Psychic Powers, Edgar Cayce and the last words of Hassan-i Sabbah

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In my post relating to the ‘Psychic’ fortune telling industry, I said some rough things relating to psychics that were in the interest of debunking the proposition that people are incapable of divining for themselves.

Are psychic powers real? Edgar Cayce, for example – exhibited psychic powers despite a profound Christian faith that was at odds with the conclusions, reincarnation, his trance states suggested.

Edgar Cayce provided a catalyst for the modern ‘New Age’ movement. It’s not uncommon in Chaos magic circles to find contempt for all things ‘New Age’ however. While Edgar Cayce and others (I’m personally fond of Nicola Tesla) may provide material evidence for real ‘supernatural’ mystery, alas it’s subjective stuff and as such defies critical observation.

What’s wrong with the ‘New Age’? The answer is nothing really, but it has large market share in ‘occult’ circles and seems to crowd out valuable subjects that seem more threatening, such as Wicca, Hoodoo, Chaos magic and Thelema. The flood of material has resulted in a great deal of poorly written and even misleading material in the ‘New Age’ genr’e. There’s the reason and basis for resentment.

Chaos Magic and ‘New Age’ do have some friction. Chaos magic is concerned with real world results and clear communication of practical magical ideas applicable to anyone, The ‘New Age’ possesses doctrine, divides people into categories and easily lends itself to marketing and exploitation. The lack of incorporated moral structure and freestyle method of Chaos magic frightens or seems wrong to some proponents of ‘New Age’.

Past life therapy, Energies from magical minerals, Psychics with power you cannot have, energy healing …etc. Certainly some of these phenomena are REAL, no? Or, at least, could be. What’s the problem?

Hassan-i Sabbah
was an Islamic fundamentalist who, on his deathbed, uttered a profoundly non fundamentalist realization: “Nothing is true! Everything is permitted!

That statement has found itself in the writings of William S. Burroughs, Robert Anton Wilson and … Peter Carrol used to to frame Chaos magic.

Nothing is true, Everything is permitted!

This statement is the real access Chaos Magic has to the  New Age, and anything else. It REALLY seems scary and damnable to some, what of morals? What of God? What of ethics even?

Here’s my take on it. First, get the paradox in the statement – if nothing is true, it’s not true that everything is permitted.  I believe the statement concisely encapsulates the existential insight. This is the fundamental reality, the reason for morality and ethics to become manifest.

So let’s break it down. First, Nothing is true. Now obviously 1+1 always equals 2 (unless it equals 11, thinking visually rather than of the abstraction that is math) – but the big questions are always big question marks. Is there a God? Is there life after death? Are psychic powers real? Can synchronicity be manipulated?  It’s actually rational where the conclusion cannot be proven – to accept  no conclusion.

Everything is permitted is just what’s so. God, if real, isn’t going to stop you. The only one that can stop you is you. Thinking in terms of a God, everything really is permitted, as it wouldn’t be true otherwise, given the infi nite power defining God. This is not to suggest morals or ethics aren’t real, they exist for good reasons and are created by us for a clearly practical purpose.  What it does suggest is the you are responsible for your own morality, not God, not parents – you!

Now, that’s the basis of paradigm piracy. Because no spiritual or magical  idea is intrinsically more real than any other, a Chaos Magician can and will explore them all. You can become a Catholic Christian specifically to explore the possiblities the rosary and faith healing present and then, when you have some answers – you can invest yourself into the Voodoo faith… If ‘Nothing is true but everything is permitted, all spiritual and magical forms might work!

So fundamentally Chaos magic does respect the possibility of Edgar Cayce having a genuine psychic mystery. And hypothetically any self proclaimed psychic could similarly be as ‘real’. The things of the New Age – Chaos magicians understand that the act of faith manifests its own magic. If you choose to believe there are magical energies in gem stones – the belief alone is sufficient to make it so.

So if something of the New Age paradigm represents your own interest, it’s okay. You can be a great Chaos Magician as well!


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