Events at Treadwells

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I had the good fortune to visit Treadwells again last week and it struck me again as to what a wonderful little shop it is. From the outside it looks like something from Dickens or, perhaps, from a Harry Potter novel.

Anyway, read the rest of this News item for the latest detailed list of planned events, summarised as:

Herbal Magic Workshop: Making things for yourself and others: Treadwell’s Presents… Led by Paul Wood and Lily Moss
Voudon Gnosis of Michael Bertiaux: A Talk by David Beth
Dangerous Books, Hidden Knowledge and Demons in Vellum: The Keepers of Occult Books in Libraries Today: Cecile Dubuis (University College London Library)
Mesopotamian Demons III: A Third Night with Dr. Irving Finkel’s Demons: Dr. Irving Finkel (Keeper of Near Eastern Antiquities, The British Museum)
HP Lovecraft and the Occult: A Series With Dr. Justin Woodman

… and many others.
Treadwell’s Books
34 Tavistock St.,
Covent Garden WC2E 7PB
Events Mailout
30th November 2006
Booking: Please book in advance via Tel. 0207 240 8906.
Map on our website, .
Note: all events start promptly and latecomers are not admitted.
Wine is, however, served from 7.00 pm on nights when the events commence at 7.30.
All Treadwell’s evening talks are followed by a drinks party.

Herbal Magic Workshop: Making things for yourself and others
Treadwell’s Presents Led by Paul Wood and Lily Moss

16th December (Saturday) 1 – 6pm £22

Herbal preparations are an integral part of natural magic, cunning witchcraft and folk magic. This workshop provides a hands-on environment to make bath salts, sachets and herbal potions that you can use yourself, or give to another. You can make items to gain psychic power, visionary ability, love, legal success, justice, and house purification. In this afternoon workshop, everyone will be taught the attributed powers of some important gum bases, oils, roots, barks, leaves and petals. There is hands-on practice all the way through, and samples of all the ingredients will be tested. Each person will mix three items to take home. This is a perfect place to learn to make things at home which you can give as Yule and Christmas gifts to your friends and family. All of Treadwell’s herbal supplies will be on sale at 10% off on the day (for those attending the workshop). Registration is taking place now, and places are limited.

Voudon Gnosis of Michael Bertiaux: A Talk by David Beth
11th January (Thursday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

This talk enters the exciting but often confusing world of Michael Bertiaux (b. 1935), the enigmatic occultist, thinker and artist who is most famed as the author of The Voudon Gnostic Workbook. Bertiaux’s Voudon Gnostic system is a syncretic voodoo grounded in Esoteric Haitian voudon and shaped by various occult systems from Crowley to sorcery to esoteric continental freemasonry. He is the head of a number of inter-related magical orders including the Ecclesia Gnostica Spiritualis, a church tradition which claims an apostolic succession.

Tonight’s speaker is almost uniquely qualified to unravel the threads of the Voudon Gnostic work and speak experientially from an insider’s perspective. David Beth (Tau Melchizedek) is the Sovereign Grand Master of the OTOA and LCN and a Gnostic patriarch. He has been practising esoteric disciplines for many years and is a close friend and confidant of Bertiaux. David is also a university-educated historian born and raised in Africa, and has lived in Europe and the USA.

The talk will outline the various orders and elucidate some of the key concepts in Voudon Gnosis, including “the conferements”, “point chauds”, sexual magic, occult art and the rites of initiation. Many false assumptions regarding the Voudon Gnostic work will be dispelled, and more than a few surprises will be revealed. It follows on from the talk given in early 2006 by Emir Sahilovic.

Basic information about Bertiaux and his work can be found here:
Nevill Drury interview:

Dangerous Books, Hidden Knowledge and Demons in Vellum:
The Keepers of Occult Books in Libraries Today

Cecile Dubuis (University College London Library)

23rd January (Tuesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

A book could be a spiritual landmine, for reading an occult text could ruin an innocent life no? And are there not hidden secrets behind the vellum binding – think Da Vinci Code, think Rule of Four, think Name of the Rose. These are deep atavistic beliefs that operate consciously or subconsciously in the minds of both the occultists and the keepers of the books. Most occult texts are held in libraries, yet their keepers the librarians are rarely occultists, and some are actually afraid of the occult – and the doors are so often barred

Tonight’s speaker went on a mission to find out how much (and how) libraries hinder people’s access to the occult texts in their possession. Her field research aimed to do a few things: first, to try to see how libraries reacted to an occultist trying to gain access to occult books. She also (wearing her scholar’s hat) interviewed lib! rarians about their attitudes to occult books and how they felt about being custodians of such material. Her findings were surprising at times, comforting at others and – once or twice – a bit horrifying. This is a talk for anyone who has ever been awestruck in a library, for anyone who has ever sought out the “occult section” of the stacks, or has dreamt of having a private book collection.

Cecile Dubuis, MA, is a librarian at University College London. A lifelong lover of gothic literature, she is involved with the book group Bibliogoth and is an active organiser for the Vampyre Connexion and other London goth societies. Her 2004 dissertation, Libraries and the Occult, involved work with The Warburg Institute, The Wellcome Library, Battersea Public Library, the Library of Avalon and the Theosophical Library.

Mesopotamian Demons III:
A Third Night with Dr. Irving Finkel’s Demons

Dr. Irving Finkel (Keeper of Near Eastern Antiquities, The British Museum)

25th January (Thursday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

Tonight’s illustrated talk is on just what it says, from a leading scholar in the field: magic, demons and necromancy in Ancient Mesopotamia. We are delighted to present, for a third talk, Dr Irving Finkel of the British Museum. This lively speaker is a world expert in Ancient Mesopotamian magic who contributes frequently to radio and television programmes. Maev Kennedy in The Guardian says: “Irving Finkel is the last of the great eccentrics, put on the earth to brighten up the dull grey everyday. He knows more things about more things than most sane people could cope with.”

A soirée follows the talk, and all are invited to stay for drinks and canapés. Please book in advance. NOTE: this talk covers different material from that in his Spring Treadwell’s lectures.

HP Lovecraft and the Occult:
A Series With Dr. Justin Woodman

Dr Woodman lectures in anthropology at Goldsmiths College, Birkbeck College, and the University of Westminster. He has contributed articles on Lovecraftian themes to Strange Attractor and The Journal for the Academic Study of Magic.

Evening One: The Man, the Myth, the Magic
17th January (Wednesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

Treadwell’s presents Dr Justin Woodman’s series of four talks analysing aspects of HP Lovecraft (1890–1937), the author best known for the creation of the Cthulhu mythos, a fictional mythology detailing monstrous powers “from beyond”. Tonight, Woodman casts a critical eye on the “magical” context of Lovecraft’s life and work. He then explores some of the myths surrounding the man and his fiction. This first talk also begins to examine the powerful influence that Lovecraft’s unique literary creations have exerted over the contemporary occult imagination.

Evening Two: Legends of the Necronomicon
31st January (Wednesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

In part two of this series, Justin Woodman explores the history of the legendary Necronomicon in fact and fiction, and ponders its continuing relevance to contemporary occult cultures. Penned by the Yemeni poet and mystic Abdul Alhazred circa 700 CE, the dreaded Necronomicon is perhaps one of the most powerful and alluring of HP Lovecraft’s creations: a grimoire able to rend apart the very fabric of reality and bring forth the Great Old Ones themselves. Although a work of fiction, the Necronomicon has yet achieved a social and physical reality with more than twenty versions having been published since the 1960s.

Evening Three: Chariots of the Dark Gods
14th February (Wednesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

Many of H.P. Lovecraft’s best known tales of the Cthulhu mythos intimate that the human species is nothing but a by-product of extraterrestrial interventions in Earth’s prehistory. His idea predates the “Ancient Astronaut” theorists and “alternative archaeologists” by over thirty years. Woodman demonstrates that Lovecraft is a pervasive (but often unacknowledged) influence upon ufology and UFO religions. In the second part of the lecture, Woodman speculates further on the relationships that have developed between imaginative fiction, Forteana and contemporary occult cultures.

Evening Four: Chaos, Cthulhu, and Contemporary Consciousness
28th February (Wednesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

Tonight’s talk concludes the series exploring the relationship between Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos and contemporary occult cultures. Woodman here focuses on Chaos magic and other recent movements, and considers the claim that Lovecraft was a “mythographer of modernity”. It can be argued that he was a writer whose enduring vision is consonant with the claims of cutting-edge magic and theoretical physics; moreover, Woodman suggests, his work intimates something about the current trajectories of Western culture and consciousness.

On Dissolving the Distinction between Human and Animal:
A Series With Dr. Stephen Alexander

Dr Stephen Alexander did his PhD at Warwick University on D.H. Lawrence and continental philosophy. His work focusses on transgression, shock and taboo subjects.

Evening One: Zoophilia – Philosophy Culture Series
13th February (Tuesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

For his fourth annual philosophy series of the continental and transgressive, Dr Alexander turns to the animal-human relationship.

This opening paper challenges the metaphysical assumption that human beings are distinct from the rest of animal life. Dr Alexander gives an original twist to several post-Nietzschean thinkers, by considering their views in relation so zoophilia as an erotica practice. The erotic relationship between human and animal exemplifies and brings into focus many of their concerns.

Evening Two: Ophidicism – Eve and the Serpent
20th February (Tuesday)7.15 for 7.30pm start£5

This paper constitutes an attempt to radically re-examine the story of Eve’s biblical encounter with the serpent. It will be argued that reconciliation between the two is crucial if we are to ever move into a post-moral and transhuman future. Whether this requires neo-pagan veneration or even sexual congress with snakes is one of the points to be discussed.

Evening Three: Come Not with Kisses – Leda and the Swan
27th February (Tuesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

Many poets and artists, including W.B. Yeats and D.H. Lawrence, have been fascinated by the Greek myth of Leda and the Swan. Here, I will offer a critical reading of the cultural and political use made of a tale that describes the violent sexual encounter between a featherless woman and a bird which comes not with kisses, but with a hiss of wings and a sharp beak.

Evening Four: Equus Eroticus – Why Do Girls Love Horses?
6th March (Tuesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

The question to be addressed concerns the erotic fascination that some young women (and, indeed, some young men) feel for horses. Via a close reading of D.H. Lawrence’s short novel St. Mawr and reference also to Peter Shaffer’s play Equus, we will discuss everything from pony-play to Plato; from horse-worship to horse-ripping.

Evening Five: In the Company of Wolves – Animal Transformation Fantasy
13th March (Tuesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

Therianthropy refers to the idea that we might shed our clothes, our skin, and our humanity and transform ourselves into beasts. It has long had a powerful hold upon both the magical and literary imagination. Via a reading of Angela Carter’s erotic re-workings of Beauty and the Beast and Little Red Riding Hood, we will examine this fantasy, as well as pay a brief visit to the world of furry fandom.

Evening Six: Becoming-Animal – On Molecular Bestiality
20th March (Tuesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

This final paper will examine the philosophically occult notion of becoming-animal, as developed in the work of Deleuze and Guattari. Abandoning the fantasy of molar transformation, the more interesting idea is advanced that we might rather be able to enter into a “zone of proximity” with an animal and therein exchange particles at a molecular level.

Nineteenth Century Irish Occultism and the Emergence of 20th Century Celtic Spirituality
Joseph De Lappe

30th January (Tuesday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5

Advance notice – full description to follow.

The 1735 Witchcraft Phenomenon: Robert Cochrane and a descendant tradition
Stuart Inman
8th February (Thursday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5
Advance notice – full description to follow.

Memoirs of a Working Exorcist
Stuart Inman
8th March (Thursday) 7.15 for 7.30pm start £5
Advance notice – full description to follow.

Book Launch: Beastly Behaviour
Nexus Publishing & Virgin Books
16th March (Friday) Free
Advance notice – full description to follow.

Outside Events
At Treadwell’s Meeting Rooms

Whitestone Pagan Meetup Group
26th November (Sunday) 6pm £2.50

A meetup group for pagans led by the friendly Alwin. Ideal for those starting out on the pagan path. Informal discussion, friendly chat, learning opportunities, sharing of knowledge. Treadwell’s provides the teas and coffees. Here’s a bit about the meetup group:

Psychic Development Group for Lesbians and Gay Men
27th November and following Mondays 7.30 – 9pm

Meeting every second Monday, this is a psychic and ESP development circle for gay men and lesbians led by Ian Shillito, a psychic medium who trained at the College of Psychic Studies and who also appears in television’s Most Haunted programme. If you are interested in joining, please email Ian at for a chat.

The Druid Order (A.D.U.B.)
Open evening – Talk and Meditation
7th December (Thursday), 4th Jan, 18th January 7.30pm £5 on the door

The Druid Order is well known for their public ceremonies, most notably the Midsummer rites at Stonehenge, which they perform in their distinctive long white robes. Throughout the year, fortnightly, they hold public meetings for those who wish to learn more about them. These consist of a talk by the chief druid or a senior member, then a led meditation and a discussion period with tea and biscuits.

Reiki Training: Aurora Reiki Centre
9th – 10th December – Levels One and Two
27th – 28th January – Levels One and Two

The Aurora Reiki Centre holds its monthly classes under the auspices of Allison Brice. Levels I, II and III Classes. For more information, please visit the website of the Aurora Reiki Centre at
Reiki Share on a Sunday Evening
17th December, 14th January (Sundays) 6 – 9pm £6

Under the auspices of the Aurora Reiki Centre, this monthly Reiki share welcomes practitioners of all lineages. Three full hours of healing exchanges for all who attend. Treadwell’s provides the teas. For more information, please contact Damian on 07733 367 451 or via email at

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