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Found 110 results

  1. annemathematics

    Thought Photography

    During the year 1896 considerable stir was created by the investigation of Dr. Hippolyte Baraduc, of Paris, in the line of “Thought Photography,” which is of interest to psychic investigators generally. Dr. Baraduc claimed to have gotten photographic impressions of his thoughts, “made without sunlight or electricity or contact of any material kind.” These impressions he declared to be subjective, being his own personal vibrations, the result of a force emanating from the human personality, supra-mechanical, or spiritual. The experiments were carried on in a dark room, and according to his statement were highly successful. In a communication to an American correspondent, printed in the New York Herald, January 3, 1897, he writes: “I have discovered a human, invisible light, differing altogether from the cathode rays discovered by Prof. Roentgen.” Dr. Baraduc advanced the theory that our souls must be considered as centers of luminous forces, owing their existence partly to the attraction and partly to the repulsion of special and potent forces bred of the invisible cosmos. A number of French scientific journals took up the matter, and discussed “Thought Photography” at length, publishing numerous reproductions of the physician’s photographs; but the more conservative journals of England, Germany and America remained silent on the subject, as it seemed to be on the borderland [Pg 199]between science and charlatanry. On January 11, 1897, the American newspapers contained an item to the effect that Drs. S. Millington Miller and Carleton Simon, of New York City, the former a specialist in brain physiology, and the latter an expert hypnotist, had succeeded in obtaining successful thought photographs on dry plates from two hypnotized subjects. When the subjects were not hypnotized, the physicians reported no results. As “Thought Photography” is without the pale of known physical laws, stronger evidence is needed to support the claims made for it than that which has been adduced by the French and American investigators. “Thought Photography” once established as a scientific fact, we shall have, perhaps, an explanation of genuine spirit photographs, if such there be. – Hours With the Ghosts; Or XIX Century Witchcraft by Henry R. Evans Mercury-limned lavender, palo santo, and ambrette seed. First impressions from a bottle that landed this morning: I know some people associate lavender with sleep scents, old lady smells and/or medicine, and kudos for all of those things, but thought photography is a blend that shows her potential as a sophisticated note in an elegant perfume. Beautiful strong musky lavender, reminding me of bpal's 18 June 1860. Not getting much Palo Santo at this time. Big throw and great longevity.
  2. zankoku_zen

    Sixth Lash

    Red leather, chocolate, and black pepper. I get mainly red leather with whiffs of chocolate and black pepper. If you're into leather blends, give this a whirl. Medium throw and wear length.
  3. Lunasariel

    The Musical Seances

    The second series commenced at 15, Southhampton Row, on Wednesday evening. Into the present course, the medium, Mr. Shepherd will introduce some of the more marked peculiarities of his singular performance. He sings at each concert in the soprano voice. A marked peculiarity: tonka bean and red sandalwood with orris, lemon peel, and leather. In the imp: A very light, almost powdery scent. I'm getting mainly the orris, with just a touch of leather and vague sweetness - maybe the tonka? There's a hint of a zing at the tail end, which I'm guessing is the lemon peel, although it's not identifiable as so at this stage. Wet: The orris is still dominant, although now the leather runs a close second. No zing, lemon-y or otherwise, though. No tonka or sandalwood that I can detect, alas. Dry: Tonka and sandalwood arrive to save the day! Now the orris/leather (mainly orris at this point, tbh) combo is elegant and subtle, not overwhelmingly powdery. This now smells like the dusting powder an elegant Victorian or Edwardian lady would use. Still no lemon peel that I can pick up, but perhaps that will improve with age.
  4. LiberAmoris

    Dumb Cake

    This is the scent of an awkward encounter with a Yule-evoked doppelgänger mate: spectral cologne, blurry herbs, fireplace ash, and a dusting of crumbs. Dorian Dopplegänger! Dumb Cake smells like Dorian on the other side of the looking glass. The spectral cologne note is pretty great—like a luminous Dorian. The blurry herbs and dusting of crumbs are very faint...there's just an edge of something foody here, like white cake and the barest hint of perhaps rosemary? The ash is also spectral—pure grey-white, rather than gritty, sooty black. It's fantastic, and I will enjoy every drop (and endeavor to get some on my husband, because I think this would be amazing on him).
  5. Heavenlyrabbit

    Nes Gadol Haya Sham

    NES GADOL HAYA SHAM But not long after the king sent a certain old man of Antioch, to compel the Jews to depart from the laws of their fathers and of God: And to defile the temple that was in Jerusalem, and to call it the temple of Jupiter Olympius: and that in Gazarim of Jupiter Hospitalis, according as they were that inhabited the place. And very bad was this invasion of evils and grievous to all. For the temple was full of the riot and reveling of the Gentiles: and of men lying with lewd women. And women thrust themselves of their accord into the holy places, and brought in things that were not lawful. The altar also was filled with unlawful things, which were forbidden by the laws. And neither were the sabbaths kept, nor the solemn days of the fathers observed, neither did any man plainly profess himself to be a Jew. But they were led by bitter constraint on the king's birthday to the sacrifices: and when the feast of Bacchus was kept, they wore compelled to go about crowned with ivy in honour of Bacchus. And there went out a decree into the neighboring cities of the Gentiles, by the suggestion of the Ptolemeans, that they also should act in like manner against the Jews, to oblige them to sacrifice: And whosoever would not conform themselves to the ways of the Gentiles, should be put to death: then was misery to be seen. For two women were accused to have circumcised their children: whom, when they had openly led about through the city with the infants hanging at their breasts, they threw down headlong from the walls. And others that had met together in caves that were near, and were keeping the sabbath day privately, being discovered by Philip, were burnt with fire, because they made a conscience to help themselves with their hands, by reason of the religious observance of the day. - The Second Book of the Maccabees, 6:1-11 In order to consolidate his power in Jerusalem and Hellenize the area, the Greek king Antiochus IV Epiphanes outlawed Judaism and ordered the population to worship Zeus and the Hellenic pantheon. As this was anathema to the Jews, they refused, and Antiochus moved to enforce his religious decree by extreme force. Some origin tales say that the dreidel was used at this time as a method by which the Jewish people were able to continue to study the Talmud in secret under the guise of gambling. Now, in addition to being a light gambling game, the dreidel is also a reminder of the strength, devotion, and perseverance of the Jewish people and the mercy of God. One scent in four parts: Nun, the Snake: nuun, nothing. Naḥš, in modern Arabic, means bad luck. Represented by scents of loss and remembrance: opoponax and lemon verbena. Gimel, the Camel: the Ship of the Desert. Represented by scents of abundance, fortitude, and determination: patchouli, heliotrope, pomegranate, and almond. He, the Window: sometimes used to represent the Unutterable Name of God, this is the window in our souls through which God's light touches us. Represented by scents of clarity and piety: frankincense, myrtle, and hyssop. Shin, the Tooth: also stands for Shaddai, one of the names of God. The hand formed into shin acts as a priestly blessing. Represented by scents of strength, generosity, kindness, and benediction: carnation, myrrh, red poppy, and hibiscus. The essences of Nun, Gimel, He, and Shin are blended to become Nes Gadol Haya Sham. Prominent notes for me are the Heliotrope and Almond. This reminds me of an old favorite, Tzadikim Nistarim, and also a few of BPAL's earlier 13 blends. Probably because of the wide range of notes. Maybe even reminiscent of Cleopatra Testing Poisons. Complex and unconventional from a perfume standpoint.
  6. friendthegirl

    Midwinter's Eve

    A melancholy, deep scent, poignant and brimming with nostalgia. The perfume of sugared plums over a breeze of winter flowers. I haven't tried this on my skin yet, but it smells delicious out of the bottle. It smells like a candy or sweet that I of course can't think of the name right now.
  7. donkehpoo

    Blueberry Sufganiyot

    Blueberry-filled sufganiyot, blooping blue with jelly. GUYS. Guys. Not to sound (too) dramatic, but I've been DYING for a blueberry sufganiyot scent. I am beyond excited to get my hands on this and try it out. Wet: Very rich blueberries! Like a rich blueberry jelly or jam. There's a slight hint of a pastry note, but the blueberry jelly is pretty strong. Dry: I'm trying to think of a word that's better than "delicious" but I'm coming up short. This is an incredible, rich, blueberry jelly donut scent. While the blueberry jelly scent is still stronger than the pastry note, it's much more prevalent when the scent dries down. I had stupidly high expectations for this scent, and I'm not disappointed at all. I may need a backup bottle, which is rare for me. I've just been JAMMED. (... at Jamm Orthodontics.)
  8. zankoku_zen

    Sweet Strawberry Gingerbread

    A holiday creation of Lilith’s! Squished strawberries and gingerbread with a touch of French vanilla and mint. Sweet strawberry candy, whiff of vanilla and gingerbread. It's a ton ton ton of strawberry candy on me. For those of you that like candy blends, give this a whirl. Good throw and wear length.
  9. VioletChaos

    Gingerbread and Lavender Sugar

    [No additional description provided.] In The Bottle: This one is sweet, rich, slightly creamy and just a hair spicy upon first sniff. The lavender is definitely present, but not at the forefront. Wet On Skin: Lavender sugar is most of what's happening here, I can't say I'm really getting the gingerbread much, but this isn't the same as the lavender sugar I experience with TKO, let's say. I think the gingerbread is softening the lavender somehow, though it's not exactly foodie, though it IS slightly sugary. Dry Down: That has, in fact, become a daytime-wearable version of TKO. I get no gingerbread (the inverse of Gingerbread, Coffebean and Smoked Vanilla- so perplexing!) just a lovely, soft sugary lavender. Very comforting, this is a scent easily work during the day and I anticipate reaching for it to mix with some similarly comforting scents, like the 2017 re-release of Antique Lace. Lovely! ❤️
  10. Tal Shachar

    A Measurement of the Soul

    If then, man, in every act, leaves the impression, or daguerreotype of his mental being upon the scenes of his life and the subjects of his action, we are by this law furnished with a new clue to the history of our race; and I think it highly probable, that, by the application of this principle, the chasms of history may be supplied, and a glimpse may be obtained of unrecorded ages and nations, whose early history is lost in darkness. The ancient manuscripts, paintings, and other works of art, which still exist – the crucifixes, garments, armor, and other ancient relics, still preserved – are doubtless still instinct with the spirit that produced them, and capable of revealing to psychometric exploration, the living realities with which they were once connected. At present, these relics are barren of significance. Their hidden meaning lies waiting the future explorer, as the hieroglyphics of Egypt awaited the arrival of Champillion to interpret their significance. And why should not the world be filled with the monuments and unwritten records of its past history? It would seem, to the superficial thinker, that man was entirely limited to tradition and written records for his knowledge of the past; but physical science proves, that the world possesses, embodied in enduring monuments, the story of its progressive existence. The geologist finds, in the different strata of the earth, in its curiously mingled and irregular structure, and in the fossil remains which it conceals in its bosom, the history of its various changes of surface, and of the antediluvian races of animals which have long been extinct. The huge Saurian monsters, which he portrays from their fossil relics, rise before the eye as incredible chimeras. And over this fertile region, now occupied by prosperous States, he revives, by the magic power of science, the antediluvian seas and their strange inhabitants, unknown to man. The Past is entombed in the Present! The world is its own enduring monument; and that which is true of its physical, is likewise true of its mental career. The discoveries of Psychometry will enable us to explore the history of man, as those of geology enable us to explore the history of the earth. There are mental fossils for psychologists as well as mineral fossils for the geologists; and I believe that hereafter the psychologist and the geologist will go hand in hand — the one portraying the earth, its animals and its vegetation, while the other portrays the human beings who have roamed over its surface in the shadows, and the darkness of primeval barbarism! Aye, the mental telescope is now discovered which may pierce the depths of the past and bring us in full view of the grand and tragic passages of ancient history! I know that, to many of my readers, unaccustomed to these investigations, and unacquainted with the first experimental facts of this great science, these anticipations must seem a visionary hope – too grand, too romantic, too transcendently beautiful to be true. But observe, that all is based upon familiar experiments, and these results are but legitimate deductions from familiar facts. As surely as the expansive power of steam gives premonition of the ocean steamship, does the power of Psychometry give promise of all the glorious performance to which I have alluded. —Buchanan, 1842 A tactile scent, groaning under the weight of aeons: wild fig, cedarwood, venerable ti leaf, and white sage. In vitro: Woody figgy. I love wood and I love figs. Let's do this. Wet on skin: The cedar and sage predominate, with the fig adding juicy sweetness. The sage contributes a very clean feeling that could strike people as smelling like really nice shampoo (Tabella did the same), but I am cool with that (I have three bottles of Tabella). Delicious, multi-dimensional cedar. Dry: Sillage is very close to the skin. This actually reminds me quite a bit of a more chilled-out Tabella, less bright and sharp, just fig and cedar and sage hanging out together. There's nothing flashy about this, in fact, but it's still compelling and substantial. It's a classy, calm, and wise scent, like meditating in a forest. Definitely unisex; I wouldn't call it masculine, but nevertheless this would probably be lovely on a guy. The sage gets stronger on drydown and reminds me of one of my favourite places in the world, the Mojave desert in southwestern Utah. Love it.
  11. Heavenlyrabbit

    Maison En Pain d’Épices

    This is the scent of a freshly assembled gingerbread house, with swirls of multicolored icing, spice drop lights, meringue snow, pinwheel mint accents, chocolate roof tiles, candy wafer pavers, and jelly candy stained glass. We used a French translation for ‘gingerbread house’ as the name to make it sound fancier. French adds +40% Fancy! A jumble of scents reminiscent of that box of mixed Christmas cookies your grandmother used to make. For all the candy/sugar treats mentioned, this is shockingly not that sweet. I get chocolate , a HINT of gingerbread... and if I keep inhaling I eventually detect the barest whisper of mint and what I think is anise. My skin is notorious for burning off sweet scents so I'll be interested to see how this works on others. The dry down is a mix between Sugar Cookie, Gingerbread Poppet with a touch of Gelt and an indistinct Fruit note that shows up way in the background.
  12. zankoku_zen

    The Ghost of a Ghost’s Ghost

    Now, suppose this is to be accepted as the rational and scientific explanation of all the phenomena of this order which have been observed since the human race began to conserve records of its own experience. To what conclusion should we be logically forced? The believe in the objective reality of apparitions under such conditions would have to make way for a new conception, but the point which is really at issue between the materialist and the spiritualist would remain untouched. That issue relates to the permanence of the human personality after death. The spiritualist will point you to his own experiences as affording evidence of the permanence of personality. The materialist is certain that all the experiences of which the spiritualist is conscious result from the operation of natural law. But the eternal question of the soul – “Am I an immortal thing?” – is not to be decided either by the proof of the existence of whole armies of ghosts, or by the rational explanation of all apparitional phenomena whatsoever. The spiritualist falls into an easy error in the supposition that a continuance of personality on a new plane implies a permanence of continuity. What guarantee has a ghost of being immortal? Me not he also perish out of his appointed sphere? And why might we not fancy a whole procession of lives in phantom state – each more ghostly, more attenuated than its forerunner – the ghost of a man, the ghost of a man’s ghost, the ghost of a “ghost’s” ghost, until the thin thing fades into nonentity and slips back into the universal element? The materialist falls into an error parallel with that of the spiritualist when he conceives that a rational explanation of all ghostly phenomena has disposed of a belief in immortality. The concept is as independent of evidence, and as unsupportable by evidence as it is indestructible by evidence. We can neither prove nor disprove, but the balance of reason is still upon the side of the believer and it favours strongly the hope of a continued existence and a continued growth. We can but argue from things known. In all nature we find the clearest evidence of law of progress. – the Occult Review, January 1905 Falling into nonentity and slipping back into the universal element: pallid oakmoss and earthy patchouli tumbling into a void of misty lavender, cistus, and white agarwood. Misty lavender, oakmoss, and a whiff of patchouli. Misty is right! This is wispy, ghostly lavender. Medium throw and wear length.
  13. All sweetness and warmth. Yep—this one does what it says on the tin. Creamy, rich coffee with a hint of hazelnut (not too hazelnutty, but just enough to give a hint of rich nuttiness), cinnamon sugar, and a bit of burnt cookie. Snag this one if you love foodie coffee blends.
  14. sarada

    Jacob's Ladder

    JACOB'S LADDER And Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran. And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep. And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And, behold, the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of. And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not. And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven. The meeting of Heaven and Earth: golden amber, galbanum, benzoin, ambrette, rockrose, costus and tonka. I was expecting something like Aureus for this blend, but it is quite a different take on amber actually -- fairly light and perfume-like in the bottle, a glorious amber color when I apply it, and an almost frosting-like sweetness when it first goes on. I'm not sure what the individual notes smell like other than amber, but I know that I like most blends that contain these ingredients....resiny, warm, slightly sweet. It is lightly sweet without being cloying or honeyed, and it is amber without being powdery (that's not generally a problem that I have with amber anyway, but I know some people do). I've only had this on for the morning but it has stayed strong so far and not morphed too much. The gentle, light golden sweetness is really what impresses me. I think this one will be a hit because it is a nice compromise between the people like me who are crazy for resins, and the people who like their scents a little sweeter. There's just a tiny floral hint that I can't quite place. Perhaps that's from rockrose? Oh yes. I think we might have an amber scent for almost everyone here! Think Haunted without the musk, Aureus without the gritty earth or patchouli notes, but then add a veil of pale, luminous sweetness. It's a little "perfumey" the bottle (and I really wish I could come up with a better adjective than that) but if your skin likes amber then this should do marvellous things when you put it on.
  15. hammy

    Who Would Not Tremble Too?

    The new discovery of “Table Moving,” by means of an unseen power from the human hand, has only been introduced into England within the last few weeks; but it would be difficult to dingle out any scientific subject which has with such rapidity, taken so extensive a hold of the popular mind. If we travel by railway carriage, steamboat, or omnibus, this is the universal topic of conversation. From the aristocratic saloons of Belgravia to the “Parlours” of Whitechapel – the Green Park to the Cat and Mutton Fields, “table moving” is all the rage. From the Royal Institution, where the secretary pokes his head through a forest of electrical apparatus, to inform the audience that the facts are established, down to the humblest Mechanics’ Institute, all are full of it, and the tables, to quote the words of the old song – “are all a moving, move, move, moving,” – Every evening party must of course have its experiments; accordingly, gentlemen come provided with very elegant chapeaux for the occasion, and many an innocent flirtation occurs consequent on the proper arrangement of the little fingers of some of the fair operators. As “sweet eighteen,” with her blue eyes and golden locks, gracefully links her little finger with Charles’s, in a retired corner, what wonder if the hat should tremble? And Charles, being of course fond of poetry (his very name is a guarantee for that), cannot resist softly breathing into Lucy’s ear, that exquisite line from Waller, on his fair one’s harp – “Touched by that hand – who would not tremble too?” And after a little more conversation of a strictly scientific character, they feel quite satisfied with the success of the experiment. Mamma, who has been watching the progress of the magnetic influence at a distance, “has no patience with such nonsense, and wonders young men and young women cannot find something better to do.” She forgets that there was a magnetic influence at work about twenty years since, and what little trifles served as conductors then. – Table Moving, its causes and phenomena: with directions how to experiment A spirit-touched courtship: sweet orange blossom, white honey, jasmine tea, white sandalwood, green apple, and lily of the valley. In the bottle - Very buoyant, happy greenery. Wet - Warm. I get lots of honey. Sweet green springtime scent. Drydown - I'm smelling honey, but thinking nectar. It actually reminds me of the Nectar hair gloss, and I'm picturing a miniature butterfly garden. Tickles my nose a bit. I'd have to re-sniff my decant, but my mind is drawing parallels between this and Venus Verticordia, which I also liked. This has more going on, though. Less grass, more tea. It gets less heavy as it wears. By the end of the day, this was a spectral memory of spring. Verdict - Just lovely. I can't see anyone being offended by this. Might even be a good work scent, since it doesn't have much throw.
  16. zankoku_zen

    Blackcurrant Glogg

    A sweet, dark ember of winter pleasure: port wine, brandy, and bourbon simmered with white sugar, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, orange peel, and wild blackcurrant. Black currant, spices, clove and port wine. Boozy black currant! If that's what you're looking for, this is a nice warm blend. Good throw and wear length.
  17. zankoku_zen

    Christmas Pudding Redux

    Black Phoenix’s 2018 blob of Christmas Pudding is loosely based on a medieval recipe, and is crafted, as tradition dictates, from thirteen ingredients (representing Christ and his apostles, natch). Thick with treacle, smoky with suet (suet accord, sillies – there’s no mutton fat in this perfume!), and sweet with stirred custard. Oh damn, did I not review this one? According to my notes this one was a cake-pudding (definitely get that custard thing going on!), with molasses (fine, it's treacle) and spice. It was what I would consider a Christmas Pudding/Cake smell. Good throw and wear length.
  18. zankoku_zen

    Frumenty

    ‘To make frumente. Tak clene whete & braye yt wel in a morter tyl the holes gon of; seethe it til it breste in water. Nym it up & lat it cole. Tak good broth & swete mylk of kyn or of almand & tempere it therwith. Nym yelkes of eyren rawe & saffroun & cast therto; salt it: lat it naught boyle after the etren ben cast therinne. Messe it forth.’ In parts of rural England, the last sheaf of grain from autumn’s harvest were added to a sweet porridge that was eaten on Christmas morning to ensure good health and strength during the dark of the year. Cracked wheat cooked in cream and ale with currants, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Frumenty to me smells like cinnamon, nutmeg and popcorn. I think its the effect of the cracked wheat cooked which smells like a cooked grain, which means to me... popcorn. Spiced porridge if you like. Medium throw and wear length.
  19. patina

    Perchta 2018

    Mod Note: There is a review topic for Perchta release years 2008 and 2017 located here. Per our Review sub-forum topic policy, a new review topic has been created for the 2018 release due to an inexact match with previous years' scent description. Perchta, the Shining One, is the Lady of the Beasts, an incarnation of the goddess Holda. She, too, leads the Wild Hunt, and is the protectress of wild animals, and appears to mortals as either a white-clad, white-skinned, white-haired beauty, or as a brutish, bestial hag. She is called Berhte Mit Dem Fuoze; one of her feet is shaped like a beast’s, which gives away her superhuman nature no matter how she is disguised. She is also called Perchta the Belly-Slitter, for, at Yuletide, she castigates the wicked, slovenly, and idle, and rewards those that are generous, good-natured, and kind. The Belly-Slitter enforced community taboos, punishing those that spun during holy days and those who failed to partake in sacred feasts, thus jeopardizing the next year’s harvest. Her punishments can be a bit over-the-top, though: they include disemboweling the transgressor and filling the empty cavity with refuse. Her scent is a blend of wild musk, snow, and alpine flora: Nigritella lithopolitanica, balsam fir, aconite, crocus, touch-me-not, edelweiss, iced sugar crystals, Iris variegate, and violet. This is lovely. It's not the "coldest" snow or ice blend I've ever tried. It's white, powdery, but complex enough to be interesting. It's sweet but not tooth-achingly so. The only notes I can pick out for certain are violet and the barest hint of fir. This is very clean and I'm considering a bottle
  20. boomtownrat

    Gingerbread and More Ginger

    [No additional description provided.] This has only been off the mail truck for about two hours, because I couldn't wait any longer. In the bottle it's pure, luscious gingerbread. When it's freshly applied, I smell like my favorite kind of gingersnap: thin and a little crispy, like a pepparkakor from Sweden. There's even a little bit of a lemony note, but that subsides as it dries. It ends up as a perfect gingerbread that I want to eat.
  21. [No additional description provided.] In The Bottle: Mostly gingerbread, with a little of that extra-lemony aspect that fresh ginger frequently has. Wet On Skin: The gingerbread is, like, REAL gingerbread. I'm getting the lemon, the cake, the spice, the sharpness. It's really different than my previous experiences of the gingerbread single note (like, say, in Gingerbread Snake Oil). I'm liking it- but I also hope that the coffee and vanilla come out to play soon! Dry Down: Astoundingly, I am getting ZERO coffee from this. Which is odd, because coffee notes usually sit well on my skin -they don't amp, but they are *very* present. The vanilla has finally made an appearance, but I'm not getting the smoked aspect, either- this is more like gingerbread with a little dollop of vanilla cream plooped right on top. It's delicious, and I'm betting will get better with age, but it's not the scent that I thought it was going to be. If you're hoping for a coffee-heavy scent, check out some of the other 2018 Yule offerings, cause you might be sad about that with this one.
  22. doomsday_disco

    Frostbitten Dorian

    [No additional description provided. Scent description for Dorian is here.] In the bottle: Slightly chilled Dorian. The musk and fougere of Dorian mingled with the chilly sweetness of Snow White. Wet: On my skin, I'm getting powdery snow and Dorian. The snow note is not ozone-y or extremely minty, nor is it citrus-y or of the slushy variety. Although I do get a sufficient amount of the cold component and Dorian, the frostbite note is more prominent on me. As it begins to dry down, the chilly part of this particular snow note ends up increasing in strength. Dry: It's a lot sweeter now, thanks to the sweetness from the snow note and the sugared vanilla tea from the Dorian (which always ends up being a dominant note once dry on me). I applied Go to Sleep, Darlings on my upper arm for reference (which features the snow note from Snow White without the floral notes). At first, Frostbitten Dorian isn't as sweet, but the scent becomes sweeter over time. It is a blustery day in the hundred acre desert, and as I was walking around outside, I kept getting hit with the same magical chilly sweetness that I get from Snow White. Verdict: Hoard-worthy.
  23. The piniest pine that ever pined, pining you right in the face. This is indeed a very piney and very cheerful pine. I think it’s the bit of lemon that lifts this one up and lends the cheerful aura. This is a very realistic, bright pine scent.
  24. PurringPulsar

    Practical Occultism

    Practical Occultism consists, first, of a perfect mastery of the individual’s own spirit. No advance whatever can be made in acquiring power over other spirits, such as controlling the lower or supplicating the higher, until the spirit within has acquired such perfect mastery of itself, that it can never be moved to anger or emotion—realizes no pleasure, cares for no pain; experiences no mortification at insult, loss, or disappointment—in a word, subdues every emotion that stirs common men’s minds. To arrive at this state, severe and painful as well as long continued discipline is necessary. Having acquired this perfect equilibrium, the next step is power. The individual must be able to wake when he pleases and sleep when he pleases; go in spirit during bodily sleep where he will, and visit—as well as remember when awake—distant scenes. He must be enabled by practice, to telegraph, mentally, with his fellow associates, and present himself, spiritually, in their midst. He must, by practice, acquire psychological control over the minds of any persons—not his associates—beneath his own calibre of mind. He must be able to still a crying infant, subdue fierce animals or angry men, and by will, transfer his thought without speech or outward sign to any person of a mental calibre below himself; he must be enabled to summon to his presence elementary spirits, and if he desires to do so (knowing the penalties attached), to make them serve him in the special departments of Nature to which they belong. He must, by virtue of complete subjugation of his earthly nature, be able to invoke Planetary and even Solar Spirits, and commune with them to a certain degree. To attain these degrees of power the processes are so difficult that a thorough practical occultist can scarcely become one and yet continue his relations with his fellow-men. He must continue, from the first to the last degree, a long series of exercises, each one of which must be perfected before another is undertaken. A practical occultist may be of either sex, but must observe as the first law inviolable chastity—and that with a view of conserving all the virile powers of the organism. No aged person, especially one who has not lived the life of strict chastity, can acquire the full sum of the powers above named. It is better to commence practice in early youth, for after the meridian of life, when the processes of waste prevail over repair, few of the powers above described can be attained; the full sum never. Strict abstinence from animal food and all stimulants is necessary. Frequent ablutions and long periods of silent contemplation are essential. Codes of exercises for the attainment of these powers can be prescribed, but few, if any, of the self-indulgent livers of modern times can perform their routine. The arts necessary for study to the practical occultist are, in addition to those prescribed in speculative occultism, a knowledge of the qualities of drugs, vapors, minerals, electricity, perfumes, fumigations, and all kinds of anæsthetics. And now, having given in brief as much as is consistent with my position—as the former associate of a secret society—I have simply to add, that, whilst there are, as in Masonry, certain preliminary degrees to pass through, there are numerous others to which a thoroughly well organized and faithful association might advance. In each degree there are some valuable elements of practical occultism demanded, whilst the teachings conveyed are essential preliminaries. In a word, speculative occultism must precede practical occultism; the former is love and wisdom, the latter, simply power. A Victorian occultist’s incense, invoking the Four Archangels: precious wildcrafted Indian frankincense with myrrh, cassia, sandarac, palmarosa, white sage, red sandalwood, elemi, and drops of star anise bound with grains of kyphi. In the bottle: kyphi! A fruity, wine-y kyphi scent with lots of cassia and a bit of anise. On skin: glorious spicy kyphi. This smells less like Cairo’s lemongrassy-rosy take on kyphi, not as wine-y or ashen as Philosopher in Meditation, it’s more like the kyphi note from the Oak and Kyphi atmosphere spray, or the Chthonic Kyphi incense from TAL. It’s spicy, resinous and complex. Cinnamon/cassia is the most obvious note, but it’s also full of myrrh, frankincense, red wine and honeyed raisins, there’s also a hint of fuzzy sage to it as well. The anise isn’t there any more. I absolutely love the resinous spicy scent this has. It reminds me a bit of Haloa but without the foody notes. It also reminds me of Egg Moon’s cinnamon frankincense. After a while: it doesn’t change too much but I think the honey and wine aspects of the kyphi become more obvious. The resins deepen further, the cassia becomes warmer. The myrrh is wonderful in here, it reminds me of the myrrh in Priala, especially with the cinnamon, but not as smoky. Something about it reminds me of a couple of last year’s phoenix scents. Verdict: probably the best kyphi scent by BPAL so far. If you are a kyphi lover, you must get this. It’s brimming with spice and resin and honeyed wine, all in balance. Yule is a perfect time for this scent to be on sale, there’s something almost festive to it because of the combination of red wine and cinnamon, frankincense and myrrh, at times it reminds me of mulled wine in a church during a Christmas service, but it’s got that undertone of mystery and darkness hinting at more ancient, occult origins for this particular incense blend. The great thing is that it’s cinnamony but doesn’t burn my skin. I’m glad I took a chance on this as it’s perfect, I think it will age amazingly. Is it a keeper? for sure. Maybe a backup? If you like this, try: Egg Moon, Pliny’s Phoenix, Tacitus’s Phoenix, Priala the Human Phoenix, Oak Leaves and Kyphi atmosphere spray, Saturnian Phoenix, Philosopher in Meditation, Haloa, Cairo, Saint Foutin de Varailles, Valentine of Rome
  25. starbrow

    Fifth Lash

    Red musk, black amber, red leather, teakwood, smoked lavender, and plum. This is one sexy blend. For fans of red musk, this one is different enough to include in the collection. The warm leather and teak gives it almost a unisex quality - in fact, I'll be trying this one on a boy soon - along the lines of Hellfire or Dee, with the faint whiffs of smoky lavender and red musk swirling into the mix, and that beautiful plum note from the lab giving it all a rich purply note. But it's the leather that is really warming this one up for me and sinking into my skin. It's incredibly sexy as it settles, losing throw but gaining that really nice second-skin quality. For fun, I put it up against Mme. Moriarty, with whom it shares the red musk and plum. They are quite different, but absolutely deserve to share shelf space in the same collection. Fans of A Savage Veil or Shadow in the Elevator (kissing cousins, minus the leather note) should definitely check this one out. I hadn't tried a red musk/leather scent before and Fifth Lash works SO well. I wish its throw lasted longer but really that is my only complaint. It's gorgeous.
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