There may be certain precursors to successful magical procedures, including perfect spontaneous timing, heightened and receptive consciousness to the point of unconscious subordination to divinity, absolute confidence in the cosmic force. Free will united with obedience to the higher intelligence. It may also be more conducive to positive results if magic is conducted whilst the magician is in motion. It seems less likely that stasis would be more of an optimum state than movement if there is an intention to bring about transformation within it.
Although the potential is there in everyone and although the preconditions for success are not impossible to understand, one may, in theory, simply chance upon the optimum conditions for making magic. This is the chaos theory (I think). In the Western world, the probability that success in this area may be brought about by chance may well be greater than the probability of their being actual magicians, which is not to say such individuals do not exist. Or individual. Maybe there is but ONE magician, whereas surely there must be an infinite number of chances. It is difficult to determine because most people have fallen out of sync with the rhythm of the universe and there is evidence to suggest that there can only BE one at any given moment. Maybe the spirit of magic, the soul of creation, moves transiently through each of us with unfathomable reason.
If we have fallen out of sync with the rhythm of the universe, does this then mean, I wonder, that there is another universe with perfect timing at this moment – how close is the zeitgeist of the earth to the plan of a higher intelligence? Does it randomly coincide – at which point we would presumably be at a peak of civilization – or must we achieve a particular state of collective being if we are to join forces with the cosmic instigator?
The key to the Apocalypse is to practise it, ie, to make use of it as a book of spiritual exercises composed of twenty-eight exercises. For as the Apocalypse is a revelation put into writing, it is necessary, in order to understand it, to establish in oneself a state of consciousness which is suited to receive revelations.
It is the state of concentration without effort (taught by the first Arcanum), followed by a vigilant inner silence (taught by the second Arcanum), which becomes an inspired activity of imagination and thought, where the conscious self acts together with super-consciousness (teaching of the third Arcanum).
Lastly, the conscious self halts its creative activity and contemplates – in letting pass in review – everything which preceded, with a view to summarising it (practical teaching of the fourth Arcanum).
The mastery of these four psychurgical operations, symbolised by The Magician, The High Priestess, The Empress and The Emperor, is the key to the Apocalypse. One will search in vain for another.
Unknown author, Meditations on the Tarot, Letter IV, The Emperor
The Master sighed, deep in thought, and approached an overloaded bookcase on the Eastern wall of the treatment room. The afternoon sun cast rendered certain areas invisible with its blinding rays.
Scanning the shelves intently, following the words on each well-worn spine with a finely-nailed forefinger, all but that which the Master sought was readily apparent, the object itself merely absent.
After almost an hour of fruitless seeking, the Master stamped a foot and sighed loudly in frustration. Thoughts from what was by any standards a frequently exercised brain penetrated the atmosphere with ease.
Where on Earth is the magical book?
There was no answer to this question.
Didn’t I see it just after Halle Bop came around again and the moon was side by side with Jupiter?
Again, there was no answer, but the Master felt sure this was when the rare and ancient copy of ‘Pros Theon’, which translated into English as ‘By the Gods’, had last been consulted.
Where can it be, for heaven’s sake?
Who could say? No word came, though the room was imbibed with an overpowering sense that to lose the text completely would be disastrous.
There were only seven transcripts of the book left in existence and at least two of those – the Master’s included – were incomplete. Of the other six, a well-used copy was with the exiled Dalai Lama and the Chief Rabbi – who may well have denied its existence had he been questioned – kept a pristine version hidden away in his library behind the more orthodox texts.
Mahavatar Babaji had somehow obtained a copy of the book that he subsequently left with his disciples, while a famously un-heard of Sufi Magician inherited the fifth from his grandfather. This highly revered leader of a largely forgotten tribe of nomads had escaped persecution by retreating to a hidden network of mountain caves above the plains of ancient Babylon.
The Vatican had the remaining two copies of Pros Theon. One was in fragments and a second had been retrieved by the Knights Templar from a vault below the Church of the Sepulchre in Jerusalem.
The Master felt a sudden chill. Could it be true that the only freely available text of Pros Theon had been lost or even stolen?
In his hands he held his lovely golden wand with which he can lull men’s eyelids or wake them from sleep: and with this wand he called the ghosts and led them, and they followed him*.
Zeus turned his attention to his golden son. “Step forward Apollo,” he said, “For I would have you build me here a house, where men from all corners of the world will come to hear of their destiny.
Standing on the outskirt of the forest, the Magician relayed a key message to his wine-loving friend:
“Zeus’s twice-born son, your time shall surely come.
As grows the living vine, the victory shall be thine”.
The wolf by Apollo’s side pricked up its ears and whined as he watched the two whispering on the edge of the emerald forest. Apollo looked down at his faithful beast and both cocked their heads to one side.
“And what of me, Father? Art I not the bringer of light, voice of all reason and destroyer of dark night? How shall my sun by worshipped if the temple is all thine and he is the death-defying vine?
Zeus looked long and hard at his progeny, whose heart was cold as his mind was brilliant light. “How soon, I wonder, my great golden child, ’til you think yourself greater, even, than I?”
It was then that Zeus’ deer silver daughter put a restraining hand on her golden brother’s shoulder and entreated him in an urgent voice.
“Bait him not, beloved brother; the chariot of the sun shall be struck down by lightening and the silver moon shall die of grief – then you would see that our licentious youth shall sober in a second and sit upon thy gilded throne!”
“Ay, sister of the moon, with his hairy hand upon my priceless goblet, while his sluts strum tuneless ditties upon my incomparable turtleshell lyre!”
Apollo’s eyes flashed hot and cold.
Dionysus raised his cup to them in a toast: “You have my blessing brother, I think not to steer the chariot of the sun, nor to take your hallowed place in heaven…”I’d rather have a bit of fun.
“You’ll have to watch the lyre, though, methinks the sound of music shall do much to make our mystery!”
Apollo turned back to their father with an ironic smile.
“The muses who love me shall make here their bed. The will of the King of the Gods shall be carved out in lead”.
Zeus clasped the prince of the Sun with both arms. “Ah, that’s my boy! And fear thee not, Prince of Paeans, for although it is my will that shall be done, it is you who shall dictate my whims and wishes to the wondering world.”
A bull emerged from the forest, metamorphosising with a swagger into a shining youth, handsome as a handsome youth can be.
He walked hand in hand with the loveliest female in the land, raising to his moistened lips an earthen jar of ruby-coloured wine.
Her love-child laughed with his magician.
Hera looked broodingly at the twice-born son of his father and a cloud began descending on the assembly. “I hope you will not reserve too many honours for this youth, Dionysus, husband, for he is only quite immortal, with half true blood in his blue, engorged veins”.
“But see the ones who follow him, my wife; you must admit he is in great company: The body of desire with the power of love and the herald of all ages. I see no issue here but that which is great!” Zeus roared with laughter and raised a glass in toast to his progeny.