When one becomes an Adeptus Minor in the Golden Dawn, one is suddenly faced with the fact that there is an awful lot of amount of paraphernalia that one is supposed to acquire. E.g.:
- A white robe;
- A yellow and white striped nemyss;
- A Lotus Wand;
- A Sword (the Sword of Geburah);
- A Rose-Cross Lamen;
- The Four elemental implements –
- The Fire Wand
- The Cup of Water
- The Air Dagger
- The Pentacle of Earth
I recently totted up how much it would cost to buy this lot online from various magickal suppliers – it came to about £400 (about $560 or more). Not good.
Then I tried looking into the matter. The fact is that through a combination of carefully searching the internet, thinking laterally, searching through various local shops and DIY, it is possible to slash these costs by 90% or so.
Take for example the acquiring of the white robe. A white tau robe is otherwise known as an “alb.” From a certain occult supplier, this would cost £52. From a church supplier it would cost £72. However, a white-coloured Arabic Thobe costs around £10.
An even better example is the Rose-Cross Lamen. It is apparently possible to buy a very finely made version in wood and in all the proper colours for around £100, which at least does have a high degree of workmanship. Yours truly on the other hand created one from materials costing around £10 from a local artists’ supplies shop.
The Fire Wand caused me some difficulty. After deciding that trying to stuff a length of coathanger wire down a bamboo cane is ultimately futile, I discovered that there is such a thing as “air drying clay” which is again available from my local artists’ supplies shop. Hence I hit upon the idea of moulding fire wand from the clay around the wire core. Result: the cost of materials, about £5, whereas to buy a fire wand would be about £50 or more.
Incidentally: there is an easy way to come up with a magnetised core for one’s Fire Wand. It involves coiling a length of wire as many times as possible around the length of the assembled wand, and connecting the ends to a battery (via a 1000 Ohm resistor, so it does not short out), for a brief period. You have in effect created an electromagnet, with the Wand’s steel core becoming the solenoid in the middle. After extracting the wand from the electromagnet you will find the core remains magnetised. Again, the cost of assembling such an electromagnet is just a couple of quid from a store that sells electronic components.
I admit to some luck – or was it? – in finding my sword, in that there was a local second hand shop in which I managed to find a pair of display swords going for a mere tenner.
The Pentacle of Earth was the cheapest of all, because by now I had accumulated enough material from my local artists’ supplies shops that I was able to make it out of left-overs.
So – by searching around carefully enough it is possible to create all of your own magical accoutrements for a fraction of the cost of if you were to buy them outright. You may need to borrow equipment, such as a soldering iron, sewing machines, etc. The main cost to you is your own time – it might take you several weekends to get it all done, assuming you do not do it whilst on holiday.
Finally, I would like to leave you with this link, which details how to make your own nemyss: http://www.geocities.com/lvx_120/nemyss.html