So Gwen and I were sitting down at Sticks and Stones, the store I do readings and classes at, and talked about our schedules for the first half of 2013, through the end of June. Once we figured out what I wanted to blab endlessly about, we settled on the following set of courses from now until the end of June. After all, being one of the few ceremonial magicians and geomancers on the East Coast, I’ve got a lot of experience and knowledge under my belt (though by no means enough) to share around with folks willing enough to hear me out and pay a small-but-reasonable fee, about $30 per class. With that in mind, here’s my teaching schedule for the first half of 2013. All the classes will be on Sunday afternoons.
- Introduction to the Headless Rite (February 3, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m, $30)
Written 2000 years ago in Egypt, the powerful ritual known as the Headless Rite has been used for exorcism by mages in the Mediterranean, knowledge and conversation of the higher Self by Samuel MacGregor Mathers and Aleister Crowley, and empowerment over harmful forces by countless other magicians. Join yours truly in discussing the origins, development, and use of this ritual as he shows participants how and where to use the ritual to get the most out of it, both in the physical and the astral. No prior knowledge is necessary, but a desire for ultimate cosmic power would be appreciated.
Tired of Tarot? Pained by pendulums? Weary of runes? Want something new and fun, or just a system of divination that makes sense? Learn geomancy! This ancient art was second only to astrology for centuries, and known across Europe, Africa, and the Middle East for its ease and accuracy of getting answers. Join a seasoned geomancer, yours truly, as he introduces geomancy back into the occult scene once more. Learn about its history from desert sands of the Sahara to its modern revival across the world, the sixteen geomantic figures and their meanings, and how to answer any kind of question with geomancy using basic and advanced techniques.
Note that this class is not about feng shui, the I Ching, ley lines, or sacred geography, all of which may be called “geomancy” in other contexts. Due to the amount of material, this class is broken up into two sessions; attending the first is a requirement for attending the second! A basic knowledge of astrology and mathematics is suggested but not required.
- Ancient Hermetic Magic (April 21, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., $20)
Ancient Alexandria during the Roman Empire was a melting pot of Greek, Hebrew, Egyptian, Roman, and other influences as far west as Morocco and as far east as India and China. With those cultures came their gods and goddesses, spiritual beliefs, and magic rituals. Many of these were preserved in the Greek Magical Papyri, considered to be occult’s version of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Join yours truly as he goes over Hermetic beliefs, practices, and rituals used by magicians from the early Roman Empire in ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome. No previous experience necessary; come on by and learn these ready-to-use rituals!
- Working with Planetary and Elemental Spirits in the Western Tradition (May 26, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., $20)
The Western Mystery Tradition is often seen as dry and boring, barren of the vibrant multitude of spirits, fey, and familiars that many forms of paganism and rural religion have. Not true! In fact, this system of occult philosophy is teeming with huge numbers of spirits, many of whom are more than happy to lend a hand. Join yours truly in learning about the two major kinds of spirits worked with and called upon in the Hermetic tradition, who’s who in the seven planetary families and the four elemental families, how to call upon them, and what they can do for you in your own practice and life. No prior knowledge is necessary, but a desire for getting chatty with the spirit world would be appreciated.
- Introduction to Angelic Conjuration (June 9, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., $30)
When you hear about “conjuration”, do you think of pompous magicians in ruined castles wielding swords and hurling imperious threats at misunderstood spirits bound in arcane circles? Then stop by with yours truly and learn the truth about ceremonial magic’s most famous type of ritual! Yours truly will go over how conjuration really works, its history and roots in shamanic practices, proper conjuration etiquette, and a complete and easy introduction to conjuring and chatting with angels. With little more than a circle and a glass of water, you too can start a magical practice with some of the most powerful and easily accessible forces in the cosmos! Some knowledge of spirits in the Western Mystery Tradition would be appreciated.
- Talisman Creation (June 30, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., $30)
Creating magical items of arcane power have always been a high art in magical traditions, ranging from hoodoo-style mojo bags enchanted with oils and herbs to silver discs inscribed with astrological symbols to pull power from the stars. Although different traditions have different concepts of creating, maintaining, and decommissioning magical items, also called talismans, the process in creating them is often the same. Join Sam Block as he describes different styles of talismans, how to use them, how to make them, and how to maintain them. No prior knowledge or experience necessary, though a familiarity with astrology, geomancy, or elemental forces might come in use.
Besides the above, are there any other classes you might want to see me teach? After all, dear readers, you probably know specific things you’d like to see me blog about more, and helping to teach others helps teach myself as well. Possibly a class on Hermetic cosmology, magical timing, or similar, but what might you like to see for the latter half of 2013 and years beyond?