Alchemical Garden Forum

Please visit Entering the Garden and discover what are our sustaining roots. You may only apply with us if you agree and consent to our Community Vision and Purpose and Ethos and Ethical Guidelines.

The registration includes writing a letter of application in which you sincerely tell us why you wish to join.

feedback A Curriculum of Basic Practice Instructions

Good constructive feedback helps us all get forward when it's directly given to the right people, although sometimes feedback might be of more indirect and anecdotal type. Unhelpful initiatives are unlikely to garner attention or support.

Roots of Virtue

At Your Service
Staff member
Moderator
What makes for good internal arts to learn? Which skills and arts should the practitioner immerse with in order that he gains a reasonable understanding of how the classic spiritual arts of the world work?

Here we plan and discuss a curriculum of basic practice instructions which the Alchemical Garden Curators strive to produce for the general audience.

We invite capable practitioners to contribute! Any user may attempt to produce a curriculum lesson, but the Curators reserve the editorial oversight about what is officially accepted as a lesson for the particular curriculum entry. We do accept different lesson productions for the same curriculum entry.

Most of the curated lessons will be available for registered users only. This concerns instructive materials especially.




Curriculum Entry Keys​


1xx — Beginner studies
2xx — Intermediate studies
3xx — Advanced studies


Proposed Curriculum Outline​


Major study subjects: Ethics, Magic, Divination, Herbalism, Tantra, Mantrawork, Dreamwork, Meditation, what else?


Magic 101: General Introduction to Magic — must address ethics and explanation how magical contracts work
Magic 102: Ritual and Magic — including basic information about cleansing and consecration of magical tools
Magic 103: Magical Craft — sigils and seals

Divination 101: General Introduction Divination
Divination 102: Practical Introduction to I Ching
Divination 103: Practical Introduction to Tarot






Produced Curriculum Lessons (and Planned)​


Divination 101: Consulting Oracles, Asking Wise Questions, and Interpreting Meaningful Answers
Divination 102: Beginner Divination with I Ching or the Classic of Changes
Divination 103: Beginner Divination with Rider-Waite Tarot Deck
Divination 104: Beginner Divination with Bosch Tarot Deck
Divination 105: Beginner Divination with Geomancy

Divination 203: Using Divination for Magic: the Thoth Tarot Deck
Divination 204: Using Divination for Shadow Work: the Grotesque in Tarot

Meditation 101: What is Mind Training and What is it Good For?
Meditation 102: Simple Calmness Sitting Meditation (AKA Golden Flower)
Meditation 103: Simple Insight Meditation into Self-Grasping
 
Last edited:
  • Loving-kindness
Reactions:
What makes for good internal arts to learn? Which skills and arts should the practitioner immerse with in order that he gains a reasonable understanding of how the classic spiritual arts of the world work?

Here we plan and discuss a curriculum of basic practice instructions which the Alchemical Garden Curators strive to produce for the general audience.

We invite capable practitioners to contribute! Any user may attempt to produce a curriculum lesson, but the Curators reserve the editorial oversight about what is officially accepted as a lesson for the particular curriculum entry. We do accept different lesson productions for the same curriculum entry.



Curriculum Entry Keys​


1xx — Beginner studies
2xx — Intermediate studies
3xx — Advanced studies


Proposed Curriculum Outline​


Major study subjects: Ethics, Magic, Divination, what else?


Magic 101: General Introduction to Magic — must address ethics and explanation how magical contracts work
Magic 102: Ritual and Magic — including basic information about cleansing and consecration of magical tools

Divination 101: General Introduction Divination
Divination 102: Practical Introduction to I Ching
Divination 103: Practical Introduction to Tarot




Produced Curriculum Lessons (and Planned)​


Divination 101: Consulting Oracles, Asking Wise Questions, and Interpreting Meaningful Answers
Divination 102: Beginner Divination with I Ching or the Classic of Changes
Divination 103: Beginner Divination with Rider-Waite Tarot Deck
Divination 104: Beginner Divination with Bosch Tarot Deck
Divination 105: Beginner Divination with Geomancy

Divination 203: Using Divination for Magic: the Thoth Tarot Deck
Divination 204: Using Divination for Shadow Work: the Grotesque in Tarot
Do you think that some sciences or philosophy could be added to the list? And which if so?

Psychology maybe to better understand ourselves? But of course there are many different schools of thought in that science
 
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0

Earl Grey

Gonzo Daoist and Dharma Punk
Moderator
Do you think that some sciences or philosophy could be added to the list? And which if so?

Psychology maybe to better understand ourselves? But of course there are many different schools of thought in that science

There are resources for these already. We are focused on esoteric work here.
 
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0

Roots of Virtue

At Your Service
Staff member
Moderator
Do you think that some sciences or philosophy could be added to the list? And which if so?

I'm not sure what you are getting at, but just to make it clear: We are not interested in teaching the common natural sciences or bookish philosophies. Everyone can seek teachings on these at accredited universities and their courses.

The title shows Basic Practice Instructions, and this is a forum for wisdom and spiritual development. Naturally, what we want to produce is short practical pamphlets that help getting hands-on immersion with internal skills.

Psychology maybe to better understand ourselves? But of course there are many different schools of thought in that science

Absolutely. Then instead of becoming armchair magicians we could become armchair psychologists and give people diagnoses online.

We get to understand ourselves by the non-conceptual practice that enlightens the heart-mind, not by conceptual analysis nor dialectic science.

Some of Carl Gustav Jung's theories are interesting and relevant though. We could have one expert article on that in the context of dream work and the subconscious.
 
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0

Miroku

Practitioner-to-be
Tutor
Oh lovely! There is nothing quite as exciting as a good curriculum.

Do you think some form of meditation practice would be useful? As far as I know some form of tuning in and ability to keep ones attention and intention focused could be useful in these arts. If not for anything else, but to be able to dig for answers via introspection and increased clarity of the mind.
 
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0

One Finger Chan

Practitioner
Tutor
Do you think that some sciences or philosophy could be added to the list?
Prediction theory and some basic physiology could be interesting if one want to deepen ones understanding of why and how some of the components of Qigong aid in helping us stay present instead of being stuck in yesterdays experience plastered on our view of tomorrow.
But really, a list of components that a basic approach to meditation should contain is so much more valuable to the beginning student, while going down the theoretical path is more useful at a later stage.
 
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0

Corvus

Practitioner
Tutor
Regarding the 'Western Mysteries' ,

I think the above points about psychology are relevant but I also bear in mind that ancient central axiom of the mysteries 'know thyself' and in that knowing I include such things as psychology . I also note a great 'blender' of the two arts ( magick and psychology ) in th works of Israel Regardie .

In any case ( and for the beginner ) ; " Which skills and arts should the practitioner immerse with in order that he gains a reasonable understanding of how the classic spiritual arts of the world work?"

In some ways this is essential. Not many people into the magical arts or occult ( nowadays , in 'pop' sources , ie , the general internet and personal discussions ) have a good explanation for the modern 'medium of transference ' . Sure, we hear things like 'quantum theory ' and 'multiverse', being equated with it , but most often not , with any deep substance . Even so this not the classical understanding , not ' how the classic spiritual arts of the world work .... in the classical sense . Without that 'classical sense ' one often struggles to make sense of the arts, ideas and formulas of the classical world as it is being comprehended by a modern different mind set . [ And in that some people have a proclivity towards one or another of those mind sets ... or a jumble of both and/or different areas . ]

I am supposing this would fit into the

1xx — Beginner studies

or some similar part ? The best I have found on this ( and I highly recommend it for any beginner or anyone not a beginner that has yet to encounter it ) is ( ( here is an easy to read free pdf ) ;


even just the first 2 chapters, its less than 20 pages .

In a nutshell, its the 'geocentric theory' and the idea of the 'crystal spheres' of planetary orbits

1626577174825.png
 
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 1

Corvus

Practitioner
Tutor
So, where do we go from here ?

I have some experience in setting curriculum , or helping students to make sense of some and follow them . Again, in the Western Mystery School Tradition .

In the above proposed curriculum I have experience in




Proposed Curriculum Outline​


Major study subjects: Ethics, Magic, Divination, Herbalism, Tantra, Mantrawork, Dreamwork, Meditation, what else?


Magic 101: General Introduction to Magic — must address ethics and explanation how magical contracts work
Magic 102: Ritual and Magic — including basic information about cleansing and consecration of magical tools
Magic 103: Magical Craft — sigils and seals

Divination 101: General Introduction Divination
Divination 102: Practical Introduction to I Ching
Divination 103: Practical Introduction to Tarot








Produced Curriculum Lessons (and Planned)​


Divination 101: Consulting Oracles, Asking Wise Questions, and Interpreting Meaningful Answers
Divination 102: Beginner Divination with I Ching or the Classic of Changes
Divination 103: Beginner Divination with Rider-Waite Tarot Deck
Divination 104: Beginner Divination with Bosch Tarot Deck
Divination 105: Beginner Divination with Geomancy

Divination 203: Using Divination for Magic: the Thoth Tarot Deck
Divination 204: Using Divination for Shadow Work: the Grotesque in Tarot

Meditation 101: What is Mind Training and What is it Good For?
Meditation 102: Simple Calmness Sitting Meditation (AKA Golden Flower)
Meditation 103: Simple Insight Meditation into Self-Grasping


Of course its going to be based on what I have experience with , my 'own take' on things and the work of others that I have found valuable . Here is one example of such , a document that I feel every beginner should read ;




Postcards to Probationers​




THEOREMS​


I. The world progresses by virtue of the appearance of Christs (geniuses).
II. Christs (geniuses) are men with super-consciousness of the highest order.
III. Super-consciousnes of the highest order is obtainable by known methods.
Therefore, by employing the quintessence of known methods we cause the world to progress.

ESSENTIALS OF METHOD​


I. Theology is immaterial; for both Buddha and St. Ignatius were Christs.
II. Morality is immaterial; for both Socrates and Mohammed were Christs.
III. Super-consciousness is a natural phenomenon; its conditions are therefore to be sought rather in the acts than the words of those who attain it.
The essential acts are retirement and concentration — as taught by Yoga and Ceremonial Magic. {196}

MISTAKES OF MYSTICS​


I. Since truth is supra-rational, it is incommunicable in the language of reason.
II. Hence all mystics have written nonsense, and what sense they have written is so far untrue.
III. Yet as a still lake yields a truer reflection of the sun than a torrent, he whose mind is best balanced will, if he become a mystic, become the best mystic.

THE METHOD OF EQUILIBRIUM​




I. THE PASSIONS, ETC.​


I. Since the ultimate truth of teleology is unknown, all codes of morality are arbitrary.
II. Therefore the student has no concern with ethics as such.
III. He is consequently free 'to do his duty in that state of life to which it has pleased God to call him.'

II. THE REASON​


I. Since truth is supra-rational, any rational statement is false.
II. Let the student then contradict every proposition that presents itself to him. {197}
III. Rational ideas being thus expelled from the mind, there is room for the apprehension of spiritual truth.
It should be remarked that this does not destroy the validity of reasonings on their own plane.

III. THE SPIRITUAL SENSORIUM​


I. Man being a finite being, he is incapable of apprehending the infinite. Nor does his communion with infinite being (true or false) alter this fact.
II. Let then the student contradict every vision and refuse to enjoy it; first, because there is certainly another vision possible of precisely contradictory nature; secondly, because though he is God, he is also a man upon an insignificant planet.
Being thus equilibrated laterally and vertically, it may be that, either by affirmation or denial of all these things together, he may attain the supreme trance.

IV. THE RESULT​


I. Trance is defined as the ek-stasis of one particular tract of the brain, caused by meditation on the idea corresponding to it.
II. Let the student therefore beware lest in that idea be any trace of imperfection. It should be pure, balanced, calm, complete, fitted in every way to dominate the mind, as it will.
Even as in the choice of a king to be crowned. {198}
III. So will the decrees of this king be just and wise as he was just and wise before he was made king.
The life and work of the mystic will reflect (though dimly) the supreme guiding force of the mystic, the highest trance to which he has attained.

YOGA AND MAGIC​


I. Yoga is the art of uniting the mind to a single idea. It has four methods.

Gnana-Yoga. Union by Knowledge.
Raja-Yoga. Union by Will.
Bhakta-Yoga. Union by Love.
Hatha-Yoga. Union by Courage.
add Mantra-Yoga.Union through Speech.
Karma-Yoga. Union through Work.
These are united by the supreme method of Silence.
II. Ceremonial Magic is the art of uniting the mind to a single idea.
It has four Methods.

The Holy Qabalah. Union by Knowledge.
The Sacred Magic. Union by Will.
The Acts of Worship.Union by Love.
The Ordeals. Union by Courage.
add The Invocations.Union by Speech.
The Acts of Service.Union through Work.
These are united by the supreme method of Silence. {199}
III. If this idea be any but the Supreme and Perfect idea, and the student lose control, the result is insanity, obsession, fanaticism, or paralysis and death (add addiction to gossip and incurable idleness), according to the nature of the failure.
Let then the Student understand all these things and combine them in his Art, uniting them by the supreme method of Silence.

 
  • Loving-kindness
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0

Corvus

Practitioner
Tutor
Okay, I will go somewhere from here then :)

Sometimes it all seems too complex ( the above ) , sometimes it might be best just to kidnap someone and ram them into their first initiation :)

( with their previous permission of course ) and reveal the process as it unfolds ... one part of the curriculum at a time , with the following parts remaining secret . In my experience cultures all over the world and through time have used this method to good advantage . It usually works via the medium of dramatic ritual ( whether in ancient painted caves or modern Freemasonic ritual ) and often in the context where the seeker / initiate is 'in a play' that he doesn't know the plot or outcome of and plays the 'lead role' ( usually some ancestor hero type , or a favorable personality appreciated and emulated ) ... which he doesn't know ( but gets an 'offsider' to help him out . Its an ageless formula . Its often supplemented by latter 'knowledge lectures' , either

1627004170336.png


all the way through to

1627004050800.png


I remember my first one ( in a way the ceremony previous is more 'powerful' and life changing and leading to realization but the knowledge lecture accompanying it puts it all in 'context' the ceremony might be misunderstood otherwise, even though it has emotive power ) .
 

Attachments

  • 1627006853287.png
    1627006853287.png
    115.7 KB · Views: 45
  • 1627006933370.png
    1627006933370.png
    130.1 KB · Views: 42
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0

Corvus

Practitioner
Tutor
So, I was talking about knowledge lecture and I was remembering my first one . Also it was my first 'task' that I was charged with ( so in a way, point 1 of 'their' curriculum ) ; to meditate on what I had been instructed in . Its called the first paradox of philosophy , its about having to give up certain freedoms and restrict yourself to enable yourself to gain greater freedom . This may involve things like discipline, regulation and restriction

Since I should not repeat the lecture ( except in the ceremony ), I often use the analogy of yoga ; through the discipline of hatha yoga , which might initially involve pain, discomfort regulation and restriction of movement , a greater freedom and ease of movement may be accomplished .

Its a big stumbling block nowadays ; people want things given to them easier than this ..... yes, one may have to work for it !

So in this system, you are also given supplementary material to explore that relates to that level of initiation ... and so on through the levels .

One important thing I feel is 'back ground reading ' , ideally that has been happening all along ( before one takes a ritually significant and willful step along the serious path .
 
  • Equanimity
Reactions:
Upvote 0
Top