Masters of Mischief
A salutary tale of masters and mystery-mongers
PART ONE of Astral Conversations. In the first of this unusual series of investigations into the occult with a humorous twist in twelve parts, we are introduced to two colourful occult students who are discussing magic, chakras, masters and mystery-mongers.
Sometimes during very deep meditation even the authors of this website may nod off— particularly after a surfeit of mature cheddar and vintage port taken late at night. . .Then our minds roam the astral world, seeing strange sights and overhearing even stranger conversations among the dwellers there. On one such occasion we overheard the following polemical dialogue between two occult students, brought to us on the mysterious currents of the astral telegraph. Whether they are permanent residents of the astral world or merely visitors like ourselves, we should not like to say, perhaps we shall find out later on as this series of twelve articles unfolds?
What we can tell you, is that these two colourful characters have occasionally appeared before to disturb our meditations. One is an exceedingly knowledgeable occult student with the not inappropriate name of Joshua Bombast who has diplomas from all the best Mystery Schools, acknowledged master (especially by himself) in Tantra, Reiki, Kabbalah, Western Magic, Eastern Magic, Spell-casting, Rune-reading, Tarot, Crystal therapy, Chakra-balancing, Aura-cleansing and Fly-fishing. The other is one Arthur Flitterflop—a rather naive neophyte with the prodigious ability to strain at gnats whilst swallowing the most enormous camels.
Those of you who have ventured into the astral world will know that nothing there is what it seems to be. Nor does it have that comfortable stability with which we are familiar here on earth. Things can change from hour to hour, or even in the twinkling of an eye. One moment we are strolling through a sylvan glade inhaling the perfume of the most delectable flowers, and the next we find ourselves in a low estaminet among a crowd of drunken, brawling ruffians. It is for this reason that we did not hear the beginning of the conversation between Bombast and Flitterflop, whom we join as they argue about a subject dear to all occultists' hearts—the Masters!
BOMBAST: "Masters! You have to be a Master to know one! I actually know four!"
FLITTERFLOP (incredulously): "Four! And I don't even know one."
BOMBAST (smugly): "Ah, my dear boy, but then I am one of the really old souls, so naturally it follows..."
FLITTERFLOP (enviously): "But four of them! I mean—it's a bit unfair, isn't it? Just because you're an old soul, I mean? I don't smoke, I don't drink, I've almost given up...you know...the ladies... I'm virtually vegan, and all my chakras are thoroughly balanced..."
BOMBAST (meaningly): "I've noticed you don't spend much..."
FLITTERFLOP (defensively): "I can't afford to. What with buying those kundalini-sublimating crystals, the first edition of the Great Grimoire signed by Lord Moleskine himself, and saving up for the trip to Tibet..."
BOMBAST (patronisingly): "Now, if you were an old soul you would not need to go as far as Tibet. Look what I've got here! An actual drawing of the Masters, channeled by one of their High Chelas under the most rigorous laboratory conditions direct from the source."
Bombast flourished a sketch of four venerable old men under Flitterflop's nose, which we have faithfully reproduced at the top right of this page by a secret process known only to a few Tibetan Adepts living in an etheric retreat in Shigatse.
FLITTERFLOP (with a gasp of amazement): "But how did you come by that?"
BOMBAST (portentously tapping his nose): "By the proper occult methods, my boy. You know the drill...first you work the Lesser Blandishing Ritual of the Pentagram——"
FLITTERFLOP: "——don't you mean 'Banishing' Ritual?"
BOMBAST (petulantly): "Banishing? Why on earth would you want to banish the very Masters you're trying to invoke? You want them to appear, you idiot, not vanish!"
FLITTERFLOP (bemusedly): "Vanish?"
BOMBAST: "Vanish, banish, it's all the same thing. No, you need to blandish the Masters if you want to get their attention. Don't they teach you anything in those expensive Mystery Schools?"
FLITTERFLOP: "Which one?"
BOMBAST: "How should I know? How many is it now? Eight? Ten?"
FLITTERFLOP: "twenty-two, no, twenty-one...I dropped out of the Order of the Sphinx last week."
BOMBAST: "Why was that?"
FLITTERFLOP (shamefacedly): "Well...the regalia was getting a bit expensive. Robes and daggers and swords are all——"
BOMBAST: "——Essential, and wands and a consecrated lemon too."
BOMBAST: "I meant Lamen; slip of the tongue."
FLITTERFLOP: "Quite so, but real 24 carat gold for the sphinx headdress? I thought that was a bit much."
BOMBAST (yawning): "Yes..."
FLITTERFLOP: "And then they wanted me to go all the way to some holy Mount Shitsu in California for my initiation. That's in America you know. What with saving up for Tibet and my dodgy back——"
BOMBAST (interrupting): "——I think you mean Mount SHASTA. Shitsu is a breed of Chinese dog."
FLITTERFLOP (defensively): "is it? Don't be too sure. Dog is god spelled backwards, you know."
BOMBAST (impatiently): "Look, do you want to hear how I contacted the Masters or not?"
BOMBAST: "Well, after the Lesser Blandishing Ritual, you have to pile it on pretty thick. Lots of sucking up. The Masters can't get enough of it. Then you need to wave your wand about a good deal and stand on your head for ten minutes."
FLITTERFLOP (impressed, but sceptical): "Stand on your head?"
BOMBAST: "Of course. How else are you going to sublimate your kundalini and clean out your chakras?"
BOMBAST: "You must be joking."
FLITTERFLOP: "Aura cleansing spray?"
BOMBAST: "Don't be an ass. Crystals and aura cleansing sprays are for New Age turnip-heads. The only way to get kundalini out of the trouser-snake is standing on your head. It unblocks your chakras faster than drain-cleaner."
BOMBAST (pompously): "Well, we old souls just know this stuff. And then, you intone the Great Tibetan Mantra."
BOMBAST: "Then, hey presto, there are the Masters, large as life in their astral bodies, exactly as they appear in this sketch!"
FLITTERFLOP: "But how do you know it's authentic?"
BOMBAST (defensively): "Of course it's authentic, you dunderhead! If the Masters can walk through walls and precipitate astral letters through their Chelas, then why can't they impress their likeness on an ordinary piece of paper?"
FLITTERFLOP (suspiciously, but still admiring): "Why are they so very ancient-looking?"
BOMBAST: "Because they're wise. Who ever heard of a young Master?"
FLITTERFLOP: "But they all look the same to me."
BOMBAST: "Well, they would. They're ascended Masters."
FLITTERFLOP: "What are they Masters of?"
BOMBAST (in a hushed, reverent tone): "They are the Masters of Mystery, Ever More Mystery, Mystery Transcendental and Mystery Incredible, and they are known by their true names of Waffle, Piffle, Humbug and Bunkum."
FLITTERFLOP: "Those names are a bit silly, aren't they?"
BOMBAST: "Of course they are! It's a blind for the uninitiated!"
FLITTERFLOP: "What are they pointing at?"
BOMBAST: "The Whatness of the Nothing."
FLITTERFLOP: "I don't understand."
BOMBAST: "Of course you don't, that's the nature of Nothing!"
FLITTERFLOP: "Why do they have such long beards?"
BOMBAST: "Because they're Masters, you dolt! Masters without beards and sandals are unthinkable!"
FLITTERFLOP (unconvinced): "Are they?"
BOMBAST: "Look! Kuthumi, Morya, Maitreya and Hilarion all have beards."
FLITTERFLOP: "Cagliostro didn't."
BOMBAST: "He was an alchemist, not a Master."
FLITTERFLOP: "OK, what about Melchizedek? He was clean-shaven."
BOMBAST: "Only in his third density astral body. In his seventh density spiritual body he has a very long white beard."
FLITTERFLOP: "OK, I give up. What do your Masters teach?"
BOMBAST: "I've told you, Mystery, Ever More Mystery, Mystery Transcendental and Mystery Incredible."
FLITTERFLOP: "That's a big subject. How do they teach it?"
BOMBAST: "By never saying or doing anything. That is the quintessence of Mastership."
FLITTERFLOP: "But if that's so, how do their students learn anything?"
BOMBAST: "How do they learn? They just do, that's all."
FLITTERFLOP: "But they must teach something...somehow."
BOMBAST (exasperatedly): "Look at the picture you gormless barmpot! They raise their left hands and point their fingers at the Whatness of the Nothing. That's how they teach Mystery."
FLITTERFLOP (puzzled): "I see, and do their disciples know what they mean?"
BOMBAST: "Of course they do. You can always tell the kind of Masters who are operating by their disciples. The disciple will always attract the Master whose vibrations correspond to his. Now, these Masters have been attracted to ME, and I am going to spread their teachings far and wide and make a pile of cash."
FLITTERFLOP (still puzzled): "But you can't set up as a Teacher of the Mysteries with Masters who say and do nothing. You won't get many followers on the strength of four raised forefingers and some very long beards."
BOMBAST: "Your ignorance is abysmal. Some of the biggest occult orders have been raised on Masters who say and do nothing. Think big, my boy! With four Masters, with four raised forefingers and exceedingly long beards, we've got an occult symbolism which will attract thousands of students..."
Still arguing, the indefatigable Bombast and his toady Flitterflop passed out of our rapidly returning waking consciousness. Have we heard the last of them? You may well hope so, but we are not so sure...
If you have enjoyed this article you may also like Cosmic conspiracies—the second of our encounters with Bombast and Flitterflop. You can find a full list of the Astral conversations between these two colourful occult students on our home page. Although these conversations can be read on their own, they are best read in chronological sequence.
© Copyright occult-mysteries.org. Article added 6 December 2015. Updated 12 February 2017.