All things have a negative side. Every light casts a shadow. One can feel that they don’t entertain a thought, but you can’t avoid entertaining negatives. They are an inherent part of the equation that allows you to arrive at positives.
In occult lore, characters, alphabets, were the “DNA” of the spiritual realm, revealed rather than invented. There is some loose evidence to support this even in modern science as they continue to study the process of cognition and more specifically “language” in the brain. You can be primed to notice elements of your environment by being shown a list of words even if they don’t tell you the pattern or reason behind the list, and your opinion of things you notice can easily be shifted by the same priming process. The right set of words will render an open minded person momentarily more judgemental, or an authoritarian type more moderate in their assessment of things.
This explains the Buddhist script/writing that you just have to see to enlighten you. Indeed, in fact it is its own style of meditation. Sitting and clearing the mind as you focus entirely on penning some spiritual sutra or scripture. The word scripture simply means written text, but the meaning of a phrase sinks in due to our language instinct even without conscious thought.
Hence the tradition of caligraphy I expect? Yes, that was its origin. Commercial book production more or less didn’t exist at the time, so the discipline of calligraphy was as much an act of reverence for the text as it was a way of making it aesthetically pleasing. Rapid duplication of texts occurred first in China though not on the scale of the printing press.
The monks duplicating the Bible. Yes, that was the reason the monks penned the Bible repeatedly. It wasn’t labour. It was an act of religious devotion.
So yes, those elaborate arcane circle symbols, the alchemical diagrams and what not, it is possible to learn to read those, but you would have to delve into multiple sources to do so. This is the benefit of having an actual instructor. The mentor in magick serves to help you piece together what you will only find part of in the actual texts, as well as serving as a guide through the initiation process which is a more experiential instruction than book learning as many call it.
I am not a big fan of many modern “mystagogues” myself. They make spooky statements about the danger of not having a mentor, and while there is a danger, the bulk of their warnings are more self-serving than anything else.
Our mistakes are the mentor. Actually, there is a bit more of an issue there. As you take up and pursue a magickal practice, the techniques and experiences serve to inflame the perception, if you will. They enhance and possibly even over exaggerate aspects of the individuals mind and without some sort of anchor it can be possible to become lost in a pseudo-schizophrenic state. It “inspires”, and just as science has confirmed the link between genius and madness, it can accidently leave you in a state of artificially induced madness, and few are those who have much of an instinct for the labyrinth they walk into as they undertake this work.
I’ve seen some warnings like that in books, and was always curious what might happen. Usually not much. The person has a little episode, gets scared and puts the whole practice behind them.
It reminds me of those chain letters you get that warns of something terrible happening if you don’t send it on to ten of your friends. I think I can see the parallel there.
I care enough about my friends to not send them those silly things in the first place. Well, the standing traditions do have a vested interest in fostering dependency on their preferred organization. Rather than teach would be seekers how to discover the instincts to explore on their own, they instead foster a dependency on their own paradigm. Religion does this also, but it happens in magickal groups almost systematically. They rely on the uncertainty normal human beings experience after subscribing to one paradigm that they feel when encountering any other.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.