Me and my other friends need to know if there is a way to determine if something is real, or delusion.
Material results, that happen often enough it begins to seem self-evident this is not a coincidence.
To do that, you would have to reach a consensus as to the meaning of the terms ‘real’ and ‘delusion’.
If you can do that, the rest is fairly straightforward.
In a strict sense, science doesn’t consider anything proven. Theories can be disproven, but something can only be statistically unreasonable to deny, never perfectly true.
This may be somewhat relevant; on another thread someone asked, “What’s a good set of Magickal benchmarks to get to for someone like me?”
The reply I made touches on the same areas:
Do the method that comes easeist in terms of giving verifiable
advice - for example, warning you that your boss is going to be in a shitty mood tomorrow, so keep a low profile and don’t pull that sickie you were thinking of taking to watch some sports, and keep note of how often ideas that can’t come from you have helped you in ways you could not foresee
manifest results - they tell you to visit town even though you’re too skint to shop, you find $50 at the bus stop or get given a voucher for groceries - keep a small note of these things as well
comprehension that aids you, does not destabilise - yes, it’s all very nice that you’re the incarnation of Odin/Thoth/Zeus himself, but so are we all, albeit to different degrees, the truly useful thing is to help you reconstruct your understanding of the world and your own experiences so that you no longer feel like a victim, a thing bobbing haplessly in an ocea of other things.
Do the things that come easiest because they will build muscles (so to speak) that make the other stuff easier as well, if all you can do is astral journey to one spirit (for example) but you get results, do it as often as you can, other skills will follow along.
Having one spirit or method that you know you can rely upon is the key to unlocking all other things) because it will save you from pursuing dead ends and guide you towards your next success.
Read The Kybalion (PDF, archived link). Nothing is more important for removing confusion over which spirits are “real” and also, how magick works, and how group observation changes things.
This will unfuck probably 99% of things that will otherwise use your own common sense and intellect to bar you from achieving amazing results with magick. And it’s not very long, more like a booklet.
Try other things, keep your eyes open, never rule out a paradigm, concept, or method, once you have your core skill (listed in One above) you can ask for advice on what comes next.
The end result of BALG will be a new age of inside-out occult when god tier spirituality is written in such brutally clear language that hirarchal religion dies forever and ever.
Like Azazel told E.A, “I’m as real as you are. Which is to say, not at all.” Or something to that effect.
I find that advice walks the Divine paradox, in that not considering whether there is traffic will not make crossing the road any safer.
Reminds me of the end scenes in the rock opera Tommy, in fact…
Also. @void, is there a specific thing that y’all are trying to determine as reality or delusion? My initial reaction to your question was high-level, all of reality. But perhaps you had a specific incident that you’re trying to sort?
I look at it this way: It is delusion if spiritual or imaginary experiences (they are one and the same) interfere with your functioning in the world. The world is not “real” in an objective sense, as quantum physics has made pretty clear, but consciousness makes it seem so by establishing boundaries in order to function and survive at this level of being.
In his book Ipsissimus, EA talks about his experience staying in a state of Eternal bliss for months, and that led to a complete cessation of his functioning in the world. He ignored his responsibilities, became homeless, and just wandered around, blissed out. He wasn’t concerned with anything but what he was experiencing. He didn’t shower, he didn’t eat. That is delusion, as he was separated from the physical world. It wasn’t until he set boundaries, and cast his thoughts back to the material world, that he really embodied his Godhood and set about rebuilding his life.
Mainly if there are actually demons, or just delusions of the mind. (And if we are delusional, I really don’t want to keep feeding the delusion)
I’m trying to consider a lot of variables, such as if there are no demons, and/or, there are, and/or they are parasitic/manipulative/malicious, etc etc etc
Everything is perception. There is no way to “prove” the objective reality of demons, but as Crowley wrote:
“In this book it is spoken of the Sephiroth and the Paths; of Spirits and Conjurations; of Gods, Spheres, Planes, and many other things which may or may not exist. It is immaterial whether these exist or not. By doing certain things certain results will follow; students are most earnestly warned against attributing objective reality or philosophic validity to any of them.”
Edit to add: in my opinion, magick is a way of enlarging the boundaries of your consciousness to allow you to perceive more of this weird and wonderful multiverse we participate in.
Dang, @DarkestKnight beat me to the Crowley quote. To that I will add only the immortal words of Philip K. Dick:
Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn’t go away.
That’s not the word I’d use, in this context. I think “imaginary” is what you’re lookin for. If they’re real or imaginary, yes?
Anyway, I agree with Crowley. The many varied people on this forum have a huge range of beliefs concerning the nature and existence of demons. I’d like to think that they’re all correct, if we go by the Crowley philosophy.
So…I guess…tell your friends that there’s a whole group of people who say demons are “real”?
Oh we believe/know they are real. I should’ve worded it better haha, but I was trying to say the demons around us/where we are/our homes/etc