Monday, May 14, 2012

Eclipse Effects in the East and West

So a student of my courses sends me these really detailed fascinating questions on a semi-daily basis. We've had some really interesting conversations, and it's neat talking to him.

Today, he read Jason's recent post about the Vajrakilaya Amulets (which I heartily recommend), and asked this gem:
Today's question has to do with reconciling philosophical opposites among what appear to be equally valid traditions. [...] So can the eclipse really effectively work two different ways for 2 different people simply because they hold different belief systems? That's starting to sound dangerously like magical tech is subjective and only works because you believe in it.
The answer is an emphatic Yes! The eclipse can indeed effectively work two different ways for two different people because they hold different belief systems. But that in no way implies magical tech ONLY works because you believe in it.

In both the East and the West, magicians perform rituals and spiritual acts based on their beliefs. These spiritual actions have a tuning effect on the magician's sphere. It's like tuning the harmonic vibration of the magician's sphere. As the magicians' spheres are developed and attuned to the different harmonics of the occult tradition, they are able to process the forces released at the eclipse in different ways.

As a result, the Eastern occultist will be able to sit under an eclipse and have the consequences of both Good and Evil actions amplified 10,000 times. Any spiritual activity to benefit others and themselves performed during the eclipse will be amplified. Anything that would have a negative consequence would also be amplified 10,000 times*.

Jason's taking advantage of this amplification of all spiritual activities to create talismans that remove obstacles. He's able to do that because he's gone to Nepal and received initiations and empowerments, and performed spiritual exercises for many years that have attuned his sphere in a way that lets the forces released during an eclipse amplify everything. So the talismans he creates will be very powerfully tuned to remove obstacles as a result.

A Western magician doesn't have the same beliefs, and their practices have evolved around the belief that the eclipse is a particularly unfortunate time. These practices tune our spheres in a way that results in the eclipse forces coming through negatively.

Here's another way to look at it:

Diesel fuel works great in diesel engines. If you put diesel fuel into a gasoline engine, you're gonna have a bad time. The engine technology is different, so even though the fuel is the same no matter which engine you put it into, you won't get the same results. The guy who built diesel engines believed diesel was a good solution to the problems he had. A guy with a gas engine can believe diesel is a good fuel all he wants to, it won't make it work in his engine the same way it works in a diesel engine.

Now, theoretically, a Western magician could harness the maleficent forces of an eclipse and use it to create a talisman that could, again theoretically, be used to destroy things. This could include things like obstacles.

That's a lot of theory though, and it would take a magician who has been through similar levels of Western initiation and empowerment as those Jason has been through in Eastern traditions. Then when they used it, they would need to be skilled enough to be able to direct the forces only at the obstacles without getting any of it on themselves. And they'd need to keep it somewhere safe when it wasn't in use, being aware of the ongoing effect it would have on their sphere.

So it's dangerous for Westerners to try this kind of thing.

But that leads to the inevitable question, what about the Talismans? Will Jason's talismans cause havoc and evil evil darkness in the spheres of Western Magicians who buy them? Will they be Eastern diesel fuel in our Western gasoline engine spheres?

Fuck No!

Jason's sphere is attuned properly to process the forces of an eclipse to amplify his consecration rites 10,000 times. The rite is amplified by the eclipse, his sphere transforms the forces into his intended result, i.e. a talisman that removes obstacles, and the resulting talismans are 10,000 times stronger than the same talisman created outside of an eclipse.

These talismans are focused by the rite to become projections of this obstacle-destroying power that will radiate into the sphere and life of the magician. Their sphere won't be processing any of the forces of the eclipse, Jason's sphere has already done all that. All we'll be getting is obstacle-destruction power, and plenty of it.

So if you're a primarily Western Magician, you shouldn't worry at all about Jason's talismans having any kind of negative effect on you.

And if you're a Black Brother, it's a good time to make that Blasting Rod. Out of that wood you gathered from that tree that was destroyed in that hurricane.

* Note, I'm not an Eastern magician, so I doubt I've got it 100% accurate, but that's my working understanding.


  1. It's an interesting conundrum. Magic is definitely culturally specific, so certain thought-forms only work/exist in some systems but not others. On the other hand, some practices are portable, and can be easily shifted from one culture to another without a massive amount of trouble. A perfect example of this is the Tree of Life, which may have started as Sumerian or Assyrian, ported itself to Babylon, infiltrated Judaism and Greek neoPlatonism, and eventually utterly infected Tarot and a lot of the western mystery tradition. (I use the word infected casually here; I don't mean to imply anything bad by the attachment process, given that all the other cultures were similarly willing to accept the porting-over of a new operating system...)

    I find myself wondering if we'll eventually be able to acknowledge the useful aspects of eclipses in Western Magic, thanks to the work of men and women like Jason, who've gone to Nepal and Tibet, and so on.

  2. Ooh... I do have that large bit of lightning-stuck wood lying around... :)

    Honestly, though, the only time I might disagree with you is in the case where a talisman is designed to bring the influence of a particular spirit through directly, without having had an intent directed by the creator. While such a thing might be useful to people who knows exactly what they're doing, it would be irresponsible to let a novice (who might night jive with the spirit for any one of a million reasons) get ahold of one. It's a stupid and rookie mistake usually made by people just getting into talisman work, but it happens.

  3. A Nice summation of eclipse magic(k) Frater RO! Time for me to find that lightning-struck wood for a new blasting rod! ;) "The dark side of the Force is a pathway to many abilities some consider to be unnatural." -Star Wars Episode III, Revenge of the Sith

  4. Speaking as an astrologer who's spent quite a bit of time with this topic, the core Eastern and Western eclipse meanings aren't actually all that different.

    The meaning in both sets of systems rely on whether the Head or Tail of the Dragon is the Lunar Node designating that particular eclipse.

    13th century Italian astrologers and 7th century Hindu jyotishis agree- the North Node adds, the South Node removes. Regarding traditional Chinese opinions I cannot speak.

    The eclipse coming up this Sunday is on the South Node, and thus, in accordance with both traditions, it is good for positive subtraction- exorcism, banishment and the annihilation of obstacles both internal and external.

  5. Austin, thanks much for this clarification.

    For folks who don't know who Austin Coppock is, sucks to be you! Check out his site here to make your life suck less.

    He uses a blend of both modern and traditional methods, and while I have a strong preference for traditional stuff, his weekly horoscopes have proven to be incredibly accurate and useful in making my plans for occult and mundane activities. Really good stuff!

  6. Thanks for the hearty endorsement, Rufus.

    To expand on your description, I use the traditional as my technical basis, but also use that foundation to explore modern concerns.

    Also, somewhat differently than the bulk of astrologers who bill themselves as traditionalists, I primarily work with concepts and techniques from the Hellenistic + Roman phase of astrology rather than the European Medieval and Renaissance periods. It's very similar, but without the awkward Christian admixture.

    I'm also relatively proficient in Hindu astrology (Jyotish), but its not my primary system.

    Anyway, you sir, are also great. Which is why yours is one of the few blogs I read.


Thanks for your comments, your opinions are valued, even if I disagree with them. Please feel free to criticize my ideas and arguments, question my observations, and push back if you disagree.