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  Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
General Thelema Posted by Samael on February 12, 2001 @ 11:58 AM
from the live-free-or-die dept.

Alesister Crowley: Libertarian Minarchist or Anarcho-fascist? Are Thelema and Liberty truly compatible?

Aleister Crowley has made Reason Magazine's February issue, in an editorial on AC's "Libertarian Authoritarianism" (though I'd have thought Ayn Rand would have won that prize...). Though I do not agree all the editor's opinions, I think he raises some valid points. Crowley in some places talks like a contributing editor of "Spotlight" magazine, and at others like a top-down social planner. Will the real AC please stand up?

In my opinion, Crowley's political philosophy was his least well thought out, and some of his opinions seem inconsistent.

I'd be interested to hear what other Libertarians and or Thelemites have to say about this article.



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    Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
    by Chapoutier on Monday February 12, @12:27PM
    It is a shame that Crowley never wrote much of his political philosophy, though it is safe to say that he wouldn't want anything to do with a democracy, save that ruling by election is a farce. Would it not be clear however that since he spoke so highly about freedom the only possible way to allow or begin to find free will is through discipline?

    If one accepts that his philosophy leaned towards fascism then it would have to be minus much of the hard-nosed convictions of the fascist.

    Maybe this is why he never wrote much on government--the very system he might wish to employ could easily lead to tragedy. And then though he swore how much he hated the gestapo he would be forced to undertake such a task to achieve the desired result.

    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by Samael on Sunday February 18, @02:54PM
      it is safe to say that he wouldn't want anything to do with a democracy, save that ruling by election is a farce.

      A sentiment I happen to agree with.

      Would it not be clear however that since he spoke so highly about freedom the only possible way to allow or begin to find free will is through discipline?

      One of the best definitions of freedom I've seen was Aristotle's: "Freedom is obedience to self imposed rules". Slavery to one's own compulsive desires/fears is not freedom. But equally, nor is it acquiescence to the authority of another to regulate them.

      If one accepts that his philosophy leaned towards fascism then it would have to be minus much of the hard-nosed convictions of the fascist.

      True. And some interesting recent post-modern interpretations of of the meaning of Fascism tend to agree. Here's one, for example:

      http//:www.nazi.org/


      Maybe this is why he never wrote much on government--the very system he might wish to employ could easily lead to tragedy. And then though he swore how much he hated the gestapo he would be forced to undertake such a task to achieve the desired result.

      I very strongly suspect you are right on this one.


      • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
        by Xnoubis on Monday February 19, @06:38PM
        > http//:www.nazi.org/

        Holy moley! That's the damnedest thing I've ever seen.

        I'm reading along, seeing a number of very good ideas actually, thinking, "maybe their only big fault is their refusal to condemn the Third Reich," and then I come across:
        "...a 'Mexican genocide' may be necessary to keep America on course..."
        So, no. Same old Nazi shit.

        But thank you for a staggeringly strange experience.


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Chapoutier on Wednesday February 21, @08:05AM
          You are right on this one, Xnoubis, yet I tend to the notion of Nationalism as a required basis to a functional government. As Bush would say, 'people must be held accountable for their actions'--but so far it is just talk. And though genocide might not be the answer, how should responsibility be implemented? Finally, I would also like to point out that the nations worst enemies are its own fellow citizens--everywhere you turn there is betrayal and mind games.


          • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
            by Xnoubis on Wednesday February 21, @11:58AM
            I've been puzzling over your comment for some time now. I know that you must be coming from a completely different perspective than my own, but I haven't yet been able to make out what it is.

            I really would be interested in your clarifications.

            > yet I tend to the notion of Nationalism as a
            > required basis to a functional government

            Why is that? Many states are not nation-states, whether because they contain more than one nation, or only a portion of a nation. Are they all disfunctional?

            As far as Western societies are concerned, nationalism seems to me to be nothing but a headache.

            > As Bush would say, 'people must be held
            > accountable for their actions'

            Um, and this connects with nationalism how?

            > And though genocide might not be the answer,
            > how should responsibility be implemented?

            What relationship would genocide have to responsibility, even in theory?

            I might be able to muse on what a state might be able to do to encourage responsibility in its citizens, I don't know, but I'm not at all sure of what you're talking about here.

            > I would also like to point out that the nations
            > worst enemies are its own fellow citizens--
            > everywhere you turn there is betrayal and mind
            > games.

            Without really knowing what you're saying, I'm thinking that maybe the nation should make some new friends...


            • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
              by Chapoutier on Thursday February 22, @07:47AM
              Nationalism isn't just about uniting all states into one code of government. It's about placing the needs of the nation above all else, or more specifically, sitting down and solving problems of the nation, especially org. crime, and not just pretending that more police is the solution. A unification of ideas is also a means of protection.

              As far as the genocide quote, it seems to be disproportioned. But it is commonly known that Mexicans have been mercilessly slaughtering border patrol guards just to cross into the U.S. so far now as this job is one of the most dangerous in America. The numbers of illegal aliens are enormous, and when such a degenerate group flock into the states they disregard any and all laws or moral/honorable standards. A perfect example of this is Miami or L.A.


              • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                by Nathan W Bjorge on Thursday February 22, @11:31AM
                93

                I'm afraid I'm going to have to jump in and take my gloves off on this one. I think you are laboring under some misconcieved stereotypes with regard to immigrants from Mexico. The vast majority of immigrants, legal or illegal, are decent human beings just like everybody else. Do you consider them 'degenerate' because they happen not to have been born inside the geographical boundaries of this country or because of their race?

                93 93/93
                -Nathan


              • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                by Xnoubis on Thursday February 22, @01:40PM
                All I'll say regarding your comment about Mexicans is [emotional outburst deleted].

                Moving on, to say that "a unification of ideas is also a means of protection," suggests to me that those who choose not to hold those same ideas will then be needing protection -- protection from those participating in the "unification." We are indeed talking fascism here: not the attempt to move beyond tribalism, but the attempt to play the tribalism game and win it. I can't help but see that as a big step backwards.



              • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                by Xnoubis on Sunday February 25, @04:41PM
                Also, I'm puzzled about the nature of "American nationalism". Since the U.S. is a nation of immigrants, we don't really hold a race, creed or ancient culture in common. If we have anything that defines us as a nation, it is the set of founding ideals that include among them liberty, equality, and tolerance. People of all races and walks of life commit ignoble acts and noble ones. I'm unconvinced that it is ever justified to cast aspersions on people on account of their category.


                • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                  by Chapoutier on Tuesday February 27, @07:56AM
                  "God forbid! While one of these scum is attacking his beloved fellow men in the most contemptible fashion, the octopus covers himself with a veritable cloud of respectability and unctuous phrases, prates about ' journalistic duty ' and suchlike lies, and even goes so far as to shoot off his mouth at committee meetings and congresses- that is, occasions where these pests are present in large numbers -about a very special variety of 'honor,' to wit, the journalistic variety, which the assembled rabble gravely and mutually confirm.
                  These scum manufacture more than three quarters of the so-called 'public opinion,' from whose foam the parliamentarian Aphrodite arises. To give an accurate description of this process and depict it in all its falsehood and improbability, one would have to write volumes. But even if we disregard all this and examine only the given product along with its activity, this seems to me enough to make the objective lunacy of this institution dawn on even the naivest mind.
                  This human error, as senseless as it is dangerous, will most readily be understood as soon as we compare democratic parliamentarianism with a truly Germanic democracy.
                  The distinguishing feature of the former is that a body of, let us say five hundred men, or in recent times even women, is chosen and entrusted with making the ultimate decision in any and all matters. And so for practical purposes they alone are the government; for even if they do choose a cabinet which undertakes the external direction of the affairs of state, this is a mere sham. In reality this so-called government cannot take a step without first obtaining the approval of the general assembly. Consequently, it cannot be made responsible for anything, since the ultimate decision never lies with it, but with the majority of parliament. In every case it does nothing but carry out the momentary will of the majority. Its political ability can only be judged according to the skill with which it understands how either to adapt itself to the will of the majority or to pull the majority over to its side. Thereby it sinks from the heights of real government to the level of a beggar confronting the momentary majority. Indeed, its most urgent task becomes nothing more than either to secure the favor of the existing majority, as the need arises, or to form a majority with more friendly inclinations. If this succeeds, it may 'govern' a little while longer; if it doesn't succeed, it can resign. The soundness of its purposes as such is beside the point."

                  -A. Hitler


                  • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                    by Xnoubis on Tuesday February 27, @09:25AM
                    Well, I don't think that I need to put much energy into refuting Herr Hitler.

                    But even taking the passage at face value, how does it bear on the discussion?


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Samael on Wednesday February 21, @02:52PM
          Thought you'd enjoy that one. It reminds me of the Chimaera, a mythical beast compose of 3 completely different critters, genetically spliced together into a single....something.

          "...a 'Mexican genocide' may be necessary to keep America on course..."

          yeah, that one caught my I too...

          I strongly suspect the "National Socialist Libertarian Green Party" has a membership of 1.


    Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
    by Skye on Monday February 12, @02:33PM
    From the perspective of the ego of Crowley, libertarian. From his nego, fascist.

    Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
    by Xnoubis on Tuesday February 13, @09:32AM
    > In my opinion, Crowley's political philosophy
    > was his least well thought out, and some of his
    > opinions seem inconsistent.

    Thank you! I really think that this point cannot be made emphatically enough, or too often. As a result of his inconsistency, people can read any political view into Crowley's work. For myself, I try to start with what seems to me to be the main point, the freedom of the individual, and work outwards from there. And this definitely does not lead me to Libertarianism, by the way.

    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by Samael on Sunday February 18, @03:02PM
      For myself, I try to start with what seems to me to be the main point, the freedom of the individual, and work outwards from there. And this definitely does not lead me to Libertarianism, by the way.

      Precisely, though my thinking on this runs the other way. Libertarianism does not go far enough.
      See http://www.economic.net


      • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
        by Xnoubis on Monday February 19, @06:59PM
        > Libertarianism does not go far enough. See
        > http://www.economic.net

        Hmm. Interesting. Just looking at some of the introductory material, it appears that, although they want to remove many government mechanisms, they also want to create new mechanisms that would have the effect of constraining the power of corporations against the individual, which is the main thing I find missing in mainstream Libertarianism. These mechanisms would also be private interests, apparently, which could be problematic (what would prevent oligopolies of their super-charged insurance institutions, for example?), but at least they're trying.



        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Samael on Wednesday February 21, @03:25PM
          "Libertarianism" is hardly a monolithic ideology, as of course one might expect. There are as many flavors and varieties as there are of Thelema! (thank Goddess!)

          My point is I fundamentally disagree with Hobbs' "Social Contract" idea.

          Lysander Spooner's famous works "No Treason" and "The Constitution of No Authority" fairly well reflect my thinking on that score.

          The problem always boils down to: Is it ethical for party A, to appropriate property by violence or threat of violence --which, in the end, is the bottom line for the State-- from party B?

          Perhaps the simplest definition of Libertarianism might be: to hold the State to the same moral standards as apply to individuals.


          • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
            by Xnoubis on Wednesday February 21, @05:17PM
            Plainly, there are flaws in Hobbs' construction. I'm not familiar with Spooner, but I'll give him a look.

            > Perhaps the simplest definition of
            > Libertarianism might be: to hold the State to
            > the same moral standards as apply to
            > individuals.

            Whereas my objection to Libertarianism as it's often seen in, say, the Libertarian Party, is that I don't wish corporations to be allowed the same rights as (or greater rights than) individuals.

            There are many ways of looking at the situation. One would be to consider the dynamics between the individual, the marketplace, and the state. The goal is to maximize the freedom of the individual. An excess of state power impinges on individual freedom. But with insufficient constraints, the marketplace impinges on individual freedom as well (the disproportionate influence of business on government, environmental destruction, oppression of labor, corporate control of the media, etc.).

            What I'm looking for is a balance between the state and the marketplace, such that the individual is, to as large an extent as possible, left the hell alone. What we have now, of course, is a situation where the government is both too intrusive (the Drug War, the indiscriminate use of the military) and not engaged enough in protecting the rights of its citizens against the abuses of the powerful.

            I think of certain European governments, the Netherlands in particular, as being a lot closer to a healthy balance than what we have in the U.S. There will always be room for improvement, of course.


          • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
            by Mordecai Shapiro on Thursday February 22, @12:04PM
            Spooner also wrote one of the earliest defenses of drug and alcohol legalization, "Vices Are Not Crimes".


    Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
    by Joshua Zintel on Tuesday February 13, @09:50AM
    Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

    Ah there are such webs of illusion at play,
    enough to blur the allusion to free-fall. When
    a celestial body 'falls' freely in space there is
    no conflict.

    The difficulties of rectifying the contraries
    of AC's personality--how the scribe refracted
    the transmission of V.V.V.V.V.--is resolved by
    attaining the higher trances of Neschamah. Our
    apprehension of the Law will remain framentory,
    divided, partial until Understanding is attained.

    Practical application of Thelema in the
    political sphere depends upon the Understanding
    of those who are 'at rule'. Those who have not
    attained thereunto will only see partial shards
    of starlight & thus interpret behavior out of
    context...hence the misunderstanding of masters.

    Moral of the story-- become an M.T.!

    "Lurk! Withdraw! Upon them! this is the Law of the Battle of Conquest: thus shall my worship be about my secret house."
    CCXX:III:9

    Love is the law, love under will.
    Fraternally,

    999'.' Joshua Zintel
    http://www.hoor.org/lodges/horuslodge

    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by Xnoubis on Tuesday February 13, @11:06AM
      > When a celestial body 'falls' freely in space
      > there is no conflict

      That sounds good from an armchair, but I'm not sure how helpful that idea is in practice.

      > Those who have not
      > attained thereunto will only see partial shards
      > of starlight & thus interpret behavior out of
      > context...hence the misunderstanding of masters.

      This is nicely phrased in that it can be read two ways. One is, "Those who have not attained will misunderstand masters," which I take to be your meaning from context. But it could just as easily be read, "Masters misunderstand because of their partial attainment," which more closely describes how it seems to me.

      Rajneesh was once asked how he could reconcile his claim to be enlightened with being dragged into the scandals of his community in Oregon. He answered something to the effect of, "Being enlightened means that you know your own mind. It doesn't necessarily mean that you know that someone's bugging your phone." One of his more insightful remarks, in my view.

      The point is, we all operate from partial understanding. Even if we grant that attainment can free us from all distortions of perception, that doesn't mean that we can know in advance what the universe (and all of the beings in it) will present in the next moment. That's part of what freedom means.

      Since no one's understanding is perfect, no one person can be relied on as a political authority. Instead, each individual in a free society (for it is a free society we're aiming for, right?) has a responsibility to speak his understanding, and also to listen for the understanding of others.

      Moral of the story -- place not your trust in Princes! (Or in Rosicrucian Grand Wazoos, for that matter.)



    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by Mordecai Shapiro on Tuesday February 13, @11:48PM
      What does "framentory" mean?


      • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
        by Skye on Wednesday February 14, @04:20PM
        It's a intitiated mystery (3+3*3+3*3+3*3+3+3*3+3*3+3*3+3+3*3+3*3+3*3+3, for those of you still holding the Atlaean tradition ;}) meaning fragmented.


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Mordecai Shapiro on Thursday February 15, @11:07AM
          Whew! that's a relief. I was afraid it was some kind of NLP jargon.


    Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
    by Nexist on Wednesday February 14, @09:58AM
    Like many words in any faith (or if you prefer "Belief System"), Thelema utilizes common words with special connotations -- "Will", "Love", "HGA" etc. Another word, less readily identified is "Freedom". Freedom, in the Thelemic sense is a far cry from the "Freedom" meant by non-Thelemites.

    For a Thelemite, Freedom means the Freedom to perform one's true will -- all else is enslavement. For the Thelemite, only one thing is permitted, the accompishment of ones will (AL I:42 "So with thy all; thou hast no right but to do thy will.")

    In this sense, & most especially in the sense Crowley conceived of the True Will & the Great Work, Authoritarian Governments would have an appeal. If the leader were performing the Great Work, all members of the society would be performing their Will. While idealistic, the general desire for a benificent dictatorship lies at the heart of many an Occultist, whether they profess Anarchism or Fascism (q.v. Hakim Bey's "Black Crown & Black Rose" in TAZ)

    Anyway

    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by Xnoubis on Wednesday February 14, @12:53PM
      > Freedom, in the Thelemic sense is a far cry
      > from the "Freedom" meant by non-Thelemites

      That's not my experience at all. Sure, when I talk with others about freedom, their first formulation usually has to do with freedom from responsibility. But generally, after a bit of questioning like, "So does freedom mean being random," I find that most of us roughly share an idea of what freedom is. Not all non-Thelemites believe that we're born with an unchanging Will, but not all Thelemites believe that, either.

      I don't want to go too far into interpreting Liber AL, but I'd like to point out that "thou hast no right" isn't the same thing as "only one thing is permitted."

      There is little doubt, as the editorial asserts, that Crowley had an authoritarian streak. He also had an anarchist streak and a socialist streak. As Samael points out, he didn't do a particularly good job of making his views consistent. The most important point, as far as I can see, is that (unless you are a solipsist) you cannot consistently value individual freedom and authoritarianism at the same time.

      Crowley's quote about a Ministry of True Will was justly ridiculed in the editorial. It must be one of the all-time low points in his political thought. For the Will of an individual must, by definition, be self-determined. Your Will isn't some kind of content that could be discovered by someone else and then handed to you on a plate.

      I much prefer Crowley's stance from Liber Aleph, Chapter 32: "Thou must have simple Laws and Customs to express the general Will, and so prevent the Tyranny or Violence of a few; but multiply them not!" (emphasis mine). That's so simple it appears almost trivial, but I really think that there, for once, he got it right.

      > If the leader were performing the Great Work,
      > all members of the society would be performing
      > their Will.

      I can't even imagine how you think that follows.

      > the general desire for a benificent
      > dictatorship lies at the heart of many an
      > Occultist

      That's a good summary of the #1 reason to not get involved with the Occult.

      I believe that one of the most important tasks that we Thelemites have before us is to reform Thelema in the wake of the lessons learned from the fascist dictatorships of the 20th century. Since they happened so late in his life, Crowley can't fully be blamed for not assimilating their implications. But we don't have that excuse.


      • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
        by Nexist on Thursday February 15, @08:29PM
        Not all non-Thelemites believe that we're born with an unchanging Will, but not all Thelemites believe that, either.

        Then they are in for a big surprise. The Path may change, but never the goal, whether it be in this life or the next.

        "thou hast no right" isn't the same thing as "only one thing is permitted."

        True, all things are permitted, though you only have the right to one thing. It is still not Freedom, though it is the 'Liberty' to actually be yourself.

        I much prefer Crowley's stance from Liber Aleph

        I agree, but the two are not contradictory. After all, the basis of all Authoritarianism -- whether personal or societal -- is "Obey".

        I can't even imagine how you think that follows.

        Personally or in context? In context, you must remember Crowley's conception of the Great Work & everyone's will being as the non-interferring orbits & thus a government run by the enlightened would assist in setting each and every star in their orbit.

        I believe that one of the most important tasks that we Thelemites have before us is to reform Thelema in the wake of the lessons learned from the fascist dictatorships of the 20th century. Since they happened so late in his life, Crowley can't fully be blamed for not assimilating their implications. But we don't have that excuse.

        And, praytell, were those? Three or four items that are intrinsic to Fascism will suffice -- there are others -- but I am actually fishing for your qualifications to make such an assessment.


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Xnoubis on Friday February 16, @09:01AM
          > the basis of all Authoritarianism -- whether
          > personal or societal -- is "Obey".

          And is Thelema about "personal Authoritarianism," in your view?

          >> I can't even imagine how you think that
          >> follows.
          >
          > In context, you must remember Crowley's
          > conception of the Great Work & everyone's will
          > being as the non-interferring orbits & thus a
          > government run by the enlightened would assist
          > in setting each and every star in their orbit.

          Okay, that does help me see what you meant. Leaving aside for the moment that I think the basic conception is flawed, what confused me was the idea that a leader performing the Great Work implies that the government would be enlightened. The leader is only part of the system.

          >> I believe that one of the most important tasks
          >> that we Thelemites have before us is to reform
          >> Thelema in the wake of the lessons learned from
          >> the fascist dictatorships of the 20th century.
          >
          > And, praytell, were those?

          That's a terrific question, possibly meriting an article of its own. Unfortunately, I'm probably not going to have the time to address that right away, since I'm preparing for Pantheacon and the Beast Bay Birthday. But I'll be thinking about it over the course of the weekend.

          I will say, though, that there's a relationship between Crowley's work and 20th century fascism. And World War II had an enormous impact on the public perception of the ideas around fascism. So even if one doesn't agree with me that fascism was and is one of the most appalling errors in recorded history, I think it would still be important to evaluate how ideas relating to fascism should be presented in the post-World War II era.

          I would be very interested to hear others' opinions on the subject.


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Xnoubis on Monday February 19, @04:53PM
          > And, praytell, were those?

          Okay, I'm back. As I said, I think this really requires a prolonged discussion by Thelemites everywhere. But here are a few of my thoughts on the subject:

          There are many different definitions of fascism in use. Generally, by "fascism" I mean a militaristic, nationalistic, and authoritarian state supported by industrial capitalists, historically as a reaction against communist encroachment. In relation to Thelema, I think we can ignore the nationalist and industrialist aspects in order to focus on authoritarianism and militarism.

          Fascism is derived from fascio, originally meaning "a bundle of sticks." Each stick is breakable, but bundled together, they are much stronger. One of the distinctions between a fascist party and other political parties is the degree of force considered permissible in achieving its agenda. The accomplishment of the agenda (generally, seizing or maintaining power) is the main thing. People are persuaded or coerced into compliance, as necessary.

          For me, the definitive argument against fascism is The Open Society and Its Enemies by Karl Popper. His purpose in writing it was to demonstrate that, in addition to the Allies fighting against the Axis, there was something that they were fighting for, which he called the Open Society. An Open Society is a society in which no one is considered to have possession of the ultimate truth, and so each individual must be allowed to determine what the truth is for him- or herself to as large an extent as possible. In civic matters, where some agreement has to be made about the common interest, the Open Society attempts to arrange things so that as many people as possible can have a voice in the decision making process, but also that minority views are respected to the greatest extent possible. All of this necessitates a balancing act among conflicting interests, and so the Open Society isn't a comprehensive blueprint, but is rather a vision of what a social order needs in order to be consistent with the value of individual freedom.

          Fascism, on the other hand, involves the imposition of the view of the state upon the populace. This is generally accompanied by a rationale that justifies this imposition as being of greater importance than individual self-determination. As an example, I recently came across this reference to Pat Buchanan:
          In his January 25, 1990 newsletter, Buchanan penned what was in essence an ode to fascism which celebrated the efficiency of autocracy, and concluded with the line, "If the people are corrupt, the more democracy, the worse the government."
          (In light of this, I rather wonder why we didn't see more support for Buchanan's presidential run amongst those Thelemites who embrace Crowley's politics whole-heartedly. But I digress.)

          There are some rational lessons to be learned from the fate of the fascist states of World War II.

          One is that, by suppressing dissent, the alternative points of view necessary to intellectual and cultural progress are eliminated, which weakens society in the long run.

          Another is that, while skill and luck might combine to impose a centralized view over a nation-state, that imposition is perceived as a potential threat by its neighbors. And if that view includes a militaristic aspect (as was always the case with the fascist states of history), that perception can lead to determined opposition from the neighbors of the fascist state, i.e., international isolation, which, again, can prove destabilizing over time.

          But the foremost lessons are not rational. The lessons are found in the mass gravesites, the concentration camps, the torture chambers. They are lessons we feel in our gut. They are obvious lessons to those who live in oppressive societies, as they were to those of our parents and grandparents who fought in opposition to such societies.

          What creeps me out is that we could forget so quickly, and that a matter of such importance could be held as merely a fashion of times gone by, like the jitterbug or minstrel shows. As a result, we are a people ripe for the picking by fascists, and unwary Thelemites could easily help the process along, if we don't take care to examine Crowley's works with a critical mind and a sensitive heart.


      • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
        by it93666 on Saturday February 17, @07:48PM
        Care(a) BeastBay readers,

        Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

        "Crowley had an authoritarian streak. He also had an anarchist streak and a socialist streak. As Samael points out, he didn't do a particularly good job of making his views consistent."

        I find myself laughing at this claim that keeps beind made.

        Consistant with what? Your previous views of philosophy?

        Did you ever consider that thelema might be a NEW philsophy all on it's own accepting one part of a already standing philosophy and part of others.

        If thelema was simply "libertarian" or "fascist" than why a need for developing a philosophy at all?

        Why not just regurgitate existing philosophies?

        I think that as previously pointed out by Fr.Zintel that one could only understand that these *seemingly contradictary ideas* can only be united with initiation and insight into the mysteries which quite possibly you haven't attained.

        Thelemic Regards,

        Love is the law, love under will.

        it93666


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Samael on Sunday February 18, @03:32PM
          Consistant with what? Your previous views of philosophy?

          No. Self consistency. I thought that was pretty clear.

          Did you ever consider that thelema might be a NEW philsophy all on it's own accepting one part of a already standing philosophy and part of others.

          Lord Secret and Most Holy! You mean.... Thelema is a revolutionary new philosophy? Damn, 20 years of my life wasted...

          If thelema was simply "libertarian" or "fascist" than why a need for developing a philosophy at all?

          Funny, I thought that was kind of the point of this discussion.

          Why not just regurgitate existing philosophies?

          Like Crowley's e.g.?

          I think that as previously pointed out by Fr.Zintel that one could only understand that these *seemingly contradictary ideas* can only be united with initiation and insight into the mysteries

          You mean, like the Catholic Mystery of One God/Three Persons, which can only be understood through Faith?

          Sorry, but that's a flat up cop out.

          which quite possibly you haven't attained.

          Thanks. I would have never made the connection between initiated understanding and interpreting Thelema on my own.


          • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
            by it93666 on Wednesday February 21, @06:12AM
            93

            wow. you know how to be sarcastic.

            good for you.

            LOL

            93 93/93


    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by shader XX on Thursday February 15, @03:34AM
      ...as you mentioned, TAZ, i am tring to find
      out more about this phenomenon, do you know
      who is Luther Blisset, www.lutherblisset.net/
      archive_en/223_en.html, he makes some interesting
      claims about Hakim Bey...

      so i wonder where that would leave your "Black Crown & Black Rose" insight?

      seems to me that this sort of agent within agent
      shall i call it confusion?...is at the crux
      of the whole discussion here, facsist or libertarian...gnostic of Gestapo, or Gestapo of gnosticism, enlightened tyrant, i feel that it is really a matter of going for the core of the rose,
      not lining my bed with petels, but we needs must keep peeling them back, i myself have probably
      come off sounding like some pushy kaos agent, but
      it just seems to go with the territory, especialy
      when you have a ORDER of ranking initiates, something in me is drawn to it and at the same time wants to blow it all apart and see what makes it tick...anarchist?...some kind of agent93, just
      a crazy poet madman hurteling imagistic molotov cocktails?...a kind of kafkaesque mutant thelemite
      rogue of analogue?...what ever it is, i cannot conform, so i will become the ultimate dictator of the imagination, i have a dream of Crowley, where he says to me "all prophecy means nothing"...does that mean Nuit, or does it mean that he was tring to be the end of prophets?...agents within agents,
      and so it goes, this life time...priestess, propaganda, prophecy...somehow it all gets mixed together, and will the true thelemites please do your true will...ya know? come to think of it, there are a lot of quantum leaps of fire that one has to do in order to even begin to know what that is....power to the babe in the egg!!!


      • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
        by Xnoubis on Thursday February 15, @07:15AM
        Two T's in "Blissett." The correct link is here.

        Pretty amusing, but the validity of Bey's point isn't diminished by his foibles (if indeed the allegations are true). Not that I thought much of Bey's point...


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Shader XX on Thursday February 15, @10:20AM
          ...thankz for even being diminshed by daning
          to even consider the thought!!!...for that matter!?

          ....love of the LAW...

          the Shade man knows AL...NOT!

          P.S. but don't you think that the possibility that Bey is CIA...open up a whole can of ontological wyrms?...hmmmm

          or is OTO immune from conspirisy theory?


          • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
            by Mordecai Shapiro on Thursday February 15, @11:27AM
            >or is OTO immune from conspirisy theory?

            This is a joke, right?


            • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
              by Shader XX on Thursday February 15, @01:57PM
              ...surley you jest???

              Morde...cai...hmmmm the last three letters of your name

              cai...iac. aci. cia.. BINGO!

              actually i am more on the left...

              well, in answer to your retorical question
              i have to say that i disagree, with Xonobliss
              on the dimished capasity argument, i think it
              is no defence...

              we are the play things of the ill-uminati
              always have been, A.C. is not just a mutant
              hidden variable, or is he?

              is "do what thou wilt, shall be the whole of the Law"...a nuget of light and truth, vouch safed
              to us by some benevolent Brotherhood of eternal
              truth and justice...? could it be that easy?

              i am willing to believe...but my experiance tells me that all is not out in plane view...all the while knowing that sometimes the truth is right in front of your eyes!!!...it's just that we are
              not trained to see it...we are given obfuscations
              and all kinds of data, disinformation, and ritual...to keep us busy!...going after the carrot
              or is it the golden apple beyond good and evil?

              ...sorry if i do not sound like a professor, or some over educated know-it all, versed in all manner of OTO cryptic-naila...but sometimes it pays to stand back and make an all out effort to see the primeval forrest for the trees...

              the event horizon is closer then we think!

              if we can sit back and ask the question; is Crowley a Libertarian or a Fascist?...and sound
              like a bunch of pencil headed school boys, then i
              think the doodoo is deeper then we dare know...

              can all the ritual in the world change that?
              can all the career OTO members (thelemites?!)
              change that?...i believe that the time is coming
              when a great shake up is due, i don't know how it
              is ment to happen, but i for one am not merely
              shooting dice with sigils on the sides...

              anybody can join any order or religion and become
              another yea sayer...it's all interchangeable
              so therefore OTO is co-opted like everything else
              the language does not save it from it's own obsolesence, everything must be turned on it's head, and as the karma speeds up, as the world turns faster, we too also must adapt to the
              evolving onslot...if this makes you laugh,cry or angry, or foam at the mouth it "is no odds"!!!
              take a deeper look in the shattered mirror and ask the question aagin and again...who am i...and when
              your holy gauardian angel asks back: who are you to ask?...be ready to ask him/her back...that is your answer!

              yes Mordecai it IS a JOKE!!!...jo ka...ka ho ba!

              93 always maternaly yours...! shado 217


              • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                by Mordecai Shapiro on Thursday February 15, @11:42PM
                That's what I thought.


                • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                  by Shader XX on Friday February 16, @04:38PM
                  as ususal Mordecai. your wit and dry humor
                  wins the day...i give you an A-

                  praise Ra whore koot

                  the Shader knows!


                  • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
                    by Mordecai Shapiro on Friday February 16, @04:59PM
                    Every noon I adore a hot whore :-)


      • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
        by Nexist on Thursday February 15, @08:19PM
        It leaves it unaffected, as it was an extraneous reference, a shortcut to avoid addressing the same points -- points which I obviously consider valid. By the way, it is a logical fallacy to portray an idea as in error because of a fault of the presentor (usually called Tainting the Well).

        Anyway, the Black Crown is what each magus aspires to wear, for it seats the Will in control of the disparate elements contained in their psyche (erroneously referred to as the personality, erroneous as it implies a unity which is not present).


        • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
          by Shader XX on Friday February 16, @04:28PM
          ...hey Nexist, thanks for the "tainting the well"
          logical phallicy reference, it really sheds light on something, what i am not sure because i do not know whom started the idea, or rather i do not know which board of governors, or which self-appointed unmoved mover i am so indebted to,
          OK i am being sardonic, please be so good as to explain to me your source for your assertion, and why you believe it is more important then to consider the illumaniti issue, as a real issue, to persue, if even for the sake of not guilding the lily...and the bit about the unity erroneous black crown; my point exactly!

          p.s. so medeling by black ops does not affect the black crown because it is so disssociated anyway,
          that really IS effected, profound!

          speaking of black roses and crowns....ShaderXX


          • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
            by Nexist on Sunday February 18, @09:39AM
            please be so good as to explain to me your source for your assertion, and why you believe it is more important then to consider the illumaniti issue, as a real issue, to persue, if even for the sake of not guilding the lily

            Hello? How about the fact that "the illumaniti issue" has no more to hold it in place than intellectual masturbation? Further, the possibility that Wilson may have been more influenced by the desire for the dollar does not render invalid those items of his thought which I found insightful. There are several elements which I thought to be fascetious or in error. That doesn't mean he can't be right. Hell, I disagree with at least one point with most everybody -- should I manifest that to mean everyone is 100% wrong.

            Btw, that is the primary problem I have with people into Conspiracy Theory -- they tend to be incapable of critical thought or of breaking free of the mold they have imposed upon reality. THey sink deeper and deeper into a reality tunnel of their own paranoia -- anyway, does that address your question?


            • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
              by Shader XX on Sunday February 18, @02:21PM
              ...well, you certainly are out spoken, and, on immeadiat reflection, i cannot argue with your
              assertions, but intellectual MASTURBATION!!! works
              both ways...so having said that, what i really feel is happening, is a derth(not daath) of energy, to begin to deconstruct the whole issue, and call it what you will, (and you will)...illuminati, the REAl powers that be behind
              history, secret societies, ect. when one begins to learn about and perform Magick, one is setting certain energys in motion, sometimes i believe these energys, are extra-historical, or transcend history, and i feel that is what we are aiming for, nevertheless being a magickian ie a magus is to juggle energies, and juggle means having to deal with more then one ball of energy at a time,
              ....i am not a conspirisy theory buff, nor do i
              merely amuse myself with the impossible casscades
              of out of control speculation, that feeds paranoia
              to the max, but, and this is a real tongue twister, a little critical paranoia is healthy,and
              i do not believe that you can be an effective magickian without engaging in a constant effort to uncover the true sources of the historical influances that have brought you to this point, call it anti-magick magick, call it checks and balances, call it creative self-reflective cynicism, that recognizes the over-whelming tidal wave of disinformation, and distortion we live with everyday of our lives, and to blindly adhear
              to any system, no matter how wonderful it appears to us at the onset, is to leave ourselves no room for, for the self-reflective merits that the system has built into it, we need psychic and emotional excape valves, no system is perfect, no magick
              that is not booby hatched by our own conditioning,
              so in my experiance and observation what happens,
              what always happens, is that a certain type of individual latches on to the system, that is only
              interested in one thing and that thing is power over others, no matter how disguised we manage
              to hide ourselves, it is like the Russian revolution, it was a good idea, and a lot of poor people fought for it, but in the end they were betrayed by the cream of the crop professionals,
              ...OTO needs must be modeled on a democratic system, how can you do your true will, and at the same time answer to a hierarchy of self-serving professionals?...i listen to all you people talk
              on here, and it all starts to sound the same, like
              mathematicians discussing the latest matematical theory, as if nothing else enters the picture, your answer was a cleaver evasion, even though
              it was right on the surface, you really have not the energy or the inclination to persue the kind of creative self-reflective critical psychic-chaos
              rebal rousing i am refering to, for lack of a better self-reflective description, my intuition, is that a person could do all the ritual in the
              BOOK, and it would not only not matter one iota
              to the powers that be, ie.the(illuminati) the forces that have shaped and guided history, it would actualy serve THIER purposes because, that person was only interested in 'POWERS' for powers sake( which is what THEY feed upon)...rather then
              doing it unto NUIT, which is something you have to arrive at by a series of accidents and self-less
              self-reflection, which for a future 'thelemite'
              could take the form of self-inflicted initiations
              and sensory depervation, perhaps crossing over an abyss by looking long and hard into that abyss, and almost falling head over heals into that abyss,
              like falling in love....please pay me absolutly no attention at all...and go on with your work...!

              93 always... Zeyes 217..and thank you for disagreeing with least almost eveything i said. XX


    Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
    by Skye on Wednesday February 14, @04:23PM
    More importantly, what does being a Thelemite mean for us today? I live in a country (USA) where intent is a crime. As a Thelemite, I intend EVERYTHING . I have often thought about "turning myself in", and sueing to have all of us Thelemites thrown in jail for conspiricy . . . I being a little facicious (sp), but really, dosen't anyone else find it a bit unsettling that intent is a crime?

    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by Samael on Sunday February 18, @04:06PM
      dosen't anyone else find it a bit unsettling that intent is a crime?

      I for one do.

      As to what what Thelema means to us today, I opt for the "Sovereign Individual Paradigm" take on it. Which puts me at odds with most other interpretations of Thelema I've seen, and technically would put me in the "anarcho-capitalist" or "free market anarchist" camp, but I am uncomfortable with those labels, as they might be taken to imply things I don't believe.


    • Re: Crowley: Libertarian or Fascist?
      by Tim Maroney on Tuesday February 20, @09:23PM
      Intent is not a crime, though it is sometimes an aggravating factor.

      Plotting or conspiracy is sometimes a crime, but this involves the taking of actions in the world, not simply having an intent.

      Generally speaking, the canard that thoughts have becomes crimes is heard from the mouths of crypto-racists railing against the idea of a "hate crime," which is to say, against intent being an aggravating factor when the intent is to violate civil rights. Somehow these people forget to complain about other well-accepted intent factors, such as premeditation before murder.

      Tim


    I can't resist...
    by Xnoubis on Thursday February 15, @02:44PM
    Just because Libertarians will probably be tracking this thread, I thought I'd share this delightful quote I stumbled across, from a review of Hannibal by Matt Zoller Seitz in the New York Press:
    Lecter is at the center of the movie. He's presented as some kind of cannibal version of Howard Roark in The Fountainhead, a man who's entitled to do as he pleases because he's smarter than everyone and has better taste besides.


    • Re: I can't resist...
      by Samael on Sunday February 18, @05:02PM
      Lecter is at the center of the movie. He's presented as some kind of cannibal version of Howard Roark in The Fountainhead, a man who's entitled to do as he pleases because he's smarter than everyone and has better taste besides.

      Ouch! Touchee, Monsieur!


      • Re: I can't resist...
        by Shader XX on Sunday February 18, @07:37PM
        ...ya that's what always i thought thelema was all about,
        cranking out very smart metaphysical megalomaniacs(Manson like
        killers)...with refined tastes...!

        ha ha ha ha ba har har!!!

        what a riveting insight!

        riposte! you Rando-capitalist

        draw the shade my dear..i can't resist
        XX



     
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