The Golden Dawn is not a bunch of Nazis

There is a move afoot within the Golden Dawn community to liberate the name Golden Dawn from a deluded bunch of Greek Nazis who, in the popular mind, have taken it over.
In actual fact this confusion has come from the fact that the Western Press have translated the name of the Nazi political party Chrysi Avgi.   The reason is probably that Fox broadcasters can’t pronounce Greek. 
The group, which is xenophobic, homophobic, and misogynistic has a few things going for it.  It moves into deprived towns in Greece and offers food and community services to Greek nationals who otherwise would starve.  This is the same tactic used by the Muslim Brotherhood.  When Greek’s economy picks up, the group will fade away, fortunately its leader Nikolaos Michaloliakos  is about as charismatic as a road accident.

However the group has been linked to what the Greek Orthodox Church calls a “rise in paganism” Seraphim, the bishop of Piraeus, spoke publicly of the paganistic dimension of the Greek Golden Dawn.
This would be news toChrysi Avgi as it is very proud of its Greek Orthodox links, something the church should be ashamed of.
But the danger is that the view might be accepted by the Western Press and the Nazi Golden Dawn might forever be linked to that of the magical one.
Already a Google search for the name Golden Dawn is more likely to result in political finds rather than occult ones. It is only a matter of time before right-wing nutjobs start applying to orthodox golden dawn groups looking for a spiritual dimension for their backward politics.
Irish Blueshirts supported by Yeats

It is not as if the Golden Dawn does not have a few neo-nazi skeletons in its closet.  n the 1930s Yeats lent his support to the openly fascist Irish Blueshirt movement, led by Eoin O’Duffy, a former IRA Chief of Staff who had become Police Chief of the Irish Free State. The Blueshirts aped Mussolini’s Blackshirts and Hitler’s Brownshirts, down to the same uniforms, the same stiff-armed salute and the same greeting: ‘Hail O’Duffy!’ Yeats wrote three marching songs for the movement which sent a 700-strong contingent to fight for Franco’s Fascist uprising against the Spanish republic in the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39.

The much-admired Maud Gonne was a big fan of Hitler and the Nazis, and her daughter Iseult even hid a German parachutist in her home during the second world war.
As I revealed in my book King over the Water, Samuel Mathers’ closest friends included members of the French Synarch movement and it was likely that the “politics” he was involved with was of that movement. The Synarchs came close to power under the Vichy government in Paris.  I personally think that it was these Right Wing links which caused the end of the first Golden Dawn.  Yeats had left the Golden Dawn by that point in his career.
The far-right is attracted to the perceived elitism of occultism as well as the secrecy and dressing up.  Because of their conservatism, masonic groups often have to watch out for Neo-nazis trying to use them as recruiting grounds. 
Mussolini’s favourite occultist, Julius Evola

Normally such types quote Plato’s Republic as occult justification for their politics. Plato called for a government run by an elite team of philosophers who did not work for money but ran the country on philosophical principles. As I wrote here Mussolini’s favourite occultist, Julius Evola took this idea a stage further.  One of the things I find alarming about this period in occult history is Evola is being dusted off and being presented as an occult genius.  It is something I put down the Right seizing an economic opportunity to peddle its nazi manifesto to the esoteric world again.

But lets be clear about this.

The ideas of the Far Right (and left for that matter) are alien to occultism, mysticism and magic. If you find any of these ideas attractive, you cannot be a viable member of the Golden Dawn.  You might learn a few techniques, but you are forever locked out from discovering the real secrets.

 Why is this?
The Central doctrine behind real occultism is that the universe is an expression of the One Thing.  Therefore none of the beliefs of the Far Right tally with that.

The Golden Dawn system of magic is never about extremes, it is always to do with balance.  The extreme politics of the Far Right and Left are Qlippothic within Golden Dawn philosophy.

 One race cannot be superior to another, one religion cannot be better than another, each human has its function within creation.  You cannot use violence against another person because they reflect an aspect of the Divine and you are doing it to yourself.   Nor can you blame them for your problems.  If immigrants really are taking jobs, a more human approach is to make sure that their country of origin is a better place to live.  People rarely leave their country for the fun of it.  If your country is fucked, then do something about it don’t blame your local Jew or African.

Therefore I am joining Don Kraig in his call for Golden Dawnleaders to denounce the Neo-Nazi movement in Europe and call on the press to stop making links between Chrysi Avgi and the Golden Dawn.

Killing off the Past Heirophant

The top table of chiefs in the Golden Dawn ritual are composed of the Imperator, the Cancellarius and Praemonstrator. The Hierophant is also supposed to sit between them and behind him sits the Past-Heirophant.

Throughout the history of the Golden Dawn little work has been done about the magical function of these officers. Instead the titles are seen as mostly administrative. The person who fancies themselves in charge of the group takes the role of Imperator because it means “the person who rules” and it gets to stick them on a throne above all the others dressed in bright red and holding a jolly big sword.
However this ego stroke shows the ignorance of the system and the belief that it was an Imperator that ran the Order. In the original GD these officers were not seen and their function was not discussed by the great unwashed.

The Hierophant’s throne was between a half open curtain and that was all that could be seen of these officers. If there was any dance of the ego it was conducted behind closed doors or curtains.
There were three important officers on the top table and one, the Heirophant which moved between the three.

The three represented the three pillars on the tree of life, the alchemical principles, Fire, Air and Water and the gods Nepthys, Thoth and Isis. The Hierophant (and the candidate) represented Osiris, Salt and Malkuth, and Earth.

But what does all this mean?

There are three great currents which come into the 0=0 ceremony from the withdrawn orders which are personified by the three chiefs. For the sake of identification I will call these the Nephsys, Thoth and Isis current. Their function is to rebuild and empower Osiris.


Nephsys is water and Mercury.

Her function is to alchemically separate (ie disolve) the candidate during the various processes of the 0=0. She is the force of putrefaction which takes place after death. She is also the purifier. Isis is fire and sulfur and the consecrating force which alchemically binds the candidate. Thoth is the quintessence the force which unites the forces of Sulphur and Mercury and thus resurrects Osiris.

These three rays take up a third of the temple each. Every time a candidate or an officer (with their godform) enter into those temple sectors they are working with and interacting with those rays. Thus when the candidate enters the temple in the West the first thing that happens to them is that they are broken down by the Nepthys force so that they can be rebound by the Isis force and raised up under the Thoth ray. The work of the 0=0 therefore can be said to be using the “Solve et Coagula” maxim of the alchemist.

This means then that the circumambulations where the candidate crosses the three lines of force mirror the alchemical processes of dissolve and bind. These transmutions are carried out by Maat and Anubis as they lead the candidate around the temple. They are also a factor at the various points where the candidate is stopped.

Also it is interesting to note that when Sulphur is mixed with Mercury and baked it creates a vermilion powder which was the basis for red paint. It makes sense of why the Hierophant wears red and how the action of the Imperator and the Praemonstrator bound by the power of the Cancellerious manufacture within the order the “created fire and the uncreated (or hidden) fire” which powers the Hierophant.


The Hierophant then takes his power from these three rays which are manifested throughout the grade rises of the outer order. He is the salt, or material result of their action and hopes to pass on these powers to the candidate.

To me this answers the question as to whether the Hierophant should sit in front of the officers or in a line with them. He should be on an apex of triangle which the base line is the Imperator, the Cancellarius and the Praemonstrator. He should be seated in front of the Cancellarius who provides him with the middle pillar of air and the powers of the quintessence which he is expected to manifest into the the temple of Maat.

 The question about all this is what has all this work got do with the post of “past-heirophant”?. In Whare Ra this job was basically to assist the Hierophant in bringing in all the energy into the temple and to effectively sit in his chair as Osiris when the Hierophant was running around being Aroueris. He is Aroueris when the Hierophant is sitting down. The question is, is this role really required as it breaks a lot of very important symbols on the top table. You lose the idea of the tree of life, you lose the trinity, because four officers do not mean the same thing as three.

 The role, while an interesting idea, is not mirrored with other officers. Just because the Heirus stands up there is not a past Heirus to fills the passive role while the officer is active on the floor.

Since none of the chiefs roles are contained in the Cipher manuscripts it means that they are the invention of Mathers and Westcott. While the idea of three chiefs shows some alchemical genius, the use of four does not. In fact it shows the influence of freemasonry. In freemasonry once someone has passed through the chair they are given a past master title. They are supposed to assist the current master in their role. Sound familiar? However it is just another officer and a sop to the lost status which is afforded to the new master of the lodge.

Magically it does little which is not done elsewhere and actually messes with the tree of life and alchemical symbolism which is much more important. When I started to question the role of the past Hierophant I noticed that with the officer sitting on his desk there are actually 11 officers. Praemonstrator, Cancellarius, Imperator, Hierophant, Past Hierophant, Hegemon, Hierus, Dadouchos, Stolistes, Kerux and Sentinel. While this is a little superstitious, it is not a desirable number of officers to have, since it represents the qlippoth, whereas ten indicates the sephiroth.

Given this, I think it is probably better that the past Hierophant is handed his P45 and pink slip and told that in a magical order we don’t really need to create senior jobs to avoid upsetting people who can’t be Hierophant any more.

First published 2010

Holy Guardian Angels, Demons and Dwellers on the Threshold

IF YOU have read anything on occultism you might find yourself facing terms such as Holy Guardian Angel and sometimes, more rarely, Guardian Demon and the Dweller on the Threshold. These terms have been confused over the years so will try and explain them. In a system of 16th century magic called Abramelin the first part of the work was to get in touch with your Holy Guardian Angel and it was through it that you learnt the names of Angels and Demons that controlled the universe using magic squares. Protestant commentat ors on the system did not really know what the Holy Guardian Angel was, and some of them, such as Alistair Crowley, who had a psychological bent, thought it was the same as your Higher Self.

However in the pre-reformation Church it was believed that when a human was born they were overshadowed by an Angel and a Demon. It is the role of both to oversee their work in each life and to act as a messenger between heaven and earth. The Angel is a protector and a guide, the Demon is the force that works against the Divine forces to keep the human from returning to God.
Of the two the Demon was the weakest, yet you would know it not by the havoc it creates. Left to its own devices, the Demon will shut the ears of the soul to the guidance of the Angel and encourage the soul to carry on with its mundane life and give no thought to God. Yet if the Guardian Angel was evoked, the balance between Angel and Demon is restored. As the Priests say on the occasion of your baptism. Anger not your Guardian Angel, for it is that which will lead you to the understanding of the True Christ. The idea of a Guardian Angel or Demon has fallen from fashion although they sometimes appear in Disney cartoons as warring forces of a person’s conscious. The Guardian Angel certainly is not your Higher Self.
The term Dweller on the Threshold comes from a Victorian book called Zanoni which was written by an occultist called Lord Bulwer-Lytton. It appears to be a demonic force which appears if someone begins the path of magic before they are ready. It is supposed to scare the willies off them until they decide to stick to a normal life. It is a guardian which stood between the mysteries and the mundane world to prevent those who should not be walking in the immeasurable regions from going there.
Over the years it has come to mean something else depending on which path of magic you use. Alice Bailey in her Esoteric Astrology claimed that it was the sum total of all instincts, and wrong thinking which has built over countless lifetimes. Other occultists describe it as your shadow which must be overcome before you can carry on your esoteric work.
But one thing I have noticed is that while a few people claim they have encountered the Dweller on the Threshold they are the sorts of people who see the world divided into humans and lizard people. They are often the times who say they braved a conversation with the feared dweller and in the same breath tell you that Elvis Presley was a grand adept of their magical order.
If a Dweller on the Threshold existed the way that Bulwer-Lytton described, none of these vegetables would ever get their hands on an esoteric book, let alone find a magical group, or do any exercises. But that does not mean that it does not exist. Like a lot of things in occultism, Bulwer Lytton was not being literal.
It is not, as some commentators have tried to say a magician’s Lower Self, although there are some similarities and it uses the same tools. It is that force which keeps people from succeeding in the Magical Path. It leads them on a merry dance through different groups, it might even give them magical experiences, but Real Magic is something that they never really experience. Unconsciously they make all the choices that prevent them being Real Magicians. Tragically this does not stop such types being experts on magic or even ruling their own esoteric groups or orders. A teacher might have all the students in the world who pay a fortune to attend his lectures, but be no closer to the goal of being a real magician. They are stopped by the Dweller on the Threshold and do not know how to pass. It is not the sum total of their animal instincts, but that which protects magic from being misused.
Butler-Lytton says something very odd about the Dweller. After saying that it is the ugliest thing that anyone has ever seen, and yet it says that it contains the wisdom of “countless ages”. In otherwords the path of being a real magician is not all sweetness, light and crystal dolphins. When you step into the Immeasurable Region real magic is protected by your own fears, your own lack of self-belief. Your own fear turns you back and turns you into a pretend magician.
In one magical order called the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, a candidate who is blindfolded meets an officer who represents this Dweller on the Threshold. This officer threatens the candidate with a sword and blocks the path until the candidate can tell him his name. The candidate is prompted to say “Darkness is thy name, thou Great one of the Path of shades.” The officer replies: “Fear is failure, so be thou without fear. For he who trembles at the Flame and the Flood and at the Shadows of the Air,hath no part in God.
In the path of becoming a real magician you have to face your fears and this process is what is known as the Dweller on the Threshold. But it is more than this overcoming lower self fears. Real magic is protected by the collective fears of humanity. Its biggest fear is “what if magic were true”. What if an individual really could change the universe. In this path it is a fear that we all face and all come up with our own answers. When we face it, it is our first real teacher. In most cases it means we will leave the path completely back to the safety of our books.
Reblogged from 2009