Altered States - How to get there?

Discussion in 'Magick' started by Hermes, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. Hermes

    Hermes Zos Kia Cultus

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    There are two known ways of getting into this altered state, which some describe as the "Zone".
    • 1) self-hypnosis - affecting the subconscious
    • 2) Alpha state (where alpha brainwaves are dominant), it is called crystal countdown (from Laurie Cabot's book) in which you meditate to get into the "alpha state".
      I do not think these two a mutually exclusive, but many people swear by number 2. What do you use? What is your preference?
     
  2. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    There are many ways to create trance induction, here is a page from my notes that I am using to write my book Tarkhem: Music and the Black Arts

    TRANCE
    Old French transe "fear of evil", from the Latin transīre "to cross", "pass over"

    Wier, in his 1995 book, Trance: from magic to technology, defines a simple trance (p. 58) as being caused by cognitive loops where a cognitive object (thoughts, images, sounds, intentional actions) repeats long enough to result in various sets of disabled cognitive functions. Wier represents all trances (which include sleep and watching television) as a dissociated trance plane where at least some cognitive functions are disabled such as volition but not consciousness within the trance typically termed hypnosis.

    Sound can play an important role in inducing trance, although as Rouget points out, music does not of itself induce trance; sometimes it triggers trance while at other times it has a calming effect. In archaic trance ceremonies, different sounds can send people into trance, from loud drums to soft rattles. People can go into trance while dancing or while lying still. There are different theories as to why music can induce trance, from its emotive power to conditioned reflex. Rouget feels that music is a socializing influence on the trance phenomenon, and that this depends on the ideological systems in which it occurs. He also considers trance as ‘a state of consciousness composed of two components, one psychophysiological, and the other cultural’.
    EXITORY GNOSIS
    Mindlessness reached through intense arousal. It is aimed to be reached through sexual excitation, intense emotions, flagellation, dance, drumming, chanting, sensory overload, the "right way of walking" described by Carlos Castaneda, hyperventilation and the use of disinhibitory or hallucinogenic drugs.

    MANTRA
    The Sanskrit word mantra- (m.; also n. mantram) consists of the root man- "to think" (also in manas "mind") and the suffix -tra, designating tools or instruments, hence a literal translation would be "instrument of thought". A sound, syllable, word, or group of words that are considered capable of "creating transformation"

    Mantras, the Sanskrit syllables inscribed on yantras, are essentially "thought forms" representing divinities or cosmic powers, which exert their influence by means of sound-vibrations

    The orthodox attitude of the elite nature of mantra knowledge gave way to spiritual interpretations of mantras as a translation of the human will or desire into a form of action, with some features in common with spells in general. These sounds are manifestations of ultimate reality, in the sense of sound symbolism postulating that the vocal sounds of the mantra have inherent meaning independent of the understanding of the person uttering them.


    [FONT=&quot]To attain single-pointedness of mind, repetition of mantra's can be done in the following ways[/FONT]

    • Mantra Yoga (chanting)
    • Japa Yoga:
      • Vaikhari Japa (speaking)
      • Upamsu Japa (whispering or humming)
      • Manasika Japa (mental repetition)
    The vibrations and sounds of the mantra are considered extremely important, and thus reverberations of the sound are supposed to awaken the Kundalini or spiritual life force and even stimulate chakras according to many Hindu schools of thought

    The Transcendental Meditation technique uses mantras that are assigned to the practitioner to be used as sound only, without connection to any meaning or idea.

    Spiritual exercises of Surat Shabda Yoga include:
    Simran (repetition, particularly silent repetition of a mantra given at initiation),
    Bhajan (listening to the inner sounds of the Shabda or the Shabda Master).

    People can also use trance, particularly in the context of ‘ritual’ events, to learn new strategies of thinking or of relating to one another. States of consciousness bring about a momentary release from the subjective personality and permit experience of the collective consciousness within the human psyche.

    Trance phenomena result from the behavior of intense focusing of attention, which is the key psychological mechanism of trance induction. Adaptive responses, including institutionalized forms of trance, are 'tuned' into neural networks in the brain and depend to a large extent on the characteristics of culture. Trance is still conventionally defined as a state of reduced consciousness, or a somnolent state. However, the more recent anthropological definition, linking it to 'altered states of consciousness' (*Charles Tart), is becoming increasingly accepted.

    Trance can be deliberately induced using a variety of techniques, including:
    ·Prayer
    ·Religious rituals
    ·Meditation
    ·Pranayama (breathwork or breathing exercises)
    ·Physical exercise
    ·Coitus (and/or sex)
    ·Music
    ·Dancing
    ·Sweating (e.g. sweat lodge)
    ·Fasting
    ·Thirsting

    Ecstasy
    The particular technique that an individual uses to induce ecstasy is usually one that is associated with that individual's particular religious and cultural traditions. As a result, an ecstatic experience is usually interpreted within the context of a particular individual's religious and cultural traditions. These interpretations often include statements about contact with supernatural or spiritual beings, about receiving new information as a revelation, also religion-related explanations of subsequent change of values, attitudes and behavior (e.g. in case of religious conversion).

    Benevolent, neutral and malevolent trances may be induced (intentionally, spontaneously and/or accidentally) by different methods.

    Auditory Driving : Trance through the sense of hearing by chanting, auditory storytelling, mantra, overtone singing, drumming, music, etc.

    [FONT=&quot]Rhythmic induction[/FONT] Entrainment is the synchronization of different rhythmic cycles. Breathing and heart rate have been shown to be affected by auditory stimulus, along with brainwave activity. The ability of rhythmic sound to affect human brainwave activity, especially theta brainwaves, is the essence of auditory driving, and is the cause of the altered states of consciousness that it can induce.

    Neuroanthropology and cognitive neuroscience are conducting research into the trance induction of altered states of consciousness (possibly engendering higher consciousness) resulting from neuron firing entrainment with these polyharmonics and multiphonics. Related research has been conducted into neural entraining with percussive polyrhythms. The timbre of traditional singing bowls and their polyrhythms and multiphonics are considered meditative and calminative and the harmony inducing effects of this potentially consciousness altering tool are being explored by scientists, medical professionals and therapists.

    Brain Entrainment
    There are four principal brainwave states that range from high-amplitude, low-frequency delta to low-amplitude, high-frequency beta. These states range from deep dreamless sleep to a state of high arousal. These four brainwave states are common throughout humans. All levels of brainwaves exist in everyone at all times, even though one is foregrounded depending on the activity level. When a person is in an aroused state and exhibiting a beta brainwave pattern, their brain also exhibits a component of alpha, theta and delta, even though only a trace may be present.

    The sound dimension operates through the harmonics of the melodies as well as the physical impact of amplified sound waves. These elements combine to entrain the human organism within the ‘soundscape’ created by high volume sound systems, just as for example monks chanting together entrain themselves, body and mind, to the collective harmonic.

    In Altered States of Consciousness, the subject can experience various ‘subjective realities’ or dreamlike visions, including mythical, science fiction, religious and mystic experiences. These experiences can have a positive and lasting effect on the subject. Masters and Houston have coined the phrase ‘Visionary Anthropology’ to describe a process whereby subjects are invited to explore a world in their imaginations, and to experience and describe elements of it such as its art, customs, music etc.

    The ASCID seems to enable a creative visualization process, which aids artistic practices. Auditory musical imagery (or hallucinations) can also be experienced, especially by musicians. Such imagery can be described as ‘automatic’ or ‘self-creating’ works of art. Another phenomenon which can occur with the ASCID is ‘accelerated mental process’ (AMP), which is a form of subjective ‘time distortion’. In this state, the subject experiences a volume of thoughts or images far greater than that experienced in normal time.
     
  3. seattlegal

    seattlegal Why do cows say mu?

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    lol, the question should be: how do you avoid trance? :eek:
     
  4. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    :p Actually we fall into tiny trances all day long, and Gurdjieff addresses this in his theory of being Awake and Conscious and not a robotic, semi-conscious person going through life. Maintaining this wakefulness is a lot harder than one suspects . . . I bet there are parallels in Eastern thought (which you know a great deal about)!
     
  5. seattlegal

    seattlegal Why do cows say mu?

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    Yep. Mindfulness is the cornerstone of Zen. Thich Nhat Hanh equates being filled with mindfulness as equivalent to being filled with the Holy Spirit. It took me a while to figure out exactly how/what he was talking about, but I did eventually understand and do agree with him.
     
  6. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Search, be your own guru.

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    Mindfulness is a simple word and the desired state (Altered states makes me think of drugs).
     
  7. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    Oddly enough, consciousness expanding drugs don't introduce anything to the body/brain that isn't already there, the drug merely releases the necessary chemicals in the brain to create altered states.
     
  8. Sam Albion

    Sam Albion akaFrancisKing:ViveLeRoi!

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    i like using rhythm. Drumming does it for me. Loud, resonant, and to a beat. Gets me into "a" zone -- I won't say "the" zone... Drumming makes me feel clean, mentally... and... empty. In a nice way...
     
  9. Hermes

    Hermes Zos Kia Cultus

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    Mindfulness is not QUITE the same. It is a "new agey", spiritual word that everybody has a different terminology/meaning for. It is similar, but we asre talking apples and oranges. You do not need to take drugs but in certain cultures some drugs were used....
    The alpha state is determined brain wave activity that we all have during our sleep. It is measurable and desired to most/all phsychic activity. We can also get there via meditation.
    Self-hypnosis perhaps gets us the same result but I am not sure....
     
  10. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    Brain Waves
    Beta – 14-20Hz Normal waking consciousness
    Alpha – 8 -13Hz Daydream, meditation
    Theta – 4-7Hz Heightened creativity, Shamanic work, deep meditation
    Delta - .5 – 3Hz Deep sleep, unconsciousness


    *White noise is useful in overwhelming the conscious mind
    *Both Alpha & Theta waves are needed for Trance States
     
  11. seattlegal

    seattlegal Why do cows say mu?

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  12. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    The Mu may come into play with ritual dance?
     
  13. seattlegal

    seattlegal Why do cows say mu?

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    No, more like sitting and staring at a blank wall, (you might see this in a Soto Zen Center) as Mu waves disappear with motor acts of the contralateral hand or arm, or even if you observe someone moving like that.
     
  14. radarmark

    radarmark Quaker-in-the-Making

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    I think that the experiments with monks and gammas are a little more substantial and indicated as such in the fMRI work (see Ivanovski and Malin in Acta Neupshychiatrika I think).
     
  15. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    I gotsta read up on this here stuff! Thabks SG! :)
     
  16. seattlegal

    seattlegal Why do cows say mu?

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    http://www.interfaith.org/forum/buddhist-mindfulness-vs-taoist-flow-4201.html
     
  17. radarmark

    radarmark Quaker-in-the-Making

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    "Mindfulness" is precisely what Taoist, Buddhist philosophies aim for in most interpreations. It is that that might be measured by theta or gamma activity. There is a very, very high correlation. It may be "newagey" in the West, it is rock solid tradition in the East.
     
  18. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Search, be your own guru.

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    Agree to that, but my culture does not allow drugs. It is sure used by people on the fringes.
     
  19. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    How the heck do these guys get away with smoking ganja like chimneys over there where there such tough drug laws?
    [​IMG]
     
  20. Etu Malku

    Etu Malku Mercuræn

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    Certain drugs (DMT based) are closely connected to Shamanism around the world and are necessary to Shamanic ritual.
     

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