The Abramelin Operation and faith

Discussion in 'Magick' started by stranger, Apr 9, 2022.

  1. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    This is an attempt by me to better understand the need for "the abramelin operation", as seen in the movie A Dark Song.

    I have zero experience of magick and this movie was my introduction to it. Because of the way the movie ended I think a few with Christian backgrounds might find it palatable. I know I did.

    My take on the operation as presented in the movie is that it follows the natural path of creation (begins with darkness, continues with a process of separation, and ends with perfection). That's a gross oversimplification, but here I'm thinking of creation as described in the book of Genesis. To simplify even further, darkness first, then light. The book of Job also crosses my mind, and the principle of death and resurrection.

    I'm thinking there might be a way to bridge the gap between the two camps for those who are interested. Likely there will be few, maybe only some of us who have been around for a long time and have taken more than a few trips around the block. If not here at interfaith, then where? To me, it's at least worth looking into.

    My question is a simple one: what can a magical operation give me that I don't already have by faith?
     
  2. Ella S.

    Ella S. Utilitarian Logician

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    I am well-acquainted with the Abramelin Operation, having been a Rosicrucian who joined occult study groups with many members of the Ordo Templi Orientis. There are a wide range of opinions on what the Abramelin Operation precisely does and how it works. I have never seen A Dark Song but I have heard that it was one of the few examples of occult rituals depicted reasonably accurately.

    You can read the entire ritual and its preparations here:
    http://www.esotericarchives.com/abramelin/abramelin.htm

    That is the Mathers translation which is somewhat controversial for a number of reasons but it serves as a decent overview of the structure of the ritual as a whole.

    I do think there is a clear interplay between light, darkness, and creation in the work. You would not be the first person to connect it to Genesis 1 or Job.

    I see the ritual as intended to help the magician gain control of their sinful inclinations (through binding the demons responsible for them) which then allows them to realize God's Will for their lives through direct experience of the divine after the fog of temptation has been lifted.

    As many occultists will tell you, not everyone is so lost that they need a ritual to tell them what God's plan for their lives is, which is why not everyone is called to that path. However, many people do find the Abramelin Operation incredibly useful.

    I should also note that, traditionally, the Abramelin Operation was not used in isolation. In both the teachings of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and in Thelema, the Abramelin Operation is something that a magician has to build up to performing. They have to be initiated through several lower degrees before they can employ the Abramelin Operation successfully.

    The Abramelin Operation also marks the mid-point of one's spiritual journey, which usually takes over a decade. The end-point of both paths is to empty one's self wholly into God and to purify one's mind until it is saintly and christlike. The Abramelin Operation helps greatly with this because it marks a magician's ability to overcome temptation and to truly comprehend their path to divinization.
     
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  3. 'Amir Alzzalam

    'Amir Alzzalam Šayṭānist

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    Let me preface what I'm about to say with that I have practiced Solomonic Magic for over 30 years and I performed to completion the Abramelin Operation almost 20 years ago (I am 61 now). The Abramelin Operation is an 18-month working, it can be accomplished in 6 months under certain conditions. My Operation came to an end in the 14th month. The movie 'A Dark Song' did a good job of incorporating an infamous ritual into a modern film even if the director took artistic freedoms with the actual Operation.

    That said; "what can a magical operation give me that I don't already have by faith?" is your question.

    If by 'magical operation' you mean the Abramelin Operation, then I would say successfully completing this Operation reveals to the Karcist not his Holy Guardian Angel, but rather it reveals one's Dæmon/Daimon. Your Dæmon is the logos between your lesser/human self and your Greater Non-Human Self. There is no amount of 'faith' that will bring you to this conclusion and experience. By 'faith' I can only assume you are talking about a religious faith of some sort? The Operation concludes with a very real experience of Communion with your Dæmon and the revealing of your Greater Self, a GodSelf.

    This is the true meaning behind the Abramelin Operation, as well as the Rite of the Headless One, the Bornless Ritual, and the al-Ra's Operation. I hope I have shed some light on your question.
     
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  4. Ella S.

    Ella S. Utilitarian Logician

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    I agree that Daimon is probably a better word for what is so frequently called the Holy Guardian Angel. It's what the Greeks called it.
     
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  5. 'Amir Alzzalam

    'Amir Alzzalam Šayṭānist

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    You hit the nail on the head with the Shadow Work and binding our Demonic, very Jungian in that sense.
     
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  6. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    You must! You owe it to yourself. :) It does contain a sucker punch of sorts, but in the most delightful and non-malignant way you could imagine. I am pretty confident that you would like it. Then maybe we could discuss it further.

    Well, sometimes I like to entertain the illusion that I am an original, but I suppose in my heart I always knew the numbers would turn out to be appallingly high. It's okay though, a little humble pie is good for the soul, especially in pursuit of a goal that is dear.

    Strange you should mention that because shortly after I became more active here on IO I literally got hammered by every temptation you could possibly imagine. The fog has not yet lifted, but I have faith and am being taken care of.

    Whew, you have no idea how relieved I am to hear this. I was a little afraid that at some point I might be asked to actually participate in a ritual. Even though it will never be a part of my path, I am still curious and willing to learn. Everyone's path is different, there are no two alike imo.

    Growth, I can see that happening. A product of being diligent in your particular discipline.

    Thank you for your reply, you have a very gentle touch with these sensitive issues and I appreciate it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2022
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  7. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    Good for you. I find myself somewhat envious of your erudition and experience. I was called to the mysteries through Christianity but now find myself a perennial outsider to all camps. I believe I was shown that this is my calling and that I should therefor be the best outsider I can be, with no grumbling.

    What's in a name or a description? The being in the movie A Dark Song was good and was delighted that Sophia chose that thing that was right. I might be one brick short of a full load, but at least I know that much.

    I believe you might have confused faith with works. Please allow me to try to explain my faith. In the movie A Dark Song Solomon tells Sophia she is the conduit through which everything will manifest. My faith is like Sophia, a conduit. The connection is to the Most High, through whom the power will come. I have no power other than what I am honored with.

    I never tell the Most High what I am, he tells me and then I am that. It comes from above to below, so to speak. Never from below to above and not even from below to below.

    No one who is tied to human flesh is without experience. To think otherwise is arrogance imo. Our experience begins when we are born into this world, and ends when we die. This is our common bond.

    Quite. The Abramelin Operation as seen in A Dark Song is all I am allowed (for now at least). No need pushing it too far too fast.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2022
  8. 'Amir Alzzalam

    'Amir Alzzalam Šayṭānist

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    Sophia (great choice of names: Solomon-the Magus & 'Gnostic Soul' Sophia) becomes the conduit for the Operation because in the Operation there is someone who performs the ritual and someone the ritual affects. Solomon symbolizes the Great Magic of the Universe and Sophia the Soul of Mankind, it is always through our Soul that Greater Magic works.
     
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  9. powessy

    powessy Well-Known Member

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    I am not sure my belief in majik, I see majik more of a bidding then anything else. You teach your mind what your intention is and it will try to figure it out, you bid it to figure something out. A person that is more in touch, spiritually inclined is a person that will have higher success at majik. I would say that this operation would have varying degrees of success depending on the person performing it, you need to select an allowed mind, do not use a child clairvoyant, unless over the age of thirteen.

    The other factor most prevalent here is TIME, how much you spent trying to figure something out. Like anything else time must be given to anything you wish to do or learn. The first thing is you have to believe in this to give it time, and you have to know what it is you are trying to accomplish. This is the biggest problem I see here. Someone developed an idea and then gave it a form. To truly do this operation is to do it without knowing anything at all. This is done by understanding and being in touch with who you are, you should just feel your connection to your mind and self.

    Powessy
     
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  10. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic) Admin

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    Nothing. If you're happy with your faith, don't start doing magic.

    By the way, church liturgies, most obviously Roman Catholic, Anglican High Church, and Orthodox ones, are fine examples of rituals. Most of modern ritual Magic has much in common.

    Which two camps? In any case, I'm interested :)
     
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  11. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    This sort of leads me to another question, and that is can the Operation take place solely within a person's psyche without the physical props. Jung has been mentioned and I think it was he that believed our psyches were populated by arch types. In that scenario, Sophia, Solomon, the damned, and the Holy Guardian all dwell within, inside the "mansion" so to speak. I have the thought here that the Guardian was a free agent, however, and came and went as he/she (seemed genderless in the movie) was needed.
     
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  12. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    I've got it covered then. This is very encouraging. I'm running a little short on time myself this morning but hope to continue later.
     
  13. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    Exactly. We are not as different as we think. The words are not as important as the power. The nature of the power is what divides darkness and light, evil and good. I think this is a hard lesson. Discernment comes only to those who are of full age for a reason.

    I'll tease it a little bit. I had in mind Pagan and Christian, but the same formula would fit any differing camps. One could look at it as a reparation proceeding from the judgment of Babel, which was disastrous but necessary.
     
  14. 'Amir Alzzalam

    'Amir Alzzalam Šayṭānist

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    'Mansion of the Mind' I'm stealing this!!
    Way back when I performed the Abramelin Operation I used most of the physical implements listed and followed the instructions as close as I could. Eventually, I discovered the Tibetan Bön Po and studied and practiced their visualization techniques which led to my ability to perform many of the rituals I do now in the comfort of my Mind. So, yes, it is definitely possible to conduct ritual work within your Mind. However, anytime I begin a new practice and depending on a specific practice, I still use physical tools, they do make the operations easier and fuel the psychodrama necessary to 'unleash' your subjective universe.

    As for the Guardian Angel (Thelema), this is where it gets tricky. In the Left Hand Path philosophy that I adhere to, this is our Dæmon, the Logos between our earthly self and our Greater Self/GodSelf. It is a part of the Soul that is free to communicate with both our self and our Self, providing us with guidance in our life journey.
     
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  15. Ella S.

    Ella S. Utilitarian Logician

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    Indeed! Actually, there are a lot of older practices that require ritual tools that have been blessed by a priest from the Apostolic lineage as well as recommendations to attend mass in a good deal of older grimoires. Holy water is a common ingredient in "low magic," too.

    Most occultists did not see a division between occultism and their Christian faith. I mean, John Dee sought out Enochian partially as a way to pray properly
    Most modern occultists would say that the props are unnecessary. Israel Regardie mentions that all occult ceremonies can be done "astrally" and still retain their function in his book on the Golden Dawn. Crowley also talks about how a good magician does not need any props.

    There are a few modern occultists that feel like the physical elements are absolutely necessary because the physical elements anchor the ritual to the material universe.

    Personally, I am not an occultist anymore so I have no horse in this race. When I was, I started out believing the props were necessary until I realized I could achieve the same effects without them. Those who believe that the props are necessary have just told me that I never managed to do "real magick" and that, if I had, I would have noticed a difference. I don't believe them.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2022
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  16. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic) Admin

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    On the other hand, the learning process which gets one to maturity, already involves discernment. Chicken and egg problem.

    Regarding "astral" magic: This can be done, but requires training in visualization and concentration, otherwise it becomes a gateway to daydreaming. Usually, astral magic is tricky to get right without some "first hand" physical familiarity with a ritual, and without a well-established meditation practice. Learn to walk before running, and all that. And some schools of magic maintain that physical and astral work affect different strata of the soul.

    Props can be a lot of fun, in addition to setting the atmosphere. I'm an empty-hand practitioner mostly, but I enjoy a well-designed ritual with candles and books and bells as much as the next person.

    Are you interested in the Abramelin working overall, or in the details of ritual magic, @stranger?
     
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  17. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    Oh, I suspect a clairvoyant could be dangerous at any age, but noted.

    I think I agree with you according to my limited understanding of your experience when you say "select an allowed mind". The only trouble I see with that is that some people perceive themselves to have more allowed minds than others. Logic would dictate that those with too many allowed minds would have quite a task ahead limiting themselves to just one. If I put myself into your scenario, however, I don't think I would have any difficulty choosing only one, seeing I perceive no allowed minds at the moment.

    I like your statement "To truly do this operation is to do it without knowing anything at all." Certainly I have been and still am quite willing to put in the time, as much at it takes. This spiritual journey has been my driving force. I won't stop, don't worry.
     
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  18. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    Namaste, I am honored. Freely given.

    Perhaps it's just a matter of calling and being on slightly different paths. I struggled early on with physical implements. As a young Christian in a small fundamentalist church I had an aversion to what they called "The Lord's Supper" because it seemed such a step down from what I felt inside that I almost attributed it to evil. An older Christian was able to calm me down and talk some sense into me but I have always favored the invisible mysteries to their physical counterparts.

    Thanks for explaining, I'm trying to understand. Perhaps we are not so different. Your Daemon would be my Guardian Angel, earthly self my physicality, and GodSelf would be the Most High. It's the confusion of tongues. :(
     
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  19. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    You've given me cause for relief twice in as many days, thank you. Now "astral" is a word that would have many from my old camp asking you where you wanted your new door, but I take it to mean outside the physicality? Many who are not occult believe that we have souls, or spirits, or at least a component that is not physical. I'm interested in learning more.

    Yes, I see.

    Neither do I. I think sometimes it takes a long and hard journey to fully divest us of our tethers to this material universe. Very engaging stuff. I'd like to hear more. You're welcome anytime.
     
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  20. stranger

    stranger wolfwing, a feral angel

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    Sure, trial and error vs. finished product. In time vs. out of time. Discernment only improves in time.

    Hmm, I might have to get a second opinion on that. ;) Sometimes things are not as complicated as they seem. That's why I like knowing nothing and don't trust everything my physical senses seem to be telling me. I like the thought of leaving the thinking to someone else.

    More and more I feel the need to move away from the outward forms. Perhaps we are moving in different directions, but that is okay.

    Sure I am, or I would not have started this thread, silly. :)
     

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