I’ve come to realize something that hit like a ton of bricks disguised as chicken feathers.

I realized that I’ve been invisibly fighting my shadow. Fighting an image of a false self, projected into the world through the lens and carapace with “should’s” and “ought to’s.” Both my own and from what I “think” is being projected to me. At the same time, I have been consciously struggling with a version of the real self, telling this in-between me to wake up and get going.

Three iterations in the unity of one. A man, a projection and a ghost.

It has almost a holy symbolism to it, and perhaps it is a bit holy.

The fighting is constant. Silently occurring under the surface, hidden away from my risen self. I’m awake, see, and I can’t remember what my dreams are dreaming about.

When it dawned on me, I was taken aback.

The notion had come to me at a point earlier in the day: me, finally able to articulate the feeling I had as akin to being a soldier itching to jump out of an airplane to enter the theater of war, but not quite over the jump site.

I’m itchy, irritable, and need to molt out of this hard skin like a lobster who’s outgrown himself.

That was then that I caught a glimpse of him, that trickster false shadow. Holding me at bayonet point, that treacherous bastard was egging me hurry up and jump and join the war. Only, the moment I caught his eye, the real projection and I were in union with one another.

I’m not jumping yet. I want to, but I’m not. I’m not over the battlefield I need to be over. I have a little more room in my carapace to grow into.

What’s important is that I caught that saboteur. For a moment I could see the false-positive he projects and be conscious of it. I caught that false bastard seeing him for what he is.

What may be the most profound part of the exchange was the realization of just how important it was to link myth and reality. It put into context the WHY of feeling something and understanding the aspiration of what it suggests. Rather than desiring a thought to mean what you want it to mean.

The illusion of the false positive, when looked at as the feeling or emotion is that it takes on the appearance of the REAL, when in fact it’s illusion. That’s not to say we need to destroy our self-thoughts. To the contrary, we need those to exist. But what we need to avoid is the illusion of the projected self. That false self.

I do, anyways. I saw him and put him in his place for now.

Once More Around the Sun

I’m a few days late on this, but no one is really holding my feet to the fire for it, so it is what it is. This month marks another trip around the sun for me.

I’m two trips shy of a half-century flying around Sol, my fiery old buddy who’s gaze casts my shadow upon the landscape.

I have to admit, this isn’t what or where I expected to be on this trip. But, to be honest, I don’t think I had any real expectation of what or where I might have been.

This year marks a new landmark of sorts. I’ve taken up gardening turning the yard into a yargen—one part yard, one part garden. None of the plants are very mature yet, but when they are, I think it’ll look amazing. I blame the Brit Monty Don for my recent love of putting things in the ground and nurturing them to grow.

I say blame, but his infectious passion for plants was what I needed at the time I needed it.

Another thing, on this trip around the sun, is the relinquishment of an old vice. I can now find the answer to Adam Ant’s question of what to do when you don’t drink or don’t smoke. I was never much of a drinker, but the burning bush, that was another story. But that’s old hat now.

I think with this last trip around the sun, and the places I’ve gone and people I’ve lost has given me some perspective. What exactly that translates into will remain to be seen. For now, I plan to get my hands dirty putting some native species in the soil to do my part in rebuilding the eco system.

In some ways, I feel like I’m painting the foundation colors for a new body of work. Creating the undertones on the canvas for me to make something new. It’s primitive, and it feels organic like celebrating the rites of spring.

It feels like a primitive rite of passage.

Coyote Shows the Way

sketch, coyote, symbolism, Synchronicity

I was on my way into the job a few days back when I was gifted a messenger from the spirit world. The coyote came on a day after some heavy news in the office that provoked a lot of soul searching.

The coyote is a common animal in the hills here, so it wasn’t a surprise to see. I’ve caught a few on my way into work in the early morning hours just past the dawn twilight. But this one was different.

Symbolic tradition says the coyote is a trickster. A dog bringing bad news or scavenging away your good fortune. But another aspect of its symbolism says the coyote is a messenger. A guide or a harbinger of a spiritual awakening or revelation. I suppose it’s all in the context of how it shows itself.

My interaction with this coyote was, for me, unique.

In a usually busy road, full of cars and traffic, was unusually empty. Quiet, almost.  It crossed from the right into the middle median, walking in front of me. It turned to land a glance back at my car, and proceeded to trot languidly forward for a distance before crossing and the rest of the way and melting into the brush.

At that moment, the quiet and calm of the universe descended. Time stood still for a few moments, and the spiritual guide led the way forward for a short spell. It wasn’t the trickster, it didn’t come to steal or pilfer from me. It was there to lead the way. It was there to tell me that some spiritual transformation is coming—whether I’m ready for it or not.

I’m ready for it.

Thanks, coyote for showing me what’s ahead.



Four is the number of deaths I’ve experienced in the last 12 months, almost to the day.

I know I’m not unique. I know I’m not the only one on the planet to have experienced this. Despite those diminishments to the experience, I feel affected.

One was the passage of time. Another the failing of health. Fate and circumstance took another and the last the victim of the nature of divine cruelty for the created.

I am affected in the way that these passings remind me, 4 times over, of the fleetingness of this physical existence. No matter our wealth; no matter our status. Which makes what we do and when we do it that much more important.

A symbolism guru I study relates the number 4 to the human situation, “…the external and natural limits of the totality.” It feels like that here—four examples of how and why to live.

What do you do with this kind of knowledge? What do you do after the grief, sorrow and melancholy have moved through their phases?

What’s the question I’m asking myself (again) in the wake of the latest news. In some respects, I’m feeling angry with the actions of the world, but resigned to the notion that it happens. Of all the takeaways, I think the one that makes the starkest contrast is the drive to do more. To create and make art. To make sure I can get out what it is I need to get out before my time comes.

Is that a little morbid? Maybe. A little selfish? No, I don’t think it is. I think it’s making the best out of the worst. I want each one of these losses to be a lesson to me to not lose track and forget what it is I’m doing here.

I’ve had enough of death. I get it. I get the message, universe. One day I’ll be the reminder for someone else to get on with their lives and get moving. Hopefully, I will have gotten out everything I needed to get out.

What’s Old is New

Here we are, the Primitive Rite. Why settle back on the Primitive Rite as a personal essay blog and portfolio of past work?

For close to the past 15 years (beginning in 2005), I’ve written and worked extensively in posting and behind the scenes on Freemason Information. While a passion project, it wasn’t too far into the work that I realized the edges of what one could do (both with the site and with the institution).

So, like any property owner who finds themselves at the edge of their patch wanting more, I spent the time (and still do) working on the interior. New posts, new art, videos, social, the works. That work evolved into an eBook and then 4 print books published under the FmI imprint. In that process, it occurred to me that I had again run into the creative wall of what was possible.

Mulling the situation, it occurred to me that I had options. One idea was doing work under the banner of the Hermetic Circle. That that quickly fizzled as I have other plans for that still…one day.

Another property was out given the bagged that came with it was more than I wanted to try and work around.

Stuck again.

Then I remembered this forlorn site, the Primitive Rite, that I’ve revived and abandoned more times than I can count. The thought struck me that it was the right name for the subject. So too was it the right time to make use of it to catalog the work that I’ve done.

What’s old is new again.

Everything Vibrates

I feel, of late, as though I am in a spiritual black hole.

It is neither terrifying nor is it exhilarating, it just feels as though it is. To use another metaphor, this state of being feels as though I have been wrapped like a spindle in a bolt of cloth by the thickest black material that lets absolutely no light or sound through its weave.

I dont know what to make of it.

In some respects, from a Hermetic point of view, perhaps I am at the middle point between two vibrating poles caught somewhere in the transition. That take brings me some comfort.

Not being in that transit and just stuck in the void… horrifies me.


Welcome to my home away from home, my little slice of the universe where I plan to concentrate micro devotions under the banner of the Hermetic path.

Hermetic Hermit

hermit, hermetic, art, illustration, digital

I’ve neither written nor posted much in the last few months. I havent really wanted to becoming a bit of a Hermetic Hermit. So why start now?

Ive spent some time going through some old posts in another blog I wrote some time back, back before I made a go writing something more mainstream and less counter culture. That experiment didnt end up well as I feel as though I took myself far afield from where I really wanted to go.

Where did I want to go? Well, thats something to explore here.

This is about faith, meaning and parsing out what those things mean in a world where those two things are a constant test on the moral imagination.

Im a hermetic hermit. Its time I start acting like one.

The World Awaits

One thing thats struck me hard is the transition of the child into an adult. Ive read its comparable to the feeling of physically losing a child, though Im sure that pain is much more enduring. The transition of one’s own flesh and blood from a dependent appendage of your existence into its own recognized self-aware being is a slow birthing process that at its conclusion feels every bit the ending of one life and the beginning of another.

You would think this would give with it some measure of joy and it does, but at the point of transition it feels as though the contents of your soul have departed you leaving you wondering why.

Its in this way that the lessons of the Hermetica strike me. While left without that piece, I imagine how the divine essence feels in its long night awaiting the return of its children. Perhaps this is the same in other faiths of patrimony, the divine estate of father to son transferring title across generations. In this instance, though, as the divine source releasing its creation, I find as the joy in being the source of the good, the giver of life, wisdom, and nourishment.

It feels as though if it were a rite of release, the letting go of that essential element that was never mine to begin with.

Go, fly, my beautiful creations become what were always in your nature to be.

The world awaits you.