This entry in the black grimoire is part of the series that will explore the system of magic developed by myself with The Order of Sorcerous Intrusions.
This lecture is a good opportunity to outline some of the underlying ideas and philosophies that have informed my magic in the past, while introducing some terms and concepts from my current practice.
Black Magic: Categories, Types, and Methods
Table of Contents
Magic and the Left-Hand Path
The LHP, as a path of authentic attainment, is heavily focused on the practice of magic. Specifically magic that serves the overarching goals of the Path as they relate to the magician. As well as the individual goals of the sorcerer. As you can probably guess LHP magic is concerned with both self-evolution and more practical matters like getting laid, burying your enemies, and improving finances. In the LHP all magic that serves a useful purpose is valid so long as it works. There is no stuffy moralizing or snobbery in that regard. Effective magic is good magic.
Everyone has a definition of magic. Some people have worked out really cool ones (like Michael Aquino: “Greater Black Magic (GBM) is the causing of change to occur in the Subjective Universe in accordance with the will. This change in the subjective universe may cause a similar and harmonious change in the objective universe”).
The most famous comes from Aleister Crowley, who defined magic as “the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will”. This is a deceptively simple, widely misinterpreted, and very accurate definition. It is a bit vague and philosophical for our purposes however. And since I’m never one to pass up an opportunity to flex my language-smithing, I humbly present the following definition which applies to THIS system of LHP magic. It is influenced by the work Ipsissimus Webb, who I respect greatly in matters of storing and transmitting knowledge.
We can unpack this a bit.
To cause change in the universe
Here I am being specifically broad so as to account for magic regardless of which universe it is targeted at (physical, astral, etc.).
using structured metacommunication
Structured as in a specific method, technique or series of steps is decided upon and then used to effect the magic. In this way we can distinguish magic as a purposeful act, the product of contemplation and decision, not to be confused with mundane actions (This is where I part ways with many popular definitions.).
A metacommunication is a secondary communication or subtext embedded within a communication either explicit or implied, and possibly contradictory to the explicit communication. This refers to the use of symbols and/or symbolic acts to communicate something to parts of the Magical Universe.
that originates within the psyche of the magician
The magical act comes from within the magician. Even if the magic ultimately employs external forces, it begins within the soul of the sorcerer.
But What About White vs. Black?
For those of us that live in the Leftward charge, black magic becomes simply magic to us. I sometimes forget about the magic of the Right-Hand Path; white magic.
If you were to ask a magician of the Right-Hand Path variety to define white magic as opposed to black magic, you could get a few different answers.
The most likely being that white magic is done for altruistic goals, while black magic is used to cause harm. This is the definition that permeates low-resolution philosophies that are self-righteous.
A more “sophisticated” practitioner might go into a long-winded explanation of attaining knowledge and conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel, or perhaps the ascent of the paths of the tree of life as being the works of white magic.
The same practitioner will probably describe practical results magic as being of the black or possibly grey variety depending on the magnitude of natural upheaval caused.
This is all very silly and convoluted moralizing by my reasoning. We can certainly do better.
Black Magic is magic that is aligned with the aims of the Left-Hand Path:
- Distinction from the Universe
- Power over the Universe
- Satisfaction in the Universe
White Magic is magic that is aligned with the aims of the Right-Hand Path:
- Union with the Universe/god or gods/natural world
- Power through the agency of the Universe/god or gods/natural world
- Satisfaction of the Universe/god(s) or natural world
In Lords of the Left Hand Path, Stephen Flowers defines white magic as:
“a psychological methodology for the promotion of union with the universe and pursuing aims in harmony with those of the universe.”
More and more I come across magicians disparaging the idea of LHP/RHP, themselves favoring a supposedly holistic/middle path/? approach to magic.
Such statements reveal a fundamental ignorance of the basic ideas that define each path. Or possibly an approach to magic to never considers the goals of being.
Or worse, one that simply assumes that there is no choice in one’s approach to existence.
Whatever the situation, these are decidedly RHP positions in that they essentially see the end game of individual existence as being predetermined, or otherwise not worth confronting directly, and therefore of no concern.
Perhaps you would like to counter with the example of chaos magick (You are clever after all).
Chaos magic sees everything as permissible (you say), and rejects the concept of ultimate truth (you assert).
I’m afraid chaos magic is no escape from questions of being and existence either.
Given the great variety of ideas among chaos magicians, and the tendency to adopt different belief systems at different times, you will certainly get different and seemingly contradictory answers from the same magician if you press existential issues.
However, the fundamental underlying appreciation of an individual kia (soul, lifeforce, individual will), and its ultimate fate to be hurled into the void of chaos; places this chaos magic philosophy in the RHP camp.
I can already hear the backlash I’m going to get from that statement.
I envision a mob with chaobolts and torches at my door. Don’t freak out, I know there are exceptions. I am basing my statement on the work of Peter Carroll, who could arguably be regarded as the father of modern Chaos Magic. Calm the fuck down.
Types of Black Magic
Different traditions and systems in the LHP (and RHP) differentiate magic according to various types.
Low magic and High Magic. Practical and Spiritual. Lesser and Greater. The use of polarities is common in describing types of black magic.
The magic described by Anton LaVey in the Satanic Bible is divided into Lesser and Greater. The former being the use of applied psychology, affect manipulation, and projection of idealized personas to influence people and situations. The latter being formal ritual magic for the purpose of manifesting results in the real world through the application of magical techniques.
The Temple of Set expanded upon these ideas by describing the methods of action as they relate to the subjective and objective universes. The Temple of Set also introduced Medial Black Magic as a type of stripped down magical action imposed on reality.
My original training was with the Temple of Set, and over the years my own understanding of these concepts has evolved to better reflect my own experiences.
So in this entry I will present Black Magic within my framework that I have developed over the years.
I have categorized black magic into the following types because this is what best reflects my experience.
If you work with a tradition or system that categorizes differently or not at all, you might find that this categorization system useful in helping you document, analyze, and contextualize your own magical work. Especially in your personal magical records.
Here then are my 5 primary types of black magic.
The great Dutch rationalist Baruch Spinoza got it right when he declared:
Of course he was talking about the precedence of cause before conclusion, but the literal example is on the right track.
For our purposes let us define Fascination thusly:
Fascination is about guile, cunning, charm, strategy, and laser focus. It is also about taking into account the underlying psychical forces that can influence all human interactions. Fascination is the red-headed step-child of the bunch. Often neglected by black magicians or ignored completely. Which is unfortunately why so many magicians are so socially awkward. Black magicians are by their nature, different from the masses. Operating at a different wavelength. Accordingly, Fascination should be in every black magician’s toolbox, right on top.
Skillful application will win you greater opportunities, better experiences, and a more satisfying lifestyle.
Cultivation of a deep, practical knowledge of psychology, neurolinguistics, subtle energetics, closing techniques, etc. will prove to be a worthwhile Fascination education.
Anton LaVey wrote a noteworthy manual called The Satanic Witch. More recently, Magister Robert Johnson published The Satanic Warlock. These two books can offer the magician a starting point for exploring some of the factors of Fascination. In addition I would recommend Robert Bruce’s books on energy work to get a firm foundation in the subtle forces that will assist your Fascination.
This is what most people mean by magic or ritual magic.
It is a formal, calculated sequence of events that manifests changes in the world or yourself via supernormal action.
Most commonly Thaumateurgy is executed within a ritual framework, populated by symbols, and using a symbolic language to communicate with the magical universe.
This is type of magic is often called Greater Magic or Greater Black Magic. I have chosen the word Thaumateurgy, which translates as “Wonder Working” for its historical understanding as divine action by the magician.
If the goal is to cause a change in the physical world, this change in the personal magical universe alters the astral which precipitates into the material universe. Results are largely dependent on the quality and coherency of the change made to the astral.
There are many cases where the magician is seeking some insight or quality to manifest within themselves. This is sometimes called illustrative magic. In this case the reciprocation occurs between the personal magical universe and the astral. The strength and immediacy of the results being dependent on the powers of the black magician.
Thaumateurgy is (usually) focused ritual magic, directed at causing something to happen in the “real world” or within. Along the path, one can certainly progress to a point where the tool of ritual becomes largely unnecessary, but for most practitioners; this is ritual magic.
An example: Your child falls ill. Very ill. You find yourself at the hospital, and you are booking a room.
Answers are few and far between and your anxiety is crushing you. You need to run home to collect some essentials.
While you are home you fish the little bag labeled “first haircut” out of the baby book. You light a candle and focus everything in you on the vision of your child restored and healthy.
You FEEL a connection, a stirring, something numinous. Ten minutes later you arrive at the hospital to find your child is in fact recovering. Illness dissipates, light returns to their eyes. Inexplicable. That’s Goetia. My definition:
This is my definition and personal theory of the mechanics of Goetia based on my experience. It is direct magical action on the subtle forces that act directly on the world.
Aetheric Black Magic/Aetheric Magic (ABM)
This is a classification that I have added based on my own work. This does not necessarily reflect the ideas of the LHP community.
It is my position that direct interaction with the subtle energetic/informational field, commonly called the astral or aetheric/etheric, is its own distinct type of magic, based on the method of action and, because it doesn’t feel right to me lumping it in with one of the other types of Black Magic above.
This is a broad type of Black Magic and can include predatory spirituality (vampirism), energy work, astral constructs, and much more. I will certainly be writing on this type of Black Magic in this blog.
Yes I realize that definition is pretty vague, but I’m still working on this one. Get off my back. Fuck.
Examples of aetheric black magic include vampirism (predatory spirituality), so called energy work, astral constructs like artificial elementals and thoughtforms, and even temporal magic like retroactive enchantment.
This is magic that is aimed at the highest aspirations of Black Magic. The transmutation of the self into something permanent, powerful, and divine. Examples include communion with and initiations into the mysteries of Infernal forces, activation of the emanations of the self, Socratic techniques, exploring anamnesis, and devouring the gods. The techniques and trappings do not define a magical act of Theurgy, rather It is the aim of the working. However this is often an intensely intellectual process focusing on bringing to the surface those hidden faculties that allow us to apprehend the divine and then cultivate divinity within, through intense, internal exploration.
Psychotronic Black Magic
I go back and forth with categorizing this under Aetheric Black Magic and giving it a spot of its own. Usually based on whatever breakthrough of magical-tech I am currently seeking. Let’s start with a definition:
This is the least common area of black magical exploration, yet the one that is most likely to produce true magical breakthroughs and occult innovations. Psychotronic Black Magic (PBM) is a big part of my magical work, and over time I have evolved some pretty sophisticated magical-tech. You can find a simple example of PBM here:
In PBM we find everything under the banner of psychotronics; radionics, orgonomy, orgonite, magnetrons, etc. being applied towards black magic goals. More importantly however, and what distinguishes PBM from traditional psychotronics, is the deep fusion of magical technologies like invocation or sigils, with psychotronic technologies.
Approached in the spirit of true mad science, the evil genius manifests readily in the adept black magician; resulting in the most shocking and diabolical magical tech.
We have defined both black and white magic, asserting that these terms are related to the paths of individuation and submission respectively. Definitions have been offered for the 5 types of black magic recognized by The Order of Sorcerous Intrusions: Fascination, Theurgy, Thaumateurgy, Aetheric Black Magic, and finally Psychotronic Black Magic. And a basic explanation of the mechanics of each type was posited.
Recommended Written Works:
I strongly recommend the following written works for the exploration of black magic and the Left-Hand Path.
- Black Magic – The Left-Hand Path, Timothy Donahugh
- The Satanic Witch, Anton Szandor LaVey
- The Satanic Warlock, Dr. Robert Johnson
- The Power of Persuasion, Michael Kelly
- Lesser Magic and Psychic Self-Defense, Michael Kelly
- Three Masks of Lesser Magic, Michael Kelly
- How to Analyze People, James Williams
- Man and His Symbols, Carl Gustov Jung
- Maps of Meaning, Jordan Peterson
- The Seven Faces of Darkness, Don Webb
- The Satanic Bible, Anton Szandor LaVey
- Pacts with The Devil, S. Jason Black & Christopher S. Hyatt Ph.D.
- Hermetic Magic, Stephen E. Flowers Ph.D.
- The Technicians Guide to the Left-Hand Path, Roger Whitaker
- The Book of Sitra Achra, NAA 218
- Necrominon. Michael Ford
- The Octavo – A Sorcerer Scientist’s Grimoire, Peter Carroll
- The Nine Demonic Gatekeepers, Become a Living God
- Works of Darkness, E.A. Koetting
Black Magick, Fascination, Theurgy, Thaumateurgy, Aetheric Black magic, Psychotronic Black Magic, White Magic
About the Order
Just a competent black magician, techno-mage, and tongue-in-cheek philosopher, at your service.