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Necronomicon FAQ part 2
Frequently Asked Questions -- The Necronomicon Part II
29 June 1993
compiled by Kendrick Kerwin Chua (kendrick+@CMU.EDU)
Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania,
United States of America
(5) What is a *Necromicon*? Shouldn't it be Necronomicon?
Probably the most frequently asked, see this post from Joshua Geller:
From: email@example.com (Joshua Geller)
Subject: Re: Necronomicon FAQ
Date: 23 Oct 92 10:11:39 GMT
due to the fact that I'm at home at 1200 baud and my editor sometimes
skips characters under these conditions, this group was created as
'alt.necromicon' rather than 'alt.necronomicon'.
I am now going to rmgroup it and newgroup the new one.
sorry for any inconvenience.
This is the reason for the misspelling. No one has created a new group
with the correct spelling as of yet, due to the low volume of messages
(6) Does the Necronomicon really exist?
Reference this question to five years of e-mail and dozens of flamewars.
I respectfully submit instead this post from Thyagi Nagashiva (and
withdraw any official opinion)....
Please note that my stance on the Necronomicon in this context is not in
conflict with the fact that I have said the Hay Necronomicon is a fake.
Just because something is not what it claims does not mean it cannot be
useful. The Hay Necronomicon does claim to be the ancient word of Abdul
Al-Hazred, but in fact was the product of many men's imaginations and
hard work. Does this reduce its value or its utility?
Please feel free to work it out for yourself.
The Parallels of East and West:
Termas, Grimoires and _The Necronomicon_
By Frater I Nigris (666)
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
The word of Sin is Restriction.
[... text deleted ...]
In the west such texts have sometimes been attributed to God or to a person
who had an experience attributed to God (_The Revelation of St. John_, for
example). In orthodox religion they are called 'revelations'. In heretical
or 'occult' traditions they are called 'grimoires'. More often than not they
are said to be of ancient or mystically powerful origin. As Richard Cavendish
explains in _The Black Arts_, 1967, Putnam:
"...the writers of old grimoires, or magical textbooks, which instruct the
reader in methods of calling up evil spirits, killing people, causing hatred,
and destruction or forcing women to submit to him in love, did not think of
themselves as black magicians. On the contrary, the grimoires are packed
with prayers to God and the angels, fastings and self-mortifications and
ostentatious piety. The principal process in the _Grimoire of Honorius_,
which is usually considered the most diabolical of them all, overflows
with impassioned and perfectly sincere appeals to God and devout sayings
of the Mass. It also involves tearing out the eyes of a black cock and
slaughtering a lamb, and its purpose is to summon up the Devil." p. 3.
Cavendish confines his writings about 'grimoires' here to those which
are intended to aid the adept in summoning demonic entities, descriptions
complete with bodily movements and 'barbarous names' of evocation.
It seems that many such texts are in existence, having survived the
ravages of an orthodox fear, yet not all of them concern this subject.
When looking at the origin of grimoires and termas, what is being
cited as their 'source' (e.g. 'Abraham the Jew', the source
of _The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage_; or 'Aiwaz/Aiwass',
the source/channel of _The Book of the Law_) is a certain state of
consciousness. Whether this state of consciousness is in some way
related to any historical or extra-terrestrial figure I leave to the
discernment of the reader.
Given all this, there is no reason why a text could not be referred to ahead
of time by its source, the 'intended' recipient, or a knowledgeable
or intuitive third party. The state of consciousness is there to experience
by those with the courage and ability. The scripture will be received
by the adept in any case, and there is no reason why more than one
copy of said text could not be obtained, though individual minds being what
they are it will most likely be a different 'version'. Perhaps this is the
reason that the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John differ as much
as they do.
When we then turn to the text referred to as _The Necronomicon_ by
H.P. Lovecraft, we are hard-pressed to render a 'verdict' as to its legitimacy.
If indeed the text preceded Lovecraft, then this does not guarantee that
it has come down to us unedited. If the idea and title were used by Lovecraft
as a result of suggestions from others without an extant text, then perhaps its
'source consciousness' hid the text until a later time. If Lovecraft
fabricated even the IDEA of the tome along with its title, then perhaps he was
simply a 'third party' to a state of consciousness which we may never assess.
The writing of this tome at ANY time after Lovecraft's fabrication, in the
special context of termas and grimoires, does nothing to disprove its value or
its origin. Just because Lovecraft was perceptive enough to imagine such a
text, this does not mean that it did not exist in some fashion (be it within or
WITHOUT the dimension we call 'earth').
The ONLY means of evaluating the various versions of _The Necronomicon_,
therefore, is in comparison with Lovecraft's writings and through personal
experience of the tome in question. Given sufficient qualification and
connection, the adept may then be able to analyze the contents of the version
in question and discern whether it represents a clear reflection of the
Two points regarding even this method must be understood. First, Lovecraft's
own ideas about the text may have been faulty. Therefore, his description
in his writings regarding the text are questionable. One can only say, given
that one feels a specific version of the text varies from Lovecraft's
description yet represents a valid grimoire, that these two 'Necronomicons'
are different and possibly of different origin.
Second, ALL such evaluations are subjective and therefore deserve the
skepticism of other students. We can not arrive at 'objective knowledge'
about this, and thus no review can be considered absolute in its authority.
Certainly some adepts' opinions may be accepted over others by the
researcher, but even this is a personal preference and cannot constitute the
final word in the matter.
Therefore, regardless of the history or origin of _The Necronomicon_, whether
or not Lovecraft fabricated it or reflected it in some way, all claims that
writings entitled _The Necronomicon_ are useless or based in ignorance
must be taken in context - as personal opinions. Those who pass such
judgements make a claim to adeptship themselves in order to perform
such an evaluative role. Unless we can vouch for the ability and awareness
of those who do the reviewing, it is a mistake to take them too seriously.
The best means of evaluating grimoires and termas is personally, and only
then after taking steps to develop our mind to such an extent that exposure to
their occulted energies will not also expose us to danger or in some way
disclose that for which we are unprepared. Some grimoires, it is said,
can NEVER be prepared for in this way and have powerful effects upon ALL
those with sufficient perception to comprehend their horrible secrets.
In the realms of consciousness, 'time' and the 'transmission of teachings' are
not the simple concepts that many would have us believe. Be warned that
some who 'approve' or 'contest' the validity of a scripture are either
myopic or have political goals - the enslavement of your mind!
[(7) Many thanks for the opinions and the information that
Thyagi has provided. KKC]
(7) What is the Voynich Manuscript?
The Voynich was first connected to the Necronomicon in Colin Wilson's
short story, "Return of the Lloigor", written in the style of Lovecraft.
In short, the Voynich is an encoded text accompanied by botanical
illustrations and pictures of nudes, all scribbled in some unknown
alphabet by an unknown author, perhaps the unseen Abdul Al-Hazred. It
could be either a magickal grimiore or a gardening guide, because no one
has come up with a definitive crack of the cipher, if it even is a
cipher and not just random scrawling. Those who have access to internet
should check out internet.voynich for more information.
[(8) Thanks to Karl Kluge from CMU. KKC]
(8) Where can I find more information?
Well, there's this nifty bibliography that Laurie Brandt posted several times:
From: JBrandt@AAA.Uoregon.edu (Laurie E. W. Brandt (Pegasus))
Subject: Bib necro
Date: 3 Nov 1992 06:07:53 GMT
Albright, W. F. "The Anatolian Goddes Kubaba" Archive fur Orientforschung,
Berosus .History of Babylon. ca 280 B. C. E.
Calder, W. M. "Notes on Anatolian Religion" Journal of the Manchester
Egyptian and Oriental Society, XI(1924).
Cameron, George. G. Ancient Persia in .The Idea of History in the Ancient
Near East. p. 77-97.
Cassuto, U. .The Goddess Anath. Jerisalem, The Magnes Press, The Hebrew
Crem, C. W. .The Secret of the Hittietes the Discovery of an Ancient
Empire. New York, NY: Alfred A. Knopf, 1955.
Cumont, F. .Oriental Religions in Roman Paganism. New York, NY: Dover,
Denton, Robert C. ed. .The Idea of History in the Ancient Near East. New
Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1955.
Engnell, Ivan .Studies in Divine Kingship in the Ancient Near East.
Farnell, Lewis R. . Greece and Babylon: A Comparative Sketch of
Mesopotamian, Anatolian and Hellenic Religions. Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1911.
Frankfort, Henri .Cylinder Seals: A Documentary Essay on the Art & Religion
on the Ancient Near East. London, Gregg International, 1939.
--- ed. .The Intellectual Adventure of Ancient Man: an Essay on Speculitive
Thought in the Ancient Near East. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago
---.Kingship and the Gods: A Study of Near Eastern Religion as the
Intergration of Society & Nature. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press,
Furlani, G. "The Basic Aspect of Hittite Religion" Harvard Theological
Review XXXI (1938).
Gadd, C. J. .Ideas of Divine rule in the Ancient Near East. London, British
Academy 1948. (Schweich Lectures on Biblical Archaeology Series, 1945).
Garstang, John "The Sun Goddess of Arinna" Annals of Archaeology and
Anthropology VI (1914).
Gotze, Albrecht .The Hittite Ritual of Tunnawi. New Haven CT: American
Oriental Society, 1938.
Gurney, O. R. "Hittite Prayers of Mursilis II" Annals of Archaeology and
Anthropology XXVII (1940).
Guterbock, H. G. "The Hittite version of the Kumarbi Myths, Oriental
Forerunners of Hesiod" American Journal of Archaeology LII(1948).
---. "The Song of Ullikummi" Journal of Cuneiform Studies 5(1951), 6(1952).
Harpper, R. F. .The Code of Hammurabi. Chicago 1904.
Hook, Samuel Henery. Myth and Ritual. Oxford, 1933.
---. The Origins of Early Semitic Ritual. London, British Academy 1938.
(Schweich Lectures on Biblical Archaeology Series, 1935).
---. ed. Myth, Ritual and Kingship. Oxford, 1958.
---. Babylonian and Assyrian Religion. Oxford, 1962.
Jastrow, M. .Babylonian -Assyrian Birth Omens. Giessen, 1914.
King, L. W. .Babylonian Magic and Sorcery. London, 1896
---. Chronicles concerning Early Babylonian Kings. London, 1907
---. A History of Babylon. London, 1915.
---. A History of Sumer and Akkad. London, 1910.
---. Legends of Babylon and Egypt in Relation to Hebrew Tradition. London,
British Academy 1918. (Schweich Lectures on Biblical Archaeology Series,
Kramer, Samuel Noah ed. Mythologies of the Ancient World. New York,NY:
---. History Begins at Sumer, Thirty Nine "Firsts" Man's Recorded History.
University of Pennsylvania Press, 1959.
--- .Sumerian Mythology: A Study of Spirtual and Literary Achievement in in
the Third Millennium B. C. . Philadelphia, 1944.
Langdon, Stephen Hurbert Babylonian Menologies and the Semitic Calendars.
London, 1935. (Schweich Lectures, 1933).
---. The Legend of Etana and the Eagle. Paris 1932. .Semitic. Volume V of
Mythology of All Races. Archaeological Institute of America Boston,
Marshall Jones and Co. 1916- 1932.
Loftus, William Kennett .Travels and Researches in Chaldea and Susiana;
with an account of excavations at Warka, the "Erech" of Nimrod, and Shus,
"Shushan the Place" of Esher, in 1849-52. New York, NY: Robert Carter and
LOragne, H. P. .Studies on The Iconography of Cosmic Kingship in the
Ancient World. Oslo: Institutte for Sammenlignende Kulturforskning, 1953.
Pallis, Svend. A. The Babylonian Akitu Festival. Ancient Mesopotamian Texts
and Studies, Copenhagen, 1926.
Pfeiffer, R. H. .State Letters of Assyria. New Haven, CT: 1935
Pritchard, James B. Ed. Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old
Testament. Princeton, New Jersy: Princeton, 1950.
Ransome, Hilda M. .Sacred Bee in Ancient times and Folklore. London, Gordon
Smith, Sidney. The Early History of Assyria. London 1928.
Thompson, Reginald Campbell trans. The Devils and Evil Spirits of
Babylonia. London, Luzac's Semitic Text & Translation Ser Nos 14-15,
---. Semitic Magic Its Origins & Development. London 1908.
---. The Reports of the Magicians and Astrologers of Niveveh and Babylon.
London, Luzac's Semitic Text & Translation Ser Nos 6-7, 1900.
Speiser, E.A. Ancient Mesopotamia; in .The Idea of History in the Ancient
Near East. p.34-76
Spretnak, Charlene .Lost Goddesses of Early Greece: A Collection of
Per-Hellenic Myths. Boston: Beacon Press, 1978.
Wells C. Bradford, E.A. The Hellenistic Orient; in .The Idea of History
in the Ancient Near East. p.135-167.
Wilson, J. V. K. .The Rebel Lands: An Investigation into the Origins of
Early Mesoptamian Mythology. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press,
Wolkstine, Diana and S. N. Kramer .Inanna Queen of Heaven and Earth: Her
Stories and Hymns from Sumer. New York: Harper and Row, 1983.
Wooley, C. Leonard "Hittite Burial Customs" Annals of Archaeology and
Anthropology VI (1914).
In the near future (probably Fall of 1994), Llewellyn books may be
publishing a book, tentatively titled "The Practical Guide to the
Necronomicon". If you have any ideas or opinions on this possibility,
please e-mail me so that I can pass those words on to the author and the
Also, there are FAQ's on several newsgroups that mention the
Necronomicon and give additional information, including
Also, various authors and magazine articles have been published on the
subject, too numerous to list here. This FAQ along with the rest, should
give you a fairly complete base of information on which to form an
opinion, if any.
Please see part three.
(C) 1993 by Kendrick Kerwin Chua <kendrick+@CMU.EDU>
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