Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Pre-Coffee Morning Thoughts: Life-Wrecking Initiations

I'm not a morning person.

Especially on the weekdays.

On such mornings, my general level of goodwill towards my fellow man is directly proportional to the amount of coffee I've had. Right now, I've barely started on my 20+ ounces.

And I was just thinking about that big ole' wank-a-thon favored by most modern occultists and traditional Wiccans, ATR's, etc: Initiations!

Ah, yes...initiations.

See, every now and then the discussion about what initiations actually do comes up. Somewhere in there, mention is made of lives that were shaken up, and sometimes even wrecked, after whatever initiations various practitioners have gone through. And normally, in the same conversation, someone says that it swept away the old to make way for something new and better.

What if they're just deluding themselves? What if that's just a cheap cop-out, and their life before the initiation was just as good (or maybe even better) than their life after the initiation had done its thing? What if initiations don't actually do that and they're ascribing things to them that they shouldn't?

I dunno, I'm just musing. Mostly to keep my urge to go Office Space on some computers down.


  1. I think the only good way to answer that is if the person really took the time to analyze their life before and after. A "better" life is very subjective.

  2. I suppose it comes down to what is meant by better, and the method you use to measure it. Lets say purely materially. The arugment could be made that prior to an initiation you're making 100k a year, you travel all over the world, and have two houses, 3 cars, and you never worry for material needs. You get initiated, and suddenly your new role in life is barely making ends meet, reading cards in some occult shop and living in a one room apartment. Yes, I could see how some people might not see that as being better.
    But then there is the mental/emotional better. Lets say while you had all that money and property, you were miserable. You felt alone, friendless, getting treatment for depression and the last time you read something that wasn't a profit report was in high school. After the initiation, you find yourself part of a vibrant community, you have at least 1 real friend, and lots more friendly associates, you no longer feel depressed all the time, just, you know, when it's appropriate, and you find yourself reading new and interesting things that really get fired up about life on a weekly if not daily basis. Other's might point to the latter part as being an improvement and making their life better. Of course, the ideal is to somehow achieve both the satisfactory material success with the emotional/mental satisfaction.

  3. But what if initiations actually DO do that, and the benefits of it are only reserved for those who have the courage to stick it out, and to reinvent themselves by learning the new skills necessary to cope with the changes? Initiations, magickal and otherwise, have historically been just a part of crossing over into a full-fledged adult in ALL cultures. Only from the state of chaos (not order) can anything new be created. Without the chaos of Set, there would be no reason for Osiris to rise as Horus.