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Qabala Study Plan

Qabala Study Plan

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Published by Pieter B Roos

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Published by: Pieter B Roos on Feb 14, 2011
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Qabala Study Plan
 by Mark Stavish, M.A., FRC, SI
Over the years I have received a great deal of correspondencerequesting information on how to go about studying the Qabala.So for those new to esoteric studies, and Qabalistic magic inparticular, I have created the following plan of study. It coversabout two years to four years of work, and is designed to requirethe least amount of outlay in books and material by students.Much of the material can also be found online.Many books exist on magic and qabala, and inclusion here is anendorsement of their contents, exclusion however, in no waysmeans that other materials are not noteworthy. Experiencedpractitioners who may read this short outline will immediately recognize many of the titles and why they have been suggested.First off, the prospective student will need to obtain a copy of eachof the following:
Isreal Regardie
:
The Middle Pillar 
and
The One Year Manual 
 
Gareth Knight
:
 A Practical Guide to Qabalistic Symbolism
,
 Experience of the Inner 
 
Worlds
.
 Magic and the Western Mind 
isoptional as it is a short, clean historical survey of the material.
Chic Cicero and Sandra Tabatha Cicero
(ed):
The Golden Dawn Journal Book II, Qabala: Theory and Magic
  You can also consider:
John Michael Greer
:
 Paths of Wisdom
(in place of 
 A Practical Guide…
.) and
Circles of Power 
(as an adjunct to Regardie)
Franz Bardon:
 Initiation into Hermetics
can also be acquired atthis time, but will be mostly used in year two.
Study Plan
 Perform the "Middle Pillar and Lesser Banishing Ritual of thePentagram Exercise" as described by Regardie in
The Middle Pillar 
(or
Circles of Power 
) for one year, at least once a day,preferable twice, once in the morning and once in the evening.During this year, read the Chapters on the spheres in
 A Practical Guide..
going at the rate of about one chapter a month. Meditateon the symbols and ideas suggested, keeping in the sameframework with each sphere. If you use a geometric symbol forKether, than use geometric symbols for each of the remaininglevels. When you have meditated on the Tree of Life once this way, you can then change symbols, just stay consistent with yourchoices. You may pick one additional exercise for each month from either
 Initiation into
 
 Hermetics
,
The One Year Manual 
, or
 Experience of 
 
the Inner Worlds
. You are free in this area, but must also stay consistent, as some of the exercises must be done in a particularpatter. The greatest liberty here is with Regardie. Knight andBardon give exercises that must be done in sets.For side reading pick an article, or simply read a chapter a monthfrom
The Golden Dawn Journal Book II, Qabala: Theory and  Magic
.If you follow this plan for one year, spending the greatest amountof time doing the exercises and keeping a daily journal of yourexperiences, your magical equilibrium will be built up and noticedat the end of twelve months. At the end of the year you should be familiar with the basicsymbolism of the Tree of Life, know by heart the Names in each of the levels, and their basic symbols, colors, etc.
 Year Two
 If you like, you can then move on to additional exercises involvingthe Elements and Pathworking.Here, Bardon (
 Initiation
) and Greer (
Circles
) will be the main textfor exercises, and Knight (
 A
 
 Practical Guide
) and/or Greer(
 Paths
) will be the main text for Pathworking information.Perform the
 Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram
(LBRP), the
Middle Pillar 
(MP), and perform a meditation on the Path of the month.Spend at least a month on each of the first nine paths. These arethe most important in your early development. As for additional exercises, continue, or start, the program of study outlined by Bardon on the Elements. This will reinforce your grounding and basic understanding of how and why magic works. You may read volume
 Book III,
of 
The Golden Dawn Journal 
,
The Art of Hermes
at the rate of one article a month.Several short and effective books that are related can also beadded:
Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki
,
 Highways of the Mind - The Art and History of Pathworking,
and
First Steps in Ritual.
 
 W.E. Butler
,
 Lords of Light 
, as well as anything else by him willdo.For a better understanding of the psychological effects of magic,
 A Psychology with a Soul,
by Jean Hardy is recommended, as arethe works of Piero Ferrucci on Psychosynthesis.
The Next Step
 In general, it takes between two to four years of study to get ahandle on the basics of ritual, meditation, Pathworking, and the
 
psychology behind magic. Somewhere between years two andfour, additional material regarding planetary magic is usually added to the curriculum.For those wishing to continue their studies into the realm of planetary, and eventually zodiacal magic, there is sufficientinformation in
Circles of Power 
(Greer) to lead you in thatdirection. Additional information can be obtained from
 Planetary Magick
by Melita Dennings and Phillips. While designed as anextension of their previous three volumes on magic,
The Magical  Philosophy
(I-III), it also stands alone as an adjunct to othermagical practices. As a side note,
The Magical Philosophy
series is an interestingcurriculum in magic on its own, and worth considering. The styleis similar to Golden Dawn magic in many ways, but sufficientldifferent to be studied on it own.If these books are read, notes taken, ideas synthesized, and mostimportantly, the exercises done daily and systematically, anyonecan and will notice definite positive changes in their body, mind,and soul at the end of one or two years, let alone three or four years of practice. At the end of year two, you should have a greater sense of the various parts of your being and how they relate and interact witheach other, as well as those levels in others people and the worldat large. Psychological health will increase, and a sense of peace,stability, and imperturbability should begin to be formed. Asstated however, depending on your personal pace, it may take between two to four years to actually internalize this material anddevelop familiarity and confidence in the exercises. Patience andperseverance are your true tools in this Work. Always start each period of reflection, meditation, study, or ritual by first invoking your Highest Self by seeing your Crown, orKether, as a brilliant sphere above your head. Ask that yourHigher Self, Holy Guardian Angel, or Master Within infuse you with love, wisdom, and courage to succeed at the Great Work of redemption, the goal of all true magic. See a strand of lightpenetrate your brain, fill it with light, and continue to your heart,infusing it with a golden brilliance. You may even allow thisgolden sphere to expand to fill your aura to about four or morefeet all around you. Stay there for a minute or two, and then beginthe work at hand. While this appears to be a great deal of material, it is in fact just anarrow band of the Western esoteric stream focusing on magicand qabala. In fact, several other streams exist, includingmysticism, theurgy, practical alchemy, and specialized schools of magic. All of the material suggested is limited to the Golden Dawntradition, and is the most easily available material of its kindtoday. Any one wishing to truly study and practice magic will findthat it does work, and that the materials are only a library, bookstore, or web search away.If you consciously and earnestly practice, study, and pray, success will be yours. You may even find that at the end of a decade or so, you will have achieved what you are looking for, and can throw  your books away. Then, God, and only God, will be your teacher.

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