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  Magick as Religion
Magick Posted by Xnoubis on Thursday September 28, @03:41PM
from the great-wild-priest dept.

Magicians have occasionally been known to belittle religion. This might be because most religion in Western culture has entailed the imposition of beliefs, and the suppression of all alternative beliefs.

But I think that this misses the real sense of religion, which is indicated etymologically as re = "again" + ligo = "to bind." "To bind again," or in E.J. Gold's powerful rendering, "to bind in return." Religion is the social institution whose function is to encourage people to reconnect to their source.

As we all know, magick is "the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will." This implies that to do magick, one must know one's will. I would posit that knowing one's will in a real way means contacting one's source within one's self. So, as far as I can see, while opposition to dogmatism and intolerance is an essential part of Thelema, opposition to religion itself is not, because Thelemic Magick is a form of religion.

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    Re: Magick vs. Religion
    by Diancecht on Tuesday October 03, @08:11AM
    ..."It is also noted that every religion is exactly the same, only with minor subsections or perversions thereof. Even the name religion signifies their aim, which is to accept that deity or Jesus was the final Prophet, and therefore man is useless, or evil: the degradation of man, the silencing of his voice, and destruction of Ego are necessary to religious worship.

    The only opposition to this is the only other way of life in existence, and it was the original way to be known from which religion sprung and revolted against. And that is the Occult. Their aim: that the Universe, or Supreme Being, although just and true, is inferior, and that all things relative have evolved into man and beast for the purpose to celebrate (man’s) divination thereof.

    We can now only regret that religion has since contaminated the occult. And it is imperatively necessary to obliterate all customs and teachings (soever) to rebuild one’s own Universe, in perfect alignment and precision. For only then do we arrive at that point where man has started from so very long ago."

    --The Book of Duir, Diancecht (c)1998

    • Re: Magick vs. Religion
      by Mordecai Shapiro on Tuesday October 03, @09:00PM
      >Even the name religion signifies their aim, which is to
      >accept that deity or Jesus was the final Prophet, and
      >therefore man is useless, or evil: the degradation of
      >man, the silencing of his voice, and destruction of Ego
      >are necessary to religious worship.

      This calls to mind "let Asar be with Isa, who also are one. But they are not of me. Let Asar be the adorant, Isa the sufferer".

      • Re: Magick vs. Religion
        by D on Thursday October 05, @09:29AM
        What are you talking about?...

        This reminds me: if asked what is your biggest dislike of Thelema the dull endless quoting from the BOTL would win by a landslide. er what a mood-killer!

        • Re: Magick vs. Religion
          by Mordecai Shapiro on Friday October 06, @04:48PM
          "Begone ye mockers"

          • Re: Magick vs. Religion
            by D on Saturday October 07, @09:19AM
            "You have mocked your own self with these unflattering words."

            • Re: Magick vs. Religion
              by Mordecai Shapiro on Saturday October 07, @01:14PM
              Do you put this in quotes because it is an actual quotation from someone, or is it simply a problem with our annoying English language?

    • Re: Magick vs. Religion
      by Xnoubis on Friday October 06, @12:03PM
      Since it seems to me that Man and the Supreme Being are not two different things, I don't see a contradiction between religion and the occult. It seems rather that some occultists view "religion" as what matters to "the others," while the "occult" is what matters to themselves.

      • Re: Magick vs. Religion
        by D on Saturday October 07, @09:17AM
        Unfortunately, I do not happen to agree. As it is written in the 8th Aethyr, "And yet, with all that, they remain themselves"--i.e., man remains man, not (a) god. I could only reflect that Man and Supreme Being are two very different things.

        • Re: Magick vs. Religion
          by Xnoubis on Sunday October 08, @12:05AM
          I welcome your disagreement, and consider myself fortunate. :-) In particular, I don't read the passage that you quote as supporting your interpretation, but it is quite thought-provoking.

          For those who don't recognize it, the context is this:
          Thus hast thou erred indeed, perceiving me in the path that leadeth from the Crown unto the Beauty. For that path bridgeth the abyss, and I am of the supernals. Nor I, nor Thou, nor He can bridge the abyss. It is the Priestess of the Silver Star, and the Oracles of the Gods, and the Lord of the Hosts of the Mighty. For they are the servants of Babalon, and of the Beast, and of those others of whom it is not yet spoken. And, being servants, they have no name, but we are of the blood royal, and serve not, and therefore are we less than they.

          Yet, as a man may be both a mighty warrior and a just judge, so may we also perform this service if we have aspired and attained thereto. And yet, with all that, they remain themselves, who have eaten of the pomegranate in Hell.
          Now, the pomegranate in Hell refers at least in part to the myth of Persephone, who because she had eaten of pomegranates in Hades, was thereby compelled to live there half of the time, only able to live with her mother Demeter during the other half. The spring and summer were Demeter's rejoicing; the fall and winter, her mourning for her lost daughter.

          To eat the pomegranate in Hell seems like two reciprocal transitions to me: that the being of light would taste of the food of matter, and that the being of matter would taste of the food of the void. In both cases, they are thrust into a world not of their origin, yet retain something of their original natures.

          My reading of the passage doesn't have much bearing on the subject at hand, but I appreciate having the text pointed out.

          • Re: Magick vs. Religion
            by D on Sunday October 08, @09:17PM
            Yes, but the pomegranate dates back even before the Greek myth. Nevertheless it was interesting to read your piece on the transition, though I can't quite grasp your meaning of 'being of light' and '...of matter' --seeing that my personal interpretation of said writing further supports my original point... It is "The Vision & the Voice", no?...and ending each aire you read the master crawling back into his own body, for he is not 'ready' or 'able' to stay therein.

            P.S., to remain themselves is not the same as to remain unmoved, or unenlightened.

            • Re: Magick vs. Religion
              by D on Tuesday October 10, @12:08PM
              This question for Xnoubis, have you attained the Adeptus Minor? or i.e., the Abramelin Operation, also known as the Great Ritual, IAO, K&C of the HGA, clairvoyance, vision of the future self, and so on and so forth?

              • Re: Magick vs. Religion
                by Xnoubis on Tuesday October 10, @02:26PM
                That's private.

                I won't claim to be free of obscurations, I'll say that much.

                • Re: Magick vs. Religion
                  by D on Tuesday October 10, @02:51PM
                  Then you have no right to say my interpretation of the 8th Aethyr is right or wrong...

                  For that too would be private.

                  And there is nothing that obscures me from the original meaning of the author's meaning thereof.

    Re: Magick as Religion
    by Nexist on Monday October 09, @02:16PM
    I was involved in a very similar argument a while back. It was quite a mess, people quoting the dictionary, yet failing to actually read what they quoted . Anyway, the dictionary posits several definitions for Religion. If Thelema can match any of them, then ipso facto, Thelema is a Religion. According to Merriam-Webster Online Thelema is a religion based upon definitions 1b, 2 & 4.

    Now one could argue that Thelema is not a Religion, but rather a Mystical Philosophy as is Taoism (definition 1) but then this leads us to def 2, where Taoism is defined as a religion. Also, I am less than convinced of the usefulness of the distinction. Then again, as we incorporate elements of Buddhism, perhaps we should look to that definition. Despite its conception of deity as immanent, we still find that it is a religion.

    Slice dice or pureed, Thelema is a religion. People need to get over their psychological hang-ups, stop worry about what their parents did to them as kids by making them go to church and get on with Magick.

    Magick by the way is =always= derived from religion. Recently, there has an attempt to eliminate the superstitious aspects of the association, but if you trace teh sources, you will find the Father of Magick, Religion (its Mother is Mysticism).

    Re: Magick as Religion
    by MAOZIM on Tuesday October 10, @02:03PM
    The author's comment and definition force me to argue contrary to my opinion. If the word "bind" has even the slightest conotation to the word "religion", than, if I ascribe to the Law (thus am a Thelemite?), than I must destroy all resrtictions, and bind nothing. To "bind again," would spit in the face of Nu, willingly engaging in restriction.
    Thelemites (that damn word again), would seem to be the antithesis of religion. Neligion, perhaps?

    • Re: Magick as Religion
      by Xnoubis on Tuesday October 10, @02:18PM
      Neligion... I like that...

      As I see it, it's a language problem. The injunction to do one's will is a binding in the religious sense. To not bind at all would in this sense be the triumph of Choronzon. That would be my definition of neligion.

      To be free of the fetters of mental and linguistic constructs is more my idea of "Bind nothing!"

      Oops! Wandered into pestilence again...

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