I've recently joined a new yahoo group called EllenLlloyd. This group is dedicated to the Ancient Astronaut Theory, that the earth has been visited and continues to be visited by beings of an (or many) advanced civilizations who have either influenced or are directly responsible for the advancement of human civilization.
I generally try to stay away from our Alien-conscious, UFOlogist cousines. I believe I have a better understanding of the phenomenon they report interacting with than they do. I'm sure they believe the same about occultists in general. However, I am not willing to reject their theories altogether. There are some amazing overlaps of our particular fields.
For instance, today Ellen posted an article she recently wrote about the Everlasting Lights found in ancient tombs and reported above the temples of the ancients. Her article is good, and I recommend reading it if you have a few minutes to spare.
A few months ago I was researching the Portae Lucis, the Portal of Light ritual. The goal of this ritual is to raise the tincture of the sphere of your soul by making contact with Binah-Saturn. It's very similar in effect to the Abramelin Ritual for making contact with your Holy Guardian Angel, and also similar in effect to Crowley's Liber Samekh. The goal of the ritual is to establish and empower a higher connection to the Divine source, sort of. I had first read about this ritual in an interview with Jean Dubuis by Mark Stavish at the Alchemy Website.
In seeking more alchemical lore on the building of Houses of Light and Portals of Light, I found a treatise called The Everburning Lights of Trithemius. As most people who know me are aware, I am extremely fond of Johannes Trithemius. He was an abbot of a monastery who taught Agrippa, wrote some of the foundational texts on communicating with spirits, and wrote the original tale that became known as Faustus. Having read parts of the Steganographia and having practiced from the Art of Drawing Spirits into Crystals, I thought this treatise would be about the angels or spirits, and that it would be an allegorical reference to these entities as the "Everburning Lights." Imagine my surprise when it turned out to be a recipe for creating physical lights that one of his students had recorded.
So today, when I read Ellen's article, I couldn't help but be reminded of the overlap between our fields of study. I personally believe that the "Ancient Astronauts" and the "Angels" or "Spirits" of the occultists are the same entities. For proof we have Crowley's Alamantrah working that resulted in LAM making his appearance, and the subsequent UFO phenomenon that occurred after Crowley established contact with that dimension's beings.
By the way, that's one of the many reasons I don't combine alcohol, hashish, cocaine, ether and ritual magick. You just don't know what you're going to end up doing. But Crowley was a pawn his whole life, god bless him.
Jack Parsons, father of the Space Age, did what he could to create a "Moon Child" or a Nephilim in his Babalon working. Plato was the first to say that every man and every woman is a star. Well, every man anyway, and that if you're not a rational man, you get reborn as a woman... That's not my fault. Read Timaeus sometime. Good stuff.
Additional evidence is found in this Everburning Lights phenomenon. Where did Trithemius learn how to create these lights? We know from the other writings he is famous for that he was experienced in contacting the entities that travel between planes that we do not normally physically experience. His methods (or at least methods attributed to him) for contacting the angelic spirits work. I've spoken with Michael, Tzadkiel, and Haniel using the practices discussed in the Art of Drawing Spirits into Crystals (by the way, you need to include the sigils from the Magical Calendar and the method of creating Talismen from Agrippa's Book 4 of Occult Philosophy). The spirits of the Goetia and the Arbatel are useful for a lot of mundane things, but I find it extremely interesting that their primary functions are not to provide physical results, but to provide information.
I believe Trithemius learned to make the lights from the Spirits. Those who believe in the Ancient Astronaut Theory believe the Everburning Lights are evidence that aliens have visited the planet and given us extra-terrestrial knowledge. What better term exists for the information we receive as magicians from interviewing the spirits than "extra-terrestrial?"
This doesn't mean I believe the spirits "really are" aliens, or that there are no interstellar or inter-dimensional civilizations that influence humanity. Looking at the occult cosmologies of the ancient pagans, gnostics, and occultists around the world, I find it hard to believe that any magician would discard the theories of the Ancient Astronaut crowd completely. Our cosmologies are remarkably similar. Invisible entities bringing knowledge to mankind for our betterment, or for their own purposes. Think about it, what's the difference between the theories of Niburu and the Annunaki compared to the deliverance of the Qabalah to Abraham by Ratziel?
The chief difference is that we as magicians continue to interact with these entities, while those of the Ancient Astronaut crowd seem to think that the aliens will be returning in some distant future. Then again, I'm not that familiar with the Sitchin followers and whether they believe the Ancient Astronauts are still working with particular individuals.