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Review: The Book of Abrasax

Nsala malongo,Working with this book has been a pleasure; Mr.Cecchetelli--a brother and fellow Worker--has done it again. This book is full of useful and practical magic, with well-researched information paired with insightful commentary. It's immediately apparent that Mr.Cecchetelli has done the rites and works he's sharing, as his insights line right up with what one would expect as far as result goes. Physically it is gorgeous, with a rich brown leather and lovely endpapers...truly a pleasure to hold.The CoronastrumThis is probably my favorite part of the book; I work extensively with mudra and can attest to the efficacy of this one. The layers of symbol when creating this symbol with one's own body are absolutely delicious. All my years of work and I'd never encountered it..... The Coronastrum is a mudra, a symbol that Mr.Cecchetelli's contacts gave him during his working. It's a beautiful and
powerful symbol, and the Book of Abrasax gives you enough info…

The Book of Coelius

Ave,Alchemy is difficult, to work and to understand. Like most things that are of value, it takes work to suss it out, to reap the golden wheat of your planted effort. One of the things that makes alchemy so difficult is that it's obfuscated....by time, by the intention of different alchemists who hid their processes from the unlearned, and by needless complication. There are as many different alchemical methods--ways of processing the First Matter--as there are alchemists who write about it. That isn't to say that any method at all will do, only that true Alchemical processing requires one thing, and one thing only--Fire--and that all the stages and states described in between and established as levels are arbitrary and a matter of culture as opposed to need. In one method you'll find the process described in 5 "steps", in another 7, in yet another 12. This causes difficulty for the student of Alchemy studying the emblems and methods of our forebears; one wants…

Keep your bullshit art off of my religion.

So.
There is a particular breed of practitioner who, whilst appropriating the spiritual practices of another culture, fail so fundamentally to unify with the tradition that they insult it and it's initiates in jaw-droppingly offensive ways. One of these I've been disgusted with of late involves disrespectful manipulation of that tradition's imagery.
I'm not saying that its not possible to Use said imagery in a respectful fashion, or that one should never engage directly with another traditions symbols. Not at all. The problem is when the user has no sense of the symbols as sacred. That's when they get themselves into trouble.....on the mildly offensive end you get syncretism of the inorganic variety. Not the gentle melding of traditions you get when cultures interact, but the jarring and unpleasant shoehorning of entities and forces into dissonant paradigms unnatural to them. People doing LBRP's with random Celtic gods they have no relationship with, that kind…

Crossroads--review

Nsala Malongo,

Having received my copy of the book Crossroads, I had a very enjoyable day and a half reading and deeply connecting with some of the writing within. The first thing you notice is that the book is gorgeous! No big shocker there-- Scarlet Imprint is known for making beautiful tomes and this book is no exception. What is very interesting is that they gathered such a seemingly disparate group of nigromancers....and made it clear that they are not so disparate at all. That standing at the crossroads is something that is at its heart a matter of human spiritual work, the one thing that is consistent with all of human culture. We all dance with the dead, and then dance As the dead. This book altered my views on a few things, which is always a joy. My own Padrino is a skilled spiritualist, having worked Misa since he was a child....I've never truly given the depth of the connection between Kardec's work and the movement that grew from it justice and, now I ( and my fel…

Thaumaturgy and meaning

Nsala malongo,

I've been engaged in some intense practical work lately, which has re-affirmed an understanding gained over the course of my work in life; namely that we interact and commune with the world, with Spirit, through the manipulation of meaning. There is no action without doing this, meaning is the context, the rock we stand on when levering against obstacles. 
Everything that is not ourselves also exists within our minds as a concentration of meaning. Everything--not just objects, people as well. Mystics speak of our senses as being illusory; that they lie to us. I used to agree...but now I know better. Saying this..and getting one to believe it...is a crippling measure, the old "blinds" people rant endlessly about in flashes of occult paranoia.  Our physical senses give us true information, a lever. They just don't give us Objective information. The senses give us absolutely perfect personal information, and therefore a tool with which meaning can be con…

Golden Dawn--WTF

Ave,

I've been trying my level best to not talk about this latest eruption of foolishness, but good folks are being dragged through the mud (on both sides), and I've grown weary.

This whole thing is a steaming pile of bullshit. No one is trying to "destroy" the Golden Dawn, that's just silliness. No one is trying to become the only "legitimate" Golden Dawn order either. I'm sickened by this display.

Argue in a scholarly fashion! When did this sniping nonsense become the norm? A debate between honorable and wise gents (both of whom I consider Brothers in the Work) like Fraters AM and SR about the Sabbatian Qabbalah would be wonderful, if we could cut all the bullshit out. Quality conversations, ya'll.  Skip the vitriol, the name calling and the idiotic marketing methods.

Yes, it is idiocy. This "McGolden Dawn" nonsense is stupid.Ya'll. GROW THE FUCK UP.

For the record, The A+O's transmissions are valid, they are real. This isn&#…

Hoodoo and Palo Mayombe

This is an article I wrote for the Lemba Congo American Society for the Preservation of Palo Mayombe (or simply the Society, as we call it, because that's a whole lot of name) that addresses heating and cooling spirits, and the links of tradition and approach between Hoodoo and Palo Mayombe. 

There is a way of thinking about reality--and learning to interact with it--that empowers all of the Congo-rooted magical systems currently alive here in the West. Having years of experience as a conjurer in the Hoodoo tradition here in America, and learning from an experienced Tata the methods of Palo Mayombe as an Engueyo,  I continually am finding parallels between the two. There are two ideas in particular that stand out that I wanted to discuss.


Heating and Cooling Spirits
In Hoodoo, we "heat" a spirit to great activity using herbs and roots and powders, and "cool" a spirit using water and herbs and roots as well. The concept of heating and cooling a spirit in Hoodoo co…

Some Changes

Ave,

The vast majority of my work of late--well, the entirety of it--has been in the Palo tradition. I took initiation into the tradition a little while ago, and have found it perfect for me as something I can live...my alchemical knowledge and hoodoo all mesh into existing understanding in Palo. Which makes sense; hoodoo is rooted in the Congo, and I've found that the wisdom of roots and herbs is applied in extremely similar fashion between the two traditions. Instead of a red flannel bag, we wrap our works in corn husk (which we have a tratado, a pact with). The importance of different earths and powders is the same, as is the relationship with Spirit. I feel that studying hoodoo is especially useful for American Paleros, as it adds wisdom about herbs and palos local to the land we currently live in, as opposed to Africa and Cuba. As for alchemy, I've already posted about the depths of the alchemical knowledge available in Palo here. Tremendously interesting stuff.

I've …