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Thelema and Cult

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.magick,alt.thelema,alt.magick.order,talk.religion.misc,talk.religion.newage
From: (nigris (333))
Subject: Thelema and Cult (3)
Date: 23 Jul 1999 22:23:34 -0700

49990428 IIIom

Steve Kime :
# Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

The word of Sin is Restriction.

Steve Kime :
# > # While Crowley did not write Liber Al....

# > the story goes that he penned the thing. are you saying his
# > body changed into someone else while he was putting it to
# > paper or merely that he was possessed by extraterrestrials?
# ...He did not author Liber Al, but yes he did pen it.  I
# thought that would have been obvious.  Aiwass was/is the author.

not obvious from the title, subtitle, credits or contents, no.
apparently we have some sort of rendered document penned by
Aleister Crowley and supposedly passed to this "prophet" by a
spiritual entity known to the "prophet" as his "holy guardian
angel" (or was that a "secret chief"? dammit, which one?!)
and named "Aiwass" (or was that "Aiwaz" or something else?!!).
in fact, so much is NOT obvious or clear that I wonder why you
think it is so.

the text proclaims itself to be the words of three entities
(Nuit, Hadit, Ra-Hoor-Khuit (or is that Ra-Hoor-Kuit?? make
up your mind, dammit!)) whose expressions are mutually
contradictory while at times referring to one another ("Had!"
"Nu!" -- Had it? Knew it? I was? old old joke now).

there is even a ...story that Crowley's wife Rose
penned the text! more confusion! add to this that some of
the text is a quotation of some PREVIOUS poetry and that
some of it was changed (corrected?) by other human beings
perhaps *inclusive* of the prophet, and you have the makings
of a veritable QUAGMIRE of attributions worthy of the best
cults around.
# > # it is the Thelemic 'bible', so to speak....
# >
# > generally one does not burn one's Bible, nor forbid others from
# > speaking of its contents
# I say bible in the sense that it is the chief holy book of 
# Thelema.  

1) why does Thelema need or want, and how does it profit from, 
   any "holy book"?

2) why can't there be LOTS of 'holy books of Thelema' of equal
   emphasis, rather than some persnickety ranking system with
   a batch of doggerel that Edward Alexander Crowley liked?

3) what are the criteria for these 'holy books' and who is it
   that determines which ones do and don't qualify as well as
   how they shall be ranked? what makes these individuals or 
   groups especially qualified to make this determination?

4) who is included in the "Thelema" that has the Evul Book as
   its chief holy book?  are there membership cards or tattoos?
# To quote from "One Star In Sight", Liber Al is referred to 
# as:  "...the Word and Letter of Truth, and the sole Rule of 
# Life."  From "Official Instructions of AA":  "This book 
# (Liber Al) is the foundation of the New Aeon, and thus of 
# the whole of our Work."

I suppose this covers Crowleyites. but why should we care what
"One Star in Sight" says?  what does Crowley have to do with
Thelema except being someone who tried to co-opt this important
philosophy of individualism into a religious cult after him for
the purposes of his self-aggrandizement?
# > does your characterization of this text as 'the Thelemic "bible"'
# > indicate how you are treating it?
# Perhaps.  No, come to think of it, yes.

I think that this is how Crowley may have treated it and probably
wanted his cultists to treat it too, though I wouldn't necessarily
call these cultists "Thelemite" and I don't know why you would.

# > how is the union [with the Supreme Initiator] obtained, exactly?
# Is it not our purpose in all ways of magick to attain (and let me 
# phrase it correctly here) to the knowledge & conversation of our 
# HGA?  Does not all magick in some way prepare us for that event?

perhaps not. Crowley described all endeavors which do not have the
K&C/HGA as the object as 'black magic' (without the "k"), yet he 
also defined 'magick' as 'the Science and Art of causing Change in 
conformity with Will'.  therefore, if it was not in conformity with 
Will that one attain the K&C/HGA, then an act which did so conform
would become 'magick' which was 'black magic'.

diverging from Crowley's preferred terminology, magic/k in the
conventional sense has countless objectives, many of which would not 
be equated by those who care about K&C/HGA. some magicians don't even
believe in some 'Supreme Initiator'. all of these ideas and words
are prone to be used and abused within the Crowleyan cult.

# > # and Crowley (along with Liber Al) points the way after a fashion
# > # that I cannot deny pulls me strongly.
# >
# > can you elaborate on what way this is that he and it were pointing?
# The path prepared for attainment of knowledge & conversation with 
# our HGA as laid out in Thelemic literature and ritual is "the way" 
# that pulls me strongly.

this is a mere restatement. could you quote something from the
Evul Book which indicates this "way" you're talking about, and
explain some of its rudiments, rather than merely referring to
it once more?

# > # > and what is so
# > # > profound (choose a few lines) that it inspires you to join
# > # > a cult after his name?
# > #
# > # I'm not sure I understand this.  Thelema is the name, not Crowley.
# >
# > Crowleyanity is the name of the cult who take Crowley as their
# > prophet, the Evul Book as their Bible, and many others of his
# > texts as 'holy books'. it appears to have relatively little to
# > do with Thelema except in name inasmuch as it inspires people
# > to blindly follow a disoriented and immature man into Hell.
# To quote again from "One Star In Sight":  "They must acknowledge 
# the Authority of the Beast in the book (Liber Al) it is 
# defined."

cultists tend to quote Crowley alot. like most thoroughly converted
religious, sometimes they think that these sources constitute a
real response to critical analyses and questions sent their way.
and yet if both participants in the discussion do not acknowledge
the source (in this case Crowley) as an authority, then the citation
availeth not.

'One Star in Sight' is a humorous document. it pretends to put into
hard copy the structure of the Celestial Masters. what it really
does is to fraudulently promote a single system and cosmology
over the numerous alternatives offered through the centuries
without reference to these or sufficient admission of its 
limitations. quoting it to defend Crowley is like Christians
quoting the New Testament in order to defend *their* cult. it
is insulting to the intelligence of the non-Christian and
ridiculous in a rational discussion.

# > # > what do you think that these "Thelemic"
# > # > books were inspired BY, exactly?
# > #
# > # [Crowley's] HGA.
# >
# > what do you think that an "HGA" is,
# A preternatural Being.

my Bible doesn't have this word. please explain how the 
"praeternatural" (or is it really "preternatural"?) being 
differs from the "natural" being, and how we can tell the
difference between the two when encountering them. 

# > and how did you determine that they were so inspired?
# Those who truly immerse themselves in the study of  Liber Al 
# cannot think otherwise (or so I believe).

strange, I've known people who studied the Evul Book in depth
and never came to that conclusion. are you sure that it isn't
the prevalence of a particular portion of the Crowleyan cult?

# >  why wasn't Crowley just a
# > half-decent writer who wanted to start a cult to glorify
# > himself using an utopian name made popular by Rabelais?
# And why couldn't that just not be the case?

cf. Occam's Razor. you're the one making extraordinary claims
here, not I. even your prophet instructs us to doubt and 
beware the claims of the religious.
# > have you known anyone else who was so aided?
# Not personally.

then what leads you to think that it achieves this?  how have you
arrived at this conclusion without a scrap of evidence?

# > # They supply the language and food that directly
# > # communicates and nourishes  the soul of any given Thelemite.
# >
# > do other books do this?
# Yes.
# >  if so, which books do you think qualify?
# The Bible, the Quaran, the Upanishads, the Baghavad Gita, 
# Winnie the Pooh, etc...

"Winnie the Pooh, etc."???  I'm sorry, but I don't see what
these books have in common. are there any books which DON'T
'supply the language and food...' of which you speak? are
there any books that are considered 'Scripture' which don't
qualify, such that we can make clear divisions betwixt their
cult and the cult of Crowleyites?

Invoke me under my stars.

Frater (I) Nigris (666) 333 
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