Structuring Praxis

Unorganised, disorganised, heterodox or individual beliefs, ideas and praxis sharing.

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WildWolf
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Structuring Praxis

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How to structure your praxis?

This is a qualm i've struggled with since i've started training. There is on;y 24hrs in a day, so how do we choose what to spend our time on? Additionally, there are so many beneficial and cool practices...and so many fields of knowledge to explore....tempting fruits of Gnosis just waiting to be plucked and enjoyed.

I've had some insights in this area, so i though i'd share them with the forum. So far, there are (IMO) 3 dynamics that need to be looked at when choosing praxis.

1. Elemental Constitution
2. Astrological Cycles
3. Power of 3

Elemental Constitution: meaning the natural strengths/affinities that you possess and will find most enriching to train. I can opine on this topic all day...but suffice to say they are there and are reflected in our Astrological chart, the hobbies we enjoy and the careers we pursue. As a practitioner, it's important to learn these core truths about oneself.

Astrological Cycles: In the past, i'd never paid much attention to astrological conditions and praxis and I'm discovering this is a major blindside on my part. When it comes to structuring our praxis, we need to take these things into account. I am not talking particularly about large singular events (though those do influence our training), but rather longer astrological cycles that are constantly creating a rhythm within our small sphere of reality. For example, i've noted through divination, that i'm currently in the midst of a 14 year long cycle where it would be most advantageous to do specific types of practices.

When the cosmic winds are at your back and you see favorable conditions to sail....jump on and go. Doors will open easier than ever. Keep in mind, that other practices may be unfavorable to specific cycles.

Power of 3: there is something magickal about this number.....it helps to get things delivered and keep energy moving. So...choose 3 practices and keep it at that number.

-------------------------------

-Currently, the way i view my 3 praxis structure is planetary. Meaning, the core practice, which is in alignment with the current astrological cycle, is what i put in the center of my praxis solar system (Sun) and then the other 2 practices (planets) which i love, i have circulating around the core. This setup is quite potent. At the end of a cycle, i will switch out that Sun or Core Practice with what is advantageous with the next cycle and keep my 2 planets the same.

-Still exploring this style of training and will be for awhile. If i have anymore deep insights i'll probably update here. Cheers to those doing the work.

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Amor
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Re: Structuring Praxis

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Initially I did the meditation I was taught, typically 3 or 4 times a day.

After perhaps 5 years, while meditating, for a week, each morning I was shown a different technique.

The basic mantra meditation has remained with the new light/intent skills applied in situations that seem suitable.

These days, occasionally I still get new/variation techniques suggested through brain thoughts/images

Quite often during the day I will be prompted to some energy/consciousness/intent work

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Re: Structuring Praxis

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Amor wrote: Tue Jul 05, 2022 11:45 pm Initially I did the meditation I was taught, typically 3 or 4 times a day.

After perhaps 5 years, while meditating, for a week, each morning I was shown a different technique.

The basic mantra meditation has remained with the new light/intent skills applied in situations that seem suitable.

These days, occasionally I still get new/variation techniques suggested through brain thoughts/images

Quite often during the day I will be prompted to some energy/consciousness/intent work
There's always deeper levels and layers to explore. I think that's one of the funnest things about the path....getting knocked back to lvl 1.

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Re: Structuring Praxis

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An update on the Astrological part of this post.

I talked a bit about the Long-term astrological influences (cycles..etc) on cultivation, but i am now gaining a deeper understanding of the daily effects of these phenomena. Since i've started practicing Meditation, daily training and its importance for advancement was drilled into my psyche and as a result, i've trained religiously. However, that flavor of Linear thinking, must be tapered with an understanding of the constant waves of cosmic power that are rippling through our reality and how they interact with daily work.

Just as certain practices are favorable in Long-term cycles, during the day to day training, you gotta be attuned to what's going on and train accordingly. To give context, the current cyclical practice (Sun) that i'm doing, is energetically Yin, yet i've noticed that in all the days so far, there hasn't been a single time where it was unfavorable too the point that i felt resistance.

On the other hand, other practices outside of the central position, need to be coordinated more carefully, otherwise i can miss the wave and find it very difficult to develop "momentum" for the day. It's strange...when you try to do practices, in an energetic atmosphere that is non-conducive ....you tend to run into a wall of internal resistance....things just get stuck and its like pulling teeth. When you force things in inauspicious situations.....it takes 20 lbs of effort to move a 1lb weight.

On the other hand, if your doing a practice that is aligned with the Long-term cycle, it almost does the work itself. I was in the shower before writing this post and without even realizing it, i started to do my Yin practices. The ball needs very little effort to be kept rolling.

Of-course, this information is not particularly useful, if you don't have the proper framework for your intentions (chosen practices).

What i've gotten into the habit of doing, is the day before next, i'll do a couple seconds of stillness meditation and ask/intuit, "what the best times are for me to do my other practices (outside of the solar)? So far, it has pulled through every time.

I'll keep experimenting and sharing my thoughts as it flows. In the past my approach has been to just "Will" myself to do my training everyday....but life is more complicated that just your own intentions. There is a subtle dance going on between you and all other cosmic forces.....and if you pay attention....that dance is a watershed for tremendous insight and opportunity.

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Re: Structuring Praxis

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The short answer is another question: "What are you trying to achieve?" But like most Socratic rejoinders, it's not especially helpful. So here are some general thoughts.

If you really want to pursue a deeper understanding and practice of magic, it has to be given priority in your daily life. It needn't be all that you do, but give it space, and keep that space for it. In a physical sense, this is a sanctum or temple (ideally) or at least (much more practically) an altar. Anything, really, CAN have symbolic value on an altar, but nothing ought to be there without a specific reason to be, connected to your spiritual work. You don't use it as a crap-catcher for phone chargers, junk mail, ashtrays, roach clips or car keys. And one useful trick is to have at lease ONE element in place - whether incense, a bowl of water you keep fresh, or flowers or food offerings or whatever - that receives attention once every day.

As the temple (ideal) or altar (practical) is to space, we also need a way to set aside some time.

I have, from time to time, chanced to find myself in circumstances, without any other pressing obligations, that very nearly met the requirements of a magical retreat, of the sort described in The Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage, and had the resources and interest to dive deep into my studies, and - boy, howdy! - was that instructive and productive.

But mostly, we are carving out time from other duties, to family, friends and partners, to employment, and to the necessary business of getting on with everyday life - what Baba Ram Dass called "chopping wood & carrying water". The trick with staying in the zone, even when dealing with these seeming obstacles or irrelevancies - and it is far easier said than done - is to pursue them mindfully. Play little games with yourself finding the metaphysical principals embodied in mundane tasks. Remind yourself that all of this, the world around us and the people in it - is part of the whole shebang.

Finding even an hour a day for uninterrupted study or practice can be difficult. Take it where you can get it. One useful hack, from olden times, was to use the period, after one has been asleep for a while, but has woken up to use the bathroom. Before you go back to bed - if you aren't deep in sleep deficit, and can usefully stay awake for a bit - instead of (or, perhaps, alongside) a midnight snack, go ahead and use that quiet time for your magical studies. This is the practical origin of the notion of "the witching hour."

As far as personal aptitudes and affinities go, a word of cautionary advice: it is easy to play to one's strengths - and, as far as getting a particular result, asap, is concerned, may well be the way to go. But it is useful to also slog through the things one is not naturally inclined toward, to keep development balanced, and maybe even discover where those inhibitions come from, and if not overcome them completely, at least develop some useful strategies for working past them at need.

I could say more - Gemini rising, yo - but this is a good start, so I'll leave it at that, for now.
"Who cannot draw upon three thousand years is living from hand to mouth." - Goethe

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Re: Structuring Praxis

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Caliban wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 2:04 pm The short answer is another question: "What are you trying to achieve?" But like most Socratic rejoinders, it's not especially helpful. So here are some general thoughts.

If you really want to pursue a deeper understanding and practice of magic, it has to be given priority in your daily life. It needn't be all that you do, but give it space, and keep that space for it. In a physical sense, this is a sanctum or temple (ideally) or at least (much more practically) an altar. Anything, really, CAN have symbolic value on an altar, but nothing ought to be there without a specific reason to be, connected to your spiritual work. You don't use it as a crap-catcher for phone chargers, junk mail, ashtrays, roach clips or car keys. And one useful trick is to have at lease ONE element in place - whether incense, a bowl of water you keep fresh, or flowers or food offerings or whatever - that receives attention once every day.

As the temple (ideal) or altar (practical) is to space, we also need a way to set aside some time.

I have, from time to time, chanced to find myself in circumstances, without any other pressing obligations, that very nearly met the requirements of a magical retreat, of the sort described in The Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage, and had the resources and interest to dive deep into my studies, and - boy, howdy! - was that instructive and productive.

But mostly, we are carving out time from other duties, to family, friends and partners, to employment, and to the necessary business of getting on with everyday life - what Baba Ram Dass called "chopping wood & carrying water". The trick with staying in the zone, even when dealing with these seeming obstacles or irrelevancies - and it is far easier said than done - is to pursue them mindfully. Play little games with yourself finding the metaphysical principals embodied in mundane tasks. Remind yourself that all of this, the world around us and the people in it - is part of the whole shebang.

Finding even an hour a day for uninterrupted study or practice can be difficult. Take it where you can get it. One useful hack, from olden times, was to use the period, after one has been asleep for a while, but has woken up to use the bathroom. Before you go back to bed - if you aren't deep in sleep deficit, and can usefully stay awake for a bit - instead of (or, perhaps, alongside) a midnight snack, go ahead and use that quiet time for your magical studies. This is the practical origin of the notion of "the witching hour."

As far as personal aptitudes and affinities go, a word of cautionary advice: it is easy to play to one's strengths - and, as far as getting a particular result, asap, is concerned, may well be the way to go. But it is useful to also slog through the things one is not naturally inclined toward, to keep development balanced, and maybe even discover where those inhibitions come from, and if not overcome them completely, at least develop some useful strategies for working past them at need.

I could say more - Gemini rising, yo - but this is a good start, so I'll leave it at that, for now.
Yeah...learning to "hold space" for training is of deep importance. Society and life in general throws so much "stuff" at us....that it can take some time to develop that "sorting ability", to create an atmosphere to pursue one's studies. There is a reason why many seekers in the past renounced worldly means and became monks.....its to create the optimal situation for spiritual pursuits....though that is a bit extreme for most people.

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Re: Structuring Praxis

Post by Amor »

Mostly I just meditate twice daily and the practical work just arrives - either in meditation or in situations I meet.

If I am too hopeless at the task I am given thought-images.

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Re: Structuring Praxis

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Meditation - is the foundation for all other practices and all other arts, imho.
All other arts can be discovered/uncovered through meditation, with some patience and focus.
Although.. Meditation can be discovered and uncovered too, from some other end.
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Re: Structuring Praxis

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Amor wrote: Sun Aug 14, 2022 7:11 am Mostly I just meditate twice daily and the practical work just arrives - either in meditation or in situations I meet.

If I am too hopeless at the task I am given thought-images.
Yea, there are many ways you can structure your practice. The above is just the way that i have found most optimal at this point in my training. Basically, the idea of having 3 basic practices and timing them accordingly everyday.

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Re: Structuring Praxis

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Cerber wrote: Thu Aug 18, 2022 8:33 pm Meditation - is the foundation for all other practices and all other arts, imho.
All other arts can be discovered/uncovered through meditation, with some patience and focus.
Although.. Meditation can be discovered and uncovered too, from some other end.
The path is a wild place, but its definitely hard to do any training.....without the Mind.

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Re: Structuring Praxis

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WildWolf wrote: Thu Aug 18, 2022 8:49 pm The path is a wild place, but its definitely hard to do any training.....without the Mind.
Especially without a quiet mind.
One needs a rather quiet a mind to hear trees speak, or what else can one do, when lost in a deep woods, with no one else around to ask for directions, but trees?
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Re: Structuring Praxis

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A small update.

On a more subtle level....once you have a basic, overall structure for your practice....there is the question of how much time you should allot for each. As a chronic over-trainer.....tempering my enthusiasm has always been a struggle. However, as i'm continuing my work and gradually learning to structure them better.....i've started to see training through a similar lens as weight lifting.

On days and Off Days. Giving time for Lifting and Recovering. Contracting and Stretching to maintain balance....etc. Too much practice can live you in a state of perpetual chi sickness.

Having the patience for Recovery is not something that i've found easy....but rest is also part of training and a useful tool for fine-tuning your curriculum. Sigh....can't say i have any final insights on this....as i'm still trying to figure out the proper rhythm for myself.....but the basic idea is there for usage. Cheers.
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