Why you don’t need to use the LBRP unless you’re an initiate has already been discussed. Let’s look at some understandings of what some opinions are about why you should do it if you ARE an initiate:
Nick Farrell writes in his article (to be found at http://www.auroraaurea.com/?page_id=1988)
First you perform the Cabbalistic Cross. This draws down power from the crown to the feet. It balances and energises the sphere for more important work. It also opens the Tiphareth centre to control the operation.
Next you draw a pentagram between the pillars of the sphere of sensation in front of you. You vibrate the name YHVH, which means “I am what I am” – again aspirational. In other words, you are placing the symbol of the pentagram into your own future and energising it with your own will. In this instance you are looking towards your own portal ceremony where the completed pentagram is unveiled for the first time. The YHVH name is important because you are talking about integrating the elements under the power of spirit.
When we draw the pentagram on the right hand, we are making a statement of who we are ‘now’. The divine name here is Adonai, which means “Lord”. We are saying that we are rulers of ourselves.
Now the operator turns around again and is placing a pentagrams over their past and saying the name associated with YHVH, EHVH. This means “I am what I will be”. The operator is looking at their own past and saying “I am not trapped by my past, I am going to be something better”. You will note that this name is in this position because the operator at that moment has his or her back to the future.
The last pentagram is placed between the pillars of the left hand. This represents the gateway to the North which is connected to the Earth. But again it is also the now. The left hand gateway leads to the ‘now’ of the outside world, the right hand gateway leads to the inner kingdom.The divine name here is Agla (“Mighty art thou Lord of the Earth”).
What is being said here is that the operator is the ruler of the Earth. Not the planet, but our own personal Earth. Notice that the person has their back to the right handed pentagram where they are talking about being Lord of their own Inner Kingdom. Now they are claiming that what they see is a product of their own rulership.*
Well…. It is a very interesting concept and definitively a valid viewpoint. So, what do I think of this?
Well like any hermetic magician worth my weight in salt (or maybe copper, it’s a fucking expensive metal, however based on the price of smoked salt or Himalayan pink salt I think I would like to be paid in salt currency please),
I took this little theory out for a test flight because it was a way of looking at the ritual I hadn’t even considered the past 12 years.
You heard me, test flight. This is something really useful you can do when you have incorporated the teachings of the myths of ANY mystery school, religion or tradition, and have a subjective synthesis within its worldview/paradigm.
How do I do this?
Simple. Next time someone comes up with some wacky idea or explanation for any concept or ritual you try it out, on the same premises that they have themselves tried it. Swap the angels in LBRP outside in central Europe and see how that feels…. Draw a square instead of a circle after you studied and memorized the lineal figures flying roll.
This is why someone who is working within a specific Tradition will be able to check the validity of anyone claiming a specific effect by replicating the experiment.
(example(s) If someone claims that Freda has been misunderstood and claims that if you add a particular curl to the veve and then induce possession with Freda she stops saying kekekekekeke and is actually conversing deeply and wishes to be classed as a Rada Lwa instead of a Petwo Lwa….. Well at that point as a Houngan or mambo you yourself try this at the next fete an this is not the case you know the person was full of shit, however if it does work and all over the peristyles Freda starts talking and calms down we know we have something real. Bad example, fully fictional. Would not happen but illustrates my point)
Example two: hitting ctrl + alt +delete on a pc. Now try this on a Mac ;). They reach differently because their language/system paradigm is different but within one of the contexts everyone will get the same effect
So, I simply studied Nick’s text. I tried to understand it and did. Then I actually performed a LBRP with the understanding that it would be working on my sphere of sensation in the way he describes. I had the Intention, I had the awareness the understanding and visualizations. Having opened the hall of Neophytes enough times as presiding Hierophant I am very bloody well versed in the 5 pillar concept in my own sphere and others spheres. I am also quite good at opening up the poor candidate and using the entire temple space as a symbol and working –within- their spheres of sensation, so, tech wise no probes there.
But, alas, no joy. The LBRP does not do what Nick states.
My problems are these:
My own sphere usually turns wherever I turn. So by placing the pillars out in the corners you “fix” your own sphere. This seems useful for some form of self initiatory work. Fine. And is an awesome concept if you want to blow up your aura and fix parts. Kind of like healing yourself from the inside.
Placing the pentagram in my sphere and saying the divine names, simply has not had the effect described and it did not feel like it should when having this intention. The pentagram just doesn’t mean what he says it does. The pentagram is a mars symbol, and it was thought out like that from the start. 1=10 symbol is the swastika. a symbol you get from the kamea of mars. The concepts were all related. It is a coherent system The classic GD might not be the BEST system but at least its coherent.
This is also baked into the symbolism. The lineal figures of the planet clearly place the pentagram in mars. It is also a symbol of the divine shin descending into the 4 elements. The symbol of the 5th element. Yadda Yadda Yadda. By placing these symbols into my sphere the way Nick describes I am not getting any feeling about my future present or past.
At all. Whatsoever.
This is a shame. It is a very nice theory. It is a workable model if tweaked. But it is not what the LBRP is designed to do and not the effect you get when doing it, not even with Nicks intention and added visualization and understanding of why you would do it like that or why it would have that effect.
The effect I did get was being a ruler of the elemental aspects of myself. Thus placing the pentagrams in my own sphere was a roundabout way of accomplishing what happens anyway during an LBRP. Empowerment through the holy symbol of the pentagram which in turn repelled stuff. Instead of repelling stuff in the first place,
Also, when turning to the south, following Nicks idea I had a white pillar to my left and a black pillar to my right, so when I was drawing the hexagram, aware of the pillars, the Earth pentagram had at its starting point Hod, which is odd.
It seems to me some Hermeticists and GD “scholars” sometimes forget that the hermetic science is not the science of studying man. It’s the science of nature. Not god, nature. Man is seen as partaking of this and God is seen as manifesting in nature. This is why in Ficino’s time they would surround themselves by flowers of natures opposite the forces of Saturn to fight melancholia.
Therefore it is counter intuitive to insert symbols in yourself. They are always already there, you simply stimulate them and awaken them.
Don’t forget the Alchemy, People. The LBRP creates a vessel with a specific nature and by being immersed in that sealed vessel you partake of certain qualities. (Like a ring in a jar with a lizard in it with its tail take off will assume the forces of healing**)
But I digress.
And for the record, I have tried The ritual with Nick’s theory several times but still, no luck. It just doesn’t actually function the way he thinks it does. Sorry.
I have done this with other people’s understandings of LBRP or other rites. In some cases they have been right and their insight or analysis or explanation has allowed me to penetrate into an understanding of the rite. I have in those cases experienced what lead me to state that within the context of this Tradition it is correct. In other cases , like in this one it is simply theoretical astral wanking that doesn’t stand up to in real life tests.
If you work in a tradition you should be able to put metaphysical theories to test within that same tradition. Like this you can have very interesting group workings. I think it was frater J.M. over at strategic sorcery who was using the example of a friend who did the “wrong Saturn hexagrams” but wanting to invoke Jupiter and feeling odd.
The crucifixion and solar consciousness is not something that will come about by working with the archangel of Venus. It’s a solar thing. Rufus opus solar class only works if you take on the Neo-Platonist approach. And within that if someone advanced can help someone newer. Getting Lucifer Michael or Jeheshua when working with the sun is ok. Getting an old man ever living obsessing with rules and laws and constraints that depresses you is NOT.
So try things out. Is the star ruby a banishing? Is it really?! If you put yourself in Crowley’s shoes and have a fully GD brainwashed tradition and then do the Star Ruby let's bet you won't be dong a "thelemic LBRP
Next time someone says something like this, try it out.
If Ghede and Erzulie don’t like to be in the same room and you don’t believe the person who says this, immerse yourself in the tradition so the symbols become alive and then TRY IT. See what happens.
Do Saturn hexagrams with the god name of Jupiter and intention of invoking Jupiter but drawing Saturn hexagrams, once you’ve memorised the god names and have worked with the system for 6 months and see what happens. This is why tradition is so goddamned useful because you can prove or Disprove people by doing exactly what they did. You’ll either get 70% the same results in which case they’re right or you get 70% the wrong result and you’ll know they’re wrong.
There is no such thing as “in my world opinion or subjective experience” when it comes to working in a tradition where you have made the systems alive as you are not working with subjective things you’re working with universal symbols the moment you and someone else agrees on things.
Example from linguistics:
Fuck OFF means just that if you understand English culture and language. Fish and Chips means the dish and you always say it like fish and chips. You CAN say chips and fish and people will know what you mean, but you will not sound right. If you’re learning English and someone instructs you that Wanker can be used in a friendly way even though it is a demeaning word meaning a masturbator you, as a foreigner won’t actually know this soliloquy until you try it out.
The moment we are initiated into a set f symbols that we awaken, whether it’s a tradition language or culture, or computer program it becomes internally cohesive. This is the strength of traditions and pre-made symbol systems because you can try things out.***
*as per all academic laws and regulations on copyright its OK to quote this much material as I need it to illustrate my purpose. Please consult for instance the MHRA style guide for further information.
**Agrippa, 3 books, can’t be bothered with edition and page reference
*** of course in the end it still doesn’t prove anything. It just proves that if we both agree that X means I like you and Y means I disliked you then XY will mean (_____fill in the blank and prove my point___ )