In his book Ceremonial Magic and the Power of Evocation, Lisiewski espouses "old school" magical practice and cautions against the use of "systems" of magic; Golden Dawn, new age, and Thelemic offshoots included. He delineates the following 10 Axioms of "old school" magical practice:
Axiom 1—Different systems of magic; or components and requirements of different systems of magic, must never be mixed. Neither must grimoires or other magical texts within a given system itself be mixed.
Axiom 2—Every aspect of any magical ritual, ceremony, or rite, including evocation, must be consciously and thoroughly understood.
Axiom 3—A state of Subjective Synthesis is produced through the conscious study, understanding, comprehension, and acceptance of the theory of all elements that compose a given magical act. As a result of this synthesis, an integrated belief system is taken up in the Practitioner's subconscious mind. This allows the individual to perform the magic and obtain the results desired from the magical act.
Axiom 4—The nature of the spiritual entity summoned during evocation to physical manifestation, is either objective or subjective according to the subconscious belief system resulting from the process of subjective synthesis.
Axiom 5—Every magical action, every evocation to physical manifestation, produces a complex field of energy. This field is composed of different frequencies each at their own energy level. This complex field results from a combination of the subjective synthesis; subconscious integrated belief system; physical movement during, and internal images of the rite; as well as the thoughts, sounds, emotional anticipations, consecrations and natures of the magical instruments.
Axiom 6—In every evocation to physical manifestation, you must have full manifestation before you can control, and you must have control before you can command. Unless these three critical conditions are clearly established, the operation will end in a partial result with serious "Slingshot Effects," or produce no result whatsoever. To the best of my knowledge, these conditions have never been set down in print before. It is absolutely imperative they be fulfilled to the letter.
Axiom 7—In the process of evocation to physical manifestation, there exists the possibility of the Slingshot Effect. While this effect is most severe in the evocational act, it is a distinct possibility in any magical act, including that of simple invocation. In general, it results from an improper subjective synthesis and the resulting subconscious belief system. In evocation to physical manifestation, the effect is compounded by the magnitude of the altered state of consciousness achieved, the rapture produced during the early phases of the rite, the necessity of establishing and maintaining control, and the problem of delivering a perfect Charge. As an effect from an evocation to physical manifestation that has gone awry, five very distinct, major conditions are produced in the Operator's life and always in the order given.
Axiom 8—Daily 'magical exercises', the product of New Age charlatans and well meaning dilatants which supposedly are designed to bring about the Practitioner's spiritual development, are unnecessary. These extraneous fabrications confuse the issues of 'spirituality' and 'psychicism,' genuine personality development and its attainment of accelerated human qualities with ego weakness, while creating an artificial dependency upon a divine father figure in the clouds meant to rescue the Practitioner from his or her self-made plights of unease and distress.
Axiom 9—Do not reject the religious tradition in which you were raised, nor the commonsense found in what religionists call the Commandments of God. The use of these precepts is crucial in devising an effective subjective synthesis and producing a corresponding coherent, integrated subconscious belief system. It is also the one fundamental axiom every Practitioner of magic rigorously avoids, which accounts for more magical failure than is realized.
Axiom 10—All evocation to physical manifestation must occur directly on the ground, either in the outdoors (preferably in a secret wooded area), or in a house equipped with a cellar or basement with a dirt or concrete floor. The only way a true evocation to physical manifestation can be conducted is by performing the entire rite—from the construction of the Circle of Art to the conjurations and through the License to Depart—is by conducting the rite directly upon the earth, or in a basement or cellar that is equipped with a concrete floor that rests directly upon the ground. To attempt any form of high magic otherwise, is to not simply look for, but to ask for very serious trouble.
Conclusion — It is all up to the reader whether to follow the Ten Axioms presented here. The important thing is that they have been stated for the first time anywhere. In closing, I leave the reader with this parting thought. Play around with Magic, and you're going to get burned. Play around with this particular branch of Magic, and you are going to get burned very severely. There is an ancient alchemical axiom the Practitioner of magic would do well to remember and apply to his or her would-be magical work at all times. "Know the Theory before attempting the Praxis!"