Monday, July 27, 2015

The Grimoire Crowd

Cut is the branch that might have grown full straight,
And burned is Apollo's laurel-bough,
That sometime grew within this learned man.
Faustus is gone: regard his hellish fall,
Whose fiendful fortune may exhort the wise,
Only to wonder at unlawful things,
Whose deepness doth entice such forward wits,
To practise more than heavenly power permits.

Chorus, Dr Faustus, Christopher Marlowe

The Blogos is primarily a means of getting the information I have recieved about Esoteric Genetics, Cellular Consciousness and the Metabolism of Time into wider, interested circles and secondarily a means of exploring QBL with the Sefer Yetzirah.  Only reluctantly is it a place to discuss the politics of the WMT where I have tried to keep my political focus on displacing the Kircher Tree as the dominant (and sadly erroneous) means of approaching the QBL.  To be completely honest when I see magicians discussing politics, whether it be social justice warrior types, the nuances of identity politics in paganism, whether Crowley being a racist makes his magick unethical, or the internecine and persistant conflicts that plague the out-dated orders that no longer have a reason to exist on this planet my stomach turns a little.  Its not that I don't see these issues as important to the people that post about them I just can't help but think of all of the dialogue about magickal technique and innovation that could be happening in their stead.

Jason Millier posted about the Grimoire Crowd recently, a group which I have to consider myself a fringe member of.  I have no interest in the beautifully bound books that are being produced or the PGM, the Picatrix, the Armadel, etc but since my focus is on the Sefer Yetzirah and a study of it not scrambled by the Golden Dawn et al - I am to all intents and purposes part of it.  I agree with Jason that sometimes the Grimoire Crowd can come across as smug, self-righteous, and instantly dismissive of more ''modern'' approaches.

In my opinion The Grimoire Crowd arose and gained in popularity, in response to a massively dumbed down WMT, saturated by Magick 101 books, and rapidly bleeding out into Paganism, Wicca, the New Age, UFOs, Darkfluff, etc and was indirectly led by people who wanted to regain some of the intellectual edge alongside rectifying longheld errors caused by the Victorians/Edwardians and restoring some credibility to the Tradition.  The people who are involved in the Grimoire Crowd are typically driven, passionate, thoroughly researched, ''grounded in astrology, enriched with tongues and well seen in minerals''.  They care about the Tradition in ways that your typical new age spiritual tourist flake can't begin to imagine and they are absolutely vital as sentinels for the WMT in its current, deplorable situation. This said, to dismiss modern methods of visualization, energy work*, psychic powers etc or the injection of Eastern Wisdom into the Tradition is utterly contemptible and makes those imbeciles just look like occult hipsters desperately trying to preserve or enhance their cool.

The Future happened already - everyone is a magician these days with their ability to gain secret knowledge from the web, communicate at long distances, fly through the air, bend electrons into heating, lighting, etc - Magick is for All.  In making it seem like the only appropriate approach to Occultism is the scholarly and historical one many of the Grimoire Crowd fail to grasp how much their child - Science - has to offer them.  For example, as a geneticist, understanding phenotype and genotype has given me incredible insight into the relationship between Yetzirah and Assiah, and indeed the whole four worlds theory of the Qabalah - and generally I can say that Science, more than any other discipline, has provided me with the technical knowledge and logical reasoning I need to increase the specificity of my results.  And when we talk about results this is what we need to talk about - accuracy, specificity - not just that they exist. 

Are there problems with science, and scientism?  Yes.  Science as a sociological force can seem to be allied with the military industrial complex and large scale capitalism - science for pure enlightenment or ''for the good of all humankind'' represents a tiny part of its operation - science is for profit often at the expense of poor animals who die in experiments testing cosmetics.  These people who worship science in the place of divinity... are they lost?  Well only if Scientism isn't simply a modern mask on Mercury worship.

That there have been similar periods in history which held deep understanding of the cosmos is obvious and the Hermeticist's quest for the secret advanced knowledge of the past is a huge part of the tradition and a love of antiquity should be cultivated alongside the knowledge of the future world.  We use both the past and the future to enrich our understanding of the present.

Jason also talks about how he will believe in the impressiveness of your results when a demon teaches you advanced string theory, or to fly in the air.  The reality is that the esoteric genetic material on this site constitutes a considerable advance for the WMT and has been mediated by the Archangel Raziel who I would not have been able to work with in this way if I hadn't devoted myself to understanding the Qabalah and Sefer Yetzirah at his behest in the manner of many of the Grimoire Crowd.  The fact that this material is not widely understood is due in part to the lack of knowledge in the occult community required to understand it, we lack scientists and/or knowledge of science - alongside, more often than not, common sense.

To conclude, what you get from being in the Grimoire Crowd is singlemindedness, devotion, perfectionism, and an attention to details that you won't find in other parts of the occult world which are bedevilled by laziness, illogic and flakiness.  You will find yourself [seeming to be] consumed by the conceit of your knowledge, proud like Lucifer, ''glutted with learning's golden gifts, surfeiting on cursed necromancy'', etc.  But after a while the only way to make progress in magick is to dive deeply into a single tradition, that dive does not invalidate other approaches but is very different to just half-heartedly scratching the surface of the Ocean.

*I think energy is a poor term in magick and increases misunderstanding - better words, for different reasons, would be power or consciousness.

1 comment:

  1. you just nailed something right on the head -

    "Its not that I don't see these issues as important to the people that post about them I just can't help but think of all of the dialogue about magickal technique and innovation that could be happening in their stead."

    if there was more discussion and dialogue between different styles of magic, we would all advance forward a step. Instead, it would seem that magicians spend far more time gossiping, posturing and getting into spats.