Rule #1. The typo is the greatest teacher of truth and partiality for any writer, and in the process of properly correcting the typo the attentive Magician can perform amazing feats of shadow elimination.
I first started noticing my typos, really really noticing them around 2005. There’s a longer story here, but it’s not important. Basically what I found unbelievable, incredible, extraordinary is the finding that it seemed I could not create a typo without revealing something important, valuable, if I took notice of it. Whatever I typed and looked at, there was a meaningful order, often an unintended one. The typos were lining up, marching on a road to guide me on an extraordinary adventure.
You don’t have to be in an altered state of consciousness to appreciate the lesson I am now offering regarding typographical “errors”. The lesson, put simply, is to attend to any apparent typo and ask relevant questions to understand why your conscious mind resists the correct letter, word, or phrase. Hold awareness on it until an answer offers itself, and then later attend to whether the typo has corrected on its own accord.
Do this and you are well on the way to becoming a powerful Magician. The point is not to become a person who doesn’t make typos (or mistakes in general), but to become a person more in alignment with their words, a person whose words serve him/her well. As part of a broader strategy for eating shadow, this is fantastic growth work. To make the most of it, you will need to know why it is that you carry certain traumas connected to language, so you can study the way that these subtle traumas continue to impact you, and even harm you.
A typo is a symptom of letter trauma, sound-shape trauma, and/or word trauma, some re-arrangement of language in a way that suggests possible routes for remediation of the wounds. The letters are themselves like gods or devils, and they will trick you or give you drama.
“No sir,” says the Magician’s inquisitor. “A typo is merely a random, meaningless thing. I meant to type the letter J but I hit the letter H because I was working fast and acting carelessly. The keys are close on the keyboard. It doesn’t mean anything.”
That is true enough, I say. In a long night of dreams, some dreams are more meaningful and memorable than others. In a long session of typing, some typos are much more useful for shadow work than others. But we must affirm the principle that it is appropriate to learn from our mistakes and do shadow work upon the typos that call out to us. A typo is calling out to you if you make it repeatedly, or if you proofread a document and it remains unseen. A typo is calling to you if you get a queasy feeling about the look or sound of particular letters or letter constellations.
Trust me, this is a secret that can carry you far. In a mystical sense, you are discovering that you are Logos, Incarnate Word of God, and your conscious mind is not the only author … there are a multiplicity of authors within you which are trying to express themselves if they can, if you will let them. And there is the Logos itself, I tell you, coming to learn about itself through your writing. Language is evolving through you, and if you come up with a new phrase you can perhaps advance the course of language’s evolution. Don’t assume a typo is necessarily incorrect. It is there to remind you that you cannot think of certain concepts or entities without being unable to fully express your own conscious mind. Perhaps this is because this concept is flawed and needs to be discarded; perhaps you err because you cannot think of it clearly without wanting to run and hide.
Let me give you an example. Yesterday I wrote a blog post which expressed for the first time in words a traumatic incident I experienced, actually a combination of experiences in which I suffered delusions and, blocked by these terrible delusions, inserted a finger into my ear until it bled. I remember the sight of blood on my fingers, and later trying to hide my hands from the jail guards so they would not know that I had harmed myself physically. I had been put into a padded cell in isolation and I couldn’t bear the thought of returning there. I connected the image of bloody fingers, my ears, and fear of being found out, and the felt need to keep a secret … and my body and mind held on to these connected memories and images. So when I wrote about the experience for the first time publicly yesterday, I made a typo which I didn’t see even after reading the piece a few times. (I wrote “earlobe” instead of “ears”). My mind was not willing to let me see the problem. I could not face it. I was still working to keep a secret. The terror was too great, so a part of myself substituted a word which was less threatening. I caught the typo and corrected the word, but this was not the end of the healing work.
Later in the evening, I went out to a bar and ordered a drink. I noticed something for the first time: a sign immediately adjacent which said, “Ear Protection Available Here”, along with several ear protective devices available. (I had been in this bar many times, but this was the first time I noticed the sign. The bartender later told me that the sign had been there for over a year.) The word “Protection” stood out to me; it shone itself to me. There were two O’s in the word, one on each side, like ears on the side of a head. On the front O, the letters “Pr” which can mean “Positive” in Lingua-U; on the back O, the letter “n” which can mean “Negative”. It was a good image. The word appeared to me as a gift (from the spirits). My attention came to it tonight when it hadn’t on any previous occasion because I was (finally) ready to think about the self-harm I inflicted on my ear. I was ready to admit that I harmed myself and now was offering myself protection, if my ears would accept it. The answer came when I finally touched the sign, put my fingers on the two O’s in the word Protection, and then touched the letters to my own ears. The value of protection from the sign of “Protection” itself came to my ears.
This is integral magick, folks. You can interpret these ritualistic actions from many different standpoints. The standpoint of magick is the most liberative if you, like me, realize that healing is not an individual affair. Trauma inhabiting the letters and numbers and signs and symbols demands reconciliation which we can offer by becoming magicians. We can become like children who take the good along with the bad and make something whole from it without even theorizing about it. We can become like shamans, tasting the poison of error and building an immunity, transmuting the possible and impossible into indistinct aspects of the whole. We can become Integral Magicians, looking in our own typographical errors for clues to the whereabouts and will of the Incarnate Logos.