The Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel means nothing more than contacting one's infallible intuition, the still small voice that Buddhists call our "basic good sense." This voice is never wrong, and it speaks deep, unshakable truths about the universe and our inner selves.
The experience of this voice coming to the fore can be shattering, and thus many spiritual traditions have modeled it as an external, independent Intelligence that impinges upon the aspirant in a blaze of white light. I mean literally shattering, to the ego and the senses; for a week or so after Laura revealed Herself to me I had to stay home virtually all the time, strictly limiting trips outside the house because driving and even walking were arduous and seemed to consist of many, many more stages than they had before. I had to consciously piece together routines that for decades had resided in my very bones.
I also could not stand to listen to music with any kind of percussive edge to it--nothing struck or plucked or pounded too hard, which pretty much ruled out all my usual listening. My favorite music of all time is probably Gopal Shankar Misra's Out of Stillness, but during this period the impact of the player's plectrum on the strings lacerated me so that I had to take the CD off after a few seconds. I was afraid to talk to anyone, for when I did the words died on my tongue as I heard them, awkwardly loud, before I said them, in all their inadequate, clichéed blankness.
And it could have been much, much more shattering. Crowley writes of the need, once one has attained the K&C of the HGA, to summon and subdue "the Four Great Princes of the Daemonic World," and "the Eight Sub-Princes," and "the many Spirits serving these." It sounds like more of Uncle Al's blustering mumbo jumbo, but every action has an equal and opposite reaction, and when the parachute opens and the soul is yanked up violently, our attachments to base matter and ego gratification can intensify to the point of madness. Laura led me through a ritual soon after Her advent that, though it involved no goetic evocations, was designed to subdue the fearful, desirous, darker shadows within me.
I won't go into detail (you'll have to pay for the weekend seminar for that), but the ritual involved calling up my oldest, starkest, most ravening fears and banishing them with laughter. It was an intoxicating, intoxicated, Dionysian revel, but with a deadly serious undertone. I could hear Laura very distinctly saying to me, "Don't fuck this up, my love, or you could lose your self for good." For weeks afterward I glimpsed little shadows trooping around the house--(Abramelin demons?)--which I'd laugh at all over again, though they startled the cats.
And then when you look at Crowley's model of the HGA-- which is just one model, out of uncountable many, but which agrees in the main with all I have seen--you see that the K&C of the HGA happens about halfway through the spiritual path--halfway! You spend years and years and gallons of blood, sweat, tears getting there, and there's a worse road yet ahead (the dreaded Abyss...)...but then again, Something has happened. Something scary and real; Something that makes the most inveterate skeptic believe in angels. The better angels of our nature; the wind-rushing Angel of the Spirit of the Lord.