>> On 29 June 2010 20:33, Magliocco, Sabina <[log in to unmask]>
>> > At the folk level, the dead were never omitted from Western magic. A
>> > number of vernacular magical traditions feature spirits of the dead: they
>> > may be called upon to help, cause harm if they are restless or unhappy, or
>> > be physically incorporated into magical philters through the use of human
>> > bones.
On 30 June 2010 20:22, Helen Frisby <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Indeed. This is abundantly clear from the voluminous English folklore
> collections of the later C19th/early C20th. Admittedly the very concepts of
> the 'folk' and their 'lore' probably says as much about the folklorists as
> it does about their subjects. Nonetheless English funerary folklore of this
> period is consistently underpinned by the presumption that the living can
> and should assist the souls of the dead (especially during the liminal
> period between death and disposal) toward the afterlife, while
> also appeasing the potentially dangerrous dead, eg through care of the body.
obviously you are both right, and it would be interesting - though
beyond me - to compare some of these customs with New World
traditions. The background of the Cunning Men an/or their clients
would certainly overlap with such lore.
These customs and beliefs were however no part of the Golden
Dawn/Crowley synthesis, and are very largely absent from the
grimoires, though for different reasons. This, along with a certain
prejudice against Spiritualism on the part of Crowley, and the
ambivalent relationship it had with Theosophy, have had a dramatic
effect on the modern synthesis. Absent from the 'Western Magical
Tradition' today, among both 'moderns' and 'traditionalists' is what
we might call a well developed 'practical eschatology'. This is so
fundamental and all encompassing a component both in folk and
classical religion that its absence, once noted, is truly bizarre.
(An important rider is that the modern W.M.T. so called is largely a
product of the English speaking and Protestant world. These
observations do not therefore hold true among African or Hispanic
traditions &c, although 'modern magic' is penetrating S.American
occultism. I shall restrain myself from anticipating or repeating some
other aspects of the matter here).
>> agreed, though as mentioned the survival of folk magic is patchy, good
>> in Hoodoo, not so good in occult revival circles, where grimoires by
>> rote, angels and the qlipoth are more common. This is definitely an
>> area where taking the modern synthesis further could make magic more
>> socially relevant, and more permeable to mutual cultural exchange with
>> ATRs etc..
> Get a free e-mail account with Hotmail. Sign-up now.