Fama Fraternitatis - 1614

Wiewohl wir nun wohl wissen, daß es umb ein ziemliches noch nicht an dem, da wieder unserm Verlangen oder auch anderer Hoffnung mit allgemeiner Reformation divini et humani, solle genug geschehen, ist es doch nicht unbillich, daß, ehe die Sonne auffgehet, sie zuvor ein HELL oder dunkel liecht in den Himmel bringt und unter dessen etliche wenige, die sich werden angeben, zusammen tretten, unsere Fraternitet mit der Zahl und Ansehen des gewünschten und von Fr.R.C. fürgeschriebenen Philosophischen Canons, einen glücklichen Anfang machen oder ja in unserer Schätz (die uns nimmermehr aufgehen können) mit uns in Demut und Liebe genießen die Mühsamkeit dieser Welt überzuckern und in den Wunderwerken Gottes nicht also blind umbgehen.

Vi vet dock att det enligt vår åstundan och andras förväntningar efter någon tid kommer en allmän reformation av både gudomliga och mänskliga ting. Ty innan solen går upp, upplyses himlen av
MORGONRODNADENS ljus. I väntan på denna reformation församlas några få som med sitt antal skall utöka vårt brödraskap, höja dess anseende och stärka dess förhoppningar och ge de av Fr.R.C. föreskrivna Filosofiska Canons en lycklig begynnelse. I all ödmjukhet och kärlek skall dessa nytillkomna tillsammans med oss dela våra skatter, som aldrig skall förgås, och så lindra denna världens möda och inte längre vandra ovetande om kunskapen om Guds underbara verk.

Howbeit we know after a time there will now be a general reformation, both of divine and humane things, according to our desire, and the expectation of others: for it is fitting, that before the rising of the Sun, there should appear and break forth AURORA, or some clearness, or divine light in the sky; and so in the mean time some few, which shall give their names, may joyn together, thereby to increase the number and respect of our Fraternity, and make a happy and wished for beginning of our Philosophical Canons, prescribed to us by our brother R.C. and be partakers with us of our treasures (which never can fail or be wasted) in all humility, and love to be eased of this worlds labor, and not walk so blindly in the knowledge of the wonderful works of God.


Det brittiska ordenssällskapet Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn och den tyska Frimurarlogen L'Aurore Naissante, vilket grundades i London 1888 respektive Frankfurt-am-Main 1807, delade på samma hebreiska namn Chevrah Zerach Bequr Aur, förevisat i gyllene gult vid bloggens huvud, vilket ordagrannt kan översättas till “Stigande Gryningsljusets Sällskap”. Denna tyska Rosenkorsiska Frimurarloge i Frankfurt, vilket måste anses vara det ursprungliga modertemplet till GOLDEN DAWN, kallade sig på tyska även Loge sur Aufgehenden Morgenröthe, vilket kan översättas till “Gryende Morgonrodnadens Loge”. Detta skiljer sig åt från den engelska seden att översätta orden Bequr Aur till “Golden Dawn” eller “Gyllene Gryningen”. Med anledning av Rosenkorstraditionens tyska ursprung är en mer korrekt översättning av Bequr Aur, genom franskans L'Aurore Naissante och tyskans Aufgehenden Morgenröthe, inget annat än GRYENDE MORGONRODNADEN. Denna hänvisning till ett stigande gryningsljus, morgonrodnad eller aurora är en klar hänvisning till den allmäna reformationen omnämnt i det ovan citerade stycket från Fama Fraternitatis. Denna blogg har dock valt att behålla den försvenskade anglo-saxiska termen GYLLENE GRYNINGEN för att denna, invand som den är, lättare associeras med den Rosenkorsiska tradition som här ämnas att framställas.

Licht, Leben, Liebe

tisdag 19 april 2011

Evocation: a matter of the Microcosm or the Macrocosm?


What follows may bee seen as a follow up to my discussion on evocation that I initiated when reviewing Nineveh Shadrach’s excellent translation of the foremost Arabic solomonic grimoire. For the last years there seems to be a revival of the grimoire tradition, which often has taken an extremely traditionalistic point of view. The “traditional” view on evocation regards it solely as affecting real and objective external spirits, that has no connection whatsoever to the Magician himself; they shun upon psychological explanations as proposed by more modern Magicians who use a psychoanalytic or Jungian explanation of evocation. There are also people in between these two extreme categories, some leaning more towards one of these perspectives or paradigms.

Frater Argent belongs to this last category focusing more upon the “traditional” point of view and what follows is actually the fruit of a recent discussion that I exchanged with him over at his excellent blog StreetMagick. My own position has until now been somewhere in between but leaning more towards the modern in this particular case, the psychological approach. This has been due to the fact that I have been trained in Ceremonial Magic by David Griffin, who seemingly represent the psychological school of magic started off by Israel Regardie, and transmitted from the latter to the former through Cris Monnastre. This was carried out through the traditional teacher and student relationship, a form of teaching that by nature has a tendency to attach itself onto the pupil and stick with him or her.

One fruit of this “guru-chela” relationship resulted in the article on the initiatory process of the Golden Dawn entitled Israel Regardie, Initiaton, and Psychotherapy, which has excerted a huge influence on me. When I wrote my own BA thesis it revolved around transpersonal psychology and in it I quoted pertinent parts from Israel Regardie’s My Rosicrucian Adventure, in which he proposes that the Qlippoth represents archetypal powers assaulting the initiate through the process of initiation. Another monumental work for me, in shaping this subjective world view, was David Griffin’s magnificent tome, The Ritual Magic Manual, which presents an entirely psychological perspective on magical evocation.

Quite recently I completed my training as a psychotherapist in a field that belongs to the psychoanalytic school, which of course has had a somewhat nostalgic effect, as it were, on my original belief system. But I have always, since I started with my occult studies, believed in a objective magical or spiritual reality as well. Thus I have never really believed in Carl Gustav Jung’s theory that our spiritual self is only part of our neurological brain structure. And I do not today, nor have I ever in the past, adhered to Lon Milo DuQuette’s really amusing and equally misleading axiom “It’s All in Your Head … You Just Have No Idea How Big Your Head Is”.

That said, I have always placed my focus on the internal workings of the Magician, of the Operator, of the Alchemist, etc., in the Great Work. Thus even if I in fact have believed, and still do believe, in real demons or Qlippoth, I have preferred to focus upon finding and rooting out my own equivalent personal demons in my unconscious or subconscious mind. In a likewise manner I have regarded Magic to be primarily a species of occult or esoteric psychology, quite prompted by the works of that great occult teacher Paul Foster Case, or rather how I have interpreted him in the past. I referred to and quoted from Case a lot in my BA thesis as well, more than I did Regardie as a matter of fact, or any one else for that matter (with one exception).

This, I believe, constitutes a natural phase in the life of an initiate, to investigate onself. Both Freud and the Hierophants of ancient Greek mysteries followed the adage of Gnothi Seauton or “Man, know thyself”. But over time, as the process proceeds the initiate slowly starts to reflect upon and observe nature outside of himself; “Man, knowing nature you will know yourself”. This has also happened to me, especially in the last years of my training, again prompted by my teacher David Griffin. Today I know for a fact that magic is definitely not only reduced to a species of psychology of an esoteric kind; it is also and more so a science of energetics and evolution of the physical self as well. When we become really conscious of our body and the energetic currents that flow through it, we also naturally become conscious or observant of their correspondences in the outer world as well.

Thus today I no longer lay any emphasis on the intrapersonal and subjective self, as it may have seemed that I did in my previously mentioned review of Mr. Shadrach’s book. Today I acknowledge the importance of the objective forces on an equal status with the subjective ones. Thus I very much agree that spirits and demons have a real and objective existence outside of us. But contrary to the purely traditionalist view I don’t regard the subjective and the objective perspective on this as necessarily mutually exclusive.

I don’t even agree that what is normally viewed as “traditional” in this respect is actually traditional in the truest sense, at least not according to the Hermetic tradition. In my humble opinion, to be truly traditionally Hermetic we must employ its original perspective of the relation between the macrocosm and the microcosm. Thus, while I agree with the normally perceived “traditional” view, on the existence of real and outside demons and spirits, we must on the other hand not forget that whatever is in the macrocosm also is reflected in the microcosm.

Thus we host a legion of demons (in) ourselves that constitutes part of ourselves. In a psychological perspective these demons feed (on) our complexes (aggregations of though-emotions), or constitutes parts or the whole of any of them, but they also constitute unbalanced energetic aggregations of the Sphere of Sensation itself. So I am myself still convinced that traditional evocation methods works fine in also projecting these repressed complexes and unbalanced energies of the Sphere of Sensation out into the Triangle of Art.

The Triangle of Art

That being said, what should optimally occur in evocation is also the summoning of the macrocosmic equivalent. There is a perfectly good reason why people in the middle ages believed (and still in some catholic countries believes) that real and external demons instigated or tempted them to commit sin. Real and objective demons are attracted to and feed on the unbalanced emotions and behaviour of humans as they love these energies being radiated from our Sphere (it’s like they spot our heat signature with thermal sights); there is a rapport between the corresponding macrocosmic and microcosmic Qlippoth.

One could argue that natural man stands in greater union with the “devil” (meaning the realm of the Qlippoth), or with nature’s baseness, than he does with God (the realm of the divine) or nature’s finer forces. The most efficient magical technique to detach ourselves from these Qlippothic powers in ourselves and in nature is to evoke them. Thus both our own subjective demon as well as the objective demon should optimally merge in the Triangle. In this way we both gain consciousness of and integrate the demon of our own personality, placing it under the Will of our Genius, and at the same time raise the spark of that macrocosmic Qlippah back to its divine origin.

Faust summoning Mephistofeles

In my opinion, this also occurs in ordinary invocations as well. When we invoke a Force, say an Element or Planet, we both activate that archetypal part of ourselves internally in(to) our Sphere of Sensation, and at the same time invoke the macrocosmic equivalent externally into our Sphere as well; the circumference of our Sphere forms the point of interconnection between the “cosms” through symbol. In this way we in stages merge our own microcosmic Sphere with the macrocosmic Sphere. Theurgy is about union, not only between the “spiritual” side of ourself with our “material”, or mind and body, but also between the microcosm (inner) and the macrocosm (outer).

That’s why we shouldn’t loose sight of the fact that there also exists microcosmic equivalents of these objective forces, angelic as well as demonic. This is especially the case when working with the archetypal forces of the Elements, Planets, Zodiac (the 72 Quinants) and Sephiroth; there are both angelic and qlippotic (demonic) entities attached to these.

I have the same view on evocation as I have with invocation, the theurgic perspective. If we are to unite ourselves with the macrocosm we also must prepare ourselves to merge with the ugly aspects as well; in this last respect may I refer the reader to my recent essay on the subject of the Divine Evil. Through evocation we place these unbalanced forces under divine dominion, being part of the Tikkun ha-Olam (the restoration of the world). Restoring the world we also restore ourselves, and vice versa.

Now, “traditionalist” grimoire magicians argue against the relative recency of the psychological perspective on magic, that it doesn’t reflect the living traditions. I cannot argue with that; yes, sure, the psychological perspective is very recent. But this doesn’t disqualify it. Being trained in the psychodynamic / psychoanalytic school myself, I of course find it particularly interesting and through my own research I have found Sigmund Freud’s theories to be quite Lurianic as to their nature. While Jung’s Analytical Psychology more reflects the Christian Gnostic and Hermetic worldview, as seen through the lens of the modern academic psychiatrist or psychologist, Freud’s Psychoanalysis on the other hand more expresses that of the Jewish Qabalah.

But if someone would dare to state that this is all that there is to evocation or the nature of the Qlippoth, I would say that this surely is a sign of ignorance and lack of real experience, in the same way that C.G. Jung interpreted Alchemical symbolism as the projections of the archetypes, which is extremely reductionary at the same time as it is interesting.

So, my own position in all of this is somewhere in the middle between traditionalist grimoire magic and the school as represented by Mr. Griffin’s book The Ritual Magic Manual; I’m sitting on the fence and saying that both are correct. If one believes in only one of these perspectives, I would dare to say that it represents a half truth, although I would also say that the subjective position is the most delusional of them. I know however that Mr. Griffin believes in the objective existence of the demons as well.

In our discussion Frater Argent emphasised the importance of evoking the macrocosm as much as possible and projecting as little of oneself as one can into the Triangle of Art, meaning that one should let the macrocosmic entity taking precedence. In fact I agree with him, if it actually means that in this way one’s subjective (microcosmic) self aligns more to the objective (macrocosmic), resulting in a greater rapport or connection to the whole.

In the final analysis however, if one wants to merge one’s microcosm with the macrocosm one have to open up oneself to it. In invocation this is easily done as one simply opens up one’s Sphere of Sensation and let these forces in. But in evocation, binding the demon to the Triangle of Art (which is outside of one’s Sphere by the very definition) one have to meet the objective force half way, as it were, sending one’s own demon into the triangle as well.


10 kommentarer:

Peregrin sa...

Care GH Fr SR,

thank you for another excellent essay.

You position here I feel IS traditional, at least from the Hermetic standpoint. It is how I was taught in my tradition and is how I describe Evocation in my much delayed 'By Names and Images'.

You and your readers may be interested in an old lecture that is still up on a old website that describes this view


See ‘categories of problems, point three. To quote myself :)

"From the modern magical perspective it is hard to define an encounter with an inner plane entity as being definitively JUST an aspect of the unconscious or JUST a real, macrocosmic Being. The reflections of the demonic and angelic powers we each have within our unconscious can easily become linked to and empowered by the greater universal powers."

As for the 'psychological' being recent - it sure is in its secular form, which I feel is very limiting. However, the same awareness has always been part of the Tradition under different names. To quote a very apt saying on this topic, from Jesus himself, (Gospel of Thomas):

"Jesus said, "If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you."

Thanks again, GH Fr.

Frater A.M. sa...

Excellent post Frater.

Solitary Dawn sa...

Care Fra S.R.,

since you quote Lon Milo DuQuette, my understanding of his position regarding thi stoppic is that it is not that far away from yours. I think he does not exclude the external existence of such powers.
However, my own opinion on this is not quite clear yet. So far I tend to lean towards the opinion that these qlippitic forces are internal. But I do accept the fact that there has to be an eqzuivalent representation of those forces in teh macrocosm as well. I am just not sure in which way this may be. But it would be rather strange for a Magician to believe that he can invoke external forces like those of the elements or planets when he at the same time would deny the existence of external demonic forces.
You bring these opinions to teh point and some things are a bit more clear to me now.
Thanks for that.
In L.V.X.

Sincerus Renatus... sa...

Thank you very much Fratres for your kind words.

In Licht, Leben und Liebe,

Rouhaniat John sa...


Of course I represent the antagonistic opinion to your syncretic approach :) While this is still jovial and friendly conversation, and I hope it stays that way, I must say that indeed I am happy even you are taking this 'traditionalist' view seriously. The label makes me laugh though! I would prefer the term 'not-psychologised' :)

Essentially the intellectual and not experiential argument boils down to this: I cannot understand the value in attributing the qlipothic forces internally. And I see less value and dangerous psychological leanings trying to dig around and see if demons can't be found or created in your psyche. This microcosm/macrocosm thing has been taken way far out of the elemental and planetary divine reflections in man that not only ancient traditions, but other living traditions assert as a basic fundamental.

I worked the RMM to completion for years, and so of course I am in a fair position to evaluate it, having initiatory experience on both sides of the fence.

I will say this, you and I both know that all truly serious magicians are in the same spiritual ocean but riding different currents of revelation that the *points up* masters have exposed in our particular pocket of the world. In the end if you or I feel differently then honestly personal results should determine whether it is working for you. I know however that 10 fold more "macrocosmic-believers" manifest regularly spirits/jinn/demons that those searching for an inner correspondance (for the record I am loathe for demons when such potent upper jinn and angels exist and are able to work with us). I therefore advocate in local magical bodies or whichever current some of the more strenuous older preparations such as fasting, chanting and connecting, and working with the entities for prolonged periods of time, and then the difference between the two dissolve because you really do get physical/visible encounters.

As a final point, I appreciate your magical scholarship, antithetical or not there is divine brilliance in showing up of late and it's really refreshing to see in the WMT :)

Sincerus Renatus... sa...

@John: Thank's for your kind words. Thank you also for sharing with your valuable opinions.

I agree that the microcosm reflects Elemental and Planetary (and Zodiacal) macrocosmic forces. That's why there is so much value in Astrology, in gaining understanding of ourselves. This gives rise to microcosmic phenomena that we usually refer to as "psychology".

One reason why many reject the psychological perspective as representative of the microcosm is that everything, when we are adressing the human mind, is simply reduced to abstract thoughs and untangible emotions.

Contrary to this usually percieved view on human psychology, I believe our thoughts and emotions are energetic. They are tanglible and real; objective in a subjective way.

Freud also talked in terms of energies, being inspired by recent research in thernodynamics, etc. But for him "energies" such as "libido" was simply a methaphore, as was also the case with Jung I believe. But for me it is actual. Libido, or psychic / pyschological power, is related to the secret fire, to the serpent fire, to nerve force, etc.

Thus when I talk about energetic aggregations in the sphere of sensation I actually say that these are intrinsincally related to what we percieve as thoughts and emotions in our psyche.

Thus our thoughts and emotions, or "complexes" as Jung would call them, are actual "enteties" or "spirits". But they are eneties of the microcosm, created by our selves, as being the demiurge of our life and personality.

Thus I'm convinced that these microcosmic enteties - thoughforms - are able to be projected outside of ourselves. It is also possible to banish them, although it is hard and takes lots of willpower and perserverence.

In a way these microcosmic forms are as energetic / etheric homunculi that man as a conscious or unconscious creator makes and nurtures on a daily basis, our Sphere of Sensation being the vessel or flask. The conscious creator is of course the Alchemist. We also have the concept of the "artificial elementals" in magic, which are thoughforms that becomes externalized.

However, in the final analysis, I do believe in real and external (not externalized) macrocosmic Elementals as well. In a holographic paradigm, what we se in the greater world (created by God as being parts of itself), we see also an exact copy in the small world.

In Licht, Leben und Liebe,

Argent sa...


I agree with your last paragraph wholeheartedly, though may I point out I'm not leaning towards the traditional view as much as you may think.

I'm on the fence as to both being valid ways of working, being aware that the intention matters are great deal, and having a comfy chair upon the fence knowing of living traditions that can be traced back at least 400 years where theurgy is performed to integrate and do whta the psychological theurgic model does to demons, but on a Macrocosmic scale.


druff sa...

I really enjoy your blog. Could you recommend a group/society/fraternity for someone in the US who is interested in the topics you discuss but who hasn't ever been involved at an organizational level? Thinking it might be time for me to take the jump. Thanks!

Sincerus Renatus... sa...

@Druff: I recently answered a similar question on my blog, so I will simply repeat myself as much of what I said than still applies in general. I interpret your question that you are looking for an organization which works within the Golden Dawn Traditon, as that is what I mostly write about here.

I represent a Jurisdiction in Scandinavia which works under the aegis of Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, Outer Order of the Rosicrucian Order of Alpha et Omega® (HOGD/A+O for short). The HOGD/A+O is an international order which allows for distance study and membership, and provides for physical and traditional initiation in America.

That said, I wouldn't recommend opting for that alternative in the first round as the HOGD/A+O is not the best solution for everyone. Some Orders present more gentle approaches compared to the H.O.G.D./A+O, the latter expecting quite hard work already in the Outer Order.

Also, the best solution is to be a initiate of a local Temple, a working group. This is always the best or most optimal opion, even if that particular Temple works "irregulariy", i.e. without formal dispensation which traces its roots back to the orignal Golden Dawn Order. It's always better to work in a live and physical Temple than working solo with only the aid of some correspondance course and e-mail correspondence with a Tutor.

With the exception of the Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn (EOGD), headed by Robert Zink and offers so-called "astral initionation", I suggest opening a communication with the lot of the Internet based Golden Dawn schools which are out there and correspond with them directly, and then see what develops and how you percieve their representatives. Ask if they have active working groups in your vicinity. I belive direct communication is much more telling than just looking at flashy web sites. If possible, try to meet the representatives in person, at some café or diner, even if it means for you traveling to another city just to meet them. It is worth the investment in money.

Besides shunning Orders offering "astral initiation" as the plauge, I also suggest ignoring "self-initiation" as an alternative. There are Golden Dawn organizations who works as self healp groups for self initiates. In my opinion, if there is no Temple in your vicinities, the best solution is to belong to a Order that offers both long distance study and training and traditional live / physical initiation.

If you would consider the HOGD/A+O, which is an excellent school of ritual magic, offering both distance study and traditional initiation, I suggest taking a look at their web page: www.golden-dawn.com.

Good luck in your future search!

In Licht, Leben und Liebe,

druff sa...

Thanks so much for the thorough reply! Honestly, I hadn't even narrowed it down to the Golden Dawn, but I noticed in one of your recent posts that certain branches of masonry, for example, were more legitimate than others, and so thought I would try to pick your brain to help me narrow down my options. You clearly know a lot about many of the traditions that exist, and for someone with no frame of reference, it's hard to know what to look for and what to avoid. I will take your advice to heart. Thanks again.