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Liber Null and Psychonaut: An Introduction to Chaos Magic
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Liber Null and Psychonaut: An Introduction to Chaos Magic

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  1,892 ratings  ·  73 reviews
Two complete volumes in one. Liber Null contains a selection of extremely powerful rituals and exercises for committed occultists. Psychonaut is a manual comprising the theory and practice of magic aimed atthose seeking to perform group magic, or who work as shamanic priests to the community.
Paperback, 224 pages
Published April 1st 1987 by Weiser Books (first published January 15th 1987)
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really liked it 4.00  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,892 ratings  ·  73 reviews

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Jun 02, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Chaos Magicians, beginning magicians, occult theorists
Recommended to Michael by: Osiris
I wasn't terribly impressed with this book at the time I read it, although it does contain some interesting material. Essentially it is the compiled handbooks (or "libers") of the Illuminates of Thanateros (IOT, worked out by Peter Carroll and others during the 1970s and early 1980s. The IOT prides itself on exploring occult traditions while breaking with much of the hierarchy and stick-up-the-ass seriousness of traditional magical study. Chaos Magic, as I used to say, is what happens to you whe ...more
Lizbeth Gabriel
May 30, 2015 rated it liked it
My head hurts. It really hurts. Also, my copy is missing a page of text and half its contents table. Damn to demise all marshmallows in existence and some theoretical ones.

How can someone actively choose to experiment on everything that makes them who they are AND work 9-5? The advice is pretty clear: change your personality, change your sexuality, do all the things that normally you would not do, try a different lifestyle, support a point of view you don't agree with and so on. Keep doing that
Garrett Cook
Jan 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
"When we are born, we are soft and supple, in death we are stiff and inflexible. To be inflexible is to be the servant of death"- the Tao Te Ching

Even if chaos magick is not a magical tradition you practice, even if you are not a practicing magician at all, there is much to learn from Liber Null. It is a guide to psychic flexibility, to seeing shades of meaning in your environment and to expressing intent. As such, this is a seminal work not just for the magician, but for the artist as well. Lea
Terra Bosart
Jun 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
This was my first introduction to Chaos Magic, and it came across quite well. The writing and descriptions and concepts resonated with me so well that I began magical practice again. This book, along with Liber Kaos, challenged my perspectives and dropped me off where I started. Lovely.
Jan 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
Ah... This book was interesting. Sure it's all in our heads - but how big are our heads? Hah. If your mind is stuck in familiar ruts, this book might be a good place to go "off road". Caveat emptor.
Alistar Baker
Jun 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
One of the Seminal texts on postmodern magick. A true classic which definitely changed my view on magick dramatically, perhaps even my life. A liberating book that inspires creativity, and self-expression. If you're tired of overly-complex rituals based on some medieval mythos that seems like a joke to you, then this is the book for you. I mean, if you don't believe in the supernatural at all, then how could you take things like demons, angels, Gods, and Goddesses seriously? Yet you can still do ...more
Jul 12, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: magick-and-myth
Very good--if often pompous and opaque--text from Pope Pete. Probably not a good introductory book on Chaos Magick, as the spiralling idea-play sometimes nears the Crowleyesque. Still, it can be an exciting read, even if the concepts aren't as easily appliccable as when outlined by Hine.
Feb 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing. I'm not quite sure how to go about writing a review for it, so I'll start by saying, that many magicians who turn to writing, have a very arrogant manner of introducing the subject matter. They stress secrecy, over complicate things for the reader, and the entire work serves as a way for them to feed their ego. Making it less about actually wanting to introduce the subject to new adepts. This is not the case with Carroll. His writing is straightforward and isn't bogged dow ...more
Nov 16, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: occult-magick
I loved Liber Null, but Psychonaught was beyond me at this point. I will take it up again, but not until I have finished Prometheus Rising and Introduction to Chaos Magick (re-read).
Aug 31, 2009 rated it it was ok
The neon bible. It's what every harry potter fan should read upon growing up and being discouraged.
Pieter-Jan Beyul
Jul 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-shelf
Despite its notoriety, chaos magic isn't the blackest magic out there, but the postmodern twitch on the oldest of arts. It is only as notorious as the magician wills it. The 'chaotic' aspect of it has nothing to do with full blown anarchic and nihilistic appliance of magic to whatever means. It has to do with the understanding of the nature of reality as being (the son/daughter of) pure Chaos. Then again, this insight isn't the discovery of a single genius or a truth that has been transmitted fr ...more
Shea Mastison
Feb 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
"Nothing is true, everything is permitted" essentially sums up the overall arch of the book. Postulating the subjective existence of each individual's ego, Peter J. Carroll offers up an interesting look at the rituals of the Initiates of Thanateros--a postmodern occult group that traces their lineage back to prehistoric shamans and the Western esoteric tradition as a whole.

This is one of the better primers on chaos magic; and the ways in which one can use it to develop as a person in our societ
Jul 26, 2015 rated it liked it
Carroll has some ideas that are definitely worth pinching, but there was more than a few times when the Order dude is describing/creating here sounds like fat camp, if there was a fat camp for becoming a total sociopath instead of losing weight. or whatever. His ability to cut huge mystical concepts down into clean, manageable pieces is sometimes impressive and practical, and sometimes conspicuously void of any of kind of awe or wonder-- which may not be a problem for you, and even if it is, it ...more
Kyle R
Feb 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I thought this was a great book. I read a lot of reviews on here from people who probably know more about this kind of stuff than I do - saying that it's more geared towards beginners and that it doesn't explain certain things in-depth enough. I was absorbed in every page and this entire book seemed to be what I had always been searching for - ideas that I had always been flirting with. It validated a lot of things for me. But this is coming from someone pretty new to occult studies in the first ...more
Oct 03, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I never get tired of reading this.
Hilda Ellis-Davidson
Jun 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: philosophy
I really wanted to like this book more... but I just found the writing style to be too dense.

If Lovecraft wrote a manual on how to hack the universal consciousness, this book would be it.
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
The book is a bundle of two smaller books, The Liber Null and the Psychonaut.
The first one is nothing but a bunch of gibberish. Lots of unfunded affirmations pepper with made up words to make it sound deep and important. It’s no different than any other made up system of tough such as Scientology with is Thetans and its Lord Xenu.

At least in two different occasion it makes claims that are easily verifiable to be false. For example:

Lévitation (which includes the ability to walk on water and fir
Mar 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
i would definitely recommend reading something like Condensed Chaos by Phil Hine first, because this feels like some next-level shit. i cant imagine trying to understand this while having no background knowledge of the subject but i dont think you'd find yourself getting much out of it, especially if you didnt do the exercises and tried to engage with it purely intellectually.

or maybe read this book, bounce around to some other chaos magic authors, and then come back to this one and see what yo
Jul 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Existentialists, Occultists, People who want a kick of liberation
My philosophical journey started a new chapter with this book. After being raised Mormon, leaving at 13, deconditioning myself, and feeling reality's rug pulled out from under me, I was left in a rather aimless existential state. But at 19, this book taught me that existentialism does not have to be aimless. We can harness the power of chaos once we acknowledge that the world's structure was imposed on nature by Man. We have the power to influence the world with our own creative action.
It may
Oct 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Presents an incredibly powerful technology of consciousness manipulation, along with a corresponding coherent world view. I would highly recommend reading this book, and more importantly, attempting to utilize the tools presented, to anyone seeking to develop their own unique understanding of the world. The book can be a bit overly woo-woo at times (and woo is present throughout), which is not my cup of tea, but the ideas can be very easily interpreted in a psychological framing, as metaphors us ...more
David Cheuquen Barrientos
Buen libro para entrar a la llamada "Magia del caos". Comprime de manera efectiva diversos temas referentes a la misma y su filosofía. Hubiese sido más interesante alguna profundización respecto a ciertos temas pero se entiende al ser un libro "introductorio" que no se pudiese.

Gran parte de esta información se puede encontrar en internet, el uso de sigilos por ejemplo. Pero siempre es recomendable leer un libro como este para tener una perspectiva más amplia a todo lo que se refiere la magia del
Nov 17, 2018 rated it liked it
The 1-5 Star Review is the total of what I have to say about this book, specifically.

Caveat: This review is historical/archival in nature. 'Date read' is speculative.

This book is one of many books I have read about the occult/paganism/witchcraft. This was the readily available faith in my household as a child. Additionally, I worked for a company in this field, 2015-2016, and had to read an ocean of this stuff to do my job.
Dec 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Far from being my favorite paradigm, chaos magic has this odd eclectic patchwork quality to it. A good book, if terribly dense, it's more of a compact magickal encyclopedia: from DIY sigils, to how-tos on achieving gnosis, to theoretical distinctions between ev- and invocation, to expositions on various theologies, this book may feel jumbled and all over the place. However, it does a good job as a primer for those persistent enough to make it to the end.
Brandon Wicke
Jul 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
The best example I’ve seen so far of a lucid contemporary textbook on magickal development. It also leaves the student with lots of room to develop their own process. Now that I’ve read it straight through, I’ll be returning to the exercises and rituals to give them a shot.
Nov 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Comprehensive and engaging, Liber Null and the collection of essays encapsulated as Psychonaut contain sufficient information for the inspired reader to begin the private practice of magic. I wish 20th century magical texts didn't zoom into the whole "free love to shock the squares" thing but w/e.
Oct 06, 2018 rated it liked it
I have to admit that I liked this more than I thought I would and gained a lot more respect for the chaos magicians out there.
Aug 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: esoterica
As it says in the cover, an introduction to Chaos Magic. Delve at your peril.
Dylan Good
Jan 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
so useful for transforming your consciousness and playing in the invisible fields of our collective pscyhomelodrama
An odd book that marries ritual magic and postmodernism...engaging and unlike how chaos magicians are portrayed in tv and film...

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
Allan J Ingraham
Jan 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interested in magic? Chaos magic is a great place to begin, continue, or end. This book gets right to the point, no BS. I loved it and highly recommend it. Illustrations alone are stupendous.
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He maintains a personal website at

and acts as Chancellor to Arcanorium College:-

Peter Carroll began his career in Magic at London University where the Chemistry proved so tedious that he settled on a pass degree in that and an unauthorized first in Magic, with Liber Null & Psychonaut emerging as his postgraduate thesis over the next several years w
“It is a mistake to consider any belief more liberated than another. It is the possibility of change which is important. Every new form of liberation is destined to eventually become another form of enslavement for most of its adherents. There is no freedom from duality on this plane of existence, but one may at least aspire to choice of duality.” 37 likes
“Ideas about a person's place in society, his role, lifestyle, and ego qualities will lose their hold as the cohesive forces in society disintegrate. Subculture values will proliferate to such a bewildering extent that a whole new class of professionals will arise to control them. Such a Transmutation Technology will deal in fashions, in ways of being. Lifestyle consultants will become the new priests of our civilizations. They will be the new magicians.” 8 likes
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