THE SERPENT HOUSE OF ZAL – Research & Reflections
  • Research and reflections during the writing of The Serpent House of ZAL, an extended essay that introduces the Leng Mythos and the magicks of the Iz-za-Zahal.

    “Determination without end
    As the surface of the Qube tumbles and turns
    Born in the wells of stars, the cauldron, a graal
    Aligns fate to possiblility.”

    A reading from The Hexagrams of ZAL.

    With the simple means of three cards, the Master Za-ah-Lin communicates the essence of the moment, for in coming to his high sanctuary, the intense reflection and meditation reaches into the heart of the Avalon-Atlantean mysteries and brings forth the central motif. In the writing of The Serpent House of ZAL, this essence has necessitated an exploration, a pilgrimage that crosses both the land of Britain, reaching for its spiritual heart in Glastonbury and the lands that lie beneath the cold stars where the ancient Shadow Architects wrought their citadel of exile.

    With the Voltigeur-Physics it has been possible to step through the pages of all these books, leaping backwards in time to 1924 and the vicinity of the Chalice Orchard. Here, the aura of a woman flickers with the tones of the three rays, their complimentary colours, bright flecks that sparkle, tiny suns burning amongst the ethereal field all around her. She was born Violet, but all will come to know her by another name. That flickering fraternity of stars within her aura pulsates as portals open and close in close proximity to her, the doorways between the realms slowly opening.

    Jumping once more to the modern age, of the town transformed, of the Orchard passed from owner to owner and nothing lasting on the banks of The Tor save echoes in signs and portents. Mellow sounds drift from the High Street, where the Fey mix in broad daylight, where pilgrim feet walk the ways of old and souls destined to meet once more, meet in the shadow of The Tor. There is no cold of winter, for the Midsummer Sun dances in its slow decline and we strike a single chime at the side of her grave, the light of her aura not erased, nor the inner shining blaze no weaker. There is a peace, a tranquility that reaches amongst the headstones and teaches us still.

    Will these books offer anything greater than the experiences gained first hand in communing with the essence of the moment? Will they take us beyond this place, show us more than their authors have traced? When we begin a quest of this nature, it is not always apparent just where the road will lead, which Ray will become dominant and show the way forward. In Glastonbury the Green Ray is apparent in the sacred geography of the landscape and the realm of the Fey themselves, so closely tied to its passageways between their world and ours. The other Rays, of Christian Mysticism and Hermetic Gnosis are brought to life at their side and in their continuum we hear the voice of Frederick Bligh Bond and more loudly that of W.E.Butler, his accent as unmistakable as the practical application of the arte to the world of spirits and men. Few words are more to the point and presented in such a way that misinterpretation is impossible. They stay with you, long after you have heard them. Deceptively simple in their approach, with clearly defined definitions, they transport you back, jumping instantly to 1980s and The Ace of Wands, a tiny bookshop, where the bright cover of the paperback edition of Apprenticed to Magic hinted at the Master Magicians that walk amongst us and those on the other side of this life that support us through the joy and strife that are essential aspects of the apprenticeship itself, of the phoenix’s kiss whose flames refine.

    It is time to put down the pen once more in The Serpent House of ZAL, to feel your way along the walls, past the walled-up door, past the tall stone upon which sits the Book of Veils, to the open window and the ledge. To leap, to roam once more across the reaches of the plateau, to find the Eggship before the cold and snow gnaws at bone.

    The Hexagrams of ZAL are a powerful aid to opening the doorways between worlds. You can own your own deck today by visiting the Store.

About The Author

Sean Woodward is a British artist, writer and musician. His art is collected internationally and his essays, fiction and poetry have been published in a number of international publications. He is the author of A Grammar of Spirits, Keys to the Hoodoo Kingdom, ARCHONIX, NECRONIX, Erzulie of the Deep, The Grimoire of ZAL and co-author of The Infernal Faces of Hekate. AEONIX and Keys to the Voudon Kingdom are forthcoming from

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