In Memoriam Ted Andrews

Earlier this week it was confirmed that Ted Andrews died of Cancer. Most people know Andrews for his books on Animal Magic, but I'll admit that my exposure to his works came from a decidedly different angle, that of the hermeticist. I actually, to this day, have never read his books on animal magic, but several of the very first books on magic I read were Enchantments of the Faerie Realm and How to Meet and Work with Spirit Guides, both by him. Those two books contributed to a fusion of neoshamanic and Hermetic practices I was practicing when I first got into magic. Even today, when it comes to how I work with spirits, it's fair to say that Andrew's work is the foundation for that approach. Andrews introduced me to elemental Hermetic magic, and to some of the concepts of ceremonial magic. My mate, Lupa, tells me she never read those two books. But she's read Animal Wise and Animal Speak, which were two of his books on animal magic, and what I realize is that this person had a wealth  of experience across a variety of different magical disciplines and was able to share all of that with his readers. I really respect the ability to write knowledgeably on a variety of subjects.

I wish the family of Ted Andrews peace and comfort during this time of sorrow, and safe journey to the spirit of Ted Andrews, as he moves on to the next adventure.

Right Where You are Sitting Now podcast interview with me

On Saturday I got interviewed by Ken and Paul of the Right Where you are Sitting Now podcast. We talked about definitions of magic, my books, and some social cultural aspects of the occult culture. Go here to listen to the show.

Review of Introduction to Magic by Julius Evola and the UR Group

Introduction to Magic by Julius Evola

The title of this book could be a bit misleading, as it's fair to say that the majority of the articles in this book are not intended for people who are just coming into magical practice. The articles requires at least an intermediate knowledge in Hermeticism, Alchemy, or Buddhist Meditation techniques, for the most part. With that said, I definitely recommend this book for anyone who is interested in reading and practicing the different techniques described and discussed in this book.

These articles were written in the late 1920's by a group of experimental magicians called the UR group, lead by Julius Evola. This book presents a fascinating glimpse into ceremonial magical work being done in that time by magicians who weren't overtly associated with magical orders such as the OTO or Golden Dawn. The articles are detail oriented, but all of the writers manage to discuss the concepts with enough brevity to explain what needs to be done and how to do it, without unnecessarily waxing poetic about it.

One article I particularly liked was what I would suggest was the first article ever written on space/time magic...but rather apt for what it suggests about the nature of time and how a person interacts with it. This is definitely a book I will read again and again and get more out of each time I read it. I recommend it to any person who wants to either get a better historical perspective of magical practices or wants to continue honing his/her practices.

Revisiting well worn trails

I'm starting to read Introduction to Magic: Rituals and Practical Techniques for the Magus by Julius Evola and the UR group. It's my first time reading this book, but not my first time reading Evola's work. I first encountered Evola's work when I read his book on Tantra: The Yoga of Power. I find Evola's writing to be intriguing, if hard to read, which is to be expected given that the original language was Italian (and thus translated into English) and it was written in the Early Twentieth century. I find it's important to acknowledge those two points, because I'm not just reading a work on magic from a different culture, but also from a different time period, and in my experience a time period has it's own culture as well, which informs the context of what is being read or worked with. I think Julius Evola is one of those magicians who often is not known about or read by many contemporary occultists, likely because many people just don't know what to read from the early to mid twentieth century beyond the usual Golden Dawn or Crowley material. So you might wonder where the title revisiting well worn trails comes from and that is due to the content of the book, which is focused on Hermeticism and western ceremonial magic.  For me, while reading this book will definitely get me in touch with some new ideas or perspectives, it's also revisiting trails I've been on before and will walk on again.

Another work I'm reading is The places that scare you by Pema Chodron, which is again a revisiting of a Buddhist perspective to a lot of the internal work I'm currently doing for myself. I have no doubt that the internal work will intersect with the work I do in the book by Evola. As above so below, as within, so without.

It's a continuing journey on well-worn trails.