Sunday, 10 May 2020

Babalon Unveiled Episode 5—Scarlet Woman, Babylon the Great

Series 2 Episode 5: We have arrived at the heart of Babalon Unveiled! Thelemic Monographs. In the Scarlet Woman “is all power given”. The Serpent Power animates the life of the Scarlet Woman, radiating from the ‘star’ contained within her. Above the Abyss, the Scarlet Woman is the body of Nuit, the company of heaven. Down the ages, the feminine creatrix has been demonised and reviled. We have to travel back aeons in time to find that the so-called harlots were priestesses, temple virgins or pythonesses dedicated to the sacred oracle. As we move forward into classical times, women were thrown out of the temples and forced into prostitution. To the religious zealots down the ages, Babylon the Great symbolises the pride and arrogance of materialism. We shall lift the veil woven from the confusion of the scriptural scribes. The mythical ‘fall’ of Babylon has its origin in literal fact. She may have ‘fallen’ in so far as her material image was destroyed along with all memory of her knowledge and power, but she is fully resurrected for all those that follow the love of Nuit.

© Oliver St. John 2020. The Spanish classical guitar music is ‘Mazurka Chôro’, composed by Heitor Villa-Lobos, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Saturday, 14 March 2020

Babalon Unveiled Episode 4—Ultimate Tarot Journey, Lineage of the Magi

Series 2 Episode 4: We open the programme with the Ultimate Tarot Journey. This is not a pathworking but an investigation into the ingenious placement of the 22 trumps on the paths of the Tree of Life. We here place the Tarot in a context never previously discussed or written about. The second part of the broadcast resumes the readings from Babalon Unveiled—Thelemic Monographs. What is the meaning of ‘lineage’ in regard to magical Orders? How did such a notion come about? The truth of such matters can come as quite a surprise. All will be revealed in ‘Lineage of the Magi’, an-depth look at apostolic succession in the light of Esoteric Thelema. This includes asides that do not appear in the book.

© Oliver St. John 2020.
The Spanish classical guitar music is ‘Mazurka Chôro’, composed by Heitor Villa-Lobos, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John.
Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Monday, 27 January 2020

Babalon Unveiled Episode 3—Witches, Vampires, Afterlife and Imagination

Series 2 Episode 3: Previously, we have discussed the Thelemic Gnosis independently of the mainstream or orthodoxy. Esoteric Thelema returns the Gnosis to its ancient Egyptian source. There is no need to appeal to the writings of Crowley or his epigones. We have begun an enquiry into magical polarity and the role of Babalon or the Scarlet Woman in cosmology and initiation. We now move on to some of the key texts in Babalon Unveiled that deal directly with the matter of the (Egyptian) Book of the Law and the import of the teachings of Aiwass. We shall cover diverse topics along the way, including Witches, Vampires, the Afterlife and Divine Imagining. There is also a dramatised rendition of the Song of the Stele of Revealing, which many use for ritual purposes.
© Oliver St. John 2020. The  Spanish classical guitar music was ‘Valsa Chôro’, composed by Heitor Villa-Lobos, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Sunday, 22 December 2019

Babalon Unveiled Episode 2—Magick, Talismans and Sexual Magick

Series 2 Episode 2: We resume Lapis Philosophorum, the Stone of the Wise, the first monograph in the book Babalon Unveiled. In the previous episode we gave additional background information on the way that knowledge of the true state of affairs concerning ancient Egypt has been suppressed. After that, we summarised the development of spiritual, religious and scientific philosophy from the Greek Stoics to the present day. We discussed how causal determinism, scientific and theological, was proliferated in the world though war and conquest. The (Egyptian) Book of the Law denounces the prevailing philosophy of the present times. Having established the deterministic roots of both religion and fanatical scientism, we can now get to the heart of what Esoteric Thelema is about. We will discuss what magick is, what a magician is and does. We will disclose Esoteric Thelema by use of symbol and analogy. We will take a deeper look at talismans than will be found in any textbook. We will also reappraise sexual magick, so called.
© Oliver St. John 2019.
The first and second piece of guitar music was ‘Valsa Chôro’, composed by Heitor Villa-Lobos, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John. The piece at the end of the programme was ‘Requiem for the English People’, composed, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John (December 2019).
Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Thursday, 21 November 2019

Babalon Unveiled Episode 1—Esoteric Thelema

Series 2 Episode 1: In this new series, we will focus on Esoteric Thelema and the book, Babalon Unveiled! Thelemic Monographs. We will reveal that Thelema is an extremely ancient initiatory path that predates the Indian and Tibetan Tantras, the Greek and Persian Mysteries, and even Dynastic Egypt. Since the early 90s at least, scholars have been uncovering historical facts that radically change our view of history and consequently our entire cultural and philosophical perspective.

© Oliver St. John 2019
Valsa-Chôro, composed by Heitor Villa-Lobos, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John.
Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Lord Dunsany Journey of the King Part Two

Episode 21: We continue with the extraordinary fiction writing of Lord Dunsany. His early tale, Journey of the King, explored realms of Qabalah, magick and the Nightside years before Aleister Crowley and Kenneth Grant did so in a more technical manner. Here is the second and final part of the story, Journey of the King, from Time and the Gods by Lord Dunsany.

© Oliver St. John 2018
© Valsa-Choro, by Heitor Villa-Lobos, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John (2018).

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Friday, 24 November 2017

Lord Dunsany Journey of the King Part One

Episode 20: We will discuss the extraordinary fiction writing of Lord Dunsany. His early tale, Journey of the King, explored and even illustrated realms of Qabalah, magick and the Nightside years before Aleister Crowley and Kenneth Grant did so in a more technical manner. Oliver St. John reads the entire story, Journey of the King, Part Two of Time and the Gods by Lord Dunsany.

© Oliver St. John 2017

© ‘Adelita’ Mazurka, Francisco Tarrega, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John. Incidental music, Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Friday, 22 September 2017

Liber 373 Magick of Earth and Stars

Episode 19: We discuss Liber 373, the seven rites and seven seals of the Dragon Star. The Dragon Star is a series of tantrik initiations that has its basis in the Qabalah and Hermetic Tree of Life. The Elizabethan sorcerer and alchemist John Dee provided the blueprint for this. We also take a look at the Magick of Earth and Stars, for terrestrial and celestial locations are vital to any tantrik initiation. Episode 19 also features two newly recorded performances on guitar of compositions by Francisco Tárrega and Heitor  Villa-Lobos.

© Oliver St. John 2017
© ‘Adelita’ Mazurka, Francisco Tarrega, and A minor Prelude 3 from Five Preludes for Guitar, Heitor Villa-Lobos, performed and recorded by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Thelemic Mysticism and Jacob Boehme

Episode 18: We discuss Thelemic mysticism, with a particular emphasis on the practical side of things. The saints and sages down the ages were not all ‘up in the clouds’. We will demonstrate this with some readings from The Confessions of Jacob Boehme. Boehme had some encouraging and helpful advice to anyone facing the trials and tribulations of the spiritual path. We will of course provide plenty of comparative readings from the (Egyptian) Book of the Law, Liber AL vel Legis. 

© Oliver St. John 2017
© Prelude in D Minor by Francisco Tarrega played by Oliver St. John; ‘Transition (improvisation)’ by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Friday, 7 April 2017

The Phoenix and Nightside Astrology

Episode 17: We will look at the book entitled, The Phoenix and other Stellar Rites of Initiation. Heather Carmen and Oliver St. John perform a dramatisation of some of the Phoenix Ritual. We also include here Astrology of the Holy Guardian Angel Part Two. We cover what Edwin C. Steinbrecher called ‘Alien Powers’ in a natal horoscope.

© Oliver St. John 2017
© Prelude in D Minor by Francisco Tarrega performed and recorded by Oliver St. John; ‘Transition (improvisation)’ by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Astrology of the Holy Guardian Angel

Episode 16: We move on to the grade of Dominus Liminis and investigate relations between the Holy Guardian Angel and the astrological natal chart. We therefore include an overview of the subject of Hermetic Astrology. Astrology is frequently neglected by modern students, and sometimes even completely ignored. We will use as case studies the horoscopes of two men that started out the best of friends but ended up sworn enemies: Samuel Liddel MacGregor Mathers and Aleister Crowley.

© Oliver St. John 2017
© Prelude in D Minor by Francisco Tarrega performed and recorded by Oliver St. John; ‘Transition (improvisation)’ by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Building an Astral Temple and Thelemic Initiation

The grade of Philosophus 4=7 is here discussed. We look at the subject of building an Astral Temple. The magical temple is conceived as a pyramid in the grade of Neophyte, but it does not stop there. The ‘Z’ formula by which the Probationer passes to Neophyte is used for talismans, evocation and all manner of magical work. We therefore take a look at the whole matter of Initiation in the Outer Order or Golden Dawn. We examine the role played by the Qliphoth in the Great Work, the use of traditional visionary material such as the book of Daniel and the Revelation or Apocalypse, and how these themes are resumed in the (Egyptian) Book of the Law, Liber AL vel Legis.

© Oliver St. John 2017
© Prelude in B Minor by Fernando Sor performed and recorded by Oliver St. John; ‘Transition (improvisation)’ by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org


Thursday, 20 October 2016

HP Lovecraft Haunter of the Dark Part Two

Here is the second and final part of the H. P. Lovecraft short story, The Haunter of the Dark, narrated by Oliver St. John.

© Oliver St. John 2016

© ‘Endecha’ Prelude in D Minor by Francisco Tarrega performed and recorded by Oliver St. John; ‘Transition (improvisation)’ by Oliver St. John.
Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

HP Lovecraft Haunter of the Dark Part One

In Episode 12 of this series we discussed the new book, ‘Dreaming Thelema of Kenneth Grant and H. P. Lovecraft’. The book features 17 surrealist paintings created as part of the project. It also includes three complete short stories by H. P. Lovecraft: Nyarlathotep, The Crawling Chaos, and The Haunter of the Dark, plus a reconstruction of the Lovecraftian Necronomicon. We depart from the usual lecture style of these talks to read the short stories, The Haunter of the Dark. The story is broadcast in two parts; the second part is given in Episode 14.

© Oliver St. John 2016
© ‘Endecha’ Prelude in D Minor by Francisco Tarrega performed and recorded by Oliver St. John; ‘Transition (improvisation)’ by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Monday, 19 September 2016

Beyond Metaphysics: Lovecraft, Kenneth Grant and Gematria

A short lecture on the grade of Practicus, the third initiated degree. We will be discussing various aspects of the grade work and Ordo Astri, the Order of the Star. Also included is an entertaining, illustrated talk focussed on the new book, ‘Dreaming Thelema of Kenneth Grant and H. P. Lovecraft’. This includes readings from two H. P. Lovecraft stories written in the 1920’s, ‘The Festival’ and ‘The Call of Cthulhu’. The final section concerns the Art of Gematria. There is an unexpected appearance by Aleister Crowley!

© Oliver St. John 2016

© ‘Endecha’ Prelude in D Minor by Francisco Tarrega performed and recorded by Oliver St. John; ‘Transition (improvisation)’ by Oliver St. John.

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org

Friday, 17 June 2016

Thelema: Romance of the Magical Orders

Temple of Babalon Podcast, Episode 11: Thelema: Romance of the Magical Orders. “What is a valid magical Order?” “What is Thelema?” These are frequently asked questions. As there is so much doubt and confusion around Thelemic magical Orders, Oliver St. John discusses the question of validity. He also provides an in-depth examination of what Thelema really is, as opposed to what is commonly believed about it. There will be a discussion of the Rosicrucian ideal, the magical philosophy and cosmology of Thelema, and the Magisterium, or secret rites of initiation.

© Oliver St. John 2016
© B Minor Study by Fernando Sor performed and recorded by Oliver St. John

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org


Friday, 18 March 2016

The Interview: Magical Life and Work of Oliver St John

This podcast episode features an in-depth interview with Oliver St. John, who is usually the host of this podcast. Oliver St. John is the author of books on a range of esoteric subjects, including the magical philosophy of Thelema, Hermetic Qabalah, ritual magick, esoteric astrology and the Tarot. He is also the founder of Ordo Astri, an international magical Order based in England UK. The guest host and interviewer for this episode is Heather Spare.

© Oliver St. John 2016
© B Minor Study by Fernando Sor performed and recorded by Oliver St. John

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium:  www.ordoastri.org


Friday, 23 October 2015

Magical Pathworking

We are still dealing with the grade of Zelator, the second initiated degree. The grade of Zelator is symbolised by Yesod on the Hermetic Tree of Life, and symbolises the full entry into Yetzirah, the Qabalistic world better known as the Astral Plane. We will be discussing various aspects of the grade work. In addition, we will discuss the technique of magical pathworking. There is an experiential element here too, as we will illustrate magical pathworking with a guided visualisation of the 32nd path of Tav.

© Oliver St. John 2015
© B Minor Study by Fernando Sor performed and recorded by Oliver St. John

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org


Saturday, 25 July 2015

Enochian Magick

We now pass from the grade of Neophyte to that of Zelator, the second initiated degree. The grade of Zelator is symbolised by Yesod on the Hermetic Tree of Life, so sometimes the 2=9 grade or Second Degree is called the grade of Air. This seems an appropriate time to discuss Enochian Magick and, in particular, the magical operation called the Skrying of the Thirty Aethyrs or Aires. Later on, we will present a reading of the Oracle of Babalon and the Second Call of Spirit, in the Angelic language.

© Oliver St. John 2015

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org



Saturday, 2 May 2015

Kenneth Grant and the Witches Sabbath

Who or what is this Devil, adored by the witches? The term itself, “Witches Sabbath”, is archaic and bound up with many false trails. A Catholic clergyman dreamed up ‘Witchcraft’ in the 15th century – and all the trappings of frogs, black cats and women riding upon broomsticks. It was the same notion that sent thousands of women and men to the stake. The Witches Sabbath is an example of confusion confounded with error, as the Sabbath is the Jewish name for the seventh day on which the Lord was said to have rested after creating the universe, as according to the book of Genesis. That day is Saturday, Shabbathai, which is also the Hebrew name for the sphere of Saturn – the astrological ruling planet of Capricorn, the Goat-footed God. Capricorn corresponds to the Hebrew letter Ayin, “an eye”. Every-thing is in the eye of the beholder, and those who truly ‘see’ the Witches Sabbath, so-called, are specially chosen. Is there any magical sense or meaning in the Witches Sabbath? It takes someone with a peculiar genius to find one. And that person was the extraordinary writer on the occult, Kenneth Grant.

© Oliver St. John 2015

Visit Ordo Astri, Thelemic Magical Collegium: www.ordoastri.org