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obscurus
(@obscuruspaintus)
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21/10/2012 11:06 am  

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Restriction comes to us in many forms.
My apologies in advance should you find this post offensive.
While out on the desert the wind will occasionally blow dirt into the eyes. Sometimes we must endure a bit more irritation to the eye in order to flush it out. Left alone it does nothing but fester.

A hypothetical situation:
Mr. Y has had a piece of jewelery made. As is his belief, he wants to cleanse and charge it thus making it an object of greater meaning to himself. In an open forum he asks advice on different ways of accomplishing this. He receives varied opinions and all is well. Along comes Mr. Z who interjects into the conversation to Mr. Y, that his inner held beliefs make him a superstitious idiot. Mr. Z further demands proof to his own standard that such a thing as charging a ring is achievable. He then proceeds to drag everyone involved out onto his skeptical plane. He tries to change their way of thinking and their inner held beliefs. To force all involved into his, "Mr.Z's" skeptical reality. To my way of thinking, Mr. Z's actions are interfering and are an attempt to restrict others. It smells of the missionary and the mentality of,"we will save the natives from themselves even if we have to kill them." While Mr. Z may have the best of intentions, he does no good in this case.
Had Mr. Y, on the other hand offered this piece of charged jewelry to Mr. Z, making the claim that it would change his life for the better or something of the like, Mr. Z would have been well within his rights to demand proof to his own satisfaction.

Does not, this very practice, lie at the root of mankinds greatest problems? That someone comes along believing that they know what is best for someone else? That there is always someone who  believes that "their" way is the true and right way and that they expect all subscribe to it? Is not, "Every man and every woman is a star", a common sense solution?

The more I start to sound like a preacher myself, the more I start to think about pulling the pull on this computer. If I am wrong in my thinking or have otherwise misconstrued all of this, I'll gladly take a bite or two of the shitsandwich.

Love is the law, love under will.


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Los
 Los
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21/10/2012 4:19 pm  

A hypothetical situation:

Mr. Q desires to build a flying car, so he goes onto a public forum, announcing his plans to construct it using straw, bubblegum, and spit.

One member of this forum – let’s call him Mr. Z – asks him how, exactly, Mr. Q thinks putting those ingredients together will result in the goal. Further, he asks Mr. Q what reasons he has to think that his goal is even possible, by any means, let alone the ridiculous means he has proposed.

Despite having it pointed out again and again that he has no evidence to support his beliefs (and despite the fact that he is unable to present any) Mr. Q – and his supporters (at least those supporters who don’t run from a serious discussion) – continues to hold on to his beliefs, dismissing valid criticism of his position as “restriction” or the work of a “preacher.” How dare that Mr. Z, he ineptly reasons, try to impose his “one true way of doing things” onto others! I should be able to build a flying car any old way I please. Next he’ll be telling me there’s “one true way” of building a house or a bridge!

In other words, Mr. Q confuses legitimate criticism and healthy skepticism with restriction.

Does not Mr. Q’s reaction lie at the root of mankind’s greatest problems?


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OKontrair
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21/10/2012 6:29 pm  

Screw Mr.Q. He’s either a dope or an agent provocateur. If Mr.Z thinks no one else can see this he’s underestimating the rest of us.

Mr.Y though is more interesting.

Pretend, just for the sake of example, that we are embarking on a polite discourse. Let us assume that Mr.Y is enquiring in good faith, that he regards his activities as experimental – we would certainly make that assumption if he said he were attempting a complicated cooking recipe from a book – and, aware that he may fail, he wishes to clarify every term and procedure. Then, should failure occur, he will at least not be open to the accusation “You went wrong because you did not charge the ring properly.” 

OK


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Azidonis
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21/10/2012 6:31 pm  

Empty words. They only become "restricting" if they are taken in, and applied by the person. Then, it isn't the person who said the words doing the restricting, but the person applying the words that is restricting themselves, using the other person's words. Idea implants.

As for all of the "how to" mess, talking about it at all really implies that the person either has direct experience of the matter, or doesn't. It matters less when speech itself is just masturbation.

Also, there are as many Keys to the Sanctuary as there are Gates. It should be quite easy then, for one to simply refuse to allow outside influences to interfere with their Work, although this is often easier said than done.


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MoogPlayer
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21/10/2012 7:18 pm  

Azidonis what would you define as "experience of the matter"?

What exactly is this "sanctuary" you speak of?

And just so this conversation gets anywhere, can we please drop all of this Mr. Y, Mr. Z crap? Lets just be strait forward with each other and say what we really mean.

Also, before anyone accuses me of hanging on Los like an ornament (azidonis), let's just be clear that it's not always my will to sit and type up big long responses on these forums (that would take away from my precious music making time, an activity which I consider real magic). I do however delight in reading these conversations. From time to time I feel the need to voice my support of an unpopular opinion which I am sympathetic to. I'm happy to play devil's advocate, and leave it to people like Los and Erwin who obviously enjoy the discourse.


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Shiva
(@shiva)
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21/10/2012 8:13 pm  

Oh look, everyone!

It's the same thread that just got locked - reincarnated, er, re-threaded.


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Markus
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21/10/2012 8:25 pm  

Shush, Shiva! - You're disrupting Choronzon's soliloquy!

Markus


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Los
 Los
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22/10/2012 1:25 am  
"Shiva" wrote:
Oh look, everyone!

It's the same thread that just got locked - reincarnated, er, re-threaded.

Well, look, that thread was specifically about "Charging a [whatever kind of] ring." This one's not. It's about "Restriction," and it could turn into a potentially useful conversation about what "restriction" means in a Thelemic context. That's a conversation worth having, in my opinion.

When the Book of the Law says, "The word of Sin is Restriction," the context clarifies that it is restriction of one's own self that is "sin" (or, in an alternate reading, it is the idea of "sin" itself [the very idea that one course of action could be inherently "bad"] that causes one to restrict one's own self in this way). It's the exact point that Crowley makes when he writes: "This is Sin: / To hold thy holy self in."

The Book of the Law is categorically not saying that it's restriction to have a clear idea of what's what. And having a clear idea of what's what entails having the courage to attack one's own convictions and having conversations where one's claims -- especially outlandish claims -- are challenged, which is one of the most important points of engaging in intellectual discussions to begin with. If it were not possible to sharpen one's opinions -- make those positions more accurate by interrogating them and exposing them to people who don't agree and can present cogent reasons for not agreeing -- then conversation wouldn't be conversation at all. It wouldn't be an exchange of ideas: it would just be a bunch of people shouting across a void to an audience of no one, a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing.

"I think this!"
"Oh yeah? Well, I think this!"
"Hooray for everyone, then, since there's no way to tell who's right!"

Luckily, Thelema does not support such a wacky view. I quoted an important passage from Crowley's Book 4, Part 1 where he writes of Dharana:

By its light all other events of life are as darkness. Owing to this, people have utterly failed to analyse it or to estimate it. They are accurate enough in saying that, compared with this, all human life is absolutely dross; but they go further, and go wrong. They argue that "since this is that which transcends the terrestrial, it must be celestial." One of the tendencies in their minds has been the hope of a heaven such as their parents and teachers have described, or such as they have themselves pictured; and, without the slightest grounds for saying so, they make the assumption "This is That."

[...]

We are now in a position to say what happened to Mohammed. Somehow or another his phenomenon happened in his mind. More ignorant than Anna Kingsford, though, fortunately, more moral, he connected it with the story of the "Annunciation," which he had undoubtedly heard in his boyhood, and said "Gabriel appeared to me." But in spite of his ignorance, his total misconception of the truth, the power of the vision was such that he was enabled to persist through the usual persecution, and founded a religion to which even to-day one man in every eight belongs.

Emphasis added.

You notice that Crowley doesn't say, "Oh, well, Mohammed must have had his own criteria for deciding this kind of question, so who can say? I wouldn't want to restrict him by imposing my point of view on him."

No. He actually points out the faulty reasoning that leads Mohammed (and Christ and others) to make a mistake.

It's not a "Restriction" to be clear about what's going on. The Book of the Law does not prohibit being clear about what's what or challenging/correcting ideas of others by presenting cogent arguments against their positions.


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obscurus
(@obscuruspaintus)
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22/10/2012 1:45 am  

  93

Maybe I was wrong in re-threading this.
I mistakenly though that there was still something useful here.

93/93


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Los
 Los
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22/10/2012 1:50 am  
"obscuruspaintus" wrote:
I mistakenly though that there was still something useful here.

There well might be. For example, if you can respond cogently to any of the points I make above, it would be an interesting discussion. After all, if you think I'm wrong, then clearly there must be some reason that you think I'm wrong, and you can explain it to us.

If you can't do this, shouldn't that be a sign to you that you might want to rethink your position?


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Azidonis
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22/10/2012 4:36 am  

This is a matter that can, and probably has at various times throughout the threads, fallen victim to the phrase "crossing the planes".


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Michael Staley
(@michael-staley)
MANIO - it's all in the egg
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 4021
22/10/2012 10:58 am  
"obscuruspaintus" wrote:
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Restriction comes to us in many forms.
My apologies in advance should you find this post offensive.
While out on the desert the wind will occasionally blow dirt into the eyes. Sometimes we must endure a bit more irritation to the eye in order to flush it out. Left alone it does nothing but fester.

A hypothetical situation:
Mr. Y has had a piece of jewelery made. As is his belief, he wants to cleanse and charge it thus making it an object of greater meaning to himself. In an open forum he asks advice on different ways of accomplishing this. He receives varied opinions and all is well. Along comes Mr. Z who interjects into the conversation to Mr. Y, that his inner held beliefs make him a superstitious idiot. Mr. Z further demands proof to his own standard that such a thing as charging a ring is achievable. He then proceeds to drag everyone involved out onto his skeptical plane. He tries to change their way of thinking and their inner held beliefs. To force all involved into his, "Mr.Z's" skeptical reality. To my way of thinking, Mr. Z's actions are interfering and are an attempt to restrict others. It smells of the missionary and the mentality of,"we will save the natives from themselves even if we have to kill them." While Mr. Z may have the best of intentions, he does no good in this case.
Had Mr. Y, on the other hand offered this piece of charged jewelry to Mr. Z, making the claim that it would change his life for the better or something of the like, Mr. Z would have been well within his rights to demand proof to his own satisfaction.

Does not, this very practice, lie at the root of mankinds greatest problems? That someone comes along believing that they know what is best for someone else? That there is always someone who  believes that "their" way is the true and right way and that they expect all subscribe to it? Is not, "Every man and every woman is a star", a common sense solution?

The more I start to sound like a preacher myself, the more I start to think about pulling the pull on this computer. If I am wrong in my thinking or have otherwise misconstrued all of this, I'll gladly take a bite or two of the shitsandwich.

Love is the law, love under will.

I have some sympathy with your position here, in the sense that the original discussion was derailed. However, in my view the original participants would have been better off continuing with their discussion, and simply ignoring the voices-off who might then have taken their discussion to a new thread.

The forums are open to participation by all members, and if we post something then others have the right to participate. However, there is no obligation on anyone to engage in debate if they don't want to, nor to take on board any points made. After all, these are only exchanges of opinion; it's not some sort of Council of Nicaea. Thus the sense of restriction you speak of here is illusory, arising because you are allowing someone else to set the agenda, whereas the option exists to stick to your own agenda.

This does lead to a further point, though, which is that threads are supposed to remain on-topic. This is a principle which is set out in the site guidelines, and anyone who has a problem with that might care to raise the matter with the owner of this site. Obviously this principle cannot be applied with absolute rigour, but it should in general be observed. Otherwise, threads can soon degenerate into an homogenous mess of chatting and bickering, which though perhaps mildly entertaining in small doses soon gets boring and is liable to lessen participation in the forums.

Best wishes,

Michael.


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William Thirteen
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22/10/2012 3:52 pm  

The word of Sin is Restriction. O man! refuse not thy wife, if she will! O lover, if thou wilt, depart! There is no bond that can unite the divided but love: all else is a curse. Accursed! Accursed be it to the aeons! Hell. I, 41

I believe a narrow interpretation would be that the 'Restriction' being referred to is any bond that is not an expression of Love under Will.


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obscurus
(@obscuruspaintus)
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22/10/2012 4:01 pm  

93

This is a very slippery slope we traverse for one wrong turn of a phrase and we risk becoming like Mr. Z.
The point I try to make is that we all have our own unique perceptions and point of view. We need not prove anything to anyone but ourselves. We need not compel others to prove anything to us by our own self imposed standards. To do so is wrong and an attempt to restrict. Should we announce to the world that we intend to build a flying car made of straw, bubblegum and spit that is our right. If others should view us as delusional they may freely say as much. Once said, they should just move along and leave us free to travel our delusional path without burden of their meddling. Had those first delusional characters who dreamed of flying through the sky or to the moon on a firecracker been dissuaded, where would we be today? What seems absurd today could well be reality tomorrow. Do not overly interfere and meddle...state your point as is your right and for gods sake move on.

93/93


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Los
 Los
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22/10/2012 4:21 pm  
"WilliamThirteen" wrote:

The word of Sin is Restriction. O man! refuse not thy wife, if she will! O lover, if thou wilt, depart! There is no bond that can unite the divided but love: all else is a curse. Accursed! Accursed be it to the aeons! Hell. I, 41

I believe a narrow interpretation would be that the 'Restriction' being referred to is any bond that is not an expression of Love under Will.

Yes, precisely. And since acts of "love under will" unite the individual to the universe through the path of the True Will, "restriction" is that which interferes with this expansion of Self through its natural course.

If we want to get poetic, we could also read "wife" as HGA, such that the man [of Earth] is being told not to refuse the will of his HGA. Further, it may be the will of the "lover" (roughly 5=6) to cross the abyss and "depart," to become a Hermit.

So this verse certainly is directly saying that sexual morality should be free and in accord with individuals' wills, but it's also symbolically reinforcing the notion that "restriction" is holding back the natural manifestation of one's own True Will.


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Los
 Los
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22/10/2012 4:27 pm  
"obscuruspaintus" wrote:
We need not compel others to prove anything to us by our own self imposed standards. To do so is wrong and an attempt to restrict.

Here's where you're wrong. I've already demonstrated, through a reading of Liber AL, that "restriction" refers to restricting one's own True Will and not to challenging others. Further, the very idea that something (even restriction) could be "wrong" is a form of restriction according to Liber AL.

You can either respond to what I've said -- backing up your opinions by appealing to Liber AL -- or you can concede I'm right. Or, of course, you can just abandon the thread. 

Do not overly interfere and meddle...state your point as is your right and for gods sake move on.

If it's someone's True Will to engage in a discussion online -- including interrogating the claims of others -- it would, in fact, be "restriction" for that individual to suppress that Will out of some misguided sense of "politeness" or this weird pseudo-Thelemic morality you seem to be pushing here.


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Azidonis
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22/10/2012 5:07 pm  
"Los" wrote:
Here's where you're wrong. [...] the very idea that something (even restriction) could be "wrong" is a form of restriction according to Liber AL.

Obvious+troll+is+obvious+_64224f49138d68e624b3b588f01f8b1b.png


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Michael Staley
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MANIO - it's all in the egg
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22/10/2012 5:30 pm  
"Los" wrote:
You can either respond to what I've said -- backing up your opinions by appealing to Liber AL -- or you can concede I'm right. Or, of course, you can just abandon the thread.

Or of course he could simply stay in the thread, responding to what points he wishes.

What are your grounds for attempting to dictate the terms by which a person continues to participate in this thread?


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Azidonis
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22/10/2012 5:41 pm  

Some Context:

All questions of the Law are to be decided only by appeal to my writings, each for himself.
It was at Dover.  I had passed the Customs Inspector.  Turning back, I said: "But perhaps I ought to have declared my Browning?"  Much agitated, he muttered: "How ever did I come to miss that?" and began all over again.  I helped him out: "You see, you were thinking of pistols, I of poetry."  (There is a lesson in that!)

It is true that an artificial society creates artificial crimes; but this is not "Original" Sin; on the contrary.  What's that you say?

Then, what is "guilt"?  A.S. gylt, trespass; in our own Thelemic language, "deviation from (especially in the matter of excess, trespasser) the True Will."

"The word of Sin is Restriction. ..." (AL I, 41).  From the context it seems clear that this refers more especially to interference with the will of another.

This statement is the first need of the world to-day for we are plagued with Meddlesome Matties, male and female, whose one overmastering passion is to mind other peoples' business.  They can think of nothing but "control."

all such "well-ordered" establishments are quite evidently defenceless against any serious change in their environment.  They have failed to comply with the first requirements of biology; at best, they stagnate, they achieve nothing, they never "get anywhere."

We do progress; but how?  Not by the tinkering of the meliorist; not by the crushing of initiative; not by laws and regulations which hamstring the racehorse, and handcuff the boxer; but by the innovations of the eccentric, by the phantasies of the hashish-dreamer of philosophy, by the aspirations of the idealist to the impossible, by the imagination of the revolutionary, by the perilous adventure of the pioneer.  Progress is by leaps and bounds, but breaking from custom, by working on untried experiments; in short, by the follies and crimes of men of genius, only recognizable as wisdom and virtue after they have been tortured to death, and their murderers reap gloatingly the harvest of the seeds they sowed at midnight.

AL I,41: "The word of Sin is Restriction. O man! refuse not thy wife, if she will! O lover, if thou wilt, depart! There is no bond that can unite the divided but love: all else is a curse. Accursed! Accursed be it to the aeons! Hell."

The Old Comment

41, 42. Interference with the will of another is the great sin, for it predicates the existence of another. In this duality sorrow consists. I think that possibly the higher meaning is still attributed to will.

The New Comment

The first paragraph is a general statement or definition of Sin or Error. Anything soever that binds the will, hinders it, or diverts it, is Sin. That is, Sin is the appearance of the Dyad. Sin is impurity.<<One cannot say that it was "Sin" for Naught to restrict itself within the form of Two; on the contrary. But sin is to resist the operation of the reversion to Naught. "The wages of Sin is Death;" for Life is a continual harmonious and natural Change. See Liber 418 and Liber Aleph.

Sin (See Skeat's Ety. Dict.) is connected with the root "es", to be. This throws a new light on the passage. Sin is restriction, that is, it is 'being' as opposed to 'becoming'. The fundamental idea of wrong is the static as opposed to the dynamic conception of the Universe. This explanation is not only in harmony with the general teaching of the Book of the Law, bit shows how profoundly the author understands Himself.


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Azidonis
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22/10/2012 6:21 pm  
"Los" wrote:
If it's someone's True Will to engage in a discussion online

coughbullshit128590948356838983.jpg


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obscurus
(@obscuruspaintus)
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22/10/2012 6:55 pm  

93

We each have our own point of view. I'm pushing nothing, merely stating my position.
It is you, Los, that pushes and tries to drag others in directions they do not wish to go. I read what you say, some of it registers and some of it is meaningless to me. Take it or leave it, I then move on. My only reason for starting this thread was that the locking of the last one left me with a feeling that it had not been completed. I said all that I really wanted to say at the start of this one.
Interpretation of Liber AL is a personal matter as stated above. I have no desire to flail it about like a blackboard pointer.

93/93


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HG
 HG
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22/10/2012 6:58 pm  
"Shiva" wrote:
Oh look, everyone!

It's the same thread that just got locked - reincarnated, er, re-threaded.

No wonder.  It was an excellent thread and I miss it.  :'(

Sure, there was a lot of whining and dickishness going on, but also a lot of very interesting discussions about very fundamental things.


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HG
 HG
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22/10/2012 7:01 pm  
"obscuruspaintus" wrote:
It is you, Los, that pushes and tries to drag others in directions they do not wish to go.

And it's you, Obscuruspaintus, that pushes and tries to drag Los into a direction he does not wish to go.

Pot, meet kettle.

If you don't want to have a conversation with someone, then don't have a conversation with someone.  It's that simple.


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obscurus
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22/10/2012 7:26 pm  

93

I surely hope not HG. I would never dream to attempt to cause a change in Los...I like him just the way he is. His method can be a little abrasive yet he quite often offers up something of value. If it is true though, please let me be the pot.

93/93


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 Anonymous
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22/10/2012 9:58 pm  

Is anyone else experiencing De Ja Vu with this thread or am I having a flashback  🙂


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Shiva
(@shiva)
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22/10/2012 11:51 pm  
"Crowley666" wrote:
... am I having a flashback

You are firmly in the grip of the demon flashback. Just because the same people have turned out, beating the same drum(s), doesn't mean you're not insane. Well, maybe you're not - and I am ::)


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obscurus
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23/10/2012 12:21 am  

93

No worries fellas, it will meet an early demise.
Pray lock the door when you leave.
Oh...and don't forget to turn out the lights.

93/93


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Michael Staley
(@michael-staley)
MANIO - it's all in the egg
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23/10/2012 12:28 am  

Well, it could be deja vu all over again, or flashbacks, or it could relapse into banter, or we could restrict ourselves to the topic.

Restriction is open to a multitude of interpretations. There is restriction as mentioned in The Book of the Law, according to which restriction is the word of sin, i.e. restricting the expression of one's true nature.

Then again, restriction is a necessary part of staying alive. Not drinking hemlock, for instance, seems a smart move, as does not going through a red traffic light. In a social context, we sublimate or suppress instinctive reactions to some degree, quite rightly in my view.

The primary restriction, though, seems to be on the part of the All, which creates the illusion of individuality or restriction in order to experience itself.

So, all in all - no pun intended - perhaps restriction doesn't altogether deserve a bad press.


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Los
 Los
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23/10/2012 5:28 am  
"MichaelStaley" wrote:
Then again, restriction is a necessary part of staying alive. Not drinking hemlock, for instance, seems a smart move, as does not going through a red traffic light. In a social context, we sublimate or suppress instinctive reactions to some degree, quite rightly in my view.

Not only this, but the preferences that comprise the True Will are themselves, in a sense, "restriction."

There's no such thing as a "completely free choice." If I choose, for example, vanilla ice cream over chocolate, I am choosing on the basis of some preference I have, and that's a preference I didn't choose to have: I simply find myself with such preferences. The preference restricts my choice, but in this (admittedly trivial) case, this restriction doesn't inhibit my Will but creates it. Or, to use Michael's example, the stop light -- and the social code we've developed around the stop light -- restricts my choice in a driving situation (assuming I have the Will not to greatly increase my chances of having an accident): but it doesn't inhibit my driving pattern: it creates it.

One way to think about the process of "discovering the True Will" is to think of it as learning which restrictions inhibit the Will and which ones create it.

But nowhere in The Book of the Law -- or in any Thelemic literature -- is it ever suggested that "restriction" could be asking questions or engaging in debates or attempting to have a clear view of reality. As far as I know, only the OP has suggested this, and it is without support.


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