Tuesday, March 09, 2010


Uh, I was annoyed that Jason's post was necessary. His critics, well-intended gentlemen or not, have spent more time reading about magic than doing it. I need a better pejorative than "arm-chair magician." I think mageling is closer.

But I was not annoyed with Jason personally, just the fact that existence conspired in a way to make his post necessary.


  1. Just a clarification, I answered those critics BECAUSE I know them to be real magicians who do the work.

    I think a lot of people have com eto the "Goets are corrosive and not worth it" out of experience.

    I myself an still on the fence. While i will work with them from time to time as I indicate in the book, I also do not agree that you would get the same amount of problems with an Archangel or Planetary Intelligence. And I think if you look back on your own writings, neither do you.

  2. Fra RO,

    Mageling is almost a compliment, implying the person may eventually grow into a full on mage.

    I'm a big fan of "dilettante"..someone who dabbles in an art as an amateur hobby. Plus, you can always throw some old-world sneer on it and make it disparaging. Flexibility is good.


  3. Jason, I disagree. I got as many problems from Michael as I got from Bune. My work with the spirits of the Lemegeton's Goetia has been on the whole positive and useful. They aren't any more corrosive than any other spirit, they're just closer to material existence and have different priorities. You've helped me understand what happens when I do magic a great deal by talking about how the spirits aren't human, don't see things from our perspective, and hold to different standards than we do. I've found that to be true of all types of spirits, Goetic, Angelic, terrestrial, celestial, or chthonic. Expedite doesn't understand me any better than Haures or Tzadqiel. Is that his fault or my own?

    I think that because Goetia is termed "demonic" it leaves people with the expectation that things will go badly. Things go badly from time to time with all magic. Having the expectation that Goetic magic is dangerous just gives you a handy scapegoat when things don't work the way you want them to.

  4. So what do you see as the primary difference between the beings represented in the Goetia and the Archangels?

    While I agree with you that they are not evil persay I think you would be hard pressed to find a magician that thought that you would have just as much problem with an Archangel as with a Sub Lunary Spirit.

    The Archangels and intelligences have a divine tutelary function that the lower spirits do not.


  5. J,

    Good question. I've got it all worked out in a presentation I never gave called "Angels, and Demons, and Magicians, Oh MY!"

    The primary difference is how close they are to the manifest realm. Goetia spirits are pretty close to Level 3 (from Sorecerer's Secrets, posted here), so their results are closer to what you direct them to acquire for you.

    Archangels are closer to Level 1, so they teach you the lessons that lead to the manifestation.

    The Lem. Spirits are better for going up the chain, while the Archangels are better for going down the chain.

    In practice though, the archangels and the goetic spirits are equally likely to cause a magician trouble, no matter what popular occultism may want to believe.

    People don't like to remember that it was Angels that God sent to dish out Sodom, the plagues of Egypt, and ultimately the "End of the World" in Revelations. They break the seals and read the scrolls in the heavens, and we get the locusts and blood-oceans here on Earth.

    One of my favorite stories POS tells is of his experience with the Shemhamephoresh angel. It's not like they're tame little cupids.

    Most of the folks I know who Work the Angels get the fluffy clouds, wings and harps shit out of their minds pretty quickly once they start really getting through to the angels. And the Goetic spirits aren't nearly as horned and cloven-hoofed as people may think.

    With either class of spirit, you're going to have to learn a lesson about whatever you ask for. The Archangels seem to front-load the lesson, developing the skills that lead to the natural manifestation of the desired result. Goetia spirits seem to back-load the lessons, letting you have what you ask for regardless of your ability to manage it, and then letting you learn the lessons that naturally come from mismanaging love, health, or riches.

    And I'm talking mostly about the practical manifestation magic here. When it comes to Divine Tutelage, I think the focus of what you want to learn is what determines the spirit you're going to conjure. Goetia spirits know about how the material realm manifests, in detail. They can teach a ton of stuff about the material realm, per the Lemegeton's Goetia. Archangels are better at teaching the higher things, life lessons, and how the material stuff is a reflection of the idea in the mind of God.

  6. Think about the origin of the Lem's spirits: The Testament of Solomon.

    They need to be controlled in ways that the higher spirits do not.

  7. J, the Testament is a contributor, but it's not the origin of the spirits of the Lem, or of the system of working with the daimons contained within it.

    Look at the Pseudomonarchia by Weyer as the source of the Lemegeton Spirits, it's got the actual spirit list almost 100% intact, (69 of 72, if I remember right from here) and the approach isn't Solomonic by a long shot. The Lemegeton was a repackaging of the Pseudomonarchia as a "Solomonic" text the same way Wicca is a repackaging of the Golden Dawn. They needed more material in the book, and were familiar with Weier. You know how writers of occult materials are. They weren't all that different from us. "60,000 words!? Shit!" ;)

  8. Jason, I read the Testament of Solomon after we talked this afternoon, and I can't agree that it's the source of the Lem's spirits.

    There are three spirits in the Testament that are also in the Lem's Goetia. One is Ornias, but in the Lem's Goetia, it's spelled Orias. Could be the same spirit though, and they're both allegedly demons. Another is Asmodeus, and the last is (possibly) Astorath, though it's spelled Asteraoth.

    The only problem is that Asteraoth is an Angel that frustrates one of the Pleiadean spirits, the demon "Power."

    There's only one spirit that can unequivocably be said to be the same between the two manuscripts. I think the only thing the Testament of Solomon and the Lesser Key of Solomon's Goetia have in common is the name Solomon in the title. The conjuration is different, the things the spirits do are different, and the names of the spirits are different.

    I think the Testament is a good example of 1st-3rd century magical texts. It's a lot like the Greek Magical Papyri, a mishmash of Greek, Persian, and Hebrew names and words thrown together under the auspices of the burgeoning Christianity.


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.