Posts Tagged ‘Book Review’

5 Things I Enjoyed About Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy

Friday, April 13th, 2012

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I first reviewed Scott Stenwick’s Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy (MtMH) earlier this year. At the time, I was a few chapters in. Today, I’ll review the rest of the book.

I came into this book knowing very little about Enochian. I knew it was a complex ritual style, that it was supposed to put you in contact with Angels, and a bit of the history. I could disguise my ignorance a conversation, but I couldn’t really participate in a conversation about Enochian intelligently. After reading MtMH, I feel like I know enough of the history and the details of Enochian to have an intelligent discussion on it, which was one of my main goals.

When I first started reading MtMH, I thought about trying Enochian as a way to connect with more traditional mages. At this point, I don’t think I will. MtMH has made me less interest in practicing Enochian, which sounds like a slight, but really the book was just doing its job: It gave me a much clearer picture of what Enochian magick entails, which let me decide that Enochian isn’t for me. But trying to explain that I really do like the book, even though it makes me less likely to practice its subject, is challenging for a writer, and it’s a lot of why I’ve put this article off.

5 Things I Liked About MtMH

Scott has a great, detailed description of setting up the temple (the ritual space). It includes sigils for you to photocopy. Personally, I would be much more likely to practice the style if I don’t have to draw or carve all of these complex shapes. He also suggests using brass rings instead of gold, and other ways to get a quick and dirty temple up and running.

Seeing the details of the temple laid out gave me a much better feel for what ritual magick is about. I mean, I knew about correspondences before, but seeing Scott work through them as he reasoned about which metals to use for the temple gave me the feel of working with them, which is really useful for understanding what other mages are talking about.

Most chapters open with a blog-post-like discussion. Scott covered secrecy in magick (he’s against it), the different banishing and invoking rituals (LBRP / LIRH = Operant field), and other topics. They’re like more-polished blog posts, and even though I encountered the ideas on his blog, reading them again in book form (maybe with more editing?) made the ideas clearer. It was fun to get some of the ideas that hadn’t quite connected before.

I skipped most of the actual rituals, but from what I did read, they are quite detailed, with good diagrams. I believe I could correctly perform the rituals from just the written instructions, which isn’t true of all books. So if you do want to practice Enochian, I think this book will do a good job of it.

Beyond that, MtMH teases apart the now-standard Golden Dawn version from the original Dee-Kelly version. I can’t say which is better, but I’d sure want to know which I was using. This seems like an important distinction, and one that I wasn’t even aware of before reading this book.


Here’s where I ended up on the book:

Enochian isn’t for me. But that has very little to do with MtMH, and everything to do with what Enochian is actually about.

If you want to practice Enochian, this seems like an excellent book. It’s slim (150 pages), includes sigils to photocopy, and has quite detailed instructions for actually performing the rituals.

For me, I just want to be able to have an intelligent discussion with traditional ritual mages, and this book helped get me there. It gave me a much better sense of what’s involved in setting up a temple and performing the rituals, enlightened me on some distinctions in the history of Enochian and the Golden Dawn, and explained the difference between a lot of the standard rituals (LBRP, LIRP, LBRH, LIRH). And it did all that in about 75 pages, which is awesome. (Remember, I skipped the rituals.)

I’d recommend Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy for anyone wanting to practice Enochian, along with anyone looking for a quick introduction to what Enochian magick is all about.

Here’s a link to buy the book on Amazon: Mastering the Mystical Heptarchy.

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