I was sent a link about Tim Wallace-Murphy’s book ‘Hidden Wisdom: Secrets of the Western Esoteric Tradition’, which I have put in my Amazon basket already. It is such a lovely lecture, presented by an equally lovely man. He goes into a lot of detail about the esoteric traditions and their roots, ranging as far back as the Ancient Egyptians, Ancient Greeks/Romans with information on the Knights Templar and symbology. However, for this post I am only going to pull out one or two areas that rung true to me, or at least got me thinking.
Watch the lecture here, it’s a must see!
It is the ideal lecture on understanding where your magickal teachings come from. More than anything, I picked up early on about the difference between religion and spirituality, in which he stated and agreed with an old friend that religion is man-made, whilst spirituality is natural and free. I have always thought this, and deep down I knew I was spiritual, and always felt akin to my spiritual friends. I was pretty much alone in my early theories, arguing back and fourth with religious people from all walks of life, whether it was Christians, Wiccans and most recently, a handful of Thelemites. They all pretty much said the same thing, “You need religion to get on in life. You can’t have spirituality without religion.” Which I have disproved so many times; I am living proof. On the other side, when I say that I believe esoteric traditions to be more spiritually grounded, people have often told me I am wrong too. Exempli gratia, witchcraft is spirituality, Druidry and Thelema are considered religions with a direct link to spiritual purity, and so I would categorise them as being ‘Spiritual Religions’. As much as I dislike the word religion, I use it to emphasise the difference between freedom and structure (or doctrine). What has me perplexed is the fact that something like Thelema, which is a religion, clearly teaches you that in order to be spiritual you must go out and seek that natural water for your own heart, which is a spiritual notion, so I can’t think of Thelema as a religion all the time. Thelema is too beautiful and life affirming to have a dirty word like “Religion’ bestowed on it? Am I crazy? I can feel the crazy looks…
It is nice to know that my theories aren’t all hokum after all. Guru Jonboi (haha) would agree with me, on the grounds that spirituality and religions are two different things. Thinking back to the first phone call we had when we spoke about their differences, listening to what he was saying sent warmth down my spine; everything he said, was almost word for word coming from my mind. It felt great. To this day we still read from the same page, regardless of where we are spiritually. He leans more to the Eastern philosophies, whilst I roam the wilds of the Ancients.
Later on Wallace-Murphy goes into detail about the early Ancient Egyptian influence on the creation of Judaism. I came across a few similarities and arguments during my research and practice days. I often looked up the beginnings of The Emerald Tablet, The Kybalion and its inspirations, Kemeticism and the famed Hermes Trismestagus who could have been Moses. It’s fascinating information I tell you. It makes me think up new possible theories, but I have taught myself not to say anything out loud to people in case I am stomped on by a hundred angry men (that’s why I write on my blog, only a few eyes read it, so I can get away with it! :P).
I have always felt proud of where I was going, knowing I was right all along. All of the lessons, paths and practices I have adopted are spiritual without a doubt, and to top it off, they all fall under Hermetic practises, and Thelema most certainly. As I have mentioned a few times, my spiritual life in the last 13 years has grown, and I have only dropped Wicca, the Wiccan Rede and the minor Celtic traditions as the religious aspect of my search for a religiously spiritual home. Everything else has stayed firmly in place, as I need them all to function as a witch, Thelemite and esoteric occultist. Gnosis anyone? Joke.
I am so happy to finally prove that I am on the right track! In your face! XD