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Postby redd fezz » Thu Apr 06, 2006 4:49 pm

On another board, I brought up De Arte Magica because, frankly, if I was a woman involved in the O.T.O., I probably wouldn't be after I read this particular book. And so, I was eager to receive new interpretations/impressions from others more experienced in Thelema. Because I remember a time when I actually thought Crowley was talking about literal child sacrifice, I figured someone can clarify some of this stuff, too. FWIW, I am pretty familiar with sex magick, Shiva-Shakti, Austin Spare and have read the "Final Secret of The O.T.O." (laugh, if you must) and so I am not completely clueless in these matters.

Anyway, I got a non-response sort of response about "personal experience best kept to one's self." Something that seems to be a real hindrance to internet communication about Thelema is that it seems to be such a personal experience to so many people that anyone with a certain amount of knowledge won't bother to say much of anything... so how can we talk?

By way of personal experience, I should tell you that the reason I am interested in this NOW and brought it up NOW is due to a certain "practical experience" I have under my belt. Pathworking of path 32, relations with Diana/Isis and visions I had on April 1st of this year which were all about excretions, Silence and "focusing attention where it is needed". And so, I delved back into the subject of Sex to research and interpret my experience. I haven't used my woman as an unwitting vessel and I haven't reabsorbed my own various excretions, but I do have enough practical experience under my belt to read, digest and communicate with whoever is willing.

Moderators:If anything in this post was offensive, I did not intend it to be. If this is the case, please just delete the offending material and send me a private message regarding what is appropriate and what is not.
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Postby Jim Eshelman » Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:02 pm

MODERATOR GUIDANCE:

From the Terms of Agreement of this forum:

You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening, sexually-orientated, or any other material that may violate any applicable laws. Doing so may lead to you being immediately and permanently banned (and your service provider notified). Sex itself may be a common topic on these forums, and is by no means discouraged except to the extent that it may cause liability or create legal jeopardy as delineated above.

Additionally, this forum would not support the disclosure of the secret / confidential matter of any Order. I mention this because the paper in question is technically a confidential paper of the Ninth Degree of O.T.O. It does, however, have a unique position, because it is a paper that Crowley specifically wrote to perpetuate the secret instructions in the event that everyone in O.T.O. who possessed them were to die etc. This has always shifted the tone of how D.A.M. has been treated.

But in support of the above principles, should the conversation move into the direction of disclosing actual obligated material of O.T.O., I would need to remove that part.

Nothing above seems to be precluded by any of this, nor do I anticipate that the discussion you propose would be inappropriate.
Love is the law, love under will.
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"Success is thy proof: argue not; convert not; talk not overmuch!" - CCXX 3:42
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Postby redd fezz » Thu Apr 06, 2006 6:10 pm

Oh man, I'm not sure how to proceed now. It is a big topic. Literally, all-inclusive, right?

For starters, I guess there is a disconnect with me with regards to how this paper discusses Woman. It's a bit of a shocker because throughout so much other material, there is nothing but reverence for the female principle. Then, suddenly, Woman is reduced to a hole, an abyss; Love being useless unless under Will. And yet, turn to the Book of Thoth in his description of The Empress; note how he mentions that Venus is the only symbol that connects the whole Tree, implying Love is what holds it all together. Then again, the Will of the Tree really is decided by the Father, but...

• God created a space for manifestation.
• You can't have One without your Mother (the other)

Malkuth, great Mother Earth, is a receptacle. The Sun reflects to the Moon and the Moon reflects to the Earth. She (the Earth) absorbs. In her soil, seeds grow. In the fleshy, earthy human body, seeds of the superconscious grow in the personality. A man has a female side and a female has a male side, but is the male really the source of power? The solar phallus? What about the egg in the womb? I suppose this relates to the Cosmic Egg... but, if that is so, then what of Crowley's idea that we are spermatozoic drippings from the cosmic phallus that pulled out of its partner? That we are a parasitic accident? (Does he actually use the term "accident" or am I remembering wrong?) Is this simply another way of saying "God created a space for manifestation?" Because, when I first read it, I thought, "well, if he 'pulled out,' then what did the cosmic spermatozoa fertilize? The cosmic egg would be in the cosmic womb he pulled out of, wouldn't it?" But, now I am seeing this as a metaphor for "God created a space for manifestation." When he 'pulled out,' he 'made a space' and that space was the Cosmic Egg.

Is that right?

So, I just wonder: if you can't have one without the other, why does he seem to be placing the female on such a lower level than the creative solar phallus? They are equally important. What would the Goddess fertility cults have to say about this? Oooh, a related question: what did Crowley have to say about the Goddess fertility cults? Suggested reading?

Thanks. (And sorry if this is annoying!)
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Postby Jim Eshelman » Thu Apr 06, 2006 8:28 pm

Redd Fezz wrote:For starters, I guess there is a disconnect with me with regards to how this paper discusses Woman.

Crowley, paradoxically, was both a pioneering feminist of his day and a misogynist by today's standards. Skipping the question of how misogynistic this particular writing is, I think it's safe to say - pragmatically - that, in the context of D.A.M., the (female or other) partner usually is being discussed solely as a magical implement, much like an altar cloth, incense, paten, etc.

In one sense, I find this attitude - by both partners - completely defensible and pragmatically enlightened. In other senses, it is suspect. For some of the deepest work, legitimate human love as a catalyst is essential. For other of the deepest work, detachment from any emotion or human attribution is the key. It's hard to generalize on that one IMHO.

Love being useless unless under Will

That one is a general principle. Love that is not under will is either crippled or crippling or naive/immature etc.

"Love is the law," according to Liber Legis, but only when it is "love under will." And, in contrast to Love being simply "the law," "Do what thou wilt" - Will - shall be the whole of the Law.

BTW, I'm not arguing at all with your many fine observations. I'm just responding selectively, there I think there is something to contribute. You are generally very much on the right track. I think maybe you have a tendency to see conflict between ideas where it doesn't really exist, perhaps because of other ideas you have associated with each.

but is the male really the source of power?

"Source" is an interesting word-choice. To state the obvious: No, not the male (i.e., not a man per se), but yes, the masculine. At the post-zero level of differentiation, source - of everything, really! - is the essential characteristic of the Yod in the formula. Yet, "in her is all power given." That is, it doesn't source from the feminine, but is found in the feminine, because Heh is receptive to the incessant streaming forth of it from Source. (I start post-zero because there is no flow of it at all until there is polarization.)

It's one of the lessons of the initiate of Binah, one of the particular expressions of "service without ego" - the psyche being receptive to the continual forthpourings from the Angel-Word-Phallus-Husband, the receiving them with resistance or analysis or discrimination, and the act of reception itself being the act of impregnation which commences their gestation and either eventual or instantaneous manifestation, etc. - Neshamah as the matrix of the unfurling of what is inherent in Chiah.

What about the egg in the womb? I suppose this relates to the Cosmic Egg... but, if that is so, then what of Crowley's idea that we are spermatozoic drippings from the cosmic phallus that pulled out of its partner? That we are a parasitic accident?

Where was that? It resembles some things in a VIIth Degree document arising out of Egyptian mythology, but I don't recognize it from the document you were discussing (though I'm going wholly from memory).

So, I just wonder: if you can't have one without the other, why does he seem to be placing the female on such a lower level than the creative solar phallus?

(1) Crowley, paradoxically, was both a pioneering feminist of his day and a misogynist by today's standards. (2) Crowley was a man and, in some senses, was writing only about his own magick.

Also, I don't think you realize how far basic science has come in a hundred years. Medical text books a century ago, and at least some medical textbooks as recently as the 1920s (maybe later), still represented the traditional view that only the man contributed anything to the nature of the child - that he deposited a living thing in a woman, and she had the job of carrying it for nine months and bringing it to birth. But there was no sense of genetic contribution by her, or anything similar. This isn't all that far from the historic and traditional Jewish medical understanding that each sperm was, in fact, an entire human being in miniature that the man carried around and deposited in a woman's body where it grew. This often forgotten or neglected piece of old science (now known to be false, of course) is the obvious basis of much that's in the Kabbalah and most of what Crowley wrote on sex as a magical tool.

What would the Goddess fertility cults have to say about this?

The Goddess fertility cults operated from an even more primitive and equally ignorant view of the matter.

There are roughly three stages in humanity's understanding of reproduction. They have an interesting approximate correlation to the three Aeons usually mentioned.

In the first stage, it was only known that women had babies. The role of a man in the process was entirely unknown. Women just sometimes stopped menstuating and started having a baby grow in them. Women were the be-all and end-all of baby-making, the primal symbols of creativity. Men were handy for sex and hunting.

In the second stage, it was discovered that this pregnancy only happened subsequent to a man's ejaculation into the woman's vagina. For a while, this was the great esoteric mystery of the priesthood by which they gained and held power. With this discovery, the coin flipped over entirely, and it was held that men were the be-all and end-all of baby making, and women were just carrying the kid around. Men were the be-all and end-all of creativity, and women were property to be controlled as a way of guaranteeing proper transfer or wealth and title to the next generation of the man's flesh.

In the third stage, it is understood (should I say "believed," out of respect for the progressive nature of science?) that male and female genetic contributions combine to conjointly create a child.
Love is the law, love under will.
Yours in L.V.X.,
Jim Eshelman
www.jeshelman.com
"Success is thy proof: argue not; convert not; talk not overmuch!" - CCXX 3:42
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Postby redd fezz » Fri Apr 07, 2006 5:46 pm

Ideas are hitting me now... :lol:

The "AL" bit of Liber AL Vel Legis: Adjustment = FEMALE counterpart of THE FOOL.

Liber AL. ALeister = ALexander + ALice, blending male and female.

AL I,48: "My prophet is a fool with his one, one, one; are not they the Ox, and none by the Book?" ( I = lingam, 0 = yoni )

AL-chem-y
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Postby redd fezz » Sat Apr 08, 2006 10:50 am

Perfect timing for me: I just caught "Kim Cattral's Sexual Intelligence" special on HBO. I highly recommend it. Seems like it was produced by and featuring Thelemites. It also helped refamiliarize myself with mythology. It's much more interesting (to me) to hear the story of Eros and Psyche, for instance, with pictures, than to read the myths themselves. I don't know why but I have trouble with mythology unless someone is explaining it to me.
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Maat and Thoughts

Postby Chris Hanlon » Mon Apr 10, 2006 9:16 am

Maat is depicted as double, sometimes. Twin Maats. Would that mean two feathers?
Do the Neteru "ride" the members of a group that invokes them, as in Santeria sessions?
The discussions here seem to be speciific to the Liber texts and the corresponding ceremonies. This seems to bring up the need to both read the texts and do the ceremonies, or else there really isn't anything to discuss.
This is a "Mystery School of the New Aeon", which means it is not really involved with the Qabalah, but is with the Tarot, correct?
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Re: Maat and Thoughts

Postby redd fezz » Mon Apr 10, 2006 3:49 pm

I get a lot out of Crowley's material just reading it, now that I have some kind of foundation through BOTA. I'm sure if I started doing the main rituals of Thelema, I would probably experience something more eventually than I get out of just studying and meditating on his texts, but I think the amount of texts to study and meditate upon far outweigh the amount of rituals and ceremonies. I also think that if you do the ceremonies ignorantly, you probably wouldn't get much out of them at all, but I might be wrong about that. Crowley's stuff seems to jump out and say "BOO!" more than other stuff I've experimented with. I do know "WORK!" is the important thing, but study and meditation is work. When I think of work without proper study (laying the foundation), I think of people like L. Ron Hubbard, the nutcase, as an example of someone who thought he was the next Crowley even, but completely misunderstood him from what I gather. Performing the ritual without proper study would seem like playing to me and probably a good way to screw up your brain by energizing the wrong kind of ideas. Also, as far as I know, Thelema is very Qabalah and Tarot oriented, among other things.
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