Jason Miller views relationships with spirits as an essential part of his spiritual journey and guides readers to find their own guiding spirits. That said, beginners should hold off on this book until they are able to understand it without resorting to looking up every reference. Readers should have some prior knowledge of European grimoires. Miller discusses his many years of practice and the techniques that worked and didn’t work for him. In the world of pagan books, he’s refreshingly unconcerned with which particular branch of faith the reader follows and offers suggestions on when and how to alter historical rites to suit one’s needs. This book takes an eclectic approach, accepts both left and right paths, angels and demons, and offers rites that suit both pagan and monotheistic magical practitioners.
Medieval European grimoires based in Jewish, Christian and Muslim beliefs form the backbone of a lot of ceremonial magick working with spirits. These days there’s arguably more pagans performing magic than Christians but the Western magical tradition is historically rooted in these medieval books with a medieval monotheistic point of view. Miller works with these to show how they can be altered for other religious paths and talks about how in some instances you can’t assume that the seal for a spirit from a Christian based grimoire is going to work the same if you decide to alter the rite to call on Hekate instead. His explanation of how some spirits are connected to place, others to specific religious lineages, is helpful in understanding how and when calling on a certain kind of spirit will give the desired result. The discussion of whether one should forcibly coerce a spirit to appear or cajole it to make its presence is thoughtful and takes into consideration the changing world views of magicians from the medieval ages to the present.
Miller isn’t afraid to expose his personal follies and mistakes. His stories are entertaining and illustrate his points well. He has no compunction in telling the reader that his earlier viewpoints have changed and even indicates he will probably change his views over time. His comments show that he is aware of the currents of the magical world and the different practices from everywhere whether its Luciferians or Buddhists. He understands that not every reader is going to want to do every type of exercise and he tells readers if they’re uncomfortable with a section to skip to the next section. The questions and answer at the end of the book are interesting and useful and show how much teaching has influenced his choice of topics. For those who take an active interest in learning, historical practice and are not stuck on dogmatic choices, this book is very interesting.
Recommended for those seeking more advanced points of view and practices for spirit work.
~review by Larissa Carlson
Author: Jason Miller
Weiser Books, 2022
216 pages, $18.95