As mentioned previously, the four ancient elements correspond very well with certain tendencies of human character. In medieval times, these character traits were called the four humors: the phlegmatic, the sanguine, the melancholic, and the choleric. Even though modern psychology has abandoned this simple model, we all do still possess these character elements within ourselves. With this tool, you will become acquainted with these four elements and begin to understand how they shape your personality. When you begin to understand these subtle forces as they apply to your own personality, you will begin to see imbalances in yourself. These elemental imbalances cause you to act uncontrollably, to be compelled unnecessarily by negative unconscious forces. You will later learn a simple method for addressing these imbalances and returning yourself to a healthy state of equilibrium and free choice. In order to succeed in the New Hermetics, it is necessary to balance your personality so that you are capable of expressing all of the positive traits of each element and not obsessed by any of the negative ones. Return to Figure 3 (page 31) to see personality traits applied to the four elements. With this tool you will discover the elemental imbalances in your current personality.
1. Read the list of personality traits for each element (see figure 3, page 31).
2. Write down in separate columns for each element both the positive and negative qualities of each element that you feel describe you. Add up the positives and negatives from each element, and you will begin to see where your elemental imbalances lie. You will notice that you have more qualities from one or two of the elements than any other.
3. You will also notice that, for nearly every positive quality, you also have at least a tendency toward the negative quality associated with it. However, we all have the potential for all of the positive and negative qualities of all of the elements. We simply have not learned how to access the qualities that we are not used to, and we tend to access the same qualities over and over.
4. In order to balance your personality equation, write down all of the negative qualities of the elements that you arc currently experiencing in your life.
5. Write down next to each of these qualities the positive quality from the other element on the same line. In other words, for negative fire qualities, write down the corresponding positive water qualities next to them. For water, write down fire qualities. For air, write down earth qualities. And for earth, writedown air qualities,
6. You now have the necessary components for beginning to balance t he elements of your personality.
f course, the lists in Figure 3 do not represent every single character trait, jbu will most likely need to create further lists with other character traits to take full advantage of the benefits of balancing your personality. These lists are just meant to be indicative, and your own creativity is always uch more valuable than simply following my script.
Balancing and Refraining the Elements With this tool you will be able to move away from negative elemental traits and manifest new positive traits. First, choose from the negative qualities that you really want to discard and the positive qualities that you'd really like to adopt in your personality. This will help you to succeed with this tool. For example, you may have chosen the negative water trait of "low self-esteem," so the positive fire crait rhat you will he-invoking is "high self-esteem." Using this tool, you will move from low to high self-esteem. Of course, you can use this tool with any negative and positive qualities from Figure 3 or any you've come up with on your own. This cool will allow you to change the way you react to any situation in your life however you may like. It may seem that this technique is very fast and simple, but this is the way your brain changes—quickly and simply.
1. Enter the altered state (see page 73).
2. Go to your inner temple (see page 90).
3. Perform the New Hermetic-» grounding and centering (see page 99).
4. At the end of the grounding and centering exercise, clear away all images but the blank walls of your temple. Visualize the walls of your temple like blank movie screens where you can project pictures that you will create.
5. Move to the southwest corner of your temple if you are working with fire and water, or the northeast corner if you are working with water and air (sec figures 23 and 24, opposite and below). By moving to these positions, you will be straddling the two elemental areas.
6. Turn to the wall corresponding to the negative trait you want to move away from.
7. Make a picture of what you would see through your eyes when you are about to experience this negative trait. Experience whatever feelings, images, or sounds may precede
Figure 25. l ace the wall corresponding to your negative trait.
totally immersed in the experience, seeing what you would see through your eyes, hearing, feeling the feelings, even smelling, and then let this image go for a moment (see figure 25, above). Blank this wall of your temple.
8. Turn and look at the wall corresponding to the positive quality you are invoking.
9. Make a bright colorful picture on this wall of what you would look like when you manifest your new quality (see figure 26, opposite). How will you stand and breathe? What kind of expression will be on your face? What sorts of new things will you be able to do? Make this an image of you looking at yourself in the distance. Make the picture very appealing and desirable.
l(). Shrink this image down so that it is very small and move it way back into the wall (see figure 27, page 110).
11. Look over at the first wall and again visualize, as if through your eyes, an image of the experience that you have just had before when experiencing the negative trait.
12. Quickly shrink this image down to a very small size far away, and turn back to the new positive image on the second wall, saying the magical word, "Swish!" if you like, and making the positive image grow to fill the second wall, brightly and appealingly (see figure 28, page 111). Do this as fast as you can, and then blank both walls.
13. Look over at the first wall and again visualize, as if through your eyes, an image of the experience that you have just had before when experiencing the negative trait.
I A. Quickly shrink this image down to a very small size far away, and turn back to the new positive image on the second wall, saying the magical word, "Swish!" and making the positive
image grow to fill the second wall, brightly and appealingly. Do this as fast as you can, and then blank both walls. I x Repeat this about 10 times as fast as you can, with just a second or two between swishes.
16. Visualize yourself in the future in a situation where, in the past, you would have reacted with the negative trait, and you will discover that the new image instantly pops into your mind. This will allow you the freedom to choose this new trail instead of the old one.
17. Perform the New Hermetics grounding and centering. 1<S. Return to normal awareness whenever you are ready.
II you ever find yourself slipping back into the old trait in the future, simply use this tool again, and you will find yourself changing forever. You should use this tool with ail of your negative traits. It won't really
ke very long at all, and you will dynamically change yourself into a ell-balanced and free individual. Saying "swish" is a tradition in NLP, ut is not really necessary, unless you like it. There is also a much simpler and faster method of accomplishing is same purpose—by moving with the elements physically, feeling and ecing them within you, and allowing yourself to transform in their ower. For example, lets say that you are currently more of an earthy ersonalitv. You tend to be practical, stable, thorough, but also a little oring and a bit of a perfectionist. And lets say that you would like to be more adventurous, flexible, intellectual, lenient.
To balance this out, all that you need to do is imagine your body filling with the air element. Simply visualize and feel your whole body-becoming lighter and filling up with the whirling energy of air. As you do this, imagine that the air carries the character trait that you desire. See ii, feel it, hear it vividly inside you.
Then move your body the way it would move if you had this qual irv. Feel it and experience it inside you. Let it find a home there. Let 1 In-imagined element dissolve into the rest of vour being. Let yourself experience this new trait as a part of you. Imagine yourself vividly using this new quality in the near future. You may want to repeat this a few times, and you will discover that you have expanded your possibiliiies permanently in this new direction. The process is exactly the same lor all the elements and qualities.
If you want to rid yourself of a negative trait, imagine the appropri ate element carrying it away, or imagine the opposite element extinguishing it as you physically move your body in imitation of your inner experience. If you are feeling watery sadness, imagine fire entering, drying up all the water, and filling you instead with fiery passion. Then move about vigorously, feeling the burning intensity driving the motion. Your imagination is the only limit to what you can do with the elements. (See also Appendix 3.)
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The pathology of the poet says that the undevout astronomer is mad the pathology of the very plain man says that the genius is mad and between these extremes, which stand for ten thousand analogous excesses, the sovereign reason takes the part of a moderator and does what it can. I do not think that there is a pathology of the occult dedications, but about their extravagances no one can question, and it is not less difficult than thankless to act as a moderator regarding them.