Snowdrops from a Curate’s Garden – Aleister Crowley

snowdrops curate's garden crowley
Snowdrops from a Curate’s Garden – Aleister Crowley

Birchgrove Press – 2011 (First published 1904)

Aleister Crowley was a mystic, a poet, an Irish Republican, a mountaineer, a propagandist, a dead-beat dad, a spy, a pilgrim, a preacher and a problem when he was stoned. He was also a bit of a pervert.

This is a collection of his dirtier writings. I wouldn’t really consider it pornography or erotica – it’s really just filth. I don’t mean that in a derogatory way either. This is literally page after page of gross-out material.

The bulk of the text is made up of The Nameless Novel. Crowley wrote this while his wife, Rose Kelly, was recovering from the birth of their daughter Lilith. Every day he’d write a new chapter and give it to her that evening to make her laugh. The story is about the life of an Archbishop, and each chapter aims to be more repulsive than the last. This is a challenge when the opening chapter starts off with the following passage:

“Good, by Jesus!” cried the Countess, as, with her fat arse poised warily over the ascetic face of the Archbishop, she lolloped a great gob of greasy spend from the throat of her bulging cunt into the gaping mouth of the half-choked ecclesiastic.”

After this, the Archbishop takes a massive shit in the Countess’s mouth and then stabs her in the guts and sticks his cock in the wound…

It gets worse when the pig arrives:

“From his dripping schnickel frothed a hot stiff stream of greenish piss at an incalculable pace, while from his pink arse dripped the faeculent and pultaceous turdlings which we associate with a diet of wash.

The stench was intolerable. Minute by minute passed by, and still the unsurpassed bladder of the unclean animal of the Semite and the Mussulman shot out its hissing torrents. Her greedy mouth frothed and seethed with the o’erflowing billows; for the poor lass’s throat, do what she might—and she had done her best to swallow many a slimestick, thereby noticeably enlarging the passage—was still too small to dispose of the formidable current of urine with which her too complaisant lover now furnished her. Her merkin too dripped over the odd ends of the champion stool. “The gospel hall is full” whispered the Archbishop. “They will have to hold an overflow meeting in the arsehole.”

Sure enough, the delicate-minded girl now turned her attention to the part in question. By her incomparable gift of suction, which years of practice and not a little natural aptitude had bestowed upon her rectum, she absorbed the bulk of the faeces; while any unconsidered trifles stuck in her abundant and curly pubic hair.”

Yep. You’ve just read about a pig filling both ends of a woman’s body with shit. And guess what folks – it gets worse again! When the Archbishop’s gay lover dies, things get quite nasty indeed:

“I flung myself upon the dear corpse; I buggered him night and day, entirely surpassing—for I was now come to my strength—the childish efforts upon the queenly butter-boat of E…..d’s debauched ruler. As the work of putrefaction proceeded—and the stench was awful, for S…y’s little leaven had pervaded his whole lump—I rammed my arse-wedge frantically into his holes as they formed, as if in the insane hope of damming the damage of damned death’s fell flood. Indeed for a week or so I did more than this. The patient actually gained weight. But time tells on the strongest. In the second week I kept barely level: in the third he steadily lost ground: in the fourth he fell to pieces under me: in the fifth I sedulously and conscientiously buggered the pieces one by one: but it was no good. Steven Jimson was (in the immortal word of Poe) a nearly liquid mass of loathsome, of detestable putrescence. Do not think for a moment that my affection was shaken by so slight a circumstance! But I assure you—nay! I swear it to you upon this holy Relic! (he produced a piece of the True Touch-her-home, with the Magdalen’s clap-juice sticking to it still, and reverently kissed it)—that there was not one ounce of that body of love that could reasonably be firky-toodled any more. As long as anything that could be called Viscosity was inherent in the mass, I jounced it like a man. But this soon ceased: I reluctantly withdrew. Yet such was my love for my darling that I buggered a hole clean through his tombstone, and for six months I never left the hallowed spot.”

There’s other parts about fucking the Queen and a woman with an extendable, elastic clitoris. Things get worse and worse until the Archbishop describes the sadistic blood orgy at his father’s secret island full of negro slaves in the West Indies. I’m not going to quote that section here. I am quite sure that the whole point of this book is to be gross and offensive, but this particular section will probably be a little bit too much for most modern readers, even as a deliberately offensive joke.

After The Nameless Novel, there’s a few short stories and a bunch of dirty poems that were added on to provide enough material for a book. These are largely about eating poo and buggery. Some of them are quite funny. Here’s a nameless song:

Bugger me gently. Bertie! My arse is rather sore:
Tinkety – tunkety – tinkety – funk! I haven’t been long a whore.
Mash the shit into gravy! Make me slimy and slick!
Tinkety – tunkety – tinkety – tunkety! That’s what does the trick!

Bugger me gently. Bertie! My arse is rather tight.
Tinkers – tunkety – tinkety – tunk! We’ll ram each other all night!
Bugger me gently, Bertie or I’ll blow off your balls with a fart!
Tinkety – tunkety – tinkety – tunkety! Softly now, dear heart!

Oh Bertie, I’m in heaven! I see the golden walls!
Tinkety – tunkety – tinkety – tunkety! Shove it up to the balls!
Jesus is waiting for me with the Holy Ghost up his bum:
Tinkety – tunkety – tinkety – tunk! You bloody sod, you’ve come!

Honestly, of all the stuff I’ve read by Crowley, I found this the most enjoyable. I’ll take childish toilet humour over cabalistic mysticism every time.

Demonic and Sexual Magick! – Carl Nagel

demonic and sexual magick carl nagelDemonic and Sexual Magick! – Carl Nagel
Finbarr Publications  – 1996

I make the effort to read and review at least one book per week, and I try to say something interesting about each book I’m reviewing regardless of how crap it is. I’m at a serious loss for words with this one though. It’s a boring, stupid, disorganized mess. It reads like the work of an 11 year old who is stupid enough to believe that Harry Potter is real. All of the texts I’ve read that were put out by Finbarr Publications have been of remarkably low quality, but this one is the most inane. There’s nothing here that sets it apart from the utter shit they published.

There’s no order to anything in here. Half of the text is taken up with silly sex magic rituals taken from other sources. These rituals are of the ‘wank off in front of a red candle and stick a black feather up your ass when you’re cumming – visualise the face of your love when doing so, and she’ll be in your bed by the end of the week’ variety. The other half of the book is accounts of people who tried and benefited from these rituals. None of these accounts are remotely believable. There’s also a few unrelated paragraphs on different Occult topics such as Aleister Crowley and Voodoo thrown in too, just to take up space.

Finbarr Publications are the bottom of the bucket when it comes to Occult books, and this is the most boring text that I’ve read from them. (Here’s some more examples if you’re interested: Basil Crouch’s The Hallowed Genie and Secrets of the Black Temple by the Red Spider, Marcus T. Bottomley’s Dark Rites & Encounters With the Devil, and Nathan Elkana’s Taking Control of a Group, Organization, Society, etc., through Occult Manipulation. All of these books are beyond shit.)  Demonic and Sexual Magick! is a particularly rotten bucket of crap. One wonders about the kind of individual that reads this shit in earnest. The world is filled with idiots.

What else can I say? This was truly terrible rubbish. The paper it’s printed on would be better used as toilet paper. Seriously, if you ever come across a copy of this book, use its pages to wipe away excrement from your rancid anal cavity.

Summertime Reading: A few more Paperbacks from Hell – Miss Finney Kills Now and Then, The Stigma and The Tribe

paperbacks from hell summerI’ve read quite a few paperback horror novels over the summer. Most of them are throwaway reads that don’t justify a post of their own, so I’ve been grouping them by series, authors and publishers. (Expect posts on William Johnstone’s horror novels, J.N. Williams’s Martin Ruben series, Richard Jaccoma’s Werewolf series, and random Zebra and Tor books showing up here in the next few months.) The books in this post have nothing to do with each other aside from the fact that they were all featured in Grady Hendrix’s and Will Erickson’s Paperbacks From Hell and also reviewed by those guys online. I don’t feel a need to go into much detail with these books as Grady and Will have done so already.

 

the stigma trevor hoyleThe Stigma – Trevor Hoyle
Sphere Books- 1980
This book starts off very serious, and there’s a bunch of references to real witch trials and the Brontë family that got me excited. I’ve never reviewed Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights on this blog, but they’re two of my favourite books, and the Brontë references left me moist. There were also some fairly scary moments, and by the halfway mark I was wondering if it was really fair for a book like this to have been listed alongside the work of J.N. Williamson in the pages of Paperbacks From Hell. Then I got to the bit where a naughty dog tries to rape someone and had to reevaluate my stance. Things get grosser and sillier as the book comes to a close, and the ending alone warrants its inclusion in PFH. This is ultimately quite a silly book, but I enjoyed it.

I decided to buy The Stigma after reading about it in PFH, but like so many of the texts featured therein, cheap copies of The Stigma became scarce for a while. I paid more than I should have a year and a half ago, but it seems that there’s loads of affordable copies online again now. Grady Hendrix also wrote a more elaborate review of this book for Tor.com

 

miss finney kills al dempseyMiss Finney Kills Now and Then – Al Dempsey
Tor 1989 (First published 1982)
This is the story of an old woman who can grow younger by murdering people. I found it very enjoyable. The characters are more interesting than I expected, and the plot, while obviously ludicrous, is pretty entertaining. When I was buying this at a thriftstore, there were two copies. One had a slightly classier looking cover featuring a bloody dagger, but I obviously went for the hideous hag one. I discovered Grady Hendrix’s review of this book right after finishing it and then realised that it’s actually featured on the front cover of Paperbacks from Hell. Will Erickson also reviewed Miss Finney. He hated it.

 

the tribe bari woodThe Tribe – Bari Wood
Signet – 1981
I saw a copy of this at a used bookstore a few weeks back and picked it up. I couldn’t remember reading about it, but I knew it was recently republished under Valancourt’s Paperback from Hell reissue series, so I assumed it would be pretty good.

This is definitely a cut above the other two books in this post. It’s actually a well written novel with an exciting plot and complex characters. It deals with complicated issues in a way that doesn’t get pedantic or preachy. The Tribe tells a story that makes you think. Will Erickson and Grady Hendrix both commented on the effectiveness of the prologue, and I can confirm that it’s pretty great. I can’t imagine anyone reading the first 20 pages of this book without wanting to read the rest.

Oh yeah, it’s about a murderous Golem in New York, but don’t let that put you off. It’s actually fucking great.

After having read The Tribe and enjoying it so much, I definitely aim to read the other Paperbacks From Hell that Valancourt are reissuing.

 

Well, there you go. These books were amoung the better horror novels I read over the summer. Thanks to Grady and Will for the recommendations.

Secret Cipher of the UFOnauts and Secret Rituals of the Men in Black by Allen H. Greenfield

secret cipher of the ufonauts secret rituals of the men in black greenfieldSecret Cipher of the UFOnauts 
Secret Rituals of the Men in Black
Allen H. Greenfield

Here are two books by the same author that make up one whole. Let me attempt to briefly summarise their contents:

Humanity has been in contact with ultraterrestrial forces for millennia. A kind of merman from Sirius came down to Earth a long time ago and taught us how to organise civilisation.

The secret wisdom of the fish god has been passed down through the coded messages of myths and the ciphered language of the rituals of secret societies. Very few humans still understand the true messages behind these stories and rites. Magic is ultraterrestrial technology, and most, if not all, aspects of the Occult relate to this technology.

summoning alien.jpg
In 1904, Aleister Crowley received messages from Aiwass, a discarnate entity. Within these messages was a key to the ciphered messages of the UFOnauts (ultraterrestrials), but despite his efforts, Crowley wasn’t able to find the key within the message that he himself had channeled. Some of Crowley’s followers discovered the key to the cipher in the 70s.

Allen Greenfield, the author of these books, claims that this key unlocks the meanings of the nonsensical names of aliens and planets given by UFO contactees. It also decodes elements of the secret rituals of certain masonic fraternities.

The deciphered meaning of these terms and rituals gives credence to the claim that ultraterrestrials have long been meddling in human affairs. Some aliens seem to be good, but others are pretty bad.

These books are not easy reading, but that’s their basic message as far as I can tell. The evidence given for these claims is fairly cabbalistic, and I don’t have the background or the patience to assess it properly. I read every word in the book, but entire paragraphs went entirely over my head. There’s a lot of references to different contactee cases that I am only mildly familiar with and a good deal of discussion on different aspects of freemasonry that I didn’t get at all.

I feel that things might have made more sense to me if I had already read Robert Temple’s The Sirius Mystery. It’s mentioned quite a few times in here. I’ve had a copy of this book on my shelf for years, bit I’ve found it tough to work up enough courage to actually read it. I suppose I should really look through it before delving any deeper into UFO lore.

Philip K. Dick’s VALIS was also mentioned in here quite a few times. VALIS was one of the first of Dick’s novels I read, and I remember finding it quite confusing at the time. I wonder if it’d make more sense to me now. I thought it was pretty cool to see Dick’s work being discussed alongside Crowley’s.

The main texts of both Secret Cipher and Secret Rituals are followed by interviews with an individual who calls himself Terry R. Wriste, and these interviews contain the most entertaining, most straightforward and most unbelievable parts of the books. In one of them, this Wriste guy describes being part of an underground shootout between a group of Vietnam veterans and a bunch of aliens. Wriste was one of the only survivors. In the other interview, he claims that UFOs can be shot down with sex energy. So remember, if you’re ever about to be abducted by an alien, just whip out your dick or pussy and rub it in their direction. They’ll disappear.

Robert Anton Wilson described Secret Cipher as “A very strange book, even for the field of UFOlogy”, and I have to agree with him. This stuff is mental. It was nice reading it so soon after Dark Gods by Roberts and Gilbertson as that book discusses a lot of the same cases. I cut down on the alien books after reviewing a bunch of new-age channeling nonsense a few years ago, but the books I’ve been reading recently have got me interested again. I’ve been enjoying the way they bring other aspects of the Occult to their discussions.

I’ve found it a bit tricky to figure out accurate publishing information for Greenfield’s books. The first one, Secret Cipher, was originally published in 1994.  I’m not sure when the second one, Secret Rituals, was published, but I know it wasn’t after 1995. I read the 2005 digital editions of both texts. (Secret Cipher of the UFOnauts, Secret Rituals of the Men in Black) The texts are about the same thing, and I’m certain they’re meant to be read together. A few years ago, the author put out another book, The Complete Secret Cipher of the UFOnauts. I haven’t been able to verify this, but it seems probably to me that that text is just the other two books stuck together.

Satanic Panic: Pop Cultural Paranoia in the 1980s – Edited by Kier-La Janisse & Paul Corupe

satanic panic pop-cultural paranoiain the 1980s.jpgSatanic Panic: Pop Cultural Paranoia in the 1980s 
Edited by Kier-La Janisse & Paul Corupe
FAB Press – 2018 (Originally published 2015)

This is a collection of essays about different elements of the Satanic Panic of the 1980s. I remember seeing something about this book when it came out and thinking that it looked cool, and when I recently saw that it contained an essay on Russ Martin’s sexy Satanic mind-control novels, I knew I’d have to read it. I got a couple of gift vouchers from work over the past year, and I was delighted to find a way to use those vouchers to pursue my interest in Satanism.

The essays in here are of varying quality, but most are pretty good. I guess it’s inevitable that each reader will like some better than others. Together they present a pretty comprehensive look at the Satanic Panic of the 1980s.

Reading the book over the course of a few days was a bit odd as the introductory background information in some of the essays is pretty similar. Geraldo’s infamous Exposing Satan’s Underground special gets quite a few mentions. I guess this two hour TV special is probably the defining peak of the panic. Despite multiple attempts, I’ve never managed to watch the whole thing through. After a few moments of it, I feel a maddening urge to listen to Slayer and throw stones through church windows.

I’ve encountered a lot of the material in this book before, and covered some of it on this blog. There’s essays on Michelle Remembers, Bob Larson, books by Phil Phillips, and one on the McMartin preschool trial. The McMartin essay was one of the more interesting in the book. It argues that the claims of Satanist involvement in that case actually prevented prosecutors from busting a real paedophile ring. There are also interesting essays on Chick Tracts, Dungeons and Dragons, and heavy metal in here.

I felt that a few of the writers went a bit overboard trying to make their essays feel academic. One of them even references Foucault. Ugh. We get it guys, you went to college…

(Haha, after writing that last bit, I looked up the guy who made the reference to Foucault, and he actually teaches a course on college writing in a college. Classic! Referencing ol’ Michel might be a surefire way to dazzle your liberal arts prof, but it don’t impress me much.)

This is a far fancier book than the ones I usually read. It looks and feels really nice. There’s so many cool pictures, and it felt like a lot of work was put into the layout. Just to flick through it is a cool experience. In sincerity, if you know any goths who have a birthday coming up, this would be perfect for their coffee table.

I don’t have much more to say about this one. Overall, it’s a very cool book. I’m quite sure I’ll reread some of these essays as research for future posts.

 

Dark Gods – Anthony Roberts and Geoff Gilbertson

dark gods - anthony roberts and Geoff Gilbertson.jpgDark Gods – Anthony Roberts and Geoff Gilbertson
Rider/Hutchinson – 1980

Malevolent forces from another dimension have long been plotting against humanity. Throughout history these forces have manifested as demons, angels, spirits, fairies, vampires, dragons, aliens and Men in Black. They have convinced some humans to create secret societies that unwittingly aim to bring about the downfall of humanity. Lovecraft’s tales are not mere fiction. Nyarlathotep and Cthulhu are very real, and they’re patiently waiting for misguided humans to call them forth so that they can lead us into an era of blasphemous anarchy and interdimensional terror.

I mean… if you don’t want to read this book after that description, you’re on the wrong blog.

There’s so much to unpack here. This utterly insane book takes the work of H.P. Lovecraft, Bulwer Lytton, Erich Von DänikenFrancis King, Pauwels and Bergier, Eliphas Levi, Aleister Crowley, Trevor Ravenscroft, and John Keel and mixes it with Biblical Lore, black magic, cryptozoology, secret society conspiracy theories and UFO abduction stories. This is essential reading.

h.p.lovecraft - tom evesonjpg.jpgI’ve seen this image of Lovecraft before. It’s by Tom Eveson.

When I read Colin Wilson’s The Occult, I complained about the author’s unquestioning acceptance of ridiculous ideas. This approach made a little more sense to me after I read Morning of the Magicians by Pauwels and Bergier and understood their concept of fantastic realism, but I still thought of Wilson as a fairly credulous yet knowledgeable individual. Wilson actually wrote the foreword for this book, and it’s rather telling that he seems uncomfortable accepting this book’s findings. While he praises the authors of Dark Gods’ inquisitive vigor, he can not endorse their blind acceptance of their own conjecture. What is too much for Wilson will be far too much for almost everybody else.

Truly, this is a ridiculous book. There is no consideration given to the reliability of any of the authors’ sources; they even accept testimony from individuals they acknowledge as being liars.  They make no distinction between myths, fiction and eye-witness witness reports. Lovecraft’s short stories, extracts from The History of the Damnable Life and Deserved Death of Doctor John Faustus and Bulwer Lyton’s novel The Coming Race are presented alongside historical documents as proof of the conspiracy.

I don’t mind authors being ridiculous if the material they’re presenting is entertaining, but unfortunately, not all of the stuff in here is hugely interesting. Much of the second half of the book is taken up with descriptions of different secret societies such as the Golden Dawn, the Illuminati and even the Bilderburg Group. I recently wrote about my current disdain for conspiracy theories, and I found this section of the book to be grueling. The general message of the last 100 pages or so can be summed up by saying that any secret society that claims to offer illumination is actually run by Satanic forces that aim to enslave the society’s members and ultimately destroy humanity. I will give the authors some credit for briefly suggesting Reptilian government leaders 10 years before David Icke went mad, but this part of the book was painfully dull.

dark gods crowley blavatksy weishauptMadame Blavatsky, Rudolf Steiner, Adam Weishaupt, Aleister Crowley, Houston Stewart Chamberlain and Dietrich Eckart – Satanic Illuminatists (Picture by Tom Eveson)

Overall, the writing is quite bad. The authors seem to dance around the points they’re trying to make rather than just stating them clearly. This is particularly unfortunate as the points they are making are hardly common-sense ideas.

Perhaps the most confusing, convoluted part of this book is the bit explaining the motives of the entities who seem to abduct people in UFOs. ‘The phrase ‘seem to’ is very deliberate in that sentence. The authors of Dark Gods don’t believe that aliens are coming to Earth and abducting humans; they believe that interdimensional beings are coming to Earth and pretending to be aliens that are coming to Earth and abducting humans. We’re talking about malevolent ultra-terrestrials, not inquisitive extra terrestrials. (The idea of ultra-terrestrials rather than extra-terrestrials can be found in Whitley Strieber‘s abduction books too, but ol’ Whitley never imagines his visitors to be so deceptive.) Why are these weird entities playing such an elaborate hoax on humanity? According to Gilbertson and Roberts, it’s basically just to confuse us.

golem dark godsThis image of a Golem later appeared on the cover of a book by David Schow.

Think about that for a second. Inter-dimensional creatures are crossing over into our dimension and then pretending to be aliens because they think that will make us feel afraid and uncertain. The pretending to be aliens part just seems a little bit redundant to me. They’re inter-dimensional creatures – that’s plenty frightening and confusing. What kind of deranged people came up with this nonsense?

There’s sparse information on the authors available online, and I had to dig around quite a bit for it to paint a cohesive picture. What I could find was fairly depressing. Both men are now dead.

Anthony Roberts had previously published some other books on Atlantis and mythology. Paul Weston, an expert on Glastonbury’s mythology, claims that the mood of Roberts’ earlier books were “considerably different” to Dark Gods. Roberts ran a publication company called Zodiac House with his wife. He died in 1990 while climbing up Glastonbury Tor to see a lunar eclipse. He died of a heart attack, but some have suggested that he was actually killed by fairies for planning to summon the ghost of Robert Kirk, a folklorist who was supposedly abducted by the fairies in 1692. Most accounts of Anthony Roberts that I have found have presented him as a rather temperamental individual. (Sources: an essay on meeting Roberts, Paul Weston’s notes, and Roberts’ obituary on page 12 of The Ley Hunter Winter 1989/1990)

glastonbury tor - dark gods.jpgThis creepy image from the book shows the spot where Anthony Roberts would later die.

Geoff Gilbertson died more recently, in 2017. Despite living longer, he seems to have been the more tragic of the pair. He died alone of untreated cancer. I believe Dark Gods is his only book. After publishing it, he supposedly became convinced that the Dark Gods were after him for doing so. He apparently suffered several psychotic breakdowns and spent time living on the streets and in a mental institution. One of his friends believed that he was on the autism spectrum. This guy genuinely seems to have suffered horribly with his mental health. People that knew him seem to have thought him a very nice guy though, a fact which is not true for Anthony Roberts. Nearly all of the information I could find on Gilbertson came from this article.

I’ve read accounts describing both men as unstable. I don’t know how they met or what their relationship was like, but it seems that their interactions with each other created an echo-chamber of Fortean paranoia. Dark Gods doesn’t read like some transparent attempt to synthesize occult ideas in order to make a quick buck. No, this book is a genuine trek into Crazy Town.

I first saw Dark Gods being mentioned on twitter. Somebody was discussing how difficult it is to find these days. Underneath that comment, somebody else had posted a video review of the book by Occult Book Review, one of my favourite youtube accounts. (He’s another Irish dad with an interest in occult books, basically a nicer, smarter, more respectful version of me.) After the first few minutes of that video, I knew I’d have to track down and read this thing as soon as possible.

Doing so wasn’t easy. This book really is quite tricky to find. You’ll be very lucky to buy a copy for less than 200 dollars, and I wasn’t able to find a digital version. With a little bit of work, I managed to get my greedy little claws on a physical copy. It’s actually a very tedious read, but if you’re determined to read it and can’t afford to spend a bunch of money, ask me nicely and I might be able to help you out.

Conjuring Spirits – Michael Osiris Snuffin

conjuring spirits a manual of goetic and enochian sorcery michael osiris snuffin.jpgConjuring Spirits: A Manual of Goetic and Enochian Sorcery
Michael Osiris Snuffin
Concrescent Press – 2010

Here’s a book about communicating with demons.

There are two parts to this text. The first is a modern guide to Goetic evocation. It simplifies some of the steps that you’ll find listed in older manuals. This part was fine. I don’t practice Goetia, but I’ve read enough about it to have been able to follow along. Everything here seems to make sense in the context of modern ceremonial magic.

The second part of the book looks at the author’s system of Enochian magic. Enochian magic, for those of you who don’t know, originated in the scrying experiments of John Dee and Edward Kelley. I found it very difficult to bother with this section for a few reasons. First of all, Enochian magic is a system of communicating with angels. I’m more of a demon guy myself. Next up, Enochian magic is a load of bollocks – from what I’ve read, it seems that Edward Kelley was a just conman who strung John Dee along so that he could fuck his wife.

On top of this, the author has his facts mixed up about Dee and Kelley. He says in the opening paragraph of this section, “Between 1851 and 1859 , Elizabethan Magus Dr. John Dee and his seer Edward Kelly (sic) received one of the most powerful systems of magick in Western Occultism.” The problem here is that John Dee died in 1608, roughly 250 years prior to these dates. Queen Elizabeth reigned from 1558 until 1603.

Kelley’s relationship with Dee was actually confined to the 1580s, and I thought that the dates given by Snuffin might just have been a typo, getting the 1580s mixed up with the 1850s, but Snuffin later says that it has been more than 250 years since Dee and Kelley did their experiments. This is technically more accurate than his original dates, but Snuffins book was published in 2010, so this number places Dee and Kelley’s work together somewhere in the mid 1700s.

I know that historical accuracy isn’t entirely necessary for a functioning magical system, but I was quite surprised by this lack of attention to detail. I’ve read that Snuffin is going to release a second edition of this book, so hopefully these errors will be corrected there.