The Humours - choler, phlegm, blood, and black bile - underlie the very Elements of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth: the foundational organisational principles of a magical cosmos in European occult philosophy and sorcerous practice. They are the corollaries of those Elements found in the bodies of all mammals, and formed the dominant medical as well as magical model used to explain how animals (especially humans) interacted with their environment in a living web of being. The ideas and techniques of the Humours are not simply old outdated bad medicine, but have much to still teach us about living a balanced and connected magical life.
Most immediately, the Four Humours form the basis of the zodiacal personality typology. The Fiery choleric humours sparking hotheaded boldness and rage; Watery phlegmatic humours flooding us with reflective empathy and anxiety; Airy sanguine humours mixing and delighting in joy and lust; and Earthy melancholy humours casting a shadow of deep sombre and sorrowful cogitations. But this course will seek to not only offer a foundational understanding of the Four Humours, it will teach how to diagnose humoural imbalance in oneself and others, through study of behaviour, mood and dream as much as nativity charts.
It will also teach how to go about re-balancing these abundances and deficits, again, in ourselves and in others. We will investigate practical techniques and ritual actions to utilise the sympathies and antipathies of elemental virtues to heat, cool, wet, and dry in order to heal and harmonise. We will also discuss the very real elemental properties of food, drink and other botanical materia magica for their therapeutic power in ritual diet.
Finally we will explore various forms of operative spell-craft using the Humours: from discussions of the "evil eye" to the power of breath - by which the Humours and passions may be harnessed to infuse things with elemental power. This course will present means of employing the Prayers of the Elementals for drawing and directing potent elemental energies and spirits. Finally, we will explore how all this humoural theory and practice can be rooted in deepening understanding of the sanctifying fire, purifying water, fumigating smoke and blessed salt; and overall improving the efficacy of our consecrations - the very rites by which we empower our tools and ourselves.
The course is taught by Dr. Alexander Cummins, who is a professional diviner, consultant sorcerer and academically trained historian of magic and the emotions. His doctoral studies examined the occult philosophy and practical magical applications of humoural theory and early modern sorcerous approaches to the passions.
Humoural figures after Cesare Ripa's Complexions in his 'Iconologia, or, Moral Emblems'
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All text and images ©2013-2019 by WOLF & GOAT
Four Humours Foundation Course:
The Four Elements Embodied in
the Western Magical Tradition
taught by Dr. Alexander Cummins
Dates: Tuesday, April 9th, 2019 (Part 1)
Tuesday, April 16th, 2019 (Part 2)
Tuesday, April 23th, 2019 (Part 3)
Tuesday, April 30th, 2019 (Part 4)
Time: 9:00 to 10:30 pm, EDT
Cost: $150- payment due at time of registration
Platform: Webex Limit: 21 students
Upon purchase, you will be contacted via email to complete regristration, and to receive necesary further information. Make sure to enter your preferred email address at checkout.
Video recordings will be made of the live classes and distributed to those enrolled.