[Practice] Welcoming the Signs

This is a little bit of an experiment, trying to talk about some spiritual work in a straightforward fashion without too much interpretation projected onto it. If I like it how it turns out, if it sits well with me, I might try to make it a more regular feature of what I do here.

I couldn’t tell you precisely when I started doing this, but sometime over the last year (maybe two? maybe three?) I started using my body as a screen onto which I could project geomantic figures in prayer. As I would pray, I would just extend out my right hand (fingers freshly dipped in cool, perfumed water) and let it trace out a figure spontaneously, then let the figure rise up and into me. The way in which that happened varied, because I let the figure settle into the body on its own, with minimal willful direction.

I would play my attention along the figure, enflaming its presence in my body. Sometimes this comes with some visionary experiences of varying intensity, but mostly it is simply a potent sense of spiritual presence. Sometimes, they manifest across the height of my body, from head to toe. Sometimes they alight on a specific part of my body, usually along the vertical channel defined by the spine. Sometimes, they manifest horizontally. Sometimes, they wrap me up in an embrace.

Interpreting the signs has never felt appropriate. The process seem to be one of attunement rather than understanding. When tempted to try and read the signs, I remind myself that there are many other places in my work where I do that. Divination in this work would shift my attention from the deeply embodied dimensions of this practice.

The signs aren’t always stable. The lines move or the whole sign might invert itself. The sign might rest atop the surface of my body, pass through it, then come to rest along the other side.

After I started working and thinking with core Kabbalistic texts like the Sefer Yetzirah and the Zohar, I found those projections acquiring more visceral and visual intensity and picking up resonances with the tree of life. I started to find my way toward a means of switching the projected geomantic figure into a tree of life diagram with specific channels and sefirot more or less active.

There were a few ways to do this that seemed functional, but it wasn’t usually intentionally guided on my part. I would play lightly at one or the other until the sign responded and flashed into a tree of life diagram. The heat and responsiveness of the sign in my body made it easy to discern which one was right. Sometimes that dynamism manifests in the tree’s changing its configuration, even flashing up another geomantic figure.

After a little of this, the work came with a steady visionary experience which progressed and changed from day to day, some of which it felt important to record in writing. After a few more weeks of this, the flashes between the tree of life and geomantic signs subsided. I found myself working once again with just the signs themselves.

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