Archive for the ‘nick farrell’ Tag

RELEASED: Ritual Offerings : Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick   2 comments

Greetings fellow sorcerers!

You’ve been waiting for it… and waiting… and it’s finally here!

Nephilim Press has finally released the much-anticipated anthology:

Ritual Offerings Book Shot

Ritual Offerings: Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick

Ritual Offerings:

Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick.

So grab your copy now while supplies last!*

Ritual Offerings Inside-Cover

Ritual Offerings: Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick (inside cover art)

Spirits are not merely an option or tool to be utilized when the magician deems it necessary. Spirits are the very heart and soul of all magick. A consecrated talisman has a spirit attached to it that contributes to the talisman’s power, the incantations we use work because the spirits heard them and acted. We are not alone when cast our spells; our patrons and familiars are always present, casting the spells with us.

Throughout history, ritual offerings have been the central pillar of all magick and religion. Very often, a magickal ritual consists of nothing more than the making of a prescribed offering to a particular spirit in a specified time and place, yet here in the West, the making of an offering has been equated with the worship of the spirit receiving it. The act of offering a spirit something as payment for services rendered has a close association with the dreaded “pact with the Devil,” by which a magician surely sells his soul to damnation, but to the rest of the world an offering is intended to feed and empower a spiritual entity, and to pay it fairly for its aid.

The art of making proper offerings to the spirits is a complex one, rife with strict protocols and warnings, but if you take the time to learn this ancient and powerful art, it will supercharge your magick like nothing you’ve experienced before.

Strictly Limited to 900 numbered copies and filled with over 280 pages of essays and actual photos of authors’ ritual altars, Ritual Offerings unites twelve practicing occultists who share their knowledge and experience with this fascinating and important subject. Traditions from around the world such as Solomonic magick, Tibetan Buddhism, New Orleans and Hatian Voudou, Western Hermetic Theurgy and more are discussed in great detail. Regardless of your tradition, Ritual Offerings will guide you in feeding your patrons and familiars safely and effectively and contribute to our overall success and growth as a practitioner.

Altar and Offerings to Sachiel

Altar and Offerings to Sachiel

Contributors:

Aaron LeitchIntroduction: Magickal Offerings in Western Occultism and Liber Donariorum: the Book of Offerings

Zadkiel: The Elements of Making Offerings: The Offering as Sacrifice

Bryan Garner (Frater Ashen Chassan)Whispers from a Skull: Lessons in Spiritual Offerings from a Conjured Familiar

Brother Moloch: Ancestors & Offering

Frater Rufus Opus: The Back Yard Path toward the Summum Bonum

Denise M. Alvarado: Ritual Offerings in New Orleans Voudou

Jason MillerSevered Head Cakes and Clouds of Dancing Girls: Offerings in Tibetan Buddhism

Nick FarrellOfferings In Roman Deity Magic

Sam Webster, M.Div., Ph.D., founder OSOGDOfferings in Iamblichan Theurgy

Chic Cicero and Sandra Tabatha Cicero: Ritual for the Declaration of Maa-Kheru

Gilberto Strapazon: Offerings in Ceremonial Magick and African Traditional Religions

(* – There are currently plans to release a paperback version of this book once the hardbound numbered copies have sold out.  Stay tuned!)

michael-offering-front

Offering Altar to St. Michael

Samael-Offering1

Offering Altar to Archangel Samael

 Click Here To Order

UPDATE: Ritual Offerings : Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick   Leave a comment

Greetings fellow sorcerers!

 

Ritual Offerings Inside-Cover

Ritual Offerings: Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick (inside cover art)

 

Great news!  I have been contacted by Nephilim Press and informed that Ritual Offerings: Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick has gone to the printer at last!

angry-mob

So calm down already! Sheeesh!

 

I have been told we estimate about six weeks for the book’s delivery.  This will be a limited edition (hard cover of course!), and Nephilim says we might be running a risk of selling out quickly due to the popularity of the individual contributors (see below) and the interest that customers have expressed in pre-orders.

 

Can We Pre-Order the Book??

No, I’m afraid that Nephilim Press still does not take pre-orders.  However, since you are cool enough to be a reader of this blog, you’ll have an opportunity to secure your copy before it is offered to the general public!

Just go to the Nephilim Press Homepage, and subscribe to their newsletter.  When the book becomes available, newsletter subscribers will be notified first – giving you first dibs on your copy of this groundbreaking new manual of magick.  According to Frank over at Nephilim:

“We only send out emails when new titles are available and people who get the newsletter are notified in advance of the general public so that they can be sure to get a copy before sell outs and such. Our subscriber list is 100% confidential.”

So there you have it.  In about a month and a half, if you act quickly enough, you can secure your own copy before they’re gone!

Below is some information and a few excerpts from the book’s introduction, in case you missed them in my last blog post:

 

Throughout history, ritual offerings have been the central pillar of all magick (and religion). Very often, a magickal ritual consists of nothing more than the making of a prescribed offering to a particular spirit in a specified time and place. Yet, here in the West, the making of an offering has been equated with the worship of the spirit receiving it. The act of offering a spirit something as payment for services rendered has close associations with the dreaded “pact with the Devil,” by which a magician surely sells his soul to damnation.

But, to the rest of the world an offering is intended to feed and empower a spiritual entity, and to pay it fairly for the work it does. We cannot expect the spirits to simply manifest what we desire out of thin air—it takes energy for them to accomplish your goals, and they need to get that energy from somewhere.

The art of making proper offerings to spirits is a complex one, rife with strict protocols and warnings for your safety.  But if you take the time to learn this ancient and powerful art, it will supercharge your magick like nothing you’ve experienced before.

Altar and Offerings to Sachiel

Altar and Offerings to Sachiel

 

In Ritual Offerings, twelve practical occultists have come together to share their knowledge and experience with this fascinating subject.  Traditions from around the world are discussed – from Solomonic magick to Tibetan Buddhism, from New Orleans Voodoo and Hatian Voudou to Western Hermetic Theurgy and more.  Regardless of your tradition, this manual will guide you in feeding your patrons and familiars safely and effectively.

Take a look at the all-star line-up in the table of contents:

Aaron LeitchIntroduction: Magickal Offerings in Western Occultism

Aaron Leitch: Liber Donariorum: the Book of Offerings

Zadkiel: The Elements of Making Offerings: The Offering as Sacrifice

Bryan Garner (Frater Ashen Chassan)Whispers from a Skull: Lessons in Spiritual Offerings from a Conjured Familiar

Brother Moloch: Ancestors & Offering

Frater Rufus Opus: The Back Yard Path toward the Summum Bonum

Denise M. Alvarado: Ritual Offerings in New Orleans Voudou

Jason MillerSevered Head Cakes and Clouds of Dancing Girls: Offerings in Tibetan Buddhism

Nick FarrellOfferings In Roman Deity Magic

Sam Webster, M.Div., Ph.D., founder OSOGDOfferings in Iamblichan Theurgy

Chic Cicero and Sandra Tabatha Cicero: Ritual for the Declaration of Maa-Kheru

Gilberto Strapazon: Offerings in Ceremonial Magick and African Traditional Religions

michael-offering-front

Offering Altar to St. Michael

 

Why Ritual Offerings?

Nearly every author in this book has reported that their magick was “supercharged” by the inclusion of ritual offerings in their spells. Likewise, their students have responded with similar results. Spells that used to take weeks to produce results suddenly happen overnight. Summoned spirits that used to appear weak or far away suddenly become strong and very much present.  Talismans begin to have their effect much faster. Why should this be the case?

Because spirits are important to your magick. Today it is quite common to see spirit work listed as a “type” of magick: To accomplish your goals you might choose (for example) a talisman, a spell, an incantation, or summon a spirit. However, this is not how magick was viewed in the ancient world.

Spirits were not merely an option, a tool to be utilized when the magician deemed it necessary. No, spirits were the very heart and soul of all magick. That talisman you consecrated has a spirit attached to it, who  accomplishes the intended goal. The incantation you used worked because the spirits heard it and acted upon it. You were not alone when you cast that spell; your patrons and familiars were present and casting the spell with you. And what about spirit summoning, like we see in grimoires such as the Key of Solomon or the Goetia? Those are methods of first-contact with the spirits, who will then teach the summoner how to do proper magick with things like — you guessed it — talismans, spells, and incantations.

In all of the above, spirits are the common factor. It is the shaman’s relationship with the local spirits that makes his magick work so impressively. He knows how to attract them, gains their respect, and uses ritual offerings to feed and empower them so they can protect the tribe.

Magickal Offerings in Western Occultism

Some still choose to view spirit-feeding as a symbolic act — a kind of earthy sympathetic magick whereby we use food to activate otherwise non-physical (spiritual) currents here on the physical plane. Others, like myself and many of the authors in this book, feel the Western gods, angels, and spirits have gone without feeding for far too long; thus, if you feed them as part of your magick, they respond in a big way. No matter how you choose to interpret it, the knowledgeable use of offerings will produce impressive results; they will “supercharge” your magick.

 

Samael-Offering1

Offering Altar to Archangel Samael

 

By the way, you can read the entire introduction in the current issue of Hermetic Tablet magazine.

 

 

Ritual Offerings : Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick   6 comments

Greetings fellow sorcerers!

 

Ritual Offerings Inside-Cover

Ritual Offerings: Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick (inside cover art)

 

As many of you know, since I’ve teased it here and there over the past few months, I have been editing a new anthology for Nephilim Press entitled Ritual Offerings: Feeding Your Spirits, Empowering Your Magick.

Throughout history, ritual offerings have been the central pillar of all magick (and religion). Very often, a magickal ritual consists of nothing more than the making of a prescribed offering to a particular spirit in a specified time and place. Yet, here in the West, the making of an offering has been equated with the worship of the spirit receiving it. The act of offering a spirit something as payment for services rendered has close associations with the dreaded “pact with the Devil,” by which a magician surely sells his soul to damnation.

But, to the rest of the world an offering is intended to feed and empower a spiritual entity, and to pay it fairly for the work it does. We cannot expect the spirits to simply manifest what we desire out of thin air—it takes energy for them to accomplish your goals, and they need to get that energy from somewhere.

The art of making proper offerings to spirits is a complex one, rife with strict protocols and warnings for your safety.  But if you take the time to learn this ancient and powerful art, it will supercharge your magick like nothing you’ve experienced before.

Altar and Offerings to Sachiel

Altar and Offerings to Sachiel

 

In Ritual Offerings, twelve practical occultists have come together to share their knowledge and experience with this fascinating subject.  Traditions from around the world are discussed – from Solomonic magick to Tibetan Buddhism, from New Orleans Voodoo and Hatian Voudou to Western Hermetic Theurgy and more.  Regardless of your tradition, this manual will guide you in feeding your patrons and familiars safely and effectively.

Take a look at the all-star line-up in the table of contents:

Aaron LeitchIntroduction: Magickal Offerings in Western Occultism

Aaron Leitch: Liber Donariorum: the Book of Offerings

Zadkiel: The Elements of Making Offerings: The Offering as Sacrifice

Bryan Garner (Frater Ashen Chassan)Whispers from a Skull: Lessons in Spiritual Offerings from a Conjured Familiar

Brother Moloch: Ancestors & Offering

Frater Rufus Opus: The Back Yard Path toward the Summum Bonum

Denise M. Alvarado: Ritual Offerings in New Orleans Voudou

Jason MillerSevered Head Cakes and Clouds of Dancing Girls: Offerings in Tibetan Buddhism

Nick FarrellOfferings In Roman Deity Magic

Sam Webster, M.Div., Ph.D., founder OSOGDOfferings in Iamblichan Theurgy

Chic Cicero and Sandra Tabatha Cicero: Ritual for the Declaration of Maa-Kheru

Gilberto Strapazon: Offerings in Ceremonial Magick and African Traditional Religions

michael-offering-front

Offering Altar to St. Michael

 

The final edits have been submitted, and I expect the book to ship to the printer any day now.  Keep an eye on this blog as I will soon announce the release date.  :)  In the meantime, enjoy this excerpt from the introduction:

Samael-Offering1

Offering Altar to Archangel Samael

Why Ritual Offerings?

Nearly every author in this book has reported that their magick was “supercharged” by the inclusion of ritual offerings in their spells. Likewise, their students have responded with similar results. Spells that used to take weeks to produce results suddenly happen overnight. Summoned spirits that used to appear weak or far away suddenly become strong and very much present.  Talismans begin to have their effect much faster. Why should this be the case?

Because spirits are important to your magick. Today it is quite common
to see spirit work listed as a “type” of magick: To accomplish your goals you might choose (for example) a talisman, a spell, an incantation, or summon a spirit. However, this is not how magick was viewed in the ancient world.

Spirits were not merely an option, a tool to be utilized when the magician deemed it necessary. No, spirits were the very heart and soul of all magick. That talisman you consecrated has a spirit attached to it, who  accomplishes the intended goal. The incantation you used worked because the spirits heard it and acted upon it. You were not alone when you cast that spell; your patrons and familiars were present and casting the spell with you. And what about spirit summoning, like we see in grimoires such as the Key of Solomon or the Goetia? Those are methods of first-contact with the spirits, who will then teach the summoner how to do proper magick with things like — you guessed it — talismans, spells, and incantations.

In all of the above, spirits are the common factor. It is the shaman’s relationship with the local spirits that makes his magick work so impressively. He knows how to attract them, gains their respect, and uses ritual offerings to feed and empower them so they can protect the tribe.

Magickal Offerings in Western Occultism

Some still choose to view spirit-feeding as a symbolic act — a kind of earthy sympathetic magick whereby we use food to activate otherwise non-physical (spiritual) currents here on the physical plane. Others, like myself and many of the authors in this book, feel the Western gods, angels, and spirits have gone without feeding for far too long; thus, if you feed them as part of your magick, they respond in a big way. No matter how you choose to interpret it, the knowledgeable use of offerings will produce impressive results; they will “supercharge” your magick.

 

By the way, you can read the entire introduction in the current issue of Hermetic Tablet magazine.

 

 

My Response to Overwhelming Community Support   14 comments

Greetings, brothers and sisters!

I have been pretty quiet over the past couple of days – mainly because I really just “needed a moment.”  What I’ve witnessed over the past 48 hours has utterly floored and humbled me, leaving me (perhaps for the first time ever) speechless.

Umm..... No.

Umm….. No.

But I know I gotta say something, so I’ve been trying to think of how best to share my feelings.  That’s no easy task because I’m really all over the map on this one.  Where do I even begin??

Here’s Looking At You – For Now…

Ok, first let me tell you how all of this came to be.  Last fall, I went to the eye doctor because the vision in my right eye was getting increasingly blurry.  I had to squint one eye closed to do almost anything, and I was getting headaches besides.  I already “suffer” from ocular albinism, which basically means bright light hurts my eyes, I have incredible night vision, but everything else about my vision generally sucks.  Oh, and it means I have a chance of various eye problems as I get older – such as cataracts.  Which I got, in spades.  I was told I have the eyes of a 70 year old man.  lol  Also, I was told that my right eye was already legally blind, and the left eye would follow soon enough.

When it came time to talk payment, my heart sank.  I’m not very experienced with the insurance game (in my youth, I sure as hell couldn’t afford medical) – so I was shocked to learn that my out-of-pocket expenses combined with a ridiculous deductible meant I had to raise over $5000!

And could I spread that out over a payment plan?  Of course not!  This is America, boy!  Cars and televisions come on easy payment plans.  But sick people can just suffer unless they raise the money because fuck sick people.  :(

Bunch of jerks...

Bunch of jerks…

When I told this news to my household, my friend and brother Steve Kinney said, “Screw that, we’ll crowd-source that bitch!”  And that was the last I heard of it.  The Holidays followed soon after, and all of our attention and resources had to focus on that.

Those of you who know me have seen the eye patch I’ve worn for the last several months.  Some of you actually thought I was joking around about going blind, and that the eye patch was a prank or weird fashion statement – which officially makes me the Andy Kaufman of the occult world.  lol

Yep – Seems about right…

Then, just two nights ago, Steve up and published the YouCaring website to raise the funds.  I was at work at the time I discovered it, and thought ‘Well, it’s got a month, let’s see how much it can raise.  Every little bit helps.’

What I saw from that point forward was nothing short of incredible.

The Modern Western Occult Community

You guys know the rest of the story, because you ARE the rest of the story.  I believe the first donation came in around noon the following day.  Then – ye Gods! – I think the entire global occult community responded!  I believe I now know what it’s like to “go viral” – because I was suddenly all over Facebook, Twitter, emails, phone calls, etc, etc.  Even Chic Cicero was getting calls.  Many of you, quite rightly, wanted to make sure this was not a hoax or scam before you committed yourselves.

But, once you knew it was real, you all got together and showed such incredible, mind-blowing support.  The full goal of the fund-raiser was reached in less than a day!  I have also been reading the comments you’ve posted to the YouCaring page as well as Facebook, and I have been deeply moved and humbled by the expressions of love, caring, support and well-wishes I have seen there.  I wish I could respond to each and every one of you personally, to express even a small portion of my gratitude for all you have done.  :)

youre-awesome

All too often, you guys are going to read about how awful we occultists are.  You’ll be told we are all ego and no compassion.  You’ll hear that we would rather fight and belittle one another than give the time of day.  You’ll even see it said, emphatically, that there is something wrong with occultists that just makes us horrible people.

And every time you encounter that nonsense, I want you to come back here and read this post.  (Or, even better, read the comments made by the Supporters at the YouCaring page.)  In the past two days, I have seen every wall crumble.  Every hatchet set aside.  Every hard feeling forgotten.  And I have seen Thelemites, Golden Dawners, Pagans, Voodoo and Hoodoo practitioners, Wiccans, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Atheists and more all come together with one single proclamation:  “We take care of our own!”

Unity-Poster

And you did!  We are certainly a dysfunctional family, but when the chips are down and a member of the family is in need we come together and get shit done.  :)

And this isn’t an isolated case!  I’ve seen you guys do this before, and I have no doubt whatsoever you’ll (we’ll) do it again when another member of our family needs emergency help.  Because, yeah, we take care of our own.

Thanks.  And Thanks.  And…  THANKS!  :)

I can’t thank all of you enough!  This Monday I’ll be calling the eye doc to schedule my first surgery.  Within the next couple of months, I will set aside my glasses for the final time since the first grade.  That’s right – you didn’t just step in and keep me from going blind.  They’re going to aim a Buck Rogers laser at my eyeballs and damn well fix them for good.  :)  (I’ll always be an ocular albino, of course, but I’ll be able to actually see for the first time I can remember.)

Ahhhh... Memories

Ahhhh… Memories

Thank you, Steve Kinney, for taking the initiative in setting up this fundraiser.  Without you, I’d still be sitting at home wondering how in the hell I’d save the funds before my left eye finally gave out!  I honestly (honestly!) did not know how many people out there seriously appreciate my work and contributions to the Community.

Thank you Carrie Mikell, my lovely wife, who fielded all the calls and texts and emails that poured in once the fundraiser went live.  If she had a dollar for every time she had to say “Yes, this is real” we wouldn’t have needed nearly as much from the fundraiser!  ;)

I also want to thank all of you who shared and tweeted my story over the internet.  Especially Nick Farrell, who took it and ran with it more than any other, both on his blog and on Facebook.  Even those of you who couldn’t contribute funds (believe me I know how it is!) still got the word out there, which was every bit as important.

Some of you even took the fundraising off the net and into your own circles and temples.  I want to thank you as individuals and as organizations.

Keep an eye on the YouCaring page, and this blog, for further updates.  I’ll post pics – especially before and after shots, and maybe a shot of me throwing my glasses in the trash.  lol

Also, remember that any donations beyond the costs of the surgery and associated expenses (like meds) will go directly to the Himalayan Cataract Project.  Steve researched them, and they are top-of-the-line where it comes to your donations actually getting to the people who need help.  So we’re going to make sure that several people get their eyesight back from this.  ;)

And, have no fear, I’ll be getting to work on the next book this year.  That’s what you guys were paying for, and I have no plans to disappoint!  (Next in the queue, Abramelin!  Then maybe one final Enochian book after that.)

It’s damn hard to have faith in this world, as I’m sure you know.  But I’ll tell you one thing – I’ve got an unshakable faith in our particular corner of it.  If this is who we really are, then I’ve chosen the right life path.

In LVX

Aaron

Posted January 12, 2014 by kheph777 in social commentary

Tagged with , , ,

Chrysi Avgi is not the “Golden Dawn”   7 comments

Greetings Seekers!

Does this really need to be said?  Sadly… yes it probably does.  <SIGH>

 

Seriously... Fuck These Guys

Seriously… Fuck These Guys

 

Frankly, I don’t think anyone who has ever heard of the Golden Dawn is going to confuse us with the Greek neo-fascists Chrysi Avgi (which translates into English as “Golden Dawn”).  But, those folks aren’t the problem.

The real problem is for those who have never heard of us before, and whose first introduction to the term “Golden Dawn” is through the popular media talking about the Greek party.  (Do a Google search on the term now, see what comes up and in what order!)  Then, if those people encounter an actual Hermetic Order of the G.D. book, website, or member they will jump to the immediate conclusion that they are seeing something fascist.

And that can bring real problems.  Previously, if your boss or landlord or (in some cases) extended family discovered that you are into some kind of mysticism called “Golden Dawn”, they would likely think you were way too into Harry Potter and move on.  Now, if those same people were to hear that you practice “Golden Dawn” they might think you’re a closet nazi – which could lead to serious problems for you.

And the real downer is that I don’t think we can do a damned thing about this.  We can make all the noise we want – but the media is not going to take the time to say “…by the way, this Greek Golden Dawn party is not the same as the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn” after each news story about the Greeks.  And most muggles are going to hear about those fascists long before they ever hear about us.

Some have even gone so far as to suggest we change our name.  (Don Kraig and Nick Farrell, I’m looking at you! – find links to their blogs below.)  Personally, I can’t support that course of action because:

 

Damn Skippy

Damn Skippy

 

But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t make some noise.  Sure, by all rights these extremist whackjobs should be beneath our notice.  But we might as well take the effort to state, in no uncertain terms, that we are not associated with these douchebags nor do we sympathize in the least with any fascist or nazi philosophies or tactics.  In any country (or online).

My Order – the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn – has just released this disclaimer:

No Welcome Mat for Extremists

It has come to our attention that an extremist right-wing group in Greece has been making news lately. That in itself would not usually raise a blip on my radar screen, however this particular group calls itself “Chrysi Avgi” which unfortunately translates into English as “Golden Dawn.”  They appear to be a Greek right-wing extremist group, employing many racist, xenophobic beliefs and repugnant tactics. You can read all about them here.

There is absolutely no connection between Greece’s fascist Chrysi Avgi political group and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. The Greek extremist group does not in any way represent the ideals of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.

I would like to state categorically that the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn does not support the ideals and goals of Chrysi Avgi or any other extremist political group in any way, shape, or form. Anyone holding right-wing extremist beliefs or sympathies would be both unsuited and unwelcome in the HOGD. The HOGD has no political leanings in any form or fashion.

Normally I would not even address this topic. I’m certain that students of the Golden Dawn, the Greater Golden Dawn Community, and even casual students of alternative spiritual paths in general, already know instinctively that there is no connection between a Greek political group and any sincere Golden Dawn magical group devoted to the teachings of Westcott, Woodman, and Mathers. However, in this Internet age of abundant information combined with scant comprehension, I feel that I must act to dispel any possible confusion by the general public.

Other articles on this topic can be found here:

Donald Michael Kraig’s Blog

Nick Farrell’s Blog

Ba Iset Order Blog

-Posted by Tabatha

‘Nuff Said.

LVX

Aaron Leitch (Isis Urania)

Posted October 5, 2013 by kheph777 in golden dawn, politics, social commentary

Tagged with , ,

Jake Stratton Kent vs Magickal Lodges pt 1   17 comments

Greetings Aspirants!

JakeKent

Jake Kent reads from Geosophia

It looks like good old Jake Stratton Kent has created a bit of a stir in the ceremonial magic communities. It started with a sort of “manifesto” that he posted on the Solomonic Yahoo Group – explaining the reasons for his opposition to the secret society (or quasi-masonic lodge) model of occultism. It was quickly followed by my own defense of such occult lodges.

This has made for a fairly interesting debate, and I’ve spent the last couple of days considering whether or not I wanted to bring it over here to my blog . But since in that time the entire matter has gone viral – and even Jake has found it necessary to post an Open letter to the Golden Dawn in response – I suppose it would be helpful for me to continue the discussion here.

To bring you up to speed I’ll be posting Jake’s original manifesto here along with his Open Letter to the Golden Dawn. Then I’ll share my thoughts on the subject. But first let me give you a brief explanation of who Jake Kent is and where he is coming from.

Jake is a goetic magician, but that doesn’t mean what you probably think it does. When Jake uses the term “goetia” he’s not talking about the Renaissance grimoire of that name (which we will refer to as the Goetia of Solomon) – nor about something so simplistic as “working with demons”. Instead he is referring to one of the most primordial foundations of Western occultism: the ancient Greek Goen.

Jake explains all of this incredibly well in his seminal work Geosophia – which I highly recommend in my review which you can read here. But for our current purposes I’ll attempt to give a very short and simple explanation. “Goen” was the word for shaman in Greece before the Olympian cults existed. The Goen presided over healing, initiation, magical protection and, most famously, funerary rites. When a person died the Goen were called in as professional mourners at the funeral. (Their ritualized wailing for the dead is why the word goetia is said to translate as “howling.”)  And, of course, these shamanic duties necessarily required the Goen to interact with a host of underworld and “sub-lunary” entities.

These guys were at the very heart of what eventually became the Western Mystery Tradition. Whether it is Orphism, the Eleusinian Mysteries, the Greek Kabiri, the early Christians worshipping in catacombs and tombs or the Golden Dawn’s Hall of Ma’at – you’ll find the Goen in their distant past. Plus, as the Goen we’re quite famous for working with underworld spirits, the term goetia (the craft of the Goen) became synonymous with “witchcraft” (i.e. – working with spirits) and formed the foundation of the Solomonic grimoire tradition.  (Hence the Goetia of Solomon.)

Now, if you have read my books and essays on the subject of Solomonic magick, you know the shamanic roots of the grimoires have been a major focus for me. I have done much to reintroduce Western occult students to the Solomonic system as a form of “urban shamanism” or folk-magick divorced from the trappings of the later lodge-style systems of magick.

And I am proud to say that Jake, with his attempts to redefine the modern misconception of the goetic tradition, has been a co-conspirator with me in these endeavors. I dare say that each of us considers himself a modern incarnation of an obscure type of Western shaman.

Where Jake and I differ is that I am also a practitioner of Golden Dawn lodge-style magick. Jake has his own roots in Thelemic lodges. But where I find beauty and relevance in my order, Jake did not have the best of experiences in his involvement with secret societies.  For him, the lodge was something that he needed to cast off in order to progress in his own quest.  (I’ll save what my lodge has meant in relation to my quest for later.)

I don’t know if I have successfully gotten all of us on the same page, but at least try to keep the above in mind as you read the following manifesto recently published by Jake:

Goetia versus secrecy, Masonry & bogus history

opening remarks

This is close to an outline manifesto, relevant to the POV of my writings and distilled from over 4 decades of involvement in magic, public and private. I’m sure many will reject it out of hand, or mount a defence of aspects of occultism it attacks – but nothing said here is unconsidered; while the unquestioning retention of what it opposes desperately requires critique. Some of it explains why I’m a controversial figure, who many traditionalists find too radical, and ‘post moderns’ consider old fashioned. These easy dismissals are neat ways of avoiding important issues, when in fact the similarities between the extremes are more extensive than the differences, which is part of the problem, as I outline below.

*Goetia versus secrecy, Masonry and bogus history in modern occultism*

The historical links between goetia and shamanism are very strong. If you are familiar with the ‘Greek shaman’ thesis of Burkert et al, ‘goes’ was originally the Greek for shaman, especially as psychopomp. Funnily enough the same word, in its later devalued sense could also mean ‘witch’. Properly understood goetia is – essentially – the one authentic and continuous link the modern Western tradition has with the past, and that includes modern witchcraft (as I believe Hutton pointed out, and he is certainly right historically speaking).

There are various reasons I find the ‘Masonic’ model a dead loss in the many, many areas of modern magic where it applies. I see two reasons for Masonry in magic, one good enough, the other p*** poor. The good enough one was as a cover for free thinkers in an age when – for example – non-attendance at Anglican church was an imprisonable offense in England. That time is over. The other I will come to later.

The whole Secret Society model is not only unhelpful, but actively counter-productive. It is the principle reason why so much energy is expended fighting tiny little wars between factions (between witch groups, between rival Golden Dawns, between thelemic groups etc etc). Energy that could be better spent elsewhere – like incorporating the real advances in recovering our tradition made possible by *non-secretive* sources like academia. Indeed, one reason parts of the grimoire community are advancing faster than any other area nowadays is that it doesn’t automatically include this model! Which, whether in Magical Orders or Witchcraft leads to infighting, stagnation and parochialism. I also have no more time for ‘invented history’, which the entire occult world seems to rely on to an alarming extent. But lets start with secrecy.

Nothing I’ve heard from witch groups or magical orders in the last forty plus years has led me to feel they possess *any* privileged information – let alone insights – regarding goetia. Its been more of the same for decades, indeed since the C19th it has hardly moved at all – at least, not among occultists.

From my perspective, what I’ve learned about goetia in the occult world as manifest since the C19th is very unimpressive. Even if someone is jealously guarding material from deeper into the C18th/C19th it still lacks a lot of context, info and insights now available from modern scholarship, the papyri etc. Things have stood still for so long that modern research has got further along without them, and they don’t want to catch up! Where magic is going is not like where it has been since early modern times, but very few have caught on to that.

Which brings me to the Bertiaux/Grant end of the spectrum, what I call ‘dark fluff’, a major epidemic in recent modern occultism. There are so many ‘darker than thou’ types out there playing silly games with the Qliphoth, Necronomicon, Atlantean initiations and such. The grasp of the roots of magic in this ‘niche’ is even more bogus than the ‘occult establishment’ of the C19th and its offshoots. Indeed, they are much more similar to that establishment than they imagine. Spookying up the Golden Dawn, Crowley and modern witchcraft with a dash of Lovecraft and Qliphoth etc is no more informed about the real roots of Western magic in goetia. Its just more of the same in all but the most superficial details.

Which brings me to the other aspect of ‘why we used masonry’. It was as a *substitute* for elements of the magical tradition we’d either lost, or felt uncomfortable with in a more orthodox religious environment than currently exists. Virtually every western school has relied on Masonry to fill in the gaps for so long that they are no longer very interested in recovering what it was substituting for. There is so much Masonic bathwater that has to go to make room for real babies in the bath, and change frightens people. Hence bogus history and Masonry predominate, even though there is much better information and different structures available.

The *real* roots of what has been called ‘black magic’ by later philosophies and religions, is in fact an incredibly rich tradition distinct from them, *not defined by opposition to them*, or even reliant on similar terms (qabalistic or neoplatonist).

In short, through clinging to bogus history and the secret society model, we are selling ourselves very short indeed as Western magicians.

ALWays

Jake

 

I quickly responded to this manifesto with my own defense of “secret societies” and the lodge-style systems of magick – as you can read here, and here.  (Really, the entire thread is worth reading.)  To summarize some of the major points I made:  I do not find the magickal lodges to be outdated or irrelevant in the least.  I personally see them as going though something of a Renaissance.  They are sharing information with one another as well as opening themselves to what outside traditions have to teach – in effect overcoming the very shortcomings Jake describes in his manifesto.  While such mistakes have certainly been made in the past, and even some groups may continue to cling to them, they are not intrinsic to the very structure of magickal lodges as Jake suggests.

Before long, this story was picked up by the enigmatic “Watcher of the Dawn” (Goetic magician slams out of date “secret masonic” magic), and even turned up on Nick Farrell’s Blog (Purging masonry from the Golden Dawn).  The comments over on Nick’s blog are worth checking out – with folks like Peregrin Wildoak and even Tabatha Cicero speaking up.

If you do look into the responses made by me and other Golden Dawners like Nick and Peregrin, you might be surprised to discover most of us agree with a good bit of what Jake has to say.  Secret societies that close their doors and their minds to cross-fertilization with outside sources do become stagnant and drift into irrelevancy.  We (well… most of us) are fairly unimpressed with the bogus histories and lineage claims that were popular a century ago.  We are equally unimpressed with what Jake is calling “dark fluff.”  And, yes, those old 19th Century occultists did get a heck of a lot wrong where it came to subjects like goetia.

I think Jake may have been surprised (pleasantly so, I hope) to hear from so many Golden Dawners who did not fit his idea of stodgy close-minded tradition-hoarders.  Contrary to what he thought, we are open to new ideas, new scholarship and new ways of doing things.  Take for example this gem I shared with him on the Solomonic group:

For example, when we do angelic invocations in the G.D. Temple my wife and I (with our funky ATR background) bring food offerings. When we first did this, it was quite shocking to the other members of the Temple. They didn’t know what to make of it. But once they saw it in action, they got it.

One time, we drew up an astrological chart for a summoning we intended to do, and discovered that one Planet was in direct opposition to the Planet we intended to work with. No one was sure how to handle the problem – except for me and Carrie. We came to Temple that day with *two* food offerings. We opened the Hall, then went to the West, made an invocation to the opposing Planet and laid out the offering for those spirits. Then, we went to the East and did the same for the Angel we intended to invoke and made our offering there. Then we went on with the summoning without a hitch. Everyone in the Temple was floored.

And this, my friend, was happening in the *Mother Temple* of the HOGD. And that is the kind of thing I’m trying to get across to you. According to your view of my tradition, this could never have happened. Carrie and I would have been restricted from doing it, or asked to leave if we attempted it. And, yes, 30 years ago that might have been the case. But we were in fact given full lee-way to do this, and everyone there learned something from it.

It *is* happening, Jake. Things are not as stagnant in the orders as you think they are.

LVX
Aaron

It was in response to this kind of thing that Jake penned his Open Letter to the Golden Dawn.  For now, I’ll give you a break (and some time, if you’ve a mind to, go read the other blogs and forums I’ve linked in this post).  In the next post I will share Jake’s Open Letter and my responses to it.

 

 

Posted July 27, 2013 by kheph777 in golden dawn

Tagged with , ,

The ‘Golden Dawn Wars’ – Or ‘Much Ado About Nothing’   5 comments

Greetings Faithful Readers!

Nick Farrell recently posted a blog about the upcoming Commentaries on the Golden Dawn Flying Rolls anthology.  He called the post Flying Rolls Book Reveals Golden Dawn Community Secret.  The big secret he believes has been revealed can be summed up in this quote from the post:

Wading through [the list of contributors to the anthology] and the wide range of Golden Dawn groups that these people belong you start to realise that the level of cooperation that exists between these different orders must be considerably higher than many would have you believe.

If you’ve been around the various communities of the Western Mystery Tradition for the last 20 years, then you likely know what Nick is talking about.  I am sad to say that all too many people outside of the Golden Dawn have the impression that our Tradition is overflowing with arrogant jerks who would rather call each other names and accuse one another of outlandish crimes than concentrate on the Great Work. 

I’ve personally run into any number of dedicated occultists who proclaim they wouldn’t give a Golden Dawner the time of day.  Or even that there must be some something flawed in the G.D. system because it “keeps producing spiritually damaged people.”  Perhaps you even feel this way youself.

And that is a very sad thing – becaue the reality of the Golden Dawn is so much different than what you might have seen on the internet.  (Is that really a surprise?)  I’ve been involved in the greater Golden Dawn Community now for the better part of 20 years – and I have yet to see any of the hateful in-fighting that has been proclaimed so loudly on the ‘net.

Oh sure, there have been disagreements.  There have been expulsions.  There have been groups that split up due to irreconcilable differences.  I’ve even known individuals that flat out decide not to work with one another ever again.  All of this is expected from any movement of this size and scope.  But, what is the overall reality of the movement itself?  Is there really something “wrong” with the Golden Dawn?  Does it really produce an endless parade of overblown egos?

Not that I’ve seen in real life.  While the hate gets spewed around by a few trolls on the internet (most of them from outside the Tradition), I’ve seen the various Golden Dawn Orders and independant Temples quietly getting along, and largely ignoring what is going on in the cyber-world.  As Donald Michael Kraig recently posted on Facebook:

I’ve had the honor of knowing some of the people who have written for this [Golden Dawn Commentaries] book. It’s true. There really are no “Golden Dawn wars” today. There will always be those who try to invent them in order to develop an us-vs-them mentality—a common method used to create cults. There will also be disagreements—that’s why there are different GD groups. I take that as a sign of the vitality of the tradition and the passion of those who participate. But most real GD people I’ve met look at those trying to spark controversy and wars that don’t exist and think of what Puck said in Midsummer’s Night Dream: “What fools these mortals be.”

So Don feels the same way Nick and I feel – and we aren’t alone either.  Over the last couple of years, I’ve noticed that the true fraternity of the Golden Dawn community has been slowly seeping onto the internet.

Take, for example, the 30th Anniversary of the Consecration of the HOGD Vault of the Adepti  that took place last year.  A document was drawn up to offer congrats and thanks to Chic and Tabatha Cicero for their work and dedication to the Golden Dawn Tradition – and it was signed by dozens of folks from a host of different Orders, Temples and some unaffiliated individuals.

Later, a Facebook event was created for the same Anniversary – and what started out as dozens of well-wishers turned into hundreds as people from all walks of life added their names and thoughts to the list.  (Click on the link, and you can add yours as well!)

Most recently, the Commentaries on the Golden Dawn Flying Rolls anthology was announced – a book created by members and leaders of several different Golden Dawn groups, all working together to create something worthwhile for students everywhere.

And it isn’t going to stop there, either!  Even now there are projects in the works that transcend all Order affiliations and philosophical differences and illustrate that the Golden Dawn Community is working together in harmony toward the Great Work, with all of you in mind.  :)

So the next time you run into a Golden Dawner, before you jump to any conclusions about what kind of person he or she might be, consider the old addage:  “By their fruits shall ye know them.”

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