Discussion in 'Esoterica' started by ramonmercado, Sep 28, 2005.
Who can forget Mali defeating reigning World Cup holders France in Japan/South Korea in 2002?. A ceremony was conducted by the Malian witch doctor on the pitch the night before the game and there certainly seemed to be some supernatural force keeping the potent French attack at bay.
Witch doctors as team coaches and voodoo curses used to be a mainstay of football stories in UK comics. I'm pretty sure there was a serial in the Rover, and/or the Victor. I'm willing to bet even Roy of the Rovers had a storyline, or two, about witch doctors on the pitch.
I can! But I can't forget Senegal beating France in the 2002 World Cup.
D'oh, Senegal of course, poor old brain's been taking a pounding lately, there was a BBC doc a few years back about the use of witch doctors in South African football, the almighty powers at FIFA took a dim view of such activities.
Edit to fix typo.
Meet The Real Life Witches
After spending time with some witches, Rev Peter Laws believes the Church has been guilty of misunderstanding what they believe and practise
Thirty ministers in training are sitting in a lecture room at Spurgeon’s Bible college. I’m one of them. The air is fizzing with tension. People stare in shock at the speaker; a few shake their heads at this respected scholar. One of his Old Testament tomes is on our required reading list, yet he’s just also told us that he owns a set of tarot cards. It’s the sort of comment that makes the air hiss. Somebody’s pen is slowly clicking on and off, on and off.
He pulls a tarot deck from his bag. ‘The cards have a surprising amount of Christian symbolism in them,’ he says. ‘I sometimes take them to psychic fairs…they help me share my faith.’ He opens the pack and then says something that makes the pen clicker stop dead. ‘Pass them round.’
They’re average-size cards. They aren’t glowing. There’s no demonic hum. But he hasn’t exactly asked us to just shuffle for Pontoon. He sets them softly on the first desk and something fascinating happens. Several students lift their arms clean off the table. Some scrape their chairs back. ‘There’s no way I’m touching them,’ says one. Another mutters, ‘This is so dodgy.’ When the pack lands in front of me, I can feel the sympathetic stares. It’s like I’ve been handed a loaded Kalashnikov.
I shrug and put the tip of my finger on the pack. There’s no spark. I pick them up, turning them over in my hand. It turns out there are Christian symbols on them. But that's not what sticks with me for the rest of the week. Or frankly what has stayed with me in the decade since this incident. What lodges in my mind is the fear. There were complaints afterwards. Colleagues said a satanic power tool had no place in a Bible college. It was, they said, a spiritual contaminant. ...
In Sweden we have had an influx of eastern european beggars in the last few years. So it was no surprise to see an older woman sitting in front of the supermarket, begging. What got me surprised was the old-fashioned broom she had with her. Her ride home?
I'd have loved to have gone to this witchcraft artefacts exhibition in London a few months back ..
The Witch Report 1600 — Yorkshire headed the list
Was 1600s Yorkshire a good place to be a witch? A history researcher at the University of Huddersfield has been finding out, and her investigations have resulted in a new online article.
In England as a whole there were 2,000 arraignments for witchcraft between 1560 and 1706. But many were acquitted and just 300 were executed, meaning that the country escaped the full frenzy of the witch hunts that took place in other parts of Europe.
"Belief not only varied from country to country, but also from county to county," according to Amelia Sceats in her article, which appears in the new issue of Postgraduate Perspectives on the Past, the University's journal for standout work by postgraduate students of history, heritage and archaeology.
"On the surface, Yorkshire did not have a witch hunt, even though the Pendle witch trials of 1612 took place nearby," continues Amelia. But she did discover that there was a greater propensity in Yorkshire than in other regions to believe in the existence of covens of witches.
Some witches having a bit of a boogie ..
Most people I know who use Tarot Cards won't allow anyone to touch them.
Well worth a read, though it seems to be essentially a background piece for Gary Parsons' upcoming work.
I remember the era and it's true to say that no Sunday would have been complete without a naked witch story in The News of the World or The People. Defiled churches, mysterious symbols, animal sacrifices were everywhere, though your genuine tied-to-the-altar virgin remained elusive as ever.
I was a bit young to subscribe to Man, Myth & Magic, though any editions which came my way were lapped up. I think it was advertised on the telly with images of voodoo and shrunken heads. Certainly a classmate became a life-long Pagan, so it must all have had a lasting effect on some people.
As soon as I could, I was reading Crowley and Levi in an attempt to fathom the mysteries behind all these ceremonies and symbols. Later, I would encounter self-declared witches and practicing occultists with oodles of the same sort of literature on their shelves, though they were disinclined to critical or close-reading. It turned out the symbols meant whatever they wanted them to mean and they would make things up to suit their own mood. Witchcraft had a lot more to do with fashion than with scholarship.
Anyway, I was never invited to any of their sky-clad gatherings.
Can I ask if reading Crowley or Levi ever set anything straight for you? I've tried both and couldn't get anything from either. Crowley seemed a little more self aware than Levi, but they were a pair of wallies.
Very interesting that you note that the outspoken occultists didn't put a lot of effort into the scholarship. It's the exact same today. I don't practice any of that stuff, but I am rather interested in it. For the sake of research, I recently joined (and subsequently got banned from) several facebook groups on left hand path occultism. My goodness, the members there were thick.
Occultism is an interesting thing. To study the occult is literally to study the hidden. But how can a person possibly make sense of the hidden if they haven't made sense of what's on display? I mean, to even gain a decent understanding of occultism, you'd need to have a rudimentary understanding of all major world mythologies, religions, philosophies and sciences. Glancing over the Satanic Bible or the Book of Shadows isn't going to cut it!
Sorry if I'm derailing the thread. This has been on my mind recently. I guess occultism is like everything else in the world: most of the people who are interested in it are gobshites.
Including those "authorities" Levi and Crowley! Levi is normally dismissed as a journalist and it is impossible to read Crowley without feeling that his tongue was in his cheek as he led his dense-but-moneyed acolytes deeper into his labyrinth of initiations. Wasn't he stuffed when the flow of initiates dried up with the Stock Market Crash!
Some would swear by Grimoires which may have commanded attention as rare or banned volumes. Considered together, they seem garbled, repetitive and opportunistic - promising, like pornography, from the same publishers, a good deal more than they delivered.
Alchemy is a parallel case. Endless authorities are cited but the interpretation has always been very free. In the end, one wonders if these volumes were not just the coffee-table books of their time: "One day I'll get into this cool stuff - meanwhile check out these cryptic engravings!"
as a slight diversion, have you met Adam McLean?
Not in every case - I once had a friend whose grandfather fancied himself an alchemist. Had a whole big lab in his basement and everything. His obsession was attempting to transform copper pennies into gold.
I was intrigued by this and asked for more information, but my friend said he'd always considered his grandpa a raving looney, so never paid much attention during their sessions in the lab.
The weird thing (well, weirder than usual, considering the subject) was that the grandfather was a retired surgeon, so had a background in legitimate science. Odd that he should take up a discredited science as a hobby!
The cryptic engravings do look cool - puffing away at toxic fumes with a bellows, not so much.
If viewed as a science then alchemy cannot but be discredited.
But then likewise a dog viewed as an elephant.
Only via his website and videos. I recently posted a link to his three-part video on the imagery of alchemy, which is freely available on Youtube. Levity.com was one of the first websites which really seemed to take a subject further than any published book had done. His videos on alchemical imagery seek to separate the symbols from the emblems and the opportunistic use of available plates. My own introduction to the subject came with my adolescent perusal of Jung's volume and slightly later purchase of John Read's Prelude to Chemistry. I have always been fascinated by accounts by scientists who have attempted to replicate the procedures of the alchemists, sometimes reproducing the changes of colour and texture which mesmerized them. I have sometimes wondered if the fumes of the laboratory were responsible for some of the more visionary experiences - not an original thought, I admit!
Yes. The most elaborate of the manuscripts and printed volumes on the subject were clearly never used in a lab. Like the Books of Hours, which some of them resemble, they seem beautiful objects for contemplation. A bit like our most lavish cookery-books!
Adam McLean is a local boy for me some years ago I took a course he wrote on interpreting the images, ways to look for things, ground rules where known and so on. Really enjoyed it - you also got a cd full of images! - and it was so much better than the How to Look at Pictures in an Art History course I also took!
It looks like the author wishes to accuse the tomato of being a mandrake . . .
apart from that . . . chinstroke!
I love the fastidious note that it was rarely washed between uses!
Christ! You didn't want to be a blasphemer when they'd just finished questioning the homosexuals!
What a muddled article! It contains all the usual guff, though it is honest enough to state there is no contemporary evidence of its use. An editor? has chosen to spice it up by stating it was "exclusively for women!" - which contradicts what follows.
My guess? Probably a 19th Century tea-infuser! :rofl:
I think it's a bulb planter!
Separate names with a comma.