Author Topic: Magic vs. Drugs  (Read 285 times)

Xepera maSet

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Magic vs. Drugs
« on: October 23, 2018, 12:19:47 am »
So off the bat, I have no problem with drugs, especially psychedelic and "spiritual" drugs. Do whatever you want to yourself if you're not harming others.

But drug use and magic are polar opposites. Magic and spirituality is mind over matter, it's the will overcoming material nature. Drugs are the opposite - they are a material substance having a material effect on the material brain, which overrides the mind.

Sure, sometimes that's exactly what you want, like drinking a beer or smoking a bowl after work to calm the mind and relax it via the brain. What annoys me is people acting/pretending like becoming a psychedelic burnout is somehow the key to enlightenment/magic. It's not, and in fact it replaces material delusions with actual conscious knowledge.

"The Dragon became as a many-headed Serpent,
It's fiery tongues bearing forth speech
Into all the kingoms of the Earth."


My book, "Behold: the Prince of Darkness!": https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/1726037460/ref=dbs_a_w_dp_1726037460

Kapalika

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2018, 03:22:44 am »
What about DMT? It's found naturally in our brains and there has been ties to it with spiritual experiences in studies.

I can't say they are "polar opposites" as many drugs mimic things that naturally occur in our bodies. Of course, the line between recreational drug use and entheogens is a strong one.

Let's look at a practice of the Aghori, a Left Hand Path sect I'm sure most are at least familiar with in passing. Something people tend to overlook or be unaware of is that they smoke Hashish as a meditative tool and as part of their religious observations. Funny that Rasta is what people think of with dreadlocks and weed, when it was the Aghori who did it first  ;)

Looking to South America, Shamans use Ayahuasca tea from roots. This contains DMT and can produce some of the strongest psychedelic experiences known to man. I've talked with people who have done DMT and they described it as leaving their body and actually literally percieving the scope of the Universe... galaxies, stars, ect

I don't think those experiences with DMT are delusion.  I think they had a total nondual experience brought on by something stronger than they would of known how to with the practice of magic and spiritual development. However, it's still an experience one can't maintain and I think it's efficiency is somewhat questionable as it can't be guaranteed to come from a place of vidya since it's brought about chemically. That said, I think they literally are having a taste of cosmic awareness, total consciousness, I think they are seeing very real, literal, physical places.

Make note, I've never really heard of anyone using DMT recreationally, or at least they never saw it as recreational after the fact and many have said it changed their life.

LSD I'm kinda on the fence about, as it is artificial but there is proof that taking it can cause one to see things in totally new perspectives. In some documentaries it's discussed that the scientist who discovered it and those he showed it to used it a lot to solve mathematical and engineering problems they couldn't otherwise. And I know for a fact that it was pretty instrumental in shaping the earliest sounds of psychedelic trance (as well as rock). So it's clearly useable as a drug that can be used mindfully, and so has the potential as an entheogen. But of course now days it's usually cut with other stuff and used recreationally.

Mushrooms are another one that can be recreational but a possible entheogen, but I've mostly read about research that shows it's extremely effective at treating depression by increasing connections in the brain. This also increases creativity. One source I read (a year or two ago) suggested that it's possible that taking mushrooms once every few months might be sufficient. The main issue is it's hard for scientists to study due to all the laws.

Also, another one from South America, Salvia. Used recreationally in concentrated forms I've heard people tell me of very vivid and otherworldly hallucinations. Many describe the experience as very unpleasant but not always. Traditionally the leaves are chewed as a meditation aid and it's quite effective at that as the dose is lower. Salvia is legal in some states in the USA.

Those are the ones I'm most familiar with... in no way can I say that drugs are the "polar opposite" of magic. If magic isn't manipulating our environments and ourselves, our own minds, what is it? Magic is all about transformation, exertion of will. So long as an entheogen is used mindfully, with discipline and intention, how can it not be like any other magic aid like sigils, invocations, sacrifices, ect? All of these things manipulate us chemically, spiritually and so do certain substances.
https://kapalika.com

My religion is Satanism & Kashmir Shaivism via Vāmācāra

"We have none but evidence for the prosecution [against Satan] and yet we have rendered the verdict. To my mind, this is irregular. It is un-English. It is un-American; it is French." ... "We may not pay him reverence, for that would be indiscreet, but we can at least respect his talents." - Mark Twain
"God and the individual are one. To realize this is the essence of Shaivism." - Swami Lakshmanjoo

Kapalika

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2018, 03:37:10 am »
Alcohol.

I wanted to make this a reply of it's own as it's the one most tied to the Left Hand Path more than any other drug.

The Five M's that are very much a part of the Left Hand Path are:

meat
fish
parched cereal
sexual intercourse
wine

As an example, in Shaivite Kaula, the group of practitioners balance a glass of wine on two of their fingers and proceeds to recite a mantra for about an hour (IIRC). When the fire of Shakti approaches, they chug down the wine in one swallow, thereby intensifying the higher state that they then enter.

And that's just the more "conservative" Kaulas, some others will use alcohol much more liberally but of course with that lack of ritual rules comes the temptation into unmindful and self-harming use of it.

Likewise, I would generally avoid alcohol use in rituals unless it's not much (like the Kaulas with the single glass of wine). In my article for the Imperishable Star IV I it's mentioned that in my story with the mirror that alcohol played a role, and so I say this from experience. Still, with a moderate amount it can be useful, mostly by aiming for a buzz (hey, one glass of wine after intense meditation?).

In addition to my previous post... I again can't say, or agree that drugs and magic are polar opposites. It just isn't true, the evidence, the practice, the history, it's all there.
https://kapalika.com

My religion is Satanism & Kashmir Shaivism via Vāmācāra

"We have none but evidence for the prosecution [against Satan] and yet we have rendered the verdict. To my mind, this is irregular. It is un-English. It is un-American; it is French." ... "We may not pay him reverence, for that would be indiscreet, but we can at least respect his talents." - Mark Twain
"God and the individual are one. To realize this is the essence of Shaivism." - Swami Lakshmanjoo

Kapalika

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2018, 04:12:26 am »
Okay, so with all that out of the way, as I want to seperate the tradition/history/ect from the underlying worldview:

Magic and spirituality is mind over matter,

Quote
it's the will overcoming material nature.

It's very easy to argue that the use of drugs is a conscious willed choice to affect the matter of the body.

Quote
they are a material substance having a material effect on the material brain, which overrides the mind.

This is harder for me to address without trying to refute mind-body dualism, but my short answer is that all the "thinking" occurs within a physical brain, if it contains the mind. I guess I don't understand what is meant by mind here?

It seems very odd to me that you tend to treat the carnal as something inferior or to be avoided. Perhaps I'm becoming an older Satanist and set in my ways, but carnal all the way. The carnal is part of me, part of my soul.

I don't know how many times I've mentioned my view of the human soul (my theory of aspects) but in it the mind and spirit are just the right side, the body and drive are the left side, and the self is the central. To me, it's all part of the organism. In my view half of what determines if someone is LHP or RHP is if they deny the avenue of the left side (carnal).

The mind and spirit have the body as foundation. What happens to us when we die is another matter, as is where our stream of awareness came from, but as for this incarnation... our minds and spirits are one and the same with our bodies. They are entwined, in my view.

I tend to view the glorification of the nonphysical over the physical as a gnostic or christian ideal. Satan always was the "god of this world". I also see the denial of the physical as real as a Vedanta ect type of view... it's most often something stressed by schools that only have the Right Hand Path, that Maya is illusion, and that it should (and will) cease when we realize it doesn't truly exist (in context, only that which is unchanging and eternal is considered "real").

Left Hand Path, if it views Maya as illusion, will use the carnal, the taboo, the chemical, the mundane, everything to attain the spiritual goals. Drugs are just one of many choices and it's the propodents of Hindu RHP who say that those who do bring ruin on themselves.

I myself have had an argument before with a Hindu friend who said that the LHP was too focused on sex and sexual spiritual practices and rituals, they felt that it lead us deeper into ignorance (of reality).

My point is, using entheogens is tied to the Left Hand Path in so many ways... the often accusation of the Right Hand Path and many orthodox religions is that it isn't spiritual. But I can't agree.

It was Christianity that popularized the idea that the Universe and the physical world are evil. That's why Satan has domain over it in their view. They are right; all the things they vilify are Satan. Satan is the Universe and the carnal, that which gives rise to consciousness and the spirit.

In Ephesians 6:12 we see this: (English Standard Version)

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

They are defining Satan not just as something cosmic (physical) but also spiritual. Although it says they struggle not against the Flesh, it's contextually to be understood to be emphasizing the sources of that which causes the flesh (carnal) to cause temptation, because it was the Serpent's bringing us knowledge of Good and Evil that caused the flesh to become corrupted.

I'm not making an argument for a Christian cosmology, what I'm doing is defending my point of Satan = carnal and spiritual, but much so physical. In my own experiences with Christians, the flesh, the carnal, the physical world is all seen as corrupted and evil.


Perhaps though, I am not well versed in Setianism. Is there a view that Set is somehow something alien to the physical realm and not native of it? If so at what point does physical life go from unthinking to thinking, and thinking to having a will, not being deterministic (and thus presumably capable of magic)?
https://kapalika.com

My religion is Satanism & Kashmir Shaivism via Vāmācāra

"We have none but evidence for the prosecution [against Satan] and yet we have rendered the verdict. To my mind, this is irregular. It is un-English. It is un-American; it is French." ... "We may not pay him reverence, for that would be indiscreet, but we can at least respect his talents." - Mark Twain
"God and the individual are one. To realize this is the essence of Shaivism." - Swami Lakshmanjoo

NEMO 93

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2018, 05:21:42 am »
Chemognosis has been used in magic and more individually focused religions since the beginning of time. It has a strong link to magic. It's useless to diferrientiate between material and magic, as the ghost is in the machine. If you can bless water and food, etc. no reason you can't bless drugs. Hell, Thelema and Christianity both encourage the blessing of wine. Kaulas have already been mentioned.

But yes, they can obscure perception. But, they can work for empowerment and enhance perception. Dosage is important in this chaos as any good psychonaut or person with chemognosis will tell you. You can also run the risk of addiction depending on which substances. But you could do something as limited as drinking a red bull in the honor of mercury, honestly.

There's the argument that you won't know what is real. You won't know that anyway, and should have a firm system in place to verify it is as real as possible anyway, when you do magic sober. So that shouldn't be too much of an issue. Also, remain in control of yourself. Don't use it in anything where you need to shut the door quickly.

Lazuli

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2018, 06:49:37 pm »
I think the problem lies in needing drugs to work magic. As soon as it becomes a crutch it has become harmful. Drugs can make entering the right mindset much easier, but if you can't do it sober you're cheating yourself of actual strength.

Etu Malku

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2018, 12:30:21 am »
My take as a Mercuræn is that individual consciousness is sacred within each of us and therefore any substance which impairs or distorts one's consciousness is not beneficial in a spiritual sense. Certain drugs provide a mirroring of a spiritual experience, but never an actual spiritual experience which can only be achieved through a crystal clear and diamond focused mind engaged with an iron forged Will. Never a clouded, confused, uncontrolled mindlessness.


IAMTHATIAMNOT

Kapalika

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2018, 03:00:41 am »
Some drugs increase clarity and focus. Not that I think people should take stimulants, but even coffee is ever popular.
https://kapalika.com

My religion is Satanism & Kashmir Shaivism via Vāmācāra

"We have none but evidence for the prosecution [against Satan] and yet we have rendered the verdict. To my mind, this is irregular. It is un-English. It is un-American; it is French." ... "We may not pay him reverence, for that would be indiscreet, but we can at least respect his talents." - Mark Twain
"God and the individual are one. To realize this is the essence of Shaivism." - Swami Lakshmanjoo

Etu Malku

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #8 on: October 27, 2018, 09:44:13 am »
Some drugs increase clarity and focus. Not that I think people should take stimulants, but even coffee is ever popular.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/20182035/
IAMTHATIAMNOT

Kapalika

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2018, 12:38:19 pm »
Some drugs increase clarity and focus. Not that I think people should take stimulants, but even coffee is ever popular.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/20182035/


Okay fine then, adderall and such.
https://kapalika.com

My religion is Satanism & Kashmir Shaivism via Vāmācāra

"We have none but evidence for the prosecution [against Satan] and yet we have rendered the verdict. To my mind, this is irregular. It is un-English. It is un-American; it is French." ... "We may not pay him reverence, for that would be indiscreet, but we can at least respect his talents." - Mark Twain
"God and the individual are one. To realize this is the essence of Shaivism." - Swami Lakshmanjoo

Etu Malku

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2018, 01:45:01 pm »
Some drugs increase clarity and focus. Not that I think people should take stimulants, but even coffee is ever popular.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/20182035/


Okay fine then, adderall and such.
I think unless someone is deficient in some mental aspect and would need a drug to remain in a normal state of mind, external drugs are not beneficial and in no way beneficial for spiritual purposes. Like everything else in life, hard work is the way to go!
IAMTHATIAMNOT

Kapalika

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2018, 01:55:17 pm »
So causing chemical changes by the psychology of symbolism is somehow fundamentally different from causing chemical changes by substances?

What about spiritual practices such as fasting? Those affect your body as well as the mind. Like all things, certain substances or lack there of can be used as a tool on the LHP, filled with all the general dangers that come with the path. I don't personally employ it other than some use of alcohol (old school and all), but there is nothing wrong with any of it especially given the history. Certain drugs sure, are always going to be bad for magic, but some can be very useful and I laid out some examples in my earlier posts. Those examples just don't go away because you arbitrarily define "hard work" as being a specific way you fancy.

In any case if we wanted everything to be perfectly safe, we would all go be RHP :D
« Last Edit: October 27, 2018, 01:57:56 pm by Kapalika »
https://kapalika.com

My religion is Satanism & Kashmir Shaivism via Vāmācāra

"We have none but evidence for the prosecution [against Satan] and yet we have rendered the verdict. To my mind, this is irregular. It is un-English. It is un-American; it is French." ... "We may not pay him reverence, for that would be indiscreet, but we can at least respect his talents." - Mark Twain
"God and the individual are one. To realize this is the essence of Shaivism." - Swami Lakshmanjoo

Etu Malku

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2018, 02:06:17 pm »
So causing chemical changes by the psychology of symbolism is somehow fundamentally different from causing chemical changes by substances?


What about spiritual practices such as fasting? Those affect your body as well as the mind. Like all things, certain substances or lack there of can be used as a tool on the LHP, filled with all the general dangers that come with the path.


If we wanted everything to be perfectly safe, we would all go be RHP :D
I don't get the 'unsafe route = LHP - safe route = RHP' thing.
You can't understand the difference between meditating/visualization and taking LSD? Interesting!
Fasting is a form of sensory deprivation, in spiritual use, it creates a state called Ketosis which in turn enables the body and mind to enter into a trance state that much easier for some. If you're not using Ketosis to help induce a trance for spiritual purposes you are more than likely using it for some ceremonial act, or to lose weight.
IAMTHATIAMNOT

Olive

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #13 on: October 27, 2018, 04:37:15 pm »
There's a very interesting discussion going on here - one that always seems to be contentious in spiritual circles. I've heard about it from both hardliners and enthusiasts.

Personally, I used to have a much higher opinion of psychedelics and other drugs as tools for psychonautical exploration - but that has diminished for me somewhat. I still think they can be useful if they are approached in a focused way (knowing what one is doing, dosing properly, understanding the goals of the experience) or a ritualistic setting as previously mentioned a few times. Especially for beginners and those who still carry a lot of programming, certain drugs do seem to "open a door" that did not appear to be there before. I think Mushrooms and LSD are literally 'consciousness-expanding' in that they allow the user to become conscious of certain processes which are outside of normal waking consciousness, but whether or not this is actually useful for magical practice - especially in the long run - is debatable.

I know that certain drugs were very influential for me at the very early stages of my journey, but at this point they have lost much of their appeal and purpose. I am now able now to induce visionary experiences while sober that are much more powerful and much more revealing than anything I ever experienced while tripping or using certain kinds of deliriants/dissassociatives. So it seems to me now that using these things are actually a detriment or at least a perverting influence on the veracity of my practice.

That being said, I still don't think that psychoactive materials are totally without use even now. I'm still willing to experiment with these things every now and then. I consider doing a dose of Mushrooms every year or so - though sometimes it goes out to two years without me missing them. And again, I do believe that my early experiments with these things really opened my eyes to the possibilities of conscious experience apart from direct sensory input. Also, I've had several ego-death experiences induced by these substances which (while not always a great time) were certainly important moments in my development.

I've yet to try DMT or 5meo-DMT, for which I've heard enormous praise even from teachers which I respect and know to be serious practitioners. Perhaps I'll have more to say about that if I ever get a chance to try it - it's pretty rare in my area. I'm also not that motivated to go seek it out since I am already accessing revelatory insights and transformative experiences on a regular basis.

I've had some success more recently with milder psychoactive substances in experimental practices. One thing that I find quite interesting is doing a long meditation session immediately followed by a bowl of cannabis and water/stretches, before going into another equally long session. In my experience though this is sort of like "putting on the training weights" during my internal practice. The substance definitely brings out more mental activity and different kinds of emotional experience, through all of which I continue to maintain awareness of diamond clarity. Usually by the end of the second session I have returned fully to sobriety, which is interesting as the effects generally last at least a few hours at that dose.

I would not recommend this practice to anyone who is not already experienced though, as Cannabis does tend to be addictive on a psychological level. I don't really recommend anything that is addictive or that has the potential to create further deficiency and dependency in the user. That means I don't recommend caffeine, tobacco, alcohol, amphetamines, opiates etc under any circumstances. And neither cannabis, although it is miles gentler than most anything else on that list. I'm fine with nonaddictive substances such as mushrooms, lsd, DMT, 5-Meo, AL-LAD, etc, though these things may not inherently be useful for magical practice. Very mild substances, like Blue Lotus Flower, for example - which is essentially harmless, nonaddictive, and a good catalyst for specific categories of practice - have been somewhat effective for me in my experiments so far.

Curious to hear more thoughts on the subject. It's certainly not a closed book. I know the psychedelic experience has been explored on different levels throughout much of human development. (At least the natural substances).
« Last Edit: October 27, 2018, 04:44:55 pm by Olive »
    Art thou pale for weariness
Of climbing heaven, and gazing on the earth,
     Wandering companionless
Among the stars that have a different birth, -
And ever-changing, like a joyless eye
That finds no object worth its constancy?

-Percy Bysshe Shelley

NEMO 93

Re: Magic vs. Drugs
« Reply #14 on: October 27, 2018, 04:59:28 pm »
I can't understand being this against drugs. Caffeine? It's really overzealous.

In my opinon, the basics of the left hand path are living without restriction and strengthening your will power, and knowing your limits to maximize focus.

I don't really see how thinking similar to many moral crusades can fit into it effectively.

And on alteration of conscious, there's literally scientific evidence that prayer changes lights up different parts of the brain altering its conscious. You're always living in some kind of state of concious and it's always altering, you're more likely being deluded practicing occultism and believing its 100 percent real than doing a psychadelic a couple times. But it's no coincidence that psychadelic burn-outs end up like the most annoying magus-itis occultist.