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The Beast 666 on St. Augustine’s “Love, and do what thou wilt”

January 5, 2010 8 comments

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

Here are two quotations, straight from the Beast’s mouth (or pen, specifically), regarding the similarity of the Law of Thelema to a statement made by St. Augustine.

The first quotation is taken from a letter written by The Beast 666 (Aleister Crowley) to Karl Germer in March 1942 (available in the  ‘Downloads’ section of LAShTAL.com):

“St. Augustine’s ‘Ama, et fac quod vis’ [roughly ‘Love, and do what thou wilt’] puts the cart before the horse, begs the question, and is moreover liable to the most serious misunderstandings. As if the fact of ‘loving’ were sufficient excuse for all and sundry acts, or lines of conduct.

Safer, ‘Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law’ with ‘love’ relegated to its scientifically correct position as the means of carrying out all plans soever: Hungry man ‘loves’ food and drink, i.e. unites chemically therewith, assimilates it to his own nature, and so becomes man refreshed i.e. capable of continuing to pursue his true will. Hence, ‘Love is the law, love under will.’

It will not help him to ‘love’ anything but food and drink on such occasions; and it must be the food suited to his nature and his powers of digestion. Hay will not restore or nourish him; and food too gross, or too plentiful, drink too cold or too intoxicating, may disturb the perfection of the process.

Of course you [Karl Germer] know all this well enough; but I thought that you might find it useful to quote St. August to the common blatant guffaw of the omnipresent blackguard ‘Do wot yer loike, eh? What ho!'”

This second quotation comes from an unfinished essay by To Mega Therion 666 called “Antecedents of Thelema“:

“It has been remarked by some critics of the Law of Thelema that the words “Do what thou wilt” are not original with the Master Therion: or, rather, with Aiwass, who uttered to the scribe Ankh-f-n-khonsu, the priest of the princes, The Book of the Law.

This is true enough, in its own way: we have, firstly, the word of St. Augustine: “Love, and do what thou wilt.”

This is however, as the context shows, by no means what is meant by The Book of the Law. St. Augustine’s thesis is that if the heart be full of Love, one cannot go wrong. It is, so to say, a rider upon the theorem of St. Paul’s thirteenth chapter of the First Epistle to the Corinthians…

Far more important is the Word of Rabelais, Fais ce que veulx [Fr. “Do what thou wilt”]. The sublime Doctor does indeed intend, so far as he goes, to set forth in essence the Law of Thelema, very much as it is understood by the Master Therion himself… Superb as is this adumbration of the Law of Thelema by Rabelais with his Word Fais ce que veulxThe Book of the Law gives us more—it gives us “all in the clear light…”

Love is the law, love under will.

Thelema is post-Christianity, not anti-Christianity

January 4, 2010 41 comments

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

Concerns have been expressed regarding the approach of this series, which parallels more general concerns regarding the approach of Thelema to Christianity in general.

It is true that many people come initially to Thelema as something that challenges & goes directly against Christian ideals. After all, our prophet is known as the Beast 666, our Heaven is on Earth, and we live joyously without fear of grace or guilt, having discarded the priestly bogey of sin.

Thelema is not anti-Christian, but post-Christian.

We do not simply reject all things Christian because of their association, but even as Christianity itself absorbed the Pagan elements of past religions so does Thelema absorb and supersede Christianity.

“Every man and every woman is a star, and every one’s will is the will of God” (Blue Equinox)

Further, in the central text of Thelema known as the Book of the Law it is written:

“Aum! All words are sacred and all prophets true; save only that they understand a little…” (AL I:56)

and in another Holy Book it is written:

“To you who yet wander in the Court of the Profane we cannot yet reveal all; but you will easily understand that the religions of the world are but symbols and veils of the Absolute Truth. So also are the philosophies. To the adept, seeing all these things from above, there seems nothing to choose between Buddha and Mohammed, between Atheism and Theism.” (Liber Porta Lucis)

From this it is easy to see we do not indiscriminately reject whatever is Christian but instead penetrate past the outer exoteric dogmas & superstitions and retain the gnosis preserved by each tradition.

Yet that gnosis has also been clouded by each tradition. In the Book of the Law, we also find cursing of the old “slave religions:”

“I am in a secret fourfold word, the blasphemy against all gods of men. Curse them! Curse them! Curse them! With my Hawk’s head I peck at the eyes of Jesus as he hangs upon the cross.” (Liber AL III:49-51)

“The evident interpretation of this is to take the word to be “Do what thou wilt,” which is a secret word, because its meaning for every man is his own inmost secret. And it is the most profound blasphemy possible against all ‘gods of men,’ because it makes every man his own God.”

We not only discard but actively fight against the tyranny, superstition, and dogma that have come through Christians throughout the ages and which is even inherent in Christianity itself. In this way we “curse” and “peck at the eyes of Jesus.”

We also unite all diverse symbols & methods under the banner of the Law of the Aeon of the Crowned and Conquering Child, “Do what thou wilt.” In this way “All words are sacred and all prophets true; save only that they understand a little…” It’s even been said “Thelema is more Christian than Christianity, and more Satanic than Satanism!” (What is Thelema?)

We hope that this post and others that have been written will make it clear that we are not blindly against all things Christian but see the Law of Thelema as that which supersedes the Old Aeon of Suffering. Hopefully readers will look beyond mere appearances and initial impressions to find the True Message of this blog. Not “Thy will be done” but “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law!”

Love is the law, love under will.

Quotations on the Life of Thelema and the Death of Christianity (part 1)

January 4, 2010 25 comments
(NOTE: AL refers to Liber AL vel Legis, or the Book of the Law which is the central text of Thelema)
Every man and every woman is a star.” -AL I:3

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“The only possibility of ‘evil’ is that the Will may be hampered. On the contrary, to the slaves of ‘Jesus,’ there is scarce an act which is not of the nature of ’sin’. ‘Even our righteousness is as filthy rags.’ ‘There is none good, no, not one,’ etc., etc., ad nauseam — et praetor! To us, then, ‘Jesus’ is the very fount and origin of all possible ‘evil,’ for he synonymous with the idea of Restriction on every plane. The Christian conception of sin as the will of the natural man, the ‘Old Adam,’ is the basis of all internal conflict — of moral insanity.” (comment to Liber LXV)

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The word of the Law is THELEMA.” -AL I:39

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“I slept with Faith, and found a corpse in my arms on awaking; I drank and danced all night with Doubt, and found her a virgin in the morning.” -Book of Lies, ch.45

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Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” -AL I:40

The word of Sin is Restriction.” -AL I:41

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“There shall be no property in human flesh. The sex-instinct is one of the most deeply-seated expressions of the will; and it must not be restricted, either negatively by preventing its free function, or positively by insisting on its false function. What is more brutal than to stunt natural growth or to deform it? What is more absurd than to seek to interpret this holy instinct as a gross animal act, to separate it from the spiritual enthusiasm without which it is so stupid as not even to be satisfactory to the persons concerned? The sexual act is a sacrament of Will. To profane it is the great offence. All true expression of it is lawful; all suppression or distortion is contrary to the Law of Liberty. To use legal or financial constraint to compel either abstention or submission, is entirely horrible, unnatural and absurd. ” (Commentaries to Liber AL)

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Thou hast no right but to do thy will.” -AL I:42
Love is the law, love under will.” -AL I:57

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“Every star must calculate its own orbit. All is Will, and yet all is Necessity. To swerve is ultimately impossible; to seek to swerve is to suffer. The Beast 666 ordains by His authority that every man, and every woman, and every intermediately-sexed individual, shall be absolutely free to interpret and communicate Self by means of any sexual practices soever, whether direct or indirect, rational or symbolic, physiologically, legally, ethically, or religiously approved or no, provided only that all parties to any act are fully aware of all implications and responsibilities thereof, and heartily agree thereto.” (Commentaries to Liber AL)

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Be goodly therefore: dress ye all in fine apparel; eat rich foods and drink sweet wines and wines that foam! Also, take your fill and will of love as ye will, when, where and with whom ye will! But always unto me.” -AL I:51

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“The God-idea must go with other relics of the Fear born of Ignorance into the limbo of savagery. I speak of the Idea of God as generally understood, God being ‘something “not ourselves” that makes for righteousness,’ as Matthew Arnold victorianatically phrased his definition. The whiskered wowser! Why this ingrained conviction that self is unrighteous? It is the heritage of the whip, the brand of the born slave.” (Commentaries to Liber AL)

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Beauty and strength, leaping laughter and delicious languor, force and fire, are of us.” AL II:20
There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.” -AL III:60