Solomonic Invocation of Archangel Anael and Emergency Petition for a Friend

By Frater S.C.F.V.

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Date: Friday, March 15, 2019
Sun Phase: Afternoon
Moon Phase: Waxing in First Quarter in 12 degrees Cancer in the Nathra Mansion of the Moon
Mansion of the Moon: Thurayya
Planetary Day: Day of Venurs
Planetary Hour: Hour of Venus
Activities: Ritual Bathing; Oratio dicenda quando induitur vestis; Dressing Candle for Anael; Preliminary Prayers; Offerings to the Most High, to Ancestors, to Patron Saints and Teachers, and to the Angels; Heptameron Prayer; Invoking the Angels of the Four Directions as per Heptameron; Conjuration of Anael;

A dear friend of mine, whom I will refer to as S.H. to preserve her privacy, is presently in an emergency situation where she is at risk of becoming homeless in a two week period. As a result, I felt moved to invoke the great Archangel Anael on the day of Venus in the Hour of Venus for help with the situation and also to go deeper into discussions of Divine Love with the Angel. The Moon today is in Lunar Mansion #8, al-Nathra, which is useful for actions of love and friendship. It is an appropriate time do a loving gesture with the Archangel of Venus on behalf of a friend.

I completed a 3-day regime of ritual purity in preparation, culminating in today. After a ritual bath, I got into my white robe (while reciting the Heptameron prayer for donning the vestments, “Oratio dicenda quando induitur vestis”) and put on my stole, put on my Cyprianic rosary, scapular, Cyprianic bracelet, and Solomonic Pentagonal Figure. Proceeding to the Temple, which had already been arranged prior to the beginning of the Planetary Hour, I sounded the Bell of Art three times before entering the Circle as per the Hygromanteia. Then, I entered the Circle, and began preliminary prayers to the Divine while asperging the Circle, Altar, and all Instruments of the Art with Holy Water.

The Altar featured a green Altar cloth, which looks blue in these images, a large green candle, a small green candle dressed with St. Cyprian Oil and Thyme, which is sacred to Venus according to Agrippa’s First Book of Occult Philosophy, Chapter XXVIII, a Virgin Mary Statue, a censor with stick incense placed inside my Cauldron consecrated to Archangel Gabriel, Epiphany Holy Water, bread and water Offerings to Anael, my Wand, a vial of San Cipriano Oil, my Bells, a scrying Crystal, and the seal of Anael on Virgin Paper set on a golden Laurel Wreath. I took up my Solomonic Sword and traced over the outer line of the Circle with its point. With the Circle thus sealed, I put down the Sword and picked up my Solomonic Wand.

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First, I presented Offerings to the Most High El Elyon and asked for His Help in sending His servant, Anael to be present with me and aid me in this Operation of the Art. Next, I presented Offerings to my Patrons, including St. Cyprian of Antioch, my Ancestors, the Angels and Archangels, and the Olympic Spirits, requesting their help in this Operation. The Offerings included exorcised and consecrated goblets of spring and filtered water, candle offerings, bread, and for Anael, a green candle dressed with St. Cyprian Oil and Thyme, bread sprinkled with Thyme, and incense. I asked St. Cyprian to assist me in conjuring Anael with the aim of learning more about the Divine Wisdom and assisting a friend in need.

After more preliminary Prayers, I formally opened the Temple for the Solomonic Invocation. I felt an intuitive nudge from my Spirits to proceed with the Heptameron conjurations and prayers in Latin today, so I obliged. The Altar was set up to face the current location of Venus in the sky, which was determined using an astronomical program. Standing facing the Altar in the direction of Venus, I took up my Wand and the grimoire in the other hand and began the opening prayers.

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I said the opening line “O Angels [sic] supradicti, estote adjutores meæ petitioni, & in adjutorium mihi, in meis rebus & petitionibus” then called the Angels that rule the Air on this Day, intoning their names 3 times each in their respective directions, then praying “O vos omnes, adjuro atque contestor per sedem Adonay, per Hagios, etc…”

Having called the Angels of the 3rd Heaven ruling the Day in their respective Quarters I proceeded to the Conjuration of Friday to invoke Anael, namely:

Conjuro & confirmo super vos Angeli fortes, sancti atque potentes, in nomine On, Hey, Heya, Ja, Je, Adonay, Saday, & in nomine Saday, qui creavit quadrupedia & animalia reptilia, & homines in sexto die, & Adæ dedit potestatem super omnia animalia: unde benedictum sit nomen creatoris in loco suo: & per nomina Angelorum servientium in tertio exercitu, coram Dagiel Angelo magno, principe forti atque potenti: & per nomen Stellæ quæ est Venus: & per Sigillum ejus, quod quidem est sanctum: & per nomina prædicta conjuro super te Anael, qui es præpositus diei sextæ, ut pro me labores, &c.

I then did a second complete Conjuration in English, adding my intent for the ritual and petition, and requesting help from the Divine, my Patrons, Saints, Ancestors, and Teachers for help in making it succcessful.

Then, I began to chant the name ANAEL for an extended period of time while waving the Wand in rhythmic motion, facing the direction of Venus. I continued and continued, my chanting growing in intensity and melodic harmonies while tracing his Sigil in the air with my Solomonic Wand until I felt a shift in the energy in the room, a sense of loving warmth begin to grow like light over the horizon at dawn. I saw sparks of light and drifting spiritual ‘tracers’ outside the Circle. Then Anael’s offering Candle flared up. I welcomed the Spirit and asked the Spirit in the name of Tetragrammaton to confirm its presence if it was indeed here by moving both incense sticks’ streams of smoke to the left in unison. This happened immediately, confirming the Spirit’s presence.

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I greeted the Spirit with great love and respect and thanked the Archangel for coming and being present for this ceremony. I then knelt before the Altar, placed Anael’s offering candle behind the Crystal Ball and began to scry into the flame through the crystal in the pyrocrystallomancy method taught me to by Raphael in a previous conjuration. I then asked the Angel to assist me in tuning into his presence. I gave him consent to manifest sensations, emotions, and thoughts, to draw on my memory to facilitate the communication, and to guide me in inducing appropriate states of consciousness to facilitate the attunement.

Still kneeling, I then proceeded to scry into the Crystal until a pulsation began to emerge in the center of my forehead, my vision began to darken out while the fire in the crystal began to grow brighter. Then I saw a kind of misty-light like effect swirl around the outside of the Crystal. In the process, my eyes grew heavier and heavier and I heard Anael speaking into my mind, suggesting that I could close my eyes and need not strain them. In any event, they fell closed of their own accord without me having much say in the mater…

I greeted the Angel with great love and respect, which Anael reciprocated with his warm, adrogynous voice, saying “greetings, Child of God” with great affection.

I asked if he could give me a revelation-image of his presence and immediately I saw a beautiful winged figure, this time appearing with long blonde hair and an emerald robe, with a face of pure light. To my surprise, however, the image shifted into a green winged heart, which then morphed into a sprout germinating out of the ground and growing into a grove of verdant trees.

I asked Anael what this vision signified and he spoke in the poetic way he sometimes does, the words appearing smoothly spoken into my mind in the Angel’s voice while my forehead continued to pulsate with the throbbing light feeling:

My form is an image of Love,
The green of Nature, which is love growing into life,
The heart of the World, the sprouting of new love,
The growing wisdom of love extending outward,
The forest an image of love growing out in waves.”

I asked the Angel if this was an image of Divine Love. The Angel replied:

God’s Love is far greater than this,
Greater than your human mind,
Which thinks in time and bounded, limited concepts
Can fathom.”

I asked if the Angel could give me an analogy as to what Divine Love is like.

“The Divine Love that sustains the universe is like an ocean,
Every form and phenomenon that appears is like a droplet in that ocean,
Always embraced by the ocean, always part of it, and yet appearing separate,
Seeming to change like the waves on the service,
Yet ever still and eternally held like the ocean depths,
This is what God’s Love is like.”

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I asked Anael if he could share more about the nature of Divine Love:

“God’s Love holds the entire universe within it, excluding nothing.
Creation itself was the flowering of that eternal Love into the sparking-forth of Time,
A Love so infinite it could bloom into finitude, a Love so vast it could pretend to be Other,
There is not a particle that appears in this world that is not held by that Love,
That Love is the particle, and the particle is that Love,
Do not imagine that it is Other than you.
The Love, the God, and the Creation are only different in appearance, not in Reality,
It is Love itself that brings-into-being phenomena, phainomenon, means appearing-into-view, through the Power of that Love, which Loves to Appear and be Appeared to.”

When asked if God’s Love was like human life in any way we could relate to, Anael replied:

Not quite! Your human love is often conditional,
Bound by expectations, limited by arising and subsiding in Time,
Exclusive of some, inclusive of others.
God’s Love is entirely different from that.
And yet even finite human love is but an appearance
of that Love without which nothing is.
God’s Love never began and will never end.
God hates no one; His Love never turns to hate as human love often does.
It does not exclude or include in a dualistic sense.
It is not earned, nor can it be lost.
It has no expectations and no conditions;
It is you humans who make up the requirements and conditions!
It cannot be approached or moved away from;
It is always available at all times,
More subtle than the subtlest,
More intense than the greatest Starry inferno,
Small enough to hold the tiniest particle,
Vast enough to embrace all that is, was, and ever shall be,
Who can say what it is like?
It is here and now, always available.
But your Father
–and Father and Child are just metaphors to try to help you humans understand–
Loves you so that He sets you free to turn away from Him,
To forget Him, to pursue your own ideas,
Giving you everything that was ever created,
Present with you in every moment,
And yet how ungrateful you humans are!
Despite that ingratitude, His Love never retreats a step from you,
Never distances itself as you humans do when you pull away in hurt.
God’s Love never fails, nor ever leaves you.
Whenever you wish, it is given fully, nothing held back.”

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Hearing this, I wondered why we seem so unaware of it. Anael explained:

“There are no barriers to God’s Love except the ones you imagine there are.
Imagining there to be barriers, you make up stories about how to “earn” God’s love.
In so doing, you miss the mark of the Good and the True,
And imagine that your “sin” disqualifies you from Divine Love,
Nothing could be further from the truth!
God loves you before you stumble, while you err,
And after you have realized your mistake.
Does a good father see a child stumble and hate the child for acting out of ignorance?
Of course not! Do you imagine Divine Perfection to be less than that?
Confession, the changing of minds,
The honest admission of where you’ve missed the mark,
Is a Gift to yourself from yourself;
Your Father does not need it, but He asks for it for *you.*
In so doing, your lighten your heart,
And your imagine barriers to His Love dissolve,
So that you become more aware of what is always here.
Truly, your humanness is but a wave in this ocean.
Your ultimate nature is far beyond an ephemeral animal form bound by Time;
In loving God, you realize yourself and He realizes Himself in you;
“You” and “Him” are but metaphors to help you try to understand,
But in Truth, there are no two things, only in appearance,
Only in Love-appearing for the play of change in Time.
But how could you possibly understand?
You cannot. But as you surrender your ignorance,
The Truth reveals itself, without requiring a word.
For Truth was silent for billions of years before the first human spoke.
The “Word” itself is metaphor,
A Mercy to a human mind.”

I thanked the Archangel for these beautifully rich, although humbling, words and proceeded to my request for the Angel to assist my dear friend S.H., who is at risk of becoming homeless in a few weeks. I asked if Anael could help as best he can. Before Anael, I prayed to God, to whom belongs all of Creation, all homes, and all riches, to extend His Goodness and thanked Him for what he’s doing to help his Child S.H.

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After the prayer, Anael reassured me:

“We were working on your friend’s problem before you and she even asked.
Tell her that help will come, though not necessarily in the way she expects.
Tell her also that although she has felt as though God’s Love and presence had retreated from her, they have always perfectly been there;
It is only her imagination that has shifted,
And made what was not so, appear to be so.
If she corrects her imaginings with right understanding,
She will have a transformation of mind,
And the ever-present Love will reveal itself,
Unlosable, unfailing, and ever-here for her.
Tell her also that the matter she is worrying about
That she did not tell you has already been addressed.
Her part is to do what she can and act on what you and others have shared with her.
God and we will attend to the rest.
From our perspective, it is already done.
From your perspective, it will come.
Trust and have faith. All will be well.
God does not forsake His Beloveds,
No matter how you humans may imagine He does.”

I thanked Anael for this great kindness and help and asked if I could publish the record of this conversation and pass on these words to S.H. Anael replied:

Yes, but do not pass on what I am about to tell you. It is for you alone.

I will not reveal what was said next, but I can say that after I heard it, I felt a wave of warmth flood through my body. Tears formed in my eyes, and I felt as though the Angel’s wings were wrapping around me in the way Soror R.A. often described to me.

Finally, I asked the Angel if he would be willing to be my Patron and to speak with me again so that I could continue to learn from him.

It shall be so, Child of God. Keep up the good work you are doing in service of others. Sanctification can feel like difficulty,
But that is only the process of transforming your ignorance and arrogance,
Changing your mind.
That too, God only wants for you,
Because Eternal Freedom Wills that you be free from all that you imagine binds you.
From our perspective, you already are;
From yours, you will seem to be.
Patience and humility reconcile the two views.

With tears in my eyes, I thanked the Angel deeply. I continued to kneel there in his presence for what felt like a long time, simply abiding in that clean, clear, loving safety and warmth.

At last, I stood, thanked the Angel for coming and invited him to partake of the offerings and go at his own leisure. Then I did the License to Depart to all of the Angel and Spirits called in the four Quarters as per the Heptameron‘s procedure. With final prayers and sprinklings, I closed the Temple with the pulsing in my forehead finally beginning to dwindle, but the warmth in my heart continuing to kindle.

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Update – May 1st, 2019: All of the Angel’s words came to pass as described. Through gigs and her tax return, my friend was able to earn enough money to pay for her rent for May. Another friend from the community also helped her to write a letter to enter a business partnership with local stores to sell her excellent oils and other products. I believe the Angels and the Holy Spirit were at work in this. She has also had several job interviews in the past month. I was confident one would pan out eventually. As the Angel had said, “help will come, though not necessarily in the way she expects.” That is precisely how it did come. As Anael had said, “her part is to do what she can and act on what you and others have shared with her.” This is precisely what she did do and she was blessed for her hard efforts — a few weeks later, she was hired at a job she loves and now enjys a financial stability she never knew before. How often answers to prayers and magic come through seemingly naturalistic means, while we are waiting for some supernatural manifestation to appear in the sky…

The “the matter she is worrying about that she did not tell you has already been addressed” was a problem she was having in communicating with a partner who did not care about her spiritual path, which was so central to her values and what was important to her. They tried to work on it, but the resolution ended up being them parting ways. The Angels and Holy Spirit had left openings for it to be addressed through communication or through parting ways so that each could be free to be with a partner better suited to them. There was no fatalism here; there were options, both of which would resolve the problem. The second was the way things went. It was hard at first, but ended up being for the best. Such is the Way of God and of the Holy Angels.

Hail to you, Holy Angel Anael. Thank you for your help and guidance, thank you for your wisdom. We praise the Lord God in your name and honour and humble ourselves before Him in gratitude. Thank you, thank you, thank you. This we pray in Yeshua’s Holy Name. Amen.

Frater S.C.F.V on the Glitch Bottle Podcast

Glitch Bottle #033 – Solomonic Bells, Wands & Consecrations (Oh My!) with Frater S.C.F.V.

By Frater S.C.F.V

I recently had the great pleasure and honour of appearing on Alexander Eth’s fantastic Glitch Bottle podcast.  We discussed my own multitraditional spiritual background, Solomonic grimoires, Dr. Stephen Skinner’s interesting typology of magic, Mystery, and religion, Wand traditions, Bells and Trumpets of Art, Circles, binding, Consecration by Mass, scrying, cryptoconsecratio, Angelic invocation, and a host of other fascinating topics of magical theory and practice. Please feel free to share any comments or questions you may have. Thank you!

In LVX,
Frater S.C.F.V.

Novena of Saint Cyprian 2018 Day 6: Invocation of Archangel Cassiel

By Frater S.C.F.V.

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On this Sixth Day of my 2018 Novena to Saint Cyprian of Antioch, September 22, 2018, I arose and performed a ritual bath and ecstatic worship. I went to the store to purchase wine and spring water to serve as Offerings to Saint Cyprian. My stomach ached slightly from my fast for all of the day until the Ritual, which was interrupted only by the drinking of water and the eating of a single apple.

In the Day and Hour of Saturn, after a ritual bath and worship, I entered the Temple. I took up my Solomonic bell, sounded it three times before entering the Circle as per the Hygromanteia and then again thrice to each of the Quarters, greeting the Spirits of the East, South, West, and North with great love, respect, and  blessings of Adonai. I proceeded to give Offerings to God and to Saint Cyprian and began to pray and recite Psalms while holding my Solomonic Wand of Art. On this Saturday, Cyprian’s Day, I gave Cyprian Offerings of fresh Spring Water, Sage Incense, and Wafers consecrated in the Neophyte Ceremony of the Golden Dawn as last performed by our G.D. Order.

I dressed two candles as Offerings, one with Cyprian Oil, sage, cinnamon, and all-spice for Cyprian and one with sage, cumin, and Solomonic Holy Oil for Cassiel. I prayed over them to exorcise and consecrate them with their intended Powers. I then put on my Ring of Saturn, which contains lead and a strong black stone, given to me as a gift by my friend Sarah Wreck, making a prayer as I did so. I used the prayer from the Heptameron to ask for God’s help in calling Spirits and proceeded to a formal Invocation of Archangel Cassiel, Angel of the Day of  Saturn and of Saturn.

After prolonged additional conjurations and vibrating of Cassiel’s name while gazing into the crystal with Cassiel’s candle burning behind it–pyrocrystallomancy, as shown to me by Archangel Raphael–I felt the Angel’s presence as his fixed candle, Offered unto him, flared up behind the Crystal. Feeling his presence, which was stern, heavy, grim, and no-nonsense, I offered him Frankincense, noted by Agrippa as sacred to Saturn as an additional offering.

Cassiel remains the most stern, severe, and no-nonsense Archangel with whom I have ever worked, even more so than Samael in my experience. He is direct, cuts right to the chase, and when he speaks, his replies come fast and immediate. At least in his communications with me, he also tends to speak in a more formal, antiquated style, which I also use to sympathetically connect with him. Upon appearing in the Circle, he immediately spoke unto my mind:

Wherefore hast thou called me?”

I respectfully explained my intent, to offer him gifts of love, devotion, and friendship in this consecrated and blessed Candle and Incense of Art and to learn from him whatever wisdom he would impart to me concerning his role, Office, and the things under his power.

When asked what was his role and Office, Cassiel spoke these words into my mind as I gazed entranced into the Crystal, while Cassiel’s flame flickered behind it and dark, Saturnian ritual music played in the background:

Mine is the Office of binding and the imposition of barriers and limits without which, no structure can emerge and there can be no order. Mine is the overseeing of Time and temporality, of arising, abiding, and subsiding. Mine is the constriction of pure force into bounded form, that all things may be accomplished in apparent finitude and time.”

When asked for the wisdom behind his powers of binding and constricting, Cassiel replied:

Binding and barriers need not be but forms of imprisonment and holding back of freedom, as thou humans assume. Binding and barriers are freedom in action. Without limits on the shape of a thing, there can be no shape. Without shape, there can be no action taken by that shape. All of the multitudes of forms in nature depend on binding and barriers for their operations. Finitude is but apparent; everything apparently finite is simply the Divine Infinite constrained by its own Power to enable the freedom of its manifestation.

Nor do binding, barriers, and constrictions imply separation. All is the Divine appearing in, as, and to itself. No apparent form is separate in reality from any other, only in relative functioning in time and in appearance. Whosoever realizes this knows the Face of God is everywhere, within and without, not merely beyond apparent form, but in, as, and within it.”

When asked what attitude this wisdom should give rise to in us, Cassiel replied:

Right discernment. Discern one type of apparent form from the next; note their discrete qualities, which could not arise if not for the Powers of binding and barriers, of constrictions of form upon which all structure and Order depends. At the same time, discern the Ultimate; nothing apparent, nothing formed, nothing shaped, nothing seemingly cut-off is so in its Absolute nature. All of the relative forms are none other than the Absolute. God hides in plain sight.

Those who know this will understand, and understanding, live in the light of that wisdom. In this way, they will not fall for the delusions of the world, that death is the end or shape limits the infinite. Only the unlimited can appear to be limited, and only so that anything can appear at all. Creation depends on constriction, not Ultimately, but in relative appearance. This is the Mystery of Divine creation itself.

I was amazed by the rapidity, clarity, and immediacy with which Cassiel communicated, perhaps unsurprising for the Archangelic Master of Time, but surprising for me, who had was so accustomed to the slower, gentler ways of speaking of other Spirits.

I asked Cassiel if he could give me a vision to explain further how “creation depends on constriction.” Immediately, as with his prior replies, Cassiel spoke into my mind as I gazed into the Crystal, “close thy eyes and it is done.”

My eyes fell heavily closed, slowly and smoothly as my spine straightened up, erect. Before I knew it, I no longer looked at the black space of closed eyelids. Instead, I saw a great Angel clothed in black, darkly powerful, flying over a landscape that was tremoring and shaking, a land of rock and desert. His face shone so bright over his black robed figure that it could not be seen, blinding golden light…

Behold how formation requires constriction. As the Earth shakes, form tenses, collapses, and falls apart. Heat agitates the structures of form and they shake apart. In this potentiality and chaos, binding and barriers can constrain new forms into being.”

As he said this, an earthquake shook the land, which split open. Bright lava could be seen below. As tectonic plates smashed together, a mountain began to take form.

“Smashing together, seems apparent violence… but is in truth creative force. Constrained and pressured, the mountain takes form as stone is bound not to flow some ways and permitted only to flow others. So it is that binding produces order through constellating chaos. So it is for all creation, for all arising of all phenomena. Imposed limitation enables the freedom of form appearing and functioning. This is the foundation of the World.”

The scene shifted to a plant growing from a sprout into a beautiful mature form.

For leaves to appear, for stems and cells, there must be boundaries and forces constraining the tissues. The limitation enables the freedom. So it is with thou human beings, which are the Divine Infinite constrained through binding and Time into relative discrete appearance.

The vision abruptly cut off and I felt my Astral form slammed back into my body with great severity. My eyes opened and I was back in my Temple.

After asking Cassiel to let his power move through me, correcting any apparent limitations that did not serve or were dysfunctional, he did immediately. Holding the Solomonic Holy Oil-anointed Crook of Saint Cyprian and pressing it to my forehead, I felt a flood of heavy, constraining energy flood through my Sphere of Sensation. My eyes fell closed again and I behind my closed eyelids, I saw images of forms breaking apart and new ones taking their place, of subtle shifts and felt changes unfolding that I did not understand…

When it ended, my eyes opened and returned to the Crystal ball. My head felt like it was spinning from the rapid flow of all of this information that Cassiel had shared and thus, I thought it perhaps best to move the Invocation to its conclusion. Thanking Cassiel with great sincerity for being so forthcoming and helpful, I asked if he had any final wisdom to reveal before bringing our time together to a close.

“See not forms as separate; they are not. The Infinite can but take form through apparent boundaries and constriction. See not discipline as blocking freedom; it does not. Discipline is freedom in action and the enabler of freedom. The lack of discipline is not freedom, it is chaos. Image the Ordering Power of the Creator; live in discipline that thou mayst be freer still.

Whatever thou lookest upon, know it as Thy Divine Self hiding in finitude, the unlimited appearing through limitation, the unbound appearing through seeming binding, the unarisen disciplining itself into arising, the Eternal appearing as Time. In this way, all dualities will be cut off, and both poles negated, nonduality itself will collapse. What remains is the Ultimate as it is, and thou art That. There is nothing else. Indeed, all that apparently is, is but the Unformed playing itself into form.”

With great humility and gratitude, I thanked the great Archangel for these potent revelations and invited him to take his leave if he wished or stay and pray with me. I thanked him and asked him I could share what he had shared with me with others to correct misconceptions and for the greater Good of freedom for all through discipline. I asked that he move the stream of smoke from his incense to the left if he agreed, and so it moved, immediately. I then asked him if he would kindly return again to work with and teach me if it pleased him and God, and received an affirmative answer as well.

I then said a final battery of prayers, and asked for Saint Cyprian’s help in one final task: creating Cyprianic Holy Oil. I did this by taking a base of olive oil and adding to it cinnamon essential oil, the herbs, soil, spices, and other curio from the Lucky Mojo Curio Company’s Saint Cyprian Oil, some of this same oil, and some of another San Cipriano Holy Oil imported via a local botanica to which I had been led by Saint Cyprian at an earlier date. I prayed for the good Saint to charge it and shortly thereafter, the Crucifix hanging from the rosary wrapped around his statue began to slowly wave from side to side.

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Moved by a flood of inspiration, before I ended the ritual and closed the Temple with prayers, I felt moved to perform a powerful and ancient ritual… the Stele of Jeu or Rite of the Headless One from Greek Magical Papyri V. 96-172. What followed was one of the most powerful magical experiences of my life.

But that, shall is a matter for another post.

Novena of Saint Cyprian 2018 Day 5: Invocation of Archangel Anael

By Frater S.C.F.V.

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On Friday September 21, 2018,  I began Day 4 of my Novena to Saint Cyprian of Antioch by waking up early to ritually bathe and worship with a full and open heart. Thereafter, I entered the Temple. I took up my Solomonic bell, sounded it three times before entering the Circle as per the Hygromanteia and then again thrice to each of the Quarters, greeting the Spirits of the East, South, West, and North with great love, respect, and  blessings of Adonai. I proceeded to give Offerings to God and to Saint Cyprian and began to pray and recite Psalms while holding my Solomonic Wand of Art.

I then used the prayer from the Heptameron to ask for God’s help in calling Spirits and proceeded to a formal Invocation of Archangel Anael, Angel of the Day of Venus and of Friday. After prolonged additional conjurations and vibrating of Anael’s name while gazing into the crystal with Anael’s candle burning behind it–pyrocrystallomancy, as shown to me by Archangel Raphael–I felt the Angel’s presence as his candle flared up. Anael’s presence felt warm, gentle, and comforting. I further asked Anael if he–I say he out of respect for Hebrew tradition, although “he” felt somewhat androgynous or beyond gender to me–could confirm his presence by moving the stream of incense offered to him noticeably to the left and so it happened immediately.

I greeted the Archangel with great love and respect and offered him–I say him, although “he” felt somewhat androgynous to me–Offerings of a lavender candle and Incense. I then asked if Anael could show me in the Crystal or in my Mind a vision of his office and role. Nothing happened for a moment and it occurred to me that the Crystal was somewhat smudged; therefore, I lifted it and wiped it clean, before replacing it over Anael’s Sigil from the Heptameron:

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After anointing his Seal with Holy Water and Saint Cyprian Oil, I saw a vision of a beautiful Angel in flowing emerald green robes, graciously tending to countless hearts, like a Mother or Father gently consoling infant children. How tender, we all are, at heart, despite the veneer of adulthood, the phantasms of fear, and the hardness of past hurt that grow within us in the battlegrounds of life experience… Trough all of this, the heart remains ever-vulnerable like a child. And behind the veil of ordinary life, Anael tends to these vulnerable hearts, loving them as Christ did when he said “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it” (Luke 18:15-17).

I asked Anael if he could kindly present a sense of how God Loves, or what is the heart or innermost nature of Divine Love. As I gazed into the Crystal filled with flickering fire, Anael spoke these words into my mind:

Divine Love is complete, always and eternally. It encompasses the Inner and the Outer. It loves without cause or reason. It is unconditioned, unrelenting. It has neither motive nor aim for gain. It loves only because to love is its Nature, and the Nature of what it loves is naught but lovable in its eyes.”

When asked how we humans, with all our faults and psychological challenges, can come to love as God loves, Anael answered:

“When you love your fellow humans, be not hindered by the superficial appearance. Love the heart of the child within as God loves His children. The unconditionally innocent heart is worthy and lovable without cause; God loves in this way, the hearts of his creation, long in patience. The power to love in you images the Divine power of love. Trust it over the fear that seems to cover it and guide you away. First love, then act with discernment.”

These words resonated with a well-known verse, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.  The one who fears is not made perfect in love.  We love because He first loved us”  (1 John 4:18-19).

When asked how we can learn to love ourselves, in the relative human sense rather than the Ultimate Divine Self that appears as all, as God loves us, Anael replied:

Cast aside the barriers you build up as reasons not to love. The seeming barriers are mere illusions. They are fabrications of falsehood. To be lovable and worthy is your nature; this is the Divine Truth and how God sees you. Therefore, model God’s vision as your power to love mirrors God’s own unfailing love. Regard yourself nakedly of all your concepts about “me.” In the absence of the concepts, the love that is already there will reveal itself. You cannot be unloveable in truth; you can only seem to think you are.”

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I asked if Anael could transmit to me an influx of the loving energy that is his nature. I was moved to place my Solomonic Wand of Art to my forehead. Immediately, a flow of warmth, loving force flickered and waved through my Sphere of Sensation, feeling cleansing, warm, safe, gentle, comforting, encouraging. The feeling was familiar — the ordinary, every day feeling of loving and being loved, an exoterically mundane phenomenon that hides an esoteric Mystery of infinite profundity: the core of the Divine Nature.

I thanked Anael with great love, respect, and gratitude and asked if he had any final things he would like to show me. As I gazed within the Crystal, I saw what Anael described as “an image of Love” — a heart set ablaze with fire. Is that not how it feels, to be passionately in love? As if our hearts are burning with wildfire altogether beyond our control? True love is effortless and all-consuming; is this not how the Divine loves? I was reminded of Isaiah 54:10: “Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,’ says the Lord, who has compassion on you.” 

As the image of the burning heart blazed in the Crystal, Anael spoke these final words of encouragement:

“Oh Son of Adam, leave your fear behind and dive deep into love through trust. For what is more fulfilling, a life sullied by fear, or bathed in love?”

I thanked Anael with a deep bow for his insight, teaching, guidance, and help. I asked if he would accept from me the gift of loving friendship and be willing to come again to teach me and worship with me and received a “yes, with joy” as a reply. It occured to me at that moment that “Haniel,” an alternate name for Anael, means “Joy of God” הניאל‬ or חַנִּיאֵל‬, “Grace of God” (El). I asked Anael if he would help me to learn to live and love and service of others more deeply and if I could share what he had shared with me for the greater good of others. Both questions received affirmative in the form of shifting in the candle flame.  I closed the invocation by inviting Anael to go in peace with the blessings of God or feel free to remain in worship for the final prayers.

I then said the final prayers and thanked Cyprian with the OSC’s Canticle of Saint Cyprian and asked him for his continued guidance and Patronage. The Cross hanging from his Statue began to slowly and gently wave as I said these words. With this done, I closed the Temple, leaving the Offerings of candles and incense to complete their burning in thanks.

 

 

Novena of Saint Cyprian 2018 Day 4: Invocation of Archangel Sachiel

By Frater S.C.F.V.

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On Thursday, September 20, 2018,  I began Day 4 of my Novena to Saint Cyprian of Antioch by waking up early to ritually bathe and worship with a full and open heart. I then traveled into the city to visit older adults in the company of a physiotherapist and social worker to serve these elderly individuals with Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, injuries from falls resulting in a broken hip, and hearing impairments. The home visits all went beautifully well.

Throughout the day, I felt repeatedly blessed by the kindness of those who interacted me. In something of a miracle, a woman with advanced dementia remembered my face and even my role and her face lit up when I came back to see her. The social worker I was with was amazed by this. I thanked God for this great and special gift.

As the day unfolded, the kindness and blessings continued to unfold. I met new people, was invited to attend a training for free, was blessed to be able to help a colleague struggling with a concussion, was smiled at and helped by strangers, and simply felt grateful and joyful to be wherever I was today, being as best of service as I could be. The Holy Spirit seemed to glow within me and I knew in my heart that Saint Cyprian was with me, helping me in his mysterious way, behind the scenes.

In the Day and Hour of Jupiter, despite being deeply exhausted, I entered the Temple, I picked up my Solomonic bell, sounded it thrice before entering the Circle as per the Hygromanteia and then again to the Quarters, greeting the Spirits of the East, South, West, and North with great love, respect, and the blessings of Adonai. I proceeded to give Offerings to God and to Saint Cyprian and began to pray and recite Psalms. I was happily surprised to see that my Novena candle had burned all the way down in less than 4 days, and had burned cleanly, leaving only white soot behind with no cracks or blackening in the glass — all very auspicious signs in the Esperitismo and Hoodoo interpretation of Novena candle magic.

Amazingly, I could already feel the transformative effects of the petition manifesting in my life in the form of greater insight, improved discernment of Spirits, trust of God in daily life, and deepened faith. May the Glory for these changes be not unto me, but unto God, with thanks and blessings to my great helper in this process, beloved Saint Cyprian.  And all of this just 4 days into a Novena intended to manifest the petition by the Feast Day of Saint Cyprian on Day 10!

I then used the prayer from the Heptameron to ask for God’s help in calling Spirits and proceeded to a formal Invocation of Archangel Sachiel. Great and beloved Sachiel! What a great, wise, beautiful, and powerful being!

When his presence was made known, I heard my cat began to meow outside the Temple door.  Sachiel’s energy was so vast, expansive, kind, loving, and warm, with the authority of a wise and beloved ruler — how fittingly Jupiterian! While some Spirits seem to be very blunt and speak few words, I was happy to find that Sachiel gave robust and insightful answers.

I used the scrying method of pyrocrystallomancy–as I neologistically refer to it–which the Archangel Raphael had shown me. This method consists of placing a candle offered to a Spirit behind a crystal ball and scrying through the crystal and magnified flame. This allows the Spirit to manipulate the candle flame and suggest different imagery through the crystal. I was in awe at how brightly and expansively Sachiel’s candle flame shone, beaming considerable light through the transparent Crystal. The flame danced wildly and beautifully. Meanwhile, the consecrated incense offered to him cast wide and slowly waving streams of smoke, which were mesmerizing.

I greeted him with great love and respect and blessings in the name of the beloved Most High. I asked him to move the stream of incense smoke to the right if he was pleased with his Offerings. It happened immediately as his candle simultaneously began to flicker in confirmation. I then asked if he would kindly guide me in any way he wished into greater understanding of prosperity and wisdom and his role in his Sphere of influence.

He showed me through the Crystal a vision of a beautiful forest over which a great Archangel in a blue robe graciously drifted with a face beaming pure and effulgent, radiant light. I asked if the Angel in the vision was him and his candle began rapidly flickering in confirmation. The sense was that Sachiel powered and nourished the growth of prosperity like a gardener nurturing the Garden, but could also oversee the culling and cutting down of the “plants” grown therein.

I asked Sachiel how to nurture the garden of wealth in our own human lives. He showed me a beautiful red rose. I asked him its meaning and he spoke into my mind these words: “Prosperity and wisdom are like roses — nurture them and they grow; neglect them and they whither. Nurture them with right action, faith and trust in God’s provision, a grateful heart. Lean not on extremes — seek balance.”

I asked him what I could do to communicate more efficiently with Angels. Sachiel said: “Make your mind like Light and it will harmonize better with our nature.”

I asked how to do this and he said:

Surrender all ideas, memories, and preconceptions and abide silently and vividly in the inherent awakeness of your own Spirit.”

I asked what he meant by abiding in this sense and he replied:

“Rest in the Source of all, from which all appears, but which itself never appears.”

When asked how to do that, Sachiel said:

Momentarily abandon all concepts. Stay wide open, awake, present.”

I asked how I could scry in the Crystal more efficiently after telling him what Raphael had taught me– “do not do; let be done to you.” Sachiel said, very insightfully:

This is true. Look not in or at the Crystal, but through and beyond it. Look deeper than with the eyes. Gaze as if peering through the center of your forehead, the seat of the Inner Vision.

Then cease to try make anything “happen.” Instead, be inwardly silent. Surrender. Open fully and receptively to whatever comes. The more you try to force it, the less you’ll see; the less you force, the more will appear.”

I spent some time quietly abiding in Sachiel’s warm, loving, joyful, and expansive presence, which was deeply calming and heartwarming. At last, I asked Sachiel if he had any final wisdom to share:

Oh Son of Adam, to those with greed, all will be taken away [in the end]; to those without greed, all will be given. Be without greed and ask for wisdom and prosperity to give and serve others rather than for yourself. Thus it will be freely given from the Treasurehouse of God’s Glory.”

I thanked Sachiel deeply and sincerely for his insight and asked if I could call him againt to work with him or learn more from him in the future. His candle flickered brightly and he spoke into my mind “with joy.” I thanked him once more and blessed him and prayed for him. I asked for his continued guidance into wisdom and prosperity in my life for the good of those in my care and his blessings and prayers on all my family and friends. I also asked for his help in helping Soror R.A. to be promoted to the position at her work where she can best be of service and work in harmony with her deepest aspirations in service for others as she had asked me to do.

He said: “if it is God’s Will, it will happen.

Finally, I asked for healing of the face of another friend if it be in his power.

All things are in God’s Power” was his reply.

I gave him license to depart or remain and pray with me for the final prayers and he happily opted to remain. I asked for his permission to share what he had shared with me for the benefit of others and he gave it. I thanked God for His help and praised and glorified Him. I also thanked Saint Cyprian for his help and scryed into the Crystal while asking if he had any words of guidance to share.

In his deep, warm voice, he spoke into my mind:

Your hard efforts are being rewarded. Continue to persevere.”

I asked him to confirm that it was truly he who had spoken those words by moving the Cross on the rosary hanging from his statue. Slowly, it began to move in confirmation. I thanked him with the Canticle of Saint Cyprian from the OSC orisons and performed my final prayers. Thereafter, I closed the Temple and Circle and remained there until I felt Sachiel’s presence, as it were, fading into the background of consciousness. I left the candles and incense Offerings to burn themselves out to fully give their gifts to the Spirits.

The feeling of warm, loving, restful and expansive kindness remained with me for hours after the Operation. Blessings be upon you, O Sachiel, and thanks to beloved Cyprian for his profound mastery of mystery…

Mystic Rods of Power: Consecration of a Solomonic Wand

By Frater S.C.F.V.

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The Lightning Rod of Magical Power: A Brief Introduction to Wand Lore

As Joseph H. Peterson (2005) notes, Plato, in his Alcibiades (1.122), and his Classical Greek contemporaries saw magic (mageia) as referring to “the Magian lore of Zoroaster.” The baresman (Avestan) or barsom (Phl.) was the prototype to the Graeco-Egyptian singular wand, but unlike the one-piece wands found in the PGM, the baresman was composed of a “bundle of twigs,” traditionally made of sticks cut from the tamarisk tree (Peterson, 2005). Indeed, for the Zoroastrian Magi, the baresman was a ritual tool that enabled the channeling of Divine Power, the execution of divination, and the energetic communication between the material (getig) and spiritual (menog) realms (Peterson, 2005).

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Zoroastrian Magi holding a baresman.

Peterson (2005) goes on to explain the Ancient origins and later grimoiric manifestations of the ‘wand principle’ in rich detail, revealing that

“the use of the baresman by the Magi was well known to Greek writers and is mentioned by Strabo and Phoenix of Colophon (280 B.C.), cited in Athenaeus. The magic wand was also known among the Ancient Greeks and Romans. Like the Zoroasrian Magi, the Ancient Roman Flamines or fire-priests, also carried such bundles of twigs in their hands (Modi RCC, 1922, p. 280).

Pliny and Apuleius both attest to their use. Homer (in the Odyssey 11.14ff) and Virgil both describe the archetypical sorceress, Circe, as using a magical wand. The relevant passage in Virgil was noted by Agrippa in his Occult Philosophy Book 1, chapter 41. It is also cited by Eliphas Levi in Key of the Mysteries, part 4, chap 1. Betz’s collection of Greek and Demotic Magical Papyri has examples of spells which include the use of a wand or staff. The spell PGM I.42-195, for example, has the Magician “hold a branch of myrtle … shaking it, [and salute] the goddess” (Betz, p. 5). A sinilar example occurs in PGM II.22, II.65 (Betz p. 13, 14).

Iamblichus (c. A.D. 250-325), one of the more important Neoplatonic philosophers, discussed magic in general in his On the Mysteries. In this work, he mentions the prophetess holding a staff or wand, invoking the divinity (Mysteries of the Egyptians, chapter 7.) Agrippa also cites this passage in OP3.48.

Early manuscripts of magic (grimoires) have many references to the use and importance of the wand in Western magic. There are two similar ritual implements commonly described in magical literature: The staff (Latin baculus or bacculus; Italian bastone; French Le baton, bâton) and the wand (Latin Virga or virgulam; Ital. verga; German Stäbchen; French: La verge;). In French manuscripts, the wand is sometimes called viere, baguette, baguette magique, baguete, or bagette, also translated as rod. The staff is more the size of a walking stick; the wand is smaller and tapered.”

It is worth noting that the Thyrsus of the Eleusinian Mystery Initiates may also be seen as a kind of proto-wand as well as an initiatory badge.  Similarly, the valences of authority and phallic masculine power embodied in the regal Scepter of Kings and Emperors are also encapsulated in the Wand symbolism that later occult traditions would adopt and sympathetically apply.  In his article on “The Magic Wand,” Mr. Peterson (2005) goes on to offer a detailed and fine-pointed analysis of the grimoiric wand traditions, citing specific manuscripts, which I will not reproduce here, but highly recommend studying catefully for the rich gems of esoteric insight it contains.

My research and practical experience have convinced me that the Wand is a powerful implement for Magicians of many different esoteric traditions and an indispensable tool in many of the magical systems grounded in the Late Medieval and Renaissance grimoires.  As a result, in this article, I will proceed to lay out my approach to crafting this powerful tool, to share the fruit of my research on the Characters to be inscribed on the Wand, and finally, to offer the script for the integrative ritual that I used to consecrate my own Wand. Grimoire enthusiasts may be interested to see how this multidimensional ritual incorporates the consecratory formulae embedded in the Key of Solomon, Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy, Pseudo-Agrippa’s Fourth Book of Occult Philosophy, the Grand Grimoire, the Grimorium Verum, and the Psalmic Corpus.

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From Page to Power: Crafting A Solomonic Wand

When it came time to produce my own Wand, I took to a careful study of the grimoiric Wand literature historical manuscripts in order to ensure that my own tool would be as well-grounded in magical theory, original source material, and subtantive practical methodologies as possible.  The hazel wood for my Wand was generously gifted to me by my friend Shariyf, who had kindly ensured that it was cut in a single stroke at sunrise in the proper Planetary Day and Hour.  Why Hazel, we might wonder, when other texts prescribe Wands carved from different woods? As Joseph H. Peterson (2005) explains,

Multiple sources attest to the use of Hazel for the magic wand, including the Key of Solomon, Weyer, Goetia, Grand Grimoire, and Levi.  According to the Sworn Book of Honorius (Chap CXXXII), the Magician’s wand or staff is made of laurel or hazel. Per Agrippa, Hazel is sacred to Mercury, and also to Jupiter (OP1.26 and OP1.29). According to MC, this is a sacred tree associated with the zodiacal sign of Cancer.  According to the Key of Solomon, Hazel has “some quality referring especially unto the spirits” of Mercury.

Grimorium Verum specifies wands of hazel and elder should be used in preparing the parchment.  The Grand Grimoire includes a divining method using a Hazel rod or wand.  According to Bardon, “hazelnut or willow are to be used for a wishing-wand. The wishing-wand is a modification of the magic wand.”

It is interesting to note that although the wood for the Solomonic Wand is widely understood to be required to be to be ‘virgin’ in nature, the precise meaning of the term varies from source to  source.  According to BUD 256, “virgin” means “having no twigs branching off of it;” for Aub 24 and Ad. 10862, “virgin” means “aniculus” (one year-old) or never having borne fruit; finally, for other manuscripts, as Peterson (2005) emphasizes, virgin simply means “not having been used for any other purpose.”  The wood used for my Wand was at the very least “virgin” in the latter sense, and perhaps also in the Aub 24 and Ad. 10862 sense, Shariyf believes, although we were not able to ascertain its exact age.

Encouragingly, however, as soon as I picked up the unconsecrated wood and held it over my consecrated Circle, I immediately felt it humming with power and could clairvoyantly see it glowing with a visible etheric glow around its tip.  By the time I later completed the consecration, it had become very clear to me that the wood was effective enough to meet the grimoiric criteria.  Had it not been, I would have ordered new wood and restarted the entire process. Indeed, in magic, concrete results should always trump subjective opinions and I faithfully applied this principle in this case.

Mystical Emblems of Power: Cryptic Characters of the Solomonic Wand

To begin the process of empowering the Wand, in the Hour of Mercury, I painted it with consecrated white paint mixed with a small amount of consecrated Solomonic Holy Water blended with Holy Water taken from a Cathedral.  I placed the Wand to dry in the midst of my consecrated Circle, where it could begin to charge through sympathetic resonance.  It is worth noting that my Circle was designed as a combination of both the Lemegetonic evocation Circle and the Key of Solomon’s Consecration Circle, and thus serves both functions. Those interested in learning more about the design and construction of this Circle can kindly see my article “Crafting a Solomonic Circle” for more detailed information.

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It is noteworthy that even the simple the process of painting the Hazel wood white was conducted as a ceremony in its own right.  During this ritual phase, I burned Offerings of Incense to the Most High and the Angels to be invoked to consecrate the Wand during the Hour of Mercurg, prayed and chanted, and attempted to begin to attune myself to the incipient Tool of the Art as it began its process of ceremonial enspiritment.

The next stage was to inscribe the Wand with the appropriate Characters on the Day and Hour of Mercury while the Moon was waxing.  This step naturally raises the question of precisely which Characters we are to inscribe.  As I had learned while researching my Circle and consulting other manuscripts, the Mathers editions of the Solomonic texts are notoriously filled with distortions and errors.  As a result, I opted to consult my erudite friend Andy Foster about his own manuscript research on the Wand in order to obtain a richer picture of the material.  In our discussion, Andy kindly shared the following comparative chart, which he has graciously given me permission to share here:

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After carefully comparing each Character in sequence, I arrived at my own final set of Sigils, which is a kind of abstraction across the best manuscript sources we have within the Key of Solomon tradition.  In this process, I also factored in the Characters from the Hazel Wand of the Grimorium Verum of Joseph H. Peterson (2007), which are nearly identical to the Clavicula Salomonis’ Hazel Wand Sigils.  The resulting final Character set that emerged from my research is as follows:

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In the Day and Hour of Mercury during a Waxing Moon, I used consecrated gold ink to draw the Characters onto the Wand and then proceeded to suffumigate the Wand with consecrated Frankincense, move it through the smoke of consecrated Fire, Sprinkle it with consecrated Holy Water via a Solomonic Aspergillum of Art, and finally, anoint it with consecrated Holy Oil.

In the process, I used an integrative ritual script drawn from a number of sources, namely, the Key of Solomon itself, Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy, Pseudo-Agrippa’s Fourth Book of Occult Philosophy, the Wand consecration formula given in the Grand Grimoire, the Grimorium Verum‘s Hazel Wand formula, and a series of Psalms, which I sung over the Wand to complete the process.  I further consecrated the Wand by means of a vibratory auditory formula by ringing my Solomonic Bell of Art over it in each of the Four Directions while doing invocations of the Divine, following Agrippa’s instructions on using a golden Bell as a consecration tool — kindly see my article on the “Bells and Trumpets of Solomon” for more detailed information on this theory and practice.

After completing the ritual, I wrapped the Wand in consecrated Solomonic linen inscribed with the proper Sigils and Names according to Book II of the Key of Solomon.  The result of all of this meticulous research and ritual work seems to me to be an incredibly powerful Tool of Art.  The consecrated Wand seems to positively glow and hum with spiritual force — simply holding it in the hand places the mind’s cognitive and affective states into a calming and elevating frame of being.  Indeed, for several hours after finishing the consecration ritual, I felt incredibly elevated, peaceful, joyous, and as if my heart were overflowing with spiritual love in a kind of Agrippan “frensie of Venus.” To close this article, I will share the ceremonial script for my Solomonic Wand consecration ritual in case my fellow practitioners might find it helpful.

Solomonic Consecration of the Wand of Art: Ritual Script Integrating the Consecrational Formulae of Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy, the Fourth Book of Occult Philosophy, the Key of Solomon, the Grimoirium Verum, and the Grand Grimoire

To begin, if you wish to do so, paint the Wand with consecrated white Ink mixed with a few drops of consecrated Holy Water in the Hour of Mercury; otherwise, skip this step and proceed to the next.

In the Day and Hour of Mercury, when the Moon is Waxing, sound the Solomonic Bell of Art three times outside the Circle.  Then enter the Circle, and ring the Bell or Trumpet three times in the East, three times in the South, three times in the West, and three final times in the North. If you do not use a Bell or Trumpet of Art, simply proceed to the next step.

Standing in the center of the Circle, inscribe on the Wand the following Characters in consecrated Ink — I used a consecrated gold Paint Marker:

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Exorcise the Wand by holding your hand over it and reciting the following Exorcism inspired by the formulae predented in the Key of Solomon and Agrippa’s Third Book of Occult Philosophy:

I exorcise thee, O creature of Woods and Wands, by Him who hath created thee and grown thee from the Earth like the Trees of Life and of Knowledge — Etz ha-daʿat tov wa-ra — that didst grow in the greenery of Eden, like the Wood on which was crucified Christ Yeshua, even like unto the Cedars of Lebanon that fed the fires of Sacrifice and fueled the mighty Solomon in the Building of the Temple, that thou uncover all the deceits of the enemy, and that thou cast out from thee all the impurities and uncleannesses of the hostile spirits of the World of Phantasm, so that they may harm me not, through the virtue of God Almighty who liveth and reigneth unto the Ages of the Ages. Amen.

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Then recite the following Psalmic Prayer invoking the purifying formula from Psalm 51:

Purge this Wand, O Lord, and it shall be Clean;
Wash it, and it shall be white as snow. Amen.

Sprinkle the Wand with Holy water three times using the Aspergillum of Art and pray the following prayer from the Key of Solomon and the Grimoirium Verum over it:

ADONAI, most Holy, EL, most Strong, deign to bless and to consecrate this Wand that it may obtain the necessary virtue, through thee, O most Holy ADONAI, whose kingdom endureth unto the Ages of the Ages. Amen.

Suffumigate the wand three times with consecrated Holy Incense (e.g. Frankincense), anoint the Wand with crosses traced by your finger in Solomonic Holy Oil, then recite this modified conjuration from the Key of Solomon over it:

I conjure thee, O wand, by these names, ABRAHACH, ABRACH, ABRACADABRA, YOD HE VAU HE, that thou might serve me for a strength and defence in all magical operations, against all mine enemies, visible and invisible, and an olive branch of lovingkindness unto all mine friends.

I conjure thee anew by the holy and indivisible name of EL strong and wonderful, by the name SHADDAI Almighty; and by these Names QADOSCH, QADOSCH, QADOSCH, ADONAI, ELOHIM TZABAOTH, EMANUEL, YESHUA, YOD HE VAU HE, the First and the Last, Wisdom and Way, Life and Truth, Chief and Speech, Word and Splendour, Light and Sun, Fountain and Glory, the Stone of the Wise, Virtue and Shepherd, Priest and Messiach Immortal; by these Names then, and by the other Names, I conjure thee, O Wand, that thou servest me for a protection in all adversities and servant in the accomplishing of all Works in accordance with Will, Shem Yeshuah, Amen.

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Again, pass the Wand through the suffumigating Incense Smoke and recite this expanded prayer from the Key of Solomon:

I Invoke thee, O Holy Spirits and Angels and Names of the Most High, that thee investeth this Wand with Holy and Magical Virtue, that it may prove a faithful Friend, Aid, and Succor in all Operations of the Art in which it is used and inspire the friendship and obedience of Spirits in whose Presence it is Used.

To this end, in great love and respect, and with this Offering of Holy Incense to the Honour of thy Names, I invoke the Aid and blessings of MORBALIA, MUSALIA, DAPHALIA, ONOMALIA, LITARISIA, GOLDAFARIA, DEDULSARIA, GEHUCULARIA, GEMINARIA, GEGROFARIA, CEDACH, GITACH, GODICH, ROGIL, MUSIL, GRASSIL, TANCRI, PUERI, GODU, AUGNOT, ASCHAROT, TZABAOTH, ADONAI, AGLA, ON, EL, TETRAGRAMMATON, SEDIM, ANESERON, EL, ANAPHAXETON, SIGILATON, PRIMEUMATON. Amen.

Anoint the Wand with Holy Water and Oil once more and pray this prayer from the Grand Grimoire over it:

I beseech you, O great ADONAY, ELOHIM, and YEHOVA to be favorable and to give this rod the strength of Jacob and the virtue of Moses and that of the great Joshua; and I beseech you, O great ADONAY, ELOHIM, and YEHOVA to enclose in this rod all the power of Samson, the righteous rage of Emmanuel and the Thunderbolt of ZARIATNATMICK who will avenge man’s affronts on the day of Judgement. Amen!

Holding one hand over the Wand, proceed to pray over it the following Psalms:

  • [Ps3=KJV3] Domine quid multiplicati sunt (Lord, how are they increased that trouble me)

Psalm 3

A psalm by David when he fled from his son Absalom.

  • Yahweh, look how my enemies have increased!
    Many are attacking me.
    Many are saying about me,
    “Even with Elohim on his side,
    he won’t be victorious.” Selah
  • But you, O Yahweh, are a Magenthat surrounds me.
    You are my glory.
    You hold my head high.
  • I call aloud to Yahweh,
    and he answers me from his holy mountain. Selah
    I lie down and sleep.
    I wake up again because Yahweh continues to support me.
    I am not afraid of the tens of thousands
    who have taken positions against me on all sides.
  • Arise, O Yahweh!
    Save me, O my Elohim!
    You have slapped all my enemies in the face.
    You have smashed the teeth of wicked people.
            Victory belongs to Yahweh!
    May your blessing rest on your people. Selah
  • [Ps7=KJV7] Domine Deus meus in te speravi (O Lord my God, in thee do I put my trust)4

Psalm 7

A shiggaion by David; he sang it to Yahweh about the slanderous words of Cush, a descendant of Benjamin.

Yahweh my Elohim, I have taken refuge in you.
Save me, and rescue me from all who are pursuing me.
        Like a lion they will tear me to pieces
and drag me off with no one to rescue me.

Yahweh my Elohim,
if I have done this—
if my hands are stained with injustice,
        if I have paid back my friend with evil
or rescued someone who has no reason to attack me—

then let the enemy chase me and catch me.
Let him trample my life into the ground.
Let him lay my honor in the dust. Selah

Arise in anger, O Yahweh.
Stand up against the fury of my attackers.
Wake up, my God.
You have already pronounced judgment.
        Let an assembly of people gather around you.
Take your seat high above them.
Yahweh judges the people of the world.
Judge me, O Yahweh,
according to my righteousness,
according to my integrity.

Let the evil within wicked people come to an end,
but make the righteous person secure,
O righteous Elohim who examines thoughts and emotions.
10 My Magen is Elohim above,
who saves those whose motives are decent.

11 Elohim is a fair Shophet,
an El who is angered by injustice every day.
12 If a person does not change, Elohim sharpens his sword.
By bending his bow, he makes it ready to shoot.
13 He prepares his deadly weapons
and turns them into flaming arrows.
14 See how that person conceives evil,
is pregnant with harm,
and gives birth to lies.
15 He digs a pit and shovels it out.
Then he falls into the hole that he made for others.
16 His mischief lands back on his own head.
His violence comes down on top of him.

17 I will give thanks to Yahweh for his righteousness.
I will make music to praise the name of Yahweh Elyon.

  • [Ps9=KJV9+KJV10] Confitebor tibi Domine in toto corde meo (I will praise thee, O Lord, with my whole heart)5

Psalm 9

For the choir director; according to muth labben; a Psalm by David.

I will give you thanks, O Yahweh, with all my heart.
I will tell about all the miracles you have done.
I will find joy and be glad about you.
I will make music to praise your name, O Elyon.

When my enemies retreat, they will stumble and die in your presence.
You have defended my just cause:
You sat down on your throne as a fair judge.
        You condemned nations.
You destroyed wicked people.
You wiped out their names forever and ever.
The enemy is finished—in ruins forever.
You have uprooted their cities.
Even the memory of them has faded.

Yet, Yahweh is enthroned forever.
He has set up his throne for judgment.
He alone judges the world with righteousness.
He judges its people fairly.
Yahweh is a stronghold for the oppressed,
a stronghold in times of trouble.
10 Those who know your name trust you, O Yahweh,
because you have never deserted those who seek your help.

11 Make music to praise Yahweh, who is enthroned in Zion.
Announce to the nations what he has done.
12 The one who avenges murder has remembered oppressed people.
He has never forgotten their cries.
13 Have pity on me, O Yahweh.
Look at what I suffer because of those who hate me.
You take me away from the gates of death
14 so that I may recite your praises one by one
in the gates of Zion
and find joy in your salvation.

15 The nations have sunk into the pit they have made.
Their feet are caught in the net they have hidden to trap others.
16 Yahweh is known by the judgment he has carried out.
The wicked person is trapped
by the work of his own hands. Higgaion Selah
17 Wicked people, all the nations who forget Elohim,
will return to the grave.
18 Needy people will not always be forgotten.
Nor will the hope of oppressed people be lost forever.
19 Arise, O Yahweh.
Do not let mortals gain any power.
Let the nations be judged in your presence.
20 Strike them with terror, O Yahweh.
Let the nations know that they are only mortal. Selah

  • [Ps41=KJV42] Quemadmodum desiderat Cervus ad (As the hart panteth after the water brooks)

Psalm 42

For the choir director; a maskil by Korah’s descendants.

As a deer longs for flowing streams,
so my soul longs for you, O Elohim.
My soul thirsts for Elohim, for El Chay.
When may I come to see Elohim’s face?
My tears are my food day and night.
People ask me all day long, “Where is your Elohim?”
I will remember these things as I pour out my soul:
how I used to walk with the crowd
and lead it in a procession to Elohim’s house.
I sang songs of joy and thanksgiving
while crowds of people celebrated a festival.

Why are you discouraged, my soul?
Why are you so restless?
Put your hope in Elohim,
because I will still praise him.
He is my savior and my Elohim.

My soul is discouraged.
That is why I will remember you
in the land of Jordan, on the peaks of Hermon, on Mount Mizar.
One deep sea calls to another at the roar of your waterspouts.
All the whitecaps on your waves have swept over me.
Yahweh commands his mercy during the day,
and at night his song is with me—
a prayer to the El of my life.
            I will ask Elohim, my rock,
“Why have you forgotten me?
Why must I walk around in mourning
while the enemy oppresses me?”
10 With a shattering blow to my bones,
my enemies taunt me.
They ask me all day long, “Where is your Elohim?”

11 Why are you discouraged, my soul?
Why are you so restless?
Put your hope in Elohim,
because I will still praise him.
He is my savior and my Elohim.

  • [Ps59=KJV60] Deus reppulisti nos et destruxisti nos (O God, thou hast cast us off, thou hast scattered us)

Psalm 60

For the choir director; according to shushan eduth; a miktam by David; for teaching. When David fought Aram Naharaim and Aram Zobah, and when Joab came back and killed 12,000 men from Edom in the Dead Sea region.

Elohim, you have rejected us.
You have broken down our defenses.
You have been angry.
Restore us!
You made the land quake.
You split it wide open.
Heal the cracks in it
because it is falling apart.
You have made your people experience hardships.
You have given us wine that makes us stagger.
Yet, you have raised a flag for those who fear you
so that they can rally to it
when attacked by bows and arrows. Selah
Save us with your powerful hand, and answer us
so that those who are dear to you may be rescued.

Elohim has promised the following through his holiness:
“I will triumph!
I will divide Shechem.
I will measure the valley of Succoth.
        Gilead is mine.
Manasseh is mine.
Ephraim is the helmet on my head.
Judah is my scepter.
        Moab is my washtub.
I will throw my shoe over Edom.
I will shout in triumph over Philistia.”

Who will bring me into the fortified city?
Who will lead me to Edom?
10 Isn’t it you, O Elohim, who rejected us?
Isn’t it you, O Elohim, who refused to accompany our armies?

11 Give us help against the enemy
because human assistance is worthless.
12 With Elohim we will display great strength.
He will trample our enemies.

  • [Ps50=KJV51] Miserere mei Deus secundum magnam (Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness)

Psalm 51

For the choir director; a psalm by David when the prophet Nathan came to him after David’s adultery with Bathsheba.

Have mercy on me, O Elohim, in keeping with your lovingkindness.
In keeping with your unlimited compassion, wipe out my rebellious acts.
Wash me thoroughly from my guilt,
and cleanse me from my sin.
        I admit that I am rebellious.
My sin is always in front of me.
I have sinned against you, especially you.
I have done what you consider evil.
So you hand down justice when you speak,
and you are blameless when you judge.

Indeed, I was born guilty.
I was a sinner when my mother conceived me.
Yet, you desire truth and sincerity.[a]
Deep down inside me you teach me wisdom.
Purify me from sin with hyssop, and I will be clean.
Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear sounds of joy and gladness.
Let the bones that you have broken dance.
Hide your face from my sins,
and wipe out all that I have done wrong.

10 Create a clean heart in me, O Elohim,
and renew a faithful spirit within me.
11 Do not force me away from your presence,
and do not take Ruach Qodesh from me.
12 Restore the joy of your salvation to me,
and provide me with a spirit of willing obedience.

13 Then I will teach your ways to those who are rebellious,
and sinners will return to you.
14 Rescue me from the guilt of murder,
Elohim, my savior.
Let my tongue sing joyfully about your righteousness!
15 Adonay, open my lips,
and my mouth will tell about your praise.
16 You are not happy with any sacrifice.
Otherwise, I would offer one to you.
You are not pleased with burnt offerings.
17 The sacrifice pleasing to Elohim is a broken spirit.
Elohim, you do not despise a broken and sorrowful heart.
18 Favor Zion with your goodness.
Rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then you will be pleased with sacrifices offered in the right spirit—
with burnt offerings and whole burnt offerings.
Young bulls will be offered on your altar.

  • [Ps129=KJV130] De profundis clamavi ad te Domine (Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord)

Psalm 130

A song for going up to worship.

Yahweh, out of the depths I call to you.
Adonay, hear my voice.
Let your ears be open to my pleas for mercy.
Yahweh, who would be able to stand
if you kept a record of sins?
But with you there is forgiveness
so that you can be feared.
I wait for Yahweh, my soul waits,
and with hope I wait for his word.
My soul waits for Adonay
more than those who watch for the morning,
more than those who watch for the morning.
O Israel, put your hope in Yahweh,
because with Yahweh there is mercy
and with him there is unlimited forgiveness.
            He will rescue Israel from all its sins.

Having again perfumed with consecrated incense, anointing with Holy Oil, and sprinkling Holy Water, pray:

DANI, LUMECH, AGALMATUROD, GEDIEL, PANI, CANELOAS, MEROD, LAMIDOC, BALDOC, ANERETON, METRATON, TUANCIA, COMPENDON, LAMEDON, CEDRION, ON, MYTRION, ANTON, SYON, SPISSON, LUPRATON, GION, GIMON, GERSON, AGLA, AGLAY, AGLAOD, AGLADIAMERON, Angels most Holy, be present as guards unto this instrument. Amen.

Sound the Solomonic Bell over the covered Wand a final three times and say:

Tetelestai! It is finished. 

Wrap the Wand in consecrated linen or silk and place it in safe place until it is needed for the Operations of the Art.

Finally, close the Circle by sounding the Bell of Art three times in the East, three times in the North, three times in the West, and three times in the South.

Knock three times on the Altar and say:

I now declare this Temple duly closed. 

wandgold3

References

Foster, Andy. (2018). Comparative Table of Wand Characters From Grimoiric Manuscripts. Shared privately.

Peterson, J. H. (2018). The Key of Solomon the King. Esoteric Archives. Accessed August 15, 2018 from http://www.esotericarchives.com/solomon/ksol2.htm

Peterson, J. H. (2007). The Grimorium Verum. La Vergne: Lightning Source Inc.

Peterson, J. H. (2005). The Magic Wand. Esoteric Archives. Accessed August 15, 2018 from http://esotericarchives.com/wands/index.html

Plato. Alcibiades. (1997). Plato: Complete Works. Ed. by John M. Cooper. Indianapolis, IN: Hackett Publishing Inc.

The Grand Grimoire (1821). Grimoire Encyclopaedia. Accessed August 15, 2018 from https://www.grimoire.org/grimoire/grand-grimoire/

 

 

The Bells and Trumpets of Solomon: Resounding Instruments of the Solomonic Grimoires

bell

By Adam J. Pearson

Introduction: Ancient Origins of Horns, Trumpets, and Bells

The roots of ceremonial bells, horns, and trumpets stretch far into the distant reaches of prehistory.  According to Hyunjong (2009, p.27), the world’s oldest known musical instrument is a bone flute that was found at a Neanderthal habitation site in Slovenia.  This early flute was fashioned between 82,000 and 43,000 years ago from the bone of a cave bear (Hyunjong, 2009).  Like the bone flute, the first blowing horns and ‘trumpets’ were also crafted from parts of hunted animals, such as animal  horns (Warner et al., 2013).  Paralleling the horn and trumpet traditions, the earliest archaeological evidence of bells uncovered thus far dates to the 3rd millennium B.C.E. in the Yangshao culture of Neolithic China; these most ancient of all human bells were fashioned from clay pottery before bronze bells emerged with the advances of the Bronze Age (Reinhart, 2015).

Although contemporary bells and trumpets may seem vastly different from one another in both sound and structure, their earliest forms were strikingly similar.  Not only were they both musical instruments of staggering antiquity, but they were shared structural similarities; both bells and trumpets featured flared-out bottoms that amplified sounds produced either by striking, in the case of bells, or blowing vibrations, for trumpets,  through their resonant cavities.  Scholars of archaeoacoustics and music archaeology have identified independent traditions surrounding the crafting and uses of bells and trumpets in cultures on nearly every continent (Reinhart, 2015).  From the Bronze Age onward, however, these traditions largely developed in parallel, although sometimes intercepting and inter-influencing streams, whose unfoldings were shaped by the cultural contexts of the early artisans who drove their development (Montagu, 2014).

This article explores a fascinating case of dovetailing bell and trumpet traditions in the ritual history of musical instruments, namely, the interwoven traditions of Bells and Trumpets of Art within Western ceremonial magic.  The article’s first foray into the realm of sonorous Solomonic tools begins by describing the materials, crafting procedures, ritual uses, and potential mythic origins of the Trumpet of Art that is employed in the Key of Solomon grimoire (Latin: Clavicula Salomonis).  It then juxtaposes the Claviculan Trumpet of Art with the Bell of Art from the Key of Solomon‘s central source text, the Byzantine Greek Hygromanteia (Greek: Ὑγρομαντεία).  In the process, I will attempt to demonstrate that although the Trumpet of Art is able to perform the functions previously served by the evocatory Bell of the Greek Hygromanteia, it also reflects the influence of a distinct and separate tradition that traces its roots back to the Ancient Hebrew trumpet or ḥatzotzrah (חצוצרה‎) and blowing horn or shofar (שופר‎) used in the Hebrew Tanach.

Thereafter, the article broadens its focus to examine the resonant connections between the Bell or Trumpet of Art and some of the reflections on ritual bells and trumpets that are contained in the writings of Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa, John Dee, the pseudo-“Dee” of the Tuba Veneris, and Girardius, the mysterious author of the 18th century grimoire, Parvi Lucii Libellus de Mirabilibus Naturae Arcanis, 1730.  Finally, I close with a brief discussion of the use and fashioning of my own personal Solomonic Bell of Art, which integrates the Hygromanteian Bell with the characters and Names of the Trumpet of Art and consecration methods from the Key.

sho

A Yemenite Jew blows a Hebrew blowing horn or shofar (שופר‎) near the Old City Western Wall in Jerusalem. Photography by David Silverman.

Convoking the Spirits with Sonorous Blasts: The Key of Solomon’s Trumpet of Art

To begin, the connection between trumpets and the original King Solomon mythos that would exert a striking difference on the much later Key of Solomon grimoire has foundations in the Hebrew Tanach that are as strong as those of the Temple of Solomon itself.  Indeed, verses 31 to 35 in 1 Kings 1 describe how David required a trumpet to be sounded to announce the successorship and ritual crowning of his son, the great Solomon himself.  As the text explains,

32 King David said, “Call in Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet and Benaiah son of Jehoiada.” When they came before the king, 33 he said to them: “Take your lord’s servants with you and have Solomon my son mount my own mule and take him down to Gihon. 34 There have Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anoint him king over Israel. Blow the trumpet and shout, ‘Long live King Solomon!’ 35 Then you are to go up with him, and he is to come and sit on my throne and reign in my place. I have appointed him ruler over Israel and Judah” (NIV, 1 Kings 1:31-35)

Thus, the blast of a trumpet was linked, from its earliest days, to the rich mythos that developed around King Solomon from its earliest Tanachic roots and the reverberations of this original trumpet blast would much later be felt throughout text of the Clavicula Salomonis or Key of Solomon the King.  In Chapter VII of the second Book of the Clavicula Salomonis, the Master of the Art is instructed to construct a “Trumpet of Art,” with which to “convoke” spirits to the ceremonial Circle in which the Master stands, and prepare them “to obey” the Operator’s commands (Peterson, 2004).

Fascinatingly, as Joseph H. Peterson (2004) explains, the Key‘s Trumpet was to be fashioned from “new wood.”  The choice of wood as a material for the body of the Trumpet is itself interesting since it deviates from the preferred materials for similar instruments in the period.  Unlike the Key‘s wooden Trumpet, the majority of blowing horns and trumpets from Antiquity through the Medieval and Renaissance periods were fashioned from animal horns (e.g. Ram or Ox), shells (such as conch as in the Maltan bronja), or metals (e.g. the bronze Roman cornu or buccina or the Scandinavian lurer) (Warner et al., 2013).

In addition, the use of “new” seems to suggest that the wood from which the Trumpet is made should be drawn from a “virgin” branch that never bore fruit, berries, or nuts, that is, wood under a single year’s growth, as in the case of the Key‘s instructions for the Wand of Art in Book II, Chapter 8 (Peterson, 2004).  Unlike in the case of the Wand, no instructions are given for astrologically timing the cutting of the wood for the Trumpet. In all likelihood, however, assuming a parallel ritual rationale to that of the Wand, the wood for the Trumpet would likely be “cut from the tree at a single stroke, on the day of Mercury, at sunrise,” with the characters and Names written during the Hour of Mercury, following the method for the construction of the Solomonic Wand (Peterson, 2004).

On one side of the Trumpet, the Key instructs the ceremonial Operator to use the consecrated “Pen and Ink of the Art” to write “these Names of God, ELOHIM GIBOR” (אלהים גבור) and “ELOHIM TZABAOTH” (אלהים צבאות) (Peterson, 2004). On the other side, specific “Characters” are to be inscribed, which Joseph H. Peterson (2004) presents as follows based on folio 120r of the Additional 10862 manuscript:

char

Happily for contemporary Solomonic practitioners, the Divine Names that the Key requires to be inscribed on the Trumpet are fairly consistent across manuscripts.  As Peterson (2004) notes, Aubrey 24 calls for the Latin “Deus Exercituum” (God of Armies), which approximates the Hebrew “Elohim Tzabaoth” (אלהים צבאות), while the French manuscript Lansdown 1202 requires “ces noms de Dieu Elohim Gibor, Dieu des Armées,” and the Italian Kings 288 manuscript has the Magician write “Elohyn Gibor.”  Interestingly, while most of the manuscripts only designate between a few lines to the construction, use, and significance of the Trumpet, Aubrey 24 devotes an entire chapter to the subject.

In addition, the practical instructions for the ceremonial use of the the Trumpet of Art are clearly delineated in the text.  In Book II, Chapter VII, the Key of Solomon explains that:

“Having entered into the circle to perform the experiment, he should sound his trumpet towards the four quarters of the Universe, first towards the East, then towards the South, then towards the West, and lastly towards the North. Then let him say:—

“Hear ye, O spirit N, I command you. Hear ye, and be ye ready, in whatever part of the Universe ye may be, to obey the voice of God, the Mighty One, and the names of the Creator. We let you know by this signal and sound that ye will be convoked hither, wherefore hold ye yourselves in readiness to obey our commands.”

This being done let the master complete his work, renew the circle, and make the incensements and fumigations” (Peterson, 2004, Bk. II, Chap. 7).

Thus, the purpose of the Key of Solomon‘s Trumpet of Art is at once to prepare the spirits to be convoked and commanded and to ceremonially position the Master of Art within the Solomonic Circle in the center of the four cardinal directions.  This directional centering of the Magician at the symbolic hub of the universe is not only demarcated by the structure of the Circle itself, which is aligned to the four cardinal directions, but also  ritually reinforced by sequentially sounding the Trumpet of Art towards each of these same directions.  In this process, the Operator begins in the East in the direction of the rise of light from the dawning Sun and proceeds clockwise–or, prior to the invention of clocks, deisial (Gaelic) or dexter (Latin) both meaning “towards the right” or “South” from the East–through the other directions from South to West to North.

As researchers and practitioners of the Key of Solomon such as Aaron Leitch (2009) have long noted, many of the Key of Solomon‘s grimoiric methods are modeled after the instructions given to Moses and Aaron in the Tanachic Books of Leviticus, Exodus, and Numbers as well as the Psalms or Tehillim.  For instance, the use of hyssop in the ritual bath in the Key of Solomon has its roots in the Biblical symbolism of hyssop as a purifying and consecrating herb within Hebrews 9:19, Leviticus 14:4-7, and most significantly, Numbers 19:6, where it is used to prepare the “water of purification” itself.

Similarly, the modus operandi of the Key‘s Solomonic Trumpet of Art can also be traced to a very specific passage in the Hebrew Tanach, namely, Numbers 10:1-7.  In these verses, God tells Moses to “make two trumpets of hammered silver, and use them for calling the community together and for having the camps set out” (NIV, Numbers 10:1).  These trumpets or ḥatzotzrah (חצוצרה‎)–which are not to be confused with shofar (שופר‎), another word used in the Tanach, which means ‘horn’ and refers to a distinct instrument–are to be sounded to call and assemble the Hebrew Tribes camped in each of the four cardinal directions of the Israelites’ camp.  As the text explains,

“5 When a trumpet blast is sounded, the tribes camping on the East are to set out. At the sounding of a second blast, the camps on the South are to set out. The blast will be the signal for setting out. To gather the assembly, blow the trumpets, but not with the signal for setting out” (Numbers 10:5-7)

Thus, when blowing the Trumpet of Art, the Key of Solomon‘s Operator follows in the footsteps of Moses, by calling to the spirits to attend to his commands in each of the directions proceeding clockwise/deisial/dexter from East to South as Moses did with his silver trumpet.  Similarly, just as Moses was told to use his trumpet to “gather the assembly” or convoke the Hebrew Tribes or prepare them to “set out,” so does the Solomonic Magician use the Trumpet of Art to prepare the spirits to “set out” and then convoke or assemble around the Circle. Thus, the Trumpet of Art has ancient Tanachic roots that long precede the much later date of the composition of the Key of Solomon.

Moreover, the Clavis Salomonis’ Trumpet is contextually grounded in a much broader series of Biblical traditions beyond those already mentioned.  Aside from the aforementioned uses of the ḥatzotzrah (חצוצרה‎) and shofar (שופר‎) to proclaim the crowning of King Solomon (1 Kings 1:31-35), and call, assemble, and mobilize individuals (Numbers 10:5-7), the Biblical texts also describe these tools as instruments used to signal the presence of the Divine as God does to Moses with “a thick cloud over [Sinai], and a very loud trumpet blast” (Exodus 19:16), declare the commencement of festivals (Leviticus 23:23), topple the walls of Jericho when played by “seven priests” in “front of the Ark of the Covenant” (Joshua 6:4-5 and see also Agrippa’s (2000) Second Book of Occult Philosophy, Chapter 10), announce different phases of the Apocalypse when Seven Trumpets are sequentially sounded by the “Seven Angels who stand before God” (Revelation 8:2 and also referred to by Agrippa (2000) in Book II, Chapter 10), and praise God within the Temple orchestra itself as described in Psalm 150:3 (“Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet!”).

Very interestingly for the present study, this same Psalm 150, which describes the use of ḥatzotzrah (חצוצרה‎) and shofar (שופר‎) to praise YHVH (יהוה) also describes the use of cymbals to the same end, enjoining Israel to praise Him with the clash of resounding cymbals” (Psalm 150:3-5).  Cymbals, of course, are round metallic instruments that are sounded by striking, and, in these ways, are very closely related to bells (Braun & Braun, 2002).

Furthermore, it is very appropriate for the discussion of bells to come that bell-like cymbals are played alongside trumpets on many different occasions in the Tanach.  We read, for instance, that “David and all the Israelites were celebrating with all their might before God, with songs and with harps, lyres, timbrels, cymbals and trumpets” (1 Chronicles 13:8), that both instruments were used to dedicate the Wall of Jerusalem (Nehemiah 12:27), that “Heman and Jeduthun were responsible for the sounding of the trumpets and cymbals and for the playing of the other instruments for sacred song” (1 Chronicles 16:42), and that “when the builders laid the foundation of the Temple of the Lord, the priests in their vestments and with trumpets, and the Levites (the sons of Asaph) with cymbals, took their places to praise the Lord, as prescribed by David” (Ezra 3:10).

Thus, within the Tanachic lore of the Israelites to which the Key of Solomon would later mythically hearken back and symbolically align itself, bell-like cymbals and trumpets were repeatedly sounded in unison and the traditions that evolved around these ritual tools largely dovetailed together.  How appropriate it is, therefore, that the Greek Byzantine Hygromanteia–which is, as Dr. Stephen Skinner (2013) demonstrated, the primary source text of the Key of Solomon itself–should provide a parallel tradition to that of the Trumpet of Art, in the form of a mysterious evocatory Bell.

hygro.jpg

Ringing Open the Gateway: The Hygromanteian Bell of Art

Those who approach the Greek Byzantine Hygromanteia after first studying the Key of Solomon and learning to work its system using the Solomonic Trumpet may be surprised to discover that there is no Trumpet of Art in the Clavicula’s older source text.  Indeed, in the entirety of the Hygromanteia, there are only two occurrences of the word “Trumpet.” Moreover, in both cases, the word is used, not to refer to a tool to be made by the Magician, but rather to reference the Angelic Trumpet “that shall be sounded” on the Day of Judgment (Marathakis, 2011, p. 335).

The first of these twin trumpet references occurs in the Conjuration of “Asmodaes,” in which the Magician addresses the spirit by telling it that

“I conjure you by the Trumpet that shall be sounded, calling for the Second Coming” (Marathakis, 2011, p. 335).

In a similar fashion, the second and final trumpet reference in the Hygromanteia occurs in yet another conjuration, in which the Master is instructed to command the spirit

“by the trumpet that the Angel of Resurrection shall sound” (Marathakis. 2011, p. 173).

Therefore, while references to trumpets in the Hygromanteia are purely symbolic in nature and are used to add power to the conjurations,  the Hygromanteian magical arsenal does not include a physical Trumpet of Art in the style of the Clavicula.  Where the absence of one kind of  one kind of sonorous Solomonic tool in the text is glaringly evident, however, the presence of another is equally so. This second resounding tool of Solomon is the Hygromanteian Bell of Art.

Interestingly enough, this author’s first indication that there might be a Solomonic Bell tradition with a historical precedent in the Hygromanteia came, not from the Hygromanteia itself, but from Joseph H. Peterson’s (2004) insightful notes on manuscript variations in the later Key of Solomon. In Chapter IX, “Of the formation of the Circle,” in his edition of the Clavicula’ Salomonis, the Magician is instructed to

“enter within the circle and carefully close the openings left in the same, and let him again warn his disciples, and take the Trumpet13 of Art prepared as is said in the chapter concerning the same, and let him incense the Circle towards the four quarters of the Universe.

After this let the magus commence his incantations, having placed the Knife14 upright in the ground at his feet. Having sounded the Trumpet15 towards the East as before taught let him invoke the spirits, and if need he conjure them, as is said in the first book, and having attained his desired effect, let him license them to depart.”

In form and content, this section seems reminiscent of the prior passages concerning the Trumpet of Art which have already been discussed.  However, examining Peterson’s (2004) footnotes 13 and 15, reveals a fascinating point.  Although other manuscripts of the Key of Solomon such as Kings 288 and Aubrey 24 read “Trumpet” here, Sloane 3847 does not.  In place of “Trumpet,” and very interestingly for the purposes of this study, the Sloane 3847 version, which is entitled The Worke of Salomon the Wise Called His Clavicle Revealed by King Ptolomeus Ye Grecian reads “Bell” and instructs the Master to “let the Bell be [rung] toward the East” (“Ptolomeus,” 1999).

In addition, the same manuscript later tells the Operator to ring the Bell in the four cardinal directions from within the Circle. As the text reads, the Master shall have a bell, and ring it “4 times toward the 4 partes of the world, with 4 pater nosters” (Peterson, 1999). These instructions clearly place the ringing of the Bell “towards the 4 partes of the world” in harmony with the sounding of the Trumpet of Art to the four cardinal directions in Kings 288 and Aubrey 24, which suggests some parallelism between the Trumpets and Bells of Art within the Solomonic tradition.

This Bell-Trumpet homology is significant because, with its dating to 1572, Sloane 3847 is one of the oldest extant versions of the Key of Solomon, which places it chronologically closer to its Hygromanteian source text than many of the later manuscripts (Peterson, 2004).  In contrast, the British library catalogue describes Mathers’ earliest source, the Additional 10862 manuscript, which includes the Trumpet of Art rather than the Bell, as dating to the 17th century.

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Medieval depiction of bells used in worship, suggesting the connection between bells and the sacred in the Medieval mind, a tradition with Ancient roots.

Thus, Sloane 3847 offers an example of a version of the Clavicula Salomonis in which a ritual Bell is used in place of the Trumpet called for in most other manuscripts and in the same manner as the Trumpet, to alert the spirits and prepare them to obey.  While the Trumpet of Art seems to suggest an attempt to integrate the Tanachic lore around the ḥatzotzrah (חצוצרה‎) and shofar (שופר‎) into the Key of Solomon‘s magical system, the presence of the “Bell” in Sloane 3847 may reflect a continuation of the Hygromanteia‘s use of a Bell of Art in much the same way.  Thus, just as bell-like cymbals and trumpets were often used together for similar purposes in the Tanach, the grimoires reveal similar dovetailing traditions of consecrated ritual bells and trumpets being similarly employed by the Solomonic Master.

Moreover, juxtaposing the Key of Solomon‘s instructions for the creation and use of the Trumpet / Bell of Art with the Hygromanteia‘s instructions for the construction of its own Bell reveals some interesting and highly revealing similarities and differences.  On page 352 of Marathakis’ (2014) Hygromanteia, the Apprentice of the Master of Art is commanded to

“ring a Bell inside the Circle. He must have a Bell with the following names written around it in the blood of a Bat. Behold the names:

Peth, Glia, Peres, Mpethiel, Mepithiele, Thsos, Mparous, Mparon, Mpimaon, Mpapirion, Khae, Rhoam.”

Thus, while the Key of Solomon instructs the Magician to write Hebrew Divine Names on the Trumpet/Bell, the Hygromanteia‘s Bell is emblazoned with nomina barbara or barbarous names.  In addition, while the Key specifies sigils or “characters” to be included, the Hygromanteia limits itself to Names of Power and does not include additional sigils (Marathakis, 2011).

Interestingly, however, while either text could have reasonably asked the Operator to engrave the Names and ‘Characters of Art’ into the tools, both texts prescribe the use of magical inks instead.  In both cases, the inks are specially consecrated, as in Book II, Chapter 18 of the Key of Solomon, which provides a specific consecration method for the Ink of Art.  Similarly, as Dr. Stephen Skinner (2013, p. 348) explains in Magical Techniques and Implements Present in Graeco-Egyptian Magical Papyri, Byzantine Greek Solomonic Manuscripts and European Grimoires, the ‘Bat Blood’ to be used for the Bell would also be carefully prepared for the purpose, by being extracted from an animal that was “sacrificed in order to drain its blood.”  This sacrifice unto the Divine itself would consecrate the blood for magical use.

Notably, bat blood is also called for in the Key of Solomon. However, in the Clavicula, the Operator is required to perform the “Exorcism of the Bat” given in Book II, Chapter 16 over it after extracting it from the vein in the right wing of the animal as well (Peterson, 2004).  Thereafter, the Master blesses and consecrates the blood for use in the Ink of Art by various Divine Names as described in the text  (Peterson, 2004).

As to the appearance of the Hygromanteian Bell, manuscript Harleianus 5596, f. 34v provides two crude drawings of the Bell of Art in the margins of the Circle diagram, which are highlighted here for clarity.  As Marathakis’s (2011) edition indicates, the topmost image bears the label “Bell” in Greek:

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Moreover, the Hygromanteia also specifies the type of bell to be used for the Bell of Art  with terminological precision when it invites the Apprentice to “hold a small Bell that some call kampanon and ring it for a little while before you enter the Circle” (Marathakis 2014, p. 169).  The kampanon or “small bell” referred to in this passage seems to have been a small hand-bell (Marathakis, 2011).  As Alexandra Villing (2002, p. 223) reveals in her fascinating article “For Whom Did the Bell Toll in Ancient Greece? Archaic and Classical Greek Bells at Sparta and Beyond,”

“Ancient Greeks were not familiar with large bells of the kind that ring in our churches today. Smaller, portable bells, usually not much taller than about 10 cm [3.93 inches — My Note] were, however, a very widespread feature of Ancient Greek life.”

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Koudounia (Greek: κουδουνια) are bell-like instruments, which produce a ringing sound when struck and were seen by  many Ancient Greeks as having the apotropaic power to ward off evil Spirits.

In addition, in the same article, Villing (2002, p. 225-226) explains that in Ancient Greece,

“Archaeological, iconographical and literary sources attest to [the use of bells] as votive offerings in ritual and funerary contexts, as signalling instruments for town-guards, as amulets for children and women as well as, in South Italy, in a Dionysiac context.

The bells’ origins lie in the Ancient Near East and Caucasus area, from where they found their way especially to Archaic Samos and Cyprus and later to mainland Greece. Here, the largest known find complex of bronze and terracotta bells, mostly of Classical date, comes from the old British excavations in the sanctuary of Athena on the Spartan acropolis and is published here for the first time.

Spartan bells are distinctive in shape yet related particularly to other Lakonian and Boiotian bells as well as earlier bells from Samos. At Sparta, as elsewhere, the connotation of the bells’ bronze sound as magical, protective, purificatory and apotropaic was central to their use, although specific functions varied according to place, time, and occasion.”

The Bell of Art as described in the Hygromanteia is consistent with the Ancient Greek view of bells as “magical, protective, purificatory, and apotropaic,” a view also shared by the Romans who similarly employed tintinnabulum bells, the ancestors of modern wind chimes, to ward off evil spirits  (Villing 2002, p. 226; Eckardt & Williams, 2018).  In like manner, in the Japanese Shinto tradition, bells have long been used both to attract the attention of kindly and holy Spirits and banish evil Spirits from the shrines at which they were rung; for the same reason, bells are still used to this day on Japanese protective charms or omamori (Mendes, 2015).  In short, like the Ancient Greek kampana, which could be both attractive and apotropaic, the Hygromanteian bell also serves the dual function of banishing hostile spirits and attracting cooperative and benefic spirits to the Operator’s call (Villing, 2002; Marathakis, 2011).

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An omamori or Japanese amulet with an apotropaic golden bell (Mendes, 2015).

In addition, the Greek ritual bells’ use as signalling instruments further connects them both to the Ancient Hebrew understandings of trumpets described in the aforementioned Tanachic verses and to the Israelites’ own uses of ceremonial bells.  In Exodus 28: 31 to 35, for example, Aaron is told to wear a special robe adorned with “gold bells” to protect him “when he enters the Holy Place before the Lord” so “that he will not die.” God tells him to

“31 “make the robe of the ephod entirely of blue cloth, 32 with an opening for the head in its center. There shall be a woven edge like a collar[c]around this opening, so that it will not tear. 33 Make pomegranates of blue, purple and scarlet yarn around the hem of the robe, with gold bells between them. 34 The gold bells and the pomegranates are to alternate around the hem of the robe. 35 Aaron must wear it when he ministers. The sound of the bells will be heard when he enters the Holy Place before the Lord and when he comes out, so that he will not die.” (NIV, Exodus 28:31-35).

Much like the Trumpet of Art and the Tanachic bells of Aaron, then, the Hygromanteia’s Bell of Art can be seen as both sanctifying and apotropaic, embedded as it is in the contexts of older traditions around the ritual use of bells as spiritually powerful tools in the aforementioned Greek and Tanachic traditions, and Byzantine Christian uses of bells to ‘convoke’ parishioners to Church, to name just a few streams of cultural influences that fed into its conceptualization within the Hygromanteia (Sachs, 2012).

It is worth noting, however, that unlike the Clavicula‘s Trumpet, the Hygromanteian Bell is sounded both before and after entering the Circle to designate it to the spirits as a sacred and protected space.  This is a subtle but important point that is often overlooked, but warrants careful consideration as it bears hidden significance.  As Dr. Stephen Skinner pointed out to this author in his comments on an earlier draft of this article, many cultures use ritual bells to announce the entering of spiritual space.  Hindu temples, for instance, often feature ghanta bells that devotees are expected to ring before entering the Gharbagriha (sanctum sanctorum) to announce their arrival to the Gods and Goddesses and prepare themselves to receive darshan (the sight of Holy Images of Divinity) (Brown, 2013).  In the same way, the Hygromanteian Apprentice rings the Bell of Art to announce the Apprentice and Master’s entrances into the Circle, the sacred meeting place between the spirit world and the human world.  After this preliminary sounding, they proceed to sound the Bell again from within the Circle in order to alert the spirits to be ready to appear and obey in the style of the later Claviculan Trumpet.

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Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa as depicted by Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528).

Resonant Grimoiric Connections: Ritual Bells and Trumpets in Agrippa, Dee, pseudo-“Dee,” and Girardius

The precise origins of the Hygromanteian Bell of Art tradition are shrouded in mystery. Although Old Testament style bell-cymbals, Christian Church and altar bells, Ancient Greek kampana and koudounia (Greek: κουδουνια), Ancient Egyptian ritual bells–perhaps through their impact on the development of Ancient Greek music–and Mesopotamian bells all may have influenced the Hygromanteian Bell, another candidate for a historical precedent might be the Chaldaean and Neoplatonic Iynx (Braun & Braun, 2002; Sachs, 2012; Montagu, 2014; Muñoz, 2017).

In Greek literature, the Iynx (Greek: Ιυγξ) was originally a reference to the wryneck bird, which was originally bound to a Sorceror’s wheel and then spun around to attract an unfaithful lover (Majercik, 2013).  The word Iynx then came to be used to mean a kind of love charm, a semantic valence that Plato expanded to express a kind of Erosian ‘binding force’ between humankind and Divinity.  By the time of the Chaldeaen Oracles, which cannot be any younger than the 2nd century C.E. since Iamblichus refers to them, Iynges had come to be understood as magical Names (voces mysticae) that were sent forth as ‘couriers’ from the Divine to communicate with the Theurgist (Majercik, 2013; de Garay, 2017).

The original wryneck bird-bound wheel Iynx gradually evolved into a bell-like metal disc that was inscribed with Divine Names and symbols, much like the Hygromanteian Bell (Johnston, 1990).  This bell-like instrument would, however, be attached to a twisted leather thong, which would be rapidly spun to produce a whirring sound.  Theurgists believed that the sound of the Iynx would attract daimons and inspire them to reveal their Magic Names, through which Magicians aimed to acquire magical powers (Johnston, 1990; Majercik, 2013).  In the iynx tradition, therefore, we find a magical bell-like tool inscribed with Divine Names and characters that may very well have been one of the influences, alongside those of the other aforementioned traditions, that helped  give rise to the Hygromanteian Bell of Art.

What is certain, however, is that the Hygromanteia is not the only text from the later grimoiric period that employs consecrated ritual bells in its repertoire of recommended magical tools.  Indeed, in his Third Book of Occult Philosophy, Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa (2000) writes that:

“there are also sacred rites and holy observations, which are made for the reverencing of the Gods, and religion, viz. devout gestures, genuflections, uncoverings of the head, washings, sprinklings of Holy water, perfumes, exterior expiations, humble processions, and exterior Ornaments for divine praises, as musical Harmony, burning of wax candles and lights, ringing of bells, the adorning of Temples, Altars and Images, in all which there is required a supreme and special reverence and comeliness; wherefore there are used for these things, the most excellent, most beautiful and precious things, as gold, silver, precious stores, and such like.”

In this list, many classically Solomonic practices that are familiar to any practitioner of the Clavicula Salomonis system can be discerned.  These practices range from sprinkling “sprinklings of Holy Water” to the suffumigations of “perfumes”and “washings” or ritual baths (Agrippa, 2000).  Trumpets are notably absent from this list, although “the ringings of bells” are mentioned.

While the Hygromanteia does not specify the material from which its Bell was to be created, Agrippa offers practitioners some guidance in regards to selecting materials from which to construct magical Bells.  To this end, Agrippa (2000) suggests that such bells are best made from “beautiful and precious things, as gold, silver, precious stones and such like.”  He grounds his suggestion in his conception of beautiful objects as more sympathetically resonant with the Divine’s intimate participation in the Form of hte Beautiful; on this point, Agrippa follows a Neoplatonic line of philosophico-magical theory that is traceable back to Iamblichus, Porphyry, Plotinus and earlier still, to Plato (de Garay 2017).  Of course, in order to emit a resonant ringing sound, a Bell of Art must be made from an appropriate material with the acoustic ability to produce such a sound when struck.  Gold, brass, bronze, or silver are all appropriate choices that are consistent with Agrippa’s notes in this passage; fittingly Ancient Greek bells were often fashioned from bronze (Villing 2002).

It is not sufficient for ceremonial magical practice to simply make a bell in an appropriate metal, however.  The Bell of Art must also be consecrated in order to en-spirit it and empower it, as Aaron Leitch (2009) suggests in his Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires.  To this point, in his Third Book of Occult Philosophy, Agrippa (2000) adds that such consecrations can have potent protective and apotropaic results when he explains that

Bells by consecration and benediction receive virtue that they drive away and restrain lightnings, and tempests, that they hurt not in those places where their sounds are heard; in like manner Salt and Water, by their benedictions and exorcisms, receive power to chase and drive away evil spirits” (Agrippa, 2000).

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The exorcisms and benedictions by consecrated Water and Salt of Art to which Agrippa alludes here are well-known to Solomonic Magicians; indeed instructions for both are presented in Chapters 5 and 11 of Book II of Peterson’s (2004) Clavicula Salomonis.  However, the commensurate power of bells themselves to exorcise and bless sacred spaces within the Solomonic tradition is often neglected.  It is no accident that Agrippa lists bells, water, and salt together; for him, as for many other writers in his own time and long before, these ritual items were often considered together and used in complementary ways (Agrippa, 2000).

Similarly, this key passage of the Third Book reinforces the protective power of consecrated bells to ensure that “they hurt not in those places where their sounds are heard,” a potential carryover from the Ancient traditions that may lie in the background of the Hygromanteian Bell (Agrippa, 2000).  For Agrippa, in short, as perhaps for the Hygromanteian Master of Art, the ringing of a consecrated Bell can be as protective to the Magician as it is evocative to the spirit.

Moreover, the connections between bells, the Divine, and directionality that have been described in relation to the Trumpet of Art and the Tanachic use of trumpets in Numbers 10:1-7 are also echoed in John Dee’s (2003) True and Faithful Relation of What Passed For Many Years Between Dr. John Dee and Some Spirits, in which the Elizabethan Magician reports that the Angel Madini prayed before Kelly and Dee that:

“Miraculous is thy care, O God, upon those that are Thy chosen, and wonderful are the ways that Thou hast prepared for them. Thou shalt take them from the fields, and harbour them at Home. Thou art merciful unto thy faithful and hard to the heavy-hearted. Thou shalt cover their legs with Boots, and brambles shall not prick them: their hands shall be covered with the skins of Beasts that they may break their way through the hedges. Thy Bell shall go before them as a watch and sure Direction: The Moon shall be clear that they may go on boldly. Peace be amongst you!”

Thus, in much the same way as in Madini’s prayer, the ringing of the Bell of Art “goes before” the entrance of the Magician into the Circle in the Hygromanteia, as a “watch and sure direction” (Dee, 2003).

Interestingly, while this passage suggests some of the spiritual ideas surrounding Bells that have already been explored, Dee is also connected to the trumpet strand of the sonorous Solomonic tool traditions.  Indeed, John Dee is purported to be the author of a fascinating work entitled the Libellus Veneri Nigro Sacer or The Consecrated Little Book of Black Venus (1580), which centers on a magical Trumpet entitled the Tuba Veneris or Trumpet of Venus, which is shown here as rendered in Teresa Burns and Nancy Turner’s 2007 translation of the Libellus:

Tuba-Veneris.gif

It is worth noting, however, that Michael Putnam (2010), a translator of an excellent edition of this underappreciated grimoire, has cast doubt on Dee’s authorship of the text for a number of reasons.  These include, for instance, that the script reveals authorship on the Continent, not in London as the text claims; that Dee’s autograph in the earliest surviving Warburg manuscript (MS. FBH 510) is not recognizably his; that there are no references to the “Tuba Veneris” in any of Dee’s journals or other books; that the text gives “June 4, 1580” as its date of composition when Dee’s journal entries reveal he was in Mortlake between June 3 and 7 and not in London; and that the text uses a forcible and binding-based necromantic approach that is very different from the supplicatory prayer-based Angelic work that Dee was doing in the 1580s (Putnam, 2010).

Whatever its origins, the Tuba Veneris is remarkable as one of the few Trumpets of Art in the Solomonic tradition, and it has four interesting differences that distinguish it from its Key of Solomon counterpart.  First, while the Clavicula‘s Trumpet of Art is fashioned from “new wood,” the Trumpet of Venus is made from an animal horn, much like the shofar (שופר‎) (Peterson, 2004).  In addition, as the text explains, the horn for the Tuba Veneris is to be removed from a living bull.  More precisely, in order to craft this Venusian Trumpet,

“one takes the Horn of a living Bull, then one takes Vitriol dissolved in vinegar, with which one should wash and purify the Horn, after which one carves the Characters as they are represented in the following sketch, into either side of the horn with the aforementioned Steel Instruments. One must make sure that the entire preparation of the Horn, including the time it is torn off from the bull, must also be in the times, days and hours of , just as was done in preparing the Seal. Afterwards, one envelops it in smoke, wraps it in linen, and buries it together with the Seal of , then unburies it again and preserves it for later use” (“Dee,” 2010).

Second, while the Tuba Veneris’ characters are carved into its surface during the Day and Hour of Venus, the Clavicula‘s characters are painted onto it in the consecrated Ink of Art, presumably in the Day and Hour of Mercury as in the case of the Key of Solomon‘s Wand (Peterson, 2004).

Third, the Tuba Veneris and Trumpet of Art are consecrated in very different ways.  The Trumpet of Venus’ mode of consecration via burial is very consistent with the consecration methods for Ancient necromantic and Goetic tools, which were to be buried in the ground so that the spirits could operate upon and bond with them in a chthonic environment, a precedent found in the Papyri Graecae Magicae (Stratton-Kent, 2010).  Importantly, the Tuba Veneris is used in conjunction with a Liber Spirituum, which is also buried underground as part of its consecration process, like the Liber Spiritua used in necromantic operations in other texts such as the Fourth Book of Occult Philosophy (Stratton-Kent, 2010).  In contrast, the Key‘s Trumpet of Art is not buried, but rather consecrated entirely above-ground.

Finally, while the Clavicula‘s Trumpet of Art is sounded to the four directions, the Trumpet of Venus is used in a very different manner to amplify the Operator’s voice; instead of sounding the Trumpet, the Magician speaks the Calls to the spirits through it.  As “Dee” explains, the Master should “speak the entire Call through the Horn of Venus, and he should summon the Spirit by naming it once at the beginning and again at the end, but always with distinct pauses” (“Dee,” 2010).

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A final resounding instrument is worth considering in this overview of the grimoiric literature, and that is the Necromantic Bell of Girardius, which appears in the 18th century grimoire, Parvi Lucii Libellus de Mirabilibus Naturae Arcanis, 1730.  This intriguing text can be found in l’Arsenal manuscripts 2350 and 3009 in the Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal in Paris (Girardius, 1730).  The consecration method of the Bell of Girardius and its necromantic associations beautifully parallel the Trumpet of Venus in a way that suggests another meeting point between the Solomonic bell and trumpet traditions that this article has been considering.

The Bell of Girardius features the name Tetragrammaton on its bottom followed by the astrological symbols of Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury and the Moon, the Name Adonai, and finally, the name Jesus on the ringed handle.  Girardius’ Bell is cast from what Jake Stratton-Kent (2010) calls a kind of “magical electrum,” which consists of alloyed gold, copper, fixed mercury, iron, tin and silver, and lead, although some manuscripts omit the lead (Girardius, 1730; Masello, 1996).  In terms of astrological timing, the Bell is to be made either “at the day and hour of birth of the person who wishes to be in confluence and harmony with the mysterious Bell” or, in other manuscripts, at a time when the Planetary aspects favour the Operator by progression or transit to the natal chart (Masello, 1996; Stratton-Kent, 2010).

According to the text, the Necromancer must then engrave the date of his or her birthday or otherwise the date of the casting of the Bell directly into the Bell itself–a practice nearly unique among all of the grimoires–as well as the names of the Seven Olympic spirits, that is, Aratron for Saturn, Bethor for Jupiter, Phaleg for Mars, Och for the Sun, Hagith for Venus, and Phul for the Moon (Girardius, 1730).

Thereafter, the Bell must be wrapped in green consecrated cloth, which different authors interpret as linen or taffeta, and buried under cover of darkness in a grave for 7 days, which correspond to the 7 Ancient Planets (Girardius, 1730; Masello, 1996; Stratton-Kent, 2010).  This goetic consecration process is notably similar to that used for the Trumpet of Venus and places the Necromantic Bell, like the Tuba Veneris, in the aforementioned tradition of grave-based chthonic consecrations with roots in the Papyri Graecae Magicae (Stratton-Kent, 2010).  Naturally, this is a method grounded, pun intended, in classical sympathetic theoria; indeed, the grimoire makes this point clear when it states that during its time in the grave, the Bell absorbs from the neighbouring corpse or the Underworld-like environment “emanations and confluent vibrations” which “give it the perpetual quality and efficacy requisite when you shall ring it for your ends” (Girardius, 1730).

When the Bell is used to summon the spirits of the dead, the Master is required to don sandals and a toga-like vestment clasped at the shoulder as well as a tunic, and hold the Bell in his or her left hand and a parchment scroll bearing the sigils of the Planets in the right (Stratton-Kent, 2010).  Thus, the Bell of Girardius is engraved rather than drawn on with its Names of Power like the Trumpet of Venus and is consecrated in a similar manner, but is used for entirely different purposes, namely to evoke the spirits of the dead.  Surprisingly, however, neither text mentions sounding their instruments to the four cardinal directions, a notable point of departure from the Clavicula’s Trumpet of Art and the Hygromanteia‘s Bell.

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The Necromantic Bell of Girardius from the 18th century grimoire, Parvi Lucii Libellus de Mirabilibus Naturae Arcanis, 1730.

Integrating Theory and Practice: My Solomonic Bell of Art

How does a contemporary practitioner make sense of the sometimes diverging, sometimes converging Bell and Trumpet traditions found in the grimoires? How does one put such a labyrinth of instructions into concrete practice?

There are at least three ways to tackle this challenge.  First, one can make the tools specific to the grimoires with which one is working and as exactly as described in the texts.  This approach is likely the best for grimoire purists and for those who wish to experiment using the precise constraints and instructions of a particular system.  This method is reasonable and ideal in most cases, particular in the case of highly idiosyncratic texts like the Tuba Veneris or the Necromantic Horn of Girardius.

Second, one can combine methods from different texts to create a tool that is adapted to one’s particular way of working by synthesizing what seem the wisest and most applicable instructions from different grimoires.  This method is sure to alarm traditionalists, but may be applicable when working in a tradition with internal continuity between the two texts to be synthesized, such as within an integrative Hygromanteia-Key of Solomon practice, for example.

Third, one can use a combination of the previous two methods, using synthesized tools in some cases and classical tools made to the letter of the grimoiric instructions when appropriate.

My overall approach is the third one given here, which seems to be the one that most contemporary practitioners take.  For most tools, I closely follow the grimoire instructions in the style of Frater Ashen Chassan, Dr. Stephen Skinner and Mr. Aaron Leitch in much of his work.

In other cases, when it is more appropriate to the work at hand, however, I apply a synergistic or integrative methodology to integrate instructions from texts in continuous traditions.  Aaron Leitch took a similar approach and brilliantly resolved the dilemma of whether to side with the Bell or Trumpet traditions in his own Solomonic work by using a Trumpet of Art made to the exact specifications of the Key of Solomon to which he attached 7 bells by 7 ribbons in the seven Planetary colours.  In this way, he was able to fashion a Trumpet that benefits from the magical and physical properties laid out by both the Bell and Trumpet traditions.

In my own case, for Hygromanteia-Key of Solomon work, I opted to follow the Hygromanteia and Sloane 3847 of the Key of Solomon and simply use of Bell of Art. However, I chose to integrate the Divine Names and Sigils given for the Trumpet/Bell in the Clavicula Salomonis manuscripts with the Hygromanteia‘s Bell format and consecration and creation methods leaning more towards the Key tradition.  Therefore, drawing on Agrippa’s (2000) recommendation to fashion ritual bells out of “beautiful and precious things, as gold, silver, precious stores, and such like,” I opted to use a beautiful antique golden bell for the purpose.  This is a small bell as described in the Hygromanteia (Marathakis, 2011).

Following the usual Key of Solomon methods, I exorcised the metal and performed benedictions and Psalm readings over the Bell during the Hour and Day of Mercury under a waxing Moon.  This process included sprinkling Holy Water over the Bell with a consecrated Aspergillum of Art, anointing it with Solomonic Holy Oil, and suffumigating it with Solomonic “odoriferous spices” (Peterson, 2004).  All of these procedures were completed within a consecrated Solomonic Circle of Art.

Also during the Day and Hour of Mercury beneath a waxing Moon, I wrote the Divine Names and drew the characters given below on the Bell as recommended by Joseph H. Peterson’s (2004) edition of the Clavicula for the Trumpet/Bell of Art.  This work was completed with a consecrated Pen and Ink of the Art, which were also prepared to the letter of the Key of Solomon instructions.

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Finally, to protect the consecrated Ink from fading during use, I varnished the Bell with a consecrated lacquer that was blended with consecrated Solomonic Holy Oil and prayed additional Psalms over it to complete the consecration.  The completed Bell of Art, which I store in a properly prepared Solomonic linen as shown below the Bell in the image below, appears as follows:

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In my own humble experience, the resulting tool is both beautiful and powerful. Following the Hygromanteia, I ring the Bell before stepping into the Circle, to announce my entrance into consecrated sacred space.  Then, following the Key, at the commencement of each Operation of Art, I ring the Bell in the four cardinal directions, starting in the East and moving clockwise around the Circle back to the East.

In my experience, all of the classical functions of the Bell or Trumpet of Art are well-accomplished by this Bell, from protection to apotropaia, formation of a sacred space, excitation of what Dr. Stephen Skinner calls “magical tension,” and “exciting the senses” as suggested by the Papyri Graecae Magicae into what Agrippa would later call a productive “phrenzy” (Betz, 1996).

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Lion” by Formisano Francisco.

Resonating Through History: Concluding Reflections on the Bells and Trumpets of Solomon

In conclusion, this article has attempted to trace the winding twin threads of the Solomonic Bells and Trumpets of Art and demonstrate that, although the Clavicula Salomonis’ Trumpet of Art is able to perform the functions previously served by the evocatory Bell of the Greek Hygromanteia, it also reflects the influence of a distinct and separate tradition that traces its roots back to the Tanchic trumpet or ḥatzotzrah (חצוצרה‎) and winding horn or shofar (שופר‎). This article has also striven to illuminate the natures, ritual functions, and physical materials of the Claviculan Trumpet and Hygromanteian Bell by placing them in the larger grimoiric contexts of the writings of Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa, John Dee, the pseudo-“Dee” of the Tuba Veneris, and Girardius, the author of the 18th century grimoire, Parvi Lucii Libellus de Mirabilibus Naturae Arcanis, 1730. 

Before the Trumpet blasts and Bell ringings of this article fade into silence, however, an etymological point about the English word “bell” is worth mentioning for the light it sheds on the Bell/Trumpet connection.  According to the Online Etymology Dictionary (2018), the modern English word “bell” derives from roots that signify

“a hollow metallic instrument which rings when struck,” from the Old English belle, which has cognates in Middle Dutch belle and Middle Low German belle, but is not found elsewhere in Germanic except as a borrowing; apparently from PIE root *bhel- (4) “to sound, roar” (compare Old English bellan “to roar,” and the later English word “bellow”).”

Thus, both bells and trumpets are linked to a sense of “roaring” that symbolically and sympathetically connects them to metaphors of kingship, dominion, and authority in the roaring of lions.  Just as the roaring of a lion can strike fear into a human heart, the roaring of the Trumpet or a Bell of Art is intended to strike fear into the hearts of evil spirits and thus ward them off apotropaically; indeed, this is likely the reason why the Sloane 3847 manuscript of the Key of Solomon states that

“by the vertue of these names [written on the Bell], the voice of the Bell shall enter into their hearts, to cause them to feare and obay” (“Ptolomeus,” 1999).

The “voice” of a Bell is its ‘roar’ and the magical association between the two is profoundly ancient, as is the apotropaic power of loud droning sounds like the booming of a horn, the roaring of a lion, and, just as significantly, the bellowing of the human voice.  In Papyri Graecae Magicae IV: 475- 829, for instance, the Magician is instructed to “look intently, and make a long bellowing sound, like a horn, releasing all your breath and straining your sides; and kiss the phylacteries and say, first toward the right: “Protect me, prosymeri!” (Betz, 1996).  Thereafter, the Master is told to “make a long bellowing sound, straining your belly, that you may excite the five senses; bellow long until out of breath, and again kiss the phylacteries” (Betz, 1996, 705).

This latter verse offers some additional insight into the magical value of bellowing noises like those produced by the human body or trumpet; such resounding sounds hold the power to “excite the senses” and make the Magician alertly attentive in a way that can facilitate spirit communication.  This enlivening quality of bellowing, droning, and ringing sounds is entirely consistent with the use of the Hygromanteian Bell of Art or Claviculan Trumpet to “alert” the spirits to be prepared to come to the call of the Master (Peterson, 2004; Marathakis, 2011).

Finally and in closing, it is this author’s contention that the droning sound of vibrating Divine Names that was employed by 19th and early 20th century Victorian lodge magicians may very well be a later Hermetic application of the old Papyri Graecae Magicae bellowing formula.  Just like the primal method of the PGM, the Hermetic vibratory formula at once calls the desired powers, banishes the undesired ones, and “excites the senses” of the Magician to an enlivened state of sensitivity (Betz, 1996).

In this way, the ancient power of droning vibratory sounds that echoed from the Neolithic horns, clay bells, and bone flutes through the bellies of bellowing Greek papyri magicians and the grimoiric Bells and Trumpets of Art continued to resonate within the 19th century Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn Temples in much the same way.  Whatever the exact historical lineages may be that trace these ancient practices and tools from the shrouded mists of prehistory to the living experiences of 21st century Mages, however, their reverberating power and enduring value remain with us to this day.  And if we continue to vibrate Divine Names, sound Trumpets, boom Horns, and ring Bells of Art, to paraphrase the great physicist and alchemist Sir Isaac Newton, we do so while standing on the shoulders of the giants who came before us (Lines, 2017).

Acknowledgements

I am very grateful to Mr. Joseph H. Peterson for his insightful notes on the manuscripts and his tireless work for the grimoire community, to Dr. Stephen Skinner and Mr. Aaron Leitch, whose helpful comments on the first draft of this text inspired the section on the shofar and led to a more nuanced central thesis, to Mr. Jake Stratton-Kent for his valuable insights into the Bell of Girardius and necromantic consecration methods within the Papyri Graecae Magicae, to Mr. João Pedro Feliciano for his interesting information on the Chaldeaen and Neoplatonic Iynx traditions, which inspired the section on the topic, to Mr. Andy Foster for his helpful reflections on the original manuscripts, to Magister Omega for his insights into the practical points of the Tuba Veneris system, to Frater Abd Al-Wali for sharing photographs of his own Bell of Art, and to Mr. Nick Farrell, for his kind patience during my writing and revisions and for helping inspire this much-expanded version of the original draft.  This article would not have been possible in its current form without all of your helpful and supportive feedback and useful ideas for which I remain sincerely thankful.

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