by Christopher Penczak, edited by Tina Whittle
When you enter into relationship with a magickal group, you participate in the group consciousness. Sometimes this is as simple as a temporary or loosely formed group mind where people of like mind share a structure and develop it together. It is mostly in the mental level and at times can exert an unconscious influence. Worst-case scenarios include devolving into a mob mentality. It’s why a group can descend into paranoia about other groups, or how one person’s character flaw can seem to manifest in others who previously didn’t have such a flaw.
In the best-case scenarios, you can feel the love and support of other members even when they are not present with you. You are uplifted, and in some magickal groups, you have access to skills and a depth of experience you otherwise would not have. Many people are more insightful or psychic in group, or spells in the group are more effective than when solitary. In the gestalt, the exile is really greater than the sum of the parts. It evokes that magickal quintessence where 1+1+1+1=5.
If you join a formal tradition or esoteric order, you might, through some process of initiation, be connected to the egregore of the group. This is more than the mental level of a group mind. It encompasses many levels and can be connected not only to individual humans, but also to a land, various gods and spirits, ancestors, symbols, and the mythos of a tradition can live and be expressed in the egregore. Each is different, and some are not consciously created, but many are purposely constructed using magickal building principles.
While the mechanics can be different, one receives the “current” of the tradition through a ritual or empowerment and is connected to the essence, or depending on the structure, a facet of the essence of the collective energy. Through this current, initiates are both contributing to the collective and receiving support from it. Initiation can confer relations with a group of spirits and ancestors you wouldn’t normally have otherwise or provide access to a body of both intellectual teachings through the members and intuitive wisdom.
The word “current” implies a linear connection, but that is just the limit of language. We can conceptualize a linear flow of energy, but it really comes from all directions and no direction. Those who wish to work wisely with this energy will literally sit with it, tune into it, and “work it.” While it is like a gift that has been given that we must unpack, it also comes with a responsibility to the past and the future. Those who are caretakers of a tradition will not only work it for their own evolution but will take action to manage the collective current, keeping it clear and clean, healing as necessary and adding to it when needed.
If a current has been passed to you, sit with it. Work it by listening to the consciousness within it. Feel the power. Be open to receive the move and offer moves in return. If you have received many, do the threads of initiation blend together or remain separate in you? Does the collective require anything more of you? Does it offer more? Are you asking it the right questions? How can you immerse yourself more deeply? How can it catalyze profound and lasting change for your greatest good? Work the current consciously before it works you.