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Angels and Metaphysics

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.religion.angels,alt.pagan.magick,alt.magick,alt.paranet.metaphysics,talk.religion.newage
From: nagasiva 
Subject: Angels and Metaphysics
Date: Sat, 19 Jul 2003 20:00:14 GMT

50030718 viii

"angelicusrex" :
# I wonder indeed, why you are doing this.

I thought I made it clear enough: I want to talk about communications
with angels and/or other nonordinary entities. this seems to be a
good forum and opportunity. the threads recent have opened up several
trajectories of skeptical inquiry on the matter and I thought my
contribution of a lattice of communication might help somewhat. that
doesn't always work amongst entrenched participants (a good example
where it did not work before was between conservative and universalist
Sufis; an example where it did was between Jewish and Neo- Kabbalists),
but it is ALWAYS valuable for me to accomplish it for posterity.

# I am not "imposing my cosmology" on anyone, Nagasiva. I am stating 
# facts. 

I understand that to you they are facts. thanks for so 
identifying them. I'll try to respect them as such. I hope
you'll see that my aim is complete honour and a sincere
willingness to learn without compromising my own truths.

# I speak to angels. They tell me what they call themselves. They 
# tell me that almost all "invisible friends" are actually angels 
# which children can see and/or experience and adults cannot. 
# Therefore the adults impose their taxonomy on the children, 
# calling these beings "imaginary friends." I beg to differ they 
# are, in your terms, 'real' unsensible friends (agents if you
# like) from a dimension we all call "Spirit."

thanks for sharing your perspective. much appreciated. obviously
the example of 'imaginary playmates' would not apply to the
category of 'unreal agents' as you see it. perhaps pink elephants 
or space aliens or role-playing characters or 'let's pretend 
people' may so qualify as you see it. the issue to me in making
a taxonomy isn't so much what qualifies, but the classes themselves. 
you're helping me to see what it is that you plug into these 
classes and for what types of cosmologies it might be an
inadequate model. for this I'm very glad of your patience.

# is an imposition to come onto an NG that discusses 
# angels and simply bring a new arbitrary unaggreed upon taxonomy  
# into play. 

I'm just trying to be helpful. it is an exciting topic of
discussion for me. 

# are coming here with a new game to play and kind 
# of ignoring the ones already in play....

I don't consider it a game at all. 

# seems to me it was actually made to "make fun" of 
# those of us who believe in angels. 

please refrain from your projections about my motivations.

# Bringing toasters and dogs into the question to make 
# us all look foolish.

clear delineations of categorical agents of communication
are valuable to ascertain. sorry if I offended. I thought
the discussion was inspired and meaningful and I wish
to participate as I am able. this isn't always appreciated.
so it goes. :>

#> not really, I'm trying to get a descriptive thing going which will
#> apply to all paradigms. you want to remain within your own, which
#> is understandable.
# I HAVE to remain in my own. My own is NOT conjecture or 
# arbitrary heirarchies or taxonomies. It is what I am 
# physically TOLD by beings which I am in contact with. 
# If I play your game then it is all in fun. But my real
# mission here is not to play. It is to be serious.

mine is to seriously consider all perspectives on the matter of
something I consider to be very real and important. try not to
take my examination as any sort of insult or game-playing, as
that isn't how I intend it. 

# It is hard for me to follow your very technically verbose thread. 

now that I have benefitted from your very good response in the
revision of my taxonomy I'll see how I might use it in some
conversation with you. :> I'll try to remain more simple.

# Maybe I am missing your good intentions? But you did say that 
# you were talking about things that were "ludicrous."

only that it can quickly become so when speaking of psychic
communication with inanimate objects. please understand that
I have no judgment about that at all, but I can see that most
within the threads of conversation on the matter do NOT think
that communicating with inanimate objects is anything other
than ludicrous (I don't happen to regard it as such where
there are those who sincerely think they are doing something
of value -- and I'm unsure about the motives of those who 
have brought the matter up in the alt.religion.angels 
newsgroup; I thought the comparison was *inspired*!).

#> now you're beginning to impose your cosmology into the taxonomy,
# I have to. Your taxonomy is not a cosmology. It is an arbitrary listing 
# and sectoring of persons, places and things. No one has yet agreed to the
# terminology you are using in your taxonomy. You need some consensus and
# agreement. Whereas, we are not discussing here whether there ARE angels or
# not. But rather HOW these beings appear to and/or communicate with us.

I can see that you want some kind of consensus on it, but I don't need
it and think that my taxonomy affords a bridge beyond strict cultural
beliefs. you and others of a similar interest and belief may not find
my activities useful, but any that are of like-mind to me or who are
from a very *different* mind than you may find it quite helpful. I'm 
very grateful for your having stuck with me this far into my construct.

#># An imaginary friend is exacly the same thing.
#> usually these are characterized not as beings, but as
#> subjective phantasms created by the imagining child.
# Only by adults, who claim all "unsensible being" is a 
# phantasm or imagining.  Until they experience it themselves.

I definitely see what you mean and can agree.

#> ...if angels are not material beings, how do they interact with 
#> the physical world, such as by entering buildings and extracting 
#> people from them?
# Simply put, they can perform functions on two planes. Material and
# Spiritual. We can only perform functions on one. Or so we believe. 
# This may not be the case. But it is how we act. Angels can be 
# material beings when they want to. Then they can be invisible or 
# unsensible to us, when they want to.

this is explanatory of what occurs, not of how it does. I don't
expect that anyone should know this, but the dilemma remains.

#> it is the age-old question of "what is the means by which
#> persons of a nonmaterial dimension affect the material and
#> vice-versa", and it isn't very easily resolved.
# Sure it is easily resolved. The means is thus: Spirit has always preceeded
# the material. therefore it affects the material on all points. Material
# comes as a condensation or result of the Spiritual and therefore has little
# effect on the Spiritual. It does have SOME effect however. As the things we
# manifest here from our minds and skills can be useful to those in Spirit....

a marvellous description. precisely what I was looking for.
thank you. a very cogent and succinct description.

#># So dogs can indeed "act as angels."
# ...Dogs can act as divine messengers and can even be possessed and
# utilized by these unsensible real agents. Or they can, if willing, act 
# on their own accord to "do good service" to others. Making them ad hoc
# representitives of the Divine. 

this is more akin to my interaction with the world. I tend to think 
in terms of messengers (/angels) or what I call 'prophets', and that 
these can be shifting roles for a variety of people, objects, maybe 
even events. neato.

# Unless you are going to say that being an "agent" is not a role 
# and now draw up a new taxonomy for what "Divinity" may mean. 

not my intent. 'communication agent' is sufficient, and the usual
person I run across tends to think in terms of fixed categories,
even if they somehow might shift 'behind the scenes'. you also
seem to have some limitations where this is concerned. angels 
do not seem to manifest as inanimate objects, for example.

#> 'angels' therefore are just any saving being acting in
#> a rescuing capacity, and aren't necessarily nonphysical.
# ...Angels are representatives of the Divine. Dogs can act as 
# representatives of the divine as material BEINGS. Immaterial 
# beings can also be representatives (agents) of the Divine and 
# can and do influence and act in the material realm whenever 
# they so choose. A dog, however may not become an immaterial 
# divine messenger unless and until it drops its material state. 
# At which time, incarnating again as a dog or the same dog
# becomes problematical especially if the "corpus" is in 
# disintegration or physical stasis.

thank you for filling in more about your cosmology. I really
appreciate it. 

#> you're helping to define more precisely what an angel is
#> (and therefore transcending the taxonomy I created by
#> stipulating your cosmology to fill it out nicely).
# Sorry, that's my mission here.

you're misunderstanding, I think, in tendering an apology.

I don't consider it problematic in the slightest. I appreciate
your attention and consider it exemplary that we shall be able
to communicate in reference at points to the taxonomy I'm
making. where it begins to break down (as around certain kinds
of cosmologies such as where planes are concentric like what
you're describing), I may have to refine it a little to
accomodate what you think is true. that's fine. I'll learn. ;>

#># However they cannot act as imaginary friends, as
#># they indeed are "real friends."
#> precisely. this distinguishes them: 'real' vs. 'unreal'.
#> you are agreeing with my methodology and my taxonomy here 
#> inasmuch as you are speaking from within it while 
#> developing what you believe of your cosmological outlook.
# No I do not wholly agree with your taxonomy. Some of it 
# is nonsensical and arbitrary while parts of it do align 
# with what is already KNOWN about angels, dogs and toasters. 
# These things do NOT exist in a vacuum.

interesting. I can only learn from our interaction, and do
really appreciate your patience with my learning. as I can
see so far, I don't know that any of these things are facts,
but I can approach what you know with respect and react

#> thanks for making more plain how you see angels and dogs.
# Why thank me? My observations are simply that, observations.

because your patience is evident and I appreciate it. :>

#> here is a large extention of your cosmology. you've
#> provided vast implications of how the cosmos came into
#> being, what role these 'unsensible real agents' have,
#> and how they may be predisposed to interact with
#> humans, what powers of appearance they have, etc.
# Again, I simply cannot play your game of taxonomy. because 
# it would mean I would have to eradicate my own knowledge 
# and experience base in favor of your new, arbitrary ones.

I understand. as I said above, it isn't so much a game as
a facilitating bridge. if you don't feel a need or any
inclination to use it, that's fine. at least *I* can use
it to find approaches to your knowledge system that are
respectful, translating from my own.

# Of course [angels] can be sensed. That's why your 
# taxonomy doesn't work. 

then maybe a refinement of it will be possible. I already
provided one refinement: changing 'unsensible' to 'otherwise
unsensible' or some such. I can see that what we're really
talking about here is 'ordinarily nonmaterial' as you have
described it.

---------- NOTE: this is where the real meat of the conv begins:
                 feel free to restrict the rest of our interaction
                 solely to what I'm calling 'meaty' :>

presumably re angels:
# ...the taxonomy would have to read: Somewhat sensible 
# real agents. Or Partially sensible real agents....

so are angels the ones in control over whether we sense them?

# No I am separating toasters from beings. Toasters are not 
# sentient beings.

that's how I tend to think of them too. not always, but usually.

----------------------------------------------- end of meat

# Sorry, this is common knowledge. 

I know that, but I don't presume 'common knowledge' is true in
matters of metaphysics and the world of the spirit. I tend to
suspend my judgement and then try to make connections to what
I have personally experienced. sometimes I learn much this way,
and sometimes others are offended at my broad-mindedness that
they take for 'being wishy-washy'. ;>

# And your taxonomy listing of them is a joke.

you don't seem to be laughing. I never intended it as humour.
I was quite serious, talking about cosmology and metaphysics,
things which are incredibly important to me and discussions
with people in forums like these. :>

#>  we might ask in response how it is that
#> an inanimate object could be responsible in a moral sense,
#> but you're just locating a cause for fires (such as in a
#> malfunctioning toaster) rather than actually blaming
#> toasters, with which it is very easy to agree.

# Right. 'fault' simply designates source for a fire. 
# Not a moral failing.

see? I'm already making progress in understanding you. ;>

# ...My cosmology has nothing to do with this. Toasters are
# not included in cosmologies. 

this is where I am apparently more aware than you are, and
I tried to make it more plain before. some people don't
agree with your cosmology. inanimate objects are considered
by them to be just as much 'beings' as living entities. if
you don't agree, that's wonderful. I won't force you. :>

# I am exempting toasters from YOUR taxonomy because they 
# simply do not and never have constituted "being" or been
# "living." they are therefore not "agents" of anything.

I hear that they are not a part of your cosmology as beings.
thanks for making that plain.

#> inasmuch as not everyone agrees
#> with your cosmology, they might also disagree with your
#> conclusions.  i.e. a 'shamanic' perspective might assert that
#> everything in the cosmos is a different shade of consciousness,
#> of living being (animate and inanimate). their notions of
#> what a nonsensed communicating agent might be may vary from
#> yours, especially if they don't see the world as created,
#> or as populated by spirit emmissaries of your Creator God.

see, here I was providing a glimpse of that for you. :>

# Maybe, but then not one person has yet accepted your taxonomy 
# either. In fact I am disagreeing with it. So that's one point 
# against you. 

I'm not really scoring for or against here. my intent is to be
INCLUSIVE. if you don't see a class that should be here, please
make it known to me. otherwise there may be classes that you
do not agree should be included based on your cosmology. that's
great. it is sufficient that I've accounted for yours. :>

# If you are a shaman, say so. Then we can discuss further 
# what constitutes "consciousness" or "spirit" or any number 
# of things concerning toasters. However right now you are 
# saying 'might and maybe.' Which are meaningless conclusions. 

that's right. I'm not drawing conclusions, I'm making bridges.
you can draw conclusions, or not, as you see fit.

# You yourself are not granting toasters autonomous life. 

sometimes I do, in my experience of the world. I do not think
of this as problematic in the least. it is something that a
good number of people do when we 'personify' things by naming
them (especially mobile things, like automobiles, ships, and
any number of other objects which are given names from houses
and regions to trees, birds, dogs and human beings). :>

# And varying shades of consciousness cannot fit in with 
# your very restricted taxonomy. 

in order to be fair, I'll restate it for our consideration:
----------------------------------------------------------------- (meat? :>)


1-- (imaginary)            unreal agents (mental or visual illusions)
2-- (otherwise unsensible) real   agents (noncorporeal entities)
3-- (living)               mobile agents (ambulatory organisms)
4-- (living)           stationary agents (rooted, static)
5-- (nonliving)                   agents (constructed or natural, static/mobile)


I'm not sure I see the problem to which you are referring. the general
category of 'thing' would seem to be accounted for here (in the sense
of a noun) such that continuums of consciousness and regions of
autonomous agency of communication appear to be included. if you have 
some additional suggestion for revision, I will of course be very
willing to consider it. so far you have objected to what does not fit
within your limited cosmology and I can completely understand that. 
I will not be insisting that you agree to that aspect, or try to fit
everything within my taxonomy into your worldview. that would be rude
on my part. I'm attempting to offer you nothing but respect, even if
our perspectives on the universe are very very different. until I see
evidence to the contrary, I'll presume the same of your motivations. :>

# Do I have to write down my own [taxonomy]? Then will you not simply
# label is a [cosmology]?

not if it is inclusive. then I'd consider it superior to my own. :>

# At what point does our disagreement get out of hand?

when one of us insists that our picture of the cosmos is superior 
and begins to berate the other for not agreeing. 

# I am really not understanding the rest of your discourse.

ok, thanks for making this clear. I'm stubbornly persistent as you 
will see, and cheerful to boot. I have great confidence in our
ability to overcome differences of opinion and to see into the 
heart of important matters. :>

# ...Angels are communicated with by people because they seem 
# to have a connection to God, who is possibly the Creator of 
# this Universe or others. 

interesting. you seem far less certain than I suspected. 
thanks for making it more clear what you believe.

#> these are reasonable assumptions, and they proceed from common
#> enough axioms. my only comment is that they are limited to your
#> perspective and you may find differences with people who have
#> different cosmological presuppositions than you do, and
#> agreement with those who share your views.
# No kidding?

honest injun!

#> I recommend that you do not presuppose my motivations or attitudes
#> toward you and others who have advocated communicating with angels.

# Why not? ....

because you don't know anything about me or my experience of the
world. in part I'm taking time to come to know you and yours at
the same time as attempting to create a communication lattice
such that a great number of others might commuicate on same.

# ...Why would someone not presuppose your motivations from 
# your own words?

because I'm making it clear that I bear you only the fondest of
sentiments and the greatest duration of patience with your beliefs.

#> it doesn't help us understand the subject any better, and it tends
#> to lead to my opposition to your entire cosmological platform
#> (which I notice tends to attract arrogance such as you are here
#> exhibiting and to which Tom has already referred quite amiably).
# Arrogance? What is arrogant is once again, coming onto an NG 
# uninvited 

:> alt. are not by invitation. they are drop-in forums
where anyone can play, silly!

# and displaying a real distaste for giving anyone here the 
# benefit of the doubt.

actually that is *PRECISELY* what I'm setting about to do: by the
creation of a communication translation lattice that will make it
possible for the interested to accomplish this very feat. you can
see that my horizons are very broad indeed if I am attempting to
make room in a discussion about angels for all manner of beliefs
about cosmology.

# This is our NG. We talk about angels here. 


# Now some guy [Tom] came on and said, "No, talk to your DOG 
# not to angels!" 

you misunderstood Tom. he was asking you some difficult queries
because that is Tom's nature. apparently you didn't like them,
and I can understand why (because they challenged your base-level
suppositions about the universe, and you are apparently not
secure enough in your faiths to have weathered them without

# then someone else said "talk to your toaster!" 

I saw that but wasn't sure who suggested it. I thought the
suggestion was inspired, from a philosophic perspective,
though I do understand how it might rattle those without
the proper cosmology to integrate their subtle aspects.

# this is real arrogance 

I don't think these inquiries and suggestions are, by 
themselves, arrogant, though they may have been carried
out in an insensitive or brusque manner (I'm very sorry
if they were -- what I saw of Tom's inquiry was very
amiably asked despite your bluster).

# and it is demeaning to call others arrogant, amiably or not, 
# when no such "arrogance" is being displayed by anyone but 
# yourselves. You are sitting there, making fun of us all. 
# And now have added insults to your injuries.

it is certainly not my intent to insult you. most of the
insults I've seen emanating from your quarter. however,
let me apologize up front for any insult I may have been
foolish enough to offer you. :> if we may disagree on
matters of fact or philosophy, let's be big enough to
agree to disagree and move on, shall we?

#> in fact, I may be one of the more likely to support you in any
#> future ridicule of your perspective, even though I do not find
#> evidence for a Creation, a Creator God, or a specific and
#> completely isolated class of spirit you regard as 'angelic'.

# Then your support would not be necessary or even effective, 
# would it? How can one be devisively supportive? 

necessary? unknown. effective? it might be. one may be
decisively supportive by bringing to bear undermining
critiques of unfair ridicule of you and your beliefs.
demonstrating a broad-minded acceptance of and willingness
to accomodate a variety of perspectives, this naturally
predisposes those with equanimity of mind toward one. :>

# want me to agree with your ridicule of me, of my being 
# "arrogant" and of your belittling of my "cogence" 
# concerning your arbitrary taxonomies.... 

there is no need on my part to turn this personal. my main
interests are in discussing the subject matter of angels
and communication therewith. I hope you can see your way
to doing likewise. if I assess arrogance and am shown it
not to be present, I am happy to withdraw that assessment.
if I assess insufficient cogence and am shown that cogence
to actually be present, I am happy to withdraw my assessment.
so far I haven't seen anything inspiring me to change my mind.
it isn't intended as a personal insult to you, so please do
not take it as such. my comment is about the character of 
the logic and attitude I perceive as contained in your words 
and may be as hasty as your assessment of my motivations.
you may merely inform me of my error and we can move on. ;>

# I know you think I'm stupid or full of myself. 

not so. I would recommend that you do not presume to know
what I think about you unless I specify it plainly. you seem
very certain of your cosmology (calling elements of it 'fact'
for example), but that is not necessarily evidence of
stupidity. your experience may be more extensive than my own
and I may shown to be inadequately assessing your output. 
I've occasionally been known to make mistakes and know this.

# But there you would be wrong on two counts. 

quite true. your presumptions about me are inaccurate.

# I am here, as I said, to explain the Angelic to people who 
# want to know. Not make things up as I go along, as most 
# people whodon;t talk to angels do. 

how can you tell who does and who does not talk to angels?
you seem to presume that those who are critical thinkers,
or who come with a greater allowance for what knowledge
may include beyond your knowledge-set to this forum are
for some reason "nonbelievers" and "not talking to angels".
I would caution you against these presumptions.

------------NOTE: more meat to our conversation here

# I do not question a Creator. I talk to God nightly. 

that seems at odds with you words above:

	...Angels are communicated with by people 
	because they seem to have a connection to 
	God, who is possibly the Creator of this 
	Universe or others.

I guess I'm confused about what you doubt and believe.

------------------------------------------------------ meat ending

# At some point people have to go by what they experience 
# and know and stop mucking about with "cosmic question 
# and answer games." I am telling you straight out your
# taxonomy is off. 

thank you for your advice and feedback.

# If you regard this as arrogant or presumptive. I am sorry.

not at all.

# But right now only you and I are having this discourse. 
# No one else is involved. No shamans, no other people 
# at all. 

sure, but my taxonomy is intended to be INCLUSIVE. ;>

# You created this taxonomy and expect someone to agree. 

absolutely NOT. in fact, I tend to presume that EVERYONE

# I am someone, but I do not fully agree with your terms. 
# Why does this cause you to think I am arrogant? 

that doesn't. :>

# Are your terms really that precise or indicative of 
# the discussion at hand? Or are they really a simple 
# joke at our expense?

time will tell, I suppose.

#> # ...discourse on angels is important. because many of us feel
#> # something beyond our ken is manifest in that which we call
#> # Spirit....  we will always turn it around to: "What does this
#> # have to do with angels?"
#> a wonderful attitude.
# Thank you. Yours is just as "wonderful."

my admiration is genuine.

#> please remember that not everyone shares the same 
#> perspective on the universe as you do,
# And please understand you just bounced onto an NG that 
# has more people with my perspective on it than your 
# perspectives. 

that's fine. I don't require conversion or anything.

# I don't mind disagreeing with people and discussing. 
# But you are, as most people finally  do, becoming
# more and more disagreeable. You have succeeded in 
# one post to accuse me of being incogent, arrogant, 
# presumptive, not understanding that others may
# disagree with me and oriented towards being stubborn l
# and disagreeable. Do you really think I am blind? 

I don't know you well enough yet.

# Because this surely looks like "Attitude" from you.

let the chips fall where they will.

#> it has been my intent to stand somewhat apart from 
#> this and analyze what it is that angels represent to 
#> ALL of us as compared to other things.
# This is an impossibility. No one can understand or 
# analyze what angels mean to "ALL" people. 

variably, I think it is quite possible. it is kind of
like anthropology.

# Tell me what they mean to YOU. Or ask me what I think I
# know about them.

those are the rules of your game. ;> I undersand what you
desire. when I am comfortable in knowing that my ideas about 
the universe will be appreciated for what they are, I'll make 
these known to you. until then, my objective is to try to 
build bridging lattices beyond our respective myopias.

--------------------NOTE: here is additional meaty conversation

#> if you have other methods of determining authority as compared to
#> impersonation, I'd like to hear about them. or if you believe
#> that all agents capable of establishing communication should be
#> regarded as angelic and as reliable, I'd be interested in hearing
#> why you believe that this is the case. thanks.

# I cannot see why you think I would believe that all communicants
# with human beings should be designated as "angels."

at that point, establishing that they *are* communications with
angels rather than anything else that might be possible would 
be important to those who place value on angelic conversation. 
you make remarks about this below with respect to 'proof', 
which is something about which I've been asking.

# Angels are representatives of the Divine. Period.


# There are representatives of the phone company, of insurance
# companies and pizza delivery boys. Are they all "angels?" No.
# Can some entity impersonate an angel? Sure. Are my angels
# impersonations? No. They have proved themselves to me over
# and over. And they have also proven themselves to others.

perfect. how did they prove themselves to you? what did you
and others accept as that proof? I'm very interested in this
because their status as angels rather than the impersonations
you agree are possible is based on your proof-method, and I'd
love to understand what types of proof-methods people devise.
I've provided a couple of methods that I've encountered or
used myself in another post and hoped you'd add to that data.

# I say they are angels because THEY say they are angels.
# And they have done nothing to prove they are not angels.
# Therefore I regard them as angels.

this I can completely understand and respect. thanks very
much for your perserverence with my methods of inquiry and
my interests in establishing common grounds of interaction.

yours very truly,


Newsgroups: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.religion.angels,alt.religion.gods,alt.magick,alt.paranet.metaphysics,talk.religion.newage
Subject: Re: Psychic Contact: Gods, Dogs, and Angels
References:  <6YgRa.2334$>   
From: nagasiva 
User-Agent: nn/6.6.0
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Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2003 05:53:11 GMT
X-Trace: 1058421191 (Wed, 16 Jul 2003 22:53:11 PDT)
NNTP-Posting-Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2003 22:53:11 PDT
Xref: alt.magick.tyagi:40401 alt.religion.angels:67012 alt.religion.gods:998 alt.magick:351884 alt.paranet.metaphysics:24588 talk.religion.newage:162646

50030716 viii

"nagasiva" taxonomizes psychic communication agents: 
#>  transensual 'unreal' agents (fictional characters, imaginary
#>                               playmates, etc.)

"angelicusrex" :
# What if imaginary playmates are angels? 

the ontological status is not identical to the character of
the agent provided by the recipient of the communication.
that is, the equation of categories transcends taxonomy.
you can say A really = B all you like, but it doesn't change
the fact that the categories are provided to communicating
agents one whit, whether we're talking about dogs or toasters.
are toasters *really* angels? etc.

Tom and I were talking about this with respect to dogs who
were impersonating angels, angels impersonating dogs, and
toasters impersonating either dogs or angels. it quickly
becomes somewhat ludicrous. 

# What if 'fictional characters" literally exist in an 
# alternate reality? 

these cosmologies are important to consider in an evaluation
of the ontological status of a communication. this is one of
the reasons that testing is suggested within certain contexts
(for example, the context of magical evocation or invocation).

# can we include Transdimensional 'real' agents? 

no doubt. and extraterrestrial entities too. one need only
be limited, really, by cosmology. from a Buddhist viewpoint
one might attempt to communicate with hungry ghosts, animals,
other humans, bodhisattvas, and gods, for example. the point
I was making was not with respect to where they came from
(as from other dimensions, worlds, etc.), but what their
ontological status was. here's my taxonomy again with more:

		unsensible 'unreal' agents (mental illusions)
		unsensible 'real' agents (noncorporeal)
		sensible 'unreal' agents (visual illusions)
		living mobile agents (ambulatory organisms)
		living stationary agents (rooted, static)
		nonliving agents (constructed or natural)

angels fall into the "unsensible 'real' agents" because the
individual having a communication with them regards them as
real. the 'mental illusions' class would be something that
the magician or sensitive regards as plainly fictitious, 
as when Chaos Magicians invoke Bugs Bunny or Donald Duck.

#># I don't know how you would measure the intelligence 
#># of a toaster.
# Give it an IQ test via another, smarter machine.

the real issue is how to determine whether it is the toaster
that is really responding, or whether it is an impersonation,
or an actuality (e.g. whether it is another toaster using 
this toaster merely as some kind of sock-puppet).

in this way identification is, as Tom and others have already
made note, not THAT different from internet communication or
(something as yet unmentioned), some kind of Turing Test.

it would seem conservative, to me, to begin by presuming that
communication proceeds from the imaginary to the physical 
depending upon its character -- that unreal agents (mental 
and visual illusions) are imaginary and interior, and that
communication with what are considered real agents are of
some kind of questionable category: observably external 
in the case of human communication (this being recordable 
by machines), and possibly imaginary and interior otherwise.

starting from the axiom that angels exist in some way,
the issue becomes whether they are imaginary and internal,
regarded as real, or whether they are somehow external
and beyond the imagination. one way to test this of any
agent in a minor way is to get information from the agent 

this of course *proves* nothing, since the person who is
receiving the communication might be unconscious of the
method by which she came by the data. perhaps she forgot
or heard but did not recall hearing it, for example.

restricting the category of information to something that
could not have been ascertained at any time beyond the
context of the test would be the next logical hurdle --
having someone select a card from a differentiated deck
and getting the information from the agent directly
without looking at the card for example.

even this is sometimes side-stepped by those who use the
cosmology or the ontological character of the agent as a
bar to success at such tests. "angels don't stand for
these kinds of tests" or "gods don't wish you to doubt
their existence and refuse to perform for clinical 
tests", etc., etc.
#> in precisely the same way one would measure the intelligence 
#> of an angel or a dog via psychic connections: by asking it 
#> questions and seeing how it responds.
# Yes, talk to your toaster and ask it what it can do for you 
# today. Give your toaster a little hug, perhaps clean out 
# the crumb tray and windex the chrome. this makes them feel 
# better. Once they are comfortable, you can begin asking 
# questions. 

do toasters have feelings? do they get uncomfortable? 

sometimes I ascribe these experiences to inanimate objects,
and many times I do not. if pressed, I'd have to say that 
I think one must be a living organism with a nervous 
system in order to experience anything, but I'm outing 
my essentially materialistic and biological biases here.
after all, angels don't have these qualities. 

also, it is one thing to attempt to ascertain the "reality" 
and then again quite another to attempt to CREATE ONE'S 
EXPERIENCE OF THE WORLD (what some New Agers identify 
*as* reality). I may wish to talk to trees and flowers and 
bugs as if they could hear and understand me in order to
have a 'shamanic experience of the world', possibly even
bringing me into some kind of harmony with them as I begin
to pay more attention to what they are saying with more
than my imagination fed by sensory-input at my size-range.

how this might apply to communications with angels would
depend on what an angel actually is, whether it differs
from any other unsensible 'real' but noncorporeal agents,
or whether effectively there is no distinguishment that
CAN be made (because they're all imaginary, or because
they all reside within some weird dimension that makes
such distinguishing impossible).

at least with trees and dogs and bugs (and even toasters)
we can see and feel and perhaps even smell that with 
which we are imagining our communication, and this 
may actually provide input to the communication that 
reveals something beyond our imagination to us.

# I would use the "Light for Yes- Dark for No" code.


#># I suppose it would be difficult to get an angel to 
#># submit to a standardized test of intelligence too.
# They love to be tested. Test away.

that is also my understanding. usually I hear from people
who enjoy communicating with angels that some kind of
system for communication whereby a testing *may* occur 
is an ESSENTIAL. usually they describe the construction 
of a symbolic lattice for this purpose, and maintain 
that reference to this symbolic lattice is a means of
determining (a la Jungian dream-interpretation, but using
systems of numerolinguistic and translation of vision-
imagery into words that can be computed and compared) the
identity and character of the entity with whom one has
engaged communication.

another measure that I've known was used and have used
myself was the evaluation of 'significant coincidence', 
whether as it was timed (as on demand) or within the 
context of the overall interaction.

# However is their native intelligence the same as people 
# like yourself who grew up in the Suburbs? We might have 
# to give the angels some points, like affirmative action 
# does with Blacks in college. because angels just aren't
# in the same mix as us....

there are cosmologies in which angels are quite specific
as to their knowledge and ignorance. popular media sometimes
depicts angels in reflection of Christian (/Jewish?) norms,
inasmuch as they are sexless and therefore have no real
understanding of sensuality, physical-ecstasy-and-release,
etc., etc., which is possible for bodied beings that they
sometimes study and/or envy in this capacity.

not only that, in some cosmologies the angels are effectively
'borgian' components of the Monad God, operating at some kind
of peculiar 'distance' or as an agent of change. one may see
this within Jewish scripture as Balaam operates *as* Jehovah
(as Jehovah becomes for Balaam a 'satan' or adversary).

the term 'angel' conveys this somewhat as it is translated
'messenger' -- a kind of pod-like extension of the God 
into the realm of the story, the Creation, wherever.


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Southern Spirits: 19th and 20th century accounts of hoodoo, including slave narratives & interviews
Hoodoo in Theory and Practice by cat yronwode: an introduction to African-American rootwork
Lucky W Amulet Archive by cat yronwode: an online museum of worldwide talismans and charms
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Association of Independent Readers and Rootworkers: ethical diviners and hoodoo spell-casters
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Yronwode Institution for the Preservation and Popularization of Indigenous Ethnomagicology
Yronwode Home: personal pages of catherine yronwode and nagasiva yronwode, magical archivists
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