- Emerging out of the Midlands in England, especially the city of Leeds, in the late 1970s and early 1980s, Chaos Magick draws on the ceremonial magic (spelled “magick” to promote a link with ages past) of such figures as Aleister Crowley, the practices of “free belief” (appropriating any concept or symbol, not just arcane or indigenous lore, as a focus for effecting magic), altered states of consciousness and sigil magic proposed by the artistoccultist Austin Osman Spare, and the gothic fantasy literature of H. P. Lovecraft. Chaos Magick gathered momentum in the late 1980s and 1990s with the published works of Phil Carroll (such as Liber Null and Psychonaut, 1987) and Phil Hine. The title of Carroll’s volume Psychonaut was borrowed for the song of the same name performed by the gothic rock band Fields of the Nephilim, and such music alongside that of Coil was important in promoting the neo-shamanistic aspects of Chaos Magick. More of a disparate collective of individuals than a “movement” as such, Chaos Magickians tend to practice alone. Cyberia thus offers a powerful resource and certainly some aspects of Chaos Magick are shared with techno-shamanism.
Historical dictionary of shamanism. Graham Harvey and Robert J. Wallis. 2007.
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