In my previous post I shared a surprisingly easy method to consciously project Out of Body also known as Astral Projection. But after you do that, then what? Here’s what I wrote in Modern Magick:

Once you are able to freely project your consciousness into your Astral Body and travel around in that state, what good will it do you? Why even learn how to Astral Project in the first place? Sure, it is fun and exhilarating, but going to a movie can be fun and going dancing can be exhilarating. And movie-going and dancing take a great deal less preparation and practice.

There are many books which discuss how wonderful it is to be out-of-body. But once you achieve the ability of Projection, few of the books discuss what to do with it. Some say you can contact friends or visit the Moon or any other of a variety of more or less mundane things.

Why bother? I can call my friends on the phone or drive over and visit them. And although visiting the Moon might be interesting, it is not at the top of my “things to do” list. And why, if the goal of Astral Projection is so relatively mundane, have occult schools and fraternities from the earliest dates of recorded history stressed the importance of learning how to project?

The answer to this question is related to…hypnotherapy.

Hypnotherapy and
Process Orientation vs. Client Orientation

You may have heard—you may believe—that hypnosis is very powerful. It’s not. It’s natural, normal, and very common. We go in and out of hypnotic trances many times every day. Just watching TV puts you into a hypnotic trance. That’s why advertisers want to repeat their commercials so often: it’s like positive affirmations, only instead of you using them on yourself to improve your situation, advertisers apply them to you, urging you to pay too much for sugar water, unhealthy foods, and extravagant cars. The fact that the same advertisers continue to use TV commercials shows how powerful suggestions given while a person is hypnotized truly are.

And that’s my point. Hypnosis, in and of itself, isn’t powerful at all. It’s what you do with it that makes it powerful. That’s why the best hypnotherapists study for years to learn their profession. You can learn to hypnotize in a few hours or less. Learning what to do after a person is hypnotized, helping a person achieve effective and desired change, takes a lot of study.

Many people, however, think  learning hypnotherapy has got to be a simple process. They think that hypnotherapy is like a software plug-in to Western medicine. Here’s the basis Western medicine paradigm:

  1. You go to a doctor.
  2. The doctor examines you.
  3. S/he gives a diagnosis.
  4. S/he gives a prescription of drugs or procedures.
  5. If you take the drugs or have the procedures done to you, you get better.

With hypnotherapy, instead of a drug or procedure at point 4, you just plunk in hypnosis—read a “script” of predetermined suggestions that are supposed to work for the diagnosis—and the client gets better. I call this approach the “process orientation” model. There is a process for resolving health issues and most people will be helped by the process. For Western (allopathic) medicine, it works incredibly well. It’s just not the basis of hypnotherapy.

One of the reason a process orientation works is that the causes of any medical issue are limited. The “flu shot” can prevent you from getting the flu because each year there is generally just one virus that affects most people. You only need to defeat that one virus.

But ten people could come to a hypnotherapist with the same issue (it’s technically called a “presenting problem”), and the cause for each person could be radically different. Therefore, rather than having a pre-set hypnotic induction to try and use on all clients and one generalized set of suggestions to deal with a particular issue. the best hypnotherapists talk with the client and determine which type of induction and which specific suggestions will be most effective. In other words, even though ten people have the same presenting problem, the hypnotist may work differently with each client. That’s why I refer to this as a “client orientation” rather than a process orientation.

This is one reason hypnotherapy is a great complementary tool for Western medical techniques: it doesn’t replace aspects of allopathic medicine, it follows another philosophy and works parallel to allopathic medicine.

Magick Books, Teachers, and Presenters…
They’re a Lot Like That

I have given presentations on magick, occultism, and other topics throughout the U.S. and Europe. In the coming months I am tentatively scheduled to appear in California, Nevada, Michigan, and on a tour of the North Eastern states. One of the things I love to experience is the “Aha!” moment. This is when a student who has been struggling with some topic or aspect suddenly has a flash of understanding. It’s as if a cartoon lightbulb turns on over their head and they scream, “Aha! I understand!”

This presents a question: why didn’t this person understand before? The answer is that for some reason, what the presenter (or other presenters, teachers, trainers, etc.) had previously stated didn’t make sense to that particular student. Now, however, something the current presenter shared suddenly makes everything clear and the student has an Aha! moment.

It’s important to note that the previous presenters or writers were not trying to deceive. They were sharing the best way they knew how. But perhaps a different word, a different inflection, a different metaphor finally made it clear to the student. That’s why teaching, like hypnotherapy, shouldn’t be a process oriented art (although that’s the way it’s usually done), it should be client oriented.

And that’s why there needs to be multiple books on the same subject. Different writers express themselves in different ways, and what works for one reader won’t work for another. In fact, that’s why I’m glad there are lots of good books on astral projection. It’s not that one is “better” than another, it’s that one is going to be better for you than another. The same is true for books on magick.

Here Come the Secret Chiefs?

However, I have to take this one step further. Right now, if you’ve been reading various magick-oriented blogs, you might have seen that there’s a furor over the “Secret Chiefs.” This was the name the original members of the Golden Dawn gave to the higher beings, masters, mahatmas or whatever name you want for some entities who seem to be guardians of the Order and can supposedly provide special advanced information. The furor right now has to do with their nature: Do they exist? Are they physical beings? Are they non-physical beings?

I can’t answer for others, but I can give you my response to the furor: I don’t care!

I don’t care if they’re real or not, physical or non-physical, a metaphor, saviors, guardians, space aliens, or whatever. In my opinion nobody will ever be able to prove they exist or do not exist in any form. The real question, in my opinion, is what do we believe of them?

If they are saviors or supermen/superwomen or aliens with knowledge we either don’t have or can’t obtain, it’s admitting that we are inferior little trolls incapable of obtaining this wisdom for ourselves. Further, it implies that the one way they have of communicating the information will work for all individuals even though all evidence shows that what works for one person will not work for another. So I’m not going to get pulled into this silly argument. Doing the work on a daily basis is far more important. Becoming self-reliant, in my opinion, is the essence of magick. Waiting for dribbles of handouts from ersatz gods-on-high puts us in the position of being dogs when our owners put a treat in front of us but order us not to eat it until they say so. It turns us into de facto slaves.

I’m not saying the concept of such mysterious beings doesn’t have value; it does. What I am saying is that we don’t have to turn them into Nietzschean Super Men combined with Jesus Christ and all the archangels and angels.

So How Does This Relate to Astral Travel?

This has been a roundabout way to get us back to the actual point of this post. When we have projected onto the astral plane, our conscious mind is no longer limited to Einsteinian time and space. We are not limited to the concept that nothing can go faster than the speed of light. Instead, we can travel at the speed of thought. If you want to visit your girlfriend or boyfriend, simply astral project, focus on being there, and you are there. This doesn’t have to be complex.

So after you’ve visited some friends or planets, etc. then what? The answer to this question is one of the reasons astral projection and travel is regarded so highly among occultists. When you can astral project and travel you no longer have to kowtow to beings who maybe will give you spiritual information and answers to your questions (or bow to those who claim to be in contact with them)—you can go right to the source and ask the beings who guard that information directly.

Do you have a question about magick? Project through the doors/gates/curtains (as described in my previous post) that have the appearance of the Tarot card “The Magician” and seek the guardian of that information. Need to improve your luck? Do the same with the “Wheel of Fortune” card. You can do the same for any topic. Just pick the card that represents the subject to you, project through it, use your mind to take you to the guardian of the desired information. As you get better with this technique, you can even design your own symbols or sigils to use in place of the Tarot cards.

Okay. It’s not exactly that easy. You may need to provide information such as passwords or symbols indicating that you’re entitled to the information. This is where all of those books with tables of correspondences come in handy. You can also follow the Golden Dawn’s concept of using the Tree of Life as a roadmap to those areas (Sephiroht) where you can find answers to your questions, answers in a form you will understand. In the brief words presented about I’ve share a design for what could be a lifetime’s worth of magickal study and work.

You may have noticed I wrote that this is “one of the reasons astral projection and travel is regarded so highly among occultists.” What’s the other occult reason for astral projection?

Tune in next time!




Written by Donald Michael Kraig
Donald Michael Kraig graduated from UCLA with a degree in philosophy. He has also studied public speaking and music (traditional and experimental) on the university level. After a decade of personal study and practice, he began ten years of teaching courses in the Southern California area on such ...