has every attribute imaginable. From Dark to Light, all flavors of this force are available. Sequestering off a piece of the force, this Tao, is not impossible… it’s fairly easy. Through belief, will and intent, the seeker (knowingly or unknowingly) dials in a piece of this cosmic force. Personifying this section of the force with a name, symbol, scripture, color, personality and visual it is completely dialed in. The energy of the cosmic force is separated out for the specific task at hand. Through this anthropomorphic process an entity is defined. Egregores (group minds) can establish even greater definition to these beings.
What’s in a name? Is the name Uriel any more real than a fictional character, like Luke Skywalker? Before crying blasphemy, hear me out. Uriel appears, or manages a need, not because it’s a real angel sitting and waiting at one’s beck and call, but because the aspirant has defined a section of the universal force with the personality, name and symbol. In other words, someone personified this energy to act a certain way… to be helpful to specific needs. Once dialed in, the belief and intent of the seeker works the force to the desired goal, through the personality and persona called upon. In this way there is no self-existent Uriel (or any other entity of a grimoire), they are aspects of one force, given an identity by the caller. What happens if we suspend our doubts for a moment and sit in devotion to a character that inspires us. Is there a character that inspires you? I’m inspired by characters from Star Wars. One of my favorite characters comes from a recent Star Wars novel, a Jedi named Logen Greatstorm. Your hero might be someone who was real, once alive – a saint, or a guru. Whom/whatever it might be, what if you believed it was possible to sit with this being to get advice? You collect a symbol that represents the person. If you don’t have a symbol, you can generate a sigil to represent the figure. Dialing into the personality of the persona, sit and visualize them there while in your meditative state. Speak your questions and wait for the answers. This is where skillful means is required. The ego will attempt to answer, one must relinquish thought and rely more on feeling. That “still small voice,” that reaches deep within us… even then test it. Don’t do drastic changes because you think your spiritual guidance tells you to. In the end, you must make the choices, and you must take the responsibility for them. For this reason an ethic, and ethos is pertinent to the work. Utilizing characters or people who inspire the best in us, is for this reason, a good idea.
The evidence of these ideas is in the work itself. I had many spiritual experiences where I was convinced the entity did it. It was Boriel, Uriel, Hekate, or some other entity working through the tapestry of magic I weaved. In time I began to ponder this… why do I feel the same presence in each system I utilize, be it Kabbalah or esoteric Buddhism? For some years I thought it must be due to one deity that all faiths connect to. That theory cracked under scrutiny, as Buddhism had no concept of deity. In 2019 I had an awakening: What if it wasn’t the same god, but rather I was feeling my expansive Self? What if I was bringing my greatest nature with me everywhere I went? I brought my Higher Self into the Buddhist temple, or into the Freemason Hall, or to my devotions to Hekate. In that way I felt the same presence, and that presence was so expansive, so foreign to me, it felt like it had to be a god-like being. It has dawned on me that each of us has this great potential – that expansive Self that stretches the cosmos. When we interact with it, it seems so powerful we can’t accept it’s us, so we call it something else. Perhaps there is a God behind it as well, but this Self of ours is certainly our power. Don’t take my word for it… do what I did… sit in your own contemplative practice, in your own way, and ask your Highest Self, “what would happen if I reached out to this image?” Even if the image is fictional, ask away. It may feel silly, or pathetic at first, but see what you get as a response.
Once you have found the image of your inspiration… or the tapestry of framework to utilize, then consider the methods to the work. In general there are general categories of work. At all times, meditation will be required. For some, the tools of mantras are useful in establishing goals with the entity. Using ritual or ceremony might be appropriate for those who enjoy the formal aspect of the work. For mystics, like myself, devotion might be a more appropriate focus. Through it all, strive to remain open to Belief, hold a Will to see it through and an Intent to drive the work.