Tag Archives: Freedom

The Portal of Initiation

The Portal of Initiation: A Rosicrucian Mystery Drama & The Fairy Tale of the Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily, by Rudolf Steiner and Johann W von Goethe, respectively, the 1981 second revised edition from Spiritual Literature Library (Garber Communications), is part of the collection at the Reading Room.

Rudolf Steiner Johann W von Goethe The Portal of Initiation from Spiritual Literature Library / Garber Communications

“The Portal of Initiation: A Rosicrucian Mystery Drama, can best be described in Rudolf Steiner’s own words:

‘When one has worked one’s way through to an understanding perception of the world, the living need is felt to form ideas no longer, but to create artistically, that is, plastically, or in color, or musically, or poetically. In my Mystery Dramas I myself tried to give what cannot be expressed in ideas about the nature of the human being. … This leads us to enjoy, to seek out, to contemplate what one cannot possibly experience in thoughts, but in living figures, as they appear in the dramatic pictures; then we let the figures of the drama really work upon us. … Art must be added to what is abstractly known if true knowledge of the world is to be attained. Further, when such perception is attained and presses toward creative form, this experience penetrates so deeply into the human soul that this union of art with science produces a religious experience.’

‘Today, humanity may not yet be inclined to absorb into external culture what can spring from the spiritual life. however, at least in artistic pictures we can show how life may develop, and what in the form of thoughts and feelings flows into our souls and permeates them. The result can be the kindling of the presentiment that out of its present, humanity must go toward a future in which it will be able to experience the streaming down of spiritual life into man on earth. For humanity is approaching an age when man will perceive himself as the intermediary between the spiritual world and the physical world. These performances were given in order that this presentiment might be awakened.’

Steiner spoke repeatedly about the importance of Goethe’s Fairy Tale, not only in relation to the spiritual striving of our time in a general sense, but in his first Mystery Drama, The Portal of Initiation, he drew upon many of the basic themes of the Fairy Tale. Steiner also indicated that the way the pictures in Goethe’s Fairy Tale ‘unfold themselves’ shows that they possess the power ‘to transform the human soul’ which opens itself to them. He also once characterized the Goethe Fairy Tale as the ‘archetypal seed’ which offers the possibility of a new order of social life amongst humanity as a whole, and described it as the foundation upon which he based his teaching concerning the modern Science of Spirit, Anthroposophy.

Although they are surrounded by the remarkable conveniences modern technology has placed at our command and the degree of ‘freedom’ this has made possible, many people today would agree with Goethe’s observation, made long ago: “Whatever sets the human spirit free without giving us mastery over ourselves is harmful.’—ANd with this awareness goes the recognition that despite the marvels of technology, designed to set men free to an ever-increasing degree, there nevertheless prevails a widespread feeling, a longing to return ‘home’, to experience the unique guidance of the star of one’s individual destiny. … Goethe’s Fairy Tale offers, in form of artistic images, the first steps on the path which at length will enable a man to come to know himself as a being of body, soul and spirit, with all this implies. Thus the Fairy Tale of Goethe may become ‘everything’ or ‘nothing’ for the reader—and it is left entirely to his own individual freedom to let it ‘speak’ its significance to him.” — back cover

Put a Satanic Monument at OK Capitol

You may be interested in The Satanic Temple‘s crowdfunding effort, and righteous experiment in pluralism, to place “a Satanic monument to be erected at the OK State Capitol to complement and contrast the 10 Commandments monument that resides there now.”

The Satanic Temple Baphomet Monument

That image above is of the proposed monument and was posted by the group in the comments on their social network page which may be of interest, as it features an iconic Baphomet figure.

“We, The Satanic Temple, an established New York City-based religious organization, seek to donate a public monument to Oklahoma’s Capitol Preservation Commission for display upon Oklahoma City’s capitol grounds. As an “homage” to Satan, the purpose of the monument is to complement and contrast the Ten Commandments monument that already resides on the North side of the building.

The existing Ten Commandments monument, donated to the Capitol Preservation Commission in 2009 by Mike Ritze, a representative of the Oklahoma State Legislature and ordained Southern Baptist Deacon, has raised the ire of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) who filed suit in August of 2013, noting that, ‘the monument stands alone, with no other monuments or memorials in the immediate vicinity.’ Also of concern to the ACLU is the ‘self-evidently exclusive’ religious message ‘that supports and endorses the faiths and creeds of some churches and sects.’ We believe that in being allowed to place our monument within the proximity of the Ten Commandments monument, we can appease the ACLU’s concerns.

By accepting our offer, the good people of Oklahoma City will have the opportunity to show that they espouse the basic freedoms spelled out in the Constitution. We imagine that the ACLU will also embrace such a response. Allowing us to donate a monument would show that the Oklahoma City Council does not discriminate, and both the religious and non-religious should be happy with such an outcome. Our mission is to bring people together by finding common sentiments that create solutions that everyone can appreciate and enjoy.

We are keenly attune to the need for a public-friendly design and plan is to make our monument an object of play for young children. The Satanic Temple is accepting donations toward the production and placement of this historic and important monument to religious diversity.” [via]

BTW, this is also the group that “performed a ‘Pink Mass’ over the grave of Westboro Baptist Church founder Fred Phelps Jr.’s mother” [via, also].

UK Filter to Block ‘Esoteric Content’

You may have heard about the mandatory online filter being proposed in the UK. If not, you may want to find out more. And, either way, but especially if you are in the UK, you may consider checking out some of the dissent to the idea, including petition at “UK Prime Minister David Cameron: Stop the unnecessary censorship of ‘esoteric’ websites and web forums!

“Can you imagine a world where access to spiritual information was blocked by the government? What if you stopped by an internet cafe, only to find your favorite website was banned by a public web filter, or your friend’s natural health website was blocked because it mentioned ‘spiritual healing’ techniques? A disturbing movement to censor perfectly legal spiritual information is growing (right now in the UK, but other countries are poised to jump on the bandwagon), and will continue unchecked unless people become aware of the problem and protest it. Find out more about the UK filter, and how it will affect you, below.” [via]

UK Filter to Block 'Esoteric Content' - Worldwide Implications

Banned Books Week 2013

Banned Books Week, an annual event sponsored by the American Library Association, this year is September 22–28, 2013. I’m sure you can find something at the Hermetic Library that is suitably and sufficiently celebratory, including a few subversive, transgressive or outsider works that have been banned or censored at one time or another in their own right in the past and that, no doubt, some would want banned or removed even now! Even if not there, certainly at your favourite bookseller’s shop you can find something worthy of your attention and in solidarity with the theme of the week that would at least raise some eyebrows. But, either way, this annual event is an especially good time to specifically celebrate the freedom to read esoteric and occult works, both online and in general.

Banned Books Week 2013

“Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community — librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types — in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.” [via]

“The ALA promotes the freedom to choose or the freedom to express one’s opinions even if that opinion might be considered unorthodox or unpopular and stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of those viewpoints to all who wish to read them.

A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group. A banning is the removal of those materials. Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting the access of others. As such, they are a threat to freedom of speech and choice.” [via]

Kenneth Anger Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome 1954 with Anais Nin

 

Kenneth Anger Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome 1954 with Anais Nin [HT DisInformation]

“Nin was a pioneer as one of the first women to ply the dirty book trade and she eventually let the works be collected and published widely under the titles Delta of Venus and Little Birds. She’s considered to be among the best writers of the female sexual experience.

Along with Miller, Nin became a counterculture hero during the unrest of the 1960’s. While Miller championed freedom of libido in his writing and fought for free of speech in his battles against censorship, Nin was perceived as the kind of strong, talented, liberated woman that the just-budding feminist movement was still trying to articulate.” [via]

Banned Books Week 2012

This year is the 30th anniversary of ALA’s Banned Books Week, which is this week: September 30−October 6, 2012.

“Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community — librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types — in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.” [via]

Also, you know, check out the Hermetic Library for some transgressive and subversive material to read, including a few works that have been banned at one time or another in their own right in the past and that, no doubt, some would want banned or removed even now.

You may be interested in a new post by Sabazius over on his blog about the Tunis Comment, or The Comment

You may be interested in a new post by Sabazius over on his blog about the Tunis Comment, or The Comment, at “A Brief Examination of ‘The Comment’“.

“These days, The Comment is sometimes regarded as a bit of irony, or an anachronism, or an example of ‘reverse psychology,’ or even a joke. But Crowley took this statement quite seriously, even if not perfectly literally.” [via]

“There is nothing wrong with studying Crowley’s evolving commentaries and writings dealing with Liber AL, such is encouraged by The Comment and was clearly the intent. But we know from experience that group discussion, especially in official contexts within a hierarchical organization, inevitably evokes the dynamic of intellectual leaders and followers, and subtle pressures to conform. O.T.O. is full of what might be considered operative paradoxes, and this is a significant one. We believe that by actively working to discourage the creation of social contexts in which individuals are expected to state their personal views on Liber AL and its meaning, we preserve their freedom.” [via]

Concerning Death by Aleister Crowley in International, Dec 1917.

“But the orb revolveth anon; the shadow passeth away from thee. There is the dissolution, and eternal ecstasy in the kisses of Nu! For inasmuch as thou hast made the Law of Freedom thine, as thou hast lived in Light and Liberty and Love, thou hast become a Freeman of the City of the Stars.” [via]

“Pathology of the Sublime” from Problems on the Path of Return by Mark Stavish, M.A. in Vol 3 No 1 of Caduceus.

“While the four major existential fears of annihilation and death, responsibility and freedom, aloneness, and meaning, (Existential Psychotherapy, Yalom) are the fears most deeply rooted in the ego (Assiah/Malkooth) and can be said to be a result of the transient nature of the Elements from which it is created, these conflicts are not the result of internal instinctual strivings, or of encounters with our internalized images of significant adult authority figures during the infantile stage of our development (as in Freudian work), but with inescapable givens of our existence in the world.” [via]

Banned Books Week 2011

It’s that time of year again for ALA’s Banned Books Week, September 24−October 1, 2011.

“Banned Books Week (BBW) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment. Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States.

Intellectual freedom—the freedom to access information and express ideas, even if the information and ideas might be considered unorthodox or unpopular—provides the foundation for Banned Books Week. BBW stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of unorthodox or unpopular viewpoints for all who wish to read and access them.

The books featured during Banned Books Week have been targets of attempted bannings. Fortunately, while some books were banned or restricted, in a majority of cases the books were not banned, all thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, booksellers, and members of the community to retain the books in the library collections. Imagine how many more books might be challenged—and possibly banned or restricted—if librarians, teachers, and booksellers across the country did not use Banned Books Week each year to teach the importance of our First Amendment rights and the power of literature, and to draw attention to the danger that exists when restraints are imposed on the availability of information in a free society.” [via]

Also, you know, check out the Hermetic Library for some subversive material to read, including a few works that have been banned at one time or another in their own right.