READERS’ QUESTIONS (DL7)
Why should we believe you, when what you say is often opposed to the general view of Occultism? DL’s views are not popular with certain other groups and, since your Society restricts its membership so stringently, what about the people who find themselves agreeing with you? Where do they go?
Leaving aside the question of the validity of a “general view”, you should only believe what you want to believe, what feels right for you. An attitude which appears quite frequently is the “witch-hunting” mentality or, even more regularly, a fear of other Occultists’ “witch-hunting”.
Orthodox religions impose restrictions; Occultism should not, but it sometimes does, perhaps because its practitioners are seeking to re-establish the comfortable security of their former faiths. Without experience, it is not possible to evaluate. A system which prohibits its adherents from experimenting with other ideas is revealing its own insecurity and trading on the insecurity of its followers. If you refuse to believe in, say, reincarnation, you will be expelled from your coven. They might be doing you a favour. You ask where would you go. Why do you feel the need to go anywhere? You are where you always have been, with yourself.
Since you are re-defining the Left Hand Path and Right Hand Path, do you also re-define evil and good?
The questions are not related. Many people, of whichever path or none, do not realise that good or harm is a subjective judgement until one has reached Adepthood and the power to see everything in true perspective.
That’s the real difference. Not being good or evil, but understanding what good and evil are.
You said in DL4 that not everyone has it in them to be an Adept. What qualities do you look for in a prospective pupil, apart from, obviously, hard-working and eager to learn?
This is a question which cannot be answered. I know who will make it and who will not, and I also know who will benefit from going part of the way, but there are no standard qualifications which all pupils must have.
Don’t even utter the obvious, because by speaking it you give it more credence. The attributes you mention are more appropriate to a junior clerk than to a potential Adept.
I had read that certain areas of the country can induce a feeling of exhaustion, being “drained”, and others can have the opposite effect. I’m not sure whether I believed in it, but I began to believe, since I personally experienced the effects in a certain place. Yet I’m still not sure. It felt real to me; is there any rational explanation for the phenomenon?
Everything is a matter of energy. Like rivers or electricity, energy flows from one place to another. Some places take more of the energy I have than others take. If I stayed in them long enough, I would, like a battery, become discharged. There are certain places in the country where I do not go. A few are the exact opposite, places which invigorate me, where I get more powerful instead of being drained. There is nothing you can do to alter this energy, it simply exists, in its various forms, and some of those forms are not compatible with certain individuals. (Remember non-compatibility does not mean hostility). Avoid the places which drain you or, if this is not possible, try to arrange things so that you compensate for the effects.
Can you tell me what is mean by “bad ground” and how one can “heal” it?
These are areas where a traumatic event or series of events has been absorbed by the ground, to the extent that it can be felt by a sensitive person. This is not necessarily the same as the energy forces referred to in the previous question, where the reaction varies with the individual. “Bad ground” is inimical to all. The influence can in some cases be strong enough to prevent plants, even weeds, growing on neglected soil, though this can be artificially created for propaganda purposes. Millions of gallons of disinfectant were pumped into the ground of a concentration camp; nothing will grow there for strictly practical reasons, though it is another interesting indication of the part that superstition plays in warfare and its aftermath.
You should only attempt to “heal” bad ground if it is essential that this be done and if you can foresee all the consequences of your action. At that stage, you will not need to ask me how to do it.
What do you think of mediums, people who purport to communicate with the dead?
People who summon spirits successfully are sure of an interesting conversation because they are talking to themselves, though probably they and their associates are not aware of this fact. One’s own subconscious contains the Universe, though most people find this difficult, if not impossible, to accept.
So much of the history of magick appears far-fetched, accepted by the credulous long ago, but of no relevance today. Does it matter whether people such as, for instance, Merlin, existed?
Merlin would appear to be the personification of an ideal, something which must be attained if what is, in effect, a young nation, can go any further. It does not matter whether or not he existed, or what ideal he represents, because it is something that was thought necessary at the time. The same applies to systems of Magick, which will continue to exist as long as people feel a need for them.
I understand the reasons for your advice not to take stances and I can see why this is vital to one’s progress. But there is one way in which I still take stances and I really don’t feel that this is harmful. When watching snooker, I take stances in that I support certain players and am pleased when they win. It makes the game much more enjoyable than if I did not care which player won. The reason I think this form of stance is harmless is because it ceases as soon as the game is over. Whether one of my favourites won or lost makes no difference to my mood as soon as I have switched off the television, it is simply of no importance. Am I right in thinking that this is one example of a non-harmful stance?
Be careful of thinking that there could be such a thing as a non-harmful stance; it may be the thin end of the wedge when you are not sufficiently advanced to be sure of your ability to avoid stances. Providing the outcome of the game has no effect on your everyday life, this form of participation is not dangerous, but keep a close watch on yourself. Beware that dividing-line. Holding your breath as a player pots the black is all good fun, but, when you switch off the television and go to make a cup of tea, are you whistling happily because your favourite player won, or clattering crockery because he lost? If so, the stance started after the game was over.
From the Dark Lily Journal No 7, Society of Dark Lily (London 1988).