Dion Fortune

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Dion Fortune bigraphy, stories - British Occultist and Author

Dion Fortune : biography

06 December 1890 – 8 January 1946

Dion Fortune born Violet Mary Firth (6 December 1890 – 8 January 1946), was a prominent British occultist, author, psychologist, teacher, artist, and mystic.Richardson, Alan; "The Magical Life of Dion Fortune", Aquarian Press, 1987, ISBN 1-85538-051-X, p 26. Schooled in Western Esotericism, she was influential in the modern revival of the magical arts. She was also a prolific writer of the supernatural and the occult in both novels and non-fiction works. As a psychologist, she approached magic and hermetic concepts from the perspectives of Jung and Freud.

Known to those in her inner circle as DF, her pseudonym was inspired by her family motto "Deo, non-fortuna" (Latin for "by God, not fate"), originally the ancient motto of the Barons and Earls Digby.Knight, Gareth; Dion Fortune and the Inner Light, Thoth, 2000, ISBN 1-870450-45-0, p 2. Fortune died in 1946 from leukemia in Middlesex, London, at the age of 55.

Books and other writings

From 1919 she began writing a number of novels and short stories that explored various aspects of magic and mysticism, including The Demon Lover, The Winged Bull, The Goat-Foot God, and The Secrets of Dr. Taverner. This latter is a collection of short stories based on her experiences with Theodore Moriarty. Two of her novels, The Sea Priestess and Moon Magic, became influential within the Goddess Movement and Wicca, especially upon Doreen Valiente.

Of her works on magical subjects, the best remembered of her books are; The Cosmic Doctrine,Richardson, Alan, The Magical Life of Dion Fortune, Aquarian Press, 1991, p63, ISBN 1-85538-051-X and Fielding, Charles and Collins, Carr; The Story of Dion Fortune, Thoth Books, 1998, ISBN 1-870450-33-7, p151. a summation of her basic teachings on mysticism, Psychic Self-Defense,Charles and Collins, Carr, The Story of Dion Fortune, Thoth Books, 1998, ISBN 1-870450-33-7, p150, a manual on how to protect oneself from psychic attacks and the seminal book of knowledge known as the The Mystical Qabalah,Fielding, Charles and Collins, Carr; "The Story of Dion Fortune", Thoth Books, 1998, ISBN 1-870450-33-7, p151 and Richardson, Alan, "The Magical Life of Dion Fortune", Aquarian Press, 1991, p137, ISBN 1-85538-051-X an introduction to Hermetic Qabalah which was first published in England in 1935, and is regarded as one of the best books on magic ever written.

According to authors Charles and Collins Carr, her writings have the virtue of lucidityCharles and Collins, Carr; "The Story of Dion Fortune", Thoth Books, 1998, ISBN 1-870450-33-7,p150. and avoid the deliberate obscurity that characterized many of her forerunners and contemporaries in explaining the ancient "Wisdom Teachings".Fortune, Dion; The Mystical Qabalah, Aquarian Press, 1987, ISBN 0-85030-335-4, p 1. and Fielding, Charles and Collins, Carr; "The Story of Dion Fortune", Thoth Books, 1998, ISBN 1-870450-33-7, p152.

According to author Diana Paxson, in a letter to regarding her sister-in-law Marion Zimmer Bradley she credits Dion Fortune’s Avalon of the Heart and Morgan Le Fay novels as the inspiration for The Mists of Avalon. In the Letter she says "In particular, Mists of Avalon was a story of a woman’s spiritual quest. The spirituality of Avalon derives from the British Mystery tradition, especially as it was interpreted by the occult writer Dion Fortune, whose character, Miss LeFay Morgan, is both a progenitor and descendant of Morgaine. In addition, Marion drew upon Dion Fortune’s non-fiction book, Avalon of the Heart. For a time, Dion Fortune lived in Glastonbury, in a cottage at the base of the Tor, in the Chalice Orchard, Glastonbury, home of the legendary Glastonbury Tor is still a sacred center of pilgrimage for many".

Dion Fortune’s early 20th century occult and supernatural non-fiction writings also influenced other fantasy fiction authors of novels, comic books, graphic novels and video games.