Returning Home

The practice allow us to “return home”, namely to tune in with something gentle and stable in ourselves. It allows us to experience a space inside of us, a space in which we literally feel good.
Often when we begin with an inner development practice, we are far from ourselves and fragmented; and this is not a metaphor, it’s the actual condition of most of the human beings: we are far from our true, intimate nature.

This condition makes us feel ill, incomplete, insecure, sad, tired… often tired even of the life we live.
But, during the practice- and I mean a real, concrete practice guided by a competent instructor- something happens, and this happens each time, sometimes with more and sometimes with less intensity. 

We begin to feel the illusory more farest, and closer to something more concrete and real inside of us, inner
What happens? Our state of consciousness changes.
It’s not true that our problems vanish, this would be an out-and-out falsehood: what happens is that we begin to see our problems in a different way. Such as before the practice we are the problem and, all at once we are not more the problem, but the observers of the same. Yes, able to observe it such as we could observe a map, looking it from on high.
In the field of inner growth, practice is fundamentally exiting from our identifications and “reentering home”. The center of ourselves, who and what we really are.

Posted in Awareness | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Strength

The strength that’s inside of us, is made by courage, determination and resistance. There are moments in life when we need strength, power of for “a right action”, namely the activation of a tank of latent energy we have inside of us. We all have inside much energy of what we think to have. But often it’s an external situation that allows us to discover such “secret” that we usually forget.

Such occasion is almost always an unexpected difficulty, so apparently something “negative”. However, it’s just such step out from the habitual schemes, from the line of less resistance, such “sojourn” in territories where we can’t remain relaxed and feel safe is a marvelous occasion to know ourselves a little bit better. Such occasions are usually related with physical, emotional or economical issues.

Accessing to such Force, doesn’t mean that when a complication happens we feel like lions, that we have to pretend that’s all well, nor with ourselves or the others.

It would be a great lie.

It’s dangerous and immature to avoid to look at the problem, and this attitude would lead us to greater problems.

Accessing to this Force allows that when, self- pity, discouragement, fear and judgment arise, we learn to don’t identify ourselves with such feelings; namely we don’t become perturbed.

We see our emotions arise such as waves that come from the horizon and gradually grow as they approach the coast; We can also go along with them a little bit, even cry (why not? It’s a shame?), but we shouldn’t allow them to become a tsunami.

To use the Force means to learn to not waste it, burn it in useless negative emotions.

Posted in Awareness | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beyond the appearances…while I am observing those persons

Maybe, we should have to take a look to what lies beyond the appearances. It’s there that we should learn to look.

We are often, very often, stuck in a series of conditioning is that deny us to see, really see. And, when we have understood what and how we should observe, we don’t have enough energy to do it.

We prefer a quiet life. Maybe a little bit monotonous, but in any case quiet. We remain in a scheme with faint tints while we could live in a picture with intense colours, but not only: we could also exit from the frames of such a picture.

Let’s try to get really in contact with the persons with which we live and interact, instead of choose a “voluntary isolation” we often justify as “our right of privacy”, but often, very often, is mere fear.

In order to grasp what lies behind the appearances, we have to question what we believe to having understood, and shift the look from the point where our attention is automatically attracted to the area that surrounds this point.

Let’s make an example: if we observe a person, let’s go beyond the act of listen its words.

Let’s try to observe its tone colour, the gestures and the posture, the clothes, the environment in which it use to live or where it works, its fellows, friends and how it interacts with them; if we lunch with this person, let’s continue to observe, what and how it eats, how it reacts to a setback or a problem,etc…

There are so many aspects that transpire beyond the appearances that we could notice… if only we could remember to observe a little bit.

And, observation, is not only an act we perform with our eyes, but with our outer and inner senses, preferably, as best we can, with our whole being.

In such a way, we could really understand better those near us, beyond how he or she believes of appear… beyond what we think to know about this person.

This is the gateway for empathy… and compassion.

Now we could really say to this person with sincerity:”Yes, I understand you”.

Maybe, we should have to take a look to what lies beyond the appearances. It’s there that we should learn to look.

We are often, very often, stuck in a series of conditioning is that deny us to see, really see. And, when we have understood what and how we should observe, we don’t have enough energy to do it.

We prefer a quiet life. Maybe a little bit monotonous, but in any case quiet. We remain in a scheme with faint tints while we could live in a picture with intense colours, but not only: we could also exit from the frames of such a picture.

Let’s try to get really in contact with the persons with which we live and interact, instead of choose a “voluntary isolation” we often justify as “our right of privacy”, but often, very often, is mere fear.

In order to grasp what lies behind the appearances, we have to question what we believe to having understood, and shift the look from the point where our attention is automatically attracted to the area that surrounds this point.

Let’s make an example: if we observe a person, let’s go beyond the act of listen its words.

Let’s try to observe its tone colour, the gestures and the posture, the clothes, the environment in which it use to live or where it works, its fellows, friends and how it interacts with them; if we lunch with this person, let’s continue to observe, what and how it eats, how it reacts to a setback or a problem,etc…

There are so many aspects that transpire beyond the appearances that we could notice… if only we could remember to observe a little bit.

And, observation, is not only an act we perform with our eyes, but with our outer and inner senses, preferably, as best we can, with our whole being.

In such a way, we could really understand better those near us, beyond how he or she believes of appear… beyond what we think to know about this person.

This is the gateway for empathy… and compassion.

Now we could really say to this person with sincerity:”Yes, I understand you”.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Path of Awakening According to Gustav Meyrink

The beginning is what man lacks.

It is not that it is difficult for him to find it. It is precisely the preconceived idea of having to find it that becomes a stumbling block

Life is generous; at every instant it gives us a new beginning. Every second we are confronted by the question: “Who am I?” We do not ask it, and this is why we do not find the beginning.

But if for once we were to take it seriously; a new day would arise, whose dusk would spell death for those thoughts that have infiltrated the royal palace and now sponge at the table of our souls.

The coral reef that these thoughts have diligently created in the course of millennia and which we call “our body” is their work and the place where they dwell and breed. If we really want to reach the open sea, we must first open a breach in this reef of glue and lime, and then redissolve it into the spirit that it originally was.


Those who do not learn to see on this earth will certainly not learn in the “great beyond.”

The key to the power over the lower nature has been rusted since the Flood. It is called, “to be awake.”

To be awake is everything.

There is nothing that man can be more certain of than being awake. The truth is that he is caught in a net of sleep and dream that he himself has woven. The thicker the net, the mightier is his sleep. Those who are caught in it are the sleepers who go through life as cattle to the slaughter, dumb, indifferent, and thoughtless.

To be awake is everything.

The first step in this direction is so easy that any child can take it; only the misled has forgotten how to walk, with both feet paralyzed, because he will not throw away the crutches he has inhe- rited from his ancestors.

Be awake in all that you do! Do not think you are already awake. No: you are asleep and dreaming. Be firm, collect yourself, and briefly behold the sensation that runs through your body: “NOW I AM AWAKE!”

If you can feel this, you will also suddenly realize that, in comparison, the state in which you were a few moments ago is like stupor and sleepiness. This is the first feeble step in a very long journey from slavery to omnipotence. Walk in this fashion from one awakening to the next. There is no pestering thought that you cannot thereby dispel; it is left behind and can no longer reach you. You overshadow it, just as the canopy of a tree outgrows its driedup limbs.

Once you have reached the point where this awakening also permeates your body, sorrows will fall off you like dead leaves.

The ice-cold ritual baths of the Jews and Brah- mins; the vigils of Buddha’s disciples and of the Christian ascetics; the torments of Indian fakirs to keep from falling asleep – there are all nothing but external, crystallized rituals, which like broken columns bear witness to the seeker:

“Here, very long ago, stood a mysterious temple dedicated to awakening.”

Read the sacred scriptures of every people on earth: through all of them runs the scarlet thread of the secret doctrine of awakening. It is the ladder of Jacob, who wrestled with the Angel of the Lord all “night,” until the “day” broke and he was victorious.

If you want to overcome death itself, whose armor is sleep, dream, and dullness, you must climb from one step of awakening to the next. Imagine: the lowest step of this heavenly ladder is called “genius.” What name shall we then give to the highest ones? They remain unknown to the multitudes and are considered to be legend.

On your way to awakening, the first enemy that will bar your path is your own body. It will fight against you till cockcrow. However, if you behold the day of eternal awakening that will pluck you from the sleep-walkers who think themselves men and do not know that they are sleeping gods = then even the body’s sleep will vanish and the entire universe be subject to you. Then you will be able to perform miracles at will, without having to wait humbly like a whimpering slave for a cruel God to bestow his grace upon you, or strike your head off.

It is true: you will no longer know the happiness of a faithful and tailwagging dog that comes from acknowledging a master above itself, whom it must serve. But ask yourself this question: now that you are a man, would you like to trade pla- ces with your own dog?


All those who experience the earth as a prison, and every believer who cries for redemption – such people unconsciously evoke the world of ghosts.

Do it too, but be fully aware!

Will those who do it unconsciously find an invisible hand to magically transform into solid ground the marshes into which they stray? I do not want to argue, but I don’t believe so.

When on the way of awakening you go through the world of ghosts, you will gradually recognize that they too are nothing but thoughts that you can suddenly see with your eyes. This is the re- ason that they look alien to you and like beings; for the language of forms is different from the language of the brain.

Then the time has come for the strangest transformation that can ever happen to you: out of the people surrounding you, ghosts emerge. All those who have been dear to you suddenly beco- me larvae, including your own body.

It is the most terrifying solitude that one can imagine. It is like a pilgrimage through the desert: those who do not find the spring of life in it will die of thirst.

This is the sign, or the stigma, of all those who have been bitten by the “Snake of the spiritual world.” It almost seems as if two lives must be grafted onto us like a slip onto a common tree, before the miracle of awakening can occur. The separation that otherwise occurs in death occurs here through the extinction of memories, or so- metimes due to a sudden inner upheaval.

Everybody could attain this if he had the key. The key consists simply in becoming aware of one’s “form of the Self” or of one’s skin, even though one may be asleep, in discovering the narrow crack through which consciousness slips between waking and deep sleep.

The struggle for immortality is a battle for the control over the sounds and fhosts that dwell in us; the waiting for our “Self” to become King is the waiting for the Messiah.

Everything I have said here is also found in the scriptures of every people, namely the advent of a new Kingdom, the awakening, the victory over the body and solitude. And yet a bridgeless abyss separates us from these people: they believe that a day is coming when good people will enter Paradise and evil people will be swallowed into the pit of Hell. We, on the contrary, know that a time will come when many will reawaken and be separated from those who sleep, as lords from slaves, because the sleepers cannot understand the awakened. We know that there is no good and evil, but only “truth” and “falsehood.” They believe that “being awake” consists in keeping the senses and the eyes open and the body erect during the night to recite prayers. We know that “being awake” corresponds to the awakening of the immortal Self, and that sleeplessness of the body is just its natural consequence. They believe that the body must be neglected and despised due to its sinfulness. We know that sin does not exist, that the boy is where we have to start and that we have come down to earth in order to transform it into spirit. They believe that it is necessary to go with one’s own body into solitude in order to purify the spirit. We know that our spirit must first go into solitude in order to transfigure the body.

It is up to you and to you alone to choose your path: ours or theirs. Your free will has to make the choice.


I have said that the beginning of the way is our own body. Those who know this can begin the journey at any time.

Now I will teach you the first steps.

You must become detached from your body, but not as if you wished to abandon it. You must free yourself from it as if trying to separate light from heat.

Hear lurks the first enemy.

Those who separate themselves from their bo- dies in order to fly through space go the way of the witches, who have turned their gross earthly body into a ghostly one and rdie it like a broom to Walpurgis Night.

Witches believe they are at the Devil’s Sabbath, while their bodies lie senseless and rigid in their rooms. They merely exchange their earthly per- ception for a spiritual one; they lose their best part to gain a worse one; theirs is an impoverish- ment rather than an enrichment.

You can already see that this is not the way to awakening. In order to grasp that you are not your body (as most people believe), you must recognize the weapons that your body uses to maintain its power over you. You are so much at its mercy that your life would end if your heart ceased to beat; also, you plunge into the night as soon as you close your eyes. You believe you can move your body around, but this is an illusion; on the contrary, it is your body that moves itself, merely borrowing your will. You think you can create thoughts. You are mistaken: it is your body that sends them to you so that you think they came from you, and do its bidding.

Sit up straight and resolve neither to move a limb nor to blink, and to remain as still as a statue, then you will see how your body, filled with hatred, rebels against you, attempting to subjugate you again. It will assail you with a thousand weapons and give you no rest until allow it to move again. By its fierce anger and its excessive struggle, as if flinging darkt after dart at you, if you are sly you will realize how much it fears to lose its control and how great your power must be if it is so afraid of you.

However, to dominate your body should not be the ultimate goal you pursue. When you forbid it to move, you must do it only in order to come to know the forces on which its dominion extends: they are legion, almost infinite in number. Your body will send them to fight against you, one after the other, as long as you continue to resist its urges by merely sitting still. The first weapon will be the brute force of muscles that quiver and throb; seething blood that makes the face swear; hammering of the heart; cold shivers on the skin; swaying of the body; as if your center of gravity had shifted. You will be able to face and defeat all of these forces, thanks to your will. But it will not be the will alone: there is a higher awakening behind it, invisible like Siegfried’s magical helm. This victory too is not meaningless. Even if you were to master your breathing and your heart- beat, you would just be a fakir, which means a “pauper.”

The next champions that your body sends against you are elusive swarms of thoughts.

Against them, the sword of the will is powerless. The wilder you strike at them, the more rapidly they buzz around you; even if you succeeded in momentarily getting rid of them, you would become lethargic and thus be defeated in a different way.

To order them to stay still is a waste of energy. There is only one way to escape from them: take refuge in a higher degree of awakening.

How to achieve it is something you must learn on your own.

It is a constant and cautious proceeding with feelings, and at the same time an iron resolution.

This is all I can say about it to you. Any advice that anyone gives to you in this painful struggle is poison. There is a cliff here over which non can help you but yourself.

After reaching this state, you are then confronted by the domain of ghosts, which I have spoken of earlier.

Frightening or splendid apparitions will confront you, making you believe they are beings from another world. In truth, they are only thoughts in visible for over which you do not yet have full control!

Remember: the more solemn they look, the more dangerous they are!

However, when you find the “deeper meaning” hidden in each of these larval beings, you will see with the eye of the spirit not only their living nucleus, but yours as well. Then, everything that has been taken from you will be returned to you a thousand-fold, as it happened to Job: then you will be back where you started, as fools claim sarcastically. They do not know that there is a different between coming home after a long time in a foreign land and always staying home.

Nobody knows if you will be allowed to share in the prodigious forces once possessed by ancient prophets, or if you are destined to enter eternal peace.

Our path leads to the threshold of maturity. Once you arrive at it, you are also worthy of receiving that gift.

In either case, you will have become a phoenix: it is up to you to get there by force.


One of those who still have the key of magic has remained behind, on earth, to seek and to rally those who have been called.

Just as he cannot die, the legend about him can- not die either.

Some say he is the Wandering Jew, others call him Elijah; the Gnostics claim he is John the Evangelist. Naturally, everybody has his own ideas about this figure. A being like him, who has transformed his body into spirit, cannot be tied to any rigid form.

The only true immortal being is the awakened man. Stars and gods disappear; he alone endures and can achieve anything he wants. There is no God above him.

It is not without reason that our way has been called a pagan way. That which a religious man believes about God is nothing but a state that he himself could achieve, if he could only believe in himself. But he obtusely sets up obstacles over which he does not dare to jump. He creates an image to worship, instead of transforming himself into it.

If you want to pray, pray to your invisible Self: it is the only God who can answer your prayers. The other gods hand you stones instead of bread. When your invisible Self appears in you as an entity, you will recognize it by the face that it will cast a shadow. I myself did not know ear- lier on who I was, until I saw my own body as a shadow.


Posted in Awareness | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Freedom: Is the sky the limit?

It has been a while since the last post on this Blog. As a guide, it is not a simple thing to draw a map which follows a path that leads to true freedom in ourselves All ancient traditions have had the sole purpose of conquering obstacles toward the liberation from ordinary limits, which coincides with maximum human fulfillment. The ancient texts however, to be correctly understood, require study and preparation. Attempting to approach such a complex and profound topic with modern language is therefore a way to provide greater possibilities for pondering and study.

In order to realize achievement of any goal, it is useful to follow a project that is close to our everyday life. I don’t mean here that we must follow a series of rules, which can easily turn into a path to be followed mechanically… but a vision, an image, which contains a progression – a map of the Path.

This series of texts suggest not only one possible approach. Because there is more than one approach, no system has the “exclusive rights” or shares the “only truth” to achieve such a state of freedom.

So, this series is divided into two distinct parts. This will make an easier explanation of such a Path and, consequently, it will be easier to understand.

First Step: Intellectual Understanding

Very often, when we try to reach a goal, we fail due to lack of clarity. If we chase something, which we then confuse with something else, we end up finding ourselves off track. For example, in order to find water, we need to start digging at one point and go deeper, in a consistent and persevering way. With a thousand excavations, stopping at the surface of each one, we will find nothing at all. However, it’s also true that we will not get anything even by insisting in a haphazard, uninformed way that there is water where it doesn’t exist.

In order to achieve the goal, we need perseverance and knowledge of the territory. Not everything can be realized by moving in a random way, hoping to find the best insights at the right moments.

It is very important to understand intellectually what is freedom and its absence, without limiting our search to a superficial notion.

When we choose a line of action, we must be certain of what we do, otherwise we will stop when the first difficulties appear.

Therefore, the first part of this series of posts is exclusively devoted to theory and pondering. We will explore some aspects of freedom in a simple and not too conceptual way, and also some forms of limitations to which we are subjected, trying to build an understandable map of a territory where freedom is sovereign.

Second Step: The Inner Field

Every human being has within himself, profound aspects of which he is not aware. There is much more besides what we know about ourselves, and I am not referring only to the unconscious sphere, which is the main focus of modern psychoanalysis, but to an even more intimate dimension.

Little or nothing is discussed about this hidden aspect of human nature in our culture; yet, in this intimate field lies the greatest energy we have at our disposal.

This energy can allow us to achieve any goal, in accordance with the needs of our real nature.

Thus, the second part of this series of posts presents a possible path to reach greater contact with this deeper side, in order to bring out the potential that resides in it. Let’s clarify it: this is not a sort of mini- course. In these posts we will explore aspects of the human being that cannot be investigated only in theory, and in the absence of an expert guide. This is an analysis of what is lacking and some of the ways to obtain what is missing; methodologies that have always been present on the planet, but traditionally known by a small number of people and too frequently misunderstood in the modern era.

When I was a child, I enjoyed going late at night to the garden in front of my house. I sat still and looked toward the vast starry firmament. At that time, light contamination was absent, so it was dark enough to see the clarity and brightness of the stars.

In this way I deepened toward the direction of something that I perceived as immense which brought me to a sense of peace, mixed with the desire to merge with that unfathomable space.

As a teenager, I experienced an opposite feeling: namely, by observing the sky at night, and, instead of perceiving its vastness, I started to perceive it as a dense, transparent wall, such as that of an aquarium, as if we were enclosed inside a glass bowl. Sometimes, such a feeling often appeared, even now. Surely, I won’t say the experience is pleasant.

Over time I also experienced a third sensation, linked to the starry firmament. Fortunately, this one is less oppressive. In this case, the luminous points, the stars, did not represent a reference of vastness. I perceived instead the “empty” and dark space present between one point of light and the other, as if it were showing me a way, a possibility – a free path towards Infinity.

Such sensations have always made me ponder about the concept of Freedom – the distance, the infinity, or the opposite – the sense of limitation of the universe itself that we observe, represents the symbol of a captivity or freedom that goes beyond common reason and everyday experiences.

However, through the years, those experiences bring some questions to my mind: what is true Freedom? What does it mean to be free? It certainly doesn’t mean doing whatever we want; which would be an extremely limited and silly vision.

Even if we could get everything we want, would we not be prisoners of the passing of time? Of that passage we call death and of many other Laws which we are forced to “undergo”? Are we free from the law of gravity? Can we just decide to fly without external help? Can we breathe underwater? Can we decide not to get old? I understand that these may seem obvious concerns, because the limits imposed by nature are not perceived as a form of slavery. Yet … they represent a prison.

In relation to the environment in which we live, we, as human beings, are subjected to many things (even before being so as individual men and women). It is useful to underline this, because later on we will have to distinguish between the limits connected to Natural Laws, and the chains imposed by human thought.

Over the centuries, throughout the world, many social bonds have been presented as God’s will. Such conditioning is strong and should not be underestimated; to be free we must not accept a human limitation as an expression of the will of something that is beyond human comprehension and of which we only know as something that has been said by others.

And this is not limited only to religious beliefs. Scientific conditioning also has its place within the map of what we are taught by culture. We are too accustomed to being wary of what is not sanctioned and recognized by modern science. If there is no credible evidence that human beings can develop mental powers of any kind, then it means that this cannot happen. It happens daily and, as always, it is others who choose for us, establishing what is true and what is not true.

The stars in the sky are both an index of a vastness to be conquered, and a sign of an apparently insurmountable limit. Many of those stars, although brightly shining in our eyes, have already collapsed, exhausted, transformed into something else.

Since light takes some time to travel in space, paradoxically, we can get the visual image of a sun when we observe it, although in fact it may no longer exist.

This makes me think that what surrounds us is a world of illusions; a play of light and shadow, which are not necessarily real despite the mere fact that we perceive them.

The Laws that govern our body and the life of entire galaxies represent. at the same time the limit and the door to a greater Freedom. The same Laws that imprison us are those that hide the secrets to free us and go “beyond”.

Freedom is not a factual condition, but a continuous journey, a Path; the only state which can reveal to us, the most wonderful realities of a life that otherwise is impossible to understand through logic alone, faith alone or scientific reason alone.

The Truth of this universe is a goal that recedes as we approach it. For this reason, I think that a path necessarily linked to time and space cannot reveal to us what lies beyond time and space itself..

We need a leap of consciousness, something that frees us from the road we have taken and launches us “beyond”. We need the ability to renounce easy reference points, because every safe place is also a trap from which it is very difficult to break free.

I consider that this is the reason why most people fail to be truly free; precisely because the primary tendency of many human beings is to seek a safe haven, enjoying the aquarium where inside they swim, however small it may be. They accept the comfort zone where they are imprisoned.

However, outside this comfort zone, there exists an entire Universe to be discovered.

To be continued….

Posted in Awareness, Freedom | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Principles of Magic #3: The Practice

gurdjieff-seeker-of-truthLife itself, and a little bit of what people usually call Karma, forced me to learn to become a good listener and, above all, a great observer, which gave me the possibility to develop and improve my understanding, and which also gave me the possibility to be able to notice certain tendencies in people whom I had met throughout my life. In such a way, with a bit of curiosity (and in the total absence of judgment), I had the possibility to notice some “little” contradictions that can be considered as “normal” for the personality of a human being, fragmented into so many little “i’s”.

In such a variety of contradictions, I had noticed a recurrence of the contrast between rationality and instinct; a sort of battle between reason and unconscious fears which happens completely unconsciously, but which conditions our lives.

I’ve seen great intellectual minds speaking about “witchcraft”, “devil” and “demons”; completely rational managers secretly seeking advice from fortune-tellers; strong sportsmen trembling with fear while suspecting they were being cursed; professors participating in some “occult rituals” of wicca and rune magic, without even knowing what they were speaking about; young men dressed proudly with amulets, pentacles and other “magical” symbols, sometimes even tattooed on their skin; informatic engineers supporting the existence of “astral plans”, and so on, and so on…

I’ve witnessed all this and much more…. and who knows what kind of hidden fears I hadn’t yet noticed.

The behavior is not so much the contradictory aspect of the contemporary mind, an element that is more than obvious in so fragmented a personality; the point lies rather in the deep suggestion that the word “magic” evokes in our mind.

Why are we so fascinated by the possibility to get in touch with “subtle dimensions”? Why do we try to influence our destiny through the use of amulets, talismans and spells? Why do we try to justify our behaviors or seek for a near future hope in the Horoscope instead of beginning to learn, in a serious way, an ancient science such as Astrology? And many, many other “Why’s“…

Undoubtedly, near to the technological progress typical of our rational contemporary society, already lies an unknown region in our minds that often results in superstition, a region where ignorance, ancient and new fears reign, even today.

We could raise our shoulders and ignore everything, saying that these are only fixations or false beliefs. However, this topic is not all a result of fantasies, and the best way to respond to ignorance (namely, the act of ignoring things), is the skill of Knowledge. We need balance, intelligence, and a healthy degree of curiosity followed by a serious will to understand – a sincere inquiry without preconcepts. This is the reason I am writing these posts devoted to the topic of Magic. And this is the answer to many people who had asked me the reason “Why” I am writing about this topic. This is one of the main answers to this question.

M0011829 Hermes Trismegistos, from Stolcius, Viridarium Chymicun, 1624

As it happened for the second post, due to health and family issues, I hadn’t been able to write any posts for this blog since November. However, such as with everything in life, it seems that the time has come, so here’s the third post devoted to Magic. In the first and second post. we explained the meaning of Magic and the different levels of this Art. As I stated before, Magic hasn’t anything to do with what today, is presented under this name. There’s a huge difference between the magic we find in many books and “what Magic is really about”. It’s an ancient path that, in order to be practiced in an efficient way, needs at least a certain degree of development. The Third Level of Magic needs a discipline and a preparation that is equal to what Mr. Gurdjieff asked of his pupils. So, as said in the previous post, in order to be able to perform “The Great Work”, the Magus must have undertaken a Work on himself.

After reading the previous posts about this matter, many people had asked me through emails, Facebook and in person, what is this preparation about and what are the practices that are part of the Magic. Aware that it is impossible to explain such a huge corpus of Knowing in a few words, I would like to make an outline of the basic practices that make an apprentice, a Magus.

So, here is the schedule of this post and further posts about Magic:

  1. The Gaze and the presence;

  2. The physical postures;

  3. Techniques of magical defense;

  4. Amulets, talismans, pentagrams;

  5. Magnetization of an object;

  6. Symbols of protection;

  7. The main Tools of the Magus;

A little bit of practical stuff. Let’s begin.

The Gaze

With a simple act of will, we need to focus our attention on the solar plexus – the complex network of nerves located by the abdomen, at every time and situation during our day. We must also learn to use our gaze.

Indeed, we have to learn to never lower our gaze. It’s very important to impose the principle “I Am” (that, in such a moment is located in the solar plexus), and make this principle prevail as a priority in every situation. If we learn to use our gaze, and with a well-rooted principle of “I Am” within us, it is possible to direct a considerable amount of energy, even at the most elementary levels of training.

How do we develop this skill? First of all, we must learn to wake up, really wake up in the morning. Mainly, we must learn to work constantly on our awareness. There are plenty of elementary exercises related to this work on this blog, and also in the book I wrote. In order to wake up, you can use some of these exercises or some practices you already know.

You must start your day washing your face with fresh, cold water, after having kept the water in your hands for some moments, remembering that this water is a source of life.

Even if we are not aware of it, we experience our day surrounded by a myriad of symbols: a tree, a form, a building, a ray of light and even the simple act of turning on the light when we come home. It’s a divine principle.

In everything we do, wherever we are, try to become aware that you are a small part of the Divine.

This act means, to ritualize our life.


Observe yourselves, and your physical postures. This is crucially important. A posture that is extremely relaxed will drive your mind and your emotional field to seek only gratification. Seeking only comforts, produces frivolity and feebleness, and these two mechanical aspects reflect on our inner and outer condition.

A true Magus is a seeker of the Truth, so as a seeker, he has to acquire attitudes of a warrior. Of course, we are not yet Samurais, however we musn’t try to become little samurais: this would mean that we have already decided beforehand, to never become a real Samurai.

It is the path of the Intentional Effort: if we are unable to transcend a headache, a bit of tiredness, the battle is already lost. If we are unable to win over hunger, thirst, drowsiness, we’ve already given up on the inner path that is also the Path of the real Magus.

Indeed, if we aspire to become a Magus, we must be able to do what we have decided to do, even with a fever or with a terrible headache. We have to always represent what we are: a particle of the Divine. And, as divine beings, we have no limits, except for the limits we impose on ourselves. This is the attitude of the Magi. Intentional effort means everything for him.

This teaching is the basis of all the teachings of the real Magic Practice. And it’s vastly different from how Magic is presented today.

A Magus isn’t a common, sleeping, and mechanical creature: when he passes between people, he is noticed. He is noticed because of his posture, his eyes (remember for example, Gurdjieff’s eyes), his way of moving. He is a being, when passing through the masses, who creates emptiness on his way.

In the moment when we use the gaze, we must put into practice, everything we had learned in our inner path; also, we have to feel ourselves as someone who represents a divine principle.

And, everything must bow in the presence of the Divine, especially ignorance.

You must have this sense of austerity within you – the most you will be able to center yourselves in the solar plexus, and the most you will represent the absolute, independently of how much you are able to understand the concept of the Divine.

Use the gaze in every situation, at every moment.

First of all, stare into people’s eyes. It could happen that, when you do this, a person will lower his gaze. If this happens, don’t allow your illusory personality to take pleasure of this, or think that you have overpowered this person. Be kind in these situations. However, this will be a signal that such a person has felt some kind of power in you. It also means that you’ll be able to help this person if he wishes so.

Some people use systems such as opening their eyes widely or make strange grimaces with the eyes such as they want to say, “look into my eyes” or, “all eyes on me”. This is useless. The focal point of this practice is not to modify our gaze, but to keep it as it is. The difference is that the eyes, accompained with such a practice, exudes the part of the divine that’s within us.

Remember, the gaze is a powerful Mudra.

So, to resume, the Magus learns to “go down” into the solar plexus, and from here, brings the gaze. It’s first necessary to activate this zone of the body (the solar plexus) and then, from that point, move the energy that will light the gaze. It’s a process similar to when we produce a movement.

For the Magus, the solar plexus is where the divine, the “I Am” is located. You need to be still and focus on the person beyond, such as you would pierce it with the eyes.

This act must not display hardness, but sweetness.


The physical postures and perception

The physical body is our first defensive structure, even if, through the body we can direct the energy beyond it.

Let’s see some practical examples: a gesture of closure – so, a defensive one – is to cross the arms (arms folded). Before doing this gesture, we have to connect the index finger and the thumb. This is a gesture that is usual for many people, even if they are unaware of what they are doing.

Another example of usual unconscious gestures, is to cross the legs – a posture which produces a protection of the genital area.

The Magus has also to learn to observe the postures he assumes spontaneously. Gestures such as touching the head or crossing the fingers, or running the hands through the hair, show that our unconscious defensive system has perceived a state of aggression. Substantially, all the postures that imply a “closure” are defensive postures, and they have an effect on the emotional field (we’ll discuss in depth, this aspect in a further post).

The act of closing the fist with the thumb inside of it is indicates the action of “cleansing”. This gesture can be used to wash clothes and clean rooms or, at least to color them with the qualities of our energy.

For example: imagine that you are speaking with a person who is upset. While speaking, intertwine your fingers (closure- defense- protection); then, at a point in the conversation, keep the fingers intertwined and join the indexes; point them tactfully towards the interlocutor, beginning from the zone of the solar plexus. If you link this act to the gaze, you can calm and control the mood of this person. Using the “pointed” hands is always a direct act of emanation of our energy outwards. This produces quite strong effects.

Try to notice, through observing yourselves during the whole day, what gestures of “closure” and “opening” you do unconsciously – for example, while sitting, you cross the legs, point the finger or the hand toward the interlocutor, etc. This is advice I give to everyone. Nothing can be done without first developing the skill of Observation. Indeed, observation is the root of every inner path, and the tone of the main topics on this blog. It could seem strange to link this practice with the noun, “magic”. However, this is exactly the way the Magus evolved his “powers”, the main practice of Magic of a higher level. Indeed, as stated in previous posts, Magic is a way of knowing the Natural Laws that rule our Universe and the way to use it (for example, knowing the Law of Cyclicity, namely the Law of Seven, enables the Magus such as the Seeker to use it for developing purposes). So, it’s not my interpretation, but something that is already taught in some groups I had the opportunity to meet. It’s also written in 500 to 800 year old books and manuscripts you can read in places like the Biblioteca Marciana in Venice (if you know which texts to ask for).

However, returning to the topic, it’s not a rarity that an adept tends to use too many gestures of “closure”; since while we make them too often, such gestures produces states of contraction, to the detriment of the possibility to develop and refine sensibility and intuition. Closure is a condition when you can’t receive nor give. It’s like closing your internet: end of the access.

The capacity to perceive what happens around us is another ability we’ll mention here. Mainly, we have to develop an attention which allows us to perceive not only what happens in front of us, but also behind us. First of all, the adept has to learn to extend his hearing at 360°; then gradually, sharpen this ability to the modalities of perceptions in the space that surround him.

The tone of the voice is important in interacting with other persons. As an example, a low tone of voice is useful to create more attention, while a singing-like tone evokes the effect of tranquilizing the interlocutor. In the same way, a high pitch tone produces altercation.

A huge error is the use of a raised tone of voice in order to overpower someone; since the interlocutor is upset, the only result we’ll have is to raise his state of irritation. On the contrary, pronuncing the words slowly with a deep tone of voice will produce calm.

Another useful thing which is deeply related to the field of self-observation, is observing the type and quality of our spontaneous gestures. Namely, we’ll have to notice in which situations and to which persons we do gestures of “closure-defense” and “opening”.

I would like to end this post by mentioning briefly, an ancient magical training that is related to the way of walking. This practice consists of walking with the palms opened pointed towards the ground. The arms move faster than the rest of the body. The nape of the neck is slightly rigid and the gaze remains fixed towards the goal, namely, the destination we have decided to reach. The way of walking is to proceed by putting a foot in front of the other. During this way of walking, the practitioner has to visualize himself as a point. A tip (like the tip of an arrow), pointed forward.

At first glance, it could seem strange and weird as a practice (however, those who practiced the movements taught by Mr. Gurdjieff should have experienced the same feeling), especially for the rigid neck. Why should we keep it rigid? Because this act is a “magic seal-gesture” (or a mudra, if you prefer) that protects the head.

There are many other ways and practices that produce “closure-protection” such as “opening”. However, I’ve mentioned only the first since the second could be used as “tools for offence”. Also, these practices are just outlined, not explained in depth. The aim of these posts is to inform, not to produce tools which could harm someone.


Posted in Art Of Memory, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The “Principles of Magic”#2 – The levels and focal points of Magic

9f4713d8907b029f1823700b96626badSince I wrote the first part of the “Principles of Magic” five months ago,  I had received dozens of emails with questions about various aspects of this topic. I had answered some of these emails, but due to some personal health issues, I hadn’t been able to answer all of them, nor able to write any essays to post. Now, in order to “redeem” myself, I would like to answer, through this article, some of the main questions.

One of the main questions was related to what is undoubtedly related to the wish of learning more about this Discipline, specifically, “how many kinds of Magic exist? Are they all driven by the same principles?”. The definition I gave in the first post of this series, where I defined Magic as “a practice of Knowing that proposes to intervene on the phenomena of Nature through the study of the Natural Laws”, wasn’t enough.  It is natural and legitimate when the reader is driven by curiosity. And, when curiosity develops in interest, such interest becomes a thirst. This thirst must be quenched.

In order to accomplish this task, I won’t speak here about deviant practices known as “black magic”, as this topic will be addressed in a future post. I’ll remain focused on what the real Magic is, namely, something that isn’t “black” or “white”, but neutral, and whose synonym is “Knowing”. The principle of such a discipline responds to: «I want to (and can) produce interactions through the Laws of this Universe».

Such kind of Magic is formed by three distinct levels. There are not different kinds, but different levels of Magic.

The First level is more usual than we would think at first glance. It is represented by what a priest performs during a Mass, and it’s the lowest known level of Magic. The baptism, the holy matrimony, the unction of various objects, and the unction of people (the blessing) are all  practices of Magic. Almost all the sacraments are acts of Magic and mostly, they were originally intended to be as practices to bestow protection.

The Second level of Magic is most known as the “Magic of Symbols”. It is an active practice even in our time. In Europe, the maximal expression of this degree of Magic was practiced by the Templars and the Rosicrucians, such as in some Christian circles through the use of symbols, saint’s iconography and images.

It’s good to know that such a level of Magic, in its purest expression, aims to nullify, namely annihilate, what had been caused through harmful uses of magic. The result of such an annihilation is mostly known: the “negative influence” turns against those who had produced it,  more than to those who had “commissioned” it, with  extreme harshness.

In fact, the Vision of such kind of Magic is the defeat of the “operators” of harmful forms of magic, and not of the people who had asked for a magical intervention, since they are not considered responsible because they are not completely aware of what they really produce, (according to the principle: “Father, forgive them, for they  know not what they do”).


The Third level of Magic is far different and “higher” than the previous levels. Indeed, it uses only and uniquely, a state of realization. In such a level, the operator uses three energetic centers  which, in some Eastern traditions are known as “Chakras”: the third, the fourth (which is considered to be the domain of  Magic par excellence), and the sixth chakras.

Furthermore, the Magus who is able to work on such a degree of Magic, also had undertaken a Work on himself. Such Inner Work is not required in the previous levels of magic. Indeed, the Magic of the first two levels does not require awareness, as it is extremely elementary and easily produced. Usually, specifically in the religious field, a person (in this case, the priest) is not aware that he performs a Magical rite. Thus, such degrees of Magic are not so “powerful”, therefore are easy to be annihilated.

The Magus of such a level, produces changes inside his own energetic centers, or more accurately, inside a “specific plane” of each energetic center (or chakra, if you prefer).

Furthermore, through developing his own awareness, practicing Meditation, contemplating some words and mantras, he becomes able to produce such an “expansion” of his awareness that he becomes able to modify what is in front of him.

It’s surely a far less violent level of Magic, but extremely powerful, which implies a considerable degree of inner development and initiation. The Magus who is able to work on the third level of Magic is considered to be at what in esoteric words, is known as the Seventh Level of initiation (we’ll address the topic “initiation” in further posts).


Let us delve a  bit deeper into the subject of magic, by summarizing the focal points of a practice as ancient as the first humans, or even before them.

First of all: never approach Magic without any previous knowledge about this matter. It could be harmful for both those who experiment with it and for others. An approach that lacks of any previous knowledge is equivalent to a suicide. A minimal error could produce physical disorders, illnesses, even death, or serious physical disorders in other people.

This is the reason why a maximal seriousness and clarity is always required. In the field of magic, it’s not possible to have to find the answer to the question “what to do now?” when we are facing a problem.

Second: when one practices Magic, he absolutely must avoid  connection with who is suffering. This implies a detachment from the problem (the same kind of detachment that a lawyer has towards his client). At first glance, this detachment could seem an egoistic act. However, there’s always a reason for an act: the aim is to reduce the risks to a minimum. If someone connects with someone’s suffering, he submits himself  voluntarily to a state of suffering. This reduces clarity, and reduces the possiblity to help someone who suffers

The correct approach is to try to evaluate the problem in the most detached, rational way, with the goal to find how much the suffering of such a being is a karmic result.

Frenzy is also an attitude that should be avoided. Indeed, the urge to “free someone from suffering at any cost” is a nice way to put our integrity at risk: if we try to commit ourselves until we are completely exhausted, we’ll not be able to help the individual who needs help, nor dozens of others who may need  help. Maybe our help would be more useful in another situation.

In ancient times such level of Magic was performed only on initiates, and it was practiced only by disciples when, according to a principle (or Law) of relation,  help was indispensable in order to avoid the risk that the inner work of such an individual (the initiate) may be lost. Such kind of High Magic is rarely used.

Another important aspect is responsibility. Independently of the level of Magic practiced, this aspect must be present. According to the magic theory, even if we move a little stone, it will produce a result on a large scale. Thus, there will be a price to be paid. This is why we can very often hear or read that producing suffering (even justified suffering), will imply a price that we’ll have to pay.

The fourth aspect is purification. Usually, this term evokes the idea that we are “unclean, bad, evil, so we must purify ourselves”. This is a common error. In the universe, there is nothing that is bad or impure. Everything has a reason to be, to happen and to exist. Everything that happens has a reason behind it, whether or not  we are aware of it. Since everything that exists in this Universe is a reflection of the Absolute (in trivial words, “all is One”), there is nothing that can objectively  be more pure or impure.

The real meaning of purification is to focus all the energies of the principle of “I” (individuality), which is already separated from truth, towards the realization  such truth (“all is One”) in its entirety, or to devote ourselves completely to serve humanity or the whole cosmic plane.

Purification means Work on Self, service, a conscious commitment to inner growth. And this can (and must) be applied to every field of life, every moment of the day.

Control of our emotions and thoughts, as intended in a path of Self Development, can be called purification.

Purification is the act of no longer at the mercy of fears, thoughts, guilts and, above all, conditionings. It is the act of becoming less mechanical.

We have to produce a conscious act of Will. Undoubtedly, the more one is “pure”, the more he is “strong”. Being pure means be who we really are, reflect the identity of our being, in everything we do, from how we dress to eating, from sleeping to washing the dishes. Everything! If there is an essential concept in order “to be able to do”, this is Order. Order is control, mainly, intensity of awareness in everything we do.

In the field of Magic, nothing can be done mechanically or because of a habit. First of all, we have to re-educate ourselves. Thus, we can replace the word “purification” with “re-education”.

Another aspect on which one should work, is fear – a limitation we face very often; the fear of suffering, of being judged, of producing suffering, of making a mistake, etc…

It would also be useful to specify that the concept of Suffering, often mentioned in the pages of this blog, doesn’t mean “suffering that ends in itself”. Suffering in the field of Self Development (so also in the field of Magic) means conscious effort: for example, to wake up every morning at a prearranged hour, devoting oneself some time of our day to a psycho-physical discipline, ritualizing some moments of our day, recapitulating the day before going to sleep, and so on…

Hence, the “War against sleep”, doing things with a different, more refined awareness. Everything must become the gesture of a Magus, since the first magic has to be performed on ourselves. This “magic” can be called “inner work”. Without such prerequisites, it will be impossible to perform something that could be even remotely, called Magic.

Posted in Art Of Memory, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

The “Principles of Magic” #1: An Introduction and The Principle of Discipline

After having posted some essays about Giordano Bruno and the Art of Memory, many people had asked for additional elucidation on Magic. What is it?  What do I intend as Magic?  Where did I learn such things?  There were many confused questions, but also some questions driven by a curiosity to know more about a topic that is both ancient and extant at the same time.

I decided to write a series of posts about this topic, in response to the various questions sent to me, which may essentially be consolidated into a unique and fundamental question: “What is Magic?”

So, I would like to begin with a quote of Sir Arthur C. Clarke, the author of the novel 2001: A Space Odyssey:

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”


Is there any better way to begin a series of posts devoted to the “Structure of Magic”, than this quote?

Even if it had been written with humorous intent, this quote reveals an indisputable truth: Magic is nothing but knowing. Who can control it, can use it. Who doesn’t possess it, fears it. In these contemporary times, we can even call it “technology”.

Indeed, if we ponder a bit,  isn’t it true that we perform a sort of magic when we trace  some symbols on the table with a mouse, which materialize on the PC screen in front of us? It’s something which is a bit unsettling, and at the same time amazing, especially if we don’t know anything about the functioning of a computer. Similarly, the apparition of cell phones and later, smartphones and iphones amazed us – real magic.

Imagine what would happen if we could hypothetically go back to the past, 300 or 400 years ago, and walk during the night with an electric torch. Wouldn’t people consider this a sort of Magic performed by great Magis or demigods? Even a simple watch would have been considered an absolute proof of witchcraft in many periods of the past.

So, this is Magic: a practice of Knowing that proposes to intervene on the phenomena of nature through the study of the Natural Laws. Not more, nor less. The simplest and most understandable definition I’ve been able to find.

Today we consider it quite a normal thing being able to use electric or nuclear energy, to control  fire and water, or to fly, or drive at the speed of 250 kilometers per hour. The new frontiers of science suggest to us, that sooner or later, we’ll be able to perform teleportation or to become invisible, or to perform other tasks that today, are considered “impossible”.

But where lies the boundary between the possible and the impossible if we, as human beings, are able to surpass it continuously? What was impossible twenty years ago, today is considered so possible that it has become normal, obvious, even monotonous. In the same way, it’s possible to predict that, what is considered as “impossible” today, will become “normal” in the near future.


The etymology of the noun “magic” in Greek Μαγεία  (science, wisdom),  is derived from the word which indicates the “magi” (Μάγοι) – Zoroastrian ministers in ancient Persia. Such individuals were expert in astronomy and astrology, and also had a Chaldean mathematical culture. Just to clarify, the distinction between astronomy and astrology occurred after the 14th century.  Prior to that, the study of celestial phenomena was a unique discipline, both mathematical and humanistic.

The word “magi” comes from the root mag (“great being” or “being great”, “remarkable”), linked to the ancient Sanskrit term mah-ant, “gerat”, magh-ā and mag’-man, “greatness”. This word will develop to the Latin term magnus.

The distinction of “magi” is often mentioned in the Old Testament in The Book of Jeremiah (39:3 and 39:13), in The Book of Daniel (2:2), and in The Book of Isaiah (60:3). The name is also present in The Book of Psalms (70:9-11 and 68:30). In the New Testament, the only text that speaks about the voyage of the Magi to Bethlehem is the The Gospel According to Matthew  (2:1-12), the oldest of the four canonical texts.

In his book, The History of Magic, Eliphas Levi writes: “The doctrines of the true Zoroaster are identical with those of pure Kabalism, and his conceptions of divinity differ in no wise from those of the fathers of the Church. It is the names only that vary ; for example, the triad of Zoroaster is the Trinity of Christian teaching, and when he postulates that Triad as subsisting without diminution or division in each of its units, he is expressing in another manner that which is understood by our theologians as the circumincession of the Divine Persons. In his multiplication of the Triad by itself, Zoroaster arrives at the absolute reason of the number 9 and the universal key of all numbers and forms. But those whom we term the three Divine Persons, are called the three depths by Zoroaster. The first, or that of the Father, is the source of faith ; the second, being that of the Word, is the well of truth ; while the third, or creative action, is the font of love. […] Zoroaster established the celestial hierarchy and all the harmonies of Nature on his scale of nine degrees. He explains by means of the triad whatsoever emanates from the idea and by the tetrad all that belongs to form, thus arriving at the number 7 as the type of creation…”

In ancient times, the Magus and his science were deeply respected, in the same way that today, is respected a recipient of the Nobel Prize or an eminent docent of a prestigious University. The Magi were renowned, and often well-rewarded as advisors of the royal courts.

Of course, such individuals were also well-feared because of their knowing, in a way similar to a hacker able to break a database system would be feared today.

The point lies always in Knowing: who possess it can be a precious ally or a dangerous foe.

But I don’t want to explore in this post, the application of Magic (I’ll speak about this in a further post on this topic), but rather clarify as best as possible, what is essentially, Magic. Nor do I want to give a historical vision of the same, or deepen the work of famous Magi such as Salomon, Abramelin, Paracelsus, Cagliostro, St. Germain, Jon Dee, Eliphas Levi, and others. It’s useless for the aim of this series of posts.

So, concretely, to what do we refer when we use the term “Magic”?

Let’s try with an example that can also be experienced: let’s assume that most of the readers had probably visited a gothic cathedral, and if someone hasn’t yet visited one, I strongly suggest to do it. Once entered into this place, you’ve probably noticed that the gaze is immediately attracted upwards.

Such perception, such experience of “being pulled upwards”, is not due to the fact that you are visiting a “sacred place”- specifically, it doesn’t depend on conditionings related to a religious education, but on innumerable architectural knowings inherent to this type of structure.

In a gothic cathedral, the ground tends progressively upwards. Mainly, from the entry way to the center of the temple, the floor is built slightly upward. Also, the pillars aren’t perfectly straight, but tend to converge toward the center, reflecting the Law of the Octave. The apse is built in a particular way, and the light is predominant in the space of the building: it animates and gives a measure to the forms, and it also has a symbolic meaning, mainly, the image of the luminous nature of the Sacred.

Also, the proportions of the building aren’t without intention, nor determined by aesthetic needs or by the spectacular effects. The proportions in these buildings are based from a vision of the art as science, the research of the geometric relations that lie behind the basis of the universe, and establishes the form of the divine manifestation. The same proportions can be found in music, where the harmonics are not casual, but are reflections of the celestial harmonies.

Indeed, the first gothic buildings had been constructed according to numerical relations similar to the musical intervals – the octave, fourth and perfect fifth – for example in the rapport between the dimensions of the bay (an architectural element) or of the transept with respect to the nave. In such a way, the sacred building literally resonates with the same universal harmonies. And such harmony is not a result of perfect symmetries, but of imperfections created with purpose.

It’s an example of sacred geometry explained by Fulcanelli, such as an example of objective art as explained by Gurdjieff.

A structure built in such a way and with such knowing, becomes a perfect “machine” that produces precise effects. Indeed, using the example of a gothic cathedral, once we enter this building, the thoughts become rarefied, the sight is pulled upwards,  time seems to expand, the light becomes softer, giving to the spaces a specific meaning, bringing a deep feeling that is perfect to lead us to forget the external world and its illusions.

A gothic cathedral keeps thousands of technical expedients, studied to bring whoever to experience such emotion. It’s an inevitable thing: after having walked ten, fifteen, twenty-one meters inside the building, almost always 3×7, we look upwards and perceive a kind of “energy” that raises in us, a desire for purification.

All these experiences were wisely preordained by the builders of these cathedrals, and it has nothing to do with the fact that such buildings have become religious places. Indeed, the cathedrals, in the time of their construction, were also places for meeting and discussion, and not only places where to preach a religion.

The gothic cathedrals are places built “according to a specific science”, thus, with Knowing.

Individuals like Leonardo da Vinci, Brunelleschi, Bramante and many others including the creators of the gothic cathedrals, gained their knowing from a School. They learned the universal Laws, rules and principles. And, they were researchers in the field of Magic. Today, we would define such individuals as “scientists”.

So, this is Magic. We can define it as a practical act aimed to operate on the natural phenomena through the study of the natural laws. It’s a result of research, experiments and transformations from an element in another, with the goal to reach an inner perfection, protection, health and prosperity.

A science and a technology at the same time.

It’s a very important aspect to be understood, because, even in our personal experience, we can’t attain a real pleasure without knowing, but only the satisfaction of our instinctive needs. Specifically, we are perfectly able to survive, but not to “live” in the real meaning of the term.

Let’s try to consider our days:  what motivates us, what drives us to do something other than the usual job and livelihood, eating, distraction, sleep and so on?

Needs and mechanicity are, in reality, the same thing: the need produces identification, and identification represents almost always, the fear of “losing something”, namely, the fear of “suffering”.

We fear that we are unable to live up to someone’s expectation, of being unable to do something, or to live an emotion; we fear the others’ consideration, the future, the failure,  old age… and in order to avoid such suffering, we identify ourselves with whatever can keep us far from the source of suffering, desperately trying to find the peace we crave.

In vain. We are unable to rule ourselves, our life, and the suffering gets worse.

But there’s a way out, mainly,  to consciously choose the friction which we must suffer anyway, as difficult and painful though it could be.

In initiate terms, we call this kind of choice “voluntary suffering”, which is the instinct of “going further”, using the resources we have at disposal in a determined context. We spoke often about the concept of “voluntary suffering” in this blog.  However, it would be good to remember that it means to not abandon ourselves to the mechanical flow of events and to choose to “swim counter-current”. We gather the strength, and try to discipline the mechanical part of us.

Discipline is the process that teaches us “how to do”, which we need to take an action (instead of suffering only and exclusively a reaction); it’s the principle that gradually crystallizes our idea and becomes Will. This is exactly what corresponds to the magical process of transformation.

The problem lies in the fact that almost no one is used to perceive his life as a goal, a result to be gained. We don’t have aims, nor have we decided on a goal to pursue during our existence. We have spoken to ourselves and others about partial goals – sometimes touching in their naive innocence, or about practical goals and urgently driven needs, but it’s not the same thing.

The Magus, Seeker of Truth, will do all that is possible to reach his final goal, and his preoccupations will essentially be devoted to that goal. Here rises the Work and the voluntary suffering: the decision of taking the challenge, the practice of generating intentionally-aimed problems in order to overcome them.

This pushes the Magus to increasingly more control of himself, to become more and more aware, until reaching the will to decide what he really wishes to do.

Indeed, there is no objective limit within us. A human being is designed with the possibility to evolve, and everyone of us, without exception, has the necessary tools to perform this.

The only sin that we can commit toward ourselves, is to think that we are limited: we can do whatever we wish to do,  as individuals such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Giordano Bruno and others have done. We can show the impossible, even walking on water, and making it possible, depends on the goal we give ourselves.

Science, knowing and will are the tools, discipline is a method, and the “how to” achieve a specific result. But we don’t speak here about the usual discipline used to teach children. We are speaking about self-discipline – something that has to be self-generated, a result of the realization that we are mechanical, thus  “imprisoned” in our own illusions. Discipline is the tool which makes us able to realize such a state of imprisonment.

The disciple (he who performs the discipline) will learn to recognize, to prize and then to love he who has already achieved the goal and who will be able to show precisely, the “how to escape this prison”.

Posted in Art Of Memory | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Christmas: The Tree of Life

So, here we are: Christmas 2015!

goldtree-350And, I’ll take this opportunity to speak about an object that is a symbol for such a festivity. Yes, I am speaking about the Christmas tree. Indeed, it’s not a secret that the tree represents something more than a simple decoration for the pleasure of our eyes, at home or in the public square. Indeed, the trees have appeared as earthly fare before the designers and the urbanists. And, even if we do the best we can to destroy them, they’ll end their existence far after our own.

The tree was considered as a sort of “cathedral” by the most ancient animist cultures, and its cult is quite diffused. The Christmas tree is a continuity of the ancient German tradition, which celebrated the Cosmic Tree. However, the tree as a cosmic symbol is present in the culture of the Vedas, the Persian and biblical Tree of Life, and so on.

After all, the tree is an element in nature which fits as a universal symbol. Indeed, it represents life itself, gives food and refuge, purifies the air we breathe, links the earth with the sky, incorporates in it all the four elements, sinks its roots into the Mother Earth, and elevates itself towards the Celestial Hierarchies.

buddhismoIn Northern India, in Central Asia, China, Tibet, Siberia, and in many places in Africa, trees are an object of cults: people tie on the trunk, tiny strings on which they light incense and insert flower wreaths. At the bottom of the tree, they deposit flowers, food, and lamps. This very ancient tradition is still extant throughout the World.

On a Babylonian clay tablet dated 1850 B.C., it is represented as a stylized tree. On the branches are hung diamonds which represent the stars, and on the top of the tree, is the Sun which dominates the other stars. It’s the most ancient known Christmas tree, if we remember that the Babylonians celebrate the God Shamash, exactly on the 25th of December. Also, the Babylonians used to decorate the tree with different varieties of fruits.


Celts, Saxons and Normans used to bring trees into the home to keep away unimmaginealchemicaevil spirits – the Egyptians the palm trees, and the Romans, the fir trees. As a sign of devotion towards the consecrated trees, the ancients would hang apples and other fruits as offerings to the divinities. This tradition was extended throughout Europe, in gratitude to the earth for its generosity and, as a sign of good luck, the farmers would hang the fruits of their harvests on the trees. The ancient Germans would hang stones on the branches of oak trees in order to keep away spirits who had escaped from the afterlife during the falling of the leaves. Successively, the trees became decorated with colored fruits, wreaths and candles.

There would really be too much to write on this topic, and a dozen posts wouldn’t be enough. And, now it’s Christmas time – time for greetings, not time to read (at least not too much!).

So, during these days, when you see a Christmas tree (and this will not be a difficult task), don’t look at it as a decoration. Remember what it represents: the Cosmic Tree of Life. And, greet it with all your Heart. Your Christmas will surely be enriched and more pleasurable with this simple act.

With Love,


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Art of Memory 3: Giordano Bruno and the “Symbolic figures”

branthexastichonze2In the previous post, we drew the guideline of the mnemonic related to magic: substantially, the world is composed of an infinite number of “sensible objects” which represents the shadows of the “real objects” (or archetypes). Recognizing the different shadows which belong to the same object, allows us to grasp the different aspects of the same object (the archetype) and, at the same time, “to introject” the object by reflecting it in the mind.

Thus, the archetypes are a sort of “main index” of the contents of the world. In turn, every entry creates different levels of “sub-indexes” until it achieves the apparent infinity of the created objects.

Through the guidance of symbols (figures, diagrams, allegorical images), the Magus begins to ascend a sort of “Ray of Creation”, from the bottom to the top, from the apparent plurality of things, to the unity that those things imply.

These concepts, that may not be so simple to be grasped by the logicalbrunomemory2 mind, are examined in depth by Giordano Bruno in De Umbris Idearum, a magical text where the author explained in depth, the art of memory.

The work that Giordano Bruno revealed in De umbris Idearum begins with a talk about the nature of the “shadows” and the concept of “ideas” which are interpreted in the text in a neoplatonic way. Then, he lists the images-guide, which are the practical parts of the text.

Those symbolic figures represent:

  • the thirty-six i trentasei decans of the zodiac, i dello zodiaco, namely, the magical “governors” of the so-called decades, described by the ancient Egyptians as demons;
  • seven planetary images for each planet, with a total of forty-nine images;
  • twenty-eight images of the lunar phases;
  • an image of the Draco Lunae or “dragon”;
  • thirty-six images linked to the duodenary division of the zodiac.


Through the astrological symbols (a fundamental science in the hermetic approach), the Magus impresses in the mind, the “higher shadows” – the nearest categories to the “pure ideas” that can inhabit only the “divine mind”. Those are still shadows, however, they are closest to the archetypes.

neptuneIf the archetypes are the “indexes” of the library of the universe, then we can certainly hypothesize that, from the view of the renaissance Magus, the astrological symbols represent the immediate “sub-indexes”, namely, the intelligible categories which are closest to that which can only be foreseen, but never understood.

Through impressing such symbols in the mind, the hermetist lays in some way, the foundations for the further cataloguing of every other object that, in turn, will receive a collocation based on the ratio that links it with its main symbols.

In such a way, the Magus will be able to recognize, in every material and less material object, the connections and the Laws that express in the world, the presence of the Divine, and which shows that the apparent multiplicity (the duality) that we perceive in the world belong to an unique plan, expression, and substance of the Absolute. In such a plan, every apparent difference manifests itself, justifies its existence, then extinguishes. Thus, every Law concludes in the unique fact of the omnipresence of the divine consciousness.

This was only a brief and limited excursus about the art of memory, and my hope is that I have been able to summarize one of the most interesting experiences of seeking in Western culture and esoteric knowledge.

Posted in Art Of Memory, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment