Imperial Arts (imperialarts) wrote,
Imperial Arts

Goetia: #68 Belial

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

King Commanding 80 Legions

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.
Belial is most definitely one of the more important figures in demonology, and is highly-placed within the Goetia. Allotted a considerable 80 Legions, he is exceeded in this figure by the likes of #13 and # 9, both also among the Kings. The text says that he declares himself to be a fallen angel created next after Lucifer and first to fall before the celestial army, and that he can deceive the magician if improperly placated with "gifts, offerings, and sacrifices."
The name Belial is commonly translated as BLY - YOL (without worth), pronounced Bel-ee' ya-all. When questioned as to the significance of this name, the spirit was proud to assert its meaning as "Lord of the Lake of Fire."
The spirit made a grand entrance at its arrival. The apparition is described as a beautiful angel (some versions have two angels) in a chariot of fire. I was damnably curious what such a thing might look like. I had imagined something out of Ben Hur or the Battle of Kadesh murals, and was surprised to find something more like a steam-roller with a throne on top. What a nightmare! but it was afternoon and I was awake. It was a machine, without doubt, but something beyond any human device, spewing spark and seeming to glide into place. It was a thing that did not possess or require dignity, neither beautiful nor frightening, but given the appearance of a terrific juggernaut that would not have stopped easily or without the full control of its rider.
The angelic figure on the throne was like a man of burning gas. It was ephemeral, brilliant, large, and utterly impassive. I had the suspicion it was sneering at me as it reclined. Without malice, the spirit was keen to greet me in a voice that was as vast and heavy as the apparition, yet without echo.
I began with my gifts, offerings, and sacrifices. I frequently speak against making any such offerings, and it is an arbitrary judgment on my part to employ the method as given in Goetia, which directs the use of gifts etc. Weyer names Belial among the 72 spirits of the Brazen Vessel, but does not mention sacrifices and so forth as something one should do in the binding of Belial, in agreement with the Koran that Solomon was never an idolater, adding that he is accused of giving offerings to Belial. One could easily judge that there is some misinterpretation which has been erroneously presented as an actual part of the tradition by becoming standard in its core literature, an effect in which the role of the demon itself might by suspected. I decided to go with the program as given by the Lemegeton, to make a gift, offering, and sacrifice but with an approach of contracted payment rather than as a religious or devotional offering.
I am opposed to making blood offerings (my own or that of other creatures) for a variety of simple reasons, but I do believe that such offerings ought to be fresh or at least slaughtered for the purpose. A piece of pre-frozen T-bone or a vacuum-sealed shawarma offered to a spirit is an absurdity, not an expedient. A little closer to the mark and outside of any blood offerings, but still falling short, are those who feel that sacrifice makes a convenient excuse to get rid of unwanted clutter, and you will find them "sacrificing" things they neither need nor cherish. To be forced to promise service or render a promissory gift is to be in the least advantageous position. A true sacrifice will not be debilitating, and yet it should not be convenient either.
The seal of the spirit is about an ounce of pure gold, so one might consider that a gift should at least exceed the minimal requirement for conjuring the spirit. In this case, one would certainly not bother Belial without a real need to do so, if for no other reason than the expense of the gifts and offerings. Far too many occultists seem to think that spirits are extremely eager for sexual fluids, and perhaps there truly are some depraved imps that delight in such things, but for a King of demons one needs a good gift. I will not say what was given to the spirit or how, except to make clear that it was not from any body and involved no strange blood-letting ritual. I would have enjoyed the gifts had they been given to me instead, and the offerings would tempt me, but among my sacrifices one is worth noting in public. It was a collection of writing and drawing, never made public despite my anticipation toward that end, which I sealed and burned in the brazier. The spirit took great delight in this, remarking on what was now lost and how it would affect myself and others. I forsook those materials, somewhat dear to me yet inconsequential in the grand scheme of things, and exchanged them for what I now desired to obtain from Belial. It was a genuine sacrifice, so I mention it as an example and say nothing of the rest.
In order to understand my reasons for conjuring this spirit, it is necessary to understand a few fundamental ideas about money which are also written in the entry for spirit # 9. The overwhelming majority of people do not understand the real nature of money, whether they have much of it or little of it. The man with a Ferrari is almost always just as clueless as the menial laborer when it comes to real and useful knowledge of money. There are certain key points to bear in mind, chief of which is the idea that calculable money is only a means of measuring the interaction of different parts of society. Paper money and bank balances keep track of your part in a vast ongoing exchange between people. It is well-known that banking operates by investing the savings of bank customers, and every single American dollar represents an endorsement from human institutions worldwide. As with chess, where the best position is one that provides the most desirable mobility, it can be said that the best use for money is to use it for something. A second major point in understanding money is the principle of "demand and fulfillment" and the concept of originating the right to create those demands. After much consternation about the issue, it became clear that this is a concept exemplified in that common combination of a dare and a bet that everyone knows as a "contract."
In summary, it is important to invest money, and one can assure profits if they can be secured by contract. If, for example, a person invests with a mutual fund, there is a contract to return a predictable rate of income. The investment company, in turn, will establish its own contracts to secure its own profits. In both cases, the bets are so well-hedged that there is only a trickle of profit in return. The company will fear for their liability, and the investor will fear for his risk. Neither trusts his judgment, and so both must subsist on less than what is available with just as much security. There are certain esoteric principles of investing that produce a staggering amount of money in mere days, and which are sustainable at any budget level. Ignorance and fear alone prevent people from making use of these trade options, which ordinarily remain far below the radar of all financial news.
None of the people who "lost everything" during the stock market crash of the current recession would have lost a dime if they had understood the basic principles of money and the techniques of their own investment firms. There are several ways to secure finances against loss, and the public simply refuses to learn about them. People will rush like mad bulls to their doctors and demand whatever new pill is on the TV, but will not investigate the proper management of their own retirement savings. That is foolishness.
Currently there is a swift-moving and powerful effort in the US government to dramatically alter the way in which financial business occurs. One of the proposals threatens to undermine the effectiveness of a particular trade strategy. This measure is being pressed into action on account of public distrust of the wealthy, but in truth it is yet another shackle for the poor. These controversial trading strategies can produce thousands of dollars a day with a very small initial investment, making them one of the very few ways in which a person can totally break free from the constraints of work. Imagine earning in half an hour what you made all last year, three times a week, with less starting capital than an automobile down payment. That is the true source of the controversy: the public hears "down with the aristocracy!" and the aristocrats are satisfied that at least they do not hear "we don't need you anymore."
I requested from the spirit that it preserve the ability to produce income in this manner which has thus far been so very useful. I specified that I did not care who was involved, or what needed to be halted or passed in legislature, so long as the ultimate outcome was the preservation of this manner of profit. The spirit agreed to this, assuring me of the safety of myself and my family. It was immediately afterward that I began to suspect I had opened the wrong can of worms. In order to accommodate this request, several changes would occur in the world (it called them "trials"), which the spirit then described. None of these were pleasant in the least, and I did not ask anything of them but rather accepted it in passing as the spirit again reaffirmed that throughout all of it I would be kept free of such trouble.
The spirit was especially inclined to dismiss any notion of supremacy among humankind. It was adamant against the existence of any "chosen people" or of any superior race or nationality, and while some praise egalitarian sentiments, this was said in reference to the fact that we are all mortal. No one can escape the meeting with his death, and in this inevitability humans are all alike.
In describing the forthcoming "trials," the spirit revealed a great deal about itself and its objectives within the world. It would be amusing to record the information on discs, offer them for sale to the President at an exorbitant fee, and break half of them when refused before making an identical offer with the other half as did the Tiburtine Sibyl to Augustus. Of the content of these plans, I will say as little as possible, but suffice to say it was all bad. A fair amount of it involved a breakdown of the current Western society and its subjugation under "the Lord of Rome."
One of the finer points of the dialogue was in the explication by the spirit concerning moral decrepitude into which people will so willingly throw themselves. In its estimate, the difference between people of different social positions is irrelevant, and it will endorse the rule of nearly anyone regardless of his or her suitability to hold executive authority. It was with what, in a human, might pass for wry humor that the spirit described the various depravities it had previously inspired among society at large, including such savories as violent revolutions, cannibalism, and outright animalistic savagery. The spirit insisted that people refrain from such behaviors on account of imaginary differences in value assumed to exist between people and things.
If the life, property, and dignity of the person next door is relatively inconsequential, there is little to prevent him from becoming a mere obstacle to remove, or prey to be exploited and possibly even devoured. When things that are considered "sacred" are looked upon as no more valuable or meaningful than others of their kind, there is little room remaining for reverence. That a word or phrase can adopt extra dimensions of meaning, while saying very little in specific terms, is evident where there is only human prejudice to account for one word being more "charged" than another in describing identical circumstances. While it is a delight for humans to give meaning to persons and things, it is the joy of this spirit to reduce all things to their base quality, so that none are exalted above others and everything is equally worthless.
The spirits attendant upon this Mighty and Powerful King, who are 333,300 in number, are those that set in effect its plan to assist the magician. The spirit removes obstacles to accomplishment that are connected to those in power over a nation, which for the magician ought to manifest as favorable work on the part of government officials, specifically the Senate. Crowley declares that Belial appoints people to seats on the Senate. The power of the spirit is also to accumulate the "favor of friends and foes" upon which any proposition of the government so heavily depends.
Crowley is often dismissed by the so-called traditionalist magicians, who are often only superficially aware of the content of his writings. The man wrote great volumes of occult lore and much else besides, and most of it requires more than a casual glance to comprehend, yet it is fashionable to dismiss him on account of his eccentricities. Crowley is said to have had an especially close working relationship with the spirit Belial, who is otherwise invisible in his writings. There is supposedly a ritual entitled "The Brazen Head" by Crowley which concerns Belial in some way, but it is not in print or I have not yet discovered it.
I decided to inquire about Crowley and those others who had, over very many years, been in contact with the spirit. The spirit described what it had provoked by providing leaders to the leaderless, for ages and ages, repeatedly demonstrating among mankind that an absence of values and ideals can sustain all the necessary functions of life. It named men who were so foreign that I could not even recognize the dialect of their names, and of how each reduced enormous hordes to bestial compulsions, instigated titanic battles, and attacked the foundations of philosophy. In each and every case the spirit did no more than to facilitate the will of the magician, so that he obtained and endured only what was requested, while the effects of this one desire were magnified outward from himself in society.
I made clear that it was not permitted by my bindings to cause harm to any creature, and the spirit would reply only that it would not prevent people from acting upon their impulses. This was not entirely reassuring. Nor do I agree with its assessment of humanity. Evolution from specks of dust floating in void to rational and capable creatures indicates to me that there is something valuable in advancement above those basic and primal attributes which we struggle to transcend as human beings. It may be true that two people dangling from strings over a pit may be in equal danger of destruction despite any amount of difference in their character or station, but this does not make character and station worthless. Human endeavor, real concerns and passions, and genuine interest in the world are indeed worthwhile, although in truth they will not bring one beyond the boundaries of ordinary humanity. For me, that is enough.
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.

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