Tag Archives: compass

9 Compasses and Workout of the Week #28

The Cabal Fang Workout of the Week is two-parter.  Enjoy!

Cabal Fang Workout of the Week #28

Part 1: A nasty little pyramid with no breaks.  This works great with two heavy bags, one standing and one lying flat.  But if you only have one or none at all, you can either make one or punch the air.  No excuses!  Start with Splay Punch x2, Punch x2 from Mount, Punch x2 from Guard, Standing Punch/Kick x2 vs. the upright bag,  Then Splay Punch x2, Splay Punch x4, Punch x4 from Mount, Punch x4 from Guard, Punch/Kick x4 Standing.  Then Splay-Punch x2, Splay-Punch x4, Splay-Punch x6, Punch x6 from Mount, Punch x6 from Guard, Punch x6 Standing.  Keep going until you get to 5 Splays and all strikes x10.  Next round 4 Splays all strikes x8, then 3 Splays and all strikes x6. etc. back down to 1 Splay and all strikes x2.

Part 2: Find your compass and meditate on it.  There’s nothing worse than feeling lost.  To find out where you are and start heading in the right direction, get our your handy compass.   This holds as true in the realms of mind and spirit as it does in the realm of the forest.  When you want to orient yourself in the great outdoors you use a physical compass; to get your mental, spiritual bearings, get out a symbolic compass.

Yes, I said meditate.  Here’s how.  Look at the 9 “compasses” listed at the bottom of this post.  Which one seems appropriate to the problem, pickle, or situation you’re dealing with at the present moment?   Once you settle on a choice, memorize it.  Close your eyes and imagine that the North pole of the compass is tattooed in glowing letters on your forehead, the South one on your lower abdomen just below your belly button, the East one on your right shoulder, and the West one your left shoulder.  Set a timer for 10 minutes, assume your chose meditative posture and close your eyes.  Imagine that compass situated on your body.  Which words are glowing most brightly?  Which aren’t glowing at all?  Try to make them all glow evenly in your mind’s eye.

Below you’ll find 9 compasses that will help you orient yourself if you give them some time, consideration, meditation, contemplation, and prayer.

 Maybe the Being/Action compass is what you need.   Sometimes you don’t know if your problem is bad thinking or poor choices.  North/South is the “Being” dipole while East/West is the “Action” dipole.  There is no “wrong way” on a compass is there?  Of course not.  Just as there’s a time to go North or South depending on where you’re headed, there’s a time to accept what you’ve been dealt (“I am not”) and a time to reach down deep and assert your will (“I am”).  There’s a time to take action (“I will”) and a time to refuse to take action (“I will not”).   Sometimes these things overlap — inaction becomes an action, acceptance can become inaction, and so on, like a four-way game of rock-paper-scissors.  To figure out which direction you need to go, meditate on this compass and see if you can find your way out.

Or maybe you have a goal in mind and you don’t where to start.   Try the Ways of Achieving compass.   Not sure which quality you need to cultivate in order to hit your goal?  Meditate on the the Qualities of Manifestation compass.

When it doubt, go with the Hermetic Quaternary.   If you’re looking for direction but you’re not sure which compass is best, go with the one that’s been around since Eliphas Levi first wrote it down in 1854.  It’s about as powerful a tool as you could ever hope for.

Go ahead, give it a try!

Directions Hermetic Quaternary (a.k.a. “The Powers of the Sphinx”) Qualities of Manifestation Being/Action
North/Up To Know Purpose I am not
South/Down To Will Intent I am
East/Right To Dare Passion I will
West/Left To Keep Silent Determination I will not
Directions Western Elements Tarot Suits Astrology
North/Up Earth Pentacles  Ox/Taurus
South/Down Fire Wands  Lion/Leo
East/Right Air Swords  Man/Aquarius
West/Left Water Cups  Eagle/Scorpio
Directions Holy Grail Bloods Archangels Ways of Achieving
North/Up God & Goddess Uriel  To Visualize
South/Down Ancestors & Kin Michael  To Practice
East/Right Heroes & Friends Raphael  To Execute
West/Left Sacrifice & Nourishment Gabriel  To Plan


Of the Secret Compass and the Rosy Cross

What started all of this was a post by Freeman about what is and is not occult, about what is healthy and what is not healthy about literalism and symbolism (by the way, Freeman is a very learned fellow, and if you are interested in Western Esotericism, you should follow his blog straight away).

Anyway, Freeman said, “Today, we still need to cultivate our balance, and I see the so-called occult revival as playing an important role in that, at least until we swing too far the other way. We can’t have only Plato or only Aristotle, or only symbolism or only literalism, and remain healthy.”

I agree with that completely, so much so that I’d like to elaborate.

The Rose Cross of the Golden Dawn

Freeman mentioned, quite rightly, that “the original Rosicrucian literature…was a corrective to Christian dogmatism that contained a balance of spiritual and empirical elements.”

The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn took up the cross, the Rosy Cross to be specific, and carried it into the 20th Century.  At the heart of Golden Dawn practice are two little rituals called the Qabalistic Cross and the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram, the first and only rituals taught to members prior to initiation.

The Qabalistic Cross ritual is a re-envisioning of the Catholic or Orthodox crossing gesture that has been expanded into a complete exercise that includes some special words and visualizations.  Embedded within it you will find the Hermetic Quaternary, which is “To Know, to Will, to Dare, to Keep Silent.”  Each part of the Quaternary corresponds to a direction, to one of the four letters of the Tetragrammaton, and to a way of seeing.

  • To Keep Silent is to see mystically, which is to see yourself as an insignificant part of the Universal One (saying ATEH and touching the forehead).
  • To Will is to see magically, which is to see the universe as under your command and control (saying MALKUTH and pointing to the feet or lower tip of the spine)
  • To Know is to see gnostically, that is to know the universal truths in your bones (saying VEH GEBURAH and touching right shoulder)
  • To Dare is to see scientifically,  which is to doubt and test everything you see (saying VEH GEDULAH and touching left shoulder)

The enlightened person sees in all four ways at once without contradiction.  Both dipoles — the North/South/mystic/magic nor the East/West/gnostic/scientific — are viewed non-dualistically, which is perhaps why Hermeticism has been called “Western Zen.”

A compass rose. Note that it has a rose in the middle.

Now, it should come as a surprise to nobody that the thing one uses to stay on course is a compass, and the thing you draw on a map to ensure proper orientation is called a compass rose.

The rosy cross pictured on the left orients you on the map of the material plane.  The colorful one above does so on the spiritual map.