Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Enochian Chess and the publication of WB Yeats's Celtic sub-elemental boards by Steve Nichols

  
A unique set of 88 TAROT of the FouWorlds atous drawn in the 1500’s, but directly from  designs from late antiquity.
These cards are designed to accompany the four boards of Enochian Chess, and represent the 22 x 4 paths of the
Qabbalistic worlds of Atziluth, Briah, Yetzirah and Assiah.

The FIRST EDITION Tarot Four Wolrlds printing is limited to 100 sets, each with individual numbered  now SOLD OUT.
    My personal history with Enochian Chess goes back quite a long way, to my teens in the 1970's when I was a keen tournament chess player (common variety) as well as a voracious reader of any occult literature I could find. After leaving university around 1980 (Philosophy, Psychology, AJ Ayer was one of my Profs) I embarked on my sometimes haphazard and individual career as an acupuncturist/ psychotherapist/ neural computing /brain research on the one hand, and as a Games consultancy, inventor and manufacturer on the other hand. Enochian Chess was launched in the early 1980's with collaboration from JH (Herbie) Brennan, Francis Regardie and with publicity from meeting with Prince Charles to demo the sets, the sets were published for the first time, 1982. More than 30 years have elapsed since then, but I am genuinely happy to present for the first time all of Yeats's sub-Elemental 'Celtic' Enochian Chessboards.

At this moment I don't want to say anything that might be a spoiler to the forthcoming book which covers the full historical background of these Celtic boards, plus instructions how to paint them for yourself. Suffice to say that my research has been helped in owning probably the bulk of Ithell Colquhoun's manuscripts concerning occult matters, plus some letters and correspondence. Many of these unique resources I published as "The Magical Writings of Ithell Colquhoun", http://www.lulu.com/shop/steve-nichols/the-magical-writings-of-ithell-colquhoun/paperback/product-702061.html and I also programmed a PC version of Enochian Chess that very handily contains all the various Rules options and does all the divination work using my Connectionist AI patch.

As an antiquarian book dealer living in London I came across Golden Dawn manuscripts and rare items every now and then, and I purchased anything connected with Enochian Chess. The first edition Celtic boards follow some of Ithell's suggestions regarding Yeats's boards designs, which I have they suit the 'printed' format better. In 1980 I used to screen-print all the boards, these days I still love the printing process although it has modernised a great deal. Yeats's himself is sometimes a bit woolly on specifics of colour, whilst Ithel (a famous surrealist painter who wrote "Taro as Colour" along with other works and whose own taro cards are pure abstract colour and nothing else) is probably the greatest specialist in that field. Dee's Watchtowers and the 4 GD chessboards that represent them now supplemented by 16 Gates of the Cities of the Four Elements (or four Worlds of QBL), and if arrayed along compass lines will form an even larger and more vibrant 'protective space' or astral temple.

John Dee saw the Watchtowers as 'bulwarks against Satan' so the WBY Chessboards are useful to Ceremonial practitioners who may not be particularly interested in playing the Enochian Chess game itself. Yeats's magickal colour schema is strikingly different from the Tattvic colours (primary red, yellow, blue and red) used by the Westcott-Mather's boards. The patterns are different as well and create a 'Celtic' rather than a 'Kemetic' ambiance.

These perfectly supplement the four Elemental boards that everybody knows. As well as extending the system wider and further than until now (and introducing Celtic deities into the fray) , the full twenty-chessboard system really stretches and overloads the single 78 tarot pack imagery. Some years ago, the (Egyptian or pyramid) Enochian chessboards 'spoke' or alt least winked to me and "asked for" what turned up as Tarot of the Four Worlds (T4W collective with the minor Tarot of the 4 Winds), which I duly came across ready-formed but unnoticed by the Frat-Sors. Having four sets of 78 tarot, one for each of the elements, makes divinatory life a lot easier and more accurate. Especially since I came across the 88 Trumps from research into the history and true origins of the Tarrochini itself. I claim the Puritans in a backlash against the Humanist Renaissance made a crusade against playing cards, and against any non-Christian deity images or Witchcraft and divination in particular, see article http://88taro.com/prohibition.html
 
The 'Emblematic tradition' which traces back to ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphics ultimately (via Horapollo) seems to have given rise to the Game of the Four orders of Virtue (c 1425) and subsequent Tarot "Trumps" (lit. "Triumphs" of the Pagan Gods and Goddesses). The modern "Levi Waites" tarot is what the Christian Church in the place of the raw and authentic (Ptolemaic era) pre-Christian tarot. Wither's 'Ancient (pagan)' and Modern (Christian) Four Winds clearly demonstrates the birth of a newly minted Church-approved "tarot" by the absorption and cannibalisation of foregoing ancient (pagan) wisdom images. I have placed a free set of the 88 Trumps at http://88taro.com/hachenburg1614.html so folk can look at these imagos including Wheel of Fortuna, Strength and other familiar images. 
Check Enochian Chess website http://Enochian.net and http://posthuman.TV for further announcements on WB Yeats and Enochian Chess.

Steve Nichols