The Magick of Alexandria Workshops
The Magick of Alexandria Workshops are an authentic reconstruction of the Graeco-Egyptian Magick of fourth and fifth century Alexandria in Northern Egypt. The rituals experienced within the workshops are composed entirely of excerpts from a number of authentic source documents. The workshops are designed to form a complete system of initiation. The aim of this system is balanced spiritual development through the invocation of divine energies. This ultimately leads to Empowerment through direct access of one's higher self - the divine spark within us all.
The Hermetic philosophers worked with a system of nine spheres which served as a model for both their universe and their psychological makeup. The first seven spheres correspond to the planets, while the eighth and ninth spheres correspond to both the realms beyond the planets and extremely deep subtle psychological levels.
Each workshop will take the form of a long evening where the energy of a sphere will be experienced. Initially, the seven planetary spheres of the ancients will be worked through in their traditional order: Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. Tapping into these energies facilitates experiencing the entire range of divine archetypes.
At each of the planetary workshops three gods and/or goddesses will be invoked. The first will be a god or goddess from the Greek pantheon, corresponding the planet being worked with. The second will be a god or goddess from the Egyptian pantheon, which are somewhat trickier to unambiguously aspect to a planet. The third will usually be a god or goddess with a darker energy. While all three invocations are recommended, participants will always have the option of sitting out the invocation of a god or goddess they don't feel comfortable with.
The purpose of invoking darker energies is to enable participants to explore their psychological boundaries by confronting gods which have been demonised through the passage of time. This is not to say that these gods are intrinsically evil, but they have accrued negative associations which can be confronting to some. Spiritual growth can sometimes be challenging if the conditioning of a lifetime has to be deprogrammed - this is where the dark gods come into their own. Fear is perhaps the greatest impediment to growth.
All the invocations in the Workshops have been run successfully as group rituals on the east coast of Australia and in California, while many have been run in Ohio. The participants in these rituals have had direct experiences of planetary forces, sometimes leading to intense personal experiences, and even life changing experiences following the rituals. This is hardly surprising given that the planetary forces being invoked were referred to as gods and goddesses by the ancients.
Participants in these groups have had various degrees of spiritual experience and can be categorized broadly as either seasoned magickians, New Agers, witches, pagans or curious novices. The results they have experienced have shown that the only pre-requisites to profound spiritual advancement are determination, sincerity and an open mind.
Beyond the seven planetary spheres, lie the eighth and ninth spheres. The eighth is the sphere of the stars and the ninth is that which lies beyond. The ninth was referred to as the Prime Mover and is the closest approach possible to the absolute. The sublime visions of the Gnostics and Hermeticists were within the eighth and ninth spheres.
To successfully work with the eighth and ninth spheres presupposes having worked with the preceding seven planetary spheres. Consequently, only those participants who have completed the planetary workings will be admitted to the workings with the eighth and ninth spheres.
Regarding the workshops, participants with ritual robes should wear them. For those with no robes it is good to set aside special items of clothing which are only worn for spiritual exercises. Black and white are excellent as they are totally neutral colours and are suitable for all of the workings. There are colours associated with each of the planets, enabling participants with a number of robes to wear a different robe to each workshop.
Participants shouldn't wear any perfume, after shave, or essential oil to the workshops, as they will be anointed with the correct essential oil attributed to the deity being invoked prior to entering the working.
Drug and alcohol use prior to and during rituals is discouraged. It is a sign of disrespect to the divine forces invoked and also to the other participants. It also compromises one's ability to be receptive to the energies invoked.
Prior to each workshop, it is a good idea to read up on the gods and goddesses to be invoked. It is also useful to meditate on the energies to be expected. In all ritual workings, the more that is put into them, the greater the rewards.