My interactions with angels has been a strange ride thus far. I can only imagine how they must feel. Ever since myself and a group of fellow practitioners over at Rune Soup started a study group there has been much conversation, research, prayer, and work involved in getting to know the messengers through academic, theological, and practical efforts. We’ve poured through grimoires, scripture, apocrypha, modern academic works, and fluffy new age approaches in attempts to gleam some consistency and personality from our decidedly un-flappy and sometimes-winged-but-just-as-often-eye-spangled-and-fractally friends. Our efforts as a group have given us a boat-load of experiential data to consider, using namely the method found in Keys to the Gateway of Magic which consists of calling an archangel up as a group, scrying or journeying for ten minutes, and then comparing notes. I’ve gotten some really interesting stuff out of the sessions personally (such as Samael being a spirit who was originally worshipped on Mars as a god back when the red planet was still populated and Earth was a molten mess) but some of the others in our group have had some truly wild experiences. We have the occasional odd-vision-out but mostly the experiences, while catered to the individual and thus somewhat kooky and entirely unique, have been pretty on-the-nose as far as maintaining a suggestive coherent nature or personality of each archangel from experiencer to experiencer. The majority of my own personal contact at this point, however, comes from what I believe to be simply diligence, and eventual entanglement through the committed daily recitation of a few very lovely prayers, a dream journal, just generally having them on my mind through study, and (eventually) making requests and conversations on the fly (pun intended.)
It is best to use some training wheels to begin with and I only feel like I have a place to recommend what worked for me, and for me those training wheels were (along with our scrying sessions) the preliminary prayers from the Cunning Man’s Grimoire, which are at the bottom of this post. The first one is wonderful on it’s own, but better with the fourth following. Best practice, however, is to read all four each morning or each night before bed. Don’t just read them though, feel them. Perform them. Try it soft and listen to your words. Then try it like you’re on stage the next day; Explore them. Make shapes in the imaginal for the words, or ride them like a story within your mind. Get them in you and know them. The brilliance of these prayers is astounding to me and the metaphysics is genius. It took me some time to sort out just how much heavy lifting these prayers really do – read with magical eyes at what is being verbalized.
Feel free to add other angels to the roster in that first prayer, but remember it covers “and their ministering angels and spirits” which means shoot high in the name list (cough, Metatron, Shekinah, cough), and consider intoning or singing them when you get to that part. These prayers also set up an imaginal command prompt with “being called or required in the name of etc..” and it really surprised me how much that helps get their attention on the fly. At least, after a month or three of nailing those prayers every day and keeping close written record of dreams.
The way that they seem, for me anyway, is more like a group of very strange friends that it’s taken a while to get to know, rather than dumb agency-lacking automitons to be commanded as some would suggest. Neither do they, in my experience, lend any likeness to archons or anything archonic, as others would say. They appear to be, through the collective experience I’ve witnessed in our group (including my own) something like sentient personifications of forces, or combinations of forces, in the universe who have permission to act causally. This is not to say they don’t have personalities, or even stories and narratives that may or may not have ever “happened” in the way us meatbrains like to define what True means, but they do seem structurally and causally integral to the universe. And they are most certainly persons.
The archangels, especially, seem to have prominent roles in composing aspects of the world, as if fractured streams of consciousness cascading from the Capital G down into many streams or currents so that different forces can be combined in varying portions to make the variety of materials and beings we have in our universe. Like a table of elements, but spirits. Imagine pure white light of God hitting a prism and splitting into a rainbow, then those standard colors (archangels) sticking to some paint on a palette, only to be mixed again into new colors and images. I think of the Shemhamphorash and other “smaller-time” angels as being more complex iterations of these forces (the paintings, rather than the paint) with more complex spiritual structures and thus more specific vocations or rulerships. This would stack nicely against the grimoiric procedural method of calling up the ruling angels first; they very well may be actual components of the angels under their governance. In this sense it would be more accurate to think of a woven cascade of crocheted reality than some rigid hierarchy, but what do you expect considering the sources? In this case, also, we can think of getting to know the messengers as getting to know the very mind of God, or the seams and stitches in the quilt of Grandmother Weaver.
The archangels also appear to be different from the planetary intelligences. The planets themselves, as persons, feel like vast old conscious generators of specific currents; engines of planetary essence being constantly emitted into the cosmos and from which things are woven, while the angels seem to be the stewards of how those currents behave and how they land in the manifest; like stewards of archetypal portions of existence. I’m not even going so far as to suggest that they are even the same class or “species” of spirit, per se (because who the fuck am I, and also see notes on Samael above) but our evidence and my experiences suggest that perhaps the ranking of “angel” is an actual thing reserved for spirits who have made the choice to take a custodial role in the universe.
It seems as though now that they know me and what I’m about they simply help me when I ask them, but as stated before, this is almost certainly more about entanglement and the imaginal interface one builds through praxis and research than anything. It’s honestly quite alarming just how much my own experiences working with and befriending the angels has been indicative of an under-examined legitimacy within the more intuitive but aesthetically appalling realm of the new-age angel craze.
I believe, as stated, that this all comes down to entanglement, and severity and quantity thereof. There is no doubt that using grimoiric methods to contact, command, and accomplish magic with angels does, in fact, work, but this alone does not suggest a superior methodology. The methods that have survived did so because they work, but I personally cannot help but think that a more shamanic or intuitive approach could be equally valid, if not more so. This aligns with messages received through our group scrying sessions and our dreams (which you can read more about here); that existing systems should be used as training wheels to develop one’s own personal methods of honoring and contacting the messengers. I received the following instruction from the angels in dreams in the form of a bullet-list, a recipe for contact without a grimoire and further evidence that our entanglement-centric metaphysics is somewhat accurate. I have elaborated where necessary since this was communicated in simple words but came with packets of emotional and geometrical data attached to them, some of which was completely beyond my comprehension. What was shocking about these instructions for me was how much they supported my already running model of universal metaphysics.
I feel I should also add that there seems to be a correlation between the fidelity of contact and the connection one has through their personal astrology. If you’re trying to decide who to reach out to first, consider looking at your birth chart and focusing on the angel of your Ascendant or Lunar ruler. Contact with Gabriel seemed to confirm the idea that the moon and moon-things directly govern happenings on our planet, and thus Gabriel is the gateway to synchronicities and contact events making them another great place to start.
The shape of this I found fascinating when considering the lore surrounding Hecate’s altar being the actual moon, and who oversees the migration of souls in and out of this world, and Hecate herself being the gatekeeper to the liminal doors. Regardless of what you decide, I implore you to share your results, either in the comments or your own blog post. And please reach out if you do. Without further adieu…
- Know their name; This means to explore it. Say it aloud and pay attention to the way your mouth moves, the shapes you make with your projecting and contracting breath, what shapes those cause in your mind. Meditate on the name, formally or casually, until it feels familiar. Until you feel close to it. You could research the angel you wish to contact as well, forming a better idea of who they are and what to look for and while this was not explicitly part of the directions given in my contact events, “Know their name.” could easily imply knowing their story as well.
- Create an heartfelt image in dedication and representation of the essence of that angel, or at least as you currently perceive/understand them. An act of heartfelt creation makes an impact, a groove where reality incorporates an idea’s full manifestation into its unfathomable folds through a mutual engagement by the imaginal and yourself. To engage in such an act in dedication to another being is exactly the kind of entanglement we are going for. This could be a glorious work of art, or as simple as a sigil but remember with acts of devotion for the sake of contact you often get exactly what you put in. This doesn’t mean a painting is better than a sigil, this means take care to put your care into whatever choice on which you land. This image can also become an event, and even a talisman, when enough effort and heart is poured into the action.
- Dedicate an event in spacetime to them, making action and story in which you are both main characters. This can be as simple as “Tomorrow, on the day of the sun, I will climb to the top of a hill and greet the dawn with frankincense in honor of the archangel St. Michael, in his day and on his hour.” but could equally become much more flowery and dramatic. Naturally, an action that is in harmony with the nature or rulership of the spirit in question would be ideal. Tip: They seem to enjoy singing.
- Say words, tell their story, and add any poetic references to personal experiences you’ve had with the angel before, even if from a story or some kind of personal connection through childhood, perhaps the hospital where you were born or a boarding school dedicated to them, but especially if you’ve ever been helped or aided by the angel before. Calling upon the parts of your stories that intersect conjures the truth of your relationality, inherent in those moments in time.
- If you feel them arrive, thank them for coming and ask for closer contact with them. Ask how you can strengthen the connection. Ask them to give you a sign to confirm that contact was made, if you aren’t sure, and use your cards. If they show up and it’s a strong connection already, ask them to come when you call, to know them better, or for rulership specific assistance; ask what you think is best. Perhaps make a list of questions before hand. Here’s the kicker, end your heartfelt request with “In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, and through the merits of Jesus Christ + Amen.”
Cunning Man’s Grimoire Preliminary Prayers
- Oh infinite, wise, holy, blessed, glorious, pure, good, omnipotent Father, Son & Holy Ghost, one true god of gods, king of kings, Lord of Lords, creator of all the universal world, the holy, holy, holy, high, good & merciful god Sabaoth, the omnipotent of all powers in whom all creatures live, move & be, & doe obey to thee, which hast created thine Angels in wonderful order, & made them thy ministering spirits for all believers & heirs of salvation to the glory of thy great & holy Name, wherefore I, thyne unworthy servant, doe humbly implore thy holy divine glorious good and merciful majesty, through thyne infinite goodness, love and mercy & eternal love of Jesus Christ + our mediator and messiah [Messiah] [that] you wilt vouchsafe to forgive my manyfold sins & to purify my mind, soul, spirit & body with thy Holy Spirit, & fortifie me with true faith, hope, & charity, & grant me vertue & power that these thy holy Angels, Cassiel, Sachiel, Samael, Michael, Anael, Raphael & Gabriel, with their ministering Angels & spirits being called or required in the Name of god the Father, Son & Holy Ghost, may through thy mercie in + Jesus Christ willing & readily teach, instruct, shew & visibly represent, & openly & plainely in my native tongue make me perfectly to understand clearly all my honest & lawfull desires, questions, or demands, & in all my necessities with perfect understanding and memory to help & confirm me with thy power & strength of wisdom & might against all assaults of all myne enemies, spiritual & bodily to Thy glory, good of thy people & comfort of me, thyne unworthy servant, through thyne eternal love and mercy in + Jesus Christ our Lord & saviour so be it done. And in the Name of god the Father, Son & Holy Ghost to whom be ascribed all honour, glory, power, might, majesty & dominion without end, Amen.
- Oh Lord Jesus Christ + which art the eternal son of god the omnipotent Father of Heaven, creator of all creatures, I most humbly beseech thy glorious good and divine majesty which art + Alpha & Omega + the first & the last, our only mediator & advocate, our Lord & saviour sitting at the right hand in glory of god the Father, that thou wouldst forgive my manyfold sins, purifying my mind, soul and body with thy righteousness & holy spirit & to strengthen my faith, hope & charity, & grant me thy help & mercie that thyne holy Angels with their ministering Angels & spirits in all my necessities may help, defend, teach, shew & instruct me in all my honest & lawfull desires as thou hast granted to many of thy servants, through thyne eternal love & mercy who with the Father & the Holy Ghost remainest one true, glorious, good & merciful god to whom let men & Angels & all creatures in their degree & kinds sing all honour, glory, might, majesty & dominion without end, Amen.
- Oh holy, holy, holy, good and gracious God the Holy Spirit preceding from god the Father and the Son, I humbly implore thy holy & divine majesty, that you wouldst vouchsafe to sanctify my mind, my soul, & spirit, & all my members & faculties, of my body to the glory of god, salvation of my soul & body with a true & lively obtaining faith, hope, & charity, & that thy holy Angels with their ministering Angels may help and defend me in all adversities, & necessities, & that they may willingly & readly teach, instruct, & open & plainly shew to my sight & perfect understanding that thereby I may see, & perfectly understand, & know, all my honest & lawful requests, questions & demands that them being cited & called in the Name of god the Father, Son & Holy Ghost through the merits of our Lord + Jesus Christ our Lord & saviour who with the Father & the Holy Ghost remaineth one true infinite wise, holy, good & merciful, incomprehensible, omnipotent god, of all goodness & holy gifts, to whom let the universal world & all his creatures sing Hallelu-jah, with all honour, glory, power, might, majesty & dominion ascribed to + Elohim which is God in trinity of persons & unity of essence & a spirit & truth, & Emanuel, without end, through the merits of Jesus Christ +, Amen.
- Give ear to my words Oh Lord, consider my meditation, harken to the voice of my cry, my king & my God, for unto thee will I pray: let my cry come unto thee, for my soul trusteth in thee, our help & happiness is in thee, let me not be disappointed of my hope, infuse O god thy vertue into me, confirme O god what thou hast wrought in me & let my prayers be directed unto thee as incense in thy sight, & grant my humble request through the eternal love & mercie in + Jesus Christ, our Lord & saviour, Amen.