220A2-7.ASC The question of the limits of individual Liberty is fully discussed in Liber C

Master Index Current Directory Index Go to SkepticTank Go to Human Rights activist Keith Henson Go to Scientology cult

Skeptic Tank!

220A2-7.ASC The question of the limits of individual Liberty is fully discussed in Liber CXI (Aleph), to which we refer the student. The following four chapters will give a general idea of the main principles. `De Vi Per Disciplinam Colenda. `Consider the Bond of a cold Climate, how it maketh man a Slave; he must have Shelter and Food with fierce Toil. Yet thereby he becometh strong against the Elements, and his moral Force waxeth, so that he is Master of such Men as live in Lands of Sun where bodily Needs are satisfied without Struggle. Consider also him that willeth to excel in Speed or in Battle, how he denieth himself the Food he craveth, and all Pleasures natural to him, putting himself under the harsh Order of a Trainer. So by this Bondage he hath, at the last, his Will. Now then the one by natural, and the other by voluntary, Restriction have come each to a greater Liberty. This is also a general law of Biology, for all Development is Structuralization; that is, Limitation and Specialization of an originally indeterminate Protoplasm, which latter may therefore be called free, in the definition of a Pendant.' `De Ordins Rerum'. `In the Body every Cell is subordinated to the general physiological Control, and we who will that Control do not ask whether each individual Unit of that Structure be consciously happy. But we do care that each shall fulfil its Function, and the Failure of even a few Cells, or their Revolt, may involve the Death of the whole Organism. Yet even here the Complaint of a few, which we call pain, is a Warning of general Danger. Many Cells fulfil their Destiny by swift Death, and this being their Function, they in no wise resent it. Should Haemoglobin resist the Attack of Oxygen, the Body would perish, and the HAEMOGLOBIN would not even save itself. Now, o my Son, do then consider deeply of these Things in thine Ordering of the World under the Law of Thelema. For every Individual in the State must be perfect in his own Function, with Contentment, respecting his own Task as necessary and holy, not envious of another's. For so only mayst thou build up a free state, whose directing Will shall be singly directed to the Welfare of all'. We of Thelema think it vitally aright to let a man take opium. He may destroy his physical vehicle thereby, but he may produce another `Kubla Khan'. It is his own responsibility. Also we know well that `if he be a King' it will not hurt him -- in the end. We trust Nature to protect, and Wisdom to be justified of, their children. It is superficial to object that a man should be prevented from ruining and killing himself, for his own sake or for that of `those dependent on him'. One who is unfit to survive aught to be allowed to die. We want only those who can conquer themselves and their environment. As for `those dependent on him' it is one of our chief objects to abolish the very idea of dependence on others. Women with child, and infants, are not exceptions, as might seem. They are doing their will, the one class to reproduce, the other to live; the state should consider their welfare to be its first duty; for if they are for the moment dependent on it, it is also dependent on them. A man might as well cut out his heart because it was weak, and in need of cautious care. But he would be no less foolish if he tried to prevent the used-up elements from eliminating themselves from his body. We respect the Will-to-Live; we should respect the Will-to Die. The race is auto-intoxicated by suppressing the excretory processes of Nature. Each case must of course be judged on its merits. His neighbours do well to assist one who is weak by accident or misfortune, if he wishes to recover. But it is a crime against the state and against the individuals in question to hinder the gambler, the drunkard, the voluptuary, the congenital defective, from drifting to death, unless they prove by their won dogged determination to master their circumstances, that they are fit to pull their weight in the Noah's Ark of mankind. 73. There is a connection between Death, Sleep and Our Lady Nuit. (This is worked out, on profane lines, by Dr. Sigmund Freud, and his school, especially by Jung, `Psychology of the Unconscious', which the reader should consult). The fatigue of the day's toil creates the toxins whose accumulation is the `will to Die'. All mystic attainment is of this type, as all Magick is of the `Will to Live'. At times we all want Nibbana, to withdraw into the Silence, and so on. The Art of it is to dip deeply into `Death', but to emerge immediately, a giant refreshed. This plan is also possible on the larger scale, all Life being Magick, all Death Mysticism. Then why is Death `forbidden'? All things are surely lawful. But we must work `without lust of result', taking everything as it comes without desire indeed, but with all manner of delight! Let thy Love-Madrigal to Death, thy Mother-Mistress, ripple and swell throughout the years, with all the Starry Heaven for thine Orchestra; but do not imagine that to attain Her is the sole satisfaction. It is the yearning itself that is Beatitude. It may seem that in this verse the word `Death' is used in a sense somewhat other than that explained in the previous note. It is forbidden, observe, to `man'. That is, then, the formula must not be used by one who is still an imperfect being. Our definition is surely confirmed by this phrase rather than denied, or even modified. To long for death is to aspire to the complete fulfilment of all one's potentialities. And it would evidently be an error to insist upon passing on to one's next life while there were hawsers unhitched from this one. The mere inexplicability of the various jerks would make for bewilderment, irritation, and clumsiness. For this reason, alone, it is all-important to ascertain one's true Will, and to work out every detail of the work of doing it, as early in life as one can. One is apt (at the best) to define one's will dogmatically, and to devote one's life almost puritanically to the task, sternly suppressing all side- issues, and calling this course Concentration. This is error, and perilous. For one cannot be sure that a faculty which seems (on the surface) useless, even hostile, to one's work, may not in course of time become one of vital value. If it be atrophied -- alas! Its suppression may moreover have poisoned one's whole system, as a breast debarred from its natural use is prone to cancer. At best, it may be too late to repair the mischief; the lost opportunity may be a life-long remorse. The one way of safety lies in applying the Law of Thelema with the utmost rigour. Every impulse, however feeble, is necessary to the stability of the whole structure; the tiniest flaw may cause the cannon to burst. Every impulse however opposite to the main motive, is part of the plan; the rifling does not thwart the purpose of the barrel. One should therefore acquiesce in every element of one's nature, and develop it as its own laws demand, with absolute impartiality. One need not fear; there is a natural limit to the growth of any species; it either finds food fail, or is choked by its neighbours, or overgrows itself, and is transformed. Nor need one fret about the harmony and proportion of one's various faculties; the fit will survive, and the perfection of the whole will be understood as soon as the parts have found themselves, and settled down after fighting the matter out in the balanced stability which represents their right reaction to each other, and to their environment. It is thus policy for an Aspirant to initiation to analyse himself with indefatigable energy, shrewd skill, and accurate subtlety; but then to content himself with indefatigable energy, shrewd skill, and accurate subtlety; but then to content himself with observing the interplay of his instincts, instead of guiding them. Not until he is familiar with them all should he perform the practices which enable him to read the Word of his Will. And, then having assumed conscious control of himself, that he may do his Will, he should make a point of using every faculty in a detached way (just as one inspects one's pistols and fires a few rounds) without expecting ever to need them again, but on the general principle that if they were wanted, one might as well feel confident of the issue. This theory of initiation is so important to every aspirant that I shall illustrate how my own ignorance bred error, and error injury. My Will was, I now know, to be The Beast, 666, a Magus, the Word of the Aeon, Thelema; to proclaim this new Law to mankind. My passion for personal freedom, my superiority to sexual impulses, my resolve to master physical fear and weakness, my contempt for other people's opinions, my poetic genius: I indulged all these to the full. None of them carried me too far, ousted the other, or injured my general well-being. On the contrary, each automatically reached its natural limit, and each has been incalculably useful to me in doing my Will when I became aware of it, able to organize its armies, and to direct them intelligently against the inertia of ignorance. But I suppressed certain impulses in myself. I abandoned my ambitions to be a diplomatist. I checked my ardour for Science. I trampled upon my prudence in financial matters. I mortified my fastidiousness about caste. I masked my shyness in bravado, and tried to kill it by ostentatious eccentricity. This last mistake came from sheer panic; but all the rest were quite deliberate sacrifices on the altar of my God Magick. They were all accepted, asit then seemed. I attained all my ambitions; yea, and more also. But I know now that I should not have forced my growth, and deformed my destiny. To nail geese to boards and stuff them makes foie gras, very true; but it does not improve the geese. It may be said that I strengthened my moral character by these sacrifices, and that I was indeed compelled to act as I did. The mad elephant Wantobemagus pulled over the team of oxen? We may put it like that, certainly; but still I feel that it might have been better had he not been mad. For, today, if I were an Ambassador, versed profoundly in Science, financially armed and socially stainless, I should be able to execute my Will by pressure upon all classes of powerful people, to make this comment carry conviction to thinkers, and to publish the Book of the Law in every part of the world. Instead, I am exiled and suspected, despised by men of science, ostracised by my class, and a beggar. If I were in my teens again! I cannot change my mind about which ridge I'll climb the mountain by, now when I see, above these ice-glazed pinnacles storm-swept, through gashes torn from whirling wreaths of arrowy sleet, the cloud-surpassing summit, not far, not very far. I regret nothing, be sure! I may be even in error to argue that an evident distortion of nature, and its issue in disaster, are proof of imprudence. Perhaps the other road would not have taken me to cairo, to the climax of my life, to my true Will fulfilled in Aiwaz and made Word in this Book. Perhaps it is lingering `lust of result' that whispers hideous lies to daunt me, that urges these plausible arguments to accuse me. It may be that my present extremity is the very condition required for the fulfilment of my Work. Who shall say what is power, what impotence? Who shall be bold to measure the Morrow, or declare what causes conjoin to bring forth an Effect that no man knoweth? Was not Lao-Tze thrust forth from his city? Did not Buddha go begging in rags? Did not Mohammed flee for his life into exile? Was not Bacchus the scandal and the scorn of men? Than Joseph Smith Had any man less learning? Yet each of these attained to do his Will; each cried his Word, that all the Earth yet echoes it! And each was able to accomplish this by virtue of that very circumstance which seems so cruel. Shall I, who am armed with all their weapons at once, complain that I must go into the fight unfurnished? 74. One does not need to be constantly popping in and out of Trance. One ought to do both actions with ever increasing length and strength of swing. Hence one's life-periods, where this counts, become gradually larger and more vivid, and one's death- periods though very short, perhaps, may be unfathomably intense. The whole question of Time has been thoroughly investigated already. The present remarks refer only to the conditions of `normal' consciousness, into which we throw ourselves at recurring intervals. The doctrine here stated should be studied in the light of previous remarks; verses 61 to 74 inclusive form a coherent passage: notice the words `death' in verses 68. There is evidently an intention to identify the Climax of Love with that of Life. It is then not unnatural for us to ask: Can `Death' have some deeper significance than appears? Scorpio, the Zodiacal Sign of Death, is really the Sexual or Reproductive function of Nature. It is the Earth-transcending Eagle, the self-restoring Serpent, and the self-immolating Scorpion. In alchemy it is the principle of Putrefaction, the `Black Dragon', whose state of apparent corruption is but a prelude to the Rainbow-coloured Spring-tide of the Man in Motley. The nymph of Spring, Syrinx, the trembling hollow reed which needs but Breath to fill the world with Music, attracts Pan, the Goat-God of Ecstatic Lust, by whose Work the glory of Summer is established anew. It is obvious that `the length of thy longing' varies with the number of potentialities to be satisfied. In other words, the more complex the Khu of the Star, the greater the man, and the keener his sense of his need to achieve it. 75. This passage following appears to be a Qablaistic test (on he regular pattern) of any person who may claim to be the Magical Heir of THe Beast. Be ye well assured all that the solution, when it is found, will be unquestionable. It will be marked by the most sublime simplicity, and carry immediate conviction. (The above paragraph was written previous to the communication of Charles Stansfeld Jones with regard to the `numbers and the words' which constitute the Key to the cipher of this Book. See the Appendix to these comment. I prefer to leave my remark as it originally stood, in order to mark my attitude at the time of writing). 76. It is the prophet, the `forth-speaker' who is never to know this mystery. But that does not prevent it from lying within the comprehension of the Beast, kept secret by him in order to prove any one who should claim sonship. (Cf. the note in brackets to the new comment on verse 75. The last part of this verse presents no difficulty. An XVI, Sun in Sagittarius. In the Appendix will be found the Qabalistic proofs referred to in the penultimate paragraph, as supporting the claim of sir Charles Stansfeld Jones, whose occult names, numbers, dignities and titles, are as follows: PARZIVAL, Knight of the Holy Ghost, etc., X O.T.O., 418, 777, V.I.O. (Omnia in Uno, Unus In Omnibus), Achad, or O.I.V.V.I.O. (Omnia in Uno, Unus in Omnibus), Fra A:.A:., 8 = 3 , Arctaeon, to be my son by Jeanne Foster, Soror Hilarion. See Appendix for the technical explanation of this verse. I may here briefly mention, however, that `Thou knowest not' is one of the cryptographic ambiguities characteristic of this Book. `Thou knowest' -- see Cap. I verse 26, and `not' is Nuith. The word `ever' too, may be the objective of `know', rather than merely an adverb. Note `to be me', not `to be I' -- an evident reference to Nuit, `not', MH. Cf. verse 13, comment. One can only exist by being Nuit, as explained in discussing the general magical theory. Observe that I am here definitely enjoined to proclaim my Law to men, `to look forth' instead of retiring from the world as mystics are wont to do. I may then be confident that this Work is a proper part of my Will. Note: This `one' is not to be confused with the `child' referred to elsewhere in this Book. It is quite possible that O.I.V.V.I.O. (who took the grade of 8 = 3 by an act of will without going through the lower grades in the regular way) failed to secure complete annihilation in crossing the Abyss; so that the drops of blood which should have been cast into the cup of Babalon should `breed scorpions, and vipers, and the Cat of Slime'. In this case he would develop into a Black Brother, to be torn in pieces and reduced to his Elements against his Will. 77. Pride is the quality of Sol. Tiphareth; Might of Mars, Geburah. Now Leo -- my rising sign -- combines these ideas, as does Ra-Hoor-Khuit. The christian ideas of humility and weakness as `virtues' are natural to slaves, cowards, and defectives. The type of tailless simian who finds himself a mere forked radish in a universe of giants clamouring for hors d'oeuvres must take refuge from Reality in Freudian phantasies of `God'. He winces at the touch of Truth; and shivers at his nakedness in Nature. He therefore invents a cult of fear and shame, and makes it presumption and blasphemy to possess courage and self-respect. He burrows in the slime of `Reverence, and godly fear; and makes himself houses of his own excrement, like the earthworm he is. He shams dead, like other vile insects, at the insects, at the approach of danger; he tries to escape notice by assuming the colour and form of his surroundings, using `protective mimicry' like certain other invertebrates. He exudes stink or ink like the skunk or the cuttle-fish, calling the one Morality and the other Decency. He is slippery with Hypocrisy, like a slug; and, labelling the totality of his defects Perfection, defines God as Faeces so that he may flatter himself with the epithet divine. The whole manoeuvre is described as Religion. 78. There are certain occult wonders concealed in the first part of this text. (See Liver CCCLXX). The solution of the last sentence may depent upon the number of the verse, which is that of Mezla, the Influx from the Highest, and of the Book of Thoth, or Tarot. We may take `thy name' as `the Sun', for Qabalistic reasons given in the Appendix; the verse need not imply the establishment of a new cult with myself as Demigod. (Help!) But they shall worship the group of ideas connected with the Sun, and the magical formula of the number 418, explained elsewhere. 79. So mote it be!


E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank