As a society, we no longer really mark the transition points in life with due respect to our psycho-spiritual selves. Initiation, in the sense of marking a transition point in our lives, has, today, mainly become a byword for getting very drunk on the occasion of a birthday or being super-glued to a streetlamp in the nude on your stag night.
From a spiritual or occult perspective, the rite of passage into a magickal system is also a rare event given that most of the established occult orders who would have done this work, such as the Rosicrucians and the Golden Dawn, have passed into memory and the history books.
In Homemade Magick Lon Milo DuQuette (one of the World’s leading exponents of the magickal arts) presents his perspective on magick and the process of opening ones psyche to its influence.
Homemade Magick is a little different. It is part self-initiatory manual and part personal retrospective on a lifetime spent in magickal work.
It begins by clarifying the fact that the core focus of modern magick is the magickian. To this end, you are firstly encouraged to establish your own magickal motto and prepare yourself for self-initiation into the world of magick.
As a student of the Western Magickal School of Mystery, DuQuette’s account of his life and magickal influences draws heavily upon the works of Aleister Crowley and the core principles of Thelema.
In part two, the book moves away from personal consideration of the initiate to the most important assets of any magickian: the tools of the trade, such as the pentacle, sword, goblet and wand.
The authors’ approach to the subject is to keep things simple—even in magick, so the tools are not-sophisticated in their appearance to start with but an emphasis is placed upon consecrating and charging them correctly.
Part three continues this theme of making-do by explaining how an initiate’s home can be transformed into a magickal temple—a sanctified place where you can practice magick. This section also includes some insight and advice on how to raise your children in your magickal world, how to perform magick whilst travelling and how to live with a partner who also practices magick.
The book closes with an index and is illustrated with the authors own photos.
Homemade Magick: offers a great deal more than its simple title suggests.
Not only is it a manual of initiation but it also reveals a large degree of insight into the private and professional life of its author himself—both as a magickian and in his former role as a successful musician and recording artist.
Not surprisingly, given the background of Lon Milo DuQuette as an occultist, the book draws upon the heavier occult principles of Crowley as well as the advanced magickal philosophy of the OTO. However, to the author’s great credit, he manages to successfully avoid using the same dry verbiage and instructional stuffiness that dogged both of these resources.
As I mentioned in my introduction, this is a book born of the necessities of providing quality information into the self-initiation process as well as guidance on the path of occult self-discovery.
In a world where good occult teaching is hard to come by and often prohibitively expensive when you find it, this book plays a vital role in introducing you to the challenges involved in following your own magickal path.
To use an old Golden Dawn analogy, the author pitches this book somewhere between Neophyte and Probationer grades—though, it is evident that he has reached higher grades himself, and he maintains that sense of excitement and expectation that you get when you first embrace the Great Work.
Throughout its pages the advice is sound, the practical lessons are powerful and the photos are a delight. Merged with the numerous anecdotal stories of life in magick, this makes this a book that is a treat to read.
As an auto-biographical account of how to approach elemental magick Homemade Magick simply cannot be beaten. It is a ripping yarn and a powerfully informative manual of instruction rolled into one.