09/02/2015

The Spiritual Beggar and the Work with Spirits

I have been pondering for some time what wordings such as ‘I work with so and so spirit’ and ‘when I asked so and so spirit to give me a work opportunity I got it’ really imply. What is truly at play in asking favours from spirits and to ‘work with spirits’?

When you find yourself in one of the crossroads of life searching the palace of opportunity and resort to magic or summoning to move gently through the valley of tribulation to gain open doors, what is going on in this very moment when you approach strange spirits and ask favours?

So, allow me to share some musings and thoughts on these themes.

I have for some time been intrigued with the mystery of begging and what goes on in the cheap taverns of life and with beggars there are two things that at random intervals shows itself as unique and interesting, matters we perhaps rarely pay attention to because the beggar is only something swift and passing that many pay to get rid of – or pay to help. One factor is the blessing.

The blessing always comes if you give a little bit more than what is expected. And we can wonder, what is going on here, you give some money, no amount that hurts your financial state or is a sacrifice in any way – in return you receive a blessing. Who is this person that is blessing you? What is going on here?

The other phenomenon is predictions and prophecy. I have countless experiences with this, ranging from gypsies taking my hand after giving them all lose money I had on my person and taking my palm and reading events that came to pass in the week to come as I had beggars being given some money walking away, stopping, just to turn back to me to tell a sentence or two of something they felt they had to tell and then walked on like the epiphany they gave me was nothing.

I see our relationships with spirit as mimicking any other kind of relationship, it be with plants beasts or other humans. It is about affinity, proximity, time, dedication and work as much as it is about affinity and immediate bonds forged in a moment of mutual recognition, attraction and love.

To work with a spirit is to work on a bond, an attraction, and the rules are quite similar to the rules in building any other form of relationship – with one quite baffling exception – a spirit (a being with a non-material body, and a spirit not anchored to a tomb in earth) exists in a state of perpetual celestial justice. With this I mean, the moral and law that binds material justice have little bearing on what is not of matter, so in the field of justice we find a landscape that is not at all as we conceive it to be on material premises.

I wonder if this paradox is somehow solved in the presence and activities of beggars, these people who give blessings when favours are given. Somehow, when we approach a spirit of repute to ask favours aren’t we engaging a form of spiritual beggary? But since we here move into a field where matter and non-matter meets, the balance and relationship is somewhat different.

If we pursue the idea of placating a spirit for favours as if we were beggars we place ourselves in an acceptance of need, but also the embodiment of blessings… In a way these musings do invite in the many examples from Torah, Bible and Cinema where angels are often portrayed as beggars or strangers, like how the prophet Elijah when he returned as a beggar visiting Rav Akiva to relieve him of his despair as a meaningful paradox on the Hermetic axiom, ‘as above, so below’ where the tables are turned and in almost natural ways all celestial wealth is mirrored in the station of possibility in the state of the beggar.

If we take a step back and allow these ideas to flow and take form and shape, we see that need, blessing and acceptance provide the field for what we know as luck, because what is this meeting between beggars, spirits and men where money and blessings are traded?
Luck is opportunity opening up when we are in the right place to see it. If we can move on and take advantage or embrace luck is a matter of awareness and skill.

I recall one specific encounter with a beggar writing this. I was in downtown São Paulo waiting for a friend, as I sat down and ordered a beer an elderly woman came up to me, with great calm and direction she opened her hand to receive some money and I had only four coins on me and no other cash. I gave her what I had and her reaction was to take one of the coins, throwing it in the ground with great force, murmuring something, and then she blessed me and walked away.
It was a magical moment, because for me this was a living spell, pure sorcery, to take a third of what little you were given and throw it to the ground, evoking something, for the sake of increase. I watched her walking away to a bar across the street where she gained bills, replacing and overriding the few coins I had to give… she had her increase and I gained my blessing…

I of course have several conclusions to these ponderings, and far more to say, but somehow too much explanations seems too much, so at this round just these coins of wonder that you hopefully throw to the ground so increase of thought, opportunity and luck can be gained…. 

Image:  Alexei Tarasovich Markov: Fortuna and Beggar