Forgetting Humans: The Secret Granary and the Cup That Must Be Broken

For all of the people out there who are looking to spiritual systems, whether exoteric or esoteric, or who look to sorcerous systems and metaphysical pursuits to make themselves into better people, find peace, increase their overall well-being, to them I say “keep looking and good luck.” Exoteric religions alone among those various interests may give someone the impetus or inspiration they need to become ‘good’ (at least according to some specific definition unique to the religion) but the rest of those pursuits aren’t really about that.

The practice of Sorcery, in any of its genuine recensions, isn’t primarily about moral growth or peace and tranquility, though some people may, by happenstance of Fate, find some element of that inside it. But you can’t come looking for that, or you really won’t find it, and for an important reason.

Sorcery is impossible to pin down, just like the wind. Few people have the constitution to deal with such an insubstantial Art, such an unpredictable and indescribable metaphysical reality. But far from discarding Sorcery, or the pursuit of it, most people take the other route- they just change it to suit them. By changing it, by telling the wind that it has to be earth now, they actually lose it altogether, but they keep holding on to something they describe as “sorcery”. You’ll know these people easily, if you keep your mind on the wind- they tend to talk a good deal, but yield nothing in the way of tangible results.

Can the intangible yield tangible results? I must say, it can; but its results are often very subtle. Don’t feel let down- when its results aren’t subtle, they are as visible and unquestionable as a thunderstorm. But sorcery, like wisdom, is good at hiding, and good at avoiding people who aren’t yet ready to be like the wind. It scorns the people of inflexible concepts, who have to have everything explained and “locked down”; it looks kindly upon the people of fire and wind.

And this insubstantial nature of Sorcery is more profoundly insubstantial than you think- sometimes, right when you think you don’t have it, is when you discover that you do. Sometimes, or oftentimes, in my experience, the unplanned workings, the unplanned and rather spontaneous trances, visions, conjurations, and works are the most powerful.

That should trouble anyone who wants a formula-book; formula books are only good for one thing- they orient the mind and the desire towards the sorcerous worldview and aesthetic. After that, if you are lucky, the magic comes and begins to find you, largely spontaneously. Our friends in “Golden Dawn” type magical lodge-working are champions at planning out every detail of a magical work; for the wicked life of me, I can’t begin to imagine how that can be “magic” as I have come to understand it. It may be an almost yogic sort of mind-conditioning, a transformative practice in some ways, but certainly not sorcery in the ancient and visceral sense.

If it’s authentic sorcery you want, as the ancients had it, you have to be able to do impossible things- like tying the winds together, or making a dead tree come back to life. Maybe braiding the hair of a toad, or capturing the sound of a cat’s footfall in your left hand might be called for at times.

These “impossible” tasks force a person’s mind into a helpless quandary, which is right where you want to be. Paradox? Of course. But an initiatory one. Ordinary people don’t want to be confused or helpless or befuddled. The sorcerer knows how to adjust to those kinds of situations and make them work, because like air, like the wind, they can take any shape, move around any obstacle, fly over any mountain, cut through any person, and, over time, even wear the great mountains down to sand. Helplessness can be strength. Silence can be noise. Death can be life.

You should welcome challenges, as a test of sorcerous cunning- an opportunity to learn and sharpen one’s subtle skills. The problem with the above mentioned “sorcerous tasks” isn’t that they may be impossible, but that you are reading them and thinking about them while connected to your red fetter- the body. In reality, the body isn’t a trap, isn’t a fetter, but until you learn to use your white body, your wind-body, the witch’s flying fetch, your thinking is centered in a very material-seeming sense to a world with a few simple rules- rules that don’t include “tying” gasses or clutching at sounds.

In that limited way of seeing, the body seems like a big weight holding you down, and limiting you to space, time, gravity, and the never ending struggle of wealth versus poverty, and health versus illness. But the wind body- it can transcend the apparent rules, quite easily, as easily as a breeze passing by you in the night.

The soul, the wind-body, is a granary full of grains of power. Countless powers- countless capacities, many which have never been named before- all gathered inside that silo of a body that you bathe and feed and give medicine to when it feels bad. Ever notice how taking care of the ordinary body is precisely like keeping a pet? We respond quite carefully to our bodily pains and wants, but never to our soul’s needs and wants, at least, not often. Unlike your body-pet, the soul won’t die on you one day. However, unless you’ve gotten used to living and experiencing the world in that sorcerous wind-body by the time you die, you will miss your pet greatly, and be pained by it- maybe confused, maybe lost.

The soul is the secret granary of witchery. But every collection of great grains needs a silo to house it, so the body is an anchor to completeness. There is no “soul=good, body=bad” logic to be found in real sorcery. There is no “ignore the senses” logic, either, as we have seen. The senses are tied to the body, making your body, like your soul, a sorcerous vessel. It’s just a vessel that has a particular destiny, while the soul has another. For this meeting we call a lifetime, a full being has expressed itself, and that is a being of fearful terrors and many wonders.

If you’re only living from the red body, the body of blood and tissues, sorcery is just a bunch of words and lame, weird ideas. There is no explanation for it that will suit you, at all. When you engage the white and the red, soul and body, you start to realize the uncomfortable truth- Sorcery has no actual “hard and fast” rules. It doesn’t work on a “logic”- it works because the world is sorcerous, and you by nature are also sorcerous, and because in such a nature, strange things occur pretty regularly.

You have to pay attention to their occurrences- they flow here and there, mostly unpredictable, but sometimes not- and leap into their weird flowing. You have to be ready to have faith- some sorcerous occurrences are signaled by subtle events that lead up to them, and you have to take a chance at them. You have to learn to recognize, to be very aware, very awake, very attentive, with all your senses.

Every real sorcerer is a master or mistress of opportunity. They don’t miss much. And I know what they are all looking for- the secret that makes magic really work- something I call “the authentic moment”, or the owl’s blink. An “owlblink” is also a folkloric name for a curse or a harmful hexing; but, as a swift, silent, sudden occurrence, which really can’t be predicted, it is another name I give to the magical “authentic” moment.

And this moment, which happens when it will, is one of the sources of your real power to bring about sorcery. It is a moment in which many insubstantial threads all get tied together and coincide just right, just perfect. You’ve experienced them before, trust me; but the more aware and awake you make yourself, the more you see with the soul, the more you’ll see that these special moments are moments when anything can really be possible.

This is the final truth at the bottom of the bag of sorcerous cunning- the authentic moment is something you search for, something you can live in joyful anticipation of. You can’t search for it without inspiration, without a passionate love for the aesthetic of sorcery, the mystical, and the insubstantial. You have to be excited for this kind of strange pursuit. You have to love it. And, without even planning it, you’ll feel that sorcerous moment coming for you- there, at night, alone, as the winds pound the trees outside, your imagination will suddenly flare up, quite outside of your control, filling you with visions of the Pale People moving quietly through the crust of the Earth outside, and you’ll want to go to them.

Some of them look like dead people you’ve known; others have unearthly beauty, and some unearthly ugliness. You’ll feel like you’re as light as a feather, a leaf on the wind, and you’ll dream of just flying through your window on the wind, to fly right into their company. You’ll have insights about things you needed insights on. You’ll have spontaneous emotional reactions. And just like that- maybe in minutes, maybe in an hour, you’ll be “you” again. Things will seem more ordinary again. But you will know that it was very real; it doesn’t feel the same as what you might call “an idle imagination”- you felt the chill in your spine; you know that, for a brief moment, or series of moments, your soul went away, and danced with otherworldly things. And this experience can never be repeated.

No real sorcerous work is ever repeated precisely as it was done before, just as no wind blows the same way twice, and no river flows the same way in the same place twice. To grasp the Sorcerous, authentic moment is to drink from “The Cup That Must Be Broken”- the ancient vessel of sacrifice that was destroyed as soon as it was used. That sacrifice was never repeated, always new, always evergreen, any time it was done.

No authentic sorcerous work is “repeatable” because the conditions that made it possible at the moment it was possible are gone forever. New conditions may arise in the future- you may even conjure up some of those conditions, when you get powerful- but they’ll be different each time, too. And there are so many conditions, seen and unseen, that create every authentic, sorcerous moment. You can’t grasp them, or the magical moments, unless you first become aware of them. Becoming a seer, using the senses and soul properly, is thus required first, before a person becomes a “doer”, a worker of the Art.