As is often the case after I finish what I believe to be a thorough exposition of my beliefs on any particular subject, one of my fellow blogger/ practitioners chimes in and I realize that I've left out something important. In this case, the blogger in question is RO, and the "something" I'd left out is actually plural.
RO reminds us that Ashen has stated clearly that he doesnt believe your average joe walking down the street could peer on in the window and see the evoked spirit. In this I agree fully, and also in RO's assertion that the ability to see spirits is one that is developed, not something even those among us who are more magickally inclined typically "just have". For quite some time I was among those who got their desired result, but with no greater contact than some of what you'd call "poltergeist" phenomena. I "knew" I'd been heard by the spirit I'd intended to reach, because "obviously" something had been there, and I'd achieved what I set out to do, so of course I'd succeeded, right? Not necessarily. As Ashen correctly points out, this is flawed logic; akin to sending out an email to the entirety of the world wide web saying "Hey Frieda Pint@, I'd love a picture of you" and, upon receiving one, assuming it's from her.
My ability to perceive clearly those spirits I evoke came all at once, almost as if a switch had simply been flipped within me, but this only after a huge amount of effort on my part and years of work towards that end. In essence, it was both the culmination and the beginning of a magickal career.
Is it necessary to reach this point or to be acquire this ability to succeed in your magick? NO. Not at all. Despite having not laid eyes on a spirit I'd sought, I did achieve great results, and even now when working towards specific, material goals or for a single end I do not typically resort to a full on evocation, simply because it isn't necessary. Why use a grenade to destroy an anthill? If I have a good chance of succeeding with much less work, why wouldn't I? Evocation is, for me, a higher magick. A means of communing with higher beings, learning, initiation, ascension and empowerment.
Achieving visible manifestation, for me at least, isnt about overcoming doubts about whether or not I've succeeded, nor is it about knowing WHO in the spirit world granted my petition - when my work is directed at achieving a specific goal or obtaining a specific change I dont really CARE which spirit helped or by what powers my goal was achieved. In these cases, knowing when to take YES for an answer is indeed a virtue. Evocation for me isn't done for any specific goal - i.e. I don't plan, prep and execute an evocation of Bune to ask for $500 that I'm lacking for my rent.
I also agree with RO's assertion that the "divine bliss" Ashen speaks of, which comes with the culmination of a successful evocation, is something that can't be described accurately. And thats probably half of why achieving visible appearance is of such importance to me. Simply because it IS a transcendent act, and one that brings with is a state of euphoria no drug can match. You'll recall, during the HGA debates, I stressed, quite vehemently in fact, that achieving that contact, reaching that level and standing before your HGA for the first time was something beyond words and which, by its very nature changes the Magus. That comment was met with a flurry of "no its really not that hard" and "I did it and its not that big a deal, why do you make it sound like something that big". Well, because it IS something big. Bigger than an aspirant who hasnt yet been there can fathom, and I will say once again what I said and received flack over, those who speak of it nonchalantly and as if it were a casual everyday experience are quite likely full of shit. Perhaps unknowingly so, actually believing they are correct, but nonetheless wrong.
So, I guess what I'm trying to say, albeit in my usual long winded way, is:
- It is NOT necessary to visibly see a spirit in order to achieve your magickal goals.
- Achieving visible manifestation is a developed skill and ability, not likely something you "just have"
- Despite this, visible appearance, differing as it does from the improbably physical appearance, IS not only possible, but fact. And it is an experience you'd really have to have to understand.
- Agreeing with Ashen, those who speak of it casually, like "Well hang on I'll go ask Metatron and see what he says" or "Yeah I have K&C, no biggie" are most likely (my words, not Ashen's) full of shit.*
This refers NOT to those who genuinely believe they have succeeded, but those who know they havent, who likely havent even made the attempt, but love to speak as though they are the reincarnation of Abramelin in order to aggrandize himself. A modern example of this sociological phenomena is the high school football player who, being a virgin, brags that he has bedded half the cheerleaders in the school.