a little death

falling straight down about twenty-five feet I smashed my nose in almost to the point of puncturing the brain, the surgeon said they were very nearly operating on that cerebral organ when they reconstructed my battered face. The interesting thing about my, admittedly painful, experience was that soon after I began my inevitable plunge, my consciousness left my body and I could see myself falling in slowed time before I was transported to a bird’s eye view of a limitless desert and a mechanized city in its midst. What my vision means I cannot be certain, but it seemed to me to say that only machines were left at the far-side of eternity; that we human organisms were fast losing our own immortality by fearing death and believing that the end of the body is the end of the individual.


in esotericism we often encounter schemes of the subtle body and its various levels of energies. one can understand the well-meaning commentators who have a tendency to rank these energies; surely it is a better investment of time & energy to cultivate the consciousness of higher energies?

those experienced in navigating these realms often report encounters with nonhuman, yet conscious and sentient, beings. many do not, and so, judging by their own experiences, conclude that those who have had these experiences are fabricating, or exaggerating more pedestrian encounters. the truth is much more interesting and complex, and pertains to the logistics of such encounters.

seekers after such experiences are almost universally advised to follow the stock preparations for 'the esoteric life': renouncing excess, maintaining a strict discipline, &c. what is not always emphasized is whether these steps are the means or the end in itself. If one is seeking to encounter what have been variously called allies, or spirits, then discipline is a means to an end.

another reason one might tend to discount these encounters is that they do not happen in a normal waking consciousness. this is one reason to work with the methods of discipline (unless one has the ability to consciously recollect one's dreams, they are unlikely to be aware of such encounters even if they are already having them).

The greatest fear is the fear of death - the fear of an imminent unknown, the ultimate unforetold. What, if anything, of this fear pierces through the veils of sub- and un-conscious processes and finds life in the daily habits of the individual and society?

The fear of the unknown most certainly finds parallels with the fear of death, which is its exemplar, but how does this very real, and at times very palpable, fear resonate throughout the human worlds? In large part it would have to be by the fall back into ritual and superstition regarding separation from the body, that which in this world is often the only thing a person has that they consider themselves capable of knowing.

Certainly death is inevitable for all living creatures, at least outside the confines of religion or the lore of alchemy that posit a life-here-after or a wondrous medicine capable of bestowing a measure of immortality, as well as the wealth with which to enjoy it. But why fear the inevitable?

Or perhaps it is that very certainty which we most fear and not the unknown itself, for there are certainly psychedelic travelers ready to barrel headlong into strange contortions of mental landscape. Some even return after the obligatory eight hours or so with stories of their death and rebirth. So perhaps it is the unwavering certainty and knowledge of the inevitable that human beings fear so much, yet that would mean there is some strange transference going on in our aptitude to pick up ritual and habit, things and activities that we make inevitable and certain.

Ritual can serve to hold our lives together. Something we can always return to, that we know and are comfortable with. Death before one’s time is a tragedy, yet who can say when one’s time is and whether or not departing at a specified date was not the best thing that could have happened?

these experiences most often occur in liminal states which are neither sleep nor dreaming per se, and at times that are neither daytime nor night. nor are such experiences restricted to dreaming - they can occur in any 'break' in normal, waking consciousness, the kind of states that certain meditators actively seek, what a certain sorcerer might call 'stopping the world'. these breaks in consciousness can be entered into, just like doorways or gateways into other, outer worlds. just like (a little) death.


the best or worst time for these to happen depends on an intricate machine of factors that includes the astrological configuration, lunar and solar phase and one's own existential circumstances, most prominent among which is whether they have developed, through a strict discipline, the ability to know that they are happening.

these experiences can be used as a component in a sort of machine which the magician can use to control time and space, to control energy. the objective here is not to dominate, but rather to organise ones energetic gestalt in the most effective manner. the magician's ability to seek the latter while avoiding the former will be one of the factors determining the extent of their success.


why not advise students to take the seemingly responsible route, to hone in on the higher energies and to ignore the lower? many of those who give this advice are not giving it to people who live in the real world, are not living in the real world themselves, are not (and mystics in general are not) esoteric strategists1.

those magicians of the so-called left hand path are esoteric strategists. their position is basically that even the dark, the evil, the unclean, can be a means of esoteric attainment. & an attainment of a peculiar nature, it is – not to become one with god, but to become oneself a god.

many modern magicians described as being of the left hand path advocate association with certain energies, intelligences, or spirits as they are variously called, in order to exchange with them knowledge and power, often in return for energies of a 'lower' nature. the argument being that the spirits existing on these lower frequencies of the energetic spectrum accessible to us tend to be business-minded2.

both the methods of these magicians and their objectives, seen to be alien to the 'known', the human world, cause them to be described as being of the left hand path, this being understood by some as little more than a pejorative term3.

nonetheless, these technicians have understood the end of esoteric study as the attainment of knowledge and power, and the means as both the most ready to hand and potent of all, these being precisely those which are understood by the layperson to be 'unclean' or inherently dangerous to use (in this manner)...
When you ask someone what they believe happens after we die, they ought to rightly respond by affirming that they do not know – many will say they will cease to exist, others that they will be going to heaven or hell, similitudes to the life we certainly do have some inkling of only transfigured into regions of only good or only bad, some will say that they will be reborn into some other body in some other time.

There are cases of young children who have provided astounding knowledge regarding what appear to have been their past-lives, and this gives some credence to the idea of reincarnation, but the vast majority appear to remember nothing. But yet, where do life and death come from - what is life and what is death? What can we say about the state of being without a body, being embodied ourselves, and why do we fear it? Why are little children scared of the dark?

A vast eternal blackness necessarily without feature would seem to be the closest approximation we have to non-existence, no thought yet still an undeniable appreciation and perception of darkness. It may not be a very full life, but it would still be a life of sorts. And what about the light at the end of the tunnel that many say they have seen after having been on the brink of death or even truly clinically dead?

Light and dark are the two existential phenomena that cannot be resolved into further analogical contraries: Light begins and is life, darkness the end being death, and in between a water wherein the Great Game is played out between the White and Dark forces of the world.

For it is certainly the interplay of water, light, and the dark unshining elements that have created these bodies that we inhabit and use. Without the sun and without water there would be no life. Yet also, without shade and shadow and tempering coolness life would not be. Some philosophies even say that our world and matter is all a shadow cast by higher objects in a greater space of higher meaning. That only with our current habits of mind is there the battleground where life and death and time are real


1 indeed, one can (over)generalize mysticism as the 'right hand path' itself. similarly, the magician would be definitive of an adherent of the lhp. if one moves in this trajectory, one will soon come to the (accurate) conclusion that the ideal is a synthesis of the two, rather than any adherence to only one or the other..
2 this seems overly materialistic, but that is simply an inappropriate perspective to take. In physics we learn that for every action, there is an equal, opposite reaction. This is a structural 'fact' of our reality. Money is simply a standard for measuring energy, and far from the most accurate one could conceive. in any case, this is the correct, or 'healthy' way to think of the relationship. while it is an important interaction, it is inaccurate to think of it as some kind of 'end'; rather it is to be considered a means toward the magician's own ends.

3 in fact, the problem is not with using these techniques, or aiming for these lofty aspirations. one might easily become obsessed with these encounters, setting aside all else in their favour. even as the rest of one's life comes tumbling around one, all they will be thinking of is the next opportunity to indulge in ones addiction.


(negative) space

There's more to space than mere distance. There is also the duality that finds expression and use in projective geometry. Consider two intersecting lines. The lines intersect in a point, and the point and two lines are in this sense equivalent. It would be fruitful at this point to examine the standard geometric entities of point, line, plane, circle, &c.

1 create an empty three dimensional space into which your mind's eye might peer.

2 posit a point in this space and imagine all the lines that pass through that point. The object made up of all those lines is called a 'pencil of lines', and it may variously be considered as containing the unifying point or not, as circumstances dictate. This is a more expansive notion of the duality as noted supra.

3 With this second geometric structure image it is more easy to see that there are two fundamental ways of defining any thing, a positive and negative definition, or specification: we may say either 'this thing' or 'not all these other things'.

we may also consider a line constructed of points, & associated with it the pencils of the points from which we composed it in our mental space.

Generally, the line is considered to be dual with a pencil of planes, each point contributing from its pencil only those lines which lie in a plane at right angles to the constructed line at the point under consideration. The image of this general form is the easiest to consider, but all the other lines in each pencil also lie in these fundamental 'normal' planes and form a system of skew planes also associated with the line.

one can generalize these notions to curved lines and various 3D surfaces. The idea is to take any object in one's mind and attach all the associated tangent lines and planes, the minimum necessary to grasp the image. Although normal and other intersecting lines and planes can be considered they are tangential to these purposes.

External reality is, for human perception, a set of different massive objects defined by space. Space is the dual to mass and is negative as mass is positive. The occult fields unknown to mainstream science are likely operations and changes occurring in this negative space.

we have a hand upon which are placed some symbols and various glyphs. The glyphs are representations of the negative space associated with the hand considered apart from the rest of the body, which explains why it appears to be severed.
Consider your own hand for a moment and picture the associated geometric structures associated with its boundary in some real space. It is helpful here if you can already see finer detail in the extended human energy structure or if you have seen it and those finer details in the past, perhaps when under stress. 
This field is what the various glyphs refer to and describe. If one does not easily see, or has not seen, these energetic structures, one may become cognizant of them relatively easily, especially when one has some general idea of what to look for. 
One might attempt to see the fields surrounding one's own hand, or indeed of any object, in a dimly lit environment. It is useful here to focus one's vision on the boundary between an object and the air and to keep one's eyes in a state of focusing on the distance of the object; we are trying to see something that is not exactly matter, after all.

Consider a single outstretched finger. It is roughly a cylinder capped with half a sphere. From the tip of the finger there emanates a central axial line. Around that line there is a family of approximate paraboloids varying in what may as well be called density. This is the basic structure emanating from each fingertip. As one bends one's finger, curving the axial line, the family of paraboloids varies in response.

On the thumb, this basic structure is roughly delineated: We see the cone-like triangular issuance from the tip, and a spiral issuance portending from the joint in opposite direction to the material.

On the forefinger, the various spiral structure are shown as again developed at the joints.

On the middle-finger, the dividing third of five is the axial line as dividing the clockwise and counterclockwise depository spirals.

On the little-finger, the basic structure is again delineated, this time as ingress....



Individuals have a form of center which manifests psychologically as the ego and linguistically in the word 'I'. Since it is a center, the ego must have a periphery, & since it is the notion of our self as a personality, we can assume it to be the locus around which personalities congregate, and the outlet through which they affect the other.  We each have multiple personalities, or modes of interfacing with the world. In the standard individual the differences between the various egos are small and their separate natures not evident. Being 'close' to one another, they are all close to the center and the ego does not, and cannot, change much over time. 

In so-called multiple-personality disorder (mpd), the little egos are more distinct and the fact that each personality has no knowledge of the others is an indication that they are also further away from the center than in ‘normal’ individuals. 

Under differing circumstances, it is useful to behave in a certain manner, to take on the characteristics of a certain personality. Personality systems are formed over time in reaction to our environment, and manifest in habits. Being a product of the environment in time, differences in location and duration will elicit different forms of personality. People of similar environments share the same basic personality structure. This notion of 'environment' includes culture. 

The very existence of mpd indicates that the ego is a kind of center. This disorder is seen to occur amongst people who have undergone traumatic experiences, and one can come to understand it by viewing the personality as a product of environment in duration. Different environmental conditions encourage and demand different courses of action in securing the needs of the body and the dominant personality. Taken to the extreme an environment may be hostile to the point where the inability or unwillingness to act in a certain manner would lead to death. In such a case the dominant personality will usually be sacrificed in order to ensure survival of the physical organism.

The difference between a new environment and that in which primary personalities were formed will dictate how far the ego must move from its usual location to 'center' the emerging personalities. In moving, it will take on other personality characteristics. This change in personality is the movement of the ego; one is always accompanied by the other.

It is useful to consider the existence of a field of personality that exists independent of any individual and with which each ego must find some relation. In relation to this field the ego is a point. Since it haunts some ‘area’ of the field, we can talk about sub-fields of varying 'densities'. Once a certain density has accumulated in the personality field, the ego will tend to center it.

Inducing a different habitual structure, moving the position of the ego in the personality field, and remaining in such a state will cause density to accumulate in that portion of the field. At the same time, the initial personality as a region of density will grow weaker. After returning to normal conditions, the individual ego will find itself with a new center.

Individuals with mpd are characterized by the existence of especially dense regions remote from one another, each of which can act on its own as a center. Just as the personality of a normal human changes along with conditions, so too does that of someone with mpd. The difference being that, since individuals with mpd have multiple centers, a change of conditions may force the ego into a drastically different orbit. In this sense the ego and personality structure are similar to the solar system and astrology can, under this light, be considered a science. Even ignoring the influences of the actual planets, the various signs and conjunctions can themselves be viewed as fundamental personality elements.


The most striking characteristic of this phenomenal world is the apparent distinction between the static and dynamic. While we appear to move, the vast majority of objects in our environment do not. The sun, moon, the planets appear to move over time, whereas the Earth on which we stand does not. This 'primitive' notion of a geocentric cosmos based on simple sense evidence has been discarded and replaced by a heliocentric system which has gradually developed into the more general notion of hierarchocentricity. 

The choice of center is arbitrary, however, due to the fact that motion is relative. Selecting out any particular point as a center is then purely a matter of convenience relative to the task at hand; the mathematical formulae for predicting the locations of the heavenly bodies are simpler when the Sun is at the center. The relative simplicity of the heliocentric predictive laws compared to the geocentric ones led to the former system being considered true, and the latter false. This tendency of valuing simplicity is part of the modern scientific enterprise. 

& yet the wanton application of Occam’s Razor is both crippling and blinding. There is no reason things must be simple in their basic nature. Certainly as far as human life is concerned, the Earth is the center not only of the Solar System, but of the Universe. It might not have been wise to shelve the geocentric system, especially considering that past ages have been unanimous in declaring the effects the planets have on the Earth, mind and social organization of humanity. In any case, relativity of motion indicates that the geo- and helio-centric systems are complementary and that neither has any right to be considered ‘true’, & the other ‘false’. 

Relative usefulness for some specific end is no good as an arbiter of truth. This description of the choice of center for the local planetary-sun system is an illustration of the equivalence of the static and the dynamic that arises from the relativity of motion. This formal equivalence allows some freedom in choosing what we will consider to be static, and what is dynamic. This choice can also be made in various aspects of our experience.

Throughout our lives we associate with the environment and conceive that it is our body that moves. Still, it is possible to operate from the notion that our body is static and that the movements we appear to make are actually movements of the environment. If we choose to not inextricably tie our self to our body and think of ourselves as a point-like observer or consciousness then we have the choice as to whether we as that point believe we are moving through a field of unified observational states or that we are unmoving and the field is changing. In short, we have the right to consider our being as the center of creation, and without a doubt we are each already the center of our own world. 

The ability to mentally position one’s self further from or near to the center of all things is a prerequisite for certain magical actions. This is based on control of that aspect of ourselves that exists abstracted from mundane bodies; that is not so much seen or felt but heard, and that is referred to as mind. The relativity of motion, insofar as it applies to material bodies, provides a logical basis for what is commonly considered illogical nonsense. 

Logic is not a crutch in magical practice, but rather its legs. The production of physical effects is the prerogative of modern science and its mathematical tools, which are a product of logic. The magical production of physical effects must be based in the application of logic, and hierophants have always come from among the ranks of those acquainted with physical facts and forces. 

Something is called magical by those who do not know the logical steps necessary to reproduce it. That a television or computer is no longer considered magical is due to there being a widely-held notion of what is and isn't possible to achieve with logic. It should be noted that mathematics, as the high development of logic, often leads to ‘illogical’ results. There is no reason that a mathematic concerning existence as willful consciousness may not lead to similar ‘illogical’ results. 


In order to form new personality centers, traumatic experience is necessary. In all cultic systems there exist rites of initiation, which often include some aspect of trauma. The idea of Induction or initiation as a member of some group includes within itself the notion of some degree of ‘loss of self’ alongside the creation of a new self, or personality. From the standpoint of an esotericist, the notions introduced here are useful in that they provide a simple structural approach for tackling the ‘problem’, since it is to a large extent not of one’s own creation. 
What needs be done is painfully obvious and consists in changing one’s habits, through putting oneself in hostile environments. The extent and desired speed of the change determine the methods. The use of highly traumatic experiences will rarely work as planned, which is precisely the point. The application of massive physical and/or emotional pain is primarily of use in causing rapid deterioration, and even shattering, of an existing personality. This may or may not be desireable.
Changing oneself consists in identifying habits of body and mind, so that one may do or think something other. Over time the ego will become more mobile and the personality and mind more flexible, and the opportunities and range for action will increase. Before any more effectual magical practice this first is necessary.

A ‘normal’ human experiences the world dualistically as self and other. This division is synthetic and operational (all definitions are operational and exist as closed loops within a linguistic framework). Unity demands that this division be illusory, however useful or common. As the normal state of human consciousness is dualistic, the density in the personality field will tend to support the ego in this state. 

A preliminary training of the personality through forced habit changes will diffuse the density and facilitate breakthroughs into non-ordinary personality super-system fields. The thinning out of the field of the dualistic personality super-system is necessary in order to eliminate its 'total gravity'. By thinning out or homogenizing the density of the super-system field it obtains the condition wherein there are only weak potential positions where the ego may center itself and the hold the dualistic super-system has on the ego approaches annihilation. Dualistic and unital consciousness may appear to be diametrically opposed, but this cannot be the case if the two states are to coexist.

Unity and duality are separate notions, although two does indeed come from one (which comes from zero, but that is another matter). They are not opposed, they are rather independent and complement one another. The condition wherein two quantitative terms are independent of one another and yet related is a condition called in mathematics ‘normality’; its geometric figure is the right angle. The axes of the two dimensional  graph, the 2D Cartesian system, are normal to one another. Move along either one and your position will not change with respect to the other. Two spaces that are normal are independent of one another; separate in a sense, and also related, together creating a space larger than if they were separate.

Considering any personality super-system, in this case the dualistic and unital, to be planar, the condition of normality can be visualized by considering two planes separated by some fixed distance – picturing them close together will be helpful here. When our dualistic personality super-system has had its density ‘thinned-out’, has been homogenized, it loses what power of gravity with which the ego was centered. The ego is no longer strongly bound to the dualistic system and is free to ‘float’ into the unital personality super-system and begin the creation of a new density/gravity relation within the unital structure.

One who begins operating from a position within the unital field first notices not so much a change in the appearance of the other, but rather that everything will have meaning, whereas in the dualistic field very few things present themselves as containing significant meaning. Likewise will every act be characterized by meaning, and will carry unimaginable potency. To one accustomed to the dualistic field, existing and acting in the unital field will be draining, similar to being awake for extended periods. This similarity indicates exactly how self-induced sleep deprivation serves as an accelerative. When we sleep, we dream, and the dream world and the unital super-system are identical.

The esoteric justification for sleep is that our consciousness must return from the dualistic field to its source in the unital field regularly, to obtain sustenance. We feed our bodies in the dualistic world, our souls in the unital world. We find in dreams that the things we encounter have meanings beyond their mere appearance, and that we are able to act in ways usually unimaginable. These are the same changes one finds when entering a state of cosmic consciousness. The unital super-system is what Australian Aboriginals refer to as the Dream Time.

There are many things the structures of which may be elucidated in terms of hierarchocentricity. When one speaks of hierarchy, they mean a gradation of power, or control, and a hierarchy is in this sense the relational structure of that gradation. A usual symbol is the pyramid, indicating that the power of many is controlled by a few. This is not the only possible symbol of hierarchy. It could just as well be represented by a line, or a pillar, and could take as representation for itself any image so long as it has a way of indicating the ideas of being greater, and less than. 

As an example, the structure of power within a democracy would be two pyramids connected at either their bases or their apices. These forms would indicate that although the power of the many are controlled by the few, those few are in turn controlled by the many. Centricity is, obviously, the idea of something being central and heierachocentricity is, as would be expected, the structure of control relating to things considered as central. As the apex of control in a system is a sort of center, hierarchocentricity is then a hierarchy of hierarchies. 

Hierarchocentricity is the natural order of the All, and any deviations therefrom will be subject to a corrective action corresponding to the degree of deviation and the propensity of that deviation to recreate itself.  The whole of nature is a hierarchocentric paradox that cannot be resolved from the spatiotemporal point of view. This comes as no surprise to students of esotericism and is evident in the symbol of the cosmic egg and the related ‘chicken in the egg’ paradox. Paradox, as outside the law, is the source of all phenomenal things subject to law as normally considered. An understanding of the law of paradox is necessary to move beyond current limitations and these suggestions for personal development arise from and are a means of resolving basic paradoxes attending our existence.