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Heathen's Lair

The Quest For Power

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The Quest For Power[credits]

by Leilah Wendell

 

Some think power is the ability to instigate change. Others view power as a mechanism of control. Whether it's control over circumstances or individuals, power is a precarious element, no less dangerous than a vial of nitroglycerine.

Perhaps true power is effective use of will, which neither overwhelms another nor becomes addictive to the user. To some, power is contained in material things; money, position, etc. To others, power is more subtly expressed in gestures, and actions of a faithful determination. What empowers one to follow a goal? There are a whole host of answers. From financial gain to spiritual deliverance. Power is like a fine wine or a potent drug. It is to be used in moderation to achieve the desired, pleasant results. Perhaps it would be best to ask, from what fountain does one's power flow? True power comes from unshakable faith. What I call, "Certain Knowledge” which is simply that which filters directly down into the spirit without dilution or corruption. It is a pure source, meaning, it is without conditions, editing or expected gain. Power is not control over someone's destiny. Rather it is in the letting go of one's own destiny and trusting in the natural progression of purpose. A simple parable would be the strong man who picks up a flower and crushes it in his grasp. Not knowing one's own strength can be detrimental to the souls we touch. While overestimating our power can be equally as bad, case in point, the man who claims that no sword can harm him when a simple suggestion can cripple him.

There are many religions and 'magickal' schools of thought that utilize the illusion of power to lure in "lost" souls- Usually that "power" consists of sparking fear into impressionable minds, minds that have not yet found their own source of power. They offer them a paper “shield" and "sword". Like children, they pick them up and engage in mock battles with invisible enemies. All the while thinking that they grow quite proficient. Until one day their illusion of false superiority gains them a genuine confrontation with an adversary who holds a gold sword and a shield of silver. Their paper weapons have no chance against the real thing. Swords forged out of fear and shallow belief are never a match for those forged from genuine faith and love. It is not true power that is the danger, it is the illusion of power. It can be devastating to the faith of the wielder. True power wields a divinely sharp sword that pierces without pain so the blow is often not immediately felt until one looks down and realizes one is bleeding! "Tools" such as this are forged in the fires of intrepid faith, not in ceremonial kilns. Even the precision of Excalibur could only be wielded by one with these qualities. What good is a divine sword in hands that know not how to use it?

Still others believe that power is in the length and intensity of a glance. But the cat is best at this game because the cat understands that it is just that, a game- and proves nothing. The cat quickly grows bored and prefers to lick its paw. There is more purpose in that than in playing silly games with humans.

Power is perhaps best expressed as conviction to one's purpose. Power is faith fueled by the deepest form of love. It is knowing what has to be done and doing it! Power is confidant silence. Contrary to some belief, there is no power in magickal spells or incantations themselves. For surely power is better expressed in the actions of one who truly believes rather than in the words one uses to explain belief. Power is "right use of will". The confidence that a certain action will yield a certain result. There is no power in ceremonial tools or trappings, just as there is no potency in, for example, the Tarot or the crystal ball. Such items are simply tools of concentration. A focusing point, if you will, no more effective than a candle-flame, to keep peripheral distraction to a minimum. A "magickian" who wields his or her sword without faith can never evoke a manifest destiny no matter how many “tools" they have, nor how much occult schooling. On a more mundane level, some believe that money is power. However, without the wisdom to use it wisely this form of power is at best fleeting, at worse, remorsefully addictive.

There are those who like to think that they are vessels of power by affiliation. In other words members of a particular religion, cult or school of “esoteric” study. Their content of power is often measured in degrees, i.e., “He is a level 8 or 9, a Magus Adeptus, an Imperator, etc.” Such "schools” foster only the illusion of power and give one a false of importance that often leads to their eventual downfall. True power is not taught, it is instilled by a personal sense of divine purpose, which differs greatly from a false sense of importance, which has no goal or ultimate purpose other than to impress friends and relatives. True power does not seek to dominate nor "show off” and true power cancels out phony power in all situations. For example, the old myth of giving one the "evil eye" has no affect on those who believe in the genuineness of their own power source over the "suggestion” of one who thinks he or she has power.

Power springs from an internal fountain...from a sense of purpose. The replacing of fear with understanding. Power is the hermit who strides silent and alone against the wind. He ignores the mirages of such a lengthy and arduous journey because he understands what they are. He knows that his destination awaits him just up ahead, and nothing will keep him from that appointed place. Faith and love are the seeds of power. Fear and doubt cringe in its shadow. Power is only good when it is not used as a weapon of control, when it is instead applied toward making ones own purpose manifest without distorting another’s.

 

 
Black Elk: Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux

 

"Grandfather, Great Spirit, once more behold me on earth and lean to hear my feeble voice. You lived first, and you are older than all need, older than all prayer. All things belong to you -- the two-legged, the four-legged, the wings of the air, and all green things that live.

 

"You have set the powers of the four quarters of the earth to cross each other. You have made me cross the good road and road of difficulties, and where they cross, the place is holy. Day in, day out, forevermore, you are the life of things."