The Cephaloedium Working

by

Aleister Crowley

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

I ask an Oracle of Thelema for this Working.

‘Liber Lapidis Lazuli’ the Solar chapter: “white cat, the sparks fly from thy fur! Thou dost crackle with splitting the worlds.”

I ask a Yi King symbol for the whole Working: XX ‘Big Earth’. It means Manifestation: i.e. the bringing forth to birth of the forces hitherto developed by us in secret.

I ask a Tarot Trump to represent the Prime Pantacle of the Operation: XVI The House of God.

Now the Oath of the Working is to establish The Book of the Law; in particular to finish the Comment and to publish the book as therein commanded. First therefore in this Work is Hermes to be invoked and next the Sun. I am therefore to restore the Card ‘The House of God’ as I did when I abode in the body of Alphonse Louis Constant with the Card ‘The Devil’. I will therefore obtain a Vision of this Card, and paint it upon a panel of mahogany wood, with the proper colours and forms.

Now on the day of the Sun, in this the Sixteenth Year of the Aeon, when He stood in the 6th Degree of the Sign Sagittarius, whose letter hath the value of 60, the Moon being in the 16th Degree of the Sign Cancer whose letter hath the value 8, did the Beast 666 TO Mega Therion a Magus of A∴ A∴ Baphomet 729 the Supreme Holy King of Ireland, Iona and all the Britains that are in the Sanctuary of the Gnosis Xth degree O.T.O., Avatar of Bacchus Diphues in the Place of the XIth degree O.T.O., Logos of the Aeon of Ra Hoor Khuit, Grand Master of the Knights of the Holy Ghost, Grand Master of the Knights of the Temple, Eidolon of the Rosy Cross, Alastor the Destroyer Spirit of Solitude, Wanderer of the Waste, of the Blood of Kerval Arch-Druids Hereditary to the Oak, whose Holy Angel his Guardian is Aiwaz 93, the God first dawning upon Man in the Land of Sumer, whose breast beareth the token adventure upon Mountains beyond any man of his fellows, whose body and blood bear witness of the wounds of Astarte, and the shames of Priapus, even I in the Abbey of Thelema at Cephaloedium that am hidden, did convene therein to counsel Alostrael, 31-666-31, the Scarlet Woman Lea my concubine, in whom is all power given, sworn unto Aiwaz, prostituted in every part of her body to Pan and to the Beast, mother of Bastards, aborter, whore to herself, to man, woman, child and brute, partaker of the Eucharist of the Excrements in the Mass of the Devil, Sorceress of the Rite of Esau and Jacob, and also GENESTHAI, 143,{WEH NOTE: C.F.Russell} a Neophyte of A∴A∴, a Master Magician of O.T.O. and a Passed Postulant to the Secret Chamber of the Knights of the Temple, High Priest unto the Beast before the Altar of Purple and Gold.

First then this Brother GENESTHAI made of Invocation of Tahuti Lord of Wisdom in the Great Magical Circle of the Abbey, that He might come upon us in power.

Thus was Tahuti manifest in the mind of The Beast, like Light therein, clear, icy, wit without heart. And I beheld the Working afar off, full utterly of desire towards it; and I was aware of certain things concerning it; as here now to be writ down.

Firstly: the Working shall establish the Aeon of Ra Hoor Khuit by obeying the instructions given in "The Book of the Law".

Secondly: it is a Working of Mercury and Sol, combined even as they are in the Beast; so that the Word of the Working is Aleph-Lamed-Dalet-Yod {WEH NOTE: sic, probably should be Aleph-Lamed-Hay}, 36, the square of 6 and the sum of the first eight numbers, etc., etc. Now Aleph is the letter of Hadith as Hay of Nuith, and Lamed is their balanced union.

Thirdly: Alostrael resumeth Nuit and The Beast Hadith; Their Copulation is therefore by this word 36 well signified.

Fourthly: it is written, ‘Liber Lapidis Lazuli’, Cap. III, vv. 16-18 that all is vain unless there be “a man’s life spilt for thy love upon Mine Altars.”

Thus then let His High Priest do sacrifice to The Beast, thereby to consecrate Him to the Rite.

Fifthly: that ‘The Paris Working’, the first model for our present Orgia, is not to be followed pedantically.

Sixthly and lastly: that special names are to be used by us; for The Beast Ophion 700, for Genesthai 143 Iacchaion, and for Alostrael a new name not yet given. Also that the vapour of the Oxide of Ethyl may be used in the Workings.

After this the "Yi King" gave us our First Working as Air of Air [57], that is, these present writings and considerations of the Whole Matter.

I now make Qabalistic investigation of the letter Peh.

1. It is ‘A Mouth’ and therefore is the Word therein.

2. Its value 80 is Jesod, the Foundation.

3. It is the Third Letter to Aleph and Lamed in CCXX, and the final of Aleph-Lamed-Peh. Cf. also “eight, eighty, four hundred and eighteen” “knowing the law of the fortress, & the great mystery of the House of God.”

4. It is the third equilibrating Path on the Tree. As Stability is only perfect as infinite Change (see XIth Aethyr) so Construction is only solid if based on War.

5. “I am a God of War” etc. is Ra Hoor Khuit.

6. The Word in the Mouth is 93: Aiwaz is the Lord of the Fortress or House of God, which is the Abbey of Thelema.

7. Aiwaz is spelt Ayin, the Eye, i.e. that of Shiva or Horus, the Meatus Penis and the Anus; Yod, the Phallus, Spermatozoon; and Hand, Vau, the Fertility of the Testes and Uterus as well as the Nail of the mentula, being Taurus the Cow Isis and the Bull Apis or Shiva, the Son in Tetragrammaton, the Redeemer by Reproduction, the Mithraic Bull of Resurrection and Initiation in the strength of the Body. And lastly Zain is the Sword of the Phallus, and Gemini the double sexual nature, the murder-lust between the incestuous twins Cain and Abel, Horus and Set or Harpocrates, Osiris and Typhon, etc. And Gemini is the airy pulse that gives a basis for the Voice of the Messenger, the menstruum of the Holy Ghost, the swing of the motion of Love, the house of the Sun in May, when he impregnates Maia with Mercurius whose mouth uttereth His Father. And Zain spelt fully is 67, the number of Binah the All-Mother. Ayin is moreover the Devil of Lust, the Goat of Mendes, Pan, Baphomet; and spelt fully Ayin is the Erection and Leaping and Extension of the Phallus; Yod is the Spermatoon, the Solitary Boy Hermes, the Virgin; while Nun is the Eagle of sexual Ecstasy, the Serpent of Life through Death, the Scorpion or Scarab of Kephra, the Womb which transmutes through corruption, the Semen or fluid vehicle of the Spirit, the Elixir of Magick, the Blood, Wine, and Poison in the Chalice. And Yod repeating that God, and prophesying the Vau that follows it, ends with Daleth the letter of Venus, the Door of the Palace of Love. Then Vau reproduceth itself in its spelling, as it is written “all is ever as it was” in "The Book of the Law", and in Aiwaz are found the Three Star-Clusters of Earth-Nature, the Goat under the God Set or Saturn for Hadith, the Begetter, and Mars exalted therein for Force and Fire, the Virgin under Thoth or Mercury, His Word creating in her the Eidolon of His Nature, and the Bull under Isis or Venus, the mighty redemption and nourish ment of Love, for Nuith the Womb of Space wherein Her Lord worketh His Work.

By this cometh forth the Sign of the Child, the Star-Cluster of the Twins, under Hermes the Word, airy, elastic, bisexual, eternally young, the lovers born of one Womb, made Two that by Love they may make themselves One.

So then in this Name Aiwaz is every rite of the Magick of the Aeon of Horus declared in detail, and in His number 93 is shewn forth not only the Word of the Law, but the Ways of the Word and the Mysteries of Truth.

This Name then and this Number shall be the Glyph Hieratic to unlock the Fortress of the Aeon; Captain is He of all the hosts of Mars, and Ra Hoor Khuit crowned King in that Palace of Force and Fire. Set, The Beast, for Ayin; Thoth, Alastor the Logos, for Yod; Apis, Perdurabo, for Vau; and Hoor Hoorpakraat, Baphomet, for Zain; foursquare, mystic, wonderful, as cherubs shall I that am One through these Four be the builder and warder thereof. And the Scarlet Woman shall bear Her Cup therein, bestriding Her Beast: & Iacchaiion shall stand with his Rod, to wige That Beast therewith.

For he hast the Wand of Death & The Beast the Cup of Death, but the Beast hath the Wand of Life & the Scarlet Woman the Chalice of Life. Now Pe joineth & guardeth the Victory & the Splendor, the frontiers of the Kingdom of Truth: & it is the Issue, whereby the Bowmen sally forth from the centre Tiphereth to Yesod the apex of the salient. And Pe is the girdle of the Loins of the All-Father & the Sword in the girdle, as Teth is his breast-plate of courage, & Daleth his Helmet of Live. This Sword is shewn as a lightning-Flash of Flaming Sword on the Fortress that defends the Kingdom: it is the Sword or Spear of Ra-Hoor-Khuit. The card is then thus briefly to be described.

Ra Hoor Khuit sends forth a Ray of Light as a Sword. The Fortress is his Aeon of 11 towers for abrahadabra. Within is Aiwaz with 93 or 220. About it is 666 in four-fold form. The Scarlet Woman bears Cup & Sword, riding The Beast: & Iacchaion follows with his Rod. Thus far concerning the Card XVI.

Now then followeth a consideration of the Vestments of the Artists. Of the Robes & Insignia of the Work.

1. The Scarlet Woman shall wear the Scarlet Abbai: for it is

(a) proper to Her

(b) proper to Mars

(c) proper to Aries, wherein the Sun is exalted. She shall bear a Golden Cup for Wine, Blood, or Poison; & be girt with a Sword, as it is written in the "Book of the Law." She shall wear a girdle of white or of mixed colours. In her hair she shall wreathe Her Serpent.

2. The Beast shall wear an orange slip & sash as proper to

(a) Hod

(b) the Sun

(c) Gemini: for he is Prophet of the Gods, & he is The Beast 666, of the Sun, & he is innocent, a Child, even, as Horus-Harpocrates, with the double Function in Love. Over this shall he wear the Robe of Blue for Nuit lined with Scarlet for Hadith & the Sun is gold on his breast. He shall wear the Crimson Cap for Binah, that covereth him, with the White Cross of John for Kether. He shall wear His ring of a magus, & his Rosy Cross. He shall bear the Wand of Obeah, with its Janus-head of Man & Woman, & its Four Snakes for His weapons.

3. Iacchaion shall wear the Black robe lined with gold, for he commeth forth from the darkness of the outer, & the Light but fringeth him. also black is proper to a Neophyte. His head shall be bare, for shamelessness, & as the symbol of his function in this Working. he shall bear the style & the papyrus for Thoth, to write the words of the Work. Also he shall bear "The Book of the Law."

Of the Furniture of the Temple.

In the East the Altar of Fire, & the Throne of the Beast, with Incense etc.
In the West the Scarlet Woman, & the Altar of Sacrifice, the Wine etc.
In the South the Throne of Aiwaz, with the Altar of ?
In the North Iacchaion with the Table of the Scribe.
In the Centre the Hexagonal Altar, with the Pantacle, the Image of the God -- our Aborted Man-Child, the Bell, & the Knife, the Oil & the Lamp, or candle.

Of the Ceremony in General.

The Formula of this Magick is this
(1) Banish.
(2) Purify.
(3) Consecrate.
(4) Equilibrate.
(5) Make Oath.
(6) Invoke, by song, dance, &c.
(7) Make Iacchaion God, by Ether.
(8) Sacrifice him to the Beast, who thus becomes God. Use here the accendat & the right Mantram, the Tu quies & the Quia Patris.
(9) Sacrifice The Beast to the Scarlet Woman, using Her mantras F---- S---- etc. Ether at pleasure.
(10) Consume the Elements, as by Amalantrah the Wizard we are taught, the Pantacle being of "Earth". (In parts 7 to 10 weapons & robes may be laid on the throne of Aiwaz.)
(11) Perform any scrying or utter any prophecies, as may be given. & at leisure & pleasure resume vestments & insignia. & close Temple. So far of these matters.

Now we may begin our first Working by the Invocation of Hermes on His day with the Sun in 9 degrees Sagittarius, the Moon in 23 degrees Leo & Mercury in 19 degrees Scorpio one hour before Noon with him in the Zenith, sextile to Venus Jupiter & Saturn. In furtherance whereof, at eleven of the night of Monday, did The Beast work under The Scarlet Woman his Word, to make the Great Operation go aright. Immediately was The Beast inspired to a writing Mercurial, a satire upon the Fish: & thus wrote he some 14 or 15 hours.

The Oath of the Cephaloedium Working.

Hear All that we, TO MEGA THERION 9 = 2 A∴A∴ The Beast; Alostrael, The Scarlet Woman; & GENESTHAI 0 = 0 A∴A∴ do now in the presence of TAHUTI most solemnly swear to devote ourselves to the Establishment of "The Book of the Law" as uttered by Aiwaz 93 to 66, by the Way of The Cephaloedium Working as in the record thereof it hath been written.

Witness our Hands:

To Mega Therion 9 = 2 A∴A∴ 666
Alostrael - 31-666-31.
Genesthai

The Banquet of Fish & Yellow Wine was consumed & the Oath of the Working witnessed accordingly with ceremonial proper thereto, & concluded at 1:18 p.m. of the Day of Mercury which openeth the month called December.

I ask a symbol for the next Day of the Working.

IV - Earth of Moon: The formulation of the Restrictions & the dispelling of Ignorance. id est: make careful arrangements & ask for further Enlightenment. How should we obtain further Enlightenment?

LII - Earth of Earth: "When one's resting is like that of the back & he loses all consciousness of self: when he walks in his own courtyard & Does not see any of the persons in it - then there will be no error."

die Jovis:  Began the Pantacle of XVI, & went on with my
          Fish Story; which by the way is the Blasting of
          the Old Tower of Jesus-Tyranny.

de Martis:  We have all three been sick in various ways, so
          that save for beginning the Painting of the Pantacle
          no work has been done.  I ask a symbol to indicate
          our proper course of action: XX -- Airy part of
          Kteis.  Cf. General symbol, I should suppose that
          this means that we can now begin again.  What shall
          we do tomorrow die Mercuri?  X -- Phallic part of
          Water.  The Tiger.  See line 6.  Consider the
          whole course that is trodden & examine the presage
          which that gives.  We still therefore invoke Tahuti,
          & read the record up to this point, then obtain
          illuminated Wisdom as to our course.
               This Operation was accordingly taken in hand
          at one o'clock, the afternoon on the Day of Jupiter.
          The formulation of the Primum Ens Melissae was
          however difficult.  The Beast receiving a
          communication of a climatological character reminding
          him of his Lost Lustre.  It is therefore incumbent
          to make a new divination task: what course is
          now proper to pursue?  LXII: Let the matter
          take care of itself: enquire further on the next
          day of Mercury.

dei Lunae:  Dec. 13: At two o'clock this morning, after making
          my Confession.  I laid my hand upon the Sacred
          Lotus of Alostrael & swore these Oaths: --
          I.   I ......., the Beast 666 hereby & herein
               most solemnly promise & swear: to devote my
               whole working time exclusively to the
               completion of my Comment on "The Book of the
               Law."
          2.   I, etc, as before etc. swear: that as soon as
               the Comment is ready, I will take the Book &
               cause it to be printed, bound & issued in the
               manner ordained in the Book itself, though
               I leave myself without money to buy my next
               meal
          To these oaths, I called Nuith!  Hadith!  Ra Hoor
          Khuit!  as witnesses thereof.  I then invoked Aiwaz
          to aid me to keep them, & in all other ways soever
          to forward the Work.
          2.20 a.m. - I therefore open my MS. of the Comment.

Dec. 15.    We seem to have been harassed by minor illnesses, so
          much as to be actually crippled; in fact I have been
          practically obliged to keep to my bed & Alostrael
          will take the divination concerning the working.
          How shall we proceed?
          LI.  Fire of Fire:  This seems to mean that a new
          current may be expected.  This New Current turned
          up on the morning of Dec. 16 Die Jovis, in the shape
          of a letter from the printer of The Equinox III.
          The Oracle also means that we need to formulate
          the Yod of our Tetragrammaton; which rests with
          Frater Genesthai.  He is at present the 'Pure Fool'
          & must acquire the Sacred Lance.

Die Veneris:  Dec. 24.  I have been revising the Comment on
          "Liber Legis," with the aid of Alostrael, Iacchaion,
          & Jane Wolfe.  This applies only to Chapter I;
          Chapter II I have revised with Iacchaion only, &
          Chapter III I have read through alone.  I cannot
          express myself adequately about my sense of failure
          in this Comment.  More I feel that I have not conquered
          my repulsion to Chapter III.  I ask myself too:
          Have I even tried to carry out the instructions in
          that Chapter?
          I am utterly wretched about the whole matter.
          I say: have I not failed absolutely to obey the
          "Heavenly Vision"?  I am so miserable that I can
          only see one course of action: to ask the Yi to give
          a General Symbol for my past Work in relation to
          "The Book of the Law."
          LIV - Kwei Mei:  Alas! too true!  I have been
          divided against myself: I have gone in just deep enough to
          compromise myself, not I when the whole hearted
          plunge would have brought success.
               I have been too irritably active, & not persistent
          enough.  Give a symbol for my right course of action
          in regard to it 'at the present time & thence onward.
          LVIII Tui.: Let there be an even flow of Love to
          it, a still & subtle dissolution.  Water, the weakest
          thing in Nature is stronger than the strongest.  Steady
          devotion without anxiety or fussiness will penetrate
          the Universe.  Inward harmony & sincerity: the slow
          accumulation of Karma, constant concentration on
          the Law, utmost faith even in one's opponents, will
          gather the whole world into the fold of the Stars.

Wed. Dec. 29. 1920 e.v.  Current for this work going to-day &
                       oath renewed in public.  I spent all
                       night writing on certain matters proper
                       to the Comment --- 93 pages of MS.

Dec. 30 1920 e.v. dei Jovis:  At about ten o'clock of the forenoon
                       The Beast & The Scarlet Woman
                       performed a Mass of the Holy Ghost
                       with the intention of establishing the
                       Law.

Jan. 3. 1921 e.v.        Frater Iacchaion began a Working which
                       continued throughout the whole night.
                       The Beast accordingly was inspired to
                       continue the Comment through the
                       night following.

Jan. 7. die Veneris:     Awake most of the night in meditation.
                       The Beast decided on a course of action
                       with regard to the practical matters
                       connected with the Book of the Law.
                       (1)  Consult Yi about recovery of the
                            MS.
                       (2)  Push through Comment.  The Yi
                            gives Khwan (47) Watery part of
                            Luna meaning Bring restriction to
                            bear on the thief.

Jan. 20. die Jovis:      The Sun enters the Sign of Aquarius:
                       I record that Frater Iacchaion, the
                       Primum Mobile of the Working, having
                       failed to initiate any Rashith Ha-Gilgalim,
                       has caused the collapse of the
                       whole Working, which I therefore declare
                       ended.  I now myself repair to the
                       City of Paris, there to inaugurate an
                       alternative course of procedure.
                       666 To Mega Therion 9 = 2 AA

Here endeth the book of
The
Cephaloedium Working.

  Iacchaion                            Altar of Fire
& Table of Scribe                      Aiwaz Throne & Altar
                                       Altar with Lamp, bell,
                                       Knife, pantacle, & Oil.



                  Scarlet Woman with
                  Cup & Sword, Wine.
                  Water, Ether &c.

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The Cephaloedium Working by Crowley

Original key entry of first half by Fr. H.B. in New York
4/13/90 e.v. remainder entered and ASCII conversion
by Bill Heidrick, TG of O.T.O.
--- needs further proof reading
Additional work and design by John Griogair Bell of The Hermetic Library at Hermetic.com

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