In this episode Rudolf welcomes legendary Jake Stratton-Kent who is one of the most knowledgeable authors and practitioners of grimoire magic and has been called the most notorious necromancer in England.
Jake describes himself as a ‘very late Late Pagan’ which is a reference to his focus on the historical time where late Paganism overlaps with the early church period forming a fascinating and nurturing soil for magic as we think of it these days.
Having started out as a solitary practitioner more than 40 years ago with Paul Huson’s ‘Mastering Witchcraft’ Jake worked his magical path through different techniques always seeking out the historical roots of ideas and ultimately coming back full circle to one of his very first interests, grimoire magic. Since then Jake has become a widely renowned authority on goetic workings and in this episode he shares why he was drawn to this kind of so-called ‘left-hand’ or ‘dark’ magic.
Furthermore, Rudolf and Jake dive into the effectiveness of magic in general, necromancy and its significance, recommended sources, how being ‘fashionable’ in magic might lead to blind spots, how ‘bad reputation’ doesn’t necessarily mean ‘bad’ and whether or not respectability should be part of a magician’s vocabulary.
As for his work as an author, Jake has written numerous pamphlets and articles for various publications from the mid-1970s to the current day. He is the author of the ‘Encyclopaedia Goetica’, comprising three volumes in total: ‘The True Grimoire’, which is a reconstructed and extensively commented edition of the infamous ‘Grimoirum Verum’, ‘Geosophia’, a two volume survey of the Greek origins and mythic background of goetia itself and ‘The Testament of Cyprian the Mage’, which is an analysis of the grimoires and their spirit hierarchies in Late Antiquity, all published by Scarlet Imprint. Another quite remarkable work is ‘Pandemonium – a discordant concordance of diverse spirit catalogues’, published by Hadean Press.
Jake previously edited and contributed to the influential journal ‘The Equinox – British Journal of Thelema’ which is nowadays superseded by ‘Conjure Codex’, a serial anthology of writings on spirit conjuring traditions from around the world, ancient and modern, published by Hadean Press.
As a ‘senile delinquent’ Jake has a background in the Youth Radicalisation and Free Festival Movement of the 1970s that has never entirely left him. He lives in the UK but loves the Czech Republic, especially Prague.