PGM VII.505-28: Meeting With Your Own Daimon

Inspired by Sfinga and Key (authors of, I decided to try my hand at PGM VII.505-28: Meeting With Your Own Daimon. The purpose of the rite is as the name says— it is a rite that allows you to meet your own personal daimon.  If there is something I wish I did before attempting to performing the rite, however, it is to actually read through Holy Daimon by Frater Archer, for not only does the book includes an adapted version of the PGM rite with detailed guidance on how to perform it, but within it is also a very thorough explanation of what constitutes a daimon, to which the author draws a parallel between Socrates’ view of the daimonion with the occult view of the holy guardian angel. I wholeheartedly suggest that those who wish to attempt the PGM rite read over Holy Daimon before attempting.

Regardless, the rite is a relatively simple week-long ritual. Prior to performing the rite, at the suggestion of Sfinga and Key, I infused some myrrh resins into edible ink and used the ink to write the required holy names onto fourteen eggs. During the first dawn of the rite, I rubbed an egg all over myself, licked the names on the egg clean and then cracked it over a bowl to be discarded. Once that was done, I took another egg and raised it to greet the sunlight streaming through my window and spoke the required prayer seven times over the egg. Finally, I cracked the egg and swallowed its content. Admittedly, I found the yolk to be much tastier than the egg whites. When sunset came along, I spoke the required prayer seven times and repeated the rite again at the next dawn until seven says was over.

It was around day six that I realized something was wrong.

One thing I neglected to mention was that a few nights before I began my week-long ritual, I went clubbing in a classic university student fashion. Since that night out, I had been feeling a bit tired and sick, probably due to the sleep deprivation and the alcohol and the stress of working on my dissertation. Hence, by the time I was almost done with the PGM rite, I found that my body was exhausted and I felt incredibly weak compared to my usual baseline.

On day six of the ritual, I received a brief image in my head of a figure who seemed to be made up of lightning and storms. The energy I felt from the figure was wild and volatile, and this was a huge contrast to what I saw on the final day of the ritual. Instead, what I saw after I have completed the rite was a corpse-like figure shrouded in shadows. Due to a sense of dread I felt after seeing this figure, I decided to ask two of my trusted friends for advice: Red (@witchcraftinred on Instagram) and Lucas (@geopythia on Instagram). Both of them agreed that something wasn’t right.

In essence, the spirit felt as if it was dematerializing. One of the purposes of the rite is to ‘birth’ it into being, but due to some mistake I made — perhaps caused by the weakened state of my physical body which prompted a lapse on concentration and focus when performing the final days of the ritual — the spirits’ form failed to remain stable and it failed to remain anchored to me or the realm I am in. I wondered too if this could’ve been caused by how body was ‘impure’ due to the state of sickness that I was in, which led to the daimon being affected when I rubbed the egg all over my body and swallowed the other egg, thereby imbuing my ‘impure’ essence into the daimon’s own.

Thus, I swiftly devised a way to stop the daimon from dematerializing.

After performing some additional divination myself and cross-checking my divination with Red’s tarot readings, I concluded that a simple way to keep the daimon from dematerializing is to strengthen it and give it something to act as its anchor. A way to do this is to get some kind of object (in my case, a piece of jewelry) and consecrate it in the name of the daimon using PGM IV.1596-1715: Consecration For All Purposes; Spell to Helios.

Through this consecration process, both the jewelry and the daimon itself (NN, in the text) is blessed with ‘strength and honor’ by the faces of Helios, among other blessings. I used Digital Ambler’s version of the rite where the rite is carried out in a single operation during the day and hour of the Sun after sunset. I adapted the rite further to use burnt bay leaves to act as the herb that fumigates the jewelry. Additionally, prior to the consecration, I also called upon the Aldebaran, Regulus, Antares and Fomalhaut as Watchers of the Cardinal Directions to bless and safeguard the ritual space. I also asked that my own patron, as the Lord of the Starry Ocean, assist me in the rite.

To my relief, the consecration was a success.

It took me a while to familiarize myself with the daimon, but it is not long before I dreamt of a figure made out of flames and when I performed my own divination regarding the daimon, I received confirming cards of Ace of Wands, Eight of Wands and King of Wands. The fiery nature of the cards seemed to match the fiery nature of the daimon. To triple check that everything was going alright and that I wasn’t making all of this up (self-doubt and the fear of delusion, as they say, can be a bitch), I reached out to Alex (@the_hexdoctor on Instagram), a dear friend and mentor of mine, who agreed to performed a reading to clarify some of the weird occurrences that had begun to happen since I made contact with the daimon.

Without delving into too much detail, it is accurate to say that the daimon will bring about upheavals in my life. If anything, the upheavals has already begun— the internal ones, at least. Information had come to light about the reasons I was born (not my metaphorical life purpose, but the literal reason behind the decisions my parent had to birth me). Likewise, I had something between a mental breakdown and a mental breakthrough wherein I realized that my childhood was, in fact, a troubled one. Hence, it made logical sense why I still felt so wounded deep inside.

It just never really hit me truly how hurt I still feel.

I believe that the daimon has led me to accept that some things in my childhood that happened actually happened, and that even if it happened years ago in the past, it doesn’t mean that I am not affected by it to this day. I wasn’t weak, because no child should need to be strong. It is human to be fragile and be breakable.

There is no shame in shattering, sometimes.

Furthermore, I think the nature of the daimon one receives from the rite will also depend on who you are as a person and where you are on your spiritual journey. To quote Lucas during his reading on the daimon: ‘this spirit is a reflection of your many spirit pacts and contains multitudes to be unraveled. In part, it represents the fear and the severity of each pact which must be faced for the power and personality within it’. Confrontation, reflection, fear and growth seems to be the theme of this daimon so far. I feel like I wasn’t quite ready to work with this daimon so directly yet. Hence, the daimon is working to get me to that state where I can confront whatever lies in wait for me.

All in all, I do think that the rite has the potential to genuinely be life-changing. Yet, the fact that the rite is literally the last rite written in the Holy Daimon book also speaks to the life-altering power within the rite, one that shouldn’t be attempted haphazardly. Therefore, if anyone else is curious about performing the rite, I suggest that they divine thoroughly on the consequences of doing so beforehand.

Fixed Star Astrolatry: Capella, Alphard and Castor

Those who have been following this blog may notice that I have hidden my previous fixed star article. This is because I feel like that article was posted somewhat prematurely and I would like to rewrite a better post now that I have some more personal experience with the stars. Astrolatry — the veneration of stars as spirits and gods — has been an important part of my childhood and cultural upbringing. However, it is only after a reading in 2021 with Sasha Ravitch (whose services I fully recommend to anyone interested) that I realized that the same concept could be applied to not just classical planets, but also fixed stars. Sasha’s work on fixed stars have played a large part in my own understanding of them, and today I would like to recount my experiences with three stars: Capella, Alphard and Castor.

Capella, the She-Goat

Capella is the brightest star in the constellation of Auriga, the charioteer. Immediately, a word springs to mind— freedom. The chariot is the embodiment of action and movement. It is a vehicle that rushes ever forward, never stopping and never to be restrained. Capella too is associated with the goddess Diana, for the star marks the orientation point of a temple at Eleusis, dedicated to the goddess. Like the wild goddess of the hunt, there is a wildness to Capella, an untamable nature that refuses to be enslaved. Capella is my heliacal setting star and it represents a lot of what I seek in life: freedom, for myself and others. Thus, it is in my view that one of the many areas that Capella rules over is independence and self-sovereignty. This belief is also reflected in Bernadette Brady’s delineation of the fixed star, which I urge others to read up on should they be interested.

On a more traditional note, Capella is known to be a Behenian fixed star whose name means ‘Little She-Goat’ for she is the goat that is being carried by the charioteer. Capella is also associated with Amalthea who is the she-goat nurse of Zeus, the one who fed the future King of Olympus with her milk as he laid in a cave on Mount Dicte in Crete. When Zeus grew up, it was from her hide in which he created his aegis, the thunder-shield. The crown of her horn later became the cornucopia— the keras amaltheias, the horn of plenty. Hence, it is in this regard that I believe there to be a motherly nature to Capella. Just as Jove is generous and giving, Capella too provides and nurtures. Additionally, like the aegis her hide is made into, the She-Goat also defends. Those who are in need of freedom from abuse may therefore call upon for protection.

According to Ptolemy, Capella is of the nature of Mars and Mercury. To Alvidas, it is of Mercury and Moon. It gives honor, wealth, eminence, renown, a public position of trust and eminent friends, and makes its natives careful, timorous, inquisitive, very fond of knowledge and particularly of novelties. Capella can therefore be approached for assistance in achieving these things as well

Thus, on July 1st when a Mercury-Capella conjunction (with Mercury being in its domicile sign of Gemini) occurred, I chose to consecrate a talisman under the blessings of Capella in order for me to be granted honor, wealth, eminence and renown. I commissioned a jeweler to craft a small, silver pendant in the image of the Bodleian MS sigil of Capella and, on the night of the ritual, drew the sigil of the star, placed the pendant on top of the sigil, lit some candles, offered the star incenses of mint and mugwort, and invoked Capella using the prayer below:

Goat Mother,
Mother Goat,
Your child cries for you!
I call you by these names and more:
Almathea, Alhajoth, Alhatod, and Alhaiset.
She of the Horns-Verdant,
She of the Hooves-Galloping,
Unyielding and untamed,
Never to be restrained.
O Capella, wild and kind,
As you race upon your chariot,
Spare us a glance from
Your lofty place among the sky.
With gentle gaze, grant us your blessings!
Bless us with your Horn of Plenty,
Protect us with your Thunder-Shield!
By your grace, bestow us
Honor, wealth, good health and renown.
O healer and nurturer,
O ever-loving exalter of kings,
May nothing bind us or confine us.
May no enemy hurt us,
Nor may jealous eyes defile our glory.

I asked the star to bless the talisman-pendant and said a few more personal prayers to the star. Literally hours later, I received texts from a family member reassuring me about my finances and promising to help support me, even to the point of encouraging me to spend more on whatever will keep me healthy and comfortable. This is quite an improvement, as I usually tended to have a rocky relationship with this particular family member. Furthermore, at the time of the rite, I was anxious about my desire to save and invest versus my desire to enrich my occult knowledge via attending some relatively expensive occult conferences and astrological courses. Now, due to Capella’s intervention, I am at a point where I can write off my occult expenses as ‘living expenses’ and so far, the said family member has continued to repeat their reassurances to me that they will assist me financially in whichever way they can, in whatever matters I needed.

One thing I noted too was Capella’s nature as being ‘very fond of knowledge and particularly of novelties’. It therefore makes sense that Capella — who rules over wealth — would want to give me access to wealth that would allow me to indulge in my fondness for knowledge and novelties as well. I have a feeling too that should I need to acquire some kind of sponsorship for my PhD in the future, Capella will be more than willing to assist me to do so as well.

Alphard, Heart of the Serpent

Alphard is a fixed star which is dear to my heart, not only because of its serpentine associations but also because I was born when Alphard was in lower culmination with Venus— Venus being the star of relationships and the arts, along with so much more. My own Venus is placed in the bloody sign of Scorpio, located in the cold, haunted caverns of the eighth house. Poison, obsession and desire is a recurring theme in my life and Alphard, in my view, is the embodiment of desire in its many passionate, all-consuming forms.

According to Bernadette Brady:

“Alphard is the bright red star in the middle of the Hydra known as the ‘Heart of the Serpent’. Many cultures have a snake or serpent connected with their creation mythology. For the Babylonians this was the dragon of Tiamat. In the Old Testament it was the snake in the Garden of Eden. In these myths it is the serpent that catalyzes crisis and upheaval and thus has to be subdued, slain or crushed. Yet as the story proceeds, it is clear that a new order has arisen in the world. Alphard captures this creative process whereby disruption and mayhem create new stability. In our turbulent world this energy can easily erupt as violence, untamed energy or, at its everyday level, as emotional outbursts. Nevertheless, to think of Alphard in this simplistic way is to ignore the bigger picture of its creative energy.

Alphard uses all your passion, strength, and determination to change old patterns in your life, to unblock obstructions, and forge new paths. Thus a more appropriate expression for Alphard in your life is to consciously focus your enthusiasm, forcefulness, and willpower, no matter how obsessive, onto a desired goal and work to see its completion. That way Alphard adds the energy of creative emergence from the void or chaos to your life with much greater control […] William Blake, the English poet whose passion burned into his religious poetry, had Alphard rising as his Jupiter contacted his Nadir. The darkness, the passion, and the religious or mystical focus of Blake gives us an insight into a more balanced Alphard. A writer with a very different nature is Stephen King, the famous writer of horror stories. King was born on the day that Alphard culminated with Saturn.”

As can be seen from the quotes above, Alphard is the destroyer who makes way for growth. To me, Alphard represents the process of transmogrification, a shedding of skin to make way for rejuvenation and rebirth— albeit one that could only be accomplished through a trial by fire, the utter eradication of the old self to herald the new. This is true in a societal sense as well as a creative kind. Kill your darlings, says Alphard. Kill your ghosts; is storytelling not a kind of exorcism? Writing, in many ways, is a form of confession. Through writing, you can turn your heartache and the pain of those who came before you into a metaphor, into a story. Writing is a tool that allows you to give voice to what went previously unsaid, granting you the gift of absolution and the ability to take charge of the narrative. Alphard is both destructive and creative, bringing about change and revolution through relentless ambition. Hence, it would make sense that artists, writers, visionaries and revolutionaries alike could petition Alphard for assistance in accomplishing their goals.

Whilst bored on a long-haul flight from Bangkok to London, I decided to perform an experiment. It should be noted too that at the time of my journey, Venus was squaring Alphard. I’m not sure how much that particular aspect contributed to my experiment, but I noticed it all the same. Essentially, I am quite familiar with the practice of scrying tarot cards, a technique I first encountered when attending a ‘tarot magic’ class at Treadwells a year or so ago. Using the same technique, I decided to enter a light trance and use the tarot card as a scrying portal in order to connect with the fixed star. With regards to Alphard, the star is in the third decan of Leo which is represented by the Thoth tarot card of Seven of Wands, so I scryed an image of the Seven of Wands and asked the Lord of Valour to grant me an audience with Alphard. Being on a plane in the middle of the night sky also gave a liminal quality to the atmosphere which I believe aided me in the impromptu, experimental rite.

I do encourage others to experiment with this method should they wish. It would be interesting to compare results as well.

Castor, the Shining Twin

Like Alphard, many renowned writers have Castor (and/or his twin, Pollux) active in their charts. Castor, more so than Alphard, is more explicitly associated with the act of storytelling.

According to Bernadette Brady:

“The Greeks also applied the concepts of the morning and evening with their twins, Castor and Pollux. Castor was connected to the morning star and was the horseman; Pollux, the boxer, was connected to the evening star and was associated with thieves and darkness. Thus Castor was of the light and Pollux was of the dark […] Ptolemy states that the star called Apollo (Castor) is like Mercury, with the star called Hercules (Pollux) of a nature similar to Mars. Robson says that Castor is linked to keen intellect and success in law and publishing, but warns that it is prone to violence […] In addition, it would seem that Castor and Pollux, while struggling with their polarities, produce writers. Apart from the poet and artist William Blake, a great many writers have either Castor or Pollux active in their charts: the novelist James Joyce, songwriter John Lennon, Poet William Wordsworth, novelist Lewis Carroll, novelist George Eliot, poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson, and novelist Charles Dickens, to name but a few. Castor and Pollux are probably not about writing itself, or the urge to write, but, rather, successful storytelling by one who has a knowledge of mixing good and evil, overlapping them until both are changed and whole. Writers who can do this will be successful. Again, Castor and Pollux are about the blending of opposites, the recognition of opposites, and the building of bridges between them.”

From what Brady has written, it can be viewed that Castor is associated with the ‘brighter’ side of storytelling in contrast to its darker twin Pollux. Hope and idealism in the face of despair are the stories that Castor tells. Castor’s connection to both Apollo and the morning star likewise gives it an almost visionary property. It grants one the ability to see what the world could be rather than be blinded by the grim reality of what it currently is, not just in the mundane sense but potentially in a prophetic manner too. It is my own belief that the line between poetry and prophecy is incredibly thin and can be made nonexistent, as is the line between storytelling and literally crafting a narrative to subvert and redirect the social order. Castor rules over mythopoesis, over what the Irish call imbas forosnai, over the powers found within the mead of inspiration of the Norse. Every writer, those who wish to change the world through storytelling, or those who seek oracular gifts, can benefit from petitioning Castor.

That, essentially, was what I did on July 13th 2022 during an exact Castor-Ascendant 1H conjunction, right after sunrise in the UK. During the rite, I made my offerings of candlelight, fruits, flowers, fresh water and honey to the star before saying the invocation below:

I call upon the poet-seer, he-who-spin-words-into-prophecies,
Bright, binary, laurel-wreathed star of creativity,
Hear me, Aphellon— Star of Apollo.
Hear me Avelar— O Castor, I call you by your many names. 
Lord of story-telling, you of grey and iridescent eyes. 
Your eyes are like a flash of rainbow among thunderclouds,
Like the opaline shine of a pigeon’s shimmering neck.
May your gaze fall upon me with kindness and curiosity.

Come to me, O Storyteller 
Come to me, O Weaver of Tales
You who weave together the diverse languages,
The different cultures and ideas into a tapestry of fate.
Join me: feast upon these offerings and upon me,
Upon my tale.

I offer you my story like a book placed upon your altar,
A sacrifice of my person.
Take it, so that you may rewrite it.

[At this point, I began to tell Castor the story of my life as if it were some fairy tale. I told him of my desires, how I wish to change the world along with the things you wish to leave behind as my legacy.]

O Castor, this is the beginning of my tale:
May you rewrite the ending, however it may be,
So I may achieve my heart’s desires.
Grant to me a soft epilogue.
Grant that I be your poet-seer.
O Lord of Storytelling,
Cast your holy radiance upon me,
Shine on me your stellar-light.
Bless me with your powers,
And allow me to be your emissary on earth.

Castor, to me, is the weaver and unweaver of narratives, the writer and rewriter of tales. Anything one wishes to be changed about one’s story, about one’s fate, can be petitioned to Castor. Of course, Castor can also assist an author or a poet or any kind of storyteller in their art, but the fate-weaving powers of the star is not something to be overlooked either. Three other individuals who performed a variation of the same rite with Castor also reported positive results.


Although I am currently going through Chris Brennan’s Hellenistic Astrology course in order to get a more rigorous and classical background in astrology, I still believe that there is something holy in the theurgic nature of astrolatry, just as there is something beautiful about stellar witchcraft. People have been venerating stars for millennia— it is unsurprising that forming a relationship with the stars present in your chart can be reaffirming and potentially life changing. 

Experiments with the Greek Magical Papyri

For the past few weeks, I have been experimenting with several rites from the Greek Magical Papyri (PGM). The PGM can feel intimidating to a newcomer, especially if they lack knowledge of Greco-Egyptian myths and magic. However, I believe that everyone has to start from somewhere, and the PGM is as good a place as any for someone who is seriously interested in magic to begin. This post will be a recounting of some of my experiences, in case others wish to try them themselves and compare notes! 

Experiment 1: the Headless Rite

I have experimented with my own version of the rite back when I was relatively new to the occult roughly about 1-2 years ago. Now, I wish to attempt the rite again in hopes of turning it into a monthly cleansing regimen. The following rite is mainly inspired by Digital Ambler’s interpretation of the text.

First, I created the coronet-phylactery by taking a strip of white cloth and writing AOTH ABRAOTH BASYM ISAK SABAOTH IAO in blue ink on it along with the symbol :> on the white cloth, and then tied it around my head so that the text rests on top of my brow. Then, I take the coronet-phylactery and anoint it with Sphere and Sundry’s Sun in Aries oil and consecrate the cloth by reciting PGM IV. 1596-1715 over it.

Next, I stood facing north, wore the coronet-phylactery, incanted the names of AOTH ABRAOTH BASYM ISAK SABAOTH IAO and performed the Headless Rite.

Incantations of the Headless Rite could be found in PGM V.96—172, or you could follow the guide by Digital Ambler at

The first time I performed the rite using this method, nothing much happened as I was still getting into the headspace required to perform the rite. In a sense, you have to relax and allow the words to flow through you, letting yourself become a vessel for the Headless God. Jack Grayle refers to this concept of theosis — a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God — as taking on a deity’s Godface. It is akin to a lighter form of possession, in my experience. When I incanted the words of the rite for the second time, forcing myself to relax, I noticed that the words came much easier, as if someone else was taking the helm so to speak. Hence, I allowed that presence to fill me up and steer my actions, informing the tone of my voice and the words that spilled forth from my mouth. By the third time and onwards that I performed the rite, I found my body physically reacting to the words. I felt nauseous. I could hear the blood thumping in my ears. Frankly, I felt like throwing up. 

That, in essence, is the purging and exorcistic nature of the Headless Rite.

By allowing the Headless God to fill you up, whatever else is not meant to be there inside you is pushed out. Naturally, I stopped the rite before it became ‘too much’. Zia, a dear friend of mine (who could be found on Instagram @necrowright) later performed a geomancy reading on my experience, identifying the rite as entailing the act of “cutting ties, or cleansing, or getting rid of something dead weight”. For those who wish for a relatively efficient and ‘easy’ rite (in the sense that you only need an easily made phylactery and the ability to speak to perform the rite) to help with getting rid of unwanted spiritual gunk, I believe the Headless Rite is perfect for that.

Experiment 2: the Headless Rite and the Consecration of Helios

The next experiment is an idea I received from Alison Chicosky, who posted the following on her Facebook group PGM Study & Practice Group (which I sincerely encourage people to join if they wish):

PGM Experiment Time! 

I have been testing this combo for several months with amazing success. It recently came up where one of the “open doors” spells was suggested as a potential road opener. This is the combo I use when someone needs pretty much as much help as they can get-  not just a single result, but a comprehensive solution. 

Materials: a candle, and frankincense, whatever else you think you need for rituals.

Timing: time this spell so that it completes at sunset. This combo usually takes me less than 20 minutes.

Step 1: PGM V 96-172 The Stele of Jeu the Hieroglyphist
Where the spell says “deliver him, NN..” use the target’s name, or yours if this is for you.

Step 2: PGM IV 1596-1715 Consecration for all purposes/ spell to Helios
Instead of using this as a consecration, use the targets name or yours. So in each case, instead of “give glory and favor to this phylactery” say “give glory and honor to him, John Doe” or whatever the name of your target. 

At the end of the spell, before the last line, I add something to the effect of: “as the sun sets, let the sun also set on the troubles of NN, and let it not rise tomorrow unless NN rises also in power and glory.” Remember that you are also timing this to complete at sunset.

I performed the combination of the two rites above and the results were stunning, even if I felt like at the time I hadn’t given it my 100% in the rite since I was exhausted from a long day of work. Firstly, a day or so after the rite, I received a refund of some money I had totally forgotten about. Since I was hungry for some extra cash, this refund came at a perfect time. Secondly, some magic targeting my rivals began to take effect despite the fact that those curses were done a long while ago and not many prominent effects were seen since then. I later divined on it and discovered that the reason the curse took an effect now was due to the combination of the Headless Rite along with the Spell to Helios.

Because of this, I believe the rite works in two ways. To borrow some Hoodoo terms: the rite is a combination of an uncrossing, a road opener, a blockbuster and a success spell. The Headless Rite uncrosses the occultist by performing something akin to an exorcism on them, before destroying any blocks that lies in the occultist’s path. This allows for the Spell to Helios to draw success towards the occultist as they are consecrated by Helios, whilst also opening the roads to success for the occultist (a road which is now unobstructed due to the blockbuster element of the rite). Finally, the last sentences of the rite regarding the setting and rising of the sun adds to the destruction of anything that troubles the occultist, along with the enchanting of the occultist themselves so that their heart’s desire can come true.

All in all, even when performed halfheartedly, the rite was wildly successful.

Experiment 3: the Serving Woman

Inspired by Jack Grayle’s adaptation of the rite, I substituted the skull required in PGM XI.a 1-40 with a drawing of a donkey’s skull, drawn in black ink. On the drawing itself, I also wrote the necessary symbols followed by the word SABERRA in red ink. Then, I simply performed the rite as written in the text. At night, around 3am (a time I deem to be incredibly liminal, but the rite should be just as successful if performed at midnight), I went to a bridge and placed my left foot on the image and then spoke the formula as described in PGM X1.a 1-40, following the instructions as accurately as I could.

That attempt, frankly, failed.

So, I decided to change the location.

I made my way to a threeway traffic junction. Thankfully, due to the lateness of the night, there was minimal traffic in the area. I stood at the center of the crossroads and performed the rite just like before. To my shock, I saw a literal creepy-looking house peeking through the darkness from where I stood. Of course, it may just be a coincidence that there are houses near the traffic junction where I impulsively chose to perform my rite. However, as the rite is addressed to a goddess called ‘The Mistress of the House’, I believed it was a sign that I was on the right track. Hence, I continued the rite, stepping my left foot on the skull-drawing and speaking the words as written in the text. To add to the eerie atmosphere, I noticed too that my voice echoed when I spoke. Could it simply be the acoustics of the area, due to the fact that a bridge hung above the traffic junction? Perhaps, but it genuinely added an air of mystique to the rite.

Then came the moment where I was supposed to receive a token from the goddess in the form of two teeth. To my surprise, I heard the sounds of cars arriving in the distance, so I stepped away from the crossroads and allowed the cars to pass me by. It was at that moment that the light from the car illuminated my vision, allowing me to see the previously pitch-black roads and realize that a black-colored object laid on the road right in front of me. My gut instinct told me that this object was the token I was meant to receive, so I collected the token and said the words to release the Mistress of the House from her bonds, and returned to my home nearby. 

That was where things went wrong.

I had a weird sense of feeling nagging me, as if I forgot to do something. So, I did some divination to double check the rite and was glad to see that I received my domestic helper just as the rite intended. However, there was something off about the tarot cards I read, something I couldn’t quite put my fingers on. Hence, I hit up my friend Zia and through her impressive divinatory skills, I eventually realized what was missing. The Mistress of the House was not yet released from her bonds at the crossroads!  I thought I did everything right because the PGM text simply said:

“But do release the goddess, when you are sure that the old woman will serve you, by speaking as follows […]  When the old woman hears this, the goddess will mount the ass and depart.”

Eventually, I figured out that the reason the releasing incantation did not work was because I did not have my left foot stepping on top of the drawing of the skull when I said the incantation. This is particularly interesting, as in the beginning of the rite, it is stated that:

“After you say this, you will behold sitting on an ass a woman of extraordinary loveliness, possessing a heavenly beauty, indescribably fair and youthful.”

The text therefore implies that the Mistress of the House arrives on the back of a donkey, and after the rite is done, she departs the location by riding her donkey back. Therefore, the act of saying the releasing incantation whilst your left foot is still stepping on the skull, and then removing your feet off the skull after you are done saying the incantation, is what allows the Mistress of the House to depart. In my case, I had removed my foot from the skull-drawing when I was trying to escape getting hit by a car at 3am. In my hurry, I must’ve said the releasing words whilst forgetting about the skull entirely, therefore rendering the releasing words impotent. Regardless, I returned to the traffic junction before dawn could come and fixed my mistake by properly releasing the Mistress of the House this time around.

A part of me wonders what may happen if I choose never to release her. Will she remain trapped there forever? What if I didn’t release her and instead kept increasing my demands of her?

Since the Mistress of the House is a title that refers to the Ancient Egyptian goddess Nephthys, I don’t actually believe that the being whom we were able to restrain is actually Nephthys herself. Rather, after having a discussion with Zia about it, I have come to the conclusion that the being we summoned is actually some (lesser or smaller) emanation of the goddess. But, perhaps if we were to refuse to let this being return, it may be possible that Nephthys may be angered by this act or worse. In my case, I’d rather be safe than sorry so releasing the Mistress of the House is a wise decision in my view.

As for the serving woman herself, it is said in the PGM that: “everything that your soul desires will be accomplished by her. She will guard all your possessions and in particular will find out for you whatever anyone is thinking about. Indeed she will tell you everything and will never desert you: such is her store of good will toward you.” That is a certainly impressive claim. Out of curiosity, I approached Sfinga (@dragoncunning on Instagram, and a writer at and texted her a photo of my token. Sfinga stated that she had a strange vision of “a middle-aged woman who sometimes looks even older, wearing fairly modest Greek clothing blended with old English elements. She has a head wrap tying her hair back […] a simple necklace with some symbol on it. Her feet are hooves. She looks really present and ready to facilitate domestic/home functions, like a house spirit” along with how she had been “upgrading the wards” of my current place of dwelling.

Cool, huh.

Judging from the vision, I believe the hooves may be a reflection of her donkey-inspired nature. In my experience though, I didn’t see an old woman but something else, a creature more aesthetically pleasing to my eye (that is, only when I’m trancing and trying to invoke a vision, otherwise the spirit doesn’t really show itself to me as it tends to just prefer being in the background). I believe that the PGM house spirit is capable of taking many forms, including whatever form that will put her master or mistress at ease. So far, the house spirit has been incredibly helpful in dealing with some issues with insects in my room, along with helping me unblock a sink of mine. Through my own divination (with my friend Red, @witchcraftinred on Instagram and of, helping me interpret and double check some of the cards), I have also found that the house spirit is capable of magic related to ‘death’ and the ‘revelation of secrets and the illumination of the truth’. This seems to be in line with what the PGM stated (how she will ‘ find out for you whatever anyone is thinking about’) along with her connection to Nephthys, the Kemetic goddess associated with mourning, the night/darkness, service (specifically temples), childbirth, the dead, protection, magic, health, embalming, and beer, according to Wikipedia.

Anyhow, for the rite that was done in a very impromptu manner, I’d call this a wild success.

Experiment 4: Hymn of the Hidden Stele

At the rising of dawn, I simply anointed myself with Sphere and Sundry’s Sun in Aries oil and then recited PGM IV.1115—1166, the Hymn of the Hidden Stele, which is what Sam Block / Polyphanes of the Digital Ambler calls the “a prayer that praises and invokes the all-encompassing, all-powerful, all-generating Aiōn as the god of all gods”. Likewise, Jack Grayle described the hymn to be “a love-song to the kosmos” whose purpose is to “attain one-ness with the Supreme Being”.

I have nothing much to say about this hymn except that it is incredibly beautiful and theurgic. It helps if you visualize the things you are saying, and eventually I find that the visualization becomes vision.

I encourage anyone interested to try it out to do so. 

Experient 5: Bring BOEL in!

Sfinga was the first person to inform me of the fact that there is a spirit in the PGM called Boel— a name that is the one and the same as the Boel of the Second Pentacle of Mercury from the Key of Solomon. I’ve been wanting to contact Boel to help with my academic life and my future career, so the fact that there is something about him in the PGM is absolutely fascinating.

The first time I tried mixing tech from the PGM and the Key of Solomon, I did it by drawing the Second Pentacle of Mercury and then conscrating it the classical way. Then, after doing that, I recited an adaptation of PDM xiv. 459-75 over it, asking that the pentacle be made capable of bringing Boel in. In my experience, something like that does work, but it also confuses the spirit of the pentacle itself somewhat. Hence, a better method is to simply consecrate the pentacle the usual way and then use incantations from the PGM to ‘call Boel in’ when you want to invoke Boel and petition him.

The second time around, I did so using the new method, and invoked Boel using the words below which is an adaptation of PDM xiv. 459-75, PDM xiv. 489-515 and PDM xiv. 150-231:

Boel— in the name of Mercury, by the powers of the Second Pentacle of Mercury, I conjure you!

In the name of God, hear me and heed my will!

O Boel, first servant of the great god, he who gives light exceedingly, the companion of flame, in whose mouth is the flame, he of the flame which is never extinguished, the god who lives, who never dies, the great god, he who sits in the flame, who is in the midst of the flame, who is in the lake of heaven. I shall praise you before the moon; I shall praise you on earth; I shall praise you in whose hand is greatness and might of the god, he of great praise, PETERI PETERI PATER EMPHE EMPHE O doubly great god, who is in the upper part of heaven, in whose hand is the beautiful staff, who created deity, deity not having created him.


TAGRTAT, he of eternity, bring BOEL in! Bring BOEL in! ARBETH-BAI YTSIO, O doubly great god, bring BOEL in! TAT TAT, bring BOEL in! Bring BOEL in! Bring BOEL in! TATGRAT, he of Eternity, bring BOEL in! Bring BOEL in! Bring BOEL in! BEYTSI O great god, bring BOEL in! Bring BOEL in! Bring BOEL in!

Although I say ‘God’, in my mind, I was thinking of TAGRTAT, this being whom I can’t seem to find much information on. Is TAGRTAT none other than Thoth himself (a wild guess here, going by the fact that their names both start with a T)? Regardless, the rite went well. Boel seems efficient at his job too; he even scolded me (nicely) for being imprecise with my petition!

The experience made me wonder: are there other instances of planetary angels (or angels associated with specific planets) showing up in the PGM? That was when I came across the mention of Aniel whose name appears alongside Boel in PDM xiv. 516-27. Aniel — also known as Haniel, Hananel, Anael or Hanael — is an angel generally associated with the planet Venus who also appears in the Key of Solomon. I haven’t attempted to reach out to Aniel yet, but I’d be curious if others have done so!

Experient 6: A Direct Vision

If I were to be frank: my spirit sight is utterly shit.

It’s gotten a whole lot better though. If I get into a trance, I can See things, and I have been training myself to fall into a trance state more quickly. Still, even when I do have a vision, the vision is rarely as vivid or as strong as I wish it to be. Hence, the PGM Va. 1-3 rite to receive a ‘direct vision’ fascinated me. The rite is extremely simple. All the occultist had to do is to say the barbarous words invoking Helios’ name, anoint oneself and then a direct vision will be granted. There is an instruction to “add the usual”, which I understood as instructions to state what vision you wish to see. Thus, I devised a simple rite to contact the God of Fire to grant us a vision.

Firstly, when looking at invocations of Helios, one invocation that intrigued me was in PGM XII. 160-78 where it is said to “use also the namc of Helios for everything: Fiery, EPHAIE, Hephaistos, who is shining with fire, brightly moving, ANANOCHA AMARZA MARMARAMO.”  What particularly caught my eye is the mention of Hephaistos alongside Helios, for I have always had a fondness for the Crooked-Foot God. Hephaistos too is intriguing due to the archetype related to the Magician and possibly the Devil himself. I won’t elaborate here as it is beyond the scope of this blog post, but I recommend that people read this article by Christopher A. Faraone should they wish to explore the issue further

Anyhow, I decided to blend parts of my own devotional prayer to Hephaistos with the first half of PGM IV 1596-1715, also with PGM Va. 1-3 and bits of PGM XII. 160-78 in order to create the rite below.

Hail Hephaistos, Divine Smith, Lord of Subterranean Fire.

It is your calloused and ever-dutiful hands that built the palaces of gold and marble, exalting the glory of the gods. From the world’s great orb, to the seas that ring the globe, to the sky that hangs above, no beauty eludes your craftsmanship. The majesty of the Theoi are yours, crafted painstakingly for your brothers and sisters, for heroes and kings— a statement to last the eons, enduring the death of stars and turning of the ages. You breathe life into metal, you breathe souls into statues. Whether it be the maidens, the bulls or the horses of brass and iron, it is your flame that kindles their souls. O, Lord of the Dragging Footsteps, toiling and pouring sweat over the forge and furnace; you are the Lord of Creation, a smith on reality’s anvil. Halting Lord of Quiet Dignity, only your metal-bright mind, like the silver glint of a blade, could be sharp enough, shrewd enough, to bind the Queen of the Gods. You bargained your way into power, and earned your seat upon the throne. 

Hail Helios, Celestial Titan and Lord of the Solar Fire.

Fire’s dispenser, world’s far-seeing king. O Helios, with noble steeds, the eye of Zeus which guards the earth, all-seeing one, who travel lofty paths, O gleam divine, who move, through the heaven, bright, unattainable, born long ago, unshaken, with a headband of gold, wearing a disk, mighty with fire, with gleaming breastplate, winged one, untiring, with golden reins, coursing a golden path, and you who watch, encircle, hear all men. I invoke you, Helios. I invoke you, Hephaistos-Helios. I invoke you, the greatest god, eternal lord, world ruler who are over the world and under the world, mighty ruler of the sea, rising at dawn, shining from the east for the whole world, setting in the west. Come to me, thou who risest from the four winds, joyous Agathos Daimon, for whom heaven has become the processional way. I call upon your holy and great and hidden names, which you rejoice to hear! The earth flourished when you shone forth, and the plants became fruitful when you laughed; the animals begat their young when you permitted.

I invoke you, the greatest in heaven:


The shining Helios, giving light throughout the whole world!
You are the Great Serpent, leader of all the gods, who control the beginning of Egypt
And the end of the whole inhabited world,
Who mate in the ocean
You are he who becomes visible each day
And sets in the northwest of heaven, and rises in the southeast.
Fiery, EPHAIE, Hephaistos, who is shining with fire, brightly moving, ANANOCHA AMARZA MARMARAMO

And show me a vision of [insert petition].

[Then, anoint yourself with holy oil and witness the vision.]

[In my case, I used Sphere and Sundry’s Sun in Aries oil.]

As for the results of the rite, I experienced a stream of information pouring into my head along with flashes of mental images answering the question I posed. The rite itself has also inspired me to renew my veneration of Hephaistos, and divination for whether I should start venerating Hephaistos again or not came back incredibly positive (the ending card being ‘The Sun’, which is incredibly fitting).


It’s been a wild ride. Lately, I’ve been performing magic for the sake of improving specific areas of my life, but it wasn’t until recently that I got inspired to perform magic for the sake of performing magic, resulting in the spree of me messing about with the PGM to see what may happen. There are other rites I have done but left out of the blog post for privacy reasons. However, I am also excited (egg-cited… I am sorry) to eventually perform the PGM VII. 505–28 rite to ‘meet your own daimon’, wherein one of the actions required for the rite is to eat a raw egg every dawn for a week. Key and Sfinga have written a lovely post on the rite on their blog which I recommend everyone check out if they are interested.

In my view, the greatest takeaway I had from the experiments is that magic and theurgy by themselves can be incredibly fun and fulfilling. Experimenting without expectation of results— everyone should try that out at least once in their life.

Finally, I end this post by including some images of items used in the rites down below.

Ivy: Snake and Namesake

In the occult community, I tend to go by the name of ‘Ivy’. My dear friend Red has written about the significance of names in a prior post, so I won’t repeat what she said. Instead, I wish to contemplate on why I have chosen that name for myself and how the mask I wore has morphed me into who I am today.

Firstly, the name Ivy was picked due to the convenience of it. Ivy is short for ‘ivy-crowned’, an epithet of the Greek god Dionysus. My foray into paganism began officially through Hellenic Polytheism, wherein Dionysus was my primary mentor and patron. I had initially laughed at the person who suggested that I look towards Dionysus as someone to assist me through a crisis that was previously troubling me. Back then, all I knew of the god was that he was the lord of parties and wine. In that regard, it was insane that I — a Capricorn Sun, very much saturnine in my austerity and reserved character — would want to venerate a deity known for insobriety.

It was hilarious how wrong I was.

Dionysus is so much more than drunken debauchery. With wine comes frenzy: maníai, madness, insight and the manic Mysteries. Through Dionysus-Zagreus-Sabazios, I was shown how truth can exist within contradictions; ergo, duality or the lack thereof, a unification of opposites, ekstasis leading to transcendence. It was through Orphism and the Orphic Gold Tablets that I first understood how jumping into milk is akin to falling into the ocean of the stars. It was through the lens of sparagmos and omophagia that I performed my first Red Meal: eating the flesh of the God-Devil and drinking his blood and having him devour me in return— a mutual consumption, for to share a meal is to share divinity. Dionysus too was the one to pique my interests in death and the afterlife (and eventually, necromancy). What might surprise those who did not know much about the Goat-Lord of Grapes is that he is not a summer deity, but rather a winter and funerary god. Funerary rites were held in the name of Bacchus, and every winter when Apollo departs from Delphi, it is Dionysus who takes the Sun God’s place at the temple.

I could go on and on and on about Dionysus, but the point I wish to make was that Dionysus was my first. He was the one who first took my hands and led me through the doors into a world I didn’t know had existed. For that, I honor him by taking on the name of Ivy: the garland of kissios that wreathes the head of the bull-horned god, the creeping green that adorns his thyrsos.

However, my practice soon shifted after I caught the attention of another figure who sought to initiate me. Regardless, although I no longer ‘work’ with Dionysus, the symbolism surrounding the folklore of the ivy plant still very much rings true to my identity as a practitioner and a witch. To quote the book Under the Bramble Arch by Corinne Boyer:

“There was a certain darkness associated with ivy quite possibly because of her associations with death, graveyards and ruins. In Cornwall if you wanted to dream of the Devil, you would pin four ivy leaves to the corners of your pillow. In early American folklore, ivy was unlucky to give as a gift in Maine and Massachusetts because it could bring death to a family. A Somerset belief was that to pick an ivy leaf off a church wall, one would develop sickness. To fall asleep under a large ivy vine climbing tree was said to bring death to the one in slumber. Ivy’s black berries were sometimes used in cursing rituals in the British Isles. It is no surprise that ivy is ruled by Saturn, according to astrologers of old. Ivy was a burial plant due to its evergreen nature and was associated with immortality.”

Ivy is a saturnine plant associated with death and the Devil. And yet, in folk magic, ivy is associated with love. To quote some examples again the aforementioned book:

“Ivy was used along with holly in an Irish love divination on New Year’s Eve. Ivy and holly leaves were placed under one’s pillow, and the following simple charm was spoken to bring dreams of a future mate: Oh ivy green and holly red, tell me tell me whom I shall wed […] Because of its intense clinging nature ivy has been used in love magic in times past, being a symbol of love, fidelity and friendship. Country names for this planet were ‘bindwood’ and ‘love stone’. Ivy was used in marriage divinations, some were as simple as if a girl placed an ivy leaf in her pocket, the next man she met would be her future husband. An old char, from Dunbartonshire, was for a young maid to take an ivy leaf that was growing on a church, place it under her blouse and whisper this rhyme: Ivy, Ivy, I love you. In my bosom put you. The first young man who speaks to me, my future husband he will be.”

How could such a saturnine plant be associated with love? One of the answers, as I would come to understand, is due to the same reason that Libra is the exaltation of Saturn and the domicile of Venus. To explore the astrological significance of this might take a post of its own, along with the mind of someone more knowledgeable about astrology than my current level of expertise. Nevertheless, the image of love as a tree slowly but surely growing, with sturdy roots beneath a soil wetted with blood, is one that keeps reappearing in my head. Perhaps, that is the connection between Saturn and Venus and love. Either way, when one thinks of a different kind of love — the kind associated with temptation and seduction — another image that comes to mind is that of the serpent or the snake.

Ivy is an incredibly serpentine plant. Daniel Schulke, in the Viridarium Umbris, claims that ivy is ‘aligned with the snake spirit’. It makes perfect sense to me that ivy, like the snake that tempted Eve, is so commonly used in love magic. Ivy, in its serpentine-saturnine nature, is binding and love magic is often performed through binding one heart with another. Likewise in folk magic, the hagstone or the adder stone, is often used as a tool for protection and spirit flight. The snake, known for its poison and the manner in which it sheds its skin, is again an unsurprising occult symbol for death and rebirth. Briar has also written a very thought-provoking post on the symbol of the snake, which I do urge people to read if they are interested in the topic.

The latest puzzle piece in this conundrum seems to be my realization that I, in fact, have Venus in paran with Alphard. According to Ptolemy, the fixed star Alphard has the planetary nature of Saturn and Venus, being a star within the constellation of Hydra, the water snake. My friend and astrologer (and astrolater <3) Sasha Ravitch has touched upon Venus and the planet’s Otherness, especially when it is in paran with or at an angle to a fixed star, in her latest podcast appearance. I really do recommend that people go listen to the podcast if they are interested in the relation between stars and spirit work.

To conclude this ruminative piece on the symbol of the ivy plant, it can be said that the name I casually took on had come to mean a lot more than it initially did. The mystery of the serpent is still one that I am exploring. I don’t believe a complete comprehension of any mystery could be achieved, but insight and understanding is something I hope to gain in the future.


1. Boyer, C., 2020. Under the Bramble Arch: A Folk Grimoire of Wayside Plant Lore and Practicum, Woodbury, MN: Llewellyn Publications.
2. Schulke, D., 2005. Viridarium Umbris: The Pleasure Garden of Shadows, Chelmsford: Xoanon Limited.

Saiyasart Grimoire: A Translation

Due to my own interest and the interests of several friends of mine, I have decided to share my personal translation a little Thai grimoire known in English as the “Book of Saiyasart” (ตำราไสยศาสตร์). When translating names of people mentioned in the book, I’ve attempted to make the transliteration as faithful to how it phonetically sounds as possible. As for the incantations — otherwise known as the kata — I decided to leave them in Thai but the text could be copied and pasted into Google Translate and played aloud should people attempt to try out the kata themselves.

Although I am not a certified translator, Thai is my mother language and I have studied at a British international school for fifteen years before completing my Bachelor’s and my Master’s degree in the UK. So, I’d like to think that I do have a decent command over both Thai and English and am able to capture the essence of the text in my translation. However, some details of the text may be left untranslated if I am unsure of my own interpretation of the instructions. In which case, a general overview will be provided instead.

As for the original text, the text could be found online here:ตำราไสยศาสตร์_%28อนันต์_คุณานุรักษ์%2C_๒๕๐๘%29.pdf



A commemoration from the royal cremation ceremony of Captain Lieutenant Jindalat at the Wat Chan Samosorn Crematory, Phra Nakorn.

6 November 2508.


The “Book of Saiyasart” has previously been published twice, with 6000 copies having been published by Khun Anan Kananurak who has published it as a New Years gift for his friends and family, and the soldiers and police force. I have received a copy, and because I already have a moderate level of existing knowledge regarding the wicha of saiyasart [translator’s note: this could be translated as ‘the art of the occult’], along with how some of the kata [translator’s note: incantation] in this book are the same as the ones my ajarns [translator’s note: occult mentors] have taught me, to which I have seen the results of, I believe that the knowledge within this book will be very beneficial to the everyday person, especially individuals whose jobs are risky, those who are facing dangers, or to those who live in remote and isolated areas for example. Some might view the occult to be nonsensical, but the truth is that, our ancestors have expressed interests in the occult and used it to bring them glory in defending the nation and protecting the state in the past.

Hence, I believe that the art of saiyasart is something that is slowly disappearing because many teachers, ajarns and knowledgeable persons are zealous about keeping the knowledge to themselves, refusing to easily pass on the knowledge to their students, causing the knowledge to be lost with them to the land of the ghosts. Therefore, I have ordered the book to be re-published for the purpose of disseminating the knowledge. The books will be given as commemorative gifts to those who attend the royal cremation ceremony of Captain Lieutenant Jindalat at the Wat Chan Samosorn Crematory at Phra Nakorn once more. Thus, it will be the third time that this book is being published. Whether the wicha in this book or those outside this book will have power or not often depends on who uses it. Those who use it must have faith in the wicha, and perform the ritual correctly as the text demands. I want to confirm that if the wicha lacks power then it is because the caster did not perform the rites correctly in accordance with the pillars of practice. In truth, any wicha — if performed by a practitioner who adheres to the correct pillars of practice — will create desirable results. If the publication of this book has led to goodness, then I would like to offer the merits of such an act to my ancestors, to the original author of the book, and to Captain Lieutenant Jindalat who has passed away.

Lieutenant Chawang Sanpradit

[The following 4 pages include: a picture of Captain Lieutenant Jindalat, a short biography of his life and a poem dedicated to him, written by his children. I have left them untranslated, but I would like to point out how the love and respect towards the late Captain Lieutenant can truly be felt through the writings.]

The Pillars of Practice

1. When beginning any magical activity, one must recall the Three Jewels of Buddhism, and the dharma of your father and mother and teachers.
2. Cool and still your mind until there is absolute faith in your magic— let there be no doubts.
3. If performing magic to do with power or influence, then strengthen your heart. If performing magic to do with mercy, then gentle your heart, and make your mind cool and still.
4. If consecrating or blowing away evil, focus your resolute will onto the object of your focus, such as when blessing holy water for example.

Whoever follows these principles will find success in your magic, no matter if the wicha was learnt from a mere temple errand boy.

Prayer to the Virtues

Place your hand in a praying gesture before an idol of Buddha, or do so upon your bed, and pray three times that: “พุทธคุณ ธรรมคุณ สังฆคุณ ปัถวิชัยยะมุง ขอให้สรรพคุณคุ้มครองกับสรรพภัย”

[Translator’s note: the prayer essentially translates to asking the many virtues of Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha and ปัถวิชัยยะมุง protect the individual from the many dangers that exist.]

Reverse Itipiso

ติวาคะภะโท พุธนังสานุสมะวะ เทถาสัตถิระสา มะธัมสะริปุโร ตะนุด อะทู วิกะโลโต คะสุโน ปันสัมนะระจะชา วิชโทพุทธสัมมาสัมหัง ระอะวาคะ ภะโส บีติอิ

This kata has many powers, which will be summarized as follows. It should be constantly prayed every night prior to sleep, and all deva (gods) and people will show mercy and compassion towards you. You will live for long, and be protected from your enemies. Monsters and devils will fear you and be unable to come near you. The kata can be used to bless betel nuts or to consecrate holy water by praying it 108 times over water to be sprinkled over one’s head and drunk. It can be prayed 108 times to remove fish bones which are stuck in the throat. It can be used to bless a meal to be eaten, or powder or perfume (to bring in charm). If you are traveling far, then look towards the direction of your travel and say the kata three times before travelling to protect you during your journey.

Itipiso Eight Directions

อิระชาคะตะระสา ชื่อ กระทู้ 7 แบก ประจำทิศบูรพา [east]
ติหังจะโตโรถินัง ชื่อ ฝนแสนห่า ประจําทิศอาคเนย์ [southeast]
บี่สัมระโลปุสัทพุธ ชื่อ เกลื่อนสมุทร ประจำทิศทักษิณ [south]
โสมะนากะวิถาโท ชื่อ นารายณ์ขว้างจักร ประจำทิศหรดี [southwest]
ภะสัมสัมมวิเทกะ ชื่อ กวาดป่าหิมพานต์ ประจําทิศปัจจิม [west]
คะพุทธะปัญทู ธัมมะวาคะ ชื่อ นารายณ์เกลื่อนจักร ประจำทิศพายัพ [northwest]
วาโทโนอะมะวา ชื่อ นารายณ์ถอดรูป ประจำทิศอุดร [north]
อะวิสสุคนุสานุสติ ชื่อ นารายณ์แปลงรูป ประจำทิศอิสาน [northeast]

[Translator’s note: each of the kata above corresponds to a name/title and a direction.]

If you are travelling, then pray the kata that corresponds to the direction that you are travelling. It will protect you and bring you aid in trade

The first incantation called “กระทู้ 7 แบก” can be used to bless the meal that you are eating daily in order to bring about vitality and good health. It will protect you from weapons. If an elephant fights with you, its tusks will break. Place your hands into a praying gesture and pay respect to the seven rishis and all your mentors.

The second incantation called “ฝนแสนห่า” is to be used when you are on a water fast from dawn to dusk. Do not fear thirst. Use the kata to bless fifteen betel seeds to be eaten, and pray for rain. Likewise, use the kata with a candle and pray it 9000 times whilst contemplating the many floors of heavens.

The third incantation called “เกลื่อนสมุทร” is used to bless seven pepper seeds seven times, and can be used to bless quicklime to ease fever. The kata can be used to bless paper to be made into a candlewick, and the candle can then be prayed over to ease the illness of the sick individual. Do so while facing the direction that corresponds to the kata.

The fourth incantation called “นารายณ์ขว้างจักร” is to be used against your enemies. Incant the kata silently in your mind whilst facing your enemies, and they will lose their strength and be depleted of their will to fight.

The fifth incantation called “กวาดป่าหิมพานต์” should be prayed every dawn and dusk to keep thieves at bay whilst facing the corresponding direction of the kata.

The sixth incantation called “นารายณ์เกลื่อนจักร” is to be used to bless water for an individual to drink if they are unable to deliver a child. The kata should be recited 108 times, and the water can also be sprinkled upon their head as well. If this is not possible, then the kata can be used to bless one’s saliva.

The seventh incantation called “นารายณ์ถอดรูป” can be used to bless powder and perfumes to make one charming and attractive. The consecration is to be said 108 times and 7 times before use.

The last incantation called “นารายณ์แปลงรูป” is to be used when sweeping your body from your feet to your head three times. It can be used daily. Your eyes will be red like a garuda. Your enemies will fear you. If you are surrounded by enemies and wish to escape in a direction, then pray towards that direction. If you are living somewhere dangerous, take eight stones and pray the corresponding kata of that direction and throw the stones towards the corresponding direction. The kata can also be used in other ways depending upon your ingenuity.

Kata of the Five Gods

โสทายะนะโมสุคโต ยะวะโร นะโมกุกกุสนโธ นะโมโคตะโม โลกะหิโต นะโมอะริยะเมตไตรย โยจะยะ บุคสุปาคะโต เวสันติลาโภ ภวันตุเม

This kata can be recited three or five times over water to wash your face every morning. It can also be prayed before bed nightly. You will be loved by gods and man alike and protected from all kinds of dangers. It can be recited three times over water to be drunk, in order to bring you knowledge and wisdom. If you are a woman, the kata will make delivery easier and make your child wise and smart. It can be recited three times over beeswax to be used upon your lips to make you charming towards others. It can be recited nine times onto water which is used to water a rice plant, in order to ensure that the plant grows well. It can be recited 108 times against venom of animal bites. It can be recited three times over meals to bless the meal to bring you good health.

Kata Sum Phut Te

สัมพุทเธ เธวตา สัมพุทเธ เธวมนุษย์สา อุตตะมังวะรัง สัมพุทเธ เธวพรหมมา สัมพุทเธอินทรา ตุษิตายามา บี่ยาสังฆา เทวปุตโต อะวิสุรัง ปาอะอิทวีมุตตัง สัมพุทเธนะกาโร สัมพุทเธโมกาโร กัสสโปพุทโธ ทายะกาโรสะปูทิตัง สัมพุทเธทุติยัม ตะติยัง สุริยา นิสุมะยัง อุนะระนาสัง อะนายัง อะเสสะโต

This kata can be used to bless rice to be eaten three bites per day, recited once per bite, in order to bring about good health and other virtues. It can also be used to bless betel seeds to be eaten as well.

[Translator’s note: the kata explicitly invokes Brahma and Indra, along with mentions of deva and mankind.]

Kata to Consecrate Sesame Oil

อัตถิอัตเถนะ สะราสะเรนะ มังสังมังเสนะ จํามังจําเมนะ ตะบีตัง คะบีตัง พุทธะ ธัมมะ สังฆานุภาเว

Find an auspicious election, and perform the usual pre-ritual veneration of monks and spiritual teachers with flowers, incense and candles. Then, incant the kata over the oil 108 times. Each time the oil is to be drunk, incant the kata seven times and swallow an appropriate amount. Others can also drink it should they wish to remain healthy and be defended against weapons. Drink it daily, and do so for three months in order for it to reach the bones. Once the oil has settled into your body, you can drink it two to three times monthly. Your enemies will scatter.

Rejuvenation / Bathing Kata

นะอะเต็กเต็ก ตับกูเป็นเหล็ก ไส้ปอดกูเป็นทองแดง กระดูกกูเป็นกําแพง เนื้อหนังกูแข็งครือศิลา นะคงข้างซ้าย โมคงข้างขวา พุทคงข้างหน้า ทาคงข้างหลัง อึคงเมื่อนอน อะคงเมื่อนั่ง เดชะพระพุทธัง ช่วยคุ้มรักษา นะอุด โมอัด ทาบีด นึมึพึทึ อึอัดอึอุด 

Pray the kata and stroke / sweep it from the tip of your feet to your head three times. Pray the kata each time you sweep upwards. Perform it daily in the morning. It will grant you good health and protection from weapons. If you are about to engage in a battle with an enemy, sweep the kata over yourself three times.

[Translator’s note: the kata uses mundane language interspersed with holy incantation. First, it uses a series of metaphors to say “my liver is iron, my stomach and lungs are copper, my bones are walls, my skin is stone”. Then, it uses each syllable of the นะโมพุทธทายะ (Namo Buddhāya) incantation interspersed with sayings of left, right, in front, behind, asleep, sitting etc to invoke holy powers to protect the caster at all times].

[Translator’s note: the title of the kata makes me think that this kata is meant to be used whilst bathing. The act of ชุบตัว is to take a damp cloth and clean someone with the cloth. Hence, it may be inferred that the kata can also be used with a damp cloth of blessed water, stroking upwards upon the individual’s body].

Stroking Upwards

[Translator’s note: the direct translation of the section would be to “bring up” but in the context of the previous kata, this section is merely an elaboration for what it means sweep or stroke upwards.]

Sit with the tips of your feet pulled inwards towards your body. Press the palms of your feet together, pressing your knees towards the floor [translator’s note: the classic lotus position]. Bend your body forwards and touch your hands upon the sides of your feet. Incant the kata and stroke three times. Stroke up your legs on both sides up to your waist but do not touch your shins, and keep going up past your armpits and chest and then place your hands together in front of your chest, with your right hand clasped above your left hand. Then, stroke up from your wrist up to your arms and shoulders and ears until you reach your face. Position your hands as normal and keep stroking up until you reach your head.

This method is a general method. If a specific kata requires the stroking to stop at a certain part of the body, then stop. There are some things you must not do, however. Do not touch the shin otherwise the kata will lose its power. Do not touch the heart or it may cause arcane madness. 

Kata of the Toad

อิติคกคก คกคกอิติ อิติคกคก นะมะพะทะ ดะฮึม ดะฮัม ดะฮัม ดะฮึม นะอะฮึม

Incant the kata with a heavy voice deep in your throat. Stroke upwards from your toes to your head three times, incanting each time. Do this every morning and evening. It can be used to bless a meal, blessing three bites (once per bite). It is used to make you powerful and to defend you against weapons and enemies.

Kata of the Elephant in Musth

มะกุมอะ อะกุมมะ มะหึมขึมขัม ติอะมะ นะลุ่ย โมหลุด พุทไหล ออกจากร่างพระพุทธัง พระธัมมัง พระสังฆัง นํ้ามันไหลออกจากร่าง พระธรรมสะระนังคัตฉามิ จักขุตัง มานิตัง อึอะ

Take the oil from the tip of your nose, rub it onto your palms and press your palms together and pray the kata. Stroke from the tip of your feet to your head three times, incanting each time. Perform it every morning and evening daily. It will protect you from heavy weapons and you will become slippery so that your enemies cannot catch you.

[Translator’s note: this is another kata that mixes mundane speech with holy incantation whilst also invoking Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.]

Kata Mahatameun

อึนะเต็กเต็ก ตับกูเป็นเหล็ก ไส้ปอดกูเป็นทองแดง นํ้าเลือดกูเป็นนํ้ากรด นํ้าชําเมลือกกูเป็นเผือกมัน นํ้าลายกูเป็นศีรษะ เนื้อหนังกูเป็นงั้ง นะอิติคกคก คกคกอิติ อิติคกคก นะมะพะทะ ดะฮึม ดะฮัม โอมเพ็ชชตึงเพ็ชชตัง เพ็ชน่าทั่งหนังแห้งแข้งเหล็ก

Stroke upwards three times, incanting the kata each time, do so from feet to head every morning and evening daily. It can be used to bring good health and to protect from weapons and enemies. It can also be used to bless three bites of rice to be eaten, incanting the kata with each bite.

[Translator’s note: this is another kata that mixes mundane speech with holy incantation. It also uses metaphors like “my liver is iron, my stomach and lungs are copper, my blood is acid” etc]

Phra Onggarn of Awakening

นะโมนะมัสการ เชิญท่านมาสู่ พระครูทั้งหลาย ท่านได้เอ็นดู เชิญท่านมาสู่ ตัวข้ามีการ ขอให้มีชัยชนะแก่มาร วันนี้เชิญท่านมาเอาใจลง หมากพลูธูปเทียน ข้าแต่งไหว้ครูถวายท่านทุกองค์ กระแจนํ้ามันครบครันบรรจง พระครูทุกองค์จงให้ประสิทธิ์ 

Use this prayer to sweep up until your shoulders thrice, incanting once per stroke. Then, continue with the prayer and stroke upwards.

ข้าขอปลุกยันต์มณฑลปลุกเครื่องทั้งนี้ ปลุกพระอักขระ อักษรให้ดี ในร่างกายทุกสิ่งนานา ปลุกเนื้อปลุกหนังปลุกทั้งมังสังกระดูกรูปลา ปลุกนํ้าปลุกเลือดแล่นเลื่อนขึ้นมา ปลุกทั้งอักขระ อึอะพระธรรม น่ก่น่กะ นะมะพะทะ มืออยู่ประจำ คงพันรูบ่า ประเจียดประจำ ฤฤาฦฦา รักษาเช้าคํ่า ตะกรุดทิสมอน ทั้งคงกะพัน เพ็ชย่ท่ทั้ง ล่องหนกําบังทั้งนั้นขึ้นมา นะนําเดินหน้าอย่าได้ไปอื่นเชิญขึ้นมาทำ นะโสโมโส พุทโธขึ้นมา นะทําธะทา ย่สิท สิทธิ

Can be used to awaken arcane influences or any amulets. It can be used to sweep upwards daily as well, for good health and protection against weapons.

[Translator’s note: this kata is a beautiful ritual invocation of spiritual teachers, implied to require offerings of betel seeds, incense, candles etc. The kata uses a mixture of mundane words and holy incantation, and it is all spoken in rhyme. It can be used to awaken yantra and arcane circles, along with awakening amulets and parts of the body itself such as the blood, the bones, the waters of the body and the skin.]

Kata Mahayen / Cooling Kata

นะอะเย็น โมอะเย็น พุทธังอะเย็น ธัมมังอะเย็น สังฆังอะเย็น เย็นเสมือนนํ้าในคณโฑทอง อึมิ อะมิ อุมิ

Stroke upwards from feet to head three times, incanting the kata each time. Or, the kata can be used to bless water to be used for drinking, washing the head and face and body, or for sprinkling over the head. It is used to ease the heat or the anxiety that comes with arcane magic. It can also be used to bless betel seeds to be eaten. The caster can perform the kata on themselves or on others, either is fine. The kata can be used to blow away heat.

[Translator’s note: this kata uses a mixture of mundane words and holy incantation, and a simile for the individual to be cooled like cool water in a golden carafe.]

Rice Grain Kata

นะมะพะทะอึ นึมึพึทึอะ โสปัตตังสะระ ปัตนัง โสภัควา

Take a grain of uncooked rice and wrap it in a ball of cooked rice, ensuring that the ball of rice is small enough so that it can be swallowed whole. While making the rice ball, pray that: “this grain of rice, whether I stab it or pound it or cook it or boil it, it will not break nor will it be cooked. May its powers be mine.” Next, incant the kata over it three times. Then swallow the rice ball whole, without chewing or breaking the ball of rice when you swallow it. You can eat this with every meal, or make this for others to eat. It will make you strong against all kinds of weapons. If a dog eats it, then the dog will never be bitten by another dog.

Dressing for Good Fortune

When wearing cloth or trousers, do as follows in order to receive good fortune.
When wearing cloth or trousers, say: “เอารกหนาแม่มารองนั่งๆ”
When wearing a shirt, say: “เอารกบางแม่มาหุ้มตัว”
When wearing a belt, say: “เอาสายสะดือพันรอบตัว กายะพันธนัง”
When wearing a hat or wrapping your head, say: “เอานํ้าทังแม่มาทูลตัว มาเป็นกรงจักรแก้ว ครอบตัวของลูกไว้แล้ว นิตติ จิตติ จับปัตติสนธิ ทุกขัง อนิจจัง อนัตตา อิติปิโสภะคะวา อรหังสัมมาสัมพุทโธ

Do so daily. It will bring you good fortune and protect you from harm. It will grant you glory and respect and powers above your enemies. You will have no fear of weapons.

Phra Maha Prajiad


Sit facing east or south and calm your emotions. Place your right hand on top of your belly button, and hold your breath while you pray the kata [translator’s note: mentally, I assume] and move your hand to your left. Place your hand back on top of your belly button, and do the same whilst moving your hand to your right. Perform this rite twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. It will bring you powers whilst making you immune from the effects of weapons.

Kata Tum Prajiad [1]

อึฝนตกก็ไม่ต้อง อะฟ้าร้องก็บ่มิถึง แม่จูบลูกก็บ่มิถูก เปียกก็บ่ห่อนเปียก แห้งก็บ่ห่อนแห้ง

After you have showered, stroke upwards from your waist to your head once whilst incanting the kata. Do this after showering daily. Then, use your right hand to wipe your left armpit and say “สะเล๊าะ” and then use your left hand to wipe your right armpit and say “สะแล๊ะ”. This will protect you from weapons.

Kata Tum Prajiad [2]

Sit and still your emotions. Take each of your hand and touch each of your mouth and say “คาบ”. Keep your hand where it is, and plug your index fingers into your ears and say “พระธรรม” and then move your index fingers to place it over both of your eyes and say “ดวงแก้ว”. Do this for one minute per rite, and perform the rite every morning and evening. This will protect you from weapons.

Kata Maha Ood

อิติปีตุ อุทังทวารัง อุอะ 

Pray this every night for arcane powers. Pray this when in danger to jam a gun and prevent it from firing.

Kata Maha Ood

พุทธังอุด ธัมมังอุด สังฆังอุด 

After you have relieved yourself, place your finger on top of your anus and then incant the kata. Next, place your finger on top of your penis and then say “อํามะ อําอะ อึมอึ” and then incant the kata. Do this often to prevent a gun from being jammed.

Ta Ba Fah

สุคคะตุด สุคคะโต สุคคะตัดถานัง อะปิ๋ป

Pray this kata and stroke upwards from your feet to your chest (do not go beyond your chest) three times. Perform the rite every morning and evening. Should you yell at your enemies, they will see you as fire and fear you. Should you yell at an elephant, the elephant will run away. If a farmer uses this kata, their rice will not grow. Do not yell at your friends or family, or they may become insane.

Yod Sil


Pray this kata before bed every night. Your enemies will be unable to raise their hands against you and their weapons will fall from their grips. Pray this kata when traveling somewhere dangerous. Dangerous animals will also flee.

[Translator’s note: I’m not sure why the kata is so short. Maybe it’s meant to be a syllable to be prayed repetitively or perhaps it is incomplete.]

Kata To Dominate Enemies

นะพุทโธ โมพุทธัง นะโมจังงัง สังฆังพุทโธ อึ

Should you see your enemy or someone you believe may be an enemy, pray the kata and breathe towards the direction of your enemy. Your enemy will fear you and will not hurt you.

Kata Maha Jungung


Pray this nightly to increase arcane powers. If your enemy is about to hurt you, yell the kata at them. Your enemy will be shocked and frozen in place, unable to move.

Kata of Awakening

อึนะปลุกๆโมขึ้นๆยิ่งๆ พุทธังประสิทธิ์ ธัมมังประสิทธิ์ สังฆังประสิทธิ์ พุทธังปลุกๆ ธัมมังปลุกๆ สังฆังปลุกๆ คาถาอาคมข้าพเจ้าขึ้นๆ ยิ่งๆ อึโมนะ 

Pray the kata and stroke upwards from your feet to your head three or seven times. Use it on yourself or whatever you wish to imbue with arcane energies, including talismans. An alternative kata (same instructions) is as follows:

โอมปลุกมหาปลุก ปลุกรูปมะขันธ์โท ปลุกนามมะขันธ์โท เวทนาขันธ์โท ธาตุพุทโธ อิทติริทธิ ทายะพุทโท มะอะอุ อิทติริทธิ

Kata Phra Chao Mongkut

อิติปิโส วิเสเสอิ อิเสเส พุทธะนะเมอิ ตินะเม พุทธะเสตังอิ อิเสตัง พุทธะปิติอิ 

Pray this kata every night before going to sleep. It will protect you from all dangers and bring you glory and compassion from all those who see you. Those who wish you harm will end up hurting themselves. Pray this kata eight times and blow it towards the direction of your enemies. You can also consecrate a powder to use on yourself to bring you charm. Pray the kata when walking somewhere dangerous. Pray the kata when entering a battlefield weaponless. Consecrate a piece of cloth to use as a headwrap. Still your emotions and use your head to circle the top of your head thrice, recalling how you are wearing Buddha’s crown. Use the kata to bless water, to sprinkle the water upon your head and drink it to remove yourself of a child [translator’s note: an abortion method perhaps?] and to remove a piece of fishbone stuck in the throat. Do whatever you wish with the kata.

An alternative kata which can be used interchangeably is as follows:

อิติปิโส วิเสเสอิ อิเสเส พุทธะนะเมอิ อิเมนะ พุทธโสตังอิ อิโสตัง พุทธปิติอิ ตะโจพระพุทธเจ้า จงมาเป็นหนัง มังสังพระธัมเจ้าจงมาเป็นเนื้อ สังฆังอัตถิ พระสังฆเจ้าจงมาเป็นกระดูก ตรีเพ็ชชตง อิสะวาสุ สุสะวาอิ พุทธปิติอะ 

[Translator’s note: the second kata invokes Buddha to become your flesh, your skin and your bones— whatever that means.]

Phra Barami Gaang Tud

อิติบารมีตาดึงษา อิติสะปัดอุมาคะตา อิติโพธิ มนุษย์ปัตโต อิติปิโส เจ็ดเตนะโม

Use this kata to bless your meal to eat daily to maintain good health and vitality. Pray this kata to protect you against enemies. Whichever direction you are traveling, face that direction and pray the kata three times to protect you against dangers. Use the kata to bless water to wash your face with, to make you charming and for others to treat you with compassion. Do whatever you wish with the kata.

 Kata of Calling Arcane Powers

สะอะระนะ สะวะระอะ มาเรโส

Hold your breath and pray the kata. Breathe into your belly three times to call arcane powers into yourself.

Kata Bid Akra

นะปิดอักขระ นะปิดสะทะ 

Place your hand on the top of your skull and pray the kata once to ‘close’ the kata.

Kata of Akra Binding

พุทธังผูก ธัมมังผูก สังฆังผูก พุทธังรัตตนัง ธัมมังรัตตนัง สังฆังรัตตนัง 

Hold your breath and pray this kata, circling your hand around your belly button once to bind arcane powers to you.

Kata Chaiyasit

โอมไชยๆ สรรพไชย สุทธิเมโมสุโข อิติสัมมาสัมพุทโธ นะเทสิตัง นะยาโร กุตสัมปัตติ สิทธิ อุกาสะ อะระคะนังกาโรมิ

Pray the kata and stroke upwards from your feet to the top of your skull three times. Do so every night. It will protect you from weapons. If you use flowers and incense and candles to venerate your teachers, you can use the kata to create holy water by praying it 108 times, or how many times you are capable of reciting. Use the water to drink or wash your head or shower for three days, to remove from you all that is unholy. You can also give this water for others to use.

Kata of Arcane Control


Use this kata and place your right hand on the top of your skull when going underneath something that ‘connects’, such as when walking underneath a bridge. This will prevent your arcane powers from deteriorating.

Kata of the Lord of Hide and Seek


Use this kata when fleeing from enemies. Run towards a tree and touch the tree whilst repeatedly incanting the kata and your enemies will be unable to see you.

Kata of Protection

อึนะพุทธังกัน ธัมมัง สังฆังกัน กำแพงเพชรและเกราะเพชรทั้งเจ็ดมากันตัวกู เป็นเสภามหาเสภา พระครูให้กูกันเสร็จทั้งจะกละและทะมบ สรรพการทั้งปวงมาทำแก่กูก็บ่มิต้อง ครั้นคนมาลองแก่กูก็บ่มิเข้า พุทธังสะสะ ธัมมังสะสะ สังฆังสะสะ 

Place your right hand on your skull and your left hand on your belly button. Hold your breath and pray the kata three times. It will protect you from all kinds of harm.

[Translator’s note: again, this kata mixes incantation with mundane speech. It asks for seven diamond walls and seven diamond shields to protect the practitioner from harm.]

How to Behave Towards the Four Mentors

[Translator’s note: The word พี่เลี้ยง could be translated as mentors or nannies— I went with mentors as it seemed more appropriate.]

โลนพิทักษ์ พี่ยักษ์กุมาร มารพิชัย ภัยยะสังหาร These are the names of the four mentors who watch over us. But, if you do not call them then they will not answer, if you do not ask them for a favour then they will remain still.

When you are eating a meal or sweets or a fruit or drinking any drinks, every time you do so — whether drinking or eating — recall the four names of the four mentors and invite them to dine or drink with you. Do this every time; do not forget or miss doing so. With the first bite, recall โลนพิทักษ์, with the second bite, recall พี่ยักษ์กุมาร, with the third bite, recall มารพิชัย, with the fourth bite, recall ภัยยะสังหาร. After you have done so for the first four bites, continue to dine as normal. If there is poison in the meal, then you may be unable to eat it. When you are traveling, whether by boat or by car, invite the four mentors to travel along with you in order to protect you. When in danger, call upon the four mentors to protect you from weapons and harm. Whatever you do, recall them and call upon them for help. These four mentors are Yak/Yaksha, but they have appeared as normal human beings before. If a monk does so usually it will be holy [translator’s note: a rough translation— the last bit is confusing] but ajarns have claimed that it is a sin. I, however, believe that this is the heart of this book/grimoire. Whoever does so will be protected from all kinds of harm.

[Translator’s note: it is my personal theory that these aren’t names so much as they are titles. In an attempt to break down the meanings of the names, พิทักษ์ means to protect whilst with regards to พี่ยักษ์กุมาร : พี่ is brother (in Asian culture, we tend to call everyone brothers/sisters as a title of respect), ยักษ์ is yaksha, กุมาร is kuman (like, a kuman thong for example— a kuman is a type of spirit/demon). มารพิชัย : again, we have the word มาร which can roughly mean demon. ชัย can be short for ชัยชนะ which is victory. ภัยยะสังหาร just means “dangers be killed / eliminated”.]

Kata of the Seven Glass Walls

พุทธัง ธัมมัง สังฆัง สัตตะระตะนะปะการัง อัมมะหากัง สะระนังคัจฉามิ สุสุ ละละ โสโส นะโมพุทธายะ พุทโธพระบัง ธัมโมพระบัง สังโฆพระบัง

Pray this every night to protect you from dangers and enemies. Stroke upwards from feet to the top of your skull three times, or do so once every morning and evening. It will protect you from all kinds of harm.

นะอัม hold your breath and pray then breathe out. Your enemies will be unable to face you.

อึอํา hold your breath and pray when someone is angry. They will not be able to raise their hands against you.

อะอา hold your breath and pray when walking under the doorways of your enemies. They will be unable to harm you.


[Translator’s note: the following is some background on the kata as taken from Wikipedia.

“The Jinapanjara (Pali: jinapañjara; Thai: ชินบัญชร, Chinabanchon), sometimes known in English as “The Cage of the Conqueror”, is a post-canonical Buddhist Paritta chant. It is one of the most popular texts that is widely chanted in Thailand. It has existed since the end of the nineteenth century, from the time of the reign of Rama II. It is assumed that the Jinapanjara was authored by a Lanna Buddhist monk. Later, the monk Somdej Toh modified the incantation and made it more complete, by translating the content and curtailing some parts in the chant with unknown meaning. The text can also be found in Myanmar and Sri Lanka.”

For the sake of it being easier to read, I’ve used the spelling and the formatting of the kata associated with the more popularized version as commonly distributed online, rather strictly using the version found in the grimoire. However, the translation of the kata’s description will be translated based upon what is written in the grimoire.]

ชะยาสะนากะตา พุทธา       เชตวา มารัง สะวาหะนัง 
จะตุสัจจาสะภัง ระสัง         เย ปิวิงสุ นะราสะภา.
ตัณหังกะราทะโย พุทธา      อัฏฐะวีสะติ นายะกา 
สัพเพ ปะติฏฐิตา มัยหัง       มัตถะเกเต มุนิสสะรา.
สีเส ปะติฏฐิโต มัยหัง        พุทโธ ธัมโม ทะวิโลจะเน 
สังโฆ ปะติฏฐิโต มัยหัง      อุเร สัพพะคุณากะโร.
หะทะเย เม อะนุรุทโธ        สารีปุตโต จะทักขิเณ
โกณฑัญโญ ปิฏฐิภาคัสมิง    โมคคัลลาโน จะ วามะเก. 
ทักขิเณ สะวะเน มัยหัง       อาสุง อานันทะ ราหุโล
กัสสะโป จะ มะหานาโม      อุภาสุง วามะโสตะเก.
เกสันเต ปิฏฐิภาคัสมิง        สุริโย วะ ปะภังกะโร
นิสินโน สิริสัมปันโน          โสภิโต มุนิปุงคะโว
กุมาระกัสสโป เถโร           มะเหสี จิตตะ วาทะโก
โส มัยหัง วะทะเน นิจจัง       ปะติฏฐาสิคุณากะโร.
ปุณโณ อังคุลิมาโร จะ          อุปาลี นันทะ สีวะลี
เถรา ปัญจะ อิเม ชาตา        นะลาเต ติละกา มะมะ.
เสสาสีติ มะหาเถรา            วิชิตา ชินะสาวะกา
เอเตสีติ มะหาเถรา            ชิตะวันโต ชิโนระสา
ชะลันตา สีละเตเชนะ           อังคะมังเคสุ สัณฐิตา.
ระตะนัง ปุระโต อาสิ            ทักขิเณ เมตตะ สุตตะกัง
ธะชัคคัง ปัจฉะโต อาสิ         วาเม อังคุลิมาละกัง
ขันธะโมระปะริตตัญจะ         อาฏานาฏิยะ สุตตะกัง 
อากาเส ฉะทะนัง อาสิ           เสสา ปาการะสัณฐิตา
ชินา นานาวะระสังยุตตา         สัตตัปปาการะ ลังกะตา
วาตะปิตตาทะสัญชาตา          พาหิรัช ฌัตตุปัททะวา.
อะเสสา วินะยัง ยันตุ            อะนันตะชินะ เตชะสา
วะสะโต เม สะกิจเจนะ          สะทา สัมพุทธะปัญชะเร.
ชินะปัญชะระมัชฌัมหิ           วิหะรันตัง มะฮี ตะเล 
สะทา ปาเลนตุ มัง สัพเพ        เต มะหาปุริสาสะภา
อิเจวมันโต สุคุตโต สุรักโข     ชินานุภาเวน ชิตุปัทโท
ธัมมานุ ภาเวน ชิตาริ สังโฆ     สังฆานุภาเวน ชิตันตราโย
จรามิ สัทธัมมานุภาวปาลิโตติ   ชิญปัญชนปริตตัง

This kata belongs to the สมเด็จพระพุฒาจารย์ (Toh Phromarung) of the Wat Rakhang temple in Thonburi during the reign of King Rama IV. This monk is known for many of his miracles. He is the one who created the powdered Buddha amulet for the populace to venerate. Those who venerated have received many miracles. News of the miracles reached the ears of the king who asked how such miracles occured. The monk gave the king one of his amulets and informed him of the kata.

This kata has many powers. Those who pray the kata every night will be granted success and a long life and be free from all that endangers them. It can be used to consecrate holy water to bless one’s head, to wash away sickness and misfortune. It can be used to wash your face every morning. A diebetic individual is sick and unable to find a cure for their illness. They drank holy water for two months and found that their sickness had disappeared. A mentally ill person drank one bottle of the holy water and was cured as well.

The author of this book has received permission to distribute this kata from the Wat Rakhang temple.


[This whole section is a page long invocation to greet and venerate several beings or groups from Buddha to the Sangha to the four elements of earth, fire, wind and water and the seven planets in addition to Rahu and Ketu. The invocation asks all these forces to come and protect the prayer, granting them a diamond shield against demons, among other prayers. I’ve decided to keep the rite untranslated.]

Kata to Mend Bones

มังสังมังเส โลตังโลเต พุทธาจัตตาโร เอโก ปัตโต ข้อหักกูจะต่อ กระดูกหักกูให้ติด นะมิดชิดติดติอิ

Use this kata to consecrate sesame oil to mend bones. Use the oil on fractured or broken bones daily. Blow the kata on the injury everyday and the bones will heal.

Kata to Propitiate Misfortune

พุทโธโมโมเพวานัง สรรพเคราะห์ชะเตสูนยัง จันทรทังสะสิระ วิเสาร์โร ครูราหู เกตุ จะมหาลาภัง สรรพเคราะห์ทุกขัง ภะวันตุเม

Pray this kata before going to bed every night, in order to propitiate the malefic planet to create less misfortune. This kata can be used to consecrate water to sprinkle over one’s head or other’s heads as well.

[Translator’s note: the kata explicitly mentions Saturn, Rahu and Ketu which I find interesting.]

Kata of Cleaning the Water Bowl

อิตินะขัดขันธ์แก้ว ขัดขันธ์ไว้แล้ว แผ้วไสยะ ไสยัง นะอิติ
อิติโมขัดขันธ์แก้ว ขัดขันธ์ไว้แล้ว แผ้วไสยะ ไสยัง โมอิติ
อิติพุทขัดขันธ์แก้ว ขัดขันธ์ไว้แล้ว แผ้วไสยะ ไสยัง พุทธอิติ
อิติทาขัดขันธ์แก้ว ขัดขันธ์ไว้แล้ว แผ้วไสยะ ไสยัง ทาอิติ
อิติยะขัดขันธ์แก้ว ขัดขันธ์ไว้แล้ว แผ้วไสยะ ไสยัง ยะอิติ

[Translator’s note: the bolding of the text is a decision made by the translator to emphasize how the kata uses a pattern where the นะโมพุทธายะ / namo buddhaya mantra is spoken, interspersed with other incantations]

Use this kata to bless water to wash your face every morning and evening. It will make you radiant and bring you charm. Men and women will show compassion towards you. If you feel troubled because you have been practicing magic or because of any other reasons, then use the kata to bless water to wash your face, to sprinkle over your head and to drink. The kata can also be used to bless betel nuts for eating as well. 

An alternative kata to bring you success in life and arcane practices is as follows: ไชยยะพุทธัง ไชยยะธัมมัง ไชยยะสังฆัง

Kata for the Protection of the Mind

อึกุมมะ มะถืออะ อะถือมะ

Pray the kata and stroke upwards from the feet to the head. This can be done on behalf of other people as well. Likewise, the kata can be used to bless seven pepper seeds to be eaten too. It will protect your mind to not panic and be surprised / frightened.

The Book of Saiyasart ends here.

I would like to apologize to those who are experts in the arcane arts if there are any mistakes within the book. Please rectify the mistakes as seen fit. May the knowledge in this book be a charity to the generations who will come after us.

Lieutenant Chawang Sanpradit


So that’s it for my translation! I am no professional translator nor am I any expert on the topic of ‘Thai Magic’, but I have tried my best to capture the spirit of the original text despite the occasional awkward phrasings. I also have not tried for a long period of time any of the kata in the grimoire yet (although I was encouraged by my spirits to make use of the ‘Kata to Propitiate Misfortune’ nightly, which I am trying to do). If I do end up experimenting more with other kata in the book, then I may write a follow-up post on the results of my experiments.

Varuna: Lord of the Waters

As Mercury begins his retrograde, I find that words lose their precision. Communication that was once cuttingly clear now feels like voices echoing in the mists. It is in times like these in which I abandon my attempt at academic rigor and turn towards storytelling. Additionally, the pressure of studying for a Master’s degree is starting to weigh on me— if I have to think about Harvard citation one more time I might just throw my laptop down the hill. So, for this article, I would like to simply tell the story of Lord Varuna: a Vedic god with iterations throughout various cultures and religions.

In present day Thailand, Varuna or Varun is called by the name of Phra Pirun (or occasionally, Virun). As a god dressed in kingly garbs, wielding a sword-staff in one hand and riding upon a naga, Lord Pirun is revered as a local god of rain and agriculture. For this reason, it is him who is the symbol of the nation’s Ministry of Agriculture. In Japan, he is conflated with Suiten, the Shinto god of water. In India, and among the Vedas and the Puranas and a myriad of other holy texts, Varuna is too vast of a being to be reduced to a mere set of epithets or domains. Even I, in my desire to wear the mantle of some bard or holy poet, know better than to hope to capture an ocean in a teacup.

I do not claim to be a scholar of Vedic religion. The stories I am about to tell are but mere snatches of a song, a broken melody reconstructed. 

Varuna is known for being the Lord of the Waters, and water is nothing less than the universe itself. It is said that before the universe became the universe as we know it, the primordial hill rose from the bottom of the primeval waters. The night sky was an ocean whilst the stars were its islands. It was Varuna who ruled over this water. It was Varuna who ruled over the Asuras, the beings of this primitive universe. Islands floated and water flowed until a force of resistance arose, embodied in the form of a serpent called Vrtra. From beyond the hill, Indra — the Lord of Lightning and Leader of the Devas — emerged. Indra threw his vajra at the once floating hill, thereby fixing it in place and, at the same time, splitting it open. By conquering the hill, Indra had thereby conquered the Asura. He pushed heaven and earth asunder, forming the dual cosmos. The cosmic tree then grew from what remained of the dissected hill, becoming the pillar of the universe, the tree that supports the sky.

Some say that, after the restructuring of the cosmos and the defeat of Vrtra by the hands of Indra, Varuna ascended to the title of Deva. Some argue otherwise, claiming that the Lord of the Asuras was already a Deva. How could he not be, for was he not an Aditya, son of the goddess Aditi? Others, in a contradictory contrast, believe that he is both. Holy texts and tales refer to Varuna as both a Deva and an Asura. Others still have theorized that the bragging contest between Indra and Varuna is an act that has to be re-enacted every year, as the cosmos is restructured anew annually. Every year, the powers of Chaos and the Asuras (who have fled from the cosmos after their subjugation and defeat) would return into the world temporarily, triggering the conflict between the Asuras and Devas once again. In this critical period when forces are at war and reality is in flux, Varuna must have re-assumed his Asura-character, becoming as he once was in the primeval world prior to the arrival of Indra. Thus, during this brief time of the year, Varuna was not a Deva-asura but a supposedly dangerous Asura.

In the cosmic drama, we all have roles to play.

Yet, even during the times when Varuna is a Deva, there are hints that speak of his secret ties to the Asuras. In sources such as the Mahabharata, there are indications that Varuna — although a god of the newly organized world — continued to maintain secret relations with the suppressed demons along with the night side of this world. Varuna is said to be an object of worship for various bhutas, a term which potentially includes spirits and devils. His abode and watery realm, likewise, appears to be the refuge for demons after they have been slain or expelled from the earth. The abode is openly depicted to be a source of evil, for it is Varuna who protects the evil-doers and the beings of chaos who attack the world of order when night falls.

It is unsurprising then, that Varuna rules also over the secretive night as well. As the god of the night and the moon, day and night are the white and black garments that he wears. Golden-horned Varuna’s eye is also that of the sun, the golden all-seeing sun that observes all which occurs upon the earth. As the Lord of the West, the direction at which the sun sets, Varuna too rules over the sun that sits at the root of the world’s tree. With the setting sun comes the realm of the dead: it is said that upon passing, the souls shall see two kings, Yama and the deva Varuna. Drowned souls, especially, belonged to Varuna. Even after his demotion to ruling no longer the primordial ocean but the earthly waters, the subterranean sea is still his abode and so are all sea animals his to command. Even the nagas, mighty and noble serpents, bow down to Varuna for he too is their lord. His kingdom among the underworld is Patala, including that of the glittering, underwater realm of the nagas.

As for his character: how would one judge someone who is willing to endure agony for the sake of necessity? During the churning of the ocean of milk — an event in which the Devas and the Asuras are churning the milky ocean in order to retrieve amrita, the nectar of immortality — the Asuras are positioned on one side whilst the Devas are on the other. Brahma, the Creator-God, stood above both parties. Varuna, notably absent from the conflict, is argued to have been the ocean itself. When the Devas went to the ocean and announced that they will churn its water in order to obtain amrita, the lord of the waters demanded that he shall too receive a part of the nectar of immortality on the condition that he is willing to endure the violent crushing by Mount Mandara. There is no clear distinction between the element and its god; the divine element is propitiated, like a victim before its immolation. As the ocean is churned by means of Mount Mandara, the churning produced a terrible sound akin to the noise of thunder from titanic rain clouds. All manners of aquatic animals, struck by the mountain, died by the hundreds in the water.

In other words, the emergence of the ordered world was a cosmic necessity to which even Varuna had to resign himself— a hanged man upon the noose.

Fitting, as Varuna too wields the noose.

The noose, along with a pitcher of water, is one of the objects wielded by the Lord of Truth. The noose is a bind; an oath, a promise of truth. Indo-Iranians swore their oaths addressed to Varuna before the waters and to Mitra before the fires, and witnesses in the court of law likewise swore to tell the truth, standing before the kindled fire and the vessel of water. It is said that a false-testifying witness who lies will be bound by Varuna with one hundred ties, each one to be released once every thousand years. An old Northern Indian rite of swearing an oath also requires the oath-maker to enter a circle made of calf manure with the vessel of water placed in the center. The Mahabharata mentions that to keep one’s oath, the person should release that which tempts to break the oath into the waters, into the ocean— Varuna’s domain. In the Ramayana, also there exists a form of an oath sworn upon the water, in which water gets poured on the palm of the person’s hand to seal the promise.

With oath, comes order. Everything that is ordered in the universe has Rta as its principle. Rta is the cosmic law: a spoked wheel revolving round the sky, the path of which dawn — the daughter of heaven — follows. The rivers too follow the Rta of Varuna, for he is its guardian, the Lord of the Cosmic Order who controls the flow of water. Although order, in its saturnine nature, is strict, Varuna is not unforgiving. Sin — paapa, a perversion of the natural order — is mentioned chiefly in connection with Varuna. It is a disease which sticks to man and stains him. It can therefore be fought against like disease: spells can banish it, fire can burn it and water wash it away. Varuna is repeatedly begged to forgive sins. In the Rigveda, Vasistha reminds Varuna of their former companionship when he and the god once sailed on a ship together in Varuna’s heaven. For old friendship’ s sake, Vasistha prays for forgiveness that should he have violated Varuna’s law, may he be shown mercy. Prayer, despite transgression through thoughtlessness and human frailty, is often enough to secure Varuna’s forgiveness. Binder and releaser, Varuna releases mankind from sin.

In the same way that Saturn — the star of time and order — is feared throughout history, Varuna is also feared and later demonized after his demotion, falling from a position of a God-King to being a mere lord of the earthly waters. With time, his dark and malevolent traits begin to overshadow his impartiality, for it is said that the merciful Mitra now pacifies the cruel and spiteful Varuna. Later texts such as the Taittereya Brahmana and Shatapatha Brahmana likewise depict Varuna as ugly and deformed, bald with protruding teeth and red-brown eyes, much different to his earlier sublime appearances. Perhaps this is simply the consequence of his already ambiguous nature, and the fact that Vedic poets were decidedly in favor of uncompromisingly good gods rather than passive god-kings whose character was less than perfect. In many ways, it could be viewed that Varuna’s decline was expected. Varuna met the same fate as that befell the other passive sky-gods: they all yielded their position to more active and warlike solar deities.

To claim that Varuna lost his elevated position to Indra as he declined and Indra ascended, however, may not be wholly accurate. The scholar Heesterman spoke of an alternation between Varuna and Indra in more definite terms: when Varuna loses his power, Indra takes over and vice versa. The historian Kuiper, similarly, argues that the fight between Varuna and Indra is a seasonal act to be performed annually. In the Varunapraghasa, Varuna is identified with winter while Indra is quite generally the god of summer. Is this perhaps a case of the Summer Lord slaying the Winter King, only for the cycle to repeat? In a translation of Hymn 10.124 of the Rigveda, it can be seen that it is Indra who offered Varuna to rule alongside him, saying to Varuna that: “Without magic resources will those Asuras become, if you, Varuna, bestow your love on me. Separating the false from the true, O King, come rule my kingdom.” Based upon the aforementioned interpretation, it therefore cannot be claimed that Varuna is subordinated to Indra. One is a ruler, a keeper of order and divine law, whilst the other is a hero and a conqueror-king. 

Regardless, it should be noted that what we know is largely incomplete. Varuna is associated with many things most people may find repulsive. It is said that when practicing witchcraft or black magic (‘abhicara’), one should sacrifice a black ram which belongs to Varuna, for Varuna is death. Likewise, the color black is generally associated with Varuna, for what is black belongs to Varuna as well. He is additionally prayed to in conjunction with Nirriti, the cremation-ground goddess personifying death, destruction and decay. All of these associations with what is generally feared have placed an element of taboo regarding mentions of Varuna.

To quote Kuiper:

“The basic difficulty in studying Varuna is this element of taboo. An intentional reticence can seldom be proved. In his case, it is true, there are sufficient indications pointing to feelings of fear and awe with regard to him. We have some reason, therefore, to expect restraint, dictated by taboo, in what Vedic and post-Vedic authors tell us about Varuna. Although it is argued again and again that the only sound and scholarly method of studying a god is to confine oneself to what the texts explicitly say, this is only fully true for the study of gods of a less complex character, such as Indra. It is seldom realized that the same principle, when applied to the study of Varuna, is tantamount to condemning oneself to an imperfect understanding, if not a complete misunderstanding, of the god. In this case it would be an unsound method to ignore the aspect of taboo and a possible reticence, and to proceed as if the direct data of the evidence are the only reliable basis for an interpretation of his character.”

As for me, I believe that to understand Varuna is to understand the ocean itself. Many see the light dappling across the water’s surface and forget how deep and cold and dark the sea is below. Many fear the frozen, stygian depths that may drown them and forget how euphoric drowning can feel. Water is life: it is creation and phantasmagoria and inspiration. Water is also death: it is the river that separates the living from the dead, a boundary and a bridge. Water is a messenger, a psychopomp of sorts: it is said that praying into water allows the prayer to evaporate into the clouds, letting your words reach the heavens or wherever they need to go. There is an incomprehensible unknown to the ocean, a surreality to water. Like a trickster, water distorts, bending and warping the truth. Like a prophet, water reveals, washing away lies to unveil veracity.

Water betrays a multifaceted nature, much like its god. 


  1. Brown, W.N., 1919. Proselyting the asuras (A Note on Rig Veda 10. 124). Journal of the American Oriental Society, 39, pp.100–103.
  2. Elizarenkova, T., 1987. F. B. J. Kuiper: Fundamental Directions of His Scholarly Work. Numen, 34(2), pp.145–178.
  3. Jamison, S. W., 1981. A Vedic-Avestan Correspondence: RV ánadant-: Gathic nadəṇt-. Journal of the American Oriental Society, 101(3), 351–354.
  4. Kuiper, F.B.J., 1960. The ancient Aryan verbal contest. Indo-Iranian journal, 4(4), pp.217–281.
  5. Kuiper, F.B.J., 1975. The Basic Concept of Vedic Religion. History of religions, 15(2), pp.107–120.
  6. Kuiper, F.B.J., 1979. Varuṇa and vidūṣaka: On the origin of the Sanskrit drama, Amsterdam: North-Holland Publ. 
  7. Premnath, D.N., 1994. The Concepts of Rta and Maat: a Study in Comparison. Biblical interpretation, 2(3), pp.325–339.
  8. Sielicki, S., 2017. Indo-Iranian Parallels of the Slavic Water Rites of the Oath and Guilt Confirmation Attested in Medieval Latin Accounts and Slavic Law Codices. Studia mythologica Slavica, 20, p. 33-54
  9. Siqueira, T.N., 1933. Sin and Salvation in the Early Rig-Veda. Anthropos, 28(1/2), pp.179–188.
  10. Sreenivasarao, 2022. Varuna and his decline. Available at:

Rahu: A Remediation

Rahu, in astrological terms, is known as the North Node. It is also called the Caput Draconis or the Head of the Dragon. Due to how its function is to externalize the deep-rooted faults within the individual, it is considered to be a malefic shadow planet. Rahu, and other similar shadow planets such as Ketu, produce unfortunate conditions for the individual to face: a trial by fire, a series of tests and ordeals whose purpose serves to eradicate weaknesses in the personality as part of the spiritualization process. Although Western astrologers compare Rahu to the dragon, Rahu is known in Vedic beliefs as Ahi, which means serpent. Befitting its malefic nature, Ahi is another name for Vritra — the personification of drought, evil and chaos — often depicted as a human-like serpent blocking the course of the rivers who is then heroically slain by Indra.

Likewise, in the Vedas, Rahu is invoked as a demon named Svarbhanu, who devours the luminaries to cause the eclipse. On new moon nights, the moon comes into a condition where Svarbhanu can devour both the luminaries and cause a solar eclipse. After the eclipse the moon is reborn, having emerged from the sun’s body. In the same vein, the Puranas describe Rahu as ‘half-bodied, immensely powerful, a troublemaker for the sun and moon, born of a lioness, having a huge body like a mountain, of lamp black color, snake-shaped, terrible mouthed and the devourer of the sun and moon.’ Hence, there is a narrative on Rahu being the great serpent who swallows the sun and the moon, causing eclipses and casting shadows through its movements. A common theme of rebirth of the sun and moon can also be seen, just like how Rahu forces an individual to face ordeals in order to shed their weaknesses just as a serpent sheds its skin.

The most well-known tale in both Indian and Thai mythology that points towards the origin of Rahu is that of the churning of the ocean of milk. In this story, the gods and the asuras (who could roughly be understood as ‘demons’) are using the body of Vasuki — the king of serpents in Hindu and Buddhist religion — as a rope tied around the central rod formed by the mountain Mandara to churn the ocean of milk. This is done in order to retrieve amrita, a nectar of immortality. Upon retrieval of the nectar from the ocean, the gods did not want to share it with the demons. Hoping to not be seen, Vasuki surreptitiously partook of a portion of the nectar but was soon detected. The gods became furious and Vishnu hurled his discus at the serpent. However, as Vasuki had already drunk parts of the nectar, he could not be destroyed. The serpent was merely divided in two. The upper portion of the serpent became Rahu and the lower became Ketu. 

Hence, it therefore makes perfect sense that Rahu represents materialism (along with the mischief, fear, dissatisfaction, obsession and confusion that extreme materialism brings) whilst Ketu signifies the spiritual process of the refinement of materialization to the spirit. In other words, Ketu causes material loss in order to force a more spiritual outlook in the person and turn them towards God, a function mirroring Rahu. As someone with my Ascendant and Jupiter in the Ashvini nakshatra, and my Sun and Mercury in the Mula nakshatra — two out of the three lunar mansions ruled by Ketu — I must say I feel a special fondness for the beheaded serpent. Moreover, from this Tuesday 30th March onwards, Rahu will (according to Thai astrology, which naturally has overlaps with Vedic astrology) be transiting to be into Aries, the same house as my Jupiter and Ascendant and will remain so until 2023.

As someone who practices astrolatry, I was familiar with the veneration of stars from a young age, including the veneration of Rahu. When I was back in Thailand, my family used to pray and give offerings to Rahu every time a major transit happened. Last week, I received a call from my mother who reminded me to perform the remediation this Tuesday night. Thus, I felt urged to consult another reputable Thai astrologer in order to affirm the decision (among other things) as I have not performed the remediation away from my family before. I ended up contacting Ajarn Apichai of The Thai Occult who, without prompting, sought to warn me about the malefic fallout Rahu may bring especially with regards to my natal chart.

If I were to be in Thailand and not the British Isles, there would be countless temples available for me to visit, temples dedicated to Rahu with offerings readily available for purchase and incantations ready to be read and prayed. Such a temple is Wat Sisrathong (วัดศีรษะทอง) temple, a temple in Nakhon Pathom dedicated to Rahu. According to the temple, eight (or in some cases, twelve) offerings of black colored food along with black incense sticks and candles should be given. Common food offerings include black grapes, black liqueur, black coffee, black beans, black jelly, black sticky rice, black cakes and black fermented eggs. However, substitutes can always be made. My family, for example, has offered seaweed, pepsi and dark chocolate before.

I have found the incantations and prayers taken from the signs posted at Wat Sisrathong temple and transcribed the original incantation in Thai followed by a rough English verbalization, should anyone else wishes to follow along with the remediation rite. They are as follow


นะโม ตัสสะ ภะคะวะโต อะระหะโต สัมมาสัมพุท ธัสสะ (x3)

กุสเสโตมะมะ กุสเสโตโต ลาลามะมะ โตลาโม โทลาโมมะมะ โทลาโมตัง เหกุติมะมะ เหกุติ


นะโม ตัสสะ ภะคะวะโต อะระหะโต สัมมาสัมพุท ธัสสะ (x3)

ยัตถะตังมะมะ ตังถะยะ ตะวะตัง มะมะตัง วะติตัง เสกามะมะ กาเสตัง กาติยังมะมะ ยะติกา


นะโมเม พระราหูเทวานัง ธูปะทีปะ จะปุปผัง สักการะวันทะนัง สูปะพะยัญชะนะ สัมปันนัง โภชะ นานัง

สาลีนัง สะปะริวารัง อุทะกังวะรัง อาคัจฉันตุ ปะริภุญชันตุ สัพพะทา หิตายะ สุขายะ พระราหูเทวา มะหิทธิกา เตปิ อัมเห อะนุรัก ขันตุ อาโรคะ เยนะ สุเขมะจะฯ

ข้าแต่พระราหู เทพแห่งโชคลาภ อันศักดิ์สิทธิ์ที่สุด ข้าขอบูชาท่านด้วยของดํา 8 อย่าง ขอให้ข้าพเจ้าปราศจากโรคภัยและอันตรายใดๆ ขอให้ ท่านประทานพร โชคลาภ ความร่ำรวยทั้งปวง ให้แก่ข้าพเจ้าด้วยเทอญ

English translation

1. Perform the Nammo prayer three times:

Nammo tassa pakawato arahato summa sumput tassa (x3)

2. There are two incantations to perform depending on the time of day of the rite.

If performed during daytime, say the following Suriya Bappa incantation:

Goosae tomama goosae toto lalamama tolamo tolamomama tolamotung  haegootimama haegooti

If performed during nighttime, say the following Jan Bappa incantation:

Yattatungmama tungtaya tawatung mamatung watitung saegamama gasaetung gatiyungmama yatiga

3. Incantations to make offerings to Rahu

Namomae prarahutevanung tupateepa japuppung sagara wuntanung supapayunchana sumpunnung pocha nanung salinung sapariwarung utagungwarung akachuntoo paripoonchuntoo suppata hitaya sookaya prarahuteva mahitiga tepi umhae anooraak kuntoo aroka yena sookaemaja

4. Prayers to Rahu

To Rahu, the Most Holy Lord of Wealth, I venerate you with these offerings of eight black foods. I pray that I am free from all illnesses and dangers. May you grant me wealth and all kinds of riches.

I plan to perform a variation of the rite with one black candle and eight food offerings this Tuesday at nightfall. Likewise, Ajarn Apichai has pointed out that since Rahu is associated with shadows, a way to remediate Rahu is to perform donations related to light. Donating light bulbs could be done, or so could covering Rahu with gold flakes assist in the remediation. In my case, however, I am choosing to make donations to organizations that aim to literally ‘give light’ to those in need. Some organizations I am looking at include Solar Aid, Little Sun and Unite to Light.

I also wish to point out several things other (Western) astrologers have remarked upon Rahu and Ketu, words that have struck a chord with me.

Firstly, I have found the discussions between Adam Sommer and Chris Brennan of The Astrology Podcast to be very illuminating. Below is a snippet of their conversations:

AS: Where the north node, which is the dragon’s head, which has no body, it’s kind of like the Buddhist idea of the hungry ghost. Whereas Rahu in the east is this materialistic, conniving, very intelligent entity that knows how to get power, knows how to succeed in the material world. Well here we have cultural values and place that shows us the difference. Where, if the north node is destiny in the West, and it’s this hungry ghost demon in the East, we see a very big difference in what destiny means to these two different ways of thinking about reality, right?

CB: Right.

AS: And so the north node I do think is a story that we’re meant to write. It’s kind of like a beautiful book with a great pen in the middle of it. It’s kind of like if you have the guts to write this story, to face the dragon, there’s a lot of synchronicity and there’s a lot of experience that comes from it. But if you stay there for too long, it’s very hard in my experience personally to turn off Rahu. To turn off the north node, because it’s this more, more, more, more, more, type energy, it’s very Mars-like. And that’s the great test then, it’s like, well, how can I actually lead Rahu to Ketu. How can I bring the head to the tail. How can I in a way make a circle out of time.

Additionally, a few days ago, Dr. Alexander Cummins has mentioned in his Instagram post on Cauda Draconis (the geomantic figure related to the South Node / Ketu), describing it as the Dragon’s Tail which ‘not only severs ties but breaks the fingers, hands, limbs, and skulls of those who would hold us under, salting the charred wreckage of the master’s house with the bitter tears and anguished howls of our oppressors’ bereaved and maimed families, neighbors, acquaintances and housepets alike’ and wishing that ‘may you ever be bound to nothing but that which you willingly bind yourself’ and ‘defend those whom you love with as much explosive conflagration as you can call down and take responsibility for in the aftermath’. Geomancy is a divination form instinctively linked to the stars, one that I have tried to study in the past. In this case, I believe Dr. Cummins’ poetic description of the Cauda Draconis truly does capture the essence of Ketu as the beheaded serpent freeing oneself from chains (of materialism and egotism and all others).

To conclude, I wish to say that this little post is a lot less polished than my usual posts because I do intend to get the content out before Tuesday so those who wish to perform some Rahu remediation (with care and careful consideration beforehand) may do so, perhaps taking inspiration from my local practices if they wish. Regardless, I will end this post by remarking that Rahu, in my opinion, could only be fully understood alongside Ketu. Best of luck to everyone, and may you be safe as Rahu transits from the earthly Taurus to the fiery Aries.

30/3/2022 updates:

I have added pictures of my previous Rahu rite from 2020 and the rite from last night to the end of this post. Aside from the offerings, I’ve also donated $12 to a light-giving organization. Like always, I did a tarot reading to check the success (or failure) of the rite I just did.

For whether the rite went well, I got 3 of Wands followed by the Hierophant and the 5 of Pentacles. The cards speak for themselves I also divined on whether Rahu will show mercy upon me. In this case, I got the High Priestess, Justice and Page of Pentacles (my signifier). The summary card for the whole affair is the Queen of Pentacles.

My interpretation is that, Rahu’s lesson will always be one that is just and fair. He will not be cruel — for cruelty implies pleasure from causing excessive harm — he will simply do what must be done for me to learn the necessary lessons that will push me forward on my spiritual path, enabling me to one day grow from the Page to the Queen.

This does suit how Rahu tends to manifest in life, though. Rahu is rarely lenient, but fairness is to be expected.


  1. Behari, B. & Frawley, D., 2003. Myths & Symbols of Vedic Astrology, Twin Lakes, WI: Lotus Press. 

Images Credit


Gracious and Cruel: Contemplations on the Great Mother

For a very long time, I have understood the Mother — the All-Mother, the Great Mother, the Great Goddess, or simply the Mother — as Freya or Frau Holda. For those interested, Varga wrote an intriguing post on Freyja here. To me, however, she is the heaven and earth itself, a goddess whose appearance is bedecked with moon-silver and chthonic gold. She is the spinner of fate, a queen who rules over the waters along with the dead. But, as I have come to learn later, Freya means ‘lady’. It is both a name and a title and a face, but not all that she is.

Although I do not adhere to the “all goddesses are one goddess” manner of thinking, I have come to experience the all-encompassing nature of she who I call Mother and the fluidity of her identity. As time went on, I found myself drawn towards the Vedas along with Buddhist-Hindu beliefs. I find myself catching glimpses of the Mother in the texts I read. What struck me immediately was how mercurial and synchronistic the gods and goddesses of the Hindu-Buddhist beliefs are. Soft polytheism, as one may call it, is a norm here. Deities are often avatars or aspects of other deities. In Hindu beliefs, Devi (whose name translates literally to means ‘goddess’) manifests herself in limitless forms, including that of Parvati, Kali, Amba, Lakshmi and Saraswati (Kinsley, 1988). In Shaktism (what could arguably be called a Buddhist-Hindu belief, associated with Tantric and Vajrayana Buddhism), the Divine Mother is approached as ten cosmic personalities: Kali, Tara, Tripura Sundari, Bhuvaneshvari, Bhairavi, Chhinnamasta, Dhumavati, Bagalamukhi, Matangi and Kamalatmika (Shin, 2018). 

“Seen as a principle, She deserves Her many names. For while it is perhaps true that these epithets indicate that more than one female deity has been absorbed into Her character and that some of these epithets may be ways of explaining otherwise puzzling cult iconography or ritual, Her names, together, do finally described what She is — the vital principle of the visible universe which has many faces: gracious, cruel, creative, destructive, loving, indifferent — the endless possibility of the active energy at the heart of the world.”

Grace and Mercy in Her Wild Hair: Selected Poems to the Mother Goddess

Just as the universe can be painfully paradoxical, so can she. Gracious, cruel, creative, destructive, loving, indifferent: she is like the world she embodies. Her destructive and transformative nature is present in the way Chhinnamasta decapitates herself, only for her blood to flow like fountains, feeding her attendants the way death nourishes life. Her awe-inspiring wrath and nightmarish terror can be seen in the void-darkness of Kali’s flesh, the demon-head trophy she holds in her hand and the garland of skulls wreathed around her neck. I also feel a sense of familiarity when I meditate upon Aditi, a Vedic goddess often associated with Hindu Devi, for she is the personification of the infinite and the cow-mother of many gods.

Aditi’s name means ‘unbounded’, which could be translated more easily to mean ‘freedom’ (Oldenberg, 2004). As the fetters of sin and suffering threaten man, the Adityas (the gods who are the children of Aditi) are those who control these fetters. Thus, one prays to them to free oneself of these binds, and Aditi – the mother of the celestial gods – is the personification of boundlessness (Oldenberg, 2004). Additionally, in the Vedas, many gods are described to be “belonging to the water, celestial, earthly, born of cow” or more specifically, “born from Aditi, from the waters, from the earth” (Oldenberg, 2004). Moreover, Aditi’s association with the cow extends to ritual, sacrificial texts that warn individuals “do not kill the sinless cow, the Aditi” (Oldenberg, 2004). What better animal to represent the Mother than the cow? Cows give milk, the sacred substance that nutrifies life. Similarly, rain within the Rigveda is often referred to as milk, for rain is what feeds and sustains the earth. In many other religions, the cow too is a Mother, such as Nut of the Kemetic religion who is represented as a cow, or the Auðumbla, the primeval cow of Nordic beliefs.

When I think of the mother, I am reminded of the Madonna–whore complex. The Mother is not one thing or another. She is not a helpless wife whose power is to be dismissed, nor is she a blameless victim of sexism whose occasional callousness is to be ignored. The mother is death as much as she is life, something I often noticed to be either demonized or sensationalized when it comes to the Western (mainstream) audience. I believe this poem excerpt encapsulates the ever-changing nature of the Mother very well:

“I understand now, Tara, I understand:
You’re a master at magic.
However a person conceives of You.
You willingly assume that form.”

Singing to the Goddess: Poems to Kali and Uma from Benga

The Mother, to me, is a Witch Goddess as much as the Witchfather is. It is in my experience that should you make an uneducated assumption, she will play to your conception of her and exceed whatever box you’ve placed her in. How, then, could anyone connect with the Mother whose identity is complex and contradictory? The easiest answer, as I have learnt through experience, is through meditating upon her names and epithets. It is an act I am familiar with as per my initial background in Hellenic polytheism. My dear friend, Red, has also written about the importance of names here. It is believed in many societies that a name of the person or an object was directly related to the essence of the person or object (Benard, 2002). The evocation of a name is efficacious because the name itself holds power. This is one of the reasons why the power of words has always played a vital role in Indian thought (Benard, 2002).

According to Benard (2002), a name is a linking reference point between the deity in their saguna (form aspect) and their nirguna (formless aspect). Tulasidasa, the great bhakti poet, has said that “… the name acts as an interpreter between the material and the immaterial forces of the deity, and is a guide and interpreter to both.” Thus, by reciting the names of a deity one can: (1) become more familiar with the deity; (2) be protected by the deity, (3) receive blessings and experience the deity in their saguna form; and (4) be directed to the transcendent deity without form (Benard, 2002). However, it should be noted that even if the names given in various hymns and prayers such as the namastotra are the important ones, a deity cannot be fully described by any number of names as they are nameless and limitless. Names are an important access point, but a deity should not be reduced to their names or titles either.

The recitation of the namastotra (a name-praise) is a simple ritual which can be performed by anyone who wants to be closer to the deity (Benard, 2002). Ideally, as one chants the names of the deity, one contemplates the deity and identifies with all the aspects of the deity. This is a personal and intimate ritual which requires nothing costly, except time and devotion (Benard, 2002). One such example of a text which praises the name of a deity is the Lalitasahasranama, the thousand names of the mother goddess Lalita. As Lalita is a manifestation of the Divine Mother (Shakti), and the text is therefore used to worship other goddesses such as Durga, Lakshmi, Parvati and Kali as well (Wikimedia Foundation, 2022). Within the text are names/titles/epithets that are often contradictory. For example “she who has a form (Moortha)” and “she who does not have a form (Amoortha)”. Some other epithets are benign such as “she who gives redemption (Mukundaa)” whilst others are more wrathful such as “she who is very angry (Prachanda)”. An English translation of the Lalitha Sahasranamam can be found online here.

There also exists an inherent magical power to the recitation of holy names. By reciting their names, deities are believed to aid a practitioner and to become their source of help, strength, and encouragement (Benard, 2002). Likewise in the Atharvaveda, there is a belief that uttering a deity’s name will bring the deity’s protection (Benard, 2002). Similarly, the recitation of the name has a consecratory power and imparts a blessing conferred by the deity (Benard, 2002). In many of the praises of names, such as the Lalitasahasranama, it is said reciting the names will free the practitioner from evil, that all accumulated sins will be destroyed, and one will achieve prosperity, eloquence and whatever one desires (Benard, 2002). The recitation of names can also be spoken alongside the usage of prayer beads. According to Benard (2002), in the Bhakti Cult of Ancient India, it is stated that “to chant therefore the holy names with the help of the sacred rosary of beads […] may be then viewed as the essence of worship and the culmination of worship.” Furthermore, the Lalitasaharanama states that if one “mesmerizes” ashes with the thousand names and applies these ashes over a sick person, the person will be healed. Or, if water “mesmerized” with the thousand names is poured over a possessed person, the possessor will flee at once (Benard, 2002).

In my own practice, the Mother is associated with Venus and the Moon. These two planets hold many similarities, for they are both feminine and are from the same nocturnal sect. The fact that Venus is dignified in Taurus whilst the Moon is exalted in Taurus is also no coincidence. Hence, I would ideally pick 49 or 81 names to recite and meditate upon (for the 7 is the number of Venus and 9 is of the Moon) depending on my needs and circumstance. If others wish to adapt this method to connect with the Mother — whoever she is, for your Mother and mine may not be the same — then I fully encourage it. Just remember that the Mother has infinite names, and countless forms and faces. I would like to end this little post with an excerpt from Bernard (2002) on chapter eight of the Mahabhagavata Purana that emphasizes the multiplicity of the Mother.

Here, as relayed by Bernard (2002), Sati is portrayed as a dutiful Hindu wife asking her husband’s permission to attend her father’s sacrifice. Since they were not invited by Daksa. Siva insisted that she should not go. However, Sati insisted that they did not need an invitation because she was Daksa’s daughter. Since all entreaties failed, Sati decided to remind Siva that she was no ordinary woman but a powerful being with awesome aspects.

Sati thought (to herself), "Siva had received me as his wife by my choice but today he censured and slighted me. I will show him my power."

Seeing the goddess with her lips trembling with anger and her eyes blazing like the conflagration at the end of an aeon, Siva closed his eyes. Suddenly she displayed her terrible teeth in her fierce mouth and laughed. Observing this, Siva became very afraid and trembled with an averted face. With much difficulty, he reopened his eyes and beheld a terrible form. Abandoning her golden clothes, Sati's skin became discolored. She was nude with disheveled hair, a lolling tongue and four arms; her black body was covered with sweat. Decorated with a garland of skulls, she was exceedingly fierce and had a frightful roar. On her head was a crescent moon and a crown as luminous as the rising sun. In this terrific form blazing with her own effulgence, she roared and stood in all her glory before Siva. Bewildered with fright, Siva forsook her and trembling with an averted face, he fled in all directions as if deluded. With a terrific laugh, Sati roared and said to him, "Don't be afraid."

Hearing these sounds, terrified Siva swiftly fled in all directions. Seeing her husband overpowered by fear, Sati became merciful and having only the desire to restrain him, she appeared in a transcendent form in each of the ten directions. In whichever direction Siva fled, she was there. Seeing one terrible form, Siva ran in another direction in order to escape but he was always confronted by another one. Siva remained still and shut his eyes. When he reopened them, he saw before him the Dark One (Syama, which is another name for Kali), whose smiling face was like a fully-opened lotus. Nude with large breasts, with fierce, wide eyes, disheveled hair and four arms, she blazed like ten million suns as she stood in the southern direction.

Seeing Syama, Siva, overcome with fear, asked, "Who are you, O Dark One? Where is my beloved Sati?"

Sati replied, "Siva, do you not see that I am Sati who is before you. Kali, Tara, Lokesikamala, Bhuvanesvari, Chinnamasta, Sodasi, Tripurasundari, Bagalamukhi, Dhumavati, and Matangi are my forms.”

If disrespected, the Mother is prone to wrath. She is, however, still capable of mercy and kindness. Her forms, although beautiful, are also terrifying. Her sexuality should not be erased either. She is everywhere and within everything, all-pervading in her existence. I may not ever truly understand her and all her complexities. All I know, without doubt, is that she is my Mother.

(Before I truly finish this post, I also wish to give a shout out to Upyrica whose relationship with the All-mother has inspired me greatly and gave me the courage to pursue my path as well. ❤ )


  1. Benard, E. A. (2002). Chinnamasta: The Aweful Buddhist and Hindu Tantric Goddess. Motilal Banarsidass. 
  2. Kinsley, D. (1988). Hindu Goddesses: Vision of the Divine Feminine in the Hindu Religious Traditions. University of California Press, ISBN 0-520-06339-2.
  3. Oldenberg, H. (2004). The Religion of the Veda. Motilal Banarsidass. 
  4. Sen, R. (1999). Grace and Mercy in Her Wild Hair: Selected Poems to the Mother Goddess. Hohm Press. 
  5. Shin, J. (2018). Change, Continuity and Complexity: The Mahavidyas in East Indian Sakta Traditions. London: Routledge. ISBN 978-1-138-32690-3.
  6. Wikimedia Foundation. (2022). Lalita Sahasranama. Wikipedia. Retrieved March 11, 2022, from;

Of Seas and Stars

Cosmology is often depicted in a form of duality: heaven and hell, the above and below, the chthonic and ouranic, and the sky and sea. Yet, throughout history, this has not always been the case. It is only after the popularization of Platonism did the distinction between the celestial and the chthonic, and between Theurgy and Goetia, became commonplace (Kadmus, 2018). The Olympians such as Zeus are associated with the skies and the heavens whereas the Titans such as Kronos and Gaia are associated with the earth and the underworld, creating a tension between the two seemingly opposing realms. This distinction, however, is flawed. Not only are there existing several deities – Dionysus and psychopomps such as Hermes, for example – who blurs and transgresses such duality, but the ancients often ‘understood the stars and constellations as maps of the Underworld’, a way of thinking that contradicts the common conceptions of the above and below (Kadmus, 2018).

Movement of the stars are believed to have occurred both in the heavens and in the netherworld. Gods of luminaries, such as Helios and the sun of which he is identified with, are believed to be both heavenly and underworldly (Kadmus, 2018). In the case of Helios, his domain over both the skies and the underworld is due to how the sun passes through the underworld at night, allowing it to share power over both realms (Kadmus, 2018). The later rise of Apollo would later change this attribution, as the sun and Apollo eventually takes on a more exclusively heavenly meaning (Kadmus, 2018). The myth of the sun journeying through the underworld is not unique to that of Ancient Greece either, but similar tales have existed both in Kemetism and the Vedic texts.

In Kemetism, it is believed that the sun makes a journey each night, descending into the primeval waters of Nun to be reborn again with the morning sunrise (Cheak, n.d.). As shown upon the sarcophagi and the royal tombs, the sun sets over the western horizon and returns each dawn on the eastern horizon, moving through the depths and traversing the twelve hours of the night (Cheak, n.d.). Likewise, Agni – who is identified with the fiery sun in the Rigveda – is described to have been ‘born from the waters’ in a way that could be interpreted as the sun’s birth from the east in the morning (Matsumura, 2014). In the Atharvaveda, this is further elaborated in how Agni becomes Varuna in the evening, a deity who dwells within the Netherworld and is associated with the direction of the west (where the sun sets), the waters, death, and the moon (Matsumura, 2014). The Kausitaki Brahmana states that the sun, ‘having entered the waters, becomes Varuna’, emphasizing again the water as being the locale in which the sun sinks from the above into the below, and rises up each day to return back into the sky (Matsumura, 2014).

Both in Kemetism and the Vedas, there is a belief in the waters the source of all life and creation. In Kemetism, Nu (later, Nun) is the personification of the primeval waters, the element that sustains, generates and animates all things (Cheak, n.d.). Similarly, in the Vedas it is believed that in the beginning there was only water, of which a small clod of earth rose to the surface where it floated about and became the world as we know it (Kuiper, 1975). In Vedic literature such as the Srimad-Bhagavatam, the entire universe is regarded as an ‘ocean of space’, an ocean with innumerable planets where each planet is called a dvipa, or island (Thompson, 2004). It is also interesting to note that in Vedic religion prior to the rise of Indra, Varuna holds the traditional title of the ‘lord of the waters’, and it is these primeval waters that Varuna holds domain over (Kuiper, 1975). The fact that Varuna also resides in the netherworld, at the roots of the Vedic world tree, either near to or within the subterranean cosmic waters, also suggests a chthonic quality to the waters (Kuiper, 1975). Hence, it could be inferred that much as the waters form the ocean of which celestial stars float upon, the waters also underpin the deepest crevices of the netherworld, perhaps being the substance that connects the ouranic to the chthonic. 

Water, like the sun which sinks into and rises from it, is associated with both life and death, along with the rebirth that happens through drowning and deification. Drowning rites within the Greek Magical Papyri reflects the belief of the late periods of Ancient Egypt whereby the process of ‘divinsation by drowning’ was formally recognized. (Cheak, n.d.). However, these rites were not done as a common means of funerary rituals, but rather for the initiatic purpose of encountering death as a means to apotheosis (Cheak, n.d.). The act of drowning as a means of deification mirrors the cyclical rebirth of the sun-god who  descends nightly into the watery depths of Nun to be reborn again with the morning sunrise, as previously discussed (Cheak, n.d.). Correspondingly, the Shatapatha Brahmana also explains that stars ‘are the lights of righteous men in Svar-galoka, and that the rays of the sun are their souls’ (Shushan, 2011). Here, in Vedic beliefs, the sun’s rays are also equated with the gods, thus associating the dead with the divine (Shushan, 2011). Moreover, the sun is considered to be the soul’s final destination, causing one ‘to die  again and again in yonder world’, which again associates rebirth and reincarnation with the sun’s nightly  cyclical journey through the sky and underworld (Shushan, 2011).

The netherworld and the ouranic heavens may not be worlds apart either, as a descent into the underworld may very well lead to an ascent up to the celestial heavens. Orphic gold tablets, which were thought to have been buried with initiates in order to guide them in the afterlife, have multiple lines of inscription upon them that refers to the act of jumping into milk (Graf & Johnston, 2013).

“You have become a god instead of a mortal. A kid you fell into milk.”

“Bull, you jumped into milk. / Quickly, you jumped into milk. / Ram, you fell into milk.”

The phrase ‘you have become a god instead of a mortal’ most likely alludes to some kind of post-mortem transcendence or ascension, accomplished through jumping or falling into milk, much like the act of deification through drowning in Kemetic rituals. Graf & Johnston (2013) discussed how the milk may have been a reference to the Milky Way, reflecting how Orphic initiates are ‘children of starry Sky’ who will return to the sky to experience their well-earned bliss. Yet, Graf & Johnston (2013) views this to be contradictory to other signs in the tablet that points to ‘a subterranean location for the initiates’ paradise’. However, it could be argued that the contradiction only exists if the celestial skies and the subterranean afterlife are considered to be two separate locales. In early Vedic literature, Yama (the god of death) alongside Varuna, is associated with both the upper and lower realms (Shushan, 2011). In the Rigveda, it can be inferred that the underworld exists within the sky, while two words for ‘heaven’ – Paraloká and asáuloká – refer to the underworld in the Jaiminiya Brahmana (Shushan, 2011). 

Is it a coincidence that the lord who rules over the primeval waters of creation – later delegated to ruling the night, and the rivers, seas, oceans and rain – also holds domain over the abode of the dead? According to Bodewitz (2019), Varuna presides over the dwelling place of the dead called the ‘stone-house’ in the netherworld. This stone house, located at the depth of the cosmic mountain (sometimes described to be a cosmic tree in other texts) is not only where the dead will arrive to greet Yama and Varuna, but also where the sun sinks to when it sets at night, hence becoming the ‘the sun in the rock’ (Bodewitz, 2019). In my opinion, the fact that Varuna holds domain over both water and the dead makes perfect sense. Water has always been associated with death in many cultures, from the Greek to Thai to Slavic to Celtic.

In Greek mythology, the river Styx separates the land of the living from that of the dead. Likewise, there existed a similar belief in the Lanna kingdom of Thailand regarding a river that the dead are required to cross in order to reach the afterlife (Nimmanahaeminda, 2005). This river is also present in Slavic beliefs, where the realm of Veles is located in a field in the far west behind the water that separates the worlds of life and death (Kajkowski, 2015). The location of the realm of the dead being in the west, a direction where the sun sets at, is an intriguing point. Moreover, the Slavs originally did not differentiate between Heaven and Hell as there existed only one ‘otherworld’ surrounding ‘our world’, located ‘somewhere behind the waters (especially the Milky Way) in the form of an abyss which pulled one inside by means of a vortex’ (Kajkowski, 2015). The commonality also extends to Celtic beliefs regarding the Otherworld. Access to the Otherworld could be gained by many means with some examples being through the fairy mounds or by going across or under water, especially that of the western sea, which was considered to be one of the boundaries of the Otherworld (Koch & Holley, 2006).

To conclude, water has always acted as gateways to other realms– realms which may not be so far apart, after all. A descent through drowning, whether into milk or water, may lead to an ascent into the stars. As the stars are maps of the underworld and the underworld exists within the sky, the upper and lower realms are connected or may even be one and the same. The sun, which sinks into the sea in the west each night only to rise in the east each morning represents the cycle of katabasis that souls may go through. Several implications therefore arise from this revelation. First, is how it may not always be beneficial to harshly distinguish gods and spirits as being strictly ouranic or chthonic. Secondly, is the implication that a journey to the netherworld or the celestial world may be reached through traveling to either realms. Finally, is the fact that waters are doorways to both of these places. Although some may wish to differentiate between the primeval waters of creation and the mundane waters of the earth, it is my personal view that all water – whether it be from the rain, the rivers, the seas or the ocean – are sacred, and holds the capacity to act as conduits and become crossroads in their own right. Water is therefore a crucial component when one wishes to engage in necromantic, chthonic or stellar workings.


  1. Bodewitz, H. (2019). Life after death in the Ṛgveda Saṁhitā. Vedic Cosmology and Ethics, 94–110.;
  2. Cheak, A. (n.d.). Waters Animating and Annihilating. Aaron Cheak. Retrieved February 13, 2022, from;
  3. Graf, F., & Johnston, S. I. (2013). Ritual Texts for the Afterlife: Orpheus and the Bacchic Gold Tablets. Routledge. 
  4. Kadmus. (2018). True to the Earth: Pagan Political Theology. Gods & Radicals Press. 
  5. Kajkowski, K. (2015). Slavic Journeys to the Otherworld: Remarks on the Eschatology of Early Medieval Pomeranians. Studia Mythologica Slavica, 18, 15.;
  6. Koch, J. T., & Holley, A. (2006). Celtic Culture: A Historical Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. 
  7. Kuiper, F. B. J. (1975). The Basic Concept of Vedic Religion. History of Religions, 15(2), 107–120.
  8. Matsumura, K. (2014). Mythical Thinkings: What Can We Learn From Comparative Mythology? Countershock Press. 
  9. Nimmanahaeminda, P. (2005). Water lore: Thai-tai folk beliefs and literature. MANUSYA, 8(3), 27–39.  
  10. Shushan, G. (2011). Afterlife conceptions in the Vedas. Religion Compass, 5(6), 202–213.;
  11. Thompson, R. L. (2004). Vedic Cosmography and Astronomy. Motilal Banarsidass. 

Thai Serpent Beliefs: Naga, Phaya Nak and Ngeuak


The naga, revered and feared in Thai as the phaya nak or the nak, is a serpent with a variety of depictions ranging from a river serpent and bringer of rain to being a protector of Buddha or a benevolent deity. There are two main schools of thought that attempt to explain the origins of the nāga: the Indianized school that argues that naga beliefs stem from Indian mythology, and the local school that argues that indigineous serpent worship had existed in Thailand long probably before Brahmanism and Theravada Buddhism became prominent in Southeast Asia (Chang, 2017). In this essay, the word phaya nak will be used to refer to the Thai interpretation of the Indian naga, which in certain contexts may be used interchangeably due to how the naga has been arguably syncretized with the local Thai indigenous serpent beliefs. Other names of the phaya nak such as the ngeuak will also be discussed.

Naga: Through the Lens of Religion

It is unsurprising that Thailand is hugely influenced by Brahmanistic and Hindu beliefs, due to its proximity with India and the fact that Thailand used to be a part of the Khmer Empire whose primary religion is Hinduism and later Buddhism. Typically, if one were to stroll through the Buddhist temples located throughout Thailand, one would see countless sculptures of phaya nak adorning the roofs and stairways of the temples. The depiction of the phaya nak as guardians of holy temples is believed to be inspired from the Makara, the holy mount of Varuna from Vedic mythology (Chang, 2017). However, the Thai interpretation of the Makara was made to resemble a crocodile-like serpent, especially during the Sukhothai period when Makara ceramic statues were sculpted with two horns, holding a pearl in their mouth similar to that of the Chinese dragons (Chang, 2017). The portrayal of the naga as a protective force continues in the Khmer depiction of Buddha in the 7th – 13th centuries. Here, Buddha is seated atop of the naga’s serpentine coils in a meditative state, and this sculptural style could be later seen in Thailand after the Sukhothai kingdom was established as the first Thai state (Chang, 2017). 

Myths of the phaya nak when told through Buddhist lens often portray them in a benevolent light. A famous tale is the one that led to the depiction of the phaya nak protecting Buddha. In the Khuddaka Nikaya, it is written that there was a great rainstorm that lasted seven days, causing Mucalinda – the Naga King – to encircle Buddha’s body seven times with his coils and spread his great cobra-like hood over Buddha’s head to shelter Buddha from the rain. After the storm ceased, Mucalinda transformed his appearance into that of a youth and venerated Buddha (Chang, 2017). An oral tale taken from Northeast Thailand also speaks of the naga as the embodiment of Phra Upakut, a deity who brings and protects against evil. In this tale, the naga is the son of a mermaid and Buddha, perhaps pointing towards the naga’s origins as a water serpent (Chang, 2017). Another oral tale also from Northeast Thailand portrays a naga as being devout, transforming himself into a human being as he wishes to be ordained as a monk, explaining why newly ordained monks are called nak (Chang, 2017). Therefore, it can be seen that within a Buddhist worldview, the naga is a force of good, much like Buddha.

Naga: Through Indigenous Lens

It became clear that when studying folklore surrounding the phaya nak in Thailand, there appears to be two types of tales: myths of naga as incorporated into Buddhist beliefs and stories of the phaya nak when viewed through local, indiginous lens. The difference in the two depictions of the naga is stark, as rather than showing naga as an enlightened being or a being seeking enlightenment, the phaya nak is capable of love, anger and even destructive wrath. A tale from Northeast Thailand is that of Padaeng and Nang Ai (Chang, 2017). It revolves around the Naga Prince Suthonak who fell in love with the human Princess Nang Ai, causing him to shapeshift into an albino squirrel wearing a jewel around its neck to attract the princess’ attention. However, the squirrel was shot by a poisoned arrow and later eaten by the people of the princess’ city who shared its meat. The death of the naga prince was avenged by his father, the Naga King Thao Suwan Phangkhi, who killed all the people within the city. 

Intriguingly, tales of the naga wishing to marry human royals are also common outside of Thailand, including in countries such as Cambodia who too was part of the Khmer Empire. This can be seen in the story of the Khmer king who was expected to mate each night with a nine headed serpent princess to continue the royal lineage and ensure the prosperity of the kingdom (Tu, 2009). There also exists a Khmer tale of how Princess Nang Neak, daughter of King Naga, was married to Prince Preah Thong. In the 13th century, the Thais adapted this story into their own legends, claiming that the first king of the Sukhothai Kingdom has lineage from the naga princess (Tu, 2009).

There also exists local folklore where the naga is an ancestor of races of humans. In a legend by the Tai Lu people – an ethnic group of China, Laos, Thailand, Burma and Vietnam – which speaks of how the Tai race originated from the water serpent (Tu, 2009). Whilst fishing in the Mekong river near her home in Southern Yunnan, a young woman named Nang Sa touched what she believed to be a log floating in the water. Later, she gave birth to ten baby boys of which a naga king claimed to be his sons. Frightened, Nang Sa tried to escape with the children but her youngest son failed to escape. Thus, the naga king found the boy and bathed him in the Mekong river. When he grew up, the boy was appointed as the leader of his tribe and their descendents became what is now known as the Tais, the ancestors of the Thai and Laotian people (Tu, 2009).

What all these stories about the naga have in common is the naga’s ability to shapeshift. As aforementioned, in tales told from a Buddhist worldview, the naga shapeshifts into a human form to become ordained as a monk. In stories lacking overt Buddhist influences, the naga shapeshifts into an animal to attract the attention of its human love interest. Even in the Traibhumikatha, it is written that there are two different kinds of naga: the ‘water-born’, and the ‘land-born’ (Ruang, 1987). The latter can change their form when they are on land but are unable to shapeshift in the water. Vice versa, the water-born naga can transform themselves in the water, but not on land (Ruang, 1987). Strangely enough, neither kind of naga can shapeshift in the place where it sleeps nor when they are sloughing their skins. It is also stated that they can take forms as angelic as the devyata, with female nagas becoming as graceful as the female inhabitants of the celestial heavens (Ruang, 1987). When they are hunting the land in search of food, they can transform into whichever form most suits their needs, such as water snakes, cobras, green pit vipers or other forest beasts (Ruang, 1987).

Case Study: Chiang Saen Basin 

If one wishes to study how the naga is perceived through indigenous perspectives in contemporary times, then a good case study is that of the naga beliefs in the Chiang Saen Basin. Before the city was named Chiang Saen, the basin area was home to the town of Yonok which the locals believed was built by a prince who was assisted by a naga lord disguised in human form (Moonkham, 2017). The town ‘Yonok’ was named after the aforementioned naga lord, and after five hundred years of prosperity the town faced destruction by the hands of the same naga, as a consequence of the immoral deeds of its king (Moonkham, 2017). In a study conducted by Moonkham (2017), interviewees have described the story of Yonok’s fall as the following:

“People believed later it was a naga who escaped from their world and came and played with water up here. It transformed itself into a big white eel […] after they found the white eel, the people were surprised about its size as it seemed unusually humongous […] then they killed it, and after they killed it, they dragged it along the place where it became the stream (Huay Mae Rak) […] the place where it was killed became a river (Kok River) […]  the place where it was distributed became another river (Lua River) […] and the place where they found it became a village (Bann Mae Ha).”

“The smell of cooking the eel went over every house in the town and they all ate it, […] except one widow named Mae Bua Khiaw who lived isolated by herself on one of the hills outside the town. Nobody came to offer her anything. Then one young gentleman came and asked her what was happening and what was the smell of the food they were cooking and eating. Mae Bua Khiaw told him that ‘they caught the big white eel from the river today and distributed it to everyone, but nobody would come and offer me anything, plus I am too old to go anywhere,’ […] Then the young gentleman told her to not feel despair and suggested to her that no matter how loud or terrible the noise she heard, she should not at all come out and the widow agreed, […] Later that night she heard noises very loud like a falling sky and the earth quaked, […] and in the morning, she saw the whole town disappear, only the big lake in the middle of the town, […] That young gentleman was the Phanthu Nakkharat, the same nak who built the town.”

Several implications could be inferred from this tale. First, is that the nagas are not creatures who are of this world, but rather lived elsewhere and would occasionally come up through the waters to interact with the world of humans– where the nagas come from will be discussed later in the essay. Second, is how the rivers that formed the lands are actually parts of the naga’s body. This actually reflects the local folklore of Chiang Saen where it is believed that ‘all rivers, waterways, and lands, are either under the protection of or were created by the naga’ (Moonkham, 2017). Not only do rivers meander like snakes through the lands, resembling the slithering of nagas, but it is also believed that nagas who created the waterways use the rivers to travel in and out of their underworld which is why they act as protectors of such waterways (Moonkham, 2017). The local beliefs of the Chiang Saen basin can therefore be deemed to be a very animistic view.

Additionally, there also exists a belief that ‘to know, say, or in any way use the name of the naga is offensive to them if it has not been allowed’ (Moonkham, 2017). Because of this, rather than mentioning the names of nagas, the majority of the river names around the Chiang Saen basin are named after characteristics or actions related to the naga, such as Kham (which means ‘gold’), Rak (which means ‘to drag’), and Kok (which means ‘to kill’) (Moonkham, 2017). Not only are the naga the owners of the waterways, but they are also the owners of the land too. Prior to striking the first pole of a house into the ground, certain ritual ceremonies must be performed to ask for the naga’s permission and the structure of the house itself must follow the patterns of naga movements and positions (Moonkham, 2017).  Likewise, the naga is believed to be a predictor and powerful controller of rain, leading to ceremonies every April that worships the naga in order to receive water for crops (Moonkham, 2017). Hence, there is also a specific shrine erected in honor of the naga in Chiang Saen basin (Moonkham, 2017). 

Nagas are also capable of picking out humans to be their mediums. Mae Khwan, a medium interviewed by Moonkham (2017), was an orphan in destitute and working at a temple in the Chiang Saen basin when the naga possessed her. The possession caused many people to visit her in order to ask her to predict the rainfall or to tell if someone was sick, of which she was accurate in foreseeing. Similarly, Mae Wanna is also a devout Buddhist working at another temple who could communicate with the naga (Moonkham, 2017). She claims to have met Phor Pu Phanthu Nakkharat – the naga lord Phanthu – through a dream. She agreed to be the naga’s medium on the condition that she did not have to be possessed. In her interview with Moonkham (2017), Mae Wanna explained how the naga sometimes communicate through a yellow, gem-like oval-shaped stone which she allowed the interviewer to touch during their conversation. She believes that the reason the naga came to her is to help guide the populace through her so the calamity that befell Yonok will not happen again.

What is most interesting is the belief that the nagas are ancestors of the people. Similar to the aforementioned folklore of the Mekong where the son of the naga king is the ancestor of the Tai people, Mae Wanna also believes that she is a descendant of the naga. She believes that the people who come to Chiang Saen have some connection with Phor Pu Phanthu Nakkharat, that they all ‘somewhat relate to him or the naga’ in general (Moonkham, 2017). She claims that Phor Pu Phanthu Nakkharat is the one who brought them here, even the reason that the interviewer Moonkham came to visit too. In her own words: ‘We are the children of the naga, […] this land is the land of him, he built it and he destroyed it because some people offended him and became immoral’ (Moonkham, 2017). 

Her belief reflects the views of the Abbot of the Phrachao Lanthong temple who stated that:

“The naga is with us since the beginning of time, […] especially with people of the Tai ethnic groups, […] they embedded this belief in their blood since the emergence of the Tai people […] it cannot be separated from us, […] it is like our individual self.”

Many oral traditions from the Chiang Saen basin are believed to have emerged from spiritual beliefs which existed prior to the introduction of Buddhism. This is supported by how the abbot of the Phrachao Lanthong temple claims that naga worship was practiced by locals long before around 200 BC when Buddhism arrived in the region (Moonkham, 2021). Likewise, it could also be argued that the term ‘naga’ was developed later on as attempts were made to try and describe the mythic serpent in a Buddhist context, suggesting that the existence of the naga as we know it today may have emerged from ancient serpent cults (Moonkham, 2021). Archeological evidence in support of this theory can be seen in the painted earthenware pots discovered around the Siam peninsula. In places such as Ban Chieng, Udonthani, Ban Kao, and Kanchanaburi, painted earthenware pots depicting many wave-like serpent designs decorated around the pottery body were found (Tu, 2009). These findings indicate the possibility that serpent cult worship was possibly practiced by the primitive society in the Siam peninsula during the Metal Age around about 2000–3000 years ago (Tu, 2009).

Naga: Chthonic or Celestial

Regardless of what the nagas are, there is still the question of where they are from. In Thai folklore, it is believed that nagas live in the ‘underworld’, known in Thai as Muang Badan (Misaengruthkul, 2019). This is similar to Indian legends, where the underworld is said to be mostly submerged underwater and is split into seven sections, with one of the sections (‘Nakalok’) being ruled by higher-leveled nagas (Misaengruthkul, 2019). This underworld – although underwater – is still situated above the ‘narok’, a realm which could be loosely described to be hell, known commonly in Buddhist cosmology as ‘nakara’ (Misaengruthkul, 2019). The main difference in the belief held in Thailand is that the underworld is not clearly split into seven sections. Instead, the underworld is home to a variety of otherworld beings, including the naga. Not only are the nagas believed to dwell within the underworld, but they also have several servants in the form of water Prai, mermaids, aquatic creatures, reptiles, venomous animals and all kinds of snakes (Misaengruthkul, 2019). Regardless, the location of the Thai version of the underworld is still situated above the narok/naraka (Misaengruthkul, 2019).

Additionally, Muang Badan also serves as an endless water source that keeps the Mekong River and all other rivers from drying out (Tu, 2009). This also mirrors the belief of locals at Chiang Saen, who claim that there are ‘six naga holes in total around Chiang Saen’, with one of them being ‘under the water by the Mekong river bank’ (Moonkham, 2021). Presumably, these naga holes located under the water are the entrances to the underworld, drawing a parallel to the Indian belief that the underworld is mostly submerged underwater. The location of the entrances to the underworld are implied to be deemed sacred too, as the locals at Chiang Saen declined to tell Moonkham (2021) where exactly the holes are located as ‘it’s not supposed to be known by everyone’, only that two of the wholes are on the Thai side of the Mekong River whilst four of them are on the Laos side. Therefore, these folk beliefs only support the association that nagas have with water and the chthonic underwater worlds.

It is only from a Buddhist worldview in which the naga gains a more celestial attribute. According to the Buddhist beliefs, nagas are servants of Thao Wirupak (also known as Virūpākṣa) – one of the Four Heavenly Kings who guards the west direction of the cardinal directions – and are tasked with protecting the teachings of Buddha (Misaengruthkul, 2019). According to the Pali Canon, it is said that the Four Heavenly Kings dwell within the Cāturmahārājika heaven, one of the worlds of the celestial devas of Buddhist cosmology. This religious depiction of the naga as dwelling up in the heavens is a clear departure from local folklore of nagas dwelling down beneath the waters in the underworld.

Naga: Ngeuak and Phi Ngeuak

Another interesting aspect to note about folklore surrounding the naga belief in Thailand is how the term ngeuak is used interchangeably with nak. In the Chiang Saen basin, the naga is also known as the phi ngeuak (Moonkham, 2021). In places like Laos, similar belief exists where the ngeuak are feared and believed to be ‘fickle and unpredictable, and must be placated by people’ (Hashimoto, 2008). Some Laotians also believe that those who drowned in rivers died due to being eaten by the ngeuak (Hashimoto, 2008). Moreover, there is a legend in Luang Prabang which stated that in primitive times, the kingdom was populated by two ngeuak, who became the wives of the king by transforming themselves into human figures (Hashimoto, 2008). This greatly mirrors the Thai and Cambodian tales, mentioned earlier in the essay, of nagas marrying royals. The question of what exactly is a ngeauk is difficult to answer, but the Lexicon of the Royal Institute B.E. 2525 provides several meanings of the word, one of which means ‘snake’ in the old Tai language, similar to the usual depiction of nagas as serpent (Nimmanahaeminda, 2005). Likewise, in the Oath of Allegiance by the Ritual Water Curse (Ongkarn Chaeng Nam), the word ngeuak was sometimes used to mean naga (Nimmanahaeminda, 2005).

It should also be noted that the ngeuak are sometimes called phi ngeuak, as is the case in the Chiang Saen basin. The prefix phi can be roughly translated to mean spirit or ghost. Just as in Laotian beliefs, there are also folklore in Thailand where if someone died by drowning inexplicably (such as drowning in spite of being a proficient swimmer or drowning in shallow water), it is believed that they were killed by the phi ngeuak (Thongtow, 2019). Water spirits known as phi naam are born from the spirit of those who drowned, and are sometimes called the phi ngeuak as well (Thongtow, 2019). Much more menacingly, it is believed that the ngeuak would drink blood, whether human blood or cow blood or that from other animals (Thongtow, 2019).

Perhaps, there is an element common across all folktales that connects the belief regarding the naga and the phi ngeuak, and that element is water. The naga dwells within the waterways, same as the ngeuak who dwells within bodies of water and sometimes causing death through drowning, allowing the drowned to become a phi ngeuak. Water is often associated with death and bodies of water are regarded as the portal between realms, a famous myth being that of the river Styx that separates the land of the living from the land of the dead. There is a similar belief in the Lanna kingdom of Thailand, whereupon funerary rites involve placing a small packet of cooked rice into a shoulder bag laid in the coffin (Nimmanahaeminda, 2005). This is done in order to aid the dead in crossing the bridge over the river to the opposite side, as there would be no return once the dead person reached the other side, and scholars have found that this belief existed among the Tai in general, being shared by the ethnic races of the Tai-Yai and the Tai-Lue (Nimmanahaeminda, 2005). Through water, there is perhaps a connection between the venerated naga and the much feared phi ngeuak who sometimes behaves like a restless dead.


In another potential essay, I would like to draw attention to the similarities between Thai phaya nak and the fairy folklore of the western world. From the watery underworld of Celtic folklore to the fae-esque belief that ‘to know, say, or in any way use the name of the naga is offensive to them if it has not been allowed’, to the parallel between fairy consorts and naga marriage, to the naga’s shapeshifting abilities and their capricious nature, there is a lot to be potentially discussed in this topic. Nonetheless, all that is certain is that the nature of the naga or the phaya nak is a complicated one, made even more perplexing when taking into account local folk beliefs regarding the ngeuak or the phi ngeuak.


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  2. Tu, P.A. (2009). The Significance of Naga in Thai Architectural and Sculptural Ornaments.
  3. Ruang, L. P. (1987). Traibhumikatha: the story of the three planes of existence. Association of Southeast Asian Nations. 
  4. Moonkham, P. (2017). Mythscape: An Ethonohistorical Archeology of Space and Narrative of the Naga in Northern Thailand
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