When is a Second Coming not what it seems?
I pen these words as we approach the religious period called Advent, which is popularly associated with the coming, or advent, of Christmas, although more fundamentally it refers to the Second Coming of the Messiah, which in the eyes of Christians represents the end of the world and the coming of a better one.
Whatever the eschatological possibilities, to occultists it calls to mind matters rather closer to home and the question of the return (spiritual, astral, etheric or physical) of certain gurus or significant forerunners close to our hearts.
I am reminded of this question by a remarkable little book just published by Alan Richardson entitled Me, mySelf & Dion Fortune. A very personal work by one of her biographers and also a bargain (currently about £4 on Amazon) for a hundred odd pages of rare and honest wisdom and self revelation.
As the author admits: “The older I get, the less I understand about Dion Fortune. The more I read (and write) about her, the less I actually know. Is Dion Fortune simply the pen name of a woman who died in 1946? Or a convenient name given to an entity who has floated in and out of many peoples’ minds ever since?
“Yet again, could ‘Dion Fortune’ be more accurately described as ‘It’? That is to say, instead of being seen as a wise and powerful soul on the Other Side, could ‘It’ be more in the nature of an energy, an inner plane impulse which pushes us in certain directions? Honestly, I don’t know.
“But here is how she influenced me from a very young age. I have often said that it would take a book in itself to describe the incredible levels of chance, coincidence, synchronicity and totally bizarre serendipity that enabled (and often forced) me to research and write about this energy/entity/great magical soul known as Dion Fortune.”
Anyway, this is the book. And a valuable one because what it has to say about Dion Fortune can be applied to a whole host of inner plane gurus or legendary or ancestral characters, together with a range of startling serendipities and synchronicities involving such figures. Some that may appear puzzling or pointless. Others open to being glamorised or misinterpreted.
When researching his biography of Dion Fortune, Alan discovered an awful lot of people who felt they had meaningful links with her. In fact he doubts if there is any DF fan who does not claim some link. And although to anyone else such links might seem far fetched, to the person involved they can be important keys.
Some links seem so powerful that those concerned have even wondered if they were Dion Fortune reborn – although more likely to have been cases of being temporarily overshadowed. A possibility with which I would concur from my own experience and of others known to me. As Alan Richardson is called, from personal experience, to say, the only danger is when you expect everyone else to believe this, and fail to accept within your own self that – almost certainly – something else is going on.
These days he is more inclined to think in terms of Other Lives rather than past lives. That is, that time is not linear. That everything is happening now, at this instant, ever-becoming.
Be this as it may, it seems we all have our own stories to tell and puzzlements to express. And Alan reckons that the only thing we can be dogmatic about is that no-one can be dogmatic about it! That whether ‘Dion Fortune’ is a great soul on the inner planes or a flow of energy rather like an electrical current shouldn’t worry us too much.
To which I would add that it is of course possible to be both – or even something quite Other. My esoteric sparring partner, the Rev Anthony Duncan, was thus ever chary of an occult tendency to call the Second Person of the Trinity a ‘Christ force’ rather than a Divine Being. It can be spiritually demeaning to make an abstraction out of life.
Much the same could be said about various inner contacts one might have had, including the three canny lads that jumped me into writing The Abbey Papers. Anyone who has a copy could here profitably turn to Section 55 for some handy hints about much of this, but for those who have not I abstract the following.
When, under guidance in the Mysteries we come upon the spirits of the Ancestors, they are like guardian angels of the race, for they partake more of the angelic than of the human spirit that gave rise to them. So when we come upon them we are not taking part in a kind of spiritualist séance. These are not spirits of the departed as commonly understood. They are more in the nature of intelligent holograms – to use a souped up image of modern technology. They are representations of power – or ensouled magical images.
They are not put there or imaginally created by us. They have an objective existence of their own and may be used by those who are invested with sufficient authority and who have the power and ability to do so. Much of their emotive power comes from emotions embodied in the ideas attached to the particular archetype they represented as individuals when in incarnation.
In normal circumstances they are put before us with a purpose. They are brought before our field of attention, to be, in a sense, restimulated within our aura, thereby imparting a certain energy to the image, and also stimulating a corresponding energy in us. An exchange of energy takes place, an energy that may last and be drawn from for some time.
In other words it has the effect of dedicating a certain part of our aura to the works and the powers of that particular archetype and its needed work in the world today. This may be by realisation as much as by physical action. It is what practical magic is all about.