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Necronomicon Info Source

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Subject: Necronomicon Info Source
                  written by: (PARKER RYAN)
                                          brought to you by: .neXus.
   This is a revised and expanded version of my Necronomicon
   Information post. My first post, written off the top of my head
   (I didn't have any of my books with me), contained a few small
   errors. I have corrected all the errors I could find in it, but I
   can't guarantee this version is perfect.
   Part 1: The Necronomicon Mythos According to HPL Lovecraft's
   ideas on his myth-cycle
   Part 2: The Necronomicon and Ancient Arab Magick Arab magick as a
   possible source for HPL's fiction
   Part 3: Sources on Ancient Magick Research sources and some more
   Part 4: The Necronomicon Mythos and Modern Magick A. Crowley,
   Anton LaVey, Kenneth Grant, A.Spare and Dr. Dee
                               PART ONE
   This section is a short summary of some of horror writer H.P.
   Lovecraft's major ideas relating to the Necronomicon and its
   associated Myths. The Necronomicon is perhaps the most infamous
   book related to the magick (whether real or fictional). Please
   note that I am not claiming that the information presented in
   part is historical fact. Rather I am simply summarizing what HPL
   had to say in his fiction and other sources about the
   Necronomicon. After reading ALL parts of this post AND doing your
   own research, you will be the judge about what may or may not be
   historical fact. Perhaps the best way to start is by Quoting HPL
   from _The History and Chronology of the Necronomicon_. "Original
   title Al Azif-Azif being the word used by the Arabs to designate
   that nocturnal sound (made by insects) supposed to be the howling
   of demons."
   "Composed by Abdul Alhazred, a mad poet of Sanaa, in Yemen, who
   is said to have flourished in the time of the Ommiade Caliphs,
   circa A.D. 700. He visited the ruins of Babylon and the
   subterranean secrets of Memphis and spent ten years alone in the
   great southern desert of Arabia-the Roba el Khaliye or 'Empty
   Space' of the ancients and 'Dahna' or 'Crimson Desert' of the
   modern Arabs, which is held to be inhabited by protective evil
   spirits and monsters of death. Of this desert many strange and
   unbelievable marvels are told by those who pretend to have
   penetrated it. In his last years Alhazred dwelt in Damascus,
   where the Necronomicon (Al Azif) was written... Of his madness
   many things are told. He claimed to have seen the fabulous Irem
   or city of Pillars, and to have found beneath the ruins of a
   certain nameless desert town the shocking annals and secrets of a
   race older than mankind."
   Later the Al Azif was translated into Greek under the Greek title
   Necronomicon (the title is definitely not in Latin as is often
   claimed). This title is translated as "the Book (or image) of the
   Practices of the Dead"; Necro being Greek for "Dead" and Nomos
   meaning "practices", "customs" or "rules" (as in astronomy). The
   title Necronomicon absolutely does not translate as Book of Dead
   Names (as Colin Wilson has mistakenly and repeatedly stated). In
   order for it to mean Dead Names it would have to be Latin/Greek
   hybrid (besides HPL flatly indicated the first translation is the
   correct one). Still later (possibly in the 1200's) it was
   translated into Latin but retained it's Greek title. The Latin
   text came into the possession of Dr. John Dee in the sixteenth
   century. Dr. Dee made the only English translation of the
   Necronomicon known.
   The Necronomicon contains dark secrets about the real nature of
   the Earth and the universe. According to the Necronomicon the
   Earth was once ruled by the Old Ones, powerful beings from other
   worlds or other dimensions. HPL in _The Dunwich Horror_
   attributes this quote to the Necronomicon "Nor is it to be
   thought, that man is either the oldest or the last of Earth's
   masters, or that the common bulk of life and substance walks
   alone. The Old Ones were, the Old Ones are, the Old Ones shall be
   not in the spaces we know but between them, They walk serene and
   primal undimensioned and to us unseen. Yog-Sothoth is the gate.
   Yog-Sothoth is the key and guardian of the gate. Past, present,
   future all are one in Yog-Sothoth. He Knows where the Old Ones
   broke Through of old, and Where They shall break through again.
   He knows where They have trod earth's fields, and where They
   still tread them, and why no man can behold Them as They tread.
   By their smell can men sometimes know them near, but of their
   semblance can no man know, saving only in the featurs of those
   They have begotten on mankind; and of those are there many sorts,
   differing in likeness from mans truest eidolon to that shape
   without sight or substance which is Them. They walk unseen and
   foul in lonely places where the Words have been spoken and the
   Rights howled through at their seasons...Yog-Sothoth is the key
   to the gate whereby the spheres meet. Man rule now where They
   rule once; They shall soon rule where man rule now. After summer
   is winter, after winter summer. They wait patient and potent, for
   here they shall reign again."
   The Necronomicon STRONGLY hints that there is a cult or group of
   cults that worships the Old Ones and seeks to aid them gain
   control of this planet. One of the tactics attempted by this cult
   is to breed human and Old One offspring that will then multiply
   and ingress into terrestrial life until the Old Ones return to
   their pre-ordained position.
   Some branches of the cult venerate a deity called Cthulhu.
   Cthulhu is a dragon-like "god" with a face that is a mass of
   tentacles. Cthulhu is dead (dormant) but dreaming in the abyss
   (the Pacific Ocean). It is not certain whether or not Cthulhu is
   an Old One. At one point Cthulhu is referred to as Cousin of the
   Old Ones. At another the deity is called the high priest of the
   Old Ones; both of these labels might imply that Cthulhu may not
   be exactly like the Old Ones. The cult seeks to raise Cthulhu in
   order to usher in the day when the Old Ones will control the
   world. When Cthulhu rises men will be wild and free beyond good
   and evil. If Cthulhu rises partly from the ocean but it is not
   yet the correct time there are terrible bouts of madness. The
   center of the Cthulhu cult "lay amid the pathless deserts of
   Araibia, where Irem, City of Pillars dreams hidden and
   untouched." The cult places special emphasis on dreams, which
   they say can sometimes contain the thoughts of the "deity."
   There are many other important gods mentioned in the
   Necronomicon. One group of these deities, the Other Gods seem to
   be true Gods (unlike the Old Ones and Cthulhu who seem simply to
   be very powerful entities).
   Most important among the Other Gods are Yog-Sothoth and Azathoth.
   Yog-Sothoth is coterminous with ALL time and space. In _Through
   the Gates of the Silver Key_ Lovecraft (who, despite the fact
   that E. Hoffman Price appears as co-author, wrote nearly every
   word of this story) describes Yog-Sothoth thus:"an All in One and
   One in All of limitless being and self-the last, utter sweep
   which has no confines and which outreaches fancy and mathematics
   alike. " Past, present, future all are one in Yog-Sothoth. Of
   equal or greater importance is Azathoth. Evidence that Azathoth
   is at least equal with Yog-Sothoth is that Azathoth is "Lord of
   All" while Yog-Sothoth is "All in One, One in All" Azathoth is
   the "ultimate nuclear chaos," at "the center of infinity." It is
   from the Throne of Azathoth that the aimless waves, "whose chance
   combining gives each frail cosmos its eternal law," originate
   from. It is Extremely noteworthy that Azathoth is very closely
   related to the latest models in Quantum Physics. There are also
   some notable parallels between HPL's ideas about Chaos and the
   new Chaos Mathematics. Azathoth the ultimate nuclear chaos that
   emits the random waves that govern the universe seems to be the
   principle opposite of Yog-Sothoth who embraces the expanses of
   infinity. Whereas Yog-Sothoth is infinitely large, Azathoth seems
   to be infinitely compact (e.g., the quantum center). HPL
   researcher Philip A. Shreffler states in _The H.P. Lovecraft
   Companion_ that the acting principles of Yog-Sothoth and Azathoth
   are "infinite expansion and infinite contraction" respectively.
   The heart and soul of the Other Gods is Nyarlathotep the mighty
   messenger. It is as their messenger that Nyarlathotep makes the
   will of the Other Gods known on Earth. It is through Him that all
   traffic with Azathoth must go. Nyarlathotep has a thousand forms.
   He is called the Crawling Chaos.
   Shub-Niggurath the Black Goat of the Woods is a type of "perverse
   fertility deity." Shub-Niggurath also is called the Goat with a
   thousand young. It is apparently a very important deity in the
   Necronomicon mythos, judging by how frequently It is mentioned.
   There is obviously a connection between the cult of
   Shub-Niggurath and the many Goat cults of antiquity.
   Besides Cthulhu, the Old Ones and the Other Gods there are
   numerous minor races of creatures in the Necronomicon such as the
   shoggoths. A shoggoth is a shapeless congerie of "protoplasmic
   bubbles." The shoggoths were created by the Old Ones as
   servitors. They can assume any form they need to accomplish their
   assigned task. They are unruly servants, becoming more
   intelligent with time eventually gaining a will of their own.
   Shoggoth are sometimes, according to HPL, seen in drug-induced
   Another race is the Deep Ones who are a type of amphibious
   creature resembling a mixture of a fish, a frog and man. The Deep
   Ones worship a god called Dagon. Dagon is a deity resembling a
   giant Deep One. Dagon and the Deep Ones seem to be Allied in some
   way with Cthulhu.
   Another minor race is ghoul. Ghouls are corpse eating monsters
   that are very manlike except for their canine or monstrous facial
   features. It is
   possible for a man to be transformed into a ghoul under the right
   This concludes my short summary of HPL's major ideas on the
   Necronomicon and it's Associated myths. This is by no means
   exhaustive but it should give you enough general information to
   address the rest of this post with a good point of references.
                               PART TWO
   HPL's accounts of the Necronomicon provide a number of dramatic
   parallels with actual Arab myths and magickal techniques. These
   parallels are too specific and detailed for it to be a case of
   coincidence. Much of the material in this section was NOT
   available in the books printed in English before 1930. This would
   seem to mean that Lovecraft either was given the information in
   his stories by someone initiated in Arab magickal traditions
   (which is VERY unlikely) or that Lovecraft had a written source
   of information on Arab myths and magick not publicly available.
   The second option is rather plausible as Lovecraft was an
   extraordinarily erudite bibliophile who Loved Arab mythology when
   young. Lovecraft Almost certainly had an unprinted, probably
   rare, book (or some other form of manuscript), on Arab myths or
   magick. This is the most economical explanation as to how VERY
   OBSCURE information on Arab magick could appear in his stories.
   Lovecraft probably owned a book much like Al Azif (Necronomicon)
   in content if not in title. To some people this may sound like a
   difficult assertion to accept without support. I am just that
   type of person. The reason I am making this assertion is that I
   feel it is very well supported. I hope you will share this
   feeling when you are done reading this post.
   I will now detail some of the rare information, referred to
   above, that connects HPL's accounts of the Necronomicon and its
   myths with real Arab mystical and magickal traditions.
   HPL wrote that the Necronomicon was written Abdul Alhazred, who
   was called the "Mad Poet." Alhazred visited the lost city "Irem
   of the Pillars" (the center or the cult of Cthulhu) and
   encountered many strange and magickal things there. Lovecraft
   placed Irem in the Rub al Khali. When he was very old, Alhazred
   recorded what he had learned in his book of poetry _Al Azif_
   (later retitled Necronomicon).
   Irem is very important to Arab magick. "Irem Zhat al Imad" (Irem
   of the Pillars) is the cities name in Arabic. It is popularly
   believed by the Arabs that Irem was built by the Jinn under the
   direction of Shaddad, Lord of the tribe of Ad. The tribe of Ad,
   according to legend, was a race roughly equivalent to the Hebrew
   "Nephlim" (giants). In some version of this myth Shaddad and the
   Jinn built Irem before the time of Adam. The Muqarribun (Arab
   magicians) have important beliefs about Irem and it's
   significance. The Muqarribun, whose traditions predate Islam,
   believe that Irem is a locale on another level of reality, rather
   than a physical city like NY or Tokyo. (Why Irem is important to
   the Muqarribun and how they use it will be more fully explained
   shortly.) The "Pillars" in "Irem of the Pillars has a hidden
   meaning. Among Arab mystics pillar is a code name for "elder" or
   "old one." Thus "Irem of the Pillars" is really "Irem of the Old
   Ones." (It is noteworthy that several Lovecraft "scholars"
   erroneously claim that HPL created Irem, just as they claim he
   created the Necronomicon, as part of his fiction.)
   In Arab legend Irem is located in the Rub al Khali just as HPL
   said it was. To the Muqarribun the Rub al Khali also has a
   "hidden" meaning (incidentally the art of encoding and decoding
   "hidden" meanings in Arab mystical or magickal writing is called
   Tawil). Rub al Khali translates as "the EMPTY Quarter." In this
   case Empty refers to the VOID and is the same as AIN in the
   Cabbalistic traditions. Rub al Khali is the "secret" door to the
   Void in Arab magickal traditions. It is the Exact Arab equivalent
   to DAATH in the Cabbala. To the Muqarribun the Rub al Khali is
   the secret gate (Daath) to the Void (Ain) in which is the "city
   of the Old Ones." This is Incredibly close to Lovecraft, who made
   many references to a gate connected with the "Old Ones." Further
   Lovecraft claimed that the Old Ones were from Outside (another
   dimension of reality) and linked them with the "infinite void."
   By making these claims about the "Old Ones" and connecting them
   to Irem and the Rub al Khali Lovecraft tapped into the very core
   of an almost unknown (but important) area of ancient Arab magick.
   What makes this even more interesting is that there is no way to
   know about the "hidden" meaning of Irem unless you have done some
   serious research into Arab magickal and mystical traditions. Thus
   Lovecraft either made one of the luckiest guesses in history or
   actually did some research into the deeper aspects of the
   Muqarribun magickal traditions (to my knowledge there were no
   publicly available books with this information in Lovecraft's
   The "Rub al Khali" (not the physical desert, but the Arab
   equivalent of Daath) was entered in an altered state of
   consciousness (some where between dreams and the complete absence
   of thought) by the Muqarribun. Irem represents that part of the
   "Empty Quarter" that acts as the connection to the Void. It is
   from this place (Irem) that the communion with the Void and that
   which inhabits it can happen. The "monsters of death" and
   protective spirits Lovecraft mentions are the Jinn (see below).
   The Muqarribun can interact with these entities when he is in the
   "Rub al Khali" or "Irem." When the Muqarribun passes through Irem
   to the Void he achieves Annihilation (fana). Annihilation is the
   supreme attainment in Sufi and Muqarribun mysticism. During
   Annihilation the magicians entire being is devoured and absorbed
   into the Void. The self or "soul" (nafs i ammara) is utterly and
   completely destroyed by this process. This is probably the
   sources of stories regarding the soul eating demons (associated
   with Irem) in Arab legend. This should be compared to Lovecraft
   in _Through the Gates of the Silver Key_ in which Irem is a type
   of portal to the Outside. A close comparison of this story with
   the Muqarribun ideas, discussed above, will again show that HPL
   had a knowledge of Arab magick that was not publicly available.
   Next let's look at Alhazred's title. HPL wrote that Alhazred's
   title was "Mad Poet." "Mad" is usually written "majnun" in
   Arabic. Majnun means "mad" today. However, in the eighth century
   (Alhazred's time) it meant "Possessed by Jinn." To be called Mad
   or Possessed by Demons would be highly insulting to orthodox
   Muslims. The Sufis and Muqarribun regard Majnun as complimentary
   title. They even go so far as to call certain Sufi heroes Majnun.
   Jinn were powerful creatures of Arab myth. The Jinn, according to
   legend, came down from heaven (the sky) in the time before Adam.
   Therefore, they pre-exist mankind and thus called "Preadamites."
   "Infidel pagans" worship these incredibly powerful beings. The
   Jinn can "beget young on mankind." The Jinn are usually invisible
   to normal men. They apparently want great influence on Earth.
   Much of the magick used in Arab countries concerns the Jinn
   (protection spells against, or spells to call them up). The Jinn
   are thus virtually identical with Lovecraft's Old Ones.
   Let's look at the title "Mad Poet" some more. Jinn inspire poets
   in popular Arab myth. This is why Mohammad was so vehement in
   denying that he was a poet. He wanted it known that his
   revelation came from "God" and not the Jinn. So the title "the
   Mad Poet" indicates that Alhazred had made "Contact" with the
   Jinn (the Old Ones). It also Implies that his writings were
   directly inspired by them. This is entirely consistent with what
   Lovecraft wrote about Alhazred. Anyone unfamiliar with Arab
   magick and mysticism could not know the significance of "the Mad
   Poet" in Arabic. This again seems to indicate that Lovecraft
   probably had a source of rare information on Arab magick.
   Lovecraft wrote that Alhazred's Necronomicon was a book of poetry
   originally titled _Al Azif_. This also shows a deep connection to
   Arab magick and mysticism that would not be apparent to someone
   unfamiliar with these subjects. Al Azif is translated as "the
   book of the howling of the Jinn." This title is remarkably
   consistent with the meaning of "the Mad Poet" in Arabic (The One
   Possessed by Jinn and Whose Writings Are Inspired by the Jinn).
   It is Also important that the Al Azif was said to be written in
   poetic verse. The Necronomicon (Al Azif) was concerned with many
   religio-magickal and mystical subjects. Nearly all Arabic Books
   on religion or mysticism were written as poems. This includes
   orthodox works (such as the Quran) as well as Sufi and Muqarribun
   The name Cthulhu provides an Important and fascinating parallel
   with Arab magickal practice. Cthulhu is very close to the Arabic
   word Khadhulu (also spelled al qhadhulu). Khadhulu (al qhadhulu)
   is translated as "Forsaker" or Abandoner." Many Sufis and
   Muqarribun writings make use of this term (Abandoner). In Sufi
   and Muqarribun writings "abandoner" refers to the power that
   fuels the practices of Tajrid "outward detachment" and Tafrid
   "interior solitude." Tajrid and Tafrid are forms of mental
   "yoga," used in Arab systems of magick, to help the magician free
   himself from (abandon) cultural programming. In Muqarribun texts
   Khadhulu is the power that makes the practices of Tafrid and
   Tajrid possible for the magician. Although I was familiar with
   the use of "abandoner" in Arab mystical and magickal writings I
   was unaware (until about two years ago) that Khadhulu appears in
   the Quran. I owe the knowledge Khadhulu shows up in the Quran (in
   a very significant way) to William Hamblin. In the Quran chaper
   25 verse 29 it is written, "Mankind, Shaitan is Khadhulu." This
   verse has two orthodox interpretations. The first is that Shaitan
   will forsake man. The other orthodox interpretation is that
   Shaitan causes men to forsake the "straight path of Islam" and
   the "good" ways of their forebears. The orthodox Muslim would
   view forsaking Islamic culture as sinful and ungodly. However,
   Muqarribun and Sufis, as already discussed feel abandoning
   culture is vital to spiritual growth. The identification of
   Shaitan of the Islamic tradition is very important. By the time
   Mohammad was writing Shaitan was being called "the Old Serpent
   (dragon)" and "the Lord of the Abyss." The Old Serpent or Old
   Dragon is, according to experts such as E.A. Budge and S.N.
   Kramer, Leviathan. Leviathan is Lotan. Lotan traces to Tietan.
   Tietan, we are told by the authorities on Near Easern mythology
   is a Later form of Tiamat. According to the experts the Dragon of
   the Abyss called Shaitan is the same Dragon of the Agyss named
   Taimat. Scholars specializing in Near Eastern mythology have
   stated this time and again. Why is this important? Its importance
   lies in the fact that HPL described Cthulhu as dragon-like and
   sleeping in the abyss (ocean). Leviathan/Tiamat is also said to
   be sleeping or dormant. The identification of Shaitan the Old
   Dragon Lord of the Abyss with Khadhulu in the Quran is thus a
   very fascinating parallel with Lovecraft. The connection of the
   "Abandoner" with the Dragon is strengthened somewhat by a line
   from "The Book of Annihilation" an Arabic text on magick. This
   line translates as, "the dragon is an abandoner for he leaves all
   that is sacred. The dragon goes here and there without pause."
   While this line is obviously symbolic (most likely referring to
   the practice of Tafrid) it does serve to establish a connection
   between the Dragon of Near Eastern myth with Khadhulu in Arab
   magick. The ancient dragon of the abyss (Tiamat) traces back to
   Sumeria. Sumeria was the oldest civilization known to have
   existed. If Khadhulu of Arab mysticism is synonymous with the
   Dragon of mythology (which the evidence suggests it might be)
   then Khadhulu has been "worshipped" for a very long time. The
   numerous parallels between Cthulhu and the Muqarribun's Khadhulu
   are strong enough to suggest that Lovecraft expanded on Arab myth
   to create his deity Cthulhu.
   There is another interesting bit of information related to the
   Dragon of the Abyss (which originated in Sumeria) and Khadhulu.
   This data quite possibly is simple coincidence. On the other
   hand, it may not be coincidence; there is simply no way to tell
   yet. It concerns one of the titles of the Dragon, namely the Lord
   of the Abyss. The title Lord of the Abyss translated into
   Sumerian is "Kutulu." Kutu means "Underworld" or "Abyss" and Lu
   is Sumerian for "Lord" or "Person of importance." Let's consider
   this for a moment: the Sumerian Kutulu is quite similar to
   Khadhulu in Arabic. Khadhulu is associated with the Dragon in
   Arab magickal texts. Khadhulu is also Identified with the Old
   Dragon (Shaitan) in the Quran. One of the titles of this Dragon
   (Lord of the Abyss) is Kutulu in Sumerian. The word Kutu (abyss)
   is connected with the dragon Sumerian mythology. Indeed the ruler
   of the Abyss (kutu) in Sumeria was the Old Dragon Mumu-Tiamat.
   There is, it would seem, quite a bit of connection here and it
   may indicate that Kutulu and Khadhulu are on in the same. I first
   became aware of the similarity of Cthulhu and "Kutulu" reading a
   publication of L.K. Barnes. I was quite skeptical at first but I
   did not make a knee-jerk dismissal of the information. Instead I
   researched until I was able to confirm all the above information,
   related to the word Kutulu. The fact that the above information
   on Kutulu is accurate and very suggestive does not PROVE
   anything. It does, however, generally SUPPORT the idea that
   Kutulu/Khadhulu has been a part of the magickal traditions of the
   Near East for a very long time. The only thing that can be
   accepted as proof will be the discovery, in a Sumerian text, of
   the direct mention of the name or word Kutulu in the context
   discussed. To my knowledge this has not yet happened. Until it
   does (if it does) the Kutulu/Khadhulu equivalence will have to
   remain tenative.
   Let's closely examine the material on Arab magick. I believe it
   leads to one conclusion. Lovecraft had access to rare material on
   Arab magick and myths. Ignoring the possible coincidental
   equivalence of Kutulu and Khadhulu there is still overwhelming
   evidence supporting this proposal. Lovecraft used Irem in a
   manner that Parallels the Muqarribun use before this information
   was generally available. The Rub al Khali (Roba el Khaliye) is in
   truth important to the Muqarribun. The Jinn are exact counter
   parts of the "Old Ones." Lovecraft's description of Alhazred is
   VERY consistent with the Arabic Meaning of the "Mad Poet" even
   though this also was generally unknown in the 1930's. The Al Azif
   (the howling of the Jinn) is obviously related to Alazred's
   title: "The One Who is Possessed by
   Jinn and Whose Writings Are Inspired by Jinn." Al Azif being a
   book of poetry is consistent with the fact that almost all
   mystical or prophetic writings in Arabic are poems. Khadhulu's
   association with the sleeping Dragon of the Abyss is VERY close
   to Lovecraft's Cthulhu who lays Dreaming in the Abyss (ocean). To
   my knowledge there was nothing available (in print) about Khdhulu
   in English in the 1930's. All this seems to indicate that
   Lovecraft had a source of information of Arabic magick and myths
   not commonly accessible. It appears HPL expanded on some of the
   material, in this source, in his fiction. Please note that this
   in no way detracts from his considerable creastivity. HPL's
   stories are great not because of few isolated elements but rather
   because of the way Lovecraft could blend the individual pieces
   into a whole.
   In addition to the material above there are numerous other
   instances in which Lovecraft borrowed from Arab and Near Eastern
   mythology. Lovecraft probably expanded on Arab and other Near
   Eastern myth when creating his Deep Ones and Dagon. Arab myth
   mentions mysterious fish-men from the sea of Karkar. These
   fish-men are probably derivative of the myths related to the
   actual Near Eastern god Dagon. Dagon is a Philistine deity that
   appears as a giant fish-man. Dagon is a later version of the
   Babylonian Oannes. Oannes (Dagon) was the head of group of
   semi-divine fish-men. The Fish-man Zootype still plays an
   important role in some systems of magick. Clearly Dagon and the
   Deep Ones are direct expansions on Arab and Near Eastern
   mythology familiar to Lovecraft.
   The Ghoul is another obvious example of Arab mythology that has
   worked its way into Lovecraft's fiction. The Ghoul is derived
   from the Arabic Ghul. The Ghul is a man-like creature with
   monstrous facial features. It inhabits desolate and lonely places
   especially graveyards. The Ghuls which inhabit graveyards feast
   on the corpses there. This obviously is the source of Lovecraft's
   Ghouls. To this day the corpse eating Ghul has a distinct role in
   the magickal practices of Arabs and others.
   The Black Goat of the Woods with a Thousand Young traces back to
   ancient Egypt and Sumeria. While both Egypt and Sumeria had Goat
   cults it was probably the Egyptian version that was most
   influential. The so-called Goat of Mendes was a "black"
   incarnation of Asar. The cult was fertility based. Aspects of
   these Goat cults were absorbed into Arab magickal systems. For
   instance, the Aniz tribe is designated as the Goat Anz. (Anz and
   Aniz are cognates.) The Aniz are called the Goat because their
   founder practiced fertility based magick. The Symbol of this cult
   is a torch between two Goats horns. This symbol has become
   important in Western magickal traditions.
                            BARBAROUS NAMES
   Alhazred is said (by HPL) to have journeyed to Egypt in search of
   occult secrets. This is consistent with the time frame that it
   was supposed to have ocured in. Between the fourth century and
   the tenth century Near Eastern scholars interested in magickal
   matters viewed Egypt as an invaluable source of information.
   During this time many corrupt Egyptian words and phrases entered
   magical writings. Gnostic, Coptic, and Greco-Egyptian word
   formulas were incorporated in great number into existing Arab
   magickal systems. The barbarous names often only vaguely resemble
   their Egyptian forefathers. For instance, Asar Un Nefer became
   Osorronophris. Although the name has been badly corrupted the
   original can still be deciphered. Often Egyptian words and their
   corrupt counter parts can have even less phonetic similarity than
   this example. It has been suggested that some of the Barbarous
   names used in Lovecraft's fiction might indeed be corrupt
   Egyptian word formulas. Particularly Yog-Sothoth, Azathoth, and
   Nyarlathotep are said to have an Egyptian origin. (Note the
   obviously Egyptian endings "hotep" and "thoth.")
   I was given a privately printed document called _The Rites of the
   Gods_. This document consists of seven short rituals and an
   introduction. It is said to be a translation of an Arabic
   document. I feel that this, however, is very unlikely. I will
   have to remain skeptical of this booklet's Arabic origin and its
   antiquity until I have some solid evidence (such as an Arabic
   Original). It is more probably a modern attempt to reconstruct
   "ancient rituals" dedicated to the Other Gods. Although I regard
   this document as probably apocryphal the introduction contains
   some very interesting and possibly accurate speculation on the
   origin of the names Yog-Sothoth and Azathoth. _The Rites of the
   Gods_ suggests the following origins for these names.
   Azathoth is said to be derived from Asa-thoth. _The Rites of the
   Gods_ states that Asa translates as "source" from ancient
   Egyptian and Thoth (Tehut) is of course the popular god name. Asa
   is an alternate name of Thoth. A friend who knows much more about
   Egyptian mythology than I do assures me that Asa the god is
   indeed closely associated with the concept of "source" (he is
   considered the "source" because of his association with the
   beginning of time). Ausaa-Thoth or Aasaa-Thoth is translated as
   the intelligence of Thoth.
   According to _The Rites of the Gods_ Yog-Sothoth is derived from
   Yak-Set Thoth. This is supposed to translate as follows Yak means
   "one" or "union" (Yak, or perhaps more correctly Iak, and Yog
   seem on the surface to be quite different. This is an illusion
   the "og" in Yog is pronounced like dog. The vowel sound "a" in
   Yak is pronounced "ah." Thus the vowel sound in both words is
   identical. K and G are based on the same root sound. K and G are
   formed in exactly the same way by the tongue and pallet. The only
   difference is the way the air is released at the end. Yak and Yog
   are phonetic equivalents. To prove this to yourself try saying
   Yog (as in dog) then Yak (as in hawk) alternately. They sound
   quite similar.) Set is, of course, the deity Set and Thoth is
   again the god Thoth. Thus Yak-Set Thoth translates as "Set and
   Thoth are one" or "the union of Set and Thoth." Set and Thoth are
   the dark and light aspects of the moon respectively in Egyptian
   mythology. According to _The Rites of the Gods_ the magical
   significance of the name Yak-Set Thoth is "the union of opposites
   in lunar-vaginal context."
   No translation for Nyarlathotep was offered in the introduction
   to _The Rites of the Gods_. I first realized, many years ago,
   that Ny and Hotep were Egyptian words meaning "not" and
   "peaceful" respectively. "Not peaceful" certainly seemed to fit
   Lovecraft's Nyarlathotep. I still didn't know what "Arlat" could
   mean. I am again indebted to William Hamblin for the complete
   translation. Ny means "not" Har means "at" or "through" Lut
   "gateway" or "place of judgement" and Hotep means "peace" or
   "rest." Thus Nyharluthotep translates as "there is no peace
   through the gateway" or "there is no peace (rest) at the place of
   judgment." The magickal functions of Nyharluthotep are very close
   to those of Thoth (Teht). In face, some people suggest that they
   may indeed represent the same force. The Thoth-Nyharluthotep
   equivalence will probably clarify the meaning of the name
   Asa-Thoth. (Please note that just because I used information from
   William Hamblin's writings in this post does NOT mean that Mr.
   Hamblin shares any of the views in this post.)
   It is very interesting that the Barbarous names associated with
   the Necronomicon do not only have an Egyptian word and obey
   Egyptian sound but seem to made of actual Egyptian words and obey
   Egyptian Grammar. Corrupt Egyptian words and phrases often appear
   in Arab magickal texts. The appearance of what certainly seems to
   be real barbarous names in Lovecraft's fiction should cause one
   serious thought. Did HPL derive these names from a rare book on
   Arab magick? Could it be Coincidence?
                              PART THREE
   I've been researching Arab magick (and it connection to
   Lovecraft) for nearly 10 years so I won't be able to list every
   source I've used. However I should be able to give resource in
   which people interested can verify ALL the claims I make.
   But first let me say a word about what I didn't use as sources. I
   did NOT use ANY of A. Crowley's ideas on Near Eastern mythology
   or language as a source for the information on Arab magick and
   mysticism. Nor did I use any of Crowley's ideas in my suggestions
   on the Egyptian meaning of the barbarous names (I did use W.
   Hamblin Ideas about Nyarlathotep though). Crowley was NOT a
   source. I did not use any of Colin Wilson's "research" at all.
   Nor did I use the Simon "Necronomicon" as a major resource. I
   adapted ONE idea from that book only after I CAREFULLY VERIFIED
   it in other more reputable sources
                          IREM OF THE PILLARS
   Those of you looking for general sources should begin with these.
   A Dictionary of mythical places by Robin Palmer. Arabian Night
   ed. by R.F. Burton (get the 10 Vol. set) For those who want to
   research how Irem fits into Arab magick and Mysticism should try
   to find this book_The Muqarribun: Arab Magic and Myth_ by Steve
   Lock and Jamal Khaldun.(it talks about the "hidden" meaning of
   Irem etc.) I believe Idries Shaw also mentions how Irem fit into
   Sufi mysticism in one of his books but I can't remember which.
   Mr. Shaw briefly talks about the double meaning of "Pillars" in
   Arabic (which means Old Ones) in _The Sufis_.(the art of
   encoding/decoding "hidden" meaning in Arab mystical writings is
   called Tawil)
                             RUB AL KHALI
   The sources for the Rub al Khali are mostly the same as Irem. You
   can also Check out Kenneth Grant' Hecates Fountain. Note that I
   am NOT saying Grant should be read as a good historical source,
   he is not. HOWEVER his ideas on the Rub al Khali are nearly the
   same with those of the ancient Muqarribun.
                               MAD POET
   If you want a short cut to verify that the Arabic word for mad
   "majnun" also means "possessed by Jinn" and that poets are said
   to be inspired by Jinn just look up Jinn in Man, Myth, and Magic.
   If you'd like to go to the original source find Notes on the
   Arabian Nights and The Modern Egyptians by Lane. The Sufis by
   Idries Shaw also briefly mentions Majnun
                               THE JINN
   Again the short cut to check out the validity of what was posted
   on the Jinn is to look up Jinn in Man, Myth, and Magic. If you
   want a more detailed source look up Genii in A Dictionary of
   Islam. This book has much information not covered in M.M.M. In A
   Dictionary of Islam Jinn are said to have come the Earth ages
   before man existed. They were the first of Earths masters. They
   built huge cities whose ruins still stand in forgotten places.
   Aeons later many Jinn were forced to flee Earth while other were
   imprisoned. Still other roam desolate places to this day. The
   Jinn are said to be invisible to normal men. They are, however
   able to interbreed with humans but the human parent may suffer
   when the dark offspring is born (shade of the Dunwich Horror.)
   The Jinn will, according to legend survive mankind (the last of
   Earths masters?) I don't need to point out the parallels to
   Lovecraft's Old Ones. If you want more information than is
   provided in A Dictionary of Islam try Notes on Arabian Nights by
   Lane also try using the term search (Jinn) through ILL. There are
   whole books on the Jinn.
   Khadhulu is the Arabic word meaning "abandoner" or "forsaker."
   The primary source to read to research the role of "the
   Abandoner" in Arab magick is The Muqarribun: Arab Magic and myth
   by Steve Lock and Jamal Khaldun. In this book the transliteration
   of "the Abandoner" is "al qhadhulu." (I use the transliteration
   "Khadhulu" because I've been told it is more correct.) In this
   book the authors state that al qhadhulu (Khadhulu) is a type of
   spiritual force that powers the practices of Tafrid and Tajrid.
   These are exercises that are used to transcend (abandon) normal
   cultural programming. The idea is that by transcending
   (abandoning) Dogma and fixed beliefs a person can see reality as
   it is. al qhadhulu is stimulated by the Nafs (breath or soul.)
   The stimulated "abandoner" then causes the Hal or spiritual
   state. the relationship between Nafs, al qhadhulu and Hal is very
   intricate and this is very oversimplified. Lock and Khaldun state
   that the abandoner is mentioned some Sufi poetry. Another source
   that you may want to read is Further Notes On the Necronomicon by
   William Hamblin. Mr. Hamblin Compares Cthulhu with Khadhulu in
   this article. I hate to admit it but I had owned The
   Muqarribun... for at least three years before I read Mr.
   Hamblin's article and I never noticed how close al qhadhulu
   (Khadhulu) is to Cthulhu. I also did not know that Khadhulu
   apeers in the Quran (25:29) until I read Mr. Hamblin's article. I
   have since talked to several Muslims about this verse. The verse
   translates as "Mankind, Shaitan is al khadhulu." They have
   explained two orthodox interpretations of this verse to me the
   first is that Shaitan will abandon man. the other is that Shaitan
   causes men to forsake Islam and its culture. You'll note that
   this second interpretation is fairly consistent with the
   spiritual meaning the ancient Muqarribun give al qhadhulu.
   (Obviously an orthodox Muslim would think Muqarribun practices
   Sinful.) This verse in the Quran is important because it links
   the "abandoner" Khadhulu with Shaitan the Old Dragon, Lord af the
   The Image of Shaitan as The Dragon was well established by the
   writing of the Quran. The old Dragon is Leviathan. Leviathan
   traces to Lotan. Lotan to Tietan. And Tietan is Tiamat. This can
   be verified in MANY sources. One standard one is The Gods of the
   Egyptian by E.A. Budge. S.N. Kramer is another. (see below)
   Kutulu is a Sumerian translation of the title Lord of the Abyss.
   KUTU means Abyss. LU means lord or person of importance.
   L.K.Barnes was first to note the similarity of Cthulhu and Kutulu
   in Simon's "Necronomicon." I was therefore quite skeptical of it
   accuracy. I carefully read History Begins at Sumer and Sumerian
   Mythology by S.N.Kramer as well as several other books on
   Sumerian mythology/culture. I discovered that the translation
   given to Kutulu is TOTALLY ACCURATE. I also verified that KUTU is
   closely tied to the Sleeping Dragon (Tiamat) in Sumerian myth.
                         ARAB MYSTICAL POETRY
   Arabic mystical poetry is a complete field of study in itself.
   The Pre-Islamic prophets used the Sadj style of verse. This is
   the same style that the Quran is written in. The early Muqarribun
   poetry is in the Ruba'i style which is faily simple. Later
   Muqarribun and Sufi poetry was written in the Mathnawi form of
   verse. Idries Shaw talks about the role of poetry in Arab
   mysticism in The Way of the Sufi. Lelah Bakhtiar has a short
   chapter on poetry in Sufi Expressions of the Mystic Quest.
   Another more detailed source is Structural Continuity in Poetry.
   A Linguistic study of five PreIslamic Odes by Mary C. Bateson
                          THE BARBAROUS NAMES
   I have to admit I haven't done enough research into this area
   YET. This is my next big project. I'll post anything of interest
   I learn in my research. The translations for Yak-Set Thoth and
   Asa-Thoth are from _The Rites of the Gods_. The translation of
   Nyharluthotep is from _further Notes on the Necronomicon_ by
   William Hamblin. If you want more information on corrupt Egyptian
   word formulas in general try using the term search through ILL
   (Gnostic Coptic or Greco-Egyptian). The best books available on
   Egyptian mythology are by E.A. Budge.
   The Book of a Thousand Nights and a Night trans. by R.F. Burton.
   This is the huge 10 Vol. set. The Sufis and Muqarribun say these
   books contain many mystical and magickal secrets. A. Crowley
   calls them a "valuable storehouse of oriental magick-lore. VERY
   GOOD. Much of the material in this is very Lovecraftian.
   The Secret Lore of Magic by Idries Shaw. this is an interesting
   and very useful book if you can read BETWEEN THE LINES. Shaw
   almost never comes directly out and say anything of importance.
   He does hint in the right directions though. Contains some good
   general info. on Arab magick.
   The Muqarribun: Arab myth and Magic by Steve Lock and Jamal
   Khaldun. This is a nice little source on Arab magick. Some of the
   material on Irem and the "abandoner" is relevant to HPL. This
   books main drawback is that it is too short.
   Fabled Cities, Princes and Jinn from Arab Myth by Khiray Al
   Salem. Although this book is also short and is for young readers
   it contains some information that is hard to find elsewhere. It
   is most useful if you keep your eyes open for double meanings.
   Notes on Arabian Night by Lane. This contains some information on
   the Jinn that is quite good Sufi Expressions of the Mythic Quest
   by Laleh Bakhtiar. this is an intriguing book that touches on
   such subjects as mystic poetry, dreams, the Dragon, the Jinn etc.
   The chapters are to short and it hints more than it says.
   The Sufis by Idries Shaw. This book contains scattered gems of
   information. Not very detailed. Shaw's attempt to show that every
   western mystical group was influenced by the Sufis is silly.
   The Way of the Sufi by Idries Shaw. This is a good book if you
   are interested in Arab mysticism Per Se. Otherwise don't bother.
   Tales of the Prophets of al-Kisai by Muhhammad ibn abd Allah
   Kisai 11th century. Good for its data on preIslamic prophets.
   Interesting stuff if you have enough background in Arab magickal
   The Book of Annihilation author unknown. This is a short Arabic
   book on magick. It is not of much use if you don't have a friend
   to translate. It is in general not unlike HPL style grimoire. No
   Yog-Sothoth or Azatoth here though.
   Making of the Last Prophet by Mohammad Ibn Ishaq. This book has
   some interesting material on PreIslamic prophets
   Hajar bin Humeid by Gus Willa VanBeek this is a good source on
   PreIslamic culture in general.
   below are some resource on Near-Eastern mythology etc. that might
   be useful in your research.
                          SUMERIA AND RELATED
   Sumerian Mythology by S.N. Kramer
   History Begins at Sumer. by S.N. Kramer
   Sumer by Andre Parrot
   Cuneiform Texts by Giorgio Buccellat
   The Gods of the Egyptians Vol .1+2 by E.A. Budge
   Isis and Osiris Vol. 1+2 by E.A. Budge
   Egyptian Magic by E.A. Budge
   The Egyptian Language by E.A. Budge
   An Egyptian Hieroglyphic Dictionary by E.A. Budge
                               PART FOUR
                           ALEISTER CROWLEY
   Aleister Crowley's writings show many parallels to the
   Necronomicon Mythos. Some of these parallels are listed below.
   Yog-Sothoth is coterminous with all time and space. (see Part One
   under Yog-Sothoth.) Crowley's Nuit is "infinite space" Azathoth
   is the infinitely compact "nuclear Chaos at the center of
   infinity"(see part one uner Azathoth Crowley's Hadit is "the
   infinitely small and atomic" point. Here we see that the Two most
   important Gods of the Necronomicon correspond exactly with
   Crowley's Two most important Gods. Crowley received the BOOK OF
   LAW, which foretold the return of the ancient deities, from the
   messenger of the Gods Aiwaz. The Necronomicon states that the
   return of the Old Ones will be heralded by Nyarlathotep the
   Mighty Messenger. Crowley states that the ascension and fall of
   deities is governed by a process he called the Equinox of the
   Gods. The Necronomicon states that the rises and fall of the Old
   Ones is also Governed by an Eon spanning cycle (After summer is
   winter. After winter, Summer). The Dragon (draconian current) is
   important to Crowley's Magick.
   Cthulhu the dragon-like god is of great importance in the
   Necronomicon. Crowley sometimes referred to the Stele of
   Revealing as CTH^H666. Note the similarity between CTH^H and
   CTHULHU. There are a great many more similarities but this should
   give you the general idea.
                          ANTON SZANDOR LAVEY
   Anton LaVey is the head of the Church of Satan. In _The Satanic
   Bible_ LaVey asserts that the Shew Stone used by Dr. John Dee is
   the same as the Shining Trapezohedron of the Necronomicon Mythos.
   Mr. LaVey also asserts in _The Satanic Bible_ that the Goat God
   worshipped through the eons is The Black Goat of the Woods with a
   Thousand Young from the Necronomicon. In the sequel to the
   Satanic Bible, The Satanic Rituals, Lavey presents two rituals
   concerned entirely with the HPL mythos. The first is the Call to
   Cthulhu. The second is the Cermony of the Nine Angels. Here is a
   brief quote from Ceremony of the Nine Angels.
                    Kzs'nath r'n As-Athoth bri'nwe
                    sz'g elu'khnar rquorkwe w'ragu
                     mfancgh' tiim'br vau. Januf a
                   wrugh kod'rf kpra kybini sprn'aka
                  ty'knu El-aka gryenn'h krans huehn
                 Azathoth, great center of the Cosmos,
                 let thy flutes sing unto us, lulling
                 us against the terrors of thy domain
                 thy merriment sustains our fears, and
                 we rejoice in the World of Horrors in
                               thy name
                    Ki'q Az-Athoth r'jyarh wh'fagh
                    zhasa phr-tga nyena phragn'glu
                   Honor to Azathoth, without who's
                  laughter this world should not be.
   In the Laws of the Trapezoid LaVey mentions the "Hounds of Time"
   and in several rituals mentions the Old Ones.
                             KENNETH GRANT
   Kenneth Grant is the head of a U.K. branch of the
   O.'.T.'.O.'..Grant's system of Magick is just that: Grant's
   system. His Cabbala is highly unique to him. Grant feels that the
   Great Old Ones and Other Gods are quite real. He has developed a
   new interpretation of Crowley's book of law in light of what he
   calls the "Necronomicon Gnosis." Grant is perhaps known for his
   unique approach to dream control and sex magick. Grant's
   interpretation of the Roba el Khaliye (Rub al Khali) is very
   close to that used by the Muqarribun. Hecates Fountain by Grant
   contains the most HPL/Necronomicon related material of all his
   books. Grant was friends with Austin Spare. Spare was a brilliant
   artist as an occultist. Grant once gave Spare a copy of one of
   Lovecraft books. Spare was very disturbed by what he read. He
   felt that there were really dark forces being tapped by HPL's
   stories. Spare created several Magickal pieces of artwork based
   on HPL. Spare is thought to have said that HPL had many more
   things right than he knew.
                            ENOCHIAN MAGICK
   Enochian magick was discovered by John Dee in the sixteenth
   century. It is appearantly based on a previously unknown
   language. Many magicians assert that the Enochian language
   predate all human languages. Gerald J. Schueler is widely
   considered one of the foremost experts on Enochian magick. Mr.
   Schueler state that Enochian magick is "the powerful system of
   Magick used by Aleister Crowley, and the Golden Dawn, and of the
   Necronomicon, to contact intelligences from other dimensions."
   John Dee is said to have made the only known English translation
   of the Necronomicon. It has been suggested that Dee may have
   first established contact with the Enochian entities using Magick
   adapted from the Necronomicon. The Enochian system has many
   parallels with HPL. Schueler asserts that the Enochian tradition
   proposes the existence of a God or Force which is the
   manifestation of Infinite Space similar to Crowley's Nuit and
   HPL's Yog-Sototh. Schueler also contends that The Divine
   manifestation of the nuclear point at the center of infinity
   (equivalent to Hadit or Azathoth) is also important to Enochian
   magick. The Enochian Keys state that the wold is nearing an eon
   spanning Cycle in which Ancient Gods will return to there throne
   and the world will be forever changed. These keys also mention an
   imprisoned dragon (Cthulhu?) The fact that the keys are in an
   unearthly language said to predate mankind is in itself very

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