Control and surrender and magic

Monday, July 19, 2021

3:30 a.m. I just got a couple of hours’ sleep due to an interesting thing that happened.

I was lying on the bed, trying hard to control my anxieties about various physical problems which, I fully realized, were interacting with my physical symptoms in a worsening feedback loop. I was having trouble stopping it. My breathing threatened to worsen. My general inability to relax and receive healing sleep was worsening. Everything was making everything worse, and it was getting harder to stay calm, when my instinct was to jump up and move around.

Without a lot of leeway left, I thought of the slide-switches, and decided to try to use them to regain emotional control. I set one to fully focus, another to maximum receptivity, though in both cases I had to hesitate to decide whether more focus might mean more focus on symptoms, more receptivity might mean more receptivity to whatever was wrong. But I decided to try it, and the very decision seemed to being more control. In very short order I was in charge again, rather than the automatic reactions that were turning physical discomfort and emotional awareness into low-grade panic. As I regained my control over the process, symptoms abated markedly, and I was able to lie there relaxed, then get a sleep-cycle of an hour and a half or so. I moved into a dream that ended with the words, emphasized by volume, “Feedback loop” (meaning something different in the dream, but those words still) and I was awake

This is very interesting. The sore spot on my upper hip next to my spine is still sore, but it is localized – for the moment, at least – and should not prevent me from going back to sleep. However, my nose is full to the point of almost forcing me to breathe through my mouth: I don’t know if I would actually be able to sleep, lying down.

So, since I am up, shall we use the time well? Commentary on all this would be a good use of time, I’d think.

Well done there. We remind you that your (anyone’s) 3D trials are not necessarily to be seen as imposed by some non-3D entity (part of yourself or otherwise) as some sort of test. It can look like that – particularly when you pass the test! – but that is only a way of looking at it.

Closer, I suppose, to say that life itself poses the test. External conditions meet our internal conditions sometimes and things happen. What you would call the shared subjectivity meeting the personal subjectivity.

That is a very neutral, instructive way to look at it. Many of the trials and tribulations of 3D life are just that kind of interaction of the “yourself” that you know and the yourself (or part of yourself) that you do not know. That is 3D conditions making it possible for you to grow by absorbing a portion of your life of which you had been unconscious.

I suppose it happens pleasurably sometimes, not always with difficulty or pain or trauma or distaste.

Yes indeed. Your life might almost be described as a continuous process of your present-moment awareness being brought into awareness of parts of itself it hadn’t absorbed (and thus considered to be separate), and choosing how to react to it.

Thus emphasizing the importance of staying awake, in the present, moment by moment.

Yes. Being Here Now. As Gurdjieff pointed out, no work can be done in sleep.

Thinking about how I was able to regain control of my downwardly-spiraling emotions, it occurs to me that that ability to regain control could be described as one aspect of receiving “life more abundantly.”

It is all about control, and about willingly surrendering control. Learn the rhythm, dance the dance, and life becomes so much easier. As we said, a good while ago, you don’t have to learn through pain; you can learn through joy.

For some reason,. I am sent back to 20 years ago or so, and either Rita or I mentioned that you-all had told us something “a long time ago,” and you were laughing at us, at the difference between our senses of time. To Rita and me, we had been at it for a while (months, by that one, I imagine) and from yours we had barely begun. Twenty years on, I see your point more clearly!

Twenty years on, you see many of our points more clearly. There is more to say about control and the surrender of control, but this is a good time to answer Dmitry Kornilov’s question.

Is it? All right, I’ll patch it in when I transcribe.

[Email from Dmitry Kornilov, in Moscow, Russia.

[… So I’m reading Rita’s World Part I, and what an amazing material it is!!!… But anyway…The reason I’m writing to you is to find out whether I can propose a question for the discussion with the TGU.

[I was wondering if you could ask their opinion on magic – “black” and “white” one? Personally I never bothered about this issue, until last year when the circumstances of my life were such that I happened to work in an environment where few people were practicing witchcraft. And they put spells on me which had very tangible physical effects, so that I had to ask for the help of a specialized master to remove those negative influences. Apparently they were trying to affect my energy system…or, perhaps aura… One of the methods those dark magicians used was NLP – neuro-linguistic programming…

[So, such was my practical experience of this. I was fond of tarot cards readings at the time, and was told that all those negative influences were part of my family line karma – I was paying some ancestors’ debt…

[Later I found out that the topic was very popular here in Moscow – in a negative sense, because I’ve got an impression that every second person was into magic trying to influence other people or to push forward their own selfish interests. Moreover, I’ve noticed that the contents of esoteric shelves in book stores radically changed from channeled stuff, yoga, Eastern teachings, Buddhism, Eckhart Tolle and so on, to books on runes and magic. Now all the shelves are stuffed with books titled something like “how to become a successful witch”, or “practical guidelines on magic”, and so forth… Terrible!

[I don’t know whether these issues were previously raised with the TGU, but I would be really interested to hear their (or, perhaps Rita’s?) standpoint on that matter. If needed, we can modify the question, and shape it in a better way.]

Go ahead.

The essential difference between white and black magic is not so much what people usually assume it is – unselfish v. selfish ends, nor even evil v. good. Obviously the subject may be approached from within those polarities, but we think it will be more useful to look at the subject neutrally, as we usually prefer to do.

Magic – ritual magic particularly – may be described as the attempt to alter the world to conform to one’s wishes. In that context, certainly you could see that some people’s intent was relatively unselfish, even altruistic, and that of others was quite bounded within ego. So it becomes easy to fall into judgment as good or evil.

The bane of our 3D existence, having eaten of that fruit.

Perceiving things as good or bad, and adjusting your attitude toward them accordingly, certainly does not lead to an easy life. So in considering magic, let us stay away from that particular snare, and see what it looks like when we remember that “the world” is not “other,” nor is it material, but is part of self, and is the visible aspect of the shared subjectivity.

I can see immediately, it puts it in an entirely different light.

Yes. You could look at the essence of magic – as of any other power or ability or inclination in life – as opportunity. Opportunity to do what?

To live in that present moment, experiencing the interaction between the self we know and the self we don’t know.

Correct. So let us demythologize magic as a subject; let us take it off its pedestal, so to speak. Things cannot be carefully examined until they are off their pedestals.

  • Magic works! There is no use denying it for the sake of a pretended ease of mind.
  • Like any tool, it may be used to do good or bad, may be used well or badly, wisely or foolishly, idealistically or destructively.
  • It is not something divorced from everyday life. It is an often-unnoticed, automatic part of 3D life moment by moment.
  • “Luck,” intuitions, “accidents,” “coincidences” etc. may all be seen as manifestations of magic from beyond 3D awareness.
  • Ritual magic may be seen as the practice of bringing non-3D energies into conformance with 3D desire.
  • But always remember what is going on: It is the 3D conscious self interacting with the aspects of the shared subjectivity to which it has resonance (anything else being, in effect, invisible to it, untouchable).
  • Discernment of good or evil is not the same as condemnation (or approval). It is seeing what is. But the addition of a label as good or evil is not so much discernment as it is adjustment to one’s values of what has been perceived.

So now, to your friend Dmitry, we say this directly.

“Do not concern yourself worrying about the use or misuse of magic around you in society. It will have unanticipated side-effects for practitioners, for society, as everything does. Things that appear benign bring undesired consequences. Things that appear evil bring unsuspected blessings. The universe knows what it is doing, and can be trusted. People may enter into the study and practice of magic for all the wrong reasons, but perhaps their larger being is using that to turn their attention to the existence of non-3D forces, and ultimately to the existence of higher potential.

“For yourself, protect yourself from such influences to the degree that you feel necessary, and open yourself up to whatever higher energies you can learn to employ in life. We have been sketching the indicated attitudes: openness, trust, intent to know your greater self to the extent you are able at any given moment. All will be well. Thank you for the question.”

And I presume he is welcome to submit follow-ups?

Of course. And although it is not yet an hour, still a good place to pause. Good work, earlier.

Thank you for all this. Till next time.


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