Most every past culture had leaders (The King), fighters (The Warrior), and holders of great secrets and knowledge (The Magician).


“The Magician is an initiate of secret and hidden knowledge of all kinds. And this is the important point. All knowledge that takes special training to acquire is the province of the Magician energy. Whether you are an apprentice training to become a master electrician and unravelling the mysteries of high voltage, or a medical student, grinding away night and day, studying the secrets of the human body and using the available technologies to help your patients, …or a trainee in one of the psychoanalytic schools, you are in exactly the same position as the apprentice shaman or witch doctor in tribal societies. You are spending large amounts of time, energy, and money in order to be initiated into rarefied realms of secret power.”

– King, Warrior, Magician, Lover - 59% on Kindle


Image by Anthemios on Flickr


I love thinking of my copywriting skills in this way – as “powers” obtained by diving into secret corners of psychology.

Unlike doctors, high-level copywriters are more scattered, sharing knowledge more one-on-one. The internet changed things a little (with many other previous “secrets”, too), but there is still not a very clear “institution” or “temple order” for copywriters.

That makes this profession feel more like a cool, secret order. Initiation requires reprogramming your own subconscious with the principles hidden in the sales letters of the old masters, as well as studying the old tomes (since selling psychology doesn’t change over time, old texts are just as valuable as new), and finding a mentor to be the Sage to your Apprentice.

It’s pretty cool.

Whatever you do in work, look at it from the eyes of your inner Magician. What about your work would amaze the average person? How far can you take the knowledge of your field? Can you get so good that you can do things that “seem like magic” to normal people?

Whether you’re setting broken bones, playing ballads that move listeners to tears, or pulling money out of “thin air” with nothing but a web page, you’re performing magic – you’re a Magician.


“Do not merely practice your art, but force your way into its secrets; it deserves that, for only art and science can exalt man to divinity.”

– Ludwig Van Beethoven


Active Shadow: The Manipulator

“The man under the power of the Manipulator not only hurts other with his cynical detachment from the world of human values and his subliminal technologies of manipulation, he also hurts himself. This is the man who thinks too much, who stands back from his life and never lives it. He is caught in a web of pros and cons about his decisions and lost in a labyrinth of reflective meanderings from which he cannot extricate himself. He is afraid to live, to “leap into battle.” He can only sit on his rock and think. The years pass. He wonders where the time has gone. And he ends by regretting a life of sterility.”

– King, Warrior, Magician, Lover - 69% on Kindle

I know I’ve fallen prey to this Shadow before. There were times in my past when I would journal about life more than I would actually live it. Reading back over entries from years ago, it seemed like I was indeed “locked in a labyrinth of reflective meanderings”.

The way out, it seems, is to engage the other archetypes – to leap into battle like as the Warrior, and to become compassionate and eager to benefit others as the Lover.


Passive Shadow: The “Innocent” One

“The “Innocent” One’s underlying motivations come from envy of those who act, who live, who want to share. Because the man possessed by the “innocent” One is envious of life, he is also afraid that people will discover his lack of life energy and throw him off his very wobbly pedestal. His detachment and his “impressive behaviour,” his deflating remarks, his hostility toward questions, even his accumulated expertise, are all designed to cover his real inner desolation and hide his actual lifelessness and irresponsibility from the world.”

– King, Warrior, Magician, Lover - 70% on Kindle

Once again, this hits home pretty hard for me.

It seems I’ve avoided the deep pits of hostility towards others, but has been there, and I’ve certainly used clever masks to hide inner lifelessness and detachment from time to time.

Thanks to David Hawkins’ teachings of letting go of negativity, it seems that I’ve recently made great progress out of these dark, negative shadows.

It always comes back to what we get out of our negativity. You would wonder, reading these descriptions, what anyone would gain from being in such a spiritual wasteland. It is only the secret, seductive pleasure of negativity – the juiciness of anger, the self-righteousness of pride, the self-indulgence of shame and guilt – these are the things that keep us stuck in shadows.


Perhaps the Lover will help us see the beauty of the positive.

– James