19th Century Mystic | Eliphas Levi
Eliphas Levi Zahed (1810-1875) was a French occult writer and ceremonial magician. Levi’s definition of magic is more like the definition of mystical union with God. Levi was born Alphonse Louis Constant and the name Levi is his attempt to translate his name into Hebrew. In the quest to credential themselves many spiritual teachers cite an earlier authority or lineage. Levi gave himself a Hebrew name and today many people give themselves Sanskrit or Sikh names.
Levi advocated Christian socialism and denounced Churches as corruptors of the true teachings of Christ. Levi was the first to declare that a pentagram or five-pointed star with one point down and two points up represents evil, while a pentagram with one point up and two points down represents good.
Eliphas Levi’s most famous work is Transcendental Magic, Its Doctrine & Ritual. Transcendental Magic is cited by Wikipedia as being a major influence on the unofficial textbook of Masonic ritual, Dogma and Morals by Albert Pike. Wikpedia goes on to state that Levi’s accounts of pagan rituals are considered unreliable today.
Eliphas Levi’s Divine Mystical Definition of Magic
Levi’s definition of Magic and Magician read more like the definition of a mystic or Holy man.
FROM WIKIPEDIA | Magic
- “To practice magic is to be a quack; to know magic is to be a sage.”
- “Magic is the divinity of man conquered by science in union with faith; the true Magi are Men-Gods, in virtue of their intimate union with the divine principle.”
- “He looks on the wicked as invalids whom one must pity and cure; the world, with its errors and vices, is to him God’s hospital, and he wishes to serve in it.”
- “They are without fears and without desires, dominated by no falsehood, sharing no error, loving without illusion, suffering without impatience, reposing in the quietude of eternal thought… a Magus cannot be ignorant, for magic implies superiority, mastership, majority, and majority signifies emancipation by knowledge.
- The Magus welcomes pleasure, accepts wealth, deserves honour, but is never the slave of one of them; he knows how to be poor, to abstain, and to suffer; he endures oblivion willingly because he is lord of his own happiness, and expects or fears nothing from the caprice of fortune.
- He can love without being beloved; he can create imperishable treasures, and exalt himself above the level of honours or the prizes of the lottery.
- He possesses that which he seeks, namely, profound peace. He regrets nothing which must end, but remembers with satisfaction that he has met with good in all. His hope is a certitude, for he knows that good is eternal and evil transitory.
- He enjoys solitude, but does not fly the society of man; he is a child with children, joyous with the young, staid with the old, patient with the foolish, happy with the wise. He smiles with all who smile, and mourns with all who weep; applauding strength, he is yet indulgent to weakness; offending no one, he has himself no need to pardon, for he never thinks himself offended; he pities those who misconceive him, and seeks an opportunity to serve them; by the force of kindness only does he avenge himself on the ungrateful…”
- “Judge not; speak hardly at all; love and act.”
(Editorial Disclaimer: Much of the content and images in this Eliphas Levi article was taken verbatim from Wikipedia, except for the Knights Templar initiation drawing which is from Alamy.)