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Enochian and Goetia Compared

To: alt.magick
From: (Shaxe)
Subject: Enochian and Goetia Compared
Date: 12 Sep 2002 21:43:17 -0700

Okay, I'm still trying to figure out why Duquette recommends using the
Enochian Calls with Goetic operations.  Since no one seems to know, I
thought I'd do my best to compare and contrast the two systems, to see
how someone might think they'd work together.

First off, they both surface around the Elizabethan age.  The world
had just emerged from the Middle Ages, but it hadn't quite managed to
break into the Enlightenment yet.

So on the one hand, they are both forward-looking systems.  There's a
certain amount of pre-Enlightenment freethinking going on in them.

They don't adhere as slavishly to traditional planetary or elemental
categories as do, say, Agrippa or the Greater Key of Solomon.  The
planetary/zodiacal atrributions of the Goetia seem almost an
afterthought.  The Enochian Tablets may be broken down into elemental
and planetary forces, but those forces seem to behave differently in
Enochian operations than they do otherwise.

Nor do they adhere rigorously to traditional categories of morality. 
The goets are not so much absolutely evil as they are flawed,
incomplete, cunningly self-interested, or just plain insane.  The
Enochian entities may be angels, but their nature is so alien that
they cannot really be classified into human moral categories.

Likewise, neither system adheres as strongly to orthodox religion as
does the Sworn Book of Honorius or similar books.

On the other hand, they have a bit of the medieval naivete about them.
 Science had not yet made the world so cynical about magick as to
produce the Faustian, pact-with-the-Devil style grimoires you see in
the 18th century.

So that's it in terms of history.  What about construction?

On the one hand, the Enochian system, though incomplete, is
painstaking, while the Goetia has the air of being a bit thrown

On the other hand, they both rely on material that was either
channeled or made up.  Dee received his system through Kelly's scrying
(or invention).  And the Goetic sigils, since they do not appear in
the earliest published versions of the spirit catalog (in Weyer's
Pseudomonarchia Daemonum and Scot's Discoverie of Witchcraft) and
since they follow no known rules of sigil contruction, must either
have been made up or discovered with the spirit vision.

In terms of effect, they both rely on a trick known by all good horror
film directors: if given inadequate data, the human mind will fill in
the blanks.  If you can't see what a monster looks like, you begin to
suspect.  And your suspicion is invariably scarier than the special

In Enochian, you have only a nearly unpronounceable name and an
elemental attribution that describes the spirit's nature only in the
grossest and most inadequate terms.

In Goetia, you have to work with a bizarre description that tells you
almost nothing of substance about the spirit.  Sure, there is an
improbable physical description and a random assortment of the tasks
assigned it (which are usually nearly identical to the tasks of
several other spirits).  But the Goetia descriptions tantalize more
than they inform.

If you summon Bartzabel, you pretty much know what you're gonna get;
but if you summon Valefor or Haagenti?  Much more unpredictable.

Finally, most of the Goetic spirits are theromorphic; according to
some reports, so are the Enochian ones.

Any thoughts?

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