What is the great work and how do you complete it?

Hey I was wondering what your guy’s thoughts were on this, from my understanding the Great work is achieving eternal life through high magick.

So there’s a physical death, but there is also a second eternal death or cosmic washing machine. But if you develop the “solar body” you are able to go through the washing machine and retain a part of your soul.

How does one accomplish this, in Christianity they do it through Jesus, but for us who actually do magick, and not worship someone who did magick how can we accomplish this?

I believe that was the purpose of the Golden Dawn? To teach people how to do this, I have the curriculum so I guess I can do it, but I need a lot of free time lol.


The “Great Work” is simply the classical term for what we now call Ascension. It is the spiritual elevation of the human being to a divine state.


But you don’t think that also entails building up the solar body and eternal life?

Life after death is generally part of the Great Work, yes, but there are many different paths for accomplishing it, and the “solar body” concept is only one of them (other traditions have the Rainbow Body, Diamond Body, etc).


The great work is about living out your true will and from that being able to escape the reincarnation cycle so you can ascend to higher realties. “Will” simply being your soul purpose for coming alive in a body on this planet. Magick is used to being able to live out your true will in this one life instead of having to do multiple lives to complete it, as magick can accelerate the speed of your reality and of course general spiritual progress. You can find out about your true will by coming in contact with your HGA, Higher guardian angel, your higher self. It is indeed the purpose of the Golden Dawn, as well as that of Thelema.


I have a book to contact my HGA but I know my purpose in life.

can you recommend methods to build up these various bodies? I believe I have ascended above most people on this earth, I have a life purpose and I have magick to make sure I get what I want

It depends on who you ask. Modern magicians will generally say it is symbolic for following the True Will (as in the Thelemic tradition), or spiritual transformation of the mind, or so on.

For many traditional magicians and alchemists (as in, magicians and alchemists of the 16th century and earlier), the Great Work is about the creation of the literal philosopher’s stone, a stone that can cure any ailment, or transform any metal into gold.

“For which cause the Alchymists endeavor to seperate this spirit from Gold, and Silver; which being rightly seperated, and extracted, if thou shalt afterwards project upon any matter of the same kind, any Metall, presently will turn it into Gold, or Silver. And we know how to do that, and have seen it done: but we could make no more Gold, than the weight of that was, out of which we extracted the spirit” Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa, Three Books of Occult Philosophy, Book I Chapter 14.


The philosophers stone is the same thing, the ascension of the kundalini energy, the creation of the ba and ka energy which creates an inner elixer that can heal anything and what is said Jesus achieved with Mary Magdalene through sex magick, as she was an advanced priestess herself trained in the magick of Isis.
The philosophers stone was never literal, it is an inner alchemical process of spiritual evolution. It is often written literal, but we know as with all older grimoires, things are written in code for the sole purpose of protecting the sacredness of the knowledge.
Thelemites are after the same process.


To be honest with you, if you have ascended above most then there is no such thing as asking for these methods that do exactly that which you say you have done.


Seriously disagree with this.
While some grimoires have used “coded” language to varying degrees (primarily the non astrological magick grimoires), much of it is very much literal.

The “symbolic” interpretation that became popular is largely a reaction from the materialist philosophy that became dominant later on.


Well it SOUNDS good but I disagree also on the same grounds as @Dankquanicus.

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I personally wouldn’t waste time on the golden dawn material. Crowley’s thelema…mmmmm maybe.

There was a recent case here on Balg of a failing magician who kept going back to the golden dawn material like it was a light that would lead him out of darkness. Sadly that didn’t happen for him. I’ve never seen a real, true, powerful adept come from working with that current. Yes there have been but I’ve never personally seen it.

Bardons system of hermetic spiritual development is very much in line with what you’re talking about and I worked it about half way through. Another balg member I know worked his entire book one through and this young man is a phenomenal practicioner.

This is just my 2 cents is all.


I agree as well. There has been a forced esotericsm in the last century or a little more, to things that was actually meant to be straightforward.

We are talking about a time where the geniuses didn’t know as much as an average high school student of today.

However if this philosophers stone could be created for good, is something out of my depth as an answer and out of topic I guess as well. But they tried, no doubt on that.


I don’t believe in this concept myself, as in, there’s no such thing as real death. What I call the second death is the Taoist view that this is when you leave the energy body and you rise through the Bardos. The spirit is eternal can cannot die.
This one depends on your worldview.

Not really. That’s a corruption I think, Jesus said god is within. He had found his god within, so they became one, and that is what all should do. Find the god within to find Jesus, but Jesus is “the finger pointing the way to the moon, not the moon”.

You might like to read the books Life and Teaching of the Masters of the Far East, I assumed it was about Taoism, and I got is as it was recommended by Vermilion in his book on Kryst (which might be Christ spelled funny :slight_smile: ), but it’s actually all about learning from Indian immortals who used the teachings of Jesus.
I don’t personally agree with everything in this but then I never do, here’s a lot of food for thought for sure.


I think this falls extremely close to the myth of progress. Many of these practitioners were far beyond many occultists today in both knowledge and practice.

But i agree with the straightforwardness of their material. But in the case of Astral High Magick, for example, the authors had the confidence to reveal these things because they know only the experienced of knowledgable would be able to understand the instructions in the first place, and this has not changed.

You probably saw this before but it seems to fit with the theme here … :slight_smile:

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I agree. It seems like training methods passed down from teacher to student have gotten greatly dilluted by the modern world.

Most of us today are just blindfolded in the dark trying to make sense of what’s been passed down to us.

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That is ok to disagree, we all have different backgrounds of magick and visions of what is what. As far as I have seen in my studies of the history of magick, symbolic interpretation became widely used from the moment paganism was banned and deemed illegal in Europe which was the same time Christianity took over, around 392 AD. Magick was still widely condemned in the period of the renaissance/the time of Agrippa during the revival of Hermeticism. He himself was persecuted numerous times for heretic practices, therefore in combination with other information I have on the inner alchemical process, I do not take all his writings literal as it was simply dangerous to write not in a symbolic way in those days.

Not trying to hijack or anything I just enjoy writing about this subject.

In Dzogchen, to my understanding, one of the ideas is to cultivate constant, continuous mindfulness of heightened power throughout waking and sleeping.

The idea is that if you are not aware as you pass into sleep, it is unlikely that you will be aware as you pass into death. If you are consistently aware in dream, then perhaps you will become aware in the intermediate Bardo state, or what some would call Purgatory. The idea with all this is that you need to be aware and mindful in the bardo to not be controlled by previous karmic traces and to attain liberation in the bardo to leave the samsaric cycle of life and death. Put in Western terms, you have to be aware in Purgatory, where you go after death, regardless, to control whether you enter a Heavenly realm or return to the material plane, which I would say is a sort of Hell-plane, but in some ways also Heavenly. Perhaps these terms are too obfuscated and bogged down in watered down religious propaganda nonsense, which is why I tend to favor Eastern terminology for this. More investigation is required here and I need more direct experience.

I’m still coming to understand all the Dzogchen terms and concepts, but generally speaking with any spiritual tradition or set of practices the idea with this sort of “high magick” awakening type stuff is to peel away layers of corruption until you return to fundamental God-essence, which is your true nature.

You can see these sorts of concepts in Enochian magick much more plainly than in other angelic magick, in my opinion, and you tend to see more of it in Vajrayana Buddhist texts than in demonic magick oriented texts.

You also hear various different philosophies about all this with RHP and LHP types. You could say that RHP philosophy is about attaining unity with God-consciousness and leaving the material world by being liberated from samsara (cyclic suffering) and reincarnation, although many RHP practitioners take vows pledging to limit themselves from full attainment until all beings can achieve awakening. You could say that LHP philosophy is about using the power that can be attained from knowing your God-essence to live in the material world as an individual being.

If we’re gonna talk about it then I suppose I’ll say what I really think. My goal is something like both of these. Attain liberated consciousness and the ability to exist beyond samsara while also being able to exist in the material as a separated entity. I combine Buddhist/Dzogchen and related practices and doctrines with Western magick, such as Enochian, and I believe this to be a fruitful way to work.

I am sometimes wary of using Western JCI terms due to so much bullshit being propagated by capital T The and various churches corrupting the concepts. The idea of “faith and works” is a good example. You need “faith” that this is possible. I would say you need proof of magickal results. You need to “do works” to enter Heaven. To some this means going to church and splashing holy water on yourself, maybe donating some cash, maybe trying to “be moral,” maybe saying your Our Fathers and Hail Marys. I would say it is more about doing sophisticated practices such as ritual magick, like the priests kind of do at mass (mind control spells), and meditation and the like. Eating consecrated bread probably does something, but I am skeptical of that if you are not the one to do the invocation yourself.

All of this information is out there, especially these days, with many previously secret texts and commentaries now available for the public. That is how I got educated. If that hadn’t happened, I imagine I would have found my way to a monastery at some point.

The difference between religious people and practitioners shouldn’t be surprising. Most people just can’t be fucked to do basically anything beyond a shallow depth of bare survivability, no matter how intelligent they may or may not be. I’ve met some truly stupid people on the path to becoming doctors. They are just good at memorizing stuff in books and memorizing math processes, usually through brute force. There is very often very little self-reflective or truly critical thought devoid of emotionally biased thinking in people, not to mention an absolute lack of mindful awareness, meaning that they believe everything that arises in their mind is “them,” “their thoughts,” “their ideas,” “their identity,” rather than recognizing all appearances as empty phenomenon devoid of substance. Put simply, they’re fucking stupid fuck-faces who are controlled by ego. Doctors (yes, the MDs and the Ph.D.s) and engineers tend to be the stupidest and fuck-faceiest precisely because of ego, although there are many people with an astounding lack of knowledge and minds riddled with lies, shallow entertainment, and incessant bouncing boinging pinging notificating distraction, and most of all fear in the form of weakness, the greatest plague which has ever infected and controlled humanity.

That’s not me saying, I’m so smart, look at me, that is my observation. I believe part of The Great Work is to rid yourself of all the shit that modern society and humanity tries to thrust on you forcibly and without your consent. Otherwise, the peace and tranquility required to know your true God-consciousness, and just to enjoy your normal life, is not possible.

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