This forum’s views on Edward Alexander Crowley vary greatly.Some are positive,some are negative.Some think he was good at some things,some think he was bad at everything.Whatever the case may be,it’s very hard to deny that he was one of the most influential figures of occultism.
His views seem very Left Hand Path-y(Do What Thou Wilt Shall Be the Whole of the Law),and he is one of the main things we associate with the idea of magick.In fact,he’s whyy we put k on the word magick,to differentiate it from stage magicians.
Regardless,I am dedicated to my own path,and not hear to preach the Gospel of Crowley.I don’t agree with half of what he says,I don’t use his system,and I sure as hell am not planning on teaching others on it.
I am just here to share a poem I’ve been urged to share.Doubt this will help anyone much,but I think it lays out a good pathworking,and it reflects something I’ve had in my own magics,and my own systems.
So without further ado…
[i]In the years of the Primal Course,
In the Dawn of the terrestrial birth,
Man mastered mammoth and horse,
And Man was the Lord of the Earth.
He made him an hollow skin,
From the heart of a holy tree,
He compassed the earth therein,
And Man was the Lord of the Sea.
He controlled the vigour of the steam,
He harnessed lightning for hire,
He drove the celestial team,
and Man was the Lord of the Fire.
Deep-mouthed from their thrones deep-seated,
The choirs of the aeons declare,
The last of the demons defeated,
For Man is the Lord of the Air.
Arise,O Man,in thy strength!
The kingdom is thine to inherit,
Til the high gods witness at length,
That Man is the Lord of His spirit.[/i]
A note that may or may not matter to you is that this was composed in honor of George Raffalovich,a comrade of Crowley’s.
Now for the lit crit stuff.
The main thing about the rhythm that stands out is the repetition in the final man,where man has mastered each individual element.The other thing that stands out to that,is the full stop at the end of each verse.To me,it simply implies that it is a phase.Its one conclusion,and thus,its own ritual,or pathworking.
In a way,this shows four keys,and locks,simply unlocking in a specific order,to yield the specific result,of mankind being master of the elements,and master of himself.
Crowley believed that we began in the Aeon of Isis,a word where the worship of the ideal goddess was prevalent.The original societies humans lived in were predominately matriarchal,the ideal of womanhood was seen as beautiful,because she created children,and was to be protected and worshiped,or at least,this ideal of fertility.
Women were not always treated perfectly,but the goddesses were considered supreme.There was also a strong worship of the Earth,the mother who shelters us and protects us.
It is named after Isis,the sorceress goddess,who was probably one of the most inspirational goddesses I know of,committed to her husband,and the mother who brought Horus to overthrow Set.
Upon moving into more patriarchal societies,and more masculine pantheons,the position of great gods,such as Marduk,Ra,and Zeus appears.As does the idea of capital G god,who I really don’t need to bring into this mess to say that he ruled over this world,for quite a while.This second aeon,was dubbed by him as the Aeon of Osiris,worshiping the ideals of masculinity.
Crowley believed that this Aeon came to a conclusion with him and Thelema(rather vain of him),and the Aeon of Horus,would begin,where mankind would no longer look outwards for other things to worship but empower himself.
Now notice that the first two elements to be mastered in the poem are Earth,and Water,both considered to be feminine elements.The Earth who is the mother that feeds and shelters us and the Water that sustains us and heals us.
These two elements were mastered during the agricultural revolution(Earth) and when ancient people first began sailing(Water),like the Phoenicians getting to Africa,and such.They were mastered during the Aeon of Isis,during its rise and decline,for the feminine side of mankind.
The next two elements are Fire and Air.Both of these elements are considered masculine and dominant ones.Fire,which brings us war,as well as helps us cook food and protect ourselves,and air which ultimately represents the very life force that drives us(compare that to passion and the fire that drives us!),are both active elements.
These two elements were mastered over the ages,as Greek fire,as gunpowder,and of course,as electricity.This aligns with the fact that when I read the poem,Tesla’s image appears into my mind.
Air is a bit more obscure since it is harder to wield per say,but its esoteric meaning is more obvious as the age of dogmatic religion and suppression of all knowedge has disappeared,and science(which I know some occultists hate since they bend over backwards trying to disprove us),is ultimately a means towards knowledge and its application,which this modern day and age is all about.
These two elements were mastered in the Aeon of Osiris.
Finally,man masters himself,and the gods themselves witness this as he steps up to join them.No gods,no masters,but the ordinary mortal man or woman or child.
The poem is very much a call to arms of sort telling us,we’ve done it.We’ve mastered our worlds,we must become gods,and we must rise!
So stop the worship,and start the studying.Stop the veneration and start the growth.Stop the submission and start the apotheosis.
It is a rather obvious fact that this world was made for mankind to profit from.I identify as an environmentalist,I’ve participated in so many different ecological movements,and I firmly believe that abusing these resources we have and taking too much from them is going to bite us in the rear end.
At the same time,I also know that there is so much to this world we learn from and can reverse engineer.The tomatoes we eat are as man-made as anything else we’re using.Despite coming from the same Earth,we cultivated them.A good example is how strawberries human make are huge whereas strawberries from the forest are tiny.
The Left HAnd Path message here is that you do not have to,or want to merge back with this world,to merge back into Source,and become everything around you,become nature.
Because blind submission to natural forces isn’t nearly as good a way of understanding them,as summoning their spirit,commanding their powers,learning from them and understanding them.
And while it seems counterintuitive,mastering the world is a road to mastering ourselves,which contradicts with the traditional view that by mastering ourselves we know how to work in the world.
In reality,both need to occur,simultaneously.We must adapt the world,to ourselves,and adapt ourselves to our world.Stubbornly striving after things that won’t benefit our ascent, isn’t useful,it just gets you bruised badly and stuck in a dead end.
The Daily Practice
Earth is North,Fire South,Air is East,and Water West.
As such when you move from North,West,to South,to East,you are moving counterclockwise,deosil,waking against the sun,etc.
Which is in itself a left hand path-y thing.
The ritual begins with a Black Sun meditation.When the Black Sun has reached its zenith,it imbues the magician with its darkness.Vibrate the name of the Black Sun,which is ‘‘Erlathus’’,and a very useful ally.
I would advise against vibrating his name unless you’ve made chums with him before,preferably through the practice of performing the meditation daily,but not obligatory.
Once you have done this,banish in each of the quarters,by drawing a equal-armed cross,and declaring that all spirits are gone.If you have any personal banishings you use(The LBRP,in Darkness Bound,etc.) do them too,or instead.Customize,experiment!
Now that you are back at North,bow,not out of admiration,but aspiration,and announce:
‘‘I bow before the Northern Watchtower,and summon the King Ghob and Queen Terra,to grant onto me their blessings.Great monarchs of the Earth,of all that is material,of the Mother,bless me.For I stand before you,as a creature of Earth,and invoke your essence.’’
Here,see yourself as a statuette made of glowing clay,and then pull the particles of dirt into yourself.Fill yourself with them,and become them.Then release them.Now the clay is glowing,it has been empowered and consecrated.Your form reverts back to human.
Remember to fully perceive the element.Smell it,feel it,touch it,know it,see it,hear it,taste it,BE it.
Go to the West,and do the same.Bowing,not out of admiration but aspiration,and do the same.
‘‘I bow before the Western Watchtower,and summon the King Nichsa and Queen Tritonia,to grant onto me their blessings.Great monarchs of the Waters,of all that is ephemeral,of the Mother,bless me.For I stand before you,as a creature of Water,and invoke your essence.’’
Do the same.See yourself as a creature of water,and fully absorb water,invoke it,and then release it having received its blessings.
Then go to the South and do the same,bowing courteously.
‘‘I bow before the Southern Watchtower,and summon the King Djinn and Queen Corona,to grant onto me their blessings.Great monarchs of the Fire,of all that is passionate,of the Father,bless me.For I stand before you,as a creature of Fire,and invoke your essence.’’
Do the same as before.See yoursef as a hollow creature of fire,and absorb the living breathing flame.Release it,having received the elemental blessing.
Finally,go to the East and perform the same.
‘‘I bow before the Eastern Watchtower,and summon the King Paralda and Queen Vayu ,to grant onto me their blessings.Great monarchs of the Air,of all that is inspirational,of the Father,bless me.For I stand before you,as a creature of Air,and invoke your essence.’’
And do the same as before,absorbing the essence,and receiving the blessing.
‘‘With a mind of air,a body of Earth,a heart of water,and a drive of fire,I claim my throne amongst the gods.I free the Titan,caged within this vessel of flesh,the god who assumes manforms and the king who lives amongst beggars.I rise as (insert godname),beyond mountains,oceans,infernos,and fields.Beyond this world,beyond all worlds.’’
At this point call on one of the elementals and ask that they teach you their secrets.Make note of what they have to say,and work with either of them as long as it is necessary.
Because of the symbolism,I believe there is something unique to that order,of Earth,Water,Fire,and Air,that is natural to us.
When you deem you have finished with one element move to the next.If you feel a drawing to a particular one then go for it.Do not follow the rigid structures I outline.I’m just here to provide with a template.
The Fifth Element
When you are done with all the elements,at the end of your pathworking,conclude it by doing the initial ritual in reverse,beginning in the East and going to the North,declaring that you ARE the element,and that you are taking all the powers it gives,and bringing them to this world,grounding yourself.
At that point,use the four elements to structure a temple around you and above you a mirror.Lie down,within a pentagram drawn prior*,and scry into the imaginary mirror.Look into it,and ask to meet and perceive aether.Unlock its true nature and ask that it comes down,and merges with you.Then merge your form to its,and as before bring it back with you to this world.
Once you have absorbed all the elements,at the end of your journey,channel a godname,for a form of your godform representing each individual element.Your ethereal godform is the same one as your main one,so there’s no need for that one if you know that godname already.
And then,reap the rewards,and experiment with this new world as much as you wish.
*The pentagram can be drawn in chalk,it really doesn’t matter.A drop of blood or sexual fluids can make it more conductive but is not necessary.Your name should be written in the center of it,be it your godname,or your real name,and you should lie in it such that your head is on one point of the pentagram,and your hands and feet in each point.
Rituals should be done by candlelight or in pure darkness,but this is not obligatory.