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Jul 22 2011

Kenneth Grant’s Outer Gateways

Kenneth Grant’s controversial work continues to influence many occultists even while others claim grant was a fraud. Whatever the truth Grant’s works are notoriously hard to find and expensive when you do find the. The Connecticut library system actually does have several floating around – or did 10 years ago when I had them ordered from a small town branch miles from the college town I was in.

Outer Gateways is one of his more interesting works. A kind of Lovecraftian, neo-realism is presented her that touches on the fictional Cthulhu’s relationship with Crowley’s Liber 418, the Necronomicon as metaphor for The Primal Grimiore and the theory that UFOs are actually magical entities seeking contact with us. That’s just the first chapter.

Your best bet is to try to find it in a library unless you can afford paying more than $100 for a used book but here’s 177 of the 272 pages available for free. It’s a fun read and packed with enough information to keep you busy even if you can’t read the whole thing:

Kenneth Grant – Outer Gateways

Oct 27 2010

Reader Question: Where Can I Find Electrum Magicum

I’m paraphrasing but to answer reader “Lilitu” who asked about a magical metal used to make bells that summon angels I believe you are thinking of Electrum Magicum. In E.M. Butler’s Ritual Magic it is mentioned in the chapter called The Faustian School.

The metal is formed by “melting in the prescribed order and with due regard to planetary aspects golf, silver, iron, copper, tin, mercury and lead, and mixing them together.” I have not tried such myself and know of no one who has but I have been in contact with people who make their own bullets and from that have gleaned that mixing the above metals is something that is practically impossible.

Butler mentions that the complete process can be found in two different magical chapbooks. One is Magia Divina which was published around 1745 the other was Magia Naturalis et Innaturalis. The latter is also noteworthy because it explicitly espouses the heretical view that the demons Magicians summon are both able to receive and desirous to receive forgiveness and salvation from Jesus Christ.

Magia Naturalis et Innaturalis was often claimed to be authored by Faust himself, a lucrative conceit that was common among chapbook printers at the time. Electrum Magicum in that book was formed into balls that were used to threaten demons, find buried treasure, unhex people, banish ghosts and do all the varied things Magicians used to do to earn a few coins. Magia Divina only gives instructions to make a bell that summons angels.

Outside of a museum or perhaps a university library I’m not sure where you could read the ritual. And I know of no reputable source that claims to have possession of or be able to make Electrum Magicum.Butler had access to the two while writing her book, but that was in the 1940s so checking with the universities she was affiliated with (Cambridge, I believe) may or may not pay off.

However, if you did figure out a recipe you need not break the bank building a workshop to melt and mix metals. As I said before the popularity of bullet making among shooters means cheap high speed melters and ingot molds are available in versions that can fit on a workbench. Hope that helps.

Good luck and have fun.

Oct 1 2010

The Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram

The Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram is designed to purify both the magician and his or her immediate area. It is most often used as a precursor to magical work, sometimes used as a meditation and can be pressed into service as an exorcism though in my humble opinion it lacks the power of traditional religious exorcism. However, since many magicians will know this rite (or will want to learn it at some point) and since it needs no special equipment or supplies, the LBRP has become one of the most popular banishing rituals in modern occultism. Every magician knows it and can pretty much do it at the spur of the moment.

Originally created by The Golden Dawn the rite has, through that process of occult osmosis many practitioners are familiar with, been passed along to many different traditions. Interestingly, despite the overt Judeo-Christian symbolism traditionalist Wiccans have been known to use it. There are variations which replace the Christian and Jewish references with pagan ones for the more xenophobic practitioners who dare not “pollute” themselves which such things but I have known dozens of pagans who have used the ritual as is and have not been struck down by the gods. Continue reading

Sep 7 2010

The Black Pullet

Otherwise known as The Treasure of the Old Man of the Pyramids, The Black Screech Owl, or Red Magic this little chap book that most know as The Black Pullet was once a staple of occult shops. The suspect origins of the book put many off, but the system of magic contained therein has an elegance which will appeal to the more traditional occultist and the techniques themselves make fun projects for the crafty (no pun intended) practitioner.

The process described in the book is simple, yet the execution is complex and requires time, dedication, skill and most importantly resources. Figures which are provided need to be embroidered on silk squares which are then used in conjunction with special rings (also specific to the rite and ideally created by the magician) for various purposes. The power of each talisman and ring is activated at will by hand gestures and the recitation of certain magical phrases.

I’ve owned the Pullet since my early years of practice but soon found simpler rites to achieve more reasonable results so I can’t vouch for their efficiency. Many of the results promised by this book of supposedly ancient secrets are criminal at best, concerned with magically burglarizing homes, creating earthquakes and spying on your neighbors. In that respect it is the pettiest of sorceries, but the techniques themselves I consider a kind of Ceremonial Magic.

It also comes in so many different version that many think the various titles are different books entirely. I have a 1984 Marlar Publishing edition called The Book of Magical Talismans which lists the author as Elbee Wright who wrote the Book of Legendary Spells. This version adds material that was culled from other occult chapbooks of that era.

The Trident Books version is available on Scribd:

Trident Books – The Treasure of the Old Man of the Pyramids

Hermetics.org has a .pdf available for download and there is a Kindle edition. Sacred-Texts has a complete history of the book.

I once saw one of the rings from the Pullet in a jewelry store call C’est Magnifique in NYC. For all of you New Yorkers not interested in learning to make your own rings they might be a good place to start looking for the rings involved.

Sep 7 2010

A Charm To Remove a Curse by Donna Rose

This ritual is effective on many different types of curses but is supposedly specifically designed for women who fell the “other woman” has cursed their relationship. With minor alterations it should be workable in many different situations.

Again this comes from The Magic of Spells and Curses by Donna Rose which is a fantastic mini-grimoire that should be in your library, but it is rather hard to find and thus overpriced which is why I’m publishing her better spells here:

Make a mixture of the following into an incense and burn it in your home and especially in the bedroom, each midnight – for at least five nights.

a. Sandalwood

b. Juniper berry

c. Hawthorne Berry

d. Cedar Wood

e. Pine Wood

Use a White incense base and add the above ingredients, well mixed. Burn as directed.

Each night, cast the ashes out the front door, and scatter them into the winds.

As the incense burns, as that the Supreme Being reverse the spell and cast it back to those who have cursed you. Use a pine branch as the incense burns to sweep out the house. Run the branch down your arms at the conclusion of the spell-work each night, and, on the final night, burn the branch.

Needless to say please be careful when doing all this burning. The “white incense base” is for the hard core incense makers out there in this case I’ve known people who burn the herbs and dried berries on coals which I assume is messy but not everyone is going to learn to blend their own incense. A good protection incense made by someone you trust knows what they’re doing probably works just as well.

Aug 23 2010

The Pulsa Denura: Haredim Cult Death Curse

Haaretz ran a story titled “The mysterious death of an Orthodox Jewish millionaire – murder or suicide?” which relates the strange death of Solomon Obstfeld. Obstfeld had rented an apartment to a Rabbi at below market prices, but the Rabbi had n0t paid any rent for a period of months so Obstfeld threw the man out. Before returning to Israel the Rabbi cursed Obstfeld with the Pulsa Nenura (Whips of Fire), a supposedly ancient curse using Kabbalistic formulas to call upon the Angels of Destruction to kill the victim.

Obstfeld died under suspicious circumstances.

Whether from this curse or the Rabbi’s hired help (which those close to Obstfeld believe is what actually happened) Obstfeld’s death has pushed this strange ceremony into the public eye and I will leave it to readers to form their own opinions about its effectiveness.

But first let’s start with the true history of the Pulsa Denura. I am no expert but I know of no legitimate Kabbalist who has ever purported to use such a curse. The ever unreliable Wikipedia claims the idea of the Pulsa Denura can be traced back to the Babylonian Talmud, but scholars say the original was specifically a curse that could only be given by God to one to his Angels. There is no traditional Kabbalistic basis for this ceremony being used as a curse.

The consensus seems to be that this rite was created in the early years of Israel’s reemergence by a Rabbi named Amram Blau who led the Haredim, or what we would call ultra-orthodox Jews. The rite is basically an elaborate excommunication ritual with a curse incantation thrown in. It was and is used as a political tool by the Haredim, who count among their numbers active anti-Zionists seeking the collapse of Israel, and also a large proportion of that state’s welfare recipients since most of the Haredim men actually refuse to work for “religious” reasons.  In this conflicted and overly pious community the Pulsa Denura can be seen perhaps as the expression of a group that feels both powerless and neglected by the wider Jewish community which it both despises and relies on.

Of course, as Chaos magicians will tell you, the truth is what you want it to be. The academic veracity of the curse may not pass muster but that doesn’t mean the curse can’t work. It has a high success rate, though the keen observer will notice that almost all the victims of this curse were old, already targeted by violent extremists or, in Obstfeld’s case, involved with shady characters like a Rabbi who may have hired a hitman.

Here’s video of the Pulsa Denura being performed:

My Hebrew is, shall we say, limited so I am uncomfortable publishing text to the rite. Hebrew speakers will find the text is out there. For religious purists it should be noted that it is impermissible, according to Jewish mystical tradition, to pray for something bad to happen to someone.

Like The Black Mass, which required the services of a de-frocked priest, the Pulsa Denura cannot be performed by just anyone. A group of scholars (some say ten) must perform the ritual in front of the tomb of a Jewish “martyr” after three days of fasting, starting at midnight. If the victim is without sin, the Angels will instead kill those that called them, myth says. The process will seem familiar to many of you that have slung some curses before.

In Israel the ritual isn’t particularly taken seriously, but is always a spectacle which draws the media. But there is no question that the rite contains elements of traditional Black magic. Perhaps the creator of the ritual read more than just the Zohar?