National Paranormal Society NPS FOCUS June 2016 - Page 33

“departed one”. Hungry Ghosts are pitiful creatures with enormous empty bellies and pinhole mouths. Their necks are so thin they cannot swallow, so remain hungry. These beings are insatiable; the greedy ones, trapped in agony. The Preta are reborn entities or spirits that are trapped by the evil deeds they have done. Hungry Ghosts are associated with compulsion, greed, addiction and obsession.

Mara - the personification of evil and temptation. Mara is one of the earliest non-human beings to appear in Buddhist scriptures. Mara is a demon, often referred to as the “Lord of Death”. Mara personifies the fulfillment of desire of the “Triple Thirst" the thirst for existence, the thirst for pleasure, the thirst for power. Mara’s role in Buddha’s path to enlightenment is significant. The soon-to-be Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama sat in meditation. Mara, the demon of evil and temptation; the seducer; the provider of sensory pleasures; the master of delusions and bringer of spiritual death brought his three daughters, Desire, Fulfillment and Regret to seduce Siddhartha. Siddhartha remained in meditation. Then Mara called upon his army of demons and monsters to attack him. Yet Siddhartha remained. Death claimed that enlightenment rightfully belonged to him and not the mortal, Siddhartha. Mara’s horde of

mastery over goals or challenges in life. Some religious Taoists have their own gods and rituals like any other belief system. The journey starts in the present and adherents work on their everyday problems and concerns. For most Taoists, from a philosophical perspective there is no personified god or devil.

Magickal practices today have originated from what is known as the Tao of the left, known in Western Magickal Traditions as the Left Hand Path. These adherents are sorcerers and other magic workers who work with elements of wood, earth, metal, water and fire all together. Western Magic workers will usually work with earth, air, water and fire, as a contrast. Whether it is for evil or for good totally depends on the goals of the workers. The term Thunder Magic is used for those combating magic of manipulative or evil intent. In South East Asia, magick use is rampant, and often Taoism can become a philosophy of lifestyle. In general today, left hand path magic is considered to be atheistic, Luciferian or Satanic in Western Magickal thought.

The use of the K at the end of the word Magic is used to discriminate magician’s tricks from actual Magickal beliefs and practices as suggested by infamous author and magician Aleister Crowley.

demons cried out together, “I am his witness!” Then Mara challenged Siddhartha, “Who will speak for you?”

Then Siddhartha placed his right hand on the earth, and the earth spoke, “I bear you witness!” With that, Mara disappeared. As the morning sun broke the horizon, Siddhartha Gautama realized enlightenment and became the Buddha.

In contrast to Western representations, the demons of Asia are primarily the powerful ancient spirits of nature, who require recognition and appeasement. Many offerings are set out to this day to placate these demons.

Taoism (often pronounced as Dow-ism) is based on the writings of Lao-tzu, a 16th century figure, centered on living in humility and piety. It can be seen as a philosophy, ethical teaching or religious tradition whose roots come from Chinese folk magic. Tao refers to the word or path which is based on the flow to achieve

6. Taoism