November 22, 2011

On Moments of Lucidity: Levannah

What was that about solar egos? Oh, right.
One of the downfalls of having a vivid imagination and a Solar-heavy nature is that you can fall into the trap of believing that you can know what every experience will be like before you have it. Now, this can come in handy when you're trying to pick up a new skill ("Are you sure you've never done this before?") or when you haven't studied for a test ("What do you mean you 'just made it up' and got an A?" Yeah... I'm that asshole), but it also tends to lead to an extraordinarily severe form of spiritual arrogance. Case in point: my recent work constructing a very basic Lunar talisman.

Modern Alchemy.
My decision to construct a Lunar talisman (and I use "construct" in the loosest of terms) came about while I was slammed with schoolwork had lost any semblance of a regular practice, which gave me a bad case of the Magic Itch (there should really be a shampoo for that). Christopher Warnock's wonderful Planetary Magic Program had forecast a wonderfully opportune (and relatively rare) window for Lunar work, so I told the perfectionist in me to fuck off and went ahead with a simple ink-on-paper model. It's a far cry from the nanoparticles-of-planetary-metal-chemically-precipitated-inside-a-sheet-of-vellum models I eventually hope to make (I finally get to put my chemistry degree to use, and I use it for... medieval magic? My professors would be so proud), but perfectionism has prevented me from starting so many projects I count that as a plus.

Now the fun part: expected effects versus observed effects (or: isn't science fun when it doesn't kick your ass?). Honestly, I would have thought that I'd see an increase in the rate and quality of manifestation for my other spells, sort of "locking in" the "mirror" and "foundation" aspects of Levannah while they were favorable. Perhaps it might impart that "empty clarity" feeling I get while staring at the stars, rather than the "stuffy headiness" I generally find myself in. I had forgotten about dreams completely (really? I mean, really? How do you forget about dreams? It's the freakin' Moon!), but if I had remembered, I would have expected an increase in dream recall, but that's about it. I have yet to see if these things will play out in the long run, but what I got the two nights following construction was shocking in the most incredible of ways.

In the days leading up to the consecration, I had become increasingly bitter and ill-tempered for a whole host of reasons, not the least of which included sleeping about two hours a night and spending every waking moment studying for a massive exam, tutoring others for the same exam, or interning at my rotation site (read: "slave labor"). The bitterness lent itself well to a creeping depression, which in turn was automatically combated with even more bitterness and indiscriminately-flung malice (note that I'm talking about internal states here. If nothing else, I was at least was holding together well enough to smile pleasantly at people while plotting to stab their eyeballs out if I had to explain a simple-fucking-concept(TM) over again). Those reading this blog may not know me well enough to know that this is entirely uncharacteristic of me, and that it's pointed to some long-term issues that need clearing up, but I digress.

The first night, about 12 hours after consecrating the talisman, I involuntarily passed out ("Just five minutes...") in an awkward position on my bed, and immediately found myself in what I first thought was an apartment, but upon exploration turned out to be one small room in a large mansion (!). It is hard now, in retrospect, to say what struck me most about the place, because in truth, everything sort of stuck me all at once. I was distinctly disoriented at first, recognizing only one of the tenants personally, while two or more of the others had very distorted and/or disfigured faces (imagine two heavily bearded Irish guys who lost a wicked bar-fight), and I had a fuzzy notion that I was there to scope out the place as a potential new home. As I explored the mansion (the size of which escapes words, but purple marble was a definite theme (!)), several things happened at once. With each room I explored, the other tenants (or potential tenants) grew more feminine, paler, and more ethereal; at the same time, I realized that these people (mostly women) were the epitome of what I look for in both friends and lovers; they had a quality I can only describe as "drawing". The more I talked to each of them, the more I felt as if I was remembering an old friend; a best friend, a soul-mate that I couldn't believe I had forgotten. The rooms themselves seemed to be imbued with the feeling of getting something you didn't even know you wanted (glassed-in conservatory filled with rocking chairs, where all the tenants sit in a circle and read novels together? Not my usual style, but I couldn't have wanted anything more as soon as I sat in "my" chair. Forest in the front yard? Need. It. Now. And so on.), and the more rooms I explored, the more I got to interact with the tenants (I realize now there were 8 of them. Adding myself would have made 9 (!)).

The overall effect was overwhelming. I was home, for the first time ever. The love and peace that immediately flowed between all of the tenants, myself now included, was overwhelming. The sense of belonging was overwhelming. The sense of needing this place was overwhelming. At one point, while all of this was crashing down over me, I ran into the figure of my dad, who approved of my choice, but informed me of the high (monetary) cost of living there. I didn't care; any price was worth it, because nothing could be wrong in this place. That was the last objection that was raised to me, and the rest of the dream dissolved into an overwhelming sense of belonging.

When I first woke up (four hours later), the first thing I noticed was that any negativity had been completely obliterated from my mind. What had taken months to build up into a days-long rage was simply gone, and what's more, it stayed gone. The emotions of the dream lingered for days without any effort on my part to recall them. The second night, I had a (now mostly-forgotten) dream in which I used those emotions in an almost physical manner (imagine "lightworking" fluff) to deal with some long-term personal issues. Despite the week becoming progressively more hellish, I only felt better as it wore on.

In retrospect, I asked for health, safety, the driving off of enemies, and the pouring down of Levannah's blessings, and I got exactly all those things in the most unexpected emotional Roto-Rooter I could have asked for.

Isn't magic great when it's not kicking your ass?