Mon, Mar 28|
Necromancy for Beginners Class I: A History of A "Black Art", with Dr Alexander Cummins
Registration is for Class I of V in this series.
Time & Location
Mar 28, 2022, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
About the Event
The practice of necromancy is regarded most strictly as consorting with and gaining knowledge from the dead, and more broadly as sorcerous work conducted by means of such shades. It has enjoyed a treatment in "the West" as the preserve of wicked black magicians, devilish witches, and other ghastly ne’er-do-wells.
This course seeks to look beyond this spooky reputation to the valuable, responsible, and nourishing work that can be done with the dead: from veneration of ancestors, to the conjuration of great ghosts to teach one things, to taking care of your local churchyard and asking the occasional favour from the residents, to dealing with the intrusive and disturbing impact of restless shades.
This course is taught by diviner, consultant, historian and –yes – necromancer Dr Alexander Cummins, who draws on both his academic research and professional experience as a spiritual reader and worker to draw together these examinations and explorations of how the living and the dead may aid each other.
March 28th - Necromancy for Beginners I: A History of A "Black Art"
To understand the dead, it is helpful to first survey the manners by which the dead themselves are considered throughout human days and ways. Such a foundation allows deeper consideration of modes of necromantic practice throughout history.
This class will examine some important concepts in the history and practice of necromancy: considering the influences of the dead as expressed in significant ecclesiastical doctrines and dogmas, as well as theological debates, and most especially in various everyday understandings of the afterlife, and encounters between the living and the dead.
This class will not only profile a few historic necromancers, and present accounts of various approaches and techniques for working with the dead; but consider how enterprising necromancers may engage with and actually use historical materials in their work. This class thus seeks to chart not only a history of necromancy, but consider the necromancy of history itself.
April 11th - Necromancy for Beginners II: Beloved Ancestors
It is hardly an overstatement to observe all human cultures across time and space have ways of remembering, honouring, and venerating our departed family, friends, and the ancestors who came long before us. Indeed it has been argued to have been one of the very first spiritual practices: not only mourning or remembering, but continuing to be in relationship with our dearly departed.
In this class, we will consider through various ways people across different time periods and regions celebrate and draw strength from their dead: from remembrances to shrines, from offerings to naming traditions, and from divination and mediumship to the use of materia like familial grave dirt. In the course of this journey we will try to consider a range of approaches and traditions, while cleaving to nuanced understandings of the cultural sensitivities and strictures attached to such deeply personal practices.
Throughout we will explore techniques and approaches for building closer and more nourishing relationships with one's ancestors, as well as touching upon common difficulties around dealing with a whole range of "difficult" or even outright abusive family dead.
April 25th - Necromancy for Beginners III: The Great Dead
The Great Dead, perhaps better known as the Mighty Dead, can be considered a somewhat catch-all term for ancestors of one's magic: the influential figures in one's tradition or personal lineage of occult practice, the luminaries in their sorcerous fields who shed the light by which we ourselves have learned. These may be historical priests, semi-legendary teachers, or even wholly mythic heroes: the demi-gods and -goddesses from whom one's tradition draws and celebrates its origin.
More broadly, the Great Dead however might be considered to apply to any inspirational soul who one might feel has (albeit indirectly) guided and galvanised our understanding and accomplishment of an art, craft, or practice. Artists, writers, bakers, musicians, designers, dancers, and accomplished workers of every human endeavour may thus join the ranks of the Great Dead alongside witches, seers, priestesses, and ceremonialists. Our heroes need not be in Greek myths to deserve our praise, respect, and love. Guilds of such Great Dead even cohere around professional and trade secrets, and one may seek to work with dead doctors, artisans, lawyers, soldiers, or other leading lights in their fields for particular assistance and support.
In this class, we will explore venerating ancestors of lineage and inspiration, and consider how working with such tutelary shades - of the artistic, of the professional, and of the magical - can deepen your magical practice. We will consider shrines, working tools, offerings, services, and enriching your understanding and engagement with your own work through the guiding words and spectral guidance of the experts and workers who came before you.
May 9th - Necromancy for Beginners IV: Graveyards & The Local Dead
Beyond nourishing the roots of our familial dead and helpful ancestors and tutelary shades, enterprising necromancers also build relationships with the local dead and the underworld spirits that walk in graveyards and cemeteries. These relationships and work can facilitate a range of responsible operations and engagements with various spiritual ecologies. This class will discuss a number of practical concepts and methodologies that folks should find helpful for their own necromancies: from basic safety protocols to the myriad uses of deathly materia magica, and more.
More than specific techniques, we will discuss a range of approaches, attitudes and means of working with the dead throughout history and across many cultures: whether by tutelary, collaborative, contractual, and even (disturbingly) coercive methods of capturing, forcing, and torturing the dead into performing magics. Such discussion of these ideas and practices of course requires nuanced discussion of ethics, culture, and power, and behoves responsible study.
In the course of this class, students will be armed with better contexts and perspectives on the whats, whys, and hows of not simply venerating but actually working with the dead.
May 23rd - Necromancy for Beginners V: The Restless Dead
The dead return in many forms: from beloved familial ancestors and mighty inspirational figures of artistic and magical accomplishment, to thin melancholy witnesses of time's passage and the land's memory. But the dead that cause perhaps the greatest disturbances for the living are typically referred to as the Restless Dead.
In this class we will analyse how to discern the disruptive and dysfunctional actions and effects of these turbulent and intranquil spirits; their natures, habits, and habitats; their effects and reactions in the wider ecology of spirits, and the symptoms of their presence and disruptions; and, crucially, what may be done to alleviate, soothe, and remedy their hauntings.
This investigation will begin with grounding in the locales and loci by which we might find, cohere, and dissipate such tumultuous wraiths. From this re-hallowed ground, we will discuss techniques of 'ghost-laying' to settle such disturbed and disturbing shades to slumber, as well as considering a number of herbs, stones, and charms of protection for one's self and one's spaces. The many many uses of graveyard dirt to settle as well as raise the dead will be particularly considered.
Moreover, we will cover means and methods of making propitiations to smooth over difficulties, consider how to best conduct spiritual negotiations for space and energy, and discuss those last resorts of exorcism, binding, and banishment.
About the Presenter:
Dr. Alexander Cummins (@grimoiresontape) is a professional diviner, consultant sorcerer, and historian of magic. His work focuses on grimoires, divination, and folk necromancy. He co-hosts Radio Free Golgotha, and can be booked for talks, workshops, readings, coaching and consultation at www.alexandercummins.com/. His recorded classes can also be obtained from The Cauldron Black archives.
THIS CLASS IS ONLINE ONLY! If you are unable to make the live streaming of this class, don't worry - the recording will be available for you. The class link will be emailed to you in your registration confirmation. The class recording link will be emailed to you within 3 business days of the conclusion of the class and will be available to you for 30 days after the conclusion of the series.
By purchasing this class you agree to the following Non Disclosure:This Agreement is between The Cauldron Black (“OWNER”); and the Purchaser (“RECIPIENT”). WHEREAS, OWNER has developed through substantial effort, research, time, and expense certain inventions, design concepts, methodologies, technical know-how, copyrightable material and trade secrets directed and related to this class. (“INFORMATION”); WHEREAS, OWNER desires to disclose the INFORMATION on a confidential basis to RECIPIENT. The OWNER wishes to maintain the confidentiality of the INFORMATION and the protection of OWNER'S intellectual property rights. NOW, THEREFORE, in consideration of the mutual promises, covenants, and conditions contained herein, the sufficiency of which is hereby acknowledged, the parties agree as follows: I. CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION A. OWNER agrees to disclose INFORMATION to RECIPIENT for the purposes of an online class. B. RECIPIENT agrees to receive such INFORMATION and to refrain from copying, disclosing, using, selling, or offering for sale any and all of said INFORMATION. RECIPIENT agrees to keep confidential and refrain from disclosing any and all of the INFORMATION, and to take all necessary and reasonable steps to prevent unauthorized disclosure or use of any and all of the INFORMATION. Failure to uphold this NDA may result in legal action.
Class I of V
+$0.75 service fee
This registration is for Class I of V only.
+$0.75 service fee0