Tag Archives: Aiwaz

The Magical Record of the Beast 666

Magical Record of the Beast 666: The Diaries of Aleister Crowley, 1914–1920, edited with copious annotations by John Symonds and Kenneth Grant, the 1993 third impression of the paperback from Duckworth, is part of the collection at the Reading Room.

Aleister Crowley John Symonds Kenneth Grant The Magical Record of the Beast 666 from Duckworth

“Crowley called his Diary a Magical Record because it contains accounts of his magical experiments, including the details of his secret sexual magick and of his consumption of a variety of dangerous drugs. it was not written with an eye to publication. ‘I don’t particularly expect anybody to read it,’ he wrote. Hence the unguarded way in which he recorded his innermost thoughts and performances of secret rites. There is a veiled reference to this extraordinary journal in his Magick in Theory and Practice, 1929. ‘Yea, he [Crowley’s Holy Guardian Angel, Aiwaz] wrought also in me a Work of Wonder beyond all this, but in this matter I am sworn to hold my peace.’ The ‘Work of Wonder’ was his supreme initiation into the highest grade of the mystical Order of the Silver Star, the beginning of which is described in this volume. Crowley, who died in 1947, had to hold his peace about that, and certainly about his sexual magick. Today, in these confused times, strange creeds thrust themselves forward, asking to be examined. everything is in the melting pot and a way out of the chaos in being anxiously sought. There is no stranger creed than Crowley’s doctrine of Do What Thou Wilt. Nor are there any experiences more exotic than his mystical illuminations and initiations.

John Symonds is Crowley’s literary executor and biographer. Kenneth Grant is the present world head of the Order of Oriental Templars, the magical order which Crowley reorganized in the 1920s.”

 

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Beelzebub and the Beast

Beelzebub and the Beast [also] by David Hall is a “an engrossing comparative study of two of the Twentieth Century’s most colourful gurus, George Gurdjieff and Aleister Crowley.” The title is due to be available in October from Starfire Publishing with a deluxe edition available in November. Pre-orders are available in the US and Canada through J D Holmes and elsewhere directly from the publisher.

 

 

“David Hall, who died in 2007, will be a familiar name to many as one of the founders and editors of SOTHiS, the substantial and diverse Thelemic magazine which was published from the United Kingdom in the 1970s. David was passionately interested in the work of Gurdjieff as well as that of Crowley, and in the early to mid 1970s he wrote this penetrating study comparing the work of both men. Unfortunately it failed to find a publisher at the time, although publication was referenced as forthcoming in Kenneth Grant’s Nightside of Eden. (Muller, 1977)

Crowley took an interest in the work of the Greek-Armenian occultist G. I. Gurdjieff, and visited Gurdjieff’s Institute for the Harmonious Development of Man in Fontainebleau in 1924 and 1926. There have been other comparative studies of the work of the two men, the most recent being The Three Dangerous Magi by P. T. Mistlberger (O Books, 2010).

Examining in turn the life and work of the two men at various levels, the author discerns a common source. Commenting circa 1919 on the first chapter of The Book of the Law, Crowley wrote ‘Aiwaz is not as I had supposed a mere formula, like many angelic names, but is the true most ancient name of the God of the Yezidis, and thus returns to the highest Antiquity. Our work is therefore historically authentic, the rediscovery of the Sumerian Tradition’. Similarly, the author here shows that the roots of Gurdjieff’s work can be traced to the same source.

With a full-colour wrap-around dustjacket, a substantial Foreword by Alistair Coombs, plates, tables and line-drawings throughout the text, a Bibliography, a comprehensive Index, and an Afterword about the author, this book will be of considerable interest to many.” [via]

 

“Limited Edition of 750 copies only. A Fine Hardcover Volume, illustrated end papers, and in a custom full color dust jacket based on the painting, MELEK TAUS by Stuart Littlejohn, which features the Peacock Angel emerging from a Yezidi arch, plus a substantial Foreword by Alistair Coombs, with plates, tables and line drawings throughout the text. Michael Staley has constructed a comprehensive index and bibliography, and has also written an Afterword about the author. 350 pages. Octavo.” [via]

The Slayer of Souls

You may be interested in “The Slayer of Souls” by Robert Chambers, an occult romance which includes, among other things, a fictional reference to the “Yezidee” or Yezidi.

The Yezidi are mentioned in various sources, not the least of which are in the works and life of Sir Richard Francis Burton, including The Kasîdah of Hâjî Abdû El-Yezdî [PDF], and in an unpublished section of Aleister Crowley’s introduction to the New Commentary to Liber Legis:

“Aiwaz is not (as I had supposed) a mere formula, like many angelic names, but is the true most ancient name of the God of the Yezidis, and thus returns to the highest Antiquity. Our work is therefore historically authentic, the rediscovery of the Sumerian Tradition.” [via]

Although it’s not a direct reference, to that passage by Crowley, Hymeneaus Beta notes in the Editor’s Introduction of Magick: Book 4, Liber ABA the connection between this “God of the Yezidis”, as that likely was used to mean at that time, and Melek Ta’us, the peacock angel of the Yezidi. The connection is more certainly what Crowley meant because further on in that unpublished introduction to Liber Legis there is mention of “Aiwaz” meaning “Messenger”, which is one of the characteristics of Melek Ta’us.

One of the places that I’ve encountered the deity Melek Ta’us is as he appears within the Feri Tradition, and discussion can be found about that online of which one example is at Feri Tradition: FAQ. There’s a lot more about the Yezidi and Melek Ta’us (also transliterated variously as Tawûsê Melek, Malak Tawus, or Malik Taws, Melek Taus …) online.

But, after that digression, back the the work of Chambers:

There’s an interesting review The Repairer of Reputations: The Slayer of Souls by Robert Chambers from pornokitch where they’ve been reading through Chambers’ works, trying to decide whether history has been just or unjust to Robert Chambers.