Recent developments in my magical work have convinced me that the art of discerning the Aura is a hugely under-rated discipline, especially when it comes to applying it to ceremonial magick. I believe that the faculty of Auric vision is essentially the same discipline as catching a glimpse of whatever lies within the Triangle of Art in an evocation, or for discerning whether a talisman is effectively charged as a result of a consecration ceremony.
I even have a working hypothesis that Auric phenomena tie in with some of the more fantastic visual manifestations in magic, such as Invisibility and transformation. I argued this point with two magical colleagues recently: after all I reasoned, if some people can see the human aura – which is a paranormal visual phenomenon – is it so unreasonable to claim that invisibility and transformation can also take place, which are other types of paranormal visual phenomenon? This divided my audience: one guy admitted that it was at least an interesting idea, but the other attempted to tank the plank from my argument by claiming that although the Aura is real, it isn’t “paranormal”!
Well, whatever. I don’t believe that arguing that the aura is a non-paranormal but lesser-known natural phenomenon can sufficiently explain some of the things I have witnessed in my time. I do not claim to be the world’s greatest aura reader myself, but I have definitely seen people light-up, especially when they were engaged in magical activity. One of the most remarkable incidents which occurred to me was when I attended a talk on Reiki. The speaker, a Reiki master, said that as a result of practising Reiki for several years he had found his own psychic abilities increase and improve of their own accord. He then staged a little demonstration.
He got several volunteers – including myself – to attempt tofeelour own auras by the simple method of rubbing our hands together and then holding them close together – varying the distance between them, so as to detect any differences. Then he came round to each one in turn. “Now notice what happens when I put my hands between yours,” he said.
He placed his hands between mine: there was a flash of golden light in the air between his hands as he did so. “Ooh!” I cried. “I saw that!” It transpired that the speaker had indeed been attempting to send a current of Reiki between his hands, and wanted to know if we could detect it, either by noticing a change in temperature or, as in my case, by beholding a strange ethereal glow in mid-air which could not be explained by any light-source or reflection.
The thing is, the ability to gain at least a basic level of Auric-vision is both remarkably easy and fast. Developing it to a high degree however is what takes a lot of practice. Another magical colleague of mine showed the ease with which it was possible to teach basic auric vision by demonstrating it in the pub one evening (which of course is where all the best magic takes place!). The first step was to acquire a plain black surface to view the results against: we improvised by hanging a black leather jacket on the back of a chair. He held up his own hands and got me to stare past them, and then got me to hold up my own: I noticed that a glow was hanging around them which I had not noticed before. The total time taken was less than a minute.
A magical system like, e.g., the Golden Dawn, presupposes that Adepts will possess “spirit-vision” – most obviously in the analysis of the Neophyte ceremony, where it is claimed that symbols appear in the aura of the candidate at key points in the ritual. Yet there is no teaching on how to attain this spirit-vision! There is plenty of instruction in regard to the use of Tattvas to develop clairvoyance, although this is more akin to seeing visions on the astral plane than ones which occur in physical space. This is why I believe that more emphasis should be given to training people up in basic psychism, before expecting them to accomplish tasks of ceremonial magic.