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Magickal Items I’m Taking to University

As I’m trying to tie up the loose ends on my university supplies, stationary and halls items, it occurred to me I hadn’t drawn up a list of Magickal tools I’ll need. I can’t take everything, and there are a lot of books I will have to leave behind until Yule. I will only take the most important items, also noting that I may buy other items when I’m there as well. What items would you take with you? I’ve asked a few folks over the past few weeks, and the responses have been diverse. I’ve had time to think and thought I’d share this written mishmash of ideas! It’s been a long time coming!

Here is my comprehensive list of spiritual items I might be taking:

Tarot
I am only taking two of my thirty decks. The “Lo Scarabeo Tarot” and Crowley’s “Thoth Tarot”. The Lo Scarabeo tarot is a modern merging of three of the worlds most popular tarot, with beautiful Italian illustration and simple symbols. It’s a deck that is comprised of the Rider-Waite, Tarot de Marseilles and Thoth. I use this deck as one of my daily/weekly tools for personal divination. It may come in handy with a few students too. As for my beloved Thoth deck, it’s only used for the odd reading, meditation and Qabalah study.

Books
As far as books are concerned, they have been the main area of interest and inquiry. Partly because they are tomes of knowledge and I will miss them if they aren’t around for me to study from. Mostly because the house I’ll be leaving them in is heaven for the ignorant and closed minded – I would die if my aunt decided to hide or destroy them, like a few of my old ritual items from times past.

My original plan was to take the smaller version of Liber ABA – Regardie’s “Gems…” As it includes everything I need to know in a more immediate fashion, but I’m just too attached to my blue baby. So below is a small list of a few important books I’m taking, baring in mind I can change them every three months or so until I get my own place the following year.

▪Liber ABA
▪Liber AL vel Legis (I have so many copies of this bible, I really wouldn’t mind if it got lost! I have 8 now; excluding the printed copies within other publications)
▪Gems from the Equinox
▪Garden of Pomegranates
▪Middle Pillar
▪The Tree of Life
▪The Golden Dawn
▪The Complete Works of Aleister Crowley vol. I-III

Journals
All of my journals are coming with me! I write in them so damn much I’m already about to start my next brand new Moleskine for Conjurations and thoughts. Write! And write often folks!

▪Book of Conjurations
▪Book of Thoth
▪Book of Horus
▪Main journal

Ritual Items
Now, I don’t know all the rules of my halls yet so I’m not risking candles, my dagger or wands etc. however, I shall take a particular number of altar cloths to create scared space, and possibly a statue or two. I’ve moved from the stage of having a statue to represent deity in order to worship it, as my view of deity is that of the New Æon. I will also have a small vase with a fake red rose – hayfever issues.

Miscellaneous and Pagan Items
I will take a few crystals to keep balance, and my pink yoga mat! If there is a yoga class at the gym then I’ll be going, if not I’ll find one somewhere in the city – need to keep toned and spiritually connected yo’!

Music will be on my iPad, iPhone and laptop, which will range from the beautiful Deva Premal and Maya Fiennes right up to Beethoven, Demdike Stare and Rammstein. I have quite an eclectic taste in music, but rock is in my blood 😛

I’m sure there is much more I could take, but I will see. My travel altar items need a massive reshape too!

Like I said, what would you take with you and why? So many people have so many different paths and experiences, and differing reasons for particular items. What keeps you spiritually connected? Let me know below.

In LVX 93, 93/93

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Blocking Out the Unknown

I was going to title this post, What Paganism Means to Me, but realised that my view would confuse or annoy many. I have decided to dissect what paganism and the occult mean form one area I’m focusing on: Hermeticism.

When someone asks me what I would associate with Paganism I see four vivid images. Ancient Mediterranean practices from Greece, Italy stretching across to Egypt and the rest of Nubia, and parts of Israel up in the Middle East. I see an old Alexandrian world with gladiators, priests and priestesses and various members of the Babylonian world, marching forward and paving the way for almost all modern religions and beliefs today. On another angle I see the solitary magicians living their Hermetic lives in Therugy, penning their travels and scripts in secret all over early Europe before, during and after the artistic renaissance and Baroque ages. My third view would be that of Northern Europe in the slings of battle, against the mighty Saxons, Vikings and Norsemen—and the few battles with Germanic and Roman soldiers. My last view of paganism conjures up modern images of people with statues to the Celtic, Norse, Roman/Greek and Egyptian Deities, alongside fairies, books and Charmed DVDs.

Our world had changed so much, and it’s quite enthralling to see. But you see, that’s where I get a little inquisitive. Where did this modern view of doing things ‘the easy way’ come from? Why do people assume full rituals are pomp? I understand from an experienced occult point of view, the ‘pomp’ is actually needed to draw in energies the mundane dabbler could never raise or grasp. So in a way, I’m glad most practitioners of magick don’t know about old school and traditional magick, or ancient paganism. But, at the same time I wish I could share wisdom to the vast numbers and show them what real magick is. I’ve been close to giving up magick a number of times, but I’ve always held fast because the Universe made it obvious I’m destined for other stronger paths—even if I live my True Will alone.

Now, I’m someone who has to identify areas of failure or strength in order to learn the lesson for myself. On various websites and in some books, paganism is listed with or under the occult. I personally feel the two are different and similar at the same time. I think that if you want the occult to find you, start with either general witchcraft, magick and Hermeticism (Golden Dawn, Thelema, ceremonial magick and other paths that stem from free form practice like Shamanism; not modern Wicca as that involves lots of areas based on these older practices that have been watered down an awful lot, and I don’t have the time to strip it down yet).

Like I said here, paganism is all green and loving, whilst the occult shows the magician the good, the bad and the ugly, which in turn moulds a better equipped and full of ‘pomp’ practitioner. I love the pomp, and have done for years, hence why I had to give up on Wicca. My magick stems from the ancient world, true occultism. Magick that connects you to the Divine in ways that I never imagined. Over the past few months my practice of simple rituals like the LBRP have not only helped me understand the ritual each time I perform it, but I feel more connected to the Universe and angels than I have in the past. It’s wonderful and upsetting at the same time, but that’s expected and shows me I’m on the right path. I’d never change these lessons for anything else in the world.

What is it that scares you most about taking that vital step? You came out of the Broom Closet, and you will every time you meet new people, and you know how big a step that was. What is stopping you from unblocking what pure magick feels like? Now, don’t assume that magick will come easily, nor will you be able to practice as freely as you like without structure, guidance or ‘pomp’. That is the pure beauty of the occult. She’s a rare beauty you may pass a few times on your path, but unless she looks you dead in the eye, holding out her hand, you’ll never know what it’s like unless you give up blocking her out.

How do you know what’s out there if you don’t venture outside? I’m a traveler of magick, and proud. At the same time, I have noticed I don’t like it when ‘experts’ try to tell me if I’m wrong about understanding true traditional Hermeticism, when their only view is that of modern Wicca (5%) and old skool books they haven’t actually practised anything from. Oy vey!

I’ve seen the snobbery from both sides: occultists’ can’t stand modern eclectic dabblers because they refuse to forge a backbone, and discard thousands of years of freedom and magick for a quick fix. On the other hand, learning a lot about magick from as many areas as you can is a bore to most fast paced dabblers of today, and they feel it’s far easier to just stay within the circle once they’ve found their footing.

There is so much I could say about the occult, about how enlightening it is, and how sour it can be at times. For me, Thelema is perfect as it encompasses all of the first three ideas of what paganism conjures in my head from earlier. Wisdom, truth, magick and Hermeticism. I can smile knowing my idea of western Magickal systems is my practical reality. I perform rituals very similar to those of the priestesses and priests of ancient Egypt, Rome, Greece and Israel (without animal slayg. I can research old customs and pair them with my Golden Dawn witchcraft, Thelema and magick practices (as they are all very similar and are based on ancient rituals found and translated) to conduct rituals of personal intent. I have stepped into a world beyond my understanding but I’m happy for it. I’m learning so much, and carving what my personal idea of what the occult and paganism is to me.

What does it mean to you? What images come to mind when you think about the words paganism and occultism? Are they the same or different areas of the same garden?

I wonder… That’s all I do these days.

Sy, x x

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I’m Not Crazy After-all | Hidden Wisdom Lecture

I was sent a link about Tim Wallace-Murphy’s book ‘Hidden Wisdom: Secrets of the Western Esoteric Tradition’, which I have put in my Amazon basket already. It is such a lovely lecture, presented by an equally lovely man. He goes into a lot of detail about the esoteric traditions and their roots, ranging as far back as the Ancient Egyptians, Ancient Greeks/Romans with information on the Knights Templar and symbology. However, for this post I am only going to pull out one or two areas that rung true to me, or at least got me thinking.

Watch the lecture here, it’s a must see!

It is the ideal lecture on understanding where your magickal teachings come from. More than anything, I picked up early on about the difference between religion and spirituality, in which he stated and agreed with an old friend that religion is man-made, whilst spirituality is natural and free. I have always thought this, and deep down I knew I was spiritual, and always felt akin to my spiritual friends. I was pretty much alone in my early theories, arguing back and fourth with religious people from all walks of life, whether it was Christians, Wiccans and most recently, a handful of Thelemites. They all pretty much said the same thing, “You need religion to get on in life. You can’t have spirituality without religion.” Which I have disproved so many times; I am living proof. On the other side, when I say that I believe esoteric traditions to be more spiritually grounded, people have often told me I am wrong too. Exempli gratia, witchcraft is spirituality, Druidry and Thelema are considered religions with a direct link to spiritual purity, and so I would categorise them as being ‘Spiritual Religions’. As much as I dislike the word religion, I use it to emphasise the difference between freedom and structure (or doctrine). What has me perplexed is the fact that something like Thelema, which is a religion, clearly teaches you that in order to be spiritual you must go out and seek that natural water for your own heart, which is a spiritual notion, so I can’t think of Thelema as a religion all the time. Thelema is too beautiful and life affirming to have a dirty word like “Religion’ bestowed on it? Am I crazy? I can feel the crazy looks…

It is nice to know that my theories aren’t all hokum after all. Guru Jonboi (haha) would agree with me, on the grounds that spirituality and religions are two different things. Thinking back to the first phone call we had when we spoke about their differences, listening to what he was saying sent warmth down my spine; everything he said, was almost word for word coming from my mind. It felt great. To this day we still read from the same page, regardless of where we are spiritually. He leans more to the Eastern philosophies, whilst I roam the wilds of the Ancients.

Later on Wallace-Murphy goes into detail about the early Ancient Egyptian influence on the creation of Judaism. I came across a few similarities and arguments during my research and practice days. I often looked up the beginnings of The Emerald Tablet, The Kybalion and its inspirations, Kemeticism and the famed Hermes Trismestagus who could have been Moses. It’s fascinating information I tell you. It makes me think up new possible theories, but I have taught myself not to say anything out loud to people in case I am stomped on by a hundred angry men (that’s why I write on my blog, only a few eyes read it, so I can get away with it! :P).

I have always felt proud of where I was going, knowing I was right all along. All of the lessons, paths and practices I have adopted are spiritual without a doubt, and to top it off, they all fall under Hermetic practises, and Thelema most certainly. As I have mentioned a few times, my spiritual life in the last 13 years has grown, and I have only dropped Wicca, the Wiccan Rede and the minor Celtic traditions as the religious aspect of my search for a religiously spiritual home. Everything else has stayed firmly in place, as I need them all to function as a witch, Thelemite and esoteric occultist. Gnosis anyone? Joke.

I am so happy to finally prove that I am on the right track! In your face! XD

Sy, x

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