Saturday, April 17, 2010

Source of the Enochian System of Magick - According to Frater Barrabbas

I have an intriguing question for all magicians using the Enochian system of magick. What if instead of either using the plethora of books and materials on Enochian magick or consulting the various published and translated or annotated diaries, a magician decided instead to go to the actual spiritual source that supposedly produced this material and start anew, without any prior opinions or beliefs. Would a magician who took this path find out anything new or different from what is already known and in use?

I am not advocating throwing away any of the materials that exist, either in the form of the diaries of John Dee or the many books that have made use of this material and expanded on it. In other words, I am not proposing reinventing the wheel in regards to Enochian magick. What I am proposing is for magicians to contact the angels and spirits in a similar order that John Dee and Edward Kelly did nearly 430 years ago to see if there is any further lore to be had. This is exactly what I did back in 1991, and what I discovered was an entire system of magick and a specialized Qabbalah that had not been reported in Dee’s diaries. My reason for doing this is that I believed that there seemed to be a lot of missing data in the overall Enochian system, and I also believed that what I was looking for would not be found in the diaries. I assumed that it could only be discovered if one followed in the foot steps that Dee and Kelly had made centuries ago, revealing the source of that system of magick.

To my knowledge, no one has taken this perspective and attempted to replicate what Dee and Kelly did so very long ago. The obvious reason for this is that there already exists a very large body of data in the form of Dee’s diaries. Occultists have been pouring over these diaries now for over a century. Why would anyone want to re-do all of the painstaking skrying sessions that Dee and Kelly performed only to produce either what is already known or something that would be less interesting or engaging? Purists like to say that they have taken accepted methodologies, like the pronouncing of the Enochian language, and gone back to the diary sources instead of using Aleister Crowley’s or Israel Regardie’s techniques. Yet despite the fact that there is so much material, I stubbornly suspected there were things missing as well.

Why did I think that and what were my reasons for believing that to be the case? Perhaps it was an intuition, but certainly I decided long ago that the Enochian system of magick was a thing that was separate and beyond even the writings and speculations of John Dee or the emotionally volatile intuitions and insights of Edward Kelly. Dee was a 16th century man, and the Enochian system of magick seemed like something that was both timeless and beyond the boundaries of any kind of occult or spiritual speculation from that time. One glaring omission was the lack of any authoritative archangelic spiritual entities in the Enochian system. We are talking about Briatic level spirits and not various entities associated with the Elemental Squares or planets. Once Dee had progressed beyond the basic known archangels of Uriel, Raphael, Michael and Gabriel, no other analogous class of angelic spirits is to be found.

I am sure that some Enochian adept would handedly dispute this claim and perhaps even point out some spirits that I had missed in my studies, but still, I am presenting the reason why I thought that the Enochian system was incomplete. It also seemed to lack much in the way of ritual structures, initiatory transformations, etc. I found the alphabet of the Enochian language to be difficult to work with, since there were only 21 (and not 22) letters - so close yet so far from the Hebrew Qabbalah. So with this intuition and perhaps limited understanding, I proceeded with the project of invoking the spirits in the order that Dee seemed to access them, and see if there was any other material to be had from the spiritual source of the Enochian system of magick. Instead of using a shew stone and performing the skrying sessions that Dee and Kelly performed, I decided to use the ritual lore that I already had in which to facilitate the invocation of the archangelic spirits. Since I use a system of direct immersion, I was not only going to invoke these angelic spirits, but I was going to enter into their domain as well. I not only was able to contact and receive a great deal of additional information, but I also received a very curious bit of lore as well. That the archangels had sealed much of this information away because it had been the provenance of another class of spirits altogether. These spirits were called the Nephilim, and it appeared that they were the reputed authors of the entire Enochian system of magick. I found myself transported from looking at historical information to engaging in speculations and insights associated with legends, myths and even a bit of archaic theology.

Therefore, I proceeded to perform quite a number of invocations, starting with the four basic archangels and Ratziel, then the corresponding four angels of the Nephilim and going even beyond that boundary. I got to talk with these various entities at length and learned that John Dee and Edward Kelly had only received a small part of this lore. That even after years of working with these entities, I have extracted probably only another small (but significant) segment. Yet what I have discovered is that this system of magick is active and larger than what anyone had previously realized. Hopefully, others will read my words and perhaps even perform some of the rituals, seeking to expand the knowledge that currently exists so that someday the Enochian system of magick will be represented by a whole and complete system, divorced from the pious religious perspectives and narrow belief systems of the 16th century, and brought fully into the 21st century - renewed and redeemed.

This is the sequence and names of the spirits that I invoked using lore that had been developed within the Order that I worked (Order of the Gnostic Star). My assumption was that it was loosely modeled on the progression of steps that Dee and Kelly performed centuries ago with their skrying sessions.

Invoke the four Archangels - then Ratziel and finally Naluage - which led me to invoke the four chiefs of the Nephilim.

  • Uriel
  • Michael               
  • Gabriel
  • Raphael
  • Ratziel - 28 Spirits of Light
  • Naluage - Four Chiefs of the Nephilim

It is only now in the present time, when my ability to write and structure my thoughts has matured, that I have decided to begin publicizing this work, started almost twenty years ago. Some will dismiss it as either pure speculation or even worse, the imaginings of an undisciplined mind. Others will consider it totally out of synch with orthodox beliefs and practices that have already begun to harden and restrict speculation and artistic exploration. I am certain that those who consider themselves experts in the domain of Enochian magick will scoff at my ideas and claims since they deviate so profoundly from the base material of the diaries. However, it’s my belief that the diaries are limited, so if we consign ourselves to working only with them, we may misrepresent what is a living and dynamic system of magick. Times have changed and so has our understanding of magick and occultism. This alone might compel some to examine my work and perform the rituals for themselves to determine if I am correct or delusional.

So for this reason I have decided to share with my readers some of my more unusual theories about the Enochian system of Magick. I admit that there are a lot of magicians working this system or parts of it these days, and there are quite a large number of books expounding in exhaustive detail on this subject. The more faithful practitioners stay very close to the actual diaries produced over four centuries ago by Dr. John Dee, but a small minority, such as myself, engage in a certain amount of speculation. These diaries are the sole source of this system of magick, so all one has to do to get a real understanding about any part of the Enochian system of magick is to examine the relevant diary material. However, it seems little understood that the diaries were actually the raw repositories of Dr. Dee’s occult speculations and investigations. These diaries were used by Dee to produce a finished grimoire, now lost, that he claimed was angelically inspired and transmitted, and, I believe, was an analogous version of a noted 14th century grimoire, called the Sepher ha-Ratziel, or the Book of Ratziel. Although Dee thought that the Ethiopian Book of Enoch was that grimoire, it would have actually been the Book of Ratziel. Dee never acquired either the Ethiopian Book of Enoch or the Sepher ha-Ratziel, but he believed that a master grimoire existed, containing the language of God and his angels. Dee sought this language because he believed that it was a requirement if he were ever to be as honored in having intercourse with God as Enoch was reputed to have been. 

Why do I believe that the mythical grimoire that Dee sought was the Book of Ratziel? Because according to Jewish myths, God instructed the angel Ratziel (God’s Mystery) to produce a book of occult mysteries and give it to Adam. However, some of the other angels were jealous when they heard about this gift. So they stole the book and hid it away in the depths of the sea. Ratziel searched for a long time to reacquire this book, but when he finally found it, Adam had long since passed away. The latest patriarch was Enoch, so Ratziel gave the book to Enoch. This book then was handed down from one generation to another, perhaps lost and rediscovered many times, according to legends, until a Jewish scholar rediscovered and made it available to the learned few in early 14th century Germany. Whether the resultant Book of Ratziel was newly written from existing traditions, created from whole clothe, or indeed was an ancient recovered book is unknown; but an examination of it shows that it was contemporaneous with Hebrew grimoires from that time period. So it was either cobbled together from existing traditions or created as a whole new magickal tradition. The book is filled with many angelic spirits but no angelic language, since Jewish magicians would have believed that God and his angels spoke classical Hebrew. John Dee’s preoccupation with a legendary grimoire supposedly authored by Enoch gave his own work an authenticity and legitimacy in the eyes of himself and other learned savants with whom he deemed to share any of his secret works.

So Dee actually believed that he was rediscovering a lost system of magick that would allow him to gain direct communication with God. This system of magick was called Enochian because of Dee’s fascination with the patriarch Enoch and his wisdom. The angelic language that Dee and Kelly uncovered was later called Enochian, perhaps in honor of the patriarch that Dee so admired. However, connecting this system of magick with the patriarch Enoch has powerful and mythic consequences. To fully understand the supposed Enochian system of magick one would also have to know something about the patriarch Enoch, including what is found in the bible and in various apocryphal books.

This is where we get to some interesting speculation. If we examine the myths and legends about Enoch, especially the Book of Enoch and the Book of Noah (which only exists in fragments), we discover that Enoch knew and appeared to traffic with a group of fallen angels who had come to earth and chose mortal women as their wives. They must have also acquired corporeal bodies, since they began to produce children. The bible talks about these beings in chapter 6, verse 1 through 4, of the book of Genesis, and the books of Enoch and Noah expand on this association. One might conclude that Enoch’s wisdom was due in part to his association with the Nephilim, not to mention the fact that he supposedly received a book from the archangel Ratziel. I will examine these relationships in greater detail at a later date, but what we have here is an association of Enoch with the archangel Ratziel, and the angelic spirits become flesh called the Nephilim. It would seem then, that the Enochian system of magick would involve the archangel Ratziel as well as the 200 angelic spirits known as the Nephilim. It could be presumed from this association that much of what passes for the Enochian system of magick may have its roots in the forbidden teachings of the Nephilim.

Ever since I first encountered the Book of Enoch and the fragments of the Book of Noah, I have been quite intrigued by the idea that fallen angels, who assumed human form, took wives and sired children, became the first teachers of writing, metallurgy, astronomy, alchemy, esoteric philosophy, the arts of war, architecture, herbalism, and the various methodologies of magick. In short, they were reputed to be the patrons of civilization, yet for this they were condemned and ultimately overthrown. It beguiles the mind to think about these spirits and to desire to invoke and contact them. However, the four archangels listed above were responsible for sealing the knowledge of these spirits away from the earth and the temptations of mankind, and also imprisoning these entities in a place where they could not be reached.

I came to the conclusion that I should contact these archangels and get their permission to regain this knowledge, to gain access to these imprisoned beings so I could acquire and build on their knowledge, thus gaining a more pure and direct source for the Enochian system of magick. I believe that Dee and Kelly unknowingly crossed this threshold centuries ago, but all the while being ignorant of the source of the wisdom they were being taught. I believe that they unwittingly made contact with the Nephilim and channeled some of their knowledge, but much more remained untapped. This, of course, is just my opinion, but in actively pursuing this train of thought, I discovered new material for the Enochian system of magick, which I am only now able to put together into an intelligible system. This system of magick seems to be more like a Semitic form of Witchcraft than a ceremonial magickal system as derived in the 16th century, even with its elaborate tables, calls and lists of spirits.

All of these speculations and creative insights are just my thoughts and opinions. I am sure that many will disagree with them. However, I am revealing these ideas and sharing them for those few who might find this perspective of great worth and seek to emulate it, thus adding to the newly derived Enochian lore as I have done.

Frater Barrabbas


  1. When you say "Nephilim" here are you talking about the Nephilim as described in Genesis (the offspring of humans and angels who are also described as "great men of reknown") or are you actually talking about the Watchers (the angels themselves)?

    I ask because I run into magicians who confuse the two a lot. Based on my own work I have no problem relating the Enochian angels to the Watchers, who are said to have been placed over the various parts of the Earth and so forth in a manner that is at least somewhat similar to what is described in the Dee diaries. However, Genesis is pretty clear that the Nephilim were physical beings rather than a class of spirits.

    Or are you using the term in a manner completely different from how it is used in Genesis?

  2. The bible mention of the Nephilim is ambiguous. The word Nephilim is from the Hebrew root NPhL which means to fall. So Nephilim means "fallen ones," which could be the name that the Watchers or Beni Elohim received after they went to earth to mate with women, or it could mean their children, since the word also has the obscure meaning of abortions.

    The bible says "The Nephilim were in the land in those days..", which is stated before talking about the siring of the children of the Watchers, which were called Anshe Hashem - Men of Names or Renown. So the offspring were known as the Anshe Hashem, so it's ambiguous as to who the Nephilim were. I prefer to use the term to describe the fallen Watchers, but that's just my opinion.

  3. I sent your article to a friend and his reply was this:
    "Interesting, but is he publishing the results"?
    LMD at present has the best book on practical Enochian Magic, other than that not a lot of good practical material is out there. This system needs a fresh set of eyes, if anything, to clarify the question marks people have. in short...write more please!