Welcome to Bob Freeman’s occultdetective.com

Posted in Alba Gu Brath, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice on April 18, 2016 by Occult Detective

01 sigil magickBob Freeman is an artist, game designer, paranormal adventurer, and author of two book series — The Cairnwood Manor series ( Shadows Over Somerset  & Keepers of the Dead) and Tales of the Liber Monstrorum (First Born & Descendant).

A lifelong student of mythology, folklore, magic, and religion, Freeman has written numerous short stories, articles, and reviews for various online and print publications and is a respected lecturer on the occult and paranormal phenomena.

He lives in rural Indiana with his wife Kim and son Connor.

In addition to occultdetective.com, Mr. Freeman can be found online on twitter and facebook.

 

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Barbarism

Posted in Magick by Trial & Error on December 9, 2019 by Occult Detective

“Barbarianism is the natural state of mankind.
Civilization is unnatural. It is the whim of circumstance.
And barbarianism must ultimately triumph”
― Robert E. Howard

DisembobiedI’ve been thinking a lot about ‘civilization’ lately, the pros and cons of society writ large. I have, for the vast majority of my more than fifty years on this rock, lived in the country, or at the very least, country adjacent.

I am no fan of cities. and if I’m being perfectly honest, I can barely tolerate small towns. I am, however, a very social person. I like people. I like intellectual discourse. I enjoy the camaraderie of friends and colleagues. I thrive on the social interactions found in games and sport and ritual.

The thing is, a society breaks down the minute the collective grows too large, when it grows beyond the hunter/gather social construct. We grow and prosper best when we are sheltered in a tribal modality, when the collective is small and sustainable.

We can come together with our neighbors, to feast and celebrate, to test our physical and intellectual mettle, to share ideas, but in the end, we must return to our tribal roots.

That’s where the real magic flourishes, in the tight knit communities, tied by blood and ancestry. Never do I feel more at ease than when I am out in the wilderness, breathing the country air, deep in a secluded wood. That is when I feel connected to the earth, when I feel the magic coursing beneath my feet and up into my body.

No, these cities, with their corrupt and twisted towers, their wasteland of concrete and steel, are not meant for us. And all the voices I hear cry out on social media, why, they’re all city-folk, wanting their cake to devour and choke on. They are a part of the machine, and it’s a machine I am growing more than weary of.

Everyone speaks of tribalism as if it’s a dirty word, especially in magic circles. It pains me to see them so proven wrong. They can’t see the forest for all the trees.

“The more I see of what you call civilization,
the more highly I think of what you call savagery!”
― Robert E. Howard

 

Myth-conceptions

Posted in Magick by Trial & Error on December 6, 2019 by Occult Detective

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I read a post today by John Beckett over on Patheos. It was titled “An Authentic Foundation for Modern Paganism”, which you can read for yourself here.

I don’t necessarily disagree with anything Mr. Beckett said, but as a storyteller, I must admit, I enjoy a good yarn, especially when its connected to magic.

Does it truly matter whether or not Gerald Gardner was initiated by Old Dorothy Clutterbuck, or Alex Sanders by Mary Bibby? Would we better off knowing the truth of the events in Cairo during Crowley’s reception of the Book of the Law? What of various proclamations regarding Secret Chiefs or divine visitations? For the Christians in the room, what of Paul’s conversion on the road to Damascus?

The Eddas and Sagas are filled with livid boasts, proclaiming larger than life exploits, all intent on building a vibrant mythology that passes from tongue to tongue, becoming a part of the very fabric that makes up the celestial tapestry of our mundane human existence.

I’m not calling for lies to be the order of the day. We get enough of that from the news media and politicians (and their social media cohorts and sycophants). But don’t be so quick to snuff out the magic. A poetic origin story or fanciful recounting of a ritual might be stretching things a bit, but when one paints a picture, do we favor dull and neutral, or do we look to the bold and vivacious?

Let magic breathe a little. By the gods, let magic be magic.

My thoughts on Unholy Alliance: A History of Nazi Involvement with the Occult (New and Expanded Edition)

Posted in Magick by Trial & Error on December 5, 2019 by Occult Detective

ualevendaIn June of 1979, Peter Levenda flew to Chile―then under martial law―to investigate claims that a mysterious colony and torture center in the Andes Mountains held a key to the relationship between Nazi ideology and its post-war survival on the one hand, and occult ideas and practices on the other. He was detained there briefly and released with a warning: “You are not welcome in this country.” The people who warned him were not Chileans but Germans, not government officials but agents of the assassination network Operation Condor. They were also Nazis, providing a sanctuary for men like Josef Mengele, Hans-Ulrich Rudel, and Otto Skorzeny. In other words: ODESSA.

Published in 1995, Unholy Alliance was the first book in English on the subject of Nazi occultism to be based on the captured Nazi archives themselves, as well as on the author’s personal investigations and interviews, often conducted under dangerous conditions. The book attracted the attention of historians and journalists the world over and has been translated into six languages. A later edition boasts the famous foreword by Norman Mailer.

How did occultism come to play such an important role in the development of Nazi political ideology? What influence did such German and Austrian occult leaders as Lanz von Liebenfels and Guido von List have over the fledgling Nazi party? What was the Thule Gesellschaft, and who was its creator, Baron von Sebottendorf? Did the Nazi high command really believe in occultism? In astrology? In magic and reincarnation?

This is a new and expanded edition of the original text, with much additional information on the rise of extremist groups in Europe, Latin America, Asia, and the United States and the esoteric beliefs that are at their foundations. It is the first book in a trilogy that includes Ratline and The Hitler Legacy. This is where it all began.

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I remember picking this book up in the mid-90s shortly after it was released. I was working at Waldenbooks at the time, seasonal help at Christmas. I’d been tasked with opening boxes in the back storeroom and as soon as I laid eyes on the Avon cover it went straight to the stock shelves where employees kept the stack of things they wanted to buy with their company discount. I took it home with me after my shift and read it straight through the night.

So, here we are, nearly twenty five years later, and I’ve just read the “New and Expanded Edition”. Firstly, Ibis Press continues to impress with their production and design skills. They put together beautiful books and Unholy Alliance is no exception.

As for the book itself, I’m not sure any of the added material is overly warranted, but it doesn’t detract from the original text. It is still a fascinating deep-dive into occult conspiracies and the Reich’s maddening obsessions.

I’ve always been rather fond of Levenda’s writing. For one, he’s a smart guy and one helluva researcher, and it often seems like there’s so much information bouncing around inside his head he has a hard time staying focused. It reminds me of nearly every occult study group I’ve belonged to. There’s always that one guy, too smart for his own good, talking a mile a minute, trying to get all of his thoughts out there.

You’re also never really sure when he’s pulling your leg a bit.

I used to recommend Unholy Alliance unconditionally and I am more than happy to do so again. It’s a subject entirely engrossing and Levenda leaves no stone unturned. I’ve read his complete trilogy now and they are all compelling reads that I endorse fully.

Unholy Alliance: A History of Nazi Involvement with the Occult (New and Expanded Edition) by Peter Levenda is available wherever books are sold. Here’s the link to the evil empire wherein it can be purchased with grace and ease, and possibly delivered from the sky by drones.

Bob Freeman’s “Descendant Blog Tour” Schedule

Posted in Horror, Magick by Trial & Error, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice with tags , on November 14, 2019 by Occult Detective

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On Monday, November 18, I’ll be a guest of Dark Bites where I’ll be discussing the “scariest investigations” I’ve been involved in during my more than thirty-five years as a paranormal investigator.

I’ll be sharing my thoughts on the benefits of studying ancient myth on Tuesday, November 19 when I stop by Armed with a Book.

For Sheila’s Guests & Review, I’ll be discussing my writing process. Watch for it on Wednesday, November 20.

Thursday, November 21 will find me over at Jazzy Book reviews where I’ll share which movie or tv universe I’d like to find myself in.

On Friday, November 22, I’ll be interviewed for The Book Junkie Reads.

I’ve been offered an open forum on Saturday, November 23 at Sapphyria’s Books. Seeing as how it will be the 130th Anniversary of the first commercial jukebox (11/23/1889 at the Palais Royale Saloon in San Francisco) I thought I might blog about music and its connection to my writing (and paranormal adventuring).

Seventh Star Press has asked me to discuss how much reality I allowed to seep into my writing (Descendant, in particular). Look for it on Sunday, November 24.

The Descendant Blog Tour comes to a close on Monday, November 25 with a visit to I Smell Sheep. Now that’s a blog any true Scotsman can get behind, if you know what I mean. They’ve asked me to list my Top 10 Paranormal Investigations. I’ll do so, but maybe with a twist…

In addition, there will be a number of reviewers posting their thoughts on Descendant throughout the week. I’ll post links to those reviews, and to each of tour stops as they become available.

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A bit of art for your Tuesday afternoon

Posted in Occult Detectives on November 12, 2019 by Occult Detective

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Just a quick bit of art I was messing around with — Landon Connors, as it were.

Watch this space tomorrow for an announcement concerning next week’s blog tour.

Paint it Black: An Occult Detective RPG Casefile / Chapter Two

Posted in Archive on November 11, 2019 by Occult Detective

Connor wrote the recap for our last playtest session.

Bordermen Games

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Chapter Two: The Demon’s in the Details

“Who dares disturb my slumber?” The creature asked as it rose from the sarcophagus. Expecting an undead abomination, painter Arthur Godson and reporter John Winslow were surprised to see a young woman standing before them.

The woman had runes tattooed upon her face, and she radiated an aura that seemed to unsettle the investigators. Clearly, she was trying to control with some kind of magic, but Arthur and John were beyond such tricks.

Understanding this, the woman asked if she could help them, having incredible skills at finding things. The two informed her that they were looking for a woman named Maddie Blake, whom they believed had something to do with a terrible murder (they kept it to themselves that the victim was the Archangel Cassiel).

The woman said that she knew nothing about Maddie Blake, but claimed that she could help them…

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Now Available from Seventh Star Press & author Bob Freeman — First Born: The Audiobook, narrated by CJ Gold

Posted in Horror, Occult Detectives, Writing in Theory & Practice with tags , , , on November 8, 2019 by Occult Detective

Cover 01 First BornI am excited to announce the release of First Born: Tales of the Liber Monstrorum in audiobook format, available now on Amazon.com.

Narrated by the amazingly gifted CJ Gold, First Born collects more than a dozen esoteric thrillers — from the arcane sorceries of “The Wickedest Man in the World” to the supernatural exploits of Occult Detective Landon Connors and the harrowing investigations of Agents Wolfe and Crowe, this collection of macabre tales of the black arts treads the dangerous landscape between this world and that populated by angels and demons, gods and devils, ghosts and spirits, and the legendary creatures of our darkest imaginings.

First Born is the beginning of the journey into the Liber Monstrorum, the Chronicles of those Occult Detectives who are the last line of defense against those preternatural forces that threaten to destroy a world that refuses to believe that such things exist…

First Born is also available in Trade Paperback and ebook formats.

Also available in Trade Paperback and ebook formats is Descendant: A Novel of the Liber Monstrorum in a tale that directly follows the events played out in First Born.

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