Ravemore's Notes

A little meandering… Pagan reflections on a left hand path.

Witch Bottles

Old and simple forms of Craftwork, these constructions are used for a variety of purposes, such as hexes, curses, counter-magical devices, and many others. Witch Bottles have been dug up and dated back to the 16th century. You are only limited by your imagination when it comes to a Witch Bottle. Their use spans many different traditions and geographic areas, so regardless of what your Left Hand Path inclinations are… it should be fairly easy to find inspiration.

Older Witch Bottles tended to be made from glazed stoneware. The best type of modern glass to use in my opinion is a champagne bottle because the glass is thick, dark colored, and they are designed to withstand pressure. Most Witch Bottles contain large amounts of organic material and over time the contents can decompose or ferment, resulting in a build-up of gases that can break the glass and destroy the spell or containment. A current favorite among many witches are the small cobalt blue bottles. They can easily be incorporated into interior decor and thus hide protective charms and spells in plain sight within the home without raising suspicions. Personally, I tend to cling to the old methods of burying them, or concealing them outdoors… particularly with spirit traps. The last thing I want in my home is an angry spirit trapped in a little glass bottle. When broken, the containments do fail.

Counter-magical Witch Bottles are used to absorb and contain incoming curses and hexes from other hostile practitioners. They are often hidden on one’s own property, under door thresholds, or buried at the furthest edge of the property. Any hidden location close to the person seeking protection will suffice though. The most common components are urine from the casting witch, iron or steel nails, bent stick pins, shards of glass, and other sharp objects. The sharp objects catch or impale the curse, and the urine binds and nullifies it. A short chant or prayer is whispered over the burial spot.

Witch Bottles containing curses are equally prevalent. We can be amazingly malevolent beings, and there is never a shortage of hatred, jealousy, and rage among the Third Children. Sometimes it seems our thirst for vengeance can be unquenchable. I have already outlined one example of a curse-bearing Witch Bottle HERE… and it tends to be one of my favorites.

Another interesting type of Witch Bottle called a “Break-up Bottle” can be used to ruin relationships and separate lovers, usually for the sole benefit of the casting witch. The usual construction components consist of the names of the two lovers written on a piece of paper which is then then ripped apart into two separate pieces, the hair of a dog, and the hair of a cat. The bottle is then filled with a red wine and corked. Before it is buried on property where one, or both, of the lovers live it is shaken vigorously and a short chant or prayer muttered over the spot.

The polar opposite of the Break-up Bottle is the “Honey Bottle.” This one usually contains 3 parts water to 1 part honey and a variety of herbs suited for the purpose. The names of the witch and the object of the spell are written onto one piece of paper and incorporated into the mixture. It can be used to facilitate feelings of love, attraction, or good will. It should also be buried on the property of the object of your affection… or obsession, with a suitable chant or prayer.

Witch Bottles remain active as long as the item is hidden and unbroken. The occasional Spell cast to empower it further never hurts either…

The Importance of Initiation

I have heard exhortations from both sides of the fence… some touting the necessity for initiation into The Craft, and others relegating it to either a footnote, or totally eliminating any significance and value it may hold. My personal philosophy places great importance on Initiation for a variety of reasons. It fulfills essential functions within a Left Hand Path, and arguably any religious or mystery system. With that being said though, I do not prescribe the notion that initiations must follow any type of genealogical line, or that a practitioner is for some reason “illegitimate” because another has not performed certain rites or rituals to welcome them into The Craft. That is utter garbage. The individual has as much capacity and right as any group or coven to properly carry out an initiation… possibly to even greater effect.

The purpose of Initiation is to experience a ritualistic death of the old life, and a spiritual re-birth onto a path few are brave or competent enough to tread. It shows a high level of resolve on the part of the initiate, and lays the soul bare for shaping and the mind open and receptive for the acceptance of sacred truth. It begins a fundamental process of change that is found in most religious gnostic traditions. A change within self… Care should be exercised though, particularly when performed by a single individual, because an Initiation carries great symbolic importance. It should not be cheap, easy, or hastily constructed and executed. It should create an atmosphere of awe, power, and profound introspection. It must prepare the individual for a lifelong quest to reach, grasp, understand, and use The Light we all seek. Initiation does not have to be long and drawn out… but it can be. It does not have to be full of props and actors… but it can be. It just has to be effective. To further this end, it should contain snippets of a tradition’s core tenants and lore… little tastes of the flavors and aromas the tradition offers the initiate if there is dedication, a willingness to perform hard work, and a deep thirst for knowledge.

Independence…

“The essence of independence has been to think and act according to standards from within, not without.”

― Aleister Crowley

Beltain Blessings…

For all of those who follow my Blog, or just happen to pop in from time to time for a peek, I wish you a joyous Beltain, and I will think of you as the witching hours approach and I place a lit candle in the window sill. May the Goat God of the Witches incite you to lust, eroticism, and fill your heart with ecstasy, his phallus a rod of iron. May Bridgit tempt you with her luscious round hips, and beckon you inside. May your garden prosper and grow green as the light of our Sun God Lugh gains in strength. May The Mother Danu embrace you in her protecting arms. May Morrígan leave your thread uncut for another cycle, as you continue to learn and grow in this mortal world. May Manannán mac Lir provide you with luck and prosperity from the mist.

Dance around the Bonfire until you are exhausted. Embrace the darkness, look to the moon with reverence, and listen for secrets whispered from the shadows.

-Ravemore

Inquisitions… Thoughts for Reflection

Most posts or articles in our community tend to deal with the horror of witch burnings, and I do not intend to take away from them because we should never forget the terror experienced by our fellow pagans, innocents wrongly accused, minority Christian sects, mystery schools, and others deprived of life, liberty, and personal wealth by the unstoppable machine that the various inquisitions had become. What I would like to do though is explore a little more how these entities flourished and were used. Touch upon some thoughts that might prompt others to dig a little more and post thoughts on their own  Blogs… something beyond the simple act of re-blogging. I firmly believe this is an important exercise because not only understanding what something is, but learning why it comes into existence and continues to live provides weapons to counter it in the future.

When we think about Inquisitions we often imagine small groups of fanatical inquisitors running around with sponsorship from the church and local government, perpetuating the horrible torture sessions, hangings, and burnings of heretics we look sadly upon today. This is a very simplistic way of looking at it though. The inquisitions were actually great ponderous mechanisms with many intricate cogs, gears, and wheels. They were complex bureaucracies with huge support infrastructures behind them providing logistics and funding. There are piles of records that can be looked at as a testament to the effort it took to maintain the tribunals. Monarchies, particular Spain often shaped or influenced the direction and focus of the inquisitions through financial manipulation, both in the Old World and the New. Peru keenly felt the scourge of the inquisition, and the unfortunate truth is there can be no clear reckoning of how many lives it destroyed. This is a reality I did not even consider until I began doing a little more in depth research. In fact, I was surprised there had been debate on whether a new Inquisitorial Office would be opened in the South American colony of Buenos Aires in 1636.

It would be nice to think the Inquisitions were shut down because we as human beings had begun to evolve to a higher level and were moving beyond such senseless and petty bloodshed, but the sad truth of the matter is it just boiled down to money. “Whether conducting full-fledged heresy trials or merely issuing warning edicts and indulgences, inquisitions incurred expenses and required sources of income. The question of inquisitorial finance has long interested scholars, and the extensive haciend records at the Archivo Histórico Nacional in Madrid have been subjected to preliminary surveys though much work still remains to be done.6 It is now generally agreed that while confiscations of prisoners’ goods and estates may have brought important revenues (particularly in the early days of the Spanish tribunals, and in special cases such as mass arrests of New Christian merchants in the seventeenth century), inquisitions were rarely profitable money making ventures.7 Day to day expenses could be met thanks to income from church benefices set aside for the purpose, so inquisitors had to be knowledgeable about the state of ecclesiastical resources in the regions to which they were assigned [INQ 5]. As time went on, revenues from seizures, royal grants or other sources were also regularly invested in real estate as a means of producing censo income.8 Yet spiraling personnel costs and extravagant auto de fe ceremonies ensured that many tribunals were perpetually short of cash or in debt.” (21.)

When the funds dried up, so did the inquisitions. This is the main point I want everyone to take from this post. In modern times we think something like this could never happen, but the reality is that wherever there is intolerance, religious zealotry, and large amounts of money the volatile mix is there waiting for a spark to ignite it. Imagine if the income sources had not begun drying up, if they had not been directed towards fighting new wars, or clinging to rebelling colonies… some of us might not be here now. When we see the religious right in whatever form it takes becoming vocal and more powerful… we should also be looking at the health of their bank accounts.

Rare Books & Special Collections, Hesburgh Libraries of Notre Dame, Ties to the new world, Lima Peru’s active Inquisition.

What is Darkness?

A question was recently asked of me, which made me examine something in a little more detail… something I have taken for granted I think. The question was fairly simple on its face, but also very complex; “What is Darkness to you?” I think the most difficult questions that can be asked of another person fall into this classification. They are like a fine wine with different hints of flavors and aromas; lost to you if you gulp them down all at once… but intense and enjoyed if you can discern their presence. Also, it is a very relevant question for me on a personal level because Darkness is something germane to the Left Hand Path I walk, and who I am as a person.

I think Darkness is not absolute, is very personal, and for me is intricately intertwined into my religion and existence.  People claim we are born innocent, not touched by good or evil, but for some this is not necessarily true. Old Souls returning from The  Morrígan’s  Cauldron are predisposed to The Light or The Darkness because of experiences in prior incarnations. For most though, Darkness starts out as an outside influence that seeks to find a way inside, and once it slips inside it is either welcomed with open arms, or battled with an uncertain outcome. I think the man who states he has never had this battle or welcoming embrace with Darkness is either a liar or a fool. Is Darkness equated with Evil? I would say yes. They are the same side of the coin. Darkness is not a static thing, it grows, it evolves, and no two types of Darkness are exactly the same. It is unique to the individual, but has the ability to shape and direct the Darkness in others. Darkness feeds Darkness, and can give birth to new forms of Darkness.

Darkness for me is the conscious decision to seek enlightenment for myself without seeking to save mankind in the process. Darkness is the fulfilling of carnal desires without thought to societal taboos and organized religion’s doctrine. Darkness is the unleashing of my passions, directed by an iron will to affect change beneficial for myself without high regard towards others. It is putting myself above the other base animals around me crudely mimicking the ideal of “human kind.” This life is merely a pathway towards my own ultimate ascension at the end of The Low Road, if not this upcoming time, perhaps the next. Darkness is power. The key aspect of this realization though is that there are varying degrees of Darkness within the individual. Although I hate, I also love. Although I want to kill, I also want to nurture. Although I want to injure, I also want to heal. Darkness in others may be skewed slightly one way or another, or be totally off the scale. I also recognize that to function in society I have to have a hand firmly in place on the reins of my Darkness. I recognize both the good and the evil inside myself, and accept the consequences of my actions… as all actions do have consequences. I am comfortable with who I am. I have embraced Darkness and am evolving with it. We have a symbiotic relationship…

Self-examination like this is not as simple as I have made it out to be though. I’m sure my thoughts and philosophy will change over time as my Darkness evolves and the balance shifts. From time to time I may make further comments on my thoughts concerning Darkness.

Stars…

What is it that makes the stars shine at night? It is the darkness…

-Unknown Author

And Death Shall Have No More Dominion…

“And when, after having divested thyself of thy mortal body, thou arrivest at the most pure Æther, Thou shalt be a God, immortal, incorruptible, and Death shall have no more dominion over thee.”

-Pythagoras

The Watchers and Nephilim…

Éabhla watched her son Demna sleep next to the dying embers of the hearth fire coals. It had been eight years since she had given birth to the boy, none but her knowing his father was the Goat God of the Witches. The feeble light bathed the small cottage room in an orange light, and she quietly mulled over the words of the stranger who had come to the village three days earlier. He was a smith and artificer claiming to be a traveling merchant of metal wares, and his skill and merchandise was the subject of much awe and admiration. He was obviously a master of his art. He offered his name as Tubal Cain… a strange and foreign name. Earlier that evening, after the boy was asleep he had knocked on her door. She had allowed him entry, as she was a witch of great power and had no fear in her heart. Fear was an emotion that had died on that terrible night so long ago. The tale he told to her was fantastic, but in her heart she knew it was nothing but truth.

The old man was very tall, and his skin dark. He smiled benevolently as he sat at the small wooden table in her cottage. His voice was low, and strong… but kind. “Éabhla, the Master has sent me for the boy. He will be a great leader among men someday, and he requires instruction in the mysteries, battle, and kingship. He is more than man, as you know all too well. He requires tutelage away from Danu’s Third Children until the time is right for him to return.”

Éabhla’s heart fell, and a great sadness filled her. The boy was precious. Tubal Cain smiled reassuringly. “Do not fear Daughter of Danu, you will see him again. The auguries foretell it.” She straightened herself in her chair and leaned forward asking quietly “Tubal Cain, tell me more of yourself and my son’s destiny.” She sensed sorrow, or perhaps tiredness, from the old man as he nodded his head and spoke. “I am old Daughter of Danu… very old. I hearken from a faraway land, and from a time far in the past. Like your son, my father was not of men, but my mother was of the Third Children created by the Great Goddess. As a young man I committed a great crime and was banished by my people, but my father placed a mark upon me by which I would be known… and any who would do me harm would feel the full power of his curse.” He bared his left forearm and she glimpsed a strange symbol burned into his flesh. “In those early days man began to multiply on the face of the earth, and the Fomori were still in exodus from our world after the Second Battle of Mag Tuireadh, but some resolved to remain and watch over man. For this they were labeled “Fallen Ones” by the Fomori tribes… hated and despised for bringing The Light to mankind. They numbered 200 and were spread throughout all lands where men scavenged or tilled, for they were not confined only to your country, but were known to have inhabited many other places. Some of the most powerful of The Watchers were Araqiel, Armaros, Azazel, Gadriel, Baraqel, Bezaliel, Chazaqiel, Kokabiel, Penemue, Sariel, and Samyaza. Cernunnos was the greatest among The Fallen Watchers, before he ascended to Godhood at the Great Mother’s bidding. The other Watchers serve him unquestioningly. They taught chosen individuals among Danu’s Third Children dark arts, powerful enchantments, mathematics, and astrology to name but a few, but they also saw that the daughters of men were beautiful, and they took human mates and thereby bore children. Even now this happens from time to time, as well you know. The children of these unions are known as “Nephilim” in an older tongue. They are destined to be great and mighty men of renown. They are often taller, stronger, smarter, wiser… more than mortal men. To fulfill their destinies they must be shaped upon the anvil, tempered, and honed. This is for the benefit of all mankind.

After a long silence he rose from his chair, but before Tubal Cain left he walked to the boy’s bedside and gently moved a lock of golden hair aside. “Éabhla, when he returns he will be known as Fionn, and after this night you should take upon yourself the name of Muirne and leave this place. You will see your son again six years from now… the auguries foretell it. I will return in the morning for my brother and we will depart. He then made his way to the door, offering a gentle and comforting smile as he left. The sadness in her heart was replaced by hope.

Eyes…

“Nature is a temple where living pillars let sometimes emerge confused words: man crosses it through forests of symbols, which watch him with intimate eyes.”

– Charles Baudelaire

Eyes, symbolic of The Watchers and the knowledge and wisdom passed on to Danu’s Third Children… Emblematic of mixing bloodlines, and men that are more then men.

Casting the Bones…

Sometimes a writer presents a product that reaches straight into your chest and gives your heart a little squeeze. The words are woven like a complex and intricate cat’s cradle, simple strings making mind-blowing geometric shapes. Sarah’s piece below is almost Tolkien-like in its quality and ability to lead me to a new level of consciousness. For these reasons I have begun using it when I cast the bones for augury in the witching hours…

The Necromancer’s Chant

Black is the colour of womb and tomb

We meet at night on the dark of the moon

White is the colour of bone and ash

To speak to the dead we bathe and fast

Red is the colour of blood and death

We rub the bones and give them breath (20)

– by Sarah Lawless

Fetishes… Not the Yummy Sexy Ones.

A “Fetish” is a receptacle crafted for the purpose of storing energy or power that will be put to some specific purpose at a later time. Some arcane workings can require more energy than a single witch can muster, either because the practitioner is inexperienced, or the scope of the rite is simply too great for one witch alone to maintain. These greater rituals or spell castings will either require the assistance of other witches working in concert, the aid of Lesser Powers, or the tapping of energy reserves stored in a Fetish. Fetishes allow witches to extend themselves further and direct more power with their will.

When constructing a Fetish, it should be noted that the form it takes can vary immensely from witch to witch. It should incorporate a piece of you as a practitioner… and the path you walk. It is equally beneficial to create one that has a form conducive to the working. This adds to the ambiance and assists with visualization. Materials used are mostly unimportant, but there should be an integration of a gem stone or crystal relevant to the type of power one wishes to store in it. Crystals are amazing conductors of energy and frequency… in essence magic. A Fetish can be of any size, but should usually be portable and easily destroyed or hidden. Powerful covens are said to maintain permanent Fetishes within the Covenstead… containing deep reservoirs of energy. Caution should be exercised though with such permanent fixtures… If the inquisitor ever walks again with impunity and a nod from society, the stake can again become a reality. My favorite Fetish takes the form of a raven’s skull containing polished quartz crystals in the eye sockets. An activation rune should be inscribed on the Fetish, and the witch should also employ a simple spell to release and use the energy.

To Empower a Fetish, or charge it, a proper Ritual Circle should be cast first. The rite used for this empowering process is extremely simple. It is a meditation in which the witch feeds the Fetish power through a focused projection of the will combined with visualization. The longer the process continues, the more energy will be infused into the Fetish. It can be drawn from within the witch, from the surrounding earth, plants, animals, or even flame.

A Fetish can also be put to more diabolical uses. With the proper spells and curses they can be put near an enemy’s abode and used to siphon energy, cause sickness, and eventually even death. They can even be used as containments or prisons for Lesser Powers and the spirits of the dead who have self-bound to our world. A future post will deal with the processes and the dangers related to these alternate uses.

 

Klingon Proverb

“bIHeghvIpchugh bIHeghpu’.”

Translation: “If you are afraid to die, you have already died.”

-Klingon Proverb

Wisdom can be found even in the most violent and destructive of the universe’s creations…

The Insights of Two Aleisters..

The Insights of Two Aleisters..

“If I classify something as evil, that is my opinion and certainly there is someone who would disagree with me. It really comes down to individual “taste” when defining evil…….one size does not fit all. The definition is up to the end-user; not the observer. If you do not like the taste of the wine, choose another, then another, until you find the one that pleases you.”  (19)

– Aleister Nacht

“The sin which is unpardonable is knowingly and willfully to reject truth, to fear knowledge lest that knowledge pander not to thy prejudices.”

– Aleister Crowley, Magick: Book 4, Liber ABA

Wandering Near the Hedge…

Aodhan breathed in the crisp mountain air, felt the chill of the evening on his bare skin, and smelled the acrid smoke from the embers of his smoldering campfire. His body was weak from fasting, and his mind felt light as a butterfly flitting on a breeze. The rhythmic chant he had been reciting silently over and over for hours had begun opening his awareness beyond the bounds of normal perception. He sought a better understanding of the mysteries of The Craft… knowledge forbidden by the Christian clergy and classified as a profane heresy punishable by death. A dense fog had begun to seep out of the loamy soil, and soon the night was clothed in a blanket of mist. He continued to chant… and his mind wandered closer to the hedge.

“By Horns and Hooves of the great Goat-Foot God,

Keeper of knowledge unflawed,

Bearer of the arcane flame of awakening,

I seek. I ask. I yearn. I’m craving.”

He continued to chant, oblivious to the passage of time… and his mind wandered ever closer to the hedge.

Aodhan heard some rustling in the brush to his right. He turned his head slowly, fearful that an interloper had found his camp and that he would be exposed. He saw no one and breathed a small sigh of relief, the gut wrenching feeling of dread quickly dissipating… but a perplexed look gradually crept across his face. He saw that his breath did not form a vapor when he exhaled into the chilly night air. In fact, he could not feel the cold on his skin at all. He quickly climbed to his feet and his jaw dropped in amazement. He saw himself sitting where he had just risen from, still chanting and deep in trance. He turned slowly in a circle, bewildered, and stopped when he heard a throaty chuckle from the shadows. The raspy voice following the chuckle did not instill any fear in him… it had a comforting quality about it. “

“Third Child of Danu, you come seeking Light in the Shadows… and there is no better place to seek it.

It is in the Darkness where Gnosis can be found. It is where you can cast your soul into the crucible and emerge pure and refined. A Witch’s Blood is drawn to it, is excited by it, and becomes hot like the fires of the forge.

Do you come to the Shadows to place yourself on the anvil?”

Aodhan nodded his head in the affirmative, unsure who was speaking to him. “Yes, I come to learn all you will teach me.”

Out from the gnarled trunks of some nearby trees a great shadow detached itself and approached the camp fire. As it came closer Aodhan could see it was a huge man with the massive head of a goat. Cloven hooves sank deep into the earth from his massive size and weight. He motioned for the young man to sit, his eyes reflecting the firelight like a nocturnal animal as he crouched next to the fire. Aodhan quickly bowed his head in reverence and sat as instructed. He knew he was in the presence of a God.

The Goat God of the Witches then began to speak, his low voice nearly a whisper.

“I will impart some wisdom to you child. What you do with it is entirely within your judgment.” He then uttered many secrets to the young man… a few of which follow.

“The pleasures of the flesh are a pathway to power. Embrace them. Be wary though, when they become the object of desire instead of the key to discovery, you will reside in a prison of your own making.

The serpent is a sacred creature. It will often seek you out to offer the fruit of knowledge. Eat of it, that you may know me and emerge into infinite and diverse possibilities.

Three is a powerful number.

The blackest magic can falter under the light of Lugh. Work them and conceal them where the Sun does not touch.

There is great power and great danger in True Names. Guard yours and diligently seek out others.

Value Knowledge and Wisdom above blind faith and servitude.

Separation from the Natural Order is a prerequisite for Godhood. Yet, the Natural Order is necessary to maintain Godhood.

There is great power in the feminine. It is a cornerstone of The Mysteries.”

There was much discussion in the darkness as the Goat God instructed. He wove his teachings into elaborate stories and allegories, presenting challenges for Aodhan to ponder and work through, giving him insights into mysteries he would most likely struggle with in the course of many lifetimes. As the Witching Hours drew nigh to their end though, Cernunnos, God of the Witches bade Aodhan farewell with a simple gesture of his hand and a low grunt. The young man bowed his head in reverence, uttered a short prayer of gratitude and thanks, and when he looked up again the towering presence of the Light Bringer was no longer there. He could still smell the Goat God’s musky odor though, as it hung about the camp. He also keenly felt the cold and could see his breath in the air. He was again in his body. The coals of the dying fire flared briefly and ignited of their own volition, and with the fog and mists now gone, Aodhan could see the twinkling of the Morning Star on the eastern horizon.

Hotel California

Mirrors on the ceiling,

The pink champagne on ice

And she said ‘We are all just prisoners here, of our own device’

And in the master’s chambers,

They gathered for the feast

They stab it with their steely knives,

But they just can’t kill the beast

 

– The Eagles, Hotel California

 

To Know…

To know all, it is necessary to know very little; but to know that very little, one must first know pretty much.

– G. I. Gurdjieff

Gnosis… and the Left Hand Path

The material world we live in is full of sorrow and pain, joy and pleasure, and many other states and experiences that often compel mortal man to hold onto life at all costs, or bind to the living world after death, and return again and again from their journeys to Morrígan’s Cauldron. Can this cycle be broken? Should it be broken? What does it mean to attain divinity through gnosis? So many questions… and so many answers depending on where we look.

As told in the Creation Myth, Cernunnos provided the Third Children of Danu with an amazing gift. The sorcerous flame he ignited and bestowed upon mortal man was pure potential, the potential to overcome fate. The Great Mother Danu stood by, content to allow circumstance unfold and grow, all powerful, all knowing… a gnostic Monad in all sense of the word. She smiled and caressed his shoulder with affection as he left the garden because she knew at that moment in time her new creations had been given the ability to break the cycle of birth and death and become divine creators and destroyers in their own right. No longer bound within a system and equipped to be the architects and engineers of their own realities, masters and travelers along all branches and roots of The Great Oak, great Aeons of light and darkness. With each ascension the Great Mother becomes more than she was before. This is the meaning of divinity. It presses the limits of comprehension when you truly sit and meditate over the concept for any length of time.

The decision to break the cycle of death and renewal is a personal one. Some feel content and fulfilled to live life after life for ages upon ages, even many practitioners of the Left Hand Path. There is nothing inherently right or wrong with this choice. I tend to think of this along the lines of a big fish in a small pond. As we gain knowledge and experience, portions carry over after each re-birth. We have flashes of insight and moments of satori that can create conscious jumps in our self-development and make walking the arcane paths easier and more fruitful. We become more powerful, sometimes for good, and sometimes for evil… and it is a well-known fact that power is intoxicating and addictive, more so than the finest opiate. I firmly believe though that it will get to the point for all mortals where they will make a choice of their own free will… Some will transcend into something more and leave our mortal world behind, and for others fate will become too much to bear and they will wander off of The Low Road to be consumed and utterly destroyed, or to roam lost and forlorn for eternity… no longer bound to the cycle. For them the end is often truly the end. Their divine spark snuffed out, never to be re-ignited. A form of final suicide. Either way they will find emancipation from the cycle. Some of us are old souls and are closer to making this decision, others are newer sparks birthed from the great cauldron and will not be faced with this decision for ages to come. Some are driven and consciously seeking this outcome and will reach the portal much sooner. The variables are many and it would be an impossible task to exhaust all possibilities in this post, or any other text.

Although we have the potential to attain divinity through gnosis, the knowledge required to do so must be obtained through hard work, an open mind, and dedication to our craft. We must actively acquire it, often times over the course of many lifetimes. In this, the Great Goat God of the Witches continues to assist us. He whispers and teaches arts and lore to those willing to listen, and this is the basis for gnosis. It is the cumulative knowledge gleaned and retained until the moment to act is reached. Gnosis is nothing more than knowledge… and it can be found everywhere.

And he shall separate them one from another,

as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats.

And he shall set the sheep on his right,

but the goats on his left.

— Matthew 25: 32-33

Do not allow yourselves to be herded to the right brothers and sisters. You are not docile sheep. Seek the path of The Goat, and the gnosis that will set you free.

Faith

“I slept with faith and found a corpse in my arms on awakening; I drank and danced all night with doubt and found her a virgin in the morning.”

― Aleister Crowley, The Book of Lies

Lares

Ancestral spirits who protect the home and hearth, all cultures seem to have them in one form or another… but the word “Lares” just seems to roll off the tongue and feels good. The dead often self-bind themselves to our physical world, delaying their journey on the Low Road, and the living relatives that they leave behind are often the reason. Love, duty, honor… they are all strong concepts that carry over. As long as we give them reasons to tarry, and a sense of purpose, those spirits will remain with us to watch, protect, and comfort. Small devotional altars, or shrines, are recommended. Pictures or mementos of our ancestors, things that were important to them should be placed there. Offerings of incense, food, and other comforts should be made on a regular basis to let them know we think of them and appreciate their sacrifices and attention. If you have a hearth or fireplace, that location would be ideal, and failing that a kitchen, as they are areas intimately tied to the family structure, places where family members come together to prepare food, eat, and ward away the darkness and cold of the winter months.

Shrines are always very personal creations, and there is no right or wrong way to build one. No exact measurements. No specific items to be placed on them. I always love seeing pictures and reading about other people’s shrines. Look around for inspiration, particularly in those cultures that have been practicing this art for ages… there are many.

Manannán mac Lir – A Story

Seamus, a young man of only 16 years, sat at the crest of a long wind swept dune near the tree line on a very small island. There were more rocks than trees though, and the small thickets of vegetation were bent and gnarled from constant seaborne wind. He watched the rolling breakers hitting the shore, tears streaming down his face. His ship had wrecked on nearby rocky shoals, and he had been the only survivor to make it to land. He could still see the remains of its masts and rigging bobbing among the flotsam and jetsam littering the waves. He felt like retching. He remembered only a week before, his pappy telling him to make an offering to The Lord of the Waves… and he had heeded that advice. He remembered dropping his only silver shilling into the sea with a short prayer to Manannán mac Lir. A coin he had earned working the potato fields near Dublin, waiting for his chance for employment on the fishing boat. It seemed the gesture had been in vain though. It had been days since he had eaten and he felt his body weakening. He had found small reservoirs of stale water in the stumps of a few trees… but those were being used up rapidly.

Lost in his thoughts and despair, he did not notice the other man on the island until he was nearly upon him. He was tall, dressed in old style oiled leathers, and carried a large wool crane bag on his shoulder. Shoulder length hair was bound in a braid. Seamus was speechless. He saw no ship, and could not comprehend how this man came to be there. The man strode up to him and stood there, silently appraising him. Seamus stuttered out two simple questions: “Who are you, and where did you come from?” The man smiled gently and gestured for silence. He collected dead wood while Seamus watched, and when he had a decent sized pile, bent near it and whispered a few strange words. The pile burst into flames, and Seamus’s eyes widened in disbelief. The man then reached into his crane bag and withdrew a small pig. He dispatched the animal and was soon roasting the delicate flesh in the fire. Realization soon dawned upon poor Seamus. He was in the presence of a God.

He ate in silence while Manannán mac Lir watched him, eagerly consuming all that was given to him. Finally he asked, with eyes averted, “My Lord, why did you save me?”

Manannán mac Lir smiled softly and his voice was low, almost like the pounding of waves on rock. “You did not survive because I saved you Seamus, you survived because you can swim, and you put every ounce of effort and energy into surviving. The Gods sometimes help those who help themselves, but making an offering and uttering a prayer never hurts.” He grinned as he flipped a silver shilling onto the sand at Seamus’s feet. The boy stared at the coin dumbfounded, he felt dizzy and faint, light of body and mind. Moments later Manannán mac Lir held a great swan in his hands, and as he thrust it into the sky and released it he said softly “Fly Seamus… fly.”

As he watched the large swan take flight and head towards the mainland, the Great Goddess Danu approached from a nearby copse of trees, a small smile on her face. She bent down and picked up the silver shilling, brushing grains of sand from it as she stood. With a twinkle in her eye she said, “Lord Manannán, you should have been a potter.” With a sly grin he said, “Aye, I sprinkled water upon inert clay at the creation of your Third Children, Great Mother, aiding in their shaping… and even now I feel the need to do a little molding.” A small pig nestled against his leg, grunting for attention, and he bent over, picked it up, and placed it back into his crane bag.

Circumstance

“Do not be afraid of your difficulties. Do not wish you could be in other circumstances than you are. For when you have made the best of an adversity, it becomes the stepping stone to a splendid opportunity.”

― Helena Petrovna Blavatsky

Twilight Sleep Invocation

Meditation has much value in witchcraft. It clears the mind, cleanses away distractions, and prepares one mentally for any arcane working, great or small. It also creates fertile ground for knowledge, insight, and self-development. It can also be a tool or technique for entering the altered state of awareness known as “Twilight Sleep”, where the practitioner is neither asleep nor awake, but in a condition that can easily be characterized as something between the two. This is one of the first steps in venturing into the astral realms.

With that being said though, bear in mind that meditation and other types of cleansing rites are not a prerequisite for rituals, spell casting, or other types of craft work. I cannot even begin to count the number of sources I have seen that direct it as necessity. It is merely a tool that can lead to greater success. If your will is strong and your intent is focused you will, more likely than not, achieve similar levels of success. Meditation and altered states of awareness just make the process easier.

I like to begin my meditations with an invocation, and the following is one I adapted for my own path from Janet and Stewart Farrar’s works. I have to say… it is one of my favorites.

 Great God Cernunnos, come forth again!

 Come at my call and show thyself to men.

 Goat God of Witches, upon the wild hill’s way,

 Lead thy flock from darkness to day.

 Forgotten are the ways of sleep and night –

 Men seek for them, whose eyes have not found the light.

 Open the door, the door that hath no key,

 The door of dreams, whereby men come to thee.

 Goat God of Witches , O answer unto me! (18)

Awards

Just a little note. I created an awards page as I’m trying to keep the main page clear of images and other media. If you are directed here due to a nomination, or would like to make a nomination, please take a peek at the awards page in the header above. Thanks!

Invisibility

A long time ago I jotted this down in a notebook, the author unknown due to my tendency at that time in my life to overlook little matters such as that.

Get a raven or a crow’s heart, split it open with your athame; make three cuts and place a black bean in each cut. Plant it, and when the beans sprout put one in in a pouch hung about your neck and say–

 By virtue of Blackbird’s heart,
And by strength of my great art,
I desire to be invisible… and forgettable.

So mote it be.

And so it will be as long as the bean is kept around your neck, and until the next full moon. Be aware though, this invisibility is not one in which light is refracted and you cannot be seen. It is one of glamour in which people will tend to “not notice you.” You will be less conspicuous and the memory of those who have seen you will be somewhat foggy and unclear.

Bonsai?

“Trimming, pruning, especially for regular maintenance, requires that he who tends it must make thought out decisions of which new growth should flourish and which should be cut away. Doing so in an effective, artful manner – and with health of the miniature plant in mind – requires foresight. Proper foresight, in turn, requires patience.” (17)

-Darth Draconis

Bonsai?

… Or not.

The Left Hand Path teaches us that we must cultivate our inner selves, strive for personal growth, and learn the lessons that the Goat God of the Witches whispers into our ears while we sleep and while we walk in the shadows. True power requires both foresight and patience, cutting off that which does not serve us and nurturing that which contributes to positive growth… personal habits, points of view, things, and people. This requires introspection and meditation, knowing who we are, where we want to be, and what stands in our way.

Ink – Rivers upon which Boats of Will and Intent Sail…

Never pick a fight with people who buy ink by the barrel.

– Mark Twain

Many spells, talismans, and charms have a written component. This begs the question of what components are to be used in their construction. Often times the recipes or directions are very basic and do not elaborate greatly. As with all arcane rituals, and with life in general, what you put into your art can have a proportionate effect on what you get out of it. I have touched upon my views before that atmosphere and ceremonial practices have a tendency to more easily place the mind into altered states that are conducive to successfully working magic. Therefore, would it be prudent to buy a pad of lined paper and a blue ink click pen at Wal-Mart and put it to use? I do not think so. Ink can be mixed, feathers can be easily made into quill pens, and paper can be self-manufactured. It is work. It takes effort. To become good takes practice. The self-satisfaction can be enormous though. With that being said, the pad of lined paper and blue ink click pen will work if that is the method you choose to pursue. I’m the first to say “to each his, or her, own…”

I’m not a fan of making 300 different types of inks and papers for every conceivable rite or ritual. In my opinion it would be a foolish waste of time and resources. Other components, such as herbs, can be easily weaved into the magical working with greater ease and equal effect.

I have listed three types of ink and one paper recipe below, which should be sufficient for most, if not all, craftwork.

You can follow this link to a very interesting page instructing on Writing Quill Construction. Josh Berer also has an extremely professional WordPress Blog with a lot of information on Ink and Calligraphy. A very comprehensive work written in 1904 by David N. Carvalho on inks can be found here. Knowledge is power, and I challenge you to delve into some of these subjects in an effort to expand your own horizons.

 Dragon’s Blood Ink. 

  • 1 teaspoon Dragon’s Blood resin (powdered)
  • 10 teaspoons alcohol
  • 1 teaspoon Gum Arabic (powdered)
  • 3 drops Red food coloring

Steep the powdered resins in the alcohol until dissolved, and then add the red coloring for a deeper and brighter color. Filter and store in a dark bottle.

Black Ink

  • 2 tablespoon Lamp Black
  • 1 tablespoon Gum Arabic (powdered)
  • Small bowl of warm distilled water and an eyedropper

Grind the Lamp Black into a fine powder, mix in the Gum Arabic, and then drop by drop add distilled water until it is the consistency of useable ink. Store in a dark bottle.

Brown Walnut  Ink

  • Crushed shells of three dozen walnuts
  • 3 tablespoon Gum Arabic (powdered)
  • 3 rusty nails
  • 1 cup distilled water

Place walnut shells and rusty nails in pan and cover with distilled water. Add Gum Arabic and cook on low heat, with a lid on the pan, for 1-2 hours. Pour all contents into a glass bowl, cover top with plastic wrap, and soak for 5 days. Strain ink into a dark bottle.

Homemade Paper

1. First, make several frames: Bend an old wire coat hanger into a square or other desired shape, fastening the ends together with tape in the middle of one side (not in the corner). Pull a pair of pantyhose over the square or shape. Trim the ends of the pantyhose, and tie a knot on either side of the square or shape.

2. Tear newspaper into small pieces. Use of a paper shredder also works well. Other types of paper such as egg cartons, old greeting cards, old white printer paper, etc. can also be used. The key is to get the material into a very small shredded state.

3. Add the paper material and water in a pan. Ratio you should start with is approximately 1 cup of water per 1 cup of shredded paper. Boil and stir your paper mixture in a large pan until it becomes the consistency of oatmeal, adding water as required. For color and variety, you can add bits of dried leaves, flowers or grass, the papery outer skin of an onion, etc.

4. Let mixture cool. Add 2 tablespoons of white glue for every cup of paper material, and mix it evenly.

5. Wet the frame. Spoon the mixed paper material onto the frame, smoothing it out to the desired thickness. Hold the frame over your pan and allow the excess water and paper material to run off. When it stops running it can be hung up for drying.

6. Hang the frame in a well ventilated area until it is completely dry! Carefully peel the paper from the frame. You can then place it between 2 towels to press it with an iron on low heat, or let it sit overnight under heavy books to smooth it out. (16)

Moral Laws

“Heaven makes no moral laws, but gives us instincts towards rightness and virtue.” (15)

The Logomachy of Zos – Austin Osman Spare

Cron Annwn

The fogs and mists drift through the woods, flowing down from the hills like an opaque stream and collect in brushy hollows and low spots. Eddies and currents powered by light tendrils of wind move it randomly, almost hypnotically in random directions. The fog glows softly with light from a full moon you cannot see through low cloud cover. You can feel the silence… it is almost tangible. Nights like this are when we often see spirits of the dead who have self-bound to our world walking the night, or hear stories of frightening encounters with the Unseelie Court. We know not whether it is something inherent in a foggy night, or the result of our own projected fear and apprehension. We just know it is this way.

There are abundant stories, passed on orally from father to son and mother to daughter, of the White Hounds in the mists… Cron Annwyn. Few have seen them, but those that have claim they are spotless white of fur with red colored ears, standing nearly the height of a grown man. Their howling is loudest when they are at a distance, and as they draw nearer, it grows softer and softer as they approach their quarry. They roam the mists hunting the spirits of the dead, or those who have committed serious evil deeds, devouring them to sustain their own existence. It is more than probable that they are Sidhe, and it is said they dwell in the Underworld under the sway of Morrígan, The Crone, when they are not roaming the surface world.

The hunt does not differentiate between evil and good spirits, and this serves as another reminder on why we must not stray from The Low Road when it is our time to begin our own journey to the Cauldron. Also, the next time you find yourself in the fogs and the mists, when the sun has dipped below the horizon, listen for Cron Annwn… and if their howls seem to be receding, and you have evil in your heart… head indoors and cast your wards. (14)

The Power of Charms..

It is very unfortunate that the power of charms and other similar incantations fell out of favor with modern man in recent centuries, and equally interesting to see the slow revival in the last few decades. The medical establishment lost a valuable tool when the age of reason and the development of the scientific method supplanted the influence of hedge witches, the cunning woman and man, and other practitioners of the medieval healing professions. The church did an excellent job in suppressing the pagan religions that were at the forefront of those arts, but early renaissance men saw their value, even if they discounted their arcane worth and attributed success to divine intervention.

Lea Olsan eloquently put a finger on the proverbial pulse when she stated “This belief in the power of the words to change the circumstances or reality lies at the basis of the use of a charm. The words might be spoken in a patient’s ear, written on bread or hosts and ingested, or carried on the person as a preventative. The directions for performance of the charm not seldom include specific accompanying acts, which in late medieval manuscripts are often simple tasks of caretakers, on the one hand, or acts intended to strengthen the sufferer mentally by means of evocation of deeply felt religious symbols.” (13)

Early attempts at melding charms into modern medicine was attempted by the church, without the success they saw in absorbing and assimilating the ontology of pagan life. When they stamped out their accepted use in healing, I believe they doomed many innocent people. Prayers and charms should have gone hand in hand with new and innovative treatments, but this was incompatible with doctrine.

We now know of the incredible power of the “Placebo Effect”, and as practitioners of witchcraft we also know it is even more profound than that. Effect can indeed be shaped by Will alone… the essence of magic. Neither way is more beneficial or powerful without the other. 1+0=1… 1+1=2. Basic mathematics are applicable.

Latin Charms and Oral Tradition

Understanding..

“To understand the living, you got to commune with the dead.”

– Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil  (1997)

The “real you”…

“You can’t study the darkness by flooding it with light.”

– Edward Abbey

Self examination and introspection can reveal surprising insights into who, or what, we are. Mainstream religion over the centuries has conditioned mankind to repress, to avoid, and to fear our true nature. Pope Gregory was foolish, yet apparently effective. In an attempt to control the masses he whittled and shaped his “deadly sins”, yet was  unable to tear away from the influence of Pythagoras. Very hypocritical. A “perfect number” manifest in all of its glory. Remember though, we must not confuse sin with human nature. We should embrace all parts of who we are, without letting them consume us. They are foundations for true understanding. Abstinence is the only true sin… (12)

 

 

 

Ties Between Witchcraft and Mental Illness

I’m still chuckling. In fact my stomach hurts a little now. I heard someone recently state that anyone claiming to be a witch is crazy. This prompted me to find a few on-line mental health exams, and I have to note the third one seemed pretty respectable. Anyway… surprise, surprise.

Mental Health Quiz = Bipolar disorder 35% depressed.

Sociopath Survey = You are a high functioning sociopath.

The Great American Psychopath Survey (11) = Your psychopathy score is somewhat high: 133 out of 224

Of Savage Lust, and a Pact with the Goat God of the Witches

Éabhla scurried through the dense brush, mud and tears staining her cheeks. The gurgle of the nearby river Shannon could be heard rolling against it banks. Her body shook with fear, which slowly began to turn to rage. Her sister had been burned at the stake not more than two hours prior, and she was still in a deep state of shock. Times had been rough since their parents had walked the Low Road, and she and her sister had been forced to rely on prostitution to afford food. Connaught was not an easy place to make a living, as most others were also poor. They did what they had to do to survive though. Their luck took an even worse turn when a jealous wife accused them of witchcraft. The arrests and trials had been swift. There had really been no hope of true justice. She could still hear in her own mind the screams of her sister from her dank cell as the flames had consumed her flesh. She had prayed to the old gods, begging for help, crumpling into a sobbing heap on the pile of filthy hay on the dirt floor while she waited for them to load fresh faggots of kindling and wood around the stake.

She did not know who the cloaked and hooded woman was that unlocked her cell, and in fact she did not even see her enter the stone walled hut serving as her place of detention. She had entered the torch lit room quiet as a wraith. All three guards had fallen fast asleep, but only seconds earlier had been boasting and laughing about the executions in progress. It was surreal. As the door swung open the woman reached in and lifted her up gently by the arm and whispered in her ear, “Child, I have come to free you from your bonds and give you choices. Your sister now walks the Low Road, but it is not yet your time. Morrigan is not yet ready to cut your thread and call you home. If you wish security make your way to Kildare, the sisterhood will take you in and you will be safe. They will indoctrinate you and you will become a keeper of the flame. If you seek vengeance though, head to the river with all due haste. The choice is yours… make it wisely.”

Éabhla had no doubt where she would go. After exiting the doorway she sprinted to the nearby tree line, her tattered skirts flying about her. When she glanced back there was no sign of her savior. She headed toward the river, branches scratching her skin in her rush to get there.

She crouched near an old gnarled Oak Tree, her ears straining for any sign that she had been pursued. She expected to hear the sharp cries of villagers and see wan halos of torchlight in the mists, but there was nothing. She could feel a presence though, but her determination to avenge her sister squashed any fear trying to creep into her heart. After a long period of time a low guttural voice from the darkness startled her. “Child, you walk in darkness and you have called upon the old gods in your despair… what is it you seek?” She replied softly, her eyes straining to see who spoke to her. “I was told to come to the river if I wished vengeance.” After a few short moments the voice again carried through the darkness. “The Mother always offers choices child. You chose to come to the river. Do you forgo your other choice?” Éabhla straightened her back and stated simply “I do.” There was a chuckle that sounded reminiscent of rolling thunder many miles away. “Are you willing to make sacrifice for the vengeance you are seeking?” She bit her lip and said flatly “I am.”

A very large shadow drifted from the lee side of a nearby boulder where the speaker had been concealed. Éabhla’s heart skipped a beat in her chest when she realized the huge man had the head of a massive goat. He was no man at all. He was Cernunnos, God of Witches. As he approached she could smell the acrid odor of his skin and see the feral glow of eyes reflecting weak moonlight making its way through thin wisps of fog. Her legs became weak. She was enamored with his overwhelming physical presence, with the way he moved, the sound of his voice. Before she knew what she was doing she was casting her skirts aside and guiding his gigantic phallus to her entry. They rutted, oblivious to the world, and he whispered secrets to her. Secrets of poppets and curses, mysteries concerning herbs, bindings for demons and other Lesser Powers, and lore of all kinds. She was unmindful of the world, lost in pleasure and pain… and the secrets kept coming. In between grunts and squeals she offered herself, body and soul, into his service for the rest of her life. After what seemed to be ages he grunted and filled her with his seed, a flow her small body could not contain, and her cup did run over. The Goat God of the Witches rolled her over, gently patted her belly, and softly said in his throaty voice, “New life has been created to replace one that has been lost, and you now have the knowledge and power to avenge a wrong if you choose to do so. You are now truly that which you and your sister were accused of and punished for.”

Less than a month later the judges presiding over the trial of Éabhla and her sister had taken their own lives… all of them. Some experienced sudden and strange illness, some had lost their minds degenerating into incoherent babbling of witches and demons, and a few just ended their existence with no apparent reason at all.

Carnal Reflections

Sex, beautiful sex. The foreplay, the build-up, the climax, the tingling all over. The energy released can be awe-inspiring… or not. I suppose it can vary greatly depending on the mood and the partner. As I get older I have found the importance placed on the act itself can be over-rated, but it is undeniable that when things “click” and when used in conjunction with a magical working, things can literally grow wings and fly at the speed of light. Many societies, including our own, are still mired in the prudish and puritanical chains of the past. The Left Hand Path frees us from these restraints. We do what feels right, and step outside the grasping claws of the mainstream religious right who preach social and political conservatism, but who in reality are promoting nothing more than spiritual slavery.

The embracing of the taboo can be exhilarating in itself. I remember over ten years ago when my wife and I began to swing and enjoy the debauchery life has to offer in its fullest, the idea was even more intoxicating than the acts. We have slowed down over the years though. I think that just comes with age… and perhaps too much of a good thing? Who knows… If you find our profile on swinglifestyle I guess I can give you a cookie, or a brownie point. *Grins* My advice though is to embrace what feels right. Don’t worry about who is touching who, don’t fret over who’s watching, and don’t deprive yourself of the experience. One, two, three, four… the more the merrier. When the church bell tolls for you my brothers and sisters, flip it the middle finger and walk into the shadows. The Goat God of the Witches will be there to embrace you.

Evoking and Summoning

Evoking and Summoning are very dangerous arts, but a source of considerable power. The Will must be strong, and the Focus sharp when working these types of magic. Many traditions frown upon these types of craftwork, but as a practitioner of a Left Hand Path, this does not concern me. Some will point out that Evoking and Summoning are the same art, but this could not be further from the truth. Evoking is the practice of dealing with, commanding, and binding of spirits and Lesser Powers that have been summoned, usually through processes such as pacts or exorcism. Summoning is attributed to the process of calling a spirit or Lesser Power. The Goat God of the Witches has given us the knowledge necessary to accomplish these things, and as such we should explore this darker side of our craft.

The purposes of evoking and summoning are many, but the most common are for guardians, protection, assistance with tasks or desired outcomes, knowledge, and as weapons. The same principles here apply to both evoking and summoning of Lesser Powers, and the spirits of the dead who have been bound and linger. The ideal time for evoking and summoning are “the witching hours”, 12:00 a.m. until the break of dawn.

A summoning will require the casting of a proper ritual circle for protection, and construction of a thaumaturgic triangle outside of the perimeter of the ritual circle, in the northern quarter. A thaumaturgic triangle is simply an equilateral triangle drawn within a circle, all three sides of the triangle touching the edges of the circle. Inscribed in the enclosed points outside the triangle, inside the circle, but not touching any of the lines of the triangle or circle, will be custom incantations tailored to the type of summoning that will be conducted. There are many other valid types of containment, but this is the one I choose. Charge the thaumaturgic triangle similar to the ritual circle with your athame.

Remember that anything with a “hollow” or open space can be used to house or contain a spirit or Lesser Power; therefore you do not ever want to perform a summoning in your home, or within a permanently inscribed thaumaturgic triangle. Allowing the possibility of an entity taking up residence where you live can be a bad idea. I strongly recommend against binding spirits into portable items with the intent of keeping them indefinitely. They will rebel and seek your undoing. If you ever come across one of these items, I recommend not touching them and leaving the area immediately. Often times these entities or spirits have been tortured, abused, and forced into compliance by strong willed practitioners and they are not going to be friendly. You have been fairly warned…

You may hear from other sources about thought form construction in relation to summoning. This is not truly evoking or summoning and a separate art entirely. At some point I will post concerning that type of working. I would just like to comment that if the purpose of your evoking and summoning is to be offensive in nature, thought form construction is a much safer route for you as the practitioner… and it can be much more effective, reliable, and devastating.

After the ritual circle and thaumaturgic triangle are constructed, you must prepare a written pact. This is the bargain you intend to strike with the spirit or Lesser Power you will summon. Some research may be required to discover what payment or exchange the intended entity may be inclined to accept. Often they will desire a small portion of your life energy, which I deem acceptable. Sometimes something of value must be given before one can take something of value. All commerce with spirits is founded upon a law of exchange. Have caution that you do not bargain your soul though, for any pact using that as currency will be binding, and will be to your greatest ruin. Also, if you feel like your soul, or your entire life essence is the only thing of value you have to offer, the Left Hand Path may not be the road you are intended to walk anyway. After you have successfully summoned a willing spirit or Lesser Power you may have to negotiate changes, so have writing implements on hand. Some practitioners forgo negotiating and simply bind the entity through force of will to accept the pact. This is dangerous, but very possible. The first part of any pact should address the requirement that no harm to you, or yours be perpetrated or aided by the spirit or Lesser Power. The pact shall spell out what is required of both parties, the terms of the agreement, and the termination of the contract after both parties have fulfilled their obligations. The writing of the contract is a form of binding, and the written words are sigils imbued with the magic of your craftwork. Do not be afraid to walk away without coming to an agreement and entering into a pact if the price asked is too high. Be cautious if a spirit or entity asks for your blood, hair, or a personal item as part of your pact, as this can give it power over you. As Arthur Edward Waite has said “Against these you must be on your guard, because the guileful friend becometh an open enemy.” (11.) It is advised that no spirit or entity be detained beyond the time of one hour.

Light several incense sources near the thaumaturgic triangle, and ensure there is a copious amount of candlelight around both diagrams. Often times a summoned entity will manifest in the smoke and shadows. Sometimes they will speak audibly, sometimes only in your mind. Also, have a bowl of salt available in your protective ritual circle in case the need to exorcise a difficult or aggressive entity arises. Be aware, this is always a possibility. Also be aware that you may not be successful in a summoning as there may be no answering entity

Stand within your ritual circle facing the godstang, with an appropriate wand in hand, and an athame laying near your feet. Hazel is an ideal type of wand wood for a working such as this.

Raise your protective wards.

Cernunnos, Goat God of the Witches, I beseech thee to bless this rite,

watch and protect me in this endeavor, light the darkness with the cunning light between thy horns.

From a bowl you have within your ritual circle, grab a handful of dry earth with your left hand and let it slowly trickle through your fingers onto the ground, using caution not to allow it to fall onto the lines comprising your ritual circle. If you are summoning a spirit, grave soil is most appropriate.

I cast forth earth, symbolic of the surface world, Domain of the Third Children of Danu.

By wand I implore a willing entity, (A specific name if known)

come forth and heed my call, manifest that we may parley.

By wand I implore a willing entity,  (A specific name if known)

come forth and heed my call, manifest that we may parley.

By wand I implore a willing entity,  (A specific name if known)

come forth and heed my call, manifest that we may parley.

Three times the call goes forth, do any (You) answer?

If there is no answer, the above can be incanted two more times before the rite should be abandoned until another night.

If a spirit or entity makes an appearance, negotiate your pact. Once an agreement has been reached, or one has not been reached and the space of an hour has elapsed, the spirit or entity can be released from the triangle by grounding the diagram with your athame. Grounding merely consists of a minor working that involves pointing your athame at your thaumaturgic triangle and willing the barrier to discharge its energy into the earth. It is a similar task to raising and lowering your protective wards.

Cernunnos, Goat God of the Witches, I thank thee for watching over my rite,

I walk in shadows and seek the light,

My face looks to the heavens for the morning star, and as always I will find thee burning bright.

Once the terms of the pact are discharged it should be burned and the ash buried in the earth.

If the pact is not honored by the entity or spirit, it can be forced into compliance through other means using the pact, or released if you are of kinder disposition.

If the pact is not honored by you, woe may come knocking upon your door.

Self Truth..

“Self truth results from the unification of Will, Desire and Belief forced into one thing. By this effectiveness the soul draws near and casts its omniscience over us by inspiration.” (15)

The Logomachy of Zos – Austin Osman Spare

An Interesting Adaptation of an Old Curse..

Curses and hexes are one of many dangerous types of craft-work in the repertoire of a practitioner of the Left Hand Path. Our Goat God whispers from the shadows to those of us inclined to listen… those of us with the will to use the darker arts. There always exists the possibility of persecution or attacks from the ignorant, the self-righteous, and society’s sheep; therefore it is prudent to have weapons at one’s disposal. From time to time I will post interesting curses and hexes, but you will not receive admonitions to “not use them” or “this is only for educational purposes.” You will need to make your own decisions on use and appropriateness. I am a realist in many respects and understand there are some individuals that cannot be reasoned with, cannot be negotiated with, and will single-mindedly seek to do you harm. My two cents is you should crush them. They are beneath you and not worthy of pity. You will hear me say in posts from time to time that the gods did not give the wolf teeth with the expectation that it not use them in defense of self, or the pack. This is a philosophical truism that holds much water in my opinion.

Bottle Curse of the Flies

Note, this curse is most effective when the weather is warm; therefore it is best suited to late spring, summer, and early fall. I prefer to do the casting during the witching hours and by candlelight.

1. Procure a medium sized bottle. The cork will not be required for this working. I prefer cobalt blue bottles myself, although a clear bottle that will allow you to see the contents can be very agreeable under the right circumstances.

2. Place a photograph of your intended target into the bottle, or nail clippings, hair, or a piece of clothing they have been in contact with. These items maintain a spiritual connection to the person whom they belonged to and will create a thread whereby the curse can find them and deliver its full effect.

3. Place a piece of raw meat inside the bottle.

Write the following on a piece of paper, and when complete read the incantation over the bottle. Focus the will and convey your intent as you weave and bind this spell. Slip the piece of paper into the bottle with the meat.

By candle light, deep in night,

this spell I craft full of spite.

Rot in soul, rot in flesh,

You will hunger, you will thirst, nothing will refresh.

Pain and fire, on swift wings come,

Buzzing death, like demons drums.

So I will it, So mote it be!

Place the uncorked bottle in a shady and out of the way place near your target’s home. Anywhere within about a ¼ of a mile should be sufficient. Avoid places where passersby may smell the odor. As maggots hatch in the rotting meat they will grow into flies and will carry the curse to your intended target repeatedly.

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