It was a form of insanity. It was wonderful! Being in church was probably like this, he thought. They were like one whole creature.
Incense suffocated him like poison-gas. He fell out of the church. The void surrounding him would not tolerate a God, and no God could tolerate the void. He ran blindly, fleeing the taste which moved with him.
Ramsey Campbell, Demons by Daylight
The Age of Enlightenment was in full swing: an explosion of philosophy, science, the resurgence of hermeticism and occult experimentation all competed directly with the traditional teachings of the Church, and the Jesuit monopoly, in the Universities and Colleges.
Aristotle’s Children: How Christians, Muslims, and Jews Rediscovered Ancient Wisdom and Illuminated the Middle Ages by Richard E Rubenstein, a 2003 hardcover from Harcourt, is part of the collection at the Reading Room.
“The astonishing story of revelation and transformation in the Middle Ages. When Aristotle’s lost works were translated and available once again, the medieval world was galvanized, the Church and the universities were forever changed, and the stage was set for the Renaissance.” — back cover
“In 1945 an Egyptian peasant unearthed what proved to be the Gnostic Gospels, the sacred books of one of the earliest Christian sects. This landmark study, a winner of both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award, draws on those texts to illuminate the world of the first Christians and to examine the different ways in which both Gnostics and the orthodox constructed God, Christ, and the Church. Did Jesus literally rise from the dead? Was there only one God, and could He be both Father and Mother? Whose version of Christianity came down to us and why did it prevail? Brilliant, provocative, and stunning in its implications, The Gnostic Gospels is a radical yet accessible reconsideration of the origins of the Christian faith.” — back cover
“This is a photo of a pentagram which appears in the architectural details of St. Francis church in Porto, Portugal submitted by Violeta Fc”
The Hermetic Library visual pool is a visual scavenger hunt for images of a living Western Esoteric Tradition.
Images of your ritual or ritual space, images of sigils or tools, showing off your own library or special volume from the restricted stacks, sacred spaces and places, esoteric artefacts and installations, inspired paintings and people — these and much more are part of the culture and practice of magick.
“The ‘Black Mass’ is a totally different matter.
I could not celebrate it if I wanted to, for I am not a consecrated priest of the Christian Church.
The celebrant must be a priest, for the whole idea of the practice is to profane the Sacrament of the Eucharist. Therefore you must believe in the truth of the cult and the efficacy of its ritual.” [via, also]