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  1. The Anthropology of Magic

    My old friend Dr Susan Greenwood of Sussex University has just had a new book published – The Anthropology of Magic – available from Berg. Hopefully I’ll get round to reviewing it in the not-too-distant future, but in the meantime, here’s an interview with Susan from the excellent Pagans for Archeology blog. Susan will be giving a lecture on her work at Treadwells Bookshop on the 14th April, next year.

  2. Dialogue

    When I first met Vishvanath (the guy who I affectionately refer to as my “guru” – knowing full well he squirms when I do this), we started a conversation about tantra (and everything else) which went on for a year or so. A conversation shaped through walks through local woodland and parks, in and out of pubs and each other’s rooms, criss-crossing the city night and day. It was the beginning of friendship; a forging of affinities. Continue reading »

  3. Much ado about Yoginis

    There’s an easily observed phenomena on the contemporary occult scene – the recuperation of new scholarship into existing knowledge discourses. A new book comes out – and gradually it seems, its presentation shifts from “this is new stuff” to “we’ve always known this to be the case” – and eventually (thinking of my earlier post this month) – “this isn’t just out of a book, I’ve experienced it directly.” Continue reading »

  4. Experience – I

    In occult practice (as with much else), it’s relatively easy to have an experience which appears to confirm one’s theories, whether they be implicit or explicit. Continue reading »

  5. Sri Vidya, Gender, Thealogy, Immanence – Some Notes

    “Creation arises in joy, abides in joy and returns to joy…  Lalita awakens the receptive soul to the bliss that underlies all things” Tantric Yoga and the Wisdom Goddesses  (1994: 89).

    I was standing in water the other day and the angle of it created a stream broken into drops, cascading from the end of my chin. Each drop chased the preceding one and, looking down at them, I was hit by amazement. Their light-catching, simple procession immersed me in immediate wonderment. But I was not bathing in a dramatic waterfall, merely showering on ordinary morning. Tantrism is a philosophy of the cultivation of everyday ecstasy. 
    Continue reading »

  6. A meditation on Lalita

    The Saundaryalahari (“Flood of Beauty”) is a key Srividya text, sometimes attributed to Sankara. Composed of 100 verses, it is usually divided into two parts – verses 1-41 and verses 42-100. The first section, sometimes called the Anandalahari (“Wave of Joy”) is concerned with the facets of Lalita sadhana – her image in external worship, but also her Yantra and mantra-modalities The verses can also be read in such a way as to relate them to the subtle mapping of chakras, nadis, etc. The Anandalahari is sometimes seen as originating directly from Siva, or Lalita Herself. Continue reading »

  7. West Midlands PF Con

    Last Saturday (26 September) I went to my first ever Pagan Federation conference, in Stourbridge town hall, of all places. Continue reading »

  8. No more astral?

    I’ve been banging on to various friends for a few years now about why I no longer set much store in the notion of the astral plane(s), but until recently, I hadn’t actually written anything substantive – until some unsuspecting correspondent got the full blast of my unbelief (memo: I must stop answering correspondence before 7am). The following was written as a way of explaining my reasoning… Continue reading »

  9. Old wine in new bottles

    Original Falcon Press will be re-issuing The Pseudonomicon, Condensed Chaos and Prime Chaos – the latter with a new introduction. Continue reading »

  10. Becoming Imperceptible – I

    “Siddhi can be looked at in a number of different ways and one key one is to explore the sources of your own feelings of wonder. Dig deep… our culture expends a lot of energy in attempting to innoculate us against siddhi. … If you can find no wonder in yourself – examine why not? Have you ever felt any? What changed, when and why? Does wonder sustain you or dope you down? Is it good or bad do you think?”
    Vishvanath, in a discussion of siddhis, 2005 Continue reading »