Saturday, 30 July 2011

The beast that almost got me... - or OCH's aftermath

While writing this post the sentence kept coming back to me: "This beast almost got me." And that's the truth. Going through the aftermath of the ritual of OCH took its tribute and I paid the toll. 

I guess any successful spirit communion will express itself in changes in our lives? So when it comes to determining the impact of a rite it is much less about what happens while we are in the temple than it is about what happens once we leave it behind. The forces of the spirit we work with will take shape and merge into our personality as soon as we allow them to sink into our subconsciousness and become one with who we are underneath our skins... Assimilating the powers of spirits into our everyday lives is similar to the way our body assimilates the nutrition of food - the powers unfold once their taste has vanished in our mouths. 

Entering the sphere of the Sun taught me how it feels to arrive at the spot marked 'X' on my life map: there is no next step to take, no next goal to turn to. Once I allowed the forces of OCH to enter my live it was easy to lose any sense of direction. In an earlier post I had mentioned that the Sun is the only place at which a wind emerges into all directions. The solar winds come forth from a single point and expand into all directions. The Sun is the ultimate center of our realm of creation. And measured from its centre every other point seems to be just as far away. No living thing approaches the Sun, yet the solar winds reach out to everything... 

As a human we are not made to live in the Sun, but to live in its orbit. We are not meant to be the centre of our own universe - but to circle around it in spheres. To maintain stability our lives depend on a reference point that is bigger than ourselves, a point that can sustain balance while we go through the transformations we call a living. As a human we are the host of our body and minds. We welcome experiences, strangers that come to visit and to change us. As humans we are constantly becoming by allowing life to work on us.  

The Sun, however, never changes. It is the agent of change itself. The Sun is not a host but the light that shines over every encounter. We need the Sun to shine in our back to look far into the future or close up at a detail. If we come too close to it, if we even allow it to shine behind our own eyes, it will blind us and leave us without a sense of direction.

Engaging with the spirit of OCH was a wonderful experience. It took me to the centre of everything we know. It kills social and cultural stereotypes about the shining star and replaces them with real life experiences... The spirit of OCH is a wonderful teacher. But he is also unforgiving, relentless, merciless. His light doesn’t mind if it dries tears from our face or burns the last fertile soil in Somalia. More than a rose ever will be, the Sun is the Sun is the Sun.

If we approach the Sun to engage with it, we need to understand that we will be blind for the duration of the encounter: Every other life, every other career, every other relationship  will suddenly seem in reach. The power to re-imagine and start afresh will be abundant and the ease to destroy what we have built uncannily alluring. When we encounter the spirit of OCH it take all our willpower and a busload of faith not to burn down the bridges of the live we had created before... Because once we shift identification from the objects we see in the Sun, to sunlight itself no single shape will ever be good enough. Ego and hunger will be infinite.

Here is the beast that almost got me: As humans we don't belong into the Sun. We carry its seed in our hearts, a single spark instead of a planet of fire. If we re-imagine each day who we are and what we will achieve, we won't achieve anything. And ultimately we will be at the end of everything and nothing.

From the moment we step into the Sun it will burn us to ashes. It will eat our centers of identity and give way to the illusion that any form and shape out there could be us... This is the illusion we have to face: while we can engage with forces and spirits that are lightyears beyond us, our nature as humans will remain the same. We are the flask that contains all elements, not the fire underneath.


Monday, 11 July 2011

Arbatel Experience - The Ritual of the Olympic Spirit of OCH

Last week I performed the fourth ritual of the seven Arbatel operations. As I am following the sequence of the planets as indicated by the Tree of Life, this was the ritual for the Olympic Spirit of the Och, associated with the Sun or Tiphareth.

I started preparing for this ritual in late May. The preparation of the actual paraphernalia, the temple consecrations or the design of the Lamen actually don't take too much time. Yet what does take time for me is to tune into a new field of spirit experience and energy before I feel comfortable approaching its source in a ritual setting. I found this normally takes between six to eight weeks for me. The longest it ever took were 18 months though. This was when I allowed a deity to give my entire life a new makeover...

Photos from the creation
process of the Lamen of OCH
The liminal point when I decide to set a date for a new rite is often indicated by a subtle change of qualities and 'ruling' energies in my daily life. In most cases it takes a lot more patience than I normally have to wait for and realize this shift... Anybody working with the influence of the planets or Sephirotic forces on our bodies will be familiar with it: It can be as simple as my appetite changing for things associated with the spirit I am planning to work with. Other times I find myself talking to the spirit in inner dialogues while going through everyday activities. And sometimes I am asking my HGA questions about the spirit. 

Most often, however, I am given the opportunity to work in settings during my work or private life that are closely connected to the forces of the spirit I am approaching. For a solar spirit such as Och this could be the opportunity to give presentations or trainings to large groups, the chance to help others achieve higher self-confidence, or simply to invite friends to my house and host them. If several of these incidents culminate over a short period of time, I know that my life is rich with the spirit's energy already. Communing with it in a ritual setting at this point is much easier than trying to tune into its rhythm with a cold start...

You can read more about how this worked out for this particular rite - and about the idea of spirits as fields of rhythms - in the full account of my ritual for the Olympic Spirit of Och.

I tried to be as accurate and open about the experience during the ritual as with the previous three rites - all mistakes and failures included. The simple idea still is to share ritual experiences more openly - and thus help to tear down the traditional border between life inside and outside of our temples. Yet, what is different with Och's ritual account is that I refrained to provide a lengthy interpretation or summary of the findings of the rite. When you read through it you will understand why. 

There is one more thing, however, that might be interesting to add here. 

This morning during communion with my HGA I asked how s/he would define the nature of the Olympic Spirit of Och and what the main difference is between her/him and Och. Here is the answer s/he gave me:

"He is the constant where I can chose to be thou. He is the eternal source, where I am what lives in its spirit. I know the land, the river, the sea. The source knows the beginnings only. I am the full circle of life. I am you as you are I. We hold the privilege of change."

May all your magic be filled with life.