Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Warlock's Library #3

This book is one of my favourite possessions as Leilah Wendell is one of my favourite Occultists. I own all of her books including her biography Our Name Is Melancholy, Necromance Art Book and Encounters with Death. I also own and have framed her collection of wondrous art works, and have been a member of her Obitchuaries Forum since April 2003.

Many years before Katrina devastated New Orleans, Leilah bought an old dilapitated house on Magazine St and transformed it into the Black and Purple House Of Death (photos). From here she wrote many Necromantic works under her Westgate Press company including this ritual book(1991), and it became HQ for Necromantics around the world.

At 50 pages this book is short and sweet, but details quite thoroughly the means to become a Necromantic, practise its beautiful rites and in doing so become Death's Empath. Firstly the distinction between Necromantics and Necromancers must be explained, as it is done with Leilah at the start of the book.

Where Necromancers were magicians who would raise (read: force) the spirits of the dead to rise up from their graves to reveals wordly and otherwordly secrets, the Necromantics purpose is more sublime. Necromantics aim to communicate and become one with Azrael, the Angel of Death, bask in his Amythest light and use Death Energy for magical purposes, astral walk through Earth and Stargates, and become comfortable with their own Death before the event occurs.

Most NecRomantics are in love with Cemetery culture, adorning themselves with crucifixes, crosses and skulls, are taphophiles and are comfortable in the presence of Death. They enjoy a long walk through a cemetery, and it's common for Necromantics to first learn this Twilyte Art when someone close to them passes, but it's not a pre-requisite.

Here is a brief summary of Leilah's chapters within this Ritual Book:

1. Preface - Leilah describes "Death Energy" and its purpose, along with a Necromantics relationship to Azrael.
2. Terminology - The difference between Necromancers and Necromantics.
3. Amortean Credo - The vow a Necromantic makes to Azrael and to herself.
4. Getting To Know You - The beginning steps for a Necromantic to become accustomed to Death Energy and revere Azrael.
5. Connecting With The Death Energy - The next stage in connecting with Azrael. How to walk through the Stargate, the tools and emotional state necessary. Also how one can Astral Travel.
6. Ritual for Opening the West Gate - How to walk to the Other Side with Azrael.
7. The Summoning of Shadows - To summon shadows, one must become a shadow, this explains how.
8. Ritual Sculpting - How to create a Golem, similar to the one Leilah constructed in the House of Death.
9. High Necromancy - The ultimate rite of a Necromantic. Not for the faint-hearted or uncertain. How to connect with Azrael like never before. The rite will change your life and you will never be the same again (you will be better!).
10. Necrophilia in the Necromantic Rite - Leilah's disdain for Necrophilia and how it is forbidden to Necromantics, how it is an affront to Azrael, and why.
11. Doing Battle on The Spiritual Front - When one needs strength, the way to call upon Azrael's brother Mikael, the first Angel of Death, whose sword slays, while Azrael's scythe harvests.

Necromantics is a beautiful art, and in the world of the occult is quite unique. Necromantics is more spiritual in its workings then physical. It doesn't revel in the pleasures of the flesh, but requires the practitioner to harness the strength of their spirit to connect to the Death Energy, and to walk with Azrael in his Melancholy Path. He has no desire to be worshipped, only understood, deeply loved and never feared. One only needs to drive past a cemetery and sigh at its monuments, crypts and tombs to glimpse an understanding of the beauty and fascination of Necromantics.

You can peruse and order Leilah's Necromantic works here. Leilah's main Westgate site is here and her famous Obitchuaries Forum is here.

The Black Orchestra #1

Garden of Delight - Enki's Temple

Formed by Singer/songwriter Artaud and Pisacane in 1991, Garden of Delight began as a band to explore their love of spiritualism through music, and after releasing their first single NECROMANTEA (which Atraud now despises) they signed with Dion Fortune Records to record their first album about Sumerian Mythology titled ENKI'S TEMPLE:

1. Ancient God (Dead But Never Gone)
2. Inanna
3. And The Wind Blows Down The Clouds
4. The Watchtower
5. Behind the False God
6. Sumerian Haze
7. Enki's Temple and The Gates of UR

Artaud's grand plan was to release 7 albums, with 7 songs each across a span of 7 years as this number was significant in Sumerian Mythology with 7 Gates and 7 Seals to the Underworld.

With a distinct Gothic Darkwave sound featuring Atraud's deep and sombre singing, along with a drum machine and synthesizers, Enki's Temple mused Inanna's descent into the Sumerian Underworld to attend a funeral there. In the myth Erishkigal, Inanna's sister and ruler of the Underworld suspects that Inanna's true purpose is to conquer the Underworld and dethrone her sister, taking this hellish and morbid place for herself. To expose and depower her, Erishkigal demands that Inanna must pass a test at each of the 7 gates to the Underworld, giving away a magical item she possesses to each Gatekeeper. Arriving naked in front of her sister, Inanna then demands her sister step down from the throne. Subsequently Inanna is murdered and impaled on a hook.

Inanna's servant Ninshubur goes to Enki's Temple and pleads with him to release his mistress from the Underworld, and Enki gives Ninshubur the tools necessary in the form of two homunculi to appease Erishkigal. The servant manages to retrieve her corpse, and when they escape the homunculi are able to revive her. Inanna sends a band of demons after her sister to demand someone close to her take her place. Eventually her husband Dumuzi and his sister agree to spend six months each in the Underworld, and when her husband is down with Erishkigal this explains the lack of fertile crops and the Autumn/Winter season because she is the Goddess of Love and Fertility.

Artaud and G.O.D ended up making more then seven albums, after a brief break-up in 1997 with their 7th album PARADISE which ended Part-1 of the band's history. Each previous album Artaud sung about different mythologies ranging from Greek (Necromanteion IV) to Jewish (Scheoul "Sheol").

Enki's Temple is regarded by most fans as their best (and sombre) work, but to appreciate it I recommend you listen to their other albums, especially their earlier ones such as EPITAPH and SARGONID SEAL.

I am certain that the seal/sigil on the front of Enki's album cover is from Simon's Necronomicon that explains Lovecraft's tome originated in Sumeria. The symbol stands for MARUTUKKU, which is the Third Name/Seal and he represents Master of the Arts of Protection, sealed the Ancient Ones in their caves, behind the Gates, and he possesses the Arra Star which is the five-pointed pentagram. The Sigilist who invokes this sign does so when he performs an occult ceremony where there is danger present, such as when invoking demonic forces. Calling upon his Arra Star invokes a symbol of protection, that guards the soul as well as the body.

A recommended album for fans of Gothic and Darkwave music. If you are looking for a new band that has this particular sombre sound, or like other Gothic bands that sing about Sumerian Mythology such as Carl McCoy's Fields of the Nephilim I recommend you start with this album.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Warlock's Library #2

Supernatural Guides: Vampires, Werewolves & Demons.

Published in July 1979 by Usbourne Pocketbooks, this little guide by Lynn Myring was the first book I ever read on the subject of vampires. I believe I was twelve at the time, and I read it down the Gold Coast down south while attending a party at someone's mansion for a 40th.

The family had one daughter who was a year or so older than me, and when the strip-o-gram arrived and the children had to vacate the room the girl whose name I cannot recall took me to her parent's opulent library, placed this book in my hands and asked me if I believed in vampires.

This innocent act was the beginning of a lifelong obsession with vampires and the occult, and although I saw the original Salem's Lot on TV four years previously the obsession never stuck, or did it? I am certain the image of the vampire boy floating out of the mists, scratching on his friend's window begging for entry was stuck in my mind ever since, and would be to this day.

This book explains the myths behind Vampires, Werewolves and Demons, and provides a pop-cultureless explanation of these groups. Sure Hammer Horror, Franco and Rollin had been making vampire films for years by then, but this was before vampires were cool ala The Lost Boys, and decades before they become a pop-culture phenomenon.

What was explained in this book stuck in my mind what vampires and their hellish ilk should be like in stories, albiet of the classical/traditional kind: No reflections, shunned by garlic and crosses, refused entry unless invited and could take the form of bats, wolves and mist. The vampires either lived in eerie castles or returned to their graves early in the morning after their blood feasts before the sun's rays destroyed them utterly.

Like most books on vampire lore this book explained the origins of vampires around the world, but what made is special was the comic-like art of the interior that resembles the cover art you see above. My favourite pages are the vampire rising from beyond the grave in a swirl of supernatural mist (page 6)*, and the page of a pious man watching over a coffin, with a legend pointing to the different ways of preventing the birth of a vampire such as:

1. Illuminating the room with candles and a fireplace, because as creatures of the night, vampires feared the light.

2. Placing garlic cloves over door frames. In medieval times anyone who didn't like garlic was viewed with suspicion.

3. Sun and Moonlight were once seen as strong sources of life-giving energy, which might reactivate a corpse. Therefore curtains and windows must remain shut till the body is buried.

4. Animals were a great danger to an unburied corpse, and if one such as a cat jumped over the coffin, the body inside was sure to become one of the blood-sucking undead!

5. Lastly mirrors were thought to reflect the soul and were taken down or turned to face the wall near the corpse. This was to prevent the soul becoming trapped in the mirror and returning later to animate the body! (Page 11)*.

The book explains how vampires were buried and destroyed, such as nailed down in their coffins through the joints so it couldn't rise at night, to stuffing its mouth with garlic and staking it upside down. The book explains the vampire myth in correlation to the Black Death, and also relates medieval vampires stories such as Arnold Paole, with some pages on Eastern and Jungle vampires.

The Werewolf section goes into the myth originating from Norse Berserkers to its further growth in Germany and France. Pacts with Satan and night-time rituals with bonfires and magic salves are presented as a means to become a werewolf. Jean Grenier, the Wolf Boy who claims the Lord of the Forest gave him a magic wolf skin and ointment so he could eat men, was dismissed by a judge at the time as ludicrous and sentenced the boy to spend the rest of his life in a monastery.

The Demon section is short and sweet, detailing medieval demons and their correlation to vampires and werewolves, and how Demons were blamed for the misfortune of man for some time in the Middle Ages.

The guide ends with a summary of real monsters such as Vlad the Impaler and Elizabeth Bathory, and the short history (back then) of Supernatural Cinema such as Bela Legosi and Christopher Lee's Dracula and the original Nosferatu.

At only 64 pages, this little treasure is better than most vampire/monster guides released today, and compared to the state of the Vampire genre to back then, with this book we can clearly view what is sorely lacking into this wonderful genre today.

I got my copy off eBay years ago, but you can also find it on Amazon for an average price of US$60. As a memento this book is worth far more than that to me, but at 64 pages I suggest you do a good search to compare prices.

* Alas the scanner on my printer is not operating for some reason, so I cannot show you the pages in this wonderful little book.

The Warlock's Library #1

On Walpurgisnacht 1966, Anton LaVey who was to become known as "The Black Pope", ritualistically shaved his head and formally announced the creation of The Church Of Satan. Two years later he wrote this book as a collection of his observations of the human race in his early years, and also his own adaptation of Ragnar Redbeard's MIGHT IS RIGHT philosophy with his own Satanic Spin. A book of Humanism with a dose of devilish psychodrama and ritual, this has come to be the tome that most modern day Satanists use as a rule-book to achieve carnal pleasure and success while removing all unnecessary spiritual hogwash from their lives and philosophies.

The Satanic Bible is split into Four parts that are represented by the Four Lords of Hell and their elements:

1. The Book of Satan - The Infernal Diatribe - Fire
2. The Book of Lucifer - The Enlightenment - Air
3. The Book of Belial - The Mastery of the Earth - Earth
4. The Book of Leviation - The Raging Sea - Water

To LaVey, Satan wasn't a fallen angel trapped in the confines of Brimstone and Fire eager to steal your soul, with pitchfork and a contract ready for you to sign at the crossroads. He represents a Force of Nature, a metaphor for the carnal side of man, a man who uses his intellect and natural gifts to ascend above the dim-witted God-Fearing populace of Earth. A Satanist knows that his body was given to him to experience the pleasures of life (sin), and spits venom at those who tell him to deny that which is only natural to him such as sex, food and revelry (the seven sins).

Before part one, The Book of Satan, LaVey listed the Nine Satanic Statements, where through the metaphor of Satanic thought he explains the rules by which a Satanist should live his life: to aspire to greatness where he can become the best he can be. He must realise that man is just an animal not some spiritual being, and he needs to revel in the so-called sins of man if he wishes to live life to the fullest.

Some examples of these Satanic Statments are:

1. Satan represents indulgence, instead of abstinence: This statement explains that our bodies have been geared to respond positively and orgasmically to pleasure, so why deny yourself these experiences? Abstinence to a Satanist, let alone to common man seems like a strange concept. A bird has wings, why shouldn't it enjoy flying?

5. Satan represents vengeance, instead of turning the other cheek: Some people are prone to become a walking door-mat, letting others use and abuse them, and when abused just let it slide and/or think it is necessary to cater to the other person's whim. The Satanist says Hogwash!  to that and claims if one man strikes you on your cheek, smash him on the other! Make your enemies fear you; if someone pesters you tell them to stop. If they persist; destroy them utterly. In picking a fight with a Satanist they are signing their own doom, and they have no-one to blame but themselves if they cross you. A Satanist feels no guilt destroying his enemies when they have been duly warned.

6. Satan represents responsibility to the responsible, instead of concern for psychic vampires!: This one is my favourites at the moment. We all know someone in our lives that is so full of self-pity and needs constant assurance and attention that it drains us emotionally and physically.

We all have someone in our life that drains us with their constant lack of moving forward and improving. I recently ended a friendship because the 35-year old man who still lives with his parents, has no car and refuses to diet and exercise yet goes for girls that could guest-star on Gossip Girl kept complaining to me why he couldn't get a girlfriend. Furthermore he was still complaining about getting picked on in high-school which was 18 years ago!

After constant sound advice of getting his own place, exercising, having realistic standards in women, and purchasing a car, he is still drowning in the same shallow pool of self-pity, and still of course has no girlfriend! The Satanist abhors these leeches, and casts them back into the pitiful place from whence they came! LaVey describes himself people that only have you as a friend because of their high standards, constantly give you physical/monetary gifts and ask for nothing in return except for 'favours'. When you ask for things in return they are always 'indisposed'. Remove these people from your life as quick as possible.

The Book of Satan is LaVey's rewording in verse of Redbeard's 1890 book 'Might Is Right', giving the Satanist through verse a guide to his life, whereby he can become monetarily and physically powerful, exalting the physical and carnal whilst disparaging the spiritual and weak.  The keyword for Satanists is not TRUTH but DOUBT. The Satanists constantly tests and investigates things before he accepts their validity.

The Book of Lucifer explains the intellectual viewpoint of a Satanist, presents a Satanic view on Satanism and not the twisted explanations from bible-thumpers that have been the only (wrong) source of explanation for the religion for quite some time.

LaVey explains that the seven deadly sins lead to emotional and physical gratification, and should be practised and celebrated. Since man has been hard-wired to enjoy these sins, it was only natural for the Christian Church to point them out to tear man away from his own nature, while at the same time he explains that in the end the carnal will always win out over the spiritual. Some examples of this are wearing any clothes other than just to keep you warm makes you guilty of pride. Someone that enjoys a large block of chocolate or a 3-course meal even though the body does not require that much sustenance is guilty of gluttony and so forth.

LaVey continues with the metaphor of selling one's soul and how the Gods of past religions become the demons of the current ones. Satan means adversary and this term means that a Satanist must be adversarial, not be part of the flock, and to be true to yourself and your own nature. LaVey lists the Four Crown Princes of Hell that constructed the book's chapters, along with the names of devils and demons from different cultures around the world that stood in a similar light to Satan. Also explained is the Satanic viewpoint of sex, how love and hate relates to a Satanist, the difference between indulgence and compulsion, and the explanation and use of The Black Mass in a Satanist's life, its real meaning, psychic vampires, Religious holidays and the misunderstood topic of Human sacrifice.

The Book of Belial explains the use of ritual and magic in a Satanist's arsenal, how to construct and employ the tools for this, and the Thirteen steps for Satanic Ritual. Beforehand LaVey scoffs at 'white-light' magicians that invoke protective circles and pentagrams to safeguard themselves against the very forces they demand assistance from. A Satanist is not one to insult those who seeks aid from, and boldly steps forward and respectfully asks for assistance. Belial means "without a master."

The Book of Leviathan lists three different rituals that respond to a Satanist's modus operandi - Love, Destruction and Compassion. This mirrors the previous explanation of the Satanist's weapons of Sex, Sentiment or Wonder*. LaVey stresses that a Satanist discovers which weapon the Witch or Warlock wields to the best capacity, and uses that weapon to attain all their desires.

These rituals use emotional response and energy along with a choice of Nineteen Enochian Keys (adapted from John Dee's own work), that when assembled and chosen properly the Satanist will obtain the desired affect. In doing so that Satanist must be 100% certain that this is the outcome she desires for said person/event. The Satanist has no-one to blame but herself if they chose the wrong ritual or reason, and the result causes them guilt or grief. Two examples of this are:

1. LUST: Causing someone to lust after you but you don't really desire them or find their resulting advances to offend and disturb you.

2DESTRUCTION: Seeking the total end of a person in one form or another, only to experience guilt over their demise. You must utterly and succinctly desire their end, with no regrets. To the point they must deserve beyond a doubt what is coming to them.

Thus ends THE SATANIC BIBLE. An interesting read on the true nature of man, and how following your desires and being true to yourself will lead you to live a gratifying existence that you were meant to live. LaVey had his tongue firmly in his cheek when he named his group a Church and his book a Bible. A smart man for his time, this book is recommended, not only for the aspiring Satanist, but also for those who wish to know more about this philosophy and desire to hear Satan's side of the story, pitchfork and all.

*An example of Sex, Sentiment and Wonder is where the Witch/Warlock is extremely attractive and can use that as a weapon then they chose SEX as their power. SENTIMENT explains the old lady next door who cooks endless amounts of cookies that children gobble up and are enchanted by her lifestyle, or the wizened old man that people go to for advice. WONDER is where the person isn't the personifiction of sex but is strange, menacing or quirky enough to hold people's attention and the person will do things for the witch/warlock out of fear.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Requiem Chevalier Vampire: Tome 8

Written by French writer Pat Mills (Slaine - 2000 AD) and artist Olivier Ledroit, this darkly fascinating and very twisted comic series is translated into English and published by Heavy Metal magazine about once a year in their monthly issues. The comic itself is normally split into 'parts' within the issue.

For readers not familiar with the comic, you can read about the background to the story and characters here: Requiem Chevalier Vampire

In this issue, we see a Hellfire Club meeting in Greenwich Village hosted by Aleister Crowley and his latest Scarlet Woman, Leah Hirsig (featured above) aka The Ape of Thoth. The purpose of this event is to consecrate Leah to Aiwass, the Dark Mysterious God who helped Crowley scribe THE BOOK OF THE LAW.

In attendance is Journalist Horatio Burton of Union Jack Magazine who recently described Crowley as “The Wickedest Man in the World.” After declining a glass of menstrual blood from the ‘Ape of Thoth’, Crowley shows Burton his latest painting of the Ape, which is a demonic visage of Leah painted as the “Queen of Dead Souls.”

Crowley dedicates Leah to Aiwass as Alostrael – The Womb of God, where she will become his vessel to give birth to a ‘Moonchild’. Vowing to write about this blasphemy in his paper, Crowley beckons him to the painting once more where the spirit of Aiwass in the spirit form of a mandrill tears him limb from limb, cursing him to limbo for all eternity.

In Resurrection now, we meet the vampire selves of Crowley and Leah, where Crowley is now known as Black Sabbath and Leah as Aiwass in her/his Mandrill form where they consummate their forbidden love with the taboo of different species. Requiem has just destroyed The Convent of Blood, trying to rescue his Earthly beloved Rebecca who is now a Lamia. Requiem is battling Otto, his vampire advocate who was responsible for Rebecca’s earthly demise. If a Lamia can kill her murderer in Resurrection they will be set free. (see comic page above).

Otto gets the upper hand on Requiem, who in his astral body returns to his proper vampire form to then face off an Inquisitor who has slain an army of zombies and in his spare time feeds off orgasmic energies, thus denying any party he targets any lustful satisfaction.

Taking her vampire form once more at the request of Black Sabbath, Leah seduces Requiem to subdue him and release his mind from his endless desire of Rebecca, only to have their orgasms stolen. Requiem expresses his utter dissatisfaction in Leah’s seduction, and in a final, desperate attempt to please him, she takes her mandrill form once more while riding him, asking him if her mandrill form is gross (exhilarating) enough for him. The story continues….

I have followed this comic for several years now, and it’s only published in Heavy Metal Magazine once or twice a year. To be honest I get it for the superior, twisted art of Ledroit than the story, but on this occasion Mills has outdone himself with his penmanship.

I’ve always admired Aleister Crowley from afar. I’ve read the BOOK OF THE LAW and seen a documentary about his life, but haven’t had the chance to read any of his works or investigate his life fully. After reading this issue, I am quite keen to pursue knowledge of this enigma of a man, and must say I am intrigued by these Scarlet Women and why he referred to Leah as “The Ape Of Thoth”. So I am beginning my investigation on Crowley, The Scarlet Woman and Thelema.

If this story interests you, you can find the current tome split across two sections in the March 2010 issue of Heavy Metal magazine. You can find a preview of the issue, and what the cover art looks like here.


Firstly some of you may know me from my first blog THE DIRGE OF GABRIEL.

While I loved that blog, since it was my dark little first born, I have decided to discontinue it because I rarely watch and read many Horror films/books as often as a blog would require me to keep it updated. Good horror novels are few and far between as are movies now, and I feel the Golden Age of Horror has faded (though I desire the remake of The Wolfman will reignite the Black Flame!).

I read more non-fiction books than fiction at this current point in my life, so I wanted to create a new, improved and darker blog that would suit my current hobby, thus THE CONVENT OF BLOOD was born. I got this name from a building a vampire named Requiem destroyed attempting to rescue his beloved in a vampire comic called Requiem Chevalier Vampire, which I will review shortly.

So this blood-soaked Blog of Darkness serves a variety of dark purposes from reviewing some horror movies and novels that I find worthy of my peculiar tastes, to examining occult texts, and investigating occult personalities, groups and events that I find intriguing.

It will also serve as a personal journal of sorts, a dark biography to discuss what is going on in my dark little mind. I’ll also discuss occult systems that I have examined and explain what I like/dislike about them.

Come my fellow Dark Immortals! Take a seat in our decrepit pews, and open your Black Bibles to Chapter One. As the Demonic Priest and his Vampire Nuns take their place behind the pulpit, let your mind wander to the depths of your pagan minds, where your darkest fantasies lurk, and let the Black Mass begin !!