Feel the need to engage more? Look and be moved. It will happen.
Today’s subject is not just about general mania, and mania isn’t as dramatic or obvious as people might think. There is a condition medical types refer to as hypomania. The person is generally very much in control of themselves, just very focused and ambitious with intense emotional states cropping up, but again no loss of control.
It’s like they are also extreme in the control of it. Ah indeed, and the reason hypomania is even a diagnosis is that extreme self-control can snap over time and become true mania.
Sort of a dull affect then with hypomania? Actually, hypomania is generally expressed with a more intense personality, even charismatic. Think of the word as meaning just under mania, borderline mania. But what I mean to discuss tonight is mania as it manifests in the dark arts.
What motivates people to take up the darker metaphysical practices? Any ideas?
Quest for power.
Simple desire for knowledge of the unknown.
They feel themselves to be outsiders?
Feeling like they don’t belong to normal society.
All legitimate answers, and each could apply to any individual practitioner you might meet. They all have come to the decision that finding some channel to exert their will on the world is not only necessary, but justified.
Let’s look at the other two broad categories of magick.
There are those who practice magick as a form of spiritual development, primarily focused on achieving personal growth and a deeper understanding of the world and people around them. These people can be called theurges. They seek harmony or unity with the spiritual world through their practices.
Sounds like Nazis, evil actions to justify the greater good? No. Theurges tend to confine their practices to contemplation. They often favor asceticism and isolation. They tend to champion causes. A lot of neopagans take up the green movement, not trying to force anything, just trying to expand their sense of the spiritual and promote wellbeing in the world around them. Is this a clearer example? They tend to be idealists.
Another broad category of magick practitioners are more focused on the practical insights that can be gained from what they learn and practice. They may not know why their chant works or why burning specific incense seems to heighten their sensitivity or promote good luck, but they practice and refine their toolbox of this sort of lore in order to enrich their own lives and from time to time help others as well. They often take a more professional view of their magick. These people can be called thaumaturges.
Now both of these two groups tend toward a moderate view of the world and tend to stay more balanced, even handed. They don’t feel they have much to prove ultimately. The theurges sometimes teeter, but are often just peaceful, open hearted individuals. Bleeding hearts as some might say in a derogatory sense.
So what would be the difference between these two classes of people and a practitioner of the dark arts?
Intent to do evil. What is evil?
That which causes harm. Unintentional harm would make them different? No, intentional harm. We all make mistakes.
“Evil” seems to differ among different people.
Maybe one type might be out to manipulate people.
Doesn’t “evil” depend on the context?
Well, speaking as a devil’s advocate here, is it unfair to see the world as being something other than human hearted? What does theurgy look like under pressure? Seeking spiritual purity when at every turn it seems threatened.
What would thaumaturgy look like if every moment of your life depended on it, like a soldier depends on their gun?
Manipulative and power hungry.
This is the actual line between the sacred and profane arts.
That’s why villains hardly ever win? They burn out with the effort. Indeed, it is.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.