Having left the comfort zone of the narrow-mindedness of Probationer’s repetition of practice, the Neophyte will surely rush into a beautiful colorful garden of flowers, rites, and contemplations that now stand so beautifully before him, waiting only for him to pick them, where he would realize that something is wrong. The more he practices, the further he moves away from the attainment itself. He has smelled the beautiful rose so strong that his senses got dull, and he could no longer feel any sort of divine scent. Out of all the desire for attainment, the Aspirant conceived a thought within himself that practice and ritual lead him to something entirely given by nature, which he would otherwise have come to without doing anything. And instead of dealing with attainment and enjoyment with the holy concubine, he is now working and studying so much that he is left alone in his temple. He seems to smell the ominous smell of this stale kitchen; he intuitively feels that practices move him further away from the goal, because in fact, nowhere is it assumed that any practice leads to any attainment. Why we think so is an entirely different thing, similarly as any practice of Yoga takes the Aspirant further away from Yoga.
There are two ways the Neophyte acts. One is to go through a multitude of practices; the other is much different and more specific – to have a single lesson, technique, or method until complete transcendence of that and no other has been achieved. But the wisest thing by far is to practice both aspects of work. The first way may be suitable during usual daily exercises in the grade, while the second should be exercised occasionally, once a month, for example, or even at the end of each grade in order to completely overcome “it” and enter the required sphere completely. It is like fire; the first heats up the food and keeps the meal on the table pleasant. The second burns and destroys the remains of the same food, cleaning the stench and decay, preparing and disinfecting silverware for tomorrow’s feast.
It is exactly this second thing that is of our interest, and, astonishingly, this method is so sadly excluded from our strategy. Unlike the practices that Neophyte does daily, which were presented to him in the best way by his Superior and clearly described in our books, there is a way of performing these same practices that affect the Aspirant’s program so differently, which tickle him and make him smile transforming his aspirations in a lively and inspiring way – intensive work with only one technique, so to speak, lesser Abramelins, completely neglecting “everything else.” Certainly, neither lesser nor greater Abramelin contains anything of a silly idea such as “everything else,” but an individual will certainly feel this in his first magical retreat.
It is quite sad that the term retreat is misunderstood to such an extent. The Aspirants of the Great White Brotherhood loathe caves and deserts. They really find every place in the Universe suitable for a retreat. In the end, that term is something quite the opposite of what it really means. A star cannot retreat; it can only radiate what it already is and go along the way it can only ever go; a retreat is an illusion of the star that with some work it will go along that way faster and better and that it will radiate its light more and even stronger. The present Æon invites its magicians to work together, in beds as much as in caves, to exchange light and not guard it. To expand and dissipate, not to retreat. However, there are certainly elements within the idea of retreat that a magician should successfully incorporate into his own work and get the most out of this for his grade.
Every magical retreat is a true reflection of the Aspirant’s inventiveness and courage. Yet, it is not whether he will have the courage to implement it or not – it is something completely different, the courage to construct the whole work for himself. Six months of Abramelin are perhaps one of the most significant manifestations of the magician’s manipulative neurosis, where those six months actually last a lifetime and where something most important is never actually accomplished. This is not only the courage to jump into the Abyss but the courage to make a pirouette during that divine fall that will amaze fate, applauding the magician. The Aspirant needs such courage. He is not afraid of falling; he consciously jumped into the unknown. He does his best to enjoy that short time of fall that becomes eternity. He eternally delights the anticipation of the moment of his fall, and in that anticipation, he finds the creativity to make not a Great, but a Work of true art. For every work of art is a Great Work in small, and vice versa.
Already as the Neophyte, the Aspirant should approach the very Abramelin with extreme skepticism, not in understanding the technique but in understanding the mechanism. What is stated as a parameter of placing the soul and raising awareness within the embryo is during the third month of pregnancy? And just after 6 months, a being should see the light of the LVX and the experience of the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel, in this case, passing through the gates of heaven – being born as a human. After that, the Aspirant is destined to face the four great Princes of Evil and understand the Tetragrammaton in its pure form – as an illusion, or “evil”; isn’t all this a reference to one much more natural process that happens with every consciousness upon birth on this planet? He accepts matter and the Tetragrammaton as the “law” within which he acts and where he is “trapped.” Indeed, let one Neophyte consider the mechanism of Abramelin as something straightforward and natural, and let him remove all the shells and scales of a religious and mystical pond in it. Let him try to approach this phenomenon from a completely different angle than he could have had so far about this sacred operation. However, by no means should he reject the opinion he has about all this and his inner sense of truth he has acquired so far.
Enlightenment does not happen due to the application of the correct technique – on the contrary, it is nothing different than in its basic form when it appeared in the East. It is exactly in the phenomenon of migration of such an abstract thought as enlightenment. If the Aspirant sits down to enlighten himself, nothing will happen except that he will be sitting. But if he starts moving, he will be enlightened the moment he gets up from a sitting position, shifting observation from something as unreal as enlightenment to something as simple as making a move to and getting up. The moment he stops thinking about something – he will “be” in something; it is this step of giving up and shifting from the object of expectation to a completely different object, which is all we need. It is completely irrelevant what the nature of objects is. The whole essence is precisely in that transition, about which his attention cannot know anything – because it is too busy with the object, leaving the process of transition completely undefended.
Each of our instructions and techniques is nothing tangible or precise to lead the Aspirant to the ultimate goal. They are only aphrodisiacs of the soul and have no other function by itself. The Aspirant can find himself neurotically writing down about a complete failure in his diary when only yesterday he “did the same” and was able to achieve the ultimate goal of success. Now, all is the same – but completely disappointing. We are quite powerless within the pedagogical framework of our art; we are often unable to build a candidate to use things as he pleases and build what we call a method on his own. We so consistently and routinely reveal instructions from our books (Libri 13, 33, 61, 185, 203, and 489), which stand so firmly above our Order that the foundations themselves have begun to tremble and crumble down. We must be flexible not only in applying methods but also in understanding the final attainment. Both things are equally just a matter of an agreement that describes the ultimate experience completely arbitrarily in a similar way as if we wanted to suggest and describe silence by notes and music. No note, no matter how high or low, quiet or loud, no interval, chord, harmony, or phrase will in any way be able to describe silence. The more we use notes, the further away we will be from what we want to convey. We need all notes and sounds to disappear; then it will be silence indeed. It is similar to proper performance – if we do it correctly, it is attainment itself. It does not come after the performance because it is not the result – on the contrary – a performer who performs the ritual by performing it correctly achieves success at that moment which is completely irrelevant from the performance itself – the moment he realizes that the goal of the ritual is not to perform the ritual, and no matter how well or badly we perform there is always just one and only possible outcome – and that is a failure. Every performance is a paradox in itself, every exercise is the worst of all magician’s curses. The moment the artist tries to write down and remember a good improvisation, that moment, he tears the wings of his own Angel. But all our duty is to show and learn that there is really nothing to learn but to free the Aspirant’s being to use what pleases him at that moment without any form or preparation; to eat when hungry, his hunger will by no means cease by preparing food, only by eating it. To drink when thirsty, neither before nor after. To sleep when dreamy, not to force himself to go to bed either sooner or later than his nature tells him. The connotation is exactly the same as performing a ritual or any other practice. In the same way that an artist performs improvisation, without any established norm, relying only on creativity and his own intuition, so does a magician have to perform a ritual, without a purpose or an aim – merely creating his own work of art, the art of this Great Work. What a painting is for an artist, a ritual must be for a magician. He does not perform it for any other reason than pleasure and enjoyment in itself, not in the purpose.
As for Abramelin, there are completely different methods that lead to change. Whether it will lead to the Knowledge and Conversation, we really cannot say with certainty, just as no one can really say whether those few months can yield the same thing. For the Neophyte, the idea of a magical retreat is a great place that will move him further in his grade and boost him in an utterly creative way, allowing him to gain certain knowledge that he simply will not be in a position to acquire through his usual practices.
As already mentioned, there are two ways of working on a grade – the first way is to work with practices related to the Neophyte daily, which involves reading various literature focused on that grade and with the Aspirant’s mind narrowly focused on the task. But this task contains many smaller units in itself, which can be separated entirely by their content. In other words, in all its focus, the Aspirant is, so to speak, distracted by a multitude of exercises of which he has little foreknowledge and to which he sometimes has no other relationship than faith that they will lead him in some way to what he aspires to in such a lovely way. But in real life, he strongly feels that he needs something else, something that will group all the knowledge and thoughts he has had every day for months or even years and frame all that knowledge giving him a clear and precise idea of where he should go with all that anyway.
A magical retreat is actually a perfidious attack, which equally has two essential properties. The first is a temporary removal of all ideas except the one which he tries to sharpen to perfection and transcendence. Secondly, he seems to be resting from hard work and the habit of the mind to function in a certain rhythm by harnessing himself even more, having in mind just one thing. At the same time, he removes all his barricades which otherwise stand firm during normal work; this is a tactical change that completely changes the course of the war, leading to an apparent truce. There is only one thing that makes this retreat always so fruitful for the Aspirant – the fact that he does not often do this, just occasionally – once a month or maybe even once during the grade.
Let him take a closer look at something completely concrete; retreating just like that is hard considering everyday life and work – the weekend is quite perfect for something like this. The Aspirant will already be preparing himself for the work on Friday, but he must determine what he will so boldly strive for during those entire two days before he does anything. It can be a practice or even an idea that he wants to realize fully. In the case of the Neophyte, it could be an idea of the Angel, thus making this weekend a small Abramelin. Maybe the Pentagram ritual, which is both simple and perfect for an endeavor like this. Or maybe Liber Samekh or even Liber Pyramidos, but one should definitely choose something that needs a shorter performance time. The emphasis here is not so much on time for an individual performance, as on the way we will poison a long period of time with repetitions. Certainly, we could use some other treats, such as sleep and communication deprivation. Let’s say the idea of Angel is the one that will carry us on. The Aspirant will make a special chapter in his diary for this retreat, temporarily suspending all other practices and responsibilities he has, introducing a special mode now, a priority mode in his work that puts everything else aside. If he has work to do on Friday, he will do it entirely normally, by no means focusing on what awaits him after that. On the contrary, he must not announce the idea of a retreat to his nature. This retreat is a tactical shock for his growth, which must not be mitigated by thinking about how things will be performed, creating a strategy, or writing a detailed plan for the weekend during Friday. No way, Friday must go quite usually. Also, he has to take care of his diet – by no means should he eat anything too salty and spicy, making his night between Friday and Saturday difficult, which is very important for the whole operation. He should also fill the fridge with light food, as he will not be going out from Saturday morning until Monday. One detail is very important, and that is to wake up much earlier on Friday than he usually does. If he gets up at 7 o’clock, for example, that should be as early as 5 o’clock on this occasion. It does not matter what he will do from 5 am, but he should make sure not to go back to bed in any case. The Aspirant should get up 2 hours earlier than usual, ideally between 4 and 5 am. After the regular business or other obligations on Friday, he can go to a restaurant in the company of himself, because he will be extremely close to that person in the next 48 hours. He should feel free to go out to a pleasant dinner, but take care not to drink too much alcohol because he will need a healthy and deep sleep that night. At that dinner, he has to think about how he could work or what practice he would do during Saturday and Sunday. In case he chooses to work with the Angel, let it be a simple but effective method. He can make a simple sign of Horus, and during that performance, he should strive for the Angel with all his strength and his whole being however he knows, even if he knows nothing about it, he must manifest that “nothing” completely. If he has a childhood dream that acts as a clue to him, he must do his best to remember that dream during the sign of Horus. Instead of a vibrating a name, he should simply exhale slowly, imagining his thought of the Angel going from him to the end of the Universe, which is then moved by that breath like a tidal wave. And just when the breath comes to the end of that active infinity, he should withdraw himself to the sign of Harpocrates. It is extremely important to imagine how that wave returns to him like the cosmic tide, bringing him experience when he stays passive in the sign of Harpocrates, expecting something to appear within him in the form of a feeling. Even impatience of waiting for that feeling is an emotion, and if it occurs – simply amplify it with the sign of Silence. He will embrace everything that comes up now, everything that comes with that wave, came as a message from divine providence. From the sign of Horus to the sign of Harpocrates, this whole movement takes a little longer than a few seconds. What is important is that he understands two amplitudes of that wave:
- an active one, as a sign of Horus, where he strives for the Angel to the best of his efforts and knowledge, imagining how he screams his name, calling him, dying in his arms, crying, doing whatever he thinks is necessary. However, he should know that after that sign, there is nothing – he has to imagine that he only has a few seconds of life left, as long as the sign of Horus lasts while he is sliding with his foot and reaching with his arms forward, he has that short time to dedicate himself to Him, his Holy Guardian Angel. He has to burn out doing it – this must be the highest act of Bhakti Yoga.
- a passive one, in which he is now doing nothing but listening to the echo of the previous action.
This wave goes from him to the end of the Universe and back. He has to feel that wave – the first one as willing and active, and the second one as passive and extremely quiet, as a mere reflection of the first. Let the wave come back to him with new knowledge, or rather, new feelings. Whatever it feels like, he has to live through and amplify it. Now, in the same way, he should experience the sign of Silence – which ignites any feeling that arises, amplifying it in his mental apparatus. Like fanning the flame, the sign of Silence is exactly that fanning of any impressions the sign of Horus brings him.
Let the practitioner quit the idea to understand this fully and in detail. It should all be a game – not an instruction. He must understand it as daring the Angel, like a game of hide-and-seek with him. These are all just incidental theses and reminders of something completely unimportant and ordinary. The more we give importance by thinking about this, the more difficult it will be for us to feel that subtle and quiet feeling in the sign of Silence which will be provoked by our thought of the Angel, as unraveling the yarn of light, more and more. During the retreat, the Aspirant will have time to adjust all of this; it is essential to set the form loosely and flexibly at first, without excessive detail, to make it look like a living bait for the nature of the Angel which cunningly escapes from being caught defying all logic and form.
After a pleasant dinner, he shall return home. At this point, he should turn off the phone and prevent anyone from reaching him, until Monday at least. He can leave a message for people that he has gone away or tell a similar juicy lie enjoying this scam. What follows is a long and exhaustive shower; he should spend at least half an hour to an hour in the bathroom. If he has a bathtub, let him fill it with hot water, play his favorite ambient music, dim the candlelight and lie in the water without thinking about anything. Or at least pretend not to think about anything; the ultimate goal here is to enjoy and relax completely. Therefore, he should do whatever relaxes him and makes him feel good. He should wash really well, imagining that he has to wash off the armor of everyday life. One should be naked and stay that way for the next two days. After all of this, he should try to go to bed and fall asleep soon. It is quite possible that already at this step, difficulties will arise, that is, he might have insomnia. That is good because it means that his being reacts and defends itself from the appearance of that sublime and magnificent LVX; his being already smells the Angel and reacts with an allergy to it. Then, one should wake up with a pre-set alarm as early as 4 am and feel free to make oneself a coffee and start keeping records from the first moment of his awareness. He should write down whatever comes to his mind that he thinks maybe even remotely important, sketching the reality and looking for the ultimate clue to follow later towards his Great Work. He has to write down what he has dreamed about, how he slept, his expectations, and his mental state. If he feels anxious, uncomfortable, maybe he is enthusiastic? He may also feel absolutely nothing. He has to write all this down, at least in brief. He should spend some time with himself, thinking a bit about what awaits him, be persistent in the mild drowsiness that is likely to occur. At 5 o’clock in the morning, the active part of his magical retreat begins, and from that time on, what will adorn this whole endeavor begins – performing a short practice that he has outlined the day before. In this case, it is a dedication to his Angel with the sign of Horus, in the way we have already defined, finishing with the sign of Harpokrates. After that, he should write down what he experienced, together with his brief comment. What is important is to make an assessment and a grade of the whole experience. He should try to use a wider range of numbers, from 1 to 100 or even from 1 to 1000. The higher the number, the greater the sensitivity and closeness to the Angel. Only his gentle feeling and imagination should be the guide here, by no means detailed and dedicated analytics.
After half an hour, he should do the same; practice and record. He has to keep doing so until Saturday noon. If he feels sleepy, he has to refrain from sleep by all means and meditation or anything that would restore his alertness. In fact, he will do absolutely nothing between repetitions of the same practice: no television, no books to read, no studying or reading about the Angel. Half an hour between practices must be drowned into complete passivity. During that time, the mechanism of the Great Work is at the peak of its power, completely behind the barriers of the Ego, which thinks that this is some kind of heavenly holiday. However, very soon, everything will get a different course.
After Saturday noon, the practice should be repeated every 20 minutes. It is very important that the Aspirant must not compensate for sleep in any way; he can drink coffee, of course, it is even advisable, but taking even a short power nap is out of the question. He shall continue at such a pace until 8 pm, after which one must accelerate, and the practice will be carried out every 15 minutes, once and again until the midnight between Saturday and Sunday, when the final part of the retreat will take place with the practice being exercised every 5 minutes. It is quite probable that already during Saturday, the Aspirant will have various types of emotional discharges, euphoria, outbursts of enthusiasm, insights, but also complete ambivalence and stagnation. Let him progress further and continue to follow the procedure and schedule at all costs. After midnight, he will do his practice every five minutes, and it will last until 5 am. It is quite certain that by then, both his physical and mental apparatus will be exhausted. At 5 o’clock, let him lie down and fall asleep as this will be the sleep of the righteous. It is a must for him to wake up naturally on Sunday, without an alarm clock. A dream that he has had will contain precious senses and knowledge. He must remember everything he dreamed immediately after getting up; even if it was just a slight hint or recollection of a strange part of the dream, he must find something specific. Indeed, he will be under the influence of a great change of his being as early as Saturday, but what we are in pursuit of is that dream, which could possibly be lucid, and which will be a chemical reaction under the stimulus of the Angel. The ultimate essence is found in causing drunkenness of the Aspirant by exhaustion and intent. These two substances seem to act upon the mind of the practitioner like a sedative, in such a way that his mind will naturally enter the realm of the spirit. That pleasant warmth of tired eyelids and the dizziness with endless repetition of practice make the perfect basis for change. At that moment, the Aspirant will manifest the Vision and Voice on his own, in the way that suits his nature best. Here, we are really trying to omit everything that can affect the Aspirant’s projection in advance, which would not be good at all; but one thing is enough to say – this type of practice can bring more insights and experiences than months or even years of the usual way of working. The quantity of performance and a complete revision in the work seem to bring a complete change in the perception of the quality of the performance.
This is all about practical instructions on retreat; it would certainly be good to mention the variants that can take the Aspirant to a completely different division of the work.
The first variant is more aggressive and more difficult. It does not include sleep deprivation nor performance during the whole weekend. It is limited to one day only, from morning to midnight, and we should get up fresh and rested, but certainly not after 11 am. This practice contains nothing but a brief thought of what we are striving for. If it is the Angel, then it is a brief thought about him. If it is enlightenment, then it is a very simple and short thought about it. That thought must be more of an emotion than an empty intellectual observation. It must not be passive thinking but an active emotion towards a thought. We need to feel something about what we are thinking about. That is a very important detail. There is one practice within our Order that we will convey here in its full form.
10. Listen, cousin of a close kind, is not your breath a Serpent, and your mind a Mongoose?
9. Serpent rises, then go down.
8. Mongoose knows that Serpent is deadly in her ascent, not in her descent.
7. Let the Mongoose do not miss a single rise of a Serpent.
6. For in one rise there is a certain death.
5. Still, let the Mongoose not be distracted by fear.
4. Yet, let him know that Death will be the crown of everything.
3. Also, the Mongoose will follow the rises of Serpent from Strength until Joy (from Ra to Tum, from dawn to sunset).
2. He will die a thousand times, and after each death, another bite of Scorpion will be waiting for him.
1. And still, in every rising of a Serpent, let him feel the scent of sweet Adonai; yea, let him feel the scent of sweet Adonai (this exercise relates to whole day Dharana on the curse of breathing.)
Serpent’s rise and fall are inhalation and exhalation, of course, while the Mongoose is Aspirant’s attention. The practice is done in the period between the dawn and the sunset – between Ra and Tum. In fact, all the wisdom is in the course of a day; whatever he does, wherever he goes, every time the Aspirant inhales, he must actively feel an emotional reaction to his Angel, while the exhaling should be completely passive and devoid of any action. The Aspirant will often want to slow down inhaling during that short time to spend more time focusing on the Angel, but that is completely inconvenient. It is precisely the shorter time that leads to quicker and easier success – because, in that short time, the mind has no possibility to build a defense against such a meaningless reaction which will poison his entire apparatus completely and like a snake, and by midnight, the Angel will already be there, at hand. During the time, the Aspirant will often simply forget that he needs to breathe with emotional intention towards the Angel; it can take up even a few minutes before he realizes and remembers what he really needs to do, which is perfectly fine – let him gently return to the given performance. As in the first variant, the mechanism of what has to be done when inhaling must be clearly set – one simple emotion that arises in us when we are thinking about the Angel must be felt. He does not need to think about the Angel, but rather what is felt when we are thinking about him. Imagine that emotional reaction to the Angel is like fanning the flame; let him imagine that he is blowing into that ember with our inhale – it is heating up even more while spreading the nature of LVX inside us. On the other hand, exhaling should be completely passive, not thinking about that divine flame at all or about the Angel in any way. Exhalation is intended for rest, but only for a short time because, in the next inhalation, he should again enflame his emotion toward the idea of his own Angel, magnifying that emotion to the very limits of the visible Universe, as if he wanted to burst out and dissipate.
Inhaling must be a provocation to the very feeling of Adonai. Whatever it may be, even if there is nothing, it must be exactly nothing regarding neither less nor more than the Angel. It is very important to catch the wave. Whatever is felt, even a complete failure has to be the failure toward the Angel.
This is all done until midnight, and then we can continue on our own, or maybe most suitable – to surrender to the divine influence of a dream on our soul. After a refreshing night’s sleep, on Sunday, we should simply go outside and listen to the inner voice that ignited the day before and now warmed by it, wandering around the city completely intuitively, entering the alleys and stores which we feel we need to enter. When we find ourselves at a crossroads, we need to feel whether the Angel is calling us to go left or right. When we find ourselves in front of a bus at the station, whether it calls us to get on or not, and all that day, we should actively provoke synchronicity and pay close attention to every event that the Universe can offer during such a sublime stroll through the garden of God. Every time we stumble, we need to see what we stumbled upon. Every time an ambulance passes, we have to follow it. Every time we hear a tram bell, we should look in that direction. Every event, whatever we see, whatever we spot, we shall consider as the call of the Angel in a three-dimensional world. This should be gladly accepted. We have to follow our nose. That is the best route in the Universe. This is an active and walking meditation of the highest kind, which, provoked by the practice of the previous day, can yield heavenly fruit in the work of a Neophyte.
Finally, another remarkable experiment equally uses the idea of retreat, which can be so valuable to the Neophyte. In this experiment, we retreat to our room and darken it to the point of complete blackness. Windows must be covered with opaque material, and the edges are framed with some black tape so that even a single particle of light is prevented from invading. The room really has to be completely dark, it is not easy to achieve, but it can be done after some time and effort. What is being sought now is quite a simple instruction; all it takes is for the Aspirant to spend two entire days in complete darkness. There are a couple of difficulties here, but they can be easily overcome with inventive ideas. One of them is his need to use the toilet, and for this occasion, he can simply put an opaque cloth over his eyes or around his head and keep his eyes closed while groping to the toilet. Food and water can be put in the room in advance, so there should be no significant problems related to that either. The whole experiment should start in early Friday evening; 3 hours should be spent in a completely dark room, keeping eyes wide open and thinking and doing anything his mind can imagine. Then he should fall asleep in that darkness and, most importantly, wake up in precisely the same dark ambiance, only to continue where he left off. If he fell asleep during Friday night, he will now have to spend the whole Saturday in complete darkness. During Saturday, various insights and revelations start coming out of the Aspirant. This way, darkness acts like light, indicating hidden and dwarfed things. In that darkness, he sees nothing but himself, looking with his eyes all around him, seeing exactly the same ambiance, yet those eyes see everything but themselves. They see nothing, and in all that nothingness, he is the only one present. The Aspirant can do anything that pleases him. He can practice or contemplate, or simply do nothing – which is actually the most difficult. Then, another night to sleep in complete darkness follows, and dreams now receive the epithets of complete change – the Aspirant’s disorientation in time and space begins during this period. Everything becomes nothing. Even all that blackness will convert into nothingness. No words can even remotely describe the depth of change of the Aspirant being initiated by this technique. The experiment ends on Sunday night, just before bedtime. The Aspirant should certainly enter the light slowly, and the whole feeling of returning to the world brings such an intensive sensation. This is such a magnificent experiment that nothing which had been experienced until then will be even remotely similar and powerful, with particular value for a Neophyte.
There is one brilliant variation of this exercise where everything stays the same; only he will not be alone in a dark room – he needs to spend all this obscure time with his partner. The best tantra is to be with a partner in the dark for a long time, such brilliant things can happen. After a while, the feeling of restrained sexuality and anything that used to adorn his relationship before getting completely lost; after one day in the dark, partners hug and cuddle, all without any visual signals. In the end, after two days, the love affair in that dark world represents something that will remain etched in the Aspirants for the rest of their lives. It is precisely this relationship that the Superior and the Student have, and in the end, the one the Aspirant and the Angel have – in a slightly softened form, but it is quite the same peculiarity.
Over time, in that warm darkness, each form will naturally take shape and form of the Angel, like water that sooner or later finds its way to the source. This is the ultimate trick by which the Aspirant unstoppably deceives himself. In the dark, there is neither time nor attention for failure. There are mechanisms in it that are so favorable for the cultivation of the Angel, in a way that the Aspirant cannot even notice. This darkness is such a suitable trap, both for the Aspirant and for the Angel, for indeed, in the darkness, there is no difference of either proximity, distance, or perception. Therefore, the Aspirant and the Angel are equally neither the Aspirant nor the Angel. Failure stands across success. In the dark, everything is one darkness, so they are one as well. It takes some time for the mind to turn off its mechanisms of action gradually. Then one enters a tranquil realm, which will accept the Aspirant giving him a unique life experience.
Although he has subordinated the whole thing to the concept of the Angel, it is done in precisely the same way with any other practice, be it the ritual of the Pentagram, the Liber Samekh, Liber Pyramidos, the Middle Pillar, or some personally devised exercise – although working with the Angel would be quite suitable for the grade of the Neophyte. Something like this can completely change his being, forcing him to repeat this kind of work throughout his life for all sorts of things – even completely and seemingly ordinary ones. Once a year, once a month, once a week even. He can do physical exercises, ritual masturbation, or something completely different. He can add and mix previous ideas; why not masturbate, prolonging climax along with the idea of the Angel, described earlier? Either way, these experiences can steer his life in one particular direction. His life will obtain a new jewel, which will shine so sublimely and strongly. As if he got two brand new days in an equally brand new life, it will be a gift he could never get in any other way. By this, he will prolong his life in a completely different sense of the word, not in time but presence.