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Aaron's Rod: Any of the staves carried by Moses' brother, Aaron, in the Old Testament of the Bible. The Bible tells how, along with Moses' rod, Aaron's rod was endowed with miraculous power during the Plagues of Egypt which preceded the Exodus and is believed to have borne an inscription which is composed of the initials of the Hebrew names of the Ten Plagues (Tan., Waëra 8, ed. Buber). Translation of inscription: "To the extent of God let these come to pass". There are two occasions where the Bible tells of the rod's power even when it was not being held by its owner. Similar to a magic wand, it was used in the miracles of dividing the waters of the Red Sea and in causing water to gush from a rock in the desert. When Aaron cast his rod before pharaoh and his magicians (Exodus 7), the rod transformed into a serpent, hence the occult use of Aaron's Rod with a motif of a serpent. An old Jewish legend states that Aaron's rod was created on the sixth day of Creation and was retained by Adam after leaving the Garden of Eden, subsequently passing into the hands of a succession of patriarchs. The Torah ascribes similar miraculous powers to the Rod of Aaron and to the staff of Moses (compare, for example, Exodus 4:2 et seq. and 7:9). The Haggadah goes a step further, and entirely identifies the Rod of Aaron with that of Moses. An apocryphal Christian legend states that the rod was cut from the Tree of Knowledge, eventually came into the possession of Judas, and was the beam of the cross on which Christ was crucified. The hazel wand used by water diviners in dowsing echoes the water finding by Aaron's rod in the desert. It is believed by many to have survived into the modern day and has even been the focus of extensive archeological research by the Roman Catholic Church, NAZI Germany and various independent archeologists.
 
Abacomancy: A "divination" practice which interprets patterns in dust or in the funerary ashes of the recently deceased to forecast future events.
 
Abada: (Also known as the Nillekma or the Arase) A type of unicorn.They are similar to the Unicorn except they have two crooked horns instead of one straight one. They are a dark bay color, have a warthog tail, and a are a little larger than a donkey. Like the unicorn, its horns are thought to act as an antidote to poisons. It reportedly lives in Africa, specifically the Congo.
 
Abaddon: (From Hebrew "Ha Baddon" meaning "The Destroyer") Chief of the demons of the seventh hierarchy. Abaddon is the name given by St. John in the Apocalypse to the king of the grasshoppers. He is sometimes regarded as the destroying angel or prince of the underworld, also synonymous with Apollyon (Rev. 9:11). In the Hebrew scriptures, Abaddon comes to mean "place of destruction," or the realm of the dead, and is associated with Sheol (see, for instance, Job 26:6, Proverbs 15:11, Proverbs 27:20 and Psalm 88:3, among others). The Christian scriptures contain the first known depiction of Abaddon as an individual entity instead of a place. In St. John's Revelation 9:1-11, Abaddon is described as the king of the bottomless pit and of a plague of locusts that resemble war horses with crowned human faces and having women's hair, lions' teeth, locusts' wings, and the tail of a scorpion.

Abarimon:  The name of a legendary race of people native to a country of the same name. The people of Abarimon have backwards feet, but in spite of this handicap were able to outrun all other runners. They lived side by side with wild animals and attempts to capture them failed because they were so savage. It is believed that special sandals are the reason their feet were turned in. This is what allowed them to run at such high speeds. They lived in the Himalayan Mountains and the country itself was found in the great valley of Mount Imaus. There was a special quality of air which meant if it was breathed for a long period of time it would be impossible to breathe any other type of air and the inhabitants could never leave the valley alive. The Abarimon people were first described by Pliny the Elder.

Abaris: A Scythian high priest of Apollo and a renowned magician. He chanted the praises of Apollo, his master, so flatteringly that the god gave him a golden arrow on which he could ride through the air like a bird. Therefore, the Greeks called him the Aerobate. Pythagoras, his pupil, stole this arrow from him and thus accomplished many wonderful feats. Abaris foretold the future, pacified storms, banished disease, and lived without eating or drinking. With the bones of Pelops, he made a statue of Minerva, which he sold to the Trojans as a talisman descended from heaven. This was the famous Palladium, which protected and rendered impregnable the town wherein it was lodged.

Abatwa: (Zulu Mythology) Legendary little people from the southern regions who are so small they can hide beneath a blade of grass and ride ants. They are said to live a nomadic lifestyle and continually on the hunt for game. Folklore states that these people are nomadic hunters capable of killing and consuming large animals. According to Zulu, the Abatwa live in the mountains and hills, but are nomadic hunters, having no central village. They follow the game, greedily eat their kill in its entirety, and then move on. When out on a hunt, or traveling to distant lands, they ride horses, usually the entire group upon a single animal, sitting from the neck to the tail, one behind another. If they fail to make a kill, they will devour their communal horse. Due to their shy nature, they will only tolerate being seen by the very young (said to be anyone under the age of 4), by magicians, and by pregnant women. If a pregnant woman in her seventh month of pregnancy sees a male Abatwa, it is said that she will give birth to a boy. Legend states that if one happens to come across an Abatwa, one will typically be asked a question like, "From where did you first see me?" One must reply by saying one saw them from a mountain, or some far away area. They are said to be extremely sensitive about their size, and if one answers by saying that one only saw them right then for the first time, the Abatwa will try to kill them with poison arrows. Stepping on an Abatwa by accident is also said to be a death sentence. Some believe the Abatwa to be an aboriginal African people also known as Twa, Bushmen or Bosjesmans, whom are thought to be the primordial inhabitants of Burundi and Rwanda.

Abductee: A person that has allegedly been abducted by aliens one or multiple times. Generally, this implies been taken without consent or against their will.

Abduction: The kidnapping of humans either by humans or by non-human beings. (See: “Alien Abduction”).
 
Abigor: The Grand Duke of Hades according to Johan Weyer. He is shown in the form of a handsome knight bearing a lance, standard, or scepter. He is a demon of the superior order and responds readily to questions concerning war. He can foretell the future and instructs leaders on how to make themselves respected by their soldiers. Sixty infernal regions are under his command. Sources:Weyer, Johannes. Witches, Devils, and Doctors in the Renaissance: Johann Weyer, De Praestigiis. Edited by George Mora. Binghamton, N.Y.: Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies, 1991.

Abnuaaya: Also known as "Almas" and "Albasty", the Abnuaaya are the fabled 'wildmen' of the Caucusus Mountains and central Asia. The creatures have a history of sightings dating back many centuries, perhaps even prior to 1420, and modern crypto zoologists believe that based off eyewitness accounts and descriptions, the Almases may be remnants of Neanderthal man or a species similar to the Yeti

Abominable Snowman: Popular term for a "Yeti" or "Meh-teh". A supposed large primate-like creature reported to live in the Himalayas. The Western name is derived from the Tibetan yeh-teh meaning "little man-like animal"; it is a false cognate with Old English geottan (or yettin in Modern English), an antiquated word for an orc or troll. Most mainstream scientists and experts consider current evidence of the Abominable Snowman existence to be unpersuasive, and the result of hoaxes, and legend.
 
Abraxas: The Basilidian sect of Gnostics of the second century claimed Abraxas as their supreme god and said that Jesus Christ was only a phantom sent to Earth by him. They believed that his name contained great mysteries, as it was composed of the seven Greek letters which form the number 365, the number of days in a year. Abraxas, they thought, had under his command 365 gods, to whom they attributed 365 virtues, one for each day. The older mythologists consider Abraxas an Egyptian god, and demonologists describe him as a demon with the head of a king and with serpents forming his feet. Ancient amulets depict Abraxas with a whip in his hand, and his name inspired the mystic word abracadabra.

Abred: The innermost of three concentric circles representing the totality of being in the cosmology of the Celts. Abred represents the stage of struggle and evolution against Cythrawl, the power of evil.

Absent Healing: Psi phenomenon in which the practitioner is able to invoke healing changes within a subject without being present at the time of healing or at a great distance. Sometimes through the subject providing some associational link such as a written request for healing, or in reverse form, by the healer sending a piece of material to be placed on the subject's body where the healing is required, or simply by prayers for the subject's recovery on the part of the healer or a band of healing associates. Many people today, Christian, metaphysical, or modern Spiritualist, hold sessions at which they pray for the recovery of petitioners who write them for help.

Absent Sitter: Psi term for a person, who is not present at the time of a psychic reading, for whom the reading is given. Similar or alternative term is "proxy sitting."
 
Abura-akago: (油赤子, lit. "red oil baby") is a ghost in Japanese mythology. Abura-akago is illustrated in Toriyama Sekien's Konjaku Gazu Zoku Hyakki, as an infant spirit lapping oil out of an andon lamp. Sekien's accompanying notes describe it: In the eighth town of Ōtsu in Ōmi ("Afumi") Province there exists a flying ball-like fire.The natives say that long ago in the village of Shiga there was a person who stole oil, and every night he stole the oil from the Jizō of the Ōtsu crossroads, but when this person died his soul became a flame and even now they grow accustomed to this errant fire. If it is so then the baby which licks the oil is this person's rebirth. Sekien seems to have based this image on a story from the Shokoku Rijin Dan, published in 1746, in which an oil merchant who steals oil from the Jizo statue at the Otsu crossroads is punished by being transformed posthumously into a ghostly flame.

Abura-sumashi: (油すまし, "Oil Presser") (Japanese Folklore) A creature from the island of Amakusa in Kumamoto prefecture (Japan). The abura-sumashi's name can be translated as "oil wringer", from abura (oil) and sumasu, a word from Amakusa dialect which means to "press, wring, or squeeze". It seems to be related to the production of katashi-abura ("hardship oil", taken from the seeds of the Camellia sasanqua plant) which was once prosperous in the Kawachi district of the island. In modern media the abura-sumashi is often depicted as a squat creature with a straw-coat covered body and a potato-like or stony head.

Abyssum: An herb used in the ceremony of exorcising a haunted house. Abyssum is consecrated by the sign of the cross and hung up at the four corners of the house.

Abyzou: The name of a female demon. Abyzou was blamed for miscarriages and infant mortality and was said to be motivated by envy (Greek phthonos), as she herself was infertile. In the Jewish tradition she is identified with Lilith, in Coptic Egypt with Alabasandria, and in Byzantine culture with Gylou, but in various texts surviving from the syncretic magical practice of antiquity and the early medieval era she is said to have many or virtually innumerable names. Aalso spelled Abizou, Obizu, Obizuth, Obyzouth, Byzou, is pictured on amulets with fish- or serpent-like attributes. Her fullest literary depiction is the Compendium of demonology known as the Testament of Solomon, dated variously by scholars from as early as the 1st century A.D. to as late as the 4th.

Acheropite: Term used to describe a supernormally produced portrait on cloth. Another term, used for a cloth that bears the miraculous portrait of Jesus, is veronica, based on an apocryphal legend of a woman who wiped the face of Jesus during the procession to the Cross. The controversial Turin Shroud is one of the more interesting examples of such a cloth.

Active-Agent Telepathy: Term used by parapsychologists for situations in which the agent in telepathic experiments seems to be an active factor in causing mental or behavioral effects in the percipient, or subject, rather than being simply a passive participant whose mental states are recognized by the percipient.

Acupressure: A form of body work which, as the name implies, is based in acupuncture. Acupuncturists apply pressure to the designated points on the body with the hand rather than using needles. A popular practice in Japan, it was severely restricted by laws against massage in the nineteenth century. That law was repealed in 1955. As acupressure revived, it found a receptive audience in the West. Acupressure is similar to but distinct from other body techniques like do-in and shiatsu. For further information, contact the Acupressure Institute, 1533 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA 94709. In the 1970s, Michael Reed Gach developed a variation on acupressure that he termed acu-yoga. It combines acupressure with hatha yoga. Individuals are taught to apply pressure on the points while assuming various yoga positions.
 
Acupuncture: The Chinese practice of inserting needles into specific points (acupoints) along the ‘meridians’ of the body and manipulated to relieve the discomfort associated with painful disorders, to induce surgical anesthesia, and for preventive and therapeutic purposes. It is proposed that acupuncture produces its effects by the conduction of electromagnetic signals at a greater-than-normal rate, thus aiding the activity of pain-killing biochemicals, such as endorphins and immune system cells, at specific sites in the body. Studies have also shown that acupuncture may alter brain chemistry by changing the release of neurotransmitters and neurohormones and affecting sensory perception and involuntary body functions. In recent years, the techniques have been adapted for use in veterinary medicine.
 
Acutomancy: A form of divination utilizing sharp or pointed objects, such as needles, which are dropped in customary lots of seven onto a table surface, where the resulting random pattern is interpreted to gain insights into future events.
 
Acuto-manzia: Unusual form of divination by pins practiced by Italian psychic Maria Rosa Donati-Evstigneeff. Ten straight pins and three bent pins are used. They are shaken in cupped hands, then dropped onto a surface dusted with powder. This system would seem to involve some psychic faculty, and is related to such forms of divination as geomancy and tea leaves.
 
Adam Kadmon: ("primeval man"). Kabbalistic term, known especially from the symbolism of the Zohar, expressing the anthropomorphic conception of Jewish mysticism of the Divine realm. A Tree of Life in the Kabala in the form of an idealized spiritual being. The Divine-emanated hypostases, the Sefirot, are described symbolically as comprising a huge human-like figure: The three upper ones, Keter (crown), H?okhmah (wisdom), and Binah (intelligence), are the head of this figure; H?esed (love) is the right hand, Din (judgment) the left and (which is also the source of earthly evil), Tiferet (beauty) is the body or heart, Netsah? (endurance)---the right leg, Hod (majesty)---the left, and Yesod (foundation)---the male organ. The feminine element in the Divine realm, Malkhut (kingdom) or the Shekhinah (Divine presence), is depicted as a parallel female body. The concept of Adam Kadmon is the Kabbalah's mystical interpretation of the imago dei---the creation of Man in the form of God (Gen. 1:26). The figure itself is first presented in a Jewish mystical work in the ancient Shi'ur Komah text which belongs to Hekhalot and Merkabah mysticism, in which the Creator's limbs are described, their names given, and their gigantic measurements listed. This mystical symbolism is based on the anthropomorphic interpretation of the verses in Song of Songs 5:10-16, where the "lover" is understood to be God Himself. Medieval Kabbalah used the Shi'ur Komah symbolism extensively, which may have had certain roots in Jewish mystical speculation of the Second Temple period. Various kabbalists in the Middle Ages and early modern times used this symbol in different ways, some emphasizing its mythical-anthropomorphic meaning and some moderating its mythical impact, using it for the hidden realms within the Godhead.

Adamastor: The name given to a spirit once believed to haunt the Cape of Good Hope and prophesized doom for those seeking to sail around the Cape to India. Said to have appeared to famed explorer Vasco de Gama on his expeditions to circumnavigate the cape to reach trade ports in the east.
 
Addanc of the Lake: A monster that figures in the Mabinogion legend of Peredur. Peredur obtains a magic stone that renders him invisible, and he thus succeeds in slaying this monster, which had daily killed the inhabitants of the palace of the King of Tortures.
 
Additor: A spirit board modified by the addition of a little round hollow box with a pointer protruding from it. The hollow box is a miniature cabinet that is believed to accumulate psychic force as it moves under the fingers over a polished board printed with the alphabet. The term autoscope has been given to such devices as the ouija board, planchette, and additor, that are believed to facilitate the production of messages from an unknown intelligent source, at times the subconscious mind, at other times from discarnate spirits of the dead.
 
Adept: According to the Theosophical Society and some occultists, adepts are individuals who, after stern self-denial and consistent self-development, have prepared themselves to assist in influencing the advancement of the world. The means by which this is attained are said to be long and arduous, but in the end the successful adept fulfills the purpose for which he was created and transcends other human beings. The activities of adepts are multifarious, being concerned with the direction and guidance of the activities of other human beings. Theosophists claim that their knowledge, like their powers, far exceeds that of other mortals; they can control forces both in the spiritual and the physical realm and are said to be able to prolong their lives for centuries. Adepts are also known as the Great White Brotherhood, rishis, rahats, or mahatmas. Ordinary people who earnestly desire to work for the betterment of the world may become "chelas," or apprentices to adepts, in which case the latter are known as masters, but the apprentice must first have practiced self-denial and self-development in order to become sufficiently worthy. The master imparts teaching and wisdom otherwise unattainable (and thus resembles the guru in the Hindu tradition) and helps the apprentice by communion and inspiration. Helena Petrovna Blavatsky alleged that she was the apprentice of such masters and claimed that they dwelled in the Tibetan Mountains. The term adept was also employed by medieval magicians and alchemists to denote a master of their sciences.
 
Adhab-Algal: The Islamic purgatory, where the wicked are tormented by the dark angels Munkir and Nekir.
 
Adjuration: A formula of exorcism by which an evil spirit is commanded, in the name of God, to do or say what the exorcist requires of him.
 
Adlet: (Alaskan Inuit legend) A bloodthirsty race of canine-human hybrids similar to werewolves which are said to be the offspring of an Inuit woman’s unnatural mating with a large, red dog. The woman became pregnant with this creatures offspring and later gave birth to 10 fur covered Adlets. According to this legend the terrified Inuit woman sent 5 of these children across the sea, where they sired in what the Inuit referred to as the "white races". The remaining 5 children are said to have remained close to the woman’s home, where they became cannibalistic warriors.
 
Adonai: A Hebrew word signifying "the Lord" and used by Jews when speaking or writing of "YHWH," or Yahweh, the ineffable name of God. The Jews entertained the deepest awe for this incommunicable and mysterious name, and this feeling led them to avoid pronouncing it and to substitute the word Adonai for "Jehovah" in their sacred text. The ancients attributed great power to names; to know and pronounce someone's name was to have power over them. Obviously one could not, like the Pagans, suggest that mere creatures had power over God. This custom in Jewish prayers still prevails, especially among Hasidic Jews, who follow the Kabala and believe that the Holy Name of God, associated with miraculous powers, should not be profaned. Yahweh is their invisible protector and king, and no image of him is made. He is worshiped according to his commandments, with an observance of the ritual instituted through Moses. The term "YHWH" means the revealed Absolute Deity, the Manifest, Only, Personal, Holy Creator and Redeemer.
 
Adramelech: The Chancellor of the infernal regions, Keeper of the Wardrobe of the Demon King, and President of the High Council of the Devils, according to Johan Weyr. He was worshiped at Sepharvaim, an Assyrian town, where children were burned on his altar. Rabbis of the period said that he showed himself in the form of a mule or sometimes of a peacock.

Adytum: From the Greek term 'aduton', which means a place to which entrance is forbidden. This is a term alternatively used with 'sanctum sanctorum' or 'Holy of Holies' to describe the innermost sanctum of a temple or church, or an area of sacred space in occult practices.
 
Aetities: A precious stone of magical properties, composed of iron oxide with a little silex and alumina, and said to be found in the stomach or neck of the eagle. It is supposed to heal falling sickness and prevent untimely birth. It was worn bound on the arm to prevent abortion and on the thigh to aid parturition.

Aeromancy: n. [Aëro- + -mancy: cf. F. aéromancie.] Divination from the state of the air or from atmospheric substances; also, forecasting changes in the weather. The art of foretelling future events by the observation of atmospheric phenomena, as, for example, when the death of a great man is presaged by the appearance of a comet. Francois de la Tour Blanche stated that aeromancy is the art of fortune-telling by means of specters that are made to appear in the air, or the representation by the aid of demons, of future events, which are projected on the clouds as a film is projected onto a screen. "As for thunder and lightning," he adds, "these are concerned with auguries, and the aspect of the sky and of the planets belonging to the science of astrology."
 
Afanc: (Welsh, pronounced with f as in English v, sometimes also called Addanc) A lake monster from Welsh mythology. Its exact description varies; it is described alternately as resembling a crocodile, beaver or dwarf-like creature, and is sometimes said to be a demon. The lake in which it dwells also varies; it is variously said to live in Llyn Llion, Llyn Barfog, near Brynberian Bridge or in Llyn yr Afanc, a lake near Betws-y-Coed that was named after the creature. The afanc was a monstrous creature that, like most lake monsters, was said to prey upon any foolish enough to fall into or swim in its lake. One tale relates that it was rendered helpless by a maiden who let it sleep upon her lap; while it slept, the maiden's fellow villagers bound the creature in chains. The creature was awakened and made furious; its enraged thrashings crushed the maiden, in whose lap it still laid. It was finally dragged away to the lake Cwm Ffynnon, or killed by Peredur. Some later legends ascribe the creature's death to King Arthur or to Percival (Peredur's name in the later Arthurian legend of the continent and England). Close to Llyn Barfog in Snowdonia is a hoof-print petrosomatoglyph etched deep into the rock "Carn March Arthur", or the "Stone of Arthur's Horse", which was supposedly made by King Arthur's mount, Llamrai, when it was hauling the afanc from the lake.
 
Affectability: A term coined by parapsychologist Charles Stuart implying susceptibility to feedback in a situation where the subject in an ESP test is told the score on the previous run and asked to estimate the score on the next run. In this context, "affectable" subjects were those who consistently gave estimates that reflected their score on the immediately previous run; "unaffectable subjects" were not so influenced. Stuart also used the term "affectable" for subjects who were markedly extreme in expressing likes or dislikes to various possible interests, while "unaffectable" subjects were relatively indifferent to many of these interests. By measurement on a Stuart Interest Inventory, Stuart claimed that unaffectable subjects appeared to score higher than affectable on ESP perception. However, the term "affectability" can be applied generally to the degree of suggestibility of a subject.
 
Africa: (Note: The north of Africa, including the Sahara and the Sudan, has been Islamic territory for many centuries. For a discussion of Islamic magic and alchemy, see the entry Arabs. Instances of Arabic sorcery are also discussed in the Semites entry.) Beliefs and practices thought of as occult in Western society were integral to the traditional tribal religions in the southern two-thirds of Africa, especially those concerning sympathetic magic, the cult of the dead, and witchcraft. During the history of this region, the basically pantheistic and polytheistic religions have also been cross-fertilized with Islamic and Christian teachings, creating new beliefs and modifying old ones. Today a large but undetermined number of Africans follow traditional beliefs involving deities, ghosts, and spirits as well as an array of special powers in nature presided over by the supreme entity adopted from Christianity and Islam. The latter, somewhat remote from everyday problems, is believed to largely operate on humans through the many other deities.

After-death Communication (ADC): Also called post-mortem communication; literally communication with the deceased.
 
After Death Contact Project: (ADC Project) Established by Judy and Bill Guggenehim to accumulate firsthand accounts of people who have felt the direct presence of or have actually seen deceased loved ones. They have collected more than two thousand such accounts of "after death contact" (ADC) in their study and welcome any further accounts. Telephone interviews are conducted at the expense of the ADC Project, PO Box 536365, Orlando, Florida 32853.
 
Afterlife: State of a surviving consciousness after the physical death of a living being.
 
Afturgangas: (Icelandic Folklore)Spirits of the deceased.

Afrit: In Arabian traditions, an afrit is the spirit of a murder victim which rises to avenge the crime. Traditions hold that the spirit rises from the slain person's body in the form of 'smoke rising from a fire'. The spirit form is malevolent and their activities are regarded as quite terrifying in nature. The time honored tradition of removing these violent spirits is to drive an iron nail into the ground in the location the murder was committed. See also "nailing down the ghost".
 
Ag: A red flower used by some Hindus to propitiate the deity Sanee (the planet Saturn). It is made into a wreath with jasoon, also a red-colored flower, which is hung round the neck of the god, who is of a congenial nature. This ceremony is performed at night.
 
Agaberte: Daughter of a certain giant called Vagnoste dwelling in Scandinavia. She was a powerful enchantress and was rarely seen in her true shape. Sometimes she would take the form of an old woman, wrinkled and bent, and hardly able to move about. At one time she would appear weak and ill, and at another tall and strong, so that her head seemed to touch the clouds. She effected these transformations with the smallest effort. People believed her capable of overthrowing the mountains, tearing up the trees, drying up the rivers with the greatest of ease. They held that nothing less than a legion of demons must be at her command in order for her to accomplish her magic feats. She seems to be like the Scottish Cail-leach Bheur, a nature hag.

Agalmatomancy: From the Greek 'algama' (figure) and 'manteia' (divination), the divinatory practice of forecasting future events by reading features of statues. See also "Idolomancy".
 
Agares: The Grand Duke of the eastern region of Hades, according to Johan Weyer, . He is shown in the form of a benevolent lord mounted on a crocodile and carrying a hawk on his fist. The army he protects in battle is indeed fortunate, for he disperses their enemies and puts new courage into the hearts of the cowards who fly before superior numbers. He distributes place and power, titles and prelacies, teaches all languages, and has other equally remarkable powers. Thirty-one legions are under his command.
 
Agartha: (Buddist Theology) A civilization of people suspected by some to exist in the center of the Earth. It is believed to be a race of supermen and superwomen who occasionally come to the surface to oversee the development of the human race. It is also believed that this subterranean world has millions of inhabitants and many cities, its capital being Shamballa. The King of this world is believed to have given orders to the Dalai Lama of Tibet, who is his terrestrial representative. His messages are transmitted through certain secret tunnels connecting the inner world of Agartha with Tibet. The famous Russian channel Nicholas Roerich, who was a channel for Ascended Master El Moyra, claimed that Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, was connected by a tunnel with Shamballa in the inner Earth. The entrance of this tunnel was guarded by Lamas who were sworn to secrecy. A similar tunnel was believed to connect the secret chambers at the base of the Great Pyramid at Giza with Agartha. The first public scientific evidence of Agartha’s existence is believed to have been uncovered in 1947 when Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd of the United States Navy flew to the North Pole and, supposedly, instead of going over the pole he actually entered the inner Earth. In his diary, he tells of entering the hollow interior of the Earth, along with others, and traveling seventeen hundred miles over mountains, lakes, rivers, green vegetation, and animal life. He tells of seeing monstrous animals resembling the mammoths of antiquity moving through the brush. He is thought by some to have eventually found cities and a thriving civilization. (See: "Hollow Earth")
 
Agate: According to ancient tradition, this precious stone protected against the biting of scorpions or serpents, soothed the mind, drove away contagion, and put a stop to thunder and lightning. It was also said to dispose the wearer to solitude, promote eloquence, and secure the favor of princes. It gave victory over enemies to those who wore it.
 
Agathion: A familiar spirit that was said to appear only at midday. It took the shape of a man or a beast, or even enclosed itself in a talisman, bottle, or magic ring.
 
Agathodaemon: Benevolent deity in Greek mythology, the "good spirit" of vineyards and cornfields. According to Aristophanes, Agathodaemon was honored by drinking a cup of wine at the end of a meal. He was represented pictorially in the form of a serpent or sometimes as a young man holding a horn of plenty, a bowl, and ears of corn. Winged serpents were also venerated by the ancient Egyptians, Chinese, and other peoples.
 
Agathodaemon: Benevolent deity in Greek mythology, the "good spirit" of vineyards and cornfields. According to Aristophanes, Agathodaemon was honored by drinking a cup of wine at the end of a meal. He was represented pictorially in the form of a serpent or sometimes as a young man holding a horn of plenty, a bowl, and ears of corn. Winged serpents were also venerated by the ancient Egyptians, Chinese, and other peoples.

Agency: The imaginary ghost created for group psychokinesis experiments in a séance-type setting.

Agent: A person who is usually unaware they are the cause of poltergeist phenomena.
In a test of general extrasensory perception, the individual (human or animal) who looks at the information constituting the target and who is said to “send” or “transmit” that information to a percipient; ( the person who makes the attempt to communicate information to another (termed the "percipient") in a clinical ESP experiment) in a test of telepathy, and in cases of spontaneous extrasensory perception, the individual about whose mental states information is acquired by a percipient; the term is very occasionally used to refer to the subject in a test of psychokinesis or the focus in a poltergeist case. [From the Latin agens (agentis), derived from agere, “to drive, do”].
 
Age of Aquarius: The alleged two-thousand year long period in human history marked by enlightenment, love, and profound peace heralded by the ascension of the constellation of Aquarius into 'the house of the Sun' in "astrology". Astrologers through out history have disputed the time frame in which this period of universal enlightenment is set to begin, with most estimates falling between 1904 and 2160 AD. The term received its greatest popularity during the 1960s when spiritual exploration and alternative lifestyles became fashionable in society because of the political and social unrest of the time. See also "New Age".
 
Agharta: Robert Ernst Dickhoff claimed in his book Agharta (1951), that Martians colonized Earth 80,000 years ago and built an elaborate system of underground tunnels, starting in Antarctica, with exits in Tibet, Brazil, the United States, and elsewhere. A secret underground port for UFO's called Rainbow City was supposed to be still in operation. This colorful story appears to be related to the Tibetan legend of the subterranean kingdom of Agharti, presided over by "the King of the World." Millions of people are said to live in these underground realms in cities without crime and using a highly developed science. The King of the World understands the people on Earth and influences them secretly. He is to appear before the people of Earth in a final cosmic struggle of good against evil. This legend was recounted in the book Beasts, Men, and Gods by Ferdinand Ossendowski. Ossendowski (1876-1945) was a Polish writer who traveled extensively through Central Asia in the 1920s.
 
Agimat: (Philipino Folklore) [also "anting-anting" and "bertud"] The equivalent to a talisman, amulet or charm. Generally depicted as polygonal metallic objects, the agimat can also be of any material, from virtually any source such as:  as a croc's tooth, a precious stone or a mutya (supposedly the essence that falls from the heart of a banana tree). An agimat can protect its owner from harm or death caused by another person or evil spirits. Some agimats reportedly bring luck and even supernatural powers to the wearer. Agimats, in various forms, are still a popular commodity. In one Manila commercial district, they are sold openly.
 
Aglaophotis:  A kind of herb said to grow in the deserts of Arabia and much used by sorcerers for the evocation of demons. Other plants were then employed to retain the evil spirits as long as the sorcerer required them. Possibly, a fictional herb, it's mentioned occasionally in works on occultism. References to Aglaophotis and to Olieribos (both of which are said to be magical herbs) are made in the Simon Necronomicon.The Greek doctor Dioscorides named Aglaophotis as a member of the peony family, Paeoniaceae. It has been speculated that the species paeonia officinalis, or the Europea peony, is the source of Aglaophotis, but there is little evidence to prove this theory. According to Dioscorides, peony is used for warding off demons, witchcraft, and fever. This is at odds with the presentation in the Necronomicon, in which it is used to call upon dark forces.

Agogwe: An allegedly mysterious creature reported in the east African country of Tanzania, described as being a rust colored, woolly-haired mammal which walks upon two legs, most often reported as being between four and four and one-half feet tall. A similar creature, the "sehite", has been reported in the Ivory Coast.
 
Agrat Bat Mahlat: (Zoharistic Kabbalah) (אגרת בת מלת) One of the four angels of sacred prostitution, who mates with archangal Samael. Her fellow succubi are Lilith, Naamah, and Eisheth Zenunim.  Considering Mahlat and Agrat as proper names and bat as "daughter of" (Hebrew), Agrat bat Mahlat means 'Agrat daughter of Mahlat'. Sometimes Agrat is used alone, or with variations (Agrath, Igrat, Iggeret). Iggeret means in Hebrew 'letter or missive' while 'agrah' means 'reward'. Mahathallah, probably the correct spelling of Mahlat means in Hebrew 'deception' or 'illusion'. Therefore, Agrat bat Mahlat could be translated as Agrat 'daughter of illusions', 'bringer of deception' or 'reward for deception. According to the Kabbalah and the school of Rashba, Agrat Bat Mahlat mated with King David and bore a cambion son Asmodeus, king of demons. The spiritual intervention of Hanina Ben Dosa and Rabbi Abaye curbed her malevolent powers over humans. Some authors, such as Donald Tyson, refer to them as manifestations of Lilith. Agrat Bat Mahlat rules Salamanca (western quarter), Naamah rules Damascus (eastern quarter), while Lilith rules Rome (northern quarter). The southern quarter is controversial, since it is assigned to a country (Egypt) instead of to a city, and the name of the ruler is unclear, usually identified as Mahalat (the mother of Agrat?) or Rahab instead of Eisheth.
 
Ahazu-Demon: (The Seizer). Little is known of this ancient Semitic demon unless it is the same ahazie told of in medical texts, where a man can be stricken by a disease bearing this name. Ahazu is depicted as in the game "Dungeons and Dragons" as a dark-skinned naked humanoid with bat-like wings, long thin arms, and an elongated head dominated with a mouth filled with needle-sharp teeth. Ahaz has long sharp talons and his legs appears to trail away into nothingness. This description likely inaccurate.
 
Ahrimanes: The name given to the chief of the Cacodaemons, or fallen angels, by the ancient Persians and Chaldeans. These Cacodaemons were believed to have been expelled from Heaven for their sins; they endeavored to settle down in various parts of the Earth, but were always rejected, and out of revenge they found their pleasure in injuring the inhabitants. Xenocritus thought that penance and self-mortification, though not agreeable to the gods, pacified the malice of the Cacodaemons. Ahrimanes and his followers finally took up their abode in all the space between the Earth and the fixed stars, and there established their domain, which is called Ahriman-abad. As Ahrimanes was the spirit of evil, his counterpart in Persian dualism was Ormuzd, the creative and benevolent being.

Aigypan: A "sasquatch" like creature reported as inhabiting the remote jungles of Venezuela, which some allege to build primitive tools and weapons, as well as crude huts for shelter. Some reports even claim that these creatures are carnivorous, sometimes attacking and eating men, but prone to carrying off women, allegedly for breeding purposes. Said to be very dangerous and quite ill-tempered.
Ailuromancy: Also known as "felidomancy", a divinatory practice which interprets the movements of felines to forecast future events.
 
Ailuromancy: Divination through superstitions concerning cats. For example, a black cat crossing your path is a bad omen in the United States and Germany, although usually regarded as lucky in Britain. Owning a black cat is also believed to be lucky. A cat washing its face or ears, or climbing up furniture, is said to indicate rain; if the cat washes its face in the parlor, it may indicate visitors. It is a widespread belief that killing or mistreating a cat will bring ill fortune. This may arise from ancient religious beliefs concerning the cat as a sacred animal.
 
Akaname: (Japanese Folklore) "Filth licker". A hideous type of Japanese bogeyman that quite literally licks dirty bathrooms clean with its tongue and the aid of poisonous saliva. It is believed that the monster may have originated as a way for parents to motivate their children to keep the bathroom clean. [You can find several images of what a Ningen might look like on our page featuring cryptids and creatures of folklore HERE.]
 
Akasha: n: (Sanskrit) Space.  In the Abhidharma taxonomies it is defined as the container within which the four ‘great elements’ (maha-bhuta) of earth, water, fire, and air find expression. Generally it is said to be of two kinds: limited by corporeality (in other words the space between objects), and unlimited or infinite. In some Abhidharma systems it is classified as one of the unconditioned (asa?sk?ta) phenomena (dharma). Space is often used in Mahayana literature as a simile for the mind in its natural state, since the unlimited expanse of space, which is nothing in itself, is characterized by purity, immutability, and emptiness, and yet it acts at the same time as the ‘container’ or support for all phenomena without distinction. In the occult, it is believed to be one of the five elementary principles of nature according to Hindu mysticism. Akasha is the first of these principles, and out of it the others are created. These subtle principles, or tattvas, are related to the five senses of human beings and to basic elements of matter: earth (prithivi), water (apas), fire (tejas), and air (vayu). The all-pervading akasha is responsible for vibrations of light and sound. Akasha is described in some mystical doctrines to be a mystical, spiritual substance where "memories" are stored since the beginning of time. It is one of the five elements in Hindu philosophy and is often described as a form of atmosphere or ether. The Akasha is thought by some to contain a record of everything that has ever happened, but also everything that will ever come to pass in the future. Theosophists believe that persons with special psychic powers can tap into the Akasha or "Astral Light". They achieve this by using their astral bodies or "astral senses" to search for spiritual insights which have been stored for all eternity. According to ancient Indian tradition the universe consists of two fundamental properties. These are motion and the space through which motion takes place. This space is called the Akasha (Tib.: nam-mkhah). It is also believed to be the substance that enables things to step through into reality and gain visible appearance, extension and corporeality. The Akasha relates to the three dimensional space of our sense perception and this is called the "mahakasha". The nature of the Akasha is limited not only to this three dimensionality, indeed it is made up of infinite dimensions comprising all possibilities of movement not only physical but spiritual as well. "Akasha" is derived from the root kash, meaning "to radiate, to shine" It also has the meaning of "ether" believed to be the medium of movement. The Akasha is thought to be indivisible, eternal and all pervading.

Akashic Records: A theosophical term denoting a kind of central filing system of all events, thoughts, and actions impressed upon an astral plane, which may be consulted in certain conditions of consciousness. Events are believed to make an impression upon the akasha, or subtle ether, which may be reanimated by mystics as if they are switching on a celestial television set. The idea of akashic records was central to the work of seer Edgar Cayce. When Cayce went into trance, it was believed that he accessed the records, sometimes referred to as God's Book of Remembrance. The akashic records store the individual's thoughts and information on activities that may be read by certain gifted seers. So far, the only presented evidence of akashic records has been the claims of those who purport to gather information from them. These claims cannot be empirically tested, and thus is not deemed a serious matter of scientific inquiry. Neither the Christian nor Vedic/Hindu traditions generally recognize their scriptures and beliefs as being rooted in the akashic record, though specific groups or individuals may subscribe to such a belief. However in Islamic belief, under the concept of Qadar, there is a notation in the so called "the Book of Decree", or "Al-Lawh Al-Mahfud" which is also defined as a preserved tablet that holds the records of all the events that ever happened and also that are going to happen. Believed in mystical doctrines to be the source or storage area for memories of all human experience, from the beginning of time to the very end of time itself, (stored permanently in a spiritual substance called “Akasha“). Held in some traditions to contain the memories of every living soul through the ages as a repository or permanent record of the spiritual evolution of humanity.
 
Akateko: (赤手児, lit. "barehanded child") (Japanese Folklore) A yōkai from the Aomori prefecture, specifically in the city of Hachinohe. The akateko appeared as an infant's hand hanging down from a tree.
 
Akathaso: (Burmese Folklore) Evil spirits who inhabit trees.
 
Akhnim: A town of Middle Thebais, which at one time possessed the reputation of being the habitation of the greatest magicians. The French traveler Paul Lucas (1664-1737), in his Second Voyage, speaks of the wonderful serpent of Akhnim, which was worshiped by the Muslims as an angel, and which the Christians believed to be the demon Asmodeus.
 
Akita: In 1969, Akita, Japan, was the site of one of the more prominent modern series of apparitions of the Virgin Mary. While praying, Sister Agnes Sasagawa, a young postulate of the Order of the Handmaids of the Eucharist, a Roman Catholic order community, received a locution, a clairaudient message, concerning how she should pray. She ascribed this voice to an angel. The content of the prayer, she later discovered, was the same as that given to the three children who had seen the Virgin Mary at Fatima. Sister Mary was deaf. Four years later she received another locution, which happened to coincide with the development of the stigmata, a mysterious cross-shaped wound on her hand that refused to stop bleeding. The inner voice directed her to the chapel, where she saw the Virgin for the first time. She also heard a series of accompanying messages from the Virgin calling for prayer and sacrifice. The words seemed to come from a wooden statue of the Virgin located in the chapel. She would see the Virgin two more times. The last of the three messages complained of problems of discord and compromise within the church reaching to the highest levels. These apparitions would probably have gone unnoticed had it not been for the accompanying phenomena. During the period when the apparitions were being received, the statue oozed a reddish substance from its right hand. Analyzed, it proved to be type AB blood. Then the statue was noticed to perspire. Again the substance was analyzed and proved to be similar to human sweat. Then, several years later, the statue in the chapel began to emit tears from the eyes. All of the sisters saw the tears as did visitors to the convent. At one point, a Japanese film crew from the local television station filmed the phenomena. They also took samples of the tear drops, which upon analysis proved to be the same as human tears. Over the next six years the statue was recorded to weep more than a hundred times. In 1981, the first miracle was recorded: a woman experienced a healing of what had been diagnosed as terminal brain cancer. Later, Sister Agnes was cured of her deafness. The local diocese conducted an investigation, and in 1984 the bishop of Niigata announced a favorable conclusion and authorized the veneration of Our Lady of Akita. The messages are in accord with church doctrine and appear to be of mysterious or supernatural origin. This verdict was confirmed by the Vatican in 1984. The events at Akita challenge the more common explanations of skeptics concerning weeping statues as the substance coming from the eyes was not water (as would have been the case if it was due to mere condensation). In like measure, explanations generally attributed to bleeding statues do not appear applicable.

Akkiyyini (Inuit folklore) A skeletal ghost that, during his life, enjoyed dancing and playing the drum. When the Akkiyyini hears people making fun of his dancing, he emerges from the grave and uses his arm bone as a drumstick and his shoulder blade as a drum. This causes the ground to violently shake and causes the river to become savage, overturning boats and drowning his unfortunate victims.

Akurojin-no-hi: (悪路神の火 lit. "fire of the god of the bad road") (Japanese Folklore) A ghostly flame from the folklore of Mie prefecture in Japan. Akurojin-no-hi often appears on rainy nights, and people who encounter it and do not run away become gravely ill. (See also: "Ball Lightening" and "Ignus Fatuus").

Akusala-mula: (Sanskrit; Pali, akusala-mula). Collective name for the three roots of evil, being the three unwholesome mental states of greed (raga), hatred (dve?a), and delusion (moha). All negative states of consciousness are seen as ultimately grounded in one or more of these three.

AL: According to Éliphas Lévi, this forms part of the inscription on a pentacle that was a frontispiece to the published Grimoire of Honorius, an antipope of the thirteenth century. The letters, used to designate a name of God, were reversed on the pentacle, said to be part of a ritual for the evocation of evil spirits."AL" was also a word of considerable importance to magician Aleister Crowley. It was the name given to the revelation he received in 1904 that became the basis of his new system of thelemic magic, usually called The Book of the Law or Liber AL. Crowley placed great store in numerology. In his system, AL equated to 31, the number which he felt held the key to unlocking the meaning of Liber AL.

Alaka: (Hindu Folklore) 1). Also called Alakapuri, is a mythical city. It is the home of Kubera the king of Yakshas and the lord of wealth, and his attendants called yakshas. Mahabharata mentions this city as the capital of the Yaksha Kingdom. This city rivals the capital of Indra the king of the Devas. 2).  Sanskrit word meaning "lock of hair".
 
Alan:  Deformed spirits from the folklore of the Tinguian tribe of the Philippines. They have wings, and their fingers and toes point backwards. Alans are said to take drops of menstrual blood, miscarried fetuses, afterbirth, or other reproductive waste and transform them into human children, whom they then raise as their own. They live near springs in extremely fine houses, made of gold and other valuables. The modern Alan spirit has long since left the Philippines, pointed their toes forward again and roam the wilds.
 
Alastor: n. An avenging deity or spirit, the masculine personification of Nemesis, frequently evoked in Greek tragedy. A cruel demon, who, according to Johan Weyer, filled the post of chief executioner to the monarch of Hades. The conception of him somewhat resembles that of Nemesis. Zoroaster is said to have called him "The Executioner." Others identify him with the destroying angel. Evil genies were formerly called alastors. Plutarch says that Cicero, who bore a grudge against Augustus, conceived the plan of committing suicide on the emperor's hearth, and thus becoming his "alastor."

Alchemy: n: a medieval chemical philosophy or art, having as its asserted aims the transmutation or transformation of base metals into gold. the discovery of the panacea, and the preparation of the elixir of longevity. The miraculous power of transmutation or extraction. Now considered a "psuedo-science" commonly recalled for experiments to transmute base metals into gold, the formulation of a universal cure to remedy all known diseases, the indefinite extension of life through chemical and magical means, and the production of artificial life forms in a laboratory setting. Richly illustrated in symbolism and steeped in arcane traditions, the practice of alchemy eventually led to the formation of accepted sciences such as chemistry. Today, sometimes regarded as a symbolic philosophy for the evolution of the human spirit from 'base man' to 'enlightened man' through the use of alchemical symbolism and imagery.

Aldinach: An Egyptian demon, who, according to demonologists, presides over tempests, earthquakes, rainstorms, and hailstorms and sinks ships. When he appears in visible form, he takes the shape of a woman.

Alectorius: This stone is about the size of a bean, clear as crystal, sometimes with veins the color of flesh. It is said to be taken from the cock's stomach. According to ancient belief, it renders its owner courageous and invincible, brings him wealth, assuages thirst, and makes the husband love his wife, or, as another author has it, "makes the woman agreeable to her husband." Its most wonderful property is that it helps to regain a lost kingdom and acquire a foreign one.

Alectormancy: Also spelled as 'alectromancy' and 'alectryomancy', from the Greek 'alectruon' (cock) and 'manteia' (divination), the archaic divinatory practice of forecasting future events by placing a rooster or hen into a circle of grain, around which letters of the alphabet have been arranged. Answers to questions concerning the future are interpreted by which letters the bird chooses to feed at. Other variations included diving the future from the crowing of a cock or by reciting the letters of the alphabet, making special note of those letters which are spoken when a cock crows. The practice was especially popular in the Roman Empire to identify robbers and thieves.

Aleuromancy: (from Greek halo, 'salt', and manteia, divination), The divinatory practice of utilizing flour to forecast future events. One method involved mixing flour and water in a bowl and then interpreting the patterns left at the bottom and sides of the vessel. Another practice involved writing sentences upon slips of paper, which were then baked into balls of dough and divided amongst participants to learn their fates. The practice is still in existence in the form of Chinese fortune cookies.

Alfridarya: A belief resembling astrology, which claims that all the planets in turn influence the life of man, each one governing a certain number of years.

Alga: A word from the Kabala formerly used by rabbis for exorcisms of the evil spirit. It is made up of the initial letters of the Hebrew words, Athah gabor leolam, Adonai, meaning, "Thou art powerful and eternal, Lord." Among superstitious Christians it was also a favorite weapon with which to combat the evil one, as late as the sixteenth century. It is found in many books on magic, notably in the Enchiridion ascribed to Pope Leo III.

Alien Abduction: Term used to describe being taken onboard an "alien" craft against one's will or being 'kidnapped' by extraterrestrial beings. The first reported claim of alien abduction was in Brazil in 1957 and since then there have been reports from all over the Western world - in Europe including the UK, Australia, South Africa, Russia, and North America. Although people's experiences vary quite widely, the following features are commonly reported:
- Light, especially a beam which draws the person up, and sometimes vibration.
- A spacecraft of some kind.
- Humanoid beings, especially small gray ones with large black eyes, who communicate by telepathy.
- Medical tests being performed and eggs or sperm removed so that human/alien offspring can be produced.
- Lost periods of time and inexplicable small wounds.
Very few accounts are complete but sometimes the full story is recovered through hypnosis.
 
Allat: Goddess of the ancient Arabs of pre-Islamic times and one of the three chief goddesses of Mecca. She is associated with the god Dhu-shara, known as Allah (supreme god), worshiped in the form of a rectangular stone, reminiscent of the later Kaaba of Mecca. Allat is mentioned in the Koran as a pagan goddess. She is said to have been joint ruler with Allah and judge of the afterlife. She is mentioned in the Qur'an (Sura 53:19), which indicates that pre-Islamic Arabs considered her as one of the daughters of Allah along with Manat and al-‘Uzzá. She is equated with the Greek Athena and Tyche and the Roman Minerva. She is frequently called "the Great Goddess" in Greek in multi-lingual inscriptions. According to Wellhausen, the Nabataeans believed al-Lat was the mother of Hubal (and hence the mother-in-law of Manat).
 
Alli Allahis: A continuation of the old sect of the Magi, priests of ancient Persia.
 
Alliance of Solitary Practitioners: A loose association of Wiccan and Pagan covens and solo practitioners. Its web site, located at http://www.witchcraft.net/ASP/, provides both information and a means for solitaries to communicate with each other. Solitaries may also become formal members of ASP. By the end of the 1990s, ASP reported more than 1,300 members in more than 40 countries. While agreeing on a few basics concerning Paganism, solitary practitioners manifest the widest possible variation in belief and practice.
 
Almanach du Diable: A French almanac containing predictions for the years 1737 and 1738 and purported to be published from hell. The book, which was a satire against the Jansenists, was suppressed on account of some over-bold predictions and became very rare. The authorship was ascribed to Quesnel, an ironmonger at Dijon. The Jansenists replied with a pamphlet directed against the Jesuits, which was also suppressed. Entitled Almanac de Dieu and dedicated to M. Carré de Montgeron, it was published in 1738 and claimed satirically to be printed in heaven.

Allobio-Feedback: Term used by William G. Braud (1978) to denote the situation in which one subject, A, is attempting to influence, psychokinetically, the physiological processes of another person, B, aided by biofeedback to A concerning those processes in B. [From the Greek allos, “other,” + bios, “life,” + feedback]

Allopathy n : a method of treating disease with the use of surgery, substances, remedies and treatments that are specifically targeted to produce effects different from those caused by the disease itself. Allopathy is a form of medicine used to describe the conventional medical approach to medicine or "Western" medicine.

Alma n : a creature reported to be of ape-like appearance that inhabits the mountains in central Asia, which was up until a few years ago part of the Soviet Union. Although not as well known as the “Yeti” and “Bigfoot” stories about the Alma suggest that it is a creature more akin to a hairy human than an ape.
 
Almanach du Diable: A French almanac containing predictions for the years 1737 and 1738 and purported to be published from hell. The book, which was a satire against the Jansenists, was suppressed on account of some over-bold predictions and became very rare. The authorship was ascribed to Quesnel, an ironmonger at Dijon. The Jansenists replied with a pamphlet directed against the Jesuits, which was also suppressed. Entitled Almanac de Dieu and dedicated to M. Carré de Montgeron, it was published in 1738 and claimed satirically to be printed in heaven.
 
Almoganenses: The name given to certain Spanish people who, by the flight and song of birds, meetings with wild animals, and various other means, foretold coming events. According to the fifteenth-century humanist Laurentius Valla, "They carefully preserve among themselves books which treat of this science, where they find rules of all sorts of prognostications and predictions. The soothsayers are divided into two classes, one, the masters or principals, the other the disciples and aspirants." Another kind of knowledge is also attributed to them, that of being able to indicate the way taken by horses and other beasts of burden which are lost, and the road followed by one or more persons. They can specify the kind and shape of the ground, whether the earth is hard or soft, covered with sand or grass, whether it is a broad road, paved or sanded, or narrow, twisting paths, and tell also how many passengers are on the road. They can follow the track of anyone and cause thieves to be apprehended. Those writers who mention the Almoganenses, however, do not specify either the period when they flourished or the country or province they occupied, but it seems possible from their name and other considerations that they were Moorish.
 
Almusseri: A nineteenth-century secret society resembling African associations, with secret rites akin to those of the Cabiric and Orphic Mysteries. Their reception took place once a year in a wood, where the candidate pretended to die. The initiates surrounded the neophyte and chanted funeral songs. He was then brought to the temple erected for the purpose and anointed with palm oil. After 40 days of probation, he was said to have obtained a new soul, was greeted with hymns of joy, and conducted home.
 
Alocer: A powerful demon, Grand Duke of Hades, according to Johan Weyer, . He appears in the shape of a knight mounted on an enormous horse. His face has leonine characteristics; he has a ruddy complexion and burning eyes, and speaks with much gravity. He is said to give family happiness to those whom he takes under his protection and to teach astronomy and liberal arts. Thirty-six legions are controlled by him.
 
Alopecy: A species of charm by the aid of which one can bewitch an enemy whom one wishes to harm.

Alpha: In the context of brain science: a distinctive brain-rhythm or brain-wave which occurs mainly in the occipital region of the cortex, and which is correlated, on the psychological level, with feelings of drowsiness, relaxation and disengaged attention on the part of the subject; it is of relatively high amplitude, and has a frequency range of between 8 and 13 Hz (Hertz, or cycles per second); of parapsychological interest as a possible physiological indicator of a psi-conducive condition in the subject. [From the Greek alpha, first letter of the Greek alphabet]

Alphabiotics n : a form of medicine, was originally conceived by Dr. D.V. Chrane in the 1920's. He began practicing his medicine in Abeline in Texas. It was his son Dr. Virgil Chrane Jr. who established alphabiotics as "a unique new profession". A holistic health treatment established in 1971 by Dr. Virgil Chrane, Jr., and grew out of his years of concern with the overarching negative role that stress was playing in the life of contemporary humanity. Chrane came to feel that most adults, due to many years of incorrect responses to stressful situations, were now "brainlocked" in an unbalanced stress state. He assumed that coming out of this state can enhance all of one's life, and proposed Alphabiotics is the answer to the problem. He offered Alphabiotics as an alternative to other therapies that were more symptom oriented, rather than dealing with the root cause of the problem. The solution to the stress problem Chrane found in New Age metaphysics. The lack of balance leads to a diminution of the Life Energy (also called prana or qi in other systems of thought). The practice of Alphabiotics allows the free flow of Life Energy. Such energy appears to have an intelligence of its own and quickly flows to those places in the body where it is most needed. The technique of Alphabiotics has the appearance of great simplicity, the patient lying on their back on a table while the practitioner gently manipulates their neck area. The entire treatment takes less that 30 seconds. While appearing simple, the process requires training to properly perform, and Chrane (and his son Michael Chrane) train practitioners through the International Alphabiotics Association. The association may be reached at HCR 83, Box 18-A, Menard, Texas 76859. It has an Internet site at http://www.alphabiotics.com/. Practitioners can now be found across North America, and in Australia, the United Kingdom, and countries of continental Europe.

Alpha Wave:  n: a pattern of smooth, regular electrical oscillations in the human brain. These normally occur when a person is awake and relaxed. The machine used to record these waves is called an electroencephalograph, or EEG. Alpha waves have a frequency of 8 to 13 hertz. Also called “alpha rhythm”.
 
Alphitomancy: An ancient method of divination used to prove the guilt or innocence of a suspected person with a loaf of barley. When many persons were accused of a crime and it was desired to find the true culprit, a loaf of barley was made and a portion given to each of the suspects. The innocent people suffered no illeffects, but criminals were said to betray themselves by an attack of indigestion. This practice gave rise to the oath: "If I am deceiving you, may this piece of bread choke me." By means of this method, a lover might know if his mistress were faithful to him, or a wife, her husband. The procedure was a follows: A quantity of pure barley flour was kneaded with milk and a little salt, without any leaven. It was then rolled up in a greased paper, and cooked among the cinders. It was afterward taken out and rubbed with verbena leaves and given to the person suspected of deceit, who, if the suspicion was justified, would be unable to digest it. In ancient times, there was said to be a sacred wood at Lavinium, near Rome, where Alphitomancy was practiced in order to test the purity of women. The priests kept a serpent or a dragon in a cavern in the wood. On certain days of the year the young women were sent there, blindfolded, and carrying a cake made of barley flour and honey. Those who were innocent had their cakes eaten by the serpent, while the cakes of the others were refused.
 
Alpiel: An angel or demon who, according to the Talmud, presides over fruit trees.

Alpine Tatzelworm n : A creature described as being between 60 - 90 cm, (2 - 3 feet in length), and having the thickness of a man's arm. The creature is believed to be an undiscovered species of amphibian or reptile. It is thought to dwell in the Swiss, Bavarian and Austrian Alps of central Europe. The local people refer to it as the Tatzelworm (clawed worm) or stollenworm (hole dwelling worm). There have been many differing stories about limb counts. Some descriptions suggest that the species has only a single, front pair of legs, some say it has two pairs of legs and some say it has no limbs at all. The general appearance of the Tatzelworm is likened to a worm-like lizard or salamander. Some zoologists have suggested a link between the American Gila monster (Heloderma suspectum) and the Tatzelworm. The latter being a species of poisonous lizard. There may also be a link with the grass snake (Ophisaurus apodus), a large legless lizard from southern Europe.
 
Alraun: (German Folklore) Images shaped from the roots of mandrake (see Mandragoras) or from ash or briony. The term was popular in Germany, where it was also used to indicate a witch or a magician. An alraun had to be treated with great care because of its magical properties. It was wrapped or dressed in a white robe with a golden girdle, bathed every Friday, and kept in a box, otherwise it was believed to shriek for attention. Alrauns were used in magic rituals and were also believed to bring good luck. But possession of them carried the risk of witchcraft prosecution, and in 1630 three women were executed in Hamburg on this charge. The alraun was difficult to get rid of because there was a superstition that it could only be sold at a higher price than bought, and there are legends that owners who tried to throw an alraun away found it returned to their room. According to the folklore, an alraun assisted easy childbirth, and water in which it had been infused prevented swellings in animals. Because of the large demand for alrauns, they were often carved from the roots of briony when genuine mandrakes were difficult to find. They were exported from Germany to various countries and sold in England during the reign of Henry VIII.
 
Alruna-Wife: (German Folklore) Considered by ancient Germans to be a form of household-goddess.
 
Alrunes: Female demons or sorceresses, the mothers of the Huns in ancient Germany. They took all sorts of shapes, but without changing their sex. The name was also given by Germans to little statues of old sorceresses, about a foot high. To these they attributed great virtues, honoring them as fetishes; clothing them richly, housing them comfortably, and serving them with food and drink at every meal. They believed that if these little images were neglected, they would bring misfortunes upon the household.

Altered States of Consciousness (ASC): Also called altered states of awareness; a state of mental relaxation where people become more susceptible to impressions. Expression popularized by Charles T. Tart which can refer to virtually any mental state differing from that of the normal waking condition; of parapsychological interest as possibly psi-conducive states; they include dreaming, hypnosis, trance, meditation of the yoga or Zen tradition, the hypnagogic-like state induced by the ganzfeld, and drug-induced states.
 
Alu-Demon: Ancient Babylonian demon, said to owe his parentage to a human being; he hides himself in caverns and corners and slinks through the streets at night. He also lies in wait for the unwary, and at night enters bed-chambers and terrorizes people, threatening to pounce on them if they shut their eyes.
 
Amadeus: A visionary who experienced an apocalypse and revelations, in one of which he learned the two psalms composed by Adam, one a mark of joy at the creation of Eve, and the other the dialogue he held with her after they had sinned. Both psalms are printed in the Codex Pseudepigraphus Veteris Testamenti of Johann Albert Fabricius, published at Hamburg, 1713-33.
 
Amaimon: One of the four spirits who preside over the four parts of the universe. Amaimon is the governor of the eastern part, according to the grimoire, or magic manual, of the Lemegeton of Solomon, also known as the Lesser Key or Little Key.
 
Amalanhig: (Visayan mythology, particularly among Hiligaynon speaking groups) Amalanhig are Aswangs who failed to transfer their monstrosity causing them to rise from their graves to kill humans by biting their necks. It is a variant of the type of vampire native to the Philippines. In order to escape from Amanlanhigs, one runs in zigzag direction since they can only walk in straight direction due to the stiffness of their body. One could climb high enough in a tree to be out of their reach. One can also avoid them in lakes and rivers since Amanlanhigs are scared of deep bodies of water. Amalanhig are generally depicted as apearing identical to humans, though there is an enlargement of the upper canines in most individuals.
 
Amandinus: A variously colored stone, said to enable the wearer of it to solve any question concerning dreams or enigmas.
 
Amaranth: A flower that is one of the symbols of immortality. It has been said by occult magicians that a crown made with this flower has supernatural properties and will bring fame and favor to those who wear it. It was also regarded in ancient times as a symbol of immortality and was used to decorate images of gods and tombs. In ancient Greece, the flower was sacred to the goddess Artemis of Ephesus, and the name "amaranth" derives from Amarynthos, a hunter of Artemis and king of Euboea. There are many species of Amaranth, some with poetic folk names such as "prince's feather" and "love-lies-bleeding."
 
Amaymon: (Demonology) A Prince of Hell, and, according to some Grimoires, the only one who has power over Asmodai. A curious characteristic of this Spirit is shown during the Evocation of Asmodai to visible appearance, when the Exorcist must stand upright with his Cap or Headdress removed in a show of respect; for if he does not it is Amaymon who will deceive him and doom all his work. Amaymon is said to have a deadly poisonous breath. The Lesser Key of Solomon states the Exorcist or conjurer must be in possession of a Silver Ring, duly consecrated and worn on the middle finger as a form of protection against this poisonous astral breath. According to Pseudomonarchia Daemonum he is the King of the West, although for some translations of The Lesser Key of Solomon he is King of the East (Although some translations of The Lesser Key of Solomon consider Belial, Beleth, Asmodai and Gaap kings of the four cardinal directions, though not giving detail on the cardinal point each rule). According to the grimoire The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage translated by S.L. MacGregor Mathers, Amaymon (as Amaimon) was one of the eight Sub-Princes, described as an Egyptian devil whom Abramelin restrained from working evil from the third hour till noon and from the ninth till evening.
 
Amduscias: Grand Duke of Hades, according to Johan Weyer. Amduscias has the form of a unicorn, but when evoked, appears in human shape. He gives concerts, at the command of men, where one hears the sound of all kinds of musical instruments but can see nothing. It is said that the trees themselves bend to his voice. He commands 29 legions.
 
Amethyst: Gemstone believed to have occult properties, described by sixteenth-century writer Camillus Leonardus as "reckoned among the purple and transparent stones, mixed with a violet colour, emitting rosy sparkles." The Indian variety is the most precious. When made into drinking cups or bound on the navel, it was claimed to prevent drunkenness. It was also believed to sharpen the wit, turn away evil thoughts, and give a knowledge of the future in dreams. Drunk in a potion, it was thought to expel poison and render the barren fruitful. In ancient times it was frequently engraved with the head of Bacchus and was a favorite with Roman women.
 
Amiante: A species of fireproof stone, which Pliny and the ancient demonologists recommended as excellent against the charms of magic.

Amniomancy:  Divination by means of the caul, or membrane that sometimes envelopes the head of a child at birth. From an inspection of this caul, wise women predicted the sort of future the baby would have. If it were red, happy days were in store for the child, or if lead-colored, he would have misfortunes.
 
Amon: According to an ancient grimoire, Amon is the great and powerful marquis of the infernal empire. He is represented as a wolf with a serpent's tail, vomiting flame. When he appears in human form, his head resembles that of a large owl with canine teeth. He is the strongest of the princes of the demons, knows the past and the future, and can reconcile friends who have quarreled. He commands 40 legions.

Amorphous - Having no definite form or shape, spirits and ghosts often appears in mist-like forms or shapes.
 
Amoymon: According to an ancient grimoire, Amoymon is one of the four kings of Hades, of which the eastern part falls to his share. He may be invoked in the morning from nine o'clock till midday and in the evening from three o'clock till six. He has been identified with Amaimon (or Amaymon). Asmodeus is his lieutenant and first prince of his dominions.
 
Amphiaraus: (Greek Mythology)  (Also: "Amphiaraos" meaning "doubly-cursed" or "twice Ares-like"). A famous soothsayer of classical mythology, son of Oicles and Hypermnestra. He hid himself so that he might not have to go to the war of Thebes, because he had foreseen that he should die there. This indeed happened, but he came to life again. A temple was raised to him in Attica, near a sacred fountain by which he had left Hades. He healed the sick by showing them in a dream the remedies they must use. He also founded many oracles. After they sacrificed, those who consulted the oracle slept under a sheep skin and dreamed a dream, which usually found plenty of interpreters after the event. Amphiaraus was an adept in the art of explaining dreams. Some prophecies in verse, which are no longer extant, were attributed to him.

Amulet n: An item that is worn as a charm to help combat disease, evil and or witchcraft. It is an item worn as a preservative piece of jewelry and used for the protection of an individual against things that are generally considered to be bad. (See also: “gemstones” “crystals“).
 
Amy: According to an ancient grimoire, Amy is Grand President of Hades and one of the princes of the infernal monarchy. He appears there enveloped with flame, but on Earth, he is in human form. He teaches the secrets of astrology and liberal arts. He reveals to those who possess his favor the hiding place of treasures guarded by demons. Thirty-six of the infernal legions are under his command. The fallen angels acknowledge his orders, and he hopes that, at the end of 200,000 years, he shall return to heaven to occupy the seventh throne.
 
Anachitis: (Also: anancitis) In divination  meaning "stone of necessity" is a stone used to call up spirits from water. It was described as a type of diamond by Martin Rulandus the Elder. The stone was used in antiquity by the Magi, being described by Pliny the Elder as one of their "dreadful lies". Its use had fallen out of favour by the middle ages.
 
Anamelech: An obscure demon, the bearer of ill news. In ancient times he was worshiped at Sepharvaün, a town of the Assyrians. He always revealed himself in the figure of a quail. His name, it is said, signified a "good king," and some authorities declare that this demon was the Moon, as Andramelech is the Sun. In Christian demonology, a demon worshipped alongside Adramelech, the sun god. She takes the form of a quail. She is a lunar deity and is said to have been worshipped at Sepharvaun, an Assyrian town. The name means "Anu is king."
 
Anancithidus: Described by the sixteenth-century physician Camillus Leonardus as "a necromantic stone, whose virtue is to call up evil spirits and ghosts."
 
Ananisapta: A kabalistic word made up from the initial letters of the prayer Antidotum Nazareni Auferat Necene Intoxicationis; Sanctificet Alimenta, Poculaque Trinitas Alma. When written on virgin parchment, it is said to be a powerful talisman to protect against disease.
 
Anarazel: According to ancient superstition, one of the demons charged with the guardianship of subterranean treasures, which he carries about from one place to another to hide them from men. It is he who, with his companions Gaziel and Fécor, shakes the foundations of houses, raises the tempests, rings the bells at midnight, causes specters to appear, and inspires a thousand terrors.
 
Anathema: A formal ecclesiastical ban, curse, or excommunication. The name was given by the ancients to certain classes of votive offerings, to the nets that the fisherman laid on the altar of the sea nymphs, to the mirror that Laïs consecrated to Venus, and to offerings of vessels, garments, instruments, and various other articles. The word was also applied to the victim devoted to the infernal gods, and it is this sense that is found among Jews and Christians, referring either to the curse or its object. The man who is anathematized is denied communication with the faithful, and he is delivered to the demon if he dies without absolution. Through the centuries the church often lavished anathemas upon those considered heretics and enemies, though many such as St. John Chrysostom taught that while it was well to anathematize false doctrine, people who have strayed should be pardoned and prayed for. The use of anathemas has largely dropped out of contemporary Christianity. Magicians and sorcerers once employed a sort of anathema to discover thieves and witches. Some limpid water was brought, and in it were boiled as many pebbles as there were persons suspected. The pebbles were then buried under the doorstep over which the thief or the sorcerer was to pass, and a plate of tin was attached to it, on which was written the words "Christ is conqueror; Christ is king; Christ is master." Every pebble must bear the name of one of the suspected persons. The stones are removed at sunrise, and the one representing the guilty person is hot and glowing. The seven penitential psalms must then be recited, with the Litanies of the Saints, and the prayers of exorcism pronounced against the thief or the sorcerer. His name must be written in a circular figure, and a triangular brass nail driven in above it with a hammer, the handle of which is of cypress wood, while the exorcist declares, "Thou are just, Lord, and just are Thy judgments." At this, the thief would betray himself by a loud cry. If the anathema has been pronounced by a sorcerer, and one wishes merely to escape the effects of it and cause it to return to him who has cast it, one must take, on Saturday, before sunrise, the branch of a one-year-old hazel tree and recite the following prayer: "I cut thee, branch of this year, in the name of him whom I wish to wound as I wound thee." The branch is then laid on the table and other prayers said, ending with "Holy Trinity, punish him who has done this evil, and take him from among us by Thy great justice, that the sorcerer or sorceress may be anathema, and we safe." Harrison Ainsworth's famous novel, The Lancashire Witches, deals with the subject and the Pendleton locality in England.
 
Anchimayen: (Chilean/Mapuche Folklore) (in the mapudungun language, also spelled "Anchimallén" or "Anchimalguén" in Spanish) A mythical creature in Mapuche mythology. Anchimayens are described as little creatures that take the form of small children, and can transform into flying spheres that emit bright light. They are the servants of a kalku (a type of Mapuche sorcerer), and are created using the corpses of children. Anchimayens are sometimes confused with Kueyen (the Mapuche lunar goddess), because she also produces a bright light. Anchimayen may be related to "Ignis Flatuus", "Spirit Orbs" and or "Ball Lightening".

Ancient Anomalies: Ancient artifacts which just don't appear to fit in with the accepted view of archaeology or history. for example in Antelope Spring in Utah a 500 million year old fossil has been found which is said to reveal a trilobite crushed by a sandaled foot. Archaeology suggests that man was not walking the earth at this time let alone wearing sandals hence the anomaly.
 
Ancient Mysteries: Secret rituals of pagan religions, known only to select initiates who had qualified for higher spiritual development. Such mysteries were kept apart from popular worship, and initiates had to take a binding oath of secrecy, so that even today our knowledge of the mysteries is partly conjectural. Typical mystery cults were those of Eleusis in Greece from about 1500 B.C.E., in turn deriving from the mystery religions of ancient Egypt and the mysteries of Mithras, a Persian deity. Traces of Mithraism existed in Britain. Many secret societies in modern times have claimed that their rituals are a descent of an ancient tradition.
 
Ancitif: A little-known demon, who, during the possession of the nuns of Louviers in 1643, was said to have occupied the body of Sister Barbara of St. Michael.
 
Androdamas: According to ancient belief, the androdamas is a stone resembling the diamond, said to be found in the sands of the Red Sea, in squares or dies. Its name denotes the virtue belonging to it, namely, to restrain anger, mitigate lunacy, and lessen the gravity of the body.
 
Android: A man made by other means than the natural mode of reproduction. The automaton attributed to Albertus Magnus, which St. Thomas destroyed with his stick because its answers to his questions puzzled him, was such an android. Some have attempted to humanize a root called the mandrake, which bears a fantastic resemblance to a human being. In modern times, androids or robots have become commonplace in science fiction stories and films.

 
 
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