An Introduction to Ceremonial Magic

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An Introduction to Ceremonial Magic

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Magic, or Magick as it is known by Thelemites and neo-religions, is a melange of disciplines; principle of these is curiosity. Magic follows a similar line to Gnosticism in that it is the search for ‘gnosis’, or knowledge.

Secondary skills include: astrononomy/astrology, mathematics (geometry, trigonometry, calculus and algebra), linguistics – modern (French, German and Italian), and classic (Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Arabic); calligraphy and penmanship, artistry and copying; memory, lateral, literal, logical and oft times surreal intelligence.

To perform many of the rituals both substantial finances and private working space are required. Particularly when working with Theurgia and Goetia, the neophyte is required to construct medallions from gold and silver and mark out large diagrams on the floor.

Access to large libraries is also a must, as is having the finances to purchase both modern translations and early works from antiquarian book shops.

It is rare to find all of the above characteristics (both intellectual and material) in one person – unless one has already discovered the spiritus mundi, which negates the discipline in the first place – so it may be suggested to work in a pair. If the neophyte is successful in their choice of partner then the skills, and resources, they may be lacking should be apparent in their partner. Larger groups, bordering on the covenesque, should be avoided as history shows that human psychology quickly reverts to its tribal roots and the group ends up as Master and acolytes – anathema to personal development. In fact, several rituals require two persons to be present – particularly those involved with communication with angels. On a more grounded level, a partner may provide impetus to research, preventing the acolyte from allowing their attention to waver and lose sight of the original goal.

Magic, sadly, is not learnt – and most definitely not understood – overnight. Often, a work read may be forgotten or simply dismissed as being too fanciful or too complex only to be reread several years later and to be understood – usually after other similar works have been digested and can be used in comparison.

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Looks like a lot of work and knowledge to be good at it.
By YCON: posted on 24-2-2006

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