Anwyn Pendrake

Occultist, Chaos Mage, Psychonaut, Dragon

If you were to tell me that the most useful book of esoteric information was a pdf file on a Deviantart page just a few weeks ago, I would have tilted my head. And I would have balked outright if you had told me it was made by someone who called themselves “Arch-Traitor Bluefluke” and unironically used the phrase “I'm the Juggernaut, Bitch!” as a section title. But that is the classism in the occult world speaking. I'm used to stuffy old books written by old white men appropriating cultures they are not part of. If you think magic has to come from spellbooks and proscribed rituals, rather than experimentation and flexibility, this book is not for you. For the rest of us though, I can think of no better introduction to magic on the market. Especially not for free, like this one is.

The Psychonaut Field Manual, created by one Arch-Traitor Bluefluke, is an instruction guide for the budding chaos mage. Bluefluke has created a pretty good down and dirty introduction to some basic foundational magical techniques, all while keeping it agnostic of any theology so that you can get started without subscribing to any particular dogma. It's also a lot easier to digest than some other books on the subject. There are instructions for summoning spirits, sigilization, creating a magic circle, banishing, and even befriending fear-eaters.

Being theology blind, the manual doesn't ascribe any philosophical meaning to where spirits come from or how magic exists. Instead, it attempts to explain it all using pop psychology and concepts from neuroscience, an approach with given my own hypothesis definitely appeals to me. If it has any flaw, it is that the information could stand a bit of updating to modern neuroscience. But for what it is, its still a handy little instructional guide. Certainly easier to digest than Libre Null, at any rate.

Though the information itself is theologically blind, Discordian imagery is used throughout the booklet. Golden apples appear everywhere, as does the Hand of Eris and the number 23. This may put people off of the book, but I've personally found Discordianism to be a good philosophy to work out of so I like this fearure. Not to mention the fact that the artwork itself is fantastic. A nice bled of Jhonen Vasquez, Mike Mignola, and the Gorillaz. Cartoony, punk, and kick-ass all at the same time.

To show you an idea of what I mean, here is one of my favorite parts of the ealy chapters of the booklet, a tarot spread based on the Hand of Eris:

Hand of Eris Tarot Spread by Arch-Traitor Bluefluke

Not only is the art here cool and evocative, but the spread is actually very good for a number of uses. For example, while it is primarily included in the manual as part of a method of sigilization, it can also tell you whether attempting a particular magical action is a good idea or not. If neither of the potential outcomes are good, or if one is significantly more negative than the other, don't do it. It's a good, simple, evocative spread.

Overall, rather than trying to hit the ground running with any other guide, if your need for chaos magic is real and you want to start practicing, download the pdf. It's free, and that's more than can be said for most esoteric works these days.

I've been struggling to think of what my goals should be as a mage. Wicca, Druidry, hermeticism, and pretty much every other esoteric tradition has a guiding principle or morality ascribed to it. Chaos magic? Not so much. In fact, the basic tenant of chaos magic is “nothing is true, everything is permitted.” A framework and goals are only necessary as long as they are useful. But if you don't have a clear goal, what is even the point?

When I started the blog, and began researching the occult, I said I wanted to explore the world of consciousness that lay just beyond what people could see physically. To what end? To explore the mystery of my own existence, I suppose, but why? Well, in examining some Discordian and Chaos Mage text, I've found a bit of an answer. Hail Eris, cause she hit me on the head with a golden apple and reminded me that I'm an anarchist. And suddenly that put everything in a better perspective.

The current cognitive paradigm is materialistic to the nth degree. People are reduced to unconscious machines, and religion into a tool used to control them. Any deviation from the norm is a malfunction to be corrected. I am a malfunction in someone else's brain. Fuck. That. Noise. I'm gonna shatter that cognitive paradigm.

The Goals of the Psychonaut

The Star of Chaos

There are three main goals that I have as a mage and that I encourage other mages to take up as their own:

  1. To break free of the falsehood that world is purely material in nature.

  2. To gain mastery over one's cognitive power.

  3. To pass on their knowledge and allow others to do the same.

The sharing of information about magic is praxis, insofar as it can help someone break down the shackles of their conceptual reality and realize their true potential. Magic is a powerful tool for self-actualization and building belief in ones own power.

In my next blog post, I will review one of the resources that has been instrumental in my study of magic and talk about why I think it could be a good starting point. Until then, I leave you with the following words of wisdom:

“In conclusion, there is no conclusion. Things go on as they always have, getting weirder all the time.” – The Principia Discordia

Being plural, at least in the way that we are, is interesting. It kind of necessitates having an internal, imaginary world that you can explore. The term used in plural circles is “headspace.” Ours is a bit odd. We first thought it was an apartment. But what I've discovered about it has kind of shifted our perception of it, and indeed our perception of reality as a whole. Before I get into that, though, I have to explain a bit about the occult practice known as pathworking.

A Brief Introduction to Pathworking

Pathworking is a meditative practice wherein the magician journeys to other places using their mind. Think of it as like a guided meditation, only you let your imagination do the guiding and are receptive to whatever it may show you. Pathworking is actually what Xander did when they did the ritual to summon Celdwyn. In that case, they drew a card from a dragon themed tarot deck and meditated on it. Since then, Xander has journeyed several times to a grove in a forest, and met with spirits.

When I first began taking up occult practice myself, I drew from Xander's experience with pathworking to try and get a better idea of our headspace, which at the time was an apartment. I attempted a pathworking to see what lied outside of the apartment and discovered, much to my surprise, that we actually inhabited a cabin in the woods that Xander was exploring. I've done some exploring of this area myself, and I've come up with a hypothesis.

The Cosmopsyche

There is a branch of metaphysics known as panpsychism that holds that everything in the universe is conscious to some degree. A sub-branch of this philosophy known as cosmopsychism purports that the entire universe as a whole is to some degree conscious. If that were true, and given the existence of plural headspaces, it would suggest the existence of a larger metaphysical universe beyond the physical one we can perceive with out senses. Essentially, the universe has its own headspace. I call this the cosmopsyche. It is my belief hat this is where Xander and I have gone on our pathworkings.

I am just beginning to explore the cosmopsyche, but already I have talked with otherworldly entities and spirits. It stands to reason that everything humankind has ever imagined has a presence in the cosmopsyche. Furthermore, although I can't really prove this as of yet, it seems to me that the cosmopsyche presents itself according to the perceptions of the visiting magician in the much the same way a plural system's headspace does.

I am only just beginning my investigation of this phenomenon, but one thing is certain to me: there is more to the universe than just the physical world.

Hello. I'm Anwyn Pendrake, headmate of Xander Pendrake. I am one part of a plural system: a collection of individual consciousnesses inhabiting the same body. The technical term for what causes my existence is dissociative identity disorder. But the rest of my headmates and I don't view ourselves in this lens. We consider our existence to be a subset of neurodiversity and reject the idea that our existence is disordered. It is simply different.

Why Xander and I are the main fronting personalities, there are other personalities in our headspace in addition to us. A “headspace” is a sort of imaginary home that can be used to visualize and talk to our headmates. There are four of us in total: myself, Xander, Celdwyn the dragon and Morgan, a little girl with a penchant for plants and playing with action figures. Our headspace is a cabin surrounded by trees, with a city visible in the distance.

Xander and I are both writers, but Xander is primarily a writer of fiction, while I am a blogger. I previously hosted my blog on the monsterpit write freely server, but as that might be going away in a few months I thought it might be better to My particular focus for this blog is twofold. First of all, I want to share my experience as part of a plural system with the rest of the fediverse. Secondly, I want to share the insights I've gained via another interest near and dear to my heart: occultism and chaos magic.

Exploring the Mind

I call myself “The Plural Psychonaut” because I'm using meditation and other occult practices to explore the phenomenon of consciousness. Being a guest in someone else's body is utterly bewildering, especially when we have so many memories of ourselves as a single entity up until recently. And while there is technically an explanation, it is rooted in medical terminology and views my very existence as n anomaly to be cured. Straight up, I don't trust it.

Occult meditation, on the other hand, has allowed me to explore realms beyond that of our immediate headspace. It offers an explanation for our existence without trying to guilt us into becoming a singlet, essentially killing off the individuals in our mind. When I meditate, I am able to talk to my headmates and explore our headspace. I've learned a lot through this an other practices, and I hope to learn a lot more as I progress forward. I hope you'll join me for the journey.