The Arnemancy Podcast is back for a third season full of interesting guests, fascinating interviews, and strange history!
Join your host, Reverend Erik—that’s me!—on an exploration of your favorite topics, including Tarot, magic, the occult, and the history of Western Esotericism. This season, we welcome a bunch of new guests alongside some of your favorite returning visitors. We will be exploring modern applications of technology in magic. We will also take a close look at the works of Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa.
You can find the Arnemancy Podcast at arnemancy.com, as well as wherever you find the rest of your podcasts: iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, Google Podcasts—and now also on YouTube! Subscribe today at arnemancy.com/subscribe so you’ll be ready when season three’s episodes are released!
A sigil is but a word in a language so complex that it defies the boundaries of dictionary or thesaurus, a language so universal it relies on emotion and intuition, instead of equation. A sigil is an idea, more than it is a sentence. It is a wish and it is a command, but it is also an art. The art of sigil craft demands your patience as much as it demands your creativity. Concoct your meaning, divine your sentence, but then you must extract it from what you believe it to be, and abstract it into a form wholly unique. Solve et coagula. In this way, we encrypt our meaning into a form that may be impossible to decrypt. (more…)
Set upon by numerous foes, the Seven of Wands is the card associated with the Third Decan of Leo. The sign of Leo is ruled by the Sun, and this decan is ruled by Mars. It covers 20° through the 29° of Leo. In 2021, the Sun was in the Third Decan of Leo from August 12 to August 22.
Thomas Negovan is the director of the Century Guild Museum of Art and author of Le Pater: Alphonse Mucha’s Symbolist Masterpiece and the Lineage of Mysticism. He joins me in this special bonus podcast episode to discuss the work of Alphonse Mucha (1860-1939), especially his incredibly symbolic and deeply esoteric masterpiece, Le Pater.
Mucha was a Czech painter, illustrator and artist who lived in Paris during the Art Nouveau period. His distinctive style is recognized today as being among the defining works of that period, and is probably best known for his posters promoting stage actress Sara Bernhardt. However, Mucha was also a Moravian Christian and Freemason, and his esoteric interests and mystical pursuits enfused the artwork of his incredible masterpiece, Le Pater.
But your ears thirst for the sound of your heart’s knowledge. You would know in words that which you have always known in thought. You would touch with your fingers the naked body of your dreams.
One of the joys of the Tarot is its paranoia. Each deck promises to be a book containing the universe in all its detail—the physical and the metaphysical: that which is, was, will be, could be, isn’t, and wasn’t—as long as you know how to read it. And as the deck connects to everything, so everything connects back to the deck; thus the world becomes a conspiracy of meaning.
I say this by way of a caveat. Nothing I’m about to say is definitive, or even wholly justified, but rather a record of trying to follow a thread, and then getting tangled in other threads, until the little web of etiologies and etymologies is strong enough to lift the searcher off the ground. And in the spirit of a kind of paranoia, I intend to find my way by going too far.
You’ve got permission to come aboard this podcast episode! My guest in this episode is Captain Tres Henry, who also joined me back in April. We discuss divination, destiny, magic, and reality. Divination is not just a read-only operation, and we discuss what this means for the diviner who is also a magician.
This is a nerdy episode. We build up a metaphor between computer programming, divination, and magic. We dive into the notion of randomness and how it is connected to free will and determinism, a topic also at the heart of my chat with Allen Drake. We discuss a number of other esoteric topics, but take some time to also discuss boats. Get ready to learn about rigging and masts and other sailor terms like that.
We also talk about the Captain’s two pieces of software, Urania and Georatio. The former is astrological software geared toward magicians, and the second is a geomancy tool.
Tarot is one of the most profound initiatic tools. The 22 Major Arcana cards reflect the inner alchemy process of consciousness expansion, and the different stages we must undergo in our personal transformation. These cards, when properly understood and channeled, can offer steps that can guide you through Soul ascension and growth.
One of the cards that has always fascinated me and found its way into my awareness is the Magician. Not only is it the first building block in Tarot, but it is also a well of symbolic and initiatic teachings.
In this article, I will lead you on a deeper dive into one aspect of this card, especially in its relationship with the four elements of matter, the Platonic solids—more specifically, the Dodecahedron. First, let us begin by taking a look at the beauty and importance of sacred geometry.
Okay, stay with me here. You are going to have to hear this one to believe it, because my guest on this episode is Alexander Eth. That name is probably familiar, because Alexander is the host of the esoteric Glitch Bottle podcast, which covers topics we are all curious about: magic, mysticism, grimoires, necromancy, and other mysteries of our weird universe. Alexander is a classical ceremonial magician and researcher into grimoires.
Did wizards just make all of this up? Alexander and I talk about the modern renaissance of grimoire magic and what he’s learned from all of the amazing magicians, researchers, scholars, and translators he has talked to. Is there technology to trace? How much of it is innovation? I have been waiting for so long to have this conversation, and Alexander’s insights are fascinating.
In exploring this subject, we will discuss many of your favorite grimoires, well-known magicians both modern and historical, and a number of popular techniques. We discuss ritual implements, the history of such implements, and along the way we reveal that Alexander’s mind is a vast and impressive encyclopedia of magical goodies.
We also talk a lot about the nature of spirits. What are they? Why can we talk to them? How can we do it better? Why does it work in so many different ways? We ask these questions and then we absolutely try to answer them!
As a bonus at the end of the episode, Alexander and I share our pro tips on organizing podcast playlists. How can you spare your brain? Well, listen to the end and find out.
Anyhow, you can tell from the description, I suppose, that the episode had to be a long one. It also had to be a long one because this is an interview with Alexander Eth!! Enjoy!
The Nine of Swords, heavy with difficult imagery, is the Tarot card associated with the Second Decan of Gemini, which covers 10° to 20° of that sign. In 2021, the Sun was in Gemini I from May 30th to until the morning of June 10th. The sign of Gemini is ruled by Mercury, and its second Decan is governed by Mars.
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The Nine of Swords
These last few Swords pips don’t really get any more comfortable. In fact, they get darker and darker. The Nine of Swords depicts a nighttime scene with the subject sitting up in bed, apparently wracked with anxiety, terror, or grief. The black, black wall behind them could be an endless quagmire of darkness, but the most important feature here is that there are seven bold swords hanging there. While the hilts are all visible, the points vanish off to the right somewhere.
Before we get too far into the meaning of this card, I would like to draw your attention to some interesting details in this card’s art. First, on the side panel of the bed in the lower left, we see an intricately carved frieze that seems to depict two figures either playing or fighting among some trees. Next, the bedspread has very interesting designs on it! The roses are easy to pick out, but the blue panels, if you look closely, are covered in needlework depicting a variety of astrological symbols. Mars, the ruler of this Decan, sits in the subject’s lap, while Mercury, the ruler of this sign, hangs down nearer the floor. But they are not alone; take a closer look and see what you can spot.
The anguish depicted in this card is very difficult – an uncomfortable image and a crappy feeling to experience. This is one of those cards that is awkward to explain in a reading for a client, just as much as it is troubling to deal with when reading for yourself. I tend to look at the Minor Arcana in sequences, and as a suit climbs from Ace to Ten, at the same time, it descends further through the worlds of emanations to material reality.
Through this lens, the Nine of Swords is about elements in the Intellectual Realm nearing the first stages of material manifestation. Here, the pure intellect of the Swords begins once more to mix with the other elements. Ideas face reality, and suddenly there is a reckoning. What is the cost of your current path? What do you need to destroy in order to create? Almost every act of creation ends up having a price tag, and sometimes that price is difficult to bear.