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Crowley's black magick closet?  

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 Anonymous
Joined: 50 years ago
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04/12/2009 6:43 am  

I was discussing with a friend regarding black magick, i.e. with the intent to harm, and he said Crowley had a closet he performed black magick in...so as to keep it separate from his main temple. I'm not sure which house or abbey this was supposed to be at. Does anyone have any facts on this?

I know there is some mention in his biographies of him cursing a few folks, but I am unfamiliar with this closet and its contents.

Thank you,
Iza


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 Anonymous
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04/12/2009 3:49 pm  

Hello Iza 🙂

I am new here and I haven't studied Aleister's work as most of the guys here did. But I feel sure that he did not use to perform black magick, on the contrary he thought it would be the most stupid think one could do.

I believe what he actually did as a presence on earth was to help humans realize their vulnerable spot; that is being so easily subjective to mental intimidation.

Regards
Hecate


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alysa
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04/12/2009 4:11 pm  

During the time he took his first steps in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, he had an appartment at Chancerry Lane, London, there he made two rooms one which he called the White Temple and the other which he called the Black Temple, the Black Temple was mend to perform the more 'darker' aspects of magic, the White Temple was used to perform the more 'lighter' forms of magic, later he also invited Allan Bennett to live with him at his flat, where they performed magic together.


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SatansAdvocaat
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04/12/2009 5:27 pm  

Well, Alysa does have the gist of it right, apart from the 'Chancery Lane' typo. 🙂

Mention of AC's 'Black Magic Closet' is made in Chapter 21, page 182 of the Confessions. See:
http://www.hermetic.com/crowley/confess/

He and George Cecil Jones were experimenting with Abra-Melin demons during this period apparently, despite the fact that AC (at least) had not performed the Operation of the Sacred Magic; as well as indulging in the Goetia.

93, 93/93.
Satan's Advocaat.


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alysa
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04/12/2009 6:24 pm  

Yes, Chancery Lane, I miswrote it, thanks for pointing me at that typo, Satan'sAdvocaat, at times I forget how to write certain words in English.


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the_real_simon_iff
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04/12/2009 9:20 pm  

93!

Don't know about its use for black magic, but he once constructed an closet for ritualistic purposes (see the Aleister crowley timeline for January 4, 1907). He called it the "Ebony Box". He wrote (if I decipher correctly):

THE EBONY BOX

As small as possible for me in Asana
Firm Pose; fairly light sides
Feet say 18 inches high.

Right wall. 2 switches
(1) to powerful reflector lamp placed
on top of the box. Internal wire, x to
wall switch through one foot.
(2) to tiny internal glow lamp
Moss to sit on.

Front wall - slit at level of eyes, to
be closed by a sliding panel.
Back wall - a door

Left front corner - shelves for watch and
notebook, water etc.

Ventilation?

Altar for sacred {a symbol using L and Y intertwined} + incense
Flame of this the only light in room
bar the search light

He doesn't write if he ever built and used it, but it sounds like a kind of "magic closet" to me.

Love=Law
Lutz


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 Anonymous
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05/12/2009 2:02 am  

Crowley very much used some of what we might call "black magic" from the traditional definition of using magic to attack others. He used the Abramelin demons in his war with Mathers before the formation of the A.'.A.'. and there were other incidents. The room in question was decorated with a statue of a black man standing on his head as an altar. Outside of that I do not recall the set up, mayhaps someone more knowledgeable will be able to give a further description.


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 Anonymous
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05/12/2009 7:40 am  

Hi everyone

I think I could use some help here to understand things better. I had a look on Wikipedia about Abramelin and it is said that, although the magus performs some demon evocations it is merely to bind them and –as I get it- to come to an equilibrium within him/herself.

[Once this is accomplished, the magician must evoke the twelve Kings and Dukes of Hell (Lucifer, Satan, Leviathan, etc) and bind them. Thereby, the magician gains command of them in his own mental universe, and removes their negative influence from his life.]
( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Book_of_Abramelin)

Aleister Crowley mentions his need for equilibrium in his ‘Confessions’:
[footnote page 182: Iehi Aour never had anything to do with this; and I but little: the object of establishing it was probably to satisfy my instinct about equilibrium.]

I think I wouldn’t have any problem myself if he did or did not perform “black magick”, as it does not change the magnitude of his work and the truths he conveyed –plus there is always a deeper meaning behind our acts and it would be of tremendous importance to try to realize it. However, I believe things are not always what they appear to be and it would help me to have your opinions on the subject.

Thanks in advance
Hecate


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 Anonymous
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11/12/2009 3:03 am  

From "Magick in Theory and Practice"

As was said at the opening of the second chapter, the Single Supreme Ritual is the attainment of the Knowledge
and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel. “It is the raising of the complete man in a vertical straight line.”
Any deviation from this line tends to become black magic. Any other operation is black magic.
In the True Operation the Exaltation is equilibrated by an expansion in the other three arms of the Cross.
Hence the Angel immediately gives the Adept power over the Four Great Princes and their servitors.
See the Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage.
If the magician needs to perform any other operation than this, it is only lawful in so far as it is a necessary preliminary to That One Work.
There are, however many shades of grey. It is not every magician who is well armed with theory. Perhaps one such may invoke Jupiter, with the wish to heal others of their physical ills. This sort of thing is harmless,
There is nevertheless the general objection to the diversion of channels of Initiation to the Sea of Attainment, into ditches of irrigation for the fields of material advantage. It is bad business to pay good coin for perishable products; like marrying for money, or prostituting poetic genius to political purposes. The converse course, though equally objectionable as pollution of the purity of the planes, is at least respectable for its nobility. The ascetic of the Thebaid or the Trappist Monastery is infinitely worthier than the health-peddler and success-monger of Boston or Los Angeles; for the one offers temporal trash to gain eternal wealth, while the other values spiritual substance only as enabling him to get better bodily conditions, and a firmer grip on the dollars. or almost so. It is not evil in itself. It arises from a defect of understanding. Until the Great Work has been
performed, it is presumptuous for the magician to pretend to understand the universe, and dictate its policy.
Only the Master of the Temple can say whether any given act is a crime. “Slay that innocent child?” (I hear the ignorant say) “What a horror!” “Ah!” replies the Knower, with foresight of history, “but that child will become Nero. Hasten to strangle him!”


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 Anonymous
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12/12/2009 12:02 am  
"uranus" wrote:
The room in question was decorated with a statue of a black man standing on his head as an altar.

There is a photo of the altar under Miscellanea in the Galleries.


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sonofthestar
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12/12/2009 12:56 am  

93!

The type of altar mentioned---making use of an image of the black fellow,
was a typical kind of furnishing somewhat popular during the Victorian/Edwardian eras.
There were various types of tables, lamps, smoking stands, and bookends etc-- in that style.

Those Elephant end tables, and platforms for various things, were about too----
usually carved from wood, or made from some kind of porcelain.
And let's not forget those regrettable umbrella stands fashioned from an elephant's foot and partial leg!

So just in case anyone thinks there was some “sinister” motive for having such an altar,
the facts I’ve made mention of above, are there for general information purposes…
in reference to some interesting, yet gaudy, decorative accents used for interior decorating;
such furnishings, and accessories, as influenced by various cultural aspects of those times.

93! 93! 93!


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alysa
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12/12/2009 1:03 am  

Yes, one must recognise, Crowley was a child of his time.


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SatansAdvocaat
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12/12/2009 12:18 pm  

93rdLibra and sonofthestar seem to have gone to a lot of trouble to point out that, may the Gods forbid, there could have been nothing 'black magical' about AC's little Black Temple. He himself plays down its significance in 'The Confessions' and states his main motive for being Equilibration of the Forces. But its purpose was clearly 'sinister', that is, of the Left.

AC was clearly capable of the occasional act of black magic, as indeed I believe we all are either by accident or deliberate intent.
While the Sacred Magic of Abramelin was clearly all about the Knowledge and Conversation of the HGA for him, he still cherished and placed great magical store in the demonically empowered talismans or magic squares until the end of his life.

Don't merely quote Scripture, but examine it in context.

93, 93/93.
Satan's Advocaat.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 50 years ago
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12/12/2009 1:41 pm  

Thank you guys!

When AC first came to me during a channeling session I asked him (in much fear) to clarify two things:
1. If he had performed black magick, and
2. If he had performed sexual magick
(at that time I had no idea about his life and his deeds, except some rather negative references of other authors )

He ansered:
1. NO ! (it was a loud and clear and sturdy answer)
2. That’s another story…

Later I started reading a bit and realized how complicated the whole of his life was –certainly nothing that could be expressed in one or two words.
I realize that most of Lashtal’s members are experts in Aleister’s life and philosophy. This is really helpful for anyone who seeks to learn the real facts.

However, even now -and contrary to any thoughts and fears people around me express about him- my subconscious denies to put the words “Aleister Crowley” next to “Black Magick”. The funny part is that it also denies placing his name among the “Good guys”, as if this would diminish the significance of his work. I believe that Aleister Crowley was a man of truth and I can only attribute this quality to a spirit much higher and wider than the level of “good / evil” or “white/black” polarity.

Hecate


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lashtal
(@lashtal)
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12/12/2009 1:47 pm  

He's either changed his tune over the years and across the gulf, or he's lost his sense of humour. In 1923 he was far more entertaining: "I may be a black magician but I'm a bloody great one.""

Owner and Editor
LAShTAL


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 Anonymous
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12/12/2009 2:59 pm  

Out of evil comes forth good and out of good comes forth evil. It's all black and white.


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 Anonymous
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12/12/2009 3:37 pm  
"lashtal" wrote:
"...."I may be a black magician but I'm a bloody great one.""

LOL
Yeah, that's the spirit

😀


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sonofthestar
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12/12/2009 6:22 pm  

Hello Satan’sAdvocate!
I am in no way belabouring myself to imply that AC did not use the “techniques” and “trappings”
of “Black Magick”---in certain most singular rituals.
I am merely defending his taste in the use of gaudy furniture!
It’s no easy feat to employ the fine art of interior decorating to outfit something so small as a closet.

Now if for instance, someone launched an all out astral attack upon him (unprovoked of course)
he could indeed make use of the very methods his adversary used----in his counter attacks.
One can use the very methods and techniques employed by the enemies of the Great White Brotherhood,
in defense of that brotherhood’s emissaries incarnated on this Earthly plane---
in much the same way as a gun can be used to defend the life of one's self and loved ones----
or to commit a crime against an innocent.
So I see no problem of any champion of the Light, using “so called” methods of “Black Magick”
in their Guarding of that Light.
One would though have to make judicious use of that special inner sense of the understanding of things,
so as not to upset “the balance” of those things.


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sonofthestar
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12/12/2009 6:24 pm  

93!

Cannot believe I forgot my ninety threes!

93! 93! 93!


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michaelclarke18
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13/12/2009 1:34 am  

the other [temple] black, a mere cupboard, in which stood an altar supported by the figure of a Negro standing on his hands

http://www.lashtal.com/gallery/displayimage.php?pos=-1048


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alysa
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13/12/2009 2:32 am  

Yea, that's the picture.


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SatansAdvocaat
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14/12/2009 4:41 pm  

Some good points being made alround, I will acknowledge, but this picture business is driving me nuts! Whenever I attempt to log-in the Gallery, I simply get "Your browser will not support cookies" in red letters and I'm ignorant enough to not really know which kind of 'cookies' are intended; in fact, its driving me ginger nuts! 😕 This is what comes of being dependent on an ancient pc on the network in my local library I do suppose.

All of which means that I cannot view this wonderful, gaudy piece of furnishing. Was it meant to be one of those racist-based novelty items or has it got pretensions to be mass-produced ethnic art ? Would someone take pity and enlighten me ?

Surely it can't be so gaudy as to have been AC's skeleton in the cupboard ? 😉

93, 93/93.
Satan's Advocaat.


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lashtal
(@lashtal)
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14/12/2009 4:47 pm  
"Satan'sAdvocaat" wrote:
this picture business is driving me nuts! Whenever I attempt to log-in the Gallery, I simply get "Your browser will not support cookies" in red letters and I'm ignorant enough to not really know which kind of 'cookies' are intended

When you're viewing the main LAShTAL.COM site, make sure you're logged-in, then click on Galleries. Come back out of the Galleries and then click on the link above. All will be revealed.

Unless… Some have reported problems with usernames that combine upper and lower case characters. Not seen it myself, but it might be responsible. If you still can't view it, let me know by Private Message or email and I'll send it to you.

Owner and Editor
LAShTAL


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sonofthestar
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14/12/2009 7:03 pm  

93!

Satan'sAdvocaat ! (sorry for my misspelling)

I tend to believe that the origin of such furnishings were influenced by England's encountering of various peoples during certain Military Champagnes instigated, and/or ----championed--- during the reign of Queen Victoria.
I've not done any research on this, so I could be wrong---but I think I'm right!

Such furnishing has it's precedent all the way back into Egyptian times, in the use of various vessels, and articles of furniture (even the ends of canes)--- depicting images of the people the Egyptians encountered on the battlefield or surrounding areas---denoted by the Egyptian Rulers to be the enemies of Egypt.
These images were usually representations of the heads of such individuals ---used to support the main piece of furniture.

AC would have chosen such a specimen of furniture for perhaps two reasons:
basic functionality---and ornate styling…as convenient to his purposes;
as well as the metaphorical connotations of Black/White---Darkness/Light ----etc,
as pertinent to the concept of “Balance” as understood according to “Hermetic” lines.

93! 93! 93!


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 Anonymous
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Posts: 0
14/12/2009 8:49 pm  

93/23

I do remember reading one specific instance in Fracis King's bio of A.C. (he also recorded it himself in Confessions, somewhere, I think. It's when Neuberg fell in love with a woman and was going to leave A.C. Our dear Uncle Al considered this woman to be a Vampire (the type that sucks a Brother from the Path of the Great Work, not the "Twilight Saga" type.) So, he went over to her apartment building and with his Astral Dagger (guess A.C. didn't want to be seen stalking the corridors of an apartment building holding an actual dagger. Quite understandable!) He got to her door an traced the sigil of Jupiter or the planetary ruler spirit, or something like that. A day or two later she shot herself! This was indeed his intention. This could be an attempt to use the techs. of the "Black Lodge" against one of their own, such as sonofthestar mentioned. But, it does seem to be tinted with a hint of jealousy, to me.

Then there's the traditional "black masses" that, at one time, he would conduct (for money, of course) at the request rich and bored women. Both of these incidents could be interpreted as not really "black magick", per say....but it's all in how One interprets these actions. "I may be a black magician but I'm a bloody great one!" Indeed! 😈

93 93/93


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michaelclarke18
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15/12/2009 11:31 pm  

The woman was called Joan Hayes.


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Horemakhet
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16/12/2009 1:00 am  

. . . There was also the botched attempt of Leah & the Goat. Also the time he "crucified a toad in the basilisk abode"- amongst other gems. Surely, he must have shocked his 'occultist' contemporaries: anyone who read of his exploits. He was a 'bad boy', who had a reputation of being so, right back to his early days in the GD. . . .


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alysa
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16/12/2009 4:52 am  

I also think that Aleister did perform some rituals which some people could discribe as 'Black magic' though, I think it was never Aleister's aim to perform 'Black magical' acts, I think his spirit was far greater than that. I think indeed that Crowley stood beyond the common understanding of 'Good' and 'Evil'.


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Horemakhet
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17/12/2009 3:52 am  

. . He thought that many of his contemporaries were rather silly, didn't he?- Since his death, there have been two fairly distinct threads of thought concerning him. One, focuses on his shortcomings as a man;- to many he is a black magician, & a satanist. The other current of thought sees him as a genius, & someone - of his time- yet far ahead of it. There was an imbalance between the two, but now we are seeing a more profound assessment of his accomplishments. This website is a great example of this . . .


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