Gnosis, photo by Raymond Salvatore Harmon

To: alt.magick.chaos
From: fenwick[at]sonic[dot]net (Fenwick Rysen)
Date: Sat, Sep 26, 1998 23:24 EDT
Message-id: <6ukb4k$ilk$>

lo eskis i

Quoth Polaris (

<< I was wondering if anyone could tell me a few ways to achieve gnosis that do not involve sex or drugs (yes, I know that those are the best). >>

Not necessarily the best, though probably some of the most common.

Others include:

  • Hyperventilation
  • Confronting a fear (snakes, heights, etc)
  • Strong emotive force (love, hate, rage, confusion, etc)
  • Meditation (to vacuity or other state)
  • Pain
  • Spinning (dizziness/confusion)
  • Staring into a strobe light
  • Running to complete physical exhaustion
  • Holding it as long as you possibly can before going to the bathroom
  • Adrenaline rush (bungee jumping, parachuting, holding up a 7-11, etc)
  • Drumming
  • Chanting
  • Mantras
  • Singing
  • Listening to music Really Really Really loudly (especially ambient music)
  • Creating artwork
  • Holding your breath (either with or without air in your lungs)
  • Hunger and/or thirst (fasting)
  • Sensory overload (For example, pain, sex, fear, hyperventilation, loud music, and strobe light all at once)
  • Sensory deprivation
  • Listening to white noise until it’s no longer white noise
  • Sitting on a powerpoint (most graveyards, incidentally, are powerpoints)
  • Blood rush to head (standing on your head or hanging from your feet)
  • Shamanic body postures (see the works of Belinda Gore and Felicitas Goodman)
  • Killing something (go get your hunting license and kill Bambi– he’s overpopulated, he tastes good, *and* he’s healthy for you!)
  • Sacrificing something you value
  • Rollercoasters (works best if you keep your eyes shut)
  • Gazing (crystal balls, pools, mirrors, a random spot on the wall)
  • Sleep deprivation (aim for five days or more for best results)
  • Lucid Dreaming (do *not* combine with sleep dep—
  • insanity results, trust me, I know from personal experience. I’m better now… Honest!)
  • Martial Arts (if you’re willing to make a ten year investment)
  • Jumping through a bonfire
  • Dancing
  • Lighting yourself on fire (WD40 or a rubbing alcohol and water mixture)
  • Mosh Pits (actually just a combination of Loud Noise, Dancing, and Pain)

There are more. Use your imagination.

Of course, there’s my personal favourite of just practicing magick *EVERY DAY* until you can summon up gnosis without special preparations. The *methods* of achieving gnosis should not be confused with the gnosis itself. With practice, the methods become unnecessary and the magician gains access to gnosis directly.

In Life, Love, and Laughter

–Fenwick Rysen

Chaos Matrix

Image credit: Raymond Salvatore Harmon