Awen and Nwyfre, Will and Mind, Intention and Tao

Change is life. The great unfolding says Ken Wilber and for me the Great Spirit is driving and possibly is that unfolding, that change. both the entropy and the negentropy, the yin and the yang.

As I recounted a few weeks ago, I see the ‘mind’ that Bobcat describes in Animist terms and the ‘will’  (and representation which seems to be the mind element) that Schopenhauer describes, as fundamentally the same even if the semantics of both are unhelpful and the manifestations are different. For me they are two sides of the same thing. The will to exist as an atom, the mind of a mountain, the will of the superego, the reptilian mind and the will of the weather to rain on our parades all are expressions of the mind-will, just on various levels and therefore with different manifestations.

For me the mind as life force, as memory, as yin, as the force that provides stability and pattern is in Druid terms, the nwyfre. Awen is will, it is yang, inspiration and intention, it grows things and changes them, it is magic. They are different but the same, they are both flow but manifest in different ways. Together they are the Tao.

Science regards matter as energy but I see mind-will as the other key constituent of matter (and all levels of life). What is it that organises energy into matter? How does a fertilised egg know which cells become a pancreas when all the cells start the same? Rupert Sheldrake describes them as morphic fields, perhaps this memory, mind and will leads the growth of life. There is mind and will at every level of existence but I suspect the mind-will can exist outside of matter too. Just as energy can exist outside of what we perceive as matter as well as being a constituent of it, there is no reason to expect mind-will to be confined to material things.

The universe / nature is organised on planes: physical matter, plants life, animal life etc. and the mind-will exists at all levels but with increasing complexity – in line with the complexity of the object. The mind-will can override mind-will at other levels to some extent, e.g. magic, changes in consciousness at will.

But these changes to the mind-will, how do they happen and what impact do they have?

In my 20’s I studied Therapeutic Touch (TT), a form of Reiki. There are a range of randomised controlled trials that show how pain and anxiety are lessened by TT (over and above the placebo response). The basis of TT is intentionality, the therapist has to intend to have an impact on the patient and the patient must be willing to receive the therapy to benefit from it. The key is intention, i.e. will.

Just as JMG has been discussing will in recent weeks, A Druid Way posted this great piece a few days ago on intention where he describes: “intention does invite a flow, form a mold, shape a potential, and let us exercise our sacred gift as transformers of Spirit”. He describes his intention of travel being disrupted by a snowstorm. For me the intention of the weather was more powerful than the intention to travel, a battle of magic that had a predictable outcome.

So we have intentionality causing changes in consciousness and we have magic battles of wills that we may lose. The pragmatist in me asks how we can tip the odds of winning those battles even more, how do we use our gift of magic in a more effective way.


About druidgreybeard

Druid, Animist, commentator on worlds events and student of magic.
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One Response to Awen and Nwyfre, Will and Mind, Intention and Tao

  1. corvusrouge says:

    Stephano Mancuso, a plant neurobiologist (yes, you have read that right) in his book “Brilliant Green” presents evidence that plants actually possess ten more senses that humans do. The likes of Jim Al-khalili and Johnjoe McFadden contend that we are entering an age of Quantum Biology. It is now being speculated that that the octupus, along with having three hearts and blue – green blood, actually has neural activities in its tentacles. The idea that the mind needs a brain to seat it, is being challenged more and more and our belief that the mind needs a brain to experience itself is becoming more unreliable. These can be interesting times we live in.


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