Wednesday, March 5, 2008

More Thoughts on the Greater Ritual of the Hexagram

For a long time I have been working with the Heavens of Assiah (Liber 777, column VI.) as the "godnames" for the Greater Ritual of the Hexagram when working with practical magick. The original idea was that I should be tuning the magical field to the proper force in the material world (Assiah) in order to manifest material change, and this idea has worked very well, especially in conjuction with the operant field model. The godname itself is more properly attuned to Atziluth, the archetypal world, and therefore I would use the godname for more mystical workings intended to orient my consciousness higher up on the Tree of Life. Again, this seemed to work well.

In Liber O vel Manus et Sagittae, Aleister Crowley's instruction is that the godname should always be used with the Greater Ritual of the Hexagram. He mentions nothing about using the Heavens of Assiah and neither does any other author, though Crowley is not very clear on what the Heavens of Assiah are actually used for in any of his writings that I have come across. Having experimented with using the godname in practical rituals for many years, I feel pretty confident that the Heavens of Assiah do indeed seem to work better for me, at least as far as objectively measurable practical workings go. Incidentally, if anyone else has experimented with this variation of the form I would be interested in hearing about any results that you would be willing to share.

Last night I had an interesting realization about the Greater Hexagram during my regular magical practices - treat the ritual like a pyramid rather than like a flat plane. Trace the hexagrams to the quarters while vibrating the Heaven of Assiah name, and then imagine a pyramid with the hexagrams at the four corners. Point to the top of the pyramid, vibrate the godname, and conclude with the later Golden Dawn "Let the divine light descend!" which I have always liked. This tunes the space as a pyramid with the base in Assiah and the point in Atziluth. Has anyone else tried this? It feels more complete than either the Heavens of Assiah or godname version alone.

On the drive into work today I also had a thought that this structure could be inverted. You would trace the hexagrams to the four quarters using the godname, then imagine an upside-down pyramid with the hexagrams at the corners. Point to the downward tip and vibrate the Heaven of Assiah name - but "Let the divine light descend" wouldn't really be appropriate. The next thing I think I'm going to try is using "Let the lightning flash descend!" for the "upright" version and "Let the serpent of wisdom ascend!" for the "inverted" version. I haven't tried that yet, though, so I have no idea how well it will work.

Has anybody else out there played around with the Greater Hexagram? What results have you gotten with different variations?
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3 comments:

AISh MLChMH said...

though Crowley is not very clear on what the Heavens of Assiah are actually used for in any of his writings that I have come across

They relate to the astral or "apparent phenomena" corresponding to the Hebrew Names of Numbers and Letters according to Crowley's notes to this column.

Ananael Qaa said...

To me, that's not very clear, or at least I can think of a number of different ways that it could be interpreted. Do you think Crowley is talking about magical powers here? Characteristics of astral visions? Or just the magical associations related to the Hebrew numbers and letters, since they actually are the Hebrew names of the planets, signs, elements, and so forth?

What sort of practical experience have you had using them in magical operations?

AISh MLChMH said...

To me, that's not very clear, or at least I can think of a number of different ways that it could be interpreted.

I think a review of the notes to the column in question would be helpful if you haven't already done this (pg. 55 of "777 and other Qabalistic Writings by Aleister Crowley"). For example, "By "Tzedeq" we should understand any function of a phenomenon which partakes of the nature of Jupiter." This would of course follow with Rashith-ha-Gilgilim to ATh.

What sort of practical experience have you had using them in magical operations?

Personally, I've never used them as anything beyond descriptors of phenomena observed astrally and in some analysis with Gematria. Crowley has applied Rashigh ha-Gilgilim as such in at least one Operation involving ritual sex (the Cephaelodium Working). If I come across any other references I'll let you know (beyond "Nogah" as "little bit of sweet stuff" that is).

As far as using them as god names, I believe ShMSh is a direct borrow from the Hebrews of the Aggadian god Shamash, but I don't believe this is a hard and fast rule.