If you’ve seen my last YouTube video, you know that I’ve been spending a frustrating few months trying to find good books to help me make angels a bigger part of my spiritual practice. In this quest, I was hoping to find books that weren’t explicitly Christian — which was harder than you’d think. And even more difficult was finding non-Christian books about angels that were actually helpful. But, after several months of digging, I’ve finally found a few books that were actually worth the read — plus a few primary sources for those who are ready to go deeper.
The Kabbalah & Magic of Angels by Migene González-Wippler
“Back of the Book” Description: “Using the powerful insights of the Kabbalah, we can bridge the unfathomable distances between our material world and the divine realms where angels dwell. In The Kabbalah & Magic of Angels, celebrated author Migene González-Wippler presents an in-depth look at angels in the context of the Kabbalah, the comprehensive system underlying Western religion and spirituality. Providing a complete introduction to Kabbalistic concepts, Migene shows how to apply them to our relationships with numerous angels. Included are ways to contact angels and work with them, from simple spells and magical rituals to full Kabbalistic evocations. You’ll discover how to see angels operating in your life and how to visualize them. Numerous angels are named and fully described so readers will know exactly which angel to work with for any purpose or desire. Ideal for students of Kabbalah and lovers of angels.”
My Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
- I did really like that this book was not Christian-centric. It never felt “preachy” or like I was reading a sermon.
- Migene González-Wippler has a P.h.D. in astrophysics, and she incorporates her knowledge of science, especially theoretically physics, into her book. It was so interesting to see her relate the creation myth in Genesis to the Big Bang and draw links between different archangels and the laws of physics.
- This is book has some great info on Kabbalah. Even if you are completely new to Kabbalah, the author explains the basic concepts in a way that is easy to understand.
- I would almost say that this book is more Kabbalah than angels. I personally didn’t mind this, since I find Kabbalah fascinating, but other readers may find it annoying.
- This book also has some good general information about the angels. It goes into planetary associations for each archangel and why that particular angel is associated with that particular planet, plus crystal, herb, and incense correspondences for each archangel. I still use this book as a reference when I’m planning rituals involving a certain angel.
- My biggest issue with this book is how dogmatic it is. The author is very adamant that there is a “right way” to work with angels — each ritual must be performed in a certain way, with a long list of tools and components that must be included. I did the math, and it would require several hundred dollars in supplies to recreate just one of the rituals in this book. Needless to say, this contradicts the message that angelic help is available to everyone, and it makes magick seem inaccessible to people who can’t afford fancy tools or dozens of crystals.
- In fact, this book turned me off to the topic of angels for quite a while precisely because of the elaborate, expensive rituals. I was so disappointed that I didn’t pick up another book on the topic for literal months.
Doreen Virtue’s Entire Bibliography
Note: I have not read Doreen Virtue’s entire bibliography, but from what I have read, it seems like most of her books are very similar and have a lot of the same information. As of the time I am writing this post, I have finished her books Angels 101 and Archangels 101 and have read most of Archangels and Ascended Masters.
“Back of the Book” Description: “International best-selling author Doreen Virtue is a doctor of psychology and lifelong clairvoyant who has written extensively about angels, psychic development, and mind-body-spirit topics.” (Description from The Essential Doreen Virtue Collection.) Doreen Virtue is one of the most well known “angelologists” in New Age spiritual circles, with countless books, seminars, and oracle card decks released over the years.
- Full disclosure for those who weren’t aware: Ms. Virtue recently converted to a fundamentalist branch of Christianity, and many of her fans are upset with how she has handled this transition. After her conversion, she publicly renounced her old “New Age” beliefs and literally asked her fans to throw away the books and cards they’d purchased from her — some sources even say that she made comments implying that she believes New Age spirituality to be demonic or evil in nature. For this reason, a lot of people avoid her work, which is fair — but she was such a huge authority on the topic for such a long time that it’s pretty much impossible not to run into her name if you’re working with angels in a New Age context.
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
- These are definitely the most “Christian-centric” books on the list. Although Virtue claims (at least in the books I read) that angelic assistance is available to anyone who asks for it, regardless of their faith, it’s clear that she is writing from a perspective heavily influenced by Christianity. I would have liked to have seen more consideration given to Jewish and Muslim traditions and mythology.
- In fact, these books kind of reminded me of Sunday school lessons from back when I was a kid. They have that same kind of overwhelming PG-ness and relentless positivity — even going so far as to cut out unpleasant details.
- There are some cases where I felt like Virtue was being intentionally misleading just to avoid talking about the “dark” aspects of certain archangels, like the section about Uriel I read aloud in my video.
- The books themselves are all fairly short and kind of vague. They’re good introductions and handy reference guides, but none of them go very in-depth or contain more than a few pages devoted to any given subtopic.
- The biggest pro of these books is that most of them are very popular, so it should be easy to find a used copy on the cheap
or a free pdf onlineif you’re a total newbie to the topic of angels and are just looking for an introduction.
Azrael Loves Chocolate, Michael’s a Jock by Chantel Lysette
“Back of the Book” Description: “Meet the gang. Michael loves to pull pranks, Sandalphon digs jazz, and Azrael has a sweet tooth. Chantel Lysette hangs with a pretty colorful crowd: the Archangels. Irreverent and uplifting, bursting with humor and sass, this book redefines the human-angel relationship. Chantel celebrates the unique personalities of the heavenly hosts, and promises that if you approach them as close friends instead of faceless beings, you’ll forge a sincere bond that goes far deeper than ritual formalities.”
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars!
- When I say that this book changed my life and the way I think about angels, I’m not exaggerating. Chantel Lysette does a wonderful job of balancing her wonder and awe for the heavenly host with a down-to-earth approach that makes the archangels seem way more approachable. She really drives home that the angels are here for us as friends and mentors. They want to help us and see us succeed, no matter where we’re coming from.
- This book is so fun to read — I literally brought it on vacation with me and finished it during my trip, because that’s how drawn in I was.
- There’s a ton of information packed into this little book, but it never feels heavy or hard to read. I laughed out loud at multiple points while reading, and the humor really does help to keep things light.
- Chantel Lysette is a self-proclaimed Christian, but this book never feels Christian-centric. She includes information from Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist sources, just to name a few. She has a very universalist and pantheistic view of religion and spirituality, and she does a great job of providing tools to help you incorporate archangels into any existing spiritual framework.
- I loved the inclusion of the author’s personal experiences along with all the facts and historical information. Not only does it make the book feel a lot more personal, but it’s helpful to see an example of what a close relationship with the archangels can look like.
- It’s very clear that the author was connecting with and getting feedback from the archangels as she wrote this book. I could actually feel each angel’s individual energy and personality as I read their chapter. This book made the angels feel real and relatable in a way no other book has (at least for me).
Needless to say, if you want to start working with angels, particularly archangels, I recommend starting with Azrael Loves Chocolate. Chantel Lysette has several other books about angels, and I will definitely be reading them in the future. I feel like I’m fangirling a little bit, but I really can’t stress how uplifting it was to FINALLY find a helpful, inspirational, uplifting book about this subject after so many disappointments.
If you’re already familiar with the basics of angels and angel lore and would like to dig a little deeper, there are some additional sources you may want to check out. A lot of these are very, very old, which means two things. One, they can be kind of challenging to read; two, you can usually find them for free online. If you’re interested, here are some I’ve found helpful:
- The Books of Enoch: This is a work of Jewish apocrypha that is no longer considered canon by most Jewish and Christian groups. However, it’s worth noting that Enoch was apparently widely circulated at the time of Jesus, and it likely influenced canon scripture — it’s even quoted in some canonical texts! The first book, The Book of the Watchers, describes the fall of a group of angels (Watchers) who mated with human women to create the Nephilim and who taught magick to humans. The book talks about the roles of the seven major archangels, and the punishment of the fallen angels. Enoch’s writings have been hugely influential in shaping the way we perceive angels, so it’s definitely worth a read if you’re interested. It’s also worth noting that the angel Metatron is believed to have originally been the prophet Enoch, who was transformed into an archangel after being taken up into heaven — so if you’re looking to connect with Metatron in particular, reading the scriptures accredited to him might be a good place to start.
- The Apocalypse of Paul: This is a very short account of a vision of heaven granted to the apostle Paul (although it was probably written in the 3rd century A.D.), which was among the lost writings discovered at Nag Hammadi. There’s not a lot of information about angels in this text, but I included it because of one interesting tidbit: this text implies that souls who fail to reach heaven are reincarnated to try again. Not only does this indicate that some early Christians believed in reincarnation, but it describes the role of angels in helping souls transition from one incarnation to the next.
- The Writings of Thomas Aquinas: Thomas Aquinas is a Catholic saint, considered a doctor of the Church, but he was also a great philosopher. In his work Summa Theologica, he wrote a lot about angels that is still widely believed by Christians and non-Christians alike. He talks about the purpose of angels, whether or not they have bodies, and was one of the writers who popularized the idea of an angelic hierarchy with different orders of angels serving different purposes.
- Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy and John Milton’s Paradise Lost: Okay, so these aren’t religious sources. But both of them draw heavily on religious themes, specifically the Christian concepts of Heaven, Hell, angels, and demons. Besides, I think it’s really interesting to see the way that these beliefs influenced different authors at different points in history, and to read different perspectives on these concepts. So while I probably wouldn’t go so far as to say that these works are divinely inspired, or that you should make them the backbone of your personal beliefs about angels, they can still help you to understand how these beings have influenced mankind.
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