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Aleister Crowley’s Secret Society of Magick and Excess
13-05-2020, 06:14 AM
Post: #1
Aleister Crowley’s Secret Society of Magick and Excess
Self-promoted as the “Great Beast 666″ from the Bible’s Book of Revelations. Slandered by the British press as the “Wickedest Man in the World.” Yet, theatrical occultist Aleister Crowley pioneered a radical re-imagining of self-actualization through managing paranormal spiritual entities, shaking up early 20th Century polite society. He founded the libertine religion of Thelema, and through sex rituals and extreme drug abuse, emphasized the not-necessarily-wicked ritual practice of Magick.

Mr. Crowley’s Revival: Huckster Magick or a Radical Futurist?
Using the dialectic of “Scientific Illuminism,” Aleister Crowley (1875-1947) broke from his privileged English Christian brewer’s society, endeavoring to use what he called “magick” to expand consciousness and free one from the restraints that hold them back from a higher purpose. Detractors confused this ego-infused pan-sexual ritualism with black magic or Satanism, and he remains a divisive and controversial figure, despite a continuing Occult revival, as well as counter-culture adherents over the years that included John Lennon, Timothy Leary, Ozzie Osbourne, filmmaker Kenneth Anger, Jimmy Page, Mick Jagger, Malcolm Lowry, William Burroughs, psychedelic band Hawkwind, Industrial Noise band Throbbing Gristle, and of course David Bowie.

This genius ceremonial magician dabbled in raunchy poetry, “trance” painting, witty, strange, and dark (some say incomprehensible) fiction, and scaling Mexican volcanoes and savage peaks of Pakistan for fun. He authored The Book of the Law (Liber Legis), a text dictated to him while on his 1904 honeymoon in Cairo by a supernatural entity or “praeterhuman” being named Aiwass, which became the central text the religion he founded called Thelema. This Law exhorts followers on a metaphysical level to “do what thou wilt,” and to align themselves with their True Will, their “higher calling,” through the practice of what he called magick.

“I slept with faith and found a corpse in my arms on awakening; I drank and danced all night with doubt and found her a virgin in the morning.” — Aleister Crowley, The Book of Lies
Crowley announced himself as the prophet of a new age, marking the 20th Century as the start of the Æon of Horus. Thelema asserted an overcoming of periods in history devoted to the Egyptian Great Goddess Isis (“Mother Earth” pagan) and the Egyptian patriarchal god Osiris (death worship and Christian glorification of suffering). The Aeon of Horus, the newly-born and awakened child god, sees humanity advancing upon a period of self-realization and self-actualization, with a nod toward the Age of Aquarius, which would serve as a 1960s-70s manifestation of Crowley’s tenets mixed with rock-star-hedonism.

Within the Thelemite religion, each of these aeons is believed to be “characterized by their [own specific] magical formula,” the use of which “is very important and fundamental to the understanding of Thelemic Magick.” It seems for Crowley, the formula worked, until it stopped working, and his egomania, substance abuse, and just general lack of disciplined willpower in a religion all about “the will,” became his undoing. Yet, his fame persists.
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