Magical Ethics: The Power of thought.
I want to talk a bit about spiritual morality, Magical ethics. In some ways, this essay really belongs in the lessons section, but ethical behavior really has a lot to do with what chakra you are looking at the world from.
Perceptions of morality tend to change radically as you ascend through the chakras. Ethical issues that are primary in the perceptual universe of the lower chakras are irrelevant at the top, where there is no duality. No right and wrong, only love. Trying to live as if you are at the top where morality is irrelevant and you can do no wrong, if you are really at the bottom and deluding yourself makes for ugly scenes like the Jim Jones, People's Temple massacre.
For example, I find a lot of Thelemites (followers of Aliester Crowley) are in this place. They go around spouting "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law." which is a crown chakra perception, but they are motivated to say it out of ego issues that identify them as still living from the lower chakras... where the Wiccan Rede; "an it harm none, do what thou wilt." is more appropriate. I have met a few Thelemites who really were enlightened, and I did not know they were Thelemites, for years! They were not spouting Thelemic dogma at me.
The other difficulty is that there is an exception to every rule, and trying to understand what are rules and where compassion demands an exception is difficult at best, and a dangerous slippery slope into reasons, excuses and justifications for doing harm, at worst.
Elsewhere in my writing, I warn of "The Trap of righteousness"... Observing the hazard of using judgments of "what other people need" as a motive for "Heroic" action. That attitude is what creates the most heinous repressions, from the Drug war to the Spanish Inquisition. "What other people need"... looks like martyrdom, smells like prison. It is the ugliest of emotional projections, because it tramples those it tries to "help" by projecting weakness onto them. It is a separation game of ego. The opposite of it is "Namaste". The Divine in me honours the Divine in you and sees that we are one. Once you realize that God-dess is everyone, playing at a game of pretending to be less, the idea of helplessness and suffering really changes. The nature of compassion changes too.
When it comes to morality, Gandhi said it best:
"The still, small voice within is the only Tyrant I will accept".
You have to be true to yourself, your own spirit. Even so, I find that the conscience lives in the power chakra, not the heart. The heart is a chakra of non-duality, and so it is sometimes not very respectful of personal boundaries. The power chakra is where your conscience lives. It is the chakra of personal boundaries and individuality, and it is the chakra that lets you know when your boundaries are not being respected, or when you are about to disrespect the boundaries of another. It is the chakra that signals whether your actions are karma or dharma. Ego or Divine Will. That "gut reaction" is your power chakra speaking... and it is different, for everyone.
Thus, I will offer some guidelines about what are good rules to follow, but you have to follow the dictates of your own heart and conscience. Use that higher perspective to know what is true love, what is tough love kindness, and what is your ego trying to give you some reasons about what you can get away with.
Presumably, if your heart voice is clear and true, you can trust it and also use common sense. You are not going to "Go postal" and become an axe murderer because "the voices made me do it". (Disclaimer! I will offer some suggestions, but in the final analysis you have to take responsibility for your own actions.)
This is the Tree of life. At the top of the Tree there is no duality... no reality... or, ultimate reality, depending on how you look at it. This is the higher chakra perception spoken of when we refer to life as illusion. Everything is made of love, Goddess is All that Is. Everything is true, nothing is real... nothing is true, everything is real... Goddess does not judge what is good or bad, it is all love. At this level and a few levels below, is where you can see clearly that hurricanes, plagues and earthquakes are also gifts of Love from Goddess. They have Divine Purpose. You can see that murderers and victims make an agreement before birth to play that game, to give each other experiences and it does not matter who gets killed because we are all immortal anyway.
This level is useful for perception, to gain insights into the nature of reality, and find peace, but it is an internal process. It does not mean those rules apply to the embodied reality where we live. Life may be an illusion, but if you stub your toe on a rock it still hurts.
As Philip K. Dick said
"Reality, is that which does not go away, when we stop believing in it."
Do not think these higher chakra perceptions about the True nature of reality, means that it is OK to do harm. We can go there to get insights, but we do not live there while we are embodied, so it is important to stay grounded in the lower chakra rules and ethics.
At the bottom of the tree there is a sharp polarity of good/evil light/dark. Ethical behavior is very cut and dried. Golden rules and the Wiccan Rede. Do no Harm.
Some people find that idea terrifying... because seen from the bottom of the tree it appears like people at the top are very dangerous sociopaths who have no conscience.
But the way it really works is that as you ascend the tree, you lose all motive to do harm. Ego gets diminished, it may still be around but it does not dictate actions. You become very powerful, but you have no motive to use the power, you see perfection in what Is.
The quote goes, "If you have a mustard seed of faith, then you can move mountains". What is doesn't say, is that if you really do have faith, you won't have any motive to move a mountain. You will see that the mountain is perfect right where it is. Goddess got it right.
Here is another way to look at it... Evil, is "live" backwards. So, what is evil, is that which is against life. It is fear, that blocks and limits the flow of the Divine Life energy within you. Truly, there is no "evil", there are only people acting from fear instead of love. As you continue on this path of surrendering your old fears and limiting beliefs, you lose the ego based motive to harm another. The clearer you get, the more the idea of acting to harm another person becomes uninteresting.
Quite simply, most people do harm when they are afraid, not feeling loved. If you look at the energy fields of two people having an argument, you will see a tug of war of energy going on. They are preying on each other's energy fields, usually because they are not grounded, not being fed from source so they feel a need to get their energy needs met thru vampirism. Feeding on the energy fields of the people around them. It's the hungry wolf, that hunts. It is the cornered rat, that attacks. Seen from a higher perspective, all actions are love, or a cry for love.
People who are grounded are well fed by Goddess, and so they do not feel a need to attack others to feel better about themselves, more powerful. Their needs are met within, so they do not need to get their needs met externally. Thus, Kung Fu Master is usually a very gentle being. They have the ability to do great violence, but the Kung Fu chi exercises increase their personal energy and confidence so they likely have no motive to be violent.
Energy vampirism is not good "magical ethics", and it takes years of staying grounded to really get clear of these energy sucking habits, and even then you must be vigilant for the shadow.
I recommend the book "The Celestine Prophecies" for a good understanding of the dynamics of power games, which are usually related to the power chakra. Power games, power chakra... makes sense, eh?
TCP calls the different dynamics "Control dramas". The control drama of each individual is usually established in childhood, when the child first begins to think they are not worthy of the radiant flow of life energy, and begins to close the crown chakra and cut themselves off from Source. Children really need to be nourished by their parents love energy, and it is a natural survival tactic to learn to manipulate their parents to meet their own needs.
The sixth insight mentioned in TCP outlined 4 main control dramas that people use to feed on each other's energy. The 4 types are the Interrogator, the Aloof, the Poor Me and the Intimidator.
It is useful to know what is your favorite control dramas, so you can notice when you are being a vampire and get grounded. Be honest with yourself! Most people have one primary drama, and secondary dramas to call upon as needed. Everybody uses some of them, there are no exceptions.
Interrogators will ask you questions and then judge you for your answers. You can recognize it from a million cop shows, the classic scene in the interrogation room where the person being interrogated tells their side of what happened, and the Cops pick their story to pieces and judge them.
Aloof people play "hard to get" and make you chase after them. Greta Garbo was the classic aloof. "I vant to be alone". Ever try to have a conversation with someone and it is like pulling hen's teeth to get them to open up? Aloof control strategy. It is related to shyness, shy people are usually afraid of rejection. They avoid rejection by hiding themselves.
Poor Me types try to make you feel sorry for them, and seek to feed on your pity. They try to make you responsible for what happens in their life. They have a victim attitude, because to the victim goes the sword of blame and the weapon of guilt. At present, it is almost trendy for accusations of child abuse to become a weapon in an ugly divorce. Most often the accusations are not true, and they do terrible harm. Most commercials on TV for charities use this control strategy to solicit donations. A humorous example of this control game is the scene from Monty Python's "Life of Brian". A beggar loses a leg and find he gets more donations, so he cuts off the other leg, himself.
Intimidators try to frighten you. Monster movies like "The Mummie's Curse" are a funny example of this dynamic... usually the mummy is a very slow creature, a child could run circles around it and never get caught, but it is so scary it's victims are frozen in fear and make stupid mistakes.
It is also important to identify your family control dramas, because usually your own control dramas were a reaction to theirs, or a mimicking of them.
There is another way to handle these dynamics when faced with them, and that is surrender. Build up your own energy, and give people what they want! Most people will not bite the hand that feeds them, and if your own energy level is good, you will not be so vulnerable to the dynamics.
We never completely lose the Shadow side, or we could not continue to exist in polarity-space. It may sleep for years, like a well fed snake, but it will come up ugly whenever your energy gets low, no matter how enlightened you get. Everybody does it... Even Gandhi used Poor Me as a strategy against the British occupation. He made them look bad for their treatment of a defenseless naked Holy Man. At low tide, the rocks appear that were hidden when the tide was high. Low energy... the karma rocks and shadow dramas, reappear.
Usually, life energy must flow, to be viable. Energy that stops flowing, becomes karma blockages in the energy body. The second chakra is unique, in that when it is opened fully, it grows a "pearl", that is capable of storing energy, it functions like a back up battery. Swami Muktanada said that the highest evolution is when the soul spark descends to live in the second chakra. The pearl is like a bubble of energy that has the qualities of the higher chakras. Even when your life has gone to hell in a handbasket, you are plagued by vampires and drama, sickness and misfortune, the second chakra pearl will get you through it with grace.
Sometimes it is effective to call people on what they are doing, but try to avoid making judgments. Have compassion. These dynamics are simply human nature, people feeding themselves as best they can, because they do not feel loved. Your love is abundant, you can afford to be generous, and what you put out, comes back multiplied.
However, beware... some people are "bottomless pits" who will continue to feed on you for as long as you allow it. Unless they are your own young children, it does not serve either of you for them to become wholly dependent on you for their energy. Martyrdom does not serve. They need to learn to feed themselves. The page on clearing Aka cords will show what to do in this situation.
Thus, I am generous with my Shakti, but I also encourage students to learn to stay grounded and feed themselves as soon as possible. Your becoming addicted to me does not serve either of us.
Some people get into Magic because they want to feel more powerful... but that desire is of the ego. If they are working with Chi or Prana, then to a certain extent they can raise energy and direct it to do their bidding... the path of the Magician is ego-based Magic, and the power of it is very limited. Shakti-based magic appears to be infinitely powerful... but it only works if it is aligned with Divine Will.
Some folks who are accustomed to doing ego-based magic get their asses kicked when they become Kundalini awakened, because suddenly all the magic they try to create shoots them in the foot. Sometimes it turns into a long saga of "be careful what you pray for", as Goddess persuades them of the value in Surrender.
All Roads lead to Rome, Goddess is All that Is, and there is no place else to go... But some paths are shorter and others have more twists and pot holes. Mine had a lot of those, so I got to know the pitfalls intimately. It takes the newly awakened Magician a while to realize that the ego based magic of Free Will only demonstrates their lack of faith that "Goddess has it handled".
This is really a gift. Because Shakti works to dismantle the ego, folks who are in search of power discover that their attachment to it becomes a barrier to them actualizing it. Goddess does not grant power, till the vessel has evolved beyond the desire to use it selfishly.
As you ascend the tree, you become more powerful, spiritually, and you need to be aware that your thoughts can affect people. You need to be mindful of the energy you are sending out, and stay grounded because your energy is more intense. "Do no harm" is an important focus because you are trying to clear your Karma, so you can ascend beyond the illusions of harm... not create more of it.
Whatever you do to another, you do to yourself.
There are no "other people"... all that see, is yourself reflected.
I counselled someone who was raped as a teenager, and when she was a young Witch, her first magical act was to place a binding on her rapist. When she came to see me, 20 years later, her Divine Beloved/shadow side was showing up within her, as her rapist and she was at war with her Self.
When she understood, that whatever she did to another, she did to herself she realized that in binding the Rapist, she had bound a part of her own Divine Self... it was taking the form of the Rapist so that she could learn to forgive, and set herself free from all that anger and regret.
Your thoughts have power! So, it is wise not to try to use your power to manipulate other people, and become very mindful about what your imagination gets up to. Do not have sexual fantasies about another person without their consent! On a higher level, these fantasies are real, and so it is like "Spiritual rape" to be enjoying someone without asking first. You may have noticed how often porn stars have tragic lives... this is the effect of so much sexual energy and desires being sent their way by those who enjoy sexual fantasies while looking at their pictures. Not all do, some artists can handle the energy better than others... but it is unethical, don't do it.
Love spells are unethical, and if the person wakes up from the spell their anger will be wholly justified. Similarly, do not have fantasies about your boss giving you a raise, etc. Do not fantasize about other people bending to your will. Of course, you may have dreams and desires, but surrendering them makes them manifest a whole lot faster, if they are to be. "Not my will, but thine be done."
There will be times when this power is very tempting... some people are difficult to be around, or you see them behaving in ways that are self destructive, or destructive towards you or those you love. There are ethical ways to handle this.
Look within. The position of true power is "I ATTRACT THAT WHICH OCCURS". You are God of your own life. Change the world, by changing inside of yourself. Most likely you would not be attracting these people or events unless there was something in it, for you. For your own spiritual growth. Like Richard Bach says, "There is no such thing as a problem, without a gift for you, in it's hands. You seek problems, because you need their gifts".
If taking responsibility does not work and you cannot see clearly why you are attracting what occurs, then do a visualization and have a chat with their Higher Self. Their Higher Self cannot be manipulated, it respects Free Will and likely it will have some insights into the events that you may not be able to see with your own eyes. Not everybody's Higher self is the glowing white spirit that we would like to think, but everybody's Higher Self responds to love.
Take responsibility for the events of your own life, free of blame, free of victimhood... free of attachments.
There is a funny dynamic about blame, in that it is a way of giving your power away. You cannot control how someone else feels, feelings are a choice. The choice may be unconscious, ego driven by re-action to old baggage, but it is still choice. When you blame someone else for how you feel, you are giving away your own power of responsibility, you are making them be God for you.
The only useful exception I have found to this rule, is on the rare occasion I have made a healing agreement with someone to help them clear their karma by taking it on myself, via empathy. If they break their side of the agreement by not giving it up, then I get stuck in it because Goddess won't take it from me. Free will is Goddess' Law. My intent to heal turns into "the road to hell of Good intentions" and their Karma stuck in me cuts me off from my higher guidance. Blame is sometimes the best way to give them their Karma back so I can come back into balance., because by making them be God for me, I can give them back their power and their stuff, as well as making them aware that they have power and are using it irresponsibly.
It's messy and I don't recommend it. It happens on occasion, and it has been a gift for those I have done it with, but really, is my responsibility, not to go down that road in the first place. To respect my own boundaries. Usually I made such agreements, when I was already out of my body doing healing work. When I am out of my body, I am infinite, I have no boundaries so I do not feel my boundaries being broken, and cannot respect or defend them... but the body has boundaries, it suffers when they are broken. I return to a body that is messed up, and have to take extreme measures to get balanced again.
A better solution for average situations, is to affirm "Goddess, please take this stuff from me that is not truly mine, and give it back to the owner in whatever form You think best. Thank you very much." Breathe, distract yourself, surrender. This is a "return to sender", that is vertical- it goes through the Divine. Goddess may choose to give it back to them as an insight, an event, even a winning lottery ticket! Whatever serves their highest good.
It is much cleaner and more effective than a horizontal, person to person "return to sender." If you just send projections back directly, it may feel like a psychic attack, to the recipient... and probably you will be bombing them with your own negative attitudes, on top. Let Goddess handle it.
Victimhood is a choice to react. There are some people who wallow in self pity and stay in victimhood because they find it comfortable, while others can take the same circumstances and become heroes. An example is Terry Fox. He lost a leg to cancer, and instead of wallowing in self pity, he ran across Canada with an artificial leg to raise money for cancer research. He chose not to be a victim.
Jim Byrnes lost both legs to a land mine in Vietnam, but today he is a grammy award winning musician, who has a thriving career acting in television and films, and spends most of his free time working for children's charities.
It is funny how sometimes adversity brings out the best in people. There is a funny story in the Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy book series about a planet where they managed to cure all diseases. They found that without the challenge diseases presented, they became jaded. So, they created fake, temporary diseases to bring back that challenge. If one person could climb Everest with one broken leg, the next person would try to do it with 2 broken legs, the next with both legs broken, plus a broken arm and lung cancer. To strive against adversity is part of being human. It helps us to grow, makes us stronger just as the wind makes plants grow strong. Part of the cycle of life!
Harm as a perception only exists in the lower chakras... and the higher chakra perceptions cannot be defined, in words. They must be experienced, to be understood. What is the sound of one hand clapping? Above the heart, it's all love. Tough love and gentle love... but the power chakra holds the conscience. It is the guide to let you know whether your tough love, or your gentle love, really is respecting the uniqueness of the individual.
My ethical responsibility belongs to Goddess...