- The Art of White Magic -
What is spiritual creativity? Naturally, there are many answers to this question. The answer that I would like to suggest is that it represents any creative expression that supports the evolution of spirit. Within the Esoteric Philosophy, the urge to create is a fundamental feature inherent in all aspects of creation. Whether discussing the creative potential existing within a human being, or the creative drive found within the ensouling life of an entire solar system, the esoteric tradition maintains that all grades of life are characteristically creative. From the perspective of a human being, this creative urge must be understood as a natural by-product of living a spiritual life. Spiritual creativity will always emerge when one aspires to live according to divine intention.
In the esoteric tradition, divine creativity is synonymous with the art of white magic. To understand this, it must be stated that we are here referring to the magic of the soul, and not those creative endeavors that are commonly directed by one’s personality. When using the term “white magician”, we are, therefore, referencing the spiritually directed individual who is seeking to consciously co-create according to divine law. The principles of white magic represent the ancient processes used to create outer-forms according to the will and intention of the soul itself. It requires that one reach upward to sense the soul’s creative intention, then find the means to outwardly apply what is sensed. In truth, white magic is the art of translating that which is vertically perceived into that which is horizontally expressed.
In the ancient esoteric texts we are informed that the soul is in a constant state of meditation throughout the entire duration of incarnate existence. This is an idea often not considered by many spiritually inclined people. Yet, such information is crucial if one is to truly understand the creative process as it is initiated by the soul. The soul meditates, and this as a necessary step in preparation for the magical act. It must be understood that the meditation here discussed is not the meditation that we as individuals often do as a regular spiritual discipline. That too is an important feature of the creative process. However, in this context we are referring to the soul as it meditates on its own plane. Interestingly, in the esoteric literature we are given a series of fifteen ancient rules for effectively performing white magic. These rules are presented in A Treatise on White Magic, by Alice Bailey. Actually, as one studies these rules it becomes apparent that they are not “rules” in the conventional sense. Perhaps it is more fitting to say that they are aphorisms having revelatory value, in that they contain the key to how to successfully participate in the co-creative process. Regrettably, it is not possible to present each of the rules of white magic in the context of this brief article. Even so, reference to a few of them may well serve the purpose of giving the reader an appreciation of the depths of wisdom that these rules convey. The idea that the soul meditates can be seen in Rule #1. It reads:
“The Solar Angel collects himself, scatters not his force, but in meditation deep, communicates with his reflection.”
In the esoteric tradition, the soul is frequently referred to as the Solar Angel. Here it can be seen that the soul is in “meditation deep”. By so doing it concentrates its forces in order to generate the power necessary for it to “communicate with his reflection”. As you might guess, the reflection here noted is the personality (lower-self) of the individual. This is the first step in the divine creative process. The soul must assert an impression into the waiting mind of the individual. This is by no means an easy task for the soul, for it must assert its impression into a mind that is often clouded with unwholesome thought-forms. Such soul-inspired impressions are extremely subtle, and are most often lost in the miasma of the many negative thoughts that we all carry around within us. This then gives us a greater understanding as to why the soul must concentrate its forces while “in meditation deep”. Simply stated, the soul needs to generate enough energy to project its divine wishes successfully into the darkened pool of non-spiritualized thought.
In the second stage of the creative process the magician begins to build thoughts around the idea that the soul has projected into his/her waiting mind. There are many people who have notable experience with this phase of the process. We have an impression that has come to us, perhaps in a state of contemplative meditation. From that impression we begin to dwell on it and build ideas around it. It is the process of making the divine idea mentally concrete, and therefore more usable. This is an essential feature in the magical process. The challenge is to build these subsidiary thoughts in such a way so that they do not unduly distort the original idea sent forth by the soul. Admittedly, distortion will occur, for it is an inevitability within the creative process. There is always something lost as one attempts to give structure and form to that which is essentially intuitive and without form. Even so, the building of a form around a divine idea is essential if one is to concretely manifest any soul-inspired idea. It really doesn’t matter whether we are trying to express a divine idea in words, in movement or on canvas. Whenever form is used to express something formless, there will always occur a diminishment of the originally sensed idea. The challenge facing the magician is to minimize the degree of diminishment and distortion that occurs when attempting to magically create. Fundamentally, the ancient rules of white magic center around this very issue. How do we divinely create with as little distortion as possible? This is by no means an easy task, but can be done when one is internally watchful, and knows where within the creative process distortion is most likely to take hold.
After the mind has built a variety of concrete thoughts around the soul-inspired idea, the next step in the process is to allow the created thought-form to descend into the magician’s emotional field (astral body). In the magical process, emotion plays a crucial role, for it is through the use of emotion that the descending thought-form gains the necessary power to ultimately become a tangible reality in the world. It could be rightly said that emotions, when properly utilized, add the necessary vitality and vigor to the spiritually inspired thought-forms that we hold within us. One need only reflect on personal experience to see the truth in this notion. Do we not find that the ideas we hold with greatest conviction are far more powerful within us than the ideas that we entertain, but with little or no passion? Are we not more able to manifest an idea when we “feel” strongly about that idea? Essentially, the waters of the emotional plane must bathe the soul-inspired thought. The thought must be imbued with a sense of heart and feeling.
Yet, just as there are difficulties related to building a mental sheath around the soul’s idea, so too, there are perils associated with this step in the process as well. As noted, it is essential to add an emotional flavor to the idea conceived, yet the amount of emotion to be given is a crucial consideration. This is most noted in Rule 10. It reads, in part:
“As the waters bathe the form created, they are absorbed and used. The form swells and increases in strength; let the magician thus continue until the work suffice.”
As already mentioned, the amount of vital emotion to be imbued into the idea is important. The appropriate measure determines when the “work suffices”. When the spiritual idea to be manifested is not given the proper amount of emotion (water), it will surely “die of thirst”. This is easily witnessed in our personal experience. Frequently we have a good idea but it never comes into being because we fail to become excited by it. Conversely, if the thought-form is given too much emotional charge, then it “drowns” in a torrential flood of watery emotion. This experience most of us know all too well. Frequently we become over-enthusiastic about an inspired idea, then rush forward into a frenzy of activity. The result of this is that we prematurely burnout, and thus fail to manifest the idea we so dearly cherished. Unbridled enthusiasm can also add much distortion to our idea because it can result in a loss of perspective. As would-be magicians, we must learn to wisely use our emotions in the creative manifestation process. Lack of emotion must give way to emotional conviction toward the idea we seek to externalize. And, equally true, the over-enthusiastic reaction to an idea must be calmed by developing a sense of emotional temperance within oneself.
The final phase of the magical process relates to the actual externalization of the soul-inspired idea into the outer-world. White magic is fundamentally the art of translating a spiritual truth into an outer reality. Yet, how this is done on the physical plane can be quite perilous as well. The challenge here relates to a variety of things, not the least of which has to do with the dangers of over-stimulating one’s physical body. A divine idea working its way through one’s mental, emotional and physical vehicles can be amazingly powerful, and when it reaches the point of tangible expression it has a potent effect upon one’s physical instrument. Many physical health problems are caused by over-stimulation of this kind. In addition, the “fires” of the etheric body (the chakra centers) now come into contact with the descending idea. And, as already noted, the thought-form created has been moistened by emotional conviction. Not surprising, when water mixes with etheric fire steam emerges, thus clouding one’s sight from how to properly externalize the idea. In short, the magician has difficulty knowing how to outwardly implement his/her created thought-form. Rule #14 enigmatically addresses this issue. It thus reads:
“The sound swells out. The hour of danger to the soul courageous draweth near. The waters have not hurt the white creator and naught could drown nor drench him. Danger from fire and flame menace now, and dimly yet the rising smoke is seen. Let him again, after the cycle of peace, call on the Solar Angel.”
When this rule is deeply studied it becomes apparent that it is filled with esoteric truth. The magician is now faced with the “dangers from fire”. Interestingly, this rule also reveals the remedy to the fiery perils found at this final stage in the magical process. The magician must learn to once again invoke the soul into the field of his/her consciousness. S/he must “call on the Solar Angel” to give internal guidance to this difficult and final step. Through the use of the third-eye, the soul is able to gaze into the outer-world and discern precisely when and how to present the divine idea into the outer-environment. To the magician, this soul-directed realization comes to him/her in the form of a sudden knowingness as to the “proper” application of the divine idea. The method most appropriate to this process is meditation. Here I am referring to contemplative meditation as used by the magician. In meditation one must learn to contemplate upon the outward application of the thought-form construct. The results of such meditative work can be quite fruitful, for it provides the magician with the sense of timing needed to insure that the thought-form created will be given a healthy birth into the outer world. Through this form of meditation, the magician will develop a deeper understanding of the various cycles present in the outer-world. S/he will then be able to intuit the magical moment (within such a cycle) when the thought-form must be birthed forth. These cycles are many, and a full discussion of them is not possible in the context of this writing. Suffice to say that, just as every human being experiences an ebb and flow within their spiritual and secular life, so too does the outer environment experience the same. The white magician seeks to uplift an environment through the power inherent in the soul-inspired idea s/he is attempting to manifest. The success of this effort is largely based on his/her ability to intuitively sense the readiness of the outer-environment for what s/he seeks to magically express. If these cycles are not wisely recognized and considered, the magician will express the divine-idea into an environment that is momentarily repulsive to what is being offered. Tragically, the thought-form is then stillborn. When such occurs, the magical effort comes to naught. Fortunately, through the use of contemplative meditation, these rhythms are correctly sensed, thus making it possible for the magician to know precisely when (and how) to express the soul-inspired thought-form s/he has conceived. Divine timing is essential. Verily, it is when such occurs that magic is truly bestowed, and this as a service to the large whole.
White magic is truly a term synonymous with spiritual-creativity. Even so, it is an art that does not come with ease. It requires much introspective work, and an understanding of the means by which the soul seeks to express itself though its reflection, the personality. In truth, we who are attempting to walk the spiritual path are not white or black magicians. Rather, we are best described as gray creators, in that we are motivated by both soul and personality objectives. Yet, walking the spiritual path presupposes that there is a desire within each of us to tip the scales in the direction of the soul. And, by so doing, we eventually learn to be more creatively responsive to the inner master, the soul, and less reactive to the independent proclivities of the personality. With profound patience, the soul simply waits for its reflection to learn how the divine creative process really works, and rejoices when such personality understanding emerges. Verily, it is on that day that the magician can then truly co-create according to divine intention, and this, for the purpose of environmental upliftment. Such is ever the magical calling of the soul.
© 1998 William Meader
Biographical Information: William Meader is an author, teacher and counselor. Much of his work is focused on the subjects of Spiritual Creativity, the Evolution of Consciousness and the Art of Meditation. At present he is teaching in the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. He resides in Oregon, and can be contacted through his website at meader.org.