Kali is a woman. Jupiter is a man. Athena is a virgin, but obviously a woman. Loki is sometimes transsexual, but he is a “he”, a man. Angels are asexual, but are also masculine. Baphomet is … what, bisexual, hermaphrodite, something, yet in a masculine way, right? He, Baphomet. At least, that was my unquestioning assumption, until one day the insight arose in me, that Baphomet is not a man.
The spirits are just as diverse in their sexuality as we are, and gender, grammatical and otherwise, is just as complex an issue on the subtle planes of existence as it is on our mundane one.
Instead of boring my readers with a long essay on sex, gender, their distinction, and their interplay and dynamics, here is a magical exercise inspired by an online Gender workshop (not magical) which I came across a few years ago. In preparation for the following working, I suggest at least scanning parts of this workshop, to get into the right mood.
- Design a gender neutral sigil. Take your time, this is tricky, and it is also part of the exercise. Once you are satisfied, set it up in your favorite ritual space. Altar. Coffee table. Whatever.
- Banish as follows: Think of an attractive person, notice the gender you attribute to them. Now deliberately “drop” the gender attribution by saying aloud (or thinking) the words “what a beautiful human being”. Notice the change in attitude and interest this brought about. Make a sweeping gesture to spread this new attitude all around.
- Speak out loud: “It is my intention to communicate with a truly gender-neutral spirit now.”
- Meditate in whatever posture you like, first staring at the sigil, then after a while closing your eyes and keeping your focus on the afterimage of the sigil until it fades. After some time, usually around ten to fifteen minutes, you will have had a vision or a reverie, or engaged in some other form of communication with the truly gender-neutral spirit whose sigil you created. Observe their appearance, visual or otherwise. Discuss a gender related subject with them. This is where having read parts of the previously linked online workshop is very useful.
- When you are done, thank them and inhale then exhale deeply a few times.
- Banish by doing a mildly sexual gesture, such as the sign of the fig or an erect middle finger, in the four cardinal directions.
- Write down what you remember of your exchange with the spirit. Or, if you prefer, keep a recording device running during your meditation and dictate your experience to it.
Reviewing the recorded material is very revealing. The spirit is truly gender-neutral, therefore any discernible gender in their appearance must be on the part of our perception. This will make previously unnoticed preconceptions and stereotypes visible, for instance how I used to think of Baphomet as masculine.