Archive for the ‘golden dawn’ Tag
So the Ceremonial Magick course is over until the fall. I’m *very* proud of all my students, as we seemed to have a pretty powerful and synched group of people by the end of it all. It was awesome seeing you guys go from the very basics (this is the Tree of Life… this is the Hebrew alphabet…) all the way to consecrating talismans and finally calling down angels. And several of us will definitely be doing more work together in the future.
I am heartened to learn that everyone seems to have gotten something worthwhile from the Jupiter talismans we consecrated last week. Given that I had simplified a few things for the sake of the class and time restrictions, I was prepared to be satisfied just to have shown you how to do that kind of work. I think the fact that those talismans appear to have brought real results for each student (and all within a single week, no less) says a lot of good things about you guys.
As for yesterday’s evocation of Gabriel: WOW what an experience! The last time we did this, the class just had a nice skrying session with Gabriel. That is not to say it wasn’t a powerful and moving experience, but this time around was especially intense for everyone. I suspect it had much to do with the fact that Carrie and I made sure more of the students took an active role in the invocations – where the previous group had been more content to just let me and Carrie do the rituals. So this time, the students were much less passive observers.
Some present experienced a kind of waking “sleep paralysis” coupled with a rush of images that will take some time and meditation to decipher. All very Lunar. Others were taken on astral journeys into the sphere of Yesod. And then, even I was shocked when Gabriel *physically* stepped in and kicked some ass. lol That, my friends, is REAL magick.
I’m no stranger to being “ridden” by angels, but I certainly wasn’t expecting it to happen during a class like that. To be honest, Carrie is usually the one more likely to be ridden. Regardless, I’m sure everyone benefited from the experience. I hope you will all stay in touch with me and let me know what unfolds for each of you over the coming days, weeks or months.
To everyone who couldn’t attend the course this round, we will be doing it all over again in the fall. Plus, for those of you who are long distance, we are still working on converting the classes into a Skype format so we can include you as well. Stay tuned!
Greetings fellow Pagans!
I was recently invited to give a lecture on “ceremonial magick” to a local group of second degree Wiccans. After accepting the invitation, I took some time to consider what direction such a lecture should take. What about ceremonial magick would interest them, and how could I present it in a manner to which they could relate?
The answer came quickly enough: I would give them a condensed history lesson about the Western Mystery Tradition – covering the development of Hermeticism, the Hebrew and later Christian Qabalah, Rosicrucianism, Masonry, the Golden Dawn and Thelema. Finally, all of this would culminate in a discussion about the rise of Wicca and its interrelationship with all of the above.
In the lecture, I pointed out the influence of the Golden Dawn in Wicca’s magickal methods – such as circle castings, pentagrams, Watchtower guardians, the four Elements, etc. I discussed the impact of Regardie’s publication of ‘The Golden Dawn’ on mid-twentieth century occultism (Neo-paganism included). And I even discussed Gerald Gardner’s association with Thelema – drawing much from my old Thelemic Origins of Wicca essay.
Overall, I’d call the event a resounding success, and it looks like I’m going to have to come up with some ideas for a future lecture for the same group.
Meanwhile, in the days since the event I have discovered there is something in the air about this subject. I just received the latest edition of Hermetic Virtues Magazine, and wouldn’t you know it included a wonderful essay by Peregrin Wildoak entitled The Influence of the Golden Dawn in Wicca. I have been wanting to write that very essay for many years – but it looks like Peregrin beat me to it, and did it better than I would have done. I forwarded a copy to the Wiccan priestess who organized my lecture, so she could offer it as “further reading” to her students. (I also recommend you get a copy of the latest Hermetic Virtues to check it out!)
I sent a message to Peregrin, offering my kudos and asking if he had ever read my Thelemic Origins… essay. He said he had indeed read it, and even brought it up in a related lecture he had given: The Influence of Aleister Crowley on the Development of Wicca. Let me quote his reply here:
thanks for this
Yes, I read your very interesting article…and politely disagreed with its central thesis in another recent lecture Would love a counter argument if you wish
That certainly piqued my interest. I doubted he disagreed with my premise of a Thelemic influence upon the development of Wicca. So I read his essay to find his specific point of dissent. I discovered a quote from my essay in a section entitled Myth Number 3 – Wicca as an Outer Court to the OTO or a Thelemic Vehicle:
“I’ve come to understand that Gerald Gardner intended from the very beginning for Wicca to be a largely Thelemic system.”
Having read the entire article, I think I understand where Preegrin disagrees with my statement. The above quote could be taken in one of two ways: Either I understand Wicca was intended as an organizational Thelemeic (that is, OTO) vehicle, or that it was a philosophical Thelemic vehicle.
In fact, I meant the latter. I am not among those who have suspected Wicca was intended as an outer court to the OTO, or even an “OTO for the masses.” Instead, my view is that Wicca was (to an extent) built upon Thelemic philosophy.
Of course, Peregrin also disagrees with that premise – and to prove it he cites several departures from (or in some cases the absence of) Thelemic philosophy in the Wiccan religion. And he is correct – such departures and absences do exist, and he does a fine job of pointing them out.
However, to play devil’s advocate, I would also point out that Thelema was intended to be a highly individualized philosophy. Are not those who dissect the Book of the Law and nit-pick specific points of Thelemic philosophy supposed to be “centers of pestilence”? Is it not the one cardinal rule of Thelema that one should follow his own True Will no matter what? Given this nature of the system, I don’t find it so hard to believe that Gerald Gardner felt at liberty to take Wicca in directions that might conflict with any of Crowley’s writings.
Still, I will admit my statement that Wicca was intended as “a Thelemic system” might have been over-stating the case to some extent. (That essay was one of my earliest pieces, and not an example of my best writing.) I certainly don’t view Wicca as just Thelema with Neo-pagan overlay.
However, the influence of Thelema and its philosophies upon Gardner cannot be denied. (Nor, to be fair, does Peregrin attempt to deny them in his essay.) I see more of Thelema in Wicca than the mere “fleshing out of sparse material” that Gardner claimed it to be. I believe Gardner’s occultism was heavily Crowley-influenced – first through Crowley’s published writings, then during Gardner’s time with the OTO – and that this formed the foundation upon which Wicca was ultimately constructed. (Much in the manner that Thelema is founded upon Golden Dawn principles, while it is not “Golden Dawn” in and of itself.)
Though, it is true that Gardner was taking Wicca in directions that often left the greater Thelemic system behind, and that Doreen Valiente took it even further afield. I suspect the apparent disagreement between me and Peregrim Wildoak on this issue is largely one of semantics.
Sorry for the short notice, folks! This one kind of snuck up on me. lol We are already filling seats, so make sure to reserve a spot today!
Ceremonial Magick uses ritual and invocation to get closer to the Divine Self. Come learn the basics of Ceremonial Magick from initiated ceremonial magicians, Carrie Mikell & Aaron Leitch – adepts of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.If you want to experience Ceremonial (or “high”) Magick, this class is for you!Course Topics include the following:
•Class 1: Basic Terms of Ceremonial Magick – Diagrams & the Qabalistic Cross
•Class 2: Basic Rituals & Correspondences
•Class 3: The Four Philosophical Elements
•Class 4: Hexagrams & Invoking the Planets
•Class 5: Talisman Creation & Consecration
•Class 6: An Angel Evocation
Class starts March 3rd and is on Sundays through April 14th, 1-3:30pm.Cost is $20 per class with a $60 deposit that will pay for the last 3 classes in the series.
Please call Mystikal Scents at 813-986-3212 to register. Limited to 12 students.
9545 E. Fowler Ave
Thonotosassa/Brandon, FL. 33592
And for those of you who are not local to us, we DO intend to create a Skype version of these classes very soon. I’ll let you know when those are ready for sign-up.
Greetings to my students!
After I gave my Ceremonial Magick classes in North Carolina (six classes of material packed into two sessions!), one of my students asked me to take her to the store’s bookshelves and show her my best recommendations for further reading. Now, back home in Florida, we are reaching the last few classes of the course – where we finally begin to take all the basic rituals, correspondences and theory and put them together in rituals of practical magick. Once we are done, I suspct my current students are also going to want resources for further reading and study.
Even outside of my classes, I know many of you reading this blog are solitary practitioners. And I’m sure you would also like to know which books I recommend to futher your understanding of the Western Mystery Tradition and the practice of Hermetic Ceremonial Magick.
So, I’ve made this blog entry for both groups of students and practitioners. Much like the post I made concerning books about Babylonian and Semitic myth and magick, I will here gather the titles that I have found most useful in my own Ceremonial Magick studies – both when I was a solitary seeker and even still today.
We are very fortunate today, in that we have dozens of great resources that seekers in previous generations have had to do without. I hope you will find this list useful in your studies.
The Essential Golden Dawn : An Introduction to High Magic - Chic and Tabatha Cicero
A great general introduction to the Western Mystery Tradition as a whole. It traces the historical development of the WMT and introduces the student to many of the basic theories and philosophies behind our magick. Some of the basic rituals are also included.
Modern Magick: Twelve Lessons in the High Magickal Arts – Donald Michael Kraig
This is where it all started for me! When I was handed my first copy of this book, I was already practicing my own intuitive forms of magick (much akin to Hoodoo, really). But after just one look inside this book, I knew I had found something vastly important and powerful. I made up my mind then and there to put myself through the (at the time) Eleven Lessons – and the rest is history. This is not specifically a “Golden Dawn” text, but it does focus on Golden Dawn rituals and techniques, and I highly recommend it as an introduction to the practical side of the Hermetic Arts.
Self-Initiation Into the Golden Dawn Tradition: A Complete Curriculum of Study for Both the Solitary Magician and the Working Magical Group – Chic and Tabatha Cicero
The Ciceros created this resource with the solitary practitioner in mind. They gathered a very large amount of the Grade curriculum of the Outer Order of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, then expanded it with extra-curricular study material. Then they created a ritual process of Self Initiation by which the solitary seeker can progress through the Grade material. The Self Initiation rituals will certainly not make you a member of an Order, but they will introduce you to the forces invoked in each Grade of the Outer Order. There are even quizzes at the end of each Grade, so you’ll know when you’ve incorperated enough knowledge to move on to the lessons of the next Grade. This textbook is so useful, it is even used as a study guide by students of the H.O.G.D. itself.
Secrets of a Golden Dawn Temple – Chic and Tabatha Cicero
There have been several different editions of this text under different names. You can also find the material split between Creating Magical Tools and Ritual Use of Magical Tools. The above-linked version is the one I found and used many many years ago – in fact I think it was the first Cicero book I ever owned. It outlines in exhaustive detail how to build all the tools, furniture, robes, talismans and other ritual paraphernalia associated with Golden Dawn magick. Though you certainly won’t have to build everything you find in this book to practice at home, it contains enough to set up a fully functioning Traditional G.D. Temple. Plus, it gives you the magickal theory behind each tool along with the rituals to conscrate and use them.
The Golden Dawn Ritual Tarot – Tabatha Cicero and Chic Cicero
This is a Tarot Deck, but it does come with a book. If you’re going to get into Golden Dawn magick, you’re going to be using the Tarot. And this deck is specially made for use in Golden Dawn ceremonies. (I still prefer the Smith-Waite deck for divinations, but this deck can’t be beat for G.D. work!)
The Golden Dawn: The Original Account of the Teachings, Rites & Ceremonies of the Hermetic Order – edited by Israel Regardie
This is where it all started – at least for those of us practicing the Golden Dawn today. After 1900, the original Order of the Golden Dawn split into several different groups. One of them became the Fellowship of the Rosy Cross, which still exists today. Another became the Alpha et Omega, which closed its doors sometime in the 1940s. And another became the Stella Matutina – which was the branch joined by Israel Regardie. The Stella Matutina closed most of its doors in the middle of the 2oth century. (Only one Temple remained, but it had changed its name to the Order of Smaragdum Thallasses – better known as the Whare Ra Temple – and operated secretly in New Zealand until 1978.) Before the bulk of the Stella Matutina Temples died away, Israel Regardie decided to save the Tradition by publishing the Order’s papers. This decision was controversial, but most today agree that it saved the Golden Dawn. This book is that publication – so you can see for yourself where it all began. This was the book used by Chic Cicero to found his own Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn – which is by far the world’s largest and most successful Golden Dawn Order today. This book also serves as the “advanced manual” that takes you to the next step beyond the Ciceros’ Self Initiation… book.
The Complete Golden Dawn System of Magic – edited by Israel Regardie
A good companion volume to The Golden Dawn above. This book contains a lot of early Golden Dawn material that didn’t make it into the first book.
A Garden of Pomegranates: Skrying on the Tree of Life – Israel Regardie, Chic and Tabatha Cicero
This is one of the books by Israel Regardie that the Ciceros greatly expanded and then republished for the modern student. It is an excellent exploration of the Tree of Life and the magickal and Hermetic concepts that it embodies. In my intro classes, I give you the basics of the Tree of Life – but this text will take you to the next level and beyond. It includes guided meditations to introduce you to the energies, correspondences, angels and other magickal beings associated with every Sephirah and Path of the Tree.
The Middle Pillar: The Balance Between Mind and Magic – Israel Regardie, Chic and Tabatha Cicero
The is another Israel Regardie original, expanded and republished by the Ciceros. Without a doubt, this is one of my favorites. It outlines the psychological aspects of Qabalistic and Hermetic practice – that is how the material interfaces with and changes your psyche. While I am no fan of the “psychological theory of magick” that does not mean there is no psychology at all involved in its theory and practice. I describe it this way: Magick is not “a form of psychology” any more than an engine is “a car.” Yet, without an engine a car is just a dead thing and doesn’t get you anywhere. How magick affects your mind, and how your mind affects your magick, it extremely important to understand.
Godwin’s Cabalistic Encyclopedia – David Godwin
This is a wonderfully useful resource for anyone studying the Western Hermetic Qabalah. Godwin has gathered every Hebrew name and term he could find, given them in English and Hebrew characters, their Gematira values and explained what they mean. As an appendix, he has also included a copy of “Sepher Sephiroth” – which gathers even more Hebrew words and phrases according to their Gematria values. (Kind of a 777 for the Golden Dawn crowd.)
Prometheus Rising – Robert Anton Wilson, Introduced by Israel Regardie.
And speaking of understanding psychology, this book is an absolute must-read. It is an easy-to-understand operator’s manual for your brain – complete with exercises. And the concepts it teaches are, as I said above, extremely important to your own spirutal development and your successful use of that thing called Magick. ( I drew upon the material in this book in my own Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires.)
Ishtar Rising: Or, Why the Goddess Went to Hell and What to Expect Now That She’s Returning – Robert Anton Wilson
See above. I consider this to be the second half of Prometheus Rising. And, as the title suggests, this book focuses upon the sacred feminine within all of us – and even explains why magick and witchcraft have returned to our culture in a big way. Highly recommended!
(NOTE: I will soon be adding a list of traditional Qabalistic texts to this list, such as the Zohar and Sepher Yetzirah. Stay tuned.)
The following books were not part of my own early studies into Ceremonial magick, but I believe they are potentially useful to today’s students:
Experiencing the Kabbalah: A Simple Guide to Spiritual Wholeness – Chic and Tabatha Cicero
“Kabbalah, a spiritual system grounded in symmetry and logic, is rarely addressed in a format that is suitable for beginners. Experiencing the Kabbalah goes against the trend, however, by presenting both historical and practical information on the Kabbalah that focuses on experiencing this ancient spiritual system rather than just reading about it. Chic and Sandra Tabatha Cicero accomplish this through a sort of ritual drama that they call “Walking the Tree of Life.” It characterizes each Sephiroth (different aspects of the divine) of the Kabbalah as a person, from the stable Malkuth to the enigmatic Kether, granting readers a fuller understanding of the Sephiroth and the paths between them. Experiencing the Kabbalah is an innovative guide for beginners as well as informative reading for adept practitioners.”
Making Talismans: Living Entities of Power – Nick Farrell
“Discover the secret keys and practical techniques to turn mundane objects into “living entities of power,” bringing real change in your life. By pooling magical practices from shamanism, paganism, the Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn, and Dion Fortune, Making Talismans offers training and techniques for performing advanced magical talismanic operations.”
King Over the Water: Samuel Mathers and the Golden Dawn - Nick Farrell
If you are interested in the history of the Golden Dawn, this is a great place to start. This book explores the life and times one of the founders of the G.D. without the usual lens of myth and legend surrounding him. Spoiler alert! Mathers was a fallible human being like the rest of us.
Mathers’ Last Secret REVISED – The Rituals and Teachings of the Alpha et Omega – Nick Farrell
The Alpha et Omega is the branch of the Order founded by Mathers after the original group split apart. This book is a good companion to King Over the Water, as well as Regardie’s The Golden Dawn. It contains the rituals used by Mathers’ A.O. before it closed its doors in the 1940s. Here, you can see how things were done in the A.O. as opposed to what the Stella Matutina was up to on their side of the fence.
By Names and Images: Bringing the Golden Dawn to Life – Peregrin Wildoak
“The Golden Dawn (GD) system of magic is the main source of the esoteric and magical wisdom and techniques practiced in the West today. While the rituals and bare teachings of the tradition have been published for sixty years, the inner workings and esoteric keys that empower those rituals have largely remained unpublished or unexplored in contemporary works. By Names and Images remedies this lack by providing detailed and clear instructions for the visualisations, spiritual connections and energetic practices required for every major GD practice and ritual, as well as several unpublished techniques. Focusing on the meanings and use of sacred names and practical techniques of visualisation, the book thoroughly explores meditation and divination, purification ritual, invocation and evocation, grades of initiation, and direct experience of the inner realms. Also covered is an explanation of the Qabalah and its use as a magical framework. While the book is sufficiently practical and clearly explained to be of huge benefit to a newcomer to magic, its primary aim is to allow people already practicing the Golden Dawn system to do so more effectively, and to be touched by the amazing spiritual blessings the rituals offer.”
This list is certainly not exhaustive – I could have included many further books by authors like Pat Zalewski, John Michael Greer and others. And I could have included even more by authors like the Ciceros and Donald Michael Kraig. However, I think this list is certainly more than enough to give you a sound start and a well-rounded understanding of the Golden Dawn and its magickal tradition. It will also help you to avoid wasting your time and money on books that are of lesser quality, or just re-hashes of what has already been written by the fine authors listed above.
There is also a lot of good material still in the works, too – so I’ll likely be expanding this list in the future. Meanwhile, if this list isn’t enough to keep you occupied, check out this post listing the best Golden Dawn, Hermetic and Rosicrucian blogs out there – so you can keep your eyes on the ever-developing Western Mystery Tradition.
Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
Greetings Angel Magicians!
I recently submitted my latest book on Enochian magick. This one is a practical manual – a grimoire. The publisher loves it, and we are moving forward with the editing process. Plus, we’re considering ideas for titles and cover design. (And that is why I’m posting this – see further down.)
The book is intended to explain what Enochian Magick really is – especially for those who are just beginning to look into the system. It will serve as a study guide when you read more advanced texts AND it will serve as a functional Enochian Grimoire – outlining step-by-step how to perform all of the rituals for the Heptarchia, Gebofal (the Liber Loagaeth system) and the Great Table. (Much of this has never seen print before.)
It is in three parts – the first is a general overview of the history of the Enochian Tradition. The second part lays out the system as John Dee recorded it. The third part outlines the Golden Dawn recension of the material - including their use of the “Reformed Table of Raphael” and an overview of the Concourse of the Forces.
Both the second and third parts (the actual grimoires) contain the step-by-step instructions for performing the rituals. I don’t waste time on all the ciphers and word squares from which Dee decrypted the system, nor with endless quotes from the Dee journals. I do nothing at all to complicate what is otherwise a simple and straight-forward system of Renaissance Angel magick. I just lay out the system as Dee himself would have practiced it. Then I do the same for the Golden Dawn system. Both Dee-purist and Golden Dawn practices are kept entirely separate, and the differences between the two are plainly explained.
Now, the publisher has asked me what I would like the cover to look like. Personally, I would like it to be a classy cover – akin to what they used on the dust-jackets for The Angelical Language. I don’t want to use the Seal of Truth as that has been done to death. I love the cover of Don Tyson’s “Enochian Magick for Beginners”, but that’s been used. lol All in all, though, you can probably see what I’m getting at. Not too busy, not too pop, not too “Enochian” – I want it to reflect that this is a grimoire of Angel Magick.
So what do you folks think? What would you like to see on the cover of a book like this? In about a week I will send my best ideas to the publisher. Now is your chance to put in a word on what you would like to see as well. Let me know!
Greetings, Fratres et Sorores!
I recently posted the following questions about G.D. Color Magick to Pat Zalewski’s ‘Golden Dawn Group’ forum. I think you folks will find it interesting as well. This is a subject that has been all-too underexplored, and I think these questions need to be asked as a starting point to further discussion. You are all, of course, invited to reply with your own findings.
Original post: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/golden-dawn-group/message/16022 (I highly suggest you check out the developing thread there as well as the comments section here.)
I would love to see some discussion of the Golden Dawn’s theories of color magick. It is a subject that gets glossed over quite a bit, at least in the published literature. Primarily, I would like to hear some of your thougths on how the colors were applied in a practical sense.
I have seen it stated that the Queen Scale colors are receptive, and should therefore be used when we wish to draw something to us. The King Scale colors, on the other hand, are active and should therefore be used when we wish to project an energy outward into the world. On the surface this might seem to make sense. King = Active and Queen = Passive is pretty basic. Plus, the Minutum Mundum has the Sephiroth in Queen Scale and the Paths in King – as the Paths transmit energy from one place to antoher while the Sephiroth receive it. (BUT – more on this later.)
However, this interpretation seems overly simplistic – and comes with some significant problems. For example, the walls of the Vault are in the King Scale, but I see nothing about the Vault that indicates its intent is *only* to radiate energy out into the world. During initiations and much of the Vault work I have seen, they are used to draw energy into the Vault and the adept working therein.
Another interesting conflict comes with the Minutum Mundum itself. When we view that diagram from the Four World perspective – an entire Minutum Mundum in each World – what we call the “Sephiroth” technically reside in Atziluth. (Consider their analogy with the Gnostic Aeons in the Pleroma, which is evident in the Sephir Yetzirah – Chapter 1.) Then, in the following three Worlds are the Archangels, Angels and Astrological/Planetary Spheres respectively. Meanwhile, the walls of the Vault represent the Planetary Spheres that make up the physical universe or Assiah.
The conflict here is that the Sephiroth are given in the Queen Scale while the Astrological Spheres (represented by the Paths) are given in the King. One would *think*, in the Golden Dawn, that the pure Sephiroth should be in the King/Atziluth Scale and the Planetary Spheres should be in the Princess/Assiah Scale. Yet this is not the case.
That brings us back to the King = Active for the Paths and Queen = Passive for the Sephiroth concept. I called this simplistic before, because it does not illustrate a complete understanding of the Sephiroth. Each individual sphere covers a series of “stages” that run from the Receptive (receiving the energy from a previous sphere, so that the two energeis are mixed) to the Static (the pure force of the sphere in question) to the Active (transmitting its energy to the next sphere, where we find a new mixture). Much the same can be said of the Paths – which receive energy on one end and transmit it at the other.
Finally – NONE of the above even addresses the meanings and uses of the Prince and Princess Scales. These two scales are hardly ever mentioned.
I think that Olen Rush has shone some light on these conflicts, when he shared his Minutum Mundums in the different Scales. (UPDATE: Also see this link.) It suggests that the usual diagram we see is just one example, illutrating one point. Other Minutum Mundums are possible – at least one for each of the four Worlds (for starters).
But how should this translate into practical work? In my experience, the Queen Scale color of a Sephirah is used when invoking the forces of the Sephirah itself – meaning the *entire* realm of the Sephirah in question, including its Divinity, Archangelic, Angelic and Planetary forces. This is usually done for spiritual advancement (and we might assign it to Ma’aseh Berashith). Meanwhile, the King Scale color of a Planet it used when we want to focus upon an Assiatic planetary sphere – usually for practical magick (so we might assign it to Ma’aseh Merkavah). Thus, for example, we would use Orange for Hod work and Yellow for Mercury work.
But why should that be? Why would we not use the King Scale for Hod, and the Princess Scale for Mercury? (And, of course, the Queen Scale for work with Michael Hodiel and the Prince Scale for work with the Beni Elohim?)
And, along the same lines, why are the Prince and Princess Scales hardly ever used at all? What are their proper uses?
Obviously there is a lot of material to study here – and I wonder how some of our past and present adepts have made use of the Scales in their own magick.
To aid in this discussion, here are some helpful links. I’ll update this post with more links as things progress:
The Four Color Scales
The Rose and the Scales by Bill Heidrick
Mystikal Scents Occult Shop is Proud to Welcome
Chic and Sandra Tabatha Cicero
Senior Adepts of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
Authors of such books as Self Initiation Into the Golden Dawn Tradition, Creating Magical Tools, The Essential Golden Dawn and Tarot Talismans
Come and Meet Them in Brandon, Florida on
October 7th, 2012
from 1 – 3:30pm (Eastern Time)
Only $15. This is a unique opportunity!
Call to reserve your spot while they last!
9545 E. Fowler Ave.
Thonotosassa, FL., 33592
The Ciceros’ have been asked to host Class 6 of Aaron Leitch’s and Carrie Mikell’s Ceremonial Magick Course – where they will speak on a subject of their choosing (and/or lead us in a ritual). However, you are NOT required to attend the previous classes to join us for this stand-alone event! After the class, the Ciceros will be happy to sign books. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn directly from the Golden Dawn’s leading experts!
Greetings North Carolinians!
I’ll be in your neck o’ the woods toward the end of August (the 25th and 26th), and you’ll have FOUR chances to come see me! I’ll be covering Solomonic and Golden Dawn subjects. See below for information about each event:
Event 1: A Discussion on Solomonic Magick
Come Learn The
Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires!
Aaron Leitch, author of Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires and The Angelical Language: Vols. I and II, is a member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and the academic Societas Magica. His writings cover such varied fields as religion, shamanism, Hermeticism, Alchemy, Neo-paganism, Angelology, and Qabalah.
Join Aaron for an intimate discussion on the History, Use, and Magick of the Grimoires, those classic books of Magick.
Saturday 25 August 2012
Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
4907 Garrett Road
Durham, NC 27707
11:00 AM thru 2:00 PM
Contact information: Samuel Scarborough.
Event 2: Golden Dawn Discussion and Ritual
On the evening of the 25th, I will be holding a private discussion session, followed by a ritual, at the KNR Temple of the Stella Matutina. This one is only open to Golden Dawn initiates. No subject has been set for the discussion – you will be encouraged to ask about or discuss anything Golden Dawn related.
The ritual will be a brand new invocation formula for the Outer Order. We will be making contact with the Archangel Raphael Mercuriel.
Then the next day:
Events 3 & 4: Two Ceremonial Classes (Basic and Advanced)
Aaron Leitch of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn will be hosting two Ceremonial Magick workshops on Sunday, August 26th, 2012. The first workshop will cover the basics – such as beginner rituals, exercises, magickal correspondences, etc. After a break for lunch, the second workshop will cover intermediate to advanced concepts – invoking Elemental and Planetary forces, consecration of talismans and basic evocation of spiritual entities.
Sunday, August 26th, 2012
(11am-1pm & 2:30pm-4:30pm)
2618 Hillsborough Rd.
(the NEW location!)
Durham, NC 27705
* The event will be $25 per ticket. An advance registration is required.
* Registration must be completed by August 22nd.
* You will not need previous knowledge of Ceremonial Magick or the Golden Dawn to attend the basics class.
* Aaron’s books will be available in the shop, in case you want to pick up any or all of them.
* He will also be available for book signing, after the classes.
Aaron Leitch is among the preeminent authors of today who deal with matters of Ceremonial, Solomonic and Enochian magick. His work has been published by Llewellyn and the titles include Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires and his double volume set, entitled The Angelical Language.
Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires is both theory and practice for working with the ancient texts of magick, such as The Key of Solomon, The Picatrix, The Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage, The Grimoire Verum, The Arbatel and any other of the cornerstone classic books of the occult that are referred to as “grimoires”.
The Angelical Language is an incredibly in-depth look at the work of Dr. John Dee and the Angelic, or “Enochian” magickal system.
If you want to RSVP for this event, send your full name and phone number to:
You do not want to miss this very special opportunity!
This is going to be a FULL weekend of magick and great discussion! So make sure to reserve your space (or spaces) today.
Avete Fratres et Sorores!
So lately I’ve had this growing urge to seek membership in the S.R.I.America. And I recently found a blog written by a Jewish member of the S.R.I.A (he doesn’t say which branch) that inspired me to share my own thoughts here with you good folks.
For those who don’t know, the S.R.I.America is an irregular branch of the original S.R.I.Anglia – and more specifically of the S.R.I.Scotia. That’s a lot of initials to sort out, I know, but you can read more about these groups and their history here:
My interest lies mainly toward the “…in America” branch – which I called “irregular” because they broke away from the larger family when they decided to admit women and (therefore) non-Masons. I am, myself, a non-Mason so it’s really my only choice.
Why would I chose this particular route? Well, I’m sure it is in no small part because the founders of the original Golden Dawn – Westcott, Mathers and Woodman – were themselves members of the S.R.I.Anglia. In fact, all three of them held the position of Supreme Magus in that organization at different times.
My understanding is that they wished to put their Rosicrucian knowledge to practical (that is, magickal) use – but the S.R.I.A was mainly an academic society that studied Rosicrucianism as an historical curiosity. So, they created the Golden Dawn as a kind of “occult version” of what they were already doing in the S.R.I.A. The two Orders use similar Grade structures and terminology. But the Golden Dawn had an in-depth corpus of occult teaching and practice that the S.R.I.A itself wouldn’t touch. (That’s where the Cipher Manuscripts, the Theosophical Society, Anna Kingsford’s Hermetic Society and all of that stuff came into play.)
Another reason for my interest is surely because I happen to know the Supreme Magus (Imperatrix) of the current S.R.I.America – Tabatha Cicero. She’s a hell of a lady, I must say, and I’ve been most fortunate to have her (and her husband, Chic, of course!) as a teacher in the Golden Dawn for the past 15 years. It has been in the back of my mind for a long time now that she heads the S.R.I.America, and I’m very curious to know “what’s up” on that side of the fence.
I’m sure some of you must be thinking: “But, Aaron, you’re a famous Pagan. Why would you try (or even want) to join a Christian-only Order?”
Well, as for “trying” to join such an Order, I’ve seen no resistance at all from Mrs. Cicero to my proposed membership. In fact, she was quite pleased when I voiced my interest – and she knows very well my stance as a modern Pagan with Neo-pagan origins. In fact, she herself has an interest in Babylonian Paganism (as we can see in her Babylonian Tarot deck) – and that just so happens to be the ancient Paganism that most influenced my own path. (If you’ve known me long enough, you might just remember my early work with the Enuma Elish, the 50 Names of Marduk, the Seven Annunaki, etc. Before I joined the HOGD, I called regularly upon Marduk, Ishtar and the rest of those Gods more regularly than upon the Archangels.)
But I’m digressing… The second part of the above question deserves the closest consideration: why would a Pagan even wish to join a Christian Order? We’ll leave aside the above-illustrated fact that – as Christian Orders go – it’s pretty friendly to Pagans and Neo-pagans. More important is my own stance in regard to Christian ritual and symbolism. As a member of the Golden Dawn, I’ve already encountered my share of Christian-based symbolism. (Especially in the Inner Order.)
And, as a Solomonic mystic I’ve also delved deeply into esoteric Christian belief and practice. As I described in Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires, some of the greatest teachings I received (aside from what I learned from the Santo Ochani Lele) came from a Russian Orthodox Priest named John. He was as instrumental in my ability to make sense of the grimories as Ochani was. In fact, it was John from whom I obtained my Solomonic censor – it having been used for several years in his Orthodox Christian ceremonies, several of which I had attended myself.
Yep – you heard me right. I attended several of John’s masses. I received his blessings. I bowed down and touched my head to the floor when the name GOD was sung in the Psalms. I took the Holy Communion from him. And all this while I was a practicing Wiccan!
I have always said that religious “hang ups” are a burden one should strive to eliminate from one’s mind and spirit. The Divine is not found in any single place or tradition. It is found as surely in Christianity, Judaism and Islam as it is found in Wicca, all forms of Paganism, Shamanism, Sorcery, the Golden Dawn, Masonry and everywhere else human beings have sought it. And you should be able to enter any Church, any Synagogue, any Mosque, any magickal Circle, any Lodge, any sacred space of any kind and experience the Divine. You should be able to visit these places, participate in their ceremonies and mean it with all your heart.
If you find yourself in these places and are repelled by their symbols and the names they use for God, then the problem lies within you – not them. I understand that some of us have had bad experiences with so-called followers of many mainstream religions. But we’re not talking about them here. They don’t represent God or Goddess no matter how much noise they make. You should be able to look past them to the faith they claim to represent.
This is what the Golden Dawn means when its ceremonies say “Hold all religions in reverence, for there is none but contain a ray of the Divine Light which you seek,” That’s not something to which you should just pay lip-service. It is a profound Truth – and it is something each of us must strive to achieve.
So, folks, go out there and participate in a Mass. Attend a Passover meal. Dance naked to the beat of drums around the bonfire. Vibrate words of power. Discuss mathematics and physics with atheists. Seek the Truth from each and every source you can find – because the Truth can only be found through all of them together, not by restricting yourself to just one tiny part of the Truth.
As for me, I think I’ll go see what these S.R.I.A folks have to teach. It’ll be fun.
In LVX and BB
Greetings Fratres et Sorores!
Don Kraig made a blog post worth reading today over at the Llewellyn website. The bulk of the piece is an overview of the Hermetic Virtues fifth anniversary issue, which I have linked to before. However, he also frames this with an excellent discussion of what makes a magickal Order (or, indeed, any spiritual tradition) a living and growing entity.
As Kraig points out, any tradition undergoes phases of growth and expansion, followed by stagnation and eventually decline and death. Perhaps that is a bit of an oversimplification (there are many subtle phases in between these stages), but it works as a general overview. A living and growing tradition is marked by new ideas and innovation, while a tradition on the decline tends to delve into fundamentalism and outright attacks against anyone who would challenge the established dogma. In other words, a dying tradition tenaciously clings to past glory rather than looking forward to an evolving future.
Having established this, Kraig goes on to discuss the Golden Dawn tradition as something of a curiosity. The G.D. is already more than a century old, and has served as the foundation for much of today’s Western occultism – from Thelema to Wicca and many other systems besides. As such, many have adopted the opinion that the G.D. is an example of a stagnant and dying tradition. Often, when one sees a book on the shelf with the words “Golden Dawn” in the title, it is assumed the book will be filled with “just more of the same old stuff” we’ve seen for the past hundred years.
However, when viewed from the standpoint of Kraig’s definition of the life-cycle of a spiritual tradition, does the G.D. really fit the bill of stagnation? He doesn’t think so – and neither do I!
Today, more than ever before, Golden Dawn authors are publishing new and innovative material. Sometimes this takes the form of fresh looks at traditional concepts (for example, Chic Cicero’s explanation of the G.D. magickal tools, or my own analysis of the godforms of the Outer Hall), and sometimes it takes the form of brand new rituals and techniques (such as Sam Scarborough’s Ritual of Chockmah or Darcy Kuntz’ Summer Solstice Ritual).
All of the above examples are to be found in the latest edition of Hermetic Virtues – and they hardly scratch the surface of the new Golden Dawn material that is coming to light these days. And even that does not cover the kind of innovation taking place within private Temples. As the community grows, there is a vast influx of new material and fresh perspectives into the tradition.
What you see in books like Regardie’s The Golden Dawn is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. There is, in fact, a vast array of unpublished oral teachings, original rituals, new forms of invocation, private methods and techniques of magick, re-introduced ancient wisdom and more.
All of these things fit better into Kraig’s definition of a tradition in its phase of growth and expansion. The modern Golden Dawn is just now approaching its second generation, and I don’t think we’ve come even close to hitting the top of the bell-curve.
Kraig ended his post with a list of blogs and websites that I sent to him a while back. All of them concern Western Hermeticism – either directly or indirectly related to the Golden Dawn, or at least written by respected Golden Dawn practitioners. I believe these sites are a wonderful illustration of the kind of growth and innovative ideas we are seeing throughout the Golden Dawn Community today. All of these links can be found in the menu on the left-hand side of this blog, but I’ll post the list below for ease of reference:
Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn Blog
Open Source Order of the Golden Dawn
Hermetic Virtues Magazine
Journal of the Western Mystery Tradition
Deanna Bonds – Path to the Stars
Dean Wilson – Mishkan ha Echad
Frater YShY – The Golden Handshake
Frater YShY – The Ruby Rose and Golden Cross
Morgan Drake Eckstein – Gleamings From the Golden Dawn
Olen Rush – Light of a Golden Day
Peregrin Wildoak – Magic of the Ordinary
Rufus Opus – Head For the Red
Societas Rosicruciana in America
Sr FSO – Flight of Hermes
Alex Sumner – Sol Ascendans
Aaron Leitch – Ananael
Eric Sisco – Apotheosis
Enjoy the journey!