I probably tricked you all into thinking I’ve been fairly active lately with the blog, given the large number of posts that’ve gone up recently ranging from orgone to magic circles to philosophy in magic. Truth be told, I was working out a huge input of Mercurial force in my life from the cazimi election last month, and hot damn did it make me active with minor projects and writing, not to mention social. I had some posts scheduled for the past week or so, mostly so I could enjoy a pleasantly long birthday weekend. (God bless my mother for ejecting me from her loins on a federal holiday weekend.) Yes, dear reader, I am now one year older and undergoing my fantastic second Jupiter return, along with a Solar and Cytherean return! Astrologers in the crowd, you have my permission to feel old now.
Between getting drunk on presidential debate drinking games, going to a spa with friends, catching up on a few conjurations and trips to other places both physically and astrally, it’s been a blast these past few days. The big highlight of the weekend was going to Crucible Convention, a yearly conference of mages, magicians, pagans, occultists, and other workers in the Ars Arcanorum. It was fantastic to meet people that I’ve only read or met online through chats or the blogosphere: Pallas Renatus and his beautiful lady, Frater Rufus Opus and his glorious seeress-cum-partner, Tolderoll’s erudite and classy swank, Jason Miller’s awesomeness, and others. Part of what made me feel so happy to go was the sublime discovery that these people I read, look up to, and follow on the Internets drink, cuss, and fuck around just as much as I do (God bless the world and all its wonders). Plus, there was enjoying about twelve hours of panels, workshops, and discussions, helped out by caffeine and gin:
- “Space/Time Magic 101” by Taylor Ellwood. This was a telepresentation, done over Skype, which was fitting for the topic. However, the hotel wireless in the convention area was spotty at best, which led to a very disjointed presentation (also, perhaps, fitting). However, despite the name and technical difficulties, I thought it was more appropriately focused on probability magic, which is something I’m interested in that not many people seem to know how to do or explain appropriately. Mr. Ellwood went over a few sigil-based techniques to enhance probabilities of certain events over others, chaining sigils together to bring several unconnected events into manifestation together, and how to work with alternate realities in subtle but useful ways.
- A panel on “Balancing and Polarity in Modern Magic”. This was hosted by a variety of people, two of whom I follow on the blogosphere somewhere and one I got to meet at the convention. This wandered all over the place, and was less on polarity as it was different methods to achieving a goal; in a sense, the talk seemed to focus on largely between right-handedness and left-handedness (occult chirality? occhirality?) in getting shit done with tangents on male/female, sex/gender, purity/eclecticism, and other kinds of balances than what some people might’ve meant. Really cool talk, and it showed off how different people are in their approaches and styles of talking, which helped for the rest of the convention.
- “Magic and Anthropology” by George Hansen. A real academic treat! Mr. Hansen went over lots of topics in anthropology, mostly focusing on the power magicians get socially from their marginal, “between and betwixt” state. Between the poles of religion and science, God and man, man and beast, and life and death, we find magic everywhere in all kinds of society. It’s this between-state in which magic can be found, but also cryptozoology (Bigfoot, yetis, Loch Ness monster), ufology (flying saucers, alien abductions), poltergeist and ghost activity, and other kinds of paranormal activities which can often appear to be interrelated. I wish I got a set of his handouts, but the dude was a fantastic presenter.
- “Financial Sorcery: The Lightning Glyphs” by Inominanum (Jason Miller). Although “Extreme Lightning Sorcery” was deemed too pompous even by this fantastic sorcerer, Mr. Miller went through part of his new Financial Sorcery material with lightning speed and precision. The Sixteen Lightning Glyphs were revealed to him by the god Jupiter to help bring more good, Jovial things into the world, and range from money-drawing to pure luck symbols. Really cool stuff, and he ended the presentation with a simple-but-potent ritual to Jupiter. The place was buzzing and damn near electrical with the woo, which was fantastic.
- “Angels, Demons, and Magicians (Oh My!): Hermetic Hijinks on the Emerald Road” by Fr. Rufus Opus. RO’s Pentacostal past has done him good; he was fully taking on the persona of kickass priest-king of the world and preaching the good word of Hermetic philosophy and theurgy. He recapped his experiences, the Neoplatonic cosmology, the place of man in the cosmos, and any number of anecdotes from his life. While the last presentation created a jolt of Jupiter in the air, this really rarefied it and cemented it. Seeing and hearing what RO’s done is a real inspiration, especially for one who’s taking his classes and studying this stuff on his own. Sitting with other members of his courses was fun, too!
- “Magick, Language, and Numbers” by Shawn Knight. I…actually didn’t go to this one, though I expected to. I was getting more shots of gin with Rufus Opus, Pallas Renatus, and their ladies. Lovely chats all around, though.
After this, a few cigarettes, and some wandering about, there was the party and the rest of the night. Leaving early the next morning was a shame, since I’d’ve loved to stay longer and get breakfast with the folks there, but now I know. Next year, perhaps…? Anyhow, beyond the above panels and discussions, I also learned a few other interesting things:
- Furries and occultists effect similar fashions and act similarly at conventions. Must be a geek thing.
- It’s really amusing to overhear a conversation between one’s HGA and one’s patron god in their head while they’re having drinks. Sometimes one’d be dismissive and uninterested while the other was all engaged and excited about something going on around them, and other times they’d be debating something and making the other drink more.
- Conventions go much better drunk. Duh. I should have recalled this from my other con trips.
- Everyone likes gin, just maybe not straight.
- Everyone lines more gin with their gin.
- If anyone ever offers you a drink named “the Balrog”, especially offered in an empty jug and labeled with blue painter’s tape, DO NOT ACCEPT THE OFFER. Holy mother of fuck.
- The Omnimancers, the group that hosts Crucible, are a fantastic and tightly close-knit gang. Might I have any Omnis in the audience? Speak up, because I may have questions for you in the future.
And now I need to start heading to bed and rejoin the world again. This was a fantastic vacation and break from the usual, and to all those who helped me out, who made me laugh, who’s now a friend or a better one than before, thank you! You’re ringing in this 24th year for me quite fantastically already! Now I need to get back to crafting and reading my new gobs of books, shucks.