History’s Most Formidable Occult Figures

Candle

“To know, to dare, to will, to keep silence—such are the four words of the magus…”

The Doctrine and the Ritual of Magic, Eliphas Levi

The earliest use of the term “occult” emerged in the 16th century when studies such as astrology and natural magic were catalogued under the occult sciences. Fast forward to the 19th century and the word picked up momentum with the French associating it with esoteric groups. It’s believed that the phrase “occult” finally made its debut in the English language circa 1875 when esoterist Helena Blavatsky (more on her later) began using it in her works. Although the mention of the occult seems quite recent, traces of it might have existed for much longer, into the far reaches of centuries past.

The dark arts, black magic, Satanism, witchcraft, paganism, mysticism—these are just a few of the practices commonly connected to occultism. All the greater are the number of individuals throughout the ages to have been linked to the practice of it. In his book The Black Arts, Richard Cavendish says, “The magician sets out to conquer the universe. To succeed he must make himself master of everything in it—evil as well as good, cruelty as well as mercy, pain as well as pleasure.” Perhaps this is the mission to unite the souls I’m about to mention here; a common purpose propelling them throughout their lifetimes. Presented in chronological order, let’s have a look at some of history’s most formidable occult figures. Continue reading “History’s Most Formidable Occult Figures”

Steven Johnson Leyba’s “FIRE” Exhibit & Ritual at The Dark Art Emporium

Steven Johnson Leyba's FIRE art exhibit
Steven Johnson Leyba’s FIRE art exhibit

He was ordained as a reverend into the Church of Satan by Anton Szandor LaVey in 1992, has placed curses on politicians and corporations, and caused media mayhem when, during his Apache Whiskey Rite as a political protest, he allowed himself to be anally penetrated by a woman wearing a harness with a bottle of Jack Daniel’s strapped to it. Continue reading “Steven Johnson Leyba’s “FIRE” Exhibit & Ritual at The Dark Art Emporium”

Lux In Tenebris at Lethal Amounts

From left to right:
From left to right: “Little Ghoulie Fig. 10” and “Little Ghoulie Fig. 11” by Steven Russell Black

“Lux In Tenebris,” which translates to “Light in Darkness,” is the latest exhibit at Lethal Amounts in Los Angeles, California. The group dark art show features more than 30 artists from across the globe and was curated in collaboration with Ahuixa Swimwear and Brooke Kent Art & Design.

Ahuixa is a high-end alternative swim apparel line that takes its name from the Aztec goddess Ahuic who guides running waters. Brooke Kent is an artist and graphic designer whose work highlights death, beauty, the natural and the subconscious. Both curators hold a deep appreciation for creativity that embraces the shadows and morbidity inside us, and the exhibition reveals this aesthetic. Continue reading “Lux In Tenebris at Lethal Amounts”