|Moon Magic by Dion Fortune|
Moon Magic is perhaps Dion Fortune’s best-crafted fictional work, and bears annual rereading for many years. The story centers around two main characters. Dr. Rupert Malcolm is the foremost expert on the mechanics of the mind; needless to say he doesn’t do too well using it in his own life.
In her second appearance in Dion Fortune’s novels, Lilith Le Fay, puts in a masterful performance as the occult priestess, servant of Isis, savior of Rupert, and all-round implanter of (then) radical ideas into the consciousness of mankind.
Two story lines serve as vehicles. The first is the salvation of a man who has lost touch with his feminine side, helped to a solution by a mysterious lady – no surprise there. The second consists of this same mysterious lady, revealed as a powerful occultist, establishing the feminine principle as strong and important in the mass mind of the 1930s – an idea which was still gaining traction at that time.
The book also serves as a guide to specific “magical” techniques, especially for those with some experience with any Golden Dawn-derived material. For example, the descriptions of astral and etheric separation and travelling, though only a few pages long, are better than most modern books on the subjects. (And yes, as she points out, these two are very different things.) For example, very few authors warn of the strange “shorting out” and slow disintigration of the etheric body as it travels over water. Dion Fortune clearly instructs the reader to use astral projection if large bodies of water must be traversed.
Similarly, the construction and use of the simalcrum, that ‘pretend’ body used by the consciousness to travel unseen in the physical plane, is given here in enough detail to allow experimentation. Some modern books claim to reveal it “for the first time” and then leave out important details. Yet here is a good description of the process in three sentences written in the 1930’s. How much we have forgotten in such a short time! If you are interested in astral travel or out-of-body workings there are enough techniques here to see you well on your way.
The history of this book alludes to its perception among serious occultists. Dion Fortune died a few months before the end of World War II in 1945, and obviously finished this book well before then (some say as early as 1941). Yet the Society of Inner Light felt it too risky to release the book to press as they felt it contained too much magical instruction that could be used improperly. After much internal debate the book was finally published in 1956, having been reserved for members of the Society until then.
An old axiom states that a child will want whatever is denied them – in this case it proves true for occultists as well. Moon Magic has many useful keys for the beginner and practiced magician, while providing a rollicking good read for anyone who likes a good story.
Read it once. Then read it again a year later.