I am one of those poor souls who is easily overwhelmed by the breadth of a task. It’s not just the work that leaves me beleaguered (though I am the self-proclaimed president and member of The Bum Squad™). The scope of a thing, when I consider it, leaves me drowning in potentialities and possibilities.
I can get so tied to the desired outcome and finally arriving at it that the pathway leading to IT becomes clouded and ominous. Where once the sunlight illuminated obvious routes, the clouds obscure my view. Which road to traverse, what door to open? All the options swim before me as I inhabit an aquarium – a glass encased menagerie of odds, contingencies, and probabilities doggy-paddling and breast-stroking about me.
On the most mundane of levels, the disturbance is minute. For example, going to the grocery store without a shopping list can lead to wandering about for hours until I have a cart full of things I don’t really want. I have managed to temper this regular dilemma by sticking to the basics in lieu of the list which I always think about but never seem to get around to – meat, bread, veggies, seasonings and spices, and beverages. On a magickal and cosmic level, however, the tragedy of un-knowing is even more pronounced.
Five months into my magickal practice I started to feel even more lost that when I first set out. I feel like I had more success in the beginning, when I was just trying sigils and creating spells to see if it would actually work. But now that I know magick is indeed real, I seem to be having a harder time finding my way. Chaos magick appealed to me for the freedom it offers in how I can choose to do my thing. I heard it whisper to me quietly, “The Universe is your oyster. Go ahead and make yourself a pearl.”
After so many successful sigils and spells I got curious about learning other systems of magick that I could assimilate into my own. My need of discovery and knowledge along with intuitive inklings leads me to inquire about magickal systems from all cultures. Two systems in particular that I’d like to focus on at the moment are Traditional Witchcraft and Hoodoo. Both of these magicks are quite old, and in times past the knowledge was passed down either through familial bloodlines or by a teacher who took a student under a watchful wing. Mobile phones and the internet make it possible for me to walk about with a virtual library in my pocket. Yet, as most folks can attest, not all data to be found on the world wide web is good and trustworthy. And here I am, a 21st century American woman – with no connection to my heritage other than a free DNA assessment from 23andme, and no discernibly worthy guru in sight, trying to learn methods that, in another world, would have been taught to me by an older, experienced relative or some sagacious elder in my community. Where do I go to learn about this stuff? Is it possible to become intimate with the truth sans a hands-on master? How can I be sure I am getting authentic information? Can you picture clearly my dilemma which so often leaves me feeling like I am sitting for a 7 of Cups themed portrait?
The myriad of options makes my head spin. I don’t think I have an issue paying for my tutelage with paper, plastic, and coined currency. The thing is, what if it’s all bullshit? Then, my time and money will have been expended for naught (a possibility that makes me shudder and cringe with disgust). I absolutely refuse to be hoodwinked by some low-talent, unscrupulous faker who just wants to cash in on the desire of folks like me. And surely everyone who offers magickal teachings at a price is not in the business just to clock dollars. But the possibility of fleecement (as I like to call it) is real ladies and gentleman, and a hopeful person like me can fall victim to a bullshit artist in the blink of an eye.
All of these thoughts had gotten me down recently. I was in complete despair at my lamentful situation. In frustration I posted a short rant on my Tumblr. I don’t have many followers there yet, so I totally didn’t expect a response. But I got one all the same, and I have to say it gave me just what I needed.
The dear reader explained that while it is awesome to be inspired by and borrow from others, that we should never forget to follow our hearts and pay attention to that still and small voice. He also gave me a list:
Yo. Here’s where to start: meditate, decide on a desire, formulate a ritual, write (or blog) results, adapt based on results/desire, repeat. Also sigils and masturbation sometimes.
It’s so simple, and yet within those words I find the Universe speaking to me of the cosmos and the infinite wisdom contained therein. These few terse words stabbed into my brain like a hypodermic needle and injected my Self with a truth of which I needed to be reminded.
You see, five months ago I started out doing the very things my Tumblr doctor prescribed. which gave me many small and large triumphs over various issues that I faced. Yet, somewhere along the line I got it into my head that I needed to do magick the way other people said it should be done