Please note this is NOT a ZOOM Lecture but an in person lecture. Tickets include a complimentary glass of Devil’s Botany Absinthe.
Doors open at 6:30pm and lecture starts at 7pm
The Last Tuesday Society invites you to join Matthew Levi Stevens on Monday 11th March 2024 for an exploration of the significance of Magic and the Occult in the Life & Work of the writer and counter-cultural icon, William S. Burroughs.
“In the magical universe there are no coincidences and there are no accidents. Nothing happens unless someone wills it to happen. The dogma of science is that the will cannot possibly affect external forces, and I think that’s just ridiculous. It’s as bad as the church. My viewpoint is the exact contrary of the scientific viewpoint. I believe that if you run into somebody in the street it’s for a reason. Among primitive people they say that if someone was bitten by a snake he was murdered. I believe that.” – William S. Burroughs
From the Introduction to The Magical Universe of William S. Burroughs:
In talking about The Magical Universe of William S. Burroughs I am really thinking of two things:
Firstly, and probably most obvious, is the material that appears in the output of Burroughs the Writer that can be seen as describing or referring to some magical, mystical or occult idea – Invocations of Elder Gods of Abominations, descriptions of Sex-Magick rituals, references to amulets, charms, ghosts, omens and spells – all the thematic set-dressing that we all know and love, from Hammer Horror Movies to Weird Tales, from H. P. Lovecraft to Dennis Wheatley and The X-Files…
Secondly, there is the personal interest and involvement of Burroughs the Man with belief systems and practices that come from those strange ‘Other’ territories that lay outside the bounds of either conventional mainstream religion or scientific materialism – explorations of L. Ron Hubbard’s Scientology, Konstanin Raudive’s Electronic Voice Phenomena, Wilhelm Reich’s Orgone Accumulator; also partaking of the Vine-of-the-Soul with Amazonian shamans, attending the Rites of Pan in the Rif Mountains outside Morocco, participating in a Sweat-Lodge with Native American Indian medicine men – and, latterly, an engagement with that most Post-Modern of Occultisms, Chaos Magic.
The material considered has been distilled from archival sources, correspondence, interviews, and of course, published works. As well as his own personal contact with Burroughs and his lifelong study of the Man and his Work, the author also draws from a wide range of former associates – collaborators, friends, lovers, and students – including C. J. Bradbury Robinson, Michael Butterworth, David Conway, Phil Hine, Graham Masterton, Malcolm Mc Neill, and others.
As well as his own contact with the likes of Genesis P-Orridge, John Balance & Peter Christopherson of Coil, and writer Terry Wilson, back in 1980s London, he has also had unprecedented access to the papers of Cabell McLean, a young writer who was William’s companion, lover & student, c.1976-1983.
Matthew Levi Stevens is a published author, occultural commentator, and Enochian & Hermetic magical practitioner. His published works include The Magical Universe of William S. Burroughs (Mandrake of Oxford, 2014), in collaboration with C. J. Bradbury Robinson, A Way With Words (WhollyBooks, 2013), and A Moving Target: Encounters with William Burroughs (Beat Scene Press, 2012.)
Devil’s Botany is the UK’s first absinthe distillery, founded by Directors of The Last Tuesday Society’s Absinthe Parlour & Cocktail Bar. Celebrating spirit’s connection to art, music & mixology, Devil’s Botany is unleashing the future of absinthe with bold expressions for the adventurous drinkers of today.
We are unable to give refunds for in person events with less than 7 days notice in any circumstances.