Esoteric and Occult is a broad category embracing religious and mystical traditions and practices throughout history which have served as alternatives to mainstream religions. Esoteric and Occult also encompasses secret societies, underground groups and unusual activities that fall within occultism, meaning the study of hidden things, that is, the hidden structure of reality and of humanity. The esoteric movement in the West began with Græco-Roman traditions of magic and mystery, and has continued to the present day through such well-known traditions as Neo-Platonism, Alchemy, Kabala, and Theosophy. Egyptian and other ancient religions have long been of esoteric interest although they are not truly alternative; they were mainstream religions in their native cultures, and only became esoteric after they were revived centuries or millennia later. These revivals have sometimes embraced traditions of questionable historicity such as occult Templarism and medieval Witchcraft, as well as real traditions seen through a distorted historical lens. Since the 19th century many Western esotericists have cultivated interests in Eastern mysticism as well. Yoga is commonly practiced by esotericists today, and modern occult conceptions have been strongly influenced by Hinduism, Buddhism and Taoism, especially as interpreted by Theosophy and Thelema.
If English is not the primary language of the site, please make sure there is sufficient text in English to warrant submission, and please link the page with intro in English.
The process of opening up to the various spiritual realms connected with human life through our conscious understanding was called by Steiner 'Anthroposophy', or a 'wisdom of humanity'. It can enable the individual human being to find an orientation in life, and brings new impulses to all areas of our culture and civilization. Through this, many significant persons have found the means to give new and fruitful dimensions to their cultural accomplishments and social works.
If English is not the primary language of the site, please make sure there is sufficient text in English to warrant submission, and please link the page with intro in English.
The ODP Esoteric and Occult Arts category contains English language sites about art, or "the use of skill and imagination in the creation of aesthetic objects, environments, or experiences that can be shared with others." This includes the "liberal arts," concerned with skill of expression in language, speech, and reasoning, and the "fine arts," concerned with affecting aesthetics directly, and especially affecting the sense of beauty.
Email lists are rebroadcasters to which you subscribe and to which you can send mail so that many other subscribers will read it. Usually they pertain to a specific subject, but can also be dedicated to a group or purpose other than this. Discussion groups are regularly meeting live-time gatherings in such servers as IRC (internet relay channels) and private communities such as at AOL (chatrooms). They are also community bulletin boards such as communication networks on private servers.
Please submit all sites presenting information about email lists and discussion groups that are pertinent to the Society:Religion and Spirituality:Esoteric category.
"Dark Paths" is a term used to denote a loosely grouped movement of morbid spirituality related to Thelema, H. P. Lovecraft, Chaos Magic, LaVey Satanism, horror fiction, and the Gothic subulcture. In some ways a fulfillment of the redemption of demonized emotions expressed by existentialist philosophy, and in others a goofy Addams Family lark, the Dark Paths movement in its various branches seems to be claiming an ever-growing following among the young.
Please submit sites that are gateways to darkside spirituality.
Two alternative models of Discordianism are presented here. Both of these models are false and stupid. 1. Discordianism, also known as Erisianism, is an ancient irreligion, dating back to the Cthulhuvian epoch and High Atlantis, and concealing among its tenets the secrets of the cosmos and the guiding principles of all creation. Modern-day Discordianism arose following a supernatural visitation in a bowling alley in California. Among other things, Discordianism has its own calendar, holidays and saints. For more information, consult your pineal gland, and then consult the Principia Discordia. Or not. 2. Discordianism is a joke, but it conceals a serious commentary on religion's unfortunate tendency to make people unwilling to laugh at themselves. It is based on the ancient Greek legend of the Golden Apple of Kallisti ("To the Beautiful One"), which was reported by Lucian to have started the Trojan War, but which was unknown in Homer. Eris or Discordia was the Greek goddess of discord, usually portrayed in tattered and bloodstained clothing, and bringing omens of doom. In Discordianism she was reinterpreted into a more benign trickster, a symbol of the 1960's rebellion against corrupt and conformist social structures. Discordianism is best known not from its entertaining root scripture, Kerry Thornley's "Principia Discordia," but from the works of Robert Anton Wilson, the occult novelist who brought Discordianism to a wide audience. Aren't you glad you asked? PS. Discordianism exerted a major influence on the later traditions of Chaos Magick and the Church of the Sub-Genius.
The subject of this category implies a certain amount of randomness, as well as some difficulty in forming any sort of rational hierarchy of subcategories. So necessarily submitting a link to this category isn''t quite so restrictive as others. Still, please submit only links with *some* sort of Discordian association, even if it''s tenuous at best. The editor will have the final say in what belongs here and what doesn''t of course, but he tries to be fair. So yes, you can stretch things a bit, but that doesn''t mean the editor will necessarily agree with you...
Freemasonry is a root source of Western esotericism, though some members deny this, and most others downplay the influence because of the assaults of anti-Masons. Modern Freemasonry results from the transition from operative (working) stone masonry to speculative (spiritual) Freemasonry in the 17th century when esotericists such as Elias Ashmole were initiated. Its esoteric interests peaked in the late 19th century but are still active. The original speculative form was influenced by Rosicrucianism and Renaissance magic. The basic initiatory structure of Theosophy, the Golden Dawn, Thelema, and Gardnerian Witchcraft are derived from Freemasonry.
The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn was an influential occult group in late 19th century England, and a major influence on most 20th century magic. Occult luminaries associated with the Order include S. L. MacGregor Mathers, Allan Bennett, and Aleister Crowley, among others; William Butler Yeats and actress Florence Farr were among other members. Those strongly influenced in later incarnatons and descendants included Dion Fortune, Paul Foster Case, and Israel Regardie. Various groups using the teaching and ritual methods of the original Order still exist, sometimes engaging in paper battles over their own and their rivals' legitimacy. The Golden Dawn was a kind of esotericized mixed-gender Freemasonry combining symbols from old grimoires and fresh imaginations, all structured by a version of the Tree of Life derived from Kircher. There were strong areas of common interest and leadership overlap between the Freemasonic/Rosicrucian Societas Rosicruciana in Anglia (SRIA), Theosophy, the Hermetic Brotherhood of Luxor, and the Golden Dawn.
Please submit only links to e-groups, forums, or chatrooms. The forum may deal with the subject of the Golden Dawn in any of it''s various forms.
Please submit a site that allows entrance to an e-mail list or discussion group about Hermeticism.

more information (editors only)

Kabbalah, Qabalah and other variations of the spelling can best be described as an occult, esoteric mystical system which originated within Judaism and then in medieval times was adapted by various western religious groups, which existed at the time, which then in time formed a system derived of the traditional Judaic Kabbalah which was usually referred to as either hermetic or Christian Kabbalah.
Please only submit sites which deal with Western, Christian or Hermetic Kabbalah.
Magick -- the popularity of the writings of Aleister Crowley and his post-Theosophical mystical preferences have influenced modern spelling conventions such that today more often than not stage MAGIC is differentiated from esoteric and occult MAGICK. this is the standard form accepted by DMOZ editors to cover the range of subject topics related to rituals, spells, ceremonial and other types of magick.
Please contribute a site that pertains to the subject of magick.
For articles, news stories, journals, magazines and ezines about the Esoteric and Occult.
This category is for sites relating specifically to John Dee the man, and not to his Enochian system of magick. Sites relating primarily to Enochian magick should be placed in the "Society: Religion and Spirituality: Esoteric and Occult: Magick: Enochian" category.
For personal reflections or musing on esoteric and occult subjects, as well as sites which have information on the webmaster and esoteric or occult topics.
The original Rosicrucians may never have existed, except as a literary device. The hidden fraternity has been revived time and again since its first appearance in the early 16th century, and esoteric Freemasonry and most Western occult movements have some relationship to the Rosy Cross. Modern movements calling themselves Rosicrucian may have only a tenuous link to the original. The original Rosicrucian documents were the Fama fraternitatis, circa 1611, and the Confessio fraternitatis, circa 1615. Later in the century, The Chymical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreutz was published.
"Satanism" began its life as an imaginary category -- a delusion of the masses. In many cultures there is a paranoid suspicion that somewhere, a class of evil magicians is plotting wrack and run for the good law-abiding folk. In European culture of the second Christian millennium, this became the witch craze. It was believed that society had been infiltrated by a group of people serving Satan, the ultimate enemy, who cast malevolent spells out of sheer love of evil. This exactly parallels delusions in many other cultures, though the central authority and relatively advanced technology allowed this delusion to express itself more thoroughly in Europe than it ever could in tribal and other premodern groups. As the second Christian millennium drew to a close in the 18th and 19th centuries, irony and sarcasm became common modes of expression in intellectual culture. Participants in this trend sometimes went so far as to invert the enemy status of Satan or "the devil" and to see some good in him. What became known as the "Satanic school" in literature sometimes used Satan as an example of virtues that Christianity denied, such as pride and lust, which were reinterpreted as positive attributes. Often this was combined with a Romanticism or neo-Classicalism which sought to restore pagan virtues. When occultism began to expand in the mid-19th century, and in partial response to the "Satanic school," dualistic views of Satan became common in the occult world. Eliphas Levi saw some good in the figure of Satan, which he identified with the forces of "generation," a euphemism for sex. The Golden Dawn also came to see Satan or the devil as a necessary counterpoint to God. Aleister Crowley embraced this trend more thoroughly, identifying Satan with one of his primary deities, Hadit. Jules Michelet's speculative work re-examined the witch craze in a partially redeemed light as a real movement of Satanists. In popular culture, the "Satanic school" turned into the decadent movement, examplified by Swinburne and Baudelaire. In the 1960's, Anton LaVey became the most popular overt Satanist in history with his bestselling "Satanic Bible." Part religion and part joke, his movement never attained much in membership numbers but reached broad informal support through his books. He derived his system from anti-clerical literary Satanism and anti-Christian occultism, and his system has become the progenitor of a number of less well-known movements in the decades since. Probably the best known of these so far has been the breakaway Temple of Set, which eventually ceased to refer to itself as Satanic, while still cultivating its inheritance from LaVey's Church of Satan. Modern Satanic movements tend towards the libertarian/elitist end of the political spectrum, practice magical rituals in which traditionally demonized figures are treated with respect and sometimes adoration (often without literal belief in their existence), and employ a humanistic philosophical framework that emphasizes the pre-eminence of Earth and Man over Heaven and God. They are related to a broader and more diffuse movement sometimes known as Dark Paths, which embraces other night-side forms of occultism such as Chaos Magic and the modern Goth and Vampire subcultures.
Only chats, forums, message boards, email lists and similar communications of a Satanic nature will be added. They must have a predominant Satanic content.
Stores selling Pagan and occult supplies. Check your punctuation and spelling. This Kind of Submission is NOT a Good Thingn.

Only online stores with extra content ie: many articles, links, or extra value added themes will be listed here. Stores only selling merchandise which do not fit anywhere else should be submitted to Society/Religion_and_Spirituality/Esoteric_and_Occult/Shopping/General_Merchandise/

Stores selling Pagan and occult supplies. Check your punctuation and spelling. The clearer your description is, the faster is may be added to the directory.

EXAMPLE OF A GOOD SUBMISSION: This store specializes in hand-made incense and oils. Also carries a large line of ritual tools for the pagan and wiccan practitioner.

EXAMPLE OF A BAD SUBMISSION: We have the BEst HandMade Oils and Incense on the Net!! We carry 3,000 of the BEST pagan supplies!!! Oils, Incense, Statues, Spells, Lotions, Wands, Athames, Bolines, Sigils, Jewlry, More Jewelry, Lotsa and Lotsa of Jewlry!

Also, are you submitting your site to the most specific category? Is your spelling correct? Are you using no more than three keywords?

Esoteric and occult symbols, sigils or alphabets.
The Temple of Set is a magical, initiatory, and religious order, dedicated to the idea of Xeper (roughly translated as self development) and the inspiration of the ancient Egyptian god Set.
Submit sites for email lists and discussion groups related to Thelema.
BRAHMA VAK or THEOSOPHIA is Divine Wisdom, the aggregate of the knowledge and wisdom that underlie the Universe -- the homogeneity of eternal GOOD -- and the sum total of the same as allotted to man by nature on this earth. [from HERMES MAGAZINE]