“A modern grimoire of New Aeon Magick that consists of a series of Major Sigils crafted as ritually manifested automatic drawings along with arcane writings ‘pertaining’ to them. Thelemic at it’s core, this work is empowered by the energies of the current Aeon of HORUS but is also deeply rooted in other Aeonic energies, most specifically the magickal current of MAAT: the aeon to come which is manifesting here and now as well. Together they form The Double Current. The book is organized by the ‘natures of the spirits manifest’ into five sections that fall under the major Thelemic/Aeonic Archetypes NU, HAD, HERU, MAAT and the Shadow which is PAN. They are representations of abstract laws, powers, and conglomerates of symbols with uniting elements that can be activated and used to access deep strata of the inner-being. They are not to be intellectualized. The Grimoire is both a work of art magick as well as a tool that can be used to help accomplish The Great Work by the open minded New Aeon Adept with Love & Will.” [via]
Jane Wolfe: The Cefalu Diaries 1920 – 1923 by Jane Wolfe, commentary by Aleister Crowley, compiled and introduced by David Shoemaker, the 2008 deluxe edition from College of Thelema of Northern California (now International College of Thelema), is part of the collection at the Reading Room. The papercover version is still available via print on demand.
“A fascinating look into the training undertaken by Jane Wolfe, a student of Aleister Crowley, at the Abbey of Thelema in Cefalu, Sicily. This book collects the bulk of Wolfe’s surviving diary entries from Cefalu, most of which were typed, complete with handwritten commentary from Crowley on many pages. The diary is presented in grayscale facsimile format. Compiled and Introduced by Dr. David Shoemaker.” [via]
“Reigniting the spark of magick in the hearts of a new generation of aspirants!
Have you ever tried to use
(really use it!) to design and implement magical ritual?
Can you read it without your glasses? Can you read it with your glasses?
Can you tell its ג from its נ? Can you pronounce the Hebrew names and words in 777 once you can read them? Can you find your way around the tables quickly and efficiently? (Can you answer “yes” to any of these questions?)
Aleister Crowley’s Liber 777 remains one of the most important occult references of the 20th Century, demonstrating the interrelationships of diverse philosophical, religious, mystical, and magical systems from around the world. one of Crowley’s finest contributions to both practical and theoretical philosophy was this correlation of numerous world traditions, of East and West alike. Yet it has never been very handy for the practicing magician.
Now, this extraordinary compilation by James A. Eshelman, titled 776½, is designed exclusively to support the practice of ceremonial magick, According to its author, “776½ is not quite 777.”
776½ contains 182 tables of the most useful and practical ceremonial information. Although much of this comes originally from 777, most of the tables have been supplemented and expanded. The Hebrew and other letters are large, clear, and readable. The columns have been reorganized into a more useful sequence. Additionally, almost every Hebrew word or Name in the entire work is also transliterated into English to assist the practitioner in pronunciation. numerous typographical and other mistakes from 777 have been corrected.
New tables have been added on such topics as: The Genii and Averse Spirits of the 22 Paths from Liber Arcanorum and Liber Carcerorum; the Thelemic, Scandanavian, Assyro-Babylonian, Celtic, Voudoun, and Santeria panteons; Psychological Attributions of the 32 Paths; use of the Unicursal Hexagram; the Enochian alphabet and three models of its enumeration; and more. Practical correspondences of animals, plant, precious and semiprecious stones, magical weapons, incenses, “magical powers and magical states,” and others have been expanded.
And that’s just the first half of the book!
Supplementing these extensive lists is a new essay on Ritual Construction (which is also a partial study guide to Crowley’s Magick in Theory and Practice) and ten sample magick rituals for such purposes as generating magical force, prosperity, obtaining angelic guardians, remapping your character patterns, the highest spiritual attainments, and The Thelemic Mass.
This third revised edition expands the already popular 1995 edition with new tables and additional data. The instructional essays have been significantly expanded and updated to incorporate new teaching approaches. A new Appendix contains instructions for frequently used small rituals of banishing, invoking, and energizing—including the never-before-published Liber Pleiades.
In this new edition, 776½ has grown so much, it should be renamed 776¾” — back cover
The Mystical and Magical System of the A∴A∴: The Spiritual System of Aleister Crowley & George Cecil Jones Step-by-Step by James A Eshelman, from the College of Thelema, is part of the collection at the Reading Room.
“Initiation is a reality. Humanity has a potential to grow far beyond its native state of consciousness and capability. This growth is a spiritual growth. its fruits inform and empower every facet of human, mortal expression, while disclosing to each of us our own inherently immortal natures.
On this spiritual growth, more than any other thing, the future welfare and progress of humanity depends.
For thousands of years, Adepts have known how to unlock or awaken this growth—how to mature it and unleash genius at will. Beginning in 1906, two such Adepts, Aleister Crowley and George Cecil Jones, organized and made public the mystical and magical disciplines by which any motivated person can achieve this spiritual maturity and have direct experience of realization, liberation, union with God, or cosmic consciousness.
They called their system A∴A∴. Its methods are those of empirical science; its aim, those of devoted religion.
This book explores, step-by-step, the mystical and magical system of the A∴A∴. For many in the West, it is a strange thought that spirituality can be drilled in the same way that a muscle is strengthened. Yet, an ear trained to listen to music detects wondrous subtleties that the untrained ear misses. The same is true of the palate trained to distinguish fine food and wine, or the eye trained to discriminate nuance in any of a thousand areas.
The same is true of spiritual experience. The stages of its unfolding are distinct: the discovery of one’s True Will (or who one is in the Universe), and the practical means of expressing this in the world; the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel (or conscious union with the Divine); and the continued advance toward and through that vast gulf, or Abyss, which lies between humanity and Divinity.
The author, in more than 20 years of experience of the the mystical and magical system of the A∴A∴, has derived enormous value from it. This book is the clearest, most comprehensive presentation of the system ever written.” — back cover
The catalogue comprises our usual mixed selection, ranging from relatively recent reprints to some genuine rarities. Amongst the more unusual books are a copy of what is arguably the most handsome book published by Crowley during his lifetime: The Book of Thoth (1944) limited to 200 signed and numbered copies; as well as a First Edition of The Book of the Goetia of Solomon the King (1904) resplendent in a later black full-leather binding; and a copy of The Winged Beetle (1910), limited to 300 numbered copies thus, a work which famously has an alarming and blasphemous alternate meaning encrypted in its dedication. Also unusual are a near-fine copy of Book 4, Part I (1912), a proof copy of The Equinox, Vol. I No V (1911), and a copy of the “leather-bound” issue of the 1981 Thelema Publishing edition of The Book of the Law, limited to 200 copies. Somewhat quirkier items include two original metal printing blocks for the spine and cover titling of the 1976 Thelema publications edition of “The Book of the Law” and a selection of different editions of Leah Sublime, including the infamous Scratch ‘n’ Sniff Leah Sublime (1996), whose instigator, the appositely pseudonymed Frater Pheremone assured that there really was a scent underneath each of the paper swatches (although perhaps mercifully, whatever odour there was seems unlikely to have survived the passing of time).
A small collection of quite remarkable ephemera, all in Crowley’s handwriting, includes some particularly interesting items, such as a picture postcard of “Voo-doo’s Bar” in 1930s Berlin sent by Crowley to Colonel J. F. C. Carter, of Scotland Yard, in which he jokes about his own activities as an informant and Carter’s concerns for Maria Theresa de Mirimar; and a rough draft of a letter in which “the Beast” accuses a doctor of malpractice, quite possibly on the basis that he had performed abortions, to which Crowley was strongly opposed. Two letters, both signed, from Crowley to Frieda Harris, shed light on their relationship, with one including his musings on his new lodgings, and the other his thoughts on progress with the tarot. A selection of works with contributions by Crowley, includes a number of very scarce magazines with pieces by and about him, including a bound volume of The Idler (1909) which contains the first publication of the short story “The Drug” which was not only the first short story to be sold by Crowley but probably one of the first accounts of a “psychedelic experience” to be published in England. [via]
An irregular hodgepodge of links gathered together … Omnium Gatherum for July 11th, 2014
- Nostalgia back in fashion — Gail Rosenblum, Star Tribune [HT Robert Murch]
“Those who embrace nostalgia excel at maintaining personal relationships and choose healthy social ways of coping with their troubles. When they feel stressed, for example, they tap into previously successful strategies, such as turning to a trusted teacher or parent. If I overcame adversity before, they tell themselves, I can do it again.
When they feel a lack of self-confidence, they remember when they felt valued and loved for who they were and not for what they achieved or earned.
And when they feel uncertain about the future, they wipe the cobwebs off their Ouija board.”
- Aleister Crowley and The OTO — Tobias Churton, disinformation; an excerpt from Aleister Crowley: The Beast in Berlin: Art, Sex, and Magick in the Weimar Republic from Inner Traditions
“Crowley had little concern with Reuss’s treasured image of spiritual descendants of an imaginary body of medieval male Templars sharing secrets of a yogic sexual magic (transmitted from late antiquity) manifesting in the twentieth century as a new Gnostic Catholic Church. For Reuss the Oriental Templars’ great secret was that Jesus Christ and his ‘Beloved Disciple’ had been practicing adepts; Jesus’s semen being held to manifest magical, sacramental power: ‘He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him’ (John 6:56). Reuss consolidated the doctrine that consecrated sexual fluids constituted effective agents of magical, spiritual transformation through contacts established in Paris with French Gnostic Catholic Church clergy Jean Bricaud, Gérard Encausse and other Martinists when Reuss issued Encausse and his associates (including René Guénon) with a patent to administer the Rites of Memphis and Misraïm in 1908; it is believed that in return Reuss received ‘authority’ as a legate or bishop of the Église Catholique Gnostique in Germany. Reuss’s belief that the OTO’s originators were Christian Gnostics did not sit altogether well with his rather general approval of The Book of the Law. Despite this potential disparity of outlook, all might have progressed quite nicely were it not for the inconvenient interruption of World War One.”
“After the war Reuss described the OTO as a body of New Gnostic Christians who rejected the anti-German, that is anti-brotherhood, betrayal of the Versailles Conference and looked for a transnational movement. Crowley did not attend Reuss’s international Freemasonry conference organized in Basle in 1920 for kindred fringe-Masonic representatives worldwide. Thinking about the invitation while in retirement in Cefalù, Sicily, the Beast wondered if he had it in him to combine such a collection of what he considered nonentities into a force.
But what really got Crowley’s goat was that while paying lip service to aspects of The Book of the Law, Reuss was obviously putting distance between himself and his supposed colleague. The reasons for this soon became apparent. Reuss was seeking financial support from AMORC-founder Harvey Spencer Lewis; Reuss offered Lewis an OTO diploma as an inducement to affiliation.”
- Pope Francis’s dance with the devil: For all his modernising, the Catholic church’s leader has enlisted a very old enemy in his battle against secularism — Sophia Deboick, The Guardian [HT Erik Davis]
“The devil continues to be as useful for the modern church as he has been in the past, when he bolstered the case for the burning of heretics. The concept now provides a dramatic way to underscore the dangers of a godless society. The organiser of last week’s course, Dr Giuseppe Ferrari, argues that a rise in the number of people abandoning religion and dabbling in the occult has increased Satan’s power. As head of the Gruppo di Ricerca e Informazione Socio-Religiosa, a Catholic organisation concerned with the threat posed by cults and sects, Ferrari says good exorcists are needed more than ever, since: ‘We live in a disenchanted society, a secularised world that thought it was being emancipated, but where religion is being thrown out, the window is being opened to superstition and irrationality.’
This seems like an extreme position, but it is in perfect alignment with Francis’s views, which go further than his brief mentions of the devil last week suggest. In his very first homily as pope, delivered in the Sistine Chapel on the day after his election, Francis bluntly quoted the French author and Catholic convert Léon Bloy: ‘Anyone who does not pray to the Lord prays to the devil.’”
- Iran Cleric: Jews Use Sorcery to Spy: A mullah at Tehran University told Iranians on official TV that Jews use jinns, or genies, for espionage. Young Iranians laugh, and cry, when they hear such things. — Azadeh Moaveni, The Daily Beast; from the well-it-worked-for-john-007-dee dept.
“Iran’s state broadcaster, known as Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting, IRIB, has never been the country’s most dignified institution. But even by its own standards, the network plunged into a fresh abyss of superstition and fear-mongering with a recent broadcast in which Valiollah Naghipourfar, a cleric and professor at Tehran University, discusses the use of jinns, or genies, in public life.
‘Can jinns be put to use in intelligence gathering?’ the presenter asks ingenuously, as though dragons can also serve as defense ministers and we’ve all entered the realm of the Hobbit.
The cleric nods, as though speaking about a species of exotic elf: ‘The Jew is very practiced in sorcery. Indeed most sorcerers are Jews.’”
“Such paranoia and fear of the other, of course, is typical among the ultra-orthodox of any religion.”
- Cult Rush Week: Pretzels and Wine With Peaches Geldof’s Sex Cult — Cat Ferguson, Gawker
“When I first told friends I was going to a meeting of the New York Ordo Templi Orientis branch, called Tahuti Lodge, the general consensus was that I should try not to die, and I should avoid sexual contact. […] As it turned out, neither of my friends’ concerns proved necessary.”
- Reply to Sandy Robertson’s review of Aleister Crowley: Magick, Rock and Roll, and the Wickedest Man in the World — Gary Lachman
“One of the key questions I explore in the book is why Crowley remained a pop ‘icon’ – apologies for using a much abused and emptied-out term – long after other esoteric figures taken up by the 60s counter culture, like Jung and Madame Blavatsky, no longer were. The answer to that is that Crowley’s philosophy of excess – ‘excess in all directions’, as his friend Louis Wilkinson called it – is purpose built for rock and roll and the pop aesthetics that followed it.”
- rstevens 3.0, tweet
did you know: contracts with satan are null and void if signed with a genuine fisher space pen® – space pen® the anti-superstition choice
— rstevens 3.01 (@rstevens) July 7, 2014
- When Beliefs and Facts Collide — Brendan Nyhan, The Upshot, The New York Times
“In a new study, a Yale Law School professor, Dan Kahan, finds that the divide over belief in evolution between more and less religious people is wider among people who otherwise show familiarity with math and science, which suggests that the problem isn’t a lack of information. When he instead tested whether respondents knew the theory of evolution, omitting mention of belief, there was virtually no difference between more and less religious people with high scientific familiarity. In other words, religious people knew the science; they just weren’t willing to say that they believed in it.”
- Interview: Nicholaj de Mattos Frisvold — Second Heart Magazine
“My arrival to a neo Platonic stance on this issue came initially through my interest for behaviourism and the realization of how an organism can be conditioned to nearly whatever and how inconstant and changeable the human mind and heart is which grew these ideas of dualism solely being a heuristic and not a reality. Later when I studied Advaita philosophy and Renaissance philosophers both from the European and Arabic renaissance a qualified monism took shape and got over the years sharper and sharper. Quite simply if we view everything in terms of polarities we also become more inclined to understand the tension within the fields of being and find the bridges of understanding that widens our horizon and in this the tension between the poles are also experienced less severe. For instance in the thoughts of Ibn Al Arabi we find the concept of Iblis being the limit of divine enfolding – and thus our experience of this concept is one of resistance and opposition, but in truth it serves a quite different function in defining the field of possibility for unfolding.”
- The Persecution of Witches, 21st-Century Style — Mitch Horowitz, The Opinion Pages, The New York Times
“Most people believe that the persecution of ‘witches’ reached its height in the early 1690s with the trials in Salem, Mass., but it is a grim paradox of 21st-century life that violence against people accused of sorcery is very much still with us. Far from fading away, thanks to digital interconnectedness and economic development, witch hunting has become a growing, global problem.”
- Tell Me There Is No Magic — Rue, Rue and Hyssop [HT Sarah Anne Lawless]
“We are walking into the heat scorched arms of summer this weekend, and as some of us keep our heads toward the earth, watching for signs and faerie rings, others are looking skyward again to that opulent display of rocket-fuelled magic.”
- Rewilding Witchcraft: Speaking from the Swamp, Part 1 — Oldidio, The Arrival and the Reunion; a response to Rewilding Witchcraft
“The background setting is chiefly about the decline of humanity’s ability to survive as a species over the coming 100 years or so. The matter is doleful, sobering and utterly important.”
- The Witch and the Wild — Sarah Anne Lawless; a response to Rewilding Witchcraft
“Our witchcraft, nay, our very being must become more wild, more intuitive, and more accepting of nature’s amorality and our inevitable demise if we are to make any difference at all. If we are to preserve what we’ve left behind of the earth in our destructive wake, and if we are to survive in any number as a species, we must rewild ourselves and learn how to live outside of civilization. We must lose our faiths, our religions, our meaningless attachment to nitpicketity details only we as individuals and not a whole care about. We who are importers of foreign magics and alien gods. We must become a different kind of witch. Something that needs no definitions, no boundaries, and no expectations. Something more primal and raw than our current incarnation. Something small, something just outside your door…”
- The Hammer of Thor — Past Horizons
“A small hammer dating to the 10th century was found recently on the Danish Island of Lolland. Over 1000 of these amulets have been found across Northern Europe but the pendant from Lolland is the only one with a runic inscription.”
- A Peek Into The Mystical Lives And Rituals Of Urban Peruvian Shamans — Justina Bakutyte, Beautiful/Decay
“Italy-based photographer Andrea Frazzetta gives us a little glimpse into the lives and rituals of modern healers from Lima, Peru. His project called ‘Urban Shamans’ peeks behind the doors of the rear private shops where shamans, or the so called curanderos, perform their traditional mystical rituals which are not subject to the laws and orders of today’s world.”
- Hannah Kunkle’s Controversial Project Turns Kim Kardashian Into The Devil, The Virgin Mary And Even Jesus — Victoria Casal-Data, Beautiful/Decay
“Brooklyn-based artist Hannah Kunkle puts Kim Kardashian on the altar, literally. Kunkle delivers Kardashian as the Virgin Mary, Medusa, the devil and even Kleopatra. With a flashy net-art inspired aesthetic, the artist takes Kim’s iconic, worshiped image and puts it to work, naturally, with religious/cultish iconography. The controversial juxtaposition is rather riveting as its subtle insights perfectly captures the absurdity of our nation’s obsession with Kardashian and celeb idolatry in general. ‘We have accepted her into our lives via television screens, memes, and Instagram feeds’, she says. ‘If Jay Z is the father and Yeezus is the son, then she is the ever-present holy ghost of pop culture.’”
- Quantum state may be a real thing: Physicists summon up their courage and go after the nature of reality — Chris Lee, Ars Technica [HT disinformation]
“At the very heart of quantum mechanics lies a monster waiting to consume unwary minds. This monster goes by the name The Nature of Reality™. The greatest of physicists have taken one look into its mouth, saw the size of its teeth, and were consumed. Niels Bohr denied the existence of the monster after he nonchalantly (and very quietly) exited the monster’s lair muttering ‘shut up and calculate.’ Einstein caught a glimpse of the teeth and fainted. He was reportedly rescued by Erwin Schrödinger at great personal risk, but neither really recovered from their encounter with the beast.”
- Satanic Feminism – A Soundtrack to Per Faxneld’s Book with Music by Christian von H, Patrik Hultin, Tondurakar, Jesper Erwik Johansson and Kristian Pettersson discussed at Per Faxneld’s Satanic Feminism: A New Approach to the Dissertation? — Sarah Veale, Invocatio
“This is a really creative presentation of the dissertation, one which certainly challenges new scholars to consider the life of their work beyond the written page. It is great to see how this topic has been re-imagined into a totally different context, one which allows the audience to experience the milieu researched by Faxneld in an accessible and immediate way.”
- Fantastically Wrong: Why the Egyptians Worshiped Beetles That Eat Poop for a Living — Matt Simon, WIRED
“And this makes it all the more incredible that humans once revered the dung beetle, from the ancient Egyptians to a 17th-century Jesuit who compared Christ to the bug. These folks got a whole lot wrong about the dung beetle and made some pretty fantastical assumptions, but it turns out that their reverence was totally justified. The dung beetle may live its life in crap, but it’s actually a far more remarkable creature than you think.”
If you’d like to participate in the next Omnium Gatherum, head on over to the Gatherum discussions at the Hrmtc Underground BBS.
Aleister Crowley: The Beast in Berlin: Art, Sex, and Magick in the Weimar Republic by Tobias Churton, a new hardcover volume from Inner Traditions, has arrived at the Reading Room courtesy of the publisher.
“Gnostic poet, painter, writer, and magician Aleister Crowley arrived in Berlin on April 18, 1930. As prophet of his syncretic religion “Thelema,” he wanted to be among the leaders of art and thought, and Berlin, the liberated future-gazing metropolis, wanted him. There he would live, until his hurried departure on June 22, 1932, as Hitler was rapidly rising to power and the black curtain of intolerance came down upon the city.
Known to his friends affectionately as “The Beast,” Crowley saw the closing lights of Berlin’s artistic renaissance of the Weimar period when Berlin played host to many of the world’s most outstanding artists, writers, filmmakers, performers, composers, architects, philosophers, and scientists, including Albert Einstein, Bertolt Brecht, Ethel Mannin, Otto Dix, Aldous Huxley, Jean Ross, Christopher Isherwood, and many other luminaries of a glittering world soon to be trampled into the mud by the global bloodbath of World War II.
Drawing on previously unpublished letters and diary material by Crowley, Tobias Churton examines Crowley’s years in Berlin and his intense focus on his art, his work as a spy for British Intelligence, his colorful love life and sex magick exploits, and his contacts with German Theosophy, Freemasonry, and magical orders. He recounts the fates of Crowley’s colleagues under the Nazis as well as what happened to Crowley’s lost art exhibition–six crates of paintings left behind in Germany as the Gestapo was closing in. Revealing the real Crowley long hidden from the historical record, Churton presents “the Beast” anew in all his ambiguous and, for some, terrifying glory, at a blazing, seminal moment in the history of the world.” — flap copy