Tuesday, March 09, 2010

More On Goetia

Those who have read my Modern Goetic Grimoire understand that "Goetia" is not a single grimoire, it is a path like any other, a philosophy, an approach to magic that is its own tradition, and extends back in time a lot longer than the Golden Dawn or even traditional Kabbalistic magical systems. If I were to ditch everything else and go fully Goetic in my practices, it wouldn't be any different than devoting myself to systems like Enochian, Trithemian, or even the Golden Dawn.

The demonization of the practice of Goetia is wrong at a philosophical and fundamental level. It's not historically accurate, either. Traditional Goety includes the conjuration of the celestial and the chthonic, gods and daimons, as well as ancestors, saints, and the shades of the dead. Santeros, Paleros, and Brujos today practice a similar magic to what was historically considered "Goetic" and they suffer the same kind of intellectual harassment Goetic magicians in the time of Iamblichus suffered. The Temple Priests didn't like that the commoners were conjuring gods and spirits to help people. They didn't like the competition. It's the same thing that the Church did to Witchcraft. The priests weren't tending the daily needs of their parishoners, so they turned to people who would. The Establishment doesn't like competition, and they created doxology to demonize the practices that focused on meeting the mundane needs of the people, food, sex, shelter, and prosperity.

Any system that is complete will address not only your spiritual relationship with God, that is, your relative position to God however he manifests to you, but also your physical relationship to the world around you. Religion tends to be overly weighted towards the spiritual side of things and eternity. The Lemegeton's Goetia tends to be overly weighted towards the temporal and physical side of things. The true practice of Goety is a balance of both. Blaming Goetia for my fire is a really shallow and expedient thing to do.

Look at what happened to Voudoun when Haiti had their earthquake. It got blamed for the catastrophe. Thousands of people every year benefit from Voudoun, but is anyone trumpeting the success in the face of pointed criticism? Is anyone blaming an occult pact between Satan and Chile for the latest earthquake? How about Indonesia and their Tsunami?

Goetia is a system of magic that can be very fulfilling. You can accomplish the West's "Great Work" using Goety, no matter what Agrippa and Iamblichus said about it. It's not easy, it takes self-discipline, and a strong connection to the Source. Just like any other form of magic. It helps a lot to have the HGA around too. Just like any other form of magic.

Focusing on the terrestrial and Chthonic aspects will result in a lot of opportunities for growth, but gold and silver are refined by going through the fire, not by sitting there in the ore. Anyone attempting to focus on Goetic magic as a spiritual system of growth will need to include the celestial aspects as well, and some form of relationship with the Highest in order to make real progress, in my opinion, but there are ample opportunities in the system for that exact purpose. The same pitfalls are in Goetia that are in the Golden Dawn or Thelema or Hasidic Judaism.

Pride, fear, anger, greed, lead to the Dark Side they do.It's a HUMAN thing. The spirits of the Lemegeton's Goetia have a bad reputation. But when you really look at what's going on in the fiascoes that people say "prove" that the spirits are really "demons," you'll see a lot of blame shifting and avoidance of responsibility.

I've had too many positive results from the spirits of the Goetia to say they are inherently dangerous to work with by nature. Even the fire in the house was a success, if you judge solely on the basis of whether I got what I asked for. They are incredibly effective at what they do. They just have to be handled with care.

The same is true of any system of magic. Members of the Supernatural Assistant course went through hell to get their HGA contact. Tiphareth initiations are symbolized by the Cross because you feel like you're being fucking crucified. You really do die to yourself, and no one can understand what that means until they've been through it.

My experience with the Goetia doesn't support the idea that the system itself is corrosive. I've worked with all the ranks of the spirits, and have conjured 21 of the 72 spirits of the Lemegeton's Goetia at last count, most on more than one occasion. My house only burned down once. Yeah, it sucks, but statistically, it's not a bad record. I'm getting my basement remodeled into a single master bedroom, my kitchen upgraded to granite counter tops and steel appliances, new carpeting, all the hardwood floors refinished and sealed, and new paint in every room in the house. I got rid of 10 years worth of useless accumulated crap that I've learned I really don't need to live. I'm more responsible and mature than I've ever been in my life. Patterns of behavior have changed, and are continuing to change. I see the world differently, and my life today is better than it has ever been. I spent Sunday playing with my kids instead of crouched over a computer screen typing about my latest conjuration for lottery winnings, or a new job. I'm enjoying the wealth I already have instead of trying to go after some imagined state of existence that probably doesn't exist. I'm more aware of how wealthy I really am than I've ever seen before.

And that's all the result of my Work with the Goetia. Is that bad?

"Yeah, but your house burned down!"

Thank God! That's what it took! Shit that's been wearing me down and killing all my progress for years came to the surface where it had to be addressed. It took a house fire to teach me that. That's how stubborn and ignorant I can be. Do I now say it was evil? Hell no.

And you can't either. You don't know me, or what I think or do while I'm away from the computer, really. You don't know where I was at with my relationship to God, or the level of initiation I was at. You don't know what the spirits were putting me through in their efforts to accomplish an overall grand and good plan that was hatched in the Mind of God for my personal benefit. You don't know enough to form an accurate opinion that applies to me.

You can look at what I say, what I've been through, and form your own opinion about how you would deal with things differently or the same, but be careful not to fall into the trap of demonizing Goetia just because bad things happened to me. I already posted about Michael costing me my job and Tzadqiel getting me a job that paid less. Some day I'll write about the conjuration of the Elemental Princes, and yes, it was painful going through each of the elemental kingdoms, but yes, it was also worth it.


  1. Fr RO,

    That's why I gave my opinion in the way I did it in the other post.

    I always believed that you did a great work and my support it was going in that direction, to remind people that you're not a beginner even knowing what happened to you.

    In my personal case, I'm not afraid at all at the Goetia and if I'm not mistaken, since the first day I talked to you I remember to have let you know my interest in the Goetia and I went through the Supernatural Assistant class, which I'm very thankful because I have K&C with my HGA. Even though I need more preparation, but in the end, I will work the Goetia.

  2. Phenomenal post RO. Amen brother, friggen Amen.

  3. Great RO, I really liked the post...it reminds me about tarot card No.13: death and rebirth!

    Our inner self is determined to change and it will make us change, no doubt about this.

    Congrats for your new life.

  4. Hello, I randomly found your blog and a few other things upon an internet search. I myself am working with the Goetia, actually in the middle of a project of working with each of the 72 spirits for the span of 360 days, working with each spirit for 5 days without a break inbetween.


    So far, I've come across great things, and some run-of-the-mill bad luck, and I've taken to cataloging just about all the goings on during the time. So, this is my way of looking at these demons/spirits.

  5. Frater RO,

    I've worked with spirits and so called demons for a long time. I'm intrigued by your work and the observations you are making about what happened. I have to ask you a question though. Do you think the real reason that the house burned down was because someone was using some clever magick to manipulate you into a certain direction? There is a difference between what is commonly called 'psychic attack' and the work of a black magician who knows the value of manipulation to achieve a specific end.I don't wish to sound alarmist, but there are things in your account that would make me consider that possibility. Of singular signicance is the use of fire as the agent or medium of transition. Just wondered if you had considered outside influence as a factor?



  6. IRH, I've thought I was cursed for a while. :D

    But divinations have indicated the house fire was not motivated by any magician other than myself. I've had that same indication from readings by multiple people, so I've given up that track.

    But the first thing I did after the fire was get an uncrossing rite from a Master Magician.

  7. I also saw some elements of the criticism as Pedantic.

    But it IS the most immediate response and not everyone has read enough of your posts to not know you arent Goetia obsessed lol.

    but btw, I would REALLYX3 like to hear about some of your elemental work etc. Just thought id vocalize that as I havent seen anyone else show any interest ;)

  8. I read this, and it reminded me of how every so often, there will be a forest fire so that underbrush can be cleared. Although the devastation can be horrible, they also allow new growth and revitalization.

    I'm not in any way weighing in on your experience, judging you, or trying to gauge your intent, skill, or relationship with anyone/anything. That would be silly, not to mention almost certainly inaccurate. Just wanted to come by and thank you for a perspective that recognizes the growth in even the difficult spaces.


Thanks for your comments, your opinions are valued, even if I disagree with them. Please feel free to criticize my ideas and arguments, question my observations, and push back if you disagree.