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The Golden Dawn | Israel Regardie

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‘The Golden Dawn’

Published: 1937

6th Edition: 1989

Packed to the brim with a detailed insight into the workings and mystery that was the original Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. There are so many valuable lessons in each short chapter, deep with symbolism and intrigue ranging from the various sacred alphabets and their symbolic meanings, colour scales, codes and blinds and the various rituals that are to be performed for each adept at each grade. This compendium details ceremonial magick at it’s been from the late Victorian era through the industrial right up to pre-WWII. Full of theories, instructions and notions this book will give you two things, insight into the life and thoughts of these magicians and hopefully inspiration to create your own magickal workings. Some say this book is a wonderful back bone edition that teaches you the very basics of Hermeticism theoretically and practically, but also a book that many found inaccessible. It’s up to you how you would use it. For me, I have had success with many practices and meditations I have put together myself using various tables of correspondence, and this book inspires me enough to delve deep into old mysteries, and even ancient ones too.

As for the H.O.G.D this book is great for the reader to understand their methods, and I believe a lot of the information within is still being performed and taught today by current orders. I found a lot of parallels with modern magick and witchcraft with the current authors being heavily inspired by this book and its methods. A rather chunky tome it can be a bit too bulky for your average handbag, but it is valuable. The front cover design is simple yet meaningful with the hexagram within the circle engulfed by fire and water (red and blue) – colour correspondences’ are detailed within.

There are lots of subjects that covered in each chapter, ranging from the spiritual and psychological study of tarot, Enochian magick, Qabalah, Hermeticism (obviously), Rosy Cross theory and ritual, Qabalistic Cross and the LBRP, altar set ups and much more.

I will score it a three out of five because of how amazing this collection is, but if you aren’t well versed in magick, high magick, Qabalah, Hermeticism or ceremonial magick this can put you off a little. A few folks I know have copies, but have yet to read them and one has told me he wants to cover the basics before tackling this tome. I love this book,  I have used it to create my own simple rituals, so secretly I’ll give it a personal 4.

My rating: ★★★☆☆

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The One Year Manual | Israel Regardie

‘The One Year Manual – Twelve Steps to Spiritual Enlightenment’

Published: 1976

1st Edition: Weiser pub. 1981 (my copy 1992 third printing)

One Year Manual

One Year Manual

This book opened me up to the many ways that would keep me focused on my journey. One part I loved most were the Four Adorations, a tiny variant of Liber Resh, without the strict time keeping which is perfect for me as a newbie. The adorations themselves have only this week been part of my weekly regime. Many of the exercises included in the book are easy to learn, once practiced they are also very quick. Each lesson is supposed to take a month each, as you develop through the year. Considering how quickly I read this book (two hours) I can really see it as a top recommendation to anyone who needs a fresh take at some of the meditations required of any magickal practitioner and Thelemite. I have only just got my hands on this book, even though I was recommended it quite a few months back, and it is an amazing companion to building a regime to follow for a year.

The development side will be incredible; especially the discipline and structure. The Four Adorations are fast becoming a way of life for me. The fluidity of the language is easy to grasp, and really brings a smile to your face, or at least it did me. Regardie really paid a lot of attention to detail with the upmost care and love. In the beginning of the book Regardie details the feelings and troubles he had when he wrote the manuscript in the first place, and I found that quite moving. The One Year Manual is a small and concise book with a lot of punch.

My rating: ★★★★★