Sticks and Stones

Gifts for Spirit, Mind, Body

Sam Block's Blog (20)

Genius, Skill, Talent, Technique

(Originally posted on my blog here.)

Between the sufferings of both modern public school education and psychological neuroses, a lot of people fall into one of two camps of belief:

  1. I can be anything I want and be good at everything I do.
  2. I can’t do anything no matter how hard I try.

Both of these beliefs are false, as I reckon…

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Added by Sam Block on June 9, 2013 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Divination as Intel

(Originally posted on my blog here.)

One of my favorite webcomics (which is ending this year at 10+ years old, alas!) is Dominic Deegan: Oracle for Hire.  In addition to being a painfully/punfully witty and action-packed high-fantasy webcomic, it also centers around the young Dominic Deegan, a career seer, an oracle who…

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Added by Sam Block on June 2, 2013 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Earth, Moon, and Stars

(Originally posted on my blog here.)

Cornelius Agrippa in his Three Books of Occult Philosophy (book I, chapter 8book II, chapter 7) relates the four elements to the celestial objects, namely the planets, mostly…

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Added by Sam Block on May 26, 2013 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Humility versus Modesty

(Originally posted on my blog here.)

One of the areas where I catch flak as a ceremonial magician is that people constantly assume I’m some kind of spiritual control-freak.  It’s true, lots of Solomonic literature makes use of perilous heavy-handed conjurations against demons and the like, but that’s not the kind of work I often find myself faced with.  I mean, far be it from me to…

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Added by Sam Block on May 19, 2013 at 8:06pm — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 11/4 through 11/11

Hey all!  Hope you've been well this past week.  Here's your weekly geomantic forecast from November 4 through November 11.  The Mothers for this week were Joy, the Dragon's Head, the Dragon's Head, and Loss, which show that:

Overall: Lots of thinking and sorting things out will help bring things to a quick end and definitive close.  Thinking things through, though not an active thing, is still enough to tidy up affairs and lay them to rest, though this might lead to…

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Added by Sam Block on November 4, 2012 at 6:58pm — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 10/28 through 11/4

Hey all!  Hope you've been well this past week.  Here would normally your weekly geomantic forecast from October 28 through November 4, except there are a few other things I'd like to mention this time around:

  • According to traditional geomantic lore and methodology, it's bad form to do divination with times of extreme or troubled weather.  Just as one shouldn't do divination when one is upset or emotionally excitable, one shouldn't also be using an earth-based form…
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Added by Sam Block on October 28, 2012 at 4:20pm — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 10/21 through 10/28

Hey all!  Hope you've been well this past week.  Here's your weekly geomantic forecast from October 21 through October 28.  The Mothers for this week were Sorrow, Loss, the Lesser Fortune, and the People which show that (despite the negative-sounding Mothers):

Overall: New beginnings this week will lead to a time of pleasant but needed upheaval in one's day-to-day life.  Between recent pleasantries and upcoming successes, despite some confusion, things are definitely…

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Added by Sam Block on October 21, 2012 at 2:37pm — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 10/14 through 10/21

Hey all!  Sorry about letting several weeks go past without a Geomantic Forecast, but I've been busy (read: lazy + traveling).  All the same, I hope the past few weeks have gone well for you, especially now that the weather is cooling down and Samhain/Hallowe'en is almost here!  Here's your weekly geomantic forecast from October 14 through October 21.  The Mothers for this week were Sorrow, the Lesser Fortune, the Head of the Dragon, and Sorrow, which show…

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Added by Sam Block on October 14, 2012 at 3:30pm — No Comments

Upcoming Geomancy Classes!

Hey all!  I apologize for missing out on Sunday and messing up my still-new series of Weekly Geomantic Forecasts, but I had to be out of town for a few days.  Now I'm catching up and gathering some last-minute materials and topics for my upcoming geomancy courses!

In these courses, you'll learn about this ancient, arcane, and awesome art of divination:

  • What geomancy is and is not
  • History of geomancy
  • Basic figure meanings, groupings, and associations with…
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Added by Sam Block on September 18, 2012 at 7:23pm — No Comments

An Ancient Babylonian Diviner’s Prayer

A while back, I recall hearing about a collection of Babylonian and Assyrian poetry and prayers being made public by some university or other, along with recordings of them being said aloud in their original tongue, long extinct though it was.  It was awesome, but I left it behind, not really having much to do with it besides it sounding really cool.  More recently, while I was enjoying myself on a weekend night, I was talking to a…

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Added by Sam Block on September 15, 2012 at 12:04pm — No Comments

Ancient Egyptian Protection Talismans

At a recent gem show, which had dealers of all kinds of cultures peddling all kinds of wares, shinies, and pretties, I picked up a nifty little container, a small metal canister that fits together snugly and near watertight with a few loops to hold a chain or strap. It can hold a few small objects, like a charm bag, but since the stall I got it at stocked mostly Tibetan or northern Indian things, I figure it’s a scroll canister. I’m making use of it by tying a strap through the loops to keep…

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Added by Sam Block on September 13, 2012 at 9:44am — No Comments

Mercury Election Ritual!

In astrology, there are certain times when the stars align just right (to use the cliche saying) and a certain planet gets a major power boost.  These moments are called elections, and are perfect for doing enchantments, magic, or worship for a particular force of the cosmos.  This morning I had fun with a really powerful Mercury election involving Mercury exactly conjunct the Sun, and got out a few of my tools and some candles and really took advantage of the ritual.  Since Mercury is among…

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Added by Sam Block on September 10, 2012 at 9:30pm — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 9/9 through 9/16

Hey all!  Hope this past week went well for you!  Here's your weekly geomantic forecast from September 9 through September 16.  The Mothers for this week were the People, Sorrow, the Lesser Fortune, and the Head of the Dragon, which show that:

Overall: Lots of previous activity and events are settling down and being left in the past; this is a time of transition and getting settled into a new way of living.  Though you might be leaving things behind, there is gain in your…

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Added by Sam Block on September 9, 2012 at 2:26pm — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 9/2 through 9/9

Hey all!  Hope this past week went well for you!  Now that the summer's wrapping up and September is here, the weather is starting to cool off but the year's activities are really starting to heat up.  Here's your weekly geomantic forecast from September 2 through September 9.  The Mothers for this week were Loss, the Dragon's Tail, the Dragon's Tail again, and the Boy, which show that:

Overall: Lots of activity, and new things abound anywhere you look!  What's been going on…

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Added by Sam Block on September 2, 2012 at 1:48pm — No Comments

Upcoming classes at Sticks and Stones!

Now that I’m doing weekly divination readings at the bookstore, I’ve been willingly corralled into offering workshops and classes for the public.  Being one of the few ceremonial magicians and geomancers on the East Coast, I’ve got a lot of experience and knowledge under my belt (though by no means enough) to share around with folks willing enough to hear me out and pay a small-but-reasonable fee, about $30 per class.  With that in mind, here’s my teaching schedule for the rest of 2012.  All…

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Added by Sam Block on September 2, 2012 at 9:56am — 1 Comment

Review: Les P. Cross, “Astrogem Geomantic Divination”

After weeks of waiting, I got the newest and supposedly revolutionary book on geomancy, Les P. Cross’ “Astrogem Geomantic Divination”.  It’s a self-published book written by Mr. Cross, and cost GBP £20 not including shipping.  It has an elegantly simple cover, marked with the Sun above a traditional square chart design and the Moon below, in a matte black and yellow cover.  No spine text, and the back text just has…

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Added by Sam Block on September 2, 2012 at 9:52am — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 8/26 through 9/2

Hey all!  Hope this past week went well for you!  I didn't have a chance to get this posted earlier since I forgot my laptop, but here's your weekly forecast for August 26 through September 2!  The Mothers for this week were the Boy, Joy, Gain, and Prison, which show that:

Overall:  It's a slow start this week with some delays, but things will start to turn up and turn fast.  Expect good times and advancements this week.  Things will be especially helpful at the workplace or…

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Added by Sam Block on August 26, 2012 at 7:15pm — No Comments

Your Geomantic Forecast, 8/19 through 8/26

Hey all!  I'm one of the newer readers at Sticks and Stones, and also their first geomancer.  Geomancy is an ancient form of divination that makes use of sixteen earth-based figures, each representing an alchemical state of the universe.  It's pretty flexible, and very clear and detailed in its answers to almost any query.  To help with spreading the good word about this classic system of knowledge, I'm starting a weekly blog post, "Your Geomantic Forecast", that shows generally what you can…

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Added by Sam Block on August 19, 2012 at 3:08pm — No Comments

An Overview of Geomantic Literature

Over on the Geomantic Campus mailing list, there’s been a bit of talk about a new (gasp!) book on geomancy,“Astrogem Geomancy” by Les Cross.  The book was just released this summer, and proposes a new cross between crystallomancy, geomancy, and astrology.  It uses the traditional sixteen geomantic figures and the astrological framework we all love, but…

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Added by Sam Block on August 14, 2012 at 11:34pm — No Comments

Intros and Miscellany

Hey, all!  I'm Sam, a.k.a. polyphanes, and I'm one of the readers at Sticks and Stones!  It's fantastic to actually meet you all in person, and I'm glad to have the chance to do so.

So, a bit about me.  I'm a ceremonial magician working in the Western Mystery Tradition, the collection of rituals, philosophies, and techniques that generally fall under the Hermetic label.  I'm not a strict by-the-book Solomonic magician, nor am I a chaote or freeform sorcerer, but I can be pretty…

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Added by Sam Block on August 5, 2012 at 6:34pm — No Comments

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