If the land is being poisoned, Witchcraft must respond…

An Interview With Peter Grey & Alkistis Dimetch Proprietors of Scarlet Imprint

The Old Ways have never been forgotten, but much time has passed since they were openly walked in the world. Small sparks have flashed in the collective consciousness as Western culture has crawled along it’s path. Sometimes in the form of small revivals, and sometimes in the mind’s of brave individuals, the living Force that was once so integral to our existence has struggled to come back into the light. False histories propagated during the Renaissance and Enlightenment eras still taint our understanding of what is commonly called ‘witchcraft.’ Our images are often either skewed toward malefic personas bent on the corruption of society, or people lost in a feverish illusion that has damned them to a life of futile imagination. We think of the infamous ‘witch hunts’ that raged through the Renaissance and Reformation, or are mislead by the rationalist attempts, such as those found in Reginald Scot’s 1595 publication Discoverie of Witchcraft , to counter the fires of malice and ignorance that caused so much suffering. Between these poles we’re pulled back and forth while the Truth walks freely around these easy classifications. In the contemporary setting other groups have arisen to take claim of witchcraft, such as Wicca and certain Neo-Pagan sects, attempting to use the powerful image of the witch as a centering point for their practice. Beyond all of this, however, lies a more subtle truth. Peter Grey and Alkistis Dimetch are the proprietors of Scarlet Imprint, a publishing house that specializes in exploring contemporary esoteric currents. Their Work is focused on

. and one which fitted the spirit of his time and certainly Alex and Maxine had more flair in their presentation of it. the powerless. They are systems in entropy. To consider that Gardner and Sanders did not have the access to what we do now. in the same way that the Golden Dawn and the OTO have profound limitations. or re-imagining of witchcraft. and peak oil.revitalizing the Path and practice of Magic. which is the old religion. Yet Wicca has profound limitations. and rediscovering the long line of Tradition that ebbs and flows through the Art. Furthermore. We would ask those who consider themselves witches. and that their world is very different to ours. that we are intimately connected to the web of life. It gives heart and tongue to stones and trees. it hardly constitutes a cultus which is rather an inspiration rising from the example of Austin Osman Spare. We suggest that their witchcraft should go beyond that of their godfathers. whether that is Benevento. then it is witchcraft which must respond. Witchcraft is the recourse of the dispossessed. Though there may be fragments preserved in some groups and families. Wicca did not predict this and neither did Liber Al vel Legis. Wicca is essentially constructed around a core of the Masonic grade system. it is life itself which is under threat. It was a necessary stage in the re-emergence. and a liturgical Crowley cut-up with a sprinkling of folklore. as the English usage refers to the initiated witchcraft tradition invented by Gerald Gardner (and subsequently copied by Alex Sanders) rather than as an umbrella term for various flavours of neo-paganism which it is often taken to mean in the United States. Witchcraft has this vision. This is a world in crisis. rather than more narrowly wiccans. These are the limitations of its time and its founders. to look at the source material. It was bolstered by the myths of Murray and Gimbutas. Wicca fused with a spirit of sexual liberation and a rebirth of female and earth-based spirituality. They were kind enough to take a few moments to discuss their thoughts on the Craft and it’s place in our time. the ritual accoutrements of Solomonic grimoire magic.” What is different about the Witchcraft that you espouse and something like Wicca which more people are generally aware of? We should probably define Wicca to begin with here. The work of Ronald Hutton here seems decisive. offering up a potent rejoinder to all who walk the Crooked Path – “If the land is being poisoned. If you want to understand European Witchcraft then you would be better to start with Catholicism. Furthermore. We need a culture of radical resistance that understands that we are part of the whole ecology. It is not only our way of life. climate change. It has no demonstrably older codified origin than the 1940s. Certainly Gerald created a very workable fusion of the material available to him. the hungry and the abused. the death of the oceans. and do so with compassionate anger. claims of any traditional witchcraft survival are taken in Europe with a pinch of salt. Witchcraft is rooted in the land. and neither is hiding in a thicket of studied archaic English and obfuscation. Reading fantasy novels is not a valid response. we are seeing a mass extinction of plant and animal species. It wears the rough skin of beasts and turns on a civilisation that knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.

Ritual is the orchestration of the primal states such as innocence. ‘ Of the modern writers.Cornwall or Pennsylvania. this is something which Alkistis discusses in XVI. Our counsel is to forget the nebulous modern use of terms such as Gnosis and concentrate on Work. and do. and one which though drawing on the past. This is an internal alchemy which requires huge emotional reserves and cannot be accomplished in icy detachment or by effort of Will. but we harness their emotional power to transform the future. It utilises the rhizomatic structure of underground resistance. We insist that Witchcraft has power and requires the use of drugs. The example we follow is that of Michelet who saw in the figure of the witch a revolutionary spirit. Witchcraft is found in the ecstatic possession state. sex and ordeal. We dare to utter prophecy. Witchcraft flies to the Sabbat. We do not mistake these stories and myths for history. The process needs passion and heat. flight and fight and their alchemical transformation through experience. fear. clothes itself in the symbols of its time. Witchcraft concerns itself with mystery and it is through the gates of mystery that we come to knowledge. Our position is quite distinct: Witchcraft is a force and not an order or cult. kraft. The highest form of this knowledge is Love. work with familiar spirits. an invention. or perhaps here we can use the German term. Witchcraft is unbridled female sexuality. find many points in common across all expressions of witchcraft: the connection to the land. to name but a few. Witchcraft is folk magic. How is Witchcraft and the pursuit of knowledge tied together? Are Witchcraft and Gnosis the same thing? Knowledge enters us through the body. If the land is being poisoned then it is witchcraft which must respond. . the magic of the people and for the people. we feel it is Jack Parsons who embodied the spirit of witchcraft. Witchcraft is a myth. The Goddess who possesses these qualities. which is one of revolution and of the power of female sexuality. and who speaks to us is Babalon. It is the woman who initiates. We differ in our focus in that we are actively engaged in the world and that comes from both an apocalyptic and eschatological understanding of events. We hope to. herb and plant lore and malefica. and do so with compassionate anger. Witchcraft is oracular. a story. Witchcraft is non-hierarchical.

as it goes beyond what is acceptable in search of the expression of truth. Words carry their shades with them. It talks the empty language of advertising. Genet. invocation and possession which inspire us to create our own. poems wrought. poetry. They have nothing to draw on. gesture and life whether implicitly or explicitly. If a work of art is truly of value it should be able to stand without ‘esoteric’ as a prefix. they strike . In our litany of Saints we must include Artaud. literature. The full impact of magick will unfurl in this century with a raw artistic beauty as those with nothing left to lose will choose to dare all. for the sake of life. word. These so-called artists are merely reflecting our secular society where spirit contact has been lost. Poetry is vision which makes the mysterious manifest. But there is an antidote: All art is magic. To be alive is to be able to respond and resonate to works of art. Is our idea of Crowley not enriched by Oscar Wilde and Aubrey Beardsley? Can Spare really be the only painter of note? Our minds should range widely. sculpture and dance. a support group for losers seeking affirmation from an uncritical and needy subculture. This is in stark contrast to the avant garde which ardently pursued the esoteric arts in paint. correspond with and seek out artists. Art cannot help but pursue the esoteric. and we have been alienated from the raw forces of nature. if that is not in itself an oxymoron. Kinski et al. their wider context is lost. We continually encounter. Art will not stop at the surface. movements found. Rimbaud. whether organized or through individual practice.Why are people so reticent to meet with the full impact of Magick? The major avant garde artists of the 19th and 20th century were all heavily involved in esotericism. A tool of commerce. evocation and congress with the world of spirits. These are all forms of evocation. as safe and dead as a shark in a formaldehyde tank. but it seems most practitioners today are happy with a few popular occultists they can reference. Art has become a commodity. which is often simply an excuse for poorly executed derivative doodling. Jarry. again something many of our writers emphasise in XVI. Arthur Cravan. we can say that we have been led by poetry and the belief that we should carry out its programme in reality. Canvases are being savaged. Perhaps we must ask. What is worse is the claustrophobic drawing room atmosphere that surrounds a small selection of occultists whose biographical details are deemed more important than the living practice of magick. Poetry is invocation. and their patrons reward their product which is destined for the vaults of investment Banks. where are the avant-garde esoteric artists today? Magick is reflecting that absence of art in our materialist culture. Nijinsky. Our readers write to us and reveal a deeper and richer seam than the truncated internet profiles suggest. By focusing on popular occultists. How are poetry and magic related? Intimately. It is time to turn over the tables in the temple again. This was done for art’s sake. Like Debord. Magick can seem to be a myopic ghetto.

Ted Hughes. industrial. rhythm and incantation the body resonates into other worlds and we are renewed by these glimpses. ruthlessly wrought. What do you see as a means to draw more neo-pagan and Wiccan groups into environmental thinking? It seems an obvious fit. the metaphysical poets. What myths would best invoke ecological responsibility? The critical lie we are currently confronting is that of infinite economic growth on a finite planet with finite resources. In vocalisation. Christianity continued this insane trajectory until their invisible god was replaced by the invisible hand of Adam Smith and finally the insanity of the Chicago school which believes that everything is for sale and profit alone is G_d. The speed of the rise of this new social movement will be completely unexpected. which is why we published Datura. (the many-headed Al Qaeda) and a New Jerusalem . Poetry is also work. ecological disasters will create a new generation of pagans who will have to find solutions. Gysin. The inevitable decline of modern consumer capitalism which is in the final rapacious phase of destroying our natural resources cannot fail to wake people up.like shamanic darts. Nostalgia is no protection from the end of the age of oil and a witchcraft which does not recognise this fact is irrelevant. and why we have followed up that commitment with a call for submissions to our next anthology Mandragora. scarcity. read Peter Redgrove. There will be many others. Already those with eyes to see will have seen the signs of change. Rene Char. The American dream is simply a variant of this myth structure supported with both an inquisition (Homeland Security) a devil. Those groups which do not understand eschatology will simply be unable to interpret the catastrophic chain of events as they celebrate a wheel of the year which has broken from the axle. Hunger. This pernicious myth can be traced back to the Bible which is full of ecological horror stories as the chosen people murder their way to dominance and cut down the sacred groves at the behest of their tribal god. The lack of movement is because many of those professing witchcraft are urban. Bukowski. sedentary and plugged into the internet rather than the biosphere. yet there is very little action there. Collapse. Our answer could also be. Hammered into shape. We are totally committed to poetry as an art form. John Michael Greer seems to be doing this. The Song of Songs. Shakespeare. and there are clearly other individuals such as Raven Kaldera with their fingers in the soil. it is the process of self mastery. read everything and read it aloud. Hafiz. Penelope Shuttle.

and we can also point to the work of Aaron Leitch in this context. By understanding the Antichrist. From the goetic use of psychoactive incense to flying ointments. the shamanic connection cannot be prevented from spontaneous eruption and attendant social upheaval. And we are all whores. this is the true Western Tradition and one which has retained the shamanic elements. The practitioners simply go through periods of vilification and periods of mass ecstatic participation in defiance of the approved State religion. When we say myth. . but they need to be part of a wider discipline. By disentangling the stellar myths we orientate ourselves. The drugs do work. Our own work and that of JSK shows that divine intoxication is a central part of the Western Tradition. the war on consciousness expansion. we take this as a dynamic process which flowers in our midst. Her time is Now. Love cannot be bought with any other coin. to the spiked ritual wine. the use of dance and drumming. By seeking and drinking from the forbidden grail we intoxicate ourselves with Her wine. Seeking tax status and social acceptance it has been craven in the war on some drugs. This is hypocrisy. When/why did this practice fall away? It never does. The Western Tradition has fallen over itself to be respectable. Every drop of blood sacrificed to the grail. Jake Stratton-Kent and your own practice seem to be trying to bring that back into the fold. In divine intoxication we seek communion with the Beloved.(for sale piece by piece in your local Wal-Mart and propagandised for incessantly by Hollywood). in radical opposition to the archons and our bridal bed is the battlefield of the earth. We recognise the continuity of this myth in the work of John Dee and Edward Kelley and further. most notably through a coded survival in the grimoire tradition. and has rather tried to ritually script altered states rather than explore genuine ones. Jake is explicit about this in Geosophia. we are stating that this is our direct living experience of Babalon that this story is being played out through our bodies. or ayahuasca. Her history made explicit in The Red Goddess. We celebrate life. We read this by recognising the defamed whore as the pagan Love and War goddess. proud to celebrate the luxury of our living flesh. to the role of the necromancer and psychopomp. But we do not mistake everyone who drops acid as a shaman. Dragon and Beast as Her lover we challenge man to be the equal of woman. and in doing so has pulled its own claws. Whether this is the Dionysian cults or free festivals or rave culture. Shamanism seems to be an element that is missing from the outer manifestations of the Western Tradition. The myth we choose to oppose this with is Revelations.

was fuelled by a deep love for woman. preferably in combination with each other. The telling of his story can span the gulf between the magick and pagan communities. If you have no price you cannot be bought. In The Red Goddess I am as critical of Jack and I am of Crowley or Dee but his story still needs to be told. If you are not frightened you cannot be controlled. is to turn off the connections whilst ensuring you are building a community to sustain you and your loved ones. and it is perhaps the physical and subtle energy building practices which have been neglected in the West. What are the best techniques for seeing through the spectacle? Is it unique to each individual? The spectacle is increasingly unique to each individual. We are post-Parsons as much as we are postCrowley. Simplify your life. The magical body needs to be built. Jack stands on the threshold of change. sex and rock and roll. As we work with a Goddess of Love and War then we understand the importance of being able to run energy. I love the idea of ” gnostic strategies for liberation. What is it that draws you to Jack Parsons? Jack. dares to dream. and dares to innovate. He sings for the new woman in the way that Nietzsche tells us of the coming of the Superman.” Does this concept encompass all forms of Gnosis? Psycho-Spiritual-Physical? We mean: By any means necessary. Now it is for women to create the Witchcraft following the teachings of their own bodies. like Henry Miller or Bukowski. whether to fuck or to fight. He grapples relentlessly with the need for liberation. Find the others. .Would you agree with Ralph Metzner that Alchemy/Shamanism/Yoga (in there various expressions) form the core consciousness changing technologies of humanity? We could equally say drugs. The technique simply put. Build parallel structures utilising a mix of high and low tech solutions. Decouple from the failing structures. and the individual is increasingly homogenised. ideas of sexual freedom and social change. rather than simply a well stocked library. and it is time for this generation not to fixate on dead pin-ups and their magical misadventures but to have the courage to start the fires in themselves. He is a vital link in the history of Witchcraft. If you do not want anything you cannot be bribed. He understood that the source of witchcraft is the body of woman.

Our suggestion is that individuals honestly appraise the methods of transformation most suitable to themselves and work either alone and/or with their peers when necessary to reach attainment. We have stellar lore. Orders whether intentionally or not. poetry and bodywork. The publication of the grimoires has given us our magical history back. spirit contact. Hierarchical orders tend to self preservation through an artificial construction of secrets and the drip feed of complex sounding jargon dressed up as teaching. Is it easier to operate outside of an Order or organization these days? Perhaps we could say it is imperative to operate outside an Order. Your career a trap. which has preserved other missing fragments. Every individual is on their own path. We would like to see the individual brave enough to walk their own path. This is more honest than engaging in neo-colonial exoticism that seeks to exploit the darkness of the Other.Understand that the Empire has ended. A future that has a rich magical ecology which is engaged with the world of . gods. these are our goddesses. What do you see as the next step for Magick in the 21st Century? We are in a position of radical change where eschatology will be of vital importance. Enough of this. We are weaving together the severed ends of the Western tradition. These are our ancestors. let alone suckered into the latest personality cult. Human history is full of these pyramid schemes. clustered around secrets which are not only published all over the internet but are often simply threadbare. It has no more reality than the light from a distant star whose rays are transmitting the ghost of a body which was extinguished millennia ago. an afterimage of the age of exuberance. demons and heroes. We predict revolution. that what you are seeing is a mirage. We are learning that we have a Western Tradition which is not 14th Century Qabalah and deco Egyptian dress-up. We predict that women will take a place in magick that they have not had since the ancient world. represent restriction and only seem to mould people into poor copies of their guru. they are woefully out of date. Your paper money is worthless. possession states. It is going to get hotter. We must be vigilant. the like of which has never been seen. and magick will be born from the female furnace. Methods for destroying normalcy bias are essential to pursue and are explored in the essay Seeing Through Apocalypse in XVI. whilst recognising that they can learn from others and contribute to the evolving paths of those they touch on the Way. Though we recognise the value many gain from fraternal structures. but there are physiological and psychological principles that are generally applicable. From this fusion we can achieve an erotic explosion of human potential. Magic is not about being a follower or a spectator. Our Tradition can enter into an equal dialogue with the New World. and constantly devising methods to sabotage the architecture of control. just as the Arabic world preserved the teachings of Egypt and Ancient Greece. The world is entering a period of revelation. Finally we are getting right with the restless dead rather than ransacking the tombs or striking empty pop culture postures. Jake Stratton-Kent has done an immense service in reconnecting us to the Ancient Greek Goes. entheogens. the PGM and the Picatrix.

com Biographies Peter Grey Peter is a writer. One which respects and works with the forces of nature. Where woman and man encounter each other as equals. Alkistis is an alumnus of the Courtauld Institute and the school of oriental and African studies. invisible & overlooked. his path is one of ordeal. the author of the acclaimed devotional work for Babalon. He is an exponent of the antinomian and libertarian strand of the western magical tradition. our stratagems are always evolving. What are Scarlet Imprint’s upcoming plans? What should we anticipate next? Everything we do is sub rosa. plants. http://liminal-analytics. as well as shamanic practices to access states of expanded consciousness.org . This will not be achieved without struggle.scarletimprint. using techniques derived from Butoh. She has studied Butoh under Ko Murobushi. asian dance and martial forms. He is the co-founder of Scarlet Imprint. her work explores the erotic. Masaki Iwana and other Butoh Masters. www. artist and writer. ecstasy. Much of his time is spent in the mountains following his devotional path. LIMINAL ANALYTICS: APPLIED RESEARCH COLLABORATIVE Interview Series ~:~ Specializing in the unattended.humans. animals and entities. She is the co-founder of Scarlet Imprint. Alkistis Dimech Alkistis is a dancer. irrational and primitive. and Love. his work comes out of physical praxis. The Red Goddess. he has spoken internationally and contributed articles to many magickal journals.

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