What does "BABALON" have to do with "Thelema"?
Has your question "What does Babalon have to do with Thelema?" been answered, Ignant?
I find this subject interesting, worthy of more discussion.
Certainly, i think there is more there than has been discussed, and many points above unanswered.
My position is, i think, clear: Babalon is one of the many emanations of The Demon Crowley's emotional/psychological issues around Christianity (in one of its most extreme manifestations, the Plymouth Brethren), sexuality, and a sort of blasphemic-erotic complex (a la Bataille), and is not an essential part of Thelema.
Babalon overlaps with the Scarlet Woman mentioned in AL, and, it is said, with Nuit. But isn't it correct that the Beast and Scarlet Woman mentioned in AL are defunct titles that refer to long-dead people? Or are some seeking to model their Paths on the advice offered to these aeonic officers?
I think the Beast and Babalon are 'offices' ie titles that anyone can hold if they are 'performing' 😉 appropriately.
Fair enough, but why would anyone want to do this?
I've been with "Scarlet Women", and while often good fun in the short term, they leave a lot to be desired in even the medium term.
And i can't imagine why anyone would aspire to be "The Beast 666"- just because an unusually neurotic early 20th century author and mountain-climber found this to be his Will can't imply that it's anyone else's Will, can it?
Or if if someone would argue this being "The Beast 666" is some sort of "Universal Will" of the New Aeon, or "UW" of males, or of male initiates, or something, i would dearly like to hear why.
I have never wanted to 'assume' said 'office' so I couldn't answer. I think when I have heard people talking about it it seemed like juvenile posturing more than anything. Sort of like that reddit(?) thing posted earlier.
and Salome, Delilah and Jezebel ?
I think the Beast and Babalon are ‘offices’ ie titles that anyone can hold if they are ‘performing’ appropriately.
Babalon is not an office, though (with or without any involvement from Ricky Gervais). You presumably mean Scarlet Woman? Motta was quite keen on this idea that these were titles as well, in fact didn't he describe himself as "The Beast 666" succeeding in this context, somewhere (perhaps in a letter to Germer or some proclamation in one of his organs)?
I agree... You are making some very good points, mon brave! More lead to your pencil! (As it were)
and Salome, Delilah and Jezebel?
These were more femmes fatales weren't they? Though there is a Venn diagram that could be drawn where the circles of 'Scarlet Women' and 'femmes fatales' intersect with one another. Give it a try!
All i can say is, you can have your Scarlet Women, Babalons, Salomes, Delilahs, and Jezebels.
Good fun on Friday and Saturday nights, fine, but what about Monday through Thursday?
I used to be a big fan of the philosophy of "Live each moment as if it were your last- what if you get run over by a bus in the morning?", until i noticed i kept not getting run over by a bus, often for years at a time.
Venn diagram ?
maybe the logicians and figureaticians can help
Veve is incarnating
in the noosphere
a graphic novel
for christian children
on a new interpretation
with a shout out
Jacques de Molay
is in the works
oh and possibly ego of man destroyed as the scarlet woman and lucky 666 shine
Ig: I’ve been with “Scarlet Women”, and while often good fun in the short term, they leave a lot to be desired in even the medium term.
AC said there were three types of women (Isis, Osiris, Horus)(MWTears). I believe you are describing the Horus type. Horus, Hoorus, Whorus. These ladies, he said, are interested only in themselves. Only the Osiris type is good for the long haul.
These Horus women are sparkling, amazing, usually beautiful, and they have some cosmic internet connection with ecstasy (the state, not the medicine). The trouble is, they're unstable and unreliable. Every one of them that I have known (intimately or platonickly - doesn't matter which) passed on away from their superficial interest in The Path, and there was always what we might call a "vampire" involved in their passing.
They passed on to a new situation, which (from my point of view, and ultimately theirs as well) was absolutely dreadful. I would list a few, with details of "dreadful" situations, but I don't want to scare the kids or frighten the ladies.
jb: Motta was quite keen on this idea that these were titles as well ...
Motta, who? Oh, him. I don't accept his claims or his concepts. It's not that he's wrong, just that there's no respect involved.
Ig: All i can say is, you can have your Scarlet Women, Babalons, Salomes, Delilahs, and Jezebels.
I don't care if it gets real hairy,
'long as I got my virgin Mary
glued to the dashboard of my car ...
According to AC, only the Osiris type is suitable for a long-term lease.
We know that AC was God-obsessed and God fixated.
Sex-addiction, what is that anyway? If AC was afraid of long term intimate relationships then where's the evidence? He tried marriage but his wife became even more wacko and it failed. He had long term partners, right? Was he really on the run from long-term intimate relationships?
Enjoying this thread ( especially the contributions of @belmurru and @ignant666 ) and would recall Liber XXV. In the 1929 version Babalon is attributed to the West and paired with Therion as Nuit is paired with Hadit. In the 1913 version she is attributed to the North which the place of Nuit in the 1929 version. This lends support to AC's perception of a relationship between the two. However, whether this was personal to him or to be understood as Thelemic "Theogony" is less clear.
Ignant, I asked Jim Eshelman if he had any observations about the Unicursal Hexagram with a rose in the middle having become the de facto symbol of Thelema. I opined that it must have happened in the 70s or even 80s, with that extra card in the Thoth Tarot of the time. I didn’t see it as jewelry, in silver, until ’93 or ’94, in either Cambridge MA or Greenwich Village, NYC respectively (can’t remember which was first, I bought both of them, I would guess it was Cambridge).
He responded that it was a good question, and he supposes that people saw it in either Book of Thoth or the Tarot, and it looked unique and cool and was associated exclusively with Crowley, so they adopted it and it became popular. This is “cultural ignorance”, because it actually predates Crowley and is where he got it, in a Golden Dawn 4=7 paper.
That the Tarot contributed to the popularization was my thought too which I posted on the first page. Nice to see the thought shared with good company including as ignant describes an actual genuine credentialed A.'.A.'.er. Wowzers.
I put the rising popularity of the unicursal hexagram down to use of it as a “secondary sign” by the (c)OTO
Where were they using it as a secondary sign?
And yes, Liber XXV. More Lies. IT does reinforce the role of Babalon in Crowley's Thelema.
Reminded me of the Magick Circle.
@mal oh yes, The Circle - very nice find!
Those are good observations.
Book of Lies
Magick in Theory and Practice.
The Star Ruby "matures" between circa 1912 and 1920-something. The oppositions of the latter are couplings, Beast-Babalon, Nuit-Hadit. Therion-Babalon are the earthly representatives of the cosmic pair Hadit-Nuit. They have become a gnostic syzygy.
But the earlier iteration has a different opposition or balance, Chaos-Eros, Babalon-Psyche. This is male-male female-female. It seems like Babalon and Psyche, and Chaos and Eros, are being equated, rather than paired as a couple.
Also, AC was not yet Therion in 1912. I can’t recall offhand when this name enters the stream, at least not what use it might have had before his 9=2 in 1916. Also remember that he didn’t know how to spell it to make 666 until the Samuel bar Aiwaz letter of 1918.
Another observation I’d make is that “eros” seems to be the better word for what Thelemites mean by “love”, than the hyper-Christian “agape”. I don’t know that Thelemites have the power, at least yet, to change agape to mean anything other than “charity”, “hospitality”, the kind of “love” extended to all as human beings or God’s children, if you will.
That Crowley used eros here suggests to me that he thought the same at the time, that the cosmic love of Chaos was Eros. Agape had not entered the picture, since 93 itself had not entered the pictue as a key number yet (despite the valuation of thelema, which I imagine he did, although it was an orphan until the Aiwaz letter).
Since we're on the Subject, maybe you'd like to grab a screenshot of Babalon as painted unter the title, "Binah," by my wife, code-named Kali.
Since we're on the Subject, maybe you'd like to grab a screenshot of Babalon as painted under the title, "Binah," by my wife, code-named Kali.
I have now made three attempts to link this pic and display it. As often is the case, the technology or the technician is not functioning properly. If this final-attempt post fails to perform, send me an email for your free copy. It's pretty wild, I guarantee.
That's three different codes. I hope one of them materializes, 'cause I'm done here now!
Ivy's Art is amazing !
Will send email and hoping you got the one earlier .
Is there a link as to where to buy her book ?
Tiger, psssst, the secret picture of Babalon Unveiled is coming your way ... whenever I can find that durn email account. Don't hold your breath, but breathe easy - it'll get to you.
Yeah, that book, the one containing Binah, is one of those over-expensive editions in full color with shiny paper. Not many people realize it is a 7=4 Thesis, riding on the 4th ray of Art, Psychology, and Shamanism (not as a library research project, but based on having been there, big time, in personal experience). It can be viewed, previewed, or acquired at:
P.S. For those interested in these artistic renderings, they can also be viewed for free, online at:
The book contains some later works that do not appear on the website, but essentially the whole bag is online.
The Art is AMAZING !!!
Does anyone here get that very powerful feeling, a craving for knowledge, an attraction for the dark mysteries, it can be undeniable and give you a sense of desire for knowledge, a list.
Well that, to me, is Babalon. Babylon is truth in this respect and what does thou do with our lady Babylon-truth? Dance.
Nietszche Zarathustra helped me here.
One must dance with our lady to reveal her mysteries, to unravel her truth, one doesn't steal knowledge one becomes through dance or will.
But lady truth/Babylon has a flipside. As AC said "Magick is like a jealous lover" she takes more and more as you squeeze every last drop (Love under will)
The god Dionysus is seen with two faces represents the same principle. Truth like life has a nasty side. We learn from the pain of life- from changing ourselves to conform to will.
Can anyone here relate?
Love to here your experiences.
AC was unable to pronounce the secret name of Nuit (Old Comment) ... until he at last knew her, and so (in the New Comment) her named her Babalon.
However, elsewhere (no ref available), he says he purposely spelled it Babalon so as to avoid confusion with Babylon (the Biblical, political reference to an old enemy).
So what happened here? Did he "hear" the name and decide to alter the spelling? That's what it sounds like to me, but one never knows in these murky meanderings.
I assume this was cited elsewhere in this thread but AC writes that it was during the Scrying of the Tenth Aethyr "Dec. 6, 1909, between 2 and 4:15 p.m., in a lonely valley of fine sand, in the desert near Bou-Sada." that "he was told by the Angel" how to spell Her name (this in the note to the Twelth Aethyr).
Of course, it was at the Tenth Aethyr that the Scribe and the Seer had their contretemps with Choronzon, whereupon "the Seer took the Holy Ring, and wrote the name BABALON, that is victory over Choronzon"
Might this "victory over Choronzon" then be another definition of Babalon?
Those are good observations. William, for “victory”, note her mention in Sepher Sephiroth (1912) under 156, where she is called “The Victorious Queen”.
For other early uses of “Babalon”, to the Star Ruby and the Book Four Part II magic circle (both 1913), I can only add Liber CLVI (summer 1911) – “Babalon… the Bride of Chaos” (among other things).
Book of Lies
Magick in Theory and Practice.
The same names for the quarters are given in Liber V vel Reguli (1921).
The Star Ruby "matures" between circa 1912 and 1921. The oppositions of the latter are couplings, Beast-Babalon, Nuit-Hadit. Therion-Babalon are the earthly representatives of the cosmic pair Hadit-Nuit. They have become like the Valentinian gnostic syzygies.
But the earlier iteration has a different opposition or balance, Chaos-Eros, Babalon-Psyche. This is male-male and female-female. It seems like Babalon and Psyche, and Chaos and Eros, are being equated, rather than paired as a couple.
Also, AC was not yet Therion in 1912. I can’t recall offhand when this name enters the stream, at least not what use it might have had before his 9=2 in 1916. Also remember that he didn’t know how to spell it to make 666 until the Samuel bar Aiwaz letter of February 1918.
Another observation I’d make is that “eros” seems to be the better word for what Thelemites (and Aiwass) mean by “love”, than the hyper-Christian “agape”. I don’t know that Thelemites have the power, at least yet, to change agape to mean anything other than “charity”, “hospitality”, “brotherly love,” “the love of God for man and man for God,” etc. The semantic range of agape does not include any sexual aspect.
That Crowley used eros here suggests to me that he thought the same at the time, that the cosmic love of Chaos was Eros. The term Agape had not yet entered the picture, since 93 itself had not yet entered the pictue as a key number (despite the valuation of thelema, which I imagine he did (but there is no evidence I know of), although it must have been an orphan until the Samuel bar Aiwaz letter). The only entry for 93 in the Greek Qabalah (begun 1911) is ananke, “by necessity.” Therion, “wild beast”, is there, under 247, but agape appears under 101, since the entry includes the definite article eta.
Hi everyone I humbly apologize for being such a snot jock, especially to you Shiva. Your wife's art is amazing BTW gorgeous colours.
My thoughts on the universal hexagram is that it is amazing and multi dimensional, I could hear mine spinning, which is not bad considering I am mostly deaf.
I didn't know before today that Crowley had taken it from the golden dawn but from my limited time using it, I can see why.
My thoughts on Babalon
baba - grandmother or mother
lon- longitude, long far off, league of nations, salt, blackbird, noble, ready, fierce, courage. - interesting when put together
but I still see babalon as old mumma lion
which is very thelemic because the lion is mentioned often by Crowley.
Does anyone have a copy of the manuscript of Rex de Arte Regia, the sex-magic diary published as the first part of the Grant and Symonds Magical Record of the Beast 666?
I ask because in Opus IV (page 5), the editors say in footnote 1 that Crowley wrote the word "Babalon" in Enochian characters, although they do not reproduce those characters in the book, unlike Hebrew and Greek.
If the name is written in Enochian, it tends to support the idea that AC made the association between Enochian "wicked", BABALON in Enochian, although pronounced "babalonu" in the Golden Dawn method (and so written by Crowley in the transcribed Enochian in the Equinox and 1904 Goetia), and the name Babalon from the 12th Aethyr of the Vision and the Voice. There is no indication of this in his own annotations to the Vision and the Voice, but it would seem unlikely for it not to have occurred to him.
So if anyone can look there, and ascertain if it is Enochian, and how it is written, can you provide your own transcription or, better yet, a photograph of that part of the text?
Thanks in advance to anyone who might look into this.
no enochian characters on page
and they don't say where it was written
Are you looking at the manuscript, Tiger?
The entry was on November 7, 1914. AC was in New York City. It is on page 5 of The Magical Record of the Beast 666 (Grant and Symonds editors, 1972). The beginning of the entry reads:
"7 Nov. 11:15 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Babalon per mentis imaginem manu sinistra"
The editors annotate this as note 1, at the bottom of the page. They write
"'Babalon as imagined through the mind, [and] with the left hand.' This opus, or sexual operation, was an act of masturbation while Crowley visualized the image of Babalon, the Scarlet Whore. Babalon is here written in Enochian characters, i.e. the Angelic language transmitted to Dr. John Dee, the astrologer of Queen Elizabeth I."
So in the original diary the name should appear written in Enochian letters.
yup looking at the page .
i guess here
means whats imagined through the mind
" tends to support the idea that AC made the association between Enochian “wicked”, BABALON in Enochian, although pronounced “babalonu” in the Golden Dawn method (and so written by Crowley in the transcribed Enochian in the Equinox and 1904 Goetia), and the name Babalon from the 12th Aethyr of the Vision and the Voice. "
I don't follow you, Tiger. You're not being clear.
What collection is the manuscript from, and what is the catalogue number?
I have went through the thread although I may have missed a thought or two, and I do not think that the number 156 (Crowley's favorite woman in heaven (or is that earth or is earth in heaven, or heaven in earth, or is there a heaven - there is certainly an earth! Right?) as cited in the Windram Thelema popped up. It is not as early as the Enochian Aethyr reference pointed out by Belmurru - yet quite interesting from a literal Qabalistic point of view. We find
What is wonderfully noticeable about the above - outside of it being one of the better verses of the book (with (Indian) reservations) is how it perfectly recapitulates the minimal origin of the alphabet English translitation schema (see infra) which Crowley celebrated his whole life long (we would not think the man pathetic if that were all he had done (a minor slice of creation as they say) (Rabelais and di-section)). So ...
If your examine image (terrible terrible terrible I tell you) you will see as the end of the line of the sentence "he knoweth me" Aleister writes 156.
Which by the way according to the minimal absolute ancient alphabet modern English transliteration equals (see "Postcard to Achad", 1919) 156!
He knoweeth me = 156
Now as to the Hebrew or other language etymology of Babalon that is a topic for another time.
I am sure the woman (if she exists ("achieves Hadit") will step up the plate. "If the sun and moon would doubt they would immediately go out" (Blake)
To point out the obvious without citing multiple references in AL identifying Nuit and knowledge - the homonomy of of "knoweth" and "Nuith" (one of Crowley's spellings of Nuit)
Even though evidence has yet to be found for earlier evidence than the Vision of the Aethyrs spelling(although it is fairly absurd to think he did not know it as the time he actually the book) - I would (not) hazard to guess it dates earlier.
Bye the bye - using the exact same minimal literal Qabalistical (Crowley (Postcard to Achad, 1919), EOG, 1938) transliteration schema the verse in which "he knoweth me" (vide Thoth) appears equals
AL 22 = 6681 = "when at last he knoweth me"
where the right side of the identity equals the names of its letters. Without "spelling it in full"
when at last he knoweth me = 332 = ever unto me = joy of earth = the clear light = orison = failure = slay success
I know girls and boyds (or is that men and women and are there actually any men and women on this planet. I highly doubt it) it is a terrible ecological tautology.
Anyway after rambling around (yeah the Midnight Rambler (right))
sorry for the confusion, belmurru
i only have the book
That's good evidence- thanks.
is this what you are looking for. All the works are available free online in pdf version
No, I mean the manuscript notebook, in the Yorke Collection at the Warburg, OS A16 (microfilm edition, reel 9). Some people have it, so I thought I'd ask. I understand they may not want to advertise this too widely, given the degree of paranoid conspiracy mongering that has gone on surrounding unedited AC material.
In the case of Rex de Arte Regia, it has been edited and published, but Symonds and Grant did not reproduce Enochian characters in their edition, unlike Greek and Hebrew (although not alway perfectly). I have no doubt that Babalon is written in Enochian in that place, as they say, since they transcribe it clearly, but because it is relevant to Ignant's OP, it would be satisfying to have the visual proof that has been lacking so far.
I am still willing to say that I don't think the Enochian BABALON influenced Crowley in any way when he formulated the name on a back page of the 12th Aethyr. Rather, it was an inspiration after learning the etymology for Babylon "Gate of the God ON (Ayin Nun)", which suggested it to him. Since God = EL/AL (Aleph Lamed), and ON = Ayin Nun, all that remained is BAB for "Gate", although it is not a Hebrew word.
But the Enochian equivalent did not appear in these visions, or anywhere else that I can find for the moment, until this diary entry of November 1914. I think it is extremely indicative that he wrote it in Enochian and not Hebrew, since it is not clear to me that BABALON in Enochian adds up to 156, which is the crucial fact of the word and what convinced him that it was the right spelling in Hebrew.
I have found the entry, and Grant and Symonds were mistaken, the name is clearly written in Hebrew:
I am disappointed. Surely these editors knew the difference between Hebrew and Enochian?
In any case, it can still be argued that Crowley was not influenced by the Enochian meaning of BABALON when he was inspired for the spelling of Babylon as Babalon. Rather, it was entirely based on the inspired etymology ("Gate of the God ON") and the gematria of 156 that resulted.
It looks like AC made a mistake in this passage, which explains a mistake in the transcription of this passage in The Magical Record of the Beast 666:
"11:15 - 10:30 P.M."
Grant and Symonds write "11:15 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.", which is obviously an attempt to interpret the difference in time, resulting in a ridiculous scenario.
I.e., it seems impossible that he could have been masturbating for 11 hours and 15 minutes, no matter how beautiful the imagination of Babalon might have been. In my posting of the printed edition above, I was tempted to put an exclamation mark in parenthesis after it ("(!)"). However, like with my suspicion about the "Enochian" writing of Babalon, in the absence of the original I decided to err on the side of trusting my editors (and to avoid arousing the ire of Michael Staley by casting aspersion on Kenneth Grant's recognition of Enochian, even though one could always blame Symonds, which we'll never know).
Rather, it seems more likely that Crowley himself made the mistake, and that it was either 11:15 to 11:30 p.m., or 10:15 to 10:30 p.m. on November 7.
The Enochian you are looking for is on page 6 of the magical record. It reads ' VI, 16 Nov.9.25 p.m.to 9.50 p.m. BABALON (in Enochian) minibus plenis.' Babalon with full hands.
I have the image, but I cant get the image to upload. The Ms page is reproduced in the deluxe edition of The Magical Record of the Beast 666.
There is an image of this page online. But the link breaks guidelines so I can't post.
If I can get the image up I will, if anyone else has access to the deluxe edition maybe they can post it.
Hope this helps.
Thank you very much for pointing it out, devl93! Indeed it is, and it is identical to the Enochian word for "wicked." That footnote on page 5 really misled me, but they got it right on the next page.
So he did spell it in Enochian, and he must have made the association of the name with the word in Dee's work.
very nice. So would that mean that the first appearance of 'Babalonu' (in Enochian) was in the 1904 Goetia? Tracing Her development is a fascinating exercise.
It would seem to be, at least in print. I assume that there is precedent GD material spelling it like that, as pronounced, and in Enochian.
Here is an example from the 1904 Goetia:
Nothing particularly striking about its use, nor would it seem to have suggested a connection with Babylon (which Dee and Kelly undoubtedly had, via the Roman Catholic Church as the Whore of Babylon).
That said, I think Crowley, and others who used Enochian, must have had at least an unconscious recognition of the similarity.
But I don't think Crowley reasoned consciously like this, for example:
"The Scarlet Woman is the Whore of Babylon.
The Scarlet Woman works the work of wickedness.
Wickedness is wicked.
"Wicked" is babalonu in Enochian.
Babylon in the Bible is the symbol of wickedness.
Babalonu is spelled BABALON in Enochian characters.
The Beast is Hadit.
The Scarlet Woman is Nuit.
Nuit has a secret name.
The secret name is another name for the Scarlet Woman.
Another name for the Scarlet Woman is the Whore of Babylon in the Bible.
The Whore of Babylon is wickedness personified.
Wicked(ness) in Enochian is BABALON.
Therefore, the secret name of Nuit is Babalon."
I don't believe he worked that way, even unconsciously. It seems straightforward in the Vision and the Voice how he came to the name Babalon.
Morevover, in Enochian the word for "harlot" is BABALOND, pronounced "babalonuda", and this word is more appropriate than the adjective "wicked". It is also much more removed from the simple spelling Babalon.
I would still like to know the gematria of Enochian. AC himself would not have been unaware of it, if there is one. And why else use Enochian here? Is it that he wants to make a connection with some "wicked" aspect of Babalon (more wicked than usual, anyway), since this working is for a male lover, one that looks like Herbert Charles Jerome Pollitt?
But I can't seem to find a reliable source for number values for the Enochian characters, either GD or Crowley - anyone?
In a general search I found that our own Michael Staley has anticipated some of what we are discussing, here –
“Until reaching the Twelfth Aethyr, which is a vision of the Charioteer, Crowley had retained the Biblical spelling. Towards the end of the vision, a new, more appropriate spelling flashed forth into Crowley's awareness - BABALON, the City of the Fifty Gates, the Gate of the Sun-God ON. By gematria this revised form gives 156, a more significant number. The Fifty Gates is a reference to the Hebrew letter Nun, which Crowley considered glyphed both Death and the female principle. In a commentary note to this Aethyr, Crowley wrote: "Note that the death or love of the saints is really increased life. The formula of 156 is constant copulation or samadhi on everything". This parallels Spare's insight of "all things fornicating all the time". The associations of sex with death are myriad.”
This is broadly correct, but slightly more complicated. In the first printed editions of The Vision and the Voice, in The Equinox I,v; 1952 (eds. Karl Germer, Phyllis Seckler, Thelema Publishing); and 1972 (Israel Regardie, Sangreal), the passage in the 12th Aethyr reads “the City of the Fifty Gates, the Gate of the God ON [באבאלען],” while the manuscript reads “the City of the Fifty Gates, the Gate of the God ON [
Aiyin aiyin nun nun].”
(bottom of page 9 of notebook III of the Vision and the Voice)
That is, it is not the entire name Babalon that is spelled out in the text at the time of dictation, but only the name ON. This was the “inspired” etymology, that led Crowley, some time after the 12th Aethyr, to write out the full name on the back of the page facing this one:
The back of page 8 of notebook III, of the 12th Aethyr, facing page 9 with the explanation or etymology of the name Babylon.
This is the note with what must be the first spelling as “באב אל ען”. To this is added
The Unity of Kether
HVA AChD “
“For He is manifested in Her, blessed be She!”
“Also 156 is the number of letters in a Watchtower.”
Since the working of this Aethyr finished at 01:20 on December the 5th, and since on this day for the 11th Aethyr, which finished at 11:35 p.m., Neuburg is still writing “Babylon,” which remained uncorrected by Crowley, I would guess that this back-of-the-page entry for the spelling of “באב אל ען” was done on the morning (before or after sleeping) of December the 6th, before the beginning of the working of the 10th Aethyr, begun at 2 p.m. that day. Crowley closed the 10th Aethyr by writing “BABALON” with his ring (perhaps in the sand), and thereafter Neuburg consistently writes Babalon in the manuscript.
Good correspondences and finds. thanks guys 🙂
I think the wonderful thing is being able to see how he came to the name.
The Vision told him Babylon meant the "Gate of the God ON," which he knew already or spelled immediately as Ayin-Nun, thus 120, thus the Key of the Vault of the Adepts (in the 5=6 ritual), etc. (see Equinox I,iii, pp. 210-211, and 228-229 for the symbolism of 120 in the 5=6). ON doesn't get much press, but he is identified as the Sun in Liber Samekh, section G, under AD-ON-AI, and of course in the Gnostic Mass, during the Consecration of the Elements, as "the Sun that travelleth over the Heavens in his name ON."
Babylon as the "Gate of God" had been around since cuneiform was deciphered about 60 years earlier, and was actually a folk-etymology as well for Babylon. So Crowley knew it, somewhere in his brain. From her appearance in the vision, he knew she was important, and it was crucial to get the meaning of the name right, and the spelling.
Thus when he was given "Gate of the God ON", he had the key to the puzzle, with the spelling Ayin-Nun, and the spelling Aleph-Lamed for God, all he had to do was spell the BAB part right.
In the manuscript, you can see he spelled it, at the very top in Latin letters, beginning "BAA" "AL" "ON", and crossed it out. It must have flashed before him when he got BAB as 5, added to 151 immediately, to produce 156, and thus to 12x13 for Unity, and therefore the key to defeating the dispersion of Choronzon. He knew he had it then, and used it at the end of the 10th Aethyr.
The key meaning, or power, of Babalon then is this Unity, and it is the equation of 156 = 12x13 that convinced him that it was the right spelling.
Wonderful work @belmurru
Thanks. I'm actually pretty chuffed, it's good to have a clear sense of how things come to be, and it's always nice to read the texts again, ever more closely. I hope it is useful to others, as well.
I think with the "BAA AL ON" crossed-out scribble, we can conclusively say that the Enochian word had no bearing on the choice of spelling Babalon. It was an inspired etymology for Babylon and Hebrew gematria that gave him the solution.
ON as Ayin Nun suggests further reflections on the spelling of N.O.X. (Nun, Ayin, Tzaddi = 210), which is a more complicated thread to trace. I've got a 4,000 word essay on it, and it is not finished. Interested?