Review of Liber Khthonia by Jeff Cullen

Review of Liber Khthonia by Jeff Cullen March 2, 2024

Review of Liber Khthonia: A Contemporary Witchcraft & Devotional Tradition of Hekate by Jeff Cullen

While Hekate is a multifaceted goddess, it is her connection with witchcraft, both ancient and modern, that springs to mind. In Liber Khthonia, Mr Jeff Cullen crafts a practical, unique contemporary practice by combining knowledge of ancient cults with decades of his family tradition. He is very conscious of the need to ensure that practices are legal, ethical and safe, and provides resources for sourcing spell ingredients which can be illegal if improperly acquired.

From the outset, Mr Cullen is refreshingly honest:

“I am never going to tell anyone that my way is THE way, or that they can’t use the information I am sharing to create their own system and traditions. I am providing an insight on how I and my family practices our religion and witchcraft. The witch is encouraged to take as little or as much as they choose to incorporate into their own system. It can be used in conjunction with any current practice or be used to develop one. My only purpose is to perpetuate, encourage, and contribute to the spread of witchcraft and polytheism. All my work, whether it be my art or my literature, is in dedication to the Gods.”

Thus, while some readers may be keen to follow in Mr Cullen’s footsteps, others will incorporate bits and pieces into their own practice to craft something unique and relevant to their own needs. Ultimately, every seeker needs to find their own path.

Mr Cullen provides a wonderful literature survey of what is known about Hekate. He points out paradoxes such as her prominence in Hesiod and her absence in Homer, which are the two foundational texts of Greek mythology. While some readers may well choose to do further research, Mr Cullen has done most of the work for them.

Mr Cullen acknowledges that while all of us have a little bit of divinity within us, not all of us are empowered witches. He writes that:

“In my experience, there are certain individuals, certain souls, who hear the voice of the Witch Gods echoing through the Darkness of the Void and who answer to the voice without fear because they carry within themselves the Light of Illumination, the Witch Flame, that burning force from the ether that gives power and potency to witchcraft present in the soul of every witch.”

The text presents techniques for manifesting and directing the Witch Flame so as to become an empowered witch, and these are centered around Hekate:

“But there is one divine voice that has been heard more than any other, the voice that taught the first incantations to humanity, She carries in Her womb the mighty Witch Flame that births all witches. She is Hekate, the Most High Queen of Witches! She rides through the ether on Her chariot drawn by dragons, and Her divine form radiates with the burning flame of all the stars of the expanding Universe.”

In fact, the very first exercise presented by Mr Cullen aims to discover one’s Witch Flame and connect to Hekate’s current.

The tendency among modern practitioners of witchcraft and magick is to pigeonhole the deities into having a small number of functions. The ancients, however, saw the deities as multifaceted, as indicated by many of their epithets. Hekate was no exception:

“A witch who seeks to devote themselves to the cult of Hekate should take the time to familiarize themselves with each aspect of Her, with each epithet. This exercise takes the witch on a journey through the domains of Hekate so Her devotee can understand Her better and unlock every potential behind each title.”

Mr Cullen points out that a number of witches may be triggered by terms such as “Worship,” “Prayer,” “Religion,” due to their extensive use in the dominant religion in this country. He recommends:

“Before witches can perform effective magic, they must first establish an open connection with the Divine. The quickest, most effective way to do this is by casting off old notions of what worship and prayer are, what a witch’s religion is, and using them for their original purpose: to appease our Gods so They turn Their favor and attention toward us.”

Prior to invoking Hekate, Mr Cullen gives instructions on honoring our ancestors as well as honoring the spirit of the place.

The remainder of the text is practical. There are numerous workings with Hekate, instructions on crafting ritual tools, recipes, and he addresses virtually everything that an inquisitive reader would want to learn about.

Mr Cullen even presents an initiation to Hekate which is “an amalgamation of rituals from my experience as a Master Mason and initiated Vodouisant, as well as information I have gathered from various sources throughout my years of research.” This will be appreciated by readers who feel a need to add a formal element to their devotions.

There are dozens of spells and recipes which will keep readers busy for many months. Mr Cullen does not shy away from cursing and making poppets, as well as the mandatory love spells. He also instructs readers in conjuring demonic forces. Clearly Mr Cullen expects his readers to be sufficiently sensible to venerate Hekate ethically and responsibly, and not break any laws.

All in all, Liber Khthonia is a wonderful resource for readers wanting a fresh, modern approach to working with Hekate. Mr Cullen’s decades of experience are clearly evident throughout.


Tony Mierzwicki

Author of Hellenismos: Practicing Greek Polytheism Today and Graeco-Egyptian Magick: Everyday Empowerment.

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