The Languages of Magic

Why do the calls of the Aethyrs work better in Enochian?

Scientists believed for a long time that the Akkadians had invented a secret cipher to write about magic and religion since those texts were not written in the Akkadian language. Then they realized that it was written in the much older, and up until then unknown, Sumerian language. For some reason the older language had been preserved for ritual and magic purposes.

Many years later the Christian church used Latin in their bibles and masses for a long time even though the use of languages changed and ordinary people didn’t understand a word of it. Even now, long after it finally was translated, everyone still prefers the archaic language in the old bible translations over the later, more modern translations. And of course popular media still uses Latin to depict spells and magic. Sigils could maybe be seen as an extreme of this as it is writing that becomes unintelligible on purpose.

Much of the occult currents from the last centuries used the Hebrew letters language a basis for many magical systems, for instance Hermetic Kabbalah and Tarot, although none of the practitioners spoke it as first language, in fact it was near extinct until it was revived in the 19th century. Inherent in the Hebrew letters are the numbers used in Gematria and the endless mathematical computations, often very abstruse, are abundant in occult literature.

I write both fiction and these essays in English despite my native language being Swedish. Why? Well, the simple reason is that it sets my mind in another state. It forces me to think in another way and kind of elevates me into a heightened state of writing. More focused, somehow. Using a different language distances me from the feeling of the banal and mundane that my first language gives when I try to write about magic. It makes me into another writer than I am when writing in Swedish.

The same phenomena is found in music. Sweden has a lot of musicians that sing in English instead of Swedish. Not to get an international career, but just because they think it suits the music better singing in English. I also do this with my band. I tried to write Swedish lyrics with the same topics as usual, but then it felt like it was written for a different band and I eventually made it a solo-album.

Writing in different languages also have inherent differences that makes you think in different ways. To the Germans the Sun is feminine and the Moon masculine. That affects what you think of they symbolize and how you describe them in writing. There is an African language that don’t describe directions as left or right. They use south of, or north of, etc, for everything. That makes them subconsciously very aware of the orientation of directions at all times. And so on.

So, there are several parts to this: The language itself, how it makes you think and feel and a distancing from the ordinary may be some key elements to why we as humans appear to use older language for our magic, spells and our beliefs.

Chanting the calls of the Aethyrs in Enochian is a more effective way of putting yourself in the right state of mind to work your magic.