The Path to be coming a dragon mage for the experienced. After being in contact with your guardians and you've found yourself a guide on the astral world it's time to work with the inner self. Like the path of the magician the path of the dragon mage is very similar to start off with. Your guide will help you through this processes.
1 Self Discovery - knowing yourself.
This journey can be difficult at times but the most important thing to remember is to be honest with yourself. Without honesty you'll end up in more trouble than you started with. Self discovery comes first in any magickal discipline. Very occasionally a truly exceptional student can define him/herself through the process of learning, but most times you HAVE to learn about yourself first. While I am sure you are exceptional, that very quality should show you why knowing yourself is indeed critical to the process. During this process you should find out what triggers make you behave the way you do. With those triggers known you can start learning the discipline needed to bring magick into your life. Accomplish this and you can start living a magickal existence.
For example, many entities on other planes of existence routinely use your fears against you. If you come into conflict with them and you are afraid of small spaces and do not know it, or have not over come it, you may perceive yourself as suddenly being trapped in a small narrow space. This can paralyze you with fear, sapping your will to do anything to defend yourself, unable to move, caught in a fit of blind, helpless panic. This is an extremely common tactic.
Self-knowledge allows the practitioner to utilize the most powerful tool available. It is not in a spell book, it cannot be bought, although it can be "sold", it is Will. How can 'Will' be sold? Easy, drink or eat to excess, take drugs, do anything that weakens the disciplined life you must lead to be a true dragon mage. When you know yourself, you can use your will to very potent effect.
Unless you truly understand what drives you, you will never develop the Will to use Magick effectively. Let me repeat this as it is a most critical point, unless you truly understand what drives you, you will NEVER develop the Will to use Magick effectively. Will is the key to magick. Knowing yourself is the key to Will. Control of the mind becomes easy when these techniques are applied. The mind is not used to discipline. Teaching it is a long process. It takes years. Once applied, the discipline will become second nature. You will gain confidence, self-control, and be able to apply lessons in a useful manner for the rest of your life.
If what drives you is selfish that is all right, 90% of the accomplishment in the world are done for selfish purposes. Including the "altruistic" ones. Don't fool yourself into thinking that you are doing something for someone else's benefit when your true motive is to get noticed/praised/patted on the back/revenge/one up a rival/ well, you get the point. What is the pleasure/ benefit you receive from your actions? This is knowing yourself, your motives. This is your True Will. Every spell or process you do in accordance with your True Will will be much more powerful and likely to succeed. Doing these spells for any reason aside from your True Will dooms it to failure.
2. Fear of probing the hidden areas in your soul.
There will be Trauma in re-living some of the memories and in re-experiencing the actions that caused problems in the first place, but sometimes the only way to heal a deep penetrating wound is to cut it open and let it heal from the inside out instead of outside in. This is a dangerous stage. Many loose their nerve here and go never to return, either into insanity or away from this path altogether. This is not from the study of dark areas of magick, but from remembering past traumas, such as abuse, molestation, and other things.
This is a necessary step in order to know yourself. It cannot be avoided. During this time it is advisable to have someone to help you through the trauma associated with these memories. This person can be a concerned friend, a psychologist or a loved one or lover. My wife was my stability just as I was hers. Whomever you choose, they can commiserate with you as you try to deal with different traumas, slap you when you are too self-indulgent and self-pitying and so on. Your "guard" must to be someone you know and trust implicitly. They must also know you well enough not to let you fall into any self-deluding or self-pitying traps. Make no mistake, they will happen. People want to exculpate themselves from blame.
3. Acceptance of the dark self.
Most never get here. "Better buried than stinking again," is the attitude many use to keep from getting here. Learn to live with the scars. Don't glory in them, but acknowledge that they have taught you something.
Coming to terms with your own personal dark side is important. It cannot be ignored. Dealing with the trauma that happened caused by things that happened is something else entirely. Different people deal with memories and trauma in different ways, but you need to learn to recognize when a bad experience is affecting your judgment or actions so that you can break out of that cycle. Until you break out of a particular cycle of behavior, it will continues to affect you in many ways, most notably by setting up the circumstances of your own destruction. An example of this is a person who is married and lying to their spouse about having affairs. The pattern of behavior can be due to an unresolved problem of the past where the cheater learned that this behavior is "ok". Another instance is the person who has learned not to trust anyone to be reasonable or worthy of trust as the result of mistreatment as a child.
4. Doubt of yourself, your environment your family and even the Gods. The belief that "I am not really doing this... It's all in my imagination."
This is NORMAL. Self-doubt is a good tool to keep from becoming another Napoleon or Hitler. It teaches us. And while self-confidence is a good thing, too much leads to hubris.
With two exceptions*, all of us have been trained by society to disbelieve anything that we cannot verify with our five primary senses . While many are willing to acknowledge that there may be other senses we possess, few are ready to come out and say "Yes, I can see into other worlds and interact with the beings there." Society would brand them as a freak and do it's best to destroy that person for non-conformity. Since few people are brave enough to withstand ridicule or societal destruction, we learn to ignore those things we can't rationally explain. Remember, while this stage is normal, it is critical that the prospective Dragon magi advance beyond this stage.
Again, a percentage of people will get this far and give up. Part of coming to terms with your self is to look at your confidence problems. Many of us who are attracted to this kind of work have very vivid imaginations. It is only natural that some of us may decide we are crazy and nothing we are experiencing could have happened on this plane of reality. Please, remember, "As you believe, so will it be". If you believe that you are imagining it all, then you will be.
5. Peaceful Acceptance, of the Dark, and the Light.
Inner Peace is a stillness of soul that many would call "steady". Acceptance of yourself and the wisdom to over come in this area. The concept is self-explanatory.
Generally, this is the goal of all magickal systems, in which the practitioner finds him/herself and accepts him/herself as s/he is. Because of that acceptance the magician is now self-actualized, at peace and able to love everyone because s/he is no longer dependant upon others for his/her happiness. Able to discover new worlds of connection to everything within him/herself, this is the "gold" that the Alchemists were after.
6. I am no longer a mere mortal, I feel so Olympian and distant from humanity.
This is one final phase that some magickal practitioners have spoken to me about, and that is disconnectedness with normal people. While it is normal to pity most of humanity and the fact that they do not understand things as you do, and that they MUST live in a world ruled by sorrow and misery instead of in a world of joy and wonder, one must not ever think they are less than us.
When it comes to believing your better than the human race and other people on the planet this is usually where you've taken a wrong turn. Sure, your at peace with yourself you understand the ways of life and have accepted who you are, why not share this with the rest of the world? A lot of people try to heal others in this type of situation, to show them the 'way' the path to enligtenment…
Healing is a dangerous skill. In order to heal someone, you must first know how to harm him or her as well. THIS IS NOT FOR BEGINNERS. You are mucking around with someone else's body, mind, or soul. You can do PERMANENT harm to them unless you know exactly what you are doing and why.
Megalomania and hubris are a part of this too. The scales must balance between doubt and this condition, tipping in neither direction. These emotions can grow naturally out of the previous stage. It is related to knowing that YOU did something that was good and right, that you made a difference and that YOUR spell changed the world in some way that you CAN see. With that knowledge, the immediate reaction is usually, "OH BOY! I can do anything I want to do because this stuff REALLY does work!"
This is a dangerous stage. The problem here is "I have some training, I can do anything I want and no one can stop me." Kind of like a beginning student in Martial Arts who is getting an inflated ego. Usually the Master will have to knock them down a few notches to get them to understand that there are bigger and badder things out there.
It is believed by many people that it is impossible to go through all these steps within one life time… some of the eldest people are still dealing with life tramas and accepting the dark. The key is to work on yourself while receiving lessons from your Dragon guides. They can see through you and into your spirit so they'll know the progress your making. The further with these steps you go the further your training as a dragon mage will take you. A lot of these steps are used for a magickian as well. It's always important to know yourself when working with magick.