Thursday, July 17, 2008

"Found" Wealth

I was looking at our budget lately, and "found" a lot of cash that I was spending way over and beyond sanity. I'm a Taurus, and what can I say, I like to eat out. This was WAY too much though, and putting a brake to that and some other odd spending habits I had developed unawares, I've managed to save about a grand a month. Wouldn't you like to get a $1,000 a month raise?

I get them all the time, because I'm cool.

Just kidding. I get them because I use magic. And that is pretty cool.

I found the money by going over my portfolio through my online bank. It groups things together for me based on how I use my Debit Card. Since that's pretty much all I use to spend money these days, it works out pretty nicely. I was doing a periodic budget check, just to see where we were at compared to our goals, and also to figure out why we seemed to have such a shallow pool of funds to dip into for extravagant summer vacations.

The Great Work needs a periodic check-up too. Every once in a while, we need to sit down and see how our Philosopher's Stone is coming along. What Work have we been focusing on over the last few months? What results have been coming out? Has this brought us closer to our long-term goals as magicians, or has it been a distraction? Has our recent Work provided insight requiring us to adjust our long-term goals?

I ran a quick check-up on my own progress in the Work lately, and found some wealth I could have by making a few minor alterations in the way I use my resources. It got me thinking about how I apply the techniques I've learned in my secular life to my magical practices, and specifically to the Great Work in general. I started thinking about what is required to be able to do what I do, and I realized there's a whole SERIES of blog posts I can write about this. How many people are trained in applying the best practices of Project Management to the Great Work?

Obviously, we'll need to have a few things in place to be able to do this kind of thing effectively. We'll need to have a long-term goal, for example, and a plan to get from where we are to where we want to be. We'll need a way to review our recent Work.

The Long-Term Goal for most magicians is the accomplishment of the Great Work. Most folks have a general idea of what this means, and chances are I've posited a few interpretations of my own over the years on this blog. Essentially, the Great Work is modeled after the Alchemical process of turning a base element into a finer, more purified substance which then is capable of transmuting other substances on contact.

This process has a few stages to it. We can use these stages as mini-goals within the overall goal, and chart our progress accordingly. Off and on, I'll be adding details to this particular line of thought. At the moment, I'm thinking it will cover:
  • The Great Work, yet another definition
  • The Stages of the Alchemical Great Work
  • How to Accomplish Anything Successfully Every Time
The last one will be huge.
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