Here’s an excerpt from Jason Miller’s Magick Monday Newsletter:
“I don’t reject tradition easily. I especially don’t reject traditions that seem to echo themselves across many times and cultures. I have thought a lot about these methods and because I am a teacher with a certain level of popularity I get to examine not only my own experiences but the experiences of a lot of students as well.
“I have come to the conclusion that even though these protocols are widespread, ultimately they all have a flaw: How do you know that the method of making them tell the truth is more reliable than the word of the spirit itself?
“If you don’t, or if you are wrong, then you open yourself to a dangerous situation: a spirit that can lie with impunity because it knows you will believe whatever it says.
“I actually had this summarized in cartoon form for the new book:
“If the conjuror believes that Salphegor can’t lie at this point, then Salphegor can say anything he wants and be believed. It’s one of the reasons that we don’t allow lie detectors to be used in court: if you believe that the machine can detect a lie perfectly, anyone who can fake out the machine can get away with any lie.
“Not to mention that fact that if you have a spirit that is friendly and amenable to working with you. its kind of wierd and rude to start harassing the shit out of it. Imagine that you see me walking down the hall at your pagan convention and it goes like this: .
You “Hi, are you Jason? I have a question for you….”
Me: “Yes I am, nice to meet you, what can I do for you?”
You “Are you REALLY Jason?”
Me: “uhhhh yeah. I said I was…”
You: pulling out a knife and put it to my throat “I DEMAND YOU ANSWER ME TRUTHFULLY!!!! ARE YOU REALLY JASON MILLER!!!!”
Me: “Get the fuck off me. What is your fucking damage? Of course I am Jason Miller!”
You: “Okay cool. I was wondering if you could tell me a little about…. “
“You can see how that’s not particularly productive right? Like at that point I am MORE likely to lie than I was.
“So instead of these protocols I approach spirits the same way I do with people. I stay away from people that have the reputation of being liars and manipulators. If I have to deal with them, then I take precautions to guard check what they say and guard against them. I get friendly with people I respect and have good reputations, but still take their advice with a pinch of witch salt.
“I treat information from spirits, people, or divination all the same. They are points of data that can weave together to make actionable intelligence when they make sense.
“There is nothing wrong with using divination for a second opinion on whether a spirit is telling the truth or not. There is nothing wrong with binding them by names or seals of power, when you need to, either. Treating these methods as infallible or abandoning the skepticism we maintain with people IS a problem.
“We all crave certainty. The uncertain the world gets, the more we crave it. When we attribute certainty to things that are in fact uncertain though, the results can be disastrous.
“If you want to read more thoughts on spirits, spirit skills, and assorted strategies and sorceries, my new book comes out MAY 1st. CONSO”
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