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April 5th, 2005

ON THE PRICE OF PRUDISHNESS

One of the great mysteries of 19th Century magick for me is how the “proto Golden Dawn” tradition and the “proto OTO” tradition diverged, after over a hundred years of, so to speak, working the same turf, out of classical Rosicrucianism, ceremonial magick and alchemy. The easiest explanation, of course, is that the GD inclined groups succumbed to the late Victorian puritanical tastes, particularly when the British section of this tendency began to predominate, whilst the OTO inclined remained in the somewhat more liberal climate of the continent. This was not the worst of it—the Theosophical Society went even further in bowdlerizing the entire authentic tradition. As I commented here and in my current book (The Roots of Modern Magick ISBN 1-4116-1920-X http://www.lulu.com/magickroots/), “It cannot be doubted, however, that elements of the authentic tradition showed up in such groups as “The Society of Eight”. In “The Temple Rebuilt” especially, but also in “The Revelation of the Shechinah” published in 1886 and 1888, Frederick Holland anticipates the slightly later and similar work of Peter Davidson’s ‘Vital Christianity’.
“Putting a lamp in a dark place,” Holland tells his fellows, “a lamp in a sepulcher, a candle by a skull, a candle upon a tomb, a Phallus in its home, the Cteis, pointing out to us where to find the Lux e tenebris.
“Here is a skull, a tomb, empty, worn out; it is but the ruins of the temple of a man, a piece of earth that has been in child by the sun, but the man is gone, the child is born. The lamp is still burning outside the ruined temple.
“The subtle has been separated from the gross, and the great work is performed: CONSUMMATUM EST.” Elsewhere he tells us, “Give me the sign of the Master Mason?
“That is the sign of the Master Builder. It is the belly where the faculty of generation is, and the genital members answer to the elemental world: your porchway, or entrance to King Solomon’s Temple.” Clearly, this little circle, at least, can be thought of as within the authentic tradition. Why it did not make it into the later Golden Dawn is perhaps explained by late Victorian culture as such.”
I was first made aware of Holland’s works in this area by the Frater Superior of OTO, and the text which follows was provided by my close friend and coworkers at Antiquities of the Illuminati. Holmes Publishing Group has reprinted this work in an excellent monograph in their Golden Dawn Studies Series 24 (ISBN 1-55818-411-2). Read more...Collapse )

And now beep-beep-beep- the news from out in the middle of nowhere, the tin crypt in which I dwell. I found a recent poem I wrote for a very dear and perfect friend that seems to dovetail nicely with our recent discussion of blood bonding:

EYES

Like a lone and hungry wolf
Adrift, sniffing at the steppe winds
I can catch your blood-scent. Almost taste
Heart starts to race, though I am
A thousand miles from your soft white
Throat, my prey.
No parasite I, but predator, I love
Your tender bites I can imagine.
Save you, ravage you, caress;
Primal Id, Primal bliss
In this, I journey in anticipation
Feel you feel me, feel your
Ecstatic dread, dread ecstatic participation.
Your fevered mind allows
A dream, of truly carnal phantasy.

Like darkened shadow love with
That wildly unstrange stranger.
Danger you feel and indeed I’m danger,
But no stranger to you, I’ve
Haunted your darkest dreams
It seems like Aeons, Season of the Witch.
Coming into season, you would have me
Seize on this, play with it, claim it
By stealth, the wealth of nations
Cannot buy what I wish for you
To try, and you know it, as you dodge
So artfully, playfully, dart and barge
Away with the lightest kiss, to wet the lips
And barely taste the fangs that wait.
Seal a union, seal a fate, I long for
But not alone; you evade my question
Without shutting the door, skilled evasion,
But your eyes taunt “More.”

Then, on an entirely different note, the EC is meeting in my ancestral home territory, and I may wrangle a ride to drop in and say hello to the august members that serve the primary triad. I’m still looking for a roommate for NOTOCON. I think I have a ride there and back, but in a relatively bizarre twixt (whereas tricks are for kids) they pay half a room for speakers, leaving me to find someone who likes me well enough to stand me for two days and vice versa. I have uuuuuhh mixed memories of the first NOTOCON, the Akron thing, when so many of those who read this were packed into the same little suite, and there was THAT photograph, and driving up with you-who-know-know-who with my kids disclosed how he loved to tailgate 18 wheelers and how he could fall asleep at the wheel while I desperately tried to amuse and awaken, but that’s another story.

Anyway, still looking for offline suggestion of “signs of the New Aeon” to use in my talk. They again said they didn’t have funding for pencils and index cards (no kidding), so those who offered, please send some to NOTOCON “for poor Allen Greenfield’s presentation”. For the curious (many, I hope) here is the basic description I offered the speaker’s committee as to what my presentation will cover:

Who Are the Heretics in the New Aeon?

The essential point of the presentation is to raise the question of whether, with the advent of the New Aeon, we may expect to gradually cease to be regarded as “heretics” and become more “the new normal” following upon the concept of the dawning of a New Aeon in 1904 e.v. I will scrutinize the social, political, literary and occult forces of (roughly) the last century of the previous Aeon, from the era of Napoleon and Francis Barrett and Anton Mesmer down to the beginning of the Twentieth Century and the era of Bismarck, Theodor Ruess and Freud. I will then discuss the emergence of Liber AL, the OTO, the ideas of the Twentieth Century culture, society and political history, and how they point to a fundamental change in human consciousness. This presentation will be 30-45 minutes, after which I will encourage participants to contribute their thoughts on what “markers” they themselves have observed to indicate heresy transmuting to the underlying world view one would expect in a New Aeon. I will close with a brief consideration of the contrary view…that “new aeon” may be a more figurative than literal idea, symbolic of human progress.


And thanks to Ms. M.S. for following through on helping with the initial work on scanning and burning to disk the raw material – text and illustrations – for the proposed 19th Century sexual magick booklet, and offering to find a translator for some German stuff, and taking me to Kinque-ohs to copy my originals. Now, if all goes well, I will have several disks with this stuff in no particular order, so those who really want to participate in this project either to (A) work on sorting it out for publication, or (B) work on illustrations (some of the German stuff I’ve got is way too raw for public consumption), or (C) typesetting, do send me a snail mail address for a CD-ROM when I get them back from M.S.

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