Friday, June 16, 2006

Comselh Ananael Ritual Template Part III: The Conjuration

The conjuration follows the Watchtower Invocation. This is the hardest part of the ritual form to generalize, since it must correspond to the energy desired by the magician and as a result there are many possibilities. The colors, godforms, and so forth may be found in Aleister Crowley's Liber 777 and some practice working with the correspondence tables is necessary in order to use them effectively in the construction of rituals. Also, the Greater Rituals of the Pentagram and Hexagram should be committed to memory along with the corresponding names.

VIII. The Conjuration

Officiant performs the Greater Invoking Ritual of the Pentagram or Hexagram corresponding to the type of energy being evoked, using the Heaven of Assiah name as the godname following ARARITA. All rotate appropriately, visualizing the golden sphere shifting to the Queen scale color of the sphere associated with the operation. For elements use Malkuth and for signs of the Zodiac use either Chockmah or the sphere corresponding to the planet that rules the sign.

Officiant: Let the divine light descend!

All visualize a column of light in the natural color (King scale for paths, Queen scale for spheres) materializing in the center of the altar, extending to the edge of the containment structure and running from the ceiling to the floor. There is a short pause. Officiant then conjures the spirit with all joining in on the vibrations of the names. Each of the names should be vibrated a number of times corresponding to the sphere associated with the operation.

At this point four names are used. They correspond to the four letters of the Tetragrammaton - Yod, Heh, Vav, and Final Heh. These letters relate to the four scales of color used in the Thelemic and Golden Dawn systems, the four elements, and the four Qabalistic worlds. The latter association is the most important for selecting spirit names. For the energy of the rite to manifest, the spirits called upon must be related to each other and span the four worlds. As an example, for a planetary ritual the names would be the corresponding Name of God (Yod), Archangel (Heh), Intelligence (Vav), and Spirit (Final Heh). Each name is vibrated the appropriate number of times, and there is a short pause while the Officiant waits to perceive the presence of the evoked entity. When all four entities are present, the Officiant moves on to the Charge.

IX. The Charge

Officiant: Wise (Vav-name), enliven this material basis and imbue it with the necessary will and intelligence that it may sustain itself until its objective is fulfilled, which shall be (state the objective of the rite here). Mighty (Final Heh-name), empower this material basis that it may influence the material world and maintain its own coherence according to these objectives with sufficient strength to guarantee complete, perfect, and immediate success in (restate the objective of the rite here), and with sufficient fortitude that its influence will endure and thrive.

All: So mote it be!

All then begin chanting the four names while concentrating their attention on the material basis. As this is done all should visualize the four beings within the column over the containment structure with the Yod-name near the ceiling and the Final Heh-name just above the material basis. These can be visualized as detailed beings or as globes of light - the Yod-globe in the King scale color, Heh-globe in the Queen scale color, Vav-globe in the Prince scale color, and Final Heh-globe in the Princess scale color. Iridescent energy like lightning in the King scale color should be visualized flowing downwards through them and filling the material basis so that it glows with a pure light in the Queen scale color. Officiant feels the energy building in the material basis, and when it feels "full" rings the bell chime on the next Final Heh-name. The chant stops and there is a short pause. The energy flow stops, but the four beings remain visible and the material basis continues to emanate Queen scale light.

Led by Officiant, all give the Sign and assume the godform corresponding to the energy evoked.

All: (Vibrate Heaven of Assiah name)!

The four beings are then visualized descending into the material basis, which becomes glows with brighter Queen scale light. There is a short pause for this visualization.

Led by Officiant, all give the Sign of Mater Triumphans and assume the godform of Isis nourishing the magical child that is the result of the operation.


The bell chime is then rung. The Queen scale light is visualized being completely absorbed and integrated into the material basis. There is a short pause for this visualization. The material basis is then wrapped or covered.

Officiant: There is success.

The sphere of golden light is now all that remains around the temple. There is a short pause. The closing follows.

Commentary on this section follows.

It is difficult to overstate how important the Greater rituals are for effective magical work. Unlike the Lesser rituals, which are general, the Greater rituals are used to evoke a specific force - an element, planet, or sign of the Zodiac. Amazingly, many modern books on ritual magick do not even cover them. The Greater rituals provide a standard way of tuning the magical field to a specific type of energy.

In Liber O vel Manus et Sagittae Aleister Crowley recommends that the Greater rituals use the name of God corresponding to the rite (the Yod-name). In our own work we have found that it is effective to use the Heaven of Assiah name as it is a general name for the force evoked acting on the material plane.

This ritual template includes additional details regarding the containment structure that would be used for an evocation. For an invocation, the lights and beings should simply be visualized filling the temple and at the conclusion of the charge should be visualized dissolving into the participants. This effect can also be produced by evoking the force into the elements of a eucharist within the containment structure and then consuming the elements.

Understanding the Y-H-V-H structure is very important for working ritual magick of this sort. A full commentary on the nature of the four worlds is beyond the scope of this article, but in brief they can be described as follows:
  • Yod-Atziluth-Fire-Kether and Chockmah-King Scale: This is the realm of archetypes and Platonic forms.
  • Heh-Briah-Water-Binah-Queen Scale: This is the realm of creation, in which specific instances of archetypes differentiate from the ideal forms of Atziluth.
  • Vav-Yetzirah-Air-Chesed through Yesod-Prince Scale: This is the formative world where these specific instances of archetypes begin to take form in a process that culminates in material manifestation.
  • Final Heh-Assiah-Earth-Malkuth-Princess Scale: This is the conventional material world, in which the forms of Yetzirah manifest.
The selection of names corresponding to each of the worlds is probably another article in and of itself.

The charge should be as lawyerly as possible. This is not because the spirits will necessarily try to trick the magician as some sources claim, but because like anything magick follows the path of least resistance. If a spirit can create a relatively likely and therefore simple outcome that fulfills the letter of the charge, that is exactly what it will do. If you ask a spirit to bring you a car, it is a lot easier for the spirit to arrange for you to find a matchbox car in the park than for a vehicle to materialize in your driveway. Lon Milo DuQuette has an interesting story about summoning a car in My Life With the Spirits, but for the most part such a thing is really difficult. Kids, on the other hand, lose toys all the time.

The Vav-name gives the evoked energy form and direction, while the Final-Heh name provides the energy itself. Both of these must come together for the ritual to be effective. In the case of planets, the Intelligence is Vav and Spirit is Final Heh. One of the errors in the tradition that appears to originate with Francis Barrett's The Magus is that the Spirit should be used for evil operations and the Intelligence for good operations. In fact, the two work together and are essentially neutral. One shapes and governs the force while the other empowers it. The Intelligence can be evoked on its own for the purpose of obtaining information, but evoking the Spirit on its own is a bad idea simply because it is a blind force that cannot be directed without the Intelligence.

The vibration of the names is then done to charge the material basis with energy. The visualization here is even more complex than the ones found in the Watchtower Invocation, but again, we have found that intricate visualizations such as this one substantially increase the effectiveness of rituals. The four names are visualized in the four colors and then energy flows from Kether to Malkuth through the channel created by summoning at all four levels of the Tree of Life. The energy is in the color of the King scale, as Atziluth is its point of origin. The material basis glows with light in the color of the Queen scale because the related sphere on the Tree acts as a container for the raw energy of the archetypal world.

The sign and godform along with the Heaven of Assiah name seal the energy into the material basis. It is then stabilized and integrated with the sign of Mater Triumphans, the godform of Isis, and the vibration of AUMGN. The Officiant then affirms this by stating "There is success."

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Anonymous said...

I wonder why I never read this article (series) before... It is fantastic! The way you explain the use and purpose of visualization is beyond any source I've encountered.

I'm wondering though, the visualizations 4 entities work well with planetary entities, as there is the god itself, thhe archangel, the intelligence and the spirit. But what about when only the intelligence is being used? That would leave out the princess scale out.

Also, how could it be done for zodiacal forces, where there's only the god/sign and the geomantic intelligence?

I see it working for the Elements, where there is the god, archangel, ruling angel and elemental king.

Anonymous said...

* visualizations of all 4 entities

Scott Stenwick said...

You do not have to have four names. That was something I used to adhere to based on the explanation here. Keep in mind as you dig through these really old posts that they are about ten years old and I have gotten much better at pretty much everything I do magically since then.

That being said, you could do it this way for the Zodiac:

Godname - Permutation of Tetragrammaton
Archangel - Ratziel (It's always Ratziel for all signs, because he's the archangel of Chockmah)
Angel - Geomantic Intelligence
Heaven of Assiah - Hebrew name of the sign

Likewise, for planetary, if you are just calling the intelligence and not the spirit, substitute the Heaven of Assiah for the spirit.

It does work. But I also have found it's not strictly necessary. For example, in my latest zodiacal angels article in the brand new Liber Spirituum, I just go with the permutation of Tetratgrammaton and the Geomantic Intelligence name.

Anonymous said...

That makes sense. Sorry to ask you about older stuff, but as I said, I find this fantastic! I also saw Frater Barrabbass' articles in which he uses detailed visualization of certain symbols, gates and geometric shapes, and it makes alot more sense to use them. At least for practitioners that only just begun working with conjurations. They will develop their own style over time, but i see these methods as being a solid foundation for future work.

I have used your newer approach from the beginning of my conjurations, with success - manifestation of the intent - and I find it excellent. Simple and to the point. But it never hurts to dig through your stuff and see what other "tricks" I can add to my still developing techniques :)

Thanks for the answer!

Scott Stenwick said...

It is not anything that you need to be sorry about. It is more that they just need to be kept in context. I have changed my practices over the years because I keep tweaking them so they work better, and that would be the main reason that the older stuff is different from the newer stuff.

The basic concepts, though, are still good. Understanding how the four Qabalistic worlds work can help a lot when designing rituals. You just need to keep in mind that it is one tool among many that can help you focus your mind on what is happening at each phase of the ritual, not a strict dogma.

Anonymous said...

Yeah the concepts are good and besides the practical work, they can also add to the overall knowledge about this system.