Welcome back! I am happy to announce that my Patreon is now live. I’ve thought about starting one for years now, but never really known what to offer as rewards, and what to actually write about. However, I now have a variety of materials that I would like to offer to those who wish to support the blog, and help me continue writing about magick and mysticism, sharing my knowledge, experiences and insight.
The Tiers and Projects
So for now I have created 4 tiers for my Patreon. Over time, I may add more, depending on how well it goes. These tiers correspond to the elements: Earth, Air, Water and Fire. The titles for each tier are derived from Golden Dawn literature, for anyone who is curious. Each tier will grant access to an additional monthly article.
The Earth Tier (Periclinus De Faustis | $2)
So the Earth tier is the first one, and here you get access to Monthly Spellwork, as well as digital resources.
Let’s start with digital resources. Often I create diagrams and mandalas, and also digital versions of seals and sigils for my own work. Occasionally, I also create things like fonts and 3D models. If you subscribe to my Patreon, you will get access to all of these, whenever I make and upload them. This is not a consistent reward, but more of a bonus, and I’ll upload stuff as and when they are ready. Sometimes you might get tree of life diagrams, sometimes simple planetary sigils. I am also working on a Master Mandala, which will certainly be put up, and also things like: an Enochian font, a 3D model of the Tree of Life and flashing tablets for each planet.
As for the consistent, monthly reward for this tier, we have Spellwork. A lot of you know that I create my own spells, rituals and even concoctions (oils, incense, ointments and consumables). As a Patron, you will receive a monthly article about any one of these things. It could be a spell, a ritual, a new recipe, and so on. Many will be of my own creation, many might be channeled from some deity or spirit, and some will be things I have learned from others over the course of my journey.
This is ‘Earth tier’, so most spells will deal with material aspects of life, such as money, love, academics etc. It’s a great place to begin. I will also be sharing a recipe for spiritual drink which attune the spiritual senses. Basically you get a new spell to play around with every month, complete with instructions and details of castings, which often gets ignored. This is good for those who are still learning how magick actually works.
To those who feel they cannot afford the higher tiers, the very first spell will be an effective money spell, which might interest you. With every higher tier, the rewards of the previous tiers will be included. So in the Water tier, all the rewards of the Earth and Air tiers are included etc.
The Air Tier (Poraios De Rejectis | $5)
The Air tier introduces Project Tarot. Since this is the Air tier, it will deal a lot with magickal and spiritual theory, and intellectual understanding.
Project Tarot is an undertaking where every month we will completely analyse and breakdown the symbolism found in a single Tarot card. We won’t just focus on the Major Arcana, but the Minor as well. This is a topic that I am actually very deeply familiar with, and I’m quite disappointed that most Tarot guides do not go down to such a level of analysis. You see, Tarot is not just for divination or fortune telling. You can think of it as a book, and it basically contains the entire theory of magick, encoded into 78 archetypal images. Here I would encourage others to share their opinions and thoughts as well, and perhaps every month we can discuss not just my own ideas and understanding, but those of readers as well. I want this to be interactive.
For now, we will use the standard, A.E. Waite Tarot deck, because it is most common. I may have a look at other decks it, if people are so inclined.
TheWater Tier (Monocris De Astris | $7)
Here I have something special planned. With the Water Tier we move our focus to inner, emotional and visionary aspects, and you get access to Project Theurgia.
Every month I will be invoking one of the 72 Angels of the Shemhamphorasch. And this will be a complete, in depth channeling, starting with the first Angel and going all the way around the Zodiac to the 72nd. As you know, these angels are the counterparts to the 72 Spirits of the Ars Goeita.
As a Patron of the Water tier, you will receive a monthly article summarizing my experience, and containing full details of the Angel, such as its attributions, powers and what it can do for you. I will also channel a sigil and an Angelic mantra for each (similar to demonic enns).
So basically it’s an attempt to create a full, detailed guide to every single Angel of the ha-Shem. I’m not saying I’m the first to have attempted this, but I’m pretty sure mine will be the most detailed, because I will put things in their historical and philosophic context.
This blog will continue as is, and I will still be sharing my ritual experiences here. Project Theurgia will be it’s own thing, and will follow a consistent methodology.
The Fire Tier (Pharos Illuminans | $9)
This is the highest tier, for now. It is the Fire tier, concerning the Will, and the Projection of Energy.
As a patron of this tier, you get access to Project Goetia. It is exactly the same as Project Theurgia, but this time dealing with the 72 Spirits of the Ars Goetia. Just like with the previous tier, I will be evoking each of the Spirits, and sharing an article about them, containing information about each Spirit, its powers, various planetary/elemental attributes, a channeled sigil and an enn/mantra for evocation.
Most likely the sigils for both the Angels and Demons will be colour coded and in digital format, so you can print and use them directly.
With Project goetia I will likely experiment with and try out different techniques for each spirit, and share both my successes and failures with Patrons. Maybe we can refine this down to an art, given enough time and feedback.
Project Goetia is probably one of my greatest spiritual undertakings, besides my experiments with Enochian magick and alchemy, and I am very excited to share this with you.
Now, the important thing to know is that I won’t actually start putting stuff under a tier until I have at least one patron in that tier. So for example, I won’t start Project Tarot until there is at least one Patron in the Air tier and higher, and so on.
I am very thankful to all those who choose to support me financially, just as I am grateful to all those who buy my books, and also to all my readers, who send me warm messages and have stuck by me through thick and thin. Reading about your positive experiences and successes are one of the things that keeps me going, and keeps reminding me that this blog is worth the time and the effort.
So once again, thank you for all the support over the years. All of this is for you, and without you it would have no purpose. I hope you have a great semester ahead, and that all of you make it through these difficult and turbulent times that we find ourselves in.
I will continue to write, and continue to share my ideas in the hope that this knowledge reaches as many people as it can, and that more and more people are able to look beyond the Veil and be prepared for the new age which is dawning. May it be an age of truth, virtue and openness.
Welcome back. Let me do a little follow up to the last post, which was perhaps a bit strange and felt unfinished. It was important to show the history of how and why ideology replaced traditional religion. And additionally, I had to draw attention to the source of human endeavor, which is Will to Power, which is often ignored, and many people they that they alone are correct and that their beliefs are ‘good’, not realising that everyone is driven by the same impulses as them.
We are motivated, to a great extent, by this Will, and it drives us forward. Each person has their own truth, their own ‘god’, and eventually a magician has to discover and speak their own truth, rather than attempting to realize some grand and false ideal they have been conditioned into. Especially in this time where many of the old ideals have fallen from their place.
I began to pursue magick for two reasons: to take control of my life, and to see what was beyond the mundane perception. I started this blog to share insights and experiences I had had, for the benefit of others, and eventually began to weave them into a philosophy.
You see, I was angry, depressed and bored. I was a pawn in someone else’s game, and like everyone around me, I believed that someone else had the keys to my happiness and someone else would create my future. But I found magick, and after my first successful evocation I committed to it.
I went deep. I did not stop at sigils and spells, but I kept following the rabbit hole until I reached Wonderland. It was mostly an escape. But then I tore down the walls, and brought Wonderland up to the Surface. The two integrated, and I no longer had to escape. I knew, from a certain moment, that there was no rabbit hole nor wonderland to begin with. Reality simply is, and magick is not an escape. Magick is reality itself. It is life, a life lived fully.
Even if you feel upset by my ideas and opinions, remember that you were likely drawn to this blog because of my unorthodox approach. To me, all this is absolutely real. Magick is not just psychodrama. It’s all literally true, and the more I realise that, the more my faith strengthens. And the more I feel like it’s okay to open up about these things on this blog. So pardon me, sometimes I need to shake things up a bit.
I waited, for far too long, for older and wiser folk to get around to it. But they’re unhappy and depressed, and they’re just making it worse. Life is so very short. Too short to spend waiting for it to begin. So you know what, fuck it. I’m going to say what I know to be true. Just because I can. Just because I was given the gift of speech, and for no other purpose than that.
Magick And Archetypes
In Magick, we often work with various beings that are not quite of the material plane. We call them gods, demons, angels, spirits, and all manner of other names. Traditionally, religion told us that these spirits or beings have a fixed place and purpose, in relation to humanity.
Isn’t it strange how, in most religious theology, only human beings seem to be evolving? Why is it that only we seem to have a destiny, a mortality, a free will and the ability to sin, while everything else is seemingly eternal and serves only one purpose?
Mainstream religion in the 21st century gives various justifications which have no reasoning nor basis behind them. These beings are shown to not have a Will of their own. They are presented as not growing or evolving, but being as they are forever. It’s quite an anthropocentric view of the Universe, where our own conscious, perceiving Mind alone is special and evolving, and all other things are fixed. In fact, religion acts as if these beings aren’t actually real, and as if religion only has a utilitarian purpose. As Richard Dawkins once joked “all religious people are atheists”. In a weird sort of way, this is true.
Then you come to magick, where many traditions tell you that these beings exist inside of your head. This is why they’re eternal, because they’re actually just projections of your own psyche, like personas who become detatched from you and act as independent characters during a ritual. Of course, this illusion falls apart for any sufficiently experienced magician.
First and foremost, I want you to full understand archetypes.
What are archetypes?
Archetypes was an idea explored most in depth by Carl Gustav Jung, often called the father of modern psychology. Those of you who have studied kabbalah may have heard of the “archetypal” plane as being the highest plane of existence.
Archetypes are essentially prototypes, of behaviors, forms, symbols etc. For example, we can say that there is an archetypes of a ‘chair’, which would be a transcendent object which contains all the defining traits of a chair. All things that we recognize as ‘chairs’ would adhere to its traits and characteristics.
Jung recognised that archetypes are the framework of the human psyche. These archetypes came about as the result of millions of years of evolution, and strongly influence the way we see the world. For example, ‘Mother’ is an archetype, as is ‘Father’. We, as human beings, do not ‘learn’ what mother, father, king, teacher, tyrant, trickster are. We simply have a natural inclination to recognise these archetypal ideas. ‘God’ is an archetype, as is ‘tribe’.
Not only Jung, but various others have also recognised certain archetypes which are universal. Sage, magician, wise man, hero, jester, tyrant, creator, devil, all these are archetypes. Homeland can be an archetype. Even the ‘Known’ and ‘Unknown’ are archetypes, as are Heaven and Hell. You could say that the Magician or occultist is like a archetype of the person who ventures into the Sacred space, while ‘shaman’ is the archetype which is shifting and fluid.
In the last post, we discussed how Culture is the Divine Father, and responsible for morality, which is learned. These archetypes are not ‘learned’, but inherited. They exist within us naturally, and thus they are the product of Nature, the Divine Mother.
But Jung studied these further. This is the most important thing to understand in this post: the projection of archetypes. Essentially, human beings do not just use these archetypes on other people, but also project them onto the world. For example, we project the archetype of ‘Mother’ onto our surroundings, and the place of dwelling. Somehow, millions of years of evolution have molded the human psyche to regard ‘Mother’ as the nourisher and protector. Hence, we say ‘Mother Nature’ and ‘Motherland’. We say ‘God the Father’ and regard our culture and religion as a patriarch. Remember how in the last post we talked about Utopia simply being paradise on earth? In essence, it is simply taking the archetype of Heaven, but instead of projecting this idea to the afterlife, it gets projected to the future here on Earth. Utopian and Dystopian stories are no different than mythology about Heaven and Hell.
Stories and narratives which are extremely compelling are often archetypal in nature. Religion makes strong use of archetypal narratives, as do political ideologies. This is why they replaced religion.
Hero and Saviour can be seen as archetypes too. The longer something is around, the more it gets ‘refined’ and closer to being archetypal. This is why the more ancient a religion gets, the more its power grows. Gautama Buddha was likely a mystic who lived in the 7th-5th centuries BCE. But, over 2000 years, his story has become ‘archetypal’, meaning it has slowly warped and changed to resemble the archetypal story of the ‘Hero’. By the way, this is also why mythology from different parts of the world often has similarities. Human beings have the same archetypes, and all over the world, even in disconnected cultures, these archetypes emerge.
In magick, many traditions make heavy use of archetypal narratives. The myth of Christ, Bacchus, Buddha and Horus are often used to show the stages of magickal initiation. This shows that archetypes are more than just stories and symbols, but behaviours too. They are intrinsically linked to human existence. These figures, by the way, may be real people. But that’s not the point.
We use their legends because these are archetypal. Modern day superheroes are nothing but a modern expression of archetypal figures. Where once people were obsessed with Pantheons of Gods, now they are drawn to characters in pop culture. Superman is particular, is a strong symbol for magicians to study. And yes, the story of Superman was inspired by Nietzsche’s ‘ubermensche’.
People who do not know about archetypes often make the error of claiming that if two cultures have the same mythology, symbols, rituals and language, then one of them must have borrowed or learnt or it from the other. For example, why does the story of Jesus so closely resemble that of Horus and Bacchus? Why did the Mayans and Egyptians built pyramids? Why do so many cultures have the idea of an Earth goddess and a Sky Father? People then, mistakenly, assume that one of these must have ‘stolen’ these ideas from another. Now, there are many cases of overlap and cultural exchange, but not always.
Yes, some cultures have similarities and some religions came from the same place. But all these cultures and religions are simply expressions of the one culture and one religion shared by all humanity, expressed as archetypes all over the world. People respond to these symbols and myths on a very strong and emotional level. We feel that they are ‘true’, as in they are linked deeply to the human experience.
Its almost like the archetype describes characters and a script, and we put on these masks and personas and act out the play, at different times and places.
It isn’t just mythology that is archetypal either. Star Wars is pretty damn archetypal, as is Lord of the Rings. The Journey of Frodo and Luke Skywalker are simply another iteration of the same journey and sacrifices undertaken by Christ, Hercules, Bacchus, Horus and Krishna, or those of Beowulf and Arthur.
This how the Tree of Life works. The Sephiroth represent archetypal categories, to which multiple symbols can be ascribed.
For example, Geburah is the archetype of the War God. Horus, Nergal, Parashurama, Samael, Kamael, Indra, Tyr, Ares, all adhere to this archetype.
The mistake that many, many magicians make is failing to understand what the Tree of Life actually is. For example, they will force a deity like Sekhmet to fit into Tiphareth because she is ‘solar’ or was worshipped as a solar deity. In reality, she is an archetypal War Goddess, and belongs to Geburah. Or perhaps they will force Artemis into Geburah because she is is a Huntress, when her place is clearly Yesod as well.
A deity can even have different attributions. For example, Horus the Avenger may belong to Geburah, the Horus the Prince belongs to Tiphareth. Horus the Elder certainly belongs to Kether.
Human beings, therefore, project the contents of their psyche onto the world. It is my understanding that we project the Archetypes of our own mind onto the Cosmos. A dark forest becomes the archetypal ‘underworld’. A strange epidemic becomes the archetypal Judgement Day. The leader of an enemy nation becomes the archetypal Devil, and a charismatic political leader becomes the Messiah.
Ancient astrologers, projected the archetypal deities onto the constellations. Aries the Warrior, Taurus the Mother, Gemini the Twins, Virgo the Sacred Virgin, Leo the Hero!
When you truly love a person romantically, or truly hate a person, this is more descriptive of you than of them. Because what you’re seeing is a reflection of you, your own archetype of the Lover and the Adversary. This affects your relationship not just with people, but with Spirits, with nations and religions, and with ideas and beliefs and philosophies.
Our life becomes an archetypal journey, a story narrated by our own Mind, filled with archetypal characters, and this is especially true for a magician, who will attempt to see their life paralleled by legends of great heroes and prophets. A fantastic study of this phenomena was done in the book, The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. Despite getting flak for being new age, the book is a solid exploration of the magickal initiation, and written by a openly practicing magician.
But the trouble begins where people do not realise this, and think that the archetypes are outside themselves. And then, the power passes from them to external forces.
Pay close attention to how your magick manifests, how the Deities appear, how your spells work, what you see and what symbols you channel, and what experiences you have. This is your own mind being reflected back at you. This is why you should write it down, and contemplate it.
When the contents of the mind become projected and visible, the magician can interact with them. He can interact with these archetypes, now manifest in the realm of the Unknown into which they have stepped. The magician learns about them, knows them, faces them and embodies them. And then, they recede back into his mind, now integrated into the Ego, which transforms into the Self.
Written here, is the whole secret of the magickal art, to those who will read between the lines.
The Projected Cosmos
You have likely come across the idea in many modern works of magick that magick is all psychodrama. In the 20th century, the scientific method was all the rage. Magick, occultism and spirituality were fast fading into obscurity as weird delusions and primitive superstitions.
Then came along Carl Jung with his revolutionary research on archetypes. Despite being accepted by mainstream science, very few textbooks on psychology will ever give you a full picture of Jung’s work. Jung was openly mystical, and a self proclaimed alchemist. He made absolutely no attempts to hide the full contents of his belief and work. Once, asked if he believed in God, he simply smiled and said “I don’t need to believe. I know”.
But much of it is not promoted. If you look into mainstream psychology today, you’ll see that his dry, scientific analysis is all they look at. Most are too scared to talk about or even admit to the existence of his other works like Aion, to say nothing of The Red Book. The content of these works is too much to be attributed to such a major scientific figure. Then again, no one talks about the major spiritual experiences of Newton, Descartes or many other scientists either.
Magicians too, seem all too happy to say that it is all psychodrama. Scientific materialism is all the rage among many magi these days, who are maybe too keen to be part of the status quo, or simply unwilling to challenge it. But the Gods are real. Let me explain.
Let us revisit archetypes. Consider your ‘Mother’
She is a real person, yes? And onto her, from the moment of your birth, you have projected the archetype of ‘Mother’. To you, she represents Motherhood. Keep in mind that even if it isn’t your biological Mother, you likely have a Mother figure if your life.
But, while this individual is a Mother figure to you, that’s not all she is. She is a lot more than that. An individual in her own right. A complete manifestation of the Universe, with her own Will and Destiny. And yet, within your psyche, and your perception of reality, this individual is a ‘Mother’.
Similarly, you are her Son or Daughter. But to a friend of yours, you might fill a different role, and yet to an enemy, you are the ‘adversary’. To different people, you wear a different mask/persona. In fact, in traditional theater, this is literally what actors do. While the individuals are ever changing, evolving and growing, they exist within your mind as a fixed archetype. The Mother shall always be the Mother, even though she will change a lot in one’s life.
Are the Gods real? They are. They manifest to you within the framework of your spiritual tradition, complete with a name, appearance and traits we have ascribed to them. Sometimes these are symbolic of their own Nature. But beyond that, they have an independent existence, just as you and I. Everything in Nature is alive, evolving and independent, regardless of which mask it wears at which time.
Ares is not just the God of War. This being, or phenomena of Nature, merely filled the role of War god to the ancient Greeks, who dressed him in their cultural symbolism, and gave it a Greek name. And today, we may dress him in our own symbolism. The true nature of this Being shall never be known to us, since we cannot experience the world from it’s perspective, only our own. This same being may have filled different roles/ work different masks at different times for different cultures.
If you want a quick run down on Jung, watch this video. I highly recommend it, and it will help cut down this post by 1000 words.
There are said to be three major components to magick: astrology, alchemy and theurgy. In the first post, we already discussed how the ancient Alchemists projected their minds onto the alchemical processes. These projections are really just archeytpes, and these archetypal stories and characters are encoded into alchemical mythology.
This is even more evident in astrology. Ancient humans projected their archetypes onto the celestial bodies. The constellations formed the 12 core archetypes. The planets came to represent parts of the human psyche, with the Sun being the Ego (the conscious awareness, or Ruach). You may now understand the point of astrology. As the Ego (Sun) goes around the Zodiac, it expresses itself as different archetypes. The ancient people then turned the Cosmos into a map of their own psyche. So when the Ego (sun) is in Virgo, it was understood that the energies of the Virgin archetypes would be more prevalent in people’s conscious awareness. When the sexual drive (Mars) was in Scorpio, it was understood that people would be more driven to explore hidden or taboo sexuality, as Scorpio is the archetype of the Concealer, or Antihero.
The astrological chart is really a map of one’s own consciousness. The constellations are archetypes, the planets are parts of the psyche. This is why tropical astrology works better than sidereal astrology. This is why there’s no ‘correct’ version of astrology. It all depends on which magickal tradition you use. You tap into that current, and us its symbols.
Because yes, archetypes must be understood as symbols. The last aspect of magick, theurgy, is also about projecting archetypes. Theurgy refers to invocations and evocations of various spiritual beings.
You may have heard that a ‘true’ system of magick is one which provides the student with a ‘complete’ set of symbols. This is what that means. A real, effective system of magick takes into account all the parts of the psyche, and the archetypes which they can express. For example, take the system from the O.T.A, who combine the Keys of Solomon with astrology. It gives you 72 angels and 72 demons, each divided under the Zodiac, and by planetary rank, which are under 4 Kings and Watchers. In a sense, you have every archetype you could imagine represented here, and many sub archetypes. This is a COMPLETE system. If you use this system, you do not need to include Pagan or Egyptian gods, or Rosicrucian mysteries.
The same would be said for various schools of Witchcraft, or the Golden Dawn, or Thelema, or Tantric Yoga. However, you have probably come across certain new age schools which basically throw together a hodge podge of random symbols, often deities who are all roughly the same. This is an incomplete system of magick. There is no complete set of archetypes, nor a complete cosmology given. It is based on limited logic and lack of experience, and the previous post should have made it clear why logic and commonsense can only take the magician so far.
The Symbolic Universe
While our axiomatic Values are learned, and therefore unique to each individual, these archetypes are inherited. All of humanity has the same archetypes. This is why they are said to belong to the ‘collective’ unconscious.
This idea is often misunderstood. People think of it as some sort of Hive mind, or some energetic field ‘separate’ from us. But what this really means is that there are certain traits common to all of humanity, and inherited from previous generations. This is the collective unconscious. Archetypes are universal, and passed on from generation to generation. The collective unconscious refers to those parts of the human psyche which we all share.
For millions of years, humanity lived as nomadic hunter gatherers. Our modern agricultural societies, which are only about 12,000 years old, are relatively young by comparison. Therefore, the archetypes we project are reflective of our older, nomadic past.
For example, why do many cultures depict ‘demons’ with reptilian skin, glowing eyes, sharp teeth and claws? Simple, reptiles and carnivorous animals were the biggest threat to our hunter-gatherer ancestors. Even if you’ve never seen a snake, you’ve got a fear of snakes and lions hardwired into your DNA. If you ever see glowing eyes in the dark, your first and most natural reaction would be to run, because your primal consciousness knows it means ‘predator’.
Similarly, many of our Gods of prosperity and fertility are depicted with radiant halos, golden or white clothing and vibrant faces. Because to daytime mammals like us, the Sun represents safety, security, life and warmth. The darkness represents fear, danger and death. Hence our Gods of death often appear dressed in black robes. If we were a nocturnal species, perhaps this symbolism would be inverted.
Let us assume you invoke the God Ares. He is the God of War, and there almost a grantee that he will appear to you as a well built, perhaps bearded, male. This the archetype of the Warrior. For millions of years, women gathered food and men hunted. Our brains are hardwired to recognise the ‘warrior’ as being a physically strong man, perhaps armed with a spear. Interesting how so many war Gods appear with spears, because we have used those for far longer than we have used swords, and perhaps have a natural recognition of it. The God of Wilderness, Pan, on the other hand, shall likely have horns, body hair and hoofs. The God Osiris may appear glowing, wearing white clothing, and a crown, archetypal symbols of purity, power and royalty. Kali may appear with black skin, covered in blood, with fangs and glowing eyes, archetypal symbols representing predators, danger, fear and the nighttime.
Different cultures, in different time periods, projected their archetypes onto the world. This resulted in the birth of various Pantheons. It’s the same Gods you see, and the same fundamental archetypes from the Dawn of time, and perhaps the same beings who embody them, but different manifestations.
In his book Aion, Jung described how when these symbols first appear, they grip the imagination of a culture. But then over prolonged periods of time, they turn stale and boring. Everything that can be gleamed from them has been learned, and they begin to feel empty and hollow. This is quite literally a cultural Ragnarok, or what Nietzsche called the “Twilight of the Idols”.
These symbols, or ‘idols’, die. And then a new set of symbols emerges, more relevant, more meaningful, more powerful. Sometimes, the new symbols may just be a reiteration of older symbols. (Such is the case, for example, with Paganism, Christianity, and neo-Paganism)
Interestingly, I think this is what the mystics of various religions meant when they asked their followers to give up “idolatory”. In a sense, they thought that they could get most people to give up the worship of symbols and work with the forces behind them.
And yet, it seems all such efforts are in vain. Idols do not refer to physical statues, they refer to symbols. But it seems that symbols do not go so easily. Only the most advanced Adept who has gone through all the trials of initiation can successfully give up the symbols and recognize the nameless, formless archetypes that dwell behind them.
Different orientations of these symbols produces different spiritual traditions and religions. This is what is really meant by the phrase “all religions teach the same truth”. It doesn’t mean all religions have the same moral and philosophies, because of course they don’t. But they are all paths to the same primordial, archetypal forces, and teach the same archetypal myths. Although they may be represented by various different symbols, and recognised in various external forces and phenomena, they are inner forces, found within the heart, mind and soul of every human being.
Religion involves the worship of these symbols, to imbibe and commune with the energies behind them, and spirituality involves learning to study and understand them, to increase one’s knowledge. Magick is the work beyond that, to actively call upon them, to embody them and recognize them within one’s own Being.
Nature, The Divine Mother
A lot of people these days are believers of social constructivism: the idea that pretty much all human behavior, beliefs and values are the result of social conditioning.
You know, the idea that human beings are a blank slate at birth and entirely the product of their environment.
The truth is that we are affected by Nature more than we realise. She is our Divine Mother and Her influence remains hidden in the unconscious. So much of what we do and who we are is the result of our genetic predisposition. Recent studies show that even your political leaning is genetic. This is why it’s pointless to debate people over politics, since people do not vote based on facts or beliefs, but rather based on their temperament, which is biological.
The archetypes, whatever they really are, are understood in magick as cosmic concepts. But this isn’t just a concept dreamed up by magicians in the 20th century.
Many mystics throughout the ages have also realised that archetypes are universal. For example, there were many different local religious traditions in ancient India. The ancient priests noticed recurring themes, deities and practices in these traditions, and concluded that many of these deities must be ‘avatars’ of the same larger deities.
And so they made extensive study of these and categorized them. They imagined that there was one single Divine being, and it expressed itself as a few larger Deities. All the deities that were worshipped in the world (as they knew it) were simply avatars of these deities, and then those deities were further avatars of even bigger dieties.
Pretty much the exact same process occurred in other polytheistic cultures like Egypt and Rome, where all the various Gods and myths and cults were identified as different aspects and manifestations of a core pantheon of a dozen or so deities, which in turn were identified with about 3-5 major deities. And when foreign deities were encountered, they were identified with one of the existing deities. This was an early recognition of the concept of universal archetypes, and is called syncretism.
The ancient Hebrews took this a step further, and actually recognised the conceptual nature of archetypes. For example, there were many ancient Semitic deities. Many of them were called as Ba’al (lord) or YHVH (god). You see, YHVH is not the name of a specific deity. The word is a title for a ‘male God’. Their female consorts were called ‘ASRA’, which roughly translates as ‘Wife/consort’.
The Hebrews concluded that all these deities were simply different aspects of the same God/s, and they referred to this simply as ‘Yah’ or Yehovah, meaning Father or God. And so they decided that instead of worshipping many separate deities, they would categorise them and worship the category (archetype) itself. Instead of separately worshipping many Sky fathers or War gods, there would be one primordial ‘Sky Father’ (YHVH) or ‘War God’ (ELHIM GBOR) deity. Since they were concepts, not deities, they were left without name and appearance. Eventually, all 10-12 concepts became identified with a single Divine force.
Now they did end up demonising all the other Gods in the process, but they did have the right idea. It’s just that they thought this made their religion ‘better’ and that the other tribes were worshipping false Gods, which over time became perceived as demonic.
Hopefully you see now that archetypes are not a modern concept. Even before Jung, it was noticed that spirituality and religion were universal expressions. Cultures separated by hundreds of miles would have common spiritual expressions, since these are born from the psyche itself.
This psyche is the child of Nature. It is most of who and what we are.
The Masks of the Cosmos
When magicians encounter the Cosmos, we project our psyche onto it.
The psyche is a perfect Microcosm. It is a reflection of the complete Cosmos, and the Cosmos a reflection of it.
When you cast the circle, you are establishing a symbolic Order. It is ruled by the Sun, the bringer of Light and the Heroic Ideal. The circle itself is ruled by Saturn, the Lord who binds the Universe, and rules boundaries and separations. Beyond the magick circle is the symbolic darkness, is the Chaos, the Mother, the Unknown, and she is the Moon, who reflects the light of the Sun, but also at times becomes entirely dark.
She is the Cosmos in all it’s splendor. And when you invoke the Gods beyond the circle, they are in reality masks worn by the Mother of the Cosmos, just as you yourself are a mask worn by the Father.
But what is the Unknown, exactly? It is wildness, it is animalism. Religion can shun and be afraid of it, but the Horned wild ones are always there, always lurking, waiting for us to take the first step.
One comes into this world surrounded by symbols. We are kept safe within our culture, content to believe in the world as we know it. Even in a chaotic and uncertain time, people will often fall back on something they can rely on, even if it’s a fallible ideology. The forces of Light protect us, discipline us, and prepare us for the world. They are like a bulwark against fear and death.
But the Nightside beckons always, and always it is feared by the many. The magician is the one who looks to it, and at first it glistens with brilliance. Think of how Nature is portrayed in media, as peaceful, gentle and exotic. And it is this shining call to adventure that first draws the magician out of his shell, into the Unknown. He takes on the mask of Horus and follows his Mother Isis to reclaim his birthright.
But then, as he begins to take the Light into the darkness, leaving everything behind in a youthful impulse, suddenly the Mother disappears, and the magician realises with horror what awaits him. For he sees that the Cosmos is cold, harsh and that her laws are absolute. Isis is lost, and Horus is alone faced with Set, the fury and power of the Cosmos itself, which brings it’s entire arsenal against the young God. And here Horus is blinded, because the malice he faces is too great, too powerful and beyond his imagining. And thus he is banished into the desert, where he must wander alone and lament.
But there, Horus finds Hathor, his love, and must make himself worthy of her. Now there is no Isis to protect him, and Set comes ever closer to destroy him. And so here he must delve into the Underworld, which is yet another part of the Unknown. And then the magician sees that the Cosmos he perceived before was just a surface level illusion, and that Her true secrets lie in the darkness, in the crypts and caverns hidden from view, down in the Infernal Empire where there is only confusion.
But Horus must descend. He must pass through the Temples of Darkness unscathed, and he must resist their temptations. He must master their forces. And there, at the lowest point, lies the Sarcophagus of Osiris, his slain father. And now the Cosmos reveals her final mask, as Horus makes the ultimate sacrifice of love to revive his dead father, who returns and the whole of the Underworld is filled with Light, and it becomes a gateway to world beyond. And here the Cosmos shows herself as Osiris reborn!
And only then can Horus truly call himself a Warrior, now worthy of facing Set one final time, and this time he shall succeed, having the whole of the Cosmos assist him in his efforts. He shall succeed and be crowned King! And in this way the Mother reveals her triple aspect. In Pagan witchcraft, this is the Goddess Hecate as Virgin, Crone and Bride. In Tantra, this is the Goddess Shakti as Parvati, Kali and Durga. This is why Tiamat, and Ishtar were represented being half dragon.
The Cosmic mother is the sparkling lady of stars, and yet she is also a serpentine dragon who turns one to stone with a single gaze of her glowing eyes. But if one should stand firm under Her gaze and kneel before her power, she is the radiant and mighty Queen of the Heavens.
It represents the nature of reality at the most fundamental level. It shall be understood that just as here the analogy of the Mother, of Cosmos, and Nature refers quite well to the Human psyche. The Underworld is the Subconscious.
All symbols which surround us as masks worn by the Mother. And the Individual is the Mask of the Father, which shifts and varies also. Magick is the dance of these forces in passionate romance. The magick circle is a symbolic whirling of Light and Shadow, of Fire and Water, which merge and mingle together. And where they meat, the whole of Reality manifests in the conscious perception, which is Airy. The Line which separates the Inner and Outer reality is ruled by Saturn for a reason, since Saturn is ‘The Lord God’, the highest Ideal, the Law, the Reason and the Judge, which is created by the union of the Father and Mother (Order and Chaos/ Culture and nature), which are the also the Son and the Daughter (Sun and Moon).
The impulse to drive the circle outward into Chaos, to expand the Order is ruled by Mars, while the driving forth is towards Venus, his lover who dwells beyond the circle. And Jupiter rules the balance of these forces, while Mercury causes the cosmic dance to go faster and faster, dissolving the boundaries until there shall be only Unity. Sammadhi. Apokalypsis. Gnosis.
The Sacred Feminine
It is often common for magicians, especially ceremonial magicians, to focus too much on the Sacred Masculine. That is to say, to get lost in one’s abstractions and theories. In a hastiness to describe and understand and categorise all the spiritual phenomena, the magician can fail to experience the Unknown even as he walks in its midst. This is the problem with those who ‘have an answer for everything’.
Having absolute surety in everything is masuline, yes, but it is not Sacred. The impulse to expand Order is masculine, but unless it is complemented by the feminine, it is simply a mental tyranny. It is nothing more than ineffectual theories and worldviews which often do not have any basis in reality.
Similarly, some do focus too much on the feminine, but this is rare. This is for those who jump straight into the Chaos and completely disregard all culture, all tradition and indeed, civilisation itself. Here there is only insanity, and many magicians do suffer this fate as well. This insanity is feminine, but it is not sacred. Without the masculine, without a symbolic structure, it is simply a endless void which will consume one’s soul.
The Sacred feminine, then, is Nature. Our true Nature. We, often living inside our own heads, neglect our nature too often, as we do our impulses, our bodies and our emotions. We like to act that we are entirely a product of our own Will and choosing. We like to behave like we can think our way in and out of everything, and think our way to truth and happiness, and explain everything away with thought.
As if millions of years of evolution has no effect on us. As if we can somehow ‘think’ away or ‘will’ away ancient impulses, behaviors and emotions. Our animal instincts towards sex, hunger, and aggression. The traits of our ancestors, their diets, lifestyles and instincts. The way our body works, the way it is meant to move.
And then we wonder, why we are all always so tired and depressed. The Sacred Feminine is not an idea or thought. It is awareness.
Notice your body right now. Is it not aware? Is there not a feeling and awareness from head to toe? And yet, it is not thought. Your hand is aware, but it does not think. Your heart is pumping blood, but it does not require your will.
Are you not aware of the world around you too? How often does one notice the world, and really engage with it. How often is one not thinking about what one has to do, dwelling on pointless and chattering thoughts?
To do true magick, we develop not just a strong Will and Moral compass, but also an Awareness. We also have to tap into our drives and instincts, to become one with the body. We also have to learn to feel our emotions and sensations fully and freely.
To those of you who ask how to learn to feel and sense energy, and perceive spiritual phenomena, this is the answer. Only when we learn to flow with energy, to flow with the world, does the Mother reveal her secrets. For this we do meditation, where we learn to maintain awareness and breathe deeply. We practice mindfulness, and Qigong/ Yoga, so and we become in tune with our bodies and surroundings.
This is the secret also, behind many of the gestures and motions found in magick ritual. They are not mere gestures and salutations that one must memorise and perform, but ways to draw on and direct energies.
And these powers are also developed through suffering. As we discussed before, Nature seems inviting at first. But the moment we leave our mental abstractions and fantasies and engage with Her in reality, we will suddenly be faced with the absolute and inescapable fact that life is suffering. Living in the mind is simply a coping mechanism to numb and relieve this pain.
But if we engage this pain fully, push through it, and learn to endure it, then one’s own spiritual powers shall be developed. A warrior cannot train in his garden forever. Eventually they must face real battle, which will be very different, and only many battles can make a true warrior.
Archetypes are not thoughts or concepts, but the Fundamental principles which govern the Universe, the highest Meta-Gods. To stop living in one’s head will also involve slowly learning to not rely on one’s symbols, and by extension the Gods. Because the Gods certainly are here to help us, but you shall have understood by now that we rarely engage with the Gods directly. Instead, we engage with an ‘image’ of them, created within culture and passed on to us through religion. Too often, magicians are unwilling to alter or expand their various traditions and schools of magick. But then you should have stayed nice and safe within mainstream religion. If you’re going to make the effort to come this far, you may as well take the courage and open up that shell.
Stop being so quick to judge other magicians, to categorise their and your own expereinces, to decide what you agree or disagree with. Stop being to quick to make up your mind or project yourself onto others. This closes the aura to the actual world outside, to reality and to the outer Gods.
And when you invoke the Gods with an open mind, you will begin to see them outside the frameworks you are stuck in, and they will come as they really are. And when one has the recognition that the Cosmos within is mirrored in the Cosmos outside, there will be no fear and uncertainty.
One who understands that by controlling the mind, one can control one’s entire reality, and that everything in one’s life is the result of their own Mind, shall never lose their way or get lost. And if this isn’t obvious, and if you still look for the source of your problems in the world outside, and cannot understand why the World is unfair and cruel: seek the Underworld. There, in the subconscious, are all the problems you cannot seek. Set them right, and the world shall follow suit. Awaken the Father who was slain, and the Mother shall reveal herself in new glory. And this requires sacrifice. Let the first be to embrace the pain, and face the world and life head on.
And although in the last post I told people not to wait for Utopia, that does not mean give up hope. Change is coming, and change HAS come. Look around you, and you will see the world is rapidly changing. So have hope, the world will get better as a new age dawns. But remember that even in the new age, you’re the magician. You’re the one who directs the forces of your life.
That shall be all for this time. I hope you found it helpful and gained some insight. Remember, you do not have to agree or disagree. Just take it as it comes. We all do 🙂
First off, I want to make a quick announcement. Thank you to everyone who purchased The Tree of Life: A Beginner’s Guide. The sales have been good enough that there’s a good chance I will release another e-Grimoire before the end of the year.
I understand that these are difficult and confusing times for some, and as far as I’m concerned all this will continue for at least several more years. This first book was introductory, but from now on I shall focus more on practical magick that can be done to improve one’s life and find one’s path.
But let’s move to today’s topic: Fairy Salve, and how to make it for spiritual and occult purposes.
The Story of the Fairy Ointment
The idea of “Fairy Salve” or Fairy Ointment comes to us from English and Celtic folklore. It’s essentially a folktale.
Like many other stories of its kind, it was most likely the result of strange encounters with some kind of occult phenomena.
There are many variations of the story, but in general it goes like this:
A nurse/midwife is visited at midnight by a strange looking man at her doorstep. He tells her that his wife is too ill to give birth alone, and he needs her help. The midwife is suspicious, but goes along with him in his horse drawn carriage, to his home.
There, she helps deliver the child, and cares for it while the mother recovers. She is instructed by the mother to rub a certain ointment on the baby’s eyes when it wakes up.
In some versions of the tale, the baby is anointed all over its body. Anyway, the baby opens its eyes, and the midwife notices his pupils are large and oddly shaped, almost like slits. But does as she was told, rubbing its eyes with the ointment. Either by accident or out of curiosity, she rubs some of it on her right eye, and immediately her surroundings change.
The small cottage is transformed into an elaborate or luxurious castle. In some versions, it turns into a dank (haha) cave. The midwife sees the child and its mother have turned even more beautiful (or ugly, in the cave version). She sees the baby’s siblings, who also have a strange appearance, playing around and doing all kinds of mischief, and realises she is in the home of pixies.
She doesn’t say anything, and when the father returns she demands to be taken home immediately. She sees the horse that draws the carriage is now pitch black with burning eyes. Upon returning home she is given a large payment. Some days later, she is at the market and sees the strange man, tha father of the baby, at the market. He’s taking whatever he wants from various different stalls, though no one seems to notice.
She immediately calls him out on it for stealing, and he is surprised by this. He demands to know if she can see him, and she says yes (famous last words). In response, he accuses her of stealing as well, and getting involved in things that aren’t her business. Reaching out, he touches the affected eye, saying she wont be seeing fairies anymore. Her right eye is then permanently blinded.
Some versions of this story also involve the nurse being kept prisoner by the fairies until she is recused by her husband. In other versions, she finds the salve in the home of a suspected witch, and later finds the witch’s husband stealing at the market, who then blinds her.
The Fae and English/Irish Folklore
To make fairy salve, it’s important to understand the context of this story. The main takeaway is that the Fairy Salve was believed to be an ointment that helped you see spiritual or otherworldly creatures. From the story it seems even the creatures themselves needed to use it, which is interesting.
Generally speaking, you may be familiar with the friendly and helpful fairies that appear in Fairy Tales, such as those in Cinderella or Snow White. However, all of those stories are German. In this case, we are not referring to the Fairies from the German “Fairy” tales.
Then you might be thinking of the Elves, Dwarves, and other such mythical creatures, with pointed ears and a proud disposition. However, those are from Norse mythology, and this is not the place to get into those.
In Irish and English folklore, the word “Fairy” essentially referred to Spirits that lived alongside humans. This is not referring specifically to good or bad spirits, but rather a vast range of creatures. These are similar to what the Greeks called Nature spirits, or what the Japanese called Ayakashi, and in India they are called Yaksha. While the Norse use a different system of classification, some of their spirits are part of this category. The same can be said for the Arabic Djinn.
Put simply, these are not Gods, nor Demons, nor Angels. In Magick, they are often given the title of Elementals. The main thing to remember is that they live alongside humans in this material plane, not in some place beyond.
The idea of such things has been around ever since humanity started living together in settlements and communities, and staying separate from Nature. At the edge of Civilisation, where human life met the raw forces of Nature, people had strange experiences and thus the idea of the nature spirits came about. Many legends and folk tales refer to a time when these spirits lived with and mingled with humans, but then the two groups fell apart (referring to how humanity became separate from nature). In most cultures, this referred to the spirits of the trees, rocks, deserts, rivers and mountains. Some could be vast, dwelling in mountains, some small, dwelling in grains of rice.
This belief is called Animism, and was/is a part of ‘primitive’ cultures: the idea that everything has a spirit of it’s own. In other cultures, particularly after organised religion came about, people only began to think of these spirits as dwelling in wild places, such as deep in the desert or in unexplored parts of forests. Whether they are friendly depends on the culture, region and geography.
In almost all cases, animals themselves were also considered to be a part of this category. The most well known examples are Native American and Siberian shamanism, where animals are just as much spirits of nature as any mythical creature. To us in our modern societies, this may sound strange, because we have documented animals so well, and even tame and breed them regularly. But to our ancient ancestors, most animals were as strange and magical as any fairy or nymph, not to mention the large number of dangerous wild animals that could attack and kill humans.
Even now, look at the kinds of things we are discovering in the deep sea, which are completely strange and contrary to our expectations. Look at videos or pictures of these things, and see if you don’t feel a sense of mystery, wonder and even fear.
Various cultures then, established all sorts of rules and regulations about how to deal with Nature Spirits, and how to respect their boundaries. This was not mere superstition, but also served to protect people from wandering into the territory of bears, tigers or lions. It kept them safe from various natural phenomena they did not understand. For example, to keep people indoors after night, away from forests and lakes, or to have them stick to roads and not venture off course, to be wary of strangers, to avoid the spread of disease etc. In magick we understand that “as above so below”. Any event occurring on the material plane has a spiritual counterpart, and you will see that all these things that people were afraid of were indeed “Spirits of Nature” .
To those who like films, I highly suggest the 2004 film called The Village. Don’t read any reviews or summaries, just go and watch it. It may give you something to think about.
In England, Scotland and Ireland (and Wales), these were often called the ‘Fae’ (fair folk). “Fair” here means beautiful, not ‘pale’.
Some fae were helpful, some were malicious. The most common distinction I’ve found is between “Night” and “Day” Fae. The Fae/Faery played an important role in the daily lives of people (even more than Gods) and therefore having a good relationship with them was important, as well as keep them at a distance. While the Fae were helpful, they could also be mischievous. They are forces of Nature, and i’m sure I don’t need to tell you that Nature does not always act as humans would like it to.
The fundamental thing to understand is that the Fae weren’t ‘good’ or ‘bad’, but that each things had its own purpose, and acted according to its nature. That is perhaps the greatest difference between modern and ancient humanity. Our ancestors lacked the means to control their lives and environment the way we can. As a result, they were not so arrogant and proud. They understood that Nature had its rules, and they had to live according to it. Things like fire were helpful, but if used incorrectly, they would burn you. Things like controlled gas stoves (and now electric ones) have been around for a century or so, but humanity have walked the Earth for over 200,000 years in its present form. When people were blessed with good fortunes or wealth, or when they had a good harvest, it was because they had been blessed by fairies. But when children went missing, when people died of disease or got lost in the woods, it was also fairies.
After the advent of Christianity, the Church struggled to reconcile these beings with their Scripture. It is well known that while several regions of Western Europe embraced the Chruch, the Irish stubbornly insisted on bringing along their pagan legends and folk traditions (ironically, hundreds of years later it would be the opposite, and the Irish would be hated for refusing to leave the Church and join the protestant cause. Ah..the joys organised religion).
The best answer the the Priests could give was that the Fae were somehow “fallen” creatures, similar to fallen angels, and that they must be feared.
Now, it must be clear why the Fairy Salve story has different versions. The version where the pixies are beautiful and live in a castle is probably the original, while the one where they are ugly and live in a hovel is post-Christian.
We could go on and on, but this is a very extensive topic. So I’ll cut it short with some thoughts on a certain famous occultist you’ve probably heard of: William Shaksepeare.
Yes, Shaksepeare was a magus. He was also associated with John Dee (yes, THAT John Dee, noted astrologer and alchemist, who created the Enochian language and tablets along with Edward Kelly, and who served as a spy for Queen Elizabeth).
You see, Shaksepeare was quite a radical individual for his time (like all Occultists). Though today we think of him as ‘sophisticated’ and his works are considered ‘classics’, they weren’t so when he was alive. The language he uses, which now is seen as posh, was actually a bit crude for his time. While he wrote a lot of historical plays, he also threw in spirits, ghosts and other random shit. He was like a 14th century Kurt Cobain. Naturally, it was this radical spirit that made so many love and appreciate his work. Contrary to what some may tell you, society does value and respect free thinkers, especially those who produce creative works.
To anyone who’s read his work, you can see the very clear presence of fairies. The most notable is probably The Tempest, which straight up has a sorcerer who has bound an elemental spirit to him. It is strange to say, but we don’t actually have many written records of what medieval British and Irish people thought of Fairies. Our modern perception of the Fair folk is greatly influenced by people like Shakespeare. This includes the notion of Titania and Oberon being the King and Queen of Fairies, of their general humanoid appearance and attitude.
Honestly, to make a full and complete deconstruction of the exact sources of modern fairy lore would be quite difficult, to put it lightly, so let’s cut it here.
Creating Fairy Salve
I have created this substance only twice. The first was by a pagan method (I was still new to magick and very experimental), the second by a kabbalistic. Both worked extremely well, and I shall outline them roughly.
What is the purpose? Well, it is both a ‘offering’ to be made to elemental spirits, as well as an anointing oil that can aid psychic perception during ritual. Simply put, it will help you sense spiritual phenomena during any sort of spiritual working. This idea is neither new nor limited to the British Isles, and there are several medieval grimoires that call for anointing the temples and eyes before a magick ritual (most commonly the Oil of Jerusalem, which is a certain type of enchanted lamp oil).
The Pagan Method
The pagan method will appeal more to neo-pagans, shamans, witches and the like. It takes longer, and can be easily personalised.
The basic idea is to saturate an oil with herbs, and bless it with the forces of nature. Since elementals/Fae are meant to live alongside humans, this recipe calls for herbs that have been collected from one’s own garden. It doesn’t matter which herbs you pick, but ideally it should be something you grow. Maybe choose the oldest plants you have, or those that appear to have a magical connection. You may also look into the folklore of your region, to see if any herbs or plants stand out as being associated with nature spirits.
You need to pick a time for this, and I would suggest the full moon. Or just the early morning of an auspicious day. Select a certain number of herbs. Perhaps 7 different varieties, and 3 of each?
Next, you must choose the oil. Since we are trying to make a ‘salve’, it’s a good idea to choose something that is more like a paste rather than a complete liquid. Coconut oil or ghee (clarified butter) are good, because they harden when cold. If you plan to burn it as an offering, make sure it’s flammable. If you cannot get these, you can use any normal oil. However, I do suggest going to the effort of procuring these, because this and the herbs are the only two ingredients needed, the rest is magick!
You may, if you want, add some salt. An enchanted salt, or mineral salt is good. Salt is used by many neo-pagans for protection from negative influence.
Put the chosen oil in a steel container, and then put it in a larger container filled with water. This is just a general guideline for heating any kind of oil. If we put the the container with the oil directly on the fire/stove, it will ‘cook’ the oil. In some cases, it may even vaporize the oil. Therefore, we use a water bath, to avoid burning/cooking our ingredients, and also maintain the temperature at 100 degrees Celsius.
Fun fact: This set-up, though very common in modern kitchens, is said to have been discovered by an alchemist. It was a Jewish adept from Alexandria called Mari the Prophetess (1st-3rd Century C.E.). Hence, this set up is known in alchemy as the balneum-Mariae (Bath of Mari).
Bring the water to a boil and allow the oil to heat up. As it heats, you add your herbs, either grown up or just broken up by hand. You can say a prayer at this point to any Gods of your choosing. When I first made it, I had prayed to Diana, a form of Venus and a prominent pagan goddess, and Pan, an important pagan deity for all works concerning nature and the wild. Diana is also considered to be the Goddess that is worshiped by the fair folk themselves. I do not remember exactly why this is, but I think we have Shakespeare to thank for this as well. Use a wooden stirring rod for mixing (never use iron. Steel is acceptable, but not ideal). Mix slowly, on a low heat.
Finally, when you feel the herbs have been fully saturated with the oil (10-15 minutes of heat), take it off the heat and leave it to cool. Do not cover it until it is cool. You may cover it with a cloth, if you have to.
The first process is done. The mixture has been prepared using the four elements (herbs picked from the earth, heated with fire and water, and cooled by air).
The elements are done, and we move on to Darkness. Put the mixture in a closed, opaque contained, and leave it sitting in a cool place where it will not be disturbed or be exposed to the light. Since this is a pagan method, you can also thrown in any consecrated crystals or other objects into this.
Here, the substance is blessed by the forces of darkness, whose blessing is essential so that obstacles and challenges are not faced in the future. Ideally, this should can sit for at least a week, but probably for longer. You’re waiting for the full moon. However, let it be no longer than a month, to avoid rotting or decay.
On the day of the full moon, you shall filter out the herbal components, and put the oil in a clear glass jar (plastic works too). These are no longer needed and can be discarded (ideally thrown back into the soil to decompose). Be sure to remove any stones, crystals or object you’ve put in.
Now begins the consecration by the four elements and Light (both of the Sun and the Moon). On the night of the full moon, put this jar in a container of water, and leave it outside or by a window. The water should ideally be from a natural source, such as a spring, river or from rain. When I was doing it, I did a ritual to make it rain, which worked (this was the very first time my magick had worked on such a grand level, and the single most important event that cemented by spiritual faith permanently). If not, then get some drinking water (do not get water from the bathroom sink). If you have enough, this water can also be used for the initial water bath.
It’s good if it’s directly exposed to the moon all night. But, since this is difficult for many people, it’s okay as long as it is outside or by an open window, where it can be hit by the wind. Say a prayer to the Moon if you want, and to the Fae of the Night to bless it.
Here, the salve is being consecrated once again by Air and Water, as well the Moon. Leave this overnight, from Sunrise to Sunset.
The next Day, at Sunrise, take this jar out of the water and put it in the ground. Do not bury it completely, and make sure the top is sticking out. You can also use a planting pot, or just a container with dirt in it. You also need some incense. The way I did it, is half buried the jar in an empty pot, then covered it with a larger plastic container with a incense cone next to it. This ensured that the smoke actually touched jar instead of just blowing away. Leave this in the sunlight until sunset. Call on the Sun and to the Day Faeries for blessing it.
The salve is now being consecrated by the Sun, by Fire (incense) and Earth.
When I first made this, I was lucky enough that the Full Moon was on a Monday, and immediately following a Summer solstice on Sunday. The second part of the consecration was on Tuesday. Don’t obsess over timing, but it’s good if you happen upon such an auspicious time.
Now, at sunset you take your jar, draw upon it a sigil that represents spiritual sight, or something else that is relevant. You’re free to create this sigil however you want, or choose a symbol that already exists and is important to you. You may even use the symbols of any Gods you worship.
At night you will conduct a ritual where you shall call upon the power of the forces of nature to bless and complete the Fairy Salve. A good set of deities is Diana, Pan, Titania and Oberon, and maybe even Gaia, the Earth Mother. Titania and Oberon may be seen as essential, since the substance is made by their authority. It’s a good idea to give some offering as well (candles, milk/honey, fruits etc). State the purpose of the Fairy Salve, and you’re pretty much good. When the ritual is done, thank the forces involved and clear your space. Your Fairy Salve is done. Use it as an offering, and anoint your temples and eye lids before a ritual.
As we discussed before, a good way to offer it is to burn it in a traditional oil lamp.
The Kabbalistic Method
For this method we are going to follow a similar, yet different approach. It is better for those who want to make the Salve more quickly, but don’t mind putting in more work. Ideal for kabbalists, thelemites, rosicrucians and hermeticists.
The Pagan method has relatively simple instructions, because much of the work is begin done by the spiritual forces of nature over a longer period of time. Here, the work is done mainly the the magician him/herself.
Once again, we begin by collecting the herbs. Once again, it is good to collect garden herbs, or herbs in your kitchen. We shall select 7 different varieties of herbs, once for each planet.
For this you must do your own research, and see which herbs are more commonly available in your region. I could give you an arbitrary list, but it would be better to make your own list. You can easily find the planetary rulers of most common herbs online. Ideally, pick herbs which has some association with psychic senses, nature spirits or magick. The variety of herbs needed for fairy salve are what make it more complex than your usual magick oils for things like prosperity or love, which usually only need a few herbs of any single planets.
Let’s say this is too daunting a task. In that case, you may select only herbs associated with the Moon, since the Moon rules psychic powers and visions. You also need Frankincense (or some other sweet smelling resin that can be melted). Just look for powdered frankincense, which should be easy to find, as it is commonly used as incense. If you can’t, do magick to get it.
Next, we pick a base again (ideally coconut oil or ghee, or something similar, which hardens when cold. This is not compulsory, but these are easier to rub on your eyes. Whatever you pick, ensure it smells nice and is pleasant. After all, why would you offer something repulsive to the fair folk? So no, don’t go busting out the mustard oil). We do this on Monday, in the hour of the Moon, during the waxing phase.f.
We now prepare it again, as we did before, in a water bath, adding in our broken up ingredients into the heating oil. As we stir it, we visualise white light comic from above and saturating the mixture.
We once again let it cool uncovered. The mixture has once again been blessed by the four elements, and you must offer a silent prayer and thanks, for these four elements make up the mechanistic Universe as we know it.
You shall take the mixture and pour it into an opaque container, so that no light may touch it. Having done so, draw upon it the symbol of Saturn, the bringer of Death, the collector of Dues. Place it in a cool dark place, and visualized a deep and complete darkness surrounding it, purging all that is unneeded.
The mixture shall now be left untouched over night, where the herbs shall give up the last of their essence. The next morning, awaken at sunrise and thank the lord Saturn. Erase the symbol from the container, and open it. With a solemn and serious heart, filter out the herbs. Heat the mixture again in a bath, and now add it your frankincense. Let it remain in heat for as long as it takes the powder to melt dissolve. Do not add large pieces of frankincense, as these will never dissolve. Everything must be finely powdered. When it is done, take it off the heat and pour the mixture into a clear glass jar and seal it shut. This shall serve as the philosophic egg, where the mixture shall hibernate. Be sure not to add the mixture if it is too hot and the glass is too cold, since the glass may crack.
Take the mixture outside and lay it to rest in Earth. Do no bury it completely, and let it’s top stick out, so that it may breathe the life giving Air, and lay before the radiant light of its father (Sun). In the soil around it, trace an upward pointing triangle (Fire) and draw on each point, the symbol of the Sun, Venus and Jupiter. Pray that, by their benevolence, they may awaken the spirit within. Now you shall mourn it’s passing, and offer a silent plea to the Spirits of the Day, to impart their blessing on it.
At sunset, you shall go again to the place of the burial, and erase the planetary symbols. Now trace a downward triangle (Water) around it, and draw the symbols of Moon, Mercury and Mars around it. Pray that they, by their harshness, by invigorate the spirit within the salve, and purge it of all impurities. Offer a silent plea to the spirits of the Night, that they may remove any obstacles in the working to be done. The ointment is in darkness again, but this time it has the guiding light of its Mother (Moon). Now leave with a hopeful heart, praying for the success of your working.
The next morning, awaken when you may with a happy and joyous heart. Wash your body and go to the place of burial. Remove any remaining symbols and offer heartfelt gratitude. Take the jar and clean it by submerging it in water (making sure no water gets in), and then cleanse it with incense, thus removing both physical and spiritual impurities.
Draw upon it the following symbols: Around the circumference, you shall draw the symbols of the four elements. At the bottom, draw the planetary hexagram, and on top of the lid, draw a pentagram. On either side of it, the symbols of Uranus and Neptune, and the symbol of Pluto at the bottom. Reflect for a moment, on a purpose of this ointment.
Now do a ritual of consecration. Begin with the lesser banishing ritual of the pentagram, and the banishing ritual of the hexagram. As you say the last words, IAO, visualized brilliant white light streaming from the heavens into the jar, and saturating the mixture within. You may also use any other rituals that are used in your own tradition. These are simply the ones I use.
Close your eyes and meditate with the jar in hand, and make a prayer to the Elementals of the four quarters. Pray to the the elementals of Fire and their Ruler, and trace the Invoking pentagram of Fire with your finger on the jar. Do the same for Water, Air and Earth. The spirits and Kings are named thus:
Name of Elementals
Name of Ruler
For example, “I call upon thee, oh great Paralda, to bless this jar of ointment. I call upon thy kin, the Sylphs, to lend me their power!” Then trace the Pentagram.
The Pentagrams traced should be visualised as red, blue, yellow and green respectively. When you feel the ritual is done, give thanks and welcome the elementals into your life. As them for their favour, and give offerings often. Warn them regarding mischief or harm towards any living thing.
Now give your heartfelt thanks, perform the Lesser Banishing again and you’re done.
Now you may make a small offering of thanks that very night. You can leave some food or drink outside in your garden and balcony, and call on the Faeries/Elementals to partake. Leave it overnight, throw it out the next day. To test the efficacy of your Ointment, apply some on your temples and eyelids. You should feel its power immediately, and enter into a light trance. If you do not feel it, then it is possible the mixture is not charged enough. It can be charged by leaving it on an altar or meditating on it. Remember, if your psychic senses are not fully developed, you may not immediately see spirits. However, this will strengthen your psychic sense greatly. Do not obsess over being able to physically see the spiritual beings you are invoking. If it has to happen, it will happen in time, when you are ready.
I know, the rituals seem extensive, but they’re actually a lot quicker to do. It actually takes longer to describe them than do them. You’re free to omit any parts you feel like, or add any of your own, or mix and match as you please. It can be as simple, or as elaborate as you want.
I mean, you could simply take some random oil, dissolve some moon herbs in it, bless it and call it a day. But the amount of energy put into magick determines its result. If you can muster up all the energy needed with a simple prayer, go right ahead. But most will require rituals to build up the same energy. Like everything on this blog, the process if described to be extremely friendly to people who are new to magick. Those who are more proficient are free to use what they need and discard what they don’t (although going through the whole process will only generate more energy).
I mean, the second time I made the ointment, I did not do any prayers or mourning, nor did I trace the triangles. That’s because when I buried my jar, I was able to mentally call on the aid of the planets. But for many others, the visual aid will help greatly. Some people may even go a step further, and place objects associated with the planets around the jar.
It is up to you when you make offerings to the Elementals. You can use the Fairy Ointment during any sort of ritual where you need to invoke them or their rulers. It may be a good idea to make an offering of this ointment every Solstice and Equinox. At least on the both Solstices.
So there you have it, I have finally answered what is probably the very first question I was ever asked by a reader all those years ago.
Yes. I know. This is the first time I’ve made 3 continuous posts without a 6 month gap between them. You must be so proud.
Before we get to today’s article, I have an announcement to make. This Full Moon, I’m releasing an E-grimoire, which will be the first of hopefully many on specific topics. It’s going to contain a lot of theoretical, and practical information along with diagrams. More on that later, but look forward to it. If you’re reading this after June 2020, chances are it’s already out. Check the ‘Books’ tab on the top bar.
On this blog I have two types of visitors. The first are people who are curious about the Occult or just starting out, and come by to read about my experiences with summoning demons, explanations of the pentagram or simple spells. Then there’s those who are experienced Occultists, who can put up with me rambling on and on about specific Sephiroth and Gematria values, and understand every word perfectly. At the very least, anyone who reads this blog has made the choice to learn about and hopefully practice the true magick of the Light, free of superstition, danger and shallow spiritual thrills.
What I’m writing about today may attract people who are so new to the Occult they don’t even know it’s the Occult. To them I say, keep an open mind as you read, and don’t stress about not understanding some things.
I know this because the Bornless Invocation was my first foray into the Occult. While I had some exposure to new age stuff before, it was with this ritual that I was exposed to names like Crowley, Mathers, the Golden Dawn etc. Until then, I only thought of spirituality in the hippie sense. I couldn’t even grasp the depth of what I’d stumbled on.
It’s a bit strange thinking back on it. How something that has become an integral part of my life came to me when I was bored and randomly typed “how to summon demons” into Google. Fate perhaps, or just luck.
Today I’m going to go over a brief history of this ritual, and then tell you the most efficient way to perform it, at least according to me.
A lot of information on it online is from dabblers and armchair occultists, because few real practitioners of Magick actually use it in ritual practice. But I’m one of them, so let me give a clear guide to it, without the nonsense.
What is the Bornless Ritual
I’m guessing most people, if not all, came to know of this ritual from the Ars Goetia, which is the first part of The Lesser Key of Solomon. If you google it, you’ll find a lot of websites that basically copy paste the same ‘definition’, calling it the ‘prliminary invocation of the Goetia’. While that’s technically true, it gives off the wrong impression.
This is the most commonly encountered version of the ritual:
“Thee I invoke, the Bornless one. Thee, that didst create the Earth and the Heavens: Thee, that didst create the Night and the day. Thee, that didst create the darkness and the Light. Thou art Osorronophris: Whom no man hath seen at any time. Thou art Iabos: Thou art Iapos: Thou hast distinguished between the just and the Unjust. Thou didst make the female and the Male. Thou didst produce the Seed and the Fruit. Thou didst form Men to love one another, and to hate one another. I am Ank F N Khonsu Thy Prophet, unto Whom Thou didst commit Thy Mysteries, the Ceremonies of Khem: Thou didst produce the moist and the dry, and that which nourisheth all created Life. Hear Thou Me, for I am the Angel of Apophrasz Osorronophris: this is Thy True Name, handed down to the Prophets of Khem. Hear Me: Ar: Thiao: Reibet: Atheleberseth: A: Blatha: Abeu: Eben: Phi: Chitasoe: Ib: Thiao. Hear Me, and make all Spirits subject unto Me: so that every Spirit of the Firmament and of the Ether: upon the Earth and under the Earth: on dry Land and in the Water: of Whirling Air, and of rushing Fire: and every Spell and Scourge of God may be obedient unto Me. I invoke Thee, the Terrible and Invisible God: Who dwellest in the Void Place of the Spirit: Arogogorobrao: Sochou: Modorio: Phalarchao: Ooo: Ape, The Bornless One: Hear Me! Hear Me: Roubriao: Mariodam: Balbnabaoth: Assalonai: Aphniao: I: Tholeth: Abrasax: Qeoou: Ischur, Mighty and Bornless One! Hear Me! I invoke Thee: Ma: Barraio: Ioel: Kotha: Athorebalo: Abraoth: Hear Me! Hear me! Aoth: Aboth: Basum: Isak: Sabaoth: Iao: This is the Lord of the Gods: This is the Lord of the Universe: This is He Whom the Winds fear. This is He, Who having made Voice by His Commandment, is Lord of All Things; King, Ruler, and Helper. Hear Me! Hear Me: Ieou: Pur: Iou: Pur: Iaot: Iaeo: Ioou: Abrasax: Sabriam: Oo: Uu: Ede: Edu: Angelos tou theou: Lai: Gaia: Apa: Diachanna: Chorun. I am He! the Bornless Spirit! having sight in the Feet: Strong, and the Immortal Fire! I am He! the Truth! I am He! Who hate that evil should be wrought in the World! I am He, that lightningeth and thundereth. I am He, from whom is the Shower of the Life of Earth: I am He, whose mouth flameth: I am He, the Begetter and Manifester unto the Light: I am He, the Grace of the World: “The Heart Girt with a Serpent” is My Name! Come Thou forth, and follow Me: and make all Spirits subject unto Me so that every Spirit of the Firmament, and of the Ether: upon the Earth and under the Earth: on dry land, or in the Water: of whirling Air or of rushing Fire: and every Spell and Scourge of God, may be obedient unto me! Iao: Sabao: Such are the Words!”
First things first though. The Lesser Key of Solomon is a famous medieval grimoire of unknown origin, claiming to have been written by King Solomon himself, but that’s probably not true. It was very common for medieval authors of grimoires to remain anonymous, and attribute their books to legendary figures like Solomon, Moses or Christ. This was partly to protect their identity, but also to separate themselves from their work. Most magicians even today write under a pseudonym (including me), so that people can focus on the information instead of the person.
The book has five parts, although most people only know about the first, the Ars Goetia. This is a list of 72 ‘demons’ who allegedly helped King Solomon (a Biblical figure who was a great King of Israel) build his Temple at Jerusalem. The book gives their seals, descriptions and various rituals to summon them. The book was compiled in the 17th century, although it is based on many older texts, such as the works of Johanne Weyer, Henry Cornellius Agrippa and Eliphas Levi.
And that’s what the book was for centuries. However, in 1904, a man named Samuel Lidell Mathers translated this work, along with several others. Mathers is an important figure within the Occult, one of the founding members of The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (i’m sorry for so many long names right off the bat, but the quicker we get them out of the way the better. Many of you will already be familiar with these).
Mathers was the first to translate and publish this manuscript, and it was edited by his then friend and fellow Golden Dawn member, and the well known occultist who rose to infamy: Aleister Crowley. At the very beginning of the book, Crowley decided to add a rather peculiar ritual: The Bornless Invocation.
Now, understand that this ritual was not part of the original manuscript. In fact, i’m sure the original medieval authors of the Lesser Key wouldn’t even have known about this ritual. But, it was not created by Crowley either. The Bornless Invocation was originally in Greek, although if you look at its contents, you’ll see it actually has Egyptian origin.
It was most likely created by Gnostics, a mystery cult in era of the Roman Empire which would go on to become Christianity. Many Gnostics would have been Greek, and were heavily inspired and influenced by the Egyptian and Jewish mysticism making its way into Europe. That would explain why, despite being Greco-Egyptian, it appears to have Abrahamic language that we see in Judaism and Christianity, and why it places an emphasis on Osiris, whose myths and symbolism served as a basis for the Gnostics to create their own symbolism and tradition. Also, for the sake of clarity, i’m referring to the early Gnostics of the Roman Empire, who were basically proto-Christians, not theCathars who were around almost 800 years later.
It’s also worth mentioning, that in this version by Crowley, he added “I am Ank F N Khonsu Thy Prophet, unto Whom Thou didst commit Thy Mysteries, the Ceremonies of Khem“. Khem is the ancient name of Egypt, and Ankh F N Khnosu was a magickal motto used by Crowley.
In the older, Abrahamic versions, it is written as “I am Moshe Thy Prophet, unto Whom Thou didst commit Thy Mysteries, the Ceremonies of Ishrael“. Here, Moshe is the Hebrew name of Moses, and Ishrael is the fabled Holy Land of the Biblical Jews (not to be confused with the modern nation state of Israel. There is much overlap, but they’re not exactly the same thing)
The Gnostics probably used Jewish symbolism, but Crowley saw fit to make it Egyptian, based on its origin. As it should be obvious, this translation was made to be practical to ceremonial magick, and not necessarily accurate. Many linguists and historians have translated the ritual in various, more accurate ways since then, although none have the same flair as the GD version.
The dialect you see here is late Middle English, or at least, what people in the Victorian era (such as Mathers) thought Middle English was like. Hence why many words have suffixes, such as the term “flameth” instead of flames. Pre-classical English used to be language with almost as much beauty and intricacy as Sanskrit, Latin or Hebrew. This is the dialect used in many English versions of the Bible.
The reason Crowley chose to include this ritual in the Goetia, is because it calls upon the authority of the Most High. The term ‘Bornless One’ means that which is eternal, which has no beginning. In fact, a more accurate translation of the name would be “Headless One”. To us modern people, that name sounds scary. But to the Gnostics (and possibly ancient Egyptians), it meant something more profound. Having no ‘head’, means having no ‘Ego’. That which is ultimate and self realised.
The original prayer calls on Egyptian God Osiris (Asar). In the modern version, we see the term ‘Osorronophris’, which is a Greek distortion of ‘Asar un-Nefer’, meaning Osiris the Beautiful.
The Golden Dawn worked very heavily with Egyptian gods, so it’s clear to see why they would choose this ritual. It appealed to their highly Egyptian sensibilities and style of magick, while still retaining the Kabbalistic/ Gnostic imagery they were familiar with. Within the GD tradition, Osiris is often considered the highest God. Modern media presents him as some sort of underworld Deity. But when you realise that the ancient Egyptians believed the afterlife was under the Earth, not up in the Sky, this has much more significance.
Osiris was also the God of fertility (and Egypt was a largely agricultural society). The annual flooding of the Nile marked the Egyptian New Year, and it was linked to the rebirth of Osiris. But the most important thing for us, is that the Pharaoh was said to be the living manifestation of Osiris on Earth. Thus, he commanded authority over the entire Empire.
That’s what the Bornless Ritual is: authority. When you stand within the magick circle, and summon angels or demons, you do so with that authority. The performance of this ritual is the the proclamation of that authority, that has been granted unto you by the Divine (however you choose to think of it). Put bluntly: it is an Invocation of God, and in the magick circle, you are the God of the circle.
Structure of the Ritual
There are various versions of the ritual. However, for the practical 21st century magickian, this version is the most powerful and correct, as well as efficient. I present to you, the Bornless ritual:
The Invocation of the Bornless One
Thee I Invoke, the Bornless One! Thee that didst create, the Earth and the Heavens! Thee that didst create, the Darkness and the Light! Thou art Asar-un-Nefer, whom no man hath seen at any time! Thou hast distinguished between the Just and the Unjust! Thou didst make the Female and the Male! Thou didst produce the Seed and the Fruit! Thou didst form us to love one another, and to hate one another! Thou didst produce the moist and the dry, and that which nourisheth all created life!
I Invoke Thee, the Mighty and Ineffable God, Who dwelleth in the Void place of the Spirit.
I am He! The Bornless Spirit! Having sight in the feet: strong, and the Immortal Fire! I am He, the Truth! I am He, who hates that evil should be wrought in the world! I am He that bringeth the Lightning and Thunder! I am He, who showereth life upon the Earth! I am He, whose mouth ever flameth! I am He, the begetter and manifester unto the Light! I am He, the Grace of the World! The Heart Girt of the Serpent in my name!
Hear Me, and make all Spirits subject unto me, So that every Spirit of the Firmament and of the Ether, Upon the Earth or under the Earth, On dry land and in water, if whirling air and of rushing fire, And every spell and scourge of God, May be Obedient unto Me. Amen!
It is this version used by the OTA, a group founded by Mason and prominent ceremonial magician, Poke Caroll Runyon. The OTA omits the “barbarous names” and has no repetitions, and I agree with that. More on it later.
Also, I should mention, I changed “terrible and invisible God” to “mighty and ineffable God”. The words used in the original and OTA version are really bad, because most people have a negative association with the words “terrible” and “invisible”. Western ceremonial magicians frequently fail at separating their innate guilt and fear from this most sacred and beautiful art of Magick. It is up to you, but I suggest using my words. And for what it’s worth, the original Greek translates to something like “I call upon you, awe-some and hidden God..”
When reading the ritual, you may notice that it has two distinctive parts. The first, appears to be a ‘prayer’. It involves several lines praising the Divine, and describing it in various ways. You will notice that it reconciles all duality, always using both sides of every aspect. The Divine is the source of ALL things.
The second is seemingly abrupt. Suddenly, the praises stop and we are met with a string of “I Am” statements. This ends with both a proclamation and a plea, simultaneously asking for and granting ourselves authority over the Cosmos.
The third part, which is removed here, are strings and strings of random words. These are the famous ‘barbarous names’, and they usually are what makes the ritual much longer than is presented here. You can see them in the original version I have provided at the beginning.
Usually, the whole thing is repeated multiple times, with these barbarous names dividing each part. Many of these were probably Greek distortions of Egyptian terms, and many were probably Greek originally, and yet who knows how many more have been added by the Golden Dawn. It should be noted that both of them further distorted several names, although to be honest no one at the time knew as much about these things. Over the years many others have tried to ‘correct’ these names. For anyone interested, here is an online journal which gives the origin and meaning of all of them, as well as the entire ritual.
How to Perform the Ritual
First of, let’s start with the barbarous names, and why modern magicians omit them. Some people might think it just seems like a bunch of mindless, meaningless nonsense. Ironically, those people would be correct.
You see, the mind has two halves. There’s the critical, conscious part, and the subconscious, intuitive part. Successful magick relies heavily on the subconscious mind, since the magician must have absolute faith when he performs his magick. Any doubts, limiting beliefs, and harmful perspectives can hinder the work. If you’re doing a ritual, and all the while thinking about how it’s all stupid and fake, or worried about whether you’re doing it right, or trying to think about the logic of it…well, the ritual would fail.
The way Crowley put it: by forcing you to recite these odd, strange and senseless words, you would push away the doubt. In his words “by enthusiastically invoking something we know not to exist, we are refuting the conscious mind!” (not the exact words, but close enough).
I wouldn’t quite put it that way though. A better way to think is that you’re keeping the conscious mind occupied. By giving it a fairly complex task to perform and keep track of, you’re keeping it from hindering with the ritual.
But, this is actually not a great way of doing so (and in case you’re wondering, the evocation methods that the Golden Dawn finally ended up using did not use the Bornless Invocation, nor any orations from the Ars Goetia). The barbarous names are a bit tedious. You can use them if you want, but a much better way to keep the mind busy is by adding complexity to the ritual. It is for this reason that many Occult rituals have such intricacy. I wouldn’t doubt Crowley and Mathers, as they were very powerful magicians, but I personally find the barbarous names clumsy. Poke Runyon, an equally powerful mage, seems to think so too.
Okay, so now let’s focus on the other two parts. An Invocation consists of two parts: praise and identification. In the first, obviously, we praise the Spiritual force being invoked. You may have noticed this in religious ceremonies, where the Deity in question is called by his many epithets. You may have heard Hindu prayers, where the gods in question is clearly defined using all sorts of traits, such as appearance, powers, clothing and other things. You may have heard Christian hymns where Christ or God are praised through the various roles they play in people’s lives.
The purpose of this is simply: to help us visualise the Spiritual force. If you look at most Occult Invocations, they always begin with such a prayer. This helps the magickian clearly formulate and understand what s/he is communing with, like an ‘image’ of the force. In the Bornless Ritual, we are trying to call on the Divine itself, which is why all the traits seem contradictory, since the Divine is the source of ALL things.
The second part is what religions usually leave out: identification. This is the actual “Invocation” or ‘calling in’ of the Spiritual force. Religion always uses the first part, because it wants you to feel the Gods, without identifying with them. I mean, if most religious worshipers were to identify with their Gods, they they would have no need for religious dogma. They would no longer need the religion to be a middle man between them and their God. And, to the credit of religion, invoking deities requires a well balanced individual who has done spiritual groundwork. Most people cannot just invoke a Deity without preparation. But since the Bornless Invocation calls on the Divine itself, it has few dangers, and anyone can perform it (because the Divine is in all things, whether we like it or not).
Thus, during the first part of the operation, the magus must fill himself with faith and devotion. I normally kneel when I do this part, and speak the words as if in prayer. It’s not just about repeating the words, but understanding their implication. If you believe in and pray to God, this should be done with the same fervour.
Then, the identification. At first, you were calling upon the Divine. Now, the Divine has been invoked and entered the practitioner, and s/he has to assume that mindset and framework. This is where I suddenly stand up straight and proclaim the “I Am” statements in a loud and resonant voice, believing each of them completely. In this short sequence, you have to completely identify with the Divine, and assume the persona of the Master of the Temple. Ideally, having a strong Will and Self Esteem helps. If not, then that can be built up. Doubt and fear have no place, because you’re going to be calling upon forces that will place a great strain on you, as well as those who will test you at every turn.
Personally, I also recommend people who are struggling with self esteem or confidence issues to recite the Bornless Invocation every morning like a prayer, since recognizing oneself as Divine is a crucial aspect of any occult practice. On the other hand, if you’re already really confident and can do this easily, you should be careful using this invocation because it may inflate the Ego, which is one the biggest dangers in magick.
Repetition is not needed, though you may recite it three times if you want, with identification happening in the final half of the 3rd repetition. A lot of the extra bits from the original are unneeded in serious occult practice, although being familiar with the text helps.
I’ve run out of complicated things to say, so I’m going to link two videos here. The first is an old recording of Israel Regardie reading out the Bornless Ritual, as originally intended by Crowley and Mathers. Regardie was the man responsible to publishing most of the teachings of the Golden Dawn, along with Crowley and Dion Fortune, who were both his peers within the Order. Here he is using the Egyptian version by Crowley.
The second is a video of Poke Runyon performing it within the OTA. This is the version I have used, more or less, and here you can actually see the rite in action during a live ritual. Here, the barbarous words and references to Egypt or Israel are omitted, with no repetitions. (I’ve timestamped the moment where it begins. It’s up to you if you want to watch the rest of the video, which is about an hour long and deals with OTA methods of Evocation. If you’re using mobile, the timestamp may not work. Skip to 55:40)
I like the flair with which the OTA do the rituals, but I dislike their flat tone and spoken pronunciations. This is understandable as it’s simply a minor invocation to the OTA, and much more attention is given to the rituals preceding and following it. While their rituals are no doubt powerful, and while they take great care in creating their temples, props and sigils, I really don’t like the plain English and somewhat dull non-musical recitations, or the spooky woo aesthetic. In fact, it’s all a bit cringey (no offence to any OTA practitioners 🙂 )
I think in terms of the actual words, Regardie says it with more fervor. Notice how he even pronounces all the classical English words correctly. While I always felt the Golden Dawn made everything over complicated and inaccessible, they did understand the sublime beauty of the whole process and didn’t try to replace that with cheesy looking props and spoken English orations. At the very least they made the effort to learn the Hebrew, Enochian, Latin, Greek and Egyptian orations and correctly pronounce them. But it WAS inaccessible. Most ordinary people don’t have time to learn 6 different languages, or procure lion skin belts, or make golden lamps burning olive oil impregnated with snake fat. The OTA has greatly simplified the whole process and made it so anyone, with discipline and commitment, can enter into the Temple of the Mysteries. Personally, I would combine the fervour and force of the GD performance, with the simplicity and flair and the OTA.
That’s all for today. I hope this helped you gain a better understanding of the Bornless Invocation, and various theoritcal and practical aspects of High magick.
I hope you look forward to the release of my first E-Grimoire this Sunday. Be sure to follow this blog for more content. You can also follow me on Instagram @WhiteRavenMagus. Thanks for reading.
First off, I want to announce that I’ve made anInstagram account. I basically dislike most social media, especially Twitter and Facebook. However, some people have asked for a better communication methods than back and forth emails, so Instagram it is. I’m not even sure what I’ll put there, but we’ll see.
So anyway, I’ve been engaged in High Magick for years now, and I subscribe to a specific tradition of ceremonial magick called Hermetic Kabbalah. In particular, the types of rituals practiced by the early 20th century group called the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (to whom almost ALL modern spiritual movements can be directly or indirectly traced).
I‘ve done all sorts of rituals over the years, and tried out different variations. Sometimes I go with what an old grimoire is saying, sometimes I stick to the traditions of one or more Occult groups, sometimes I use a modern, minimalist method and sometimes I create my own. Some rituals work better than others.
I’ve never had a definitive ritual structure that I used for everything, because I wanted to learn and explore first. Most magickians are expected to develop one over time. Trust me, learning from personal experiences is much better than dogmatically adhering to some premade system (that’s called religion).
Recently, I started doing some rituals that are largely derivative of the Golden Dawn method. I just want to share how I do them, and my thought process behind a recent Invocation I did. The reason is so that people can see how Magickians design rituals and ceremonies seemingly from scratch, and completely on their own without having to rely on a grimoire. It’s something anyone can, and should work towards.
It may work better for some people than others. I may share how to actually do the ritual on the blog at some point.
The Magickal Heirarchy
An important thing to understand about ceremonial magick is its hierarchical nature. Essentially, it’s a soft polytheistic idea that when you call upon spiritual forces, you start from the ‘top’ and then work your way down. This is similar to Hinduism in some sense, in which all Gods, Demons, Humans etc. are ultimately manifestations of a single Divine Force, which fragments into small forces, which further fragment into further forces (or avatars).
The Western ceremonial tradition handles this as an almost social hierarchy, instead of using ‘avatars’. You’ve probably seen it in books like the Ars Goetia, where we have Kings, which then rule over Princes, which are then rule over Dukes, then Earls and so on.
The Golden Dawn tradition intertwines Abrahamic and Egyptian hierarchies, and these can be as fluid as one needs. At the top you have the Divine, invoked through Godnames, and beneath that are the Holy Living Ones, each ruling an alchemical element. Then Archangels, Angels, Planets, Elemental Kings and their kin, Spirits and Intelligences etc.
Intertwined into this are the Infernal hierarchies, with Archdemons on top, then Demons, Dark Planets, King of the Quarters and their kin.
Additionally, they try to include the various Gods and Goddesses of Egypt. These forces are are generally parallel to the Angelic hierarchies.
Almost all members of the Golden Dawn were strongly rooted in the Rosicrucian tradition. They constantly struggled with classifying the Egyptian and Demonic forces, and when they did, they made it so needlessly complicated that I genuinely struggle to understand their descriptions in some places. It’s a thing I’ve always seen monotheistic occultists struggle with, when it’s really not so complicated.
There’s also the Enochian system, but that’s for another time (and oh boy won’t that be fun).
A lot of witches and pagans today have a strong dislike of ceremonial magick, because they consider it rigid and narrow. They think it doesn’t allow for individualism or personal interpretation. However, this is untrue. Most of the time it only seems to be rigid, but in truth it’s still extremely fluid and open, and many systems have been combined to create it, which are far form cohesive.
The ritual I designed relied on my own interpretation of the hierarchy. I begin with preliminary banishing and meditations. Then, I call upon the Most High, which is completely personal.
After that, I invoke the God that I feel should preside over the ritual, and the entire ritual derives it’s power from this God.
Next, the Holy Livings Ones. These are neither fully Abrahamic nor Pagan. The GD corelated them to each of the letters of the 4 lettered name: YHVH.
However, their forms are derived from the Sphinxes found in both Egypt and Sumeria. They are: The Lion (Y), The Eagle (H), The Man (V) and the Bull (H). They each represent an Alchemical element: Fire (Y), Water (H), Air (V) and Earth (H).
From there, I invoke an Archangel, the Planet/s whose energy is used in the ritual (and if needed, the Olympic Spirit under them). Then come the Elementals (and their King), and then the Angel and Intelligence (Archon) of the Element.
Now, on some occasions, I will invoke an Archdemon or King of the Quarter at this point. Remember, technically the Archdemons and Kings are equal to the Archangels and Elemental Kings, and not ‘under’ the planets, Angels or Intelligences. However, it is generally a good idea to Invoke them after the Celestial and Planetary forces have been called. And only then, should you consider calling on Demons and Spirits. In fact, if the ritual does not require calling upon any infernal forces, it should be avoided altogether.
Obviously, most rituals do not require going through the entire chain of command. It all depends on the ritual, and I’m simply giving the whole thing to explain the logic of it all.
True and powerful magick could be performed by simply uttering one’s intent. There’s nothing to stop this. Just saying something puts your energy into it. However, that’s not always enough and not everyone can do that. Hence we have ceremonies and rituals and spells. The Invocations simply give it more power, and the hierarchies are more to help us put our magick in a logical framework, rather than representative of the actual state of affairs regarding these spiritual forces. Ultimately, we are the ones doing magick, and these forces simply help us connect to various parts of our own Soul.
Different people may have different hierarchies. Someone may consider Christ to be the Highest Force, while another may call on Krishna. One person may think Lucifer to be a God, while to another he could be an Archdemon. Ultimately, the ‘ranks’ you ascribe to these spirits are components of your own Psyche.
The spiritual forces are the same, and what symbols you use to approach them do not matter. However, it is more likely than not, that our mythologies and stories are at least rooted in some reality.
The Invocation of Air
The ritual in question was an Invocation of the element of Air itself. The purpose was to consecrate a talisman for certain purposes. The talisman, which in this case was a Ring, would be blessed and consecrated with various energies from the dominion of Air.
Now, this is not the usual way of consecrating talismans. In fact, you can read about the usual method here. However, this was not an ordinary talisman. Therefore, I was guided to create a ritual that would call upon the entire Air hierarchy. This was also for my own learning. While I asked each and every Force to bless the ritual and talisman, it can also be utilized for much simpler workings. Instead of asking every force to bless the ritual, you could simply just invoke them in the correct sequence, and that would make the ritual much more powerful. This rituals took about an hour, but technically much shorter versions could be performed based on requirement.
So, I spent about a week working out a hierarchy I was comfortable with. I performed a simple divination from time to time, asking the Archangels if what I was doing was correct. At times, I was asked to make corrections and changes were suggested.
I did the ritual on a Sunday, in the Waxing Moon. The entire day prior had been spent preparing for this ritual, and I think that certainly added to the power. I should mention, while I did use GD rituals and chants, all the prayers were written by me personally. I was told that prayers should always be written to any spiritual force by the individual (if s/he is able), because this is a much stronger expression of love and devotion than merely repeating what has been written before.
The ritual technically had to begin at sunrise, but I was more or less close enough to it. That is to say, I woke up at 6:00 AM, showered, had coffee and began getting things ready. I later realised that the reason this ritual was so powerful was because I had done nothing but work towards it from the moment of waking. On another day, I would do a similar Invocation of Fire, which was slightly weaker because it was at midday, and my mind had already been filled with other distractions.
I had an altar at the Eastern edge of the circle. At the center of it was the Armadel sigil for Raphael, with the Talisman on it. I had previously the area with water and incense. At the ‘top’ and ‘bottom’ of the altar were my dagger and wand, for banishing and invoking respectively.
Around the altar, was a cup of water (water), a stick of incense (fire), a small container with salt (earth) and a feather (air). Outside the circle, I had placed a covered cup with rum from a newly opened bottle, and a small lamp with my own personal blend of fairy salve, which I keep specially for offering to the Elementals.
I also had sigils to the Olympic spirits of the Sun and the Moon, called Och and Phul respectively. The Olympic spirits are often called for consecration of talismans.
The Sun and the Moon are the planets that rule Air (Jupiter and Mercury rule Air, Venus and Mars rule Fire, and Saturn rules Earth).
I started the ritual, with a Salutation to the God Ra. Ra rules the Sunrise (as Hathor, Tum and Khepra rule the midday, sunset and midnight respectively. They are different avatars of the god Amun-Ra, the Egyptian Sun God). After the salutation, I spent a few moments in meditation.
Then came the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram (and a short prayer to the Tetragrammaton), and then the banishing Ritual of the Hexagram ritual, followed by the Middle Pillar ritual to ground myself. These three rituals are essential components to most ceremonial workings.
I spoke the Invocation of the Bornless One. This is a well known ritual in magick, and gives you the ‘authority’ to command the Temple and all Forces that appear within it. It is a Greco-Egyptian prayer that calls upon Lord Osiris, who rules the Element of Spirit. (Next post will be about that, since I’ve had enough people ask me about it over the years)
Now, I could begin the ritual itself. I remained facing East, because I was invoking Air.
First, a prayer to Thoth, the God who rules the element of Air. The elements of Fire, Water and Earth are ruled by Horus, Isis and Nepthys in the GD tradition. This was a prayer that I wrote. There some invocations out there that are very elaborate and long, but you really don’t need such long invocations. Although many magicians are uncomfortable with this, having the blessing and aid of Gods is extremely important for spiritual operations. Even medieval Christian occultists would make prayers to the Holy Trinity.
As I did the prayer, I saw Thoth appear, enormous and with an Ibis head, standing as they are depicted in ancient statues. He held up his hand and blessed the ritual. Next, I made a prayer to the Kerub of Air. The Kerub of Air appears as a Man, and I traced the Hebrew letter Vav in the East. I could feel energy flowing from the direction as the Kerub empowered the ritual.
I then did two pentagram rituals, invoking Spirit (Active) and the element of Air respectively.
The most important part of the Ritual came now. I was going to invoke the Archangel Raphael until I was effectively one with him. The remainder of the ritual and consecration of the Talisman would happen with me adopting the guise of Raphael. I had prepared a Greek Mantra.
Remember, to call on any entity, the chant “Agios [Entity]” works very well, and is used in several traditions. Thus, my complete chant for Raphael was:
Ela! (x5) Agios Raphael! (x7) Kalo Se Sena! (x10)
It translates to Come! Saint Raphael! Hail Unto Thee!
In fact, I have lately discovered that magical chants and mantras, especially those in ancient languages, should be sung, not just spoken. This empowers them significantly. As I repeated the chant, I slipped into a near complete trance. I saw the Archangel Raphael, with brilliant eyes shining yellow, with long black flowing hair. He often appears to be in yellow robes with purple triangles stitched onto it. He blessed me, then entered me. When I was done, the union was complete. I was me, but I was also Raphael. This is called complete invocation. Usually this takes longer, but with practice it came become quick. Also, the entire ritual done until now, along with the musical key and incense help greatly.
We held out our hand, and called into it the Cosmic kingdom of Air. I saw the entire Universe before us, and then I saw it in a purpulish hue. It was all the nebulae, clouds, dust, plasma, supernova, and everything that gave it beauty and sheen. I saw all the ‘Air’ in the Universe compress together until it was one ball of energy in my hand, bluish and purple. I pushed it into the talisman, and now it grew heavy and warm.
Then I did the Hexagram rituals to Invoke both the Sun and the Moon, for these are the planets that are under the element of Air, and opening both spheres give me the energy I needed. I uncovered the sigils of the Olympic Spirits, and asked each to bestow the planetary energies into the Talisman.
Now, I lit my lamp, and made a prayer to the Elemental ruler of Air, called Paralda, and his kin, who are the the Sylphs. You see, the Elementals co-exist with us on this material plane. This is why so much magick involves the four elements and quarters, because it is the Elementals who grant us the energy for the magickal working. If we were to use our energies, we would cause damage to ourselves, even die. The Elementals must be regarded with great respect, for they are more like us than anything else.
I welcomed them into the Circle and presented my offering. I thanked them for coming, and the Ruler Paralda blessed me in return. I could see little specs of light curling around my hands, giving me the energy I would need to do the consecration.
At this point I was totally in trance, and beginning to get tired. There was sweat dripping from my brow. But I continued intuitively. I made a prayer to the Angel of Air, called Chassam, and Archon of Air, Ariel. The angel empowered the ritual with the invigorating energy of Air, like a gentle breeze. The Archon bestowed upon it, the powerful winds that strip away ignorance and stagnation, and bring knowledge and liberty.
Now I sat silent, regarding all the energies I had invoked.
Then I got up, and performed an invocations of the Shadow side with a ritual I had very carefully prepared. I was told before hand that I did not need to call any of the Infernal hierarchies, except of course, the King of Air.
When I whispered the words to invoke the Shadow, I felt hot and there was a pressure building up. Just as with Raphael, I began to chant. I was still singing, but not vibrating, the name. King Amaymon was there even before I was finished chanting his enn.
I uncovered the alcohol, and welcomed King Amaymon. The Kings are only to be called on important occasions, and received very well. Amaymon is, in some ways, the Black Sun, and possibly an avatar of Lucifer.
He graciously accepted my offer. I saw nothing, though the image that comes to mind is a figure dressed in pitch black robes, so dark that no light reflects, with dark blueish eyes and hair, wearing a dark metallic crown.
If archangel Raphael represents the beauty of the Sun, then Amaymon rules over the Black Sun. Overcoming the Black Sun, and resisting it is integral for any Magician to truly reach adept-hood. The usual symbol of the Black Sun is the Sonnenrad. It is a Nazi symbol, not a pagan one as many New Agers claim. But this is no co-incidence, because they are an example of a group that was completely consumed by the Black Sun. The spirit of rebellion is a powerful force, but as Nietzsche once stated:
“Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster… for when you gaze long into the abyss. The abyss gazes also into you.”
I requested Amaymon to open the Eastern gate. This would let loose the “dark” side of Air, that needs to be tempered and integrated. If Air is the element of the mind, representing Liberty and Knowledge, then it’s dark side is Rebellion and Transgression. It can be a destructive force that levels civilisations, but when integrated and channeled to serve the Divine Will, it becomes the force that breaks the shackles of deception, ignorance and delusion. It breaks the chains of conformity that keep us bound. But anyone who doesn’t know what they are doing, should not invoke these energies, lest he become unbalanced and be consumed by his own Shadow. The Kings of the Quarters will open the gate if you ask them, without regard to how you will handle it. But a divination I had done before told me I was prepared.
I think Amaymon even asked “are you sure”, to which I said yes. I got the impression that the Gate was opened.
The moment this happened, I felt energies so strong, I suddenly had the thought that I may pass out. I hadn’t eaten anything, and suddenly got very dizzy. I felt my stomach drop, and I began to sway. The energy continued to build up, but I was being told to hold on, and to brace myself. So I did, for as long as I could. For a scary moment, I genuinely thought I would faint. You know that light headed feeling right before you loose consciousness? When your mind goes blank and all you want to do is lie down and close your eyes.
But then I recovered my composure. The energy swirled around me, I made a gesture as if breaking chains that were around me. I said a short prayer, and then pushed this intense energy into the talisman.
As is tradition, I used the salt, water, incense and feather to consecrate the Talisman in all 4 elements, and proclaimed it’s purpose. I used the Rose Cross, and the name YEHESHUAH YEHOVASHAH to seal it.
The Kings can open the Gates, but I needed to close the Eastern gate myself, using the Rose Cross again. Then, I began the various thanks and farewells to all the Gods I had called, and finished with banishing all the forces I had invoked and giving a license to depart to any lesser spirits.
I instinctively waved my hand about, as if dispersing energies, because I still felt a lot of stuff around. Finally, the ritual ended.
Sometimes, though rarely, I use a Tarot deck to gauge the relative ‘power’ of a ritual. This is a pretty crude method, and does not show the efficacy of the ritual, only how much energy was generated. But, I still asked the archangel Raphael to tell me how powerful the ritual was, on a scale of 1-10. Then I pulled out an 8. All in all, a pretty good ritual!
Now, ironically, the ring is way too narrow for my finger. Ha. Probably should have checked beforehand. But I can still slip it around the little finger, and it tingles where it touches the skin. It does work very well.
And that’s it for now. So remember to check out the new Instagram page (@whiteravenmagus). If you liked what you read, be sure to follow my blog, and share it with anyone who may enjoy it as well.