The Union of Opposi...
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The Union of Opposites in Thelema

Sanguine Chuck
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 467
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I would like to dedicate a thread to the topic of the "Union of Opposites" in Thelema specifically, and more broadly the concept of "union of opposites" in the body of esoterica.

I have found that the union of opposites is a consistent discovery in all forms of East and West esoteric practice, including natural and indigenous traditions.

Alchemy, Taiji Chuan, Qi Kung, Aikido are just some physical practices that include uniting the opposites of yin and yang, empty and full, absorption and radiation, a language the body naturally understands.

This unity of opposites extends itself into Western psychology, even philosophy.

And of course, Western Magick and Eastern Tantra.

From Wikipedia

The unity of opposites is the central category of dialectics, said to be related to the notion of non-duality a deep sense.[1]It defines a situation in which the existence or identity of a thing (or situation) depends on the co-existence of at least two conditions which are opposite to each other, yet dependent on each other and presupposing each other, within a field of tension.

In Magick without Tears, Crowley defines the union of opposites as central to the Great Work.

The Great Work is the uniting of opposites. It may mean the uniting of the soul with God, of the microcosm with the macrocosm, of the female with the male, of the ego with the non-ego."

The Union of Opposites is another form of non-dual practice, where as the "non-dual" experience is limited to the union of a very specific set of opposites.

In Liber al Vel Legis, we find the following sets of opposites that would therefore need to become "united", or non-dual, in the Great Work within Crowley's system

Nuit, Woman, Dove, The Scarlet Woman, Goddess, Up, Love, Certainty, Circumference, Khu, Light, Known, Infinity of Stars, God, Revealed, East, All of us, collectivism/Unity

Hadit, Man, Serpent, The Beast, God, Down, War, Uncertainty, Center, Khabs, Dark, Unknown, Finite, One Sun, Worshipper, Concealed, West, Self and Other, Individuality.

Note each unity is a polarity of opposites 0 = 2, whereas 0 is equal to the actual experience of both opposite in harmony, at once or as  1+-1=0, its more accurate representation numerically.

Since every phenomenon requires some form of opposite in all reality, man and woman, mother and father, night and day, matter and anti-matter, dark matter and observable matter, matter and energy, we see a continuum of polarity, and from the esoteric perspective, we observe polarity because this polarity is the natural language of our one shared mind.

Each unity we introduce to our minds, from a single polarity, even simple ones such as "yes and no", into their unity, maybe or any absorption of the polarity, is a non-dual exercise in Thelema.

What are some other opposites to be united in Thelema, as well as the Great Work?

This topic was modified 4 months ago 2 times by Sanguine Chuck

"If you have come to help me, then you are wasting your time, but if you are here because your liberation is bound together with mine, then let us work together." Lilla Watson

David Dom Lemieux
Joined: 6 years ago
Posts: 3199

Peter Carroll the founder of Chaos Magic took this 'Crowleyan' preoccupation and based an entire system out of it.   I'll try and find my thread on it.