Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Picatrix: An ancient manuscript that teaches how to obtain energy from the cosmos

“Through this ancient manuscript…the reader could attract and channel the energy of the cosmos so that a certain event develops according to the will of the practitioner, zodiacal magic; which is said to help master and dominate with accuracy—through the force of the universe—nature and its surroundings.”


The Picatrix is an ancient Arabian book of astrology and occult magic dating back to the 10th or 11th century, which has gained notoriety for the obscene natural of its magical recipes. The Picatrix, with its cryptic astrological descriptions and spells covering almost every conceivable wish or desire, has been translated and used by many cultures over the centuries, and continues to fascinate occult followers from around the world.  

The Picatrix was originally written in Arabic, titled Ghāyat al-Ḥakīm, which translates to “The Aim of the Sage" or "The Goal of the Wise.” Eventually, the Arabic writings were translated into Spanish, and eventually into Latin in 1256 for the Castilian king Alfonso the Wise. At this time it took on the Latin title Picatrix. 

It is composed of both magic and astrology. One highly influential interpretation refers to it as a "handbook of talismanic magic." Researcher David Pingree calls it “the most thorough exposition of celestial magic in Arabic” and describes the Picatrix as “Arabic texts on Hermeticism, Sabianism, Ismailism, astrology, alchemy and magic produced in the Near East in the ninth and tenth centuries A.D.” 

The Picatrix is divided into four books:

  • Book I – “Of the heavens and the effects they cause through images made under them”
  • Book II – “Of the figures of the heavens in general, and of the general motion of the sphere, and of their effects in this world”
  • Book III – “Of the properties of the planets and signs, and of their figures and forms made in their colors, and how one may speak with the spirits of the planets, and of many other magical workings”
  • Book IV – “Of the properties of spirits, and of those things that are necessary to observe in this most excellent art, and how they may be summoned with images, suffumigations and other things”

Each books contains several chapters. A small sampling of the contents of these chapters is: magic and its properties; the works of the planets, sun, and moon; the order of natural things; stones appropriate for each planet; figures, colors, garments, and incenses of the planets; confections of the spirits of the planets, and of averting harmful workings, and magic of miraculous effect, and the foods, incense, unguents, and perfumes that ought to be used to work by the spirits of the seven planets; how the vigor of the spirit of the Moon is drawn into things here below; and how incenses of the stars ought to be made, and certain compounds needed in this science. 

A page from the Ghāyat al-Ḥakīm (Picatrix)

The Picatrix is believed to have been written by Abū- Maslama Muhammad ibn Ibrahim ibn ‘Abd al-da’im al-Majrīt, an astronomer, mathematician, and alchemist of Al-Andalus who wanted to gather all the knowledge of the Middle East from the 8th and 9th centuries.

Arab historian, Ibn Khaldun, ascribed authorship of Picatrix (referring to the original Arabic version, under the title Ġāyat al-Ḥakīm) to the mathematician, al-Majriti, who died between 1005CE and 1008CE.

Although there are those who disagree with such authorship and attribute this magical grimoire to an unknown apprentice of a mysterious Middle Eastern magic school—mostly due to the style in which the work is presented which looks like a kind of notebook—the enigmatic grimoire was extremely popular and promised to teach its reader, among other things, how to obtain energy from the planets of the cosmos. Many authors summarize the work as being “the most thorough exposition of celestial magic in Arabic”.

The contents of this ancient magical grimoire are fascinating and in it, we find reference to talismanic magic and astrological references to animals, plants, metals, stones, etc.

Through them, the reader could attract and channel the energy of the planets so that a certain event develops according to the will of the practitioner, zodiacal magic which is said to help master and dominate with accuracy—through the force of the universe— even nature and the surroundings.

The ancient magical grimoire also gives insight into numerology and lunar calendars that supposedly would help plan rituals considering the most propitious moment so that the energy of the universe favored the result.


However, there’s more to this mysterious magical grimoire than numerology and astrology. This ancient text includes different bizarre recipes for countless spells that had to be composed using ingredients as dangerous as hashish, opium and other psychoactive plants that were used in large quantities to induce altered states of consciousness and astral journeys.

If on the other hand, the intention was to contact the spirits and master the forces of the spirits, then the ingredients that had to be used were different: blood, sperm, urine, earwax, tears and saliva were all mixed together specifically to obtain the best results and master the world we cannot see on a daily basis.

Interestingly, Picatrix explains not only how to create and ensoul magical statues and talismans, but even speaks of whole cities constructed using the principles of astrological magic.

You can find a copy of the Picatrix on the left bar of out site.


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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Are we all PSYCHIC? Scientists believe that animals - including humans - have a collective consciousness


Some may call it coincidence, while others call it a sixth sense but why do people think about someone right before they call, for example, or ‘have a feeling’ something is about to happen before it does?

It may be due to something called collective consciousness - a term used by certain scientists to describe the practice of humans, and animals, sharing behaviours and ideas with each other telepathically.

A report in 2010 claimed to have proved the presence of this consciousness and, by default, psychic abilities in humans.

But these claims divided opinion and more recent reports dismiss them as nonsense. 

The idea of a collective consciousness was first presented by French sociologist Émile Durkheim in 1893.

Durkheim’s definition related more to a shared understanding of certain morals and social norms based on people either imitating others, explicitly passing on these behaviours to one another, or agreeing certain ideals in order to feel accepted.

Yet in the 1970s, scientists began to suggest this collective consciousness could be developed and spread through species non-explicitly; through telepathic or ‘supernatural’ means.

The Hundredth Monkey Phenomenon, for example, was an idea put forward by South African zoologist and ethologist Lyall Watson and his scientific author colleague Lawrence Blair in 1975.

Watson and Blair used the behaviours of Japanese macaque monkeys to back up their claims.

During the 1950s, macaques on the island of Koshima learned to wash sweet potatoes and explicitly passed this skill onto younger members of the group. 

According to Watson and Blair, this behaviour then spread and was observed on neighbouring islands among groups of macaques who had never seemingly come into contact with each other.

They chalked this up to the monkeys sharing a collective consciousness, often referred to as a ‘shared mind’ or ‘hive mind’, in which the practices were shared telepathically.

A similar practice was more recently observed among blue tits. This time the skill the birds taught themselves was to break into milk bottles and drink the cream from the top.


Although the practice was first observed in Southampton in 2011, similar groups of the same species exhibited the same skills in other countries throughout Europe and Asia. This was despite the groups never meeting and the birds being non-migratory.

A science journal in 2010 published claims made by Professor Daryl Bem, a physicist from Cornell University, that he had proved humans have similar psychic abilities supposedly seen in the birds and monkeys.

Professor Bem set out to investigate 'psi', or parapsychology, through a series of nine experiments.

In one test, students were shown a list of words to memorise. They were later asked to recall as many as they could and finally were given a random selection of the words to type out.

They were, unsurprisingly, more adept at remembering certain words over others, but these words tended to be the words they would later be asked to type, suggesting a future event had affected their ability to remember.

In another experiment, the students were shown an image of two curtains on a computer screen and told one concealed an erotic picture. The students chose the curtain hiding the  picture ‘more often than could be explained away by chance’, according to Professor Bem.

Importantly, the position of the picture was randomly assigned by a computer that didn't make its decision until after the volunteer chose one curtain or the other.

To believers in the paranormal, this suggested the students were actually influencing future events and the odds against the combined result being down to mere chance or being a statistical fluke were quoted as 74 billion to one.

Professor Bem carried out nine different experiments involving more than 1,000 volunteers and all but one came down on the side of these so-called psychic theories.

Elsewhere, scientist Rubert Sheldrake has created experiments that test this collective consciousness and telepathy theory online and over the phone.  

He believes it can’t be coincidence that hundreds, if not thousands of people, around the world experience similar feelings of being watched, for example.

Yet many are sceptical. In regards the Japanese monkeys, author Ron Amundson dismissed the supernatural claims, instead suggesting it was impossible to know for certain the monkeys in different groups had never met. 

He added human intervention may have played a part in the skill developing because the monkeys had not seen, or learnt to wash the potatoes, before they were given them by the scientists.

It is also thought that monkeys don’t share a collective consciousness but instead all have thought processes and brains that solve problems in the same way.

This is a small distinction but suggests that when faced with the same issue, the monkeys would take the most appropriate route possible.

This was also used to explain the blue tit mystery; the birds wanted milk, they looked at the bottles and solved the problem they were facing.

Then in 2012, researchers from Edinburgh University including Professor Stuart Ritchie, wanted to put Professor Bem’s claims about the human psyche to the test and challenge his findings.

They repeated Professor Bem’s experiments, using the same computer program, but were unable to repeat his results.  

‘We found nothing,’ said Ritchie.  ‘It might just be because the statistics were a fluke. You're going to get some false positives sometimes.’

Yet Professor Ritchie was unable to explain exactly why his results were so widely different. Professor Bem claimed at the time that Ritchie’s scepticism may have skewed the results, but Ritchie later denied this.

[dailymail]


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Friday, April 14, 2017

Chöd: The Dreadful Mystic Banquet


Chöd is a spiritual practice found primarily in the Nyingma and Kagyu schools of Tibetan Buddhism (where it is classed as Anuttarayoga Tantra). Also known as "Cutting Through the Ego," the practices are based on the Prajñāpāramitā or "Perfection of Wisdom" sutras, which expound the "emptiness" concept of Buddhist philosophy.

According to Mahayana Buddhists, emptiness is the ultimate wisdom of understanding that all things lack inherent existence. The chod practitioner seeks to tap the power of fear through activities such as rituals set in graveyards, and visualisation of offering their bodies in a tantric feast in order to put their understanding of emptiness to the ultimate test.

The first Western reports of Chöd came from a French adventurer who lived in Tibet, Alexandra David-Néel in her travelogue Magic and Mystery in Tibet, published in 1932:

Chöd is a kind of "Mystery" played by one actor only... and it has been so cleverly devised  to terrify the novices that one hears of men who have suddenly gone mad or died while engaged in its performance.

A cemetery, or any wild site whose physical  aspects awakens feelings of terror , is considered to be an appropriate spot. However, the place is thought even more suitable if it is associated with a terrible legend or if a tragic event has actually happened there quite recently.

The reason of this preference is that the effect of chöd , or kindred rites, does not depend solely on the feelings aroused in the mind of the celebrant  by the stern words of the liturgy, nor upon the awe-inspiring surroundings. It is also designed to stir up the occult forces, or the conscious beings which - according to Tibetans - may exist in such places, having been generated either by actual deeds or by the concentration  of many people's  thoughts  on imaginary events. 

It follows that , during  the performance of chöd , which I have  compared to a drama  enacted by a single actor, the latter may happen to see himself suddenly surrounded by players of the occult worlds who begin to play unexpected roles.  Whatever part autosuggestion and visualization may have in the production  of these phenomena, they are deemed excellent for the good result of the training; but the test proves too hard for the nerves of some apprentice naijorpas and it is then that the accidents that I have mentioned occur: of madness and death.

Like any other actor, the man who wants to perform chöd must first learn his role by heart. Then he must practice the ritual dance, his steps forming geometrical figures, and also turning on one foot, stamping and leaping while keeping time with the liturgic recitation. Finally, he must learn to handle, according to rule, the bell, the dorjee, and the magic dagger (phurba), to beat rhythmically a kind of small drum (dammer) and to blow a trumpet made of a human femur (angling).

A "Naljörpa" performing the rite of chöd in a forest said to be haunted by evil spirits

The task is not easy; I lost my breath more than once during my apprenticeship.

Lack of place prevents me from giving a translation of the text of chöd, in extenso... However, the essential part of the rite consists in a banquet which may be briefly described as follows.

The celebrant blows his bone trumpet, calling the hungry demons to the feast he intends to lay before them. He imagines that a feminine deity, which esoterically personifies his own will, springs from the top of his head and stands before him, sword in hand. 

With one stroke she cuts off the head of the naljorpa. Then, while troops of ghouls crowd round for the feast, the goddess severs his limbs, skins him and rips open his belly. The bowels fall out, the blood flows like a river, and the hideous guests bite here and there, masticate noisily, while the celebrant excites and urges them with the liturgic words of unreserved surrender: 

"For ages, in the course of renewed births I have borrowed  from countless living beings - at the cost of their welfare and life - food, clothing, all kinds of services to sustain my body , to keep it joyful in comfort and to defend it against death. Today, I pay my debt, offering for destruction this body which I have held so dear.

"I give my flesh  to the hungry, my blood to the thirsty, my skin to clothe those who are naked, my bones as fuel to those who suffer from cold. I give my happiness to the unhappy ones. I give my breath to bring back the dying life.

"Shame on me if I shrink from giving my self! Shame of you , wretched and demoniac beings, if you do not dare to pray upon it..."

This act of the mystery is called the "read meal." It is followed by the "black meal", whose mystic signification is disclosed only to those disciples who have received an initiation of high degree.

The vision of the demoniacal banquet vanishes, the laughter and cries of the ghouls die away. Utter loneliness in a gloomy landscape succeeds the weird orgy, and the exaltation aroused in the naljorpa by his dramatic sacrifice gradually subsides.

Now he must imagine that he has become a small heap of charred human bones that emerges from a lake of black mud - the mud of mystery, of moral defilement, and of harmful deeds to which he has cooperated during the course of numberless lives, whose origin is lost in the night of time. He must realize that the very idea of sacrifice is but an illusion, an offshoot of blind, groundless pride. In fact, he has nothing to give away, because he is nothing. These useless bones, symbolizing the destruction of his phantom "I", may sink into the muddy lake , it will not matter.

That silent renunciation of the ascetic who realizes that he holds nothing that he can renounce, and who utterly relinquishes the elation springing from the idea of sacrifice, closes the rite. 

Some Lamas undertake tours to perform chöd near a hundred and eight lakes, and a hundred and eight cemeteries. They devote years to this exercise, wandering not only in Tibet, but also in India, Nepal and China. Others only retire to solitary places for the daily celebration of chöd for longer or shorter time. 

Find the book Magic and Mystery in Tibet by Alexandra David-Neel on the right bar of our site.


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Saturday, April 8, 2017

Left-hand path and right-hand path


In Western esotericism the terms Left-Hand Path and Right-Hand Path refer to a dichotomy between two opposing approaches to magic. This terminology is used in various groups involved in the occult and ceremonial magic. 

In some definitions, the Left-Hand Path is equated with malicious black magic and the Right-Hand Path with benevolent white magic. Other occultists have criticized this definition, believing that the Left–Right dichotomy refers merely to different kinds of working and does not necessarily connote good or bad magical actions.

In more recent definitions, which base themselves on the terms' origins in Indian Tantra, the Right-Hand Path, or RHP, is seen as a definition for those magical groups that follow specific ethical codes and adopt social convention, while the Left-Hand Path adopts the opposite attitude, espousing the breaking of taboo and the abandoning of set morality. 

Some contemporary occultists have stressed that both paths can be followed by a magical practitioner, as essentially they have the same goals.

Right-Hand Path

The Right-Hand Path is commonly thought to refer to magical or religious groups which adhere to a certain set of characteristics:

  • They divide the concepts of mind, body and spirit into three separate, albeit interrelated, entities.
  • They adhere to a specific moral code and a belief in some form of judgement, such as karma or the Threefold Law.
The occultists Dion Fortune and William G. Gray consider non-magical Abrahamic religions to be RHP.


Left-Hand Path

The historian Dave Evans studied self-professed followers of the Left-Hand Path in the early 21st century, making several observations about their practices:

  • They often reject societal convention and the status quo, which some suggest is in a search for spiritual freedom. As a part of this, LHP followers embrace magical techniques that would traditionally be viewed as taboo, for instance using sex magic or embracing Satanic imagery. As Mogg Morgan wrote, the "breaking of taboos makes magic more potent and can lead to reintegration and liberation, [for example] the eating of meat in a vegetarian community can have the same liberating effect as anal intercourse in a sexually inhibited straight society."
  • They often question religious or moral dogma, instead adhering to forms of personal anarchism.
  • They often embrace sexuality and incorporate it into magical ritual.

Criticism

Criticism of both terms has come from various occultists. The Magister of the Cultus Sabbati, Andrew D. Chumbley, stated that they were simply "theoretical constructs" that were "without definitive objectivity", and that nonetheless, both forms could be employed by the magician. He used the analogy of a person having two hands, a right and a left, both of which served the same master. Similar sentiments were expressed by the Wiccan High Priest John Belham-Payne, who stated that "For me, magic is magic."

Vamachara

Vāmācāra is a Sanskrit term meaning "left-handed attainment" and is synonymous with Left-Hand Path or Left-path. It is used to describe a particular mode of worship or spiritual practice (Sanskrit: sadhana) that is not only heterodox (Sanskrit: Nāstika) to standard Vedic injunction, but extreme in comparison to prevailing cultural norms. These practices are often generally considered to be Tantric in orientation. The converse term to Vamacara is Dakshinachara (glossed "Right-Hand Path") which is used to refer not only to orthodox (Āstika) sects but to modes of spirituality that engage in spiritual practices that not only accord with Vedic injunction but are generally agreeable to prevailing cultural norms. That said, left-handed and right-handed modes of practice may be evident in both orthodox and heterodox schools of Dharmic religions such as Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism and Buddhism and are a matter of taste, culture, proclivity, initiation, sadhana and dharmic lineage (parampara).

Tantra and Madame Blavatsky

The occidental use of the terms Left-Hand Path and Right Hand-Path originated with Madame Blavatsky, a 19th-century occultist who founded the Theosophical Society. She had travelled across parts of southern Asia and claimed to have met with many mystics and magical practitioners in India and Tibet. She developed the term Left-Hand Path as a translation of the term Vamachara, an Indian Tantric practice that emphasised the breaking of Hindu societal taboos by having sexual intercourse in ritual, drinking alcohol, eating meat and assembling in graveyards, as a part of the spiritual practice. The term Vamachara literally meant "the left-hand way" in Sanskrit, and it was from this that Blavatsky first coined the term.

Returning to Europe, Blavatsky began using the term. It was relatively easy for her to associate left with evil in many European countries, where it already had an association with many negative things; as the historian Dave Evans noted, homosexuals were referred to as "left-handed" while in Protestant nations, Roman Catholics were called "left-footers". This association with negative aspects of society can be traced back to the Bible, in which it states:

And he shall separate them one from another,

as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats.
And he shall set the sheep on his right,
but the goats on his left.
— Matthew 25: 32-33

Adoption into the western esoteric tradition

In New York, Madame Blavatsky founded the Theosophical Society with several other people in 1875. She set about writing several books, including Isis Unveiled (1877) in which she introduced the terms Left-Hand Path and Right-Hand Path, firmly stating that she herself followed the RHP, and that followers of the LHP were practitioners of Black Magic who were a threat to society. The occult community soon picked up on her newly introduced duality, which, according to historian Dave Evans, "had not been known before" in the Western Esoteric Tradition. For instance, Dion Fortune, the founder of an esoteric magical group (the Society of the Inner Light) also took the side of the RHP, making the claim that "black magicians", or followers of the LHP, were homosexuals and that Indian servants might use malicious magical rites devoted to the goddess Kali against their European masters.

Aleister Crowley further altered and popularized the term in certain occult circles, referring to a "Brother of the Left-Hand Path", or a "Black Brother", as one who failed to attain the grade of Magister Templi in Crowley's system of ceremonial magic. Crowley also referred to the Left-Hand Path when describing the point at which the Adeptus Exemptus (such as his old Christian mentor, Macgregor Mathers) chooses to cross the Abyss, which is the location of Choronzon and the illusory eleventh Sephira, which is Da'ath or Knowledge. In this example, the adept must surrender all, including the guidance of his Holy Guardian Angel, and leap into the Abyss. If his accumulated Karma is sufficient, and if he has been utterly thorough in his own self-destruction, he becomes a "babe of the abyss", arising as a Star in the Crowleyan system. On the other hand, if he retains some fragment of ego, or if he fears to cross, he then becomes encysted. The layers of his self, which he could have shed in the Abyss, ossify around him. He is then titled a "Brother of the Left-Hand Path", who will eventually be broken up and disintegrated against his will, since he failed to choose voluntary disintegration. Crowley associated all this with "Mary, a blasphemy against BABALON", and with the celibacy of Christian clergy.

Another of those figures that Fortune considered to be a follower of the LHP was Arthur Edward Waite, who did not recognise these terms, and acknowledged that they were newly introduced and that in any case he believed the terms LHP and RHP to be distinct from black and white magic. However, despite Waite's attempts to distinguish the two, the equation of the LHP with Black Magic was propagated more widely in the fiction of Dennis Wheatley; Wheatley also conflated the two with Satanism and also the political ideology of communism, which he viewed as a threat to traditional British society. In one of his novels, Strange Conflict (1941), he stated that:

The Order of the Left-Hand Path... has its adepts... the Way of Darkness is perpetuated in the horrible Voodoo cult which had its origins in Madagascar and has held Africa, the Dark Continent, in its grip for centuries.

Later 20th and 21st centuries

In the latter half of the 20th century various groups arose that self-professedly described themselves as LHP, but did not consider themselves as following Black Magic. In 1975, Kenneth Grant, a student of Aleister Crowley, explained in Cults of the Shadow that he and his group, the Typhonian Order, practiced the LHP. Grant's usage takes meaning from its roots in eastern Tantra; Grant states that it is about challenging taboos, but that it should be used in conjunction with the RHP to achieve balance.

When Anton Szandor LaVey was developing his form of LaVeyan Satanism during the 1960s, he emphasised the rejection of traditional Christian morality and as such labelled his new philosophy to be a form of the Left-Hand Path. In his The Satanic Bible, he wrote that "Satanism is not a white light religion; it is a religion of the flesh, the mundane, the carnal—all of which are ruled by Satan, the personification of the Left Hand Path."

In Russia there is a tradition of Left Hand Path practices within the Rodnover community under the influence of Volhv Veleslav, and within the Odinist community with Askr Svarte, and in England with Nikarev Leshy. Veleslav has also written numerous books on Tantra and the Left Hand Path.

Stephen E. Flowers, Ph.D. of the Temple of Set states in his book Lords of the Left Hand Path: A History of Spiritual Dissent there are two criteria to be considered a true Lord of the Left Hand Path and they are Self-Deification and Antinomianism.

Usage in Tantra

Tantra is a set of esoteric Indian traditions with roots in Hinduism and Buddhism. Tantra is often divided by its practitioners into two different paths: dakshinachara and vamachara, translated as Right-Hand Path and Left-Hand Path respectively. Dakshinachara consists of traditional Hindu practices such as asceticism and meditation, while vamachara also includes ritual practices that conflict with mainstream Hinduism, such as sexual rituals, consumption of alcohol and other intoxicants, animal sacrifice, and flesh-eating. The two paths are viewed by Tantrists as equally valid approaches to enlightenment. Vamachara, however, is often considered to be the faster and more dangerous of the two paths, and is not suitable for all practitioners. The usage of the terms Left-Hand Path and Right-Hand Path is still current in modern Indian and Buddhist Tantra.

Left-Hand Path relation to Tantra in Hinduism

The difference between the right hand path and the left hand path is eloquently explained by Julius Evola in the book The Yoga of Power:

"There is a significant difference between the two Tantric paths, that of the right hand and that of the left hand (which both are under Shiva's aegis). In the former, the adept always experiences 'someone above him', even at the highest level of realization. In the latter, 'he becomes the ultimate Sovereign' (chakravartin = worldruler)."

Left-Hand Path relation to Tantra in Buddhism

Robert Beér's Encyclopedia of Tibetan Symbols and Motifs clarifies widespread taboos and deprecation that associate the left hand as dark, female, inferior and 'not right':

Padmasambhava in Yab-Yum
"In Buddhist tantra, the right hand symbolises the male aspect of compassion or skilful means, and the left hand represents the female aspect of wisdom or emptiness. Ritual hand-held attributes, such as the vajra and bell, vajra and lotus, damaru and bell, damaru and khatvanga, arrow and bow, curved knife and skull-cup, sword and shield, hook and rope snare, etc., placed in the right and left hands respectively, symbolise the union of the active male aspect of skilful means with the contemplative female aspect of wisdom.

In both Hinduism and Buddhism the goddess is always placed on the left side of the male deity, where she 'sits on his left thigh, while her lord places his left arm over her left shoulder and dallies with her left breast'.

In representations of the Buddha image, the right hand often makes an active mudra of skilful means—the earth-touching, protection, fearlessness, wish-granting or teaching mudra; while the left hand often remains in the passive mudra of meditative equipoise, resting in the lap and symbolising meditation on emptiness or wisdom."

Beér's preceding explanations correspond to Yab-Yum (father-mother) symbolism and contemplation on or practice of sexual rituals associated with Vajrayogini and Anuttarayoga Tantra. Yab-yum is generally understood to represent the primordial (or mystical) union of wisdom and compassion. The metaphorical union of bliss and emptiness is commonly represented within Thangka paintings of the Cakrasaṃvara Tantra depicting the sexual union of the deity Saṃvara and his consort Dorje Pakmo.


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Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Aryan Solar God, and the Age of Aries


Aries is a typical Indo-European (Aryan) god of war and equates to the Roman Mars, the Germanic Thor/Thunor/Donar, Tyr, the Celtic Teutates and the Vedic Indra.

The Aryans were considered by the ancients to be a solar race, their most sacred sign being the swastika (卐), the best known of all solar symbols. Aries, whilst being a war god, was also regarded as a solar deity, astro-theologically speaking (age of Aries: 2160 to 0 BC), and as a fire sign symbolised by the horns of a ram.

The English word 'Ram' and the Latin 'Aries' contain the Aryan root Ar or Ra, so common in names denoting the masculine, fiery, and creative aspect of nature, seen in the word Aryan itself. In the zodiac of the fifth root-race the sign of the ram leads off, and in astrology is called a fiery, cardinal sign, the house of Mars (Aries), as well as the house of exaltation of the sun (Ra).

Forget January 1, The real new year is March 20 - the Spring Equinox and Astrological New Year - when the Sun charges into fiery Aries to banish winter's chill. During the Spring Equinox, we in the Northern Hemisphere catch "spring fever," as plants and trees sprout new leaves and begin bearing fruit.

Sphinxes with ram's heads, called criosphinxes, are said to represent the period of the equinoctial points passing through the sign Aries of the celestial zodiac, following upon the age when the bull was the sign (Taurus).

According to H.P. Blavatsky, Egyptian deities with heads of rams, "are solar, and represent under various aspects the phases of generation and impregnation. Their ram's heads denote this meaning, a ram ever symbolizing generative energy in the abstract, while the bull was the symbol of strength and the creative function."

-- Species with Amnesia: Our Forgotten History by Robert Sepehr


Find Robert Sepehr's book on the right bar of our site.


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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Occult Secrets of Vril

Is mankind on the threshold of a new age of enlightenment? Or are we descending a dwindling spiral, doomed to repeat the lessons from history which we either forget or never seem to learn?

Formed well before WW2, the German Vril Society was dedicated to the study and practice of metaphysics and were covertly conducting research into psychic phenomenon and universal free-energy (Vril). Their secret society's members, which included some who would later become notable members of the Nazi party, also advanced the idea of a subterranean civilization ruled by an ancient parent-race that had mastered Vril. 

This Aryan breakaway civilization was said to have survived the antediluvian cataclysms which ended the Pleistocene (ice age) and continued to thrive below the surface of the earth (Agartha), passing on their guarded secrets through initiation into sacred mystery schools, and now monopolized by the world elite. 

Agartha is a legendary subterranean civilization that is said to reside deep (miles) under the Earth's crust. It said to be connected to other massive underground caverns forming a vast global network of interconnected tunnels. Shamballa (also known as Shambalah or Shangri-La) is often referred to as its capital city. 

The mythical paradise of Shamballa is known under many different names: It has been called the Forbidden Land, the Land of White Waters, the Land of Radiant Spirits, the Land of Living Fire, the Land of the Living Gods and the Land of Wonders. Hindus have known it as Aryavartha (literally : The Land or Realm of The Aryans ; the Land of the Noble/Worthy Ones") - the land from which the Vedas come; the Chinese as Hsi Tien, the Western Paradise of Hsi Wang Mu, the Royal Mother of the West; the Russian Old Believers, a nineteenth-century Christian sect, knew it as Belovodye and the Kirghiz people as Janaidar. But throughout Asia it is best known by its Sanskrit name, Shambhala, meaning 'the place of peace, of tranquillity.' 

Vril was known to these mystics as a natural and abundant energy, having disseminated it's divine wisdom world wide under many names. 

The Chinese referred to it as "chi", the Hindu as "prana", and the Japanese as "reiki".


Coined by Dr. Wilhelm Reich, Orgone was seen as a massless, omnipresent substance, the universal Life force, the basic building block of all organic and inorganic matter, and closely associated with sexuality (the term itself shares a root with the word orgasm). 

Albert Pike said: "There is in nature one most potent force, by means whereof a single man, who could possess himself of it, and should know how to direct it, could revolutionize and change the face of the world."

Helena Blavatski, the foundress of the Theosophical Society, described this Vril energy as an aether stream that could be transformed into a physical force. 

She writes: "Occult science recognizes seven cosmic elements – four entirely physical, and the fifth (ether) semi-material. These seven elements with their numberless sub-elements (far more numerous than those known to science) are simply conditional modifications and aspects of the ONE and only Element."

Edward Bulwer-Lytton's book, The Coming Race (1871), described an advanced civilization that dwelled below the surface and a mysterious energy-form called "Vril". Blavatsky's recurrent homage to Bulwer-Lytton and the Vril force has exerted a lasting influence on other esoteric authors and occult groups.

What are the Occult Secrets of Vril?


About the author:
Robert Sepehr is an author, producer and anthropologist living in Los Angeles, CA.
He specializes in linguistics, paleogenetics and archeology.

Find Robert Sepehr's book on the right bar of our site  --->


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Friday, March 31, 2017

Pseudomonarchia Daemonum: The False Hierarchy of Demons


Pseudomonarchia Daemonum, or Hierarchy of Demons first appeared as an appendix to Johann Weyer's first book about demonology and witchcraft, De Praestigiis Daemonum et Incantationibus ac Venificiisi (1577), and was said by the author himself to have been inspired by an earlier text discussing spirits and demons. Yet, it is Weyer's work—not his predecessor's—that came to be known by renowned psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud as "one of the ten most significant books of all time."

The title of the book translates roughly to "false monarchy of demons".

The book dictates the names of sixty-nine demons, and the appropriate hours and rituals to conjure them.

The purpose of this subsequent book is to act as a grimoire, also known as a spell book, to provide the reader with important facts about demons that might be summoned, such as what they look like or what abilities they might possess.

Image taken from the book
Pseudomonarchia Daemonum

Weyer's Pseudomonarchia Daemonum ended up an inspiration itself, leading to the writing of The Lesser Key of Solomon in which one section, called Ars Goetia, contains a list of demons evoked by the ancient King Solomon.

There are some differences. The Ars Goetia lists seventy-two demons (4 more demons), and the order of the spirits varies, as well as some of their characteristics. 

The demons Vassago, Seere, Dantalion and Andromalius are not listed in the Pseudomonarchia Daemonum, while Pruflas is not listed in The Lesser Key of Solomon. Weyer censored the text, omitting necessary parts of the rituals and the more powerful demons, like Lucifer, in order to protect readers from their own curiosity.

Also, the Pseudomonarchia Daemonum does not attribute seals to the demons, as The Lesser Key of Solomon does.

Weyer referred to his source manuscript as Liber officiorum spirituum, seu Liber dictus Empto. Salomonis, de principibus et regibus daemoniorum. (Book of the offices of spirits, or the book called 'Empto'. Solomon, concerning the princes and kings of demons). This work is likely related to a very similar 1583 manuscript titled The Office of Spirits, both of which appear ultimately be an elaboration on a fifteenth-century manuscript titled Le Livre des Esperitz (of which 30 of its 47 spirits are nearly identical to spirits in the Ars Goetia). 

You can find the Pseudomonarchia DaemonumThe Ars Goetia, and the Grimorium Verum on the left side bar of our site.


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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Brain scans of spiritual retreat participants revealed changes in the brain


Spiritual retreats DO work: Study reveals just one day of meditation rewires your brain enough to reduce tension by almost 10%

Brain scans of spiritual retreat participants revealed changes in the dopamine and serotonin systems of their brain, which are part of our reward and emotional systems. 

The research also revealed that people who returned from retreats reported improvements in their physical health, tension levels and fatigue.

Brain scan images of a person who went on a 7-day spiritual retreat. The scan on the left shows the brain before the retreat, and the scan on the right shows the brain after. It shows the regions of interest used for the analysis as well as the overall reduction in neurostransmitter binding (reduced orange/red coloring) when comparing the pre-retreat (left) and post retreat (right) scans. The researchers observed decreases in dopamine transporter (5-8 percent) and serotonin transporter (6.5 percent) binding, which could make more of the neurotransmitters available to the brain. This is associated with positive emotions and spiritual feelings

'Since serotonin and dopamine are part of the reward and emotional systems of the brain, it helps us understand why these practices result in powerful, positive emotional experiences,' said Dr Andrew Newberg, M.D., Director of Research in the Marcus Institute of Integrative Health and lead author of the research. 

'Our study showed significant changes in dopamine and serotonin transporters after the seven-day retreat, which could help prime participants for the spiritual experiences that they reported.'  

The researchers, based at the The Marcus Institute of Integrative Health at Thomas Jefferson University, studied 14 Christian participants ranging in age from 24 to 76. 

The participants attended an Ignatian retreat, which is based on the spiritual exercises developed St Ignatius Loyola, who founded the Jesuits. 

The participants began each day with a morning mass, followed by spending most of the day in silent contemplation, prayer and reflection. They also attended a daily meeting with a spiritual director for guidance. 

Before and after they completed the seven-day retreat, the participants were given psychological surveys to fill out. According to the researchers, these showed that the participants reported perceived improvements in their health as well as their fatigue and tension levels. 

Researchers also took brain scans of the participants before and after the retreat. 

The post-retreat scans revealed decreases in dopamine transporter (5-8 percent) and serotonin transporter (6.5 percent) binding, which could make more of the neurotransmitters available to the brain. 

This is associated with positive emotions and spiritual feelings. 

In particular, dopamine is responsible for mediating cognition, emotion and movement, while serotonin is involved in emotional regulation and mood. 

Participants also reported greater feelings of 'self-transcendence'  - the overcoming of the limits of the individual self and its desires in spiritual contemplation and realization.

This feeling of self-transcendence was correlated to the change in dopamine binding found in the brain scans. 

'In some ways, our study raises more questions than it answers,' said Dr Newberg. 

'Our team is curious about which aspects of the retreat caused the changes in the neurotransmitter systems and if different retreats would produce different results. 

'Hopefully, future studies can answer these questions.'

The findings of the study were published in the journal Religion, Brain & Behavior


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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Arbatel: The Magic of the Ancients – An Occult Grimoire


The Arbatel de magia veterum (Arbatel: Of the Magic of the Ancients) is a Renaissance-period grimoire – a textbook of magic – and one of the most influential works of its kind. Unlike some other occult manuscripts that contain dark magic and malicious spells, the Arbatel contains spiritual advice and guidance on how to live an honest and honorable life.

The Arbatel is claimed to have been written in 1575 AD. This date is supported through textual references dating from 1536 through 1583. It is believed that the final editor of the Arbatel was Swiss physician Theodor Zwinger, and that it was published by Italian printer Pietro Perna. The author remains unknown, although it has been speculated that a man named Jacques Gohory may be the author. Like Zwinger and Perna, Gohory was a Paracelsian (a group who believed in and followed the medical theories and therapies of Paracelsus).

Portrait of Paracelsus (Philippus von Hohenheim),
Father of Toxicology and Occultist.

The focus of the Arbatel is on nature, and the natural relationships between humanity and a celestial hierarchy. It centers on the positive relationships between the celestial world and humans, and the interactions between the two. British poet and scholarly mystic Arthur Edward Waite (A.E. Waite) noted that the Arbatel is clearly Christian in nature. He wrote that it does not contain any form of black magic, and that it is not connected to the Greater or Lesser Keys of Solomon, which were focused on demonology. 

The most frequently cited book in the Arbatel is the Bible. In the manner it is written, it appears that the author of the Arbatel must have had many portions of the Bible memorized, and that this highly influenced his writings.

The Arbatel was an extremely influential work for its time. It is said that one cannot understand the meaning of the Arbatel without also understanding the philosophy of Paracelsus. It viewed theosophy in an occult sense, and was perhaps the first written work to do so. Prior to the Arbatel, theosophy was generally used as a synonym for theology. It was the first writing to make the important distinction between human knowledge and divine knowledge. 

Not all views of the Arbatel are positive, however. Dutch physician, occultist and demonologist Johann Weyer condemned the Arbatel as being “full of magical impiety” in his book, De praestigiis daemonum. In 1617, two professors at the University of Marburg in Germany intended to use the Arbatel as a textbook for students. Actions were taken against those professors by the University, and the book led to a student’s expulsion. Further, in 1623, an individual accused of being a witch, Jean Michel Menuisier, claimed to have used incantations from the Arbatel.

The first edition was most likely published in Basel. Some claim there had been earlier editions, although there has been no evidence to substantiate this. Since 1575, there have been several reprints. In 1655, Robert Turner translated the Arbatel to English, and printed it in his "Fourth" book of Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa's “Three Books of Occult Philosophy.” In 1686, Andreas Luppius wrote a German translation of the Arbatel, and in 1855, Scheible completed another German translation, correcting Luppius’ errors. In 1945, Marc Haven created a French translation of the manuscript. Finally, in 1969, it was translated again into English in the British Library’s Sloane Manuscripts. This English translation resulted in many errors and missing sections, and included a “Seal of Secrets” not included in any other version. 

Through its original edition and later translations, the Arbatel remains a fascinating look into ancient spiritual advice, and the different philosophies and views of the world from the 16th Century.


If you are interested in getting the book, you can find Joseph Peterson's translation (the best one in my opinion) of the Arbatel on the left bar of our site. 


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Friday, March 17, 2017

1666 Redemption Through Sin


Most people have heard of Jesus Christ, considered the Messiah by Christians, and who lived 2000 years ago. But very few have ever heard of Sabbatai Zevi, who declared himself the Messiah in 1666. By proclaiming redemption was available through acts of sin, he amassed a following of over one million passionate believers, about half the world's Jewish population during the 17th century. 

Although many Rabbis at the time considered him a heretic, his fame extended far and wide. Sabbatai's adherents planned to abolish many ritualistic observances, because, according to the Talmud, holy obligations would no longer apply in the Messianic time. Fasting days became days of feasting and rejoicing. Sabbateans encouraged and practiced sexual promiscuity, adultery, incest and religious orgies. 

After Sabbati Zevi's death in 1676, his Kabbalist successor, Jacob Frank, expanded upon and continued his occult philosophy. Frankism, a religious movement of the 18th and 19th centuries, centered on his leadership, and his claim to be the reincarnation of the Messiah Sabbatai Zevi. He, like Zevi, would perform "strange acts" that violated traditional religious taboos, such as eating fats forbidden by Jewish dietary laws, ritual sacrifice, and promoting orgies and sexual immorality. He often slept with his followers, as well as his own daughter, while preaching a doctrine that the best way to imitate God was to cross every boundary, transgress every taboo, and mix the sacred with the profane. Hebrew University of Jerusalem Professor Gershom Scholem called Jacob Frank, "one of the most frightening phenomena in the whole of Jewish history". Jacob Frank would eventually enter into an alliance formed by Adam Weishaupt and Meyer Amshel Rothschild called the Order of the Illuminati. The objectives of this organization was to undermine the world's religions and power structures, in an effort to usher in a utopian era of global communism, which they would covertly rule by their hidden hand: the New World Order. 

Using secret societies, such as the Freemasons, their agenda has played itself out over the centuries, staying true to the script. The Illuminati handle opposition by a near total control of the world's media, academic opinion leaders, politicians and financiers. Still considered nothing more than theory to many, more and more people wake up each day to the possibility that this is not just a theory, but a terrifying Satanic conspiracy.


About the author:
Robert Sepehr is an author, producer and anthropologist living in Los Angeles, CA.
He specializes in linguistics, paleogenetics and archeology.

Check  Robert's books on the right bar of this site 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

According to an old Hindu legend...


..there was once a time when all human beings were gods, but they so abused their divinity that Brahma, the chief god, decided to take it away from them and hide it where it could never be found.

Where to hide their divinity was the question. So Brahma called a council of the gods to help him decide. "Let's bury it deep in the earth," said the gods. But Brahma answered, "No, that will not do because humans will dig into the earth and find it." Then the gods said, "Let's sink it in the deepest ocean." But Brahma said, "No, not there, for they will learn to dive into the ocean and will find it." Then the gods said, "Let's take it to the top of the highest mountain and hide it there." But once again Brahma replied, "No, that will not do either, because they will eventually climb every mountain and once again take up their divinity." Then the gods gave up and said, "We do not know where to hide it, because it seems that there is no place on earth or in the sea that human beings will not eventually reach."

Brahma thought for a long time and then said, "Here is what we will do. We will hide their divinity deep in the center of their own being, for humans will never think to look for it there."

All the gods agreed that this was the perfect hiding place, and the deed was done. And since that time humans have been going up and down the earth, digging, diving, climbing, and exploring--searching for something already within themselves.


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Monday, March 13, 2017

The Ars Notoria, an ancient book that teaches amazing mental abilities


Over the centuries many books have been written claiming that loyal readers and followers of the text will be bestowed with magical powers. In some cases these books are intended to invoke demons or angels. In other cases they promise to allow the reader enhanced skills or good luck.

While the concepts of magic and demonology remained controversial through history, many such books were translated and compiled over time, extending their reach throughout several centuries. One of these books is the Ars Notoria.

The Ars Notoria is one of five books within a grimoire called the Lesser Keys of Solomon , or Clavicula Salomonis Regis . A grimoire is a textbook of occult knowledge which is meant to grant the reader the ability to cast spells, create talismans, invoke spirits, invoke demons, and perform divination.  The Lesser Keys of Solomon is an anonymous grimoire that was compiled from other works in the 17th century, and focuses on demonology. The five books contained within the Lesser Keys of Solomon are the Ars Goetia , the Ars Theurgia-Goetia , the Ars Paulina , the Ars Almadel , and the Ars Notoria .

The Ars Notoria is the oldest portion of the Lesser of the Keys grimoire. It, in particular, was not a book of spells or potions, but a book of prayers and orations that are said to strengthen and focus one’s mental powers, by beseeching god for intellectual gifts. Among these intellectual gifts is the concept of a “perfect memory.”

Those who practice liberal arts, such as arithmetic, geometry, and philosophy, are promised a mastery of their subject if they devote themselves to the Ars Notoria . Within, it describes a daily process of visualization, contemplation, and orations, which are intended to enhance the practitioner’s focus and memory.

Also, the original texts were written in mash up of ancient Hebrew, Greek, and Latin. King Solomon himself used the original content of Ars Notoria to become as wise, compassionate and clever as he was made to be famous.

“…The Notory Art revealed by the Most High Creator to Solomon. In the Name of the Holy and undivided Trinity, beginneth this most Holy Art of Knowledge, revealed to Solomon, which the Most High Creator by his Holy Angels ministered to Solomon upon the Alter of the Temple; that thereby in short time he knew all Arts and Sciences, both Liberal and Mechanick, with all the Faculties and Properties thereof: He has suddenly infused into him, and also was filled with all wisdom, to utter the Sacred Mysteries of most Holy words…” 
–Ars Notoria 

Another famous user of the Ars Notoria was John of Morigny, a fourteenth century monk When he tried to achieve academic mastery, he bacema afflisted with demonid visions. 

He went on to create his own grimoire, Libor Visonum. He believed that the Ars Notoria worked but came at too high a price. 

There is a communication trick inside that modern readers will find fascinating. Labeled a ‘magnetick experiment’, details how to use a lodestone and two compass needles to communicate great distances.

If the two needles are rubbed against the same lodestone (a lodestone is a natural magnet), the needles will be ‘entangled’. 

In this fashion, if one needle moves the other does as well. By placing the needles in the center of a circle of letters and pictures, two individuals across great distances, could talk to each other by spelling out words.

The book has many clever ideas and notions that were ahead of its time. It was also attached to prominent occult and political names. 

All this combined with the fact we discussed earlier, that many people can’t read, lead people to believe it had magical properties. The expansion of perspective and attainment of knowledge made others believe that the book itself was magical.

If we were able to get an unabridged and original copy of the book, then my mind could be easily changed.

If the book did have inherently dangerous information, authorities of various types would have worked to contain and limit the public’s access to this information. 

“And know this; that if thou hast not the books in thy hands, or the faculty of looking into them is not given to thee; the effect of this work will not be the lesse therefore: but the Orations are twice then to be pronounced, where they were to be but once: And as to the knowledge of a vision, and the other virtues which these Holy Orations have; thou maist prove and try them, when and how thou wilt.” 
–Ars Notoria 
← You can find a good translation on the left bar of our site.


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Sunday, March 12, 2017

Scientists discover how to 'upload knowledge to your brain'


Feeding knowledge directly into your brain, just like in sci-fi classic The Matrix, could soon take as much effort as falling asleep, scientists believe.

Researchers claim to have developed a simulator which can feed information directly into a person’s brain and teach them new skills in a shorter amount of time, comparing it to “life imitating art”.

They believe it could be the first steps in developing advanced software that will make Matrix-style instant learning a reality.

In the neo-noir sci-fi classic, protagonist Neo is able to learn kung fu in seconds after the martial art is ‘uploaded’ straight to his brain.

Researchers from HRL Laboratories, based in California, say they have found a way to amplify learning, only on a much smaller scale than seen in the Hollywood film.  

They studied the electric signals in the brain of a trained pilot and then fed the data into novice subjects as they learned to pilot an aeroplane in a realistic flight simulator.

The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, found that subjects who received brain stimulation via electrode-embedded head caps improved their piloting abilities and learnt the task 33 per cent better than a placebo group.

“Our system is one of the first of its kind. It's a brain stimulation system,” explained Dr Matthew Phillips.

"It sounds kind of sci-fi, but there's large scientific basis for the development of our system.

"The specific task we were looking at was piloting an aircraft, which requires a synergy of both cognitive and motor performance.

"When you learn something, your brain physically changes. Connections are made and strengthened in a process called neuro-plasticity.

“It turns out that certain functions of the brain, like speech and memory, are located in very specific regions of the brain, about the size of your pinky.”

Dr Matthews believes that brain stimulation could eventually be implemented for tasks like learning to drive, exam preparation and language learning

“What our system does is it actually targets those changes to specific regions of the brain as you learn,” he added.

“The method itself is actually quite old. In fact, the ancient Egyptians 4000 years ago used electric fish to stimulate and reduce pain.

“Even Ben Franklin applied currents to his head, but the rigorous, scientific investigation of these methods started in the early 2000s and we're building on that research to target and personalise a stimulation in the most effective way possible.

“Your brain is going to be very different to my brain when we perform a task. What we found is … brain stimulation seems to be particularly effective at actually improving learning.”


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