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To: alt.magick
From: (Gnome d Plume)
Subject: Re: Hermetics
Date: Mon, 09 Feb 2004 20:17:28 GMT

**** As promised, I have returned (after The Witches' Ball and an
all-day magical marathon on Sunday. The Witches' Ball was very
successful btw, 200 witches, with warlocks in tow; and many of them
very attractive! (dare we say that!). Sunday started too early and
went too late but we got a lot accomplished here at Rivendell.....Now
to newbie Jane's  complaint---which I sympathize with perhaps more
than my esteemed colleague Fra. Zah. Jane, alt.magick can be and has
been a snake pit---but it is the biggest and best known open
international forum on magick. We used it years ago to come out of
"the tower of silence" and overcome an attempt by a leading occult
publisher, and their pet popular magick writer, to rip us off and then
to suppress our publications. In order to overcome these odds I had to
suffer a loss of that lofty dignity that a Heremtic adept is supposed
to maintain. I adopted a Crowley type public stance and William
Buckley mode of debate--flambouyant on the one hand and ruthlessly
sarcastic on the other. It worked and as a magical small press and
video studio we are successful--at least in outreach if not in profit.
This comes at a cost however, and that cost is dually noted in your
With that in mind, I will at least apologize for sometimes enjoying my
600 pound gorilla status on alt.magick. **** 

On Sat, 07 Feb 2004 21:35:02 GMT, (Gnome d
Plume) wrote:

>On Sat, 7 Feb 2004 14:59:56 -0600, "AL Zha"  wrote:
>>"Gnome d Plume"  wrote in message
>>> On Fri, 6 Feb 2004 08:50:43 -0600, "AL Zha"  wrote:
>>> >
>>> >"Gnome d Plume"  wrote:
>>> >
>>> >>..although it may be more intense and shamanic than what you are looking
>>> >for.
>>> >
>>> >Or indeed, too blasted circus side-show.
>>> >
>>> >
>>> >AL Zha
>>> >
>>> **** The first thing I need to make clear is that "Al Zha" is not a
>>> sock-puppet of mine ( He probably is someone else's ). Having said
>>> that, let's get on with it. We haven't had a good old fashioned flame
>>> war on alt.magick in over a year now. As you all know, these cyber
>>> bruhahas are a weakness of mine. I swore mighty oaths that I would no
>>> longer engage in them, but old habits are hard to break (and they do
>>> tend to support our outreach efforts---for those muggles inclined to
>>> be skeptical that could mean "sales.") Therefore I will answer Al
>>> Zha's nasty little comment with a few observations of my own and we'll
>>> see if we can coax "Al Zha" out to play....
>>>       The newbie was interested in web sites on Hermetic Magick.
>>>        I  listed our web site
>>> and commented that:
>>> "although it may be more intense and shamanic than what you are
>>> looking for."
>>>        This was an honest, brief and appropriate reply.
>>>        To which "Al Zha" appended: "Or indeed, too blasted circus
>>> side-show."
>>>         Circus side-show?
>>>         Without questioning the Hermetic, academic, Tantirc and
>>> fraternal accomplishments of Al Zah--or assuming a lack thereof--let's
>>> examine this "Circus side-show" and see what this "Great Master" is
>>> looking down upon:
>>>          The O.T.A. is the oldest continually practicing ceremonial
>>> magick lodge in the United States. We are the rediscoverers and
>>> developers of the facial reflection method of Solomonic magical
>>> evocation, which is now the most widely used method of conjuration to
>>> visible appearance. We are the only lodge in the West that employs a
>>> full straight-line Qabalistic psychic center (chakra) system, giving
>>> us access to the most advanced techniques of Tantric yoga in a Western
>>> context. Our practical experience in Eastern Tantric (Tibetan)
>>> practice validates this claim. No other Western system has this
>>> essential magical capability. Our initiations are based upon the 18th
>>> century rite of Crata Repoa which is 100 years older than the G.D.
>>> Cypher Manuscript. Even so, we have researched, annotated  and
>>> published the most authoritative book on The Golden Dawn Cypher
>>> Manuscript.
>>>       Our pathworking system is based on personal instructions from
>>> Kerpol Singh. Like our chakra system it has been Westernized into the
>>> best inner plane initiatory system of its kind.
>>>       Our modernized Almadel scrying system for Angelic invocation is
>>> very effective and powerful; a necessary balance for spirit
>>> evocation--an essential spiritual principle that few other writers on
>>> magick seem to be concerned about.
>>>       Our reconstructed Phoenician seasonal ceremonial pageants have
>>> been continually performed four times yearly for 30 years---a record
>>> no other magical lodge or NeoPagan group can match.
>>>       For our advanced degrees we require the candidate to undergo an
>>> intensive three day and three night secluded retreat alone in the
>>> Temple where he/she must complete at least 22 rituals ascending the
>>> Paths of the Tree of Life to attain K&C of HGA. No other magical lodge
>>> has this requirement---which in itself should make it obvious that we
>>> set the highest standards of internal and external perfection in the
>>> Great Work.
>>>         Now if this is a "Circus side-show," we'd really like to know
>>> what "The Real Thing" is all about.....Go ahead, Greatly Honored
>>> Frater Al Zah, give us a lecture. ****
>>> Good Magick!
>>> (and we do it....)
>>> Gnome d Plume
>>Care, Greatly Honored Frater, Most Worshipful Master and Operative Scot Rite
>>Mason of High Degree;
>>All in good fun, though not without a greater purpose. If it's your aim, or
>>if you indeed can, make men Overmen, Supermen of Order in the Great Work
>>then appeal to your audience. Without the defensive antagonism against my
>>now, and perhaps permanent, posting nym, the above makes me believe in you,
>>in your purpose and in your ability to teach, genuinely. However, what you
>>market to earn your living among those whom you also target to initiate is
>>oft confusing, as your ultimate motivation for being in alt.magick is
>>unclear -- especially when debates, or should I state, flames, begin.
>>Speaking for only myself, of course.

**** As I pointed out earlier: we don't (and I don't) make a living
publishing books, producing videos, and lecturing and teaching magick.
And I am equally suspicious of those who do.---As for flame wars, see
my prologue above. *****
>>I do have a question about post-H.G.A. attainment as a result of your ritual
>>retreat if I may. Do you then teach adherents the necessity of conjuring
>>Goetic demons in place of Kabbalistic Arch-Devils in a Abra-Melin

**** Our HGA retreat owes more to Charles Russell (3-days) (via Luis
Culling) and Cagliostro (44 days) than to Abramelin (6 Months). Anyone
(and some have) who takes Abramelin literally in this day and time is
flirting with disaster for two reasons: first he will probably be
arrested for child endangerment, and second: no modern magician, given
our broader understanding of the art, would need to undertake a six
month intensive program to spiritualize himself before attempting any
form of visionary magick. Bardon's system is the closest modern
counterpart to this idea, but his long apprentice period (I into H,
vol I) is a fully balanced program of magical development leading to
evocation in volume 2, as opposed to Abramelin's 15th century version
of *A Course in Miracles.* Qabalistically old Abramelin's operation
has to be in Malkuth, whereas K&C should be in Tiphareth. Crowely was
certainly beyond the Malkuth stage when he undertook his "semester" of
K&C at Boleskine. Nuff said on this, I think.****

>> If not, can your invocation techniques taught be adapted for the
>>post 'sealing the hells' operation? 

**** We can seal any hell you want. That's what angels are for, and
remember, we emphasize them while other don't.****

>>Also, if you would please: I understand
>>the Angels are invoked, and rightfully so, but I've always thought, and I'm
>>not an authority on the subject by any means, that demons were never to be

**** Who invokes demons? We sometimes "evoke" demons. We never
"invoke" them.****

>>I assume, nay, expect an argument forthcoming as to my need to buy
>>your books to learn more.

****Don't worry about that. Others will buy them and tell you about

>>A fair argument it would be too, though, and
>>again, if you would, I think it would be only fair to your audience to once
>>and for all explain, without Jungian verbiage, why in what you teach Demons
>>aren't called into a Triangle of Art, but rather a skrying device. 

**** Are you sure you are referring to the right magicians here? We
always summon (evoke) Goetia spirits in a Triangle. The dark mirror
goes into the center of the triangle. That's what that big black dot
in all the Goetia MSS. indicates. Even Bardon puts his non-optic
mirrors in an upraised triangle. A certain credulous self-confessed
former mental patient once criticized us for having the legs of the
easil inside the circle (he was worried about "demon slime" slithering
down the legs no doubt) but the triangle itself is always outside the
circle--except in certain advanced operations where the evocation is
actually an invocation and the spirit is actually a Pagan God or
Goddess--but this is highly specialized and not part of your

>>explain your deviation form the instructions given in the Golden Dawn MS
>>that you sell please. Respectfully, 'because doing so exerts too much
>>"energy"' will be a cop-out and, possibly, and rightfully, considered a
>>derailment tactic -- smoke and mirrors (if you'll excuse the pun).

****If you mean trying to conjure in smoke, nothing in the G.D. Cypher
MS recommends that. Trying to manipulate smoke to form an entity is an
experiment in telekinesis, not visionary magick. Smoke is used as an
enhancement and an olfactory aid, not a primary conjuration medium.
The traditional conjuration device of choice for evocation is the
speculum. For invocation it is the orb. This really is traditional
btw--we didn't invent these systems. What we did do is to discover--or
rediscover--how to make them actually work. The GD crippled itself
magically with its unreasoning hatred of the hypnotic process. This
was a direct result of the stage and parlor swamism rampant in
Victorian times. ****
>>In short: I may decide to travel and seek instruction from you should you
>>find it worth your while to accept me as a student -- though not an easily
>>suggestible or programmable student. This depends on my one need and two
>>conditions: you are upfront about and explain in detail the possible
>>adaptations of Abra-Melin magicK existing in your post-H.G.A. operations,
>>should one or others exist; your agreement to clear up many years of
>>alt.magick confusion concerning the precise differences, in your opinion,
>>that exists between evoking and invoking; and how you choose to respond to
>>this post. If I am neither satisfied with your rationalization(s), or I am
>>expected to find out at a latter date, and by that time too late, that what
>>you offer in the way of initiatory teaching does not fit my own preferred
>>standards, then I'll conclude, with no other choice, that you're hiding
>>something and are in search for puppets to stick there manly members in the
>>Esirian Apple -- thus, participants in a "circus side-show".

**** Now I will say that you should have read TBOSM before drafting
this last paragraph---you seem to have anticipated different answers
than you would have asked for had you investigated just a bit first.
But, in any case I've enjoyed the exchange, and I hope you've learned
a bit. I closing I will say that the original "situation" that
impelled me to produce *The Magick of Solomon* and publish *The Book
of Solomon's Magick* has tended to give a skewed picture of our
magical program. There is a lot more to what we teach and do than
Goetia. That just happened to be something we had that was remarkably
effective and marketable in a simplistic form--hence the rip-off and
hence our dramatic,  more detailed and authentic (but also marketable)
reply. ****
>>Take your time, Gnomey.

>>AL Zha

**** I did. ****

(to Gnomey is to know me....)

>**** Ah! Good for you! And excellent questions all. Also I appreciate
>the timely answer. ---And I will have to take some time because
>tonight I'm attending "The Witch's Ball" (did you know they had
>balls?) and tomorrow I'm initiating ten new people (none of them
>side-show freaks btw), so by Monday I should be able to go through
>your piece above and answer each point to your satisfaction. However,
>I will leave you with one correction: I do not "earn a living" with
>books, videos or fees and dues. We cover expenses only; anything over
>(and that's not much) goes back into the magical enterprise. Unlike a
>number of "Great Adepti" I've spent a productive life in business and
>have comfortably retired, allowing me to turn my former professional
>talents (and the rewards therefrom) to the service of the Great Work.
>---Which, I will admit, is also a lot of fun.  ****
>In L.V.X., 
>Gnome d Plume

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