Tuesday, September 28, 2021

California "Shaman" Charged for Wildfires

If this article is to be believed, it sounds like Florida Man has some competition. A self-proclaimed "shaman" from California is being charged with starting several of the wildfires that have recently been ravaging the state. According to court documents, she was trying to boil bear urine - so she could drink it. She claims she was unable to start a fire and drank the urine anyway, while authorities allege that she did start a fire and it got out of control. You can't make this stuff up, folks.

Alexandra Souverneva, 30, could be sentenced to up to nine years if convicted of starting the Fawn fire, according to officials. The blaze has destroyed roughly 41 homes and 90 small structures while endangering another 2,340, officials said.

Souverneva pleaded not guilty but is now reportedly thought to have ignited several fires across California. The self-proclaimed shaman said she had been hiking to Canada as the blaze approached Shasta County on Wednesday, documents noted.

When she became thirsty and approached a puddle of what she claimed to be bear urine, she told forest officials she attempted to make a fire to purify it. The wood she hoped to use was "too wet for the fire to start," documents said. Souverneva then drank the animal urine and proceeded on her journey, according to the report.

She allegedly became caught in some brush and had to call the local fire department for assistance. The firefighters requested she empty her pockets and fanny pack, to which she presented CO2 canisters, a lighter, and "a green, leafy substance she admitted to smoking that day," California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection officer Matt Alexander said.

One of the things that drives me nuts about New Agers and "shamanism" is that the term has shifted from meaning a particular style of magick to meaning drug use. That's not to say entheogens have no place in magick, even if they aren't my thing. But just getting high is not the same thing. Magick is a specific technology employing consciousness to accomplish particular objectives - and I'm pretty sure there aren't a lot of situations where that objective should have anything to do with drinking bear urine.

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Ritual Night Talk for September 21st

Happy Equinox, everyone! Here is the video of Tuesday's Ritual Night Talk, on magick as art and science. The donation link is here.

I talk a lot about magick from a scientific perspective, or at least as scientific a perspective as possible given the limitations of studying consciousness. But the practice of magick is also an art. The scientific side is about how it works, but the artistic side is about what you do with it. Magick is supposed to make your life better, and if you're doing it right it will. When performing magical operations you can think of yourself as artist creating the world in which your future self will be living. Keeping to this practice should lead to steady improvement and movement towards what you define for yourself as success.


Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Ritual Night Talk for September 14th

Here is the video of Tuesday's Ritual Night Talk, on the nature of spirits. The donation link is here.

In this talk I cover the basic classes of spirits - celestial, chthonic, and earthly - and their attributions - elemental, planetary, and zodiacal. I also discuss how I go about working with them, and offer some points and tips based on my own experiences. There are also a couple of interesting digressions in the talk regarding some of the practical magical research that I've done over the years.


Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Virgo Elixir Rite for 2021

Here is the video of Tuesday's Virgo Elixir Rite hosted on our Leaping Laughter YouTube channel. The donation link is here.

Virgo is attributed to the powers of "Invisibility, Parthenogenesis, Initiation." Magical invisibility is more about avoiding being noticed than transparency, parthenogenesis can be used to create artificial spirits such as the servitors made by chaos magicians, and initiation is a general power that can be employed to set in motion just about anything in your magical or mundane life. Also, keep in mind that those powers are descriptive rather than proscriptive, so intents related to any quality you might find listed in an astrology book under Virgo should likewise work fine.


Monday, September 6, 2021

Via Solis Virgo Elixir Rite - Year Five (Streaming)

Today's Magick Monday post is a full script for the Virgo Elixir Rite that we will be performing tomorrow, September 7th. Like the last few elixir rites, it will be streamed on the Leaping Laughter YouTube channel. The channel can be found here. I will be starting around 8 PM CDT, but barring any technical difficulties the video will be archived after the ritual so you can view it whenever you have time if you miss it live.

0. The Temple

The ritual space is set up with an altar table in the center. The banishing dagger and invoking wand are placed on the altar. In the center of the altar is placed a cup of wine for creating the elixir, within the Table of Art corresponding to Virgo. The sign Virgo is attributed to the powers of "Invisibility, Parthenogenesis, Initiation." Magical invisibility is more about avoiding being noticed than transparency, parthenogenesis can be used to create artificial spirits such as the servitors made by chaos magicians, and initiation is a general power that can be employed to set in motion just about anything in your magical or mundane life. So those sorts of intents are most appropriate.

I. Opening

All stand surrounding the altar. Officiant inhales fully, placing the banishing dagger at his or her lips. The air is then expelled as the dagger is swept backwards.

Officiant: Bahlasti! Ompehda!

Officiant then performs the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram. All rotate accordingly.

Officiant: We take refuge in Nuit, the blue-lidded daughter of sunset, the naked brilliance of the voluptuous night sky, as we issue the call to the awakened nature of all beings, for every man and every woman is a star.


Officiant: We take refuge in Hadit, the secret flame that burns in every heart of man and in the core of every star, as we issue the call to our own awakened natures, arousing the coiled serpent about to spring.


Officiant: We take refuge in Heru-Ra-Ha, who wields the wand of double power, the wand of the force of Coph Nia, but whose left hand is empty for he has crushed an universe and naught remains, as we unite our awakened natures with those of all beings everywhere and everywhen, dissolving all obstacles and healing all suffering.


Officiant: For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is every way perfect.

All: All is pure and present are and has always been so, for existence is pure joy; all the sorrows are but as shadows; they pass and done; but there is that which remains. To this realization we commit ourselves – pure and total presence. So mote it be.

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Ritual Night Talk for August 31st

Here is the video of Tuesday's Ritual Night Talk, on ritual structure. The ritual template link is here and the donation link is here.

Ritual structure is one of those "secrets" of magick, in the sense that not a lot of authors cover it in much detail if at all. Plenty of books on the Thelemic and Golden Dawn systems of magick include instructions on forms like pentagram and hexagram rituals. But in a lot of cases readers are left to figure out on their own how to arrange them into larger functional workings. In this video I talk through how I do ritual structure, and what I have found seems to work best over the years. There also are a couple of asides based on questions from the live chat.


Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Ritual Night Talk for August 24th

Here is the video of Tuesday's Ritual Night Talk, on instance theory. The donation link is here.

YouTube has now changed the way it does previews, just when I had gotten used to how it previously worked. So I look a little goofy in the image there, but the talk went fine.

Instance theory is an idea in magick that at first seems theoretical and maybe even a little boring, but its implications are far-reaching. It resolves the issue of multiple magicians calling the same spirit at the same time without resorting to psychological-only constructs. It also explains how multiple talismans can be used to create very powerful magical effects.

Update: I figured out how to change the preview image so I look at least a little less goofy. So that's a good thing.


Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Become a Living Murderer?

A week and a half or so back, the BBC released a report claiming to link a murder case and a terrorism case to a "Satanic occult forum." I've posted several articles here on Augoeides about how genuine "occult crime" is very rare and usually a case of overreach by investigators, and in fact the two cases named are significant in the sense that they have some actual occult connections. The laughable law enforcement training video referenced in this article is a classic example of what police were being told to look for back in the day.

However, the BBC report then dives into the classic moral panic trope suggesting that many, many people (besides the handful they identify) are being brainwashed by these forums and so forth. It's a very small step from that to "we need to censor you online because you're posting occult stuff on your blog and that's dangerous." The previous Cameron administration in fact did attempt to censor "esoteric content" from web users in the UK before the policy was struck down by the courts, so the notion is not even a little farfetched.

The BBC has uncovered new evidence about the teenage killer of Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman, the two sisters murdered last summer in a Wembley park in London.

Danyal Hussein was a member of a web forum, run by an American self-styled black magician, whose instructions about demonic pacts mirror steps taken by the killer.

The American has encouraged murder in some of his writings, including for a violent Satanic group that’s been cited as an influence on seven young men convicted of neo-Nazi terror offences in the UK over the past two years.

The forum referred to in the report is run by E. A. Koetting of "Become a Living God" fame. Personally, I'm not a fan of Koetting. Much of the stuff he talks about, including "sacrifices" and the like, seems more intended to shock than enlighten. Some of the material he covers is accurate, but it's neither groundbreaking nor exceptional. Basically, as I see it, the free material here on Augeides is better than the material he charges for if you really want to learn to be an effective magical practitioner. It should be noted that that the "pact" included in the image above totally didn't work.

At the same time, the report conflates several factors in a manner reminiscent of a moral panic, and regardless of how you or I might feel about Koetting's work, it's important to keep the two issues separate. There's no question that Danyal Hussein is a bad guy. He stabbed two strangers to death. There's also no question that he was interested in the occult and particularly BALG. This is a noteworthy point because real occult crimes are very rare and his might actually be at least partially motived by his occult beliefs. But instead of that perspective, the report goes on about how "too many teens" are being "radicalized" by online Satanism.