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Thelemite and Thelemic

From: tyagi@HOUSEOFKAOS.ABYSS.COM (nigris (333))
Subject: Thelemite and Thelemic (was Magick & Liber AL)
Date: Mon, 9 Sep 1996 14:55:50 -0700 (PDT)

49960909 AA1  Hail Satan!  (thelemites, thelemic)


Rev JB Bell:
#...can one be a Thelemite without accepting parts of the Book of the Law?  

that trash-binding is absolutely bypassable in regards the Law of Thelema.
in context it can provide a valuable tool to apprehend this Law, but on
the whole it is often more an obstacle within the Thelemic religious 
community than it is a boon.

this is the problem with the Religions of the Book, as I see it.  too 
often the tool by which people wish to fabricate some glorious new Body 
of God is merely used as another enslavement device.  

here is the value of the Comment: burn your damned holy scriptures when 
you've got what you needed from them (Crowley), throw away the net when 
you've caught the fish (Lao Tzu), cast aside the dualistic needle used
to pluck the dualism from your body (Gautama Buddha), etc.

# ...simply saying "I think Crowley was suffering a major brain fart when 
# he wrote AL:III:67-90."  ...I must agree with Tim [the wizard] Maroney's
#implication that torturous "interpretation" is simply not that
#intellectually honest.  But then if we unhook the idea of Thelema from
#Liber AL, what is left?  

"the idea of Thelema" may apply in many ways.  usually when people talk
about the 'idea' of something they can mean a principle relating to the
term in question or a philosophical construct which underlies it.  in the
case of Thelema you could be talking about the religion or the philosophy
(and I do see a marked, unfortunate, divide in this regard despite
exclamations to the contrary from Nexist).

as regards the religion of Thelema, I'd say that the Evil Book is rather
a cornerstone of it, especially as it was so important to the man Crowley 
who functions as this religion's prophet.  there is still some value of 
the Religion of the Book and the skill of prophesy, both longstanding
elements of popular Western religion.

as regards the philosophy of Thelema which is at times *applied within
this religious context*, the Evil Book (as well as other prophetic works)
is entirely omissable.  Thelema as a philosophy pertaining to particular
concepts of ethics and social politic need not include the thematics and
mythos of the Crowleyan expression, prophetic or no.  I would even suggest
that many of Crowley's *other* works, inclusive of his Commentaries on
this same Evil Book, are of more value to the tradition of philosophic
exposition on this Law.
what the Evil Book does seem to offer is a complex variety of assertions
and divinities, symbolizing and exemplifying syncretism and ecclectic 
collage, as well as the blatant Egypt-worship and cross-cultural 
controversy of the Hermetic tradition of magico-religion.

# So, what makes a Thelemite a Thelemite?  How is that different from, 
# say, a Libertarian?  

I prefer to use the term like that of 'sage' in Chinese religion, an 
ideal appellate in relation to how I feel about an individual and/or
their actions and activities (examples: 'the wizard' which I apply to
Tim or the 'Rev' I accept for you on account of my respect for the 
content of your writings and their relation to my experience -- 
comparing favorably -- or 'Mystress' for Peggy).

more often I use the term 'Thelemic' as an adjective comparable to
'sagacious' or 'wise' as regards ethics or activity, reflecting my 
feelings about how a word or deed resonates with my heart and will.

typically this relates to courage in the face of social opposition,
a willingness to be outspoken or assertive where unpopular, to be
resolute where there is a great degree of pressure to conform, to 
be respectful yet persistent as regards one's own principles, 
whether this includes cooperation or direct adversarialism, done 
when possible with what I'd call 'tact' (Crowley's 'rules of art').

as I typically consider it, a Thelemite cannot be said to hold
particular political or theoretical stands, these varying amongst
the smattering of Thelemites.  I usually assocate 'Thelemite' with 
a particular attitude toward social interactions and individual
integrity.  'Thelemic' includes a variation of behavior of a range
from self-assertion to social resolution, always respectful of the
wills of the people involved, even while opposing them ("as 
brothers fight ye!").

as with any label, there is a gradation of usage associated with it,
and 'Thelemite' does not escape this, typically associate with any
individual who affiliates with Aleister Crowley and his favorite
ideas, texts and social systems (once again pointing toward the 
religious as compared to the philosophic aspects of its meaning 
which I've heretofore been trying express).


nigris (333)

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