I particularly enjoyed the following description of Aleister Crowley as subversive, taken from George Mortimer’s interesting Media Underground website:
Looking back on the estranged lives of some of the more heretical characters of the 20th century, it has become increasingly more evident to me just how clever the Great Beast was in manipulating the social order of his time in an effort to ensure a place for his philosophy in the 21st century. Where others tried in vain to maintain their good reputations in the face of [post] Victorian adversity, Aleister Crowley’s attitude was quite unique in that he appears to have made a serious point in preserving his notoriety.
In a century where the likes of Oscar Wilde, Wilhelm Reich and Timothy Leary were all locked up for exercising the simple basic rights that any human being should be entitled to, it appears at first odd, yet logical under closer scrutiny how the Beast avoided a similar fate as the aforementioned outcasts. Quite simply: Crowley couldn’t be made to look any more of a fiend than he already made himself out to be. If the gutter press accused him of something as outrageous as cannibalism, he would flatly admit it, and with tongue in cheek boast of the number of people he had consumed. Even the burning of his books would have been a futile endeavour since he clearly instructs the reader to destroy The Book Of The Law after first reading, in his closing commentary.
Where others sought the approval of the masses, Crowley disregarded them as the unevolved sheep that they so evidently were, and as a result gained the respect and support of social radicals from all walks of life.
Clearly, Crowley is here to stay and his philosophy lives on in the hearts of the young. In an era where the god of War & Terror is clearly reigning supreme, it is perhaps now more important than ever to heed the words of this unique and greatly misunderstood prophet.
George T. Mortimer