Demons, fairies, and saints—together? These are not three categories we think of together. In past eras, however, perceptions of the supernatural world were much more fluid; magicians of the Renaissance would not be averse to calling upon whatever beings were available to help. Daniel Harms, one of the editors of The Book of Oberon, details this working manual of a magician from the time of Queen Elizabeth, William Shakespeare, and John Dee. The original is in the Folger Shakespeare Library, and it could be the largest collection of ritual magic texts ever published in English—including calling upon demons, fairies, and saints for help.
Readers interested in spirituality live in an amazing time. Bookstores, libraries, and the Internet provide information on all manner of traditions, from the most orthodox to those that, a few centuries before, would have ensured a quick trip to the stake. It is hard for us to recall that, even a few decades ago, books on occult topics were quite difficult to come by. One such book that has lived in infamy is Der Lange Verborgene Freund, or "The Long-Lost Friend." Now newly updated, editor Daniel Harms explains its importance–both yesterday and today.