February 2017 Convention Schedule

I will be lecturing at both PantheaCon in California and ConVocation in Michigan this February, along with many other esteemed colleagues and friends. Please consider attending either or both.


PantheaCon 2017

On Saturday, February 18th at 1:30pm–

Eat Me: Magical Recipes in Medieval Astrological Magic

Though better known for the creation of talismans, medieval and Renaissance astrological magic texts contain further recipes and instructions. Many are intended to be consumed, buried, or burned, with numerous purposes and means of creation. Yet they all point towards a forgotten view of the universe and magic. From counting olive pips to cure illnesses to the creation of wax talismans or incense pills for evocation and influence, such mysteries depend on the philosophies of Al Kindi and his contemporaries. Explore how the outlook of the ancients can enhance our spiritual practices.


ConVocation 2017

On Thursday, February 23rd at 8:30pm–

DIY Talismans

Astrological talismans from the Scholastic Image Magic tradition often seem as challenging to make as they are powerful. After electing the window of time in which a talisman can be created, one must confect incenses, select appropriate sigils, and obtain tools and materials for the talismans. We will discuss how to create a talismanic laboratory, the process of practical considerations including choosing the best combinations, knowing which substitutions do and don’t work, and time and money saving strategies. Take the theory of talismans into real life creations and applications.

On Friday, February 24th at 4:00pm–

About Time: Basic Chart Calculation

Invaluable to numerous systems of magic, the astrological horoscope is a Swiss army knife for divination, classical medicine, and much else. One of the most advanced achievements of the ancient world, the horoscope can often be perplexing for beginners. This class will focus on the basics of erecting a horoscope chart. We will attempt to demystify the process and render the math easy, while also explaining the essentials of its parts, some of history of its development, and the rationale of the chart from the traditional (pre-1750 AD) perspective.

On Saturday February 25th at 4:00pm–

Fearless Magical Protection

It’s a jungle out there. In most magical systems one of the first things you are taught is basic protection against spiritual attacks, and for good reason. A magical life is a perilous one at times. As you become more proficient, the need for protection grows and takes new forms. This class will survey practical methods of protection from a variety of spiritual systems and methodologies. Some of these techniques are unpublished anywhere and likely to be unfamiliar, but have proven very effective. Magical protection will help secure your success.

 

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Jewish Numerological Meanings of Ten

Jewish numerology is different from those developed in other ethno-religious cultures, and it does have some key magical connotations which should be paid attention to.

  1. Keter: Crown. The Sphere of the Primum Mobile. “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me.” The Plague of the Slaying of the Firstborn.
  2. Khokmah: WisdomThe Sphere of the Fixed Stars. “You shall not make for yourself a carved image– any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them…” The Plague of Locusts.
  3. Binah: UnderstandingThe Sphere of Saturn. “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.” The Plague of Fiery Hail. Seder Tohorot (Purities.)
  4. Khesed: KindnessThe Sphere of Jupiter. “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy…” The Plague of Boils. Seder Kodashim (Holy Things.)
  5. Gevurah: Severity.The Sphere of Mars. “You shall not murder.” The Plague of Pestilence. Seder Nezikin (Damages.)
  6. Tifaret: BeautyThe Sphere of Sun. “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.” (The 5th and 6th Commandments are flipped for some reason.) The Plague of Wild Beasts.
  7. Netzakh: EternityThe Sphere of Venus. “You shall not commit adultery.” The Plague of Lice. Seder Nashim (Women.)
  8. Hod: SplendorThe Sphere of Mercury. “You shall not steal.” The Plague of Frogs. Seder Moed (Festival.)
  9. Yesod: Foundation. The Sphere of the Moon. “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” The Plague of Blood. Seder Zeraim (Seeds.)
  10. Malkut: Kingdom. The Sublunar Sphere. “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.” The Plague of Darkness (oddly out of order here.)

Picatrix as a Kabbalistic Talisman

Page 57 Picatrix Rubeus:

“All that we have said in this context we say only to sharpen the intellect and illuminate awareness, because the aforesaid words and reasons that we have stated are spiritual images and the word that Adam received form the Lord God. They cannot be understood except by the sages who have labored faithfully in knowledge and have understood how created beings attain truth. You should understand all of this and retain it in your intellect, because what we have said up to this point in this book of ours constitute the foundations of the art of magic, if you understand it well.”

  1. So, basically he’s saying that large chunks of Picatrix are talismans of a kind in textual form. What do they do? Probably helps the student comprehend the rest of the text– and man, do we need that help sometimes.
  2. The word given to Adam is a veiled reference. According to Jewish folklore, Kabbalah was given to Adam by God after the expulsion from Eden because the punishment was too severe, with the intent that it be passed down to his favored sons for their succor. Since Kabbalah is a largely non-astrological form of magic (in its practical expression) which is almost exclusively textual, this makes sense that it be referred to when describing a text-based enchanted object. A book on magic, which is itself a magical book.
  3. Some would say that Judaic Kabbalah was a medieval phenomenon, but I strongly disagree and think there is evidence for its existence during the development of the Talmud. So a reference to it in a 700AD text would not be anachronistic.

Moses’ Magical Rings

Everything is interconnected.

So, this quote from Agrippa: “In like manner Moses, the lawgiver and ruler of the Hebrews, being skilled in the Magic of the Egyptians, is said by Josephus to have made rings of love and oblivion. ”

…led me to look up the history of the word “oblivion” in the OED…

Which has:

“1. a.1.a The state or fact of forgetting or having forgotten; forgetfulness.

1390 Gower Conf. II. 23 Which Ring bar of Oblivion The name.”

Which, if it’s not clear, is Gower’s Confessio Amantis– which has that amazing section on the Behenian stars and their magical usages.

Too funny.