Abstruction?

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Abstruction?

Postby Metzareph » Sun May 16, 2010 4:14 pm

English is not my first language and I am having trouble grasping the word abstruction in the context of the 3rd Chapter, v11: "This shall be your only proof. I forbid argument. Conquer! That is enough. I will make easy to you the abstruction from the ill-ordered house in the Victorious City. Thou shalt thyself convey it with worship, o prophet, though thou likest it not"
Any clues will be appreciated.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Avshalom Binyamin » Sun May 16, 2010 5:04 pm

It's not your English that's at fault. It's a weird word.

It's pretty much not a word at all (although some dictionaries consider it a variant spelling of "obstruction"). Of course, Crowley would have been unlikely to use "abstruction" in place of "obstruction".

In the original, the "a" and the "u" are very clear, and they are each double underlined.

One possible meaning I've seen suggested is "removal".
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Jim Eshelman » Sun May 16, 2010 5:44 pm

We have con-structions, in-structions, de-structions, ob-structions, and more! They all, like "structure," come from the Latin root structus, "constructed, piled up."

Con- means "with," so "construct" is "to make something [be] with form, to be piled up."

De- means "away from," so "destruct" (destroy) is to take away the form of a thing, to knock down where it's "piled up."

Ob- means "against," so "obstruct" means "to pile up against" a thing - to create a barricade, for example.

In- means "in," so "instruct" means "to pile it up, or build something, inside {someone}."

So what does the prefix ab- mean? It's similar to de- in that both mean something like "away from," but in practice they are used differently. Ab- is the same as the Greek apo- as in apogee, which is the point at which a celestial body (such as the Moon) is the most away from (apo-) the earth (gee). So, to abstruct would be something like, "to get away from what was piled up."
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Uni_Verse » Sun May 16, 2010 6:07 pm

I have always associated the word with "abstraction," specifically in the sense of computer programming.

A simple example: You can create a program in C++ ( a programming language) without having to know the machine code ( the language of the hardware) and get the computer to do what you want.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby gmugmble » Mon May 17, 2010 7:17 am

It's not a real word. It isn't listed in the Oxford English Dictionary, which is the most comprehensive list of English words available. So we have no choice but to guess what was intended. From the etymology and context, it seems to mean "making a copy", although I suppose "removing, taking away" would be plausible. In the original manuscript, Crowley (or somebody) has underlined the letters "a" and "u". That's because you can change either one of these to make a real word: obstruction or abstraction. But neither of these makes much sense in context, and anyway we are clearly instructed not to change any of the letters.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Metzareph » Mon May 17, 2010 6:54 pm

This was very useful... thank you so much to all!
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Mephisto » Thu May 20, 2010 9:47 am

I have always viewed this word as a synthesis of "abstraction" and "obstruction." When taken in context, this word is quite applicable. Liber AL, being as it is intended for those versed in Qabalah, is full of such "slips of the pen." These "mistakes" signify key points in the higher order of the Book.

This brings to mind an interesting question: how would one translate "abstruction" ?

Which is your first language, Metzareph?
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Jim Eshelman » Thu May 20, 2010 10:03 am

JPF wrote:This brings to mind an interesting question: how would one translate "abstruction" ?

I did answer that above, in my last paragraph.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Labyrinthus » Thu May 20, 2010 2:22 pm

White's Latin dictionary;
the following three words appear in order -

abstraho: to draw or drag away

abstrudo: to thrust away from, gen: to hide, conceal

abstrusus: hidden, concealed

I think one might add this to Jim's contribution above, and beyond that you are on your own....
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Mephisto » Thu May 20, 2010 4:00 pm

Jim Eshelman wrote:
JPF wrote:This brings to mind an interesting question: how would one translate "abstruction" ?

I did answer that above, in my last paragraph.


I was thinking more along the lines of "if one were to translate the Book of the Law into, say, German, how would one go about translating 'abstruction'?"

The phrase "getting away from what was piled up" doesn't quite convey the same subtlety as "abstruction", methinks. :D

On the note of translation: has anybody gone about translating the book "into all tongues" as of yet?
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Labyrinthus » Thu May 20, 2010 4:25 pm

"if one were to translate the Book of the Law into, say, German, how would one go about translating 'abstruction'?"

abstructigung
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby underabloodredsky » Thu May 20, 2010 7:30 pm

I think Jim is on the right tract. It is a Latin based word just like in medicine; the muscluar system works in pairs of adduction and abduction (One to bring together, and one to pull apart.)
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Labyrinthus » Fri May 21, 2010 7:53 am

:P

abstruction: noun. That which is thrust or drawn away from a form or structure.

(in this case the structure would be, "the ill-ordered house in the Victorious City")

3rd Chapter, v11: "This shall be your only proof. I forbid argument. Conquer! That is enough. I will make easy to you the abstruction from the ill-ordered house in the Victorious City. Thou shalt thyself convey it with worship, o prophet, though thou likest it not"


Nota bene: "I forbid argument" is the Crowley equivalent of "Papal Infallibility". Virtually identical.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Takamba » Fri May 21, 2010 8:51 am

Labyrinthus wrote:Nota bene: "I forbid argument" is the Crowley equivalent of "Papal Infallibility". Virtually identical.


Unless maybe you note that others have taken "I forbid argument," right along with "success is thy proof: argue not; convert not; talk not over much! Them that seek to entrap thee, to overthrow thee, them attack without pity or quarter; & destroy them utterly," to mean even among brethren and others. That one's personal interpretation of each word of the Book is divine itself.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Labyrinthus » Fri May 21, 2010 9:19 am

He did not say. "make no argument", or "argument is futile".

He said, "I forbid argument".

Words have meaning.

Yet that will not stop those who don't want to see black and white from seeing gray and beige when matters of faith and emotional attachments are involved.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Takamba » Fri May 21, 2010 9:27 am

Labyrinthus wrote:He did not say. "make no argument", or "argument is futile".

He said, "I forbid argument".

Words have meaning.

Yet that will not stop those who don't want to see black and white from seeing gray and beige when matters of faith and emotional attachments are involved.


You are saying "he said." Well then, that seems to indicate to me that your take on Liber AL is that it is the work of Crowley, whereas others will take that it is a channeled work received through Crowley and so Crowley did not say anything in that book - he was told.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Labyrinthus » Fri May 21, 2010 11:44 am

Okay, I did not realize that any of his books were viewed that way. I am rather new to this site and Thelema.

(I was also opportunistically underscoring my earlier point on another thread about the common misunderstanding of the origin and true meaning of Papal infallibility).
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby deleted » Fri May 21, 2010 12:02 pm

You are saying "he said." Well then, that seems to indicate to me that your take on Liber AL is that it is the work of Crowley, whereas others will take that it is a channeled work received through Crowley and so Crowley did not say anything in that book - he was told.


I missed the discussion of the origins of papal infallibility.

Regardless of how you view the "inspiration" of the book, each passage needs to be interpreted in the light of which character is speaking and what aspect of Mind is speaking as a character. I just mention it in case your interest is piqued, Labyrinthus.

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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Takamba » Fri May 21, 2010 12:31 pm

Labyrinthus wrote:Okay, I did not realize that any of his books were viewed that way. I am rather new to this site and Thelema.

(I was also opportunistically underscoring my earlier point on another thread about the common misunderstanding of the origin and true meaning of Papal infallibility).


That's okay then. I guess I can say you made reasonable assumptions. It might also help to know the various definitions given to the various classes of writings within the Thelemic cannon. Liber AL, among many other writings using the hand of Crowley, are listed as "Class A writings" and this is described as "books of which may be changed not so much as the style of a letter: that is, they represent the utterance of an Adept entirely beyond the criticism of even the Visible Head of the Organization. " This would suggest to us that these Class A texts are not actually the workings of a "human mind" per se, but "inspired" (or channeled) from higher sources, because the "Adept" whose words they are is "beyond...even the Visible Head [human person] of the Organization."

Just keep that in mind.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Labyrinthus » Fri May 21, 2010 1:05 pm

"I missed the discussion of the origins of papal infallibility."

It was more of a comment than a discussion since no one replied. It was added a few posts after a post you had made on the 'aeon' thread. It was just before the part how I explained that Galileo was never thrown in prison or tortured by the Inquisition and how he was allowed to teach his theories freely till the day he died. (which no one replied to either... I wonder if I told the truth about how the Pope did NOT arrest and scatter the Knights Templar [King Phillipe Le Bel did] would anyone want to talk about that?)

re: infallibility
"Do you understand that it in no way implies the inability to be in error?
Did you know that it is translated from the Latin which originally implied something more like 'indisputable' with a sense of finality. It was written in order to put and end to the endless arguing and infighting in the Vatican over matters of Doctrine. The Pope finally just picked one side and said, “this is it, now stop arguing about it”

It in no way implies 'perfection' or the 'inability to be in error'.
"

Crowley's comment above reminded me of that.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby deleted » Fri May 21, 2010 1:36 pm

It is a rather rose-colored depiction of those events that you give, but on the surface, the history is correct. What's to discuss?

But, just to keep things on topic, this passage always gives me a bit of a knot. It plays in too well with my own imagined literal fulfillments of John's Revelation.

To me, it sounds like it says, "I'll make it easy to steal the thing I like to call the Abomination of Desolation. It'll be easy because security isn't very tight, and they don't keep good records. They probably won't even notice."
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Labyrinthus » Fri May 21, 2010 2:16 pm

"It is a rather rose-colored depiction of those events that you give, but on the surface, the history is correct. What's to discuss?"

Rose-colored? How so? It is simple recitation of historical fact if you ask me. ... a little politically incorrect maybe...which makes it all the more interesting to discuss.
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby krzysztof » Thu Jun 24, 2010 12:02 pm

Dear All,

93

Here is Crowley's old commentary to that verse:

'Abstruction'. It was thought that this meant to combine abstraction and construction, i.e. the preparation of a replica, which was done.
Of course, the original is in "locked glass.


How about that? :)

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Re: Abstruction?

Postby deleted » Thu Jun 24, 2010 12:05 pm

Nice... Way to appeal to the commentary. :)
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Re: Abstruction?

Postby Joga Luce » Mon Jul 15, 2013 4:51 am

Love is the Law,
Love under Will.


Ah, this discussion is interesting. I'd assumed it was latin derived (ab- http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/ab#Latin), though now I see more correlation also with ATU XVI (The Tower).

Reminds me of Alan Moore's discussion of Apocalypse from Mindscape(text here) which may also be related to the "fall" of the Tower of Babel (aka gate of god), ie the abstruction from the ill-ordered house in the victorious city.

Also as 311 (loose interpretation of Ch3Vers11) may be שיא in hebrew, meaning Record or Peak, as in Record Breaking. And if Gematrix is to be believed, has some seemingly interesting relations to the topic (cf. babel).

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