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Various: Thelema

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.magick,alt.thelema,talk.religion.misc,talk.philosophy.misc,alt.magick.order
From: (nagasiva)
Subject: Various: Thelema (Phil/Rel/Fem/Ac/Rites)
Date: 6 Sep 1997 12:22:25 -0700

[from "Michael J. Rae" ]
[a small bit removed/consolidated - tn]

Dear Nigris:

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

On Sun, 24 Aug 1997, nigris (333) [quoting uncited] wrote:
> # Crowleys misogynism is most likely one of those left overs from the 
> # last aeon, 
> hardly.  it is alive and well within the greater society and in the Orders
> which Crowley inspired or reconstructed.
This fact -- and it is a fact -- does not refute the point made.  Osirian
Aeon assumpttions etc die hard, even among the vanguard.
> # and not to be regarded to seriously be modern practioners. (Unless they 
> # deliberately want to drive women out of their camps.)
> I don't know what 'regarded to seriously' means.  should we pretend that
> there is no biggotry, no misogyny, and hope it will all disappear?   or
> would a better approach be to say what we *really* feel even if this 
> *might* be misogynist?  why shouldn't all deeply-held values be regarded
> seriously, even if they are immature, biggotted, biased?

If they are immature, bigotted, or biased, they should not be taken
seriously, except as problems to be addressed.
> # As far as I can gather the gender imbalance in OTO is viewed as a big
> # problem by many of its, male, members. 
> it wouldn't surprise me if this was so because we are heterosexual and
> feel a need to have a greater selection of sex magick partners (XI being
> beyond our grade for the nonce, perhaps).
> # ...this is a problem with Crowley at its roots. He is to blame for most 
> # of the misconceptions about us. 
> hehehe, that's a good one.  when one takes as one's Prophet and icon a
> controversial figure, it is hardly seemly to complain that the paint
> spattered trying to cover him up in response is not well-placed.  I 
> think that Crowley was a fairly normal (if ingenious and thoughtful)
> person who happens to have been forthcoming about his fantasies and
> desires.  these are still too controversial for the norm and even his
> own Order is beginning to simultaneously laud and bemoan him.  

His personal fantasises and desires are not at issue.  His rituals, his
order, and the work he left behind him are.  The question is not "what did
Crowley think?", but "what are we going to use of Crowley's, and what are
we going to let pass?"  The New Aeon is not Aleister Crowley;  He received
AL, which contains the zeitgeist IN SPITE of his petty misogyny,
assholery, and out-of-date science.  It is for us to use his sword -- not
his corpse.

> # ...this is a problem with Crowley at its roots. He is to blame for most 
> # of the misconceptions about us. 
> desires.  these are still too controversial for the norm and even his
> own Order is beginning to simultaneously laud and bemoan him.  

Of course: for different things.  This is nothing new: read Regardie on
AC, esp. _The Eye in the Triangle_.  Crowley deserves admiration for his
intelligence, mountain-climbing skills, SOME of his poetry, courage in
facing SOME of his personal flaws and for being
(IMHO) the most brilliant thinker on Magick since St. Paul.  On the other
hand, he deserves to be called an asshole, a misogynist, SOMETIMES a lousy
poet, and to be called to task for ignoring or whitewashing SOME of his
personal flaws.  I want Crowley's genius, not his syphilis!
> typically the religious would then set about "rectifying" the tarnished
> image of a person whom we *know* (because of what he inspired, look at
> us) must have been an icon of moral supremacy.  except in Crowley's
> case he made it *so* plain that he was a reprobate and had severe biases
> at odds with socialized and PC rhetoric that it'll take thousands of
> years!  this is a good thing, since it keeps the religious out of power
> and guarantees them a relegation to an out-of-the-way-quack corner. 

What we are doing here is precisely NOT "rectifying" the man, but choosing
what parts of his work we will use, and what parts we will consign to the
dustbin.  One's opinions on Clinton's political policies and on his sexual
proclivities are -- and ought to be recognized as -- quite separate

> those who understand the principles of the Law of Thelema otherwise
> will utilize them, as with the principles Crowley derived as regards
> the practice of magick (no, not just the ceremonial claptrap, but the
> science of coming to know one's true will and the art of manifesting
> change in conformity to it -- it is this to which the dry ceremonial
> husks truly point despite the fanaticism of the religious who would
> rather make of them a social ladder assessing nebulous 'spirituality'
> and 'saintliness' while corrupting the individual beyond repair).

> # (Like the fact that most of the Wiccan community thinks of us a women
> # hating sods who should be shot. Atleast around Stockholm. :)
> this is due to REAL evidence of ball-breaking Dianics that express their
> IMPORTANT man-hatred and seek out extreme solutions inclusive of the
> segregation of genders (something rather common in many cultures -- the
> Masons, many religious societies and rituals, etc.) and the advocation
> of the elimination of men.  ignoring the extreme is not the same thing
> as understanding that the extreme is not representative.  the problem is
> that the extreme is *usually* not treated seriously.

No, it's not, at LEAST not in every single case.  If someone obviously
hates your guts, you are justified in hating them back.  Crowley was
misogynist (often), and many feminists conclude that we must be
blindly following him in every respect, feasting on every crumb that drops
from the Master's plate.

It is for US to probe them wrong on this.

> # The rest of
> # the Mass is a bizarre mix of praise and blame against woman. She is seen as
> # a perfect being, but one unable to act on her own. She has to be LED by the
> # king to even be allowed to sit down. (Sure enough she raises him to King and
> # Priest, but then he takes command completely.) 
> I don't see the consistency in your complaints here.  either she takes the
> initiative and raises the d00d to King or not.  either he leads her to do
> what she must or he doesn't.  
> yet there are many things missing here.  what is this rite supposed to
> symbolize?  something social?  something internal?  what if it is an
> internal symbolism by which the feminine (as in the bulk of Crowley's
> text) is associated with the INactive?  have a look at Kabbala/Qabalah
> for some possibly comparable examples (Binah?/Malkuth?).  contrast
> Grant, who appears to prefer the Tantric feminine 'sakti', power.

NOW you're talking.

> # Why is woman adored like an inert thing in the Mass? 
> and by whom?  what can the Deacon and the Priest be said to symbolize?
> how does this relate at all to Thelemic society?  
> how about if we take this attitude with the RCath Mass.  is that a 
> recommendation that men be the Actors, that there is no part for women, 
> and that the main work is the transubstantiation of grain and grape 
> products into the flesh and blood of the son of the divine through magick?
Important questions.

> # But in some aspects the man seems retarded to me. This is a serious 
> # problem, and one that won't go away completely no matter how hard we 
> # work on it. Some elements will always be conservative and some 
> # progressive. (And a lot of elements will go from the latter to the 
> # former after having their own pet changes implemented. ;)
> by some systems of psychology we are *all* retarded -- prevented
> (usually by social influences) from full development on the basis
> of our circumstances and those who had the strongest influence on us.
> was Crowley 'retarded' in this sense?  surely.  most of us are.  the
> real issue is whether such a man (fallible, retarded, incomplete,
> immature, biased, perhaps even biggotted) can be a representative of
> a religious faction and the author of rites which are truly useful
> in a transition to growth and maturity. 

It is our right to decide what we will take, and what we will leave.  We
can use some of the old as is, revise some, ditch some, and make some new.

> # There are lots of problems in the Order, and one of the biggest is 
> # that a large part of it is adamantly Old Aeon.
> is this disputed?

You seemed to dispute it above.

> what is the role of "the Order" (I suppose you mean
> here the (c)OTO) if not to transit between cultures and aeons?  what
> would an "Order" look like if it were completely 'New Aeon' material?
> does it really surprise you that a solar-phallic cult predominantly
> influenced by masonic origins and heavily restructured by a Victorian
> writer with delusions of grandeur would have these problems?  can we
> accept them for what they are and work with them?  is this valuable,
> or should the whole thing (again??) be scrapped as unworkable and evil?
This all-or-nothing thing is not the right approach, IMHO.  Some is
valuable, some is crap.  If your parents served you pizza with Brussels
Sprouts as a boy, you would pick the damned green buggers off and wolf
down the 'za like there was no tomorrow.  (Or maybe you liked brussels

	Love is the law, love under will.

(emailed replies may be posted);join the AMT syncretism!!;call: 408/2-666-SLUG!
see; "Clement of Rome taught that God rules the world
with a right and a left hand, the right being Christ, the left Satan." - CGJung

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