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TMaroney: Thelemic Contributions To Culture.

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.magick,alt.magick.order,alt.thelema
From: (nagasiva)
Subject: TMaroney: Thelemic Contributions To Culture.
Date: 9 Jul 1997 16:22:47 -0700

[from Tim Maroney ]

>Given that the concept of Thelema explicitly proposes a radical
>transformation of the self, I am curious as to why Thelemic contributions
>to Culture haven't been more significant?

Because for the most part, Thelemic culture is lost in a soup of 
reprinting. The original Equinox was a literary journal with magical 
instructions, commenting freely and wittily on the events of the day. 
Today's Equinox volumes are Crowley reprints, with the occasional 
derivative "original" work tossed in to disguise the stagnation. Original 
contributions are often actively disparaged by the Crowley fan club 
mentality; creating an original work in the tradition is criticized as if 
one were claiming to have Crowley's spiritual degrees. This is not always 
the case, but I have heard this kind of criticism -- that originality 
equals egomania -- directed often enough towards others' contributions as 
well as my own that I have come to identify it as a persistent problem in 
the tradition.

Now, if one leaves the Thelemic enclave, one notes that Crowley has been 
an influence on a number of counterculture figures and on most of Western 
non-Thelemic occultism, even though in these cases he is only one of 
several influences on any particular figure or tradition. (When these 
influences are noted, the usual response from within the fan club is to 
insist that the matter is not one of influence but of plagiarism -- the 
idea that Neo-Paganism is nothing but a watered-down Thelema is very 
common even though any examination of source materials shows that the 
Crowley influence is no ore prominent than that of others such as Leland 
and Murray.)

Tim Maroney

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