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Showing posts from 2011

The Sea of the Dead

The Dead are everywhere. People say this but don't seem to delve much deeper into the meaning of it. They say that they work with "spirit", as if this is something that is not the dead. There is not a square inch of this planet that isn't permeated with the Dead. With Spirit. In Alchemy there is the concept of Azoth, the great sea of mind which exists as a reflection into creation of that Great Mind that is un-created and the source of existence. We find that man is a reflection of that same mind into physicality; it stands to reason that the dead are a reflection of that Mind into the world of spirit. The world of Spirit--the realm of the Dead--teems and boils and churns, and permeates all things. Where it coagulates into life we have matter, always pregnant with the Dead. Life is a coagulation, and death a Sublimation. There is only one thing, though. One thing upon which these changes take place. There are permutations of the dead that play varying roles

Enochian experiment results

Ave, So, the work with the Enochian angels has been very interesting. I've stripped away everything but the calls for this particular operation (with a censer for incense, of course) and a bit of holy water I use for purification before. For this work I began by using the First 18 calls to imitate the Creation and call the Angels that put the wheels into motion. If you move through the temple with the calls --they give you specific direction with certain calls--you find that you are creating a Spiral of sorts, out from the center, like one of those Fibonacci deals. The first seven calls align you with the Creator, invoke the Archangels of the Seven and the Twelve, and then call the entities of the four Winds. The Eighth call invokes the entities that guard against the hard-boys of the Angelic world, who are great and terrible. They are, of course, invoked in the next whirl of Calls, rotating around the center again as they take up their position on the outer edges of the Spiral

Palo Mayombe

Ave, I've been engaged in a deep study of Frater Nicholaj de Mattos Frisvold's work Palo Mayombe , and have been steadily amazed at the deep understandings within it. For a long time I've known some small measure of what Palo is--that it is a worship-centered religion, that it is necromantically powerful. I've also known what it isn't-- Palo is not just black magic, it isn't a club an African/Afro-Latino sorcerer wields to beat people over the head. That being said, engaging in metaphysical contests with it's practitioners is generally un-wise....they don't mess about. Palo Mayombe is a fierce religion, but it Is a religion. What I didn't know was the true depths of it's Wisdom and alchemical understanding. That's right, alchemical understanding . Palo Mayombe isn't a simple practice. It's a multi-layered and living religious and alchemical practice, and it's grasp of the forces of life are unparalleled. It's spir

New Approach to Enochian

Been working much on the Enochian rites, and today went "live" with a new approach (for me at least, don't know if anyone else is approaching it this way) that is centered primarily on treating the calls themselves as the Book of Logoaeth and as the primary ritual tool. No pentagrams or hexagrams, no speeches about Watchtowers, no SDA yet. No wand. Just a censer on the altar, with the tablet of Nalvage, and my tablet. Was a bit, uh, concerned going in. Attempted to memorize the calls, but even reading them in my mind dials the phone, as it were. Discovered that any one call on it's own--depending upon the nature of the call--can be powerfully unbalancing. Each call contacts a certain series of entities according to their nature, and the First 8 calls in particular, in my opinion, hold efficacy in creating a balanced and powerful state, with the Quarters called and the Angels that guard against the "stooping dragons" invoked. Kept it simple; called the First

Alchemical Synergy between External and Prima Materias

Ave, There was some discussion recently on the fora about the nature of Alchemy, and whether our alchemical forbears were referring to internal substances or primarily to external substances. One of the gentlemen involved is a well known external alchemist, with a tremendous amount of scholarship under his belt. While I respect his contribution, the idea that there is any such thing as purely external alchemy is entirely incorrect. ***added for clarity. Thank you Mr.Faust! The gist of the argument being made was that there was no evidence/truth to traditional Alchemy being "internal" in Nature, and that the Basil Valentines, Flamels, and Philalethes' of our tradition where speaking to purely physical processes. Which I, uh, completely disagree with.  Yup. There is no such thing as strictly "external" Alchemy. If an alchemical process doesn't reflect into the Body, it isn't alchemy. Archemy, yes, and sometimes Spagery, but not Alchemy. &qu

Opening the Book of Lambspring

Ave,  Hadean Press has just published a pamphlet I've written which serves as a solid introduction to internal Hermetic alchemical thought. In "Opening the Book of Lambspring" each of the emblems is delved into, in a straight-forward and clear fashion. It's a great deal at only 3 pounds,and makes for interesting reading for alchemy-loving folk. Even the well-versed in alchemy may find it interesting;they could rant about how their reading of the emblem is completely different than mine, and get a few quality "harrumphs" or grumbles in....which is an important part of the alchemical tradition,haha. Anyway, go buy it! You will definitely enjoy it.    Purchase your copy here. In LVX,  AIT

I'm a ...Pagan?

Ave, So, I was chatting with a fellow Alchemist and dear brother of mine, who was pointing me toward the Feri tradition, an American-born Witchcraft tradition that incorporates elements of Huna and Hoodoo (Which is bloody awesome. Because I incorporate those elements too.) Seems like something I should know about, and I'd never heard of it until he brought it up in one of our recent correspondences. Doing some research for it led me to a blog called The Wild Hunt, which I've read once or twice, but haven't followed closely. It would appear that I'm the only magician on the planet who doesn't follow it closely. The writing is quite good. Reading it gave me pause, as it's directed at Pagans, and I'm not a Pagan. Right? Or am I? Hmm. I'm an Alchemist and a conjurer. I worship the One that is All and is None, as we all do one way or another, and I am a devoted Sacerdos Saturni. I work with the Christian Trinity and Saints/Heroic Dead, and with the an

Vision-Chat with Saturnus, some observations.

Kairos..the Supreme Moment Ave, This Saturday I did a nice long ritual working; I've been crazy-busy the last couple weeks with family matters, and so hadn't done a proper check-in with the Old Man. I'd noticed some things in myself that seemed to be the result of an over-heavy Saturnian hand; nothing huge, but noticeable change in temperament and movement that I needed to sort out. This is something to be aware of; continued practical and devotional work with a single entity will show in your life, in your body and in your mind. We are what we continually do, and if your time is spent working with Saturnus, you'll find more and more a resemblance between yourself and Him. It's not a literal and gross change--you probably won't take to Serpent-riding or scythe carrying...although I will declare you immediately awesome if you do--but a subtle and perceptible change that is recognizable in the way the World relates to you, and in the way you relate to it.

Review: Crossed Keys by Michael Cecchetelli

Ave, Finally finished going deep into this lovely tome, and I have to say that it is very impressive. I've not worked the Black Dragon (grimoire) or done much with the Enchiridion before, so this was a double joy for me. I'm going to break the review into a couple of sections, make it easier to order my thoughts. Authenticity Mr.Cecchetelli has done something that I think will start to become a standard for modern grimoiric Magicians who choose to write--whether they are re-approaching a classic or communicating their own Grimoire. He's included a sample of his own working journal that notes his results and observations in the work, including preparations he takes before beginning the work. This part is invaluable I think, to both experienced and newb magicians. This ain't my first rodeo, as it were, and reading Mr.Cecchetelli's journal was useful for me because his results told me that he'd actually done the Work. He wasn't bullshitting; I've

Spirit-based Empowerment

Ave, In the old African Hoodoo (and if properly practiced and studied) the Hoodoo of today, it is understood that the power of the herbs and roots we use come from Spirit. This isn't like some sort of spiritual electricity, it is sentient and living virtue; these spirits can be communed with, and propitiated to do the work for us. It's worth noting that Spirit empowers more than plants; they empower minerals, words, they can empower methods . There is precedent for this in Western Magic as well. In my own book (Kameothic Internal Alchemy) I give my small Ordo's ( the Ordo Octopi Nigri Pulveri , not the Golden Dawn) method of Solomonic-based healing magic that uses the Spirits of the Deacons/Faces (for example, the First, Second, and Third Faces of Aries all have a particular Spirit, from whom certain effects might be had)  to create cures for ailments. The methods given in the Solomonic text would be completely ineffectual without the spiritual empowerment; for exampl

Bodywork and Alchemy

Ave, So, I've made no bones about my interest in various healing systems. The further I grow in alchemical practice, the more important the physical body has become in my Work. I don't think people discuss this enough, or understand it well; the physical body and it's state are of incredible importance to your spiritual work. An alchemical practice that includes some sort of regular relaxation/exercise/bodywork is far more effective than one that does not. Look no further than our Eastern brethren for evidence of that; their Neidan addresses the physical element in magnificent fashion (with body movements meant to relax the body and to stimulate the Internal fires). Don't think that the Western does not! I'm not at liberty to discuss what exactly the Western practices are, as this aspect of ours is still held under the Rose, but the fact of the body's importance is a public matter at this point. Alchemy that doesn't address this component is incomplete

The Unity of External and Internal Alchemy

Ave, On the HOGD/AO forums, a discussion has been going on about whether Sendivogius (a famous alchemist whose work is well-known) is teaching Internal or External Alchemy. It's interesting to watch, as one of the alchemists is  known for his External work and the other for his deep understanding of the Internal Work (who also works the external). The argument was fundamentally an old one; alchemists have been going back and forth with this sort of thing for ages. The most profound point (made by our Internal alchemist) given in the argument was the simple truth that it does not matter . A properly understood, initiated External Alchemical process--given using traditional alchemical language--will also work if translated to the Internal. If it does not, then I contend it is not a true process. Alchemy is Alchemy; whether the Glass involved is made of silica, or more subtle matter, the work of Alchemy is the same, as a mirror of Nature.  I would go so far as to say that the

Innovation and the Golden Dawn

Ave, I've been reading with interest the Golden Dawn forum of GH Fra Zalewski (don't know his motto, and Google isn't giving up the goods.) If one can stomach all the bickering and bullshit, there are some thought-provoking things going on in the community. It seems that groups who don't have Third Order contacts are developing their own material...not even necessarily basing their material on older papers, but applying their own understanding of Magic and Alchemy to the structure and culture of the Order to create new methods and vehicles. This is awesome. Variety=Growth, man. There have been only two ways to move the GD toward completeness, and one is to have contacts with the Third Order, which is, I understand, a group of Adepts who've kept the fire of the Hermetic tradition lit in a continuous link since back in ye olden days. This is the best if you can get it; there are some things in Alchemy you just are not going to learn if you don't have an Al

Obsidian Glass--Creating a Talismanic Mirror

Ave, This one'll be short; just wanted to share a useful method I received for working and communicating with Saturnian entities in particular. Obsidian is a fine tool for accumulating the virtue in Saturn; the Mysterium Sigillorum recommends it's use in creating a specific talisman (one I made yesterday for my father-in-law to help heal his gout; also part of a homework assignment for Christopher Warnock's Astrological Magic Course ...worth taking, ya'll. Worth every penny) that is efficacious against Saturnian illnesses. So, there is classical precedent for it's use in addition to my personal experiences. One particular use that I'm fond of is the Talismanic Mirror. Obsidian being volcanic glass, it makes a fine mirror if burnished on one side, and being Saturnian it can be loaded with Virtue and aligned with the nature of a Saturnian spirit. If there is an entity that you have a long-standing relationship with (such as Cassiel or Tzaphqiel...two extreme

Arithmancy, part V

(please read previous posts for continuity) I've found it useful to use the numbers of the Planetary Squares to invoke the Planetary virtues, while using the primary numbers to induce states of mind that are harmonious with Number. For instance, the sum of the Saturnian square is 45; I would use the mudra for 45 to summon the Virtue of Saturn, but would use the mudra for the number 2 to enter into a trance that allows for communion with that number, also assigned to Saturn. Use the primary numbers to alter personal state of mind, and the sum of the Planetary Square to engage the macrocosmic force related to the Planet. The sums for the Planetary Squares are as follows: Saturn: 45 Sol: 666 Luna: 3321 Mars: 325 Mercury: 2080 Jupiter: 136 Venus: 1225 To form the mudras for each Planet, build the number one section at a time; for Venus, first you would perform the mudra for 1000, then for 200, then 20, then 5. The final mudra is held for as long as you wish the Virtue to be invoke