Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ceremonial Hubris and Self Centeredness

Jow's observation on the self-centered nature of ceremonialists got me thinking. Ceremonial Magicians have earned a certain degree of contempt from the pagan and occult community at large because we do tend to be dicks, or haughty bitches on occasion. We spend all this time learning ancient forms of astronomy and correspondence tables, and we take the time to study the writings of magicians and mystics that can be difficult to understand, and some of us, at times, can get kind of arrogant.

But sometimes we just seem that way. When you've taken the time to actually read the source material Crowley references in his Book IV for example, you learn to understand a great deal more of what the man was saying. The jokes become apparent, and then when you point it out to people they get all offended because they don't get the joke.

And on top of that, you're a social retard who spent a lot of your time in books and communing with spirits, and most humans don't understand what you're trying to do. You finally meet some occult-people who seem to have an interest in what you've already done, and you try to talk to them, and then you figure out they're just starting out, and you want to help, but you don't know what they know, and you don't want to offend them by patronizing them, but you're excited to tell them something that would really help them, and so you try to make it sound like it's something they might already know, you refer to it at a high level so it just reminds them what you're talking about if they already know it, but if not leaves you open to go into more detail, and then they just look at you, and you try not to burn out their eyeballs with the glittering brilliance of your sphere as they gaze upon you with their stupefied inbred deer in the headlights look, and later on you learn they thought you were just being an asshole when you were trying to do a good thing. They aren't capable of understanding it, let alone appreciating it or participating in the real good times, and they walk away thinking YOU'RE the dick.

Or the haughty bitch.

So bear in mind, sometimes when the Ceremonial Magician seems like an arrogant prick, it's not on purpose, he just knows more than you, and hasn't, necessarily, interacted with anyone face to face in a bit.

Oh, and we only seem self-centered because we've seen what it really means to be "self-centered." I mean, we're only doing this for you.

Which you'd know if you'd used the Dehn translation, I swear.*