Other powers: your Magic Allies
An alliance involves a deeper relationship. You may consider it a partnership or you may consider it akin to acquiring a personal teacher, mentor or counselor. The relationship is ongoing and mutually beneficial. Creating an alliance with a power is more personally fulfilling and rewarding than the previous approach, however it's also more demanding than using a power as a tool.
You may use hundreds or even thousands of powers as tools, depending upon the extent of your magical repertoire. The number of alliances is inevitably far smaller, although you are not limited to any set number of alliances. Some people's needs are met with one ally; others accumulate three, five, a dozen or more.
Consider the tool-approach as having talented acquaintances whereas allies are your closest friends, with perhaps one or two as your very best friends. Just as everyone's social needs are different, so the need for magical alliances varies. There's no competition. It doesn't matter how many alliances someone else has. There's no one right number.
Some of your alliances may be life long. Others may involve brief intensive relationships followed by similar alliances with other powers. You may have one at a time, you may maintain several simultaneously. You will accumulate different alliances as you need, desire and/or earn them.
HOW DO YOU PICK AN ALLY?
In general, they pick you. A specific power, whichever it might be, recognizes something about your power and initiates the alliance. There are various reasons for why you were chosen. Any or all of the following might be the cause:
You may also discover information regarding your past lives by examining and studying your allies, as many believe that alliances never end but continue over many lifetimes.
· The power perceives that you share something of its nature or essence.
· There is some historic basis for affection, assistance and loyalty. This might be based on all sorts of factors: ethnic, familial, professional or other.
· The power perceives a need in you that it is able to fulfill, in much the way that humans provide assistance to each other. Dentists and other specialists make themselves available to you when you need them, while good Samaritans may proffer favors spontaneously, so do allies and other powers.
· The power just likes you and enjoys your presence.
· Knowingly or unknowingly, you've called upon this power and they've responded.
Some allies may have been hovering near you since your very first moments on Earth. General metaphysical wisdom is in agreement that every human is born with a cadre of spiritual helpers. These include representatives from each of the realms: mineral, animal, spirit and botanical. Perhaps they've been waiting silently. Perhaps they've been making overtures towards you, waiting for a gesture or response. Perhaps they've served as guardian angels. Their role is to provide guidance and protection along your life journey. Some reveal themselves easily, particularly animal allies. Others may help silently until they perceive that you are ready to be an active partner. The most powerful relationships are always mutually beneficial: Your role is not merely to be the recipient of their kindness but to provide honor and empowerment to your allies as well.
CLUES TO IDENTIFYING YOUR ALLIES
· Be aware of images that repeat in your life. Magic refutes the concept of coincidence, considering them instead to be signals requesting your attention. Was there a birthday when everyone gave you the same type of stuffed animal? Did everyone laugh when you received twelve stuffed chipmunks? What sort of jewelry enters your life—is it funny that you're always accumulating pearls? Whatever house you live in, does there always seem to be a particular plant nearby?
· Your allies are likely to appear in your dreams. Do you ever dream of flowers or of precious stones? Spirit beings may speak to you in your dreams or approach you in various forms. These may or may not be pleasant dreams. Sometimes our allies inadvertently scare us. It's not necessarily their intention, more likely faulty communication, misunderstandings or even prejudice on our behalf. You may have a recurring dream of a wolf chasing you. You run, fearing it will harm you. That wolf keeps returning, frustrated in its attempt to reach you, its intent merely to offer advice and assistance.
The Kabbalah suggests that although guardian angels can assist us anonymously, their powers are limited unless we specifically request help. When we explicitly ask for assistance, they are free to perform ever-greater services upon our behalf. This applies to other powers as well.
· Often, we know our allies because we love them and long for their presence. Something about them attracts our attention. As the old saying goes, “that which you are seeking is causing you to seek.” There's a lot of chemical interaction involved in alliances with other powers. It's like going to a crowded party, looking across the room, making eye contact with someone and just knowing that the potential for a valuable, special relationship exists. The key word is potential. You could leave the party immediately, with no interaction. No relationship would have begun although there's always the chance you'll have another opportunity at some later date. Or you could go greet that someone or make some sort of welcoming gesture, letting them know you welcome their approach.
When someone or something chases you in your dreams, stop and ask what they want. If you repeatedly tell yourself while you are awake that you will do this while you're dreaming, eventually you will find that you do. If you are very fearful of what pursues you, also repeatedly remind yourself, while awake, that whenever you wish to you can wake up and escape. You may also wish to examine the protective dream crystals and charms discussed in depth a little further on.
An alliance is intended to be mutually beneficial. Although you may be receiving overtures, if it's not a relationship you desire or find appealing, you're not obligated to enter into that relationship. This is your magic. You set the boundaries. It may be that you're not interested in alliances, period. Tools are what fit your needs. It may be that you'd like to work with crystals but not with spirit beings or vice versa. Those are your choices. Consider what's being offered to you and make your decisions based upon your needs and desires. If something doesn't appeal to you, you can always just graciously decline.
Okay, so in theory you know how to signal to someone at a party to let them know you're interested, how do you do this with a rock, an animal, a spirit?
We'll examine each realm in turn, but at the most basic level, you start by making them feel welcome. Anything that is “alive” in the magical sense has certain preferences, certain things, colors, foods and especially fragrances that serve as signals and sometimes as magnets. By creating a conducive atmosphere, you signal that their presence is desired.
Although experimenting can be fun, rest assured that there is already a fairly encyclopedic occult canon regarding the care and feeding of powers. You don't have to figure it all out by yourself. Despite the association of the word “occult” with secrets, the most powerful, knowledgeable practitioners have always made the effort to share and pass down their wisdom and so it exists for our benefit.
There are also certain welcoming fragrances that consistently call in beneficial, powerful spirits. Luckily, these tend to smell pretty wonderful to us, too; cinnamon, frankincense, gardenia, rose and sandalwood.
Don't be discouraged if it takes a little while for a response. You may have to keep trying. Sometimes powers don't realize the invitation is for them the first time or the second time but eventually they'll get the message. Some powers are more gregarious and eager than others. The more you know of your chosen power's nature, the easier communication becomes and the more likely you are to recognize a response.
It is crucial to remember, especially in a society where hearing voices or communicating with nonhumans can be considered grounds for commitment, that you are not obligated to obey any instructions or recommendations from your guides, any more than you are obligated to take advice from Dear Abby. If they suggest something you're not comfortable with, just say no. Respectfully, as always, of course, but decline. This is ultimately your magic, your life, your choice, your responsibility.
Part of the danger comes from the misconception that other powers don't belong to real life, to our day-to-day existence, so that any communication is treated as either innately evil and to be avoided at all cost or the opposite, something so sacred that it must be blindly obeyed. Remember that all life forms, whether mobile like humans or animals, rooted like trees or existing in some spiritual dimension that humans don't completely grasp, all share our Earth Mother.
Jewish folklore refers to a wide array of demons, angels and assorted spiritual beings of varying levels of power as living on the other side, our other side, the other side of our own existence, not some completely different reality. These forces aren't from some other Earth. They share our Earth with us and we all have a place. There is no different plant world, no separate animal planet. For better or worse, we all share this one.
Each living being has its own individual powers and its own individual skills to teach. Earth provides allies for every purpose. There are plants, animals, minerals and spirit powers ready to assist you in the acquisition of literally any skill or experience. Crucially, there are some specific powers that serve as magical ambassadors from their respective realms. They will teach you to sharpen your psychic skills, they are your finest teachers for learning how to access and work with other powers. They will teach you how to tap directly into Earth Magic. Let's examine each realm, in the order of easiest accessibility.