Descriptions of Festival Events
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For 2023, we are proud and excited to host the following offerings:
The Star Ruby is a ritual written by Aleister Crowley who described it as a “new and more elaborate version of the Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram.” It is still considered to be an official ritual of the A.'.A.'. The Star Ruby will be performed as the opening ceremony of the Babalon Rising festival, and it is recommend that attendees familiarize themselves with this ritual.
Liber Resh vel Helios
Liber Resh vel Helios, by Aleister Crowley, comprises four daily adorations to the Sun, to be performed at dawn, noon, sunset, and midnight. The general object is to focus the conscious mind on the center of our solar system. We will be performing the four stations of Resh daily during the Babalon Rising festival, and recommend that attendees familiarize themselves with this short and powerful Thelemic ritual.
Local bodies and loose confederations of wandering ritualistic troubadours from all over the US have presented the Gnostic Mass at Babalon Rising. We are proud to host anywhere from 1-3 Gnostic Mass celebrations throughout the course of the festival.
Aleister Crowley wrote The Gnostic Mass—technically called Liber XV or "Book 15"—in 1913 while travelling in Moscow. In many ways it is similar in structure to the Mass of the Roman Catholic Church. However, the comparison ends there, as the Gnostic Mass is a celebration of the principles of Thelema. The ceremony calls for five officers: a priest, a priestess, a deacon, and two acolytes, called “children”. The end of the ritual culminates in the consumation of the eucharist, which is a glass of wine and the host, called a Cake of Light, after which the congregant proclaims “There is no part of me that is not of the gods!”
It is the central rite of Ordo Templi Orientis and it's ecclesiastical arm, Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica. The Gnostic Mass will be performed at the Babalon Rising Festival by [presenter].
As for why Crowley wrote the Gnostic Mass, he explains in Confessions:
While dealing with this subject I may as well outline its scope completely. Human nature demands (in the case of most people) the satisfaction of the religious instinct, and, to very many, this may best be done by ceremonial means. I wished therefore to construct a ritual through which people might enter into ecstasy as they have always done under the influence of appropriate ritual. In recent years, there has been an increasing failure to attain this object, because the established cults shock their intellectual convictions and outrage their common sense. Thus their minds criticize their enthusiasm; they are unable to consummate the union of their individual souls with the universal soul as a bridegroom would be to consummate his marriage if his love were constantly reminded that its assumptions were intellectually absurd.
I resolved that my Ritual should celebrate the sublimity of the operation of universal forces without introducing disputable metaphysical theories. I would neither make nor imply any statement about nature which would not be endorsed by the most materialistic man of science. On the surface this may sound difficult; but in practice I found it perfectly simple to combine the most rigidly rational conceptions of phenomena with the most exalted and enthusiastic celebration of their sublimity.
Crowley published the text of the Gnostic Mass three times: in 1918 in a publication called The International, in 1919 in The Equinox (III:1), and in 1929 in Magick in Theory and Practice. It was privately performed while Crowley was at the Abbey of Thelema, and it's first public performance was March 19, 1933 by Wilfred T. Smith and Regina Kahl in Hollywood, California at the first Agape Lodge.
Feast of the Beast
Annual Babalon Rising Ritual
The Feast of the Beast celebratory ritual takes place Saturday night at each Babalon Rising Festival. All guests of the festival are invited to join in the Feast of the Beast as is their Will. The purpose of the Feast of the Beast ritual is to usher in the New Aeon and align all participants with the 93 current through the creation of the "Magickal Child". Attendees are encouraged to dress in costume, either as god-forms or as their higher selves/true selves. Scarlet Women, Satyrs, Warriors of Thebes, Maenads, Black-Robed Mages, Skyclad Nymphs, and all and sundry revelers are more than welcome! After the formal portion of this ritual is complete, midnight Resh is proclaimed and an all-night revel begins. Games with prizes will be ongoing. Feasting areas will be available to all assembled. The Feast of Food tent will contain snacks and beverages. Revelers are encouraged to store any alcohol to be consumed Saturday night in this tent, in order to keep glass away from the main fire. Please donate to the Feast of Food tent as you will. The Feast of Flesh tent will contain areas for consensual massage, experimental touch, cuddling, BDSM, and private areas for more intimate contact. Potential hierodules, doms, subs, massage therapists, Heiros Gamos couples, snuggle bunnies, and other individuals interested in pushing the boundaries of physical ecstasy are encouraged to play in this safe, spiritual space. We hope that the Feast of the Beast is an experience that will not only be enjoyable to our guests, but will also assist each of the participants in the realization and achievement of their True Wills. The aims of the Feast of the Beast ritual are summed up in part by Liber LXXVII, included below.
"the law of the strong:
this is our law and the joy of the world." AL. II. 2
"Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law." --AL. I. 40
"thou hast no right but to do thy will. Do that, and no other shall
say nay." --AL. I. 42-3
"Every man and every woman is a star." --AL. I. 3
There is no god but man.
1. Man has the right to live by his own law--
to live in the way that he wills to do:
to work as he will:
to play as he will:
to rest as he will:
to die when and how he will.
2. Man has the right to eat what he will:
to drink what he will:
to dwell where he will:
to move as he will on the face of the earth.
3. Man has the right to think what he will:
to speak what he will:
to write what he will:
to draw, paint, carve, etch, mould, build as he will:
to dress as he will.
4. Man has the right to love as he will:--
"take your fill and will of love as ye will,
when, where, and with whom ye will." --AL. I. 51
5. Man has the right to kill those who would thwart these rights.
"the slaves shall serve." --AL. II. 58 "Love is the law, love under will." --AL. I. 57
Goetic Community Protection Ritual
In this ritual, we will call upon 3 different goetic demons, and ask them to protect our community. Originally performed at the Fall 2021 OEM Sabbat, this popular ritual requires a hand mirror, a scarf, and a cup or glass for each participant. You may bring your own if you prefer, or use one that Re provides.
Honoring the Divine Bimbo
An exercise in reconnection and reclamation
Although its true etymology takes it back much further, the term “Bimbo” has been used as a slur for women since the 1920’s. It carries several negative connotations for women even to this day. In recent years however an awareness of internalized misogyny has caused several women to attempt to reclaim the word much like the word “slut”.
To be taken seriously in a world which regularly seeks to diminish and dismiss women, many of us have taken the rejection of this idea to the extreme and will make a point to degrade or hate on this type of femininity. Hating on the color pink, or primping, or other women who we see as vacuous has caused a scar inside which I believe we should seek to heal.
The Divine Bimbo is divine feminine energy as pink, soft, and kind. Without need to prove oneself as strong or sharp it is simple relishing in the beauty of life and everything cute and fun. The ideals given to us in Disney Princess and Barbie movies aren’t inherently bad they just didn’t serve us in our pursuit to overcome patriarchal dominance. In order to embrace femininity fully we should take the time to forgive and love the Divine Bimbo that we see in ourselves and in others.
The class I will be leading will have two parts. The first will be discussion over our ideas on the word “Bimbo” and how we can honor the Divine Bimbo in ourselves and others. The second part will be more hands on where we will create an altar piece for ourselves by cleaning, brushing, and creating pink satin robes for abused and neglected dolls I have collected. If you have old dolls of your own you would like to use I highly encourage you to. Also anything you would like to decorate the dolls with you should bring.
This will be a ladies only ritual but will be inclusive of all women and femmes. To be clear, all feminine presenting people and trans-women will be welcome.
Approach the Scarlet Temple and be embraced by an aspect of Babalon. Scarlet Harlots in myraid manifestations wait inside, ready to engage with you. Bring a gift to gain access. Babalon accepts all. Come and receive Babalon's blessing through direct contact. Seek her wisdom and blessings in your life. Come with an open heart and an open mind. The Great Mystery has many forms and many faces -- some of tender touch and some of firm words; some of thoughtful conversations and comforts; some of intense emotional exchange.
When you petition the Goddess, you will be lead to the first available Priestex.
NOTE: If you wish to serve as a vessel of Babalon for this temple service, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org
Sisters of Seshat - Earth Initiation
Brandy Williams and the Sisters of Seshat
The Order of Sisters of Seshat is a sororal order of the Western Magical Tradition. The order offers a series of initiatory experiences. Each initiation opens a gate of mystery to the powers of the elements and the planets and aligns these with women’s life experiences.
Any self-identified woman from any magical tradition is welcome. Women who have taken the initiations have been Witches, Golden Dawn magicians, Thelemites, and even beginners who have never done any form of magic before. The rituals are published so any women who want to experience them can do them. There’s no central authority and no membership obligation, each person and group is independent.
Each initiation starts with the temple ritual which invokes Seshat, the Kemetic (Egyptian) netjer or goddess of writing. She is also the goddess who was invoked to lay the foundations of the ancient temples. We invoke her to create the physical temple we work in and also to create the magical temple or container for each of the initiations.
The Order of the Sisters of Seshat is explained in detail in Brandy Williams' book The Woman Magician, Revisioning Western Metaphysics from a Woman’s Perspective and Experience.
At Babalon Rising 2023, initiate-candidates of all genders are welcome to initiate as Sisters within this Order.
THE MIDDLE STAR: A Joint Alchemical Working by Joy the Sporceress and Luxa Strata
A modern take on an ancient classic. Pulling on currents related to aspects of both the Morning and Evening Star, two magicians will build magical potential by performing different modified versions of the rite of the Bornless One in tandem, during this joint alchemical working. Through the intuitive use of glossolalia, drumming, and other techniques, the energy of the Middle Star will then be invited to emerge from the Void. Only time and experimentation will reveal what will be born from the union witnessed in this chaos magic rite.
VESTED: Creating Haunted Items with Sound and Sex Magic(k)
Luxa Strata will demonstrate a process she has developed to create items which have been imbued with a spirit using sound and sex magic(k). Witnesses are encouraged to bring items to add to the altar which they would like to have enchanted via this process during this chaos magic ritual.
Transmuting Struggles for the Empress
Shane the Mindbender
Bring a personal struggle you'd like to share. Choose if you need only to be heard or if you welcome advice. Then we'll get acquainted with authentic open hearted sharing.
With our struggles laid bare before the Empress, we'll transmute them into sigils on paper.
At the conclusion of the work, we'll go about the remainder of the day with our sigils, charging them with thoughts of growth, healing, unity, and our new path forward.
At night, we will deliver our transmutation to the bonfire, giving up our conflict, releasing our Tribute to the Empress by way of fire.
Illumi-Naughty Nightie Party
BR Org Team
On Wednesday night, the set-up pre-fest night, BR is hosting an Illumi-Naughty Nightie Party. Hoping to see some Babalonian baby-dolls, Thelemic teddies, Solomonic smoking jackets, kabbalistic kaftans, or whatever deliciously magickal boudoir attire you might have/create. We'll mix it together with some dance music and celebrate the start of another amazing BR.
Pushing the Envelope: Boundaries, Will, and Consent at Babalon Rising
BR Org Team
Aka: "Intro to Babalon Rising Festival;" "Aka: "All First-Timers Should Attend." Babalon Rising gives both fledgling and experienced Magicians the opportunity to explore their own boundaries -- magickally, spiritually, energetically, and sexually. Join Laurelei and other BR-veterans in an open, candid group discussion about respecting and working with both your own boundaries and those of other attendees in a conscious and conscientious Will-based environment. If you are new the festival, it is HIGHLY recommended that you come to this workshop. (If you are a returning attendee, it is also highly recommended.)
Sex with Gods
The deity yoga of sex magick for couples and individuals.
Tantra and the Gnostic Mass
Explaining and updating the magick of the OTO through its origin in kundalini yoga.
Lara D & Nia Ain
Join Lara D. and Nia Ain in a discussion and participatory workshop exploring masochism’s place in erotic ritual, as well as their concept of “Human Instrumentation:” how one can utilize power dynamics to become a magical tool.
No sexual contact is required for participation in this workshop but there will be a sexually explicit demonstration. Come solo or with a partner!
Egyptian Heka in the Greek Magical Papyri
The Greek Magical Papyri (PGM) have become increasingly popular in modern magical practice, yet the papyri themselves are poorly understood due to outdated translations, academic specialization resulting in cross-cultural blindness, and the persistence of misleading ideas about ancient magic. Phainolis has spent the last three years translating, comparing, and producing commentaries on hundreds of ritual-texts within the PGM, while also exploring the deep connections between these documents and earlier Egyptian magic. In fact, these documents, although written in Greek, were likely produced by multilingual Egyptian priests, who were the popular ritual specialists of their day. This presentation will examine the nature of ancient Egyptian "magic" (heka) and will give many examples of continuities between Egyptian heka and the later Greek tradition. Thoth, Isis, Horus, Amun, Kematef, Ptah, Anubis, and many other Egyptian gods are often present just below the surface of these fascinating multicultural documents. A free handout will be provided with original translations from Phainolis’s forthcoming book, Interlinear Magic: An Annotated Anthology of the Greco-Egyptian Magical Papyri.
Approaching the Gods in Greco-Egyptian Theurgy
Theurgy, from an ancient Greek word meaning "god-work," was born from the intersection of ancient polytheism(s) and Greek philosophy. It was especially prominent in the so-called Chaldean Oracles (2nd century CE) and in the writings of Iamblichus (c. 245-325 CE), a Syrian Platonist whose most important surviving work, On the Mysteries, is a compendium of Egyptian myth and ritual understood through the lens of later Platonic philosophy. Theurgy is concerned with the apotheosis (or divinization) of the practitioner’s soul, which is accomplished through a lifelong practice of special rituals to identify with the gods and incorporate their powers while still alive. Over the last 15 years, Phainolis has immersed himself in the languages and cultures of ancient Egypt and Greece in order to reconstruct what ancient theurgic practice looked like “on the ground.” This presentation will share the results of that research, focusing especially on how Iamblichus’s writings and the Greco-Egyptian Magical Papyri (or “PGM”) mutually illuminate each other. There will be a free handout with original translations of important ancient ritual-texts, amounting to an accessible way into ancient (Greco-)Egyptian “magic” (Heka) for the modern practitioner.
Chaos Magick 101
This is an introduction to Chaos Magick including its divergence and convergence with Thelemic Magick of interest to BR attendees. Chaos Magick was constructed for the practice of magick without dogma, emphasizing techniques to work with the forces that underlie all forms of magic/k. The presentation discusses its roots and the emergence and development of explicit Chaos Magick in the late 20th century. Because it concentrates on concisely presented technique, although practice and mentorship are helpful, Chaos Magick is magick you can do NOW without long, arduous training. Therefore, in the class participants will collectively create and deploy a sigil working we devise on the spot together. You will leave with the knowledge and experience of a few common techniques to enable you to continue your journey with Chaos Magick after the festival.
HYPERSIGILS: A Chaos Magic and Art Workshop
Learn the basics of what hypersigils are and how utilizing a combination of creativity and magic(k) to create an artistic, magical, mini-world can lead to surprising results. This workshop will cover the definitions of sigils and hypersigils, as well as provide some context from modern history. We will talk about different means and media for crafting hypersigils and forming magical links and touch on the work of a few magicians whose work are touchstones when discussing the topic. Participants will have the opportunity to experiment with the technique by beginning their own hypersigil using a variety of provided materials.
Qlippothic Death Worship
Yaramarud will expand on the origins and development of qlippothic death worship and his dedicated years of experience working within this paradigm. A syncretization of a multitude of practices and ideas in its explanation of the nature of Death, Yara will explore its different facets before closing with an evocation of Death itself.
Introduction to Administrism
Yaramarud discusses the foundations of his chaos magick oriented neo-shamanism paradigm and how it differs from similar iterations. Covering everything from the importance of Genius Loci, homesteading, and ethnographic research to the future development of magic through surrealism and the Hyloturia magickal model, Yara will conclude with details on how you can become your own Administer.
Through the lens of Administrism, Yaramarud will be discussing the translation of ethnographic research into magickal practice via the example of Azande Witchcraft. After giving a background in the culture of the Azande people, Yara will conduct a ritual using their techniques for the purpose of strengthening the abilities and understanding of all in attendance.
Look, Ma: No Hands! (Sex Magick Without Touching)
Who would ever want to do sex magick without touching their partner? That's one of the bext parts, right? Touch is good. Touch is important. But touch isn't always the best choice. Perhaps you're uncomfortable with touch, have made agreements with a partner that necessitate a hands-off approach, are dealing with an illness/condition that cautions against intimate touch, or just want to explore other ways of raising and heightening sexual energy in order to expand your sex magick vocabulary. This is an experiential workshop, though participation is not strictly required. We will be practicing techniques of energy manipulation, breathwork, eye-gazing, etc. It can get very intimate and intense, despite the lack of touch. Come with a partner or plan to pair up with a new friend (if available), if you want to practice. Ongoing affirmative consent is expected throughout the experience. (Socially-distanced sex magick -- since before it was cool.)
Planetary Magick, A Primer
When you are first learning ritual magick, or when you are interested in spicing things up, knowing how to work with the energy of the planets can be very powerful to apply, but it can also be ambiguous at first glance. Where do you begin? How patient are you? In this presentation, we will discuss a range of applications for planetary magick. This material is available to people of all experience levels, and while not required, you might want to bring a notebook and writing utensil for notes!
Age of Aquarius?
Much hype has surrounded the Age of Aquarius for a number of decades, but what is this gilded age? Will it be a new renaissance? Will it be the realization that we are all one? Huh? In this presentation, we will discuss not only the Age of Aquarius, but also how it fits into the overall context of the greater wheel of the ages. The presentation will last for an hour, and is available to people of all experience and knowledge levels.