THE IAO FORMULA
Lots has been written about the so-called IAO formula, although it's not always easy todefine exactly what this means in a magical sense. The vowel combination
playedan important role in late ancient gnosticism, and even Aleister Crowley liked to use it alot.'We don't want to get into the philosophical and symbolic meaning of the IAO for-mula just yet since personal experience and practice is much more important right now.Besides, we also want to prove that a majority of magical techniques will work automat-ically without a lot of ideological background knowledge or philosophical "facts" as longas the appropriate state of gnosis is reached.Instead of making a bunch of philosophical-mystical statements here, I'd rather in-troduce a practical exercise that I designed myself and explain it in detail.It's an energizing and protection exercise with effects similar to those of the KabbalisticCross, but not as complicated and in some ways even more effective. It's predominatelyused to "harden" the magician's aura, which in turn allows for optimal magicalprotection.
WORKING WITH THE IAO FORMULA
At first, the IAO formula should always be practiced while standing, but after awhile youshould try other positions as well.
The I Formula
Stand upright with your feet together; you can face the east if you like. With your eyesclosed (or half closed, if you're already experienced with this meditation technique), vi-brate the vowel I long and sustained: "Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiilhhhhhh.'At the same time, imagine a vertical ray of light entering your body at the top of your head, traveling through your body and exiting at your feet, disappearing into thefloor. The current doesn't flow in any certaindirection; however, with a bit of practice itwill usually feel like it's flowing up and down at the same time in rhythm with yourbreath. This ray is a continuous current, so it's not like a single "lightning flash.' Feel thestrong flow of energy in your body. Often it will feel like a warm, prickling sensation or afeeling of power and might.