New Altar, New Work, Same Space (also hi, Saint Cyprian!)
February 10, 2014 10 Comments
Alas, I recently had to dismantle my beloved MaGOS altar, though not because it failed its purpose. Rather, it’s been a fantastic bit of magical machinery, and it taught me no small amount about orgone and magical energies generally, as well as applying modern magical methods to traditional systems. No, I had to dismantle it because I needed the space. I swear, I’m going to be ecstatic when I move into a new place where I can get a whole room all to myself for use as a temple and have all my magical shit lining the walls without having to worry about things like beds or desks or porn.
Why did I need the space? Because I needed to set up a new altar for a new spirit. Of course, I don’t erect altars for every spirit I work with; my two big altars, my devotional altar where I make the majority of my prayers and my magical altar or Table of Manifestation where I do some of my Work, suffice for most of my purposes. The other altars around my room are for big-name deities, like Hermes and Dionysus, or for my ancestors. The other spirits I work with I make occasional offerings to at my devotional altar or dedicate a bit of jewelry to them and wear it in their honor every now and then. No, altars for me are where I do major spiritual work at, and if I have to set up an altar for something, it’s going to be for a long-term good purpose.
So, who’s this new altar going to? Someone with whom I should’ve probably called on long before now: Saint Cyprian of Antioch, the patron saint of magicians and necromancers. He’s been undergoing a resurgence and reemergence as of late, which is no bad thing, and I’ll leave you to do the clicky-clicky on the linky-linkies and read up more about him if you’re unfamiliar. Of course, he’s not officially recognized by the Roman Catholic Church anymore, but that hasn’t really stopped him from playing a significant role in the lives of those who call upon him.
Why this good Saint? I’m working with angels and calling on the name of Christ, as well as getting involved with paranormal investigation and spiritual counseling, plus getting plenty of further integration and connection with various Central American African diasporic religions. The fact that this saint is a Christian magician, the archetype of many such magicians, plus a Faustian figure (if not the archetypal one), gives Saint Cyprian a special resonance with the work I already do. I mean, I’m no Christian in name, but I’m certainly not opposed to chilling with Christ or calling on his name, especially since my work is leading me in a direction that is parallel or even meeting up with him. Beyond that, though, Cyprian is especially good at working magic with spirits, especially those of the underworld in their many and sundry varieties, and working with the dead is becoming more of a focus in my work than I had anticipated, either with my own or with that of the areas I visit. Demons, too, which is still going to be a project of mine when I get the time for it, are something Cyprian works nicely with, and having this extra help for me is no bad thing. Perhaps most importantly, however, Saint Cyprian is mostly known in Central/South American, Hispanic, and ATR circles nowadays, and has major associations with a number of their gods (e.g. Babalu Aye of the Santeros, in addition to Saint Lazarus). It’s not that I want to work with these deities, necessarily, but it will help bridge a gap between what I do and what some of my associates do, especially in the necromantic department.
It’s weird, but I get nothing but good omens for working with him. Besides, having someone on my side lower than the angels is a good thing, especially when I get around to doing work that’s lower than what I normally do, anyway. Once I get a few more supplies (prayer cards for an amparo, saint medallion, yet another incense burner, etc.) and make a few initial charms and things, I’ll start working with Saint Cyprian of Antioch in the coming weeks. Deo volente, I’ll be able to get into another side of the magic I already do.
If you already work with Saint Cyprian of Antioch, what have some of your experiences been like? Do you have any advice for others who want to learn more about working with this saint?