Holy Saint Cyprian of Antioch! Mage, martyr and mystic; theurge, thaumaturge, and theophoros; saint, sorcerer, and sage! Pray for us, now and at the hour of our death. Amen. + + + + + + + + +
Yes, it’s that time again! Yesterday, September 16, was the Feast of Saint Cyprian of Carthage, one of the great writers of Western Christianity and patron saint of all those in northern Africa, who lived between c. 200 and 258 AD. This means that, in only a few days, the Feast of Saint Cyprian of Antioch, the great saint of sorcerers, magicians, necromancers, and occultists, will be here, and today begins the nine-day period of the Days of the Cyprians. I may not have spoken about him lately as much as I did last year, but don’t worry, Saint Cyprian of Antioch is still my patron saint and one of the closest and most powerful teachers I have in my magical studies. From preservation against evil to fortification in the occult, Saint Cyprian of Antioch is one of the great magicians of our lineage, and the Days of the Cyprians is an awesome time to honor him.
Saint Cyprian of Antioch’s feast day is September 26. The feast day of Saint Cyprian of Carthage, however, is September 16 (yesterday). These two feast days are spaced nine days apart, and nine is a number sacred to Saint Cyprian of Antioch. These nine days are called the Days of the Cyprians, starting today. Some devotees and followers of Saint Cyprian of Antioch use these days for special devotions, charitable actions, and powerful works in honor of Saint Cyprian of Antioch, and I plan on doing the same starting tonight. My household and I are doing novenas to Saint Cyprian of Antioch, seeing how we all work with occult powers in distinct ways that often focus on the dead and on our ancestors, as well as to ask for his blessings in the coming year. Besides, we could probably use his help more and more as we continue to grow! The closer I work with Saint Cyprian, the more things I can do are revealed to me, especially with me falling fairly solidly under his patronage.
I also want to use this period to do something special for Saint Cyprian of Antioch. Many saints have their preferred offerings, this type of flower or that type of drink, but in general saints love acts of charity: giving to the poor, helping the disenfranchised, and generally doing good works for others. With that in mind, I had an idea for a bit of a contribution of sorts, and I need your help with this. Long story short, pitch in some cash to donate to people who are badly off, and you’ll get entered into a raffle for something in return. I hope you consider pitching in, since this is a way we can all help out and earn the blessings of the good saint together. I’m going to handle this a bit differently from how I did this last year, but the overall idea is the same:
- Donate money, no less than US$3.00, directly to the charity Doctors Without Borders. I suggest $9 or amounts in multiples of 9 (27, 81, 90…), since this is a number sacred to Saint Cyprian of Antioch.
- After you have donated to the cause, send me an email to “polyphanes at gmail dot com” with the header “Saint Cyprian of Antioch, pray for us” and with proof of your donation such as an email or PDF receipt, remembering to remove any information you feel uncomfortable sending. With this email, please send me any special petitions you would like to be made to Saint Cyprian of Antioch, and whether you wish to remain anonymous in the final fundraiser thank-you.
- Every person who donates money will have prayers made in their name and their petition presented to Saint Cyprian on their behalf when I make devotions to him that night.
- Every person who donates will be eligible for a prize (see below), with the winners chosen randomly at noon US Eastern time on Saturday, September 26.
- You can donate however many times you want or however much you want, each donation getting a different petition put to Saint Cyprian, but you’ll only be entered into the raffle once.
- These rules are valid starting with this post and ending at 9 p.m. US Eastern time on Friday, September 25. Notifications of donations made after that point will not be considered for this contest.
Doctors Without Borders was founded in 1990 in New York City to raise funds, create awareness, recruit field staff, and advocate with the United Nations and US government on humanitarian concerns. Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières is an international medical humanitarian organization that provides aid in nearly 60 countries to people whose survival is threatened by violence, neglect, or catastrophe, primarily due to armed conflict, epidemics, malnutrition, exclusion from health care, or natural disasters. Charitable humanitarian work, especially in war-torn or disaster-afflicted areas, can be hard to do, and these doctors are doing all they can to help make the lives of the least of us at least a little better, free as much as possible from injury and illness. If anyone is doing the work of God and the gods and saints, it’s these good people, and I think they’re definitely worth donating to in the honor of Saint Cyprian of Antioch. After all, a good portion of magic involves healing, and the world could use as much of it as possible right about now. You need to know how to make curses in order to break them, and you need to know how poisons work in order to make medicine work. Saint Cyprian knows this well, and this is a good effort to spread healing and medicine and wellness into the world in his name and honor.
On Saturday, September 26, the Feast of Saint Cyprian, I’ll announce the winners of the raffle, and will ask them for their addresses. If fewer than nine people donate, I’ll only be giving out free geomancy readings as prizes, but assuming at least nine people donate to the cause, the winners will receive a particular Cyprian-themed craft I’ll be consecrating under Saint Cyprian of Antioch for you to wear or use in your Work, both with the saint and in your magical activities generally. The prizes are:
- One of three seed bead necklaces
- A bone, amethyst, obsidian, and evil eye bracelet
- A bone, garnet, jet, and evil eye bracelet
- A bone, wood, tiger’s eye, and evil eye bracelet
- A niner chaplet made from amethyst and evil eye beads with black tourmaline pendulum
- A niner chaplet made from bone and quartz beads with black tourmaline pendulum
- A niner chaplet made from obsidian, amethyst, and bone beads with black tourmaline pendulum
I’ll send these out ASAP on Monday, September 28. Given the results from last year, I doubt that I’ll just be giving out free geomancy readings, and I hope we can top the $1000 we donated together to the Malala Fund. I’ll be pitching in, too! If you can, please spread and share this post to your friends, colleagues, coven mates, lodge, and others so we can spread the power and influence of Saint Cyprian across the world with good works and prayers to make the world better, and to put ourselves in a better position of power in the world.
If you don’t want to enter into the fundraiser (or even if you plan to), please take these upcoming nine days to build up a relationship to Saint Cyprian of Antioch. Pray his chaplet, recite his litany, donate to local charities in his name, pray his novena, or just light a candle for him. At the risk of shamelessly plugging my own stuff, if you need resources for prayer or ritual, you could always check out my Etsy page and buy my translation of the Book of Saint Cyprian or my collection of prayers to the good saint, including four separate novena prayers. There are lots you can do to honor this saint, all culminating with his feast day on Saturday, September 26, including giving free readings, charitable magical work, donating to food banks, and so much else to help support those who need it. If you have nothing else to do, join me in reciting a personal prayer of mine nightly during the Days of the Cyprians to Saint Cyprian of Antioch:
Hail, holy Saint Cyprian of Antioch! Theurge and thaumaturge, sorcerer and saint, mage and martyr and mystic, pray for us, now and at the hour of our deaths. May we come to honor and help the least among us, those deprived of good and those oppressed by the depraved, and lift them up to aid and shelter them as we look after ourselves. May we come to love our neighbors as ourselves, regardless of appearance, origin, faith, or habit, and thereby come to honor and love all mankind as children and brethren of Almighty God. In Christ Jesus, please intercede for us, Saint Cyprian of Antioch, and help us help each other. Keep us safe from all harm, those who live comfortably in houses and those who walk homeless in streets, those who have plenty to eat and those who haven’t eaten in days, those who pray assiduously and those who lack all faith, those who make curses and those who break curses, those who heal and those who need healing, those who invade and those who defend. We are all human and subject to the afflictions of humanity; help us, Saint Cyprian of Antioch, that we may tend to each other in a spirit of brotherhood and love that you show for us who cry out to you. By lifting our eyes up in praise of God, help us rise to holiness we desire that we may honor the Lord; by casting our eyes down in humility to God, help us acknowledge the crimes we commit that we may rectify them. Open our minds and hearts to the light of truth shining in eternal darkness, and show to our souls and spirits the darkness of wisdom hiding in blinding light. As you worked with both hands to attain the will of God, help us to work with both our hands may we strive ever towards the salvation of ourselves, all mankind, the world, the universe, and the cosmos. Through Jesus Christ, the Son of God, redeemer of humanity, amen. +
In addition, I’d like to add a twist to the novena this year. If you noticed, at the beginning of this post, I began with an invocation to the saint, one which I say often, especially when donning a necklace, ring, or other effect to the saint, and whenever I begin work with him. In it, there are nine “aspects” or “offices” I ascribe to Saint Cyprian of Antioch:
Each of these nine days, I’d like you to meditate, contemplate, and focus on how Saint Cyprian of Antioch fulfills each of these offices. What, exactly, is a mage to you, and how is Saint Cyprian a mage? What were the conditions of his martyrdom, how was he blessed to become a martyr in the grace of Christ, and how might you give up your own sacrifices to attain grace? How did Saint Cyprian wander as a mystic, how was he trained in the mysteries, and into what mysteries would or should you be led? How did he accomplish the work of God (theurgy) as both priest and magician, and how can you come to know your own labors of theurgy? How did he use his powers in the world to accomplish works of wonder (thaumaturgy), and what would you like to accomplish through acts of goetic, planetary, elemental, or other types of thaumaturgy? How does he carry God (theophoros) around in his heart and on his shoulders, and how can you do the same in your daily and sacred life? What does he stand for as a saint, and as a patron saint of magicians and necromancers and all those who interact with and live through the occult? How did he become a sorcerer, determining the lots of life for himself and others? What was the wisdom he accumulated to become a sage, and what kind of wisdom do you seek from him as a sage?
Go now with the blessing of Saint Cyprian of Antioch, and may you always enjoy the grace of God wherever you go. May Saint Cyprian, Saint Justina, and Saint Theocistus watch over you and empower you in this world, the worlds above, and the worlds below in all your works and words.