Retroactive Magic and Mind Machines

Retroactive Magic and Mind Machines
by Taylor Ellwood on 2006-08-28 10:06:42
tags: mind machines, retroactive magic, taylor ellwood

I’ve been working with Mind Machines for the last year and a half now, since I was first introduced to them at WinterStar 22. Mind Machines are technologies that can be used to induce altered states of mind. The mind machine uses audio strobe technologies to do this. The goggles have strobe lights in them, which a person looks into with his/her eyes closed. The audio part is the music or sounds, which are translated into light pulses, which are then beamed into your closed eyes. The different frequencies of sound shape the light frequencies, although you can also adjust the light intensity of the strobe lights, dimming them or brightening them as needed. This is especially useful if you want to overload your senses and put yourself into an excitatory state. Likewise adjustment of the volume of sound can also be useful for inducing a similar state.There are, to my current knowledge, two models of the Mind machine available on the market. Depending on both your funds and your preferences you may wish to get only one model or both. The Proteus model, is a model which allows you to program different sounds into your mind machine, making your soundscapes. This is highly useful for those who are musically inclined. Likewise, with a CD player the Proteus can play audiotech CDs, which are CDs with specific sound frequencies built into them that the strobe lights pick up on. The downside to the Proteus however is that it doesn.t have some of the features the Sirius has. This model costs approximately two hundred U.S. Dollars.

The Sirius mind machine doesn’t have the capacity for downloading programs that you create, which the Proteus has. However it has enough other features to counter the Proteus and is cheaper as well, costing only one hundred U.S. Dollars. The features it has is that while it can process the sound frequencies of the audiotech CDS, it can also process the sounds of other CDS, so that for instance if you want to use your mind machine for a ritual and really want to include that Coil album, you can actually do that with the Sirius model. You can’t do that with the Proteus model. Another feature is a built in microphone that you can take to concerts, but also to that place outside, which has lots of natural noises that you feel might be useful to experience as light sensations.

In the end, you have to decide what is most affordable for you and will be useful for the potential experiments you’ll be doing with such technology. The magical benefits of using this machine is that it can be used to access different states of mind/gnosis and even as a way of overloading your senses. However if you are epileptic you shouldn’t use this machine as it can cause seizures. Other benefits for using this machine also include using some of the programs in it to help you sleep better, have more vivid dreams, even help you study better or enhancing your creativity and visualization skills. The last two skills are particularly useful for magicians, but all of the benefits can be helpful.

I use the mind machine infrequently, though I have gone through periods of using it consistently. I haven’t noticed any adverse effects in either case, and the workings I’ve done with the machine have always been efficacious. If I’ve chosen to not use it sometimes, its because I do find it important to cultivate one’s natural abilities at meditation and visualization. Technology is an aid, but it should not replace the discipline of cultivating your own skills.

Sex Magic, Mind Machines and You!

One way I’ve used mind machines is for sex magic. The combination of physical sex with the mind machine is very useful for inducing a trance in the person wearing the goggles and can even be used for creation magic. Here’s what you’ll need if you want to do this:

. The Mind Machine . A willing partner . Bondage gear (optional, but useful for confining the person’s senses to the sexual act and the mind machine). . An objective: Do you want to create a magical entity for instance? Or do you want the person to trance out and do some divination via the mind machine – both options will be covered here, but keep yourself open to other ideas. . Any other ritual tools you feel necessary.again these depend on what the focus of the ritual is.

If your doing this ritual for the purpose of divination, you won’t need anything beyond the mind machine, the partner and the optional bondage gear. I find the bondage gear to be most useful in constraining the person. The machine is used as a scrying device in this case. The act of sex, along with the stimuli of the machine is used to push the person into a non-linear state of mind, with the focus being that orgasm will push the bound person over the edge. This person should, for the entire time, keep his/her attention focused on what is being scryed for as much as possible. The images and flickering that s/he will see, will occasionally reveal a flash of a possible future – Focus on those flashes, as well as the patterns you see in the light. Gradually these patterns will resolve into the probability you want to explore. You can either, at this point, simply focus on the divination at hand, or you can use this as an opportunity to shape the probability toward the specific goal you want to manifest and then push that probability into reality. How you push that probability into reality, is first experiencing it as a reality and in that experiencing of it, merging it into you. The patterns of the mind machine, can be useful for helping you get this feeling of merging the possibility into your reality, so that it manifests as a distinct reality in your life.

You can even do retroactive magic and work with a past event, shaping that event to manifest a specific present opportunity for yourself, again with the same principles mentioned above, kept in mind. Regardless of what you do, when the session times out and you’ve come back to an awareness of here and now, have your partner unbind you and quickly write down any impressions you have from the experience. You’ll want to return to these impressions later, particularly as they may contain messages for you from past, present, or future variants of yourself and/or just information about the event you scryed.

The second format you can use this type of working for is for the creation of a magical entity or talisman. Again one person is bound and is using the mind machine. This person is to visualize the magical entity or talisman being created, as well as keeping a clear focus on the purpose of said entity or talisman. The other person will keep either a housing for the entity, which is the physical container for the entity, or the talisman itself nearby. At the culmination of the sexual act the bound person will keep his/her focus on the talisman or entity housing. S/he will using the flickering lights and patterns to form the shape of the talisman or housing or even visualize the entity itself. While this is occurring the other person will take the mixed sexual liquids and use them to anoint the housing or talisman. S/he can optionally wait until the other person is out of trance so that both people can do this, but its not essential to the efficacy of the creation. The second person will also chant or do whatever else is needed to bring the entity/talisman to full creation, while the bound person keeps his/her focus on it while trancing. Again once the session ends, release the bound person and have him/her record anything of interest that was noted.

Taking a Retroactive Picture

For those of you who don’t feel like incorporating sex magic into working with a mind machine there is another possibility. Here’s what you’ll need:

. A Picture of yourself, from your past, the further back the better, but also dependent on what event in your past you want to modify. . The Mind machine . Anything else from that time period that will help you feel like your contacting your past self or even becoming the past self.

For myself, I used a photo of me from ten years ago for this working. I had old tape cassettes of music from that time, so I used that music and the microphone feature of the mind machine for my working, so as to give myself a real time warp back to my past. I even wore the shirt I had in the picture, which I still had, again in part to create a strong resonant link with my past self.

Remember as well that with retroactive magic, the present is your power spot, but because you have lived in the past, your past can be part of your present. In other words the past you is still living in its present and as such is a power spot that you can use and hone in on for this kind of working.

The picture acts as a gateway to the past. Think of it as a door to a younger you. Think as well about what you want to tell your younger version or even what events you want to change in your past. You’ll want to be very focused on determining this, because you don’t want to go in with vague expectations. Have a specific goal in mind. Your specific target is either the younger you or the event, or even both, if you want to focus on the interaction the younger you had with the event.

The next step is to look into the eyes of the picture. Commit the picture to your memory, but particularly focus on the eyes. The saying the eyes are the gateways to the soul, while quaint, is still applicable here. The eyes are expressive of a person. In the case of my picture, in my eyes of that time I saw a lot of emptiness, sadness, anger, and defensiveness. I was going through a very rough period of my life. The goal of my working was to first instruct my younger version that not only would things get better, but to stick to his focus on writing, and leave him with a general sense of intuition toward what probabilities I wanted him to undertake so as to secure this present or his future in this present.

Once you have the picture memorized, your going to want to keep it firmly in your mind, while using the mind machine. The patterns the mind machine creates will be most useful for you, because those patterns will draw you into the picture your keeping in your mind. The goal is to let these patterns draw your consciousness into the picture you have memorized, until you find yourself becoming that picture, becoming a presence in the mind of the person you were.

At this point you’ll still see some of the light flickering, but don’t be surprised if your on your past self pushes that mostly aside. Once you feel integrated into your past, now is the time to leave whatever message/instructions you feel is important. This can be words, but images work as well. You’ll feel a reaction from the past self, as that self will not only recognize you, but likely be surprised by your visitation. It’ll be important to establish that you are a future self visiting, in part because you don’t want to have to attack yourself or defend against yourself.

If you want to change events, then your goal will not just be to leave a message, but actually possess the younger version of you. Since you presumably have more experience with magic this shouldn’t be difficult to do. You’ll want to have a clear idea of how you want to change the past event, specifically you’ll want to know what actions you need to change or what opportunities you need to exploit that your past self didn’t do. This isn’t necessarily complicated to do, because if you have a good awareness of what you regret you didn’t do and a fairly good idea of how to go about doing it, then it is possible to change the actions of the past. The key though is to be aware of and follow through on the specific actions that would likely bring about the change you seek.

The odd thing with retroactive magic is that you can retain both sets of memories, the original memory, i.e. how the event originally went down, and the new memory, the new reality you created. This seems to last only a short time, however, as the new memory is integrated over the old memory, replacing one past reality with another. Try not to focus to much on the old memory as this can create a sense of paradox. Also don’t be surprised if you find your life to be just a bit different. By changing the past, even by leaving messages for yourself, you are changing your present. When the working is over take off the goggles of the mind machine and put it away, recording your experiences in your journal.

On another note it.s also possible to use this kind of working to contact a future self or even just a variant present self. The mind machine acts as the portal, with it’s patterns being used to not only mesmerize you, but actually give you access to a non-linear way of thinking, which allows you to access different layers of consciousness, and also different points on the space/time continuum.

The technology is useful because it simultaneously provides an excitatory medium of light and sound to push your boundaries, while also providing an inhibitory medium through the wearing of the goggles and the earphones. The key to using technology for this kind of work is to treat the technology as both a visualization/meditatory device and as a gateway, using the light and sound as ritual accompaniment into the realms of space/time and the mind. Another reason to use this technology is that it can act as a both a buffer and an introduction to working with space/time magic. Particularly with meditative techniques, it’s very easy to fall into the trap of getting caught up in a non-linear way of thinking or getting lost in all the possibilities your exploring. With the mind machine, the sessions do end and that sets a time limit on your working, and because you are using technology, it also keeps you grounded through the various sensations your experiencing. Thus the mind machine can be useful for a beginning chrononaut that wants to get an idea of how to work with space/time magic, but also has a controlled environment to do it in, with a definite end.

[Editor’s Note: This excerpt comes from Taylor Ellwood’s submission to the Techno Magick anthology set to be released by Konton Publishing. He has been gracious enough to donate it to Key 64.]

Taylor Ellwood is the author of Pop Culture Magic and Space/Time Magic, and the upcoming Inner Alchemy, as well as a co-author of Creating Magickal Entities. He is also the author of numerous articles on the occult which can be found at such magazines as New Witch Magazine and Konton Magazine and on such websites as Key 64, irreality, and Witchvox. Taylor is the non-fiction editor for Immanion Press and he is the editor of the upcoming Magic on the Edge experimental magic anthology. Taylor is also currently writing the Pop Culture Grimoire. He maintains the occult resource at, but has moved his online home to the den of the green wolf: