There are a lot of wonderful occult books coming out these days and it is a great time to be a practicing magician. Currently, my favorite practical magic book is Peter J. Carroll’s gorgeously illustrated Epoch. The Esotericon & Portals of Chaos Book and Deck.
I have had my copy of the book for about five months now and it is has been the cornerstone of my magical work as of late. The deck of “altar cards” is simply breathtaking and while you could of course use it as a cartomancy tool, that is not what I use it for.
I have used the deck primarily as a fast and simplified system of rotating offerings to various deities for specific needs. While the Jupiter card is currently attached to the wall in my cubicle at work as part of a small Jupiter altar, the rest of the deck sits in a large wooden box at home.
When I need a specific goal met, I flip through the book and read the descriptions of the gods, goddesses and spirits until I find what I am looking for. I then place the desired entity’s card on my rather unique beach stone altar in my bedroom, make an offering of incense, water and candle light and then make my petition and prayer then go about my business.
These offerings are a great way to “get to know” the entity at hand. During the writing of my fantasy novel “A Labyrinth Of Dreams” (coming to Barnes and Noble’s website as a digital download hopefully before years end) I would evoke and make offerings to THOTH, primarily asking for help in inspiration for the plot line, staying focused on the project and asking for a push when I did not feel like writing.
I would write in bed next to my altar during these offerings and the energy from the God was subtle yet, palpable.
Perusing the pages of the book and reading the description of each entity is a joy in and of itself. Once you have read the entire book, it becomes an excellent source text and an extremely user-friendly practical tool.
While it is a bit pricey, I would certainly recommend the book to any practicing chaos magician and even perhaps those outside of the chaos current.