Sensing the Subtleties: Part Three

Touch (Somatic Sensory)

In esoteric and spiritual practice, the use of touch is closely connected to the principles of vibration and rhythm. A pebble dropped in a pool of water sets off a visible series of vibration. A hand reaching out to touch another, although emitting no sound (something we usually connect with vibration) sets off a series of vibratory responses. Everything that is composed of energy emits a specific rhythm of vibration. When in the process of touching something, the two fields of each independent source come in contact with one another. Even in the gentlest of touches the energetic field that surrounds the recipient of that touch will respond.

The Principle of Vibration


Ripples of sound
Waves of form
Shaken to the Core
Stirred, quickened and stimulated
By the Cosmic touch.

Grid of matter- interwoven and formed
By friction, movement- displacement
Whose resonance gathers the discord
Of harmony back into itself.

The chord is struck and its echo
In frenzied activity darts here and there
Reverberating in a cavernous chamber
Nautilus-like paths guiding the
Arcing trajectory of unrelenting motion.

All appears silent and still of form
Until microscopic probes of light and energy
Reveal the seeming chaos of matter
Each moving in concert with the other
Creating the illusion of solidity and
Opaqueness of Light.

The chord is struck again
And all play a game of musical chairs
Each rushing hurriedly to claim a new
Crevice, pocket or fold in the web of time
Reshaping and reforming.

Re-creating the illusory mask of
A calm sea in a field of matter
Pointing towards the horizon
Of emboldened manifestation.

The Kybalion states that:

Nothing rests; everything moves; everything vibrates.

This principle states that all of form is in a constant state of movement. Inertia is the non-movement form that remains vibration of a sort, nonetheless. Resonating with similar patterns of vibration attunes us to the subtleties held in each increment of dynamic. Vibration produces sound. Sound permeates our worlds. And it is the vibration of a sound that we respond to physically, energetically and etherically. Our breath and the subtlest of our movements disrupt the waves of vibration surrounding us as it sets into motion its own pattern of vibration.

The Principle of Rhythm


1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3
The metronome strikes out the beat
The perfection of rhythm
The movement of feet.

Release and contraction
As above, so below
Measure upon measure
synchronicity and flow.

The silent strings that are plucked
~ lips moving in rhythm~
Sound with not a single word and
The pause carefully paced between breath.

The call of Will to action
That with physical ears is not heard
Still moves in crescendo and climax
Inspiration created in the womb of exhale.
Limitless space at its birthing
Spirit of humanity extending
And moving beyond its SELF
To part the veil that holds time.

The Kybalion states that:

Everything flows, out and in; everything has its tides;
all things rise and fall;
the pendulum-swing manifests in everything;
the measure of the swing to the right is the measure of the swing to the left; rhythm compensates.

I see this as the companion to vibration and to some degree a subset of the Principle of Correspondence. Rhythm provides the container or boundaries (or the lacking there of) and vibration provides the quantifier or needed disruption to produce the resultant cyclical rhythm. Expansion requires a state of contraction (as the necessary point of tension) to enable it to expand anew. Either state if held too long, would result in over compensation of the other, causing a new cycle of rhythm to be established. Stillness or inertness is simply an illusion; which relates back to the connection to the Principle of Vibration once again. The illusion is that of non-movement, which although it may appear unable to be measured is a lower and longer wave of motion or rhythm that may not be perceptible unless we are in resonance with its rate of vibration.

For more about the Hermetic Principles (aka The Universal Laws) check out our current book study, The Kybalion at The Sacred Literary blog.

Ephemeral Touch


These are the principles that explain the energy that is felt when holding a specific type of crystal, magickal tool or even holding a book that has been infused with the reader’s energies. These are the laws that govern the response of touch when placed upon flesh or any other object of focus. When an energetically charged amulet is put on and comes into contact with the skin of the wearer it sends a signal of vibratory response that triggers a specific mind-set or rhythmic mental wave pattern that is released towards the work at hand. As we sit in devotion and the energetic presence of the Deity, guide or other being we wish to connect with fills sacred space, we often respond by getting goosebumbs or feeling the sensation of hot or cold across our skin.

In healing work, the ephemeral touch is the vehicle of sensing and re-directing the flow of energy within the patient. The healer senses the areas of discord and dis-ease within the meridians and subtle bodies and moves through each in turn as adjustments are made in accord with what is being felt.

“Touch is used in most of the healing and therapeutic modalities. Reiki and Therapeutic massage are just two of the ways in which touch is used to promote health and well-being. A massage can be just what is needed to relax or to energize you in a more productive manner.

Within the practice of Nursing, Therapeutic Touch has become a process of intervention for more than 30 years. Although its roots are in mysticism, the medical community is now looking at various alternative and holistic practices, including the premise that specific forms of touch can engage the energetic body of the patient and be changed to promote healing. Reiki and other related healing modalities are now incorporated in the treatment of Cancer patients as part of their regular regimen. Doctors of Osteopathic medicine are trained in Osteopathic Manipulation techniques that relieve patient pain and realign the skeletal and muscular system with care provided by a licensed physician who can address the related medical needs of their patients.”

Excerpted from: Magickally Human Companion Post

Although there is the purely physical component employed in this type of healing touch, the core principles and primary reasons for its effectiveness are found in the ephemeral and subtle fields of energy applied.

Feeling Your Way


The sense of touch, like no other, reminds us of the unity of the physical and Divine aspects of ourselves. We experience the physical world both in tangible form and at the many levels of subtle energy that collaborate in informing the responses to that experience. We experience the sacred as flesh comes in contact with the presence of the Divine and thrills and is excited by that touch. The lesson of this earthly life is to greet all of the worlds with the joy of a child and the anticipation of the returning tide flowing over firmly planted toes.

Journey of the Senses

The Experience of Purposeful Repeat

A simple exercise meant to heighten your awareness and sensitivity to touch is to sit with a variety of items, explore them through touch and then record your experiences.

The First Day:

In a quiet setting where you will not be disturbed lay out 6 random items that easily fit in your hand.

For the first pass, with your eyes open, select an object, each in turn and use your fingers and hands to explore its surfaces. Spend 3-5 minutes on each item. After you have finished with a particular item, set it down and record in a journal as much information as you can about that item. Make note of its texture, dimensions, weight, etc. Be sure to include any energetic information you experienced as well. Perhaps it made you feel jittery, or your hand became warmer than usual while holding it.

The Next Day(s):

Using the same items, select one to begin the exercise.

Now, as you hold and explore the object, KEEP YOUR EYES CLOSED. Allow whatever information or sensation wishing to present itself to come easily to you. As you did the day before, after finishing with each item record everything you experienced. Repeat this same process for each of the remaining items. When you have finished with all go back and read through and compare what was written about each item over the two days. Some questions to consider would be:

Did you process more information by having your eyes open or closed? Was there a consistent thread of information that was more easily gathered when your eyes were open or closed? And, which of the objects did you feel most connected to?

This type of work strengthens your ability to make the connections between sight and touch as well as opening to new ways to enhance the information you wish to convey or receive if there is no overtly visual form attached to the process.

Companion Post:
Magickally Human
Engaging the Senses: the Sense of Touch

About this Series:

Our spiritual work relies on our physical and subtle states of being working co-creatively and collaboratively. We engage the senses in this work continually, but rarely give equal importance to them all. The sense of sight is commanded into presence through practice of visualization techniques. Sound is stimulated with drumming, chanting and toning. Touch is engaged as we handle tools, light candles, and more. The sense of taste is only accessed as a means of grounding with cakes and ale. And, we are alerted to awareness and being fully present in ritual space or meditative practice as the heady scent of incense and oils purify and set the stage for the work at hand. There will be collaborative posts speaking to the Physical experience of each of the senses in the Magickally Human Blog.

Next Post:

Magickally Human
The Sense of Taste (Gustatory)



About themagickalpen

Robin Fennelly is an Elder within The Assembly of the Sacred Wheel Tradition and also serves as High Priestess of Coven of the Mystic Path. She teaches and facilitates classes for the Pagan Experience Study Group that serves as foundation for membership within Coven of the Mystic Path. Her spiritual journey is strongly rooted in both Eastern philosophy and theWestern Magickal systems from which she has formed a core foundation that is diverse in knowledge and rich in spiritual practice. A life-long learner, her practice has evolved from the classical and philosophical teachings of books, practical experience and enrichment of this knowledge base by attending workshops of various spiritual traditions presented by master teachers. Robin formally came to the Wiccan path in 1994. Following practice as a solitary for 2 years, she dedicated to Oak and Willow Coven of The Assembly of the Sacred Wheel Tradition in November of 1996. She received her 1st, 2nd and finally 3rd degrees within the Assembly Tradition. As a teacher of esoteric and magickal studies she has used Energetic Anatomy, Tarot, Astrology, Hermetic Qabala, Eastern Philosophy, and Numerology as the foundations of her diverse selection of workshops and writings for more than 25 years. Exploration of varied energetic protocol has been the focus of her work for some time now and the information gained through direct experience informs all of her magickal and spiritual work. Robin’s writings have been featured online, and in print Internationally. She has authored several books incorporating her unique style of writing making use of poetry, prose and pathworking to enhance the concepts presented. She has taught extensively throughout the Pagan community, including Sacred Space Conference, Spring Magick, Between the Worlds Interfaith Conference and Free Spirit Gathering Festival this Summer. Her most recent project is hosting an online blogging community entitled The Pagan Experience. Robin is the owner of Holistic Embrace providing services for mind, body and spirit such as Tarot readings, Astrology reports, Spiritual Guidance and other related offerings. She lives in Eastern Pennsylvania and her life is blessed by a 43-year marriage, five children and the opportunity to work in the field of public education. Robin's esoteric writings can be found on her blogs.
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1 Response to Sensing the Subtleties: Part Three

  1. Pingback: Engaging the Senses: The Sense of Touch | Magickally Human

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