Tuesday, June 30, 2009


I am going through the final proof and pulling up typos galore.

I hate reading my own writing.

Someone wanna do this for me? Please?



Sunday, June 28, 2009

Short form and Long form

One of the teachings that really ingrained itself in my psyche from my Tibetan training, is how to determine the essentials of a practice, and choose between elaborate, unelaborate, and extremely simple forms of practice based upon needs at the time. For instance, the main Kilaya sadhana that I do takes about 30-40 minutes. I could however do a much shorter sadhana that takes 10-15, and even a bare practice taht could be done is 5-10. On the longer side, there are Kilaya sadhanas that could take me all day long, and one that takes three days to perform.

When I was first learning this practice I quickly memorized all the seed syllable utterances, mantras, and visualizations. I asked Lobsang Samten if the sadhana could be done with just these, and he replied of course, in fact I should make sure that I could do it that way, so that if I ever got thrown in prison I could still keep my commitment. Later teachers taught me how in older days the Siddhas did not even use Sadhanas, but only the memorized visualizations and mantras. The lengthy practices came about largely as a result of the blending of Tantric practice with monasticism that happened in Northern India in the 6th century and was continued in earnest in Tibet. As Glenn Mullen once said: "Sometimes you just have to keep the monks busy, especially the young ones. Lot's of them come from bandit families and such, and if they don't have 100,000 prostrations and hours of recitation to do, they will start knifing each other in the yard."

Some people think that the longer a practice takes, the higher it is. Not so. They each have their place. This goes not only for Buddhist sadhanas of course, but all ritual magic.

Take something like the daily practice recommended by Kraig in Modern Magick (not because I think its great just because most of you have read it and worked it to some degree or other). When learning it, you should take your time and linger over each element. Take time to build those visualizations, take time to let the middle pillar energy circulate, etc. In time though it should move quicker. Some, usually those that are not sensative to energy, mistake this for sloppy ritual. It can be but it's usually not. Once the ritual gets ingrained in the physical, aethyric, and causal bodies it will flow automatically. Thought moves faster than energy, energy moves faster than body. By doing it quickly you can actually generate more power because you are tightening the lag between levels, letting the body catch up with the mind.

Eventually, you learn what is truly essential about the ritual and can than cut the physical script because the various parts are inherent in other parts. I have occasionally asked students that have done the LBRP for many years, to try to do it in one breath. Inhale a deep vase breath, and call the Quabalistic cross mentally on the inbreath. Vibrate the word AMEN with the exhale and let the pentagrams and angels unfurl spontaneously outward. Let that one holy word stand in for all the others. You can do the BRH with the word IAO or ARARITA. You can do the Middle Pillar with EHEIYEH and let the light flow through all the spheres.

This approach is also inherent in the Grimoire traditions. Most of the Grammers stress the long evocations as sort of formal meet and greets. After contacting a spirit, you make arrangements to meet on less formal terms. Eventually you need only to trace the sigil and call the name, or perhaps not even that.

Of course it is nice to do the long form of things as well. I do a very short form of offering to various spirits every day, but I try to do a full Riwo Sang Cho, and maybe even a Naga and Shidak Sang on Sunday or Monday. The long form is not better necessarily, just more enjoyable and an excuse to linger with the spirits. It also re-enforces the patterns for the short form. Long form tends to be better for group practice because everyone is on the same page. It is also an excuse to examine indivisual parts of the ritual as a ritual unto themselves. It is at this level that you learn how each individual part of a ritual can be used alone or in co-operation with other elements like a Martial Artist who learns to use the individual moves of a Kata in an actual fight.

I once did a 6 hour long version of Regardies Opening and Closing by Watchtower. I spent about an hour on each watchtower, pore breathing the element, and calling the various powers of that tower from the three benner names down to the indivual angels. At the end I spent an hour in meditation when all the powers were swirled together and the veil opened. I could literally see how those four powers are the basis for all manifestation.

So your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to examine your practice and develop different forms for it. Think about how you would accomplish it if you were in prison and had to do it in secret because your captors would not allow overt ritual magick. What about a slightly more visible version that still requires no tools and only a few minutes. Devise ways to accomplish the practice within 15 minutes if you were running late for something important but did not want to break your commitment. Think next about how to take advantage of extra time, how could you drag your practice out over an entire day as an act of dedication. Howabout a weekend retreat version?

This is all part of really mastering a practice.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Indian Vampire Worship.

I can see the end of the Bollywood movie now: old Granpa settles down and says "Thing I never could get used to about Pune, all the damn Vampires."

Of course Vetal the Vampire is a good guy who worships Shiva and bestows boons to his own worshipers. A 400 year old text has just been discovered that details the worship of Vetal.

Thanks to Tau Nemesius for the link.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Funny about money

Coyote: Clarity is the path to inner peace.

Homer Simpson: Well, what should I do? Should I meditate? Should I get rid of all my possessions?

Coyote: [snorts] Are you kidding? If anything, you should get *more* possessions. You don't even have a computer.

When I gave my class in financial magick this month at New Hope, a student asked the following during the Q&A: "So, if I do magick just for what I need, that isnt bad magick right?"

I don't quite know how I lost her, but clearly I did. Though I did point out in the lecture, as I always do, that we need perspective about how wealthy we already are, anyone making over 20g a year is in the top 10%, anyone over 47g is in the top 1% income earners on the planetr, I also made a point of saying that wealth is not a zero sum game, and that there is nothing wrong with wanting more.

Yet I find this attitude amongst a lot of pagan and magick folks. Material wealth = evil or at least bad. Is it a holdover from Christian teaching? Is it hippy ethic? Is it just fear of being judged for still living in your moms basement because you spend more time playing world of warcraft than building wealth or doing magick (loser!)? Maybe its all of these. I will never forget when Al over at Open Buddha was asked how he could reconcile being a magician with making lots of money at Microsoft? I was taken aback. What did this person think one had to do with the other?

Here is the deal folks. There are spiritual paths that are built around poverty and non-materialism. They are wonderful paths, but if you are going to do it, than really frigging do it! Join a monestary, become a wandering yogi that lives on alms, make a meager living doing nothing but divination or whatever your practice is. It is a valid path with hige spiritual benefits.

However, if you are not going to join a monestary, establish some spiritual occupation, or go homeless than STFU about it and get in the game. Non-materialism is not your practice, embrace that. Than find the amount of wealth that you think you want and go for it. If like me you want a more or less normal middle class life, with little stress from work, than make that. If however you want the million dollar chateau in wine country, than go for that. Balance it against your spiritual needs, but dont pretend that you are on some non-materialistic spiritual path while you sip your americano. Its just a lie.

If you are not on a path of renunciation, than you are on a path of tranformation or acceptance. Realize that money plays a role in your life. You cannot avoid it. Truth be told even as a monk or renunciate you cannot really avoid it, but thats another issue. If you deal with money, than DEAL with it. Realize its importance and do good with it. Transoform the poisons that can arise from money into blessings. Master Mammon or he will master you.

Hoodoo Intensive with Your's Truly

Hoodoo Intensive September 27th at Soul Journey

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Spirit Speak: Knowing and Understanding Spirit Guides, Ancestors, Ghosts, Angels, and the Divine.

Book Review:

Spirit Speak: Knowing and Understanding Spirit Guides, Ancestors, Ghosts, Angels, and the Divine.

By Ivo Dominguez Jr.

Living in and around Philadelphia, I had heard a lot about Ivo Dominguez over the years, but never got to meet him personally until just recently. I ran in Buddhist and Ceremonial Magick circles, he ran more with the Pagan crowd. There was a lot of overelap, and people kept telling me that we should meet, but it just never happened. When I saw that my publisher, New Page Books, had picked up Ivo’s book Spirit Speak, I figured this would be a good chance to see what this guy is all about. If I had only known how good he really was, I would have made a special effort to meet him years ago.

Spirit Speak is exactly what it says it is and more. Many books like this tend to try to make encyclopedic lists of spirits and mythical creatures that stem from different cultures the world over. These occult taxonomies are interesting to read but have little to offer in the way of practical information. Dominguez avoids this pitfall by dealing with large general groups of spirits that the practitioner is likely to encounter, and than makes subdivisions within each category. Rather than rely exclusively upon tradition for these divisions, the author parses on the basis of the observable qualities of the beings. In so doing he provides a genuinely useful taxonomy of the occult that describes the nature, behaviors, and ways in which we can communicate with the spirits.

But the book offers more than just information on spirits. In the first four chapters he presents his vision of the subtle body, examples of various levels of spirit contact, common impediments to communication, and exercises for facilitating contact and for dealing with problems that can arise from spirit contact. These potent exercises are original and won’t be found anywhere else. The emerald heart technique alone is worth the price of admission. These exercises and rituals are fleshed out further in the appendixes of the book.

The book is not written in the voice of a Witch or Ceremonial Magician, though it is clear Dominguez has a profound understanding of both. This book is written simply from the perspective of one who knows. Spirits are spirits after all, and tech is tech no matter what tradition of magick or witchcraft you approach from. Not to be smug, but after twnty plus years of intense study and practice, there are few occult books that I learn a lot from anymore. I learned quite a bit from this book, which is the highest recommendation that I can give.

Jason Miller,

Summer Solstice 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009

New Blog

I started a new blog today.

Its called Take Back Your Mind and will be updated about once a week with thoughts on meditation and mindful living.

This will still be my main blog, but I needed to separate that stuff out from here.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Dream of the distant future.

I had a really weird one last night.

I dreampt of a future where people had mastered the art of guiding their way through the bardo that lifespans were no longer thought of as extending from birth till death. Instead, much like the way that the Tibetan Tulku system is "supposed" to work, each individual incarnation was thought of as another stage in a longer life. Through a combination of drugs, controlled death, and psychic practice people would recover full memory of previous incarnations within a couple years after birth.

In the dream I was planning a trip to a distant planet to do some kind of missionary work. Since planets that supported life are so few and far between, the only means to travel from planet to planet was to die, navigate your way through the bardo, than get re-born on the destination planet. It also solved the problem of acclimation to foreign atmosphere and germs since you would be born into a body that was indiginous to the destination planet.

Trippy huh?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Who Uses Magick?

A few years back I had the opportunity to attend my best friends initiation into the Taoist Spirit Possession group of the Than Vo Dao Kung Fu school in Philadelphia. During the initiation Master Phan invoked one of the original teachers of the system into my friend, while smoking him with incense and slapping certain power points on the body to open him up to the influence of the spirit that would literally enter him and teach him Kung Fu. When you attend one of the sessions, its really quite amazing: a dozen people doing kung fu with their eyes closed and not hitting each other or the walls. After the initiation, Master Phan came up to me and let me know: "I hope you dont think this is like voodoo or something like that..."

One of my best friends in Nepal was my buddy Dave from New Orleans. We attended a pretty intense teaching on Phurba practice one afternoon where they got into the specifics of mad-lay, the art of making the linga or doll to represent the enemy, and the way to liberate the enemy using the phurba. A day or two later we were chatting about Vodou, and Dave gave a shudder and said: " I tend to stay away from that stuff. It kinds freaks me out..."

Last month I was talking with a little old lady at the Catholic gift shop about her use of the Miraculous Medal of Mary, and the Novena that she used with it to get her daughters abusive husband to leave her. After telling me the system for using the medal she assured me "I know this sounds like witchcraft or something, but its not like that."

I like to ask people at my classes what percentage of the population they think uses magick. Not just simple prayer, but actual magick. I put it up at about 70-80% in this country. Closer to 90% in Catholic countries that understand ritual better than Protestant countries. They just don't necessarily call it by that name.

Scott made a post today about impreciatory prayer amongst conservative Christians and how one pastor at least was claiming victory ( and by proxy, credit) for the recent murder of Dr Tiller, and is now focusing his efforts on President Obama. This is not so strange as it would seem. There are lots of examples of impreciatory prayer in the bible. My personal favorite to use is Psalm 109, which is part of "Inominandum's Sure Fire, Shock and Awe, Fuck yo' Shit Right Up Ritual" .

Scott further states: "Normally conservative Christians don't have a lot of magical aptitude simply because magical people usually don't fit very well into rigid spiritual systems..."

I think a lot of people would agree with that statement. I think a lot of people would be wrong.

The trap is to confuse the sort of counter-culture or sub-culture groups and overtly occult practices that I and most of my readers engage in with being the only way that magick is practiced. Its not even the majority. Unless we are talking about people with the gift for practical magick, there is no such thing as magickal people. Amongst people that have a gift for practical magick, I have found no real tendancy against rigid spiritual systems.

Kunzang Dorje Rinpoche is probably the most powerful magus I have ever met, but is pretty rigid in his approach to practice. Speaking of Tibet the Gelugpa, who are extremely rigid, use group magick for everything.

An old friend of mine from Saudi Arabia is a Naqshbani Sufi and told me all about their use of magick to control the Djinn and so on. He is also a VERY Rigid Muslim. Taliban supporter, etc. Don't think that all Sufi's are whirling dervishes...

Conservative Christiatans in the US use magick all the time. In fact I think they are way more adept at using to effect politics than Liberals are. Yeah, they call it praying, but at the point where you are organizing retreats in "combat faith", learning exorcism techniques, and having prayer circles aimed at specific judges and such, you are doing magick. Don't even get me started on the Catholics. You can go to jsut about any Catholic shop and buy a statue of Joseph to bury upside down in the yard to sell your house.

Anyway, the point of this post was'nt to pick on Scott. The point is that you need to realize that not everyone that uses magick does it like you do, or even calls it magick. People from traditional cultures often pay professionals to do magic for them. Others do it themselves or with others from their church. But as a rule, you should assume that EVERYONE does magic.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Feeling the Central Channel

The whole subtle body system revolves around the central channel. Once you get a feel for that, you can branch out and feel the two side channels, and eventually all the smaller nadis that run throughout the body.Some people however have a difficult time sensing their subtle body at all. A good technique for getting the feel of the central channel is to drink a glass of water and take a piss at the same time. You get the sensation that the liquis is moving right through you, even though of course it is not. The channel that your imagination using to create the sensation is the central channel. Get the feel for it using this excercise, than recall the sensation in deeper meditations.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Kenaz Filan is blogging.

My friend Kenaz Filan now is on blogspot. He is a Houngan Asogwe and the author of The Vodou Handbook, and Vodou Love Magic.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Model Hypocrite?

Someone that reads my blog, and has read sections of my new book, but chooses not to post mentioned to me today:

"Jay, the first two chapters of your book on the gift and three levels basically lay out your own model of how magick works. If models are always limiting, why did you present one?"

Good point.

The short answer is: my model doesnt suck.

The long answer is that there is nothing inherently wrong with models of magick or spirituality as long as they are treated as something that is a work in progress and are updated to fit data. My model of three levels, is not really a model of how magic works; its a model of how magic works best. It is designed specifically to get people to expand, rather than contract their view of how to work magick.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Models of Magic

I have noted in the last year or so a lot of people talking about Models of Magic. Many people adhere to the "energy model" and do not accept the reality or usefulness of spirits in magick. I can sort of understand this model because it is somehow easier on modern sensibilities to think of energies, morphogenic fields, and such than to believe in actual entities that normal people cannot sense.  Same with the "mind model" which basically boils it all down to psychic phenomina. You are wrong but I get it.

What I cannot for the life of me understand are people that are popping up claiming to adhere to the "spirit model" at the exlusion of all else. Most of these folks are practicing in the "old system" paradigm and focused mostly on the Grimoires. While a great deal of this material does indeed deal with the conjuration of spirits, not all of it does. There is a lot of sympathetic magick and folk magick in the Grimoires as well that doesnt work through the agency of demons and angels. 

One of the funny things that I have noticed is that spirit model, people often get taught energy work by the spirits they contact. They get told to hold their hands a particular way, and breathe a particular way and visualize various things. Cuz, like it or not all these models have a place, and I cannot for the life of me understand folks that want to promote one above another. 

If you are trying to attract something to you or open up opportunities than my suggestion is to summon a spirit, and perhaps give that spirit a leg into your life by linking the conjuration to some sympathetic spellwork like candle burning, powdering, etc. If you are looking to influence the mind of another, than you can summon a spririt to help, but you will be better off if the bulk of your work is working directly on the energy body and mind of the target. If you are trying to heal, than I really recommend a strong energy work regimine linked to physical action like the taking of specially prepared medicine and phycial movements. 

Almost every model I have seen people come up with to explain magick has done nothing but limit how they practice magick. By all means folks, think about how these things work, but when you come up with an idea, don't cling to it like its gospel. 

Monday, June 8, 2009

Heather Graham

Heather Graham apparently does Sex Magick. 


Russian Translation

My first book, Protection and Reversal Magick, is being translated into Russian and will be available soon from Ves Publishing. 

Three languages down. Many more to go!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Question from a list

I belong to few lists these days. They either have too few posts and die, or to many posts for me to keep after. One of the few that I keep up with tends to stir the pot when things get slow by the moderator asking questions. 

Here are three that came up, and my answers:

What are the common mistakes that folks make when they first embark on a magickal path?

Not doing enough practical magick that will actually effect your life. People spend way to much time on the sidelines for fear of the danger or the feeling that they need to read every scrap of paper penned on drawing a circle before actually doing it. Get in there, get your fingers burnt, mess shit up. At least you will know that its real.

What are the common mistakes that are made by folks that 'ought to know better'?

Doing to much practical magick to effect your life. After you know its real, it can seem like the answer to everything. This causes problems. Spells can become like lies, one built upon another holding a patchwork life together. If you are always looking to influence people, you run the risk of not listening to what they say. If you are always looking to keep yourself from getting fired or evicted, you run the risk of missing the opportunities that come from having things dissolve down to a blank slate.

For those of you that have been on a magickal path for more than three years and two months, has anything happened that your beginner self would have a hard time even believing could happen?

Not really. I started pretty young, so I had a pretty wild imagination of what the potential of magick could be. If anything the opposite is true. I have been surprised at how bad magick is at certain things.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Just too good

So I wrote a "Naming Ceremony" tonight that I wiull perform on Sunday for my Nephew. 

In the process of writing I was looking for quotes and things to add in. In the process of searching for speeches from parent to child one of the many speeches that google presented me with was this:

"The way your dad looked at it, this watch was your birthright. He'd be damned if any slopes gonna put their greasy yellow hands on his boy's birthright, so he hid it, in the one place he knew he could hide something: his ass. Five long years, he wore that watch up his ass. Then when he died of dysentery, he gave me the watch. I hid this uncomfortable piece of metal up my ass for two years. Then, after seven years, I was sent home to my family. And then, little man, I gave the watch to you."

Just thought I would share. 

Monday, June 1, 2009

Deleting Archonoclast

I am deleting an old Blog Archonoclast. It was dedicated to sort of Gnostic Christian ramblings and thoughts. I left it set for almost a year and really do not have much more to say on the subject, that cant fit in here or someplace else. 

I had something in the realm of Christian-Gnosis that I needed to work out, and apparently I did. I am however a Buddhist at heart. I took ordination from Sean Knight as a Priest, but will not continue with the more formal process under Tau Nemesius. He is still a close friend, advisor, and teacher, but its just not the right lifetime for that much ecclesiastic stuff. 

Anyway, if there was anything there that you wanted to read or copy, go there now because it will be gone in a week.