Eroticism & Magick

May 20, 2017

Magical power is sexual power. Crowley understood this. Parsons understood this. Bataille understood this. Or to be more accurate, Laylah knew this, Candy knew this, Laure knew this. Witchcraft sometimes seems to have forgotten it, along with the body, a trend that technology continues to exacerbate. For the return to the erotic we need a physical culture that our dancing bodies weave and chorus into life.

Witchcraft is inherently erotic, by which I mean it is a construct of shadow and light. Of historical elements and of our current experience, of truth and lie; as it always has been. Witchcraft is an art of glamours which demands that we explore and harness our full erotic potential and that of others. Witchcraft is neither a glossy magazine, nor a gender studies module, nor a particular aesthetic; though they may be paths towards it they are not to be mistaken for the thing in itself. Modern expressions of witchcraft that appear to value style over substance are better seen as part of a continuum of erotic expression, of the necessary poses demanded in a culture of surfaces. Witchcraft is a practice with attitude, not a practiced attitude. The erotic is witchcraft if it not only attracts power, or the gaze, but if it is able to harness that power for its own ends. We are not here to please, or to be measured in likes.

Though it is often, and somewhat smugly, pointed out that the brain is the most important sexual organ to stimulate, that misses the fact that the brain is a direct evolutionary result of our need to process movement. We are not a series of selfies but bodies in motion. We are not a brain in a control tower whose interaction with the world is only done with our thumbs. The body awaits our rediscovery of it, for ours is a naked art, garbed only in the shadows we artfully cast and the masks that demand to be danced.

Touch marks and transforms us. It is the most eroded of the senses and the most necessary to our psychological health. Touch is a condition of all sentient life, the loss of tactility is death, and as Aristotle observed, thought itself depends upon tactility.

Though we deal with the intangible, touch is something we should be developing in the creation of a series of exercises to extend the range of our senses. It is not surprising that the blindfold is one of the key technologies of both initiation and sexual play. Leading and being led, hunter and hunted are the ways in which we extend our sensitivity across the country of skin.

Alongside the blindfold, the mask must be mentioned in this context, for the way in which it frees the body. In masking we discover hitherto unknown movements and voices, selves that we pull on like long gloves and that articulate potentials which animals have not forgotten. Masks can wear us, as gods often do. The blindfold is of course the dark moon and initiation, the mask, the sabbat at the full.

The erotic is the art of the extension and the anticipation of desire. It triggers a cascade of chemical releases that renew the body. We glow with it. What all the methods of eroticism and ordeal have in common is the body, and the function of the endocrine system. We can exploit this rather than taking it as a given, by training with the exactitude and presence of dancers and martial artists. The edge play of fight or flight, of tonic immobility, of extended arousal are the penumbra through which we are transvected. Our aim is to extend our mastery over the so-called autonomic nervous system, and in doing so, live more deliciously.

The work of witchcraft is best approached if you have a working energy body. The endocrine system in particular needs attention: hypothalamus, pineal, pituitary, thyroid, thymus, adrenals, pancreas and ova/testes. Unless you have an active method to address it, your system is either aggravated or in decline. Unless you are moving every day you are becoming stiffer. The challenge is that most people in our culture, which includes witches, are heavily self-medicating, particularly with alcohol, painkillers, prescribed pharmaceuticals and in a state of chronic inflammation. If this is not rectified then eroticism is impaired, ordeal work becomes blunt trauma wrought on muffled senses.

In tandem with this are the requirements of herb craft to provide the building blocks and support for the experience so that it is not catastrophic. I am not going to give a full herbal, but let me mention damiana, red clover and ginseng as general tonics as well as two of my preferred and less known ones, amachazuru and tongkat ali. If you are not taking Vitamin D and magnesium supplements I urge you to do so. For men I should add zinc, and testosterone support for those over 40, along with lifting heavy weights: these are far more effective than shunning ejaculation in order to stay vital. For women, dong quai, cat’s claw, ashwaganda, catuaba, and of course the master substance: chocolate, theobroma cacoa, food of the gods. And I recommend you consume your chocolate like your witchcraft, as dark, raw and unadulterated as possible!

The quick hit and subsequent body load of sugar and cooked fats, the over reliance on alcohol as a disinhibitor rather than a solvent for medicines, processed denatured food and death by sofa are the hallmarks of a slave society and a slave body. In addition we trash our adrenals with caffeine and crash our immune systems with cigarettes. This toxic approach does have some short term benefits, but it ultimately burns us out. The excess of energy in youth can lead us to self-destructive displays. I am not promoting abstinence, but an extended drunkenness of the senses.

Would it not be better if we were to stretch into ourselves like felines? If witchcraft drank from the cauldron of medicine and health? If we recognised that what we do requires sustained and sustainable energy work? If when we engage in the work of poisons we pay as much attention to recovery? Ask yourself: How powerful is your erotic response? Then ask, how powerful can it become?

Find a physical practice that you love. Make the body your magical weapon of choice for the performance of witchcraft. Keep extending and retracting your power like cat claws. It is a lunar mystery that we work, and it gives us supernatural seeming powers. The erotic is not linear, this genders witchcraft female whatever our biological sex. It teaches us to sustain from the smudged kohl of evening to the rose blush of day. It makes our witchcraft a full body art from the field of flesh through to our secret interiors that the blindfold and mask reveal.

Peter Grey
Forging the body of the Witch
Presentation given at the Occult Conference in London, England, 18th June 2016

One Response to “Eroticism & Magick”

  1. Reblogged this on hocuspocus13 and commented:
    jinxx♣xoxo

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