Tag Archives: goetia

Making A Goetia Floorcloth

New video: in which I record my efforts at making a full-size Goetia floor cloth, a la Lesser Key of Solomon the King.

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August 7, 2015 · 9:19 pm

Apologia Pro Angelis Caducis

fallen-angel 2

But who prays for Satan? Who, in eighteen centuries, has had the common humanity to pray for the one sinner that needed it most?

Mark Twain

It takes a certain amount of experience in evocatory magick to realise that not all “evil spirits” are either the same, or indeed “evil” per se – it is a philosophically redundant term anyway.

For example: take the spirits of the Goetia, and contrast them with (e.g.) the Qlippoth.

The raison d’etre of the latter is that they are unbalanced forces left over from the creation of the universe – but the former are “fallen angels” (at least – that is how they are described in the Lesser Key of Solomon). In practice this is a huge difference – the Spirits of the Goetia were once in Heaven, but now are not: but the Qlippoth were never in Heaven to begin with.

In other words, the Goetic spirits are the same sort of “creatures” as Angels – but in exile from the main body of the Angelic host. Moreover, despite being fallen, they are theoretically capable of redemption – which is to what, in fact, many of them aspire.

(NB: in the foregoing description, Heaven should really be thought of as “what humans believe to be heaven.” When one analyses their origin – as primordial deities – it becomes clear that their “fall” was not caused by their own disobediance, but by Humans’ increasing inability to relate to them.)

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Alex explains… Black Magick

OK, so there has been a lot of controversy on the interwebby-type thing about so-called Black Magick, and racism, and what-not, so I thought that I, Alex Sumner, novelist and world’s greatest expert on the occult, ought to shove in my £0.02 and clear all this confusion up.

“Black Magick” is a perjorative term for any magick which is just as vile as your own – except that you happen not to like the person doing it.

Seriously! Throughout the history of the occult, the common-ploy of every charlatan and rogue is to accuse the rival sorcerer down the road as a practitioner of Black Magick, whilst oneself is of course a White Magician. It’s a marketing ploy – pure and simple.

Moreover, as far as your typical fundamentalist Christian preacher is concerned, all magick is indiscriminately Black, because it all comes from the Devil. Even the stuff which does not look as if it does, does: because Old Nick is just fooling the gullible.

To my mind, therefore, “Black Magick” has become a thoroughly discredited term as to be effectively meaningless. Now, however, consider the following situations:

You conjure up a Demon, and you say to it:

  1. “Hey, Demon! Stop being evil, and work only for good instead!”
  2. “Hey, Demon! Stop being evil, and satisfy my selfish ambitions.”
  3. “Hey, Demon! Stop being evil, and open up a hell-mouth in the Nevada desert for no other reason than shits and giggles, and blatant self-aggrandisement.”
  4. “Hey, Demon! I deliberately want you to harm one, some or all of the other members of the human race.”

Question: which of a, b, c, or d above counts as “Black magick” ?

Answer: depending on your point of view, potentially all of them. By the same token however, these can be argued to be completely different.

Situation a is in fact the rationale behind a lot of the ceremonial magick of bona fide magical orders such as the Golden Dawn, the Elus Cohens, etc, as well as magical systems such as Abramelin – because confronting the dark aspects of ones personality is something that every serious spiritual aspirant has to deal with sooner or later. Indeed, I myself have blogged about this topic before, in the context of using NLP in conjunction with Goetic magick.

Situations b is a Grey area. Depending on how the conjuration is performed it could so easily lurch from being a fairly innocent extension of the kind of thing envisaged in (a) above, through to a reasonable request to provide for the basic needs of oneself and ones family, through to something like selling ones soul to be a successful businessman / pop-star /  head of a Masonic order / etc.

Situation c sounds at first to be fairly sinister, but consider this: is it really evil, if you haven’t really harmed anyone, and all you’ve done is make yourself look like a complete cock? Actually: anyone who would seriously consider attempting such a thing in the first place is probably already beyond those kinds of scruples.

Situation d looks the most “evil” of all. However, when one considers that the Governments of the world authorise the taking of human-life on a day to day basis and call it “warfare” even this could – as far as a magician who is willing to prostitute his services to the cause of the said Governments is concerned – be argued to be justifiable. The legendary New Forest working, which is alleged to have taken place in England during World War Two, is just such an example: it wasn’t just something to defend the country, it was an aggressive act aimed at at least one member of the enemy directly and his countrymen generally. But who cares, after all they were only Germans?

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Pic of the day: Pentagram of Solomon

Pentagram of Solomon, as used in the Goetia of the Lesser Key of Solomon

Pentagram of Solomon, as used in the Goetia of the Lesser Key of Solomon

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January 22, 2014 · 7:35 pm

Bloghopping: Alex Sumner talks about his forthcoming new work

I am participating in a blog hop of Visionary Fiction Authors. For more details, please see Sandy Nathan’s YOUR SHELF LIFE.

Anyway, here are my answers to some questions she’s posed:

“The Demon Detective” by Alex Sumner

1. What is the working title of your book or project?

“How To Cast A Love Spell” – a novella, in the series “The Demon Detective, and other stories.”

2. Where did the idea come from for the book or project?

A friend of mine said to me “Alex, why don’t you write a post on your website about how to cast a love spell?” After giving this some thought I decided to make it the theme of a new fictional story, instead of a blog post per se. I thought that discussing the issues involved – both how to cast a love spell, and why it is not necessarily a clever idea to do so – would sound a lot more fun and interesting if cast in the form of an adventure story, than if I were to just write something sententious and preachy about it.

3. What genre does it fall under, if any?

Dark fantasy, with a large dash of (cough) “Romance.”

Angelina Jolie

4. If applicable, who would you choose to play your characters in a movie?

Johnny Depp

Guy Shepardson, the lead-male character, would have to be someone with suave, dark, good-looks, perhaps like Johnny Depp. The lead-female character would have to be someone very beautiful and with a commanding screen presence – like Angelina Jolie.

Basically, my story is the one they should have adapted to film, instead of that god-awful mess “The Tourist.”

5. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your manuscript or project?

“Fifty Shades Of Satan.”

6. Will your book or story be self-published or represented by an agency?

Probably the former, unless something drastic happens in the next couple of months.

7. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

It’s still a WIP! I do find, though, that it’s going very quickly – probably because I myself enjoy the story so much.

8. What other book or stories would you compare this story to within the genre?

The nearest analogue I suppose would be the paranormal romance stories of Christine Feehan. This book will be nothing like Feehan’s though. I deliberately go in a different direction and follow my own path.

The Goetia of the Lesser Key of Solomon

9. Who or what inspired you to write this book or story?

Apart from my friend coming up with the original idea (see my answer to question 2), it is generally inspired by a demonic grimoire known as The Goetia. I should hasten to point out that demonic-magick is a complex matter. The issues raised are akin to Jungian notions of integrating the Shadow into the Self, rather than a straightforward Manichean good-vs-evil duality.

10. What else about the book or story might pique the reader’s interest?

Apart from a large number of scenes of extremely lusty wish-fulfillment on the part of the lead-female character, it does actually contain details of real magick in it!


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Ask A Wizard: Is Magic Real?

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The Demon Detective – now available via Amazon as well

Artwork © the author 2011

For those who prefer to do all their shopping via Amazon, my new short story “The Demon Detective” is now available there as well – exclusively for Kindle.

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The Demon Detective – New Short Story

Cover artwork © the author, 2011.

You now have the opportunity to read “The Demon Detective” – the first new material I have released since “The Magus Trilogy.” This is a Dark Fantasy short story set in and around contemporary London, and is a tale of murder and demonolatry, featuring new character Guy Shepardson.

This is only available as an ebook. It can be downloaded from SmashWords for only $0.99 in all popular formats.

For more information and to purchase a copy please go here.

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Looters spared by Void Of Course Moon

The seal of Andromalius.

So there I was, thinking, “What can I, Alex Sumner, the world’s greatest expert on the occult, do to help the people of London who have been affected by the riots recently? I know: I’ll evoke the demon Andromalius to get all the looters to return the property they have stolen!” So I decided to cast a Horary figure to see whether this was a good idea or not.

And what do you know? The Moon – which, in Horary astrology indicates the circumstances in which the question arises, would not form a major aspect with another planet until after it left the current sign (Capricorn). It would however form several minor aspects, i.e. be inconjunct to a retrograde Mercury, and semi-sextile to Neptune and Caput Draconis.

So here is my dilemma. According to one definition, if the Moon does not form a major aspect to another planet before it leaves the sign it is in, it is said to be “Void of Course” (VOC). If a Horary figure is drawn when the Moon is VOC, the only information it provides is that “Nothing will come of this question” (NB: not “the whole chart is meaningless” – the chart has a meaning, just not a very helpful one). So unless VOC is defined as “any aspect” instead of “any major aspect,” it would appear that the looters have been spared the wrath of Sumner by a Void of Course moon.

(If however the chart is not VOC, I would still be put off because the Lord of the Ascendant – Mercury is not only retrograde, but opposed to retrograde Neptune. Deceit, deception and illusion (retrograde Neptune) are likely to cause my project to go awry (retrograde Mercury)!)

More generally though, when looking at the chart for the day, one notices that there is a Grand Cross featuring four Malefic planets – Mars, Saturn, Pluto (r) and Uranus (r). At the height of the trouble several days ago, the Moon transitted retrograde Pluto!

This could of course be a coincidence … or it could mean that THERE WILL BE FRESH TROUBLE NEXT WEEK – when the Moon transits Uranus. There will also probably be a new development in the phone hacking scandal when it transits the Mercury-Neptune (both retrograde) opposition.

Horary figure for the question: "I intend to evoke Andromalius to cause all looters to return their stolen property. Is this a good idea?" Note also the current planetary positions.

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… but then we shall see face to face.

John Dee, the famous Elizabethan Mathematician, Scholar and Occultist, continues to exercise a powerful hold over the British imagination. So much so that British newspaper The Guardian this weekend featured a nice article this weekend about Dee’s “Shewstone” or black-obsidian disc with which he got Edmund Kelly to skry all the wonders of what we nowadays call Enochian Magic.

The article in question was about a new exhibition at the Tate St Ives (Cornwall, not Cambridgeshire) about magic and modernity. This proved to be somewhat ironic as according to the article, the exhibition neither featured the work of a modern magic practitioner, nor did it feature John Dee’s Shewstone. Ah well, serves me right for reading such a miserable excuse for a paper. Back to The Daily Telegraph for me in future!

But this got me thinking that I should take this opportunity to write a blog piece about Dark Mirrors and their use in magic generally.

A “dark mirror” or Speculum (not to be confused with the medical instrument of the same name) is not so much a conventional mirror but a black shiny surface in which one’s reflection may be perceived. It is used in magic for evocations.

Now a number of magicians seem to think that when performing an evocation, the spirit somehow materialises within the Triangle of Art out of thin air – but a survey of both classic magic texts and modern sources suggests that this is not the case. A great many texts suggest that the object of evocation is to make a given spirit appear in some sort of skrying medium: the most famous example of which would be the classic Crystal Ball.

However a number of other media have also been described as being used – e.g. Dee’s black-obsidian disc, or a bowl of water (a technique favoured by the Ancient Egyptians) or a small quantity of black ink held in the palm of one’s hand. Anything in fact which is black and shiny.

Paschal Beverly Randolph (1825 – 1875) advocated the use of dark mirrors for skrying purposes. He recommended using two sheets of glass, one flat and the other (the skrying surface) concave: the space between the two sheets of glass was to be filled with black ink. Randolph also wrote down practical instructions for getting started in dark-mirror skrying. (See his book Sexual Magic).

Eliphas Lévi (1810 – 1875) famously attempted to evoke the spirit of Appolonius of Tyana into a mirror. Technically he succeeded (he claimed that an apparition of Appolonius appeared) but for all the good it did him he might have just as well tried reading the tea-leaves.

Franz Bardon (1909 – 1958) in his book Initiation Into Hermetics also describes how to create magic mirrors for the purpose of skrying. According to Bardon there are several methods – such a mirror can be made from an actual mirror or glass bowl, a concave glass disc (such as can be obtained from clock-makers), or bowl which has been made by oneself out of plaster-of-paris. Knowledge of what Bardon calls “fluid condensers” – substances which attract magical influences in a kind of very simplified alchemy – is necessary to render the mirror effective. Once prepared – and assuming that one undergoes all of the other steps required for magical training – the magic mirror can be used for skrying the various planes of existence, contacting dead people, contacting magical entities, and numerous other magical effects.

The most famous practitioner of dark-mirror skrying today is Carroll “Poke” Runyon, founder of the Ordo Templi Astarte. Runyon has stated that he re-discovered the practice all by himself in the early seventies, and uses it to contact the seventy-two spirits of the Goetia of the Lesser Key of Solomon (whilst using a crystal ball for contacting angelic beings). See The Magick of Solomon.

What is being observed when one looks into a dark mirror? The reductionist-materialist would say that it is merely a dim reflection of oneself. However, in every case of evocation with which I am familiar, the magician does not just sit down in front of the object, but prepares himself with a great deal of magic ritual, which involves concentration and entering into an ecstatic or visionary state of consciousness. Runyon for example explicitly states that both raja yoga and self-hypnosis are necessary requisites for proper skrying in the dark mirror. Therefore although the physical cause of the apparition is the dim reflection of the skryer, what the skryer perceives is in fact the sum total of the influences at work on his or her mind at that particular moment, due to the magical ceremony in progress.

There is a description of a dark mirror skrying operation in my novel which I do not recommend readers carry out literally – it is meant to be the direct opposite of what a normal respectable magician would do in real life. On the other hand it is meant to convey an authentic flavour of what a vile, degenerate luciferian ceremony would consist.

Finally I should point out that several magicians claim that it is not necessary to “see” a spirit in order to evoke it properly. Lon Milo Duquette for example has claimed success with Goetic operations, but readily admits that when he evokes a spirit he feels its presence rather than seeing it. In Chaos Magick, an evocation refers to evoking the effects of a magical force to physical manifestation, not necessarily to evoking a visible appearance of the force itself.

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