The Sinisterly-Numinous O9A

Joel Hrafnsson Sinister Tarot: 3. Mistress of Earth
The Sinisterly-Numinous O9A

The Order of Nine Angles presents three different ways whereby its fundamental aeonic aims of individual change and individual evolution – that is, the breeding and the development of a new species and new ways of living and thence a new and a galactic Aeon – may be achieved. These are the initiatory Seven Fold Way, the individual exeatic adversarial praxis of Dreccs and Niners, and the tradition of the Rounwytha.

All three of these ways provide a means for the individual to acquire arête and wisdom, and all three are practical and individual, involving as they do the individual pathei-mathos (the personal learning) that results from challenging real-world experiences. They all have the same ethos, manifest in the O9A’s ‘code of kindred honour’, as they all require the individual to develop a perception, an understanding, a knowledge – acquired from a personal experience – beyond causal abstractions/forms and thus beyond denotatum; that is, and for example, beyond the illusion of conflicting/ideated opposites, beyond naming/denoting/words, beyond abstract morality, beyond dogma/ideology, beyond the simple principle of causation, and beyond the simplicity of a posited dialectical process.

As befits the individualistic, the anarchic {1}, the non-dogmatic, and the experiential, approach of the O9A, an individual is free, and encouraged, to choose which way to follow and/or experiment with; just as they can combine aspects of one way with another if such a combination or combinations work for them. For they all lead to, or can lead to, the same goal, and, as the O9A have stated many times, “what matters is the individual developing, from their own years-long (mostly decades-long) practical experience, a personal weltanschauung: that is, discovering their own individual answers to certain questions concerning themselves, life, existence, the Occult, and the nature of Reality.”

However, given that the most structured, and instructional, of these three ways is the Seven Fold Way of traditional nexions, we shall concentrate here on that approach in order to reveal, and to appreciate, the sinisterly-numinous nature – the essence – of the O9A.

The Seven Fold Way

The Seven Fold Way (aka The Seven Fold Sinister Way) provides an anados {2} of seven stages/grades each of which is linked to well-documented and specific tasks, and which Seven Fold Way has associated with it various Dark Arts (such as The Star Game) by which the required esoteric skills (such as acausal-thinking, and dark/esoteric empathy) can be cultivated. The Seven Fold Way also has the advantage of being, in its early stages, overtly occult and thus immerses the individual into that milieu, since – to paraphrase the beginning of the O9A text Naos – fundamental to occultism (and thus to sorcery/magick) is the belief that the phenomenal world of our physical five senses is incomplete: that we live in a world which contains, or which may contain, ‘things’/forces/entities other than the ones our five senses show to us; and that every living thing possesses, because it is living, certain energies which we can sense and ‘see’ if we become receptive to them, with the cultivation of such receptiveness being one of the aims occult initiation with the individual thus becoming aware of the essence of things that are hidden by their outward appearance.

It is this hidden ‘essence’ – of ‘things’ and of individuals (including ourselves) – that is covered-up by causal abstractions/forms and by denotatum, with the Seven Fold Way being a useful and practical means of discovering, experimenting with, and getting to know this essence, not only external to ourselves, but of and within ourselves as individuals. For,

“The whole septenary system is regarded, by the O9A, as a symbolic (or archetypal) map of the ‘world’ of the unconscious mind of the sorcerer/sorceress, and the ‘worlds’ (the realms) of Nature, ‘the heavens’ (the cosmos) and the supernatural, with their seven fold way – the progress of the initiate through the occult grades or stages, from initiate to beyond The Abyss – being regarded as a practical guide to attaining knowledge of all these worlds […] This archetypal map of ourselves, our psyche, and of Nature, the supernatural, and the cosmos, is also re-presented in The Star Game.” Quintessential O9A

In its initial stages – that is, up to and including the early years of an Internal Adept – this is a discovery, an exploration, and a personal esoteric and exoteric experiencing, of what is predominantly ‘sinister’. In the later years of the stage of Internal Adept there is, as a preparation for The Abyss, a move toward a discovery, an exploration, and a personal esoteric and exoteric experiencing, of what is predominantly ‘numinous’.

Of the much misunderstood concept of numinous, Myatt interestingly – and relevant to the Seven Fold Way – writes {3} that,

{Begin quote}

Correctly understood, numinous is the unity beyond our perception of its two apparent aspects; aspects expressed by the Greek usage of ἅγιος which could be understood in a good (light) way as ‘sacred’, revered, of astonishing beauty; and in a bad (dark) way as redolent of the gods/wyrd/the fates/morai in the sense of their retributive or (more often) their balancing power/powers and thus giving rise to mortal ‘awe’ since such a restoration of the natural balance often involved or required the death (and sometimes the ‘sacrifice’) of mortals. It is the numinous – in its apparent duality, and as a manifestation of a restoration of the natural, divine, balance – which is evident in much of Greek tragedy, from the Agamemnon of Aeschylus (and the Orestia in general) to the Antigone and the Oedipus Tyrannus of Sophocles.

The two apparent aspects of the numinous are wonderfully expressed by Rilke:

Wer, wenn ich schrie, hörte mich denn aus der Engel
Ordnungen? und gesetzt selbst, es nähme
einer mich plötzlich ans Herz: ich verginge von seinem
stärkeren Dasein. Denn das Schöne ist nichts
als des Schrecklichen Anfang, den wir noch grade ertragen,
und wir bewundern es so, weil es gelassen verschmäht,
uns zu zerstören. Ein jeder Engel ist schrecklich.

Who, were I to sigh aloud, of those angelic beings might hear me?
And even if one of them deigned to take me to his heart I would dissolve
Into his very existence.
For beauty is nothing if not the genesis of that numen
Which we can only just survive
And which we so admire because it can so calmly disdain to betake us.
Every angel is numinous

wenn ich schrie. ‘Were I to sigh aloud’ is far more poetically expressive, and more in tune with the metaphysical tone of the poem and the stress on schrie, than the simple, bland, ‘if I cried out’. A sighing aloud – not a shout or a scream – of the sometimes involuntary kind sometimes experienced by those engaged in contemplative prayer or in deep, personal, metaphysical musings.

der Engel Ordnungen. The poetic emphasis is on Engel, and the usual translation here of ‘orders’ – or something equally abstract and harsh (such as hierarchies) – does not in my view express the poetic beauty (and the almost supernatural sense of strangeness) of the original; hence my suggestion ‘angelic beings’ – of such a species of beings, so different from we mortals, who by virtue of their numinosity have the ability to both awe us and overpower us.

{End quote}

Thus the ‘numinous’, correctly understood, has of itself two (seemingly, to some, contradictory) aspects, just as the ‘sinister’ itself has two (seemingly, to some, contradictory) aspects or modes of apprehension; a duality of aspects within each particular ‘form’ that myths, legends, art, literature, and sometimes religions, have often ventured to express or tried to explain.

In The Rite Of The Abyss of the O9A’s Seven Fold Way {4} the two apparent opposites, of sinister and numinous, are melded together and then transcended, with the underlying unity – the essence – beyond such forms/ideations having been discovered. There is, thus, as I mentioned in a previous article, a personal, a direct, knowledge of “the living unity beyond the abstract, the lifeless, division and dialectic of contrasting/abstractive/ideated opposites. A division most obvious in the false dichotomy of good and evil, and a division not so obvious in denotatum.” {5}

In effect, this a deeper, more profound, more dangerous, type of the interior, the alchemical, ‘coagulation’ that the Rite of External Adept aims to create, and it is no coincidence that the first part of the Seven Fold Way – the way to Adeptship – is termed, in Naos, ‘physis magick’. For, as mentioned in the Pymander tractate of the Corpus Hermeticism, the aim is to “seek to learn what is real, to apprehend the physis [φύσις] of beings” {6}.

The Abyss and Beyond

It would be a mistake, albeit an understandable one, to suggest or to believe that in some manner, for the Master/Lady Master/Mistress of Earth – those who have successfully emerged from The Abyss – the Left Hand Path (the sinister) has given way to the Right Hand Path (the numinous). Instead,

“The Grade Ritual [of The Abyss] is an enantiodromia – that is, a type of confrontational contest whereby what has been separated becomes bound together again [united] enabling the genesis of a new type of being. As an old alchemical MS stated: “The secret [of the Abyss] is the simple unity of two common things. This unity is greater than but built upon the double-pelican. Here is the living water, Azoth.” What has been separated – into apparent opposites – is the sinister and the numinous.” {7}

That is, that both the LHP (‘the sinister’) and the RHP (‘the numinous’) are themselves causal abstractions – ideations – which hide both our own nature, the nature (the physis) of other living beings, and the nature of Reality itself.

As Anton Long wrote, in respect of his own experience,

“In the context of beyond The Abyss, such designations [LHP/RHP] based on such a dichotomy become, and are, irrelevant because without sense and meaning.” {8}

It would also be a mistake to consider that there is an ‘archetypal’ Master or Lady Master. For, as with the Internal Adept, there are as many ‘types’ as there are individuals with the experience, nature, the character – the physis – to attain that particular occult Grade. Thus, just as the Grade Ritual of Internal Adept makes the individual aware of – or intimates things concerning – their personal Destiny, so does The Rite of The Abyss provide the Master/Lady Master with an understanding, sans denotatum, of wyrd and of the Aeonic sorcery necessary for their particular aeonic presencing, and which sorcery may (or may not) involve the use of particular causal forms, and may (or may not) involve them with assuming some rôle, public (exoteric) or covert (esoteric), and which role may be (or may not be, usually is not) connected with the occult howsoever described or denoted (esoterically or exoterically).

Far beyond the Master/Lady Master – in terms of earth-measured years – is The Magus who formulates and who declaims a new Logos and who therefore brings forth “another perceiveration; that is, another way of perceiving and understanding Reality, and which perceiveration thus brings-into-being, or can bring into being, new ways of living and a new type of society, and thence a New Aeon.” {9}

For the O9A, this new Logos, as mentioned elsewhere {9}, is The Law of Kindred Honour, and which law has the potential to manifest not only a new type of individual but also new ways of living independent of the now ubiquitous modern State. And it is The Law of Kindred Honour which manifests, and which explains – without words or dogma – what has been, for convenience, termed ‘the sinisterly-numinous’ (the living and life-affirming unity beyond the illusion of causal opposites) and which thus expresses the exeatic nature of that presencing described by the appellation The Order of Nine Angles.

R. Parker
December 2013 ev


{1} Given that the O9A is and has been much misunderstood in respect of its adversarial and sinister use of certain political, and religious, causal forms, it is worth repeating that it has always championed anarchism; qv. the letter to Aquino, dated 7th September 1990 ev, in Vol i of The Satanic Letters of Stephen Brown.

A useful, working, definition of anarchy (a definition supported by the O9A) is “that way of living which regards the authority of The State as unnecessary and possibly harmful, and which instead prefers the free and individual choice of mutual and non-hierarchical co-operation”.

It is no coincidence that the O9A’s ‘code of kindred honour’ is thus profoundly anarchic in that it champions the law of personal honour over and above the abstract impersonal laws of The State.

{2} R. Parker. The Septenary Anados, and Life After Death, In The Esoteric Philosophy of The Order of Nine Angles. 2013

{3} The quotation is from Myatt’s commentary on section 5 of the Pymander tractate of the Corpus Hermeticism. David Myatt, Mercvrii Trismegisti Pymander de potestate et sapientia dei. A Translation and Commentary. 2013. ISBN 978-1491249543.

The translation of, and notes on, the poem by Rilke are by Myatt.

{4} The Rite is given in full in Anton Long, Enantiodromia: The Sinister Abyssal Nexion (pdf). Second edition, 2013.

{5} R. Parker, Anados. Op.cit.

{6} Mercvrii Trismegisti Pymander, 3. Translated by Myatt, op. cit.

{7} Anton Long. Enantiodromia. Op. cit.

{8} Anton Long. Lapis Philosophicus. 2011

{9} R. Parker. The Adversarial Praxis and Logos of The Order of Nine Angles. 2013

Article source:
Hermetic Origins of The O9A

Image credit:
Joel Hrafnsson, Dominus Diabolus Tarot: 3. Mistress of Earth