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Author Topic: Books on ancient ritual and ceremonial magic  (Read 3533 times)
sacredherbals
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« Topic Start: November 05, 2007, 01:05:43 pm »

Anyone know of any good books on ancient ritual or ceremonial magic? I'm interested in the way ancient pagans conducted their rituals but I'm having a hard time finding a good book on the subject. Any help would be greatly appreciated!  Smiley
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« Reply #1: November 05, 2007, 01:20:18 pm »

Anyone know of any good books on ancient ritual or ceremonial magic? I'm interested in the way ancient pagans conducted their rituals but I'm having a hard time finding a good book on the subject. Any help would be greatly appreciated!  Smiley

Sacredherbals,

I've split this request out into its own thread for you.  You're more likely to get a good response that way than if it's buried in another thread.  Wink  I would suggest, also, that you might want to be more specific about what you mean by "ancient pagans"; that's a very broad field, and we'll be able to make better suggestions if you're more specific.
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« Reply #2: November 05, 2007, 01:23:28 pm »

Anyone know of any good books on ancient ritual or ceremonial magic? I'm interested in the way ancient pagans conducted their rituals but I'm having a hard time finding a good book on the subject. Any help would be greatly appreciated!  Smiley

As far as I know, *ceremonial magic* means something fairly Judao-Christian based.  I don't think there *is* an ancient Pagan "ceremonial" magic, though various cultures may well have had magic that had a great deal of ceremony.
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« Reply #3: November 05, 2007, 02:58:28 pm »

Anyone know of any good books on ancient ritual or ceremonial magic? I'm interested in the way ancient pagans conducted their rituals but I'm having a hard time finding a good book on the subject. Any help would be greatly appreciated!  Smiley

Well, you probably won't find a single book on the subject because each culture/religion would have approached ritual differently. And even similar actions could have dissimilar meanings.

If you can narrow down your culture, you'll have better luck, I think. There are some on Greek ritual structure and ceremony, but if you're interested in, say, the Celts, it's not going to be a bit of help.

And I guess I'm not clear what you mean by ceremonial magic. You'll find a lot of modern works on it, but like Shadow said, it's going to have distinct Judeo-Christian overtones, so if that's not what you're looking for, you might be a bit more specific in the direction you're wanting to go.
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« Reply #4: November 05, 2007, 04:44:29 pm »

Anyone know of any good books on ancient ritual or ceremonial magic? I'm interested in the way ancient pagans conducted their rituals but I'm having a hard time finding a good book on the subject. Any help would be greatly appreciated!  Smiley

You might be interested in Aaron Leitch's "Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires", which is an overview and in depth discussion of Solomonic classical texts.  It provides an introduction to the relevant texts such as Solomon's Key, Agrippa's "Of Occult Philosophy", Ars Notoria, etc. etc.

http://kheph777.tripod.com/indexsecrets.html
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0738703036/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top/103-9106146-4102218
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« Reply #5: November 05, 2007, 05:07:41 pm »

You might be interested in Aaron Leitch's "Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires",

Oh, and Manly P Hall's The Secret Teaching of All Ages and Lectures on Ancient Philosophy are each large tomes that go over a wide range of occult subjects such as mystery religions, pagan symbols, etc.  These are discussions of theory though, not practical workbooks.
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« Reply #6: November 05, 2007, 05:21:20 pm »

Anyone know of any good books on ancient ritual or ceremonial magic?

Ceremonial magic is a fairly modern (and Western) invention -- middle ages and later. Most ancient cultures with a magical tradition had some form of ritual magic, but I'm not aware of any good "Overview of Ancient Ritual Magic" book.
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« Reply #7: November 09, 2007, 02:50:30 pm »

Sacredherbals,

I've split this request out into its own thread for you.  You're more likely to get a good response that way than if it's buried in another thread.  Wink  I would suggest, also, that you might want to be more specific about what you mean by "ancient pagans"; that's a very broad field, and we'll be able to make better suggestions if you're more specific.

I actually just now noticed that you did that! Thanks. I'll try to be more specific. I guess I'm just kind of bored with all the same reading. There seems to be tons of beginner books out there on magic, witchcraft etc. But I'm having a hard time finding any advanced books. I guess what I'm looking for is something a little deeper than a beginner book. Something on ancient magic, mostly celtic. Someone said that I probably wont have any luck finding that so I'm also interested in ancient Roman and Egyptian ritual/magic. I just want to learn more about what the ancients practiced and how they performed magic/ritual. Hope thats a little better of an explanation! Thanks for the replies so far.

Rain: I will check out those books that you recommended. Thank you again!  Grin
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« Reply #8: November 09, 2007, 03:59:24 pm »

Something on ancient magic, mostly celtic. Someone said that I probably wont have any luck finding that so I'm also interested in ancient Roman and Egyptian ritual/magic. I just want to learn more about what the ancients practiced and how they performed magic/ritual. Hope thats a little better of an explanation! Thanks for the replies so far.


For ancient Egyptian ritual and magic:

The Ancient Gods Speak edited by Donald B. Redford

The Priests of Ancient Egypt by Serge Sauneron

Wine and Wine Offerings in the Religion of Ancient Egypt by Mu-Chou Poo

The House of Horus at Edfu: Ritual in an Ancient Egyptian Temple by Barbara Watterson


A Guide to Religious Ritual at Abydos by Rosalie David


The Mechanics of Ancient Egyptian Magical Practice by Robert Ritner


Magic in Ancient Egypt by Geraldine Pinch


Amulets of Ancient Egypt by Carol Andrews

Reading Egyptian Art by Richard Wilkinson

Symbol and Magic in Egyptian Art by Richard H. Wilkinson


J. D. Ray. "Ancient Egypt" in Oracles and Divination edited by Micheal Loewe and Carmen Blacker. Pages 171-190.
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« Reply #9: November 11, 2007, 03:34:23 pm »

I actually just now noticed that you did that! Thanks. I'll try to be more specific. I guess I'm just kind of bored with all the same reading. There seems to be tons of beginner books out there on magic, witchcraft etc. But I'm having a hard time finding any advanced books. I guess what I'm looking for is something a little deeper than a beginner book. Something on ancient magic, mostly celtic. Someone said that I probably wont have any luck finding that so I'm also interested in ancient Roman and Egyptian ritual/magic. I just want to learn more about what the ancients practiced and how they performed magic/ritual. Hope thats a little better of an explanation! Thanks for the replies so far.

Rain: I will check out those books that you recommended. Thank you again!  Grin

Not so much an advanced text on magic as a precis on Celtic cosmology (something that, I think is necessary if you're planning to construct advanced rituals in a particular context) . . . Celtic Heritage by Alwyn and Brinley Rees.  It's a bit on the dry side, but well worth the effort.
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