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Middle Pillar: The Balance Between Mind and Magic: Formerly the Middle Pillar (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 1. April 1998

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Synopsis

This edition of Regardie's 1938 work introduces a psychological perspective in magic and occultism while giving clear directions on how to perform Qabalistic Cross, the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram, and the Middle Pillar exercise.

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Francis I. Regardie, born in London, England, November 17, 1907; died in Sedona, Arizona, March 10, 1985. Came to the United States in August 1921, educated in Washington D.C. and studied art in school in Washington and Philadelphia. Returned to Europe in 1928 at the invitation of Aleister Crowley to work as his secretary and study with him. Returned to London as secretary to Thomas Burke 1932-34, and during that time wrote A Garden of Pomegranates and The Tree of Life.

In 1934 he was invited to join the Order of the Golden Dawn, Stella Matutina Temple, during which time he wrote The Middle Pillar and The Art of True Healing, and did the basic work for The Philosopher's Stone.

Returning to the United States in 1937 he entered Chiropractic College in New York, Graduating in 1941, and published The Golden Dawn. Served in the U.S. Army 1942-1945, and then moved to Los Angeles where he opened a chiropractic practice and taught psychiatry. Upon retirement in 1981, he moved to Sedona.

During his lifetime, he studied psychoanalysis with Dr. E. Clegg and Dr. J. L. Bendit, and later studied psychotherapy under Dr. Nandor Fodor. His training encompassed Freudian, Jungian and Reichian methods.

Both Chic and Tabatha are Chief Adepts of the Golden Dawn as re-established by Israel Regardie. The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, of which Chic is the G.H. Imperator, and Tabatha is the G.H. Cancellaria, is an international Order with Temples in several countries. The Ciceros have written numerous books on the Golden Dawn, Tarot, and Magic, including Self-Initiation into the Golden Dawn Tradition, The Essential Golden Dawn, Tarot Talismans, and updates, annotations and introductions to classic Israel Regardie texts such as The Philosopher's Stone, The Middle Pillar and A Garden of Pomegranates.

Both Chic and Tabatha are Chief Adepts of the Golden Dawn as re-established by Israel Regardie. The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, of which Chic is the G.H. Imperator, and Tabatha is the G.H. Cancellaria, is an international Order with Temples in several countries. The Ciceros have written numerous books on the Golden Dawn, Tarot, and Magic, including Self-Initiation into the Golden Dawn Tradition, The Essential Golden Dawn, Tarot Talismans, and updates, annotations and introductions to classic Israel Regardie texts such as The Philosopher's Stone, The Middle Pillar and A Garden of Pomegranates.

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Format: Taschenbuch
This book proved itself to be far more informative and incisive than I expected it to be, thanks (largely) to the annotations and extra chapters provided by Chic and Sandra Cicero.
Regardie's style is often dated and ponderous. The Cicero's have managed to give it a sense of life and immediacy that it would otherwise have lacked. They deserve full marks for this, and also for the additional detail they have added to Regardie's ritual descriptions. As far as I can tell, and from the reading and practice I have done, they now stand equal to any currently in print.
The only problem I have with this book stems from the question 'why re-release it?' I think it would be fair to say that all the information in The Middle Pillar is available in other sources and generally in a more detailed form. For instance, if you want to make a start in ceremonial work then pick up Modern Magick by Donald Michael Kraig, and if you require an introduction to Cabala then buy Paths of Wisdom by John Michael Greer. Both of those books will take you further than just about anything by Regardie (discounting his full order documents and complete GD system) so there is little point in any beginning practitioner starting here.
Still, the book is an enjoyable exercise in 'reading back' over the history of magick in the last century. Although it no longer counts as required reading, it does carry the authentic flavour of a period when magick (excitingly) found itself rising to public attention and was being taken seriously by studious chaps in luxurious, Victorian drawing rooms.
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Format: Taschenbuch
I love the original version of the Middle Pillar. It made "magick" a real form of "yoga" for me. Doing the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram is great, and the Middle Pillar itself really charges up your "aura" with energy. The feeling of energy is sort of like the feeling of qi energy from doing tai qi or qi gung, but at a different "level."The last edition of this work (that was by Regardie alone) had a nice cover with the spheres superimposed over the body, which really helped the visualization.
The problem I have with this new edition is that Regardie tends to run a little long-winded, and his style is a little dated (originally written in the '30s!). However the original book was mercifully short. The Ciceros have added their own even more long-winded material. To top it off, they are somewhat scholarly to the point of distraction (but at least they edited Regardie's material to conform the spellings of the Sephiroth to traditional Western occult usage). The point of the Middle Pillar is, DO IT. Not study it. (I also have a personal irk. They are strongly Golden Dawn in outlook, and Judaeo-Christian on top of that, while some of the best works out there today are in the Thelemic line of practice. It's as though they are afraid to mention the "Crowley" word, although Regardie's main if not only magickal influence was Crowley.)
On the other hand, as a reference work, the Ciceros footnotes to the original Regardie material are sometimes excellent. Also, some of their additional material is truly helpful, although probably overwhelming for a beginner.
My advice for a beginner (and I have a friend in this predicament) is to just read chapters 3, 4 and 5 at first, since these lay out the actual practice.
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Format: Taschenbuch
The Middle Pillar by Israel Regardie is one of the best books on mysticism I have ever read. As a student of western occultism, I have read many books containing spiritual enlightenment. Typically these books give you very brief explanations of their rituals or spiritual thoughts. However, this is where the Middle Pillar stands out. This book gives you a wealth of information on one of Western Kabbalah's most important rituals. Not only do you learn the ritual extremely thouroughly, but you are introduced to the very foundation of Western Occultism and how it relates to the psychology of the mind.
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Format: Taschenbuch
This is an excellent book. The Cicero's have made Regardie's classic text even better by expanding on every point made by Regardie in the original. They have added extensive footnotes, several rituals, exercises and meditations, and a comprehensive glossary of psychological and magical terms that makes this book twice as valuable to magicians of the 21st century. I can't help but agree with Golden Dawn Historian R. A. Gilbert's assessment of the Ciceros and their work which is printed on the back cover of THE MIDDLE PILLAR. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in Magick and the Kabbalah.
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