Killers learning from I-Ching inspired by Alchemists

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Kia IAO Centring Ritual

Following the excellent suggestion of Hippi to share more magical practice on the site, and her recommendation of describing the feelings of our practise, I thought about an exercise we can all take part in.  It is a simple centring ritual, sometimes known as a ‘banishing ritual’.  To participate in this group exercise, perform the following ritual in your own time and make a special note of any sensations and feelings that occur to you as you do it.  If you don’t wish to participate, kindly refrain from commenting on this post.

The ritual chosen for this exercise is the Kia IAO Centring Ritual I recently posted on the wiki.  I reproduce it below for your convenience:

Kia

  1. Stand still with one arming pointing upwards and one downwards, like in the picture of Baphomet by Eliphas Levi.
  2. Take a deep breath inwards.
  3. On the out-breath vibrate the word ‘Kia’, like ‘Kiiiiiiaaaaaaaaa’.
  4. Visualise Austin Osman Spare’s glyph for Kia over your heart chakra.

I

  1. Raise both hands above your head, palms together, as you breath in deeply.
  2. On the out-breath vibrate the vowel ‘I’, like ‘Iiiiieeeeeeeeeeeee’. High pitch.
  3. Visualise a pillar or axis of light extending from your heart up to the heavens and down deep into the earth.

A

  1. Lower both arms so that they point outwards to your left and right, forming a cross, as you breath in deeply.
  2. Vibrate the vowel ‘A’ on the out-breath, like ‘Aaaaarrrrrrrrhhhhhhhh’. Medium pitch.
  3. Visualise a horizontal axis of light that crosses the vertical one exactly at your heart chakra.

O

  1. Lower both arms, bending the elbows and form an ‘O’ with the hands, such that your thumbs are close to your solar plexus and your fingers near your navel. Breath in deeply as you do so.
  2. On the out-breath, vibrate the vowel ‘O’, like ‘Oooooooooooooooooooo’. Low pitch.
  3. Visualise yourself, (or the ritual space), enclosed in an egg, about which circles an Ouroborus.

KIA Retreat 2012 – Books, Cards, Films and Music

The second in a series giving Anton’s account of the KIA retreat.

An important aspect of the retreat was in the sharing of various items we all brought to show and share with each other, such as books, cards, music, film and instruments to play with. We were doing this even before the official opening of the Baphomet rite.

Books

Members brought with them an assortment of books.  I can’t remember the names of all the books brought, so maybe my fellow attendees can fill the missing ones in the comments.

Proof copy Chemical Serpents. This was especially important for myself and Janice Duke since we have been working together on producing this book for the last couple of years, and I had just obtained the first proof copies so we could see how the text and artwork worked together for the first time. Janice also brought her sketch book to show me the original pencil drawings many of the images were based on.

Katya Bach also brought her sketchbook, and spent some of her time drawing in it to produce a rather interesting hedgehog-like troll critter. Another artist I wouldn’t mind collaborating on a book with at some future point.

Chicken Qabalah of Rabbi Ben Clifford by Lon Milo DuQuette. I remember having a flick through this book, although I didn’t get a chance to read it fully, or even finish the introduction. It seemed from a quick glance to promise an amusing but informative account of the qabalah for a beginner to the subject. Whether it would compare to the Promethea comics of Alan Moore in that respect, I can’t say.

Awakening Osiris. A translation of the book of going forth by day, commonly known in English as the Egyptian book of the dead. Janice made a beautiful reading from this.

Brown Magic: a manual for Brown Owls. This surprising book proved such a useful source of magic for the weekend that it will deserve its very own write up later…

Divination Cards

Typically we ended up with 3 sets of Thoth tarot.  Could have been 4 if Lolita brought her German language edition. I also brought with me my Key to the Kingdom deck.  These are not tarot, but playing cards, a so called ‘transformation’ deck, where each card is transformed into a picture, in this case imaginative illustrations by Tony Meeuwissen, each depicting a rhyme, often famous children’s nursery rhymes. I felt these appropriate for our Crowleymas retreat because in book 4 Crowley interpreted many children’s nursery rhymes in light of the esoteric mysteries they symbolised. Also I’ve found through practise that these cards add a layer of meaning to my divinations that contrast the heavily symbol laden cards of the Thoth deck to add a layer of context the reading would otherwise miss.

Another surprising deck was called, I think, the Bohemian Goth deck.

CDs and DVDs

Music and films. We had far more of these than we got the chance to watch or listen to.  On Friday evening I played a compilation that started with Crowleymass (mix mix mix) by HÖH/Current 93 and continued with Gilacopter by Revolting Cocks and featuring Timothy Leary. Other CDs played included For Beginner Piano by Plone and the soundtrack to Twin Peaks.

On Saturday evening Lolita and I shared the first of many alchemical.tv films we have been working on, Subterranean Dreams.  In this Nick Coughlan discusses his theories on the connections between dreams, parts of the body as ways to tune into different forms of consciousness, time, the fiction of H.P.Lovecraft and Arthur Machen, time travel, precognition and other weirdness.

On Sunday morning Lolita and I shared our meditation short film, Golden Dawn, which comprises a beautiful golden sunrise over the city of Inverness. Sunday evening we shared a variety of our short films and Lolita’s animations.

Musical Instruments

Lolita and I brought with us a selection of drums, rattles and a flute, most of which we purchased in Avebury, although one drum came from the belly dancing supplies shop in Edinburgh.  These proved useful not just in ritual, but also in moments of playfulness throughout the weekend.

 

KIA Retreat 2012 – The opening.

On Friday 12th October 2012, 3 couples met in a lodge near to Boleskin House on the shores of Loch Ness for the first KIA retreat.  The venue had superb views of the Loch, self catering facilities and an outdoor hot-tub. Of the 6 persons attending, 5 were actively interested in magic whilst the 6th attendee got on with other things in another room during the time when we performed rituals of any kind.  On arrival we did make the small walk to the falls of Foyers, which was flowing far stronger than I’d ever seen it before, so much so that it appeared to be raining upwards.

Originally we had planned to open the event with a Gnostic Mass, but it became apparent that even the simplified version Lolita was preparing had too many complex parts for participants to learn in advance for a small group that hadn’t worked together before.  Maybe next time.

Mass of Baphomet

Our actual opening ritual consisted of a Mass of Baphomet. This took the form of a 5 stage ritual inspired by the ‘Aeonic Litany’ of Pete Carroll.  As the only participant to have even been in a Baphomet rite before, I was to play[1] the horse or invokee.

In stage 1 all 5 participants danced in a circle beating on drums and shaking rattles, raising the energy of the animating life force of the planet. At the climax, I (as Baphomet’s horse) proclaimed the first line of the litany, ‘In the first Aeon, I was the great spirit’.

This signalled the start of the second stage where the other four danced about me, still with drums and rattles but chanting names of nature deities such as ‘an’, ‘Gaia’ etc. I danced on the balls of my feet to imitate the dance of a being with hoofed legs as I felt the possession grow.  This stage culminated in the second line of the litany, ‘In the second aeon, I was the all creator, all destroyer, Pangenitor, Panphage.’

This was followed by the third phase. Here participants called on the names of Devils, such as ‘Satan’, ‘Lucifer’, ‘Lillith’ etc, but if I approached them too close they would ward me off with holy signs and gestures.  At the climax of this stage I spoke the third line of the litany ‘In the third aeon, humanity knew me as the dark one, the Devil’.

In the fourth stage I was met with silence as participants tried to avoid eye contact with me. This resulted in the forth line of the litany, ‘In the forth aeon, humanity knew me not, for I was occult, the hidden one’.

In the fifth stage, participants chanted names related to Baphomet as the opener of ways, including related openers of the ways from other cultures, such as Ganesha and Legba, and also older forms of the name Baphomet such as Behemoth, whilst making horned gestures towards me. Finally, in full possession I proclaimed the final lines of the litany, ‘In this new aeon, I come before you as Baphomet, the god before all gods, who shall endure till the end of the Earth’.

In possession Baphomet charged the sacrament that was prepared in a drinking horn, with three loud animalistic calls into it, before taking a drink and passing it on.  Baphomet declared the door open and soon after I felt my normal conciousness returning.  I could hold the possession no longer, and as Baphomet decided to depart I felt my body collapsing into a sofa from exhaustion.  As I recovered I stood up and thought to declare myself as Anton once again so as to remove doubt.

We continued to pass around the drinking horn until all sacrament was gone.   No more rituals were performed Friday night, but we felt the doorway to open for the rest of the weekend.  Further accounts to follow…

Notes

[1] Taking a leaf out of Tai Chi, where those that practise together say they ‘play’ Tai Chi together, we talked about playing magic together, and magical playings, rather than working magic together and magical workings. We do this not to detract from the serious intent of the workings so much as to emphasise the importance of pleasure, and to prevent us taking things too seriously.  If a small error is made during a magical play, we need not stress over it.  Stressing over such trivialities can lead to ruining a ritual more than the initial error itself. We do not mean to imply that the ritual was ‘just an act’ like a theatrical play.

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