Tag Archives: love

“I am all goodness, love, truth, mercy, health. I am a necessary part of God’s universe. I am a divine soul, and only good can come through me or to me. God made me, and He could make nothing but goodness and purity and worth. I am the reflection of all His qualities.” This is the “new” religion; yet it is older than the universe. It is God’s own thought put into practical form.

Ella Wheeler Wilcox, The Heart of the New Thought [Amazon, Bookshop, Local Library]

Hermetic quote Wilcox The Heart of New Thought goodness love truth mercy health necessary part universe divine soul only good purity worth reflection qualities new religion thought practical form

The Hindu Art of Love

Hermetic Library Fellow T Polyphilus reviews The Hindu Art of Love: The Classic Companion to the Kama Sutra [Amazon, Local Library] by Sir Richard F Burton, translation of Ananga Ranga by Kalyāṇamalla.

Burton The Hindu Art of Love

This treatise on sexual technique, properly titled Ananga Ranga, is more interesting than Vatsyayana, but still not as entertaining as Nafzawi’s Perfumed Garden. Although the introduction insists that “every Shloka (stanza) of this work has a double signification, after the fashion of the Vedanta, and may be interpreted in two ways, either mystical or amatory” (10), it is hard to imagine what mystical significance could reside in some of the long inventories of physical types and postures. A great deal of information is conveyed in tabular form, including auspicious hours for lovemaking, as well as ones suited to particular techniques, data for synastry, etc. I was intrigued by the emphasis on unguiculation in Chapter VIII, but I fail to see its esoteric dimension.

This particular edition is one of Sir Richard Francis Burton’s translations of the Eastern classics of erotic instruction. Some of the best contents in fact consist of Burton’s annotations. His explanation of the “various abominations” performed in order to ensure amatory attraction by secretly administering bodily fluids in the subject’s food is worthy of remark (55), as is his observation that “most English women” have never learned the real delight of carnal copulation but that Ananga Ranga provides effective remedies for the situation (75). Of purushayitabandha, the category of coital positions with the woman superior, Burton notes that it “is held in great horror by Muslims, who commonly say, ‘Cursed be he who makes himself earth and woman heaven!'” (106) (And thus it has come to be known in some quarters as the “Thelemic missionary position.”)

The original text is dedicated to the god Panduranga (i.e. Vithoba), an avatar of Vishnu. It assures the reader that its purpose is to ensure the durability of marriage, by providing the necessary information to promote variety in conjugal activities. So mote it be.

Horribly useless, this business called life. What does it all matter, when love is gone? And who can hold love? Oh, misery! misery! And still so many years to live. To live alone.

Helen Woljeska, Nocturne

Hermetic quote Woljeska Nocturne horribly useless business called life what matter love gone hold love misery many years to live alone

such is the holy gift of the Muses to men. For it is through the Muses and far-shooting Apollo that there are singers and harpers upon the earth; but princes are of Zeus, and happy is he whom the Muses love: sweet flows speech from his mouth. For though a man have sorrow and grief in his newly-troubled soul and live in dread because his heart is distressed, yet, when a singer, the servant of the Muses, chants the glorious deeds of men of old and the blessed gods who inhabit Olympus, at once he forgets his heaviness and remembers not his sorrows at all; but the gifts of the goddesses soon turn him away from these.

Hesiod, Theogony

Hermetic quote Hesiod Theogony happy is he whom the muses love

In its simplest form, actions performed for no measurable reason, or contrary to linear logic, might indicate such underlying motives as love or friendship or trust. But great care had to be exercised, because identical actions could derive from hate, insanity, or blackmail. Moreover, in the case of love, the nature of the action seldom helps to identify its motivational impulse. Particularly difficult is separating love from blackmail.

Trevanian, Shibumi: A Novel [Amazon, Bookshop, Publisher, Local Library]

Hermetic quote Trevanian Shibumi action no reason contrary linear logic love friendship trust identical actions hate insanity blackmail

King was never anti-American; he was always anti-injustice in America and anywhere else. Love of truth and love of country could go hand-in-hand.

Cornell West in Martin Luther King Jr, The Radical King

Hermetic quote West King Radical hand-in-hand

You adapted, and you made sacrifices. You did it for your children or for love. You did it because of illness or because of an accident. You did it because you had new dreams

Thomas Olde Heuvelt, Hex

Hermetic quote Heuvelt Hex dreams

For King, the condition of truth was to allow suffering to speak; for him, justice was what love looks like in public.

Martin Luther King Jr, The Radical King

Hermetic quote King Radical love

… For Mercy has a human heart, Pity a human face, And Love, the human form divine, And Peace, the human dress.

William Blake, Songs of Innocence, quoted in Thomas Harris, Red Dragon

Hermetic quote Harris Blake Innocence Dragon mercy pity love peace