Lately, I have been deep diving into Chinese magic. It has been humbling to learn about the complex relationship between Chinese occultism, Confucianism, Daoist magic, and esoteric Buddhist traditions via @bellwen. The ancient Chinese viewed rituals, people, animals, plants, and the land as inseparable. In the Neolithic period, centuries before the birth of Christ, the imperial historian Cangjie invented writing based on the footprints of birds. During the Xia dynasty, shamanic practices facilitated a harmony between gods, people, and nature. In the Shang Dynasty, ceremonies involved calling upon the four directional deities prior to ritual commencement. In the Zhou dynasty, Lao Tzu and the Tao Te Ching birthed Daosim, which blended with Buddhism and Confucianism, and emerged alongside feng shui and geomancy. Alchemy is both inner (neidan) and outer (waidan), magic is both good and evil, a sorceress channels all energies.
After the West invaded China in the Boxer Rebellion of 1900, colonization resulted in cultural implosion in the form of book burnings and relic destruction. When Chinese wisdom was exported to the West, it became fragmented and diluted from its divine source. Due to the trauma endured by my ancestors, it is hard for me to speak about this subject, but I want to use my opportunity to practice healing in a way that honors their legacy.
Writing is a form of Daoist magic, practiced through sigil and fu talisman crafting. This explains why I have had a fascination with words since childhood, reciting nursery rhymes and songs with ease, writing several hundred page novels at the age of ten, crushing my AP writing prompts and SATs, and majoring in English with distinction in college. Farming, music, dance, photography, healing, and other arts are also forms of magic and integral to my life.
“Biographies and letters of gifted women who suffered mental breakdowns have suggested that madness is the price women artists have had to pay for the exercise of their creativity in a male-dominated culture.” -Jenara Nerenberg, Divergent Mind
Photos: New Holly Youth and Family P-Patch
Benebell and WION (on YouTube)