The Mystical Qabalah by Dion Fortune

Title: The Mystical Qabalah
Author: Dion Fortune
Date Added: August 13, 2012
Date Started: Unknown
Date Finished: September 12, 2016
Genre: Theology/Mysticism

Mystical Qabalah, ThePages: 360
Publication Date: January 1, 1957
Medium: Paperback

Dion Fortune’s classic, The Mystical Qabalah, explores all aspects of the Qabalah, including the esoteric sciences of astrology and tarot, which form the basis of the Western Mystery Traditions. It provides a key to the practical working of this mystical system for both novice and initiate alike.


Let me just put this out there right now.  I read this book because of Final Fantasy VII.  It’s about the Tree of Life, which is made up of the Holy Sephiroth, the emanations or “God-names” that focus principle archetypes behind evolving human activities.  I had no idea the rabbit hole I was diving into, nor did I realize either how well SquareSoft (now Squeenix…unfortunately) had done their research or had managed to align their usage of that term with the appropriate symbolism.  The Qabalah seeks to solve the paradox of “the Many and the One,” speaks about microcosm and macrocosm, and essentially serves as a guide through the metaphysical and esoteric.

This is not a post dedicated to me espousing the virtues and glory of FFVII (I do that often enough), but it has to be mentioned that the game led me to this study, and one of the first definitions of “Sephiroth” I found was “the path that leads to God.”  It’s clearly present in the game’s narrative, and reading The MQ showed not only how much the symbolism of the Tree is present there, but in so many other stories as well.

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The State of the Reader: 8/31/16

<–The State of the Reader: 8/24/16          The State of the Reader: 9/7/16–>

A weekly post updated every Wednesday detailing my current reading projects and where I am with them in addition to what new titles I’ve added to my to-read list.  Title links go to Goodreads to make it easier for interested parties to add any books that might strike their fancy.  I attempt to use the covers for the edition I’m reading, and I’ll mention if this is not the case.  If you have a Goodreads account feel free to friend me!  I’d love to see what you’re reading and/or planning to read.

Books Currently Reading: 4
Change from Last Week:
0

Title: The Mystical Qabalah
Author: Dion Fortune
Date Added: August 13, 2012
Date Started: Unknown

Mystical Qabalah, TheMedium: Paperback
Progress: 82%

I finished the part of the book initially written by Fortune, and while I was  on the fence with whether I’d continue into the Subjective Pathworking section, I’m glad I did.  In many ways it’s more engaging than the book proper.  There are other reasons I’m happy I continued.  I came upon something extremely meta that I never would’ve known about had I not.

Fortune in this latter section strives to explain the concept of Astral Light, and I immediately thought of two other ideas, one bleeding from the other, with the source concept very well known in popular culture:

“It is held to extend like a tenuous yet viscid atmosphere throughout the entire cosmos, interpenetrating all dense substance, and acting as the medium for the transmission of subtle forces.”

I read that and thought, “…wait, that sounds a hell of a lot like the Force.”  *letting the geek flag fly* “And wait again…the Lifestream from FFVII is inspired by the Force…and this book is about the Holy Sephiroth, omg holy meta, Batman, wheels within wheels.”  Do I think Squeenix delved that deeply into this concept?  Probably not, but I do believe they did some preliminary research, nor is it farfetched that they’d use philosophies from the Qabalah, as it’s quite commonly if not knowingly utilized through the fantasy and sci-fi genre.  It’s one of those theologies that’s prevalent in the zeitgeist, though it’s not necessarily named.  I’m pretty sure GRRM is using it to with his followers of R’hllor, the Red God, in the ideas of light and darkness, as there aren’t two trees, but rather the tree and the shadow it casts.

Title: The Mabinogion Tetralogy
Author: Evangeline Walton
Date Added: August 24, 2014
Date Started: July 31, 2016

Medium: Paperback
Progress: 7%

I read more, but only a little bit.  Apparently, I didn’t put any reading on my to do list so I didn’t do any (except for what I can from my phone) since Saturday.  Wtf.  I’ve remedied it, but I’m a bit annoyed since I really like this and the one below.

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The State of the Reader: 8/24/16

<–The State of the Reader: 8/17/16          The State of the Reader: 8/31/16–>

A weekly post updated every Wednesday detailing my current reading projects and where I am with them in addition to what new titles I’ve added to my to-read list.  Title links go to Goodreads to make it easier for interested parties to add any books that might strike their fancy.  I attempt to use the covers for the edition I’m reading, and I’ll mention if this is not the case.  If you have a Goodreads account feel free to friend me!  I’d love to see what you’re reading and/or planning to read.

Books Finished This Week: 1

Title: The Red Rose
Series Title: Submissive Beth Mysteries
Author: Fia Black
Date Added: August 8, 2016
Date Started: Unknown
Date Finished: August 23, 2016

This was a nice quick-read mystery that I highly recommend along with the first book in the series The Jade Dragon.  I’ll be writing a full review of this hopefully by the end of the week.


Books Currently Reading: 4
Change from Last Week:
 +1

Title: The Mystical Qabalah
Author: Dion Fortune
Date Added: August 13, 2012
Date Started: Unknown

Mystical Qabalah, TheMedium: Paperback
Progress: 77%

I finally finished the chapter on Malkuth, and I’m about to start the one on the Qliphoth or Unholy Sephiroth (emanations from the left hand of God).  After that the format of the book changes to be more instruction like for practical workings so I’m not sure how much of that I’m going to read.  We’ll see when we get there.

Title: The Mabinogion Tetralogy
Author: Evangeline Walton
Date Added: August 24, 2014
Date Started: July 31, 2016

Medium: Paperback
Progress: 7%

I read two and a half chapters in one setting this week instead of my customary one.  This compendium continues to delight.  Ms. Walton has a wonderful way with language.

Title: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
Series Title: Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children
Author: Ransom Riggs
Date Added: May 11, 2016
Date Started: August 24, 2016

Medium: Paperback
Progress: 13%

I added this book on the May 11, 2016 State of the Reader post.  The instant I picked this volume up in the bookstore a tingle ran through my bones.  I knew it was going to be extraordinary, and I have not been disappointed.  It grips you from even the prologue, which is amazing since prologues are considered out of vogue these days and Ransom Riggs is a new writer, (or rather this is his first published book) so I know the story is fantastic since newbies are usually castigated for making that faux pas (I removed the prologue from my original WIP for that very reason).

This is a mystery that involves a murder, but the murder is only the start.

Title: Sigil
Author: Aidan J. Reid
Date Added: June 9, 2016
Date Started: August 23, 2016

Medium: Kindle
Progress: 10%

I added this book on the June 16, 2016 State of the Reader post.  Like the first story I read by this author, Spectrum (reviewed here), Sigil immediately grips you.  Each chapter so far hangs you on a cliff and you have to see what happens next.  Murder-mystery in a sleepy (Irish) town is certainly something that’s been often done, but the unconventional priest detective puts me in the mind of another unconventional murder-mystery 3 Gates to the Dead by Jonathon Ryan (which I’ve reviewed here).  The author himself is from Northern Ireland so there’s a powerful and authentic voice behind every word.

If you didn’t notice I’m currently reading four books instead of my customary three.  I noticed I was getting a bit of reading done on my Kindle right before bed with The Red RoseI’d already decided I was going to read Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children next, and realized that since Kindle reading (on my phone at least) doesn’t require a light, I could snatch some pages up before going to sleep.  I used to read from my Kindle prior to jazzercise (back when I was able to go ;_;) and have noticed I can even get some chapters read at work during lunch.  I’m always trying to get as many finished read as possible especially considering I’ve over 500 on my TBR list.  Since I managed to read 10% in only about a day, I think this plan has merit.

Therefore I’ll now be doubling up on my fantasy/general fiction reading since I can have both a physical book and a kindle copy going concurrently.

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The State of the Reader: 8/17/16

<–The State of the Writer: 8/10/16          The State of the Writer: 8/24/16–>

A weekly post updated every Wednesday detailing my current reading projects and where I am with them in addition to what new titles I’ve added to my to-read list.  Title links go to Goodreads to make it easier for interested parties to add any books that might strike their fancy.  I attempt to use the covers for the edition I’m reading, and I’ll mention if this is not the case.  If you have a Goodreads account feel free to friend me!  I’d love to see what you’re reading and/or planning to read.

Books Finished This Week: 0


Books Currently Reading: 3
Change from Last Week:
0

Title: The Mystical Qabalah
Author: Dion Fortune
Date Added: August 13, 2012
Date Started: Unknown

Mystical Qabalah, TheMedium: Paperback
Progress: 73%

I’m still on the chapter about Malkuth. It’s a slow crawl to the finish, but I’m making progress every week, which is something.  It’s been ten years since I’ve attempted to read this book, what are (potentially) ten weeks more?

Title: The Mabinogion Tetralogy
Author: Evangeline Walton
Date Added: August 24, 2014
Date Started: July 31, 2016

Medium: Paperback
Progress: 5%

I considered adding Ms. Walton’s fantasy novel Witch House to my TBR list, but held off for the nonce.  Now that I’m looking, I can see that she has a bunch more stories to her credit.  You may see some of them on my Goodreads added list next week.

This compendium continues to delight.  I’m only reading a chapter with each session, and since the chapters are short, but the book is long, it’s going to take quite a while at this pace.

Title: The Red Rose
Series Title: Submissive Beth Mysteries
Author: Fia Black
Date Added: August 8, 2016
Date Started: Unknown

Medium: Kindle
Progress: 69%

I’m breezing through this book thanks in part to the author’s quick and easy to read style. I didn’t realize how much I’d love that for mysteries, but it fits so much better than the heavy prose I use and am used to for high fantasy.  It’s definitely a stylistic tip I want to remember if/when I try my hand at the genre. I just hit a big point in the narrative the other night. I’m hoping to finish before my update next week.

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The State of the Reader: 7/13/16

<–The State of the Reader: 7/6/16          The State of the Reader: 7/20/16–>

A weekly post updated every Wednesday detailing my current reading projects and where I am with them in addition to what new titles I’ve added to my to-read list.  Title links go to Goodreads to make it easier for interested parties to add any books that might strike their fancy.  I attempt to use the covers for the edition I’m reading, and I’ll mention if this is not the case.  If you have a Goodreads account feel free to friend me!  I’d love to see what you’re reading and/or planning to read.

Content Warning: Some discussions of rape as it pertains to narratives.


Books Finished This Week: 0


Books Currently Reading: 3
Change from Last Week: 0

Title: The Mystical Qabalah
Author: Dion Fortune
Date Added: August 13, 2012
Date Started: Unknown

Mystical Qabalah, TheMedium: Paperback
Progress: 66%

I completed the weekly goal set last week and finished the chapter on Hod, so I’m happy about that.  This week’s goal is to finish the chapter on Yesod.  I like this weekly goal thing.  It keeps me even more honest and means I may actually finish reading The MQ before the end of this year.

Title: The Rape of Lucrece
Author: William Shakespeare
Date Added: December 11, 2015
Date Started: June 25, 2016

Rape of Lucrece, The

Medium: Paperback
Progress: 32%

Nope.  Still no progress.  Not only am I now editing a story about rape, but I’m also writing an essay where a major point is about rape in the subtext of my favorite story, FFVII.  I actually had to stop writing the fore mentioned because in researching the book above (interestingly enough) I became very upset with Wikipedia’s explanation of how the titular character was viewed.  It was an excellent analysis, but horribly dehumanizing.  It also perfectly aligned with what it references in FFVII.  I was both fascinated and disgusted, and eventually the latter emotion won out.  I’m working on the essay tonight and hoping to finish it, so that will be one less source of rape rhetoric on my plate, and I can hopefully finish up this poem.

Title: The Slow Regard of Silent Things
Series Title: The Kingkiller Chronicle
Author: Patrick Rothfuss
Date Added: October 30, 2014
Date Started: June 25, 2016

Untitled-14

Medium: Paperback
Progress: 82%

I’m so close to being done with this slim volume.  I was hoping to finish this week, but I still have about 50 pages left.  I should definitely be able to knock them out before next Wednesday.  I’ll more than likely review this.  It shouldn’t take me too long.  I think afterwards, I’m going to give it to my friend Siobhan (who’s going to be reviving her own blog here!).  There’s something about Auri that utterly reminds me of her.  I feel like this book needs to be hers.

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