Walter Ogris Conducts a Personal Interview with Emil Stejnar
Edited excerpts from the interview with Emil Stejnar summer 2006
Archive of Hermetic Texts
(translatet by Eva and Bill Cranstoun)
© Walter Ogris
Ogris: Bardon has not only many loyal followers, but also is often attacked and slandered on the Internet. How do you explain this?
Stejnar: Personally I only know readers of Bardon who treasure his works very much. In cases where someone is criticizing his books, when you really look at what they are saying it is evident that they have not understood what they have read. Without exception in these cases we have people who read about Hermetics and Magic but who are completely inexperienced. In addition it seems that many of these writers are not very well educated and use criticisms to promote typical sectarian arguments. Forgive me if I do not go along with this kind of approach. I would advise everyone to do Bardons exercises while at the same time to try to live your lives successfully through wholly normal means. Someone who fails in life will not reach success with magic either. That is curious fact. Whoever discovers how it works doesn’t need magic anymore. Also its really not about Bardon but about the curriculum he put together.. What he has given has so far never been described in such a clear and
practical form before. It will take a few years before one recognize what really matters. This is unfortunately not teachable. Everyone must discover this for themselves.
Ogris: You are a supporter of Bardon’s yet you are not completely uncritical of his work. You have corrected some mistakes that you found in his books. For example the governors of the zone girdling the earth and the spirits of Abramelin have the same names, and that the Moon and Sun geniuses were not properly named. Is there an explanation for this?
Stejnar: Yes. I clear this up in my new book about Franz Bardon that will come out shortly, and for which I now take the opportunity to advertise.
Ogris: There are many long standing rumors that Quintscher was Bardon’s teacher. But when you compare the two of them there appear to be significant differences.
Stejnar: You are right. There are world’s of differences between the teaching approaches of Bardon and Quintscher. It was Hemberger who was the first to spread this nonsense in one of his “documentations.” Then others, who admitted to me later that they had never read Bardon, and took this “documentation” legitimatized it wth some academic footnotes and passed it on further. As you know I was good friends with Hemberger. I have even the publishing rights to his works and inherited his magical rings. I had many conversations with him as well as undertaken Lodge work together. I also know that he has never practiced the way laid out by Bardon, but practice an old form of conjuring magic. Hemberger owned a copy of Quinscher’s teaching materials that had Bardon’s name stamped in the front cover. It was also clear to him that Bardon was a friend of the older Quinscher in his youth and therefore he knew the true nature of their “student teacher “ relationship. Even Ernst the son of Quintscher himself, confirmed to me that as Bardon was introduced to his father, that he already had magical abilities and that he demonstrated them on several occasions. He has told me some funny anecdotes, but I have already mentioned that in a previous interview.
Ogris: Why have you not tried to clear this up with Hemberger?
Stejnar: I have. But when I met him he had already published this manuscript. By the way, he was not a student of Weinfurter either, as the otherwise useful “Lexicon of Secret Knowledge” by Horst E. Mier claims. Bardon had contact with all of the occultists of his time, and for sure there was a fruitful exchange between them all. But Bardon’s work is unique.
Ogris: In spite of that it is often claimed that Bardon’s magical path does not work.
Stejnar: Who says that? Do you know these people? Do you know if they have mastered step one and two of Initiation into Hermetics? Do you believe that they have had success with a different magical system? Do you know anyone that has been able to achieve anything useful with Magic?
Ogris: And you? Have you had success with Bardon’s magic? Have you reached prosperity through Magic? Do you attribute your success to Magic?
Stejnar: I don’t occupy myself with Magic anymore. To create a life of success Magic is quite unsuitable. It is enough when you work in the line and sense of Prentice Mulford and think positively and correctly. I guarantee you your visualizations combined with corresponding living feeling will fulfill all of your wishes.
Ogris: What purpose does magic serve.
Stejnar: Magic is for the schooling of the soul and spirit. What Bardon describes is also a great help for everyday life. Whoever trains their spiritual organs in a certain way, doesn’t need magic. For them daily life becomes a yoga practice and every obstacle a spiritual sport. Due to Science and technology mankind seems to be in control of the world. But has he got control of himself? Is he the master of his thinking, his emotions and his bodily desires? We are not born into the world, but into our bodies. Incarnation comes from the “carne”, that means flesh, we have become flesh, and we are dependent on our genetic structure. The genetic conditions determine everyone’s specific tendencies,
characteristics and behavior, and to work against these there is only one means; the power of imagination and will. And exactly these are developed through a Hermetic schooling.
Ogris: You have developed in your books a magic without magic, and describe some things differently from what Franz Bardon taught. According to you the elemental beings and elementaries are not helping spirits but cells comprised of elemental essence,(Wesenzellen) unique to our personal nature that build up our soul and spirit subtle bodies. You describe the super sensible organism with organs corresponding to the planetary powers that we must develop if we want to use the subtle body. In your view we don’t wake up after death in a beyond, but in a personal soul garden where our personal essences become spirits and beings again and we are surrounded by them. Is it possible to reconcile
these views with Bardon’s teaching?
Stejnar: Definitely. What I describe is no contradiction to Bardon’s Hermetics. Just the opposite, it is a deepening of his teachings. Also Hermetics must be learned and practiced step by step. First one must learn to deal with the elemantaries Only then can we grasp the mystery of the cells of elemental essences and understand inner anatomy and the light body. In fact every fleeting thought, every inner picture, idea or melody that goes through our head is already an elemental being and not only the more compact “magical” creation that you can send to someone
because you want something from him. And the desire for the next cigarette is already and elementary. What is left of you when you take away your every thought and feeling. Also the primary causes of your character and habits lay in these essential cellular beings. They are the cells of your spiritual flesh and blood. This is true of the genies and gods as well. This fact is one of the biggest mysteries that we
need to come to terms with.
Ogris: Bardon describes spirits which will inspire human beings in the future in such a way that we can create a modern paradise on earth. Some inventions that he had foreseen like satellite connections and the many sided applications of that technology are already in use today.. In spite of of this it appears that evil never sleeps. You have written in one of your books, long before the Berlin Wall came down, that communism would come to an end, and that in spite of this, the world would not be more peaceful. You further predicted that humanity would soon after become polarized through religious fundamentalism and brought into a new state of cold war. In the meantime it has become
clear that also your second prediction was correct. Was Bardon too optimistic? Can evil not be conquered?.
Stejnar: So called evil has many forms of expression. In this case we are dealing with stupidity, greed for money and hunger for power. Stupidity because the religious fanatics pray to a “god”and not for the Good, and the hunger for power, because now and again leaders appear who use stupid people for their own agenda. Fighters for revenge, religious armies, and national ideologues and the seducers of the weak minded. There are a handful of people who are earning millions of dollars by maintaining small wars here and there against terrorism and renegade nations. The ones who stir up and finance terrorists, gain power and all those who stand apparently against them, the oil merchants and weapons producers, make lots of money. There is no war of cultures. And its not the real problems like hunger, and poverty that are the danger. The dangers lay in the method using problems and questions of belief as a pretext for spreading hate. The demons of hate who, because of their emotions, will act as their human representatives. For this reason I maintain that all forms of religion and belief are dangerous. Even the esoteric becomes dangerous and problematic when it appears as a form of belief and claims the spiritual for itself, and doesn’t give validity to any other. Not because there is a danger of building up sects, but because every belief hems one in and clouds the mind from an open and lively perspective. One of Bardons often repeated sayings was that “ Nothing bad comes without also bringing with it something good.” That is in fact so, we can observe this again and again. Evil has a certain place in creation. That doesn’t mean though, that we should support it through our thinking, feelings and behavior. We cannot overcome evil, but we should not be the one’s bringing it into the world.
Ogris: It comes to me that Bardon and also you as good as never use the word God. You both describe that mystery as divine providence. Do you not believe in God?
Stejnar: I don’t believe that I can believe in the God that the different religions describe and to whom believers and followers of various confessions pray. That is not my God. These are phantoms created through the power of human thought and are not even gods. I do believe though in an invisible complex multi layered power that in form and space exists as comprehensive spiritual law. The proof for this is for me lies in the fantastic creation, the miracle of life and consciousness and the ingenious creations of humanity. Look at the arts or scientific arenas and first and foremost the science and astrology that allow us to understand and calculate spiritual dynamics and events. I cannot believe that we are all figures moved around in a godless computer game that has programmed itself from pure chance.
Ogris: Again you are saying power and not God.
Stejnar: OK. Say it how you want. You can also personify It. I don’t have problem with it since I am convinced that this power is as conscious of it’s existence as humans and all the other spirits. We will never comprehend this power and that is why I don’t mention It.
Ogris: How is it with the so called gods spirits and demons. Are they merely projections of human minds or do they exit in the way Franz Bardon has described them?
Stejnar: Yes I do believe that they exist. But we must differentiate between those that existed already, and those born out of the thinking and feeling of mankind.
Ogris: Which of them are good? With Bardon there isn’t black/white thinking. What is it with good and evil? Why does evil always seem to come out ahead? How is it that the good in the world is the inferior power? If in the animal world the stronger survive that is understandable and probably necessary for preservation of the species. But in the plant world I ask myself why the cultivated plants are immediately overgrown with weeds if the weeds aren’t pulled out in a timely manner. In the human world it looks as if the proliferating weeds of the criminal element can never be brought under control.
Stejnar: Yes, I do differentiate between good and evil. We can do that without philosophizing about it, but it must be redefined on a case by case basis. Then we will notice that in fact this is what is meant by Bardon that the dissolving principle has an important place in creation. Therefore we will never be able to completely eliminate it. It can only be placed within limits by transforming it. Evil shows its ugliest face when it works through humanity. Everyone always decides for themselves what is good and what is evil. The individual must control it from inside themselves. It is best if he thinks over and contemplates his thoughts and desires which determine his behavior, from the standpoint of his fellow human beings. What is Good and what is evil? Evil is always what is too much or what is too little. Exaggeration or degeneration in a certain direction. Too much courage becomes foolishness, too little gives way to fear, and paralyzes. But fear is also good because it makes us careful and put the brakes on foolishness. Good is the middle. Through this example it becomes clear that there are many more opportunities for evil than for the good. It is two to one. The so called evil can distort from two sides and good has only the possibility to defend the middle ground. Therefore it is very important to be attentive, to discover and bring to a halt every little tendency that becomes too strong in one direction.
Ogris: Do you believe in Baphomet and Lucifer and all of the evil spirits and demons?
Stejnar: What goes for the good angels and gods goes also for the others the so called evil spirits. I have no problem in personalizing them. I find the spirit model better than what many of the modern esoteric people do when they reduce all beings to “just” frequencies and fields. The question is not if they exist or if we believe in them but how they came to be. Its not about whether a spirit is good or bad but about the fact that most spirits are dependent on human beings. Wherever that is the case, that good spirits are dependent on human beings, they can also degenerate. Not because they want to hurt humanity, but because without noticing it, they keep humanity back from becoming more powerful
than they themselves. They support and help evolution as they enter into it, but they prevent the individual from consistent development and from becoming independent of these spirits. I don’t mean now the larvae and schema, the freeloaders that Bardon describes, also not every god that comes into being through the prayers and thoughts of humanity. I also have the suspicion that the whole Hierarchy of spirits that Bardon describes profits from the human race. In so far as they inspire individuals to think and act along certain lines they will then become clever and collect new inner knowledge, but at the same time will be pulled into another plane, and will lose, if they don’t distance themselves again, a part of their complex identity. We must always be wakeful and remain in control of what we are currently thinking and feeling. It is very difficult to differentiate between our own personal elementals our own thoughts and the rest of our otherwise subtle vehicles of consciousness from the elemental
inspirations that appear in consciousness. In principle it is dangerous when we develop one sided specialties or ingenious faculties when they come at the expense of other interests.
Ogris: What do you understand by the term black magic? I am reading a book at the moment by Paulo Coelho. Do you know him? Does he belong to your “esoteric circle?” He describes namely a meeting with evil and it was exactly like you describe in two of your books.
Stejnar: You are the fourth person to ask me that. In the meantime someone has sent me two books of him, and I understand your question. You mean his terrible experience of the sooty black darkness that manifested in his apartment and wouldn’t go away for days?
Ogris: Exactly. He felt such fear that he left his black magic lodge and instead became a member of some pious Catholic sect.
Stejnar: So, it is much more dangerous when evil hides in a human than when it manifests itself in the form of soot and smoke in a room. It is not the evil that creates fear but the unfamiliar and unexplained. In spite of that I don’t understand why, Coelho, who is supposedly such a tough guy,
immediately gave up magic all together. The interesting thing is that supposedly other members of his lodge had the same experience. But with me it was different. The meeting of the protagonist with Baphomet that I describe in The Book of the Master and in the children’s book Andy Mo was simply made up. That still I describe it just as Coelho experienced it, is no wonder. You make something up and naturally you have that experience in the spirit. Every thought is an experience and an effect on super sensible planes. When you want to describe something, you draw a picture in the spirit and you create it so to speak and it doesn’t matter if it existed before, independently from your thoughts, or not. It continues to exist afterwards still for a time longer. If others read it and participate in spiritually drawing the same image, then it lasts even longer. It would be interesting to know when Coelho and his friends had this experience. I wrote these passages around 1993- 1994. The place in Andy Mo was written much later, perhaps his book had already been read, and the image was already charged up from many readers.
Ogris: You depict in your Book of the Master the region of Golema, the intelligence that is responsible for authors, and supported Bardon as an author. In that region the fantasies and thoughts exist that every writer will find as if in an immense library where all is accessible, and everyone creates from the same offering of images. Coelho has written another book in which he has incorporated your thoughts, I mean, his book “The Alchemist.” The whole book touches on the same Jewish fable of the dream about a buried treasure that you also describe in your fourth book of the Master as the search for the true I Am. From you, one page, from him, a whole book.
Stejnar: A book that became a best seller. The wise rabbi who once made up this story would be happy to know that his thoughts-seeds had sprouted and has borne fruit. Now back to your question about evil. I never tried to evoke or call forth evil. But still I have had similar experiences that have given me a powerful fright. Many believe that they experience a manifestation from another plane but in fact it is their own spiritual flatulence that they are unloading. The intense expectation and creepy mood produces a corresponding elementary that makes their hair stand on end, or a shadow is created that makes some kind of noise. If especially gifted or sensitive people are working together or devote
themselves to a common imagination over a longer period of time then they can create a group spirit the so called egregore. That rarely manifests itself in front of its victims, but in them in such a way that they they never notice. For the most part nothing actually happens in an evocation or ceremonial circle. Luckily. Mostly, when someone senses an actual being in the near environment they lose it in their pants. Even Crowley supposedly brought his Abremelin exercises to a premature close because uncomfortable spook phenomenon started happening. And a son of the grandmaster of the Fraternitas Saturni landed with the Jehovas Witnesses after a successful conjuration of Lucifer. I still know some people who considered themselves to be big masters and then, after their first experience with the super sensible, they became innocent pious churchgoers.
Ogris: How have similar experiences affected you? You have described in an article that two magazines carried, one called “The Other World” and the other one called “Anubis”, an experience where your bed floated up over a meter off the floor. Then the furniture went crazy, and there was an unbelievable noise so that everyone fled out of the apartment building in the middle of the night
Stejnar: Yes that was in 1958 in Sweden. I had then a visit from a friend from Vienna. We were nineteen years old and had both been doing Bardon exercises for a few months. The scary part was the gruesome fear that I had, because I thought a demon in the form a green face was trying to force its way into my body, and wanted to pull me out of my body. I was paralyzed and moaning in a dreadful way. Naturally that had scared my friend who only saw green light coming out of my eyes, and my bed with me on it off the floor, and furniture flying around the room. After that we were scared for days.
Ogris: In spite of that you didn’t renounce magic and join a monastery?
Stejnar: No, no. As a child I had already had impressive appearances, at that time they were light forms that I took for Jesus and Maria, that created as much fear in me as the guardian of the threshold. I was already prepared so that I had soon conquered that terror. This experience was even a challenge for me which led me to really start my magical training in seriousness. I did not need to go to a monastery because I already lived as hermit. The Swedish village that I lived in was the end of the world for me since I came from a big city, and I devoted all of my free time exclusively to my magical training. I was young and curious and fascinated by the fantastic possibilities. I did the most impossible experiments.
Ogris: Can you tell me more about them?
Stejnar: No I don’t want to create an advertisement for nonsense. That wastes energy and time. Magical training is not meant for us to control the world and the spirits, but instead that we, through magic, cease to be controlled by them and the world. There are much easier options to make your destiny happy and successful. Magic is absolutely unsuitable for that. First of all it doesn’t always function as you expect and second as I have said, to be successful, there are much easier and simpler ways to get there. I did not know that at the time.
Ogris: You mention that again and again. In spite of that your have written a book for children and adolescents that leads to the magical way that Bardon and your Books of the Master describe.
Stejnar: My book, “Andy Mo” is quasi an answer to Harry Potter. Wait for the second part. There I lead the children away from magic again, and show them how that through their thoughts and discipline they can effect far more than with all that lazy magic.
Ogris: What do you think of Dan Brown and his bestsellers The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons?
Stejnar: Wonderfully exciting, but fiction. I have not read them. But it is true that not only the Illuminati and the Freemasons own the key to magic. Also the Christian orders guard the secrets and have access to the, magical mysteries, which they themselves condemmed. They work with the key of the hermetic three and hermetic four as well. I describe that in detail in my Books of the Master. There you can find what Dan Brown surely has not described. But next year he releases a novel about the Freemasons. Possibly he has stolen something out of my books.
Mehr aus diesem Gespräch mit Emil Stejnar ist in seinem Buch: FRANZ BARDON, WER WAR ER, WAS LEHRT ER, WOHIN FÜHRT SEIN WEG nachzulesen.