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On Secrecy

There has been a fairly interesting debate which has been going on on this blog and elsewhere about secrecy within modern Golden Dawn groups. Please note that I am not saying what oath we take in the Magical Order of the Aurora Aurea. It is similar but not the original. It does have a clause on revealing teachings but it is not the same as the Golden Dawn or SM. The oath of all these groups was different anyway. I think that oaths should reflect the times and not simply parrot phrases that have no meaning. However since all the oaths are similar lets have a look at it and the secrecy thing.The OathHarpakratThe traditional oath was a surprisingly dull

Correct position for the ‘L’ in the Golden Dawn LVX formula

There has been much debate on the correct position of the arms for the LVX formula of late. Regardie had a perfect 'L' as, it appeared did the original Golden Dawn.However there is another suggestion that the right hand was held as if lobbing a spear while the left was down while off centre.  This is similar to the position which is shown of the Magician in the BOTA tarot deck (and for that matter the one that Harry is painting at the moment).All good stuff which seems to indicate that the GD got more detailed as it got older. However one should perhaps look at the inspiration for the sign of Isis mourning.  Attached is a picture from Wikipedia

The Muse of History

I have absolutely no problem with other GD groups. The Magical Order of the Aurora Aurea is quite close to other some other GD groups and regularly share information.  Generally until someone has a pop at me I am usually fairly open and trusting (sometimes to a fault).The issue of historical research can be thorny. A researcher's job is not to act as the propagandist for their own order. They have to be open minded as to what might have happened even when this will lead them away from an official line that their temple chiefs would be happy with.If the line of reasoning of their temple chief is “Mathers was a god and I am the incarnation of Mathers”

History in the making

Israel Regardie tended to slag off Crowley. After all, the Great Beast wrote a really nasty letter about him which, among other things, said he was a compulsive masturbator so he had a right to be miffed. However, according to Chic Cicero if a younger occultist attacked number 666, Regardie would wade into him and defend Crowley to the hilt. He said that he knew Crowley, it was his right.I did not really understand that, until someone in an argument had a pop at someone in Whare Ra who was one of the teachers of Pat Zalewski, Jack Taylor but also had a go at the person who was my initiator, a 6=5 called Percy Wilkinson.

Things you thought were true about the GD but probably weren’t.

This article is a bit of fun and the list is not exhaustive. If anyone can think of others put them in the comments boxIt is not called the Hermetic Order of the Golden DawnThe "Golden Dawn" was never called the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (HOGD).  That was invented by Regardie for his book.  The First Order was called the Golden Dawn in the Outer (GDO) although on some letterheads it was called the Esoteric Order of the Golden Dawn.  Hermetic Order does appear on some letter heads and course material but it was not the name of the Order.  I pointed this out in my book Making Talismans and one Order immediately changed its name.  Mathers wanted

Azrael – Whom God Helps

The idea of death is a key part of organised religion.  This has mostly been because the fear of death has been a method of control for society.  Many occult and religious systems try to place the idea of balance outside the material world of the living.  Thus they make the immediate afterlife a place of balance and judgement.  It meant that you didnt start looking for “evil people” to get their comeuppance in this life and no matter how terrible your life had been if you had followed the religious line you would be “safe”.  However such simplistic approaches to life and death have never really worked.  The biggest problem with them has been that they promise eternity.  Either

Thinking about Gods

Gods are very important in the pagan religion but their role in Magic is a little less clear. My personal belief is that their is only One Thing that takes on lots of different roles. Paganism and modern paganism in particular with its Goddess obsession does as much to move me as the Christian idea of a male God. However the question then comes to the idea of worship. How do you worship One Thing? The sort answer is that you don't. It is as vain as worshiping yourself. You are part of the One Thing so you are just saying to another part of yourself how brilliant you really are. This is