XXXVII: Griffins

Griffin

XXXVII GIRIPES

Servitors: Isagas, Trapis, Parelit, Liriol, Asorega, Alogil, Ragaras, Sigis, Pliroki, Laralos, Gesegas, Tolet, Igarag, Ekalak, Ilekel, Aril, Lagasas, Kilik, Elzegar, Alpas

The word at the edge of the Square, GIRIPES, comes from the Hebrew גריפין (giripin) meaning ‘griffin.’ The name in the Central Cross is not traceable to a specific spirit, but closely resembles a mixture of the names Gesegas, Isagas and Igarag. Also notable is the appearance of the word ELOGAPI, which appears to be a derivation of the Grimorium Verum spirit Elelogap and the Lesser Key of Solomon spirit Gaap.

The Vision

I saw a black sky, twilit at its edges, from which a great star fell and ripped the heavens asunder. Beneath the fabric of the torn skies lay another sky, all of which was of the same twilit red and blue as the edges of the sky before it was. Then this sky was torn apart to reveal a brilliant blue dome. This tearing away continued until all that was left was the bare dark of a world of nothingness.

Then a single flame appeared and I saw that I was in a wood at night and the fire was my light and warmth. The Moon glinted white between a gap in the trees and a new world was formed from its light. In this world I found myself sat in a hollow with leaves all about me, beneath which lay a wooden trap door, which opened as soon as I became aware of it and plummeted me down into a musty storage room that laid buried in the earth. In the rooms were many cages housing lifeless sphinxes and harpies which were guarded by a motionless leopard that was sat in the corner of the room.

I noted that these creatures were all chimeras of some form and was prompted to choose one of them to set free. In a gap between the cages I saw the head of an eagle and touched its head. A glyph marked the spot on its head where I touched it which was like a broken square intersected by a triangular arrowhead. The creature came to life at my touch and flew up to the ground where it revealed itself to be a griffin. Behind it dangled a chain that I hauled myself up to the surface with, then used to control the griffin like a hawk is controlled by its handler’s tether. I pulled myself close to it and saw that its right eye was a Moon and its left eye a Sun. Then the Moon went through its phases until it was New and faded to black. In its place another Sun appeared so that both of its eyes shone with a great light that caused the darkened world to become awash with sunlight.

Seeing this, I let the griffin free of its leash and it flew into the skies before descending to a sandy beach where it wrote the word MARIM in the sand in the form of a Cross. Then the sea came in and washed over the letters, but only the letter ‘R’ was removed by the spume, leaving the word MAIM written twice.

MARIM

As the ‘R’ disappeared, so too did the griffin fade over the distant ocean which glittered with a sparkling golden light as it reflected the Sun’s rays.

Notes

The ‘R’ that was washed away by the sea I understood to be a representation of the Hebrew letter Resh, which symbolises the Sun in Hermetic magic, while the word ‘Maim,’ means ‘Water.’ The word left by the griffin in the sand also had the Hebrew ארי (Ari) meaning ‘Lion’ at its heart. The Lion, as well as being a Solar symbol, is the creature that the Griffin’s body is composed of. The word ‘Marim’ also bears a certain similarity to the Latin ‘maris’ meaning ‘sea.’

The new spirits to feature in this square are Parelit and Elzegar. The name of Parelit may have its origins in the Hebrew words פער (pa’ar) – ‘opening,’ ‘gap,’ ‘gulf’ and הליט (halit), ‘cover,’ giving the name the meaning ‘to cover a gulf.’ Mathers suggests the meaning of the name Elzegar is to be found in the Hebrew for ‘turning aside.’

The Square was constructed with the Moon at 28º Cancer and performed with the Moon at 6º Leo.

XIV: A Castle on a Mountain

Treasureparcel

XIV AKROPOLIS
Servitors: Parusur, Alpas, Apolion, Trapis, Aril, Ipakol, Iuar, Kilik, Kokolon, Laralos, Liriol, Nasi, Pliroky (Pliroki), Soterion.

The word on the outer edge of the square clearly relates to Acropolis, denoting a stronghold atop a hill or mountain, while the spirit name in the central cross is that of Parasur, whose name either comes from the Latin paras meaning ‘to provide,’ or the Hebrew פרס (peras), meaning ‘reward’ or ‘prize.’

The Vision

A small, brown, rocky mountain appeared in the midst of a ring of much higher blue-stoned peaks. As I regarded the scene, I saw four beams of light appear from each of the cardinal directions to merge at a central point close to the peak. When they vanished, a cavern filled with gems and treasure was briefly visible under the stone of the hilltop, which hosted an abandoned-looking castle. I followed a stony path towards the top and after a few moments found a stone on the floor with the Hebrew letters, פיוס written upon it. I bent down to pick it up and found it resistant to being prized free, but after a few seconds of grappling it with my fingers, came loose. I picked it up and headed towards the castle which had birds that appeared at once to be both ravens and vultures circling its parapets.

On reaching the castle, I saw a hole in the masonry of its porch, where a closed portcullis barred my entry. This, along with its general shape and high altitude made it seem passingly similar to the arena I saw in the vision of the Wild Animals, but it was by no means the same place. The hole in the wall, I noticed, was exactly the same shape as the stone with the writing on that I had pulled free of the pathway to the door, and upon slotting it into place, the portcullis opened and I was able to approach the large wooden doorway beyond and knock it. The door swung open to reveal a gloomy, stone-floored, circular vestibule that was empty and had no other doorways or passages from which I could pass. On entering, a black, ethereal spirit in the shape of a scorpion appeared. It uttered a nonsense-word that sounded like Usadandy or something similar, which forced me to stop in my steps. I found myself trapped in a room for a while with lots of strange faces and images including a man with a fox’s head appearing in its furnishings and ornaments until I decided to leave the vestibule and fly up to an upstairs chamber where I left a bone as an offering to the spirits that were clearly defending this place from curious explorers. My exchange was obviously received well, for on my descent to the entryway, I found the earth opening up to me, allowing me into the great treasure hoard that was hidden beneath the castle. I was permitted to take as much loot as my arms could carry before finding myself back in my home locking my newly gained wealth into a cabinet.

Notes

Considering the meaning of the spirit name Parasur in the central cross, which possibly means ‘reward’ or ‘prize’ and the presence of the spirit Kilik, whose name means ‘wealth,’ it is interesting to note that the meaning of the Hebrew word carved into the stone I gained entry to the castle with, פיוס (piyas) means ‘lottery.’ Both words seem relevant in the context of the exchange and reward that occurred in the vision with my offering being rewarded to a small portion of the vast wealth that lay beneath the castle. With its hidden treasures and guardian spirits who barred the way to them, there appears to be a classic ‘treasure-spirit’ scenario locked into this square. A previous working with this square proved it to be impossible to enter beyond its facades or outer edges too, as the following account shows.

The meditative experience didn’t yield the results I’d hoped for with the castle I’d hoped to revisit, but, on the verge of sleep—which having the square on your head stops you from falling fully into—I noticed the perspective change and the imagery become that which was not by my own design. This involved seeing myself flying high above the clouds with a human shape but crow’s wings, until I saw a castle on a high mountain jutting through the cloud. I headed there and found faceless medieval soldiers operating machinery of war, which appeared like wooden cannons (no metal). A voice quizzed me for a while, asking me questions that required a degree of analysis to answers, pulling deep honesty from my secret thoughts, before asking me who I wanted them to fire a cannonball at. I answered that there was no one I maligned enough to want to cause serious harm to.

While the soldiers on the roof in this vision didn’t appear to be treasure guardians as such, their presence appears pertinent to the person of the Lemegeton spirit Malphas, who appears as a crow, builds high towers, will send armed men to vanquish one’s foes and gladly receives sacrifices. Between both visions, elements of the character of this spirit appear to be present, with the name Alpas—which also appears in this square—possibly relating either to he or to his near-namesake Halphas, who also builds great towers and commands military matters but appears in the shape of a stock dove rather than a crow.

The word that sounded like Usadandy made little sense and analysing it in retrospect reveals nothing of use. It does however feature quite a lot of the letters present in the square, as does the word פיוס (lettered P I U S).

Other spirit names in the square that have not yet been analysed elsewhere include:

Kokolon – possibly from קעקע (koko) – ‘incision,’ ‘imprint,’ ‘tattoo,’ ‘mark branded into the skin.’ May relate to the Hebrew letters imprinted into the stone I found on the pathway to the castle.

Pliroki – difficult to trace. Mathers suggests may be Coptic for ‘burning up.’

Iuar – another difficult one. Closest match with any semantic relevance is the Latin iurandum, ‘an oath.’