Mysticism and Qabalah

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Mysticism and Qabalah

Postby Zalthos » Sat Jul 13, 2013 1:28 pm

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Hey there, everybody--been a while.

After introducing and reintroducing myself to the Qabalah repeatedly through the slew of books available (Wescott, Mathers, Fortune, and others), I feel I finally have a firm basis for practical work after reading Garden of Pomegranates by Israel Regardie. Particularly chapter 2, entitled 'The Pit,' provides the most concise and logical argument for Qabalah I have ever encountered. I'm reading his Tree of Life as well, and I am a bit embarrassed at having dismissed this author's work in my earlier years. I chalk it up to my own ignorance, but I'm delighted to learn from this great teacher regardless of my previous shortcoming.

I've been memorizing and studying correspondences and things of that nature for years, but I've only until now been able to see a clear purpose and reason for doing all of that outside of my comparative religion researches. I was completely taken by Regardie's usage of the word 'mysticism' as an umbrella term that also encompassed the Qabalah with all of its doctrines. I'd always looked at Magick and Mysticism as mutually exclusive before, but now I see magical practice as serving mystic ends.

I've been (and have become increasingly) interested in the concentration practices assigned to the early grades of the Golden Dawn and the A.'. A.'.. After reading 'Body Awareness', the first step of Regardie's One Year Manual, I noticed a lot of overlap between the practices described there and methods like asana, pranayama, and mahasatipatthana. Really, all of these things basically boil down to mahasatipatthana for me.

I realized a couple of weeks ago before a profound experience of one-pointedness that completely shocked my mind that simply observing the contents of the mind and the sensations of the body is actually a form of control. This is really hard to describe, but by persisting in this practice of simple and mindful observation, I eventually succeeded in alienating everything in reality from the consciousness where my existence resides. I can not put into words how liberating, peaceful, and profound this experience was. I was doing ordinary things like I would do any other day, and I was even in front of someone else when this happened, which is surprising to me, because I would normally only expect a breakthrough like this to happen if I was alone and not performing any action but the meditation.

I suppose the next step in reaching my goal of persisting in this place of one-pointedness is to set aside time to sit down, close my eyes, and do something like the 'Body Awareness' from Regardie, or the first couple of steps of Liber RV with the practice ultimately resolving itself into mahasatipatthana.

Any feedback or advice is welcome (here's lookin' at you, Jim :wink: ). I hope the people here who consider themselves Thelemites but have never read any of Regardie's work will take interest in this great teacher.
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Re: Mysticism and Qabalah

Postby Jim Eshelman » Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:23 pm

Continue the one-year manual. It's a good curriculum.

I wonder if you're using mahasattipatthana to mean pratyahara (mindfulness of mind). It sounds like maybe you are.

If so, then you seem on a standard Raja Yoga path. If so, be sure to devour Vivekananda's Raja Yoga. also Crowley's digest of it in Book IV Part I and 8Lectures.

Yes, Crowley's primary contribution to method probably was his integration of yogacwith magick. Liber E and Liber O are the two A.'.A.'. foundations, and a great place to see the fruit of these in practice is in Crowley's John St. John. There is also an example in a similar long section in my forthcoming Pearls of Wisdom.
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Re: Mysticism and Qabalah

Postby Zalthos » Sat Jul 13, 2013 3:00 pm

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

I will need to revisit the material on pratyahara then.

I insisted on it being mahasattipatthana due because my observations shifted from 'I am doing ______' or 'I am ________ing' to '________ is happening' during the course of meditation. In other words, things shifted away from me, the performer, to the action itself, the performance. I saw this as parallel to the first step of progress in mahasattipatthana, but I don't doubt that you're probably right about pratyahara.

More important to me than this apparent shift is, of course, the 'act' of observing which underlies all of them. I put that word in quotations because really, when I'm doing this right, it doesn't feel like doing anything at all. The best way I have found that expresses this are symbols such as that Sacred Silence, Zero, and so forth. I find this also best fits my place on the Tree as I seem to understand, as I do envision myself as upon Malkuth, yet looking to Ain as opposed to the rest of the Tree.

And Jim, let me just say that I can't wait to read all 480 pages of your new book; the table of contents makes me brim with excitement for this release. This will surely be the work of a lifetime, and a masterpiece upon your already immaculate bibliography.
Last edited by Zalthos on Sat Jul 13, 2013 3:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mysticism and Qabalah

Postby Jim Eshelman » Sat Jul 13, 2013 3:02 pm

Sounds like you're more or less working the skandas so, yeah, it's essentially maha.

To overcome "observing" seeming strange, try "witnessing."
Love is the law, love under will.
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Jim Eshelman
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"Success is thy proof: argue not; convert not; talk not overmuch!" - CCXX 3:42
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Re: Mysticism and Qabalah

Postby Zalthos » Sat Jul 13, 2013 3:17 pm

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Thanks again!
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Re: Mysticism and Qabalah

Postby Zalthos » Sat Jul 13, 2013 3:31 pm

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

I thought I might also add that Michael Molinos was very helpful through all of this, as well as works I consider to be focused upon relinquishing the ego, being Liber Cheth, (presumably) Liber A'ash, and the like. The following passage from Liber 333 was also helpful, and I deeply identify with what is described here:

Liber 333 cap 34 wrote:THE SMOKING DOG

Each act of man is the twist and double of an hare.
Love and death are the greyhounds that course him.
God bred the hounds and taketh His pleasure in the
sport.
This is the Comedy of Pan, that man should think
he hunteth, while those hounds hunt him.
This is the Tragedy of Man when facing Love and
Death he turns to bay. He is no more hare, but
boar.
There are no other comedies or tragedies.
Cease then to be the mockery of God; in savagery of
love and death live thou and die!
Thus shall His laughter be thrilled through with
Ecstasy.

COMMENTARY

The title is explained in the note.
The chapter needs no explanation; it is a definite
point of view of life, and recommends a course of action
calculated to rob the creator of his cruel sport.

NOTE
(18) This chapter was written to clarify {Chi-epsilon-psi-
iota-delta} of
which it was the origin. FRATER PERDURABO
perceived this truth, or rather the first half of it, comedy,
at breakfast at "Au Chien qui Fume".



Recognizing the cosmic origin of everything was also a big help--LOL.
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