Tag Archives: new aeon

New Aeon Magick

The Heretic’s Guide to Thelema Volume 1: New Aeon Magick by Hermetic Library fellow and anthology artist Gerald del Campo has arrived at the Reading Room courtesy of Concrescent Press.

 

Gerald del Campo's New Aeon Magick from Concrescent Press

 

“6x9in., Paperback, 208 pp. 1st of 2 in series.
ISBN: 978-0-9843729-3-5

This book is a new edition of a now classic work from a long-time practitioner of Thelema. It is a expression of his experience in a variety of forms of Thelema and a number of Thelemic institutions. First written as an explanation for the author’s young children, this recently corrected and improved version is a unique presentation of Thelema as it is actually lived. It is valuable to us all not because it is right, or orthodox, or for any other reason but that is IS. Thelema needs every form itself to be manifest in order for its full potential to be realized.

Some will object, and thelemically, they are welcome to do so. But the Magi have always learned from Nature and so we must note that although Nature abhors a vacuum, She hates monocultures: She always and only destroys them. Variety and diversity only will strengthen the current of Thelema. As it is said: Success is your proof.” [via]

 

You may wish to check out a sample chapter (PDF).

 

 

The Hermetic Library Reading Room is an imaginary and speculative future reification of the library in the physical world, a place to experience a cabinet of curiosities offering a confabulation of curation, context and community that engages, archives and encourages a living Western Esoteric Tradition. If you would like to contribute to the Hermetic Library Reading Room, consider supporting the library or contact the librarian.

Aleister Crowley and Western Esotericism

You may be interested in Aleister Crowley and Western Esotericism (and via Amazon), edited by Henrik Bogdan and Martin P. Starr, and scheduled for August 2012 from Oxford University Press and September via other retailers like Amazon. The hardcover is listed at a steep $99, but there’s a $35 paperback due in Sept (and via Amazon).

“Henrik Bogdan and Martin P. Starr offer the first comprehensive examination of one of the twentieth century’s most distinctive occult iconoclasts. Aleister Crowley (1875-1947) was a study in contradictions. He was born into a Fundamentalist Christian family, then educated at Cambridge where he experienced both an intellectual liberation from his religious upbringing and a psychic awakening that led him into the study of magic. He was a stock figure in the tabloid press of his day, vilified during his life as a traitor, drug addict and debaucher; yet he became known as the perhaps most influential thinker in contemporary esotericism.

The practice of the occult arts was understood in the light of contemporary developments in psychology, and its advocates, such as William Butler Yeats, were among the intellectual avant-garde of the modernist project. Crowley took a more drastic step and declared himself the revelator of a new age of individualism. Crowley’s occult bricolage, Magick, was a thoroughly eclectic combination of spiritual exercises drawing from Western European ceremonial magical traditions as practiced in the nineteenth-century Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. Crowley also pioneered in his inclusion of Indic sources for the parallel disciplines of meditation and yoga. The summa of this journey of self-liberation was harnessing the power of sexuality as a magical discipline, an instance of the “sacrilization of the self” as practiced in his co-masonic magical group, the Ordo Templi Orientis. The religion Crowley created, Thelema, legitimated his role as a charismatic revelator and herald of a new age of freedom under the law of “Do what thou wilt.”

The influence of Aleister Crowley is not only to be found in contemporary esotericism-he was, for instance, a major influence on Gerald Gardner and the modern witchcraft movement-but can also be seen in the counter-culture movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s, and in many forms of alternative spirituality and popular culture. This anthology, which features essays by leading scholars of Western esotericism across a wide array of disciplines, provides much-needed insight into Crowley’s critical role in the study of western esotericism, new religious movements, and sexuality.” [via]

“Foreword – Wouter J. Hanegraaff
1. Introduction – Henrik Bogdan and Martin P. Starr
2. The Sorcerer and His Apprentice: Aleister Crowley and the Magical Exploration of Edwardian Subjectivity – Alex Owen
3. Varieties of Magical Experience: Aleister Crowley’s Views on Occult Practice – Marco Pasi
4. Envisioning the Birth of a New Aeon: Dispensationalism and Millenarianism in the Thelemic Tradition – Henrik Bogdan
5. The Great Beast as a Tantric hero: The Role of Yoga and Tantra in Aleister Crowley’s Magick – Gordan Djurdjevic
6. Continuing Knowledge from Generation unto Generation: The Social and Literary Background of Aleister Crowley’s Magick – Richard Kaczynski
7. Aleister Crowley and the Yezidis – Tobias Churton
8. The Frenzied Beast: The Phaedran Furores in the Rites and Writings of Aleister Crowley – Matthew D. Rogers
9. Aleister Crowley: Freemason! – Martin P. Starr
10. “The One Thought that was not Untrue”: Aleister Crowley and A. E. Waite – Robert R. Gilbert
11. The Beast and the Prophet: Aleister Crowley’s Fascination with Joseph Smith – Massimo Introvigne
12. Crowley and Wicca – Ronald Hutton
13. Through the Witch’s Looking Glass: The Magick of Aleister Crowley and the Witchcraft of Rosaleen Norton – Keith Richmond
14. The Occult Roots of Scientology? L. Ron Hubbard, Aleister Crowley and the Origins of the World’s Most Controversial New Religion – Hugh Urban
15. Satan and the Beast. The Influence of Aleister Crowley on Modern Satanism – Asbjorn Dyrendal” [via]

Thelema Coast to Coast

The newest section of the library is the official static archive of Thelema Coast to Coast, a podcast that was dedicated to the exploration of Thelema, Aleister Crowley, the New Aeon, ceremonial magick, and the occult. As the official archive, the old domain thelemacoasttocoast.com is now pointing to the library, and many of the podcast sites have already begun to show the new location for the show and the podcast audio files. So, you may want to go take a gander at the new archive of this podcast.

Last week I was contacted by John L. Crow, who was the person behind the podcast, about whether I’d be interested in being the new home for the site and all the files. He had seen the work I’d been doing on several previously difficult to find articles at The Meditations of Allan Bennett and my work on the recently added guest site The Enochian and Thelemic Works of David Richard Jones along with several of David Richard Jones’ historical sites, such as Invisible College; and thought that the library would make a great new, permanent home for Thelema Coast to Coast. So, I spent a bunch of time converting the old WordPress site into a static archive, and checking that all the files where there. This was actually something similar to what I’d done when I created the mirror for The Eidolons of Ash, which was originally built on top of Mediawiki. The result you can see is only slightly different in appearance from the original dynamic site, but is actually improved a bit behind the scenes and now all the comments are closed.

Not only are all the show files available, but you may be interested in a few pointers to some interesting things. First, there’s the really fun Postcards page which displays images of a number of artistic things sent to the podcast via postal mail as part of a sticker giveaway promotion. There’s also archived on the site Episode #0, Promo (which only appears in the RSS feed) and an Enhanced Podcast available with slides of the lecture linked in the show description for Episode #19.

I’ve also been given permission to run the old Thelema Coast to Coast swag shop, as a way of offering some nostalgic items but also to help support the library in offering space for preservation of these and other sections of historically interesting materials. I promised to buy John one of the mugs if I actually have people get enough of the swag to cover the costs of it, so, you know, help out with that if you’re interested in having a souvenir.

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Anthropocene

The Economist [also] online has recently added a couple articles from their recent issue about the impact of humans on the planet, and the suggestion that we might be moving into an Anthropocene Age, an age of man.

“Rather than placing us still in the Holocene, a peculiarly stable era that began only around 10,000 years ago, the geologists say we are already living in the Anthropocene: the age of man.” [via]


Of course, this reminds me of the human centered philosophy of Thelema, and the works of Aleister Crowley, not the least of which is Liber OZ, Book 77, of which a key statement is:

“There is no god but man.” [via]

Then again, one thing that seems to me to be missed when most people talk about this is that with privilege comes duty, but in these articles about a speculative Anthopocene Age there is effort to make clear the responsibility that entails for human actions on Earth.

“The Anthropocene is different. It is one of those moments where a scientific realisation, like Copernicus grasping that the Earth goes round the sun, could fundamentally change people’s view of things far beyond science. It means more than rewriting some textbooks. It means thinking afresh about the relationship between people and their world and acting accordingly.” [via]

Thinking fresh can be a great idea, and this is definitely a secular as well as scientific example of the reversal of not just a way of thinking but also a way of acting.

“For centuries, science has progressed by making people peripheral. In the 16th century Nicolaus Copernicus moved the Earth from its privileged position at the centre of the universe. In the 18th James Hutton opened up depths of geological time that dwarf the narrow now. In the 19th Charles Darwin fitted humans onto a single twig of the evolving tree of life. As Simon Lewis, an ecologist at the University of Leeds, points out, embracing the Anthropocene as an idea means reversing this trend. It means treating humans not as insignificant observers of the natural world but as central to its workings, elemental in their force.” [via]

The notion that humans are a kind of elemental force should have resonance with anyone who’s studied esotericism, and the notion of the fifth power of the sphinx, the power to go, as an initiatory power; which in turn can be corresponded to the fifth element of the Western elemental model. This in some ways brings the story full circle by turning the secular and scientific notion of a new Anthropocene Age toward the scientific illuminism which is part of a New Aeon current. In an Anthropocene Age it might quite clearly follow that the age is one of rapid change due to instability in the way the world works; but, that can be an advantage, like the inherent and intentional instability of modern fighter aircraft in order to increase maneuverability, that merely is part of the increased opportunity for the advancement of the human race as part and participant in the world, seen and unseen, human and more than human.