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Those Aren’t (Likely) Dee’s Tools in the British Museum   Leave a comment

Greetings Dee Enthusiasts!

The (Surviving) Dee Collection at the British Museum

It’s not often John Dee pops up in the mainstream – so when he does, you can bet it’s going to get attention from the Angel-botherers. Especially the ones, like me, who count Dee as something of a personal hero. So it’s little surprise this article from CNN is currently making the rounds:

https://www.cnn.com/2021/10/06/world/obsidian-mirror-aztecs-queen-elizabeth-i-scn/

Before you get too excited, there is nothing really ground-breaking here – that is, for most of you who are likely reading this blog and clicked on this particular post. It just says they ran some tests that prove the obsidian mirror in the British Museum’s John Dee Collection is, indeed, from Mexico. Honestly, this was something we already knew – it’s an Aztec mirror. The test just finally proved it. For some reason.

But, of course, I had a few things to say about the museum’s collection of Dee’s magical tools. (I would warn you it might ruin some of your fantasies…. but you’ve already read the title of this blog post, so…) I first wrote a long comment on the Facebook post where I discovered the article. But once I realized how long it was, I decided to also copy it onto my wall in a post of its own. Now that post seems to be making the rounds all on its own – so I decided to post it here, to make it easier to find and share.

So, without further ado, here are some facts about the British Museum’s collection of “John Dee’s” magical tools, in two parts:

PART 1: The black mirror attributed to Dee is not only unproven to have ever belonged to him, but it seems even more likely it did not. Consider this object is in a collection that includes a large golden re-creation of Kelley’s Watchtower Vision – an object Dee was never told to create, that plays no role whatsoever in the magick, and Dee left no record of having created.

To be frank, NONE of “Dee’s” magical objects in the British Museum are certain to have been his. We don’t *know* he cast those wax Seals. Even the now-lost Table of Practice was described as being quite colorful; but Dee was told, when he asked the Angels about using color, they “had no respect of color.” So either Dee decided that meant he could add color, or not, as he wished (which is possible) – or he didn’t make that Table.

Considering these items are in a collection of things very unlikely to have belonged to Dee, AND the fact that old wizards at the time LOVED to claim they had artifacts from ancient wizards they didn’t really have…. well it’s not looking good for the “Dee” collection. (Maybe it should be renamed the “Stuff People Have Claimed Once Belonged to John Dee” exhibit?)

PART 2: Also, and I can’t stress this enough!, Dee never, ever, at ANY time in the journals, used a black mirror to scry the Angels! Not with Barnabus Saul. Not with Kelley. Not with Arthur. Not with…. damn I forget the last dude’s name. [NOTE: there were actually at least two: Bartholomew Hickman and a Mr. Nicholls – the latter of whom did not win Dee’s favor.] But not with any scryer at any time did Dee EVER use a black mirror.

He used a clear quartz stone [sphere] in a frame made for a crystal ball. And this was NOT the stone the Angels “gave” to him.

That one was yet another stone – about the size and shape of an egg, but also kind of flat. IOW – sort of like a lens. That one was for scrying the Parts of the Earth (aka – spying on foreign nations), and while we have the record of an Angel directing Dee to find it, there is no later record of him using it. (I say he probably did, but we don’t have those records. More than likely they were in a separate top-secret military journal that only the Queen and/or Walsingham could see.)”

Posted October 9, 2021 by kheph777 in Uncategorized

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Who is the Great Mother Galvah?   Leave a comment

Greetings Gnostics and Enochites!

One of the most obscure figures found in Dee’s diaries (speaking here of the celestial actors) is the angelic being known as Galvah (interpreted to mean “The End”). She appeared to Dee and Kelley only after most of Liber Loagaeth had been transmitted. In fact, it was specifically Her job to reveal the 49th and final Table of the Book – which itself was said to encompass the End Times and the reign of the Antichrist. Supporting this, Kelley envisions Her being swarmed by vile and dangerous animalistic demons, who fawn upon Her rather than intimidate or attack Her.

If you read only this entry in the journals, you might be forgiven for assuming Galvah is a dark and possibly evil being. Perhaps She is Lilith, or even the Whore of Babylon! This latter would associate Her quite nicely with the Book of Revelation, itself a prophecy of the End Times.

Yet… Galvah is referred to at one point, by the angel Illemese, as “Wisdom.” And another angel – named Madimi – calls Her “mother.” Well, unless you’re in the “Enochian angels are really demons” camp, this doesn’t do much to support Galvah being Babalon the Harlot. As many of you, who have read my Enochian books, are already well aware, I have long argued Galvah is in fact Sophia – Wife of God, Mother of Angels. This would be one of the Gnostic underpinnings of the Enochian system. Her name as given in Dee’s journals – “Galvah” – seems to be directly related to the Table of Loagaeth She was transmitting. The last one.

Makes sense – but doesn’t it seem a bit too “on the nose”? I mean, sure She came to deliver the last Table – and that Table deals with the End Times. So, I’ve always taken for granted that Her name here was primarily centered around Her specific task – to reveal the final Table. But, there has to be more to the name of the Mother of God here… To be fair, I did settle on something of an answer: She is, in fact, one half of the phrase “Alpha and Omega.” The Christos/Logos is the Alpha, and Sophia is the Omega. (In fact, I have written that “Galvah” means something closer to “omega” than to the simple phrase “the end”.) There you go – the deep mystery of Her name revealed!

But…. not really. Don’t get me wrong – I believe this interpretation to be correct. But it doesn’t go very far to explain WHY. It doesn’t give us insight into what Dee, or his angels, were thinking. Why is Sophia the Omega? Why was She sent to reveal the final Table of Loagaeth, instead of (for example) Abaddon/Apollyon – the actual Angel of the Apocalypse who appears in Revelation? (For that matter, why didn’t Raphael reveal it as he had the other 48 Tables?)

The answer, I believe, is found in the Book of Revelation. Above I mentioned the Whore of Babylon, but don’t forget there is another Lady with a starring role in that old pulp: the famous Woman of the Apocalypse. That’s Her pictured at the top of this post (complete with demonic creatures from the Revelation fawning at Her feet.) From Revelation 12, a Divine Woman in the heavens, crowned with the stars, clothed with the Sun, and the Moon at Her feet. She is persecuted by the Dragon but flown to safety by the Angels, where She finally gives birth to a Child. Tradition holds this to be Mary Herself, giving birth to Christ. Or that She is the celestial Mary giving birth to the Church. But Hermeticism calls her Aima Elohim, the Mother of the Gods (or Mother of Angels). She is equated with the Gnostic Sophia, the Jewish Shekinah, as well as with the Hermetic Soul of the World. In Dee’s journals, Galvah is presented in just this way – referred to as the mother of the “Family of Light” angels (Madimi and her siblings) and Kelley’s vision depicting the spirits of nature rushing toward Her and fawning upon Her. As if She were Mother Nature… because She is.

But whether we call Her Sophia, or Mary, or Shekinah, or Aima, or Wife of God, or Mother of God, or Mother of Angels, or Soul of the World, (or etc), there is one title by which She is most widely known even to common folk: the Woman of the Apocalypse. And therein, I believe, lies the key to understanding why She appears as “Galvah” in Dee’s journals. She came, very specifically, in her form of Woman of the Apocalypse in order to reveal the Loagaeth Table concerning that very Apocalypse. (Keep in mind, we are in this case using the word “apocalypse” in it’s erroneous – yet common – meaning of “the end of the world”.) In this sense, “Galvah” is almost literally a shorthand for Her title given in The Book of Revelation. And this tells us everything we need to know about with whom, exactly, Dee and Kelley believed they were speaking.

Zorge!

Posted September 24, 2021 by kheph777 in Uncategorized

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Loagaeth: The First Leaf (as you call it) is the Last of the Book   2 comments

Greetings Enochian Scholars and Mages!

Dr. John Dee

I’m about to receive some blowback on this one, folks, so get ready! Modern Enochian practitioners (and researchers) are making a massive error. And, here’s the real shocker: it’s coming from a misunderstanding of Dee’s journals.

This error seems to have crept into Enochian study (and practice) sometime around the 1990s – but perhaps it was born even earlier. (Frankly I, blame the whole thing on the Golden Dawn – though only indirectly.) It specifically concerns the practical use of the Book of Loagaeth. If you’ve put any study into the tables of Loagaeth, or seen Enochian discussions online, you’ve doubtlessly run into this already, so you’ll be familiar with the following words:

“And of the First leaf, it is the last of the book.”

Many authors will tell you this is what the Angels (specifically the Mother Galvah) said to Dee and Kelley about the Book of Loagaeth; that the first table (which represents God) is really the last (which represents Earth). This certainly reminds one of the old Qabalistic axiom: “Kether is in Malkuth and Malkuth is in Kether.” In order to use Loagaeth, they say, you must understand this infinitely circular nature of Creation, and thereby know the key: that you must work the Book from the LAST table to the FIRST!

And doesn’t that make sense? If the first table of Loagaeth represents God and the final one the Earth, then it seems right to begin at the Earth and work our way toward God. After all, that’s how the Path of Initiation works on the Tree of Life – beginning with 1=10 (in Malkuth) and working upward toward 10=1 (in Kether). Same thing with Loagaeth, right?

Would I be writing this if that were even remotely correct?

Sorry, but that’s not what Galvah said to Dee and Kelley. Nor did she say anything about the circle of nature or working the Book of Loagaeth backward! What she actually said was:

“The first leaf (as you call it) is the last of the book.” [True and Faithful Relation… p 19]

I know that doesn’t sound so different than what I quoted above, but often (and especially in Dee’s journals!) the smallest of details can make the biggest differences. In this case, it’s that little parenthetical comment Galvah made – often deleted by authors who quote her: “(as you call it).” That little comment is important, because it was actually a call-back to something Dee himself had written months previously:

“…in my mind it seemeth requisite that as all the writing and reading of [Angelical] is from right to left, so the beginning of the book must be (as it were, in respect of our most usual manner of books, in all languages of Latin, Greek, English, etc) at the end of the book. And the end, at the beginning, as in the Hebrew Bible. [Five Books of Mystery, Peterson ed., p 411]

In case that was a bit word-salady (Dee lived at the same time as Shakespeare), here is what he is saying: If Angelical is written and read right-to-left (like Hebrew), then it stands to reason the Book of Loagaeth should be written just like a Torah. Hence, the “first page” of the Book by Western standards will actually be the LAST page of the book.

This can be a bit hard to visualize – unless you’re Jewish or Arabic, of course! So if you need to wrap your mind around this, try this exercise:

1 – Grab a book, any book – so long as it is written in a Western language (so, for instance, NOT Hebrew or Arabic). Place the book face up, unopened, on the table in front of you. You’ll be looking at the front cover.

2 – Now open the front cover and look at the first page. It might be a title page, or maybe just a blank page that precedes the title page. All familiar so far, right?

3 – Close the book and turn it face down. It should still be right side up – but you are now looking at the back cover.

4 – Now open the back cover and look at the last page in the book.

5 – Finally close the book again and look at the back cover.

If the book you are looking at were written in Hebrew (like a Torah), you would currently be looking at the FRONT cover of the book. You would read the book by opening the cover from left-to-right, and as you read you would turn the pages from left to right. Flip the book over to what YOU call the front cover, and now you’re looking at the BACK cover of a Torah. For all intents and purposes, from your Western-minded perspective, you would be reading the entire book backwards. In case it helps, here is a photo of a Torah opened to its first page (though to us it looks like the last page):

This is what Galvah was telling Dee: that the first leaf of Loagaeth should actually be where DEE would assume the last page of a book should fall. She was simply confirming what Dee had postulated some time beforehand. So, in the end, the Mother Galvah was not expounding upon the cyclic nature of the Universe. Nor was she instructing him to work the tables of Loagaeth backward! She was just telling Dee to turn the book over.

Sometimes the reality isn’t as sexy.

ADDENDUM: Oh yeah! About the Golden Dawn and their Path of Initiation upward on the Tree of Life: this is why I said I indirectly blame them for this error. Because modern occultists often forget just how deeply the GD affected modern esotericism – and sometimes take things that were original (or at least unique) to the GD as if they were a “given” for all occultism. A great example is our case here: the GD chose to work their Pathways from the bottom upward, while the much older Merkavah Mystics chose to work theirs from God downward. Not only did Dee live quite some time before the GD, but he was heavily influenced by the Merkavah system. Therefore, the tables of Loagaeth are intended to be worked from the highest heaven we can open (table 2) and work our way down to the Earth.

Posted June 22, 2021 by kheph777 in Uncategorized

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The 48 Enochian Keys (Angelic Calling 1)   6 comments

Greetings Enochian Students!

The following analysis of the First Angelical Calling (or Key) is excerpted from The Angelical Language: Vol I.  I plan to release all 19 analyses over several weeks.  Enjoy!

———————

The Angelical Calls are more than just keys to mystical gateways. In fact. they consist of a kind of biblical poetry – psalms, really- that appear to outline a connected message about the life of the Universe. However, exactly what that message says has been debated by Enochian scholars for decades (if not centuries). Like proper biblical literature, the wording is obscure enough that different readers see entirely different messages. Over the years, many have offered their own explanations of the “meaning” behind or within the forty-eight Calls. Here, I will present my own analysis of the poetry, and attempt to demystify the obscure language.

The poetry of the Calls appears to draw from a range of biblical literature. The first. third, and final Calls each contain very Genesis-like aspects- describing the establishment of the physical world as we know it. Calls two, and twelve through eighteen, are reminiscent of psalms or verses from the Song of Solomon- being invocations of the Divine through praise.

The Calls are generally classifiable as apocalyptic writings – which, like Loagaeth, commonly focus upon the cycle of time and the life and death of the Universe. Apocalyptic texts include such canonical books as Ezekiel. Isaiah, Daniel. and the Revelation of St. John. Calls four through fourteen, especially, remind me of verses from the Revelation, Isaiah, and so on.

The word apocalypse is an archaic word for “revelation”- especially in the spiritual/mystical sense. It is through such an apocalypse that the prophets Ezekiel, St. John, and (of course) Enoch were able to glimpse the Divine Throne.  It therefore makes sense that the Calls- and even Loagaeth itself- should be associated with apocalyptic literature. Not only were they received by Kelley and Dee via direct Angelic revelation (making them prophets in their own right), but the practice of the system (called Gebofal, see chapter 4) is intended to result in the revelation of mysteries. Not to mention the fact that the Angels associated the whole system with the Tribulation.

Finally, I must give some attention to the classical Gnostic influence upon these poems. As we have seen in previous chapters, there is an undeniable Gnostic imprint upon Dee’s entire system of magick.  For example, the “thirty Aethyrs” are apparently based upon the thirty Heavens of the Gnostics.  Just as we see in Loagaeth, the Gnostic aspirant was expected to ceremonially open “gateways” leading into the thirty Heavens, receive purification and baptism within each realm, and finally obtain ultimate reunion with God. (See the Gnostic text entitled Pistis Sophia for just one example.)

Meanwhile, the Calls seem to contain a direct Gnostic borrowing in their name for God: Iadbaltoh, translating as “God of Justice (or Righteousness).” This name is suspiciously close to the ancient Gnostic name of the Creator-Ialdabaoth. The etymology of this name is obscure: however, Gnostic scripture records Ialdabaoth’s title of honor as “The God of Righteousness.”

There is also a Gnostic literary style to the poetry. For instance, the Calls written from ladbaltoh’s viewpoint bring to mind such ancient writings as The Thunder-Perfect Intellect– wherein the Gnostic goddess Sophia speaks to her followers. (Remember that Sophia- or Wisdom- appears in Dee’s journals as the Mother of Angels: Galvah.)  The treatment of the Christos (“He That Liveth and Triumpheth”) in the poetry is also very Gnostic in its imagery.

However, I must remind the reader that the classical Gnostic texts we know today were unknown to Dee and Kelley. During their lives, the classical (or Sethian) Gnostic sects had long since been exterminated, and the discovery of the Nag Hammadi texts in Egypt was hundreds of years away.

In the meantime, Gnosticism had lived on in the very foundations of Western esotericism-at the hearts of such movements and philosophies as Hermeticism, Rosicrucianism, and alchemy. Its imagery survived in medieval and Renaissance engravings and the Tarot trumps. Its literature was a heavy influence upon canonical biblical texts (such as the Book of John and Revelation). Many of its mysteries were shared with and adopted by Jewish Merkavah mystics and Qabalists. And its Doctrines were preserved and taught by isolated mystics and secret societies.

There had also been a Gnostic sect within the Catholic Church for a time-founded by a Christian teacher named Valentinus- until it was also exterminated. It would appear that Valentinian philosophy was the primary source of Gnosticism for much of the West, including for men such as Dee.

With all of this taken into account, it is no surprise that the forty-eight Calls should bear the mark of Gnostic symbolism, without being technically classified as Gnostic literature themselves.

For brevity’s sake, I will conclude this introduction and proceed to the analysis of the Calls. In what follows, I have provided the text of each Call. Then, each is broken into “sections” of related passages, and I have included my commentary with each section. The commentary will include further references to the influences upon the poetry we have already discussed.

Call One:

“I reign over you,” sayeth the God of Justice, “In power exalted above the firmaments of wrath: in whose hands the Sun is as a sword, and the Moon a through-thrusting fire.”

Most of Call One appears to be composed of the words of God Himself. As we see in the line above, the speaker of the Call establishes that he is not speaking his own words, but those of the God of Justice (lad Balt or Iadbaltoh). By quoting the very words of the Creator at the time of their creation, the speaker is reminding the Angels of the promises they have made, and the commands given to them by God. (We shall see this elsewhere in the Calls.) The speaker is also proving that he knows these secret words, and thus establishes his own authority.

Remember that Call One is intended to move the “Kings and Ministers of Government” who are also the ‘First Seven”. These are likely the seven Archangels who “stand before the Face of God” as depicte’d in the Revelation of St. John and elsewhere. Among these seven planetary Archangels, those of the Sun and Moon stand as chiefs. The first line of the Call reveals that the God of Justice is so exalted (likely super-celestial as in Gnosticism), even the mighty Sol and Luna arc but tools or weapons in His hands- a sword and a “through-thrusting fire” (fiery arrow).

Which measureth your garments in the midst of my vestures and trussed you together, as the palms of my hands. Whose seats I garnished with the fire of gathering and beautified your garments with admiration. To whom I made a law to govern the Holy Ones, and delivered you a rod (with) the ark of knowledge.

In the first line above, the initial word “which” most likely refers to the Sun and Moon described in the previous line of the Call.  In the study of astrology, the path of the Sun and Moon across the sky is used to distinguish the twelve principal constellations from among the chaotic mass of stars. Because of this, the Sun and Moon are credited with bringing order to chaos, as well as the government of the planetary and zodiacal Angels. From the standpoint of astrology it is Sol and Luna who “truss together” the signs and planets (the kings and ministers of government).  It is they who mark out (measure) the paths of the stars through the vault of the Heavens-  the vestures (territories) of ladbaltoh.

The next line suggcsts that God has garnished the seats of Sol and Luna with the “fire of gathering.” This makes sense when we consider that the Sun and Moon are said to burn with a mere reflection of the Fire from Heaven.  The line then addresses the kings and ministers once again, and suggests that the Sun and Moon have “beautified your garments.”  The planets in our solar system are beautified by glowing with the light reflected from the Sun.

The next line seems to refer to the natural laws set by Iadbaltoh- those that govern the Holy Ones (Angels), and those which they enforce upon the created realm. As the kings and ministers of the Universe, they both hold the rod (scepter) of rulership and represent the ark (or storehouse) of all knowledge. (Remember that Dee was an astrologer, and regularly read the stars for knowledge.)

Moreover, you lifted up your voices and swore obedience and faith to Him that liveth and triumpheth; whose beginning is not, nor end cannot be; which shineth as a flame in the midst of your palace, and reigneth amongst you as the balance of righteousness and truth.

With the word “moreover”, Iadbaltoh changes the subject of his speech. He is, of course, still addressing the kings and ministers, but He suddenly appears to refer to a Divinity distinct from Himself- “Him that Liveth and Triumpeth.” This would seem to be a direct reference to the Christos– the Anointed One who descends from Heaven to take on a body of flesh and triumph over evil (“liveth and triumpheth”). In the Book of Revelation, the Christos conquers the physical realm and is established as eternal King.

We have already discussed the Gnostic Christos (also called the Logos, or Word). It is both self-created and eternal, both distinct from and part of the Highest God. The descriptive terms used in Call One to describe “Him that liveth … ” are typical of the Christos. He is described as eternal, and (in the same spirit of the Call thus far) is associated intimately with solar imagery. He “shineth as a flame” in the midst of the palace of the Holy Ones, as the Sun shines in the center of our solar system. Both the Christos in Heaven and the Sun in the celestial realm are the central pillar and balance. (Interestingly, Gnostic texts describe the Christos’ first act as that of bringing balance to the realm of the Aeons. It then descended to the physical realm, to do the same here.). Therefore, Call One serves to remind the Angelic rulers of the Universe that they have sworn themselves to both Iadbaltoh and the Christos.

Move, therefore, and show yourselves. Open the mysteries of your creation. Be friendly unto me. For. I am a servant of the same your God; the true worshiper of the Highest.

Finally, the Call ends with an evocational formula – or conjuration.  As we shall see, all of the Calls end with similar conjurations. All of them are spoken by the speaker of the Call rather than by a figure- such as God- being quoted within the Call. However, there arc a couple of instances where Iadbaltoh is quoted within the formula.

NEXT: Angelic Calling 2

Click here for The Angelical Language: Vol I at Llewellyn.com

Posted April 16, 2017 by kheph777 in enochian

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