Them bastards that suffer have it fucking coming, the lazy assholes. Get up and DO something about your fucking issues, for Christ's sake! No one ever helped me do shit! Everything I know, I learned on my own, spent years studying, experimenting, shooting in the dark and hitting my own foot over and fucking over again. Now you want me to just fork it the fuck over to you for free so you can look at it and think about it sometimes and never fucking do anything with it? Fuck you.
I was homeless. I worked my way up to the upper middle class on charm and hard work. It ain't easy, but fuck you, it's possible. I know "flying a sign" gets you over a grand a week, I had to live in shelters with homeless scum. (That's what they call it, those guys with the "will work for food" signs: Flying a sign. Like it's a kite. A fun thing to do. And they bring home $200-400 a day. Or would, if they had homes. But they don't. They buy hotel rooms and crack and booze. When they run out, they fly another sign.*)
Crippled from birth!? No excuse. Get a job. Roll on over to the local Christian Children's Fund and charge them to take your picture to manipulate the soft-hearted gullible Americans into donating our precious $1 a month to them. So you can EAT. Besides, God wanted you to die, that's why you were born that way. To starve. It's his clay, he can make ugly miserable lumps if he wants to. Be thankful you made it this far.
Get the picture? I'm not really a compassionate kind of guy. I'm not quite as bad as I make out above, but on my worst days I can come pretty close. That bitterness behind the lack of compassion you see up there? That's real. I have a lot of things in my life that I had to work my ass off for. But I didn't do it alone, not by a long shot.
I really was homeless. What I leave out above is that I got off the streets because of my family. My mommy and daddy took me back in, gave me a home, and helped me get a job. They were afraid of me at the time, afraid I'd steal their stuff and their car and book it on to Texas or something. Because I was hooked on the "killer weed." Heh. Silly parents.**
I had other things going for me. I'm white. I'm not proud of my race, but I'm damned thankful. White people have it easier in this world; even though Obama's president, we still do. We didn't do anything to earn it, other than oppressing every other color on the planet while we took the resources and used them to build our society.*** There's nothing inherently better, smarter, aware, or more innately deserving about people with white skin. If you don't believe me, check out Essex, Maryland. Or your local trailer park on a Friday night. Still, I get the job when I'm up against equally qualified brown-skinned people with heavy accents. Unless there's a quota.
Another thing I have going for me is the third leg advantage. Women have a "glass ceiling" keeping them from climbing the corporate ladder. Men can climb faster cause we've got three legs. Like my skin color, I'm not proud of my gender. DAMNED THANKFUL though. Even if I didn't get promoted over better qualified women, I'd STILL be thankful. For obvious reasons.
So I can't say "Anyone can make something of themselves with nothing going for them, I did!" because frankly, I didn't. I had a lot going for me. I had to work hard, but not nearly as hard as some people. It's no excuse to lack compassion.
But what is Compassion, really? It's like pity, but without any contempt. It's not "feeling sorry" for someone. "Feeling Sorry" means feeling sorrow. Sorrow is a sign of something being out of whack, ignorance of a bigger picture. Buddhists believe something about attachment being the source of all sorrow. If you look at someone and feel sorrow, it's an indication that you're attached to something you shouldn't be. If you equate sorrow with compassion, I think you've missed the point.
Compassion, in my opinion, is not a negative thing at all. It's not feeling bad or feeling sorry for someone. It's a good feeling, a positive feeling. Compassion, I think, is simply "wanting to help."
I have a great deal of compassion for people. The homeless, people of other-color-than-white, and women. I want to help them succeed, to give them the leg up that I got just by being (mostly) sane, white, and male. I help them out by hooking them up with opportunities I find, and by sharing whatever wealth I might stumble across. I help them out by pointing out the fun stuff that helps us forget the negatives, the fun stuff that refreshes the soul, that encourages, illuminates, and inspires.
I have compassion for everyone to some degree, but some folks get more compassion from me than others. Specifically for the mage-born. We're alive in a world that for the most part rejects magic. We're stuck in a time that has raised to a "science" the idolatry of materialism. The texts we have in the West that claim to teach us magic are for the most part watered down attempts at reconstructing centuries-old techniques. Our Magisters are mere students themselves, students that have caught more of a glimpse of what's possible than we have, surely, but still far from the Magisters of old.
I've mentioned before that I think of myself as a Hierophant. It's not a pride thing at all, in case you're wondering. I don't WANT to be a Hierophant. I WANT to be a nouveau riche American upper class megamillionaire who sends his kids to the finest schools, buys yachts, collects cars, and buys and sells businesses for a profit.
But I have this drive to help people. It's a compulsion. I'm not happy unless I'm sharing something I've learned, passing on an experience, or pointing someone new to magic to a passage of Agrippa that explains what they're looking for. I get serious contentment from initiating people into the Hermetic Occult Traditions. I love finding people's Genius names and guiding them through the travails of Samekh and Solar initations. IT makes me feel goooooood.
I believe it's my purpose in life. When I die, I want to be able to continue in that purpose. That's why I'm so interested in the Rainbow Body. When it occurs, the person experiencing it becomes a teacher of great power on the other side. In Christian terms, they become one of the Holy Saints, not just an ordinary saint, but the kind that can perform miracles for the people that pray to them. The kind the Catholic Church Canonizes.
It's not based on a lust for power, or a desire to continue on after I die as myself. I believe all that would happen is that my Ruach would get empowered enough to continue to act from the spiritual realm on the physical realm while the Neschemah goes on to reincarnate again. Instead of sitting on a dusty shelf in the Akashic Record, I'd be living and moving and having my being in the lives of everyone I could help. It would be uber cool.
If things don't work out that way, I'm fine with it too. I know that God has a plan for me, and whatever it is will make me more content than anything I could dream of in this lifetime or any other. It just seems that all my studies and the things I'm drawn to the most in this life are related to becoming this after-life teacher figure, a full-blown Hierophant.
In the Corpus Hermeticum, it teaches that we are to become Powers. We go up and join with God (remember our race and value, not literally become one with God who emanated us separately for a reason) and then turn into Powers, like the Powers of the Angelic realms.
In the "Celestial Hierarchies," Dionysius the Areopagite atrributes the rank of "Powers" to the sphere of the Sun. He was a neo-platonist, and his works reflect the Hermetic teachings, as did most of the early Christian teachings. As a Christian, Dionysius provides modern Christian Magicians with an insight into the grimoires that even Agrippa lacked, imho. He describes the Powers thus:
The name of the holy Powers, co-equal with the Divine Dominions and Virtues, signifies an orderly and unconfined order in the divine receptions, and the regulation of intellectual and supermundane power which never debases its authority by tyrannical force, but is irresistibly urged onward in due order to the Divine. It beneficently leads those below it, as far as possible, to the Supreme Power which is the Source of Power, which it manifests after the manner of Angels in the well-ordered ranks of its own authoritative power.
As you can see, this would be an ideal role for me as a would-be supernatural Hierophant. I don't want to become an Angel, I don't think it's truly possible. However, a being of similar intent and function would suit me just fine.
So, compassion: I gots it. I want to help people get ahead, succeed, and be all that they can be without joining the Army. There's a beautiful existence at hand, and the path is through the Solar sphere. Entrance into that particular role is how I would like to see my Great Work turn out in the end. That would suit me just fine.
*The thing about the homeless flying a sign is true, by the way. What I don't mention above is that these people doing that are mentally ill. In the 80s, when Reagan was cutting back big government, he closed down a lot of mental institutions. The inmates were either jailed or just let go, into the streets. They're still there. They can't work because they are mentally ill. They take drugs because they are mentally ill, and the drugs give them a temporary release. They don't save that grand a week they make because they are physically incapable of making plans beyond two days in the future.
**I just wanted a real life again. I was bi-polar and the weed made me almost-stable, as long as I got high every morning and stayed mildly high all day long. I prefer it to the meds I take now, but I can't keep my job if I piss positive, so that's right out.
***Not "Culture," society. We steal cultures.