Michaelmas Present: Litany of the Holy Archangels

One of the reasons why the second half of September is always so chaotic for me is that, not only is it in the few weeks leading up to my birthday both in flesh and in Santería, but it’s also a cluster of feast days: Our Lady of Mercy and the Days of the Cyprians and the Feast of Saint Cyprian of Antioch, Saint Justina, and Saint Theocistus are definitely important, but today is yet another feast day I hold dear to my heart: Michaelmas, more properly called the Feast of Saint Michael the Archangel and All Angels.  Today is the day when we especially revere and honor the bodiless and immaterial Hosts of Heaven, with Saint Michael the Archangel, their divine commander and our divine protector, at the helm and forefront of both God’s armies and our own hearts.  And, of course, to honor the other archangels: Gabriel, Raphael, Uriel, Sealtiel, Jehudiel, and Barachiel (or whichever set of seven archangels you prefer to use).

I’d also like to share a new(ish) page with you all: a new prayer, the Litany of the Holy Archangels.  This is, for once, not something I wrote, nor could I have written something so beautiful.  Rather, it’s a prayer I’ve been using for years now, courteously and generously shared with me by good colleague and friend Michael Lux of Nigromantic Matters.  Originally written for Johannite Christian spiritual practice, Michael has generously let me share the prayer on my own website for all to use and refer to.  I find it incredibly devout, and can be used in both solitary practice as well as in a community.  I had intended on sharing this page more publicly earlier in the year when I was going to propose a new project and craft for myself, but said project never got off the ground due to logistical issues, so I never really announced the page.  However, today’s a perfect day for just that, so I hope you enjoy and find it a useful blessing in your own practices and prayers!

With that, I hope you all have a blessed end of September, with all the Angels, Archangels, Principalities, Virtues, Powers, Dominions, Thrones, Cherubim, Seraphim, and the seven commanders of all the hosts of Heaven blessing you and guiding you every moment of every day!

Blessed Angels, watch over us at all times during this perilous life.
Holy Archangels, be our guides on the way to Heaven.
Heavenly Principalities, govern us in soul and body.
Celestial Virtues, preserve us against the wiles of demons.
Mighty Powers, give us strength and courage in the battle of life.
Powerful Dominions, obtain for us domination over the rebellion of our flesh.
Sacred Thrones, grant us peace with God and Man.
Brilliant Cherubim, illuminate our minds with heavenly Knowledge.
Burning Seraphim, enkindle in our hearts the fire of Charity.

Seven angels around my head, guide us safely where we’re led.
Michael, defend us from all our foes; Raphael, heal us from all our woes.
Gabriel, give us peace on wings; Uriel, release us our attachments to worldly things.
Jehudiel, fill our mouths with praise to God; Sealtiel, open our hearts to prayer of God.
Barachiel, bless us in all our ways; Guardians, guide us through all our days.

Amen.

Search Term Shoot Back, August 2015

I get a lot of hits on my blog from across the realm of the Internet, many of which are from links on Facebook, Twitter, or RSS readers.  To you guys who follow me: thank you!  You give me many happies.  However, I also get a huge number of new visitors daily to my blog from people who search around the Internet for various search terms.  As part of a monthly project, here are some short replies to some of the search terms people have used to arrive here at the Digital Ambler.  This focuses on some search terms that caught my eye during the month of August 2015.

“how do we summon spirit astaroth to appear physically” — Carefully.  Summoning a spirit, whether to physical manifestation or just to spiritual presence, is no joke, and takes a lot of practice, study, and dedication.  Summoning a spirit to physical manifestation is even less of a joke and something that, as I see it, is nearly never necessary.  It’s all well and good if you can pull it off, but I see it as a kind of bragging right if you can do it; it requires strict fasting, serious self-empowerment, a good relationship with the spirit, intent focus on the ritual, and a huge expense of energy that…honestly, most people can’t afford and have no need to spend.  If you can do it, great!  If not, don’t worry.  So long as you can bring them in enough contact so you can communicate and perceive them, you’re doing what you need to do.  Anything more is cool.

“big cork anal prison” — Nope.

“runes that look like sigils” — I’m not sure what your idea of “sigil” means here.  To me, a sigil is a symbol that refers to some concept, word, name, entity, or intent that has been graphically encoded through a mechanical means, such as through a qamea sigil or a sigil wheel or simple combination of letters.  Seals, on the other hand, are symbols that refer to some concept, word, etc. that are obtained or revealed directly from a spirit, and are not generated through any conscious process.  Many people use the terms interchangeably, though I find the distinction helpful in my work.  So, sigils can take many forms, but runes are more or less fixed with a few variations based on era and geographic origin.  Perhaps you mean the system of bindrunes, a ligature (or, I suppose, letter-combination sigil) of two or more runes?

“crystal ball uses” — Crystal balls have many uses, and some of their more common uses are seen everywhere in our culture.  However, I’d like to go over some of the more arcane uses that only the most dedicated crystal users might consider applying crystal balls for, as it’s not always apparent how to do so.  Paperweight.  Decoration in a fountain.  Regift for a new age friend.  Drain stopper.  Candle snuffer.  Meat tenderizer.  Foot/back massager.  Game piece.  Cosplay costume component.  Laser light scatterer.  Blunt trauma weapon.  Anal bead/ben-wa ball.  Body modification implant.  Dough spreader.

“oil lamps less soot” — I wrote a post on how to use oil lamps for great effect in home and ritual, but a few points probably need restating for clarity.  There are several ways you can use an oil lamp with less soot: trim the wick before using it so that all the worst charred parts of it are removed, keep the wick low enough so that you have a big enough flame without it trying to use too much fuel at once, use a clean and pure wick made of natural cellulose or linen with no chemical additives, use clean and pure oil with few chemical (natural or artificial) additives.  Mineral oil tends to be good, but that’s because it tends to be pretty neutral in most respects, as well; olive oil would produce some soot due to its natural compounds, but the higher grade the oil, the better quality flame you’ll get.

“how should fiery wall of protection oil be applied to home” — Different traditions and practices will tell you different things, and even within a tradition, you may have different ways to apply oil for different oils.  For me, I apply Fiery Wall of Protection oil in a small cross on every threshold or lintel in the house: everywhere there’s a gate, doorway, or windowsill that leads to another room or to the outside, I put the oil towards the top and center of that threshold.  If I’m going all out, I’ll also anoint all doorknobs, latches, air vents, drains, and the like just to cover every possible means of ingress or egress from the house.  Alternatively, you could use a five-spot pattern (a dab on each corner and once in the middle) on every window and door, or anoint four large iron spikes (railroad spikes are perfect) and nail them into the ground at the four corners of your house.  The possibilities are endless!

“working with seals of iupiter in virgo” — Assuming you’re working with the Pentacles of Jupiter from the Key of Solomon (book I, chapter 18), I’d go with the consecration instructions given for each pentacle.  Mind you, Jupiter is weak in Virgo (detriment), as he’s opposite his domicile sign of Pisces, so Jupiter isn’t particularly happy about being there.  However, if the pentacle was well-made at a time good for it (day and hour of Jupiter at a minimum), then I’d think it’d be good to use whenever with little change in effect otherwise.  Thus, I wouldn’t want to make anything particularly under the planet Jupiter while he’s in Virgo, unless I really needed his specific influence where no other planet or means of obtaining something could work; in other words, unless it’s an emergency that only Jupiter and nothing else can fix, I’ll probably look elsewhere for help.  The same goes for any Jupiterian working.  Mind you, Jupiter spends just under a year, give or take a few weeks, in each sign.

“how do you spell your name in angelic script?” — First, note that nearly all forms of “angelic script” tend to be different 1-to-1 ciphers (or “fonts”) of Hebrew script; Celestial Hebrew, Malachim, Passing the River, and Paracelsus’ Magi script all follow this trend.  Thus, although these might be considered alphabets, they follow the same rules and have the same number of letters as Hebrew does.  To that end, you’d want to first learn how to spell your name in Hebrew, then use your preferred angelic script.  The big exception to this is Enochian, which was transmitted to John Dee and, although it claims to be an original proto-Hebrew Adamic language, follows the same rules as English spelling and grammar of his day.  However, Enochiana, although technically angelic, tends to be in a whole different field than the rest of the angelic stuff, and may not correspond semantically to other types of angelic work.

“ancient human giant cocks” — As I like to say, there’s nothing new under the sun; I claim that humanity has been pretty much the same today since the dawn of civilization or the dawn of language, if not the dawn of humanity itself some 60,000 years ago.  Sure, we have newer things to play with, complicated systems we’ve engineered, and a variety of abstract philosophies to lose ourselves in, but we’re still fundamentally the same.  This goes for penis size, too; I can’t seem to find any information on historical penis size, but I assume they’re more or less the same size today as they were for ancient humans.  If anything, penis sizes are probably, on average, larger today than they were in earlier eras; several cultures of the past considered smaller penises to be ideal, as they’d cause less vaginal/anal stretching and, thus, less tearing in sensitive tissue, which would lead to fewer rates of infection; similarly, huge cocks were something reserved for the gods, and even then, only in a sense of comical debauchery or intimidation (cf. guardposts with an ithyphallic Pan).  As we’ve gotten better about hygienic practices, internal tearing due to getting on a huge dick hasn’t been as much a concern, so there’s a little more bias now towards going for guys with bigger cocks, and if that’s genetic, then there’s a slight evolutionary trend for more well-endowed guys.

“how to conjure smaller angels” — Use a smaller triangle.

“what do occultists think of the kybalion” — Different occultists will give you different opinions.  Some occultists love it for its own virtue, some love it because it’s a “gateway text” that gets people into heavier and more interesting forms of occultism.  I personally detest the thing and would rather see all copies of it used for toilet paper.  It’s not Hermetic, despite what it claims, as its points and “axioms” are distinctly modern, and instead have its origins in the 19th century New Thought movement.  All of its major points and cosmological theories are either derived from modern New Thought stuff, or are only tangentially and convolutedly connected to actual Hermetic teachings.  I honestly find it to be a waste of paper and ink, and as its usually one of the first texts newbies encounter in the occult (for one unfortunate reason or another), it can lead to some really messed up ideas that ill-prepare them for serious education in Hermeticism.

“how to bless my pentacle in santeria” — Oh, honey.  You are doing everything so wrong.  You don’t; further, you don’t even, do you?  Because I can’t.

Search Term Shoot Back, March 2015

I get a lot of hits on my blog from across the realm of the Internet, many of which are from links on Facebook, Twitter, or RSS readers.  To you guys who follow me: thank you!  You give me many happies.  However, I also get a huge number of new visitors daily to my blog from people who search around the Internet for various search terms.  As part of a monthly project, here are some short replies to some of the search terms people have used to arrive here at the Digital Ambler.  This focuses on some search terms that caught my eye during the month of March 2015.

“yes and no divination” — Easily one of the easiest and most important forms of divination you can do.  Drawing one of two different stones from a bag, flipping four coins or four shells, rolling dice to get an odd or even answer, and any number of ways can be done to get a yes or no answer from a spirit.  Personally, I find the Chinese system of jiaobei particularly elegant.

“symbols that summon spirits” — Offhand, I don’t know of a symbol that by itself has the power to summon spirits generally, but the one symbol you need for best results is the symbol of the specific spirit itself that you’re trying to summon.  The idea goes that the symbol is a physical “form” or circuit for the spirit, a type of “body”, so wherever the symbol is drawn, the spirit is already there at least in some form.  The rest of the ritual uses that symbol as a basis to bring the spirit more into being for a proper summoning.

“greek sigil magick” — Sigils weren’t that big in ancient and classical Greek styles of magic as far as we can tell; according to extant magical texts, the celestial letters, sigils, seals, and the like came about from Alexandrian magic (think PGM), and weren’t native to Greece.  Rather, instead of combining letters together into a single glyph, Greeks used isopsephy (Greek gematria) to condense words into a single “symbol”, that symbol being a number.  This has the added benefit of linking any number of words together that share the same number through isopsephy; this would be akin to two different words or phrases turned into the same sigil, provided they were reduced to the same set of letters and arranged in the same way, but would be much harder to achieve in letter-based sigil magic.

“st cyprian and justina medal” — While prayer medals of St. Cyprian of Antioch can be found, they’re not that common, and it’s sometimes easy to mix up his medal with that of St. Cyprian of Carthage (though he doesn’t really mind and both work).  However, I’ve never heard or found a prayer medal to both St. Cyprian and St. Justina, or even to St. Justina.  I’d love to find one!

“geomantic representation of numbers and alphabet” — Ugh, this is one of the things that Western geomancy disappoints me with.  I have not yet found any good way to divine letters or numbers with the geomantic figures, and it’s not for lack of trying.  I’m working on another scheme to assign the geomantic figures to the letters of the Greek alphabet (which I find to be easiest to work with), but it’s still in development and hasn’t been tested yet.  Western geomancy has techniques to divine numbers and letters based on Robert Fludd, Christopher Cattan, and John Heydon, but I’ve used all these methods and found none of them to be worth the effort.  Either it can’t be done and people who say they do it are either lucky or liars, or it can be done and the systems we have from Fludd, Cattan, and Heydon simply aren’t the ones we should be using.  I have some theoretical and linguistic issues with the notion of assigning letters to the figures (which language? which dialect? what pronunciation?) that still should be figured out, too.

“what are the planetary hours of the 1-12a.m and p.m?” — That’s not how planetary hours work.  Planetary hours are divisions of daylight and nighttime and don’t follow clock hours.  They’re based on the time of sunrise and the day of the week you’re currently on, so there’s a bit of calculation that goes along with it.

“olympic arbatel enns occult” — I’m honestly not sure where the word “enn” comes from.  As I understand it, it’s like a mantra or an incantation used in conjuring a spirit, a sort of expanded name or verbal seal one can use to catch a spirit’s attention, and I’ve seen it used for the goetic spirits of the Lemegeton.  That said, I’m not aware of any such things for the Olympic spirits; the Arbatel has a pretty simple and clear format for conjuring the Olympic spirits, and they don’t involve enns or incantations or mantras of any sort beyond a short and direct prayer to God asking for the presence of the spirit.

“mix anoited oil.and.florida.water to banish.evil” — I suppose you could, though most oil I know of doesn’t dissolve in Florida water particularly well.  Rather, anointing oil doesn’t really banish evil as much as it does inculcate goodness; Florida water helps to dispel or loosen darkness on a thing and “brighten” it, but may not be enough on its own to properly banish or exorcise evil.  Try keeping them separate and used for separate stages of the process.

“christian rituals to summon angels” — You mean, like, prayer?  Or pretty much the entirety of the Western Hermetic tradition dating from the late classical period?

“why should amblers keep to the path?” — Good question!  Tell me where you’re going and how much fun you want to have, and I’ll tell you whether there’s a path to stick to.

“geomancy gpod days to pray ancestors in 2015” — Honestly, any and all days are good to call on your ancestors.  I can’t think of one that isn’t, generally speaking; any and every day you’re alive is a testament to what your ancestors have done for you—give you life through their own lives through the ages—and you don’t need any system of divination to tell you that.  Still, I suppose you could throw a chart to determine whether a particular day is especially good or ill for ancestor veneration, or use some sort of geomantic astrology to find when the Moon should be in a certain sign or mansion, but beyond that, just pray to them and you’ll be fine.

“can you use vegetable oil in oil lamps” — I mean, you can, but ew.  Vegetable oil doesn’t tend to burn very clean and leaves not only an oily smell but an oily feel in the air.  Stick to pure olive oil.

“which arcangel to pray for improvement in oratory skilks” — As far as the Christian archangels go, I would consider Gabriel to be helpful, since Gabriel is the famous herald and foremost messenger of God.  After all, he was the one who announced to Mary what was going to happen, and there’s the apocryphal horn of Gabriel to call everyone to attention on Judgment Day.  Raphael would be helpful in a more medical method, such as removing speech pathology issues, but Gabriel would probably be best for actually learning how to deliver a message clearly and communicatively.  Planetary magic would suggest Raphael of Mercury and Michael of the Sun, and their elemental counterparts Raphael of Air and Michael of Fire, though Gabriel of the Moon (or of Water) would be good for that human touch in speech that hooks everyone into believing what you have to say.

“orgone radiatior” — While I’ve heard of orgone accumulators (to gather and store orgone) and accelerators (to push and direct the flow of orgone), I’ve never really heard of an orgone radiator which, I assume, would emanate and radiate orgone.  I mean, I have, and those would be living bodies.  Orgone is an ambient, pervasive force that’s generated from living corporeal entities; in that sense, your own body is a radiator.  Thinking of this in terms of a machine you could build, I dunno; the thought’s never really occurred to me, and I don’t know whether there’s a need for this considering the ambient, pervasive sources of orgone already present in the environment literally everywhere.

“how to create talism of desease in geomantic figures” — Probably the same as any other talisman for disease, involving curses, conjuration of baneful spirits, using astrologically harmful times, and the like.  For incorporation of geomancy, I’d recommend applying the figures Cauda Draconis or Rubeus combined with the figures that govern the parts of the body you’d like to injure, then using the resulting talisman in a suitably earthy way: sneaking the item into their belongings, burying it where they frequently visit or walk over, somehow dissolving it and sneaking it into their food or drink, and the like.  Fun times!

“how do i locate my phone using geomancy” — (11 hits?  Really?) Lost item and recovery charts are one of the things I find geomancy to really excel at, and the process is simple.  Phones, being a possession you own, are ruled by house II.  See whether this figure moves around in the chart, and see what the figure itself is to determine its condition and for clues as to where it will be.  Be wary of the Judge, however, in case the phone is actually lost or destroyed for good.

The Spiritual Origin of Geomancy

It occurs to me that I talk a fair bit about geomancy, and on occasion have briefly described the factual history of the art.  Geomancy, as it is understood by scholars and historians, has no pinpointed origin as yet; the best we can guess at is that the art was developed roughly around 900 CE likely in the northeast Saharan region of Africa.  It was likely innovated by migrant tribes, perhaps merchants from further east or by Tuaregs or other Bedouin-esque peoples, as a form of divination that connected with simple mathematics.  It got caught up in Arabic trade routes that synced up with the expansion of Islam, and spread pretty much all over from there: west to Morocco, southwest to Nigera where it became ifá, south to Madagascar where it became sikidy, and east to Palestine and Arabia where it became raml, and even further to India where it became ramalashastra.  When medieval Europe began its academic discovery and recovery that we call the Renaissance, around 1100 CE, it began to import academic, spiritual, alchemical, and divinatory texts from the Arabic world from two directions: from western Morocco into Spain where this new art was called “geomancia”, and from eastern Palestine and Turkey into Greece where it was called “rabolion”.  From these two fonts came a new river of geomantic knowledge that spread quickly throughout the rest of Europe within the span of a hundred years or so.  From there, it quickly became one of the foremost spiritual arts of Europe and maintained its place for another six hundred years, only beginning to fade and go underground with the coming of the Enlightenment and Industrial Revolution.  As older texts began to be rediscovered yet again, many parts of the Western mystery tradition became reintegrated into modern practice, geomancy with them, and here we are today.

While it’s nice for an academic, it’s hollow as a spiritual story to tell.  Happily, many of the older geomantic works, especially in the Arabic tradition but with no small number of European texts joining in, give us a spiritual origin story for geomancy, usually originating with Adam, Enoch, Idris, Daniel, or Hermes Trismegistus and usually from the angel Gabriel.  So, on this day, the fourth day of the tenth lunar month that is the yearly Hermaia, as an offering to Hermes celebrating his joy and work in our world, I figure I’d share my retelling of the spiritual origin of geomancy.  What follows isn’t exactly original, but it’s not exactly a rehash, either.  Have a seat and pour yourself and Hermes a drink, dear reader, and let me tell you a tale.

May the Muses smile on me and help me share this story well.

A_man__a_tree_and_the_desert_by_e_antoine

As was his custom, he was sitting outside under his favorite tree during the height of the Sun’s path through the skies.  Not part of the local priesthood but taught some two week’s sojourn north along the Nile, the man with the thin neck and long nose wore his usual habit of loose-fitting white robes to keep himself cool during the summer heat.  His tree was on the barren outskirts of an old city, a sacred one dedicated to the Eight who made and rule the world, the scribe-god Thoth foremost among them, but although the man was well-acquainted with the local festivals and religion, he was more focused on divinity itself rather than that of any particular temple.

Alas, the day when the man would see the one who calls himself Shepherd of Men would be still far off, but the man hoped every day that that day would be this one.  On that day, he would begin to be called Thrice-Great by countless students.  For now, he just bears the name Hermes as some foreign god does, as yet unaware of his own divine nature but more attuned to the ebb and flow of power and life in the world than most.

It was under his favorite tree that the man would look at the distant roads and marketplaces, too far off to hear but kept in eyesight by the harsh light of the Sun.  The tree was hardy, able to survive in rough winds as well as in parched earth, and had the benefit of offering good shade to the man especially when the Sun’s heat would be otherwise unbearable.  Almost nobody came out this way to bother him, far off as the tree was without a nearby road, which gave the man good time and space to think.  When he could, the man would meditate, contemplating whatever mystery snagged his intellect on any given day, but being human, he would sometimes suffer hunger or thirst or lust.  Not seeing these as bad things but not wanting to indulge in them, the man would keep himself distracted by reciting prayers, analyzing interesting rocks, gazing at the stars, and conversing with the rare passer-by when one happened to wander out this way for grazing or travel to the next market.  Anything he could learn, he figured, would help him eventually; even if he couldn’t yet directly know God, he could always know more about the creations and creatures around him.

It was on one such day that the man was slightly more perturbed than he usually was by worldly concerns.  He had family, and although he cared for them as much as a solitary philosopher could, he wasn’t always in the best contact with them.  One of his sons had a propensity for spiritual development as much as he did, but his other children were better suited to buying and selling.  One such son of his traveled far and wide, well out of the Black Land, and it was a rare day indeed that the man ever got word from him.  Whether it was a fear of having an empty nest or having grass-is-greener syndrome from seeing a successful youth exploring the world, the man was more distracted than usual in the shade and couldn’t fully focus on his usual contemplation.  Thought leaped to thought as he went from his son to his children to his own fatherhood to his own father to his own home.  It didn’t help that he felt like he should only be a part of this world without being of the world, but his worries kept overriding that spiritual calling.

Resorting to habit, the man looked around him and noticed the wind calmer than it should be for this time of year, the land quieter than it had been this week, the Sun brighter than he thought it could ever be.  Nothing around him to take his mind off his son, the man resorted to the earth underneath him and grasped a handful of the loose, sandy dirt under his knees and held it.  He felt the grit, the dryness, the coolness, the crumbliness of the dirt, feeling this handful of soil as if his palm was all he had of sense.  Curious, he tossed it away from him into the air, noting how the particles of dirt traveled through the air in near-perfect arcs, the gleam and glimmer of pulverized crystal and silica shining bright once it crossed the threshold of shade into the realm of light, the smell of dry barely-fertile dirt filling the air.  He began to cough and his eyes began to water as some of the dirt suddenly flew back into his face from a strong wind that came out of nowhere.  That wind caught him off-guard, and the pain in his dusty lungs snapped him back to the present and the place where he sat.

Once he could see clearly again, he wiped off the cough-spittle from his mouth and looked around him.  The dirt he threw covered the ground, smoothed out by the wind, leaving him with a blank space before him that nearly begged to have something, anything, upon it.  Feeling somewhat out of himself from the cough, like he had just awoken from a nap, he leaned forward and dipped his fingers into the flat earth before him.  A dot here, a mark there, a trailing line from letting his arm rest before pulling it back.  He recalled some of his education as a child in being taught simple numbers and parts of numbers, and from that memory, treated some of the marks he made as mathematical forms.  He heard that, once, some teacher visiting from the far north across the Sea, the only non-Egyptian who had ever been taught by the priesthood of home, was saying something like numbers were life and all was number, but this man never really understood that kind of thing.  Numbers were numbers and couldn’t eat or fight or mate, just like the lines and marks he was making before him on the dirt.

Another wind came up, this time from the opposite direction.  Again surprised, the man looked around himself; the sky was unchanged, the Sun barely moved, no storms on the horizon.  There should’ve been no cause for this wind, considering the time of year; this meteorological puzzle would have eaten at his mind more, but he glanced down and saw that the land before him was smoothed out by the wind again, as if the marks he had made were never made at all.  Frowning, he began to consider the benefit of just going home and returning to housekeeping if going outside was going to be so uncooperative.  Another spasm shot through his lungs from the dust he inhaled, making him cough again.

“Hey there.”

The man jumped.  Opening his eyes, wiping tears from his face with a dusty hand, he looked around and saw someone standing a few yards off from him under the light of the Sun.  The man saw a placid face atop loose robes of white and blue, nearly blending into the sky and sand behind him.  Unsure if it was a trick of the tears in his eyes and the light of the Sun, Hermes blinked several times before letting his eyes fix on the stranger.  No sound of approach, no previous call to him, unusually-colored clothes, coming from the direct direction as the noontime Sun?  This was something stranger than Hermes was used to for an average day under his tree.

Seeing confusion flicker across Hermes’ face, the stranger gave an apologetic smile and slowly took a few steps towards the shade. “Sorry for giving you a scare.  I was going to my father’s house, and was curious to see what someone was doing under this lonely tree.”

Hermes, taking comfort in the stranger’s voice that had an odd lilting quality to it, smiled back and waved away the apology.  “No worries.  I think a lot here.  You just gave me a bit of a startle, no worries.”

The stranger looked around and smirked. “I take it you don’t get much company out this way.  Mind if I join you?  The Sun is bright today.”

“Of course, of course!  I don’t deny anyone the pleasure of shade here.  Come, have a seat.”  Hermes waved the stranger over, emitting one last, small cough before the stranger could begin another conversation.

“Thank you.” The stranger entered the shade and sat down gracefully a few paces from Hermes.  Hermes didn’t notice that the stranger’s footsteps weren’t marking the ground, but was still looking around, still half-wondering where that last wind came from.  As the stranger sat down, Hermes opened his mouth to begin his usual niceties to greet passers-by when he caught the stranger’s eyes looking directly into his own.  Hermes stopped short of making any kind of utterance; the piercing quality of the stranger’s eyes seemed like pure fire, and his skin seemed to glow from something more than the Sun’s heat.

The stranger took this opportunity of awe and silence from Hermes and leaned forward curiously.  “Before I surprised you, I noticed you were drawing in the sand.  I take it you’ve studied letters?”  Hermes nodded, confusion mixing with his awe.  The stranger smiled enthusiastically.  “Good!  It always gladdens me to find another soul schooled in that art.  Mind if I ask what you were writing?”

Hermes snapped to his senses and shook himself out of his awestruck confusion.  “Ah, er, nothing, really.  Not letters, more like numbers.  I was clearing my mind and letting my hands do their own thing.”  Hermes grinned with some embarrassment, wiggling his fingers as if to show they thought on their own.

The stranger let out a casual scoff.  “Come now.  Surely one studied such as yourself should know that all forms are valuable.  After all, sometimes the most true meaning can come from pure accident.”  Hermes nodded with a shrug, not sure what the stranger was getting at but feeling something nagging at his mind in that general, vague sentiment. “If it’s not too presumptuous of me, I noticed an interesting thing from afar.  Would you show me some of the marks you made?”  The stranger tilted his head coyly, but Hermes didn’t catch what the stranger was getting at.

“Er…okay.  It wasn’t much, just a few dots in a row like this.”  Hermes leaned forward and made four small dots in the sand, one atop each other in a stack.  “I recognize this as a particular way to write a particular number, but little else.  Like I said, I was just idly clearing my mind.”

The stranger looked down and chewed his lip thoughtfully before glancing up.  “True, but numbers are true, too.  Simple though it might look, I know of this symbol as an omen.  Look at it this way; if you link the dots here”—Gabriel made a light cut down the row of dots in the dirt—”you get a straight, long line, like a road.  Roads are powerful, long though they may be, and the longer, the better.  Don’t you agree?”  Hermes let the stranger’s words sink in a bit, looking down at the dots and looking up again.  “Absolutely,” Hermes replied, “and it’s true that the more one travels, the more one changes.  It’s a lonely path, but then, what journey isn’t truly taken alone?”

The stranger gave a broad smile, teeth glimmering like pearls even in the shade of the tree.  “You speak wisdom beyond your years, sir.  What’s your name?”

Hermes sat up and extended his hand toward the stranger in friendship.  “I’m Hermes.  I live in the town over there,” giving a nod towards the marketplace too far to be heard.  “And you, my friend?”

The stranger clasped Hermes’ hand and nodded.  “An honor, Hermes.  I am called Gabriel.”

Hermes cocked his head and gave Gabriel a puzzled look. “A strong name, Gabriel, and a rare one.  You’re from Canaan, aren’t you?  I haven’t met someone with one of those names before, though I’ve heard of similar names before.”

Gabriel shrugged and looked down evasively.  “It’s not exactly my homeland, but yes, my tribe is settled there.”  Gabriel looked up beyond the eaves of the tree towards the north, then back to Hermes.  “But the road I walk is long, which is why this symbol you cast”—he motioned to the dots on the ground—”caught my eye.  Would you want to know more of the truth of this symbol?”  Always eager for more knowledge and more to contemplate, Hermes nodded and tilted his hand towards Gabriel, beckoning him to continue.  And continue Gabriel did for quite some time, expounding to Hermes this symbol that Gabriel called the Road, and how to find this symbol as a result of multiple marks being made and crossed off two by two.

At the end of Gabriel’s discourse on the letter, Hermes noted a queer thing.  They must have been talking for at least an hour, and Hermes was unusually tired and mentally overstimulated from learning about this character, but the Sun was still in the same position it was before Gabriel had arrived, as if it was suspended and watching Gabriel teach as Hermes himself did.  Gabriel, noticing that Hermes was exhausted from the lesson, smiled and stood up, ignoring the dust that clung to his robes.  “I see that I’ve talked your ear off, and probably ruined your day with my chatter.  I should probably get on with my day, Hermes, and let you do the same, but I’m glad you’ve let me share this with you.”  Hermes shook his head with a grateful smile.  “No, I’m glad you’ve shared this with me!  I appreciate it, and honored by it.  If you’ve stayed too long, then I apologize for keeping you too long.”

Hermes began to climb to his feet to see Gabriel off, but Gabriel dismissively waved Hermes back down.  “Don’t bother, don’t bother.  If you like, I can visit again tomorrow and tell you more.  There were other symbols I saw you drawing; those have meaning, too, much like the Road does.  Would it bother you too much to visit you again?”  Hermes, sensing an unusual opportunity that seemed unusual on an already unusual day, felt that this was one to seize.  “Of course!  You know where to find me, my friend.  I’ll see you again.”  Gabriel nodded and gave a slight bow, then walked off into the desert away from the Sun.

The man looked towards Gabriel as he left, glancing at the symbol for the Road before glancing back up.  Hermes let out a yelp; Gabriel was nowhere to be found, despite the land around being fairly clear and there being no footprints to mark Gabriel’s coming or going.  Now he was certain; this stranger named Gabriel was no ordinary man, just as this day was no ordinary day, and this symbol was no ordinary symbol.  Hermes leaned back on the tree, running his dusty fingers through his hair in perplexion, spending  several hours more in quiet contemplation of this figure, turning over Gabriel’s lesson over and over again in his head, digesting all that the stranger had taught him.  As the Sun lowered to the western lands, Hermes left his mental exploration and decided to call it a day, feeling renewed and grown in this new knowledge.  Hermes got up and headed to his home in the city, leaving his marks in the dirt.

The Sun set, the stars rose, the stars set, and the Sun rose once more.

After the Sun began its ascent to the heavens, as was his custom, Hermes went back to his tree, seeing his marks on the ground from the day before the same as he left it.  He sat back down as he normally would, and let his mind wander before settling on higher thoughts.  As the morning slowly turned to afternoon, Hermes, his eyes closed in meditation, began to drift into a light sleep, when a breezy rustling through the leaves above him roused him from his nap.  He looked around and found, yet again, the ground before him blank from the wind.  The moment Hermes noticed his marks on the ground erased, Hermes looked up to find Gabriel approaching once more from the south.

Hermes gave the strange not-quite-a-stranger a wave, and Gabriel responded in kind, raising his hand in a friendly salute as he approached the tree.  “Well, you’re actually here!  And if you’re here to learn, then I’m here to teach, if you’re ready for it.” “Of course, my friend,” Hermes said with a grin, waving Gabriel over, “I’d like to see what these other symbols you mentioned were.”  Gabriel took his seat once more by Hermes, and repeated the same process as the day before.  Again, Gabriel asked Hermes to draw a symbol, and again, Gabriel expounded the meaning of the symbol to Hermes; again, the Sun stood  still in the heights of heaven, and again, Hermes became worn out from learning all that Gabriel taught; again, Gabriel offered to teach Hermes more, and again, Hermes agreed to meet with Gabriel to learn more; again, Hermes noted the unusual vanishing of Gabriel, and again, Hermes went home looking forward to the next lesson.

For fourteen more days, Hermes and Gabriel continued in the same way, learning all the other figures.  On the sixteenth day, Gabriel told Hermes that these were all the figures that Gabriel could teach: the Road, the People, the Union, the Prison, the Greater Fortune, the Lesser Fortune, the Dragon’s Head, the Dragon’s Tail, the Girl, the Boy, Red, White, Joy, Sorrow, Loss, Gain.  Gabriel told Hermes how the first four figures could be combined from their tops and their bottoms to form the other twelve, and how each figure reflects a different story on its own.  His lesson complete, Gabriel shrugged, saying that this was all that he could offer Hermes in the ways of symbols and their lore, but that this was also just the beginning of their true meaning and purpose.  Hermes, entranced by these symbols and stories, asked Gabriel to return to teach the rest, and Gabriel accepted.

For the next sixteen days, Gabriel taught Hermes how each figure reflects the four elements that compose all of creation as well as how they relate to the stars both wandering and fixed that determine how all things wax, wane, and transform.

For another sixteen days, Gabriel taught Hermes the secrets of combining these figures two by two and transforming them by inverting and reverting and converting them into other figures, and how all these methods change and add to the meanings of individual figures.

For yet another sixteen days, Gabriel taught Hermes how to use the meanings of the figures, the elemental and planetary and stellar correspondences, the combinations, and the transformations in answering all sorts of questions, imparting to Hermes the art of divination to reveal all mysteries of this world and all things upon it.

At the end of these 64 days, Hermes found himself exhausted, utterly and completely exhausted, from having so much taught to him in so short a time, but he felt a new wellspring of knowledge beginning to flow inside himself.  Gabriel knew he was wearing Hermes thin, and after his final lesson where he revealed the deepest secrets of this art, Gabriel took from his robes a flask, uncorked it, and took a swig from it.  The teacher passed the flask to Hermes, who gladly took it with both hands; Hermes was unaccustomed to drinking or eating during the day, but Hermes found himself more than parched and in need of something to quench his thirst.  Hermes drank from the flask from the same spout Gabriel did, and found it filled with the clearest, coolest water.  It refreshed Hermes, sure, but once he took the spout from his lips and breathed in, he felt filled with a truly newfound power.  All these days of learning, all of Gabriel’s lessons seemed to immediately snap together like well-built masonry, forming within himself a beautiful temple of the finest knowledge.  Figures shone like priceless jewels, transformations linked the figures like silver filigree across altars, truths and wisdom rose up like the smoke of rarest olibanum—

“I thought you might need a drink after this last lesson,” Gabriel said with a warm smile.  “It’s no easy thing to learn all this, but you’ve done admirably, and I am proud to be able to share with you what I have.”

Hermes snapped out of his reverie and, realizing he was stuck holding the flask in the air as he stared off into space, hastily gave it back to Gabriel, blushing at both his own clumsiness and at the praise Gabriel gave him.  Gabriel took the flask from Hermes’ hands and put it back in his robe with a chuckle before continuing.  “You’re smarter than you look.  You know I’m no ordinary man, and this no ordinary art.”  Hermes, calming down from his embarrassment, nodded; “I know.  With your name, I know not only who you are but what you are and where you come from, and it’s certainly not Canaan.”

Gabriel chuckled.  “Bingo.  I know you and have known you, Hermes, and I am glad you finally know me, too.”  He looked down at the patch of dirt where he taught his art to Hermes, then looked back at Hermes with a contented smile.  “I learned this art from my Father, and it was entrusted to me to help me in my job as His messenger.  And now I entrust this art to you, Hermes, as your brother.”  Hermes looked deeply at Gabriel, not only seeing that fire in Gabriel’s eyes but joining it with his own, and nodded his assent.  “And as I have received this art from you, Gabriel”, Hermes responded, “I am your brother.”  Gabriel smiled and, looking once more towards the northern sky and then down at their patch of dirt, stood up and brushed the dust and dirt off from his robes.  “You’ve learned much, but you cannot master what you cannot name,” Gabriel said as he wiped his hands clean.  “We have no word for this art where I’m from.  What will you call it?”

Hermes stared at Gabriel thoughtfully, then looked down at the patch of ground in front of him that contained all his marks.  He drew out all sixteen figures together, contemplating each point and line as he did.  He gazed at the dirt for a long time, and as the Sun began to touch the horizon, he finally he looked up at Gabriel, his teacher’s profile illuminated in the ruddy gold glow of the evening Sun.  “This is an art to know all that happens in and upon the world.  This is an art born from the Earth, not just with earth or water but all the elements of this world.  I call it ‘geomancy’, to see with the Earth.”  Gabriel grinned as the wind began to pick up, blowing his robes behind his back majestically towards the sky.  “Then I have taught you geomancy, Hermes, and you are the first geomancer of this world.  May this art serve you well, and may you serve the world well by it.”

Hermes nodded and smiled, wiping the patch of earth before him clean before the wind could do it for him this time.  “I hope that I may, brother.”  Gabriel nodded in reply and extended his hand to Hermes, which Hermes took in his own.  The teacher lifted his student up and, after measuring him with his eyes, embraced Hermes in the love only brothers have.  After a time, Gabriel let go of Hermes and turned away, heading for the last time towards the north with the Sun setting on his left and the Moon rising on his right.  Hermes kept his eyes fixed on Gabriel’s back as he walked off, but another gust of wind blew Gabriel’s robes up like wings as it blew more dust into Hermes’ eyes; by the time Hermes could clear his eyes, there was nobody around, with neither the figures of geomancy nor the footsteps of angels to mark what happened.

Sitting back down by his tree, Hermes mulled over his time with Gabriel, all of the things he learned, and all of the things he might yet learn.  A quiet breeze blew, kicking up a bit of dust around Hermes but without irritating his lungs again.  Staring at the ground marked with the sixteen geomantic figures, he rubbed his fingers together, noticing the fine grit of dust and sand caught between the grooves of his digits.  In the last sliver of light of the Sun, Hermes got up and walked home, taking more time than he normally would to carefully settle down in all his newfound knowledge and skill.  Finishing his journey well after nightfall, he paused outside the threshold of his house and looked around, seeing an empty patch of fallow ground to the side of his house.  In the light of the Moon, now high in the sky, Hermes cast his first chart to see how his traveling merchant son was doing.  Hermes smiled; he would never again be worried by being out of touch.

Days, weeks, months, years passed.  Hermes practiced his art of geomancy, but went back to his tree every day and, once his mind calmed down from the mania of having a new method of understanding the world, went back to his habit of meditating and contemplating divine mysteries.  However, the man no longer doodled mindlessly in the sand, but used geomancy to explore that which he had trouble understanding.  One day, he finally became great, greater, greatest among men, beholding the Shepherd of Men and understanding the source and purpose of all things.  Finally, he began to teach; he no longer worried for his children, leaving them to their own devices, except for his son Tat whom he taught as a successor to his wisdom.  As Hermes Trismegistus traveled, he taught arts and skills of all kinds, reserving some for particular students and others for other students, but he kept geomancy a secret, not finding one apt enough in his travels yet to learn it from him.

Inspired by whispers of white and blue in his heart to teach geomancy to one who would do both him and his art well, Hermes Trismegistus traveled to the east, and gave the entirety of the art of geomancy to the one named Tumtum.  Tumtum learned it and traveled west, giving it to the one named az-Zanati.  Az-Zanati learned it and gave it to the Arabs.  The Arabs learned it and gave it to the Europeans.

The ancients learned it and gave it to us.

And now I, having learned it, give it to you.

ΧΑΙΡΕ ΕΡΜΗ ΤΡΙΣΜΕΓΙΣΤΕ
ΧΑΙΡΕ ΕΡΜΗ ΓΕΩΜΑΝΤΙΚΕ
ΧΑΙΡΕ ΕΡΜΗ ΑΙΓΥΠΤΙΑΚΕ
ΧΑΙΡΕ ΕΡΜΗ ΑΓΓΕΛΕ ΑΓΓΕΛΩΝ
ΧΑΙΡΕ ΧΑΙΡΕ ΧΑΙΡΕ ΧΑΙΡΕ ΕΡΜΗ

Search Term Shoot Back, December 2014

I get a lot of hits on my blog from across the realm of the Internet, many of which are from links on Facebook, Twitter, or RSS readers.  To you guys who follow me: thank you!  You give me many happies.  However, I also get a huge number of new visitors daily to my blog from people who search around the Internet for various search terms.  As part of a monthly project, here are some short replies to some of the search terms people have used to arrive here at the Digital Ambler.  This focuses on some search terms that caught my eye during the month of December 2014.  (Yes, I know that I’m currently on vacation, but I can’t pass up this fun post.)

“instant satan posses my huge cock” — I mean, I’ve seen multiple porn comics with this as the plotline, but it’s generally not the best of things.  Either your cock starts devouring others (cockvore), starts turning others into a bigger cock as you fuck them (cock transformation), or becomes a nuisance when it never goes flaccid (demonic Viagra).  There are other ways you can have a good time, believe me.

“hallucinogens used with burning candles” — No hallucinogen requires candles, strictly speaking; you just intake them in the proper way, although depending on the culture there may be some ritual involved that can call for candles.  That said, once you begin your fantastic fun trip, remember: cars, guns, and fire are all real things and they will actually hurt you.  Respect them and have fun!

“view big black cock dick images on twetter images” — I don’t host those on my Twitter account, and I have no afterdark account with more racy content to speak of.  I regret that I cannot oblige those requests, but I’m sure there are other Twitter accounts that can help.  You might try Reddit, though; /r/MassiveCock might satisfy your needs, if I hear correctly.

“planetary days and hours calculator for gambling?” — Planetary hour calculators are a dime a dozen online and I don’t provide one, so keep searching for those.  That said, times of Venus are especially good for gambling, in my opinion; Venus has her joy in the fifth house of astrology and geomancy, the house that presides over gambling and all speculative interests, and in the ancient Roman game of knucklebones or tali one of the best throws possible was the iactis Veneris, the throw of Venus.  In my opinion, go with the Golden Girl of Gambling, Venus, but also invoke Fortuna, too!

“what is + talisman of wisdom key of solomon pentacle seal pendant hermetic enochian kabbalah” — So, basically, you’re asking about the bulk of commonly known Renaissance Hermetic stuff?  Here, lemme do you a favor: go to Esoteric Archives and just read, since a good chunk of pretty much this entire search query is already there in full for free.

“very cocks congolais” —

wow such penis very throb wow much kongo

“16 geomantic symbols and their deities name” — This is actually a pretty interesting idea that I haven’t gotten around to yet, associating each of the 16 geomantic figures with different deities.  I know something very similar is done with the 16 odu in Ifa, and the Chain of Saint Michael (a southern Italian variant of geomancy) assigns each of the figures to a different Catholic saint, and some forms of Arabic geomancy associate the figures with different patriarchs of Islam.  I’m sure other regional traditions assigns each of the figures to a different deity in their own cultures, but Western geomancy by and large doesn’t do this.  The closest thing I can think of is to take the zodiac sign associated with the figure (depending on which zodiacal attribution system you prefer, since there are several) and use Cornelius Agrippa’s Scale of Twelve (book II, chapter 14) to associate each zodiac sign with one of the 12 Olympians.  Alternatively, you might just go with the planetary divinities associated with the geomantic figure, as might be done in Jyotish (Hindu) astrology, where Caput Draconis is associated with Rahu and Cauda Draconis with Ketu.  Sixteen isn’t that popular a number in most Western systems of mythology or theology, so this would take some thinking, but it’s possible all the same.

“fiery wall of protection makes people be nice to you” — That’s not generally the point of Fiery Wall of Protection oil; it’s to keep the bad stuff at bay with force, not to make people approach you sweetly.  I use cinnamon and red sandalwood in my recipe, both of which can be associated with Venus for sweetening and love magic, but in this context they take on a much more fiery and defensive tone that make them herbs of glorious soldiers than pretty women.

“myst drinking game” — YES.  I’ve been looking for one for years, until I gave up and just made up my own.  I’m glad to know I’m not the only one who’s been looking for the existence of such a thing.

“which greek god rules labradorite” — As far as I know, no Greek god has come forth to own this particular mineral.  It’s only fairly recently discovered to the West in about the 1800s, and even then mostly in the far north of Northern America (though there are some good deposits in Finland and northern Russia, as well).  Given its associations with rainbows, it might be given to Eos (Dawn), Iris (Rainbow), or other celestial divinities of the northern hemisphere, but these are all pretty big stretches for me.

“geomancy to determine career” — Look at the 10th house.  That’s really about it.  The figure can tell you how a particular career will go (if you’re asking about one in particular), or the type of career you’ll have (if not).

“geomancy and bagua compared” — This is one thing that always peeves me off as a Western geomancer.  Despite their superficial similarities, geomancy as developed in northern Africa and spread across the Western, African, and Middle Eastern world is pretty much guaranteed to have no common origins or shared meaning with the Chinese I Ching, which predates geomancy by over a thousand years.  I Ching makes use of eight trigrams (binary figures of three lines) or 64 hexagrams (binary figures of six lines), while geomancy makes use of 16 tetragrams (binary figures of four lines), but the superficial similarities stop there.  The bagua in particular is the set of eight trigrams arranged in a particular pattern to demonstrate an ideal flow of qi or energy.

“saint michael elekes color” — The usual disclaimer here applies where I make mention that I’m not crowned in Ocha and have no formal ties to Santeria.  That said, it’s hard for me to get any reliable information about which orisha is most closely associated with Saint Michael (or San Miguel in Spanish).  Some sources associate him with Ogun (black and green, the blacksmith-warrior), Chango (white and red, the lightning-axe king of orisha), or even Eleggua (black and red, the road-opener).  What elekes I can find for Saint Michael are red and green in color, which is unusual since these would be the Golden Dawn colors for the element of Fire with which Michael is associated, even though red and green elekes are often given to the Nigerian tradition of Orunla (the diviner god of Ifa) or sometimes to a specific avatar of Oshun (the river goddess of wealth and sexuality, but here a fierce and sometimes sadistic hunter).  Because of this disparity of information, I’d recommend talking to your local Santero/a and asking them, but be aware that no two Santeros may have the same answer based on their own house’s tradition.

“do u need a ritual to conjure a demon” — It depends on what you consider a ritual.  For some people, a ritual can be a full-blown Solomonic affair with circles, robes, candles, incense, a week or more of preliminary prayers and baths, all culminating in a conjuration.  For others, it could be no more than clearing the mind and calling out to the spirit by their name.  Some people just naturally attract these types of forces to them, some people attract them to themselves because of the work they do (e.g. in graveyards, with those who are dying, in war-torn areas), so it might not take much to bring out such a spirit.  Sometimes a spirit can take residence in a particular place, and all you need to do is walk into their domain and call out to them.  You’ll note that I’m not calling them “demons” here, because what you consider a demon could easily be a personal spirit or something assigned to you based on your tradition and perception.  So, yes, you do need ritual to conjure a demon, but the ritual could be nearly nothing compared to what you might expect.

So this is it, the final post of 2014!  We’ll be back next week with new posts, so I hope you guys have an excellent New Year’s without too bad a hangover on the first day of 2015!

New Ebook: De Archangelis

Late in 2013, after my week-long ordeal of conjuring all the angels of the elements and planets, culminating in my conjuration of the angel of the fixed stars Iophiel, a good chunk of my Work took a distinctly Christian tone.  This wasn’t intentional on my end, but signs kept appearing more and more that, hey, I should probably start investigating this Christ dude more.  Not being raised Christian, but calling upon him much in my rituals and prayers, I suppose this was inevitable, especially as I got closer to the sphere of Heaven itself and working with my roots in a Christian Hermetic framework. This is just my experience; not everyone will have this happen to them, for what it’s worth.  Still, it’s not like I’m suddenly going to church every week and forsaking magic.  Quite the opposite!  It’s only spurred me on to work more and more closely with the forces of divinity in a way that’s most culturally accessible to me, including with the Greek theoi, a few African spirits here and there, and the like.  It’s all very Hermetic, in the classically-Hermetic confusingly eclectic way that I’m used to it being.

One of the big changes that’s happened since then is that I began a practice to the seven archangels of the Christian tradition, at the suggestion of my good colleague Michael Strojan.  These are not the same as the seven planetary angels, and indeed, the seven archangels go higher and are a different type of entity; if they are the same entities as the seven planetary angels, then they’re much rarer, much holier, and wear scarier hats than their planetary counterparts.  Working with the seven archangels has benefitted me in subtle ways, making my life better as a result, and it’s ended up with me having to dig deep and find out prayers for them, sometimes writing my own sets of prayers for their devotions.

Eventually, I got tired of having to use printouts of prayers I found online and compiled them into a single document for my own ends.  As these things usually turn out for me, this ended up with me elaborating on practices one can develop with the seven archangels, which then resulted in a new ebook for sale: De Archangels, “On the Archangels”, available from my Etsy for only US$10.00!

angelis

Coming in at almost 100 pages, this ebook contains pretty much all you need for starting a practice with the seven archangels of the Orthodox Christian tradition with regular devotions, prayers, and offerings, as well as how to seek their aid and presence in your life:

  • Information about the history, divine presence, and powers of each archangel
  • How to set up an angelic shrine for one archangel or all seven at once
  • How to make offerings to and requests of the archangels
  • Litanies, chaplets, and novenas for each archangel
  • A conjuration ritual to get in more intimate contact with each archangel, including original seals for each of them

This is one of my longer ebooks, and even though it’s a compilation of many Catholic, Orthodox, and general Christian prayers, there’s a lot in there from my own research and development in my own angelic practice.  It’s a work I’m proud of, and given the importance of these spirits, I’m kinda surprised there’s not a lot of work being done with them by other occultists.  Sure, it’s more churchy than conjure-y, but that doesn’t mean the archangels don’t have anything to offer you.  Rather, they have plenty to offer, and are eager to help.

Still, this ebook is not for those who are solidly set against involving any kind of Christian activity in their own practice.  This book is pretty much dedicated to Christian magicians or those Christians who have occult inclinations, so don’t expect attempts to link the archangels to the amesha spentas of Zoroastrianism or connections to ancient Mediterranean gods.  If you’re set against calling on the name of Jesus Christ, then you may want to pass this book over.  Someone on my Facebook asked me if there was anything for “non-monotheist non-Christians” to use when working with angels, and I had to reply that there wasn’t, because there isn’t.  Angels exist because of God and for the sake of God; you can’t remove God from the angels.  It’s similar to working with Saint Cyprian of Antioch, really, upon which Jason Miller has touched before:

At this time, as my reputation and the reputation of other saints is growing, there are many who invoke us, yet revile and reject the name of Christ.  I understand this, as it comes from deep hurt and pain caused by those who act in the Lord’s name, but it is a mistake. Christ is not what you think.  He does not care what religion you belong to.  He does not care about your acceptance.  But if you call upon a saint, have no illusions, you are calling upon the power of Christ.  Invoking his name will empower your work.  The spirits will respond to it whether you believe or not.  The steeples of all the churches will resonate with your working.  Taking holy communion will solidify your results.  You should not call upon the saints and ignore Christ.

While I know there are people who work with the angels and deny Christ, I can’t say that that’s a smart move, because it denies the ultimate reason they exist in the first place.  The angels, especially the seven archangels, are entities from the tradition of Christianity and serve Christ, only carrying out the will of Christ (who is God).  If that’s distasteful to you, I don’t hold it against you, but I warn against working with the angels in that case.  Otherwise, if you don’t mind calling on Christ or the names of God, or if you actually are Christian and do so with regularity, then you won’t have a problem working with the seven archangels, and highly suggest you do so.

Likewise, this book is intended for Christian occultists or occult-minded Christians, not necessarily for uber-gnostic super-magical Christianity.  The prayers and the like in this book are pretty standard stuff you’d find in any Catholic manual of prayer, and doesn’t really have much in the way of making talismans, mojo bags, or candle rituals.  Still, such acts can be greatly empowered by calling on the angels and working with them in a devotional form, and this text offers some guides on how to do just that without things seeming overtly ritualized or occult.  It’d fit right in with a conjure-worker’s handbook as it would a liberal priest’s, as I plan for it to.  If you’re interested in the more explicitly magical stuff you can do with the archangels, I suggest investigating things along the lines of Catholic folk magic or conjurework, or the excellent books from Hadean Press on working with the Archangel Michael and Archangel Gabriel.

So, if you’re willing to work with the archangels, then check out my ebook today on Etsy for US$10!  This is especially good timing, given that we’re approaching the Christmas season and Advent Sunday was this past week in the Catholic calendar.  Angels are in the minds of a lot of people, so why not tap into that current with the holiday season?

Search Term Shoot Back, July 2014

I get a lot of hits on my blog from across the realm of the Internet, many of which are from links on Facebook, Twitter, or RSS readers.  To you guys who follow me: thank you!  You give me many happies.  However, I also get a huge number of new visitors daily to my blog from people who search around the Internet for various search terms.  As part of a monthly project, here are some short replies to some of the search terms people have used to arrive here at the Digital Ambler.  This focuses on some search terms that caught my eye during the month of July 2014.

“sigil in cock by zodiac” — I don’t even know what this means, or why I got this search term among the most common this month looked for across several days.

“can i burn kameas in ritual work” — You can, but I have the feeling it’s not always a good idea.  Kameas are magic squares, a numerical and numerological method of representing the essence or power of a planet.  Effectively, they emanate the same “vibration” or power the planet itself does, though in a weaker and more transmitted way.  The kameas are talismans in their own right, no further consecration needed (though more consecration can always help).  Burning things in ritual work almost always has a connotation of sacrifice, like burning hell money for the ancestors or bleeding a pigeon out over a fire for Hermes (it’s a thing), so burning a kamea as an offering could be done, but I don’t immediately recognize for who or what.  I mean, if you want to dispatch a particular force, you could burn something like a name paper or a photo, but the kamea on its own is just the planetary force.  Chances are you want to use and direct that force, not just send it out without guidance or instruction, so burning it might not be the best idea.

“art deco and orgone accumulators” — To be honest, I like dieselpunk a lot more than steampunk; environments like those of Bioshock are a deep pleasure to me.  Dieselpunk is a cyberpunk derivative that focuses on art deco and early 20th century interbellum (1920s to 1940s) period aesthetics and technological appearances.  Think of the style of the Empire State Building in NYC, the almost hieroglyphic engravings from the 1930s on public buildings lauding the labor movement, the classic Rolls-Royce fancy cars, and even old jukeboxes, and you’ll have a grasp of art deco and dieselpunk aesthetics.  As for how this connects to orgone accumulators, that’s anybody’s guess, but I suppose one could make an orgone accumulator using a dieselpunk or art deco theme.  At that point, you’re just applying visual art to tech, so it’s not really going to change the tech itself much.

“invocation of sphere of the prime mover” — I can’t imagine there to be one.  The Sphere of the Prime Mover is Divinity unfiltered itself.  The sphere of the Earth has its prayers and invocations of worldly spirits, ancestors, and demons; the spheres of the planets have their hymns and songs, such as those of Orpheus or the Picatrix; the eighth sphere of the fixed stars has the Hymns of Silence and, when the mood is right, glossolalia.  The Eighth Sphere is the highest place (or the lowest, when seen from the point of view of Divinity) where we can still have distinct thoughts and impressions, wordless though they may be except through pure Logos itself.  Anything higher than that, and all distinctions, impressions, and ideas go out the window; you’re in the realm of the Monad at that point, where there’s really nothing but the One: everything, nothing, both everything and nothing, neither everything nor nothing, all of the above, none of the above, and something else entirely.  The only invocation I can think of to this highest of spheres is to ascend to henosis/apotheosis and speak whatever the gods speak among themselves, or whatever God speaks to Itself.  Understandably, people tend to not survive this or take multiple lifetimes to achieve this, so exceedingly few people have likely had the chance or seen the point to utter such an invocation, since there’s literally nothing we can utter to even approximate or connect to the glories of the Infinite with our finite speech.

“how to pray sator square” — The Sator Square is an old type of magic square talisman, with the words “SATOR AREPO TENET OPERA ROTAS” written in a 5 × 5 grid, which can be read up, down, forwards, and backwards.  Its palindromic nature, as well as its grammatical plausibility in Latin, have made it a powerful magical tool, even appearing as a pentacle in the Key of Solomon.  However, it’s never really meant to be prayed; it’s a talisman to be engraved, simple as that.  You engrave it on stone or write it on paper and keep it around; you can throw it into a fire to put it out or keep it in your house to prevent fires, for instance, no further consecration needed.  There’s a theory that the Sator Square was used by clandestine Christians in the early Roman Empire to identify themselves, since if you rearrange the letters you get the word “Paternoster” (Our Father) written twice in a cross intersecting at the N, with two leftover As (alpha) and two leftover Os (omega).  So I suppose you could pray the Lord’s Prayer over it, but that’d be stretching it.

“orgone accumulaors and cold water fusion” — Uh…um.  I’m a Hermetic magician and software engineer, not a physicist in any sense, so it’s hard for me to speak much about this particular combination of topics.  What I can say, however, is that the two don’t really mix in any conceivable way.  Orgone energy is a spiritual substance, an ambient life force pervading the universe.  Cold fusion is a hypothetical (not even theoretical!) means of achieving nuclear fusion at room temperature, as opposed to the millions of degrees required for normal fusion.  There’s no accepted or agreed upon theory that permits such a reaction to occur, and all the science that permits this is convoluted, fake, questionable, or some mix of the three.  No, I’m not a fan of trying to use cold fusion to solve the energy crisis of our time, and no, I don’t think that it’s the key to our continued technological progress.  Neither, for that matter, is orgone energy, which is such a radically different thing that it’s like asking what effect eating cake at nighttime has on the catalytic converter of my car.

“orgone accumulator collects neutrinos” — Again, another weird physics query involving orgone? Granted that I don’t have a physics background or degree, but Randall Munroe of XKCD fame does, and he’s mentioned neutrinos before and how utterly transparent they are to normal matter.  Quoth he, “[l]ook at your hand—there are about a trillion neutrinos from the Sun passing through it every second”.  A single neutrino might, on average, hit an atom in your body once every few years, if you’re lucky.  It’s just about laughably implausible that anything can conceivably collect neutrinos, since they almost never touch anything material to begin with.  Orgone energy isn’t physical, either, so it accumulates something that is actually intangible and unphysical, as opposed to something that’s just about completely intangible and physical.  This is definitely one of the odder orgone-related queries that’s led here, especially since I don’t recall having talked about neutrinos or subatomic particle physics before on this blog.

“what is the difrence between solomon sommoning ritual and high magic summoning ritual” — Er…this is a surprisingly complex question to answer and involves a bit of history.  Summoning rituals (and all their variant terms) are common to just about any and every path of magic: you’re calling upon a spirit to be present for some reason, you do your business with them, and you send them away.  Every path of the occult that recognizes the existence of independent spirits (and even then, some that don’t) has a means to converse with spirits in this manner.  “Solomonic summoning” likely refers to the type of conjuration given in the Key of Solomon (though it focuses mostly on talismanic operations) and Lemegeton Goetia (though there are several other parts to the Lemegeton that work with other types of spirits and systems), though it also includes other types of conjuration in the same vein such as the Heptameron and Trithemius’ Drawing Spirits into Crystals.  This is all largely an offshoot from the Hygromanteia of Solomon, an old old grimoire that even I haven’t had the chance to read yet, along with other older books such as Sepher Raziel, Liber Lunae, the Picatrix, and so on.  In a sense, “Solomonic” magic is, if not synonymous with post-classical Western Hermetic magic, a label for a large subset of the field.  “High magic”, on the other hand, is a weird term, and the earliest use of it I can think of off the top of my head is from the title of Eliphas Levi’s book he published in the 1850s, Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie or “Dogma and Ritual of High Magic”.  His magic was a derivative of Solomonic material and some quasi-“pure” Hermetic stuff, but is generally synonymous with the same.  Used in modern parlance, however, I feel like “high magic” is anything involving elaborate ritual, tools, or setup, as opposed to “low magic” or the “simpler” or more “vulgar” applications of candle magic, application of herbs and powders, and folk magic.  In other words, “high magic” is often given the image of learned wizened wizards in towers speaking to entities through arcane circles, while “low magic” is given that of an old illiterate grandmother witch cooking up brews and doing divination for the village.  It’s a really bad distinction to make, because I see no reason to stick to just one or the other, and a ceremonial magician like myself can often get lazy or see no reason to be so elaborate when simpler and easier methods exist to achieve something.

“seals to control angel” — One doesn’t control an angel.  In my understanding, and based on what I’ve seen and witnessed, angels are God-made-miniature, collectively forming the “cells” of the Divine Will.  Angels exist to carry out the will of God; their will is God’s will and God’s will is their will.  To say that they have desires for anything else is nonsensical; whether they have free will or not doesn’t matter for them, since they only operate to carry out the functions of the cosmos, which is the desire and will of God.  So, if you were to control an angel, that would imply control over the will of God, which is just a touch hubristic.  Just as you can’t tell God what to do, you can’t tell an angel what to do, either; they’ll acquiesce only inasmuch as your demands are in line with the will of God.  It’s very much a “move this or move me” type of deal; either something is to be done (in line with the will of God) or something to you is to be done (also in line with the will of God).  This is why it’s so important to maintain holiness, virtue, meditation, and prayer when working with angels, because the closer your will is with that of God, the more what you want will happen, because it’s already supposed to happen, though not always effortlessly or with the most ease.  After all, it’s also God’s will that everybody is to achieve salvation (I claim), but there’s a lot going on the world to fight against that effort.

“summon a demon spirit ‘through the internet'” — While I’m not saying it’s impossible, I doubt one could simply conjure a spirit of any kind with the press of a button, like a “Purchase Spirit Now” button for PayPal.  I mean, say you press a button that runs a program to conjure a spirit.  What would the program output?  What would receive the output?  What connection would the internetizen be making with the spirit to be conjured?  What would meaningfully differentiate this operation from the person just writing out “I want to summon spirit X” on paper and leaving it at that?  While that could work, it won’t for the vast majority of people and practitioners; getting into the right mindset, building oneself up through prayer and spiritual preparation, focusing on the sphere of the spirit to open a connection, and so forth are good things to do when preparing to conjure a spirit.  Once all that’s done, I suppose clicking a button would be the same as saying “In the name of the Blessed and Holy Trinity, I conjure you, X…” with a comparable amount of gravity and weight, but at that point, why even bother with the Internet at all, especially when you may not be assured internet access?  With words alone, you can summon spirits wherever you can speak; you can only click PayPal buttons wherever there’s a usable internet connection.

“similarities between greek god hermes and males that are a leo/virgo cusp” — If the other search entries I repeatedly get are any indication, maybe it’s being endowed with a huge cock?  I dunno.  Hermes is a god, and Hermes the god is not identical to Mercury the planet, the zodiac signs of Gemini or Virgo, the signs where Mercury is strong.  There’re plenty of correspondences between them, sure, including analytical minds, a skill for communication, and a knack for travel or traversing distances mentally or physically, but Hermes himself is not a Virgo.  Hermes, according to the Homeric myth and Athenian belief, is born on the fourth day of the tenth lunar month, or sometime around April, which would make him an Aries or a Taurus, depending on the exact lunation sequence in the Metonic cycle.  Then again, Hermes is also an immortal god, so I doubt astrological influences would affect his divine nature much the way it does to humans.

“where can i fine satanic ritual manuals and conjuring?” — I hear E.A. Koetting has some good comedy routines, but I’m trying to be thrifty with my money and spend it only on things that have meaning.

“lbrp of dragon” — If you’re faced with a dragon, I’d personally suggest you use a bigger gun than a banishing ritual, especially the LBRP (or as one of my friends jokingly calls it, Le Burp).  Drawing out that banishing pentagram of Earth isn’t going to do much against, you know, fangs and claws and what’s likely to be a more than a ton of scales and flesh rending your own.  But hey, I’m just a simple magician, what do I know?