Lovecraft & the Black Magickal Tradition? (by John L. Steadman) 2014

JLS-Book_CoverYeah. Me too. I’m having trouble accepting the premise here. But…one never learned anything from having a closed mind. So, in case you, too, are curious, here is some information on the book. Kobo.com has an ebook version; but it is priced high. Might as well grab a trade paperback like the one above. It may be a collectible one day!

Product Description: San Francisco, CA: Red Wheel/Weiser, 2014. Paperback, 286 pages. Summary: Modern, practising occultists have argued that renowned horror writer, H. P. Lovecraft, was in possession of in-depth knowledge of black magic. Literary scholars claim his ‘magic’ is purely psychological and imaginative. This author asks: was Lovecraft a practitioner of the dark arts himself? Or, more to the point, does the Cthulhu mythos ‘work’ as a magical system. Steadman firmly says ‘yes’ and engagingly works through workings, ideas, explorations. Whether you believe Lovecraft had supernatural powers or not, no one can argue against Lovecraft’s profound influence on many modern black arts and the darker currents of western occultists.

“H. P. Lovecraft and the Black Magickal Tradition explores one of the most fascinating theses in modern occultism: Lovecraft’s profound influence on the darker currents of western occultism begins with a definition of the theory and practice of black magick, including a full analysis of the black magickal methodologies as they developed in Africa, Egypt, Greece and Rome. Afterwards, I focus specifically on the life and works of H. P. Lovecraft, explaining exactly what Lovecraft knew and how much he knew about magickal thought and practice. In so doing, I determine conclusively if the two assumptions raised by prominent occultists are, in fact, valid, i.e., (1) whether Lovecraft’s knowledge of occultism was extensive enough to qualify him as a bona-fide initiate; and (2) whether Lovecraft had achieved some level of contact with real extra-terrestrial entities. Following this, I analyze the various recensions of the Necronomicon, Lovecraft’s (made-up) book of spells, and decide which of these may, perhaps, serve as an efficacious magickal grimoire.

I also compare Lovecraft’s Great Old Ones with the archetypes of other magickal traditions in order to determine whether or not these fictional constructs can be used in actual magickal workings. Finally, I provide a detailed look into Lovecraft’s specific connection with the great black magickal systems of the contemporary world, concentrating not only on the traditional systems, such as the Vodou and Wicca religions, but also on such relatively recent esoteric groups as Kenneth Grant’s Typhonian Order, Anton LaVey’s Church of Satan, Simon’s Necronomicon Gnosis and Peter Carroll’s deconstructionist Chaos Magick .
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I am a scholar of both H. P. Lovecraft and western occultism and have been a magickal practitioner for over thirty years, working with various covens and small groups of initiates. I have a Bachelor of Arts from Michigan State University; a Master of Arts from the University of Virginia; and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin. In addition to my academic credentials, I hold the following degrees in the Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.) USA: Magickian (II°), Man (I°) and Minerval (0°). ”

– John L. Steadman

(Source: A Room of One’s Own)

Read an interview Bob Steadman conducted the author here…

Listen to a discussion of the book and it’s subjects at Where Did the Road Go, here…

Read about who H. P. Lovecraft is, here…

And what “Lovecraftian horror” is, here…

And, here is Lovecraft’s official website…

(Sources: http://www.treadwells-london.com; http://www.wheredidtheroadgo.com; and http://www.aroomofonesown.com)

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One response to “Lovecraft & the Black Magickal Tradition? (by John L. Steadman) 2014

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