By Vincent Bridges (02/20/03)
The events of the weeks, from the 21st of March to April 7th, leading up to the three-day marathon dictation of the Book of the Law are shrouded in confusion and intentional obscurity. In all of Crowley’s voluminous writings, only these few weeks are skimmed over, as Crowley, the man who could describe a mountain ascendant in graphic detail 40 years after it happened, claimed memory failure and intentionally misleading entries in his diaries. This is so curious as to require an explanation, but Crowley passed it off as a result of his distaste at the content of the Book of the Law, a feeble excuse at best.
So what did happen? Pieced together from all of Crowley’s evasive comments over the years, we can put together a somewhat suppositional chronology. On the afternoon of the 22nd, probably on the terrace at Shepherd’s, Crowley met an Anglo-Egyptian initiate, probably of some Egyptian Sufi order, possibly the sheik with whom Crowley had been studying the Arabic Qabala. He discussed the situation with him and possibly received some advice. Do nothing further tonight, but do a divination on the 23rd and we’ll meet again on the 24th. Crowley apparently followed this advice and did a long complicated Tarot and I Ching reading. Although Crowley recorded this divination, he nowhere published or described its contents.
On the 24th, he again met his Sufi initiate. Crowley’s personal magickal record called him “Idris” or Enoch in Arabic. Beyond this point, silence falls. Sometime in this period, Crowley and Rose visited the Boulak Museum and Rose identified her Horus communicant with the Stele of Anhk-f-n Knonshu, exhibit number 666 in the catalogue. This impressed Crowley even further, and, perhaps through his initiate’s contacts, he had a copy and a translation made. By April 7th, all was in readiness, awaiting only Rose’s signal to begin.
Crowley’s personal diary gives us some clues to what happened in the interval between the 24th and the 7th, but Crowley claimed that he couldn’t remember what they stood for, the entries were in code, or that they were faked as blinds to his real, now forgotten activities. Apparently, although the dates are blotted out, Crowley made at least one more contact with his Sufi friend. Also, on April 6th, we find the curious note: “Go off again to H, taking A’s p.” H could be Helwan or Heliopolis, and given the role “Aiwass” was about to play, the “A” could possibly be him. Crowley was always very cagey about the subject, although he did claim that he was or had been, a living person.
Could the Book of the Law, in however oblique a fashion, have come from Crowley’s encounter with a real illuminated tradition within Islam? Could he have been provided with the insight and techniques required to make contact with the voice of the Aeon? The truth will likely never be known, and Crowley himself seems to have observed in this case a vow of silence more significant than any other in his life.
On April 7th, Rose instructed Crowley to be ready at noon on the next three days to write down what he heard for one hour. He complied, and over the next three days transcribed, from an astral voice that vibrated in his chest when he heard it, one of the most amazing, and beautifully written, pieces of mystical prose in the English language. The talents of Blake or Shakespeare would be hard pressed to top it, and it is much better than Crowley ever did before or after. That alone should give us pause.
The first day, April 8th, Crowley entered his magickal space a little early and sat down with fountain pen and a stack of clean white paper. Precisely at noon, Crowley sensed a form in the corner of the room, Aiwass, who acted as a kind of spiritualist control or MC, introducing the acts as it were. The act that first day was the star goddess Nuit, the second day that of Hadit or Horus the Elder and the third that of Set masquerading as “Ra Hoor Khu(i)t.” Together these three entities sketched out a prophetic pattern and underlying psychic motif for the next 93 years, from 1904 to 1997.
Since this is neither an analysis of the Book of the Law, or a biography of Crowley, we must now narrow our focus to one specific section of the first book and the teachings of the Star Goddess at the end of time.
In verse 57 of the first book we find the following:
“57. Invoke me under my stars! Love is the Law, love under will. Nor let the fools mistake love; for there are love and love. There is the dove, and there is the serpent. Choose ye well! He, my prophet, hath chosen, knowing the law of the fortress, and the great mystery of the House of God.
“All these old letters of my Book are aright; but Tsadi is not the Star. This also is secret: my prophet shall reveal it to the wise.”
There are many resonant points in this verse. Let us note the dove/Columbia synchronicity and its contrast with the serpent. The injunction to choose well can be seen as a warning. Earlier, in verse 52, the prophet is warned that if he doesn’t follow the rules carefully, and in fact makes any kind of choice at all, then he can “expect the dire judgments of Ra Hoor Khuit,” that is the Setian influence and prophecies of the third book. The “ye” used in the verse can also be second person plural, meaning all of us has the choice to make.
What the Star Goddess is saying, giving us fair warning as it were, is that if we don’t remain focussed on Her help and guidance during this time of transition, this change of the Age, then “direful judgements” will follow. However, if we refuse to choose, which is choosing well indeed, and if our rituals, our spiritual practices, are ever unto Her, then it will be possible to regenerate the world. As proof of this, and to give as deep as possible a meaning to the concept, the Star Goddess then revels the secret of the great conspiracy of the last age: “All these old letters of my Book are aright; but Tsadi is not the Star.”
In attributing the letters of the Hebrew alphabet to the images of the medieval psycho-technology known as the Tarot, we come upon the deeper archetypal forces at work within this great conspiracy. The zodiacal sign Aries is attributed to the Tarot Trump The Emperor, a good choice given the Imperial quality of the Aries current, and its survivors such as the Roman Empire and the Orthodox Church. The sign of Aquarius is attributed to the trump called The Star, the image of a beautiful young woman pouring the Sea of Crystal, the Milky Way, out upon the earth. This image is appropriate, for the most amazing advance of the early Aquarian era is space flight, the urge to reach the stars. The images and the astrological concepts match, but, until the Star Goddess spoke in 1904, the attribution of the Hebrew letters confused the issue.
The fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet, HEH, the pictogram, originally, for a window, was assigned to the Emperor and Aries. TSADDI, the seventeenth letter of the Hebrew Alphabet (and pictogram for a fish hook) was equated with The Star and Aquarius. It seems as absurd to speak of opening a window on Imperial Authority as it does to say the Stars fish for souls, hooking them and pulling them out of their environment. Yet, patriarchal violence is killing our planet and our spirits, dehumanizing our functions until we no longer feel the rhythms of the earth tides. And there is something eerily suggestive of the image of “stars fishing” in the tales of UFO abductions.
These attributions seem even more odd when we consider the passage in the Bahir, or “Book of Illumination,” where the transformation of Gimel into Daleth and then into Heh is described. Gimel is the High Priestess in the Tarot and Daleth is the Empress — why then would they transform into the Emperor?
The Bahir also tells us that Tsaddi is composed of the letters Nun and Yod, or Death and the Hermit in the Tarot. To be hooked by the stars is to endure the death of the ego-self might be the simplest way to put it. This certainly describes the old ways of ascetic renunciation, the only path to transcendence in the fallen or “quarantined” condition of humanity. But, in the new age of Horus, these concepts have changed.
If “Tsaddi is not the Star,” then what is attributed to the Star? The obvious attribution for Tsaddi is the Emperor, given the prevalence of Caesar, Kaiser and Tsar as Imperial titles, which means that Heh is assigned to Aquarius. This shift in attributions produces the correct alignment of meanings. In the new alignment, the Emperor’s attributions are Aries (the sign of Imperial structures and patriarchal religions) and Tsaddi, with its element of embracing the spiritual necessity of the death of body and of personality. This gives us a clear archetypal view of the disease of patriarchal violence. The Emperor is the very symbol of the alpha-male dominance and power-over-life thanotropic spiritual illness that caused the “Fall” and got this planet quarantined in the first place; the very illness that is about to drive us into total war over oil dollars and American economic control of the world.
This gives us the image of the Star-Window, which returns The Star to its original meaning of spiritual guidance. The Star-Window is open, and the progression from the Bahir suddenly makes supreme sense: The Priestess becomes the Empress, and then transforms into the Star Goddess. Even the name of God in Hebrew YHVH returns to its original sense. Where once we could read YHVH as Hermit-Emperor-Hierophant-Emperor, all male dominant qualities (suggestive in another sense of the masculine Yod controlling the name, Eve, of the original mother), now the name of God reads, Hermit, Star, Hierophant, Star, or a balance of male and female potencies. The meaning shifts from outer authority of Power-over, which is essentially the ability to destroy, to inner authority, Power-with, the co-creative function of the intuition, which is the ability to change and evolve.
The shift was announced in 1904 and actually began 88 years later in the summer of 1992 and will be complete in 2012, 108 years and nine months after the shift was announced. Some people thought of it as a time shift — from a 12/60 rhythm to a 13/20 rhythm for the Dreamspell pseudo-Mayanists — while others saw it in terms of photon clouds and UFO landings. Every man and every woman (”every man and every woman is a star,” the Goddess announced) on this planet began to come to terms (in whatever way they could) with their and our stellar nature and origins. History has begun to unwind, to unravel back through feuds and antagonisms that are centuries and even millennia old. We have truly come to the last decade of history, and what comes next is up to us. The choices we will make in the next few weeks and months may determine the fate of humanity for the next 13,000 years.