In today’s world of #hashtags and shortcuts and life hacks, our attention is sliced finer than a lion skin belt. It takes will to cultivate consistent, in-depth practice. To illustrate this, I’d like to invoke the hidden devilish drive of determination in two of the most famous English poems of all time, and why I always read and re-read them when preparing for magical rituals.Read More
Oh, Silent Violet Angel of Mercy
Magnanimous King of Heaven, Lord of Joy,
Angel of Jupiter Zadkiel, Sachiel the Pure
We Hail and praise Thee, Unconquered Lord of Riches!
Gather, all Ye Jupiterian Elements of Water,
Brim our circles, our shewstones with rivulets of Truth!
Flow through our crystals, our crops, our minds,
Reflect the High Learning and Growth From the Laughing King
Merciful Zadkiel, Sachiel of the Philosophical Faith!
You stayed the hand of Abraham, stopped the knife from Isaac’s throat
Zadkiel, Sachiel, Righteousness of God
Stay our magick from error and pride
Let our consciousness vibrate to your resonate Joy
May you laughter echo eternities in the Sixth Heaven
O! Zadkiel! Sachiel the Good! May you forever
Drape mercy like thunder
On the shoulders of a mage.
Praise you, Light! Praise you, All-Good Energy of the Multi-Dimensional Reality! Guide my thoughts to only see You, polish my heart to reflect my inner divinity, which is Me, You, God.
Hypocrisy has enchained my consciousness. With the infectious-gravity of habit, with the inflaming of desire for flesh and food and all things that tap on the dopamine-drip, thus I kneel in chained defeat. The Celestial Intelligentsia depart, halting their benign vibrations, as I close myself off from higher echelons of magical progress. I used to think I could manage my habits and still carry on the work of a neophyte in the Solomonic Magical tradition, but more and more I am seeing that this is impossible for a Hermetic Mage. I offer just a few pieces of evidence:
"But first thou must tear off from thee the cloak which thou dost wear,—the web of ignorance, the ground of bad, corruption’s chain, the carapace of darkness, the living death, sensation’s corpse, the tomb thou carriest with thee, the robber in thy house, who through the things he loveth, hateth thee, and through the things he hateth, bears thee malice...
For that it hath with mass of matter blocked them up and crammed them full of loathsome lust, so that thou may’st not hear about the things that thou should’st hear, nor see the things that thou should’st see."
-Corpus Hermeticum, book VII.
I'm realizing Hermetic magic isn't about *denying* the body's cravings or lower energies, locking them in a bottle of self-hatred and "sin". That's the domain of organized mega-church religious groups. Instead, Hermetic magic is about *harmonizing* lower energies (lust, desire, cravings, bodily stimulation) under the domain of the higher consciousness, The Holy Mind, the only Good, God. For me, this harmonization takes the form of daily meditation, hymns and inner songs that induce a trance-like state of light-ecstasy, and constant praise of God (the Light, the Good), and incorporating that into myself.
But, that's where hypocrisy snakes it's way into my actions. I am notorious for paying lip service to all of these noble lightworkings, but fail in consistently "keeping the light" in praise, meditation and thankfulness. And it's this hypocrisy that keeps us down, that denies us, as the Corpus Hermeticum tells us, from seeing and hearing what we must hear and see (i.e., the truth of our own divinity).
This concept of waging spiritual war against hypocrisy is also articulated in a 17th century document involving Dr Thomas Rudd, a well-known angelic magician who continued research into holy invocations. In this relation, Rudd and Sir John Heydon encounter spiritual beings, and relate various effects that these 'Good Genii' have on a man. But the end of this document sums up the Path to Theurgy perfectly:
"It is lawful to pray to God for such a good genius or Angel. And to purge the mind from pride and hypocrisy which is one reason that all men are not capable of Consociation with these good Genii, for faith and desire aught to be full sail to make such voyages prosperous, and our end and purpose pure and sincere; but if pride & conceitedness or affection of some peculiar privilege above other mortals spur a man up to so bold and enterprise, his Devotion will no more move wither God or the good Genii than the whining voice of the counterfeit will stir the affection of the discretely charitable. Nay, this presumption may invite some real friends to deceive him & be his destruction.
But the safest wisdom is the sincere consecrating [of] Man's Soul to God, and the aspiring to nothing but to a profound pitch of humility, as not to be conscious to our selves of being at all touched with the praise and applause of men; and to such a free and universal sense of charity as to be delighted with the welfare of another as much as our own; they that only have their eye upon these will find coming in what ever their heart can desire; but they that put forth their hand to catch at high things as they fancy & neglect these, prove at last but a plague to themselves and a laughing stock to the world."
Or, as the American Rap Music Artist Marshall James Mathers articulates: "There be no such thing as half-way crooks."
Frater Ashen Chassan, a modern Hermetic magician, author and researcher into the occult arts of Celestial Invocations mentions in his book "Gateways Through Stone and Circle", that a wise man once said the most powerful thing we humans can say to ourselves is "No". To choose. To never straddle the fence, but rather, to plunge headlong into the pools of light and divinity, consecrating our consciousness to all things holy and One. To be sincere. Sincerity is the paddle from which we can cut through the waters of hypocrisy and exhausted, low-energy, and make sail to the Port of Light, to Honesty and Magic and Humility.
Praise and Bless You, Oh God, oh Thoth, or All Mind, Universal Brimmer Of Consciousness and Light! Please help me as I seek to always praise Thee, harmonize my lower passions to sing in union the song of your Light.
"Thou shalt then make unto thyself a sprinkler of vervain, fennel, provinca, sage, valerian, mint [majorana], garden-basil, and rosemary, gathered in the day and hour of Mercury, the moon being in her increase. Then cut a handle with a single stroke from a virgin branch of hazel; the length should be three spans.6 Bind together these herbs with a thread spun by a young maiden, and engrave upon the handle on the one side the characters..."
-Key of Solomon, Book II Chapter XI
The aspergillum is the bedrock of Solomonic magical tools. Along with the holy water, the aspergillum is used to sprinkle holy water, purify tools, ceremonial magical space and generally consecrate most elements before, during and after a rite (depending on what the text calls for).
So, to do this, I needed: 1. a proper branch, 2. proper herbs and 3. virgin-spun thread.
I ordered a 1. virgin-cut branch from a trusted Solomonic practitioner in Costa Rica, which was cut in the day or hour of Mercury. I then ordered the 2. appropriate (above) vervain, fennel, valerian from Alchemy-Works.com, which is a great resource for harder-to-find herbs. The others (mint, sage, garden-basil and rosemary) I obtained from the local grocery store/organic food place. Finally, I ordered the virgin-spun thread from Solomonic mage and author Aaron Leitch on his page DocSolomons.com. I highly recommend this page for anyone needing holy water, virgin-spun thread.
I waited until the Day and Hour of Mercury, and did the following steps (these are short-hand notes of what I was to do, so please ask me or look to the KoS for more information:
*Dip thy hands in water and Sprinkle over the sticks, with devotion.
*Trace these Key of Solomon characters on the stick:
*Gather all of the herbs from boxes and line them up on a plate.
*Because the incense was flicked by initial holy water hands, censor was cleansed.
*Go outside, w/ Aspergillum stick, lightly sand it and charge it with devotion (Raph)
*When charged, go back inside and bind the herbs with virgin-spun thread
* Light cense and bless the stick (w/herbs on it) w/ devotion
*Engrave aspergillum with characters.
This has been an immensely helpful tool in my workings. However the herbs are all dry and disintegrating. So, I am looking to either re-consecrate another batch of herbs, or also looking at Orthodox Church aspergillums as well (as magicians I trust tell me that these aspergillum can be just as effective in ritual).