The following is the first installment to our second set of interview questions, answered by the Sentinel of the Bull of Ombos.
I would like to extend my gratitude to Priest Keane of Black Rivers Pylon for his collaboration in crafting these questions.
1. How did you know your magic was working?
There were two aspects to this realization. First was the obvious – I got the things I wanted. I performed magic based on desire for tangible objective things, and these things materialized.
The second was more subtle but arguably more important. I saw and felt a transformation take place within myself. I became more confident and courageous. I was evolving into the person I’d always wanted to be. I started to attract the right people, find the right places, and found that I could trust myself and my own intuition.
2. What difficulties or sticking points did you experience during your First Degree period?
The most difficult aspect of joining the Temple for me was learning to relate to myself, and certain parts of my world, in a new way. Experiences that may have once been petty annoyances could be transformed into an important step on my initiatory journey, but this required that I learn to work with them.
Also, I was in a thriving Pylon with people I had known socially for years, which meant we all had to reframe our relationships. This was another ongoing act of discipline and transformation.
3. What was the strangest thing that happened to you as a First Degree? The most unexpected thing?
The strangest thing that happened to me as a First Degree occurred within a month of joining the Temple (if memory serves, I had not yet received my welcome packet in the mail). I knew I was taking a big step…toward what, I wasn’t sure. I just knew that big changes were coming. I remember a distinct sense of possibility and potential, tinged with fear and uncertainty. There was just SO MUCH out there. I came home early from work one day, and was getting dressed to go on a date with my future husband, when I smelled something weird. I went into the hallway of my house and it was filled with smoke – an electrical fire! I saved my pets and called the fire department, but ended up living in a furnished apartment for several months while the house was cleaned and repaired.
That internal, subjective sense of uncertainty and liminality had manifested itself in my outer world. Just making sure I got the message, I guess!
The most unexpected thing that happened during my First Degree period was the confidence I began to feel. I was able to make changes to myself, to create myself. As a result of this, I became more attractive to more (and better) people, I was more equipped to practice discernment regarding who and what would further my Xeper, and I was able to ruthlessly remove negative influences from my life, without guilt. I started to find the strength to live as an antinomian.