XXI: A Lion

Lion

XXI ARIEH

Servitors: Ibulon, Liriol, Iuar, Helel, Oroia, Aril.

The word at the outer edge of the square is ARIEH and directly originates from the Hebrew word for ‘lion,’ אריה (arieh). The word populating the central square, IBOLI comes from the Hebrew יבול (ibol) which means ‘crops’ or ‘harvest’ and relates to the name of the spirit Ibulon. which also has the alternative meaning ‘a gathering of fruit.’ While the square purportedly grants visions of a lion, the word Ibol has more in common with the Hebrew root ארה (arah), meaning ‘to pick’ or ‘to gather,’ suggesting an alternative or coterminous meaning for the outer word and therefore the entire symbolism for the square.

The Vision

A cactus protruded from the centre of a rough, circular brush which became a vicious thicket of brambles as I neared its middle. Once I reached the cactus, which was about six inches in length and somewhat resembled a miniaturised Omphalos, I noticed a pride of lions gathering around the edge of the circle. Most of them were lionesses except for one noble-looking beast with a magnificent mane. With the intention of cutting myself free of the growing tangle I produced a scythe and proceeded to hack at the thicket. The blade of the scythe burned with flame as I flailed, so I ceased swinging it before I incinerated myself. Instead, I cut a small circle through the thorns around my feet, which would allow me to free myself while keeping the lions at the edge of the circle at bay.

Having no other place to go, I decided to wait for the beasts to give up and go away. It didn’t take long for them to grow more disinterested in me, but they refused to depart and continued to watch me with hungry, beady eyes. With the need to act decisively building within me again, I tugged at the small cactus to see if there was any mystery to it. Although its spines dug sharply into my hands, I reasoned that this pain was preferable to being chewed up by lions so pulled hard on it until it began to dislodge from the ground. As it kept loosening, it grew to the same length and breadth as my whole body and I was forced to embrace it, spines and all, to keep pulling it up. Underneath, dark subterranean caverns began to reveal themselves, but the girth of the cactus made it impossible to squeeze past and descend. Instead, I kept hoisting it upwards until it grew so long that it began to form a bridge which the lions behind me would soon be able to cross. Perceiving this dilemma, I corrected the angle of the elongated cactus, propping it upright so that it pointed straight up to the sky rather than towards the land.

Suddenly, the whole of the cactus was free of the earth and it stood about thirty or forty feet tall, though the effort in extracting it led to me becoming completely covered in blood, lacerations and cactus spines. Then, the body of the cactus transformed from green, spiny flesh to the brown and scaly skin of a tree. Looking up, I saw that the cactus had transformed into a great yew with a large, hollow crack at the base of its trunk. Noting that the surrounding brambles were dissipating due to the light of of a celestial body that looked like the sun and moon perfectly conjoined as one, I climbed the yew until I was at its very top, then felt my bloody, perforated body becoming one with the green needles of the yew. As my body merged with the needles and branches, I felt myself become one with the entire tree and knew, at last, that in such a state the lions could not consume me.

My business with them wasn’t finished however. Gathering my intent, I squeezed my bodiless essence through the limbs of the tree and pushed my myself back out into the world through the crack at the base of the trunk. With my airy body, I headed towards the male lion, which acknowledged me with a look of wisdom and intelligence, before I climbed upon its back. Our wills entwined, we ran to the beach with the golden shore I had created in the vision of All Sorts of Trees where I dismounted the lion and entered into a conversation with him. He gave thanks for bringing him to this place as he hadn’t seen such a sight for some time. Then he gave me his name, which cannot be written here as it was very familiar and personal to me; but when he said it, the golden sand and the sea into which it slipped grew bright and swallowed us, and a clarion chord of brass resounded throughout its glow.

When the brightness subsided, the lion told me he had been observing my struggles and, despite not making his presence known very often, reassured me that he was always there, watching, and all I needed to be done to gain his attention was tospeak his name. I felt warmed and comforted by his words in a very real sense; and when the vision of him began to dissipate, I discovered that he had left me a small, leather pouch on top of a nearby rock. On it were inscribed the letters BZBZ and tucked inside was a folding knife with an exquisite wooden handle. This is where the vision ended.

Notes

Imagery relating to both ‘gathering’ or ‘harvesting’ and lions were evident in the vision and it was no surprise that the leonine aspect expressed itself as a manifestation of Tiphereth. Thorns and spines were also prominent, suggesting the influence of the spirit Aril as reflected in Mathers’ translation of that name to the word ‘thorny.’ The gathering of threatening entities or creatures at the edges of circles or around the horizon is a repeated theme throughout these visions, as are holes, cracks, crevices, animals, trees and the principles of transmutation and ascent. Elements of this vision which continued from that of the last included freeing things that were trapped in the earth, a large crack at the base of a tree trunk and the golden shoreline which appears to represent the attainment of an exalted state.

The trumpet music that played there also resembled that which the angels played to greet the sun in the previous vision.

The letters BZBZ on the leather pouch may represent the Hebrew בזבז – (bizbez), meaning ‘to go to waste’ or ‘spent.’ I have no what this alludes to, but note that the numerical value of these letters is 18, a number which returns to the 9 of ‘black magic’ and sorcery, but also bears a Qaballistic correspondence to the words זוה (zoah), ‘to shine’ and חי (chi), ‘to live.’ Gematric devices such as this are not usually adopted in this work as it is this author’s opinion that they should be used only as a last resort, but with no obvious meaning apparent in this word’s context, a more esoteric approach was adopted.

The Moon was at 13º Taurus (the sign of its exaltation) at the time of the square’s construction and at 0º Gemini at the time of the vision itself.

XX: All Sorts of Trees

evil_roots_by_gixajin

XX ESAHEL

Servitors: Aril, Iuar, Loriol, Laralos, Helel.

The word ESAHEL at the outer edges of the square may derive from the root אישה (eishah), ‘a burnt offering.’ There is no central cross in this square, but the name of the spirit Aril, meaning ‘thorny’ appears in four interlocking forward and reverse forms to culminate in a central square based around the a repetition of the letters L and I in the centre to form a rotating expression of the word ליל (lil), meaning ‘night.’

The Vision

The vision began with the image of a Fir tree on a slope of thin earth. Some of the earth gave way at the base of the tree to reveal the root underneath, which suddenly turned into the neck of a vulture with its head buried under the earth. Then I saw that the leaves of the tree were in fact the plumage of a peacock. The strange, vulture-peacock hybrid freed itself of the earth, stared at me threateningly for a moment, then flew away over a large body of water.

Overhead, a large storm stirred with much lightning and gave birth to a deluge of rain. I entered a thick forest to take shelter where the storm was completely blotted out. I could hear nothing but the song of the forest’s birds inside and neither the rain leaked nor the sounds of thunder could pierce the wood’s veil. After walking for a while, I smelled roasting meat and followed the scent to a cosy-looking den set in the roots of a tree. Inside were a family of anthropomorphised pigs cooking one of their own. I was invited in to get out of the dark wood, and the pigs implied that something terrible was stalking me. Fully suspecting something bad to happen as soon as I got inside, I entered the hatch and found the door in the roof instantly locked itself behind me, while the pigs, their fire and everything else in the hole disappeared as the candles that had lit the den were all snuffed out.

Through an iron-trellised window, I could see the nighttime moon over the sea outside, and a wind-blasted palm tree rocked savagely at the water’s edge. There was, however, no way out, for the crisscrossed bands of iron across the window’s pane made it impossible to destroy and climb out of. Then, through the darkness, I became aware of movement. The roots of the surrounding trees began to poke through the earth walls of my prison and moved closer and closer to me, threatening to entangle me in their limbs and trap me in their embrace. I reached out to touch the roots and felt that they were covered in slime, having the same unpleasant feel as a slug or snail. Although trapped, I did not feel any real fear or desperation, knowing that if I was patient, the light of the rising sun coming from the east at dawn would disperse them. With the roots encroaching, however, I decided that instead of waiting that long, I would produce my own light from within.

The roots leapt back at the touch of my light, the appearance of which caused the sun to suddenly rise behind me, flooding the prison with golden rays. My growing shadow was the only place the dark spirits it shone upon could hide from it, and they appeared in my umbra as nothing but lidded, disembodied eyes. I spoke to them, telling them that they were prisoners of no one but themselves and redeemed each of them by touching them with the golden light that came from my hands. As each found its peace, the encroaching roots withdrew and the prison became flimsy enough for me to kick its walls in and move into the daylight outside.

Coming down to the shore of the sea I had seen through the window, I saw a rowing boat bobbing serenely at the water’s edge, but knew that wasn’t time to board it. Looking back at the forest, it seemed very normal, but in front of it, at the edge of the beach, was a small cave with a huge, white, worm-like larva poking its head out of it. I approached the worm, which looked tortured and forlorn, and pulled it free of its tight prison. It too was had been trapped and on my freeing it, the shadowy shape of a man came plopped out of it. He said he had become ‘trapped within his own larvae,’ and so I cast the gelatinous pupae he had been stuck inside into the sea. Then the shadowy shape revealed its form to be that of a wild man, similar to the one who was imprisoned in a cage near the shore in the vision of Bridges.

On taking this shape, the wild man spotted the boat on the sea and rowed it into the west to find his liberation. Following this, the wind-blasted palm tree I had seen from the underground lair of the pigs dropped a golden cone onto the floor which I picked up and removed the outer scales from, causing them and the seeds within it to scatter over the sands of the beach. The sands turned gold as they fell, then the entire sea shone with the light of the rising sun as the old man on the departing boat changed his form to something that looked divine and godlike. Then I saw angels dancing in the sky, singing a chorus and hailing the sun with golden trumpets. Then a huge cloud formed appeared which resembled the head of a ram and the vision ended.

Notes

The ‘burnt offering’ hinted at in the square’s outer edges was manifested in the pork being cooked by a family of pigs. Given the purported Jewish origins of the Abramelin Squares, the fact that this meat was pork and represented a form of cannibalism reveals this sacrifice to have had an averse, unclean nature. The transformation of the pigs into bodiless eyes squirming in the darkness came with the suggestion that the spirits trapped in the underground den had trapped themselves, or each other, there, and were now seeking to do likewise to me, by trying to trap me within the clutches of encroaching tree roots. The wild man trapped in a wormlike larva that was stuck in a stony hole was also suggestive of some kind of trapped entities. In his case, the larvae or shells of the Roman religion, which were the forgotten or trapped souls of the dead, were being hinted at. After he appeared as an old man, his sailing into the west across sunlit waters represented his salvation. I was my own salvation in this vision, invoking the solar force to save myself (Synchronistically, ‘Save Me’ by Muse was playing in the background as I wrote this), which, I then used to liberate others who had become lost in the entanglements of shadow.

With this experiment now passing its halfway point, there seem to be more elements of the ascent from the underworld appearing. I was no longer afraid of anything in this vision, and showed a greater degree of mastery over the forces surrounding me, who had all damned themselves and were awaiting liberation from another before they could move on to peace.

The square was constructed with the Moon at 13º Pisces forming a conjunction with Retrograde Neptune. It was worked with, however, when the Moon was at 7º Aries, which may have worked its way into the vision in the form of the ram’s head that appeared in the cloud at the end.

XIX: A Village

Wandering

XIX MIGIRAS

Servitors: Ipakol, Parek, Mara, Ragaras, Ramoras, Sarasim, Sigis, Girmil, Gesegas, Kosem, Ilekel, Aril, Kilik, Isagas, Alpas, Amillis.

The word MIGIRAS on the outer edges of the square relates to the Hebrew (migrash) meaning ‘open space,’ ‘plot,’ ‘pasture, ‘yard’ or ‘site.’ The spirit name present in the central cross is that of Ipakol, which may be derived from the combination of the Hebrew words יפה (yapah) meaning ‘fair,’ ‘beautiful,’ ‘picturesque’ and קול (qol), ‘sound,’ ‘voice.’

The Vision

This vision was drastically different to any other. Before beginning, I performed an invocation of the Elemental King Egin, who rules the element of Water and resides in the North. Being midnight, the sun was in its diurnal position in the North, and with the sun being in Cancer, it was also in its northernmost position in the ecliptic. With these elective qualities and other honours and sacrifices being made to him, this square was activated by calling upon he alone of the Cardinal Kings.

Once Egin’s assistance had been requested, the vision began with the image of an old book in an ancient library or study. It flicked open to a random page and a black, detached hand pointed a finger at a word. A deep voice commanded me to read the word and tell him what it was, and I replied with the answer ‘Eridanus.’ In response to that came a short rhyme:

Eridanus is where I dwell. Remember this and do ye well.

Following my memorisation of this rhyme, he became suddenly enraged, accusing me of trying to undermine and insult him by some action I had done. He threatened to cause me great pain if I did such a thing again, but I had no idea exactly what this thing was. I guessed at first that the issue came from including the name of my HGA in my invocation to him, but as this is always done with the four kings and generally provokes equilibrium rather than hatred, I discounted this. Another possibility came from the fact that a sudden change in the scent of the fumigatory offering announced that some remnants of Lignum Aloes that had been left in the brazier had gotten underneath the charcoal, changing the scent of the offerings that had been made. To know for sure what the problem was, I asked the spirit to confirm his name to me, which he gave as ‘Aridon’ (not Ariton). I apologised for any offence caused to him, explaining that I didn’t know what I had done to irritate him, but he remained angry.

Despite this unappeased anger, he proceeded to show me some visions of the square’s contents, though the tone of them was hurried and violent, as if his anger was being expressed through them.

The visions directly related to the squares began with the image of the village that had been devastated by the tidal wave in the last vision, though I now perceived it from the viewpoint of one who lived there. The tidal wave, it seems, had been a blessing, for a great fire was in the process of destroying the village when it came and its arrival quenched its flames. From the extinguished fire, a loud hissing noise came and plumes of steam rose up into the sky to form large, billowing clouds.

Then the presiding spirit, ‘Aridon,’ ordered me to drill a hole in the earth with a great augur that looked like a large hand drill that was operated by a hand-crank attached to its side. As I did this, the dragon from the visions of A Big Lake and A Vineyard appeared and slotted its tail into the hole I had drilled. Sitting in such a position, the dragon laid an egg, which dropped down into a watery canyon below, where black figures attended to collect it and nurture it. I realised that this egg was of the same sort as that which had been destroyed by the black woman in the church in the vision of Farm Buildings. Then my attention returned to the dragon, who confirmed that I had carried out most of the instructions to do honour to Egin correctly, but had not obtained the chalice I was supposed to have gotten hold of.

After hearing this, I returned to the scene unfolding in the canyon below the village. In it, a subterranean temple had been constructed and at its heart was an altar with a skull with teeth that had been sharpened to dagger-like points. The skull was affixed to a wooden stake which had a large python entwining it. After showing me this, Aridon revealed his form to me and it was terrible. He had the stature of a giant topped by a horned head and his features were those of a skull which was alight with a flame that was constantly being put out by water before being reignited again. Each watery victory caused vaporous, hissing steams to emanate from the spirit’s charred flesh just as the flames of the village fire—which I learned had been started by Egin’s dragon—had been extinguished by the crashing wave of sea waters.

This vision of extinguished and rekindled flames kept appearing until I got the gist of what they were trying to tell me and extinguished the flame on the brazier and all of the candles present in the room with water from the brass bowl that adorns my altar. It was the presence of fire, it seems, that had angered Aridon, and on extinguishing it—which brought the room around me into a very deep darkness—the intensity of the communication with the King of Elemental Water grew; for he comes at the moment when water extinguishes flame to produce a steam which lets forth the hissing of serpents as it rises into the air.

With his appeasement, I was shown the vision of a great bastion within the canyons below the Earth. It looked misshapen, with fiery windows that gave it the same skull-like appearance that Aridon bore, and the mouth of that skull was a portcullis with many furnaces burning behind it. I was invited in and on my entry I was granted a vision of his seal, the form of which I committed to memory. After it faded, the face of a brown horse appeared, and there was an intense darkness in its eyes. In that darkness I saw visions of furnaces driving metallic, red machinery by the power of steam, and the sound of malign laughter filled the air. Then I saw a series of cells that were also wheels in which walked red-brown horses which were emaciated and very close to death. They walked those metal wheels endlessly, the rotation of their movements providing the motion of the cogs that drove the great engines of hell. All this infernal action and power ultimately went to ‘fuel’ the people that populated the village on the clifftop above, all of whom were clockwork figures living their mundane lives while affixed to tracks or runners that kept them bound to an existence of thoughtless mechanical action.

With this vision came the understanding that the man without will is entirely at the whims of empty, mechanical forces. The bodies of the villagers were two-dimensional and their faces stuck in fixed expressions as their feet rolled along the tracks with no volition of movement. Yet none of them could see the extent to which they lacked control over their destinies because their drives and motives were entirely animalistic with no knowledge or insight into the predicament of their slavery to the Archons. I too had been in this state of slavery until I was awoken to the nature of the machinery of the world below by those who operated it; for such daemons are not intolerant of those who awaken. In their hearts they are rebellious against those who constructed the machinery and their infernal labours grow easier with each pair of eyes that open to the true nature of the World. With each awakening they gain hope of their own liberation, and this being so, all those who come to Gnosis and the knowledge of their own Will they recognise as allies and grant them boons to assist them to bring down the great machinery we have all been bound to. On being shown how the great Archonic system of the World works by one who was himself a vassal to their whims, I smiled and laughed in a state of mild ecstasy, for I knew that what I had been shown was true.

The vision ended with an emphasis that obtaining the correct type of chalice was very important for future works with Egin; and I also saw something which resembled part of a goat’s skull carved into the shape of a jagged knife. Then I saw an image of myself smoking a cigarette and wearing a red t shirt while my eyes shone with pinpricks of red light.

Notes

The events in this vision appear to be a culmination of the rite the dragon that appeared in the vision of A Big Lake informed me I should perform. With the absence of a suitable chalice, this work has still not been performed in full, yet I learned something important about the extinguishing of the fires present in the temple in order to evoke Egin properly. The unintended invasion of the wrong incense may also have played some role in his temporary disdain, as the incense associated with the sign of Cancer is Onycha, due to it being formed from the opercula or ‘trap door’ of the shell of a sea mollusc. Attempts to find an incense containing this ingredient had proved successful, and the importance of ‘white wine’ (see A Big Lake and A Grape or Grape Plant for this reference) also became apparent on researching this incense, as it should be treated with a strong white wine in order to sweeten its somewhat piscine aroma. That this scent was replaced by Lignum Aloes, a sweet but fiery scent associated with Sagittarius, may have been as much an affront to Egin as the flames that outstayed their welcome in the Temple had.

The horse whose eye I looked into to see the infernal machinery appeared to be another manifestation of Egin, while the dragon in the world above appeared to be his worldly servant, hatching eggs to give birth to more servants which the shadowy underworld servants nurture in his temple which others, such as the black woman in the Temple—a servant of his foes—wish to see destroyed underfoot.

As well as being similar to the name Ariton,  ‘Aridon’ resembles the word ARIDO that appeared in the previous square. As well as meaning ‘dry,’ this word also means ‘gaunt,’ which may explain the emaciated appearance of the horses.

Other spirit names relevant to the vision received in this square are:

Amillis – ‘worker,’ ‘labourer,’ ‘toil.’
Kosem – from the Hebrew קסם (qosem), meaning ‘magic,’ ‘enchantment’ or ‘divination.’
Isagas – ‘roar,’ ‘yell’ or ‘shout.’
Mara – ‘cave’ or ‘grotto’.
Sarasim – ‘deep roots.’

The position of the Moon during the construction of the square was 9º Aquarius, where it was in close conjunction with a retrograde Mars.

XVIII: A Running Spring

Ocean Waves

XVIII MAKOR

Servitors: Kilik, Aril, Mara, Liriol, Lomiol.

The name at the outer edges of the square, MAKOR, possibly derives from the Hebrew מקור (maqor), meaning ‘wellspring’ or ‘source,’ while the spirit name in the central cross is that of Kilik, whose name relates to the concepts of power, strength, bastions, armies and wealth.

The Vision

A trickle of water ran from a patch of boggy grass at the top of a mound and travelled to the edge of a sharp drop where it ran down a cliff face and onto the ground below. The course of the water continued at the bottom and wound a short distance to another cliff, this one overlooking the sea, before collecting in a small pool on the rocks below. Then, looking back at the shoreline from the sea, I saw that the entire land was swollen with water and the place where the water had ran between the first cliff and the second looked like it was about to burst open and cover the land with a deluge. Then, with the appearance of a pale-blue and white bird, the deluge came and all turned to night. The sky was of a strange, deep blue, while the moon, which was visible above the sea, accepted this watery offering as a sacrifice and released a large, bat-like creature with a body as black as void and filled with stars, as though it were forged from the essence of night.

The creature hovered over the flooded earth and released a thin, pale-bodied lunatic from a crow cage that sat on the beach. On escaping, the madman ran towards the swollen ocean and raised a fist at it as if he meant to fight it. The sea surged in response, and a large, tentacled monster appeared to be thrashing beneath its surface. Surprisingly, the wild man made good progress against the sea, glowing white with moonlight as he forced it to retreat before him. He kept running through the wedge he carved into the water until he came to the opposite shore in the near distance, where a small beach resort with what was either a lighthouse or a helter-skelter lay. As the madman came to shore, the sea, rushing in fear before him, crashed into the land as a tidal wave, engulfing the resort and its structures entirely. Then, in the aftermath, he hopped back into a crow cage that was identical to the one he had been released from, which then locked itself shut behind him.

Daylight resumed as the sea retracted back to normality and the rest of the town, which was of a Mediterranean appearance, now appeared to have migrated onto a clifftop, with the space where it once lay being carved away by the storm to leave a bare beach in its place. The ground on the clifftop was left soaked by the spray of the tidal wave and dripped, as the previous wellspring did, into a crevice in the cliff face. On the beach below, I noticed the stick in the sand from the last vision and realised that this was the same location as that vision only many years later as no trace of human civilisation had been present there before. I saw the cave where the spirit had sung in the pool, but it had been sealed shut, with nothing but a narrow crack marking the place she lived.

From inside, I heard weeping and a plea for her to be left alone. I didn’t attempt to speak to her any further, but saw in my mind that she was now much older than before and perching on the rocks of a dark, dried-up cave with no water left to submerge herself in. Water dripped in from a gap above her, but it was not enough to sustain her. As she wept, a stream of tears poured out through the narrow crack onto the beach. Then, from the darkness that surrounded her, a large dog appeared and sniffed at the blue robe she wore before nuzzling into her arms and going to sleep. Just as the dog settled, the woman’s tears reached a climax and she dissolved entirely into water leaving nothing but her robe behind, which the dog rested its head on to continue with its sleep. Then, outside her abode, another bird appeared and flew back towards the pale moon that thinly illuminated the light blue sky.

Notes

The square was constructed with Luna at 12º Capricorn, where it is in its detriment. The ragged appearance of the lunatic may have been influenced by this, with his long beard and loincloth being those of a prisoner released by a particularly capricious aspect of Water’s detrimental relationship with Earth as well as possibly representing the dual nature of Saturn, Capricorn’s ruling planet, and Luna. By his ‘lunatic’ nature and his influence over tidal movement, the white clad madman appeared to be a lunar spirit, perhaps a representation of Kilik due to that spirit’s associations with power and strength. The crow cage he was in (and the crow is a bird of a Saturnian nature) was similar in appearance to the torture cages that appeared in the dungeon in the vision of A Rose Garden.

The continuation of previous themes was apparent in the appearance of the beach from the last vision—which was identifiable by the stick I had left in the sand still being in place—only with a modern Mediterranean town now being in place there, though the tidal wave devastated the ‘tourist’ part of it.

The name of the spirit Mara relates to ‘cave,’ ‘cavern,’ ‘grotto’ and ‘den’ which once again appeared in this vision, though it was now sealed shut. The fate of the spirit’s cave may have been related to the presence of the Latin word arido, meaning ‘dry,’ in the square. The spirit ultimately lost her physical form to become a stream of running water which may suggest that her prophecy about crossing the sea leading to dissolution may have been referring to her own fate, though I had the sense that the essential life force in the spirit was not dissolved, just its humanoid appearance. The dog being left alone with her clothing in the cave was a scene of sadness and melancholy, which may be another sign of the Saturnian influence of Capricorn in the vision.

XVII: Bridges

Chinvat

XVII DOBERAH

Servitors: Ekalak, Liriol, Nabhi, Laralos, Badad, Helel, Nasi, Aril, Kilik, Kokolon, Balabos

The word DOBERAH at the outer edges of the square comes from the Hebrew root דִבר (dabar), meaning ‘to speak’ or ‘pronounce,’ and is related to the variations דבור – ‘speech,’ ‘word,’ ‘saying,’ ‘commandment;’ דברה – ‘cause,’ ‘reason,’ ‘manner;’ and דבורה – ‘bee,’ which also relates to the name of the Biblical prophet and judge Deborah. The name of the spirit in the central square is that of Ekalak, whose name may originate in the Hebrew חלק (khelaq), meaning ‘portion,’ ‘part,’ ‘lot,’ ‘share,’ ‘fragment.’

The Vision

It was night and I came to a stop on a rusting suspension bridge spanning a river after running some distance on an asphalt road. I climbed on the metal railings that ran along its side and seemed to have the choice to either climb to its top or jump over the edge into the river below. I paused unsure of which of the two I should do before realising that the bridge acted as a crossroads with the river below and led to another world. Looking up and down the river to my left and right I saw that many other bridges had been constructed. Above me, I saw a waning gibbous moon and realised that I should be crossing the bridge not ascending it or jumping from it. I stood upon the road again and had the impression that a car was coming down the road with its headlights on.

As soon as I got to the other side of the bridge it became day and I stood in the midst of a landscape which looked very Greek. Around me was yellow grass, like that of a savannah or otherwise arid landscape, and at the crest of a small hill in front of me appeared a baby elephant that seemed to be happy to see me. I thought about approaching it but got the sense that its mother or father would be nearby and would trample me if I came anywhere near it. Instead, I waited a moment to see what would happen next, then trudged carefully through a track in the grass while being careful to maintain my distance from the calf. As I neared the top of the slope, the Land Rover from the vision of Farm Buildings appeared and drove over the grass, as it also had in that vision, and pulled to a halt near the elephant. As it approached, the elephant changed into a woman of middle-years wearing a velvet, burgundy dress and with long brown hair with slight curls in it which was bedecked by a crown of laurel leaves. As her form changed, the driver of the Land Rover exited his vehicle. He was a man of late middle age with sharp features and was wearing clothes that were typical of a British farmer, being a green wax jacket, green trousers and hat, and he had a shotgun with its barrel popped open resting over the crook of his right arm. On seeing the woman, he placed his gun on the floor and it flew off into the distance behind him as they both disrobed and his Land Rover also vanished.

The couple then began to have sex in front of me, which made me feel rather uncomfortable, so I scanned the surrounding environment while they got on with it and saw many eyes, like pinpricks of yellow light, were watching both me and they from a great distance. When the two had finished their act of lust, I saw the co-mingled deposit of their union left on the floor where they had lain, pink in colour and in the shape of a Vesica. From it, an enormous rose grew, as quickly and as tall as the beanstalk in the tale of Jack the Giant Killer, and a great vine twisted around its stem. When it finished growing, it stood high in the sky, penetrating the clouds. I felt the same temptation to ascend then as I had at the bridge, but once again paused before doing so. As I lingered, I sensed the surrounding watchers coming closer. Then, confirming my suspicions, a vicious black wolf stepped out from the forest close to where the Land Rover had been parked. Knowing this was the time to ascend, I climbed.

On my ascent, I noticed that the stem between the huge thorns was covered in sticky sap which made the ascent easier as it was so tacky I knew I had no chance of falling back to earth. By the time I reached the base of the flower’s head, which was as far as I could travel, I was high above the clouds and saw the sun and the moon on either side of the petals above me, the sun to the left of it and the moon to the right. Beyond them, I could see the forms of a few scattered, distant mountains rising above the soft cloud-line. As I pondered what I should do next, a beam of rainbow light appeared in the distance, beaming its rays from some unknown point in the blue sky above to break through the clouds below projecting to an unseen location on the Earth. I understood that this to be a signal of where I should now head, and transported myself there by taking one of the huge vines that twisted around the rose’s stem and projecting its end to the base of the rainbow before sliding down it in a dizzying descent that felt realistic enough to give me a touch of vertigo.

At the base of the vine, where it met the rainbow and mingled with its rays, was a sandy beach and a great sea set in a bay of cliffs, coves and caves. Written in the wet sand was the word DOBERAH, which then extended to form the rest of the square in its entirety. Behind me, in a cave, I could hear the sound of ethereal female voices singing, which I followed to find a pool of dark sea water. I sat on a rock and let my feet dangle into the pool, but got a sense of dark, shadowy entities swimming under its surface, so removed them and rose to my feet again. As I stood there listening to the song, the light of the setting sun flooded into the cave bring the music to a stop. In the water, I could see a female spirit guarding its eyes from the light of the sun. She asked me if I could block the light of the sun with my body as he found the light intolerable. I adhered to her request and asked if she had any messages she wished to deliver to me. In response, she gave the following words:

“The seal has been broken. You stand on the edge of All, at the twilight shore of Time. Cross the Sea and be No More.”

After receiving this message, I returned to the beach and watched the sea come in with the tide to wash the words of the square away from the sand. I placed a stick into the area where the word had been in order to mark its place, and with that act the sun vanished and was replaced by the moon, which then set into the sea to leave me in total darkness. From the cave, I heard the sounds of the spirits’ echoing song beginning again. In the blind darkness that was left in my mind I saw a gravestone wrapped in ivy that I recognised from a graveyard close to where I live in the ‘real’ world. Instead of the name that usually appeared on it however was an inscription which read ‘Here Lies No More.’ After noting this, I walked away from the grave and up the hill to the path that leads to my home. This marked the end of the vision.

Notes

There was lots of polarity between dark and night, moon and sun and female and male in this vision, as well as lots of aspects of liminality, such as the twilight, the shore, bridges, a crossroad and a river. The appearance of a rainbow acting as a guiding light to show me where to head next when I had ascended the heights of the rose was akin to the Chinvat Bridge of Zoroastrianism which, like Bïfrost which separated the realms of Midgard and Asgard in Norse mythology, marked the realm between the worlds of the living and dead.

One of the most striking parts of this vision was the act of sex magick between the male and female spirits that appeared. The rose they produced symbolised that of the Rosy Cross formula, while the sun and moon that flanked each side of its head represented the culmination of male and female energies into alchemical gold. The place where I came to rest in my ascent of the rose’s thorny stem was akin to the veil of Paroketh, while the rainbow that appeared in the distance represented the paths of Qoph, Shin and Tau that emanate from the Sephirah of Netzach, Yesod and Hod which come together (pun somewhat intended) to form the word Qesheth, meaning ‘bow.’ The product of this bow is the upward flying arrow of the path of Samekh, which is associated with the sign of Sagittarius and, in the Thoth Tarot, the comingled energies of The Lovers becoming united as one in Art.

What the astrological association of this formula may point to is a connection between the position of the moon when I had constructed the square, due to it being in Sagittarius at that time. This is not the first time this has occurred, as when I constructed the square pertaining to Flowers, the moon was in Scorpio and that vision featured imagery relating to Scorpion Grass and an eagle, both of which symbolise the influence of that sign. This suggests that in future I should note where in the Zodiac the Moon is when I create these squares, just to see if this hypothesis bears any fruit.

Also of interest was the female spirit who sang in the dark, watery cave. Her message related the notion of crossing the sea in order to be No More. This relates to the great Sea of Binah with the connotations of crossing it relating to the traversing the Abyss into the realms where the personal ego is disintegrated.

While I have good knowledge of the Qaballistic system of Magic I would not primarily identify myself as a Qaballist, so these are not associations I am actively looking for in working with the Squares. What it does suggest, however, is that the Squares themselves are very much a Qabalistic expression and therefore their forms very much relate to such modes of communication. This does not mean that the spirits that appear rely on such forms to exist, hey merely use the Qaballah as the ‘language’ through which they communicate, as it was in this language that the squares they swore their oaths upon were created.

Of the spirits present, Badad is of note due to the connected ways the letters ‘B’ and ‘A’ interconnect with each other in a perpendicular fashion in this square, while the two ‘D’s present in the top left and bottom right corners mirror each other and the letters B and A in a fashion that suggests a sigil of that spirit’s name could be easily formed from this square. The meaning of this name finds its origin in the Hebrew word בדד (badad), meaning ‘alone,’ ‘apart’ or ‘solitary.’

Mathers’ translation of the name Aril to ‘thorny’ appears accurate here considering the thorns that appeared on the giant rose.

Kokolon may be relevant due to its name relating to the word ‘shame,’ as I felt a degree of embarrassment while watching the two spirits in congress.

The feminine qualities in the spirits present, the first being she who first appeared as the baby elephant and the second being the underwater spirit singing in the cave, may be connected to the presence of the spirit Nasi, whose name means ‘feminine.’ This is only the sixth square this spirit has appeared in so far, but the overall tone of most of the squares has been biased far more towards feminine entities than masculine ones. This leads me to believe that the qualities of this kind of magical work is definitely one in which the feminine entities act as the dominant initiators.

Confirming this in this particular square is the name of the spirit Nabhi, which Mathers states comes from the Hebrew root נבא (naba), ‘to prophesy.’ What he failed to notice however is the fact that the feminine noun of this word נביאה (nabiah), is much closer to the mark. More precisely, this word means ‘prophetess’ or ‘sibyl,’ and is therefore pertinent to the name of the prophet Deborah that the square was constructed from as well as the presence of the female spirit in the cave who delivered a spoken prophecy. The presence of this prophetic spirit also fits well the root word דבר from which this square was constructed which, meaning ‘to speak’ or ‘pronounce,’ verifies its sibylline nature. The relevance of this root also correlates with the presence of another name found in this square, Barak, who was the ancient ruler of Israel whose victory in war the prophet Deborah was the key to. Barak’s name translates to ‘lightning,’ and is also formed of the same root as the name of the Watcher Baraqiel in the Book of Enoch.

Also present is the word שיר (shir), meaning ‘sing.’ This may relate to the singing that was heard coming from the cave, but also has a relevance to the biblical verse of Judges 5:1: ‘Then sang Deborah and Barak.’ Considering the male-female polarity present in this square, the appearance of the combined actions of this ancient pairing—in which the feminine force was the key to victory—might be seen as further confirmation of the spiritual superiority of the female powers associated with the squares.

XVI: Flowers

Green Spirit

XVI PERAC

Servitors: Parek, Gesegas, Mara, Asorega, Permases, Ragaras, Ramoras (Ramaratz)

The word at the outer edges of the square, PERAC originates in the Hebrew פרח (parekh), meaning ‘flower,’ and is also evident in the name of the spirit Parek. The name in the central cross relates to the spirit Ramoras (named Ramaratz in the Mathers edition), whose name means ‘thunder.’

The Vision

I saw a yellow tulip in the midst of the dew-drenched grass of a sunny meadow. Other wild flowers were scattered around the area and the clouds above moved disconcertingly quick considering that there was not a breath of wind in the air. Examining the stem of the tulip, I saw a worm burrowing its way out of the earth only to be snatched up by a sparrow which flew off with it into a dark, thick forest that appeared out of nowhere. I approached the forest’s edge with caution and considered entering but was met with the sense that bears and other dangerous animals lay waiting inside. As I lingered, the meadow behind me turned barren and brown and the fast-moving clouds grew heavy and black, blotting out all but a silver disc of sun. I captured the remnant of the light within myself and used it to illuminate my path through the wood. Inside, I saw a trail of florae, including nightshade, strange mushrooms and white forget-me-nots marking a trail that I should follow.

Eventually, the flowers led me to a snow globe that lay resting in the boughs of a tree. I shook the globe and it glowed white in response before dimming to a misty grey. Then, through the mist, I saw the image of a huge worm with a gaping maw, though as the mist faded it was replaced by the image of a small, bright lake covered in water lilies that looked like they could be walked over to get from one side of the lake to the other. Beyond the lake lay a small hut that looked like a perfect refuge from the gloomy wood. Pressing on, I continued through the woods until the pall around me began to lift, then I came to the lake, which I crossed in the manner suggested in the snow globe.

On the other side the sun shone full again and I discovered a beautiful grove of vivid grass and wild flowers in which a middle-aged woman with green hair sat on a wooden chair. Her face contorted as she glanced sidelong at me until it altered into that of a hunting hound. At the boundaries of the grove stood a huge, muscular giant with a shock of black hair and a thick black beard with no moustache. The woman, in human form again, spat out some kind of seed—maybe that of a pumpkin or a sunflower—onto the ground and asked if I wanted to go into the hut. I stated I had found good enough refuge in the grove and didn’t seek to enter the hut unless she found it acceptable. She confirmed this and said I could enter if I wished, so I did.

Inside, a golden eagle stood guard, perching motionlessly above a cauldron in which some unknown concoction was boiling. On a rectangular table were set some pieces of simple cake, though I didn’t eat any of them as no permission to do so had been granted. Little else happened in the hut, which had a similar feel to it as the vestibule of the Castle on a Mountain—in which a scorpion spirit stood guard—due to the strange, almost hallucinogenic, images that presented themselves to my mind as I tried to get a grasp on the location. After a while, the woman and the giant entered the hut. The giant, whose presence in the small hut seemed impossible, remained silent, but the woman spoke to give me permission to eat the cake. As I did this, I understood that doing so enabled me to leave the grove without suffering harm from the dangers of the wood, and on departing, I walked carefree to the other side of the forest where I once again saw the river that appeared in the vision of A Rose Garden. As I stood close to its banks, the vision ended.

Notes

Parts of the vision were very prominent and far more vivid than the ones preceding it, rather like watching a film through a keyhole. The part where this was most pronounced was that where I arrived at the grove and saw the green-haired woman and the giant, who were reminscent of depictions of nature spirits such as the Wild Man of the Woods, the water hag Jenny Greenteeth or the entities encountered during experiences with Salvia Divinorum. The ‘blockage’ I experienced in the hut appeared to be linked to the guardian spirit that watched over me there, which was similar in function to the scorpion spirit in the vision of A Castle on a Mountain. The Eagle and the Scorpion are linked in their imagery, as both have been used to represent the constellation of Scorpio, with the Eagle commonly being cited as representing a more evolved representation of that constellation’s associations. It was unknown to me until I begun my analysis of the vision that the appearance of a trail of forget-me-nots may also have a link to Scorpio, as these flowers were once known as scorpion grass due to the hooks on their stems.

The other spirits relevant to this vision are:

Mara, meaning ‘grotto,’ ‘cave’ or ‘den,’ who also featured in the square relating to the vision of A Rose Garden, where I took refuge under a tree in a grove due to it being encircled by malign entities.

Permases, which may derive either from the Greek πέρασμα (perasma), meaning ‘passage,’ ‘course,’ ‘way’ or ‘ford,’ or the Latin permanere, meaning ‘to linger’ or ‘to remain,’ both of which are concepts that have a degree of relevance to the events of this vision.

XV: A Mountain

four kings

XV KEKASIM

Servitors: Asorega, Mara, Liriol, Losimon, Lomiol, Alogil, Ragaras, Irminon, Sarasim, Ogologon, Igilon, Sigis, Gorilon, Laralos, Gesegas, Kosem, Milon, Nasi, Morilon, Ramoras, Igarag, Ekalak, Geloma, Aril, Ilekel, Lagasas, Kilik, Kokolon, Isagas, Romoron, Negen, Nolom, Nagar.

KEKASIM appears to come from Hebrew קסם (qesem), ‘magic’ at the top and right, while in MISAGER there lies the possibility of the reversal of the Hebrew רגש (regas), meaning ‘tumult,’ ‘commotion,’ ‘noise,’ ‘emotion,’ making the word REGASIM when affixed with the collectivised suffix –im. The spirit name in the central cross is that of Asorega, coming from סריג (soreg) relating to the ‘boundary wall’ that came in the form of a fence of reticulated or weaved sticks that closed the inner Temple of the Hebrews off from Gentiles or the ritually impure. The meaning of this word is the same as that of the Hebrew for ‘grid,’ ‘grill’ or ‘grate,’ which may account for the ‘grid’ pattern evident in the squares. ELISONI resembles the Greek ἐλέησον (eleison), which denotes the quality of ‘mercy.’

The Vision

The mountain revealed itself as the same high, snowy peak I saw in the vision of A Snow. What was left of my old body lay contained by the clothes I was wearing. From one of the pockets, I pulled a golden talisman that resembled an Ankh, the strap of which was like the wings of an angel, while the face of a cherub or female angel lay in the cross’s interection. I pushed the remains of the body into a narrow hole it had been lying over, sending it plummeting down a narrow shaft into the roots of the mountain. Looking down, I could see a deep, blue, light glowing far below and considered exploring it, but decided against it because of how narrow it was. Looking around the vista, I could see the bluish mountains that the previous vision of A Castle on a Mountain was set in far away to the south, and beyond it was the Lake. Looking around at the landscape I asked what the name of this strange land was and received an answer from a disembodied voice which gave an answer that sounded like Kariouna. After hearing this name, I flew into a pall of clouds that lay before me in the west and rose above them before coming to rest on a much higher peak. Only a small portion of this peak was visible above the clouds, but all was cloudless and blue in that highest place.

Then I became aware of the presence of a spirit floating in the air before me in the east, its face skull-like with the remnants of its flesh flapping in the wind, while its strands of thin hair and its ragged black cloak billowed similarly. Then another three spirits identical in appearance to the first came from the other three cardinal directions. With me in the centre, they locked their hands together around me and flew me high into the sky with them. It was explained that these high airs were their dwelling place, and they were taking me up so that I can see all of the Earth below me, revolving as they flew. When they finished moving, they told me that they were intermediaries between that which was celestial and that which was not, and each of them ruled a portion of the world and governed the boundaries between the above and the below—microcosm and macrocosm—giving power over the elements in the material or external world while granting gnosis of the spiritual or internal world.

After they explained this, I saw one of them appear with the face of a lion, but the veils the others wore were not put aside in this way. The one with the lion face informed me that the golden, angel ankh I had been given was also a dagger and instructed me to pull it out, which I did to find a short, tapering, razor-sharp blade sliding free of its golden scabbard. Then I was told that this tool was the means to ‘unlock’ the four spirits as it was also a key which should be borne to obtain their favour and that of all of the spirits under their sway. With their consent, I inserted the dagger into each of their bodies and turned it, beginning with the one in the east, then the ones in the north, west and south.

Then I was back on the ground and the Four Great Spirits were gone. I went back to the spot lower down where I had pushed my old corpse into the heart of the mountain and decided to descend to see what was down there. Once I had reached the bottom I saw that the blue light I had seen emanating from its depths came from a beautiful lagoon lit by rays of bright sunlight burning down from above. On the shore of the underground pool lay a rowing boat which, having nowhere else to go, I boarded and began to row. As I approached the centre of the small lake, a maelstrom appeared and sucked my boat into it, casting me onto the wet floor of a cave far below where the boat was smashed to pieces but I somehow remained unhurt. Then I left the cave through a fissure in the rock to find a car waiting for me outside, which I entered and drove away in.

Notes

In this vision, the nexus of ‘above’ and ‘below’ could be thought of as the same kind of ‘boundary’ suggested in the name of the spirit Asorega. The mountain or high place as the terrestrial location where the boundaries between worlds are notoriously thin and permeable is long established, with connections between mountains and ‘peak-numinosity’ being well attested as the space where the celestial and earthly realms intersect across the spectrum of the world’s myths and religions. These are evident in the experiences of Moses on Mount Sinai, of Christ at the high place Satan showed him the vision of the four corners of the Earth (and later the Mount of Transfiguration and Golgotha), in the ascent made to high places such as Gorsedd Arberth in order to enter the Otherworld in the Mabinogion, in the depictions of Mount Olympus and Mount Zaphon as the abodes of the gods in Greek and Canaanite myth and in the figurative Mountain of the Adepts, Mount Abiegni, in the Thelemic and Rosicrucian traditions.

By virtue of their revelations and cardinal attributions, the four spirits I conversed with were probably the Four Kings—Oriens, Amaymon, Paymon and Egyn—whose presence has been hinted at in many of the previous visions, with the most overt being that of Oriens in the vision of Farm Buildings, though they were also represented by four beams of light in the vision of A Castle on a Mountain. In concurrence with that vision, only one of those spirits spoke and revealed more of itself, being the one in the East, Oriens.

The name Kariouna I received, which was that given to the world I was looking upon, may have its origins in the Ancient Greek κάρυον (karyon), meaning ‘head.’ This backs up a notion I had during the vision of Wild Animals where I had the sense, from the hemispheric nature of the amphitheatre, that I was in communication with some aspect of my brain. Together, these visions suggest that this astral world I have been exploring is a product of my mind and therefore of my brain. This is certainly the case to an extent with magical tools such as scrying and astral travel and is not something I would seek to dispute. What is interesting about such experiences however is the way that certain images, words and symbols take shape in the mind, suggesting that some kind of deep-level communication is taking place, either with extraneous spiritual entities or with some impersonal and unfathomable part of the psyche which possesses the same kind of preternatural that extraneous entities or daemons would. The argument about which of the two these and other magical phenomena can be attributed to is ultimately moot and will never be one that all practitioners agree upon, but my experience with such things leads me to believe that this sort of ‘astral’ work takes place on the threshold; the intersection of what is self and what is not-self. It is self-communication, yes, but it also takes place both at and beyond the borders of self, in a liminal area where other intelligences have influence over the contents of the unconscious mind which in turn comes to present awareness through the media of the personal psyche.

That the answer κάρυον, ‘head,’ I was given to my question about the nature of this world came in an ancient language I have no great knowledge of, while others have come in Hebrew and Latin or Kabbalistic, mythological or other symbolic correspondences, appears to provide proof that it is not just ourselves we are communicating with when we work with such things. Nor can it be some unexplainable process of depth-psychology that is being experienced unless such unaccountable knowledge can be said to be intrinsic to one’s psyche through theoretical constructs such as the collective unconscious or morphic fields. Ultimately then, I would postulate that the ‘liminal’ space such experiences take place in is that of the intersection between self and not-self and represents the same kind of boundary or veil between one ‘realm’ and another—one worldly and functional, the other invisible and mysterious—that the name Asorega and the Soreg stone of the ancient Jewish Temple represent.

Aside from the words and names already explored above, names with some relevance to this vision include: Sarasim, meaning ‘deep roots’ which relates to the deep cavern beneath the mountain; Mara, whose name relates to caves and grottoes and therefore ties in with the ‘deep roots’ of Sarasim; Nagar, meaning ‘fluid’ or ‘liquid,’ which relates to the lagoon in that grotto; Igarag, whose name pertains to the frost and cold associated with the upper reaches of the mountain; and Nolom, from the Hebrew נעלם (nolom) meaning ‘hidden’ or ‘concealed.’