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The Darkness Within

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Now this is interesting how you just toss out the word, " stagnant ". We had a convo about this word, I'm not sure you were included, but I know Abraxia and Jevne were, myself included.

 

The part that fascinates me is this :

 

" once it (the path, I'm surmizing, correct me if I'm wrong ) stops changeing it ( the path, again ) grows stagnant, ( as does the witch ) and dies. How about this take : the Witch has exhausted all measures of this certain growth process on the path, and has out-grown the knowledge of particular thought processes, and therefore has to come to a decision to take a step towards another turn in the path, one not walked in by the Witch. I don't wish to believe that the Path dies, and disinergrates, as it is a living thing forever changing and replenishing itself. There will always be another to walk where another has walked, in due time.

 

I can readilly accept that a Witch has working knowledge of working with the Dead ( Ancestors and such ) but a dead path ? That is strange to me, as I don't believe the path dies, or the current , or the force, or the energy, it's always in a constant form of movement, and the Witch just has to find a way to grab it. Okais, call it the Brass Ring on the Carnival Ride of sorts. lol.

Regards,

Gypsy

 

The path is meandering and crooked, true, but I see that as all part of the witches' walk, for detours along the road are all points of learning, even if one learns what doesn't work for them. Yes, with the onslaught of Wicca and neo-paganism those are simply new paths of witchcraft and/or understandings of the esoteric. But when I refer to a dead path I refer to one's way of working that has no life in it... (and this is only my opinion and I'm sure many will disagree) but I often read things on the net about people obsessed with only doing things the old way, that the only true way is if one can find the original way witches used to work 8 million years ago, etc. The owrld has changed. The needs are not those of 8 million years ago and if they were we'd all be working fertility religions, lol. The world evolves, humans evolve, needs evolve, understandings evolve, and to choke and restrain the path to an old and no longer needed way of working is to stagnate and kill it. Some may argue "but we need ot go back there - today's world isn't working" and that may or may not be true but reality is going backwards just ain't gonna happen and to obess with going back to it is walking a dead path. Much of the old understandings are very valid and very worth integrating and understnding, but they must be worked in the current reality. Science killed god (or put the gods to sleep, however one wishes to view it) and trying to refert to a way of craft-working before science isn't going to work becuase technology and science are not going away. It is great to have understanding of the time when man interacted with the spirits and divinities, but the path to stay alive must wake the spirits and divinities in this era, not in a melachany longing for a bygone era. The world evolved for a reason. Witches must evolve and evolve the path as well. One can wake the sleeping (just look at sleeping beauty) but they must be woken into the current era or they are still asleep to it and one would not be able to bring them into thier reality only into a rememberance. And memory is of the dead - interaction is of the living. Going back to the shamanistic workings of the craft (as it probably originally existed) is a good thing to do but it has to be done within this current reality and in a way that works with the current reality. We can't hide from what the world has become, we have to bring the path into the current and change from there. No the Current does not die, but if ignored or woken to a reality that no longer exists it cannot move forward on that path and dies to the one working that path. It recedes and goes back to sleep or elsewhere, just as the spirits of the forest, once cut down and made into a manicured playground sleep and are no longer felt there.

 

M

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The last few posts have really spoken to me, because I'm going through a patch with the Craft at the moment where i'm lacking the drive to go on. I know I will, and I will continue - I always do, I can't not- Its just seeing it through to the other side. Reading posts of other peoples experiences have really helped me.

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We've all seen someone who does something that isn't working and hasn't for a long time, yet they still keep on doing it. /could be because they are in a rut, could be because they don't know any different, or could be because they are scared to try anything new. The fact is they keep beating that dead horse with the same stick. This can be true of the path as well. We learn to do things certain ways because of our current understanding and experiences. Most of us, when we learn a new and better way, will adopt it, but some won't. They never progress, never get anywhere. I believe the 'guradians of the knowledge' will pull away from such people and go and find someone who is willing to take on the new understanding - OK, I have a romantic view of things, but you get my point. If not the guardians, then the 'living' energy itself will seek out another place where it can thrive.

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The last few posts have really spoken to me, because I'm going through a patch with the Craft at the moment where i'm lacking the drive to go on. I know I will, and I will continue - I always do, I can't not- Its just seeing it through to the other side. Reading posts of other peoples experiences have really helped me.

 

It's possible you need to take a break from what you've been doing and turn to some new aspect. Sometimes we need to allow some space to let what we've learnt/experienced to sink in and be 'chewwed over' so we can assimilte the new knowledge. Is there something else you've been curious about but haven't gotten to yet? doesn't have to be witchcraft, it could be bird watching or catching up on what's going on in the opera scene. The point is it's OK to take time out to recharge the batteries.

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It's possible you need to take a break from what you've been doing and turn to some new aspect. Sometimes we need to allow some space to let what we've learnt/experienced to sink in and be 'chewwed over' so we can assimilte the new knowledge. Is there something else you've been curious about but haven't gotten to yet? doesn't have to be witchcraft, it could be bird watching or catching up on what's going on in the opera scene. The point is it's OK to take time out to recharge the batteries.

 

Yeah, I've just got into a relationship so everythings a bit hectic, but I know it will be back to normal when everything calms down. I also think these last couple of years I've been too focused on doing things 'textbook' rather than exploring myself and my own ways which I guess could be a new aspect I'm going to explore

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We've all seen someone who does something that isn't working and hasn't for a long time, yet they still keep on doing it. /could be because they are in a rut, could be because they don't know any different, or could be because they are scared to try anything new. The fact is they keep beating that dead horse with the same stick. This can be true of the path as well. We learn to do things certain ways because of our current understanding and experiences. Most of us, when we learn a new and better way, will adopt it, but some won't. They never progress, never get anywhere. I believe the 'guradians of the knowledge' will pull away from such people and go and find someone who is willing to take on the new understanding - OK, I have a romantic view of things, but you get my point. If not the guardians, then the 'living' energy itself will seek out another place where it can thrive.

 

Abraxia,

 

I share this particular view of the Craft, that it is not meant for everyone and that there are universal "rules", of sorts, protected by guardians of Craft knowledge, that prevent those who are not ready, who are not worthy, of going too deeply or else getting too deep before they are ready. The mysteries of death, for example . . . why do you think it is that the living and the dead, so rarely get to interact? Because, there are rules to the game. I've been known to bend a few rules in my day, as I know various spirits have done to contact me and others. I know they are not supposed to.

 

Craft knowledge isn't any different than medical knowledge or any other type of specific information. I can read a thousand books on medicine, anatomy, biology, etc., but that doesn't make me a doctor, anymore than reading a thousand books on the Craft makes me a Witch. Anyone can use the title, but to connect to the energy of the Craft, one has to earn that right. So, when someone, who is new to the Craft and/or very obviously unprepared (immature, lacking in respect or focus, etc.) becomes frustrated or impatient with their Path, I always tell them to look long and hard at the life they are leading. For example, Witchcraft can be used to help with problems, but if all someone wants to practice the Craft for is to make them feel better about themselves or fix their miserable lives, they won't last very long.

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Yeah, I've just got into a relationship so everythings a bit hectic, but I know it will be back to normal when everything calms down. I also think these last couple of years I've been too focused on doing things 'textbook' rather than exploring myself and my own ways which I guess could be a new aspect I'm going to explore

 

Ooohhh! I love the emotions associated with a new romantic relationship. As an Empath, I find those emotions extremely intoxicating, all sexually charged and exciting. I'm an emotional voyeur. Hope all goes well for you.

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Abraxia,

 

...For example, Witchcraft can be used to help with problems, but if all someone wants to practice the Craft for is to make them feel better about themselves or fix their miserable lives, they won't last very long.

 

Very true. Yes the craft can be used magically to make one's life more (whatever one is looking for), but to limit it to that and have no greater understanding of it or interaction of it would be, for me, a dead path, and I do believe someone practicing that way would either loose interest or get pulled into one of the many misconceptions and blocks of the path.

 

It was interesting to me to read that sentence becuase I believe that you and I often practice a differnet form of the path (if I remember correctly you don't work with divniities, etc.,), and of course I instantly interpreted that sentence as what it means to ME and my personal path (which is evolution of the soul/self/spirit). I would be very interested to know if you interpret the sentence in the ssame way, and if not how you interpret it.

 

M

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Very true. Yes the craft can be used magically to make one's life more (whatever one is looking for), but to limit it to that and have no greater understanding of it or interaction of it would be, for me, a dead path, and I do believe someone practicing that way would either loose interest or get pulled into one of the many misconceptions and blocks of the path.

 

It was interesting to me to read that sentence becuase I believe that you and I often practice a differnet form of the path (if I remember correctly you don't work with divniities, etc.,), and of course I instantly interpreted that sentence as what it means to ME and my personal path (which is evolution of the soul/self/spirit). I would be very interested to know if you interpret the sentence in the ssame way, and if not how you interpret it.

 

M

 

I work with my ancestors (my Kin), both living and dead, both blood and uniquely connected, so I do work with the Divine, just not other people's mythological, psychological interpretation of the Divine. I can't interpret my reality in someone else's terms. I cannot insert another person's or culture's connection to the Craft into my own Path and make it fit.

 

I think that is what some folks, who pursue Witchcraft are trying to do, make it fit. They have a hole in their soul/self/spirit, that they want to fill up, so they look for something to plug it up with. They read some books on the Craft or talk with someone who is practicing and think how much better it would be to have power, to be respected, to be something that they are not, to fill that hole. The start looking for the right size peg to fill it up. Maybe, they will find the thing that will fill the void, maybe they won't.

 

The enternal quest for knowledge is what fills you up, M. It isn't the information that gets you off. It is the quest that lights you up. You don't want to know, Michele, you want to know more. As long as you continue to seek new knowledge, you will continue to evolve. You know you well enough to know that. I respect that. It's not my bliss, but I still admire it about you.

 

Too many newbie Witches spend an inordinate amount of time, trying to find something outside themselves to make up for their inadequacies, not only as Witches, but as human beings. I'm sorry, if that sounds overly harsh, but the Craft doesn't bestow power. It enhances the power that someone already has. That is a lesson that I learned from my personal Deity, my family. Undoubtedly, you have learned similar lessons on your Path.

 

Just my ramblings.

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I work with my ancestors (my Kin), both living and dead, both blood and uniquely connected, so I do work with the Divine, just not other people's mythological, psychological interpretation of the Divine. I can't interpret my reality in someone else's terms. I cannot insert another person's or culture's connection to the Craft into my own Path and make it fit.

 

I think that is what some folks, who pursue Witchcraft are trying to do, make it fit. They have a hole in their soul/self/spirit, that they want to fill up, so they look for something to plug it up with. They read some books on the Craft or talk with someone who is practicing and think how much better it would be to have power, to be respected, to be something that they are not, to fill that hole. The start looking for the right size peg to fill it up. Maybe, they will find the thing that will fill the void, maybe they won't.

 

The enternal quest for knowledge is what fills you up, M. It isn't the information that gets you off. It is the quest that lights you up. You don't want to know, Michele, you want to know more. As long as you continue to seek new knowledge, you will continue to evolve. You know you well enough to know that. I respect that. It's not my bliss, but I still admire it about you.

 

Too many newbie Witches spend an inordinate amount of time, trying to find something outside themselves to make up for their inadequacies, not only as Witches, but as human beings. I'm sorry, if that sounds overly harsh, but the Craft doesn't bestow power. It enhances the power that someone already has. That is a lesson that I learned from my personal Deity, my family. Undoubtedly, you have learned similar lessons on your Path.

 

Just my ramblings.

 

Damn - I wish I could quote-in-quote, lol!! Interesting concept of your family (both here and in other forms) viewed as what is(probably for my benefit of understanding, lol) as personal diety. That is a lot like what many consider their tutilary (can't even say that word much less spell it, lol), or initiatory divinity/spirit. Also the in some paths the 'adepts" of the path no longer in this realm become in their entirety a tutilary spirit (divinity) of the path (non-DNA ancestors depending upon whether one happens to be born into their path).

 

Yes, my passion is knowledge - and thank god there is way more than I could ever comprehend in this current form becuase I'd be damn bored out of my mind if that ever happened, lol!!! Wouldn't know how to entertain me bloody self (as mum would say, and it pisses her off no end that the only knowledge I bother to gain isn't of they type that would up my salary level)... But yes, I have turned into a hunter, and it is the hunt that thrills me as much as the kill, and the knowledge gained only leads to more quests (and some damn hard trials, lol) as it should :-)

 

There do seem to be a lot of people drawn to the craft who are looking for something. It is true (I believe) that ultimately the path is the Art of Becoming Whole (thank you J for forever letting me steal your quote lol) but that is in an esoteric level and many people are fragmented as people in a much more mundane way - looking to resolve abuses, gain self worth, find love, etc. Very much so the strength must come from within, but as long as the seed is there, it can be awoken.

 

the culture of other people and their divinities - that I can agree with (to date, lol). I have read about native American spirituality and it is very interesting and wonderful and importnat, but I am not a native American (few Americans are, lol) and I would not relate to that path. And a decent man of that path would tell me to go find the path of my own people rather than teach me his path. Hummm... that may also explain, on an esoteric level, why there is so much eclectedness in the craft in America as few people these days are pure one culture or another... have to think about that. I suppose that is probably why the land and ways of England have always spoken to me - that and the relationship I have with my mother, who to me is England personified. Romantacized, I know, but she carries the land within her and anyone in her presence can feel it, although they could not say what it is theyy are feeling. I have actually dated people who tell me they fell in love with my mother before they fell in love with me, lol.

 

M

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Ooohhh! I love the emotions associated with a new romantic relationship. As an Empath, I find those emotions extremely intoxicating, all sexually charged and exciting. I'm an emotional voyeur. Hope all goes well for you.

 

 

Hehe, thanks :D

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I think the darkness is first of all not evil in and of itself, it is a neutral power. It is seen in the eyes of the wolf when it hunts. We may think the rabbit is cute, but we cannot deny the existence of the wolf as part of nature. In the blacksmith traditions of witchcraft we forge darkness in the fires. We journey deeply into the darkness observing and experience it on different levels. I have worked to find what my personal balance of light and darkness is. I think that the balance is not universally the same for all people. Some are naturally more inclined to the healing arts while others to darker arts. A non-witch example would be one who is drawn toward being a physical therapist, while another is drawn toward being a special forces soldier. The special forces soldier has integrated his dark side in a way natural to him, but maintains discipline and focus. On the other hand the serial killer connects to the darkness, but loses control and the darkness consumes him, turning him into an evil being. I have found the darkness is dangerous, but necessary to journey into. At deeper levels dark spirits will struggle to overtake your mind and soul. In Chippawa shamanism, one of the sweat lodge rituals is to conjure both positive and negative spirits and then gain control in this spiritual chaos, while drumming, chanting, and heat induce a trance state. I have undergone many harsh tests from shamans, African diaspora witches, and the spirits. These tests and trials have helped me to accept my dark side and understand my "specialties" as a traditional witch. The journey into darkness also reveals much about the light. I would like to say though that I think both exist naturally, but I have found in my experiences that it is up to the witch to bring them to a state of harmony within ourselves and the work we do that effects our external world. It is my understanding that the concept of the battle between good and evil / light and dark, originated with Zoroaster and then made it's way into Judaism, Christianity, and the Muslim faiths. I find that often witches struggle with harmonizing these opposites because of the social conditioning brought on by these religions. However, there are groups such as the Spiritualist Baptist and also many Hoodoo that have found a way to combine Christian beliefs with witchcraft practices that include a dark side. Thus, in the end result I think it is really about finding a way to explain to one's self how to harmonize these opposites more than what path one may or may not follow. It is the work of gaining a mindful and heartfelt grasp on these energies. As a traditional witch with no religious beliefs I must experience to find my sense of ethics and balance in these matters. as opposed to being told by religious books and traditions what is right and wrong, or that the darkness is only evil. I hope this is of help in your questions about darkness.

 

--Blacksmith

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Ok, This is a fairly new concept to me and I haven't fully gathered my thoughts on this topic so please bear with me if it get's a little disjointed.

 

I have become aware in recent times that to follow a traditional path, you must first embrace the dark as well as the light side of nature. As with most things trad related its a matter of working intraspectively. Finding the Darkness within, to understand the darkness externally.

 

So here it goes! What is this dark aspect of nature to you? I have heard of it refered to as the bringer of life in the few places I have been able to find any reference to it at all. It seems from an acedmic point of view it stems from a great nothing, which in turn spewed forth existance.... eventually to reclaim it. What do you make of this? Do you give the darkness a name, and if you don't mind sharing it, what is it?

 

To me, the how darkness brought forth life is niether here nor there. It may have been the case, it may not. To me, my priority is living the tradition not looking to the past and keeping it a thing of history. What I'm trying to say is that I want a working knowledge of it, it doesn't matter where it came from or where its going to, just that it IS in this instant we live in called the present.

 

What is your opinion of it? Where it came from and is going to?

 

How have you embraced the darkness?

 

How has it influenced you and your practice?

 

When would you use this great viod in a working?

 

That's it for now but I'm sure I'll have more questions as we go along.

 

Regards,

 

RC

 

I do embrace it, my names I give it, masculine, yin, lord, dark. It's a sacred part of the universe, it's within everything and everyone. I acknowlege and embrace without darkness, I wouldn't know what light is. Through the negative experiences in my life, have come positivity. The two energies seem to work in sync with one another for the soul to grow. The dark soil is what the plant is rooted into, as the light shines on it for it to produce it's food, if that imagery helps explain my viewpoint.

 

Jade

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I think the darkness is first of all not evil in and of itself, it is a neutral power. It is seen in the eyes of the wolf when it hunts. We may think the rabbit is cute, but we cannot deny the existence of the wolf as part of nature. In the blacksmith traditions of witchcraft we forge darkness in the fires. We journey deeply into the darkness observing and experience it on different levels. I have worked to find what my personal balance of light and darkness is. I think that the balance is not universally the same for all people. Some are naturally more inclined to the healing arts while others to darker arts. A non-witch example would be one who is drawn toward being a physical therapist, while another is drawn toward being a special forces soldier. The special forces soldier has integrated his dark side in a way natural to him, but maintains discipline and focus. On the other hand the serial killer connects to the darkness, but loses control and the darkness consumes him, turning him into an evil being. I have found the darkness is dangerous, but necessary to journey into. At deeper levels dark spirits will struggle to overtake your mind and soul. In Chippawa shamanism, one of the sweat lodge rituals is to conjure both positive and negative spirits and then gain control in this spiritual chaos, while drumming, chanting, and heat induce a trance state. I have undergone many harsh tests from shamans, African diaspora witches, and the spirits. These tests and trials have helped me to accept my dark side and understand my "specialties" as a traditional witch. The journey into darkness also reveals much about the light. I would like to say though that I think both exist naturally, but I have found in my experiences that it is up to the witch to bring them to a state of harmony within ourselves and the work we do that effects our external world. It is my understanding that the concept of the battle between good and evil / light and dark, originated with Zoroaster and then made it's way into Judaism, Christianity, and the Muslim faiths. I find that often witches struggle with harmonizing these opposites because of the social conditioning brought on by these religions. However, there are groups such as the Spiritualist Baptist and also many Hoodoo that have found a way to combine Christian beliefs with witchcraft practices that include a dark side. Thus, in the end result I think it is really about finding a way to explain to one's self how to harmonize these opposites more than what path one may or may not follow. It is the work of gaining a mindful and heartfelt grasp on these energies. As a traditional witch with no religious beliefs I must experience to find my sense of ethics and balance in these matters. as opposed to being told by religious books and traditions what is right and wrong, or that the darkness is only evil. I hope this is of help in your questions about darkness.

 

--Blacksmith

 

 

I will echo M's words here....well said.

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I do embrace it, my names I give it, masculine, yin, lord, dark. It's a sacred part of the universe, it's within everything and everyone. I acknowlege and embrace without darkness, I wouldn't know what light is. Through the negative experiences in my life, have come positivity. The two energies seem to work in sync with one another for the soul to grow. The dark soil is what the plant is rooted into, as the light shines on it for it to produce it's food, if that imagery helps explain my viewpoint.

 

Jade

 

 

What aspects of the Darkness do you believe are inherently masculine? Which aspects are inherently negative? If Darkness is linked to the masculine and the negative, does this not imply that the masculine is negative? In the same vein, is the light always positive? Perhaps, you are defining positive in terms of growth vs. stagnation, as opposed to good vs bad. I can think of several situations in which the dark is positive and the light is negative, depending on the situation.

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For far too long western idealogy has defined duality in terms of good and evil and polarised all action and thought into that paradigm.

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What aspects of the Darkness do you believe are inherently masculine? Which aspects are inherently negative? If Darkness is linked to the masculine and the negative, does this not imply that the masculine is negative? In the same vein, is the light always positive? Perhaps, you are defining positive in terms of growth vs. stagnation, as opposed to good vs bad. I can think of several situations in which the dark is positive and the light is negative, depending on the situation.

 

Wow, interesting point. I've never thought of it that way before. Dark being positive and light being negative in what ways, if you don't mind me asking?

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Wow, interesting point. I've never thought of it that way before. Dark being positive and light being negative in what ways, if you don't mind me asking?

 

It is dark in the womb. It is in the dark that the nocturnal creatures find their food. You can hide in the darkness. It is protective, comforting. You can retreat into the darkness for peace, rest and rejuvenation.

 

If you put a crystal in the light of the sun for too long it will deplete its energy. In fact, leaving anything (or anyone) in the "light" for too long will eventually drain its power.

 

Dark and light are concepts, that have absolutely no attributes beyond that which are assigned by the Witch. In other words, it depends on one's perspective. For example, if I am hexing or cursing someone I will incorporate dark aspects. They work in the manifestation of my goal. That is good. That is positive.

 

As you can see, I don't spend a lot of time with the "light" concept. I burn easily.

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Dark and light are concepts, that have absolutely no attributes beyond that which are assigned by the Witch. In other words, it depends on one's perspective.

I totally agree Jevne...

For the lack of better words I am using light and dark… so indulge me.. .but Dark and Light are opposing but connected, each holding the possibility of the other. One cannot exist in the presence of the other but exists because the other is present. In their natural state they are pure, equal, and necessary for balance. Without the forced labels of religion and culture, Light and Dark can be accepted without question and pursued without judgment. Through natural exposure and psychosocial interaction the Light and Dark become categorized and polarized by knowledge, expectations, inherited beliefs, internalized traumas and a conscious awareness of the external world. Equally to external, they are embedded in our psyche, as often an unseen but influential component in our lives. If one can free themselves of the indoctrinated associations of good/bad, right/wrong, sacrosanct/ evil and develop an unburdened and clear understanding of the merits of both equally then there will be a freedom of thought and action centered on satisfying our needs... I have often felt that overcoming these associations is a huge stepping stone for those that wish to practice the Arte/Craft (insert your preferred term..) When fear can be replaced with respectful understanding , growth and power will manifest exponentially. .. just my nickles worth (adjusted for inflation)...

Edited by LdyShalott
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Guest Elfyd

I think the darkness is first of all not evil in and of itself, it is a neutral power. It is seen in the eyes of the wolf when it hunts. We may think the rabbit is cute, but we cannot deny the existence of the wolf as part of nature. In the blacksmith traditions of witchcraft we forge darkness in the fires. We journey deeply into the darkness observing and experience it on different levels. I have worked to find what my personal balance of light and darkness is. I think that the balance is not universally the same for all people. Some are naturally more inclined to the healing arts while others to darker arts. A non-witch example would be one who is drawn toward being a physical therapist, while another is drawn toward being a special forces soldier. The special forces soldier has integrated his dark side in a way natural to him, but maintains discipline and focus. On the other hand the serial killer connects to the darkness, but loses control and the darkness consumes him, turning him into an evil being. I have found the darkness is dangerous, but necessary to journey into. At deeper levels dark spirits will struggle to overtake your mind and soul. In Chippawa shamanism, one of the sweat lodge rituals is to conjure both positive and negative spirits and then gain control in this spiritual chaos, while drumming, chanting, and heat induce a trance state. I have undergone many harsh tests from shamans, African diaspora witches, and the spirits. These tests and trials have helped me to accept my dark side and understand my "specialties" as a traditional witch. The journey into darkness also reveals much about the light. I would like to say though that I think both exist naturally, but I have found in my experiences that it is up to the witch to bring them to a state of harmony within ourselves and the work we do that effects our external world. It is my understanding that the concept of the battle between good and evil / light and dark, originated with Zoroaster and then made it's way into Judaism, Christianity, and the Muslim faiths. I find that often witches struggle with harmonizing these opposites because of the social conditioning brought on by these religions. However, there are groups such as the Spiritualist Baptist and also many Hoodoo that have found a way to combine Christian beliefs with witchcraft practices that include a dark side. Thus, in the end result I think it is really about finding a way to explain to one's self how to harmonize these opposites more than what path one may or may not follow. It is the work of gaining a mindful and heartfelt grasp on these energies. As a traditional witch with no religious beliefs I must experience to find my sense of ethics and balance in these matters. as opposed to being told by religious books and traditions what is right and wrong, or that the darkness is only evil. I hope this is of help in your questions about darkness.

 

--Blacksmith

 

 

 

I have added my kudos to this entry, such a deep and meaningful look at this topic.

FFFF

Elf

 

 

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Guest Elfyd

It is dark in the womb. It is in the dark that the nocturnal creatures find their food. You can hide in the darkness. It is protective, comforting. You can retreat into the darkness for peace, rest and rejuvenation.

 

If you put a crystal in the light of the sun for too long it will deplete its energy. In fact, leaving anything (or anyone) in the "light" for too long will eventually drain its power.

 

Dark and light are concepts, that have absolutely no attributes beyond that which are assigned by the Witch. In other words, it depends on one's perspective. For example, if I am hexing or cursing someone I will incorporate dark aspects. They work in the manifestation of my goal. That is good. That is positive.

 

As you can see, I don't spend a lot of time with the "light" concept. I burn easily.

 

 

J,

"Dark and light are concepts..." this paragraph really resonates with me.

FFFF

Elf

 

 

 

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It is dark in the womb. It is in the dark that the nocturnal creatures find their food. You can hide in the darkness. It is protective, comforting. You can retreat into the darkness for peace, rest and rejuvenation.

 

If you put a crystal in the light of the sun for too long it will deplete its energy. In fact, leaving anything (or anyone) in the "light" for too long will eventually drain its power.

 

Dark and light are concepts, that have absolutely no attributes beyond that which are assigned by the Witch. In other words, it depends on one's perspective. For example, if I am hexing or cursing someone I will incorporate dark aspects. They work in the manifestation of my goal. That is good. That is positive.

 

As you can see, I don't spend a lot of time with the "light" concept. I burn easily.

 

Thank you so much for saying this!

 

I wrote a blog entry recently about the desert... about how at night, when it's dark, you truly see it come to life. During the day, the sun and the heat are far too intense. The sun here destroys and kills. You can't leave things outside in the open for long, or they disintegrate quickly.

 

Where at night, life spills out from every hiding place. The darkness is filled with the sounds of all the various and wonderful life. Although the plants and animals here are tough and well adapted to the desert, they still couldn't survive without the dark, cool nights.

 

The same goes for the monsoon season here... those dark storms bring life giving water and the lighting which causes fire, removing the dead growth to make room for fresh, new growth.

 

As you said, it all depends on an individuals perspective. From the perspective of the desert or the nocturnally inclined... light is negative and dark is positive.

 

~ Freki

:howl-moon:

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Hi,

 

This is a wonderful and insightful thread.:) Blacksmith, you bring up many fine points regarding darkness. I know that I was certainly affected by dualism as taught by the church. I had equated darkness with evil, however my notions changed when I joined with a pagan discussion group several years ago. It was when I was the wiccan path that I began to make the distinction between the two. When I got introduced to the writings of Andrew Chumbley, one of the ways that the darkness was personified was through the opposer who could be under the guise of Ahriman,Shaitan, and the black man of the sabbat. This personification isn't understood as the embodiment of evil by the one who helps you become liberated from beliefs, ideas, and concepts that confine you. He is Prometheus gifting fire to man or the serpent enticing humanity to eat the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He,she, it challenges one so that they may grow spiritually,mentally, and emotionally-albeit it isn't always pleasant or kind. As mentioned above, hoodoo certainly acknowledges darker aspects in some of its practices such meeting the dark rider at the crossroads. In Bon, a native Tibetan spirituality, there's a practice called Chod were the aspirant goes to an isolated,dark place such as a cemetary and goes through an intense ordeal where he offers his body for demons and wrathful spirits to feast on until only the bones remain. This is a dark visualization is a great tool of self overcoming as are the practices of some sects within left-hand tantra such as the Aghori who will meditate in cemetaries and on creamatory grounds in India. They will do meditations while sitting on top of corpses and yet there's nothing evil about them. In fact the word Aghori itself means "non-territying". It's convenient to lump in darkness with evil and vice versa while ignoring the grey areas. I agree with blacksmith that the traditional witch must come terms with darkness as well the light from his or her own perspective as well to develop as sense of ethics and balance from this understanding if they aren't already in place.

I've always found comfort,safety and solace in the darkness, even as a child. It was a time when dreams and the other world seemed very tangible. I would say that it has greatly influenced my practice, as it has been instrumental in my growth. The dark opposer is my friend and guardian. I've used this void many times in ritual and in consecration of objects. Going counter-clockwise feels just as comfortable as going in the opposite direction. I've only used it once for baneful purposes, however it backfired on me somewhat. However, if I was to employ it again it would be for protection self or loved ones, protection of any land, to counter a maleficent spell, drive out a vile entity or person. I suppose it's a matter of if a given situation warrants that kind of action.

 

Best Regards,

 

Ken

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Hi,

 

This is a wonderful and insightful thread.:) Blacksmith, you bring up many fine points regarding darkness. I know that I was certainly affected by dualism as taught by the church. I had equated darkness with evil, however my notions changed when I joined with a pagan discussion group several years ago. It was when I was the wiccan path that I began to make the distinction between the two. When I got introduced to the writings of Andrew Chumbley, one of the ways that the darkness was personified was through the opposer who could be under the guise of Ahriman,Shaitan, and the black man of the sabbat. This personification isn't understood as the embodiment of evil by the one who helps you become liberated from beliefs, ideas, and concepts that confine you. He is Prometheus gifting fire to man or the serpent enticing humanity to eat the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He,she, it challenges one so that they may grow spiritually,mentally, and emotionally-albeit it isn't always pleasant or kind. As mentioned above, hoodoo certainly acknowledges darker aspects in some of its practices such meeting the dark rider at the crossroads. In Bon, a native Tibetan spirituality, there's a practice called Chod were the aspirant goes to an isolated,dark place such as a cemetary and goes through an intense ordeal where he offers his body for demons and wrathful spirits to feast on until only the bones remain. This is a dark visualization is a great tool of self overcoming as are the practices of some sects within left-hand tantra such as the Aghori who will meditate in cemetaries and on creamatory grounds in India. They will do meditations while sitting on top of corpses and yet there's nothing evil about them. In fact the word Aghori itself means "non-territying". It's convenient to lump in darkness with evil and vice versa while ignoring the grey areas. I agree with blacksmith that the traditional witch must come terms with darkness as well the light from his or her own perspective as well to develop as sense of ethics and balance from this understanding if they aren't already in place.

I've always found comfort,safety and solace in the darkness, even as a child. It was a time when dreams and the other world seemed very tangible. I would say that it has greatly influenced my practice, as it has been instrumental in my growth. The dark opposer is my friend and guardian. I've used this void many times in ritual and in consecration of objects. Going counter-clockwise feels just as comfortable as going in the opposite direction. I've only used it once for baneful purposes, however it backfired on me somewhat. However, if I was to employ it again it would be for protection self or loved ones, protection of any land, to counter a maleficent spell, drive out a vile entity or person. I suppose it's a matter of if a given situation warrants that kind of action.

 

Best Regards,

 

Ken

 

Overall a great post that addresses many relevant points about darkness being benefical for spiritual growth. I like how you brought up new examples of Tibetian spirituality deals with concept of darkness. Very interesting and I agree with much of what you've said.

 

My only question is what you are referring to when you say going counter clockwise? Are you referring to it as a general thing for many types of workings or specifically to one thing like a circle or compass set up? As this is your first post besides the intro I'm just trying to read between the lines a little to get the direction of where your coming from. EIther way, I find it awesome you feel so comfortable with both halfs of yourself and magic, even if it did bite you on the ass lol. That is where many people run and hide behind the skirts of previously indoctrinated beliefs because they are not ready to take the bad with good.

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