For your amusement, esteemed Abramelin aficionados, I propose a Plot Twist..
I put it forward to you that “A Dark Song” (2017) is not, in fact, a horror movie about the Abramelin Operation…
Instead, it’s a parody of people who change everything about the Rite and tell the rest of us they “completed the Abramelin.”
“So, did you keep the Judeao-Gnostic structure intact?”
“Nah, I swapped in some pseudo-Taoist stuff and a bunch of Chinese characters I found in a white guy’s tattoo shop.”
“Did you have an Oratory, Lodge, Terrace, etc.?”
“Nah, I had like a Triangle room and like a sleepy time room and instead of the Oratory, I had a room with like 5 Chinese Element Circles or something like that.”
“Did you use a silver Almadel for scrying?”
“Nah, but I had like a round rock on the floor, which was pretty neat.”
“Olive oil lamp?”
“Did you keep the daily prayers to God?”
“Nah, cut those out.”
“Make the crown?”
“No, but I did snap a twig for no reason.”
“Wear the different robes?”
“I wore jeans most of the time.”
“Did you bind the 12 Dukes and Kings after the Holy Guardian Angel came?”
“Did you ask for Familiars?”
“Not even one.”
“Did you even work with the Magic Squares?”
“Nah, I talked about them for a bit, but then never mentioned or used them. I mostly just drew tribal tattoos on the ground.”
“Did you add anything to the Rite?”
“Oh yeah, all kinds of stuff.”
“You know, like some blood drinking instead of forgiveness to be more Darq Fluff Edgy. And like a drowning rite thing. And I drank a lot of whiskey and swore a lot. Oh, I also added a bit where I pleasured myself after lying to someone despite repeatedly telling them to stay pure and not lie since it could ruin everything.”
“So… you didn’t do the Abramelin at all then?”
“Oh no, I DID complete the Abramelin, bro. Totally. I finished it TO THE LETTER.”
Happy Michaelmas 2020, dear friends, and hail to all Holy Angels! We give thanks for you today with love and respect and glorify your Creator.
This year, I felt moved to make this Michaelmas less about my requests and more about gratitude, celebration of the Angels, and prayers for protection and growth for all as we continue to navigate the global pandemic and all of the chaos and social ills we face at this momentous time.
May all of those who have passed from COVID-19 be lovingly guided into the world to come by Angels sent for this purpose.
May they find peace, rest, and spiritual progression in accordance with His Will.
May all enemies be reconciled, all warring friends brought back together in love, and may we all leave this year with vision and values clearer than ever before.
These things I pray Shem Yeshua ha Mashiach.
Update from the Following Morning:
Last night, I offered water, candles, and Frankincense to all of the Angels with whom I work. I left them to burn overnight.
When I checked the Temple in the morning, however, although all of the candles had been lit at the same time, only one was still lit — the candle of Michael. Today is 8th of a 9-day ritual with the Holy Angel. And he continues to work. Hail, holy Michael! Hail Holy Angels! Glory be to God!
Date: Sunday, September 20, 2020. Sun Phase: Set. Moon Phase: Waxing Crescent at 19 % Illumination in 19 Degrees Scorpio. Mansion of the Moon: #5, al-Kalb (the Caduceus) Planetary Day: Day of the Sun. Planetary Hour: Hour of the Sun. Activities: Ritual Ablutions after 6 days of Daniel-fasting with no sex, alcohol, or meat; Prayers; Opening by the Bell of Art; Conjuration of Angels of the Lord of the Four Directions as per Heptameron; Conjuration and Evocation of Michael to visible appearance; Ritual cleansing of miasmatic contaminated objects; Curse-Breaking and defensive reflective magic against past and future curses; License to Depart; Prayers.
After 6 days of Daniel-fasting, no sex, no alcohol, and no meat, I felt an inner nudge to call on Michael for assistance in the current work on which I have been focused for the past week. It was the Hour of the Sun on the Day of the Sun with the Moon waxing in the Lunar Mansion of Al-Kalb, the Caduceus. This Mansion is very much in harmony with some of the work with which I would seek the Angel’s help, particularly, as Christopher Warnock notes, for defensive work. In addition, as Volguine notes, al-Kalb “exerts an especially favourable influence for exposing enemies,” and as Agrippa indicates, is useful for ” revenge from enemies” and “frees captives.” All of the above were highly appropriate for the work at hand.
I cleansed myself with ritual ablutions for purification, garbed myself in a white robe, my L-skin belt, and my Sacred Magic of Abramelin Crown, and picked up my Key of Solomon Wand. After sounding the Solomonic Bell of Art three times before entering the Circle, as per the Hygromanteia, I enterered the Circle then sounded the Bell to each of the full Quarters, as per the Key of Solomon.
In the Circle, Michael’s spirit Table with his statue was placed in the current direction of the Sun as assessed with astronomical software. The Table also featured offering candles; a glass of fresh water offered to God on behalf of the Angel; a vessel filled with a cleansing mixture of Holy Water, Florida water, and waxing Moon Rain Water; my Black and White-Handled Knives as well as Lemegeton’s Goetia Pentacle to be cleansed from recent miasmatic contamination; the Black Mirror of Art; the Heptameron Sigil of Michael, and other tools.
For the Evocation of Michael, I began a new method emerging from a synthesis of methods of Conjuration from the Arbatel and Heptameron Grimoires. After practicing a method for sealing the Spirit Body I learned from the Esperitista, I began the prayer from Arbatel Aphorism 14, modified to include the name of Michael:
O Lord of heaven and earth, Creator and Maker of all things visible and invisible; I, though unworthy, by thy assistance call upon thee, through thy onely begotten Son Jesus Christ our Lord, that thou wilt give unto me thy holy Spirit, to direct me in thy truth unto all good. Amen. Because I earnestly desire perfectly to know the Arts of this life and such things as are necessary for us, which are so overwhelmed in darkness, and polluted with infinite humane opinions, that I of my own power can attain to no knowledge in them, unless thou teach it me: Send me therefore thy Spirit Michael, who may teach me those things which thou wouldest have me to know and learn, to thy praise and glory, and the profit of our neighbour. Give me also an apt and teachable heart, that I may easily understand those things which thou shalt teach me, and may hide them in my understanding, that I may bring them forth as out of thy inexhaustible treasures, to all necessary uses. And give me grace, that I may use such thy gifts humbly, with fear and trembling, through our Lord Jesus Christ, with thy holy Spirit. Amen.
After additional prayers, I prayed a modified version of the prayer from Arbatel Aphorism 21:
Omnipotent and eternal God, who hast ordained the whole creation for thy praise and glory, and for the salvation of man, I beseech thee that thou wouldst send thy Spirit Michael of the solar order, who shall inform and teach me those things which I shall ask of him; Nevertheless not my will be done, but thine, through Jesus Christ thy onely begotten Son, our Lord. Amen.
As per the Heptameron, I proceded with the Conjuration of the Angels of the Quarters for Sunday:
At the East. • • Samael. Baciel. Atel. Gabriel [*Fabriel]. Vionatraba. • • At the West. • • Anael. Pabel. Ustael. Burchat. Suceratos. Capabili [*Capabali]. • • At the North. • • Aiel. Aniel, vel Aquiel. Masgabriel. Sapiel. Matuyel. • • At the South. • • Haludiel. Machasiel. Charsiel. Uriel. Naromiel.
Finally, I proceded to the Heptameron Conjuration of Michael for Sunday, holding the Wand of Art, with my Solomonic Sword linked to Michael near at hand:
I Conjure and confirm upon you, ye strong and holy Angels of God, in the name Adonay, Eye, Eye, Eya, which is he who was, and is, and is to come, Eye, Abray; and in the name Saday, Cados, Cados, Cados, sitting on high upon the Cherubin; and by the great Name of God himself, strong and powerful, who is exalted above all Heavens; Eye Saray, maker of the World, who created the World, the Heaven, the Earth, the Sea, and all that in them is in the first day, and sealed them with his holy Name Phaa; and by the name of the holy Angels, who rule in the fourth Heaven, and serve before the most mighty Salamia, an Angel great and honourable; and by the name of his Star, which is Sol; and by his Sign; and by the immense name of the living God, and by all the names aforesaid, I conjure thee, Michael, O great Angel, who art chief Ruler of the Lords day; and by the name Adonay, the God of Israel, who hath created the world, and all that therein is, That thou labour for me, and fulfil all my petitions, according to my will and desire, in my cause and business.
I performed additional prayers and Conjurations, additional purifications and sprinklings with the Holy Water mixture, offerings of Candles and Water to God on behalf of the Angel, and sat down.
I began to gaze into the Mirror while continuing to vibrate and chant the name MICHAEL. Then I entered a free-flow rapid stream of prayers and free-form Conjurations, while gazing into the Mirror. I continued and continued until the room began to fade darker and the Spirit Table appeared to shine brighter. Mysterious lights and streaks began to drift around the Circle, indicating the presence of the Spirits.
Then the offered candles dimmed down before flaring up again and I heard an infinitely warm and rich voice speaking into my mind while a light seemed to concentrically glow and fade into the center of the Mirror. I recognized the arrival of Michael with an immensity of warmth and light, a terrifying power but a comforting loving presence…
M: “Greetings Adam, Son of Adam,”thewarm voice said, playing on the familiar title “Son of Adam” for humankind and my literal name.
I greeted the Angel with love and respect and asked if I could ask both his insight and his assistance with things in harmony with the Will and Nature of God. I began by asking the Angel for his impression of the cessation of my work with “St. Cyprian of Antioch” and the processes involved with ending that work such as severing the pacts, destroying the ritual tools, burning and smashing the statues, etc.
M: “You have done well. Did I not warn you that that “Saint” was no Saint, but a legion of Liars and Impostors? Did I not warn you lest you fall into a pit of deceit? This, you did. But now, at least, you shall be clear of your folly.”
I repented of my foolishness in believing the spirit’s lies about who it was and what it claimed to be doing and that I had not listened sooner.
M: “Be comforted, you are not alone. This legion of “Cyprians” draws new fools every day by the force of their greed, lust for power, gullibility, and arrogance. Some of these impostors mean well, but most are dark and intend nothing but deception and destruction to their own gain. Being Sons of Hell, they turn those who follow them into even worse Sons of Hell than they are. Fools under their sway among you humans propagate their lies and illusions and catch more souls in the web of their deceptions. Many are those who fall into their snares. Many are those who are puppets in their clutches. Many are those who are food on which for them to feed. Many are those who stumble into the pit alongside them. Truly, they will reap the fruits of their folly in destruction worse than they imagine. Tell your humans to bewarelest they be prey for Liars more cunning than they!“
After hearing these chilling words, I asked how I could possibly express this to them when they so fervently believe the opposite about “Cyprian.”
M: “It is not for you to make them believe or disbelieve. You can put point to the cliff towards which they stumble and warn them that they are in danger of a terrible fall. Some will listen. Most will not, and ignoring all warnings, plummet off the cliff to their destruction. Then their “Cyprians” will abandon them, laughing at their demise. And they will be shocked, but it will be too late. The Jaws of Evil gape wide to catch, devour, and consume the unwary. But you humans trust lies and ignore the truth. You take darkness to be light and light to be darkness, but some among you, might, by Grace, understand.”
I explained that I had already destroyed all of the statues, implements, and tools of my work with “Cyprian and Justina” and dismantled and cleansed the Table on which those tools and statues had once stood.
M: “You did well, but have more to do, as I see, you know. Pick up your Knives and Pentacle. Wash them in the Water (Holy Water, Florida Water, Rain Water). Then press each in turn to the head of my Statue. Three times through flame. Then ground them against the blade of your Sword and leave them on my Table.”
I did as I was instructed for each item in turn. When I touched each item to the head of the Statue, I seemed to feel a flush of energy, like a vibrating wave of warmth flooding through my forehead.
I thanked the Angel for his help with this and asked if it was acceptable to use the Mirror of Art with him, as I had never done so before, and had many who cautioned against using the dark Mirror with Angels, favouring instead, the Crystal.
M: “Is my name not upon the Mirror’s back? You can use it. Next time, use also the Triangle with it. I will help you with the Triangle to focus on my Presence and those of others whom you Call. Fear not the Triangle will offend. Is it not my Sigil inscribed three times upon it? Should I be offended by my own name, when the concentrating power is mine by grace of His (God’s)?“
I was surprised to hear him invite me to use the Triangle for communicating with him as I had only ever seen it recommended for malevolent daimons, but I was remembered of the Table of Art in some grimoires, which employs a triangle shape. His logic was sound, and who was I to argue after all?
I asked him if he could give me a visual of his face in the mirror.
M: “Have I not shown you before? Why do you ask for a Dream when you could have Reality? My face is no face. My wings are no wings. But focus anyway and see.”
As the room darkened once again, I seemed to see a vague outline of a face in the Mirror. Resembling a man. Strong. Mature. Wise. And then it faded out.
M: “Dreams upon Dreams. Symbols upon Symbols. Your kind hunger for these, but they are pale substitutes for Truth.”
I asked the Angel about another matter about which I had been wondering and never asked, Heaven and Hell. I asked “is there really a Heaven and a Hell? The answer that came was cryptic and enigmatic, but profound and incisive:
M: “Heaven and Hell are both metaphors and literal. They are metaphors for your feeble mind to relate to that which you can neither understand nor relate. Their literal Truth is more than you can understand and not what you imagine. You think in time and space but they are neither in time nor in space.
Do not confuse imagination for Truth or image for Being. Is it your business to know all things or that of the One who made all things? Some things will not fit in terms your mind can grasp. Your reason is a pale light, like a candle in the dark. Yet you expect it to light up the whole universe. How can a candle light the universe?
The Mysteries of God are beyond conception. And Heaven and Hell are Mysteries of God. Yet you humans try, in vain, to conceive despite this fact. And then you cling to the models you have made, the shades of your ill-conception, and call them God’s. How are they God’s? You made them.
They are like children’s drawings. Yet you take them to be accurate maps of the entirety of Being. Would you navigate by the crayon map of a child? Of course not. Yet you try to navigate the Unknowable by your mind’s crayon maps and call that “knowledge.” That is not knowledge, but make believe. Instead of make believe, simply believe. In what? What God will give you to know.“
I was reminded of the Espiritista’s recommendation that I drop the overanalytic machinations of my mind and lean more on sensation and experience. I asked the Angel if he had any recommendations for working with the Cuadro Spirits that the Esperitista had shown me:
M: “You will learn in time. Trust the one I sent to teach you and whom I sent you to learn from. He will show you the way. He is a friend — was his name not a hint from me? Continue with your baths and prayer. More will be revealed in time.”
I asked if the Angel had any insights or guidance to offer to better serve my Social Work clients:
M: “Continue to learn and listen. Humble your heart, listen well to criticism and suggestions, and trust in God. He will give to you what you are to say and do. When they speak to you, those in your care, listen to them as if God Himself were speaking to you. For how will you know when he is or is not? You cannot. Therefore listen with a humble heart and have faith.”
I turned to the final matter about which I was concerned. I asked if others had indeed worked malefic magic against me as the Esperitista had indicated and I had already suspected:
M: “Yes. Two men, in fact. But I will help. God nurtures and protects those who choose Him, who are those whom He has chosen. Their curses will be sent back upon their heads, magnified threefold in accordance with God’s Justice to the ones He loves and calls His own. I will tend to that. For you, forgive them. Leave it to God and do what I tell you now.”
The Angel instructed me to proceed with working defensive spiritual work to reflect back all past and future curses from this point on, such that they will be magnified and strike back three times as severely as what they intended for me. He did not permit me to share everything involved in this, as it was private and so that those men who sent the curses, one of whom reads this blog, could not counter them. He prevented only for me to share this:
M: “Take up my Mirror. Reach into… [redacted] and trace three times [redacted]. Cast… [redacted] in each direction in turn, saying… [redacted]. Pick up the Sword, trace a Cross in each direction, then stab that direction, proclaiming [redacted]. Call on God by the Names… [redacted] and recite the incantation “The curses thou send now to me, / Turn back around and go to thee, / The curses thou send now to me, / reflect back to thee now times three.” Continue with [redacted] and [redacted]. All will be taken care of. Your Father is a loving and faithful. He will protect and nourish you with all you need to know and do. My Sword will cut through all according to His will.“
This charm will remain in place going forwards from now on as an enduring Ward and defensive work against any who would work malefic witchcraft against me again.
I thanked the Angel again for his wisdom and insights, as well as his much-appreciated help. After a series of final prayers, I prayed the second prayer from Arbatel Aphorism 21:
“Forasmuch as thou camest in peace, and quietly, and hast answered unto my petitions; I give thanks unto God, in whole Name thou camest: and now thou mayest depart in peace unto thy orders; and return to me again when I shall call thee by thy name, or by thy order, or by thy office, which is granted from the Creator. Amen“
I thanked Michael once more and proceeded with more prayers then gave the License to Depart to the Angel and the other spirits previously Conjured. Just as suddenly as he had come, he was gone.
I sounded the Bell to the four Quarters in reverse Order and formally closed down the Temple.
Today, I celebrated the Feast as per tradition, with the doorway chalking ritual, house exorcisms and blessings, and offerings to the Lord to commemorate the Gifts of the Magi to the Holy One Who Was And Is To Come.
I spent the day in service to the poor and people with cognitive and physical disabilities and illnesses to symbolize Christ’s Gifts to the least fortunate members of society.
In addition, I took this hallowed opportunity to clean my dedicated Temple and exorcise, bless, and reconsecrate all of the water goblets I use for Offerings to the Most High on behalf of my spiritual Court.
Thereafter, I made fresh Offerings and took time for communion with the Divine and reconnection with my Ancestors, Patron Angels, and Olympic Spirits. Stepping out of the business of daily life to stand in the Holy and Eternal space of the Spirits with nourishing and inspired a deep sense of peace in the tumult of the day.
“This figure is to be made in Sol or Luna and worne upon the brest with the seal of the spirit on one [the other] side of itt. It is for to preserve [the Exorcist] from danger, and allso to command by &c.“
My own Pentagonall Figure was finely crafted by Adley’s Magical Artout of gold-plated brass. Since the grimoire allows “Sun or Luna” and the Day of Epiphany fell on the Day of Luna this year, I exorcised, blessed, and consecrated it on the Day of Luna.
How did you spend your Day of Epiphany? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
As the Magi gifted Christ with Myrrh, Frankincense, and Gold, may the Lord bless, increase, gift and guide you and all you care for out of the infinite riches of His Grace. SHEM YESHUAH, Amen!
A. The Belt of the Lion: An Introduction to the Historical and Textual Roots of the Lion Skin Belt as Magical Implement
The lion skin Belt of the magical Art is arguably one of the most elusive, fascinating, and, in our contemporary context of sensitivity to animal ethics and environmental concerns, controversial of all magical objects. While not an essential or major magical tool in the vast majority of texts that compose the Western grimoiric corpus, it remains a powerful tool with a rich and ancient history. As I aimed to explore this mysterious tool in both theory and practice, I determined to ground myself not only in the historical context in which the Belt of the Art took on its meanings and virtues, but also in a sensitivity to the ethics surrounding its creation. If I was to attempt to craft such a tool, I would need to do it in a way that did not reinforce illegal poaching, promote the further endangerment of lions, who remain an at-risk species globally, or involve any disrespect to the spirit of the lion from which the skin had originated. In this article, I will aim to share some of the historical and traditional background from which the lion skin Belt emerged and how I approached its procurement, crafting, and consecration in the context of an intimate relationship with the spirit of the lioness I now lovingly refer to, in the style of St. Francis of Assis, as Sister Lion.
Since the revival of the Western grimoire literature, the legendary lion skin Belt of Art has entered into the consciousness of the magical community primarily through a single text — the Lemegeton’s Goetia. This sixteenth-century grimoire instructs the magician, in preparing for magical Operations, to prepare “a sceptre or sword; a miter or cap, a long white Robe of Linnen, with shoes and other Clothes for ye purpose also a girdle of Lyons skin 3 Inches broad, with all the names about it as is about the uttermost round [part of the] Circle.” (Peterson, 2021). Mr. Joseph H. Peterson (2021) notes that the lion skin Belt reference appears to have originated from “the experiment of Bealphares in Scot, which says it can also be made from “a hart’s skin” i.e. deer or buckskin. Compare also Sloane 3824 110.”
The key symbolism and Agrippan occult virtues of the lion skin belt surround courage, royalty, boldness, and fearlessness. All of the traditional materia used for this purpose–a lion skin, a hart skin, or a harlot’s garment–all embody this bold, fearless, brave aspect. The key magical function of this Belt of Art, regardless of which of the aforementioned versions of the Belt one chooses to craft, is therefore, to imbue the magician with these virtues and also provide one layer of magical protection to the Operator who steps into the magic Circle to conjure spirits.
To this point, the ever-insightful Jake Stratton-Kent has noted that “boldness is the criterion hence ‘the smock of a harlot’ alternative etc. — see Albertus Magnus.” Jake illuminatingly adds that “the Goetia is known to be part cut and paste, it borrows substantially from Scot’s Discoverie of Witchcraft, for example, for its spirit catalogue, which also includes belts of bearskin and of snake. Another possibility, not necessarily excluding the former: it is sympathetic magic to induce courage in the face of demons. References to this lead to the Book of Secrets tradition, which encourages folks to wear thongs of lion skin for this purpose, or the smock of a harlot. Both lions and harlots are bold, and items once belonging to them can transmit this quality.”
In addition to the virtue of boldness, the connection between the lion, as “Kinge of the Jungle,” and royalty imagery symbolizing mastery, power, and authority, is evident in multiple grimoires from the Medieval, Renaissance, and Early Modern periods. One such example occurs in the Sword of Moses, which provides a spell “to go before king or lord,” which instructs the magician to say an invocation “over a piece of lion’s skin dipped in black hemp (?) and pure wine, and take it with thee” (Peterson, 1998). This anointed and consecrated lion skin piece effectively becomes a kind of talisman, which carries “kingly” authority with it in a way that would enamor the magician to the “king or lord” before whom s/he would present him/herself.
The roots of the lion’s skin belt tradition stretch back through history far beyond the Early Modern, Renaissance, and Medieval periods, however. In his Magical Techniques and Implements Present in Graeco-Egyptian Magical Papyri, Byzantine Greek Solomonic Manuscripts and European Grimoires:Transmission, Continuity and Commonality (The Technology of Solomonic Magic), Dr. Stephen Skinner (2013) indicates that the magical tradition of using a lion skin Belt has its roots in Ancient Egyptian magical practice. In his words,
“The skin of any big cat, especially a lion, was held in awe, as it related to the fierce goddess Sekhmet. Sekhmet also had associations with magic.1341 High Priests of Sekhmet were often associated with magic, such as Heryshefnakht, who was both Chief of Magicians and High Priest of Sekhmet. On the reverse of the Edwin Smith Surgical Papyrus (which dates from 1700 BCE) the title of one spell refers to “the demons of disease, the malignant spirits, messengers of Sekhmet,”1342 which identifies this goddess also as a ruler over evil spirits. If that is so, then wearing a belt made of her animal’s skin conferred a certain authority on the magician. The leopard skin of the Egyptian priest and the lion nemyss1343 is met with within the European grimoire tradition in the form of a belt made of lion skin. This practice lasted through to the 17th century, and a belt of lion skin is recommended in the 1641 Goetia.”
To explain the magical rationale for this practice, Dr. Skinner suggests “that this practice originally related to Sekhmet, but later it may simply have become part of the dress of the magician designed to cower the spirits. The thinking being that any man who had mastered a lion – as he was wearing its skin – must truly be powerful, and so the belt of lion skin would be like wearing a ‘badge of courage.’”
Interestingly, none of the grimoires specifies a necessary gender for the lion from which the Belt is to be made. While the male lion, with his majestic mane, and epithet “King of the Jungle” is an obvious choice, the female lion is equally fierce, being the one who does the majority of the hunting (Packer, 2019). In addition, as Van Binsbergen (1992) notes, “most of many lion-associated divinities in Ancient Egypt were female (for example Matit, Mehit, Mentit, Pakhet, Sakhmet, Menet, and especially Tefnut).” The image of a female lioness protecting the magician like her own cub or beloved has magical sympathies that are well in harmony with the protective features of the Belt of Art as a talismanic object.
The idea of a male or female lion being a source of protection was well-attested in both Rome and Egypt. For instance, in Chapter 19 of Plutarch’s famous De Iside et Osiride, (2nd century C.E.), Osiris returns from the underworld to help prepare his son Horus for the battle with Seth. Osiris asks Horus what animal he considers most useful for those going to battle. Osiris expects him to answer ‘a lion’, but instead Horus answers: ‘a horse’. When the father expresses his surprise at this answer, the son explains, hardly convincingly, that a lion merely enables one to defend oneself, while a horse allows one to pursue the enemy and to vanquish him (Van Binsbergen, 1992). Be that as it may, horse skin belts seem conspicuously absent from the grimoiric tradition, at least to the best of my knowledge.
An invocation for this kind of mastery over the lion as implying the ability to have similar mastery over spirits can also be found in the Sixth and Seventh Books of Moses, which features a notable prayer under the heading of the “magical laws of Moses.” In this prayer, the magician invokes the righteous authority of the Lord of Hosts, praying “Oh, Lord, arise, that mine enemies may be destroyed and that they may fly; that those who hate Thee may be scattered like smoke — drive them away. As wax melteth before the fire, so pass away all evil-doers before God, for God has given Thee the kingdom. Pour out Thy wrath over them. Thy wrath seize them. Thou shalt stand upon leopards and adders, and Thou shalt subdue the lion and dragon. With God only can we do great things. He will bring them under our feet” (Peterson, 2019). According to the magical logic of this passage, if it is a symbol of power to subdue a lion, then it is even more powerful to call upon the Creator of the lion with the awe-inspiring power to subdue all lions.
Nor is the association between the lion and kingly authority and iconography exclusively localized to Egypt. Grant (1951) describes an archaeological excavation of the burial site of an Tangayikan chieftain in present-day Tanzania, which unearthed a kingly headdress which was common to many burial sites of chieftains in the area. This elaborate piece was made out of a combination of precious Kibangwa shell and the skin of a lion. In Grant’s words:
“In the matter of dress we see that the Kibangwa shell is the principal object of the royal regalia, and only chiefs are allowed to wear it with the lion skin. The head-dress (crown) is the same in every case and is made from the tail and part of the rump of a lion skin, the tail being split lengthwise and so forming two tails; the remainder of the skin goes transversely over the head from back to front, and an encircling band secures it. On the transverse piece of skin, rather nearer the crown than the forehead, is fixed the Kibangwa shell.”
Dr. Skinner also cites a 3rd century B.C.E. evocation in Mesopotamia reported by Menippus, an author who lived in Gadara, and later in Thebes, in which he alludes to the practice of a magician wearing a lion skin in Graeco-Egyptian magic:
“ I resolved to go to Babylon and ask help from one of the Magi, Zoroaster’s disciples and successors; I had been told that by incantations and other rites they could open the gates of Hades, take down any one they chose in safety, and bring him up again. I thought the best thing would be to secure the services of one of these, visit Tiresias the Boeotian, and learn from that wise seer what is the best life and the right choice for a man of sense. I got up with all speed and started straight for Babylon. When I arrived, I found a wise and wonderful Chaldean; he was white-haired, with a long imposing beard, and called Mithrobarzanes. My prayers and supplications at last induced him to name a price for conducting me down [to Hades].
 Taking me under his charge, he commenced with a new moon, and brought me down for twenty-nine successive mornings to the Euphrates, where he bathed me, apostrophizing the rising sun in a long formula, of which I never caught much; he gabbled indistinctly, like bad heralds at the Games; but he appeared to be invoking spirits. This charm completed, he spat thrice upon my face, and I went home, not letting my eyes meet those of any one we passed.885 Our food was nuts and acorns, our drink milk and hydromel886 and water from the Choaspes, and we slept out of doors on the grass. When he thought me sufficiently prepared, he took me at midnight to the Tigris, purified and rubbed me over, sanctified me with torches and squills and other things, muttering the charm aforesaid, then made a magic circle round me to protect me from ghosts, and finally led me home backwards just as I was; it was now time to arrange our voyage.
 He himself put on a magic robe, Median in character, and fetched and gave me the cap, lion’s skin, and lyre which you see, telling me if I were asked my name, not to say Menippus, but Heracles, Odysseus, or Orpheus.”
The connection to Herakles (Ηρακλής) here is culturally significant. Both Greek mythology and Greek iconography often depicted Herakles–later Latinized as Hercules–as wearing a lion skin draped over his head as an emblem of his mastery over the mighty lion, and therefore, powerful in his own right. For instance, a noteworthy late 6th century Greek vase called the “Kyknos Krate” depicts the Greek hero wearing the lion skin as shown on the far left of this reconstruction by Barov (1998):
In addition, the setting of the evocation in the 3rd century narrative from Menippus quoted above, namely, Mesopotamia, strikes me as relevant to the present article for another reason. Herakles was not the only legendary Ancient hero who clad himself in a lion’s skin as an emblem of power and boldness. Indeed, the eponymous hero of the Epic of Gilgamesh, an epic poem written in Akkadian during the late 2nd millennium B.C.E., also famously clad himself in a lion’s skin. Perhaps surprisingly, however, Gilgamesh did not don the lion’s skin in a context of triumph, but rather of mourning the passing of his dead friend and comrade Enkidu. In this extreme state of his grief, the hero pulls out his hair, tears off his clothes, vows not to shave–an oath reminiscent of the later Biblical Nazarite vow which will be taken by Samson, Samuel, and others in the Hebrew Tanakh–and runs into the wilderness, clad only in a lion’s skin, in search of Utnapishtim (Luke & Pruyser, 1985). Utnapishtim, in the Epic, is the only mortal who survived the archaic flood and gained immortality, a Mesopotamian quasi-precursor to the Jewish Noah. From Utanipishtim, Gilgamesh hopes to learn the secrets of the gods which allow the transcendence of earthly mortality.
The Magician, as a universal symbol, shares features with both Herakles, as a bold figure with the courage and authority to dominate other-worldly powers, and Gilgamesh, as a hero who aims to move beyond earthly death and aspire to Divine mysteries (Luke & Pruyser, 1985). Indeed, Gilgamesh later turns his lion-skin cloak into a sail for the boatman Ushanabi’s boat to help safely convey them across the sea to Utnapishtim; the lion skin, thereby, takes on the symbolism of not only a protective covering of one attuned to the wilderness, but also of conveyance to a holder of spiritual power (Luke & Pruyser, 1985). Magicians have long shared Gilgamesh’s yearning to transcend the bonds of mortality and learn from the spirits beyond. Such was the way of the Initiate from the time of the Ancient Greek mystes who sought Immortality in the Rites of Eleusis, or in the Mystery rites described in lines 26-51 or 475-820 of PGM IV, to the Christian Mystic who sought mystical rebirth in the eternal Life of Christ, who was famously referred to as “the Lion of Judah” (Van Den Berg, 2003). Perhaps it is fitting, then, that the magician’s Craft should feature a lion’s skin implement that girds the Magician in the power, boldness, and mythological emblems of heroism and kingship.
B. Befriending the Lion Spirit: Ensuring the Ethical Provenance of the Belt andaPractical Animistic Approach to Lion Spirit Work in a Christian Grimoiric Framework
Inspired by this rich history and the magical virtues promised by the Lion Skin Belt of Art, I therefore took on the great challenge of acquiring the means of making it in a loving and respectful way. As already pointed out in the introduction, it was essential to me that if I was to make such a Belt, that the skin should come from an ethical source, that is, not from illegal poaching or from the illegal skin trade that continues to endanger this beautiful and majestic species the world-over.
Moreover, it was important to me not only from an ethical perspective, but also from a spiritual perspective, that the skin be properly obtained because I would be inviting the spirit of the lion associated with the skin to join my spiritual family and to live in my home. It is also worth stating by way of context that I am by nature a passionate animal lover and lover of cats in particular. Protecting endangered species is a cause dear to my heart, as is caring for local animals in my area. To this end, I made sure that every cat I ever owned was a rescue from a non-kill shelter. Therefore, out of love for these beautiful animals, I resolved that unless I could find an ethically-sourced skin, I would never endeavour to make or acquire such a Belt.
Firmly adhering to this resolution, it took me a staggering 16 years to find a skin that met the ethical criteria I had set out. Over the span of the intervening years, I encountered several skins for sale, but always from dubious sellers and often with no clear provenance identified, which made them likely the product of distasteful poaching. Let any prospective skin purchaser be warned that if you cannot ensure the provenance of the skin from a vet-able local source in its country of origin, you will likely be supporting poaching, which I would strongly discourage.
At last, the fortuitous breakthrough came when a dear friend of mine, who lives in an African country whose name I will not share out of respect for his wish to remain anonymous, informed me that a skin was available from a reputable individual in his area. It was important to me that this information was coming to me from a man I know and whose character I respect, which leant credence to the fruits of his research. The skin in question came from a lioness who was not illegally poached, but killed by a local farmer in defense of his herd, which the lioness had been hunting. My friend took special care to research and discuss the provenance of the skin to ensure it was not improperly obtained and thankfully, this dear lioness’s skin passed all the tests. At last, I had found the skin of a lion whose memory and spirit were not dishonoured for money, but whom I could honour through a loving, reverential, and respectful approach.
It took careful work with my Spirits to ensure the safe conveyance of the skin to my home, bearing in mind international laws and proper protocols, as well as all ethical concerns. I will not share any more about this process both out of respect for the wishes of my friend who helped me in this difficult process and to whom I remain most grateful, and because I do not wish to involuntarily promote illegal poaching and its injurious impact on the endangered lion population. However, I will say that it took us nearly a year of careful and diligent work from start to finish simply to acquire the skin even after we had identified it.
Before anyone asks, I would like to emphatically state from the outset that I do not and never will sell lion skin Belts, nor will I assist anyone else in the procuration of such an item for legal, ethical, and spiritual reasons. This is the first and the last such Belt that I will make. There will beno exceptions. This is a hard and absolute rule to which I am bound by my conscience, reason, and Spirits, secured by an Oath that I shall not break.
In any case, after 16 years of searching and a full year of work to acquire the belt, I was overjoyed to say the least when it finally arrived safely at my house. Raphael, Kokaviel, Savaniah, Ghedoriah, and Chokhmahiel were highly effective at ensuring it arrived here safely after my prior work with them to support the legal transmission of the skin to Canada. The unconsecrated and uninscribed skin was mailed from its source country in Africa in the Day and Hour of Mercury. I was carrying my 2nd Pentacle of Jupiter for good fortune when the lion skin finally arrived at my house on the Day of Jupiter.
From the time the lion skin arrived at my house on Thursday, I felt a shift in myself in sympathy with the energy of the spirit. I felt more aggressive without knowing why. There was also some poltergeist phenomena — an object on the kitchen table where I had been storing the Belt package, waiting to open it in the Day and Hour of the Sun, spontaneously moved by itself. Strange noises were heard in the house, their source unknown. Then, today, a bottle cap spontaneously fell off the stove and landed on the floor. No one had touched it.
Before I share how I began to work with the spirit of the lioness, consecrated the skin, and inscribed it with the requisite Names, it would perhaps be helpful to offer some context in terms of my spiritual and philosophical approach to the process.
My approach to the Belt was grounded, not only in the grimoiric texts and history we have explored above, but also in the animistic worldview from which the roots of grimoiric magic spring as Aaron Leitch (2009) in Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires and Jake Stratton-Kent (2010) in Geosophia have lucidly showed It is no coincidence that the Operator in the Key of Solomon speaks to the fire of the candle as a conscious being, directly addressing it as “O Creature of Fire” — this is a remnant of an animistic mode of spiritual relating that harkens back to the earliest roots of magic itself (Peterson, 2004).
Indeed, the grimoires emerged from an attuned awareness to what B.J. Swayne (2018) has eloquently dubbed a “World of Spirits,” a view of nature as en-spirited, brimming with spiritual beings investing and inhabiting all things. It is notable that it was not only with the objects and materials (materia magica) that the magician aimed to work, but also with the spirits that embodied the stones, plants, places, and in this case, skins, of the natural world. This is the case because both the materials and the spirits carry the “occult virtues” with which the magician works and which Agrippa describes in his Three Books of Occult Philosophy.
To paraphrase the 19th to 20th century Austrian Jewish and Israeli philosopher Martin Buber, what I strove for in relating to the spirit of the lion, was not what he called an I-It relationship, which is purely a instrumental subject to object relation in which “I” as the magician simply see a skin as an “object” and “tool” (Scott et al., 2009). Buber, Instead, I strove for an I-Thou relationship between a human spirit and a lion spirit, in which we would forge a magical We in the mysterious dialogic in-between of ritual encounter (Charmé, 1997; Watson, 2006).
I was blessed in my life to have been blessed with the chance to learn from two Indigenous Elders from the Kanien’kehá:ka People here in Montreal, Canada. Both taught me the importance of approaching the spirits of natural things and beings–like the lion in this case–with care, respect, and reverence, and I determined to do precisely this in my magical approach to the Belt of Art of the Goetia.
Such an approach is harmoniously resonant with the spiritual worldview of one of my most beloved saints, St. Francis of Assisi, who spoke to his “Brother Sun and Sister Moon” and preached sermons to birds, fish, and even flowers (Hughes, 1996). Like St. Francis, I, too, would come to call the spirit behind my Belt of Art, Sister Lion, and to approach her with love.
Thus it was that with great excitement, on Sunday, September 15, 2019, I came to perform a moving ritual to begin my relationship with the spirit of the lioness whose skin would come to make up my Belt of Art. Having patiently and excitedly waited for this Day and Hour of the Sun, I performed Solomonic bathing to purify myself and entered the Temple, setting the lion’s skin and fur on the Altar surrounded by statues of Raphael and Michael, my Altar Cross, water, unleavened bread, incense, and candle offerings, the Sigils of Och and Ophiel as well as of Michael and Raphael, Holy Oil, and Holy Water.
C. From Fear to Friendship: Ritual Consecration of the Lion Skin belt and Relational Work With the Lioness Spirit
Date: Sunday, September 15, 2019 Sun Phase: Set. Moon Phase: Gibbous in Aries. Mansion of the Moon: Al-Butayn, which the Picatrix says is useful for “removing anger,” which is appropriate for helping to pacify an agitated lion spirit. Planetary Day: Day of the Sun. Planetary Hour: Hour of the Sun. Activities: Solomonic bathing; opening by Bell of Art; greeting spirits of the four directions; offerings to the spirits of my spiritual Court; conjuration of the lion spirit; working with the lion spirit; purifying and consecrating the skin; obtaining consent of the spirit to proceed with preparing the skin; temple closing.
I opened the Temple with prayers and worship to God and asked for help in facilitating the work and for aid from St. Francis of Assisi in communicating with the animal spirit as he had excelled in doing, Raphael for supporting communication, and Michael for helping to calm and soothe the powerful spirit of this lion linked to the Sun in Leo and sphere of his rulership.
I rang the Bell of Art three times before entering the Circle as per the Hygromanteia and then sounded it to each of the four Cardinal Directions as per the Key of Solomon, blessing and greeting the spirits of each direction as I did so.
I made offerings to God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in the name and honour of the Saints, the Seven Heptameronic Archangels, Uriel, the 7 Olympic Spirits, and my Ancestors. I made an additional offerings in thanks to Raphael and his four subsidiary Angels Kokaviel, Savaniah, Chokhmahiel, and Ghedoriah in gratitude for helping the lion skin to safely arrive to my home.
Thereafter, under the aegis of my Patrons and the Most High, I performed a conjuration of the lion spirit and began to directly address the spirit directly, inviting her to come in peace and be present with me in the Temple.
When her spirit arrived in the Temple, I observed an interesting phenomenon. A cloud of incense smoke broke away from the stream of smoke from the incense and drifted directly over the lion skin where it hovered for a moment before disippating.
The lion spirit appeared to be aggressive and scared at first. I saw images of roaring and felt her presence as volatile and unstable. However, I was able to calm her with a gentle approach, cradling her skin and petting it softly, giving offerings, and clarifying that I did not wish to harm her in any way but only wished for her friendship and our mutual benefit.
Originally, she presented images of growling and baring her teeth at me in my mind. When I moved my fingers over her fur, however, I had a flash of the African farmer who had killed her to protect his animals from her. Suddenly I understood — she saw humans as a threat. She had fear and aggressiveness around the traumatic moment of her death.
Gently and gradually, however, I was able to calmly shower her with gentleness and the kindness of my approach, offering her water for her thirst, food for her hunger, incense for her spirit to play through, and candle fire for warmth. The more I stroked her fur and held it close to me, the more her spirit seemed to relax. I wished her to know that I was friend, not foe, a protector of her spirit, not a threat to her life, a haven of safety, not a harbinger of death.
As her spirit began to relax, the images of the growling lioness gradually dissolved, burned up in the incense smoke. Images of the purring, beautiful creature gradually replaced them. I seemed to sense the “edgy quality” of her spirit softening into a more gentle, relaxed state as the ritual proceeded. The transformation reminded me of a cat releasing tension and relaxing into a comfortable sleep while purring.
The whole experience warmed my heart tremendously. I fell in love with this beautiful animal sister, with the beauty of her spirit, and felt great gratitude to be able to welcome her into my spiritual family. As the ritual wound to a close, I asked for the lion spirit’s permission to write the nomina magica on the Belt for her protection and mine and received an image of a purring lioness in response, which I interpreted as agreement.
I prayed for the Most High God to bless her and calm her fears, to free her from suffering, and aid us in our work together. I kept praying for her and speaking with her and I asked for all of the spirits in my Court to also welcome her and protect her. I also invited her spirit to take up safe residence in the Belt if she wished and to see it as a safe home for her if God willed. I asked her to not threaten but to protect those who live in my house as if they were her own pride, for she is now a member of my family. The images of the purring lioness continued while I continued to caress her skin, holding it close to my heart.
At last, I returned the skin to the Altar, invited the spirit to rest there and be refreshe there as long as she wished. Then I closed the Temple, and left the room feeling like a great deal of tension had dissolved from my home and feeling a great deal more at peace.
D. Consecrated Ink and Spiritual Markings: Inscribing the Belt of Art
Consecrating the Belt of Art and befriending the spirit of the lion are important aspects of the processs of preparing this legendary magical implement. However, the Belt of the Lemegeton’s Goetia in particular also requires the inscribing of extensive Names of Power upon the skin, which is no small task. As in the case of theGoetia Circle, I wanted to make sure I proceeded properly and meticulously. I undertook the painting as a ritual in itself, not preparation for the magic, but intimately part of the magic. Following the instructions of the Lemegeton’s Goetia grimoire, I inscribed all of the Names from the Goetia Circle were inscribed on the belt as per the Lemegeton’s instructions in Ink of Art consecrated according to the Key of Solomon method. As I painted, I prayed, sung spiritual songs, and burned offerings of incense and candles. I spoke gently to the lioness spirit and prayed for her and for our work together.
As we have already seen, the Lemegeton’s Goetia instructs the magician to prepare “a girdle of Lyons skin 3 Inches broad, with all the names about it as is about the uttermost round [part of the] Circle.” (Peterson, 2021). To quote my work in the Crafting a Solomonic Circle article, which explains the origin of the Names of Power used on both the the Legemeton’s Goetia Circle and the Belt of Art:
“As I studied the Hebrew words–written in Latin characters in the original manuscripts–it soon became clear to me that the letters in the outer circle of the Goetia Circle had originated in Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy (1531). As a side note, this very fact tells us that the Lemegeton text cannot, therefore, be older than 1531, and is probably considerably younger.
More specifically, the Hebrew words around the ring of the Circle come from Chapter 13 of Agrippa’s Second Book of Occult Philosophy (1531), a Chapter which is entitled “Of the Number Ten and the Scale Thereof.” In this Scale, Agrippa provides a Table with 10 Columns devoted to the 10 Sephirot of the Qabalistic Tree of Life. These Columns supply the Hebrew Names of God, the Sephirot, the Angelic Choirs, the Archangels, and the names of the “Spheres of the Celestial World” which were transliterated into English characters in the ring of Names around the Goetia Circle.
Realizing that these were originally Hebrew names, Mathers and Crowley restored them to their original Hebrew. I agree with this decision and decided to go along with it in my own Circle. In the Goetia Circle, however, only 9 out of the 10 columns were included; the Malkut column was omitted. Some Magicians have argued that the reason for this was that the Circle itself represented the Sphere of Malkut, and therefore the names were not needed. This is a fair argument, although one with which I humbly and respectfully disagree.
Caption: Image from the “Scale of the Number Ten” from Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy (1531).
It seems to me that the Malkut column contains key Names of God, Sephirot, Angelic Choir Names, and Archangelic Names, which if omitted, deprive the Circle of additional protection and talismanic power; conversely, if added, they add an additional layer of talismanic and protective power to the Circle as well as a greater sense of holistic and unified completeness.
Through this addition, the physical Circle then becomes a potent and complete mandala of all of the Powers in the Four Qabalistic Worlds mapped around the Magician; in effect, it becomes a completed microcosmic mandalaic representation of the macrocosmic forces that Agrippa (1531) lays out in his Ten Scale. Therefore, I transliterated the Names from the Malkut column in Agrippa back into Hebrew and followed the same symbolic conventions as Mathers-Crowley edition (e.g. using the astrological sigil of the associated Planet, in this case Earth).
An additional issue that anyone who wishes to construct a version of the Lemegeton’s Goetia Circle must face is the issue of the Hebrew. Unfortunately, there are many errors in the Hebrew both in the original manuscripts in the Mathers-Crowley Hebrew as well.Mr. Gilberto Strapazon has done some excellent work in meticulously correcting these errors in his own take on the Goetic Circle. When you add together my work with Mr. Strapazon’s, the result is the following list of Names for the 10 Columns of Agrippa’s (1531) Ten Scale, all in their original Hebrew, which are to be written in the outer Circle.
Here are the corrected Names for the original 9 columns used in the original Lemegeton’s Goetia Circle as transliterated back into Hebrew by Mathers-Crowley, with credit to Mr. Strapazon:
In addition to the above, my restored version of the 10th column Earth/Malkut Names, which are to be written after the Luna Names, is as follows:
With the above duly laid out, we can now return to the process of inscribing the names on the Lion’s Skin Belt of Art. A useful tip I learned from this process was to use a tape measure to calculate equal segments of the Belt so that I could divide the full length of the Belt evenly among the different divisions of Agrippa’s (1531) Scale of the Number 10 from the Three Books of Occult Philosophy.
Please note that this tip would also work in exactly the same way if you wished to use a Harlot’s garment to make your Belt of Art. If you go that route, I would recommend using either a scarf or an actual belt given to the “Harlot” in question — please pardon my use of the original grimoire language here, with all due respect and love to our contemporary sex workers.
My approach to the Belt did not limit itself to a unigrimoiric or single-grimoire approach, however. That is, I did not only include the Hebrew Names from the Lemegeton’s Goetia, but took a transgrimoiric or multi-grimoire approach and drew also on the Heptameron, Arbatel, Armadel, Abognazar, and Frater Ashen Chassan’s Gateways Through Light and Shadow.
As readers of Light in Extension will likely have noted by now, my general magical modus operandi tends to be transgrimoiric; that is, I enjoy synthesizing material from multiple grimoires, as could be seen, for instance, in my approach to the Wandor the Bell of the Art.
More specifically in this case, and after drawing some inspiration from my spiritual Court, I added the 7 Archangel Sigils from the Heptameron as well as the Seals of the 7 Arbatel Olympic Spirits in their corresponding Planetary sections. Special thanks are due to Andy Foster for the idea of dividing the Belt into sections to facilitate the organization of nomina magica.
As a practical tip to any budding Belt-inscriber who is wondering how to evenly divide the full length of the belt into sections, the formula I used to calculate the length of each division of the Belt is simple:
First measure the total length of the Belt.
Then divide that total by 10 to obtain the length of each section.
Next, clip the tape measure to the belt to fix it in place.
Then, go along starting from the left hand side and draw a short line at each division of the length you calculated above.
Finally, extend the lines to their full length after removing the tape measure.
Voila! You will now have 10 equal sections. As a side note, the same method also works for dividing up sections of the Goetia Circle, although measuring is much trickier because you have to measure in a spiral. I found that too difficult, so I did it visually, approximating by eye. That resulted in somewhat uneven sections, unfortunately. Thankfully, for the Belt, this process is much easier since we are only working with a rectangular shape rather than in a spiral, so I would recommend measuring rather than eyeballing in this case.
In addition to the aforementioned Seals from the Heptameron and Arbatel, I also included Sigils of Uriel from the Grimoire of Armadel, Iophiel, Raziel from Abognazar, and Metatron and Sandalphon from Frater Ashen Chassan ‘s Gateways Through Light and Shadow were added to balance out the remainder of the sections.
The completed Belt, with all sigils and nomina magica inscribed appears as follows:
E. The Belt of the Lioness as Offering An Ongoing Relationship: Concluding Words On A Boundless Subject
In conclusion, the lion skin Belt of art remains, both a fascinating artifact in the history of magic, and a living tool in contemporary or those who feel called to craft, care for, and employ it. Far more than a tool, however, if rightly pursued in the spirit-centered manner of grimoire traditionalism, I would suggest that the Belt offers he means to forging a powerful connection with the spirit of the Lion from whom it originated. Traditional magic is largely centered on relationships, and the Belt of Art provides a possible focus for such a relationship, not only with the spirits conjured while wearing it, but with the lion spirit him- or herself. If we are to cultivate a meaningful, loving, and respectful relationship with such a spirit, however, we must first ensure that we found it on a skin that is ethically sourced in order to care, not only for the spirit, but the living species to which it belongs. Therefore, and in closing, I hope that a key take-away message of this article shall be that if we cannot ethically source such a skin–and I repeat that it took me 16 years to do so–then it is far better not to purchase lion skin at all and thereby risk promoting illegal and disastrous poaching in the process. After all, even by grimoiric standards, a deer or Hart skin’s will work as well–and can offer a similar means for a relationship with an animal spirit–and a “Harlot’s garment” is easier than either of those to come by, and not a modicum less boldly worn by a confident magician.
Barov, Z. (1988, November). The Reconstruction of a Greek Vase: The Kyknos Krater. Studies in Conservation Vol. 33, No. 4. pp. 165-177 (13 pages). Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. on behalf of the International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works.
Betz, H. D. (1996). The Greek Magical Papyri In Translation Including the Demotic Spells. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Charmé, S. (1977). The two I-Thou relations in Martin Buber’s philosophy. The Harvard Theological Review, 70(1/2), 161-173.
de Garay, J. (2017). The reception of Proclus: From Byzantium to the West. Byzantine Perspectives on Neoplatonism. Ed. Sergei Mariev. Berlin, DE: De Gruyter Press.
Delorme, Jean (1981) . “The Ancient World”, in Dunan, Marcel; Bowle, John (eds.), The Larousse Encyclopedia of Ancient and Medieval History, New York City, New York: Excaliber Books.
Girardius. (1730). Parvi Lucii Libellus de Mirabilibus Naturae Arcanis, 1730. In the Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal manuscripts 2350 and 3009. Paris, France.
Grant, C. H. B. (1951). Some African royal burials and coronations in western Tanganyika. African Studies, 10(4), 185-193.
Hughes, J. D. (1996). Francis of Assisi and the Diversity of Creation. Environmental ethics, 18(3), 311-320.
Leitch, A. (2009). Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires: The Classical Texts of Magick Decyphered. Woodbury: Llewellyn Publications.
Luke, J. T., & Pruyser, P. W. (1982). The Epic of Gilgamesh. American Imago, 39(2), 73.
Marathakis, I. (2011). The Magical Treatise of Solomon or Hygromanteia. Singapore: Goldon Hoard Press.
Masello, R. (1996). Raising Hell: A Concise History of the Black Arts and Those Who Dared to Practice Them. London, UK: Penguin Putnam.
Packer, C. (2019). The African lion: a long history of interdisciplinary research. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 7, 259.
“Ptolomeus.” (1999). Sloane 3847 – The Worke of Salomon the Wise Called His Clavicle Revealed by King Ptolomeus Ye Grecian, 1572. [online eBook] Esoterica Archives. Available at: http://www.esotericarchives.com/solomon/goetia.htm [Accessed 25 May 2018].
Scott, J. G., Scott, R. G., Miller, W. L., Stange, K. C., & Crabtree, B. F. (2009). Healing relationships and the existential philosophy of Martin Buber. Philosophy, Ethics, and Humanities in Medicine, 4(1), 1-9.
Skinner, S. (2013). Magical Techniques and Implements Present in Graeco-Egyptian Magical Papyri, Byzantine Greek Solomonic Manuscripts and European Grimoires:Transmission, Continuity and Commonality (The Technology of Solomonic Magic). Newcastle, Australia: University of Newcastle.
Stratton-Kent, J. (2010). Geosophia – The Argo of Magic. Brighton, UK: Scarlet Imprint.
Swayne, B.J. (2018). Living Spirits: A Guide to Magic in a World of Spirits. United States: Independently Published via Amazon.
Van Den Berg, R. (2003). ‘Becoming Like a God’ According to Proclus: Interpretations of the Timaeus, the Eleusinian Mysteries, and the Chaldaean Oracles”. Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies. Supplement, 189-202.
Watson, N. J. (2006). Martin Buber’s I and thou: Implications for Christian psychotherapy. Journal of psychology and Christianity, 25(1), 35-44.
Date: Sunday, September 29, 2019 Sun Phase: Mid-day Moon Phase: Waxing post New Moon Mansion of the Moon: Zubana. Planetary Day: Day of the Sun. Planetary Hour: Hour of the Sun. Activities: Solomonic bathing; opening by Bell of Art; greeting spirits of the Four Directions and Heptameron for Sunday; exorcisms of candles, incense, and tools; offerings to the spirits of my spiritual court; Conjuration of Michael; Calling upon all spirits whose names are inscribed on the belt for aid in its empowerment; Consecrations of Belt, Triangle, and Sword; Conversation with Michael; License to Depart; greetings to Quarters; Temple closing.
After a Solomonic bath, I put on my Robe, Rosary, and Bracelet of St. Cyprian and entered the Temple. I did preliminary prayers and exorcised the fire, incense, bread, and water. I then performed offerings of water, bread, incense, and candlefire to God in the name and honour of all of my Patron Angels, Saints, Ancestors, and the Olympic Spirits as well as the spirit of the LS Belt.
This belt was ethically and legally obtained from a reputable vendor. Her spirit arrived in the Temple in a state of agitation and fear. It took some loving, gentle work to help her feel safe, loved, and protected, but now she seems to have settled in nicely.
I picked up the Bell of Art and positioned myself outside the Circle of Art. I sounded the Solomonic Bell of Art three times before entering the Circle, as per the Hygromanteia, then sounded the Bell to each of the full Quarters, as per the Key of Solomon, saying “I greet and bless the Spirits of the (direction) with great love and respect in the Name of Adonai!” I continued greeting the spirits of all other directions. As I did this, I began to see sparks of light flickering around the Circle, suggesting the presence of spirits. I performed the Calls to the spirits of the Directions, Seasonal spirits, and spirits of Sunday.
As an experiment, I attempted to begin an audio recording to see if I capture anything on audio from the session. I was shocked, however, to later discover that the audio strangely cut out right before the spirit arrived… The following entry was, therefore, written down by memory as faithfully as I could manage with guidance from the Angel. I take credit only for any errors that may be contained herein; all credit for whatever is valuable and true in this account due to the mighty Prince himself.
I performed the preliminary prayers followed by the Heptameron‘s Conjuration of Michael in Latin. It works just as well in Joseph H. Peterson’s English translation in my experience, but the Latin original felt most intuitively suitable to this particular occasion. Thereafter, I sung the Archangel’s name again and again while ringing the Bell of Art until I felt his presence appear…
When the Angel arrived, the 3 candles offered in his honour all seemed to shine brighter. I asked the spirit to swear by the name of Jesus Christ that he really was Michael the Archangel and he confirmed that he was by moving the three incense streams of smoke to the left simultaneously at my request.
I greeted the Angel by first performing a great confession of my faults, flaws and sins in the style of Book I, Chapter IV of the Key of Solomon, pouring out my heart. I asked him if he would deign to aid me although I am undeserving of his help, endlessly sinful and hypocritical in my heart despite my best efforts and intentions.
I invited the Angel to communicate with me via the incense smoke, candle flame, or speaking into my mind, as he preferred. Michael greeted me with his characteristic warmth and might. I was struck by how the great Archangelos always manages to be both simultaneously comforting and terrifying in his vast power.
His voice, which strangely sounded both deep and luminescent at the same time, began to speak into my consciousness saying:
“Oh Son of Adam, Child of God, be encouraged. Yours is a Lord of Mercy. And many are we Angels who come to the aid of a human being who even takes the first step towards a good end, a path of repentance, and towards changing their life in a worthy direction. Who wills the Good wills with God. And He is ever-ready to forgive when you stumble on the way if you put your faith in him, continue to try, and do what you can.”
I explained my purpose for calling him. First, I gave thanks to the Lord God for sending him and for his kindneds and Grace in creating us both and bringing us together. Then, I presented my offerings to the Lord on Michael’s behalf and invited him to partake of them as he wished as I had to my other Angelic Patrons, Ancestors, Saints, and Olympic Spirits beforehand.
I then proceeded with the final exorcisms and consecrations of all of the tools. I asked the Archangel to empower the Triangle with his might to constrain and focus spirits to appear, emppwer mmthe Belt with his protection, and the Sword with his might and protection against malevolence. I further asked all of the Angels and Olympic Spirits whose names and Sigils were emblazoned on the belt to grace it with their own power. All was duly performed as asked.
I gave thanks to the spirits and praise and worship to the great YHVH. I then proceeded to a series of traditional prayers in honour of St. Michael.
Hymn: Te, splendor et virtus
“O Jesu! life-spring of the soul! The Father’s power and glory bright! Thee with the Angels we extol; From thee they draw their life and light.
Thy thousand thousand hosts are spread Embattled o’er the azure sky; But Michael bears thy standard dread, And lifts the might Cross on high.
He, in that sign, the rebel powers Did, with their dragon prince, expel; And hurled them from the heavens’ high towers, Down, like a thunderbolt, to hell.
Grant us, with Michael, still, O Lord, Against the prince of pride to fight; So may a crown be our reward, Before the Lamb’s pure throne of light.
To God the Father praise be done, Who hath redeemed us through his Son; Anoints us by the Holy Ghost, And guards us by the Angel host. Amen.
~ The Roman Breviary
“O Victorious Prince, most humble guardian of the Church of God and of the faithful souls, who with such charity and zeal took part in so many conflicts and gained such great victories over the enemy for the conservation and protection of the honor and glory we all owe to God, as well as for the promotion of man’s salvation; come, I pray thee, to the assistance of my soul, which continually is besieged with such great peril by its enemies, the flesh, the world, and the devil. And as thou wast a leader for the people of Israel through the desert, so also be my faithful leader and companion through the desert of this world, until thou conduct me safely into the happy land of the living, in that blessed fatherland from which we all are exiles. Amen.“
~ St. Aloysius Gonzaga
Then I proceeded to the following potent prayer, about which my dear friend Agostino Taumaturgo wrote that the “Exorcismus in Satanam et Angelos Apostaticos by Leo XIII – also called the “St. Michael Exorcism” or the “Exorcism Against Satan and the Rebellious Angels” was
“directed at exorcizing objects and places. This exorcism was published in English translation in several pamphlets each bearing the imprimatur, that is, official permission, of various Bishops, who explicitly stated that this exorcism was allowed to the laity so long as they omitted a small handful of words.”
I performed this mighty Exorcism on myself and my Home while wielding my Solomonic Sword consecrated under the power of Michael and tracing each Cross with the Sword point itself.
Exorcism Prayer of St. Michael the Archangel
†In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.
Most glorious Prince of the Celestial Host, Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in the conflict which we have to sustain against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places (Eph. 6.12). Come to the rescue of men whom God has created to His image and likeness, and whom He has redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil. It is thou whom Holy Church venerates as her guardian and protector; thou whom the Lord has charged to conduct redeemed souls into Heaven. Pray, therefore, the God of Peace to subdue Satan beneath our feet, that he may no longer retain men captive nor do injury to the Church. Present our prayers to the most High, that without delay they may draw His mercy down upon us. Seize the dragon, the old serpent, which is the devil and Satan, bind him and cast him into the bottomless pit, that he may no more seduce the nations (Apoc. 20.2-3).
In the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, strengthened by the intercession of the Immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of Blessed Michael the Archangel, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and all the Saints, [and powerful in the holy authority of our ministry]*, we confidently undertake to repulse the attacks and deceits of the devil. *Lay people omit this text
Let God arise, and let His enemies be scattered: and let them that hate Him flee from before His face.
As smoke vanishes, so let them vanish away: as wax melts before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.
V. Behold the Cross of the Lord! Flee, bands of enemies. R. The Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Offspring of David, has conquered. V. May Thy mercy descend upon us. R. As great as our hope in Thee.
(The crosses (†) below indicate a blessing to be given if a priest recites the Exorcism; if a lay person recites it, they indicate the Sign of the Cross to be made by that person.)
We drive you from us, whoever you may be, unclean spirits, Satanic powers, infernal invaders, wicked legions, assemblies, and sects. In the name and by the virtue of Our Lord Jesus Christ †. May you be snatched away and driven from the Church of God and from the souls redeemed by the Precious Blood of the Divine Lamb †.
Cease by your audacity, cunning serpent, to deceive the human race, to persecute the Church, to torment God’s elect, and to sift them as wheat †. This is the command made to you by the Most High God †, with Whom in your haughty insolence you still pretend to be equal †. The God Who will have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth (I Tim. 2.4). God the Father commands you †. God the Son commands you †. God the Holy Ghost commands you †. Christ, the Eternal Word of God made Flesh, commands you †. He Who to save our race, outdone through your malice, humbled Himself, becoming obedient unto death (Phil. 2.8). He Who has built His Church on the firm rock and declared that the gates of hell shall not prevail against Her, because He dwells with Her all days, even to the consummation of the world (Matt. 28.20). The hidden virtue of the Cross requires it of you, as does the power of the mysteries of the Christian Faith †. The glorious Mother of God, the Virgin Mary, commands you †. She who by Her humility and from the first moment of Her Immaculate Conception crushed your proud head. The faith of the holy Apostles Peter and Paul and of the other Apostles commands you †. The blood of the Martyrs and the pious intercession of all the Saints command you †.
Thus, cursed dragon, and you, wicked legions, we adjure you by the living God †, by the true God †, by the holy God †, by the God Who so loved the world, as to give up His only-begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him may not perish but may have life everlasting (St. John 3.16). Cease deceiving human creatures and pouring out to them the poison of eternal perdition. Cease harming the Church and hindering her liberty. Retreat, Satan, inventor and master of all deceit, enemy of man’s salvation. Cede the place to Christ in Whom you have found none of your works. Cede the place to the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church acquired by Christ at the price of His Blood. Stoop beneath the all-powerful Hand of God. Tremble and flee at the evocation of the Holy and terrible name of Jesus; this Name which causes hell to tremble; this Name to which the Virtues, Powers and Dominations of Heaven are humbly submissive; this Name which the Cherubim and Seraphim praise unceasingly, repeating: Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord, the God of Hosts.
V. O Lord hear my prayer. R. And let my cry come unto Thee. V. May the Lord be with thee. R. And with thy spirit
Let Us Pray.
God of Heaven, God of earth, God of Angels, God of Archangels, God of Patriarchs, God of Prophets, God of Apostles, God of Martyrs, God of Confessors, God of Virgins, God who has power to give life after death and rest after work, because there is no other God than Thee and there can be no other, for Thou art the Creator of all things, visible and invisible, of Whose reign there shall be no end. We humbly prostrate ourselves before Thy glorious Majesty and we supplicate Thee to deliver us from all the tyranny of the infernal spirits, from their snares, their lies, and their furious wickedness. Deign, O Lord, to protect us by Thy power and to preserve us safe and sound. We beseech Thee through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen.
V. From the snares of the devil, R. Deliver us, O Lord.
V. That Thy Church may serve Thee in peace and liberty, R. We beseech Thee to hear us.
V. That Thou would crush down all enemies of Thy Church [the community of the faithful], R. We beseech Thee to hear us.
(Holy water is sprinkled in the place where we may be.)
Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the Divine Power of God, cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who wander throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.
Having performed this potent Rite, both I and the room felt considerably lightened, while my arm felt ironically weighted from the heavy Sword.
At 51 inches, it has considerable heft. It should ideally be wielded with two hands, but I traced my Crosses with one hand so as to liberate my other hand to hold the text of the Rite. With Michael thus celebrated in honour of his Day, with the exorcisms and consecrations all duly completed, and with the powerful Exorcism of the room and my person as the magician all performed, I felt prepared to relax and learn what I could from the Angel before his departure.
I began by asking him about a subject that has been occupying my mind lately, the nature of hypocrisy. I asked the Angel if he could comment on it and how best to avoid it. He began
“Hypocrisy is the basic state of humanity — to say one thing and do another, to divide inwardly, to desire one thing and claim to want another. At its root, hypocrisy’s nature is dishonesty, falsehood, a tearing of values. Those who are called to truth must ever work to purify hypocrisy from the soil of their heart. Take up the Sword of truth and cut the false away from the true. Do as you say and say as you do. Let the heart drive the head and the hand in harmony. For an example of perfect harmony, look to Christ, who lived a life free from hypocrisy. His word and his deed, his heart and his action were ever One. Strive for that unity of Inner and Outer, which is called Integrity.”
On St. Cyprian of Antioch
I asked Michael about the identity of the mysterious Saint Cyprian of Antioch, a subject that has long puzzled me and left me with more questions answers in my research and practical work with the alleged “Patron Saint of Sorcerors.” The Archangel’s reply was fascinating to say the least:
“There is not one Cyprian. The spirits who answer when the name is called are many. There was never a Bishop by that name in Antioch. Nor are the spirits Saints. Some of them are the souls of past workers of your magical arts who embraced the faith of Christ and now aim to assist humans to make amends for the sins of their past. They use “Cyprian” as a bridge to do their work.
“Other “Cyprians” were never human, but merely resonate with the legend. Some “Cyprians” delight in the Good and shepherding humans in the ways of righteousness. Others who answer to Cyprian are evil and delight in malevolence, chaos, and havoc as well as hindering and destroying under the guise of helping.
“Others still are players of tricks who find joy in lying deceit and setting traps for the unwary. Many have fallen to the schemes of these “Cyprians.” Many still fall today. And many more will fall. Some delight in encouraging humans to fall or condemn themselves. Others delight in guiding them to salvation.
“Therefore, be discerning about whatever a “Cyprian” tells you to cut the good from the evil. Let the Sword of Truth slice through the lies and the guidance of the Holy Spirit illuminate your way. Fall not for the snares of the malevolent “Cyprians” while you strive to learn from the good spirits who go by the name. Beware. And test the spirits in all that they say lest you fall headlong into a pit of folly or malevolent cunning.”
On the Olympic Spirits of the Arbatel
Encouraged by the clarity and generosity of the Angel’s revelations, I decided to push forward and ask the great Michael about the Olympic Spirits of the Arbatel grimoire. Who are they? Where do they fall in the hierarchy of spirits? What is their role?
The Angel explained:
“Those spirits whom your book calls Olympic Spirits are mighty beings who embody the raw forces of the Planetary powers. Theirs are currents that aid in the manifestation of events in their domain. They do not rule over us Planetary Archangels, nor can they overpower us. Rather, they are subjected to us and to their Lord. They do not command us, but operate in harmony with our Office and work.
“Many have fallen into error by worshipping them and mistaking them for gods. They are not. Nor should you fall into that sin and folly. Worship the Creator alone Who made you and them and us as One, extensions of Himself. Rather, you may work with them to manifest effects pertaining to their sphere. Tap into their currents and they may assist you. Greet them with love and respect as a Child of God.
“Be humble, but do not prostrate before them. They bow to the One alone and so should you. If you call on us when calling on them, we may assist you to crystallize and focus their raw currents into concrete form. Call on the Divine Name of our Father pertaining to our Sphere. Through the Name, call on us, the Archangels of the Planets. Through us, call on them. I can aid you to call Och, Raphael to call Ophiel, Anael to call Hagith, and on through the ranks and Spheres.
“These great spirits command many others below them in the service of the God who made them all to serve clear functions in his Creation. Those they command are closer to your world than to ours. But any you call should be called but in reverence of our mutual Lord and awed submission to His might. Ask His Holy Spirit to help you avoid sin, folly, and error in your work with them less you miss the mark and damn yourself as many before you have been damned.
“These Spiritscan be mighty allies, but make poor idols; good friends, but poor “gods;” strong aids, but weak replacements of the Lord of All; powerful beings, but weak without His lended Might through which He didst grace them as He graces you.“
When I asked the Holy Angel what would be his message for humanity at this moment in our historical unfolding, his reply swiftly came in smooth-flowing words, without delay:
“For too long, you have been blinded by yourselves. You have been blinded by self-absorption and worshipped yourselves as the pinnacle of worth ans he apex of value. You have loved yourself first and beyond all others, beyond even the Earth on which you depend.
“Now, if you are to survive and thrive to the best of your potential and God’s Will for you, you must reverse the trend. Love your neighbours as yourself, love the Earth as yourself. Learn to sacrifice your own comfort and desires for the good of your planet and each other. Learn to give first and put aside the thought of what you will receive for your gifts. You will not lack; your Father will provide if you give to His children as He had given unto you.
“Surrender your pride to the nectar of humility that opens the heart. See with the eyes of a heart illuminated by love lest you be blinded in your heart by self-absorption. Nurse the needs of your fellows and your planet and your Father will nurse your needs. Wake up and serve one another and tend to your planet or die in your selfish sleep. Follow the example of the Lord of the Garden and tend, give, nurture, maintain. Serve as we serve. For service to the Good is true freedom and all else is but veiled bondage.”
I thanked the Angel for these helpful words and asked if he had any personal guidance for me. I received this reply:
“Your lesson is discernment, the perception of the Sword of truth. Discern the valuable from the valueless, the trustworthy from the untrustworthy, the true from the false. Out of certain ruin, you were lifted by the Grace of your Father. Be true, therefore, to Him — turn from every other deity, worshipping none, for He is your Lord, the One, the Source. Let not prayers to others escape your lips in ungratefulness to Him who saved you. Forsake not Him who did not forsake you despite your faults and erring.
Let all your work pass through Him and He will aid you. Therefore, forsake hypocrisy lest integrity escape you. To harmonize your life with the Good is true freedom; to seek freedom in desire is slavery, the folly of your times. Strive for integrity and you will mirror Him who loves you. Aim for the Good and you will harmonize with the Angels who ever rush to the aid of those who act to manifest it. Love as you are loved, serve as you are served. Abandon what you are not and be what you are.”
I thanked the Angel for his wisdom and the generosity of his sharing as well as for his help. I invited him and all of my Patrons to enjoy the offerings and go in peace with love and respect. I gave the License to Depart to the spirits in all directions in turn, ringing the Bell of Art as I sent them off with love and blessings.
Michael’s presence departed like a flash of light, as sudden as it had come. And as the candles continued to flicker and the incense wafted up to Heaven, I duly closed the Temple, with a joyful heart and a clarified mind.
Date: Wednesday, August 14, 2019 Sun Phase: Dawn Moon Phase: Waxing at 99.8% Full in Aquarius. Mansion of the Moon: #25, Sa’d al-Ahkbiyah (the Lucky Star of the Hidden) Planetary Day: Day of Mercury. Planetary Hour: 2nd and 3rd Hours of Mercury. Activities: Solomonic Ritual Bathing with Hyssop; Offerings to the Most High in the name of Saint Cyprian of Antioch, and to the Angels; Engraving the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Pentacles of Mercury; Solomonic Bell Sounding to the Spirits of the Quarters; Prayers of Intent; Inscribing the Vigil of Raphael with his Sigil from the Heptameron; Tracing out the 3rd Pentacle of Jupiter on the Tablet of Lights; Conjurations of Raphael, Kokaviel, Savaniah, Ghedoriah, and Chokhmahiel; Spirit Petitions and Consecrations of the Pentacles; Prayers and Temple Closing.
In the past two weeks, a number of factors coalesced to inspire me to plan to do some serious work with Mercury tonight. First, after nearly a year of work collaborating with fellow magicians in 3 different countries, we were able to purchase the skin of a non-poached lion killed by an African farmer for hunting in his field. We were able to divide the hide between 5 magicians in 4 countries on 3 different continents to each be able to fashion lion skin belts for grimoire work and thereby honour the spirit of the lion while also not supporting the poaching trade.
The challenge, however, lay in safely shipping the belt across multiple international borders. One of the aims of tonight’s work was to seek the aid of Mercurial spirits for helping to ensure that the belts arrive at the homes of their rightful owners.
Second, it seemed to me that while I was going to be opening the Temple and invoking Raphael, it would be a fitting occasion to also fashion the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Mercury Pentacles from the Key of Solomon. I would be able to use these Pentacles to experiment with their capabilities and also support my work in communication and clear thinking to serve the people in my care in my professional practice.The Moon is currently in the 25th Lunar Mansion of Sa’d al-Akhbiyah, which, according to Christopher Warnock, is excellent for growth, protection, and studies and intellectual activities. As I interpret these aspects of this Mansion’s image, they are all rather auspicious for Mercury pentacle work of the kind I was anticipating. The Lucky Star of the Hidden resonates with the occult virtues of the 3rd Pentacle of Mercury in its power to reveal hidden knowledge and mysteries.
In the 2nd Hour of Mercury on the Day of Mercury, I printed my ritual script as well as paper versions of the Pentacles. These, I cut out, and reserved to be placed on the Altar in before the evening ritual work. Throughout the day, while serving my clients, I reflected on the nature of Mercury and read writings from Sam Block, Frater Acher, and Frater Ashen Chassan about the Olympic Spirit of Mercury, Ophiel, and Archangel Raphael to begin to attune myself to the Mercurial energy more deliberately.
I performed a Daniel fast to prepare myself inwardly for the spiritual work to come.As the 3rd Hour of Mercury approached, I set up the Temple for the ritual, placing Raphael’s mensa (spirit table) facing the current location of the planet Mercury in the night’s sky, as calculated by the astronomical Sky Walk 2 application.
On the Altar, I placed my Tablet of Lights with the 3rd Pentacle of Mercury drawn in chalk marker consecrated on the Day of Epiphany.
I used the same consecrated Epiphany chalk to write ELOHIM TZABAOT (אלהים צבאות) and draw the Heptameron’s Sigil of Raphael on the Vigil candle.
I also wrote out a petition asking for the empowerment and consecration of the Pentacles to be made and for help in communication, thinking, and the safe transportation of the lion skin belts to their intended recipients.
I wrote this petition on the back of the 3rd Pentacle of Mercury printed in the 2nd Hour of Mercury on the Day of Mercury with the Moon waxing.
I folded the petition up and placed it on the underside of the Vigil candle to be offered to Raphael. With the Temple duly prepared, I purified myself with Solomonic hyssop bathing while praying for help and success. In this process, I did a total confession of sins in the style of the Key of SolomonBook I, Chapter IV, “The Confession To Be Made By the Exorcist.“I then donned my scapular of Saint Cyprian, white Solomonic robe, priestly Stole, and placed my Cyprianic Rosary around my neck. When the Hour of Mercury began, I immediately began to draw the 2nd and 4th Pentacles of Mercury in ink consecrated in the Day and Hour of Mercury on the twin surfaces of a foldable mirror. I obtained the inspiration for this unorthodox Pentacle construction from reading Agrippa’s First Book of Occult Philosophy Chapter XXIX, in which he writes that:
“Things under Mercury are these; amongst Elements, Water, although it moves all things indistinctly; amongst humors, those especially which are mixed, as also the Animall spirit; amongst tasts [tastes] those that are various, strange, and mixed: amongst Metals, Quick-silver, Tin, the Slver Marcasite; amongst stones, the Emrald [emerald], Achates [agates], red Marble, Topaze, and those which are of divers colours, and various figures naturally, & those that are artificial, as glass…”
I placed Topaz on the Altar to add to the Mercurial occult virtues of the setup. However, the key words here are that even artificial glass and, by extension, plastic, would be Mercurial, and thus, useable for talismanic purposes. It seemed to me, therefore, that a foldable pocket mirror could be used to make Mercury Pentacles. The mirrors are silvery and reflective like quicksilver, sacred to Mercury, while made out of artificial glass, sacred to Mercury, and with plastic backing of “divers colours,” also sacred to Mercury by the extension of the logical esoteric principle laid out by Agrippa above.
After finishing drawing the Pentacles on the two mirror sections of the foldable mirror in consecrated Ink of Art, the 2nd Pentacle on the top and the 4th Pentacle on the bottom, I took my consecrated Solomonic burin and immediately engraved both Pentacles into the glass. The result was a foldable double-Pentacle that presented as innocuous and ordinary on the outside…
…while containing two Key of Solomon Pentacles engraved with a Solomonic burin and inked in consecrated Solomonic Ink of Art concealed in its interior:
Having finished engraving the Pentacles, I took them into the Temple, folded the double-mirror shut, and placed it atop the folded petition directly under the central Vigil candle for Archangel Raphael. I then picked up my Bell of Art and positioned myself outside the Circle of Art. I sounded the Solomonic Bell of Art three times before entering the Circle, as per the Hygromanteia, then sounded the Bell to each of the full Quarters, as per the Key of Solomon, saying “I greet and bless the Spirits of the (direction) with great love and respect in the Name of Adonai!” I continued greeting the Spirits of the Above and Below and all other directions. As I did this, I began to see sparks of light flickering around the Circle, suggesting the presence of Spirits.
I picked up my Solomonic Sword and commanded malevolent daimons in all directions to depart in the name of Yeshuah and traced over the Circle with the Blade as recommended by Dr. Stephen Skinner. I then formally opened the Temple in the name of YHVH. I then unwrapped my Solomonic Wand from its white covering and began preliminary prayers.
I lit four large candles in each of the Four Directions as offerings to the Most High. I dressed an additional orange Vigil candle for Raphael with Solomonic Holy Oil, Parsley, Cinnamon, and Cinnamon Essential Oil; these herbs and spices are associated with Mercury according to Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy for their variegated and multi-partite natures. I also added Savoury, which some magicians also regard as sacred to Mercury.
I used my Solomonic Wand to trace Holy Anointing Oil in the form of a cross on the unleavened bread offerings to be presented to the spirits in the way Raphael had taught me. I then sprinkled these with the Mercurial herbs and spices to link them to the spirits to be conjured through the sympathetic resonance of their occult Virtues.
I also prepared offerings of orange candles for the four Holy Angels to be conjured under the authority of Raphael, namely, Kokaviel, Savaniah, Ghedoriah, and Chokhmahiel. These were placed around the central Vigil on the Epiphany chalk-drawing of the 3rd Pentacle of Mercury, which facilitates communication with the Mercurial Angels.
Formally presenting the offerings to my Patron St. Cyprian of Antioch, I asked for his help in conjuring the Good Spirits and received a vision of his face in my mind speaking “it shall be done.”
I then proceeded to Solomonically exorcise and consecrate all of the tools to be used (e.g. fire, incense–along with a batch of all new Frankincense I purchased recently–wax, etc) using the usual Key of Solomon formulae. I should note that the talismanic base–the foldable mirror–was exorcised, sprinkled with Holy Water with my Solomonic Aspergillum of Art, suffumigated with consecrated Frankincense, and anointed with Holy Oil traced in the form of the Cross prior to my engraving it.
I then proceeded with the conjuration of Raphael in the Nameof ELOHIM TZABAOT (אלהים צבאות), giving several knocks on his table, offering prayers to God, and formally invoking him. I felt a glowing, warm, radiant presence begin to fill the room, the familiar sense of Raphael.
I asked Raphael to confirm his presence through a physical manifestation, first by increasing the flare of his Vigil candle flame, which he did, then by moving the filament of incense smoke distinctly to the left, which he did as well.
I then asked the Spirit to swear by the blood of Christ that he was indeed the holy Angel Raphael, which he did. I invited him to partake of the bread, candlefire, incense, and water on the table offered to God on his behalf. A notable streak of light moved along the outside of the Circle after this.
I asked the Angel if he would please bless me by helping me to consecrate the Mercury Pentacles on the Altar and enliven the Olympic Spirit Seals and Angelic Sigils on the Altar that they might facilitate communication with the spirits.
“It shall be done if it is God’sWill…”
boomed a loving, warm voice in the interior of my consciousness,
“…but only if you use these tools for Good ends and if it is your time for their use. If you try to use them for evil, you will receive no help from me and surely reap what you sow. But whatever Good uses you put them towards to God’s Glory, I will strengthen and assist.”
I bowed, humbled myself, and expressed that I was grateful for this and would respect it as best I could. I did not know what he meant by “and if it is your time for their use” — I would find that out in the shocking and dramatic events that would folllow in the days to come — but I continued with the ritual in a spirit of faith.
I then asked for Raphael’s permission to proceed with conjuring four additional Mercurial Angels under his authority and the aegis of the Divine name ELOHIM TZABAOT (אלהים צבאות), and he nudged me to proceed.
I proceeded to conjure the four Angels in turn, briefly speaking with each in turn, asking it about its particular specialty, and inviting it to use its specialized skill towards the success of the Operation.
First, I conjured Kokaviel, lighting his candle as I did the conjuration.
I found myself nudged to vibrate his name in a resonant, harmonious, and very drawn-out tone, and felt myself attuning to a spirit newly arriving. When the spirit arrived, I observed a very peculiar effect. The candle flame offered to him visibly dimmed very low and then swelled in a golden swell of light before stabilizing. I interestingly observed precisely the same effect when each of the other three spirits arrived after him, which I found very interesting, as I had never seen that effect before, let alone four times in a row.
I greeted Kokaviel with great love and respect and invited him to partake of the offerings. I tested his identity by having him swear by Divine Names, a trial he passed, and verified his presence with physical confirmation by asking him to move the incense smoke noticeably to the right.I invited Kokaviel to present a vision to me to give me a sense of his nature. I saw a vision of a blue-robed elderly man with white hair and a white beard. When I asked the spirit about his nature, he said:
“Mine is the power of the penetrating intellect, the mind that pierces through barriers and limitations to reveal secrets and knowledge, the power to bypass boundaries and reveal hidden depths. The penetrating power of Mercury is my domain.”
I asked if he would use his penetrating Mercurial power to help penetrate and enliven the Pentacles and help ensure that the lion skin belt would penetrate all obstacles to arrive to me.
“It shall be so,” answered the spirit.
Second, I conjured the great spirit Savaniah, who appeared entirely different from Kokaviel. After observing the same dimming and flaring candle effect as with Kokaviel, the spirit appeared as a flashing, flickering being resembling a golden light with rapidly-moving wings that reminded me, somewhat humorously, of the Snitch from Harry Potter. I greeted him with great love and respect and invited him to partake of the offerings. The incense smoke began to billow and move left and right fascinatingly when I asked for physical confirmation of his presence. He confirmed his identity by swearing by Divine Names.
When I asked what his office was, Savaniah answered, in a voice that spoke rapidly and in a scintillating tone:
“Mine is the power of conveyance, of transmission from origin to destination, of the current of movement, of the transfer of information in communication and matter in travel. All that darts from here to there, all that travels, all that is transmitted partakes of my power under the authority of Raphael.”
Savaniah seemed to be in constant movement, flittering back and forth, to and fro like a darting insect. How different he was from the wisely stationary Kokaviel with the warmly penetrating presence…I asked Savaniah to please convey the current of Mercurial power into the Pentacles and also to help endue them with the power to facilitate the conveyance of information in communication and the conveyance of the lion skin belts to our homes.
“So shall it be”
was the response.
Third, I conjured the great Ghedoriah and observed the same dimming and flaring candle effect. Ghedoriah appeared to me as being of golden light, but wearing a long red cape. As with the other spirits, I greeted him with great love and respect, invited him to partake of the offerings, sought physical confirmation of his presence, tested his identity, and asked him for his office. Ghedoriah’s voice was deep, ethereal, and almost reverent sounding.
Ghedoriah spoke, saying:
“Mine is the Mercurial power to manifest change, transformation, the bringing into being through shifting the patterns of consciousness, mind, and matter.”
I asked him if he would please imbue the Pentacles with the power to cause changes and transformations, in harmony with the purpose of the 2nd Pentacle of Mercury, which causes changes in events sometimes contrary to Nature, and the purpose of the 4th Pentacle of Mercury, which causes transformations of knowledge and understanding through revelation of hidden knowledge. I also asked if he could transform circumstances to help ensure the safe transmission of the lion skin belts to their destinations.
“The changes will come”
was the answer.
Finally, I conjured the great spirit Chokhmahiel. After the same dimming down low and then flaring up of the flame on the candle offered to him, I astrally perceived a charming, intellectually pleased-sounding laugh. Then a warm voice came as the spirit introduced himself. As with the other spirits, I greeted him with great love and respect, invited him to partake of the offerings, sought physical confirmation of his presence, tested his identity, and asked him for his office.
“Mine is the Mercurial manifestation of Divine wisdom. Mine is the power to coordinate disparate elements into harmonious changes in harmony with the Good, for such is the role of wisdom, to bring the right elements together to produce better ends.
Mine is not mere understanding, the grasping of a concept, or mere knowledge, the registering of information, but the power to draw on both and direct them to manifest improvements to situations. When reasoning blossoms in wisdom of mind and action, my power is manifest.”
I asked him if he could please use his wisdom to empower the Pentacles to provide wisdom in thinking, communication, and the wise conveyance of the lion skin belts. Chokhmahiel seemed to speak through a smile,
“Of course, if it is wise.”
I thanked Raphael and all of the spirits for their assistance. I then prayed closing prayers of thanksgiving, worship, and gratitude to God for all of His help and requesting His aid, wisdom, power, and support in guiding me to use these Pentacles in ways in harmony with His Will. I exorcised and consecrated the golden Altar Cross on the Altar, which had not yet been consecrated. I then snuffed out the Quarter candles, leaving the offering candles to Raphael and the four spirits burning on the Altar.I invited the spirits to remain as long as they wished to partake of the offerings, and then gave the License to Depart in the Name of ELOHIM TZABAOT (אלהים צבאות), bidding them to return to their planes but to come swiftly when called, with love and respect. Tetelestai – it was finished.
August 16, 2019 – While the main double mirror-engraved Pentacle continues to rest beneath the Vigil of Raphael, I carried one of the consecrated paper 4th Pentacles of Mercury I made with me to work today. Communication was a breeze all day. I was stunned when a client who usually refuses to meet with me and speaks in gibberish when he does speak witb me not only accepted to meet with me today, but spoke lucidly when we did meet! Since this was the first time this had occurred in months of working with this client, nothing else having changed, I can only attribute it to the effects of the Pentacle and the work of the Spirits who empowered it. Hail to thee, mighty spirits!
Sunday, August 18, 2019 – The candles offerered to Kokaviel, Savaniah, Ghedoriah, and Chokhmahiel have all burned cleanly down to the base of the Tablet. Raphael’s Vigil continues to burn clean and clear. Today, while carrying the paper 4th Pentacle of Mercury at Church, I felt myself conversing easily with my fellow brothers and sisters. Much to my surprise, a woman in the worship band came down from the stage and walked all the way to my pew to speak with me during the meet and greet time where we shake hands and offer peace to one another. She told me “I know we’ve never spoken, but I felt drawn to speak with you for some reason…”
We had a wonderful conversation for which I was very grateful. Meanwhile, the main engraved Pentacles continue to be worked upon by the Angels beneath the Vigil candle of Raphael still burning on the Altar…
Monday, August 19, 2019 – While I was carrying the paper 4th Pentacle of Mercury, I received a call from a low-income elderly friend with cancer who called me in desperation saying that she had received a Seizure of Property notice from the Montreal Municipal Court and had to pay nearly 2,500.00 $ in fines. She asked if I could help her and call the Courthouse on her behalf. I did so and explained that she had neither the finances nor the physical ability in her advanced age to do community service to repay her debts. I asked how she should proceed. I felt the Spirits of the Pentacle working on my communication as I learned about an organization I had never heard of that advocated for people in situations like these.
The next day, on August 20th, I accompanied my friend to that organization, carrying the Pentacle. The worker there helped us to work out a repayment plan where my friend wous only have to pay the Court 5$ per month and she would be safe from repossession! She was so happy and relieved she had tears in her eyes. Glory be to God!
Tuesday, August 20th, 2019 – While carrying the paper 4th Pentacle of Mercury, I went to work and was alarmed to find out that we had a mandatory meeting in the afternoon at the same time I had previously booked a session with a client that took months to book because she repeatedly refused to meet and cancelled the previous session. I did not have high hopes that she would accept to reschedule the appointment later in the week. When I called her to ask if we could reschedule with the Pentacle on my person, I was shocked by her answer: “sure, no problem.” What?! Huh?! It was that easy. I was stunned. That same morning, as I studied and wrote about Matthew 6:21, I felt a flood of insights into the verse and felt the Holy Spirit was revealing things previously unknown and unseen to me in the verse and the Ancient Greek language in which it was written. I was filled with wonder and gratitude at it all as I remembered the Key of Solomon‘s description of the Pentacle as bestowing the power to help the magician “to acquire the understanding and knowledge of all things created, and to seek out and penetrate into hidden things…” Thus far, I had learned that it had the power by the grace of God to reveal not only spiritual knowledge, but also practical knowledge, such as the knowledge of legal recourses and previously unknown organizations I used to help my vulnerable friend in need…
Wednesday, August 21, 2019 – Catastrophe Strikes: Today, I had a very difficult meeting planned, so I decided to borrow the engraved mirror 2nd and 4th Pentacles of Mercury to help me through the day. The began wonderfully, but soon took an unexpected turn when the double-Pentacle of Mercury spontaneously fell out of my pocket. The 4th Pentacle of Mercury remained impeccably preserved, but the 2nd smashed to pieces on the hard tiled floor on this Day of Mercury of all days… I was reminded that Mercury rules all transportation and I immediately felt the impact of the broken Pentacle. As soon as I stepped onto the metro carrying the broken Pentacle, the power immediately went out on the entire train. I mean within moments of me embarking. I was shocked. But that wasn’t all. When the emergency lights came on, they were followed by an announcement to say that there was smoke throughout the tunnel of a complete metro line. It was down and had to be evacuated. What’s more, 3 other metro lines in the system were down. Dear God… I took this picture after the emergency lights came on in the train:
Later in the day, I reached out to the Holy Archangel Raphael and asked if he would kindly bestow some insight what had happened with the shattering of the 2nd Pentacle of Mercury. What followed was well-deserved severity. The Angel informed me that
“You suffered the consequences of two great blunders, O Son of Adam. First, for your hunger and greed for power. Your work now is to center on the 4th Pentacle of Mercury and on knowledge, wisdom, understanding, revelation of Mysteries, and communication, gifts in which I can aid you through the 4th Pentacle. For that reason, I did not destroy the 4th and you find it unharmed. In your greed, however, you tried to claim the wonder-working of the 2nd Pentacle of Mercury as well. That is not for you now. Had you asked me, I would have guided you on this point — have I yet misled you in any matter? Rest assured, I will guide you when the time has come to work with the 2nd Pentacle. But that time is not now. Therefore, your 2nd Pentacle has been destroyed. Be encouraged — you will remake it when the time to learn its lessons has come.”
“Your second blunder was to take the Pentacle from the Altar before my Candle burned to its base. You removed it prematurely and presumptuously without consulting the Wisdom of God first, preferring instead to rely on the foolishness of your own intellect. This was a break of our protocol and a violation of the working. Had you asked me, I would have instructed you in this — that you would not remove the Pentacle from the Altar until at least the morning of the Day of Jupiter a week after its consecration. But again, you chose to lean on your own understanding rather than on the ways of those who could instruct you in wisdom. Be cautioned against meddlingwith great Forces you do not understand — lest the Forces disrupt your world and bring you to a halt, like a stalted train.”
I understood what that last sentence meant all too welll. It was a clear reference to the incident with the train. apologized sincerely, regretting my own errors. The Angel responded with a a glowing feeling of loving warmth and consolation.
“You are forgiven. Did I not say that this is a time of initiation into wisdom and learning for you? Next time, humble yourself and ask. I am happy to help. Did I not teach you in the ways of scrying and the consecration of the bread of Offering? Why should I fail you now? I delight in teaching you what you can use to bless others as God Wills.“
I thanked the Angel sincerely and asked what I should do about the broken Pentacle. The Angel explained:
“Remove and deconsecrate the remaining shards from the case that houses them. Pray over them that the Most High removes all blessings and virtues bestowed on them and that they be restored to naught but shards of glass. Dispose then of them. If you do this, no more negative consequences will follow you. Repent of the spirits, learn, and do not repeat the blunders of today in the freshness of tomorrow. If you return the 4th Pentacle to the Altar until my Vigil has burned to its base, the protocol will be restored and we will complete the work.“
I agreed to do all of these things. Before the Day of Mercury came to a close, all these things were accomplished as the Angel instructed. I placed the engraved Pentacle back on the Altar beneath the Vigil candle of Raphael as the Angel instructed.
Examining the water goblets (Fuentes) offered to St. Cyprian of Antioch and the Angels, I noticed a tremendous difference. Both goblets were offered at the same time from the same container of filtered water. The Angels’ Fuente was crystal clear. Saint Cyprian’s on the other hand, was absolutely filthy, a dark, murky white. I understood immediately that Saint Cyprian had shielded me from negative consequences I would have incurred from the Spirits angered by the involuntary smashing of their Pentacle. I thanked the great Saint for his help, threw the murky water out of my house, thoroughly cleansed his goblet with soap and water, and then offered fresh, clean water in thanks both to him and to the Spirits. The image below shows the striking contrast between the clear water offered to YHVH on behalf of Angels on the right and the murkiness in Saint Cyprian’s water on the left:
Friday, August 23, 2019 – With the protocols all rectified, the Vigil is burning smoothly this morning. These candles normally burn to their base within 7 days. We’re 9 days in now and it’s still going strong.
Today, I received four bottles of Florida water. Prompted by the spirit, I added them to the Altar, asking the Lord to exorcise them and bless them to serve in the cleansing, exorcism, and purification of magical tools. Note that Florida water is highly flammable. The only reason I felt comfortable adding them to an Altar with a burning candle is that the Vigil candle is nearly out and well protected by its casing and ceramic base. Do not place Florida water near any unprotected open flames and beware placing it near glass-cased vigil candles that are at risk of shattering. It can be difficult to work in an exploded Temple…
Saturday and Sunday, August 24 and 25: The Pentacles continue to sit on the Altar and the Vigil continues to burn.
Monday, August 26th: This 6-day Vigil candle has been burning for an amazing 12 days. I had an intuitive nudge that Raphael and his Angels will finish their work on the Pentacles tonight. The candle will be out by morning.
Tuesday, August 27th: The Vigil candle is out. I approached the Altar this morning and asked Raphael if I coupd respectfully begin to carry the 4th Pentacle now. I received this reply from the Angel: “Yes, thank you for your patience. Take it freely. May it aid you in accomplishing all good works involving communication and discovery of hidden truth.” Thanking the spirits for their help, I picked up the Pentacle and reverently and gratefully slipped it into my pocket.
Tuesday, August 27, 2019 – Against all odds, I was informed by my fellow magician in the U.S. that the lion skin belts had been safely conveyed across international lines all the way from Namibia, Africa into the United States. Customs had not even opened the package, but allowed them through any way! Not only did they safely arrive, but they safely arrived one day early!
September 4-11, 2019: The spirits continue to oversee the safe transmission of the belt aided by respect for permits and laws. On the Day of Mercury, September 4th, it arrived in Denver, Colorado. On the Day of Jupiter, overseen by my Patron Sachiel, it arrived in San Francisco, California. On the Day of the Sun, September 8th, overseen by my Patron Michael, who rules over Solar animals like Lion, the belt crossed the U.S. Border into Canada. Raphael and his four Angels continued to oversee its transmission until the belt arrived in my city in Montreal on the Day of Mercury, September 11th.
September 12, 2019 – As promised by the Angels, on the Day of Jupite while I carried the 2nd Pentacle of Jupiter, my Patron Sachiel gave me the good fortune of ensuring the belt safely arrived in my home. Hail to you, Holy Angels and great Archangel Raphael! Thank you Lord and Source of all Good!
September 15, 2019 – In the Day and Hour of the Sun, I opened the package and did a ritual to welcome the spirit of the lion into my spiritual Court. I calmed the spirit’s fear and distrust of humans, nurtured her with soothing and offerings, brought her under the protection of my Patrons. I obtained her consent to work together for our mutual benefit and permission to inscribe nomina magica on the inside of the belt for our mutual protection.
I’m so grateful to the One who made us both Who generously brought us together and to all of the spirits He allowed to assist us in this matter. I thanked them with additional offerings offered to God on their behalf for all of their help. Hail to you, Holy Raphael, Kokaviel, Savaniah, Ghedoriah, and Chokhmahiel! Hail to you dear Sachiel and Michael! Hail to you Holy Angels of the 2nd Pentacle of Jupiter and all praise and worship to the God who made us all, spirits and matter, lions and men! Thank you, thank you!
Date: Monday, August 5, 2019. Sun Phase: Set. Moon Phase: Waxing Creacent (69 degrees) in Libra. Mansion of the Moon: #5, Zubana. Planetary Day: Day of the Moon Planetary Hour: Hour of the Moon Activities: Solomonic Ritual Bathing Offerings to the Most High, to the Angels, to the Saints, to the Ancestors, and to the Olympic Spirits; Scrying with St. Cyprian; Ancestor Messages; Instruction from Archangel Raphael; Formal Assumption of Patronage; Invitation to the Olympic Spirits; Prayers, Purifications, and Temple Closing.
Tonight, with the Moon in Lunar Mansion Number 16, Al-Zubbana, auspicious for prosperity, I felt strongly called to purify myself and enter the Temple. Today, I was nudged into a store by a spirit in my Court and led to purchase a set of gold-rimmed shot glasses for alcohol offerings and small gold-rimmed plates for food offerings. These were Solomonically exorcised, cleansed, and consecrated for spiritual use before being set on the Mensas or Shrine Tables of the Spirits.
I performed ritual bathing with the Sufi Wudu formula and entered the Temple in my white R.R. et A.C. robe.
I began by formally opening the Temple with prayers and proceeding with offerings, first to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, then to the Angels, then to the Saints, then to my Ancestors, and finally, to the Olympic Spirits.
The Offerings consisted of goblets of water (Fuentes), Solomonically exorcised and blessed candlefire, consecrated incense, and unleavened bread. After my recent studies of YHVH’s protocols for bread offerings in Leviticus, I was moved to offer unleavened bread offerings. All of the offerings were offered to the greater glory of God in worship of Him alone but with the invitation to the various spirits to partake of them with Divine Grace and to His glory if He so willed. I present offerings in this way to avoid falling into idolatry and keeping the focus squarely on the Most High even while working with other Spirits through Him.
When I got to Raphael’s shrine, his flame blazed brighter and I heard a warm rich voice speak into my consciousness. I recognized it as his. It said “the bread offering must be anointed.” I did not know how that was to be done, but Raphael, ever a great and faithful teacher, taught me a Solomonic-style way. I was instructed to “dip the tip of consecrated Wand in the Solomonic Holy Oil and trace crosses over the bread whilst blessing it.” I did as I was instructed for all of the Offerings, with thanks to the Angel for his generous instruction.
With all of the offerings done, I picked up the Fuente offered to the Saints and invited Saint Cyprian to share any guidance he might have for me. He instructed me to hold the Fuente and face the shrine of Gabriel, then to lift up the glass so that the offered candleflame could be seen through the glass of the water Offering, a variant on the pyrocrystallomancy method Raphael had previously taught me.
When I asked Cyprian for a word of guidance, I heard his deep voice speaking into my mind, “continue to follow the Cross.” Then, I clearly saw the candleflame morph into a clear shape of a Cross, which then turned into an Angel shape I recognized as Gabriel. The suggestion was that the Cross symbolism and Scriptures pertaining to it had more Mysteries to reveal and that the Saint approved of the time I’ve been devoting to biblical and theological study recently. I thanked him for his guidance.
I then picked up the Ancestor Fuente and scryed into it with the candleflame on the Ancestor Mensa burning through its crystal watery depths. I thanked my Ancestors for their guidance, help, and my indebtedness to them for my life and asked if they had any words for me at this time. I received a feeling of love and as I scryed into the glass, an Ancestor said simply and with cryptic depth, “honor us.” I understood that to mean to live in a way that honors their memory and to treat their descendents, my living family, in a way that would honor them as well. I prayed to the Lord to help me to do this in a way befitting of my duties as well as the love and gratitude I feel for them.
I then received another message that I did not expect, that it was time to formalize my Patronages from the Angels. This took me by surprise because I was planning on doing elaborate ceremonial proceedings for each Angel before assuming their Patronage. To my amazement, the sense I got was “that is not necessary. We know you. Accept this gift.” Having worked with all of these Holy Angels before and already received teachings, assistance, and guarantees of willingness to build relationships, my understanding was that the groundwork had already been laid.
It was then that I realized that the 7 Heptameronic Archangels were already present. How strange, since I had not even done the Heptameron Conjurations. But then, they always are present when I do Offerings.
I was shown to dip my finger into the Fuente of each Angel, trace a Cross over the head of its statuary symbol, address the Angel, wait for its answer, and then bless my own forehead with the same water. That was it. So much for my plans for 9 day Novenas for each Angel…
Standing before Cassiel’s statuary, I felt his strong, dark presence. I asked him for his Patronage and his swift, formal reply came at once “It is as thou asketh.” His candle flared up in physical manifestation as bubbles formed in the Fuente.
Michael had already accepted to be my Patron, so when I did the above ritual steps with him, I simply received a fiery warm feeling of confirmation and saw a vision of him nodding.
Sachiel, with whom I already have a strong bond from former workings, confirmed his Patronage with a vision of golden radiance.
Anael confirmed it with a flood of love and acceptance.
Samael provided a vision of slamming a sword into the ground as if to signify a firm bond.
Gabriel confirmed it with a flare of his candle and the words “it is so,” for he had already accepted to be my Patron on January 14, 2018. At that time, when I asked him, he said these wise and stirring words:
As you have asked, it shall be. If you humble yourself and nurture the flames in others, then I will nurture the flame in you. Wherever you are, I too, will be. When you worship your Father, I will be there by your side. As God is in you, so be in God, for you and your Father are One. And there is none that do not abide in Him. Some know it, some do not. Nurture those who know and those who do not alike.
The wise know this: to humble yourself infinitely is to realize the Divine infinity in you. If you are willing to lay yourself so low as to be Nothing, then you shall realize the Nothing that is All. If you raise yourself up, you shall be brought down, but if you bring yourself down, you shall be raised up. To those who offer themselves for the good of the All, the All will be offered for the good of them.Receive by giving.”
Raphael gave me a warm feeling that “it was so before you asked,” and that he had clearly been leading me through the steps without my knowledge. He seemed to be working behind the scenes in ways unknown to me…
Finally, although not a Heptameronic Planetary Angel, I asked Uriel for his Patronage and he confirmed it with a vision of wheat in fruition and the inage of a radiant smile with a paradoxical club thudding to the ground in a way that reminded me of Samael’s Sword.
The feeling of love, supportiveness, and radiance in the Temple at this point was staggering. All of the candles began to flicker more intensively and the incense smoke began to billow upwards…
At this time, I picked up the Fuente for the Olympic Spirits and asked my Angelic Patrons and Saint Cyprian to help me reach out to them. I reminded them that I had given them offerings of bread, water, incense, and candlefire. Then I felt an Angelic nudge to address them each by name, while facing the shrine of the Angel of their corresponding planet.
For instance, facing Sachiel, I intoned “Bethor.” Facing Gabriel, I intoned “Phul,” and so on through all of the Olympic Spirits. I asked them if I has their permission to begin to work with and learn from them more actively and informed them of my current work on a Commentary on the entirety of their primary grimoiric text, the Arbatel de Magia Veterum. I asked if they would consent to teach me more about themselves and help me with the Commentary.
Around the Circle, I saw sparks and a trail of sparkling light that vanished as soon as it appeared. A feeling I can only describe as “respectful openness” seemed to flood the room. I recalled that Cyprian had told me months ago that this moment when I would work with the Olympic Spirits again as I had 10 years ago with Bethor, Aratron, and Haggith would come again, and I wouls begin to work with the others as well. Now it had come. And the feeling was… comforting. Even if the momentousness of the task did not escape me…
I informed them of my consent to work with them with a loving and respectful spirit to the greater Glory of God as the Arbatel‘s Aphorisms teach. I prayed that the Holy Spirit would show me how to work with them in a way consistent with the Divine Will and the Way of my beloved Patron Angels. At the end, I bowed before God in humility, thankfulness, and worshipful gratitude. Then, rising, I purified the whole Temple with Holy Water and asked my Patrons to guide us doing God’s Will in manifesting the Good in daily life and to protect us from harm.
At this point, I received a surprising revelation. The small Offering plates I was guided to purchase today were not for the Angels. They already had their own, so I had wondered why I was being guided to buy them.
They weren’t for the Angels.
They were for the Olympic Spirits.
And they were to be placed beside each corresponding Archangel in their respective shrines and on their corresponding Planetary Mensas.
Therefore, I proceeded to place them accordingly as instructed.
Finally, I invited any Spirits who wished to continue to partake of the Offerings and gave the License to Depart.
I closed the Temple and took the pictures shared here to document this beautiful experience.
Thus began my formal Patronage from the Archangels. Without fanfare. Without extensive ceremony. Without long discourses from them. In other words, it began in every way as I did not expect and contrary to my plans.
And with it, the formal reconnection with my old Spirit friends, Hagith, Aratron, and Bethor. And a kindling of new relationships with Phul, Och, and Phaleg.
I look forward to seeing where this fascinating trip down this rabbit hole of the Mysteries leads.
If this night is any indication, I can be sure it won’t be as I expect.
A. An Unexpected Trinity: Trifecta of Mysterious Synchronicities
Yesterday was Easter Sunday, the Holy Day on which Christians celebrate the Resurrection of Christ, which enabled him to complete his mission of establishing the New Covenant, liberating humanity through faith from their ancient legacy of erroneous action that missed the mark (hamartia, sin) of the Good Willed by God, and to send the Holy Spirit to dwell within us as a sanctifying, guiding, and empowering Force. My upcoming article Charismata Magica: Gifts of the Holy Spirit in the Solomonic Grimoires will go into into some depth of how the latter event impacted the grimoire authors and how the Fruits, Graces, and Gifts of the Holy Spirit play fascinating roles within the European grimoire tradition.
As I was fading off to sleep, I was contemplating some passages of Scripture that I had recently read and the idea occurred to me that perhaps it would be ceremonially and spiritually fitting for me to commemorate my return to Christianity through a water Baptism. I had already been Baptized by water once within the Catholic Church and completed all of the sacramental initiations up to and including Confirmation, but after my long time away from the faith studying other traditions, a new Baptism might be appropriate. Still, I had never heard the Pastor of my Church speak about water Baptisms for adults in the entire year I had been attending this particular Church and I was not sure how they handled such things.
In the morning, I began to celebrate Easter by reading from the New Testament. My attention was called to 1 Corinthians 15 in the Amplified Bible, which reads:
1 Now brothers and sisters, let me remind you [once again] of the good news [of salvation] which I preached to you, which you welcomed and accepted and on which you stand [by faith].
2 By this faith you are saved [reborn from above—spiritually transformed, renewed, and set apart for His purpose], if you hold firmly to the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain [just superficially and without complete commitment].
3 For I passed on to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to [that which] the Scriptures [foretold],
4 and that He was buried, and that He was raised [and Reaurrected] on the third day according to [that which] the Scriptures [foretold],
5 and that He appeared to Cephas (Peter), then to the Twelve.
6 After that He appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, the majority of whom are still alive, but some have fallen asleep [in death].
7 Then He was seen by James, then by all the Apostles,
8 and last of all, as to one [b]untimely (prematurely, traumatically) born, He appeared to me also.
9 For I am the least [worthy] of the Apostles, and not worthy to be called Apostle, because I [at one time] fiercely oppressed, [killed Christians,] and violently persecuted the Church of God.
10 But by the [remarkable] grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not without effect. In fact, I worked harder than all of the Apostles, though it was not I, but the grace of God [His unmerited favor and blessing which was] with me.
11 So whether it was I or they, this is what we preach, and this is what you believed and trusted in and relied on with confidence.”
Humbled by this reading, I took a ritual bath to prepare for Church, worshiping the Most High through worship songs and Psalm passages as I do every morning. Then, I walked to Church with Soror R.A. Along the way, she expressed some doubts about how we could possibly know whether Christ had really been Resurrected and what ancient textual evidence there was that Christ even existed. I told her about the extra-biblical evidence for Jesus we have from Tacitus and Josephus and about how, until recently, many archaeologists had doubted whether Pontius Pilate had even existed until 1961, when the Pilate Stone was unearthed, which bore the inscription, as translated from Latin into English:
“To the Divine Augusti [this] Tiberieum … Pontius Pilate … prefect of Judea … has dedicated [this]“
Further evidence was revealed in 2018 when a ring that had been discovered in Herodium near Jerusalem and which bore the inscription “of Pilates” was deciphered using advanced photographic technology. To quote the Jerusalem Post,
It reads “of Pilates,” in Greek letters set around a picture of a wine vessel known as a krater, and is said by archaeologists to be only the second artifact from his time ever found with his name. Kraters are a common image in artifacts of that time and place.”
We arrived at Church and joined in the worship. When the Pastor began to deliver his Easter Message, however, I was blown away by not one, not two, but three synchronicities, a veritable trifecta:
(1) For the first time ever, the Pastor described the procedure for Water Baptisms for Adults and explained that an opportunity for Water Baptism would be happening within the next two weeks. He also explained that they were accepting sign-ups for anyone interested. I was amazed given the reflections that had come to me the night before. I wondered if the Holy Spirit had given me a Word of Knowledge through that.
(2) The Pastor described the archaeological and textual evidence for Christ and Pilate, including the very Pilate Stone I had discussed with Soror R.A. Her mouth fell open in awe when he started to discuss this.
(3) The Pastor then went on to analyze 1 Corinthians 15, the very passage I had been nudged to read that very morning! I bowed my head, humbled at this, giving thanks and honouring the mysterious ways of the Holy Spirit, who abides in all of the faithful and guides, teaches and sanctifies them from within as they learn to walk in the Spirit in whom they “live, move and have [their] being” (Acts 17:28).
B. Phylactery, Cauldron, and Daggers: Covert Solomonic Consecrations by Easter Mass
On this auspicious Easter Sunday, Day of the Sun, I performed Cryptoconsecratio by Mass–covert consecration of magical items performed in Church–of the gold disc phylactery depicted above, which features the names and sigils of the 7 Heptameron Archangels and the 7 Olympic Spirits of the Arbatel De Magia Veterum traced over with a consecrated Solomonic Burin of Art. Since gold is a soft metal, it is fairly easy to engrave; a compass and ruler facilitated the tracing of the circle and straight lines respectively.
By way of context, I have already established relationships with all 7 of these Archangels and with the Olympic Spirits Bethor and Aratron, the latter two relationships of which I began back in 2010 when I first conjured those two spirits to assist with making Pentacles of Jupiter and Saturn respectively. In the coming year, however, I plan to begin work with all 7 of the Arbatel Olympics and wear this phylactery in work with them. I also plan to wear the seal under my shirt in daily life for general protection and to faciliate maintaining my connection with the spirits represented within it.
Out of respect for traditionalism, however, I have to point out here that this seal combining Heptameron and Arbatel spirit names and sigils does not occur in either the Heptameron or the Arbatel, although the sigils of the Archangels and Olympics contained here are exactly rendered as depicted in those two grimoires. As I learned through the kind sharing of knowledge from my friends BJ Swayne, Billy Ashford-Webb, Chijioke Onyeogubalu, and Andy Foster, I was able to learn that this combined seal was designed by the talented Frater Asterion. Through additional research, I traced it back to a 2011 post he made on Solomonic Magic, which is accessible hereand in which Asterion refers to it as his Planetary Lamen.
Frater Asterion explains the structure of his design and the traditional inspiration for it in this way:
“This pentacle was inspired by a figure in the last book of Faust’s Magia Naturalis et Innaturalis, only he used Olympic Spirits alone and I used Archangels too. My blog banner is based on that, if you look closely. I wrote [the Names] in Latin characters for illustrative purposes, for my upcoming book to be published in Romania, Cartea Arhanghelilor (The book of Archangels), and also as a didactic chart for my personal students.”
Through his own diligent research, Billy Ashford-Webb was able to locate the original diagram in Magia Naturalis et Innaturalis from which Asterion derived his inspiration for this combined Arbatel and Heptameron phylactery:
Frater Asterion’s sleek and efficient design, with its inclusion of the Arbatel and Heptameron Sigils of the Olympic Spirits and the Archangels suits my purposes well as defined above and was accepted under the guidance of the Angels and Olympics involved. Please note that although I have received commission requests from several people to craft a version of Asterion’s Planetary Lamen, I will not be doing any of these. Frater Asterion retains the copyright and all credit for his own design work. Anyone who would like their own version of this lamen to be crafted should message him directly.
In this same Easter Sunday Mass, I also performed Cryptoconsecratio by Mass on my new White-Handled Knife, Black-Handled Knife, and also the Cauldron consecrated to Gabriel that I alluded to in a prior post. All of the above were covertly carried into Church in a backpack, which I prayed over during the Mass. Before the Mass, I exorcised these tools and the phylactery and consecrated them with Solomonic Holy Water and consecrated and exorcised Frankincense, both prepared according to the instructions of the Key of Solomon, before bringing them with me to Church.
The experience was powerful and moving as always and the trifecta of mysterious synchronicities made it even more so. Glory to you, YHVH, El Eloah, Adonai Rapha,Glory to Yeshua Risen, Glory to the Holy Spirit who lives and works within us! In the name of Yeshua, we give thanks and praise. Amen.