|The dangers of Enochian Magick have at certain times been blown out of all proportion, and at other times carelessly denigrated. Aleister Crowley, for example, casually dismissed its dangers, and his writings leave the risks to the student’s karma. On the other hand, several groups of the Golden Dawn refuse to practice Enochian Magick at all because they believe it is far too dangerous to meddle with. The truth lies in the middle of these two extremes. There are very real dangers associated with the practice of Enochian Magick. However, proper preparation can significantly reduce or eliminate these dangers. Is Enochian Magick completely safe to practice? No. Is it dangerous? Yes. Is it too dangerous? No; not if safeguards are used and one is properly prepared beforehand. It is like skydiving. Many people enjoy this sport every day without being harmed. But if a skydiver does not prepare himself or herself and the necessary equipment properly before a dive, the results can be devastating.
Probably the best-known danger is associated with the Enochian alphabet. A terrible potential is said to exist inherently in the letters of the Angelic alphabet, since you write out the name of a deity using the Angelic letters, and speak that name aloud but once, you could be visited by the deity in one form or another. Knowing the name of a deity (and this includes demons) establishes a psychomagnetic link between a magician and that deity. According to an ancient Egyptian text, "the life of a person is invested in his name." From the earliest days, humankind realized that the name of any living being had a subtle link with that being, and that by knowing a being’s name you could control it to some degree. Likewise, the general rule is that to control an Enochian deity or demon, one must know its name. Once the name is known the awareness itself produces a subtle link with that deity. This link is sufficient, in some cases, to either allow one to go to the deity or to allow the deity to come to oneself. Because of this, special banishing rituals have been devised to allow the link to be severed, when necessary. Special invoking rituals have also been devised to re-establish the link, when desired.
As a simple example, consider the demon Hate. Once you become familiar with the idea of hatred, with which the name Hate is associated, you will be capable of hatred yourself. In a sense, your mental concentration on the name and its meaning opens a subtle attraction to the emotion itself, and you open yourself up to the demon of Hate, who could possess you at almost any time. The degree of susceptibility to establishing such links is karmic, and varies with individuals. Obviously, as far as Enochian deities are concerned, we will be more susceptible to this danger the more we believe in their reality. Most people refuse to believe they are real, and this belief protects them. In order to practice Enochian Magick, you must accept the reality of its deities. This acceptance will increase your susceptibility to their influences, as well as their danger to you. It is an unavoidable situation, but awareness is the first step in protection.
The real danger with Enochian Magick is not that a monster will jump out at you. The real danger is that the practice of Enochian magick??"treading the path of the Great Work??"will by its very nature precipitate much of your stored karma. Past karmic debts, known collectively as one’s "karmic burden," can naturally be worked off over many future lifetimes. When the Great Work is attempted, one of the results is the dissipation of one’s karmic burden. In effect, the karma that would normally take lifetimes to work out is worked out in this lifetime. Obviously this situation is not limited to Enochian Magick, but is true for all paths of the Great Work.
There are several safeguards a magician can use to reduce the dangers involved in the practice of Enochian Magick. The most obvious is to obtain knowledge. Know what you are doing and why you are doing it. Ignorant behavior, even when one’s motives are pure, usually ends in disaster. Another is to cultivate a sincere love for your fellow human beings??"a true desire to help others. Compassion is a necessity for work in the higher Aethyrs, and without it you will be in very great danger indeed. Morality aside, it turns out that strong feelings of compassion and selfless love coat the aura with a protective shield that few demons can penetrate. Without compassion, the ego will quite often have fear for itself in some form or another. It turns out that fear attracts demons of the worst sort, and can be ruinous for many magickal operations. The magician must conduct his or her exercises without fear. Perfect love casts out fear, and though it may sound trite in today’s world, nevertheless it is true that love is the best and surest safeguard a magician can have.