"Take two twigs of the juniper tree.
Cross them, cross them, cross them.
Look in the coals of the Fire of Azrael "-Dion Fortune, "The Sea Priestess"
In the Sea Priestess, Dion Fortune refers to the Fire of Azrael, built of Cedar, Sandalwood and Juniper. It makes a particularly beautiful fire and the perfumed smoke is wonderful.
A fire thus built is said to open the gates of vision and allow a window on the past. I was fortunate enough to have access to these woods, once upon a time, and found the whole process fascinating.
“She took the poker in her hand and pushed the flaming driftwood to either side, and in the hollow center thus left she piled the woods of the Fire of Azrael. Then we sat and watched them take the flame.
And in those hours while the tide rose there was delivered to me things whereof but few have dreamed and fewer still have known, and I learnt why Troy was burnt for a woman. For this woman was not one woman, but all women; and I, who mated with her, was not one man, but all men; but these things were part of the lore of the priesthood, and it is not lawful to speak of them.” Dion Fortune, "The Sea Priestess"
Azrael is the angel of Death, or Transformation, and heralds change. The name means 'Whom God Helps'. Azrael is a psychopomp, a 'guide of souls', and as such Azrael shares some of the attributes of Hermes, Thoth and Anubis and would be attributed to the sphere of Hod on the Tree of Life.
"Ah, Love, Could thou and I conspire, To grasp this sorry scheme of things entire, Would we not shatter it to bits, And then rebuild it nearer to the hearts desire?"
Omar Khyyaam of Naishapur
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