I used to term myself a Luciferian on top of the various other titles that could apply to me, such as magician, mystic, Hermetic, Rosicrucian, etc. The history behind my adoption of the title will be told shortly, but first I wish to establish that I no longer consider myself to be a Luciferian. The reasons will also be explained shortly. I have recently gone through what might be called a crisis of faith regarding my Luciferianism and have come to some powerful conclusions, which will be the main subject of this essay.
Years ago, I began to very seriously explore the ideas and practices of chaos magic, at first as a supplement to my more Hermetic and Kabbalistic magical training, but later as a replacement thereof. As part of my experiments, I adopted a somewhat sinister approach to magic and especially enjoyed demonology. I admit that my primary motivation in exploring these particular aspects of the occult were founded in simple lack of maturity. I believe now that I did not even understand the material I was working with; I was very much alone in the dark without a lantern. At the time I did not care. I arrogantly believed that my pseudo-nihilism and disrespect for all things “light” was the right way to go. Everybody who respected the light was deluded, but those of us who not only acknowledged but reveled in the darkness were as enlightened as anybody could truly be.
After several years of messing with chaos magic, I became disillusioned with it. While I still stand by the basic techniques as a great method of training the will, I cannot any longer condone the childish philosophy (or, as chaos magicians like to term it, the “metaparadigm”) behind it which is itself somewhat of a contradictory and weak attempt at transcendental nihilism. I returned, slowly at first, and then all at once, to Hermetics, Kabbalah, alchemy, and related subjects. I did not do so without bringing plenty of philosophical souvenirs back home.
I continued to call myself a Luciferian and maintained a mild fascination for all things sinister, though I now looked through the darkness and toward the Light. The culmination of the process, and what I so far believe to be its crescendo, was quite recent but has its roots almost exactly one year ago as of this writing (November 2006).
Last year I was working on my first book, The Four Powers (Megalithica Books, an imprint of Immanion Press, Staffordshire, England). I have always had ambitions of being a writer of one sort or another, though definitely more ambition than talent. To curb my self-doubt and ensure at least moderate success I decided to employ a bit of demonic magic. I planned it out, got everything prepared according to the instructions of King Solomon Grimorium Verum or the True Grimoire and, on October 31st 2005, performed a full diabolical Pact operation in which I made an agreement in writing (on virgin goat skin, no less) with Lucifer himself. The details of the Pact are irrelevant, except to say that I agreed to write a book concerning a Luciferian approach to illumination (that is, mysticism and magical self-improvement) using a particular grimoire as the book’s practical foundation. This book was to serve as my payment for services rendered which, of course, involved getting at least one book successfully published.
In the intervening year, I began to do a lot of serious self-purification. I began an intensive daily ritual routine of performing the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram, the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Hexagram, the Middle Pillar Exercise, the Circulation of the Body of Light, the canticle of Light from the Golden Dawn Neophyte ceremony, the Adoration to the Lord of the Universe, followed by yet another LBRP — and all this upon waking up. Just prior to sleep, I would perform the Rose Cross Ritual. I followed this routine more or less for several months, at which time I made the grand discovery of Franz Bardon. I still thank my lucky stars, and my friends Taylor Ellwood and Frater Griff for guiding me to Bardon’s work. I have since been quite seriously and intensely involved in the practice of Franz Bardon’s first book, Initiation into Hermetics (available in a new translation from Merkur Publishing).
This entire intensive period of magico-mysticism led me to a great deal of self-discovery. Self-discovery, of course, led me to the realization of many facets of myself which I do not much like. Self-love is important, even vital, but so is a dedication to self-improvement. Quite nearly one year after the Pact was made, I found myself regretting it deeply. It may sound superstitious to some readers, but I found myself in a very serious fear for the health of my spirit and soul. I felt deceived and dirty, as if making that Pact were an irrevocable selling of myself. Lucifer truly became the Devil in my mind, and I felt wretched for having given so much of myself for so very little. Less than a day after I became aware of these feelings within, I destroyed all of my Luciferian paraphernalia and hacked the Pact and all of the attendant sigils and seals into small pieces and kept them in a small bag until Sunday evening when I burnt them in my fireplace and prayed intensely to the archangel Michael. You see, not only was Michael the one said to have defeated the Devil at the time of his Fall, but I had also a long time ago read a Kabbalistic legend (I cannot remember where or I would cite it) stating that at the Creation of Adam, Michael had knelt before the Throne of God in Heaven and pledged himself to stand by even the worst mortal as long as he or she had even the tiniest spark of goodness left. That Pact had become more than a rash and greedy act, more than a symbol — it had become the very physical embodiment of all of my iniquities, mistakes, and flaws. I asked Michael to be with me, to stand at my right hand, and to fight back the shades and demons long enough for me to clarify and fortify myself. I cannot cite a more successful operation than this, for Michael was with me for the time I needed him. For his faith in me I can never thank him enough. Even with Michael by my side, I was nonetheless terrified. I had read many times and in many places that there was no worse companion than a cheated demon. How could I expect to break a Pact with the great Emperor Lucifer without being severely punished for such a transgression against his devilish and unfathomable will?
Ever since I first began to study Hermetics and Rosicrucianism, I had an intuition that there were important and deep mysteries in Christianity. I still maintain that the mainstream sects and branches of religion which go by the title of Christian do not, in their vast majority, approach the real meaning behind the teachings which they claim as their own. Especially exemplified in that seemingly out of place and obviously esoteric book of Ezekiel and the book so arrogantly discounted (or fanatically taken literally) called the Revelation or Apocalypse, there are mysteries in the Bible which common Christians and Jews do not even begin to suspect. I am not a biblical scholar, however, and could not even begin to put together a lucid or knowledgeable argument concerning the meanings of the recondite symbols and signs given in those books. My lack of biblical lore will not stop me from composing a little apocalypse of my own.
Bits and pieces of information, legends and myths, theories and the wildest of hypotheses have continually come my way since that night when I burned the Pact, that night which I am sure I will always remember as a turning point in my magical career. Study, chance findings, and personal intuition have each done their part. Whether I have made this all up out of random scattered pieces or if it is truly a relevant magical allegory I do not know, but I present it nonetheless for it constitutes the closest thing I have to a conclusion of the present story.
I used to maintain that Lucifer and Christ were the same person, a being of spiritual effulgence who incarnated in order to bring to us an enlightened doctrine compatible with all the greatest of mystical systems. I believed that this being was like the Light shining in darkness, and the darkness comprehendeth it not, but that it was only in enveloping ourselves in darkness that we could come to appreciate it. Now I see things quite differently.
Lucifer and Christ are as brothers, dual and opposite but both quite necessary. Christ is like the gentle North Star, guiding us through long nights toward our inevitable destination. Lucifer is like the blazing comet, seeming to shoot into our view from nowhere, burning brightly as it points us toward a momentary but important waypoint, then disappearing back into the ether. Christ is the faithful Son who does the bidding of His Divine Parents without question, not out of fear but out of good will toward His Parents and to we little children. He is in a sense the universal and ideal Older Brother, protective and gently guiding but willing at times to teach a harsh lesson or two. Lucifer has disobeyed just as our mythical ancestors but in a more dramatic way. Lucifer is the older brother even of Christ, created first amongst the angels. Lucifer’s rebellion was one not of hatred but of love, for without allowing Himself to Fall, free will would not have been available for the rest of creation. Lucifer will maintain His loving rebellion until such time as free will has become a universal constant uniting all consciousness in one pervasive liberty. He has sacrificed His own place in Heaven to grant each one of us the ability to make our own, while Christ has given up His to open the way before us.
There is a Hell, just as sure as there is an Earth, and if you were to find yourself there I assure you that there would be no escape from the eternity of torment awaiting you there. The Gates of Hell will not open until that final Revelation when the enlightened shall be gathered in joy and the ignorant shall be gathered in trembling fear. When the trumpets of the angels call forth the return of Christ, so too shall Lucifer appear and they together will throw open the Gates of Hell, nothing but severity showing upon their faces. Yet their eyes sparkle with a light which will be read at first by many as sadism, for how can the eyes of divine beings sparkle and shine at the prospect of eternal torment? Soon all will be made clear, however, and the twinkle in their Holy Eyes will be shared as one joke amongst us, for as the Gates swing open there will be no torrent of sulfurous fire nor waves of rotting flesh washing over us in hopes of consuming our own living tissue. Instead we will see behind those wide open gates… a gaping emptiness, a void awaiting its fill but receiving none, for Hell was, is, and ever shall be empty. Each one of us, in the fullness of time, shall find our salvation each in our own way, and we shall all be assumed into the Kingdom of Heaven. Hellfire awaits no man, woman, or child no matter how sinful they may have been or may be still, for all are given the limitless and eternal Grace of God by default, by the very fact of our existence! Hell is not there as a warning or punishment for mortal souls but as a grand reminder before the eyes of the Gods and Angels that if Hell were to find itself occupied by even one lone mortal it would be Their immense failure. As sure as effects have causes, and causes produce effects (though not always in the expected order), we are each responsible for our own mistakes. The Gods and Angels set over us, and those Ascended Masters who have come before us, are in charge of our guidance and redemption. While we must seek to right our own wrongs and prevent our own mistakes, it is the duty of the Gods and Angels to make certain that we are given every opportunity to do so. Let there be no mistake that God’s Justice is severe, but so too is Its Mercy infinite.
And so, having set out to abandon a Pact, I have ended up fulfilling it in spirit, if not in letter. Every current which we set up must run its course, and as magicians we must understand this principle intensely and intimately. Every opportunity is given us for our personal development and evolution. It is up to us merely to make the most of them.
©2006 Nicholas Graham. Edited by Sheta Kaey