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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Imperial Arts' LiveJournal:

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    Friday, August 30th, 2013
    12:09 am
    The Novice Arts
    The subject of preparation for the ceremonies being so frequently asked, and with the new image features of Livejournal, I would like to describe the preliminary rites of conjuration applicable throughout the Lemegeton.

    The idea that the 5th book of the Lemegeton is to be spoken as a consecration of the circle and ceremonial effects is not new. It appears explicitly in the text, in describing the prayers to be made upon entering the circle. There are ten such prayers for the circle itself, as well as others for the pentacles and triangle. The prayers of the circle are, I believe, of great importance to the ceremony as they contain the foundations of the system itself, the structure under which the whole idea of spirits and conjurations is expected to operate.

    I am presenting these as photo-copies from my own working text, originally 14x22 inches, with the black text as the spoken portion, the red text as cipher for the Hebrew words in the circle, and the green as meditations on the themes indicated by these names.
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    It is certain that every person will come to a slightly different understanding of these terms, and that an individual will develop his own understanding as time passes. It is also irrelevant, in my opinion, whether or not one really considers these things a part of some absolute reality or truth, so long as they are understood as elements of the Lemegeton system. I do not believe that it is at all important to understand the cultural context of the rituals, whether they are 16th century or prehistoric or entirely modern, so long as one has a well-considered grasp of the major theoretical and practical points of the system.

    The ceremonies operate far more like a subpoena than a phone-call, and this is an aspect of the work largely ignored in the literature of the subject. The reader of these texts is told to do and say various things which will, hopefully, contact a spirit. Contacting a spirit is a relatively small matter, with little difference to be made between requesting Captain Howdy on the Ouija board and evoking the infernal princes in elaborate regalia. The ceremony, with its obscure complexities, is intended to do more than merely attract attention or to assault spirits with holy names and dire incantations.

    The ceremony of conjuration is designed to effect an environment similar to proceedings in a court of law, wherein both parties -the spirit and the magician - assent voluntarily into covenants with one another. A covenant is much that a bargain or contract is not, and lest there be some confusion of terms it should be understood that the conjuration is designed to express the will or testament of the magician. It must be entered with a clear mind, having the facts of the matter in view, or else it is invalidated. The oath and covenant made by the magician is not with the spirit, but with God who is supreme over men and spirits alike, and this is another point entirely lost in modern presentations of demonology despite it being on the first page of the most common grimoires.

    In the case of the circle invocations, one must decide what it means to be a "Servant of the Most High" and to establish an understanding of his relationship with the spirits and their Creator. The circle itself is like the chariot of Ezekiel, a series of concentric rings surrounded by fire with a throne in the midst and six-angled figures on four sides, and for the ceremony it is the means by which the magician is figuratively exalted in divine power. There is perhaps not an absolutely correct way of understanding these things, but if one has no understanding of them or if they are denied, then the whole work is a sham and the oaths and conjurations are of no account.

    I should mention also that this is not, in my opinion, a matter of generating "subjective synthesis" or any kind of fundamental agreement with the supposed grimoire paradigm. Rather, it is an understanding that the manner in which the grimoire is designed to operate is through the establishment of covenants, and that without acknowledgement of the terms of the covenants one proceeds in futility whether he is pious or perverse.
    Tuesday, August 20th, 2013
    11:54 pm
    The Almadel
    This is intended to be a brief review of the Almadel, from my own perspective and experiences. I realize that my writing can come across as an authoritative style, but in point of fact I am simply presenting my personal take on the subject as with all of these other things in the journal, and you are free to take it or leave it.

    It is my opinion that the Almadel is the first of the "practical" arts that one should pursue in the Lemegeton series. This is due to the ease with which one can acquire the physical implements of the ritual, and to the way in which the spirits are approached. It is an introduction to evocation which allows the spirits to declare what is "right and proper" for them to perform. The magician is not encouraged to bring his preconceived notions of practicality to the ritual, seeking treasures and lovers or secret wisdom, but rather places himself before the spirits for the reception of their communication whatever that might be. The manifestations are not expected to be especially fantastic, the intent being merely to establish a genuine contact with intelligent beings of a benevolent nature.

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    Those who view this art as a technical procedure, or who regard it from a literary/historical standpoint, are missing out on the real work. The magical art, even "slavish devotion to the instructions of the grimoires," is a personal and individual work. Aside from the craft work involved, there are philosophical concerns that arise in the course of the work which force one to make and stand behind bold decisions in regard to what one wants from life and how one wishes to obtain those things. I see so many people struggling to establish a practical paradigm which fits their personal motif, seeking out the most-original or most-complete ceremonies, and ever struggling to do what is indisputably correct or whatever is awesome in the eyes of their peers. In my own work, I have decided to simply choose this one particular system and explore it thoroughly, regardless of its provenance, and I have not found that to be limiting or opposed to anything that I have believed was good.
    Wednesday, August 14th, 2013
    7:00 pm
    Pauline Art: Abasdarhon
    I am usually quite reticent concerning the other elements of ritual in the Lemegeton, this journal being exclusive to the Goetia with only a few tangential references to the other sections. There are several reasons for this, chief among them the fact that I feel the results of my other work are of a deeply personal nature and should not be brought up for public inspection. Though matters of less concern, my other motivations for silence on these arts stem from the fact that this journal has been an attempt to explore what is arguably the most interesting and popular of all ceremonial magic texts.
    ArsP1

    Table
    For those who are less familiar with the Lemegeton, it is divided into five "books" and some of these have more than one section. These books are copied from Latin, Greek, and Hebrew source materials which are now lost, and the Lemegeton is one manifestation of the lineage which I have found sufficient for practice. My experiment has been to apply all of the instructions and explore what can or cannot be done if one were to confine the limits of occult practice to this one exemplary text. I believe that, due to being copied from Hebrew texts which read back-to-front and right-to-left, the books of the Lemegeton are printed in reverse order, so that one ought to properly begin with the Artem Novem, followed by the Almadel, the invocation of the Guardian Angel, the use of the Table of Practice, the two forms of Theurgy, and finally the Goetia which is invariably attempted before anything else.

    The use of the Table of Practice occurs in the section called "The Pauline Art," which is an obscure reference to visionary and revelatory magic according to J. Peterson and his source Lynn Thorndike. This is described, by means of illustration, as a round table with a Star of David, in which there are seven pairs of concentric circles, one at each point and one in the center. Between each pair of circles are six esoteric figures representing the planets, and in the center of each smaller circle there is a planetary symbol. The Sun is in the center with a letter R (resh, probably intended as the solar face), and the other planets are arranged clockwise beginning with Saturn at the top. Beside the top angle, there is the name of Jehovah.

    I made this table from a round piece of wood about 22 inches in diameter and one inch thick, engraved with a chisel and rotary tool, sanded and stained with darker areas in the concentric circles. This is set over a bronze table base about a foot high. For travel purposes, I used colored silk thread to embroider the same design on a linen cloth of equal size.
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    Have we come to such a low point in civilization that it is necessary to bring in the celestial hosts to remind people to love their wives, care for animals, and give a brother a break? That is frightening, and I would hate to think that this was the real need for the spirit to make such revelations public. Perhaps the spirit wished to encourage people away from demonic evocation while not discouraging them from occult rituals. Whatever the case, such was the revelation and I have done my best to relate it faithfully.
    Friday, June 14th, 2013
    12:59 am
    For the Inquisitive
    I am not dead or inactive, but have relocated to a small island some 23 miles offshore.


    This journal remains my personal work, not a professional publication, and as such it should be expected that I update it in a manner I deem fitting.


    Overall, I have greatly appreciated the responses to this work, but have long felt that much of what has been taken from this journal is not what I feel are its strongest merits, and so I will take this time to reflect on what this work is and what it is not.


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    I had debated whether or not to make further updates to this journal on account of the unsavory attention it has attracted at time despite the overall positive response. I will continue to consider that, but for the present I will only say that I am still alive and quite well.
    Tuesday, September 4th, 2012
    6:03 pm
    Goetia: Balaam #51
    BLOM (Balaam) pronounced "Bal- 'om"
    King Commanding 40 Legions
    South


    I have called the spirit of Balaam, who was the last holy prophet of the nations in the days of the Exodus, brother to the first king of Edom. In the grand tradition of the Bible repeating themes, Edom is the "wicked older brother" to Israel, its people the descendants of Esau. The Edomites had the blessings of the righteous, but lacked guidance. They were given a prophet, Balaam, and his corruption provoked the ruin of the whole nation over the course of centuries.

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    Of all the things said by the spirit, the one that struck me the most was that none of these wide-range world events mean much to me, and that I am better off using my time to focus on my personal goals. The banking collapse has been imminent for years, and yet the fringe outlets cry every day that the destruction of all things convenient is scheduled to happen next week. When it fails to manifest next week, the clock has been pushed back another month, or another year, until you have a situation not unlike those who watch and wait for the Rapture. Things of that nature can and do happen, but it is more productive to live in readiness for what can be expected than to live in fear of what cannot be expected.
    Friday, August 31st, 2012
    11:15 pm
    Goetia: Zepar #16
    TzPR (hornblast) pronounced "Zep-ar"
    Duke commanding 26 Legions
    This account was written well after the fact, from memory and hen-scrawl notes.

    I have often been dismayed by the vicious nature of human sexuality. When everything else is in place, this one thing will be out of sorts, and will be the one thing that causes every other well-arranged part of life to crumble into a heap. A person can be well-adjusted in every conversational way, skilled and diligent, healthy and comfortably fed, yet some minor sexual hang-up will bring no end of pain and worry.

    Personally I feel exempt from this, and have never really endured emotional struggles about sexuality. I'm not difficult to please or outlandish in my desires, and while I am not prudish, my sex life stays undercover where it belongs. Apparently the modern trend is something of the opposite, where everyone is expected to know the details as if they were of any importance to others.

    Although I'm not at all interested in what (or who) other people find desirable, the search for sexual fulfillment is an important part of the human psyche. I understand that it is important to fulfill the sexual impulses. For whatever reasons, these are not fulfilled in a significant part of the population. Where sexuality is carefully regulated, and seemingly functional socially, the security is counterweighted by outbursts of violent hysteria. Certain episodes of the Inquisition, and present-day East Africa, are excellent examples of what happens when sexuality is unduly restrained.

    The sexual impulse is represented in the image of this spirit as a crocodile. It dwells in a predictable environment - you know where to go to find it. It can lay dormant for an age and be fed rarely, or subsist on small fish while the lucky ones take the zebra and the gazelle. It is thoughtless, implacable, and tough as nails, and presents itself on a sudden. It is furious and powerful when provoked.

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    The incident with the woman has come and gone, according to him, and we await whether his true reward should manifest.
    Saturday, March 10th, 2012
    2:20 pm
    Goetia #1: Bael
    (BOL) pronounced "Ba-al"
    King with 66 Legions
    East

    The conjuration was performed during a day of strong winds. I covered the windows and laid the circle out on the new bamboo floor. If you ever have the opportunity to install new flooring and expect to save money on the installation, just forget it and pay someone to do it for you. The process was very labor-intensive and caused my house to be out of sorts for weeks as I removed the old flooring and prepared everything else.

    Further obstacles to the work included persistent illness and stacks of books. Only in the last week or so have I been able to clear the tens of thousands of books out of my house and into our new storefront. Between the books, being sick, working 60 hour weeks, and the flooring, I have had neither space nor time for these conjurations or much of anything else.

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    The spirit was cordial enough, but at one point called my approach "rude," for which I suppose it might be accurate as I had more interest in getting to work than to make idle conversation on the exaltation of man. The figure was evaporated as steam in the wind, when the License to Depart was given, and I have set down the record as faithfully as my memory can provide.
    Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011
    1:02 am
    Goetia #29: Astaroth

    OShTRTh (Astaroth) pronounced "Osh-tar-ot"
    Duke Commanding 40 Legions
    West
     
    What is the meaning and purpose of magic? Is it a secret advantage? A remedy for inadequacy? A neglected birthright? I see magic approached in the modern world as if it were all of these things. One person will use magic to obtain securities and favors he would otherwise not obtain, while another uses it to perform crimes with impunity, and yet another seeks guidance or healing from it. Those who see magic as a tool for purely spiritual gain often neglect its practical value, and vice versa. If it is a sacred art, it would seem out of line to employ it for such dubious ends as career adjustments and relief from minor worries; but if it is not to be used for ordinary things then its overall value is greatly diminished. I sought, first and foremost, answers about the foundations of magic from this spirit said to guard great Secrets: to know the purpose of magic, its significance as an art or science, and its fundamental mechanisms.
     
    From the very beginning, I received more than what I wanted; but in the end I was not disappointed.
     
     
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    I had spent quite a long time with the spirit and thought that, having received answers and a "discipline" which might elicit more, it was time to say the License to Depart. The room was already thick with haze from copious amounts of incense that had been put on the dying coal, and whether the spirit disappeared or simply faded into the fog was not apparent. It said nothing at its departure, and I wondered if it had gone at all, so I repeated the License to Depart twice more before concluding the ceremony.
     
     
     
     

    Monday, February 7th, 2011
    12:08 pm
    Uvall #47
    OVLL (perpetrate) pronounced "Ouh-lall"
    Duke commanding 37 Legions
    West
     
    Some of the spirits of the Vessel of Brass are permitted special privileges. Some are able to harm, betray, or deceive the magician, under particular conditions, and some are able to circumvent the securities and charges of the ceremony in ways that do not threaten the conjuration outright. These privileges make the conjuration process inconvenient, but do not prevent it from being effective. One must put up with the obstacles, or take account of the risks, in order to conjure these spirits.

    This spirit is said to provide the love of women, or of an especial woman, and to produce friendship between friends and foes. It is also described as having the ability to tell the past, present, and future of a subject, and to speak "in the Egyptian tongue,"  though badly. Aleister Crowley identifies this as "sound but colloquial Coptic," though I am unsure if he meant that as a joke, whether he meant simply to explain that Coptic is the traditional language of Egypt, or whether he had personal experience with the spirit.
     
     
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    "Adieu, foreigner," the spirit said at its going. The room filled with dust. Now I have always had dust, but this was a fierce dust that hung in the air for a long while and which was fine like the ash of spider silk. The doors were opened to the outside, and it was hours before the room cleared. The dust was entirely aerial: none could be collected or caught. My children were amused at the amount of it, and my wife was quite annoyed.
     
    It was only with the greatest patience that I was able to make notes on what was said during this encounter. Much of it was lost completely, and what remains written here is a fragmentary version that is shown only to give an example of the way in which this exchange occurred. For a comparison, observe a foreign speaker for half an hour and attempt to take notes on what was said without any knowledge of the language. I had the sound of the speech alone, and that spoken in what might have been a perfect pronunciation or a peculiar accent, without any way to distinguish between the two and without sufficient time to sort the matter out on the spot.

    Wednesday, January 12th, 2011
    12:59 am
    Goetia: #61 Zagan

    Zagan
    ZYYPN (coin-forger) pronounced "Zye-fon"
    King and President commanding 33 Legions
    North and West
     
    Sometimes the things described by occult literature appear to have no place in reality, or they appear to be plausible yet sit comfortably just beyond the realm of what is ordinarily considered possible. The books may instruct a magician, for example, to sandwich a magic square between to plates on the doorstep so that cheese will magically appear between the plates overnight; or they might say to bury a lobster and chant something from the Koran to manifest a spring of sparkling water. In the former case, it would be purely irrational to expect real cheese to suddenly pop into existence; but in the latter case there is a remote possibility that a spring may bubble out of the ground as that does happen in some places on occasion. Barring any mistranslations, like those of the infamous "Maine de Gloire" or Mandragore, an occult practitioner may feel at times that a given set of instructions is intentionally misleading, or that it may be pure bull concocted by idiots and crazy people.
     
    As for the buried crustaceans, the experiment will have to be undertaken by someone who finds them less edible than myself, and I can attest to total failure on my own account in all attempts to manifest cheese from the void. Even if a person were in the absurd position of actually being in dire need of some cheese overnight, and had no way to get it, the fifth Abramelin Square of the fifteenth chapter of the third part will probably never produce the cheese on demand. The 61st spirit, Zagan, presents similar challenges. It is described as having the power to transmute wine, water, and blood into each other; to transform metals into coin; and to make fools wise. It is within the normal scope of possibilities for a foolish person to become wise, but metals being transformed into coin might be a stretch, and the transmutation of wine is a mythic power.
     
    I came to the ritual prepared to investigate the powers of the spirit on the spot. I had a small malachite tray with grains of pure gold, and a large glass of water. I realized that it was likely the spirit could not simply transform gold nuggets into $10 war bonnet Liberties, but the idea that the spirit could transform the shape of the metal without affecting its substance was intriguing. Although it was beyond my original intention in conjuring the spirit, I was to learn something important about substance and shape from this encounter.
     
     
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    I am not certain that I want to live in full sight of all of my difficulties, with the knowledge of their presence always among my decisions. That kind of knowledge, like the wings of ease offered by the spirit, leads to a decay of personal initiative. I am satisfied with having an idea of how to approach my faults so that I can be free from them on my own accord. This spirit was full of surprises, this last one certainly the best. I bid the spirit License to Depart and left the doorways open to discharge the incense.

    Monday, October 18th, 2010
    5:28 pm
    New Paperbacks

    Here are two new paperback books! 

      and  
     
    The first is called Good Heavens! and deals exclusively with the practical elements of Astrology.
     
    I often meet occultists who have a passing fascination with Astrology, but have no real knowledge of the subject. There is a distinction to be made between understanding the virtues of the signs and planets, and actually knowing the square root of squat about Astrology itself. This book is a very brief attempt to remedy that widespread ignorance, giving occultists a stable technique for creating natal charts and horoscopes without the use of a computer and without reference to tiresome pseudo-psychology. It does not contain everything you need to be a professional Astrologer, but it does contain the necessary calculation processes for astrological charts, and visual aids to finding the Zodiac constellations by sight.

    http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/good-heavens/13031962
     
    The second book, The Tablets of Destiny, is a simple presentation of planetary magic. The seven classic squares and talismans, along with more for modern astronomical discoveries, are described along with a step-by-step conjuration process. Those who wish to explore whether magical ideas and practices have validity may find in this book an inexpensive series of experiments that are not extremely difficult. Those who are well aware of these talismans may also find in this book a few ideas wherewith they can expand and develop their own occult practices.
     
    I own thousands of books. I have more than thirty boxes, each a cubic meter, absolutely full of books. More can be found on shelves, in drawers, on the toilet, and often on the floor or furniture. I have read most of them, and those I have not read, my wife has. Most of these books are stolen. I'm perfectly happy with that, and stole some of them myself. Some were taken in sacks out of the back of foreclosed bookstores, some were escorted out of major chain stores in pockets, shirts, pants, or bags. At least twice as many as I now own have been given away. You should be able to deduce from this admission that I am somewhat sympathetic to those who want free literature.
     
    I should also mention that I make no real money from these books. The sum total for all sales of all books, from the beginning, amounts to a few hundred dollars. I do not write these books for money, for prestige, or for any reason other than the vain hope that you enjoy my art and find the texts interesting or useful. The bulk of the cover price goes to the publisher, who even I must pay to get a copy for myself. I'm not going to give them away, but if you steal them, scan them, or cut me out of my two dollars, it doesn't cost me a dime.
     
    If you have my books in file form, they are stolen. I prefer hardcopy books. In fifty years, you will probably not want to sit down for a late night tea with a file. You will not drag your Kindle all across Greenland just to keep a copy of "Clan of the Cave Bear" on hand. In 300 years, my books might be on a dusty shelf somewhere, but those enormous PDF databases will probably not exist. If you feel guilty for scanning or owning my stolen books, you can redeem yourself by actually reading the book instead of keeping it in a file on your computer to be casually skimmed and then traded like a baseball card.

    Friday, October 15th, 2010
    1:39 am
    Ipos #22

     YPH + RSh  (poor beauty) pronounced Eye pah ros
    Prince Commanding 36 Legions
    East 
     
    This entry has been written months after the fact, owing to several factors. First among them are the numerous other tasks that fill my life, preventing me from dropping out of action to sit and type for two hours at a sitting. I have also had some time to observe the effects of this conjuration and better understand this obscure spirit.
     
    My primary motive in conjuring this spirit was to examine business opportunities. A large number of businesses are for sale here and in neighboring states. Some of these are inexpensive, and others generate reliable income and have an operating managerial staff. In order to avoid the difficulties of business start-up, my wife and I were investigating the purchase of operating businesses to vitalize and then sell for a profit.
     
    This spirit has two offices: to tell of events in the past or future, and to make men "witty and bold." The Infernal Dictionary says instead, "gives men intellect and courage." Buying a business is a major commitment, and also a big gamble. There are many unscrupulous sellers, and there are few guarantees. A bright mind and bold approach might yield something worthwhile in the world of business, but uncertainty and carelessness could bring nothing or disaster.
     
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    The spirit was perhaps presumptuous in regard to its power and weight of consequence, but it was also civil and articulate despite its obscene appearance.
     

    Friday, April 30th, 2010
    1:18 am
    Goetia: #68 Belial


    BLY - YOL (without worth) pronounced "bel-EE ya-AL"

    King Commanding 80 Legions

    South
     
    I had not intended to conjure this spirit until very recently, when it began to seem like a reasonable or even necessary course of action. Before coming to the ceremony itself, I must first digress and say a few things about my attitude toward the use of occult powers, conjuration of spirits, and other magical objectives. There are two prevailing camps concerning this subject, one declaring that a person ought to use magic as a last resort and the other declaring that one ought to employ such powers only for very important purposes. The third viewpoint, certainly in the minority, suggests that one ought to use magic as one would use an automobile: responsibly, but wherever and whenever it would appear the most convenient mode of action. I tend to follow this latter approach.
     
    It would be asinine to think that the spirits of the Goetia are best reserved for emergencies, or when all else has failed. There is madness afoot indeed if one were to absolutely require the appearance of birds, poetry recitals, and many other powers ascribed to the spirits. I cannot imagine any such emergency, or that one would turn to magic in desperation for such things, yet they are given as the powers of these great and powerful spirits. The system is designed to be useful when needed, but not necessarily to be used only when needed. Unfortunately, in this conjuration I felt that my intervention was necessary.
     
    The several strategies one can employ when planning occult objectives can be ranked on a scale of desirability. It is best to act in such a way that problems do not arise, but sometimes one must settle with foresight and correct problems at their inception. Failing that, difficulty can be overcome by struggle, and beneath that is the ability to recover from trouble. At the bottom of the scale there is the realization that one causes his or her own problems, in which case a magician must direct the work inward. While I strive toward the higher end of the scale, I feel fairly confident in my ability to mark approaching changes and make preparations. It is as part of these preparations for the near future that I have performed the conjuration of Belial.
     
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    Having spent the better part of an afternoon with this droll spirit, I decided that there was nothing further that I had desired from it. I gave the spirit License to Depart and it was simply no longer present. I was left with a vague but persistent apprehension, a sort of creeping unease.

    Monday, April 5th, 2010
    6:41 pm
    Five Lectures on Demonology



    A must-read for any serious student of theology!
     
    This book contains five lectures:
     
    1. The Existence of Demons
    2. The Origin of Demons
    3. The Identity of Demons
    4. The Activity of Demons
    5. The Understanding of Demons
     
    This is not the standard reference work, full of tiresome and trivial "blurbs" with no real substance. It is not a book of history or research.
     
    Instead, this is a challenging work that aims to illuminate the reader on the fundamental issues of demonology. The reader is given a sound and reasonable basis for the study of evil spirits in their proper context and with special attention given to the relevance of this subject in the modern world.

    Available at Lulu here:
    http://www.lulu.com/content/paperback-book/five-lectures-on-demonology/8566543





     

    Thursday, April 1st, 2010
    11:38 pm
    GoetiaL #58 Avnas

    ABN + ASh (Flaming Stone) pronounced "ah-ven esh"
    President Commanding 36 Legions
    South
     
     
    The spirit sought in this conjuration is described foremost as one who can provide knowledge of astrology. The spirit has several other powers, but this one is given special note and was my initial inspiration for this ceremony. I have always held a divided opinion on astrology, having no faith in its predictive capacity whatsoever yet recognizing its importance to human culture, though this is an opinion I admittedly hold with relative ignorance as it has never been a subject I gave serious attention.
     
    Contemporary society regards astrology as a curiosity of the bygone era, a discipline eradicated by Christendom and all but abandoned in the industrialized world. The grim retainers of this ancient practice, with few exceptions, keep far from the spotlight. This is sharply in contrast with the ancient empires, wherein the astrologer was a central figure in society and the art was widespread.
     
    Astrology may be regarded as the foundations of mysticism in pagan cultures, and marks the dividing line between the domains of theology and magic. It is a step away from dependence upon the gods through ritual and doctrine, and a step toward human-controlled acquisition and application of spiritual knowledge. By the craft and teachings of astrology, a person begins to form his or her own interpretations of the universe and its underlying spiritual mechanisms and in turn loosens his or her ties to organized faiths. Astrology is generally fixed upon the individual rather than the needs of society as a whole, and has played a significant role in the empowerment of those who religion had failed to reach.
     
     
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    But mark well, and beware, especially all who would invoke these spirits! Even when they are called according to the conjuration, the spirits profess nothing more than to deliver true answers by means of lies, for there is nothing signified by the supposed virtues of stars and planets. An astrologer may say truly that there is a gain or an obstacle bespoken in the chart, and this may be judged correct by all concerned, but the sight of such a thing in the distribution of the planets is merely metaphor and any astrologer will remind his client that the answer is given by interpretation of traditional attributions. When the servants of the spirit thus conjured make their judgment of the charted figures, it is not the astrologer who answers from careful study, but the spirits themselves who answer in the language of astrology. The direct truth of any matter is unavailable by their word, and from them one must be content with what can be accurately told through false points of reference.
     
    On the very edge of sleep, I bid the spirit License to Depart.

    Wednesday, January 6th, 2010
    7:35 pm
    Hardcopy Preview

    For those of you who do not own a hardcopy of Imperial Arts Volume One, you might enjoy the preview at

    http://books.google.com/books?id=MjxN5588XQMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=imperial+arts&cd=5#v=onepage&q=&f=false

    As I have said before, the printed copy exists for the sake of those (like me) who prefer a physical hardcopy rather than scrolling through pages of Livejournal. The supplementary material adds a little weight to the book and sheds some light on my perspective. I have no intention to exclude anyone from my writings on account of unwilingness or inability to pay.

    I was unaware that the Lulu publishing service made these copies available until a few days ago. I certainly wasn't notified! But in case anyone wants to sneak a peek, or for some reason is unwilling to put two bucks into my pocket, the preview should keep me from having to send you a free copy just to prove it isn't scribbles and gibberish. Those who do want to buy the book can do so at

    www.lulu.com/content/4093958
     


    Thursday, November 26th, 2009
    1:21 am
    Buer #10
    BOR (ablaze) pronounced "Boo-air"
    President commanding 50 Legions
    South

    This spirit is said to appear during the sign of Sagittarius. Crowley indicates that this is the only time during which the spirit can be bound. Whether he ever tried at some other time to conjure the spirit and failed, I am uncertain, but this one is mentioned specifically as the one through which his mentor was restored to health.

    This spirit is credited with three primary powers: to teach moral and natural philosophy, to teach the properties of herbs and plants, and to heal all "distempers" in men. The last of these is somewhat obscure, the word "distemper" being currently applied only to veterinary medicine. In short, a distemper is simply a disease characterized by a prolonged or pervasive condition, as opposed to acute trauma or infection where the cause of suffering is readily apparent. This word would have been immediately recognized by anyone studying medicine up to the modern age, when it was replaced by terms like syndrome, disorder, and volumes of similar new jargon.

    I felt especially confident that this was the best spirit to conjure at this particular time, and my decision had little to do with astrology. I sought to continue in seeking a measure of wisdom from this art, and to arm myself therewith. I conjured this spirit not only for my own sake, but for the sake of others, specifically to extend my art insofar as possible against the great diseases of our time.

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    I entered the circle this time with a mind to take the "high ground," and the experience of this conjuration pulled the rug right out from beneath my feet. I cannot say that I am humbled by it, but certainly have gained something valuable in the way of perspective, if nothing else.
    Sunday, November 22nd, 2009
    11:22 pm
    Murmor #54
    MURM+OR ("raised awake") pronounced Mur'-am + ur

    This spirit was conjured on November 1st, considered the feast of saints among Catholics, and this entry was written some two weeks following from my pencil notes gathered at the time.

    At some point in the past few years, I came to gradually understand that my greatest limitations were not the external ones. Whatever was found lacking in resources, assistance, or opportunity was always able to be obtained in some way to meet my needs if not my wants. Somehow, throughout all of this, I have felt consistently held-back, and more often than not the restrictions have been due to my own shortsightedness. While I've managed to stay well above despair, things always seem to fall just shy of true satisfaction even when I've managed to get what I had wanted.

    In some ways this has been an idea known to me, and I sought to stave off the adverse effect of my own presence in my life through conjuration of spirits, Amon in particular. I am thus spared some of the consequences of bad behavior (insofar as it is unwittingly bad), but still I have felt like a small fish in a big pond. I have toyed with the idea of gaining a better understanding of classical philosophy, but frankly I have no time for serious studies and certainly no time for the idiocy of university education. Over time it has become apparent that what is lacking within myself is not knowledge but wisdom, and that ultimately boils down to good judgment.

    I am reminded of Crowley's "The Sorcerer," who had subdued all things but remained locked within the confines of his own desires. With all things at his disposal, what would such a person do? Though I have far less than the very courses of the planets at my command, I am confounded with a similar problem in that I fear to make bad decisions, and find that many of my good intentions fall far astray from their marks. I found myself desiring real wisdom, not 35 books of Aristotle and soporific Aquinas, and so desiring I sought the aid of this spirit and the noble dead.

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    I gave the spirit License to Depart in the customary form, and the light of morning dissipated the haze. I am dissatisfied in the early break-off from my discussions, but not disappointed from what little was given. The philosophy of this spirit was entirely practical, which serves my interests and answered my request, but I still look for a deeper sort of understanding and plan to follow this conjuration with one more specifically tailored to that topic.
    Monday, October 5th, 2009
    7:40 pm
    Andras #63
    Marquis
    30 Legions
    North

    The Greek name "Andreas" (strong) is probably related to the name of the spirit Andras, which I am now convinced is identical to the Celtic goddess Andraste, whose name is commonly translated as "invincible."

    With a few of the other spirits, it was somewhat difficult to positively identify the spirit as its counterpart in mythology of the ancient world. Egyptian deities like Amon and Horus, who would be presumably more easily marked, are somewhat different in character than their equivalents in Goetia. The differences are probably a result of many thousands of years' passage from the time of their worship to the present. The deities at one time had a widespread religion and a vital role in their native cultures, into which a large and diverse output of human work and thought was directed. To the ancients, the living gods of those lost empires were vividly known and probably possessed a much more intriguing character than anything an archeologist could conjure through limited relics and scarce scriptures.

    This spirit, Andras, was unquestionably the obscure goddess of ancient England known as "Andraste."

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    In the time since this conjuration I have witnessed an inordinate amount of hostility (of an amazing variety) among strangers, which I take to be a sign of intervention by the spirit. Though it did not forbid me to involve myself against others for my own interests, it apparently wanted to encourage me to "rock the boat" against others who probably deserve it. There are indeed some awful people in the world, but it is not my business to make the world free from them, and not my place to strike them down except wherein they stand in the way of my own work. It is amusing that this spirit, which had been so degrading, is so confident in my magnanimity and considers this a weakness. Apparently it desires to test my resolve, and in so doing provide itself a means of avoiding the task appointed. Should I choose to take vengeance against those whose crimes having no direct effect on my life, the spirit assures me that I will suffer an obscure but undoubtedly dire fate.
    Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
    1:30 pm
    I am sick today, having spent last night struggling with sinus drainage and a sore throat. It should be expected this time of year, and I expect to recover swiftly.

    Distressing as this has been, I cannot decide whether nasal vomiting is nearly as disgusting as having to scroll through 70+ comments of such low merit.

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    Due to numerous requests, distaste for "scrolling" and generally pointless bickering, and my own caprice, I have chosen to reset my comment default setting to "screen all."

    I will permit all comments related to this journal, to occult practices in general, and anything off-topic that doesn't strike me as worthless nonsense. If I allow something to be posted that you don't like, and then won't permit you to call that person a moron, you can stuff it.

    If you want to comment about me personally, for good or ill, I will be happy to print it here in public. Simply identify yourself in the post along with your email address which will be verified before your comment is posted.

    As I have said before, this is my journal and all comments exist as I choose to allow them to exist. This new change, which is loathsome to me, is merely a reminder of that reality.
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