Damien Echols: Magick

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November 22, 2016

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Damien Echols was wrongly convicted of murder in 1994 as part of the infamous “West Memphis Three” trials. He spent almost two decades in prison, until new DNA evidence exonerated him in 2011. In this fascinating episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon speaks with Damien on how he rejected bitterness at his mistreatment by the justice system and used his incarceration to explore the practice of hermetic magic. They talk about what it took for Damien to survive prison and what brought him to the path of the magician. Finally, Damien leads listeners on a guided practice of hermetic magic he calls “The Middle Pillar.” (65 minutes)

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DAMIEN ECHOLS was born in 1974 and grew up in Mississippi, Tennessee, Maryland, Oregon, Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas. His wrongful conviction, sentencing, and eventual release as part of the West Memphis Three case is the subject of Paradise Lost, a three-part documentary series produced by HBO, and West of Memphis, a documentary produced by Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh. Damien is also the author of the New York Times bestseller Life After Death and Yours For Eternity (with his wife Lorri Davis).
 
While in prison, Damien was ordained into the Rinzai Zen Buddhist tradition. Today he teaches classes on magick around the country and works as a visual artist. He and Lorri live in New York City with their three cats.
 
For more, visit damienechols.com.

Also By Author

Damien Echols: We Are Unconscious Angels

Damien Echols is an author and artist who teaches classes on magick around the country. The story of his wrongful murder conviction was documented in the films Paradise Lost and West of Memphis. With Sounds True, Damien has published the book High Magick and the complementary audio program A Course in High Magick. In this podcast, Sounds True founder Tami Simon speaks with Damien about his forthcoming book, Angels and Archangels,which offers us a practical set of tools for working with these timeless forces for divine wisdom and healing power. 

Damien Echols: Building the Light Body

Damien Echols was wrongfully convicted of murder in the infamous “West Memphis Three” case and spent more than 18 years on death row before his exoneration and release. Now he teaches Western ceremonial magick—the same practice he credits with saving his life in prison. With Sounds True, Damien has published the book High Magick and a practice-oriented audio companion, A Course in High Magick. In this episode of Insights at the Edge, Tami Simon speaks with Damien about magick and how it is meant to “constantly ingest more of divinity.” Damien describes two of the central practices of magick—the Middle Pillar and the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram—and details why they are so foundational to the modality. Damien explains how he first discovered magick while in solitary confinement and details the concept of “will” in relationship to the Buddhist concept of dharma. Finally, Damien and Tami talk about what it means to manifest a “light body” and the overall goal of spiritual liberation through magick. (83 minutes)

Tami’s Takeaway:
Damien Echols is a “current-bearer”—someone who is able to pass to others an experience of boundless light. When I met with Damien in November of 2018 at a launch event for his new book, High Magick, I could tell that something had recently happened to him that had dramatically increased the intensity of this current. In this conversation, he describes how the practices of magick, which he calls “a Western path of enlightenment,” brought him to an experience of ego dissolution, which he describes as “experiencing myself as a small handful of sand that someone threw into a tornado.” The takeaway: an invitation to let go of any feeling of separateness, enter the abyss, and discover the interconnected light that awaits us.

You’re Already Doing Magick – You Just Don...

Every person on this earth is born with an entire universe of potential in them. Most people never cultivate the seeds of that potential, so the seeds go to waste and the people go through life wondering what went wrong, or blaming the world for everything that did go wrong.

Magick waters those seeds to make that potential stir, grow, and flower. It accelerates our spiritual and mental development in ways we never could have predicted. Our ability to shape our destiny and the world around us using magick is limited only by our own belief, dedication, and creativity.

The goal of my new book, High Magick, is to provide you with the opportunity to experience the magick that resides within you—within each and every one of us, without exception. These rituals and practices are merely guidelines—a place to begin.

To get you started, here’s a short video where I share a basic magick practice for more healing love.

 

Once you begin experiencing magick, you will never see life the same way again. You’ll grow increasingly aware of the currents of energy active all around you, and the interactions between energy and the material realm. And you’ll discover that, contrary to what you may have been told, there are no limits.
I’m not here to tell you what to believe, and I’m not here to convert anyone. That’s not my job. My job (if you could call it that) is simply to show you what has worked for me through thick and thin. In that way, I guess you could say it’s my job to help. And my hope is that you’ll find these practices as useful in your life as I have found them to be in mine.
With gratitude,

Damien

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