My guest this Sunday is someone whose name might ring a bell with many of our listeners out there, it’s author, practitioner, Lucumi initiate and astrologer Eric Purdue who just published a brand new translation of Agrippa’s ‘Three Books of Occult Philosophy’ in fall last year with Inner Traditions.
Eric has been drawn to mythology, magic, astrology and occultism since his high school years and as a musician living in Chicago he had access to books on all subjects that interested him. However, ultimately a fellow band member pointed him into a direction that subsequently turned out to be spot on in giving him the phone number of a Lucumi practitioner who also happened to have a deep interest in Western Esoteric Traditions such as the Picatrix. At age 18, Eric met this teacher and got a crash course in possessions, séances and a lot more work that led him to become an initiate of this specific Lucumi tradition and it was also through this lineage that he received the recommendation to study astrology.
However, being used to Lucumi divinational techniques which are usually very accurate, Eric was soon disappointed with modern astrology. Due to the fact that his interest in Golden Dawn style ceremonial magic had already receded he was trying to work with Agrippa’s ‘Three Books’ – which btw can’t be overrated in terms of relevance – and he first focused on Christian astrology and then on traditional astrology.
In our conversation Eric will take time to explain the main differences between modern and traditional astrology, we will talk about how Arabic influences managed to preserve a vast amount of knowledge, touch upon free will and the use of certain celestial objects, their pros and cons and a lot more.
Of course, another main focus of this episode will be Eric’s motivation that led him to pursue an 11 year long journey in order to translate and publish Agrippa’s life work. In any discussion about the ‘Three Books’ Agrippa himself can’t be left out so we will also talk about his life and explore how he ultimately got away with the work he was doing despite of the inquisition at his heels. Another fascinating topic will be what exactly the (in)famous ‘Fourth Book’ consists of and who might have authored it for real and we will also try to answer some further questions such as how to use the ‘Three Books’ in practice and what they have to teach you which is actually far more than just doing magic.
Eric Purdue’s author page with Inner Traditions
And this is a link to Eric’s personal page
Music played in this episode
This week we present to you beautiful music from the 16th Century!
Tempvs Fugit caused a sensation at the 2002 Calvi Festival of Polyphony. The group was singled out not only for its unusual vocal technique, but also for its innovative repertoire from the Nebbiu region, the result of research by the ethno-musicologist Corinne Bartolini, with harmonisations by Antoine Tramini. Their repertoire includes prayers for Holy Week, a 16th century Genoese processional song and the Vultum Tuum Mass, a Roman office from the very earliest times with a slight Byzantine touch, conceived as a depiction of the Virgin’s face in sound.
1) VENI SANCTE SPIRITUS – L’ORME SANGUINE
(Track starts at 8:36)
2) VELUM TEMPLI – VEXILLA REGIS – CHRISTUS VINCIT
(Track starts at 56:39)
(Track starts at 1:36:55)
Intro and Outro Musicespecially written and recorded for the Thoth-Hermes Podcast by Chris Roberts