Sunday, January 11, 2015

Abramelin Lunar Ordeal Fourth Weekend Attribute Of Fire

Abramelin Lunar Ordeal Fourth Weekend Attribute Of Fire
I have completed the fourth weekend working for the Abramelin Lunar Ordeal, which is the final series of working for the first phase. All eight of the super-archangels are now fully invoked, and I am ready to begin the next phase. Since the New Moon occurs Wednesday, December 16, there will be no further activity until after the Winter Solstice, when the Moon passes the crescent lunation type heading into the first quarter. There is a minor action that I must perform on the eve of the solstice, which is the charging of the magick ring, to be used as a material link to the Bornless One. I have also completed the rendering of twenty-two magick squares from the Book of Abramelin onto parchment, to be charged in the final working. I may add others in the future if needed, but these twenty-two seemed to be the most usable of the lot. I also discovered that the latest version of the book has errors in the definition of the magick squares, since I had to fix several of them to make them consistent and usable. That was a bit of blow discovering inaccuracies in that version of the book, since I am wondering what other typos and mistakes are published in it.

This weekend I performed the invocations on Friday and Saturday, which helped to accommodate the schedule of my lady and partner, Grace. She's having to finish up her schooling and needs Sunday to study for finals. So I made all of the preparations that were necessary for an early resumption of the work. Grace and I celebrated the Last Quarter of the Moon on Tuesday night with a meditation, fire and discussions about the second phase of the ordeal. I have arranged to have those days off from work, and I will be sequestered during that time, which means no media connections whatsoever. That will be odd, since my email and web access is kind of like a permanent appendage for me. Work was not as trying and difficult as the last weekend, but there were still tasks that I had to do on the weekend again, although they were not difficult or taxing.

A friend of mine suggested that the difficulty that I had the previous week may have had to do with the fact that I was transitioning from the Element of Air to Water, and that had it been the other way around the problems would have been less severe. I believe that he is definitely on to some profound insight, but I am not sure if that was the cause of the difficulties, since the spirits said that I was being tested. This was the middle of the first phase of the ordeal, and such activities are usually more difficult at that point than the beginning or the end. I will certainly take this into consideration when I examine and analyze the performance of the ordeal - a change may be done to the sequence of elements.

I managed to perform some kind of evening devotion every night, starting with Monday, using my temple time to focus on my personal Godhead and seek to obtain a sense of union and one-ness with it. Something is working, because I am experiencing an answering resonance when I perform this kind of devotion. I am also aware of the seed or pearl that Metatron planted within my soul, and I can feel it kind of stirring and communicating with me, appearing in my dreams sometime as a giant seed, or a huge pine cone, a black pearl, a golden Easter egg, or some other similar guise. There is definitely something there and it appears to be gaining power from my daily devotions. The meditations are also very quiet and subdued, though, as if in anticipation of some more profound occurrence. I found the quiescence of activity not at all soothing, it seemed more ominous and portending of what was to come. As it turned out, there was something building to a crescendo for the final two invocations of this part of the ordeal.

December 11 - Invocation of Seraphiel, Seraph of the elemental tetrad of Fire. Approximate start was around a few minutes before 8:15 PM, locking in the planetary hour of Mars. I was able to meditate almost an hour before the working, helping me to focus intensely on it and helping me to disengage from mundane preoccupations.

The mass and benediction were said, with Grace's assistance, which turned out a lot better due to the changes that we have both made. However, a few more changes are needed, but the Mass of the Goddess is getting ever closer to the state of perfection that we are both desiring.

I performed the invocation of Seraphiel and felt a tremendous force build up as I proceeded through it. Once I had completed the full invocation, the power emanating from the angelic entity was so intense and tangible that it literally knocked me flat on my back for a few minutes. I recovered, sat up and took the sigil of Ratziel into my hand and began to say that I had the authority of that angel to perform this working, but my words seemed to be drowned out by a roaring sound of flames and fire. I was hearing these sounds, but they didn't seem to disturb Grace, so I must assume that I alone heard them, or interpreted them as the rushing sounds of flames. It would seem that the invocation was proceeding apace, whether I had Ratziel's sigil or not - it didn't matter one whit.

It was then that I saw the vision of Seraphiel, and I was astonished at the clarity and magnitude of that vision. There in my inner sight I beheld a great towering pillar of flame, as if in the distance, although it's heat and the sulphurous smell of burning came to me as if in a dream. Then I remembered an old vision dream that I had when I was seventeen, a time when I was just starting out on my magickal journey. It was uncannily similar to what I was beholding now. I had even made a colored drawing of this vision and still had it somewhere amongst my copious files. Could that be? I don't recall that the column of fire I saw in my vision years ago had any kind of name associated with it, or if it was even a spirit. You can be the judge, as I am including that drawing in the beginning of this article.

Then I heard the voice of Seraphiel call to me, a voice that sounded like rushing air or steam, and the voice said: "Frater Barrabbas Tiresius, we have indeed met before a long time ago in your perceptions, but only moments ago for me. Although which came first is unknown to me, for time is indeed strange and disjointed where I stand." I then saw a crystal clear vision of everything that had been happening to me around the time that I first had the vision and made the drawing. It was a time of newness, adventure, extreme sexual awakening and the desire to master life and to find a fitting path for myself. Little did I know what would befall me during that short period of time, which I now know as distant memories of a long and lost time. Magick during those days was new and every occurrence was deemed great, majestic, hair raising and profound. I was transported momentarily back to that time and was able to see and sense what I knew then, although superimposed upon my memories and the wisdom of being able to judge myself as a middle-aged adult. What a strange sensation I had with all of this, almost as if it were possible to talk to a version of myself that was 17 years old, nearly 37 years in the past. Then it was 1972, today it is 2009 - and I remembered that I had that vision and made that drawing probably in the same month as I am doing this invocation. I felt strange and weird by the convolutions of different times and the oddities of fate that had so impressed me back then.

When this peculiar phenomenon had passed, I was to witness and experience a new and even stranger phenomenon. I felt a great rush of power emanating from the pillar of flame, surrounding me and then entering into me. It circulated the pearl of wisdom planted in my soul and seemed to super-charge it, so it glowed brilliantly like a tiny star. I heard a voice say to me sounding like rushing air, "So I have quickened this seed planted in you by Metatron. So it shall grow and expand until it reveals its mysteries to you - soon. Take care to continue to nurture it with good deeds, compassionate intentions and devotions of the love of the Godhead. All will be revealed to you soon enough by my counter part, the Cherub of Fire." Then, I felt a great paroxysm of ecstasy and rising passion emanate from the seed, and the sensation grew to such a great extent, that I thought it would cause me to pass out again. But it passed, leaving behind a sense of warmth, glowing love and devotion. I felt deeply touched by this entity, to the core of my being. I heard the final words said to me - "the seed now contains the poems and songs of God intoxication, and my wisdom. You will find all of this at your service once you gain access to the revealed pearl of wisdom within you."

Then the emanation of Seraphiel faded away and the vision grew dim until it was gone. But the sensations still continued for a while, and I was amazed by what I had seen and experienced.

The next day was another work day for me, even though it was Saturday. I was busy in the morning with work related issues from morning to early afternoon, but nothing was difficult or unexpected, and all was completed without any difficulty. I seemed buoyed by the experience of the previous evening, and everything felt like a blessed event, sweetened by some spiritual light that was yet unseen.

The evening meditation session was long and needful, however, I noticed that I was getting strong impressions of sensing the future, especially the future of this very ordeal. I was hearing my journal entries and blog articles in my head as if I were writing them and had already passed through the entire ordeal. I felt elated at my apparent success, and how this was going to be perceived by other occultists and magicians. Then I came to and realized that I had quite a bit of work yet ahead of me. No sense in celebrating something that would very likely challenge me to the core of my being. I also became aware of how harsh and difficult the final three days are going to be. I saw myself engaging in sessions of weeping alternating with sessions of ecstatic bliss - it was all very disturbing, as if the very boundaries of time had become momentary loose. It passed, and I was able to focus on doing the working, but the experience really haunted me as I attempted to shake it off.

December 12 - Invocation of Rikbiel, Cherub of the elemental tetrad of Fire. Approximate start was around 7:15 PM, which locked in the planetary hour of Venus. I felt that the very martial spirit of Rikbiel would be moderated by that planetary influence, so that is why I chose it. I was hoping that the harshness of Rikbiel would be so mitigated. As it turned out, no mitigation was necessary.

Grace and I performed the mass (but not the benediction), and it was probably the smoothest and the most powerful iteration so far. I felt very pleased and happy at my performance, and things seemed to mesh between Grace and I really well. Everything seemed to going really well, and that mood carried me through the invocation.

The invocation was performed without any mishap, but I almost made a mistake in the execution, and quickly corrected my action. I guess I was getting a little too carried away by my upbeat mood, and then strived to insure that the rest of the rite was performed in a proper manner. The invocation came to climax, and felt a great rush of power emanate from a presence that I could not see. That presence felt stern and very martial, there was no warmth or kindness in it at all. Then I saw orange and golden lights appear before me and take the form of a blurry outline of a human like entity with shining golden eyes, like two brilliant stars. Due to the malevolent nature of what I felt, I held up the sigil of Ratziel and said that I had the authority of this angel to summon him, and then I began, unwittingly, to admit my faults, flaws and how unworthy I was to even attempt this ritual. These admissions came unbidden from me, and I found myself almost groveling on the floor of the temple.

Then I heard Rikbiel's voice, a kind of tense whisper, say to me, "All your admissions and abasement are unnecessary, for I have already judged you as worthy of this ordeal. For the truth is that you would have been stopped by one of my seven colleagues if you had failed to prove your worth and the rightness of your intention. There are no delusions in your soul, since you know your failings all too well. You are as other mortals are, and therein is nothing to be ashamed of. Rise up and face me." And so I did as I was asked. I then had more vague and ghost like impressions of the near future, and I felt strange, as if time had multiplied itself and everything was happening at the same time. Rikbiel said, "These are the ghosts of the future that will be happening soon. They represent the fact that I have appeared to you even before the invocation, due to weight of having successfully invoked the previous seven of these great angelic spirits. I bless you on this chosen path of the ordeal, and I shall aid you in your quest. It will be another new path opened up for others, for that is what you must do once this ordeal is accomplished. Beware, though, for I must warn you that having passed me, you are locked into this ordeal and cannot turn aside. It must be accomplished, there is no turning back, for madness and self destruction shall overtake you if you would deem to quit at this time." He told me that what I must do is to intensify my devotions at this time and increase the love and devotion that I feel for my Godhead, and seek ever more ardently for spiritual union.

He also said this to me as parting words of wisdom, "If you believe that performing this ordeal is the conclusion of your work, then you are greatly mistaken. It is but a humble beginning of a life long aspiration that will continually test and challenge you. Most notably, you will take upon yourself a great yoke of spiritual and temporal responsibilities that will require you to teach and guide others. You must continue to give alms to the poor and support to your local spiritual institutions, and volunteer yourself to your community. You may not be isolated or aloof, but fully engaged with your community. You will be shown a mission, and you must fulfill it as part of your spiritual true will. Such is way of enlightenment - there is no rest or time to accept the accolades of others, which in themselves, are meaningless. Vanity, delusion, jealousy, envy, spite, pride and arrogance - these petty emotions will be no more, since that part of you must die soon. Prepare for it. To be a servant of the people is the lot of one who is deemed a high adept by others - but you shall never know the fruits of your labors."

The emanations of Rikbiel departed, I gave it great thanks for appearing, and felt a relief that the final invocation had now been completed. I was completely exhausted now, but the memory of his words were etched in my mind, and they did not cheer me or give me any pleasure.

Frater Barrabbas

Thursday, January 1, 2015

London Necropolis West Norwood Cemetery

London Necropolis West Norwood Cemetery
Highgate cemetery, in North London, might be famous for its Gothic tombs but before that was built West Norwood Cemetery, in South London, was created as the UK's first Gothic cemetery - and I think it is just as impressive.Back in Victorian times there was a real problem of where to bury the dead. City graveyards were overflowing with corpses - quite literally. Seven magnificent new burial grounds, including West Norwood, were constructed around the edges of London to cope with the surfeit. The others were Kensal Green, Abney Park, Brompton, Nunhead, Tower Hamlets and Highgate. They became known as The Magnificent Seven Cemeteries.Famous people buried at West Norwood include cookery writer Mrs Beeton, natural historian Gideon Mantell, inventor of the automatic machine gun Sir Hiram Maxim and potter Henry Doulton. You can see the inscription on the Doulton terracotta monument in the photo to the left. It states: "He discovered deep things out of darkness, And bringeth out to light the shadow of death." Sounds rather magical.I visited West Norwood Cemetery on a sunny Sunday last month and took the photographs you can see on this page, as well as visiting an art installation called the Streetscape Carousel, which displayed silhouettes of the Magnificent Seven cemeteries on the walls within West Norwood's Greek Chapel. I blogged about the carousel a couple of weeks ago, and you can see pictures of it here. The small photo to the top right shows the outside of the Greek Chapel - an impressive neo-classical structure based on the Parthenon, which makes a striking contrast against the primarily Gothic architecture in the rest of the burial ground. These days, as well as still housing a working crematorium, the West Norwood cemetery distinguishes itself from rest of the Magnificent Seven by being an art venue.One of the oddest things in West Norwood Cemetery, which took me quite by surprise when I spotted it, is a bus stop named "The Last Request". When I saw it, I was half expecting to then see some Harry Potter style magic bus turn up to take departing spirits on their journey off to the next world. I later learnt the bus stop was left from an art installation back in June, called The Curious Trail. The cemetery also hosts theatrical and musical productions as well as talks.The next talk is on Saturday 17 November and could appeal to steampunk fans and other admirers of Victorian engineering. Paul Dobraszczyk of Reading University will be talking about Charles Henry Driver (1832-1900), a Victorian architect who designed many railway stations and, with Bazalgette, designed Crossness and Abbey Mills pumping station. Dr Dobraszczyk is the author of a book calledInto the Belly of the Beast: Exploring London's Victorian Sewers.The Friends of West Norwood Cemetery, who help organise and run the artistic and literary events at the cemetery, love people to visit it to admire the wonderful architecture even when there aren't special exhibitions or talks taking place. And Hallowe'en, or Samhain as pagans call it, would be the perfect time for a walk amongst the Gothic tombs to admire their beauty and to pay respects to those buried there.Links and previous related posts Norwood Cemetery and trails/ trail/