Knowledge lost

ominous emoticon

The Shingon school does not, however, despite its esoteric character, deny the importance of our world and of happiness in the present life. From the correct performance of the various rituals, immediate material benefits can be drawn.

It’s so esoteric that none of the whole Net can tell me anything else. And I have lots of questions. What are these rituals? What benefits did they expect and what did they get, historically? How far along this path do you have to be to get anywhere practical?

Leaving Shingon aside, what do you know about ritual dancing in different cultures? I know just about any and all known cultures have dancing. Quite a lot — for magical purposes, those who still didn’t forget that. But finding descriptive records on how they believed it to work is hard. What is the connection of dancing with fire? What are magical uses of tobacco, beside visions? Have any anthropologists actually been apprenticed to a shaman? Don’t remind me of Castaneda.

The Unknown Armies RPG had some very interesting ideas in it, among them, the one that what it takes to become an adept of any magic is being obsessed about it. But how to become obsessed over anything that doesn’t give any quantifiable results just yet?

Today’s million dollar question though, is: Will finding any of these answers do me any good?