Saturday, February 27, 2016

Ritual Magic Manual ebook edition is coming (David Griffin masterpiece)

At the end of his webinar today, Demons and the magic of Golden Dawn (or whatever, the title of the webinar was), David Griffin announced that The Ritual Magic Manual is soon going to be released in an ebook format.

For those who are unaware of The Ritual Magic Manual, it is a 666 page book (a solar/venusian talisman, according to the author) that basically gives all the variations (both invoking and banishing) of the Greater Ritual of the Elemental Pentagram, Greater Ritual of the Planetary Hexagram, Greater Ritual of the Zodiacal Pentagram, Greater Ritual of the Sephirothic Hexagram rituals.

[Please note that these are his labels; others use slightly different names for these rituals.]

Published in 1999 (the only book ever published by Golden Dawn Publishing), The Ritual Magic Manual, typically is either rated one star or five stars (outside of my own review, I can't remember any middle ground reviews of the book). And when it went out of print, in typical out-of-print occult book fashion, some sellers started to ask a thousand dollars for a copy.

To the best of my knowledge, no seller has ever unloaded one at that price; the highest price I have seen admitted from a buyer was $350. Even so, given the original fifty dollar price tag, it is an inflated price for the book. (That's a book seller/collector opinion, not an opinion on the merits of the book itself. Interestingly, the most I have ever been offered is what I originally paid for my I tend to think that the actual value of the book was much less than a thousand.)

The importance of the book is that this is David Griffin's version of Golden Dawn self-initiation, and what he considers to the the most important aspect of the Golden Dawn system (basically, the rituals grow your body of light [LVX] and allows you to stop having to dwell in a meat-suit).

Now, a pdf of the book has been circulating in the pirate community for years, a slightly flawed copy, a copy that even Griffin shared in a giveaway. And I have argued for years that Griffin should get with the times and re-issue it though the ebook and POD (print-on-demand) markets...because if there really that much demand for it, why shouldn't he make a few dollars from it? (While I loathe the man, especially his insistance that anyone who disagrees with him is guilty of being part of a vast conspiracy to destroy his Order, I think that writers deserve to be paid---and the secondary book market does not give the writer a single penny---hence my argument that a re-issue was in order.)

And over the last couple of years, I have watched him edge up to this, but never step across the line until now. Good for him, good for the people who actually want an ebook copy of this book.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Occult fiction of David Griffin (hashtag blackmagicianlivesmatter)

Occasionally, people ask me if I read occult fiction, and the answer is yes. Then they ask me who is my favorite occult fiction writer, and I typically name some unknown writer because that is who I am. But I will admit that there is one occult fiction writer that I follow with great interest...

...and that is David Griffin.

You can't beat David Griffin when it comes to surreal satire of Big Name Magicians, Big Name Witches, Big Name Pagans, and Big Name Occult Orders.

Take for instance, his current work in progress #blackmagicianslivesmatter

Griffin is not trying to start a civil war...
A few days ago, Griffin posted a link to advertise his satrically named Occult News Network mailing list and Facebook page. Then he proceeded to share it with a hundred different Facebook groups, just the way that we see people hawk their expensive seminars, webinars, and badly researched and formatted books.

Some of these "ads" ended up in various Chaos Magic groups, a couple of which who did not take lightly to being spammed (they were ignorant that this is a performance piece of art) and they booted Girffin from their groups.

And then Griffin, the master story teller that he is, weaved this booting into his long running series "Hordes of black magicians are coming to enslave you using puppies and bacon."

Here Griffin introduces the villian--a black magician pretending to be a chaos magician.

Something, something dark side; let me save you. 

And here is your hook to popular culture, a common tactic of the snake oil salesman. 
And this story has it all: black magicians drunk with power, pretending to be harmless chaos magicians; civil war; race issues; a master magician armed with the sword of knowledge determined to free mankind from enslavement from black magicians.

Now, for those of you who missed the earlier installments of this comedy, Griffin started writing this a couple of years ago when he invited E. A. Koetting to his famous Magickall event. Just like in this case, he argued that the magical community, Golden Dawn in particular, was racist for protesting that his performance piece was unacceptable (basically, the Golden Dawn community missed the satire and irony of inviting a "black magician" to an event sponsored by an organization that traditionally swears to have nothing to do with "black magic"). How was it racist? Well, just substitute "negro" for "black" and you will see that Golden Dawn is racist, just like the secret black magician pretending to be a chaos magician is in the latest chapter of this story.

Anyways, at Magickall, E. A. Koetting did a long lecture, and both EAK and Griffin wrestled with one another (just like Grave Digger and Hawk Hogan used to do).

This wrestling match was met with such a roaring success that both Koetting and Griffin promptly declared each other arch-enemies; Koetting blaming Griffin for his arrest; and Griffin blaming Koetting for the vast army of soulless black magicians who assassinated Kennedy, created chem-trails and GMOs, and who now control the entire economic and political system of the world.

Now, the best part of this is the ongoing series "Hordes of black magicians are coming to enslave you using sex magic and demons, lots and lots of sexy demons" is how Griffin has crowd-sourced the creation of a mythical war between white magicians and black magicians, a war that will allow the hero (a mighty occult knight who is the embodiment of King Arthur and Merlin MacGregor) to save us all.

Yes, you too can help Griffin create and write this great saga by using the hashtag #blackmagicianslivesmatter (which will get great attention because it proves that your average magician is racist--yes, Fox News will pick up this story because of the outrage that the black community will have to have for the idea---for one, there is the black react to magic in general [see The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore for details], and there is the totally true fact that police forces of the world are just chock-full of black magicians using wands that shoot out steel balls to eliminate anyone who suspects their slavery to this evil cabal).

That's right, you can post a link to a chem-trail article, or a Fox News report, or a video of President-for-Life Trump shooting a puppy, or Sauda Arabia burning a witch, blame it on black magicians (using the hashtag #blackmagicianslivesmatter), and help create a real civil war between white magicians and black magicians, so that the hero (who will be played ny the greatest actor in the world, the ever sexy David Griffin) can swoop in and save the world.

This story needs to be told, so get to using that hashtag:  #blackmagicianslivesmatter

[As a sidenote, one must boo the horrible response so far. EAK and his pet chaos and black magicians have done absolutely nothing yet with the hashtag #blackmagicianslivesmatter. There was only one mention of it on twitter, and three mentions of it on Facebook (one being a question in a secret group asking if anyone was using it yet; the other two was Griffin telling people to use it).]

Twitter results previous to this blog post. 

Facebook results previous to this blog post. 
[Furthermore, one must boo the audience of this performance piece who obviously are not sosphicated enough to understand the art of satire, and are treating this story as if Griffin is just a big liar trying to drum up business. Please respond as if the story Griffin is telling is true, and it will make it a better piece of entertainment for all of us fans of this series.]

It is the right of the story teller to create a mythology. 

Satire, people, satire--do not mistake satire for ad spam. 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Trolling the real witches (or How dare I say that you about to poison yourself?)

As my regular readers know, I spend far too much time on social media, watching train wrecks and avoiding working on my novel. And lately, what I have seen makes me think that the next generation of witches will not be able to hex their way out of a wet paper bag.

(I should note that I am talking about a segment of the next generation, not the entire generation. But having to say, “those damn numpties who seem to suck all the oxygen out of the room every time they take part in a discussion while declaring that they are the most enlightened and knowledgeable magicians of all time, and who think that everyone who disagrees with them is a government sponsored troll hell-bent on keeping them ignorant and enslaved to big corporations” would make this little essay impossible to read. Just assume that I am not talking about you; for my readers are some of the most intelligent witches on the planet today. And now into the breech, we go.)

Let’s be honest: Every generation looks at the following generation, and thinks that it is getting dumber and softer because of some trend or technology. My generation had first television, then video games making us dumber, and our preferred music was pure brain rot—or at least, that is what my mother thought. I suspect that the idea is as old as mankind; while we do not have records of a cave man complaining that the local cave art was rotting his children’s brains, we do have records of an Ancient Greek bemoaning that his civilization was getter softer with each passing generation.

But I swear on a stack of cats that social media, in particular Facebook groups, is turning the next generation into a herd of drooling goobers. And that includes magicians and witches.

However, blaming social media might be going too far—it is more of how the next generation of witches is using Facebook that is the problem, rather than the actual technology itself.

First, there is the tendency of the next generation to communicate with memes. For those who have never tried to create a meme; first you need a picture (either of a cute animal, or something that makes you ask how stupid someone can get), to which one adds a factoid or snappy quote—a meme is instant information and truth; it is the cup of noodles of the internet—all you need to add is a bunch of likes and shares—and Boom! It is true. Please note that it’s believability and truth rests on its sound bite nature, and how many people share it—not its actual information content.

And while the entire scope of information that the older generation had is still available, unless it is in meme form, it is too long for the next generation to bother with. (Please remember to cross out “next generation” and insert “those damn numpties…”) For instance, we still have videos—unfortunately, any video longer than thirty seconds is too damn long. The same goes for books, who have time to read a book—just give us the meme that sums it up.

Now this would not be so bad if the next generation (those damn numpties) would bother to fact-check stuff. If I had a dollar for every time this week, I saw someone of my generation ask a numpty, “There is this thing called Google—did you bother to use it?” I would be able to buy a dozen pizzas. By the way, the answer to the Google question is always, “No” which is often followed by “Why would someone share a meme if it wasn’t true?!” It hurts my brain to reconcile the fact that these numpties believe that the government and corporations only share mistruths while also believing that no one in their generation would actually spread lies and false information.

Now somewhere along the line, the next generation has gotten a rather warped view of magic. They seem to honestly believe that all it takes to do magic is to wave a wand encrusted with the correct gemstones (often in neon unicorn colors) while loudly saying some secret magic words, and Boom!—magic is done! Boyfriend problems? Wave, chant—boom! Not enough rent money? Boom! Mental and health problems? Boom! Boom!

Trust me—magic does not work that way. “Oxycleantrius! Laundrus Dunnem!” Nope, laundry still dirty.

As a result of this belief, there are a metric ton of numpties on the internet asking others for spells, shiny magical bullets, to clean up and improve their lives. And anyone who dares mutter, “It doesn’t work that way,” is labeled a negativity troll. The solutions that are typically trotted out by “real witches” tend to consist of thinking good thoughts while asking Hecate and Morrigan, the nicest of the witch goddesses, to intervene. In the meantime, those nasty fake witches of the last generation are in the corner wondering if people have ever heard of a concept called “getting up off the couch.”

And heaven forbid that you do not feel like sharing your super-magic bullets with the internet, for all witches and magicians are brothers and sisters, obligated to help one another. The older generation is wrong when we think that our obligation ends at the limits of our coven, friends and family. No, we are actually obligated to help anyone who says that they are a witch.

Furthermore, we are obligated to help anyone who decides to set up a coven. And forget that nonsense we have that covens are groups that actually meet in person—today’s witch knows that one merely needs to say hello on Facebook, and voila—instant coven! Us older witches are being pure trolls when we mutter that we do not need to share our Book of Shadows with whining puppies; we should join up with the real witches. Plus, if others can’t hex their way out of a wet paper bag, we should roll up our sleeves and do the magic for them—that is what real witches do.

And we should do all this while remembering the Golden Rule of the true and current generation, do not brag about being in witchcraft longer and knowing more, and do not (under any condition) try to teach the current generation our old and outdated ways. For the only people who are qualified to teach beginners are other beginners.

I was reminded of this fact the other day while reading the posts on a Facebook group that is advertised as “a valuable resource for beginners.” The group owner declared that only beginners should be in the group, and that anyone who was more advanced needed to leave the group. This declaration might have something to do with the fact that several of the older nastier false witches said that he couldn’t find both ass cheeks when the lights were off. I would say that it was just one bad apple, but I know of two dozen group owners who kick out anyone who dares to say things like, “Drinking hemlock is a good way to die” and “GMO conspiracies and chem-trails have nothing to do with magic.”

But what do I know? I am a bitter nasty troll witch who believes in actual books with hundreds of damn pages, that I am allowed to poke anyone in the eye who calls me “brother” without my permission, that my Book of Shadows is private and secret information confined to my coven, that magic takes hard work and practice, and that the quickest way to make money is to create an actual product that people would gladly buy; I do not believe in instant covens, nor that the gods are nice, and horror of horrors, I believe in telling people that they are wrong when I see them about to seriously injure themselves and others with memes that have the information content of a booby trap.

[This article originally appeared in the Hearthstone Community Church's February newsletter which repeatedly says that my column represents the raving of a diseased mind, and in no way represents the opinions of anyone else on the church's board.]

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Feeding time (Tarot Blog Hop)

Previous Blog/ Master List/ Next Blog

Hi everyone, welcome to the February edition of the Tarot Blog Hop.

The theme for this one is "Awakening the heart," a theme that draws off of the fact that the Tarot card associated with this time of year is the Star (assigned to zodiac sign Aquarius by the esoteric Order of the Hermetic Golden Dawn).

I must admit that I had a hard time with this theme. I actually thought about dropping out of the Hop--but I am stubborn, and kept my name in the list...because I always seem to figure out something to write about at the last second whenever I have a deadline pending and it is rapidly advancing upon me.

And just last night, just two days before we were due to go live, it all of a sudden dawned on me what to do with this post.

It happened when I was busy taking care of the litter boxes and feeding the many cats that rule my house.

Cats awaiting the return of fishermen--or dinner of fish.
One of the things that is associated with the Star is humanitarian efforts, charities and whatnot. Many people think that I am a heartless bastard because I seldom donate to charities that help people. And maybe I am.

On the other hand, I will go miles out of my way to help an animal. My time and energy goes not towards helping humans; it goes to helping feral and abandoned cats for the most part.

And when confronted by people that I should be helping humans instead, I tend to say that humans have a lot of people looking out for them, including themselves; animals on the other hand, have few champions. If nothing else, humans can always create a GoFundMe route; but I have yet to meet a cat that can remember a password long enough to create a Kickstarter.

So I am a heartless bastard that has rescued several cats.

In fact, I show the most heart when I am dealing with my cats.

Sad, but true.

Pet Tarot idea: the Star
Anyways, the idea I had was to revise the Star card for someone like myself who cares more for animals than humans. In all fairness, it is a horrible first draft of a piece of artwork; but the general symbolism is there...just in case, I ever decide to create a Pet Tarot.

[I would use animals for the suits. Lizards for fire; birds for water; dogs for water; and cats for earth. This suit arrangement was also part of the a-ha moment I had while feeding my cats.]

Bartie, a cat born from a feral mother, and who is now pretending to edit stuff.
And look at how cute this cat is. He is one of the bestest cats I have ever owned. And he was brought in from the cold by me.

And if that is not enough heart for you, too bad.

Thank you for reading this little odd post that had almost nothing to do with Tarot.

I assume that the rest of the bloggers taking part in this Blog Hop are all much nicer and more on point than I was...but I could be wrong, so you better go check to make sure.

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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Occult News Wire (a Facebook page)

Occult News Wire is a newly created page for occult news (events, interesting articles, the occasional cat picture [because cats are the secret chiefs]) managed by the very last person who should be deciding what occult news you should be interested in.

You can check out Occult News Wire on Facebook.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Die winter die

So today was Imbolic, Candlemas, or Groundhog Day, depending upon what you want to call it here in the Northern Hemisphere.

And I had nine inches of snow in my driveway.

At this point, there is only one thing to say:

Die winter! Die!!

Die winter! Die!
Not everyone was annoyed with the snow. My wife liked having a snow day (she is a school teacher in her "day job"). I will admit that I slacked off a little (I figured that my newest project was annoying enough without me having to do anything else today).

Some people even had some fun in the snow.

Peyton Snowmanning.

For instance, the folks at the local news station (KDVR Fox 31) attempted to build a snowman in the likeness of Peyton Manning (because how else do you show your support for the Denver Broncos on a snow day?). Unfortunately, the snow was a little too light and dry to build a snowman. Either that, or their snowman building skills are even worse then mine.

As for whether winter is ending soon, Denver has another cold week, and another snowstorm coming later this week, so it is at least another week of winter for those of us in Colorado.

Have I mentioned that I have been chanting, Die Winter! Die!?

Monday, February 1, 2016

Happy birthday Cthulhu

It is Cthulhu's birthday. Or at least, the anniversary of his first public appearance.

Cthulhu de Willendorf (MDE 2016)
While H. P. Lovecraft wrote The Call of Cthulhu in the summer of 1926, it wasn't until February 1st, 1928 that Weird Tales published the story.

Weird Tales--February 1928
Due to this little fact, some esoteric astrologers working with the mythos use this date as Cthulhu birthday when calculating certain figures.

[Shameless plug: You can buy a print of my Cthulhu de Willendorf on DeviantArt.]