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Thelema is not Magick? Thelema is not occultism?

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wellreadwellbred
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All emphasis mine. And all in square brackets is added by me.

Thelema is not Magick? Thelema is not occultism?

"Part of my point here is not merely that Thelema *can* work without occultism but that Thelema is *not* occultism. And in fact, as I consistently argue, holding on to the supernatural *beliefs* that accompany most occult practice is an impediment to any serious attempt to practice Thelema properly. [As opposed to the practices themselves, which can be done without the supernatural theories that accompany them]." Source: http://thelema-and-skepticism.blogspot.no/2011/07/wild-ghost-chase.html?showComment=1313427672175#c2006119741600376627 - Los' reply on August 15, 2011 at 10:01 AM in the thread 'A Wild Ghost Chase' - source: http://thelema-and-skepticism.blogspot.no/2011/07/wild-ghost-chase.html - at Los' blog 'Thelema and Skepticism'

On Erwin Hessle's blog, 'Erwin Hessle - Come forth, o children, under the stars, & take your fill of love! (AL I, 12)', under the title 'Scientifically testing the supernatural' - Source: http://www.erwinhessle.com/blog/?p=215 - Erwin writes the following:

"... the “real Thelema” does not include the occult stuff at all. Occultism includes the occult stuff. Magick includes the occult stuff. Thelema does not. Thelema includes the will stuff."

And in the same source Erwin also writes the following:

"... you keep saying that I am “obviously wrong” to say that Thelema is separate from the occult, and I keep saying that you are “obviously wrong” to say that it is not. This type of argument isn’t going to go anywhere. If you’re going to make this kind of assertion, you need to provide evidence for it. Such as, for instance, even one example of Crowley agreeing with you, of saying that “Thelema” is what you claim it to be. You need to provide at least one example that this interpretation of Thelema is anything other than a pure invention of yours, and that’s going to be pretty difficult for you to do."


Crowley did not treat Magick and Thelema as being separate from each other. In the context of Aleister Crowley's Thelema, Magick is a term used to differentiate the occult from stage magic and is defined as "the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will", including both "mundane" acts of will as well as ritual magic*. It is not strictly necessary to practice ritual techniques to be a Thelemite, as Crowley due to the focus of Thelemic magick on the True Will, stated that "every intentional act is a magickal act.**"

* "I) DEFINITION. Magick is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will. Source: Definition and Theorems of Magick (subtitled Introduction and Theorems) in Magick in Theory and Practice, which is Part III of Book Four - http://hermetic.com/crowley/book-4/defs.html (Illustration: It is my Will to inform the World of certain facts within my knowledge. I therefore take "magickal weapons", pen, ink, and paper; I write "incantations"---these sentences---in the "magickal language" ie, that which is understood by the people I wish to instruct; I call forth "spirits", such as printers, publishers, booksellers and so forth and constrain them to convey my message to those people. The composition and distribution of this book is thus an act of Magick by which I cause Changes to take place in conformity with my Will.)" Source: Definition and Theorems of Magick (subtitled Introduction and Theorems) in Magick in Theory and Practice, which is Part III of Book Four - http://hermetic.com/crowley/book-4/defs.html

** "III) THEOREMS. 1) Every intentional act is a Magickal act. (Illustration: See "Definition" above.) By "intentional" I mean "willed". But even unintentional acts so seeming are not truly so. Thus, breathing is an act of the Will to Live." Source: Definition and Theorems of Magick (subtitled Introduction and Theorems) in Magick in Theory and Practice, which is Part III of Book Four - http://hermetic.com/crowley/book-4/defs.html


Neither in the best available scholarly literature on Aleister Crowley and Thelema, is he described as treating Magick and Thelema as being separate from each other, quite the contrary actually, as is demonstrated by the following from Marco Pasi's (born 1968 and since 2004 Assistant Professor at the centre for the History of Hermetic Philosophy and related currents, University of Amsterdam) 7 pages long contribution on Aleister Crowley, in the 1230 pages long Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism, published by Brill Academic Publishers in 2006, and edited by Wouter J. Hanegraaff (born 1961) (from 1999 professor of History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents at the University of Amsterdam) in collaboration with Antoine Faivre (a prominent French scholar of Western esotericism), Roelof van den Broek (born 1931) (Emeritus Professor of History of Christianity at the University of Utrecht) and Jean-Pierre Brach (born 1956) (in 2002 appointed as holder of the Chair of "History of Esoteric Currents in Early Modern and Contemporary Europe" at Sorbonne University in Paris, as successor to the aforementioned Antoine Faivre). (The Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism was selected Choice Outstanding Academic Title in 2006.):

"Two aspects stand out as fundamental in his work: magic (which, for various reasons, he chose to spell “Magick”) and Thelema. In a general sense, Crowley saw magic as a convenient term to define his doctrine as a whole, including Thelema [page 284].

"... magic[-k], understood in its widest sense, included for him  both the knowledge of the Holy Guardian Angel and [Pasi's emphasis] the process leading to the highest step of initiation. The other fundamental aspect of Crowley’s doctrine is Thelema. Indeed, this complex religious element is what mainly differentiates Crowley from previous occultists. The doctrinal principles and beliefs fundamental to Thelema are combined with the practice of magic[-k], so as to form an organic and coherent worldview. [...] The ultimate goal of an initiate [...] consists firstly in discovering his/her own true Will, and then in following its lead. It is at this point that magic[-k] plays a fundamental role in the system, since it is through magic[-k] that this process of discovery and accomplishment [leading to the said "highest step of initiation"] can be achieved [page 285 and 286]."


Here are examples of Crowley integrating Thelema with occultism. The examples are taken from from [ï]Book Four part III, Magick in Theory and Practice, which was written from 1912-1928, with the most substantial work done between 1912-1921. It was subject to revisions up to 1928, and first published in 1929*, and from Magick without Tears which Crowley wrote at the end his life. Thus the following examples are from the time Crowley was in his thirties, until the time close to his death in December 1947:

[* Source: Bel Murru's « Reply #1 on: May 10, 2007, 0335 pm » in - http://www.lashtal.com/forum/http://www.lashtal.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=14230#p14230 - the thread 'Writing of Magick in Theory and Practice']

"These considerations being thoroughly understood we may return to the question of making the Magical Link. In the case above cited FRATER PERDURABO composed His talisman by invoking His Holy Guardian Angel according to the Sacred Magick of Abramelin the Mage. That Angel wrote on the lamen the Word of the Aeon. The Book of the Law is this writing. To this lamen the Master Therion gave life by devoting His own life thereto. We may then regard this talisman, the Law, as the most powerful that has been made in the world's history, for previous talismans of the same type have been limited in their scope by conditions of race and country. Mohammed's talisman, Allah, was good only from Persia to the Pillars of Hercules. The Buddha's, Anatta, operated only in the South and East of Asia. The new talisman, Thelema, is master of the planet. Source: Magick in Theory and Practice, Part III of Book Four, CHAPTER XIV Of the Consecrations: with an Account of the Nature and Nurture of the Magical Link. - http://hermetic.com/crowley/book-4/chap14.html

"Now, having endured to the end, being Master of Magick, He is mighty to Work His true Will; which Will is, to establish on Earth His Word, the Law of Thelema. He hath none other Will than this; so all that He doth is unto this end. All His Orgia bear fruit; what was the work of a month when He was a full Major Adept is to day wrought in a few minutes by the Words of Will, uttered with the right vibrations into the prepared Ear." Source: Magick in Theory and Practice, Part III of Book Four, Chapter XVI (1) Of the Oath. - http://hermetic.com/crowley/book-4/chap16-1.html

"II [...] "... there exist certain bodies of spiritual beings, in whose ranks are not only angelic forces, but elementals, and even daemons, who have attained to such Right Understanding of the Universe that they have banded themselves together with the object of becoming Microcosms, and realize that their best means to this end is devotion to the service of the true interests of Mankind. Societies of spiritual forces, organized on these lines, dispose of enormous resources. The Magician who is himself sworn to the service of humanity may count upon the heartiest help of these Orders. Their sincerity may always be assured by putting them to the test of the acceptance of the Law of Thelema. Whoso denies "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law" confesses that he still clings to the conflict in his own nature; he is not, and does not want to be, true to himself. "A fortiori", he will prove false to you.

No Power which is not a microcosm in itself — and even archangels reach rarely to this centre of balance — is fit to treat on an equality with Man. The proper study of mankind is God; with Him is his business; and with Him alone. Some magicians have hired legions of spirits for some special purpose; but it has always proved a serious mistake. The whole idea of exchange is foreign to magick. The dignity of the magician forbids compacts. "The Earth is the Lord's and the fulness thereof" [Psalm 24:1 {A Psalm of David.} "The earth is the LORD'S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein." King James Bible. Source: http://biblehub.com/kjv/psalms/24.htm ]. Source: Magick in Theory and Practice, Part III of Book Four, Chapter XXI Of Black Magick: of the Main Types of the Operations of Magick Art: and of the Powers of the Sphinx. - http://hermetic.com/crowley/book-4/chap21.html

"... according to the Law of Thelema: the true Magick of Horus requires the passionate union of opposites." Source: Magick in Theory and Practice, Part III of Book Four, Appendix III Notes on the nature of the "Astral Plane" - http://hermetic.com/crowley/book-4/app3.html

"Now we get back to the Qabalah — how to make use of it.

Let us suppose that you have been making an invocation, ..." [...] In the course of your operation, you assume your astral body and rise far above the terrestrial atmosphere, ..." [...] "Now there appears [...] a gigantic being." [...] "... of course you must know if he is "one of the believing Jinn." Briefly, is he a friend or an enemy? You accordingly say to him "The word of the Law is Θελημα" [= Thelema] [And if the 'Jinn's' answer demonstrates that it is 'a friend', you can] "... consider yourself satisfied of his good faith, and may proceed to inspect him more closely." Source: Magick Without Tears, Chapter XVII Astral Journey: Example, How to do it, How to Verify your Experience - http://hermetic.com/crowley/magick-without-tears/mwt_17.html


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Los
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"wellreadwellbred" wrote:
Crowley did not treat Magick and Thelema as being separate from each other. In the context of Aleister Crowley's Thelema, Magick is a term used to differentiate the occult from stage magic and is defined as "the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will", including both "mundane" acts of will as well as ritual magic*. It is not strictly necessary to practice ritual techniques to be a Thelemite, as Crowley due to the focus of Thelemic magick on the True Will, stated that "every intentional act is a magickal act.**"

Which is why it's important to define our terms. "Magick" has at least two primary meanings in this context: there's the broad sense, in which "magick" denotes any act whatsoever (under which definition going to the grocery store would count as "magick") and there's the restricted sense, in which "magick" denotes performing occult rituals to obtain coincidental supposed "results" caused by some unknown supposed mechanism (under which definition "charging" a talisman for the purpose of obtaining money would count as "magick").

If we take the first definition and consider the word "magick" to encompass all acts whatsoever, then obviously Thelema necessarily involves performing this kind of "magick" (as does any other activity whatsoever), but if we take the second definition, then no, Thelema does not require the performance of occult rituals of any kind.

If you look at the list of Crowley quotes you've found, you'll notice that none of them identifies Thelema with magick in the limited sense, none of them indicates that magick in the limited sense is required for Thelema, and all of them treat "Thelema" and "magick" as distinct, discrete objects (grammatically, as well as ontologically).


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wellreadwellbred
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"wellreadwellbred" wrote:
Crowley did not treat Magick and Thelema as being separate from each other. In the context of Aleister Crowley's Thelema, Magick is a term used to differentiate the occult from stage magic and is defined as "the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will", including both "mundane" acts of will as well as ritual magic*. It is not strictly necessary to practice ritual techniques to be a Thelemite, as Crowley due to the focus of Thelemic magick on the True Will, stated that "every intentional act is a magickal act.**"
"Los" wrote:
Which is why it's important to define our terms. "Magick" has at least two primary meanings in this context: there's the broad sense, in which "magick" denotes any act whatsoever (under which definition going to the grocery store would count as "magick") and there's the restricted sense, in which "magick" denotes performing occult rituals to obtain coincidental supposed "results" caused by some unknown supposed mechanism (under which definition "charging" a talisman for the purpose of obtaining money would count as "magick").

If we take the first definition and consider the word "magick" to encompass all acts whatsoever, then obviously Thelema necessarily involves performing this kind of "magick" (as does any other activity whatsoever), but if we take the second definition, then no, Thelema does not require the performance of occult rituals of any kind.

If you look at the list of Crowley quotes you've found, you'll notice that none of them identifies Thelema with magick in the limited sense, none of them indicates that magick in the limited sense is required for Thelema, and all of them treat "Thelema" and "magick" as distinct, discrete objects (grammatically, as well as ontologically).

Below, I quote from page 284 and 285 in the Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism (Brill Academic Publishers in 2006), and the scholar Marco Pasi's description of Crowley's mainly two ways of understanding Magick [all emphasis mine]:

"In a general sense, Crowley saw magic as a convenient term to define his doctrine as a whole, including Thelema. More specifically, Crowley understood magic mainly in two ways, both of which are far from uncommon in the context of occultist literature. The first one is mostly pragmatic in nature, and considers magic as a technique for achieving specific goals by means which cannot as yet be explained scientifically, but the results of which can (in theory at least) be tested in an empirical way. [...] Crowley’s most famous definition of magic, which was subsequently adopted by a plethora of authors, is closely related to this idea: “Magick is the Science and Art of causing Changeto occur in conformity with Will” (Magick in Theory and Practice, 1929-1930, xii). [...] The aim of magic [...] is not necessarily material in nature: magic can also be used to obtain communications from spiritual entities, or to explore the “astral plane” by means of the techniques of astral travel that Crowley had learned in the GD. The messages that he received through these magical practices often had a meaning that was specific to his own spiritual evolution (but they could also beon a grander scale and concern the evolution of mankind, as in the case of Liber Legis). By the same token, through these practices Crowley thought he could improve his knowledge of the symbolic network of correspondences, which are supposed to create a unifying link between all the parts of the universe. It is to be noted that, especially in relation to this first, pragmatic sense of magic, Crowley claimed to have a scientific, rational approach - again, something far from uncommon in the context of occultist literature.

The other sense in which Crowley understood magic was certainly seen by him as the most important, although it can be considered to be complementary to the first one. According to this second perspective, magic is not so much oriented towards immediate ends, but rather becomes a way to achieve what Crowley considered the supreme goal of one’s life: spiritual attainment. [...] Traditional ceremonial and sexual magic could be used, in Crowley’s vision, both for immediate purposes and as a means to achieve the ultimate spiritual goal [page 284 and 285]."

In the quote above, Crowley's mainly two ways of understanding Magick, one mostly pragmatic in nature, and one focused on spiritual attainment, are described by the scholar Marco Pasi.

From the quote above we learn that Crowley saw Magick as a convenient term to define his doctrine as a whole, including Thelema, and that his mainly two ways of understanding Magick are far from uncommon in the context of occultist literature. We also learn from it that Crowley's way of understanding Magick as something mostly pragmatic in nature, did not exclude "means which cannot as yet be explained scientifically", or aims "not necessarily material in nature", or "communications from spiritual entities", or "astral travel".  Crowley claiming to have a scientific, rational approach in relation to his just described pragmatic sense of Magick, and that such claims are "far from uncommon in the context of occultist literature", is also something we learn from the quote above.

Crowley's just described pragmatic sense of Magick, is the one which corresponds most to what you Los describe as "...  the broad sense, in which "magick" denotes any act whatsoever ...", when you write "... it's important to define our terms. "Magick" has at least two primary meanings in this context: there's the broad sense, in which "magick" denotes any act whatsoever ...", in your preceding posting in this thread.

In short Los, we learn from the above quote from the scholar Marco Pasi, that Crowley saw Magick as a convenient term to define his doctrine as a whole, including Thelema, and that occultism was an integral part of both of Crowley's mainly two ways of understanding Magick, one mostly pragmatic in nature, and one focused on spiritual attainment.


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christibrany
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Of course Thelema is occult, and deals with magick.  Why? Because magick is there to aid in spiritual development.  Can you see your spirit, your soul with your physical eyes?  I would say no.  Thus it is hidden and occult.  If we are dealing with developing something we can't see it is the occult.  Even if you are talking about your mind or your psyche.  Why else do you think psychologists get into the occult so often? Why else do you think Crowley said the method of science the aim of religion?  I don't see why everyone has to nit pick all the time.  Maybe they are really that bored.


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Anonymous
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"wellreadwellbred" wrote:
In short Los, we learn from the above quote from the scholar Marco Pasi, that Crowley saw Magick as a convenient term to define his doctrine as a whole, including Thelema, and that occultism was an integral part of both of Crowley's mainly two ways of understanding Magick, one mostly pragmatic in nature, and one focused on spiritual attainment.

Wellbread, consider that Crowley wrote Duty (A note on the chief rules of practical conduct to be observed by those who accept the Law of Thelema.)  Note that within Duty there is absolutely no mention of occult ritual or practice in that listing.  The closest thing I can find in there that relates to the occult is point 6. Extend the dominion of your consciousness, and its control of all forces alien to it, to the utmost Do this by the ever stronger and more skilful application of your faculties to the finer, clearer, fuller, and more accurate perception, the better understanding, and the more wisely ordered government, of that external Universe  I mentioned on another thread the similarities in the words used there to his descriptions of refining the "body of light" by "rising on the planes."  However he is not specifically admitting that point number 6 has anything to do with such "astral work" is he?  If he really was discussing "the rising on the planes" exercise then surely he would've mentioned it?

The issue though is the fact that throughout Duty he references phrases from Liber Al to bolster his argument.  That's curious as we know that Liber Al was the consequence of occult practices....or do we?  Nevertheless even if Liber Al was the consequence of occult practices does that necessarily mean that anyone who comes after Crowley needs to follow suit (and practice occult exercises) in order to adhere to the principles of Thelema (i.e. do their True Will)?  I'm not telling you I'm asking you because if the answer is "no" then that may suggest that someone may become "a Master of Magick" without even hearing about magick or occultism.

In fact Crowley wrote,"] I began to see that one might become a Master of the Temple without necessarily knowing any technical Magick or mysticism at all. It is merely a matter of convenience to be able to represent any expression as x + Y = 0. The equation may be solved without words. Many people may go through the ordeals and attain the degrees of the A.'. A.'. without ever hearing that such an Order exists. The universe is, in fact, busy with nothing else, for the relation of the Order to it is that of the man of science to his subject. He writes CaCl2 + H2SO4 = CaSO4 + 2HCl for his own convenience and that of others, but the operation was always in progress independently".

The Confessions (chapter 68 http://www.beyondweird.com/crowley/liber/confess/chapter68.html)

This may all be a very radical or revolutionary concept for many occultists; you mean you don't have to do occult work to do your True Will?.  Imagine that.  Does that mean that occultists are all delusional fools and outcasts who do weird things to make themselves feel special?  No, not necessarily it just means that is how they as individuals may find their True Will whilst the rest of "initiates" don't.  I often wonder, for example how many people in your life are "keen and ..proud" or "royal and.. lofty"?  How many occultists do you know who are "keen and the proud" or "royal and.. lofty"?  Is that not what "initiation" is?

RAWilson wrote that "every cocksucker is a witch and every witch is a cocksucker."  I don't have the citation it was probably from one of the characters in one of his novels.  This expresses the same sort of sentiment.

"christibrany" wrote:
Of course Thelema is occult, and deals with magick.  Why? Because magick is there to aid in spiritual development.  Can you see your spirit, your soul with your physical eyes?  I would say no.  Thus it is hidden and occult.  If we are dealing with developing something we can't see it is the occult.  Even if you are talking about your mind or your psyche.  Why else do you think psychologists get into the occult so often? Why else do you think Crowley said the method of science the aim of religion?  I don't see why everyone has to nit pick all the time.  Maybe they are really that bored.

This is all symbolic.  Psychologists don't "get into the occult so often."  If occult means "hidden" and they try to uncover the "hidden" complexes of their cases then yeah their therapy sessions relate to that which is "occult" but it has nothing necessarily to do with elemental signs or wands and pentacles etc.  For an occultist Dr it may though.


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Tao
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I find myself (dare I say it) agreeing fully with Los and david on this one. There is no occult or magical requirement to finding and doing your true will. One might ask why a person would be interested in following the advice of a fin de seicle occultist and magician -- known for penury, addictive tendencies, and lechery -- if one weren't at least somewhat interested in the potential occult and esoteric wisdom behind his words. One might ask why a person would choose to believe that this "true will" thing actually exists if one had no interest in learning about the occult and magical practices that manifested the "Holy Book" on which the the whole thing is based, and from which it supposedly gains its legitimacy.

However, to actually fulfill the directive of the Law, one need be nothing more than a moderately intelligent child, able to take direction. Liber OZ provides that direction, conveniently worded in single syllables for every comer.


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newneubergOuch2
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“Magick is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in  conformity with Will'/Thelema


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wellreadwellbred
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"newneubergOuch2" wrote:
“Magick is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in  conformity with Will'/Thelema

newneubergOuch2, your above quoted one-liner seems to catch the essence of how Crowley understood Magick, according to how it is described by the scholar Marco Pasi on page 285 and 286 in the Dictionary of Gnosis & Western Esotericism (Brill Academic Publishers in 2006):

"... magic, understood in its widest sense, included for him both the knowledge of the Holy Guardian Angel and [Pasi's emphasis] the process leading to the highest step of initiation." [...] "The ultimate goal of an initiate [...] consists firstly in discovering his/her own true Will, and then in following its lead. It is at this point that magic plays a fundamental role in the system, since it is through magic that this process of discovery and accomplishment can be achieved."


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Shiva
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"newneubergOuch2" wrote:
“Magick is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will'/Thelema

Yes. We see it clearly. Magick is related to Thelema, but it is not the same thing. Sort of like how OTO is related to A.'.A.'., but is not the same thing. The key phrase for examination and endless debate is, "... in conformity with ..." .


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Anonymous
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"Tao" wrote:
However, to actually fulfill the directive of the Law, one need be nothing more than a moderately intelligent child, able to take direction. Liber OZ provides that direction, conveniently worded in single syllables for every comer.

"Intelligence?" What do you mean by that?  Ability to do algebra?  Ability to learn a foreign language?  What has that got to do with True Will?  Why even bring the subject up in this discussion? 


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Tao
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david, you inadvertantly make my point more eloquently than I ever could.


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So you want to throw out magick, but what about mysticism?

0 = (+1) + (-1)   
|+1| + |-1| = 2 

Pick your preferred mode of action


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Anonymous
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"Tao" wrote:
david, you inadvertantly make my point more eloquently than I ever could.

Do I? 


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Anonymous
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"ayino" wrote:
So you want to throw out magick, but what about mysticism?

0 = (+1) + (-1)   
|+1| + |-1| = 2 

Pick your preferred mode of action

Who is this directed at?


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Michael Staley
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Yes, it doesn't add up.


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Anonymous
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"Tao" wrote:
I find myself (dare I say it) agreeing fully with Los and david on this one. There is no occult or magical requirement to finding and doing your true will. One might ask why a person would be interested in following the advice of a fin de seicle occultist and magician -- known for penury, addictive tendencies, and lechery -- if one weren't at least somewhat interested in the potential occult and esoteric wisdom behind his wordsr.

"Lechery"? What is that?  Please define it.

That aside Tao brings up a good point.  Why would we listen to this flawed prophet?  He was human like us not some idealized version of a perfect human being.


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Michael Staley
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"david" wrote:
Why would we listen to this flawed prophet?  He was human like us not some idealized version of a perfect human being.

Not all of us regard him as a prophet. As his mum would have said, he wasn't the messiah, just a very naughty boy.

That aside, the reason why we listen to him is that we find is work of great interest. I doubt though that there's anyone who reagrds him as "some idealized version of a perfect human being".


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Anonymous
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Why would we listen to this flawed prophet?  He was human like us not some idealized version of a perfect human being.

Not all of us regard him as a prophet. As his mum would have said, he wasn't the messiah, just a very naughty boy.

That aside, the reason why we listen to him is that we find is work of great interest. I doubt though that there's anyone who reagrds him as "some idealized version of a perfect human being".

Well yeah.  The point was made as Tao pondered why someone  should listen to Crowley's words.  Does lechery mean "having a dick and a set of balls" by any chance?

Anyway, this subject of Crowley's "flawed character" crops up a lot.  The debate is rather predictable, judge not lest ye be  judged then we have no real evidence what the other enfleshed Aeonic Words were like and then after all  "samadhi" doesn't heal "flawed persomality traits" and so on.  There you go no need for a new thread on the issue.


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jamie barter
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
Not all of us regard him as a prophet. As his mum would have said, he wasn't the messiah, just a very naughty boy.

Like most everything else, it is all going to depend on what sort of a definition we give to the word “prophet”.  I like the one that goes “a prophet is not someone who foresees the future, but someone who is able to read and interpret the present”, which is rather nice & neat, I feel (although I’m not sure who came up with it first – perhaps it may have been Tom Paine?)

"david" wrote:
"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Why would we listen to this flawed prophet?  He was human like us not some idealized version of a perfect human being.

Not all of us regard him as a prophet. As his mum would have said, he wasn't the messiah, just a very naughty boy.

That aside, the reason why we listen to him is that we find is work of great interest. I doubt though that there's anyone who reagrds him as "some idealized version of a perfect human being".

[...] Anyway, this subject of Crowley's "flawed character" crops up a lot.  The debate is rather predictable, judge not lest ye be  judged then we have no real evidence what the other enfleshed Aeonic Words were like and then after all  "samadhi" doesn't heal "flawed persomality traits" and so on.  There you go no need for a new thread on the issue.

One question which I haven’t seen up for discussion, although I am sure it must have been during Lashtal’s long history – even if not having a whole thread to itself, it must have been at least tangentially discussed or referred to a number of times.  And this is, if A.C. has passed beyond the Abyss, into the Supernals, indeed become his “very self of very self”, the Ipsissimus – “As a god goes, I go” - wouldn’t this necessarily need to imply that he would have had to ironed out all of the unbalancing imperfections and neuroses causing disequilibrium in his personality vehicle, the Ruach?

Indeed, arguably this work should have been carried out lower down the Tree as part of the "Outer Order” work in the A.’. A.’. syllabus.  Why is somebody on the one hand able to apparently be a perfect shit & a swine of the first order and on the other also Asar-Un-Nefer, a human being who has supposedly by definition perfected themselves – at least so far as is possible?  Leah Hirsig, who also arguably would have known A.C. better than almost anybody else, described him as being in addition to the Logos an example of the most rotten type of human being, which I wouldn’t exactly call a glowing testimonial to his having a winning personality…

(If it turns out there is no such thread and no one else seems keen to do it, I may be tempted to begin one on this subject myself.)

Norma N Joy Conquest


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"jamie barter" wrote:
One question which I haven’t seen up for discussion, although I am sure it must have been during Lashtal’s long history – even if not having a whole thread to itself, it must have been at least tangentially discussed or referred to a number of times.  And this is, if A.C. has passed beyond the Abyss, into the Supernals, indeed become his “very self of very self”, the Ipsissimus – “As a god goes, I go” - wouldn’t this necessarily need to imply that he would have had to ironed out all of the unbalancing imperfections and neuroses causing disequilibrium in his personality vehicle, the Ruach?

Indeed, arguably this work should have been carried out lower down the Tree as part of the "Outer Order” work in the A.’. A.’. syllabus.  Why is somebody on the one hand able to apparently be a perfect shit & a swine of the first order and on the other also Asar-Un-Nefer, a human being who has supposedly by definition perfected themselves – at least so far as is possible?  Leah Hirsig, who also arguably would have known A.C. better than almost anybody else, described him as being in addition to the Logos an example of the most rotten type of human being, which I wouldn’t exactly call a glowing testimonial to his having a winning personality…

(If it turns out there is no such thread and no one else seems keen to do it, I may be tempted to begin one on this subject myself.)

Norma N Joy Conquest

and Hirsig was perfect and lovely and not prone to projection?  Anyway, yes Jamie this is a notable subject.  One explanation is the multiple personality phenomenon.  No, I don't mean that Crowley was sick and suffered from some "split personality" syndrome but that we all have moments of tolerance and generosity.  When that does happen it's almost like a different personality has risen to "take over" the normal personality.  Colin Wilson goes on about "different I.s  in his book Mysteries.  Regardie also touches on Crowley's different levels and "personalities" in his Eye in the triangle.   This relates to the question on how do we know who an "initiate" is?  By their behaviour?  By how often they smile?  By how many mistakes they make in their job?  By their mathematical competence?  By how creative they are?  By their grammar, command of the English language and level of reading comprehension?  Certainly not that last point, surely?.


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Anonymous
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"david" wrote:
"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Why would we listen to this flawed prophet?  He was human like us not some idealized version of a perfect human being.

Not all of us regard him as a prophet. As his mum would have said, he wasn't the messiah, just a very naughty boy.

That aside, the reason why we listen to him is that we find is work of great interest. I doubt though that there's anyone who reagrds him as "some idealized version of a perfect human being".

Well yeah.  The point was made as Tao pondered why someone  should listen to Crowley's words.  Does lechery mean "having a dick and a set of balls" by any chance?

noun: lechery; plural noun: lecheries
excessive or offensive sexual desire; lustfulness."the vice of lechery"

synonyms: lust, lustfulness, licentiousness, lasciviousness, lewdness, salaciousness, libertinism, libidinousness, debauchery, dissoluteness, wantonness, intemperance, dissipation, degeneracy, depravity, impurity, unchastity, immorality, looseness, immodesty;promiscuity, carnality, womanizing, rakishness; sensuality, sensualness, sexual desire, desire, sexual appetite, libido;informalrandiness, horniness, raunchiness, the hots, leching; rareconcupiscence, lubricity, salacity 

antonyms: chastity

Interesting isn't it?  Is all of the above somehow "evil"?

Be strong, o man! lust, enjoy all things of sense and rapture: fear not that any God shall deny thee for this


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Michael Staley
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Who in this thread has said or even suggested that lechery is evil, or even "somehow" evil?


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Anonymous
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
Who in this thread has said or even suggested that lechery is evil, or even "somehow" evil?

Thanks for pointing out that the term "evil" has to be defined at least as "unbalanced" and that which is undesirable. Hope that helps. 


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Michael Staley
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"david" wrote:
Thanks for pointing out that the term "evil" has to be defined at least as "unbalanced" and that which is undesirable.

I didn't, but don't mention it.

"david" wrote:
Hope that helps.

No, nothing seems to help when it comes to deciphering what you are going on about.


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Hamal
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Hope that helps.

No, nothing seems to help when it comes to deciphering what you are going on about.

OMG thank you for the most hearty laugh I've had this week Michael... you are so right!  ;D

😀
Hamal


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Anonymous
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"Hamal" wrote:
"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Hope that helps.

No, nothing seems to help when it comes to deciphering what you are going on about.

OMG thank you for the most hearty laugh I've had this week Michael... you are so right!  ;D

😀
Hamal

Michael was actually the one speaking in riddles (it didn't seem to be a genuine contribution to the thread either unfortunately as he has so much more to give)

"Michael Staley" wrote:
Who in this thread has said or even suggested that lechery is evil, or even "somehow" evil?

unless, that is, he genuinely wasn't following the thread and really did want me to fill him in about which reply I was responding to.  Sorry, I don't do baby sitting.  I encourage independent thought and self-reliance.


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steve_wilson
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My thoughts on this are that as a matter of fact, the proclamation of the Law of Thelema took place via the reception of Liber Al, a work that prescribes magical ceremonies and feasts amongst other things, and was received by occult means.

However, even Crowley himself seems at times to regret this, and reminds us that Nuit and Hadit etc should not be seen as literal Egyptian deities. If the Law had been received while playing Chess or climbing a mountain, who knows what form it would have taken?

In total, I think that Magick is one way to discover pure well, but not the only way, although Crowley was apt to incorporate them (Meditation for example). So Thelema is not Magick, but the Thelemite can profit from its practice.


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herupakraath
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"steve_wilson" wrote:
My thoughts on this are that as a matter of fact, the proclamation of the Law of Thelema took place via the reception of Liber Al, a work that prescribes magical ceremonies and feasts amongst other things, and was received by occult means.

However, even Crowley himself seems at times to regret this, and reminds us that Nuit and Hadit etc should not be seen as literal Egyptian deities. If the Law had been received while playing Chess or climbing a mountain, who knows what form it would have taken?

A slight correction (or maybe more than slight); Crowley states the god names in the BOTL are literary conveniences, and not to be confused with ancient Egyptian gods; that doesn't mean he believed are not gods in some form or another.


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herupakraath
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Why would we listen to this flawed prophet?  He was human like us not some idealized version of a perfect human being.

Not all of us regard him as a prophet. As his mum would have said, he wasn't the messiah, just a very naughty boy.

LOL. Whatever the work requires.


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Tao
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"david" wrote:
"Lechery"? What is that?  Please define it.

http://bit.ly/1zWY7Zn

But, then again, you didn't really need that, did you? Seeing as you encourage self-reliance so heartily.


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Anonymous
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"Tao" wrote:
"david" wrote:
"Lechery"? What is that?  Please define it.

http://bit.ly/1zWY7Zn

But, then again, you didn't really need that, did you? Seeing as you encourage self-reliance so heartily.

Could you give us a specific example(s) of Crowley's "lechery" in action or are you just going by "the wickedest man in the world" meme?


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Michael Staley
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"david" wrote:
Could you give us a specific example(s) of Crowley's "lechery" in action or are you just going by "the wickedest man in the world" meme?

Are you for real?

My online dictionary defines lechery as "lustful and promiscuous sexual indulgence". There are many, many examples of that, as a perusal of, for example, Crowley's diaries or The Confessions will demonstrate, never mind the numerous biographies. During the years in Berlin in the early 1930s, for instance, he was a rampant bisexual, and examples of this were cited in the talk by William Thirteen at Treadwells recently. I didn't take notes, but doubtless William would be pleased to cite examples if you ask him.

Anybody acquainted with Crowley's life in even the sketchiest detail is aware of this. I'm astonished that you're not.


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Anonymous
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Could you give us a specific example(s) of Crowley's "lechery" in action or are you just going by "the wickedest man in the world" meme?

Are you for real?

My online dictionary defines lechery as "lustful and promiscuous sexual indulgence". There are many, many examples of that, as a perusal of, for example, Crowley's diaries or The Confessions will demonstrate, never mind the numerous biographies. During the years in Berlin in the early 1930s, for instance, he was a rampant bisexual, and examples of this were cited in the talk by William Thirteen at Treadwells recently. I didn't take notes, but doubtless William would be pleased to cite examples if you ask him.

Anybody acquainted with Crowley's life in even the sketchiest detail is aware of this. I'm astonished that you're not.

After perusing the definitions of  lechery there is an aspect which holds that it means coming on strong to someone who isn't attracted to you i.e. making someone else uncomfortable and ignoring the "no means no."  Well yeah I'd say that that is at odds with the Law of Thelema as it is an attempt to restrict another's will but whether "the wickedest man in the world" ever did that I don't know.

There does seem to be  a lot of ideas about what "lechery" is though hence my plea for a definition which was unfortunately misunderstood .  Does it sometimes have a moralistic sting to it like the word "smut"?  How is the term used?  Michael Stipe of REM for example said, after he came out that he was an" equal opportunity lech."  No one was really offended by that as far as I know because he is commonly held to be an example of a nice guy who has a social conscience etc .

There's a problem though.  If we roll with the definition you picked out of the hat,"lustful and promiscuous sexual indulgence" well if that is somehow at odds with someone's True Will then we'd better start re-editing/republishing Liber Al because we're going to have to take out the following;

Be strong, o man! lust, enjoy all things of sense and rapture: fear not that any God shall deny thee for this and Also, take your fill and will of love as ye will, when, where and with whom ye will! But always unto me.


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jamie barter
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"david" wrote:
"jamie barter" wrote:
One question which I haven’t seen up for discussion, although I am sure it must have been during Lashtal’s long history – even if not having a whole thread to itself, it must have been at least tangentially discussed or referred to a number of times.  And this is, if A.C. has passed beyond the Abyss, into the Supernals, indeed become his “very self of very self”, the Ipsissimus – “As a god goes, I go” - wouldn’t this necessarily need to imply that he would have had to ironed out all of the unbalancing imperfections and neuroses causing disequilibrium in his personality vehicle, the Ruach?

Indeed, arguably this work should have been carried out lower down the Tree as part of the "Outer Order” work in the A.’. A.’. syllabus.  Why is somebody on the one hand able to apparently be a perfect shit & a swine of the first order and on the other also Asar-Un-Nefer, a human being who has supposedly by definition perfected themselves – at least so far as is possible?  Leah Hirsig, who also arguably would have known A.C. better than almost anybody else, described him as being in addition to the Logos an example of the most rotten type of human being, which I wouldn’t exactly call a glowing testimonial to his having a winning personality…

(If it turns out there is no such thread and no one else seems keen to do it, I may be tempted to begin one on this subject myself.)

Norma N Joy Conquest

and Hirsig was perfect and lovely and not prone to projection?  Anyway, yes Jamie this is a notable subject.  One explanation is the multiple personality phenomenon.  No, I don't mean that Crowley was sick and suffered from some "split personality" syndrome but that we all have moments of tolerance and generosity.  When that does happen it's almost like a different personality has risen to "take over" the normal personality.  Colin Wilson goes on about "different I.s  in his book Mysteries.  Regardie also touches on Crowley's different levels and "personalities" in his Eye in the triangle.   [...]

I take your oblique suggestion that Leah Hirsig could well have been influenced by her vision of “the demon Crowley”.  But there is perhaps more to it than that – if she was an isolated case, maybe…

However there are lots of other documented cases of where his behaviour has not – how shall I put it – “come up to expectations”.  His behaviour towards his friends meant that they all deserted him as apparently Louis Wilkinson was the only one who stood by him at the end.  Of his acolytes, only Raoul Loveday appeared to have escaped from ‘abhorrent treatment’ unscathed.

You don’t seem to have addressed my main question, however, although I did say it may be best to have a new thread concentrating on the topic.  (That said I’m not too clear what this one is about!...

: N Joy )


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ignant666
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Wasn't AC's standard excuse for his continued generally selfish and manipulative behavior despite his self-annointed status as "a hell of a holy guru" that at a certain point, the post-enlightenment adept is more or less "spit out" back down the Tree to roost where the base "preferences" of the current incarnation are best suited? Despite lack of any inclination to do one thing as opposed to another, the Master acts in the mundane sphere according to the base "preferences" of the meat-vehicle, not to (now-fulfilled in union with the Universe) Will. I recall this idea coming up quite often but am unable to produce quotations in support before continued application of caffeine.


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"jamie barter" wrote:
You don’t seem to have addressed my main question, however,

I did in Reply #19 but hold on I will try and elaborate.


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actually on second thoughts I can't add to it other than to say you are asking why God made the TOL that way. 


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Los
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"david" wrote:
"Tao" wrote:
I find myself (dare I say it) agreeing fully with Los and david on this one. There is no occult or magical requirement to finding and doing your true will. One might ask why a person would be interested in following the advice of a fin de seicle occultist and magician -- known for penury, addictive tendencies, and lechery -- if one weren't at least somewhat interested in the potential occult and esoteric wisdom behind his wordsr.

"Lechery"? What is that?  Please define it.

That aside Tao brings up a good point.  Why would we listen to this flawed prophet?  He was human like us not some idealized version of a perfect human being.

What the hell, David?

This thread -- like nearly all of your threads, I might add -- has gone completely off the rails.

Tao's question was "One might ask why a person would be interested in following the advice of a fin de seicle occultist and magician -- known for penury, addictive tendencies, and lechery -- if one weren't at least somewhat interested in the potential occult and esoteric wisdom behind his wordsr."...implying that she thinks the main reason most people are (or even should be) interested in Crowley is the potential for "occult and esoteric wisdom," and she therefore wonders why someone not interested in "occult and esoteric wisdom" would be interested in Crowley.

There's a pretty simple answer to that question, and that answer is that Tao's question takes as an unspoken assumption that "occult and esoteric wisdom" is necessarily supernatural in nature. It's not. A non-supernaturalist might very well be interested in the wisdom that Crowley has to offer, and that non-supernaturalist might be even more interested in the wisdom of Thelema, which is a non-supernatural system.

In the same way that Thelema has nothing to do with supernaturalism and has nothing to do with any supernatural beliefs that Crowley might or might not have held, it has nothing to do with Crowley's sex life, however we may wish to characterize it.

It is unnecessary to spend a page and a half nitpicking over the definition of "lechery," which is entirely unrelated to the topic at hand.


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Anonymous
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"Los" wrote:
What the hell, David?

This thread -- like nearly all of your threads, I might add -- has gone completely off the rails.

Well the lechery sub-thread had some good points.

"Los" wrote:
Tao's question was "One might ask why a person would be interested in following the advice of a fin de seicle occultist and magician -- known for penury, addictive tendencies, and lechery -- if one weren't at least somewhat interested in the potential occult and esoteric wisdom behind his words."...implying that she thinks the main reason most people are (or even should be) interested in Crowley is the potential for "occult and esoteric wisdom," and she therefore wonders why someone not interested in "occult and esoteric wisdom" would be interested in Crowley.

Ok.  I see that now.

"Los" wrote:
There's a pretty simple answer to that question, and that answer is that Tao's question takes as an unspoken assumption that "occult and esoteric wisdom" is necessarily supernatural in nature. It's not. A non-supernaturalist might very well be interested in the wisdom that Crowley has to offer, and that non-supernaturalist might be even more interested in the wisdom of Thelema, which is a non-supernatural system.

As a system yes it is non-supernaturalist as I said in Reply #4 consider that Crowley wrote Duty (A note on the chief rules of practical conduct to be observed by those who accept the Law of Thelema.)  Note that within Duty there is absolutely no mention of occult ritual or practice in that listing.  The closest thing I can find in there that relates to the occult is point 6. Extend the dominion of your consciousness, and its control of all forces alien to it, to the utmost Do this by the ever stronger and more skilful application of your faculties to the finer, clearer, fuller, and more accurate perception, the better understanding, and the more wisely ordered government, of that external Universe  I mentioned on another thread the similarities in the words used there to his descriptions of refining the "body of light" by "rising on the planes."  However he is not specifically admitting that point number 6 has anything to do with such "astral work" is he?  If he really was discussing "the rising on the planes" exercise then surely he would've mentioned it?


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Tao
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"Los" wrote:
There's a pretty simple answer to that question, and that answer is that Tao's question takes as an unspoken assumption that "occult and esoteric wisdom" is necessarily supernatural in nature. It's not. A non-supernaturalist might very well be interested in the wisdom that Crowley has to offer, and that non-supernaturalist might be even more interested in the wisdom of Thelema, which is a non-supernatural system.

You might infer some unspoken assumption regarding supernaturalism if that makes your argument easier but Tao didn't imply one. This thread is not about supernaturalism, nor was my reply (though your tendency to jump to that assumption says much about your recent mindset). I use occult and esoteric in their dictionary sense of "hidden" or "secret". Occult and esoteric wisdom from the Western magical tradition at the very least influenced and, if taken at face value, created Liber Legis. There is nothing necessarily supernatural in that statement. Nor is there anything that requires a practitioner of the result (Thelema) to be versed in the cause (Magick).

"Los" wrote:
It is unnecessary to spend a page and a half nitpicking over the definition of "lechery," which is entirely unrelated to the topic at hand.

Agreed.


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Los
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"Tao" wrote:
You might infer some unspoken assumption regarding supernaturalism if that makes your argument easier but Tao didn't imply one. This thread is not about supernaturalism, nor was my reply (though your tendency to jump to that assumption says much about your recent mindset). I use occult and esoteric in their dictionary sense of "hidden" or "secret". Occult and esoteric wisdom from the Western magical tradition at the very least influenced and, if taken at face value, created Liber Legis. There is nothing necessarily supernatural in that statement. Nor is there anything that requires a practitioner of the result (Thelema) to be versed in the cause (Magick).

Oh, ok. Well, in that case, there's no contradiction in a non-supernaturalist looking for hidden ("occult") wisdom. Nor is there any contradiction in someone not interested in the "occult" -- in the sense of a collection of rituals and doctrines -- seeking out deep wisdom that might be described as "occult" -- in the sense of being hidden, uncommon, or not well known. 

As ever, it's not the words that are important but the meaning referred to by the words.


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Tao
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Indeed. Perhaps if you reread my post with the close eye you admonished david to use, you'll notice I never suggested a contradiction. I merely wondered why a person not interested in occult matters (the Magick of the thread's title) would choose to follow the life-advice (Thelema sans magick) of said poverty-stricken drug-addicted lech.

You remain the only participant in this conversation hung up on "supernaturalism" in what seems to be some strange attempt to undercut my agreement with you. You can't escape it Los old friend: we are on the same page, you and I.


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Anonymous
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"Tao" wrote:
poverty-stricken drug-addicted lech.

Not that I want to start a sub thread but you make him sound like some random, disconnected, uneducated, half-sane "down and out" who begs outside train stations.  How about "former heir to a brewery fortune, published author, former Cambridge (graduate?) University attendee with lots of friends and contacts within the establishment (Masonic or otherwise.)"  Mozart ended his life in poverty.  How about that?  Also on the issue of drug use, well Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Thomas de Quincey, Lord Byron, John Keats, and Percy Shelley were no strangers to weed or opiates.  Now, why on earth would anyone want to check out their works of art?  False analogy because they weren't spiritual gurus?  Not really it's all about creativity.

Furthermore if someone hasn't got enough sound mental application not to judge books by their covers then hey I guesse they fail the entry level Thelema "IQ" test don't they?


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Tao
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"david" wrote:
Not that I want to start a sub thread but you make him sound like some random, disconnected, uneducated, half-sane "down and out" who begs outside train stations.

Is that what you see when you read this? What causes you to feel this way?

"david" wrote:
How about "former heir to a brewery fortune, published author, former Cambridge (graduate?) University attendee with lots of friends and contacts within the establishment (Masonic or otherwise.)"

I take it by your mentioning them that these items rank high on your list of merits in a life? I, for one, could care less about the size or source of one's inheritance, the exclusive college one's father's name managed to get one into, or the attendant establishment contacts that said father, university, and wealth afforded one when evaluating one's life worth. My metric tends to focus exclusively on what one makes of the materials one is given.

"david" wrote:
Mozart ended his life in poverty.  How about that?

 
No he didn't. He was in debt to his friend and fellow mason Johann Michael von Puchberg by virtue of living in a large Vienna apartment and keeping his own horse and carriage. He had a steady base income as chamber composer to Emperor Joseph II which was not large enough to afford his lifestyle. In the final year of his life, he had begun to make enough of an income from other commissions to begin paying off the debt. Had illness not struck him down at age 35, he would have been no worse off than any other musician with a mortgage on a house larger than he could actually afford.

"david" wrote:
Also on the issue of drug use, well Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Thomas de Quincey, Lord Byron, John Keats, and Percy Shelley were no strangers to weed or opiates.  Now, why on earth would anyone want to check out their works of art?  False analogy because they weren't spiritual gurus?  Not really it's all about creativity.

Shall we add William S. Burroughs, Amy Winehouse, Heath Ledger, and Lindsay Lohan to the list? False analogy indeed. This is a thread about Thelema and Magick, not works of art. If any of those gents had seen fit to publish some sort of life-manual along the lines of "Duty" or "Liber OZ", or to spearhead a society of moral training along the lines of the O.T.O., you can be sure a critical analysis of the method and outcome of their own lives would be in order.


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Anonymous
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"Tao" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Not that I want to start a sub thread but you make him sound like some random, disconnected, uneducated, half-sane "down and out" who begs outside train stations.

Is that what you see when you read this? What causes you to feel this way?

Poverty stricken letch and addict?.  A pariah, right?  Take the term "pariah" and analyse the sub sets of that term.  You with me?  Some random, disconnected, uneducated, half-sane "down and out" who begs outside train stations ; that's a pariah also.  By the way wasn't his "addictive" drug use medicinal?  He had bronchitis?

"Tao" wrote:
"david" wrote:
How about "former heir to a brewery fortune, published author, former Cambridge (graduate?) University attendee with lots of friends and contacts within the establishment (Masonic or otherwise.)"

I take it by your mentioning them that these items rank high on your list of merits in a life? I, for one, could care less about the size or source of one's inheritance, the exclusive college one's father's name managed to get one into, or the attendant establishment contacts that said father, university, and wealth afforded one when evaluating one's life worth. My metric tends to focus exclusively on what one makes of the materials one is given.

No, you were the one who initially brought people's judgements about social standing into the discussion.  It's got nothing to do whether  I am a delusional snob or not.  Wait, you're joking , right?

"Tao" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Mozart ended his life in poverty.  How about that?

 
No he didn't. He was in debt to his friend and fellow mason Johann Michael von Puchberg

etc etc ok I'll have to dig out some other example of a poverty stricken person who "made their mark" on the world won't I?  Van Gough? Dosteovsky? John Lee Hooker? Mark E Smith?  Anyone want to help me out here? Whatever.. Actually I got it; William Blake!! Aha! Didn't he also pre-empt AC with, "Do what you will," develop a philosophy and attempt to affect human conduct?  Checkmate dear.

"Tao" wrote:
Shall we add William S. Burroughs, Amy Winehouse, Heath Ledger, and Lindsay Lohan to the list? False analogy indeed. This is a thread about Thelema and Magick, not works of art. If any of those gents had seen fit to publish some sort of life-manual along the lines of "Duty" or "Liber OZ", or to spearhead a society of moral training along the lines of the O.T.O., you can be sure a critical analysis of the method and outcome of their own lives would be in order.

Thelema and Magick.  Duty and Liber Oz?  Ok fair enough I suppose manuals of proposed conduct are not exactly poems or songs but err see my Blake reference above........and you failed to respond to my final most important point...never mind  ;"if someone judges books by their covers then hey I guesse they fail the entry level Thelema "IQ" test don't they?"

Finally,was his addiction, lechery and poverty perennial?  You're thinking is too rigid imo.


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Michael Staley
(@michael-staley)
MANIO - it's all in the egg
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 4223
 
"david" wrote:
By the way wasn't his "addictive" drug use medicinal?

No. Read, for instance, the Cefalu diary included in The Magical Record of the Beast 666, where he was taking liberal doses of heroin and cocaine.


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Shiva
(@shiva)
Not a Rajah
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 6474
 
"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
By the way wasn't his "addictive" drug use medicinal?

No. Read, for instance, the Cefalu diary included in The Magical Record of the Beast 666, where he was taking liberal doses of heroin and cocaine.

Well, actually, it seems like it was originally started with the docs who prescribed both heroin and cocaine (I believe] to counter his asthma. So maybe his usage later (at Cefalu and then for the rest of his life) wasn't for asthma, but merely to sustain an addiction that was already in place - and of a "medical" origin.

They (the docs) are still doing this, and we (USA) have this massive codeine-vicodan-morphine-oxycontin addiction problem, and people are turning to black market heroin because the medical boards are getting tough on "medically-made" addicts. The latest statistics show that "medical" addiction is getting less, and black-market heroin addiction is skyrocketing.

By the way, in 1910 (Crowley's prime time), one could walk into any drugstore and there'd be a big jar of heroin tablets on the counter, labelled "cough remedy." The cost? 10 cents per tab. The prescription: None - there was no such thing, in a legal sense.


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ignant666
(@ignant666)
Elderly American druggie
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 3841
 

Shiva is of course dead right here; as of 1910 in the US the sole "drug law" in effect was the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906, which imposed a new requirement that if a medication contained for example heroin or cocaine, it had to say so on the label, identify the percentage of heroin or whatever, and include only pure high-quality heroin.
Every pharmacy stocked and sold over the counter every now-illicit drug as yet invented.
Drug laws are very historically recent. I used to regularly blow students' minds on the first day of a "drugs and society" college class i taught for years by pointing out that when my late father was born in 1930, alcohol was illegal, and cannabis legal, in the US.
I think it is fair to say that AC's drug use while not clearly contrary to good medical practice of the time, certainly included awareness of recreational and, um, libational qualities of many substances, including cannabis and peyote, where there was limited medical use even then for the former and none whatever for the latter. Has AC's "The Cactus" essay on peyote ever seen the light of day?


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Michael Staley
(@michael-staley)
MANIO - it's all in the egg
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 4223
 
"Shiva" wrote:
Well, actually, it seems like it was originally started with the docs who prescribed both heroin and cocaine (I believe] to counter his asthma. So maybe his usage later (at Cefalu and then for the rest of his life) wasn't for asthma, but merely to sustain an addiction that was already in place - and of a "medical" origin.

Yes, of course I agree with you here, Shiva. However, that was not david's question. He suggested that the use of the "addictive" drugs was medicinal. Whilst he first started taking these drugs for medical reasons, this developed into a massive habit, and Crowley became a drug addict for the rest of his life.


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Tao
 Tao
(@tao)
Member
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 316
 
"david" wrote:
Poverty stricken letch and addict?.  A pariah, right?  Take the term "pariah" and analyse the sub sets of that term.  You with me?

Nope. Not with you in the slightest. The use of the term "pariah" by you is a judgement of character of a kind with "wickedest man in the world". It is not a view of the man Crowley that I share. Nor is it particularly germane to the topic at hand though, I must say, very indicative of the judgmental voice that underlies quite a bit of your writing.

"david" wrote:
No, you were the one who initially brought people's judgements about social standing into the discussion.

Doesn't sound like something I'd do. Seems right out of character, in fact. Would you mind providing a citation?

"david" wrote:
Wait, you're joking , right?

When chatting with you, david, it's difficult to tell.

"david" wrote:
"Tao" wrote:
"david" wrote:
Mozart ended his life in poverty.  How about that?

 
No he didn't. He was in debt to his friend and fellow mason Johann Michael von Puchberg

etc etc ok I'll have to dig out some other example of a poverty stricken person who "made their mark" on the world won't I?  Van Gough? Dosteovsky? John Lee Hooker? Mark E Smith?  Anyone want to help me out here? Whatever.. Actually I got it; William Blake!! Aha! Didn't he also pre-empt AC with, "Do what you will," develop a philosophy and attempt to affect human conduct?  Checkmate dear.

What game are you playing where this incoherent explosion of irrationalities constitutes a checkmate? Calvinball?

"david" wrote:
Thelema and Magick.  Duty and Liber Oz?  Ok fair enough I suppose manuals of proposed conduct are not exactly poems or songs but err see my Blake reference above........and you failed to respond to my final most important point...never mind  ;"if someone judges books by their covers then hey I guesse they fail the entry level Thelema "IQ" test don't they?"

Finally,was his addiction, lechery and poverty perennial?  You're thinking is too rigid imo.

And the rambling continues.

david, I realize you feel the need to fence with me because I keep pointing out to you the flaws in your arguments and I'm happy to keep playing that game, but please, while he still holds out something of a branch to your flailing self, do yourself a favor and take Los's advice. Go back and actually read the response I posted in which I fully agreed with the two of you on the original topic of this thread. The points you are attempting to nitpick me apart with are not at issue in that response and the way you are going about it shows that you aren't really clear on what I wrote.

Reading comprehension is key to a long and fulfilling life on internet message boards.


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