Occult Tour of London

by Mike Sententia on July 11, 2011

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Map of the shops

The shops hand out this map. No idea why it's sideways. Click for full size.

Saturday I followed this walking tour of London’s occult shops. Some were great, some not so much. Here’s some notes on each:

Unsworth Rice and Coe: I think it’s closed. There was another small bookstore in that area. I skipped it.

Atlantis Bookshop: Very cool. Small store, good variety of books, and a noticeable lack of fluff. Staff are folks you’d want to hang out with, and I think they’ve read the entire collection. Apparently, Crowley, Gardner and other big names hung out there back in the day. I’ll be back Wednesday for a pub moot (the UK version of a meetup).

Egyptian shop on Bury Placy: Now it’s a Greek art shop. Skipped it.

Skoob Books: Couldn’t find Sicilian Place. Skipped it.

Masonic Lodge: They have tours during the week, but it was mostly closed up on Saturday. Kind of neat, but not enough to get me to come back.

New World Aurora: It’s an essential oils / aromatherapy shop now. Same kind of stuff you find in the states. I walked in and straight back out.

Mysteries: Crystals and tarot. The kind of shop you find in the states. Not my thing. (If you’re a regular reader, probably not your thing, either). Sadly, this was the busiest shop.

Dover Bookshop: Didn’t see anything occult-y there, just some reprinted books.

Watkins: Feels like an occult Borders. Tons of books, great range of subjects, but no socializing. I didn’t stay long, but the staff was friendly. A good place for books, though.

Treadwells: A guy at Watkins recommended Treadwells for events, so I skipped the last few shops on the site’s tour and went there. Another smaller store with a good selection of non-fluff books (like Atlantis). You can hang out and read (don’t chase you away), and they have the greatest variety of events. The owner is a college professor (religion or something occult-related, I think). Also, it’s moved, see the map above for the new location.

A Personal Success

From explaining direct magick many times, I have the pattern down now:

  • In traditional magick, you do a ritual to signal to your unconscious what you want to happen.
  • In direct magick, you learn to consciously direct those formerly unconscious parts. Similar to using biofeedback to consciously control your heart.
  • Then, you step your mind through the process of doing the magick, focusing on the implementation rather than the symbolic interface.

I’ll post on that soon.

Summary

Atlantis and Treadwells were the most worthwhile for me. We just don’t have shops like that in Albuquerque. (NYC doesn’t seem to either. The only one I know of in the states is The Occult Bookstore in Chicago). If I were doing it again, I’d visit those 2 shops, plus the British Museum in the middle. If you want magick books, add Watkins to the list.

Also, I asked each of those bookstores if they had anything on direct magick. None did. So I may be writing a book at some point. Any thoughts on what to put in? Leave a comment.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Benjamin Mitchell June 23, 2013 at 11:54 AM

Very helpful, thank you very much for your thoughts!

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