At the moment (July 24, 2011), I’m listening to one of the Knights of Awakening shows, a new one entitled The Labyrinth. Maybe that’s a place I’m at in the Valley right now, I feel a bit lost, turned around. Stumbling onto a labyrinth tends to disorient; however, it might just as easily be that I’ve stalled. Anyhow, the subject of this show is energy work.
On people thinking they can handle whatever they get their hands on, I have been (and maybe still am) guilty of that. But while there is a certain amount of actual risk (i.e. of fucking myself up a bit, internally), the worst outcome in my experience (seems) like it’s been that you don’t get out of it the things you could have when you work with tools and practices to far beyond you’re understanding. I can miss out on pivotal revelations, insights that are meant to bring about growth inside of me.
When it comes to messing myself up, that doesn’t really scare me – even if it should. I do worry about it sometimes, occasionally, but by and large I tend to look at it with a ‘never beyond repair’ mentality. During the time I spent focusing (exclusively) on “evil”, on malice, on hate, and on anger, I admit to having done a fair amount of damage… to myself, to my relationships, and to those people I was closest to. I’m still pretty close with a lot of them though, the ones that matter. With the “exclusively” in parentheses above, I put that in there to emphasize that there is nothing wrong with what some people call evil, there is nothing wrong with any of the things I focused on, or even with focusing only on them so long as it becomes a stage that’s passed through (as opposed to a perpetual state of being). The damage, the wreckage, made way for a rebirth of sorts. A rebirth, into something new as has happened before (and since), but not a resurrection, in the sense of old and new coming together in a sort of synthesis. No, I’ve long been at odds with embracing any aspect whatsoever of whom I was before I became Sith.
I’m getting off what I want to focus on though, energy work, working with magick, the esoteric, the Force. There’s a possibility of heavy cost that I think (and maybe even intuitively feel) is associated with trying to skip ahead, trying advanced shit without anything but an abstract, intellectual understanding of a thing or a process… and sometimes even lacking that.
When I was a… newbie, for lack of a better word, I didn’t really bother with all the cautionary bullshit though. I mean the idea of inherent danger in what I do and how I live holds appeal to me, even now. And really, I’m not sure that’s such a ‘bad’ thing. I hear and see the ‘teachers’ of energy related practices talk about preparing students, and preparing themselves for newbie’s and their lack of respect for the power they try for, but the only real way to learn is by trial. Firsthand experience almost always trumps mere intellectual understanding. I heard that time and time again to, but that itself, the value of firsthand experience, was something I believe a student can only really learn and genuinely appreciate through actually gaining firsthand experience for him/her/myself.
One repercussion mentioned so far is that the body is going to burn out if you play with a flame that’s not truly understood or appreciated. But again I wonder, how better to develop an appreciation for fire than to get burnt? That’s something else I’ve experienced, though for some reason I rarely tap into the drive that enabled me to push my body (and mind, and spirit) to its limits, then beyond, getting burnt out. Burning out is good in a way, it shows me where my limits are. Awareness comes of it, and understanding.
Over-exertion, over-using, and over-channeling power like a new student might… that, to me, seems like a natural part of the process of learning. It’s a phase in which I look at it as feeling out the energy, the body, the spirit, basically figuring out what’s what. When you start lifting weights, you’ve got to experiment, feel things out. Mistakes happen, and it’s a good to make mistakes so long as they’re learned from.
I really don’t feel that I’ve avoided the pitfalls. No, I’ve fallen into quite a few. And I say they’ve been to my benefit in the long run. It’s part of the fucking learning process, which is something a lot of experienced practitioners fail to understand. Yes, mistakes will be made; people will get hurt trying new things sometimes. So what? They learn, or they’ll get stuck, and whichever happens will be indicative of how strong a given individual is.
(Written in an offline journal July 24, 2011)
I’m fairly sure that the first Labrynth show to be broadcast was what I had been listening to shortly before writing this in my journal.