Author Topic: An Introduction to Occult Studies  (Read 7734 times)

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An Introduction to Occult Studies, and the Basic Skills to be Acquired.

   

   Contents

   

   Part I

               Basic Concepts

   -Will and Intent

   -The Three Spheres and The Four Bodies of Man

   -The Four Elements

   -Chi, The Vital Life Energy

   Part II

               Basic Skills

   -Meditation

   -Scanning and Sensing

   -Visualization Development

   -Energy Manipulation

   -The Infamous Psiball

   -Programming

   Part III

               The Paths

                           The Magician

   -Direct Magic

   -Sigils

   -Summoning

   -The Use of Ritual

   The Psion

   -Empathy and Telepathy

   -Remote Viewing

   -Psychokinesis Revisited

   -Constructs

   Qigong

   Appendix

   -Leaving Your Body

   -Resources

   -

   

   

   

   

               

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

 Welcome to The Veritas Academy! The following is a guide to what is offered here, and doubles as a FAQ. In this guide, you will get a taste of the underlying principles of the occult studies, instruction in the basic skills you will need, and a tour of different paradigms and their associated lifestyles.

   

   PART I - Basic Concepts

   

   Will and Intent – by Kyo

 The act of doing, requires two things, a will, and an intent; together, this is concept is known as ‘yi’ in China. Metaphysical operations are the purest possible, as they require nothing but the will and intent. Anything else is a tool, a means to apply your will and intent directly or indirectly. Even when you pick up a glass, before your’ arm can move, you must have decided on what you are doing, there is your intent, and must have applied the force of will to do it. Your’ arm then, is just a tool to bring about your’ will and intent. In occult applications, such tools may be useful, but are not necessary. Intent is knowledge of what you are doing, and that you are doing it. Your’ will is the force behind your intent, and is aided by your determination, focus, and desire. Learning to utilize these faculties separately from the tools to which you are accustomed is one of the most basic abilities you will learn.

   

   The Three Spheres – by Kyo

               “As above, so below.”

 The universe exists on multiple levels, spheres, or planes if you prefer. Firstly is the Celestial sphere, the source of the divine light, influencing all else beneath it. The Celestial sphere is not of terrible importance for this article, so it will be left for another work. Beneath the Celestial, lie the Astral and Mental spheres. As Prophecy explains more thoroughly in his Treatise on Elemental Magic the Astral is not actually a proper sphere of its own, but a middle ground, one which we will find very useful. Our thoughts exist in the Mental sphere, but can rather easily project into the Astral, the details of which will come later. What makes the Astral sphere so useful, is that it is impressionable. And so any change we make there upon, will ripple down with a diminished effect, onto the last sphere, that is, the Physical. The Physical sphere needs no real explanation since you have experienced it your’ entire life.

   

   The Four Bodies of Man - by LadyKalee

               LadyKalee – please edit in your work here.

   

   The Four Elements - by Kyo

               I will not go in depth on this subject, as Prophecy’s Treatise on Elemental Magic is a wonderfully deep piece of work on the elements. So it will suffice here to say that these elements are not those that you know on the Physical sphere, for that is their least pure form.

   

               Fire      - Heat, brightness, expansion.

               Air       - Movement, lightness

               Water   - Coolness, darkness, incompressibility

               Earth    - Dryness, hardness, gravity

   

   Chi, The Vital Life Energy - by Kettle
 Qi (pronounced “chee”) is a Chinese word that can translate to ‘life energy’ or ‘universal energy field’. You may also see it spelled ‘chi’, and this is the same thing, just another way of spelling it. Qi is an energy on which your body is fueled and made capable of movement. It permeates all things in the universe, you have it within your body, and it is all around you at all times. The closest western equivalent would be the term ‘bioelectricity’. Qi is brought into the body naturally through the breath, and often when the word ‘qi’ is translated into English, it will be translated as breath.

What is particularly interesting about this energy is that it can be manipulated by both the body’s movement and the human mind. Qi moves according to the body because the body moves according to qi. To move the body needs qi in certain areas, so by doing the same movement repeatedly it will concentrate it to certain areas, this is often referred to as external qigong, (most any physical exercise, particularly martial arts, go under this classification) . When you verse yourself in the world of qigong you will hear the same expression over and over again, that being “yi leads qi”. What this actually means is that using the mind (in Chinese ‘yi’) you are able to guide or lead the qi in your body to other areas of your body, and this is referred to as internal qigong, or nei dan qigong. Moving qi using your mind is by no means any magical process you merely need to place your mind in the area of you body you want it to move to and it will follow, you just lead it there.

One very important thing to know about qi is that it can be separated into two categories, those being yin and yang. Yin and yang have a number of concepts attached to them but they are really just extremes of the same thing. Yin is said to be representing the feminine, soft, cold, and is usually referred to as water (as by example, not in actuality). Yang represents the male, hard, hot, and is usually referred to as fire (once again it’s by example). Both of them are qi (can be thereby appropriately named yin qi and yang qi) they are just used to show the difference of qi depending on what state it is in. For example qi that is moving very fast is considered yang qi, and qi moving slowly is yin qi. This is very important as to gain good health it is important to have a balance of yin and yang qi within the body. Much of acupuncture is as well based on this principle, as well as the meridians and dantians.

The qi that your body runs on is stored within the dantians. ‘Dantian’ (can also be written tantian, or tanden) loosely translates to “field of elixir”, meaning a place where elixir (qi) stays. Its purpose is to store qi and regulate it throughout the body, and it is done so by sending it through the meridians (see next paragraph). For simplicity’s sake you could compare a dantian to a pump, pumping qi to various parts of your body. You have three dantians within your body, one just below the navel (the lower dantian), one at the chest (the middle), and one between you eyebrows (the upper). Each stores qi within the body.

The meridians are comparable to qi highways, kind of like qi blood vessels. Their purpose is to provide a way to get qi to different areas of the body. The meridians run all along your body, and there is no place in your body that does not have meridians. There are twelve meridians each of which is connected to a vital organ (heart, lung, pericardium, liver, spleen, triple burner, large intestine, small intestine, kidney, stomach, bladder, gallbladder). Through working with qi (qigong) you can affect these meridians and strengthen the corresponding organ. There are also eight non-organ meridians that can be used as reservoirs for qi, however this is only through qigong that these non-organ meridians can be used.

Qigong translates to “qi work”, with ‘gong’ meaning work, and ‘qi’ as it is previously explained. It is also often written ‘chi kung’, and this is fine. Qigong is essentially applying the knowledge one has with qi and manipulating through either external methods (bodily movement) or internal methods (using your mind to lead qi). The purpose of either of these practices is to increase the amount of qi within ones body, and as well to balance the amount of yin and yang qi in your body. In doing these things the practitioner can greatly increase their health as well as their mental and physical strength.

There are many, many different styles of qigong, each having their own take on how these goals should be accomplished. For example the Eight Pieces of the Brocade Qigong set seeks to gain harmonization of qi within the body, as well it helps strengthen the physical body. As another example Beggars Qigong was created for the purpose of surviving for many days without food. Iron shirt qigong was created for the purpose of receiving hard blows and strikes without taking any damage. Because qi is brought in through the breath qigong can also be translated as ‘breath work’, and there are some styles of qigong entirely based on practicing breathing exercises.

There are about as many styles of qigong as there are people who have trained it (bit of an exaggeration), but each will have it’s purpose and benefits, so deciding which one is right for you will be entirely up to you.

To review, qi is an energy within you (and without you) that your body needs to survive. Through breathing qi is brought into your body and stored in the dantian. It is then circulated through the body in the meridians. Through practice of qigong you can increase the efficiency with which this happens. By doing so you can achieve great health as well as strength.

   

   Occult Anatomy – by

               Someone please edit in a bit about chakras here.

   Other than the anatomy outlined above, there are also different parts of the body, corresponding the the elements.

   A very thorough piece on the elemental correspondences can be found in Franz Bardon’s Initiation to Hermetics.  So here I will just say that the head is fiery, the chest airy, the stomach watery, and anything beneath is earthy.

   

   Part II – Basic Skills

   

   Meditation - by Kyo

 This is without a doubt, the most important practice for anyone to begin with. Meditation is the process of clearing your mind, generally for the purpose focusing on one thing, with all your being.

 To clear your mind, begin by watching your own thoughts pass by, observe each one, and then let it pass. Through this process, your mind will begin to quiet down, until there is nothing left. In its perfection, the only thing left should be the concept of existence; this state is often referred to as gnosis. However, this depth is not required for immediate practice, as a clear mind will suffice for most operations.

 While working in any occult practice, it is as though you blurt out everything that comes to mind, since your thoughts are your voice. So it is important to learn to control your thoughts, as you control your speech in the Physical sphere.

 With meditation, you can also exercise your charkas, to enhance their inherent powers, by adjusting to receiving their input.

   

   Visualization - by Kyo

               This practice, taken from Franz Bardon’s Initiation to Hermetics, should help you develop the imagination, awareness of your senses, and focus.

 After clearing your mind, picture an object/person/scenario, in vivid detail, and hold this in your mind as long as you can. When you can do this for all of your’ senses for at least 5 minutes, then you have completed this stage of development.

 This is by no means an easy skill to acquire, and may take you quite a while, particularly for the non visual. So you should continue your other practices concurrently.

   

   Energy Manipulation - by Kyo

 It is often said that yi leads chi. That is, your will and intent guide metaphysical energies. If you want to move energy, you must place your focus at the destination, and will the energy to it. There are many techniques and applications for this, and tools like visualization can be helpful, but visualizing without will and intent, is just day dreaming.

   

   The Infamous Psiball - by Kyo

 The Psiball is a lump of metaphysical energy that you have willed into one place. This is one of the most basic manipulation practices you can do, and you should be fairly competent at it before doing anything more advanced.

   

   Programming – by Kyo

 One of the most useful properties of metaphysical energy is its’ malleability. Since it exists on the same level as thought, it can take complex forms with simple commands. Once you have a Psiball, you can program it with a concept like “alert me when someone passes this spot.” You impress this thought into the energy, until it takes the requisite form. Programmed energy is known as a construct, and will be detailed later.

   

   Part III – The Paths

   

 These paths are presented as examples of a typical focus of study. They are by no means a binding class system, and you should feel free to study across all of them. They are given here for easy reference, and to help you understand what and what does not appeal to you.

   

   The Magician

   

               -Direct Magic

-To be completed later-    

   -Sigils –

-To be completed later-    

               -Summoning – by Venus666

 Summoning is the field of magick where the summoner steps into the realm of the spiritual. A summoner can call upon various spirits for knowledge, for deeds, or for meditation, but the uses are not limited to this. There are several different ways to summon, each with its’ own system of techniques to bring about the desired result. A summoner utilizes several different states of mind, like evocation and invocation to experience the spiritual realm and its’ inhabitants. The spirit realm, located on the astral and etheric levels, is made mostly of energy. Creatures in this realm include angels, demons, godforms, ergregores, non-corporeal entities (like the dearly departed) and spirits. In order to access these realms, training of the mind is necessary.

 A true summoner, then, is a spiritual conductor, putting spirits in action according to the summoner's will and desire. A summoner must be strong in will and purpose, for spirits can prey upon unsuspecting summoners who have not yet learned to control their own minds. This can be a tremendous position of power, but also a complete downfall if the path is not walked carefully and without regard.

   

   -The Use of Ritual – by Kyo

 One of the more often made mistakes in magic is assuming that mundane objects and words have innate magical properties. There are very rare exceptions to this, in True Names, which are treated fully in Prophecy’s Power of Words article.

 Ritual has whatever power you give to it, and is filled with analogies. The circle cast signifies your own defenses, a shield, knowing thyself. The triangle is evocations is a sigil telling the spirit where to appear, and the seals and prayers represent knowledge of the entity. Similar analogies can be drawn to all elements of a ritual. The exceptions to this are such as using a fire, to increase the presence of the fire element, and this is covered in Prophecy’s Treatise on Elemental Magic. However, by recognizing where in the rituals power lies, it can add tremendously to your spell casting, by helping you focus your will and intent more purposefully.

   

   Before anyone is set on studying magic, I strongly recommend reading Prophecy’s article The Path.  As it is not to be taken up lightly.

   

               The Psion – by Zake

   

   -Empathy and Telepathy:

The classic skills of the psion are those that allow interaction with the minds of others. A basic distinction between two types of such mental interaction is that between empathy and telepathy; both, while being the same basic phenomenon (mental interaction) are different in their uses and effects. Empathy deals with the sensing, transfer, and manipulation of emotions, and similar basic mental states. Telepathy, in contrast, involves the communication of conceptual thoughts and specific information, or even mental suggestion and control.

   

               -Remote viewing

 It is often theorized that all information that can possibly exist in all space and time is in some form available to our consciousness, if only we could tap this source. This is the reasoning behind the infamous ability of remote viewing, sometimes known as "clairvoyance," which allows a psion access to information and sensation of people, places, and things distant or unknown. Though there are no exact known limits to the nature of the information which is available, the most usual use of this ability is to gain knowledge of distant places or things.

   

               -Psychokinesis

 The most dramatic, and by far most popular, aspect of psionics is that which manipulates matter itself. The power of psychokinesis can affect all forms of matter, and is limited basically by the amount of force which a psion is mentally and energetically capable of exerting. An aspiring telekinetic will therefore start with the manipulation of
very small, lightweight, and movable objects and move on from there.

   

               -Constructs

 One of the weirdest, and perhaps most versatile, abilities of the psion is the skill of making "constructs" out of psionic energy. Formed and programmed by the thoughts of their creator, constructs can be programmed to accomplish any number of purposes, making them a particularly versatile aspect of psionics.  The previously mentioned psiball can be considered to be a very simple construct.

   

               Qigong – by Nekojin_Fenix

   

 Qigong, or more easily pronounced "Chi kung" (but less phonetically accurate in Chinese) translates to the "art of chi", often called the art of breath. If you've already read about Qi-Chi-Ki, don't think you know about Qigong. Qigong deals with strengthening your energy body, as in your meridians and chakras, the vital points where your chi collects, and the meridians in which is flows. Qi (or Chi) is harnessed from breathing, and thus Qigong begins primarily with breathing exercises, and later in the practice, stance work, forms and special meditations are done. Some examples of the different types of Qigong are Taijiquan (or Ta'i Ch'I chuan), another being Shaolin Gongfu(KungFu). Both strengthen your energy body, and allow you to become more in touch with your body and it's Qi(Chi). By strengthening your energy body, you can manipulate Qi(chi) more easily, and your becomes more healthy. Taijiquan is a Qigong practice to feel the Qi(chi) flow through you, whereas the martial art Shaolin Gongfu deals with making the body hardier, by means of conditioning and utilizing Qi(chi) to become one with your will. By using your energy in unity with your willpower, you can only benefit, martial artist or not. Qigong is essentially a Health/Healing practice, mentally, physically, and spiritually. Qigong is estimated to be practiced by some 70 million Chinese. Qigong enjoys a presence in the western world, making both traditional Chinese texts and westernized texts avaliable for reference. By becoming truly healthy, your are sure to succeed, especially in other areas of metaphysical training.

   

   Appendix

   

   -Leaving the Body

               Someone please edit something in here.

   -Resources

               www.hermetics.org – excellent source for ebooks.

               www.wikipedia.org – stores of information about almost anything.

               Edit in any you want, this is why I used mentors account to post it.