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From: (nagasiva)
Newsgroups: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.magick.tantra,alt.pagan.magick,alt.religion.sexuality,,,alt.consciousness,alt.hindu,,alt.thelema,alt.magick
Date: 2 May 1996 16:48:13 -0700
Organization: Portal Communications (shell)
Lines: 468
Message-ID: <4mbhjt$>
References: <4m462l$>
Reply-To: (nagasiva)
Xref: alt.magick.tyagi:7925 alt.magick.tantra:1265 alt.pagan.magick:480 alt.religion.sexuality:12543 alt.consciousness:26316 alt.hindu:2505 alt.magick:72664

49960502 happy lunatix!

Jai Kali!

In private email (posted with permission),

|>|_Kalidas_ is the gender-neutral form of either _Kalidasa_  
|>|or Kalidasi , the "Kali" in this case being Kali Ma in  
|>|any/all ofHer 'forms.' _Das/a/i_ would be literally translated as 
|>|"slave,"although modern translators seem to often play a bit 
|>|loose, translating as the less-loaded term "servant of" or even  
|>|"devotee"or "follower" of, to avoid the negative associations  
|>|most of us would, consciously or otherwise, slap onto the word "slave." 
|>I approach via the ...path of Lover.
|...the Lover is the Master of one's heart. 

aye, that and more.  a strange intrigue the power with me my Lover has.
'slave' has very wonderful negative connotations in regards Thelema, in 'the
 slave of the slave-gods'.  this is likely my preliminary repulsion,
 along with an indoctrination in school rejecting the notion of slavery
 such that I've had to seriously investigate the SMBD community in order
 (at least initially) to understand what the Master-Slave relationship
 was like (varies, but appears to be quite consensual in many cases)

|...Do you think Ramakrishna really considered _vira sadhana_ "dangerous"? 
|Or just more "difficult?" 

I looked for the place in the Gospel where I thought he mentioned the
 three styles of tantric discipline/devotion (animal, heroic and divine,
 to which you also refer as 'pasu'/animal).  For some reason I got the 
 impression that the relationship of Lover was in some way mixed up 
 with 'heroic' tantric exercises and was said to be more difficult or 
 dangerous, probably involving challenging entanglements (children for 
 one). ;>

|We could probably each quote a zillion scriptural descriptions of the 
|"best"  yogas for the Kali Yuga, and many of them would 
|be diametrical opposites. I guess most would agree that for a _pasu_, 
|everything save blind obedience or almost desperate _bhakthi_ is 

yes, I imagine that the condition or quality of a persons' character 
 would be primary in determining what is difficult/dangerous and what
 is not.  this is part of the benefit of surveying a broad range of
 systems of aspiration, seeing relationships amongst cultural features
 and mystical disciplines, beginning to sift out the form of a discipline
 from its effect, recognizing the categories of states of consciousness 
 alongside the mythos which point to them, and finding or creating one's 
 own keyset.

|...first ... was to Kali-as-Mother, 

Kali Ma has always been near and dear to me.

|...unable--or unwilling--to identify as Siva, much less Ardhanarisvara. 

this I can understand.  who or what is Ardhanarisvara?

|..."1. When one hungers and thirsts and does not practice enjoyment; 
|that is an Initiation (_Diksa_). 

interesting.  typically I call that (when intentional, not merely
 procrastination :>) *discipline*, and I mean by this a self-instruction,
 in this case of ascetic means (perhaps others have called it practice or

|4. Austerity, charity, the yamas and niyamas; 

the last two terms sound very familiar, but as yet I don't understand
 them and can't find them in glossaries of the books I have to hand
 regarding tantra or Indian language.  my apologies if have been

|these are the gifts to the _pujari_, Priest. 

makes lots of sense to me.  the 'everything has its place' way of
 thought.  I was raised with it.

|It wouldn't be scripturally unsound  to think of any act, 
|including the supposedly "grossest" as a _yajna_ or form of _puja_ 
|with oneself as _pujari_, as long as _Tyaga_, the sacrificial 
|*intent* is there. ...

what is the best way to be sure about this 'intent'?  could one deceive
 oneself, especially when the worship benefits one sensually (making up
 good food and feeding deity for prasad so as to gain merit or enjoy the
 good tastes oneself, possible examples)?

|>|Generally, four things are still "required" to make a "proper" 
|>|yajna if one wants to be traditional: 
|>|	_Dravya_, the "substance," that which is sacrificed;
|>|	_Tyaga_, the "sacrificial intent," the attitude of giving 
|>|	         something--or everything--to the yajna recipient; 
|>|	_Devata_, the divine recipient ItSelf; and 
|>|	_Mantra_, which is fairly self-explanatory.

|I'd say practical as well as devotional results is eminently "orthodox."  
|..._Prathana_, personal benefit, is a traditional part of the _Puja_ 
|ritual. ...The money is thus the blessing of the Devata at the 
|conclusion of the rite.

how then can one be sure that the proper sacrificial intent is present?
 are there personal signs to be aware of that come from Indian tradition
 or your experience outside that?

|I'd be interested in the cyberspace constructions, but not having 
|web-access, suspect my interest will go unexplored--yes? no?

alass, all of them have been destroyed/abandoned/lost, though you are
 inspiring me to once again consider cyberspatial devotional art.  my
 latest haunt has been in Divination Web (currently down and perhaps about
 to shift to a new site).  I created several graveyard and cremation-
 ground areas (Norse Dragonboat fire burial, etc.)

a lovely playground.  I picture it as the scene of a role-played occult
 adventure involving Baphomet and the Lost City of Atlantis. :>

[re: distinctions between Kali/me; self-other, etc.]  
|I make no hard and fast distinctions either. Despite what the 
|various schools have to say on the matter of dualism/non-dualism, 
|I personally feel it's impossible to discern, and so don't spend 
|time trying....

it's nice to know I'm not alone in this approach. :> thanks.

|...I've "experienced" Kali as an actual discarnate Being; 
|as a form of _brahman_ ; 

re: the last, I do at times understand Kali to be a manifestation
 of the perfection of brahman, a flimsy symbol to my ignorant
 consciousness which tends to perceive things best as persons.
 perhaps this is what you mean

|...a _Camiyata_-style experience of "possession." 

what is 'Camiyata-style'?  I have only heard of African-derived
 and spiritualist possession.

|>everything I do is 'released' (something I find 'between' 
|>'sacrifice' and'giving') to the proper recipient....
|>I have difficulty with the typical religious attitudes about
|>ascetic rigor and 'sacrifice' or 'giving' in the sense of
|>disempowering myself in the activity.  ....
|Perhaps the release you mention above is similar to the concept of 
|"surrender," during the _yoga pada_, the "foot," "part" or "stage" 
|of "union," when one surrenders without any sense of submission, 
|the self to the self, culminating in the _sakha marga_, path of 
|the friend. 

this is often my surrender, yes, especially when I make a discipline
 to bow when leaving and/or entering the temple.  there is something
 very liberating about throwing myself before Kali's altar

|...Saiva Siddhantha tradition describes the _Padas_ as 
|leading to natural _margas_, paths, defined by the way the 
|individual experiences god at those stages: _Das Marga_, when one 
|experiences god as a slave would look upon a master; __Satputra 
|Marga_, the path of the "true child," as one would look upon a 
|loving and beloved parent; __Sakha Marga_ in which god is one's 
|longtime close pal; and _San Marga_, or "True" or "Eternal" Path, 
|wherein one moves from viewing god-as-Lover, to god-as-Self, which 
|is where all the identification/annihilation stuff comes in.  ;>

at times I wonder whether all of these are not merely the exercise
 of particular capacity (perhaps 'agape') of love toward kin, and
 we are given encouragement to test out brittle wings of our heart
 and, later, expand this to all relationships, all directions, in
 different character as the particular circumstance demands.

|...While I'm prone to occasional bhaktifits  ;>  it's not often 
|that I engage in anything resembling self-humiliation, or even 
|ego-destruction. As a _grihasthini_, or householder, it's not 
|yet my _dharma_ to do so.  ;>

I'd like to know more about this division of _grihasthini_ and
 whether you speak of a progression sometimes elaborated in my
 college classroom and academic books: student, householder,
 forest-dweller and sannyasin.

|>...I have rarely been able to enter into this experience 
|>outside kirtan (singing, dancing, art etc. in devotion to Her).
|Kirtan, bhajans, japa, and even asana have led me to states of 
|ecstatic trance. I'm apt to wander off into _samadhi_ at the drop 
|of a hat, though, and have to learn to restrain myself rather than 
|to let go.  ;>  The sense of complete immersion, unity with Kalika 
|Mahadevi, has come most frequently--not surprisingly--for me 
|during and/or after sexual union, whether explicitly ritualized, 
|or simply a Most Excellent Fuck. 

I have heard of samadhi in relation to Sri Ramakrishna also.  As
 you say you've experienced it, could you say something about how
 it *feels* (or doesn't, as the case may be), what you remember of
 it, how others describe you when you are in it, etc.?

|Several years ago, I engaged in a ritual of Formal Dedication to 
|Kali Ma, following a _Sakthipat_ initiation, _Mantra Diksa_, and a 
|bunch of other stuff which might sound impressive to those who 
|don't know me in the flesh.  ;>  It was a powerful experience. It 
|also had *no* lasting effects whatsoever. "It went away." 

my own dedicatory rite was not specifically intended as an energetic 
 event, but more as a catalyst for the next phase of my life (monk); 
 did the trick too, as I'm pretty much settled into this weird lifestyle.

I'd compare your remark about the saktipat 'going away' with what
 some say about their psychoactive experiences.  my own impression is 
 that such intense experiences don't really ever leave us, they just 
 disappear and fade a bit below the level of surface consciousness, 
 becoming part of the foundation in the accumulation of subsequent 

|I should have added an "IMHO" after my own translation/commentary 
|on _Reta_, as I'm not a Vedic scholar, and thus, not properly 
|qualified to give T&C, other than to myself.

to me it is all the same, as I locate the responsibility for checking
 sources with the READER.  thank you for making your authority known.
 I'm sure I'd have to find a bigger method of indicating that, like
 'FOWKYOO' (From One Whose Knowledge Yields Only Onions)

|...also embarrassingly ignorant about most of the stuff I 
|prattled endlessly on about _vis_ "Tantra." 

do you think this (students prattling on about what they know little)
 happens alot in tantric lineages?

|...It may be a _Tyaga_ thang, with an inner attitude born of practice 
|or a natural tendency toward, I don't know which, to view the 
|"mundane" *as* "sacred," 

I notice it is a recurrent tendency in my own approach to the spiritual,
 and yet what everyone else has always meant by 'mundane' was the ordinary
 world, the world of going to school, living in the middle-class, American
 doldrums of bored depravity.

our clique decided what was 'normal' or 'boring' and this was also what so 
 very many of my friends meant by 'the mundane' or 'mundanity'.  it applied 
 to the domesticated animal nature in us, predemonantly, I realized later,
 that herded feeling.  we were controlled and guided, mundanity was the
 hand of somnambulance.

I do sometimes see the hand of somnambulance as evil, sometimes as one of
 great compassion.  today I live rather far from that ordinary world,
 and yet smack dab where I started -- a grand cycle, another kinset, 
 a new beginning.  

|or it may be the "clicking" between myself and my present magical/mundane 
|partner, or something else entirely, but unfettered fucking seems to 
|have become mostly identical to formal _maithuna sadhana_ for me.

perhaps the conditions being present we may reach similar states of 
 consciousness regardless of activity; perhaps the facility of returning 
 to desired states of consciousness portends a maturity of our mechanism.  
 or maybe this is just becoming stuck on the physical plane. :>

|>Perpetually two things have struck me as 'difficult' about what 
|>is described as 'ritualized sexuality' and 'ceremonial magick' 
|>within esoteric traditions.

|>...reject 'goals' in the sexual interaction in favor of none at all, 
|>moving to the dance of our sincerety and mutual pleasuring and 
|>occasionally entering into trance-states or 'nonordinary states 
|>of consciousness' (even for sex) due to the way in which we 
|>merged and dallied.  The notion of 'using this energy' has always 
|>struck me as repulsive, ....
|I'm not sure what you mean by "using this energy." Toward a *specific* 
|goal, I spoze, but isn't mutual pleasure a "goal" itself? 

I wouldn't say it has the same quality of a 'goal' as does something
 like 'getting a new car' or 'finding that set of keys' or 'achieving
 the Great Work' or whatever we may designate this sexual energy as
 arrow to effect change, sent into the subconscious mind through the
 vehicle of the body in ecstatic reverie at a heightened stage of 

|As long as the pre-formulated ceremony isn't so rigid as to 
|preclude deviation, I don't see it as a problem, for myself.

some folks do prefer sticking to scripts.  helps them to get
 into the finite game aspect (Carse), having a determinable
 content (present) and goal (future), the unknown may be 
 eliminated such that it will not prevent dominion 

I have devised and followed scripts with others upon occasion,
 and given those circumstances (unlikely) and that combination
 of people (impossible) I would do it again.  I have even walked
 through a Golden Dawn ceremony and it wasn't too torturous.  the 
 attraction to the form is quite understandable.

|..."yoga" and Hinduism in their broadest senses caught my interest. 
|...went to India, hung out in _asrams_, began laborious 
|transliterations/translations from the Sanskrit 

I noticed the Sanskrit _underscores_.  rationale for that?  emphasis
 on nonEnglish text?  are there as many Sanskrit scriptures as there 
 are Buddhist sutras (more than can ever be read by one person)?

| to initiate into the O.T.O., did 
|not obtain same, and decided to go ahead NEwayz. I still have 
|nothing but the utmost respect, love, and gratitude toward my 
|Beloved Teacher, and in fact, have been in contact several times 
|since the--change?--in the status of our relationship. 

[from previous:]
|...The "formal conclusion" of the guru/sisya relationship came about, 

on account of your involvement with Thelema, or some other reason?

|...two Wiccan women I know and consider more-or-less friends "warned" 
|me against the Evyl  Crowley, O.T.O., etc. The warnings didn't 
|match the faces, so to speak, so I decided to check it out for myself 

I had similar experience, though had already read _The Book of Thoth_
 and _Magick in Theory and Practice_ (understanding little of either
 but ecstatic about them both).  Neopagans warned me of them and this
 drove me quickly away from their camps upon reference to Thelemic
 quadrants (brief meetings with Oakland OTO folks)

|...Being a "Dharma-freak" instead of a "karma  junkie," I was 
|attracted by the idea of personal responsibility, of action rather 
|than fear of consequences, and intrigued by what I perceived to be 
|parallels. I consider _Swadharma_ to be, *for me*, identical with 

does this mean that you tend to designate 'will' (true) versus 'want'
 or 'whim'?  is there svadharma and asvadharma? :>

|I have fun being a COP and self-interpreting _AL_ 
|I:57, fer-instance, in such ways as "There is Kapota and there is 
|Kundalini" or "There is Anahata and there is Muladhara," tweaking 
|the "Law of the Fortress" into "Durga Dharma" or "Durga Nyaya," 
|and considering the "great mystery of the House of God" in terms 
|of _Grihesvara_, "House of God," and "Lord of the House," and 
|meditating upon the etymilogical  roots of _grh_ and _grah_, 
|equating "house" with "book" and also with "knot."  Y'know, 
|the usual!  ;>

doesn't sound like anything that is usual for me, and it is a wonder
 way to comprehend doctrines syncretically

|I'd probably describe the Hindu-Thelemic currents as 
|"complementary." The fact that I don't see things yogic as Crowley 
|appeared to at times hasn't been a hindrance to me, thus far.

I'm not sure how far Crowley's yoga goes, actually, having only perused
 once or twice Part I of Book Four, scanned some academic texts and spoken
 with a few people associated with yogic traditions through the years, few
 of whom knew much about Uncle Al and his Evileness.

|...five years ago, I was diagnosed with a Central Nervous 
|System disorder similar to M.S., which at this point is incurable, 
|progressive, debilitating, and ultimately fatal. 

my sympathies.  you appear to be weathering it quite well thusfar.

|"purpose" of "life" was to propagate the species; that the only 
|kind of "immortality" anyone could hope for was through spreadine 
|one's DNA; that the "Big Secret" was that there WAS no secret, 
|that the Mission of Humanity was to procreate and then die. 

I don't always see all those as necessarily part of the same concept,
 though I do enjoy them separately.  individually I think we are quite
 thoroughly conditioned to propagate by our physiology and genes.  one's
 DNA may not constitute one's identity but may be the most stable element.

there IS no secret, yes.  illustrated perfectly by Douglas Adams.
 the mission of humanity?  I think it is to wake up and hear the
 screams of the forests

|...get with existence as "pure joy," followed by an individual 
|_mahapralaya_ with no re-creation process necessary. The linking 
|of "no dread hereafter" with "no keen hereafter"  ;>  left me 
|free to...I dunno. Just "walk" I guess. 

glad to hear it.  thanks for taking the time to share so much of

|...BTW, my "conclusions" about Life, the Universe, and Everything 
| have changed since then--several times. At this point, my 
|conclusions about almost everything are "I dunno, I don't think 
|it's possible to know, and that won't interfere with my doing what 
|needs to be done, what wants to be done, what will be done."  ::shrug::

talking is fine, now I'm walking this way, thanks.   I think I got ya.

|...have chosen to focus more intently on the more lasting fancies.  :>
like what?  You mean yoga and Thelema here?  Or long-term relationships,
 or something altogether different that I missed?

|'s getting just a *bit* easier as I make studying Sanskrit a personal 
|_sadhana_. ...

that is marvellous.  I have considered it myself and have enjoyed what little
 I've gleaned from brief investigations.  thanks for the recommendations on
 reference.  lovely.

|By the way, if anyone says anything interesting, I would *greatly* 
|appreciate it if public posts inaccessible to me could be 
|forwarded and/or cc'd to my I-net address.

I hope you will be cc'd, else I may do so personally. ;>

aum krim namah kaliya

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