Feast of the Lion-Serpent
(LDP 34/46)

Liturgy for a Celebration
with Sol in the Succedent Decan of Leo

Temple arrangements: The people are provided with copies of the opening incantation ("Hail to the beast of pride..."). They are admitted and sit in a circle on the ground. Music plays during the admission.

Officers Bull (in black) and Virgin (in white) flank a low table in the center, set with a bowl of water, a censer, a casket of perfume, a lit candle, a book containing the Eleven Invocations of the Lion-Serpent, and a bell.

Officer Empress (in green, wearing a crown or headdress, and carrying a glass or crystal chalice full of cinnamon liqueur) sits on a throne at the south edge of the circle. There are pillars with lit candles on either side of the throne.

There is a double-cube altar at the north edge. A large, uncut loaf of bread is on a dish or paten on the altar. There is also a burning candelabrum of three, five, or eight branches.

Bull and Virgin in chorus: Praise to mother Earth with her lion, even Sekhet, the lady of Asi!

Empress raises the chalice and speaks: Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

All answer: Love is the law, love under will.

All stand and sing or chant:

Hail to the beast of pride,
Leonine, deified!
Do what thou wilt.
Hail to the coil d snake!
From our long slumber wake,
And every fetter break:
Do what thou wilt.

In love and liberty
And light and life must be
No grace or guilt.
May the exalted fires
Of our sublime desires
Rise on the Aeon's pyres:
Do what thou wilt.

Empress: The cause of sorrow is the desire of the One to the Many,

Bull and Virgin: Or of the Many to the One.

Empress, Bull and Virgin: This also is the cause of joy.

Bull: But the desire of one to another is all of sorrow; its birth is hunger, and its death satiety.

Virgin: The desire of the moth for the star at least saves him satiety.

Empress: Hunger thou for the infinite: be insatiable even for the finite; thus at the End shalt thou devour the finite, and become the infinite. Be thou more greedy than the shark, more full of yearning than the wind among the pines.

Bull: The weary pilgrim struggles on; the satiated pilgrim stops.

Virgin: The road winds uphill: all law, all nature must be overcome.

Empress: Do this by virtue of THAT in thyself before which law and nature are but shadows.

Bull takes the water and walks widdershins from the throne, sprinkling it on all: For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered of the lust of result, is every way perfect.
(Repeats as needed to complete the circuit.)

Virgin puts perfume upon the censer, takes it and walks deosil from the throne, censing all: I am uplifted in thine heart, and the kisses of the stars rain hard upon thy body.
(Repeats as needed to complete the circuit.)

All sit. Bull and Virgin, still holding weapons, flank the throne. Empress moves to the center.

Empress reads aloud the Eleven Invocations of the Lion-Serpent.

After each invocation, she sounds the bell, and all respond:So mote it be.

  1. O Thou mighty God, make me as a ruby lion that roareth from the summit of a white mountain; I beseech Thee, O Thou great God! That I may echo forth Thy lord-ship through the hills, and dwindle into the nipple of Thy bounty. O Thou God, my God!
  2. O Thou opalescent Serpent-Queen, whose mouth is as the sunset that is bloody with the slaughter of day; hold me in the crimson flames of Thine arms, so that at Thy kisses I may expire as a bubble in the foam of Thy dazzling lips.
  3. O Thou God of the Nothingness of All Things! Thou who art neither the traces of the chariot; nor the pole of galloping delusion: O Thou who art not the pivot of the whole Universe; nor the body of the woman-serpent of the stars! I deny Thee by the powers of mine understanding; Lead me in the unity of Thy might, and draw me unto the threshold of Thine all-pervading Nothingness; for Thou art all and none of these in the fullness of Thy Not-Being.
  4. Ah! but I rejoice in Thee, O Thou my God; Thou jewel-work of snow on the limbs of night; Thou elaboration of oneness; Thou shower of universal suns: Yea, I rejoice in Thee, Thou gorgeous, Thou wildering one; O Thou great lion roaring over a sea of blood! I rejoice, yea, I shout with gladness! till the wild thunder of my praise breaketh down, as a satyr doth a babe, the nine and ninety gates of Thy Power, in the Glory and Splendour of Thy Name.
  5. O my God, exalt me with blood and be merciful unto me, as I humble myself before Thee; for all my courage is but as the fang of a viper that striketh at the rosy heel of dawn.
  6. O woe unto me, my God, woe unto me; for all the joy of my days lies dishonoured as the spangle-veil'd Virgin of night torn and trampled by the sun-lashed stallions of Dawn. Yet in the frenzy of their couplings do I tremble forth the pearly dew of ecstatic light.
  7. O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou red fire-fang that gnawest the blue limbs of night? O Thou devouring breath of flame! Thou illimitable ocean of frenzied air, in whom all is one, a plume cast into a furnace! O how can I dare to approach and stand before Thee, for I am but as a withered leaf whirled away by the anger of the storm?
  8. O Thou crowned giant among great giants, Thou crimson-sworded soldier of war! Yea, as I battle with Thee, Thou masterest me as a lion that slayeth a babe that is cradled in lilies.
  9. O my God, Thou Mighty One, Thou Creator of all things, I renounce unto Thee the whispers of the desert, and the moan of the simoom, and all the silence of the sea of dust; so that I may be lost in the atoms of Thy Glory, and be consumed in the unutterable joy of Thine everlasting rapture.
  10. O Thou incandescent Ocean of molten stars, surging above the arch of the Firmament; I swear to Thee by the mane-pennoned lances of light, to stir the lion of Thy darkness from its lair, and lash the sorceress of noontide into fury with serpents of fire.
  11. O Thou Sovran Light and fire of loveliness, whose flaming locks stream downwards through the aethyr as knots of lightning deep-rooted in the Abyss. I know Thee! O Thou winnowing flail of brightness, the passionate lash of whose encircling hand scatters mankind before Thy fury as the wind-scud from the stormy breast of Ocean.

Empress circumambulates deosil slowly, displaying the chalice, and reciting: Eternity is the storm that covereth me... Now therefore thou knowest when I am within Thee, when my hood is spread over thy skull, when my might is more than the penned Indus, and resistless as the Giant Glacier. For as thou art before a lewd woman in Thy nakedness in the bazaar, sucked up by her slyness and smiles, so art thou wholly and no more in part before the symbol of the beloved... And in all shalt thou create the Infinite Bliss and the next link of the Infinite Chain. This chain reaches from Eternity to Eternity, ever in triangles -- the symbol of the Lord most secret -- ever in circles -- the symbol of the Beloved. Therein is all progress base illusion, for every circle is alike and every triangle alike!

Bull and Virgin: But the progress is progress, and progress is rapture, constant, dazzling, showers of light, waves of dew, flames of the hair of the Great Goddess, flowers of the roses that are about her neck. AUMGN.

Empress moves to the altar in the North, makes averse pentagram invoking fire with the chalice over the bread, saying:

She sets down the chalice and elevates the bread: Therefore lift up thyself as I am lifted up.
Hold thyself in as I am master to accomplish.

She breaks the bread: At the end, be the end far distant as the stars that lie in the navel of Nuit, do thou slay thyself as I at the end am slain, in the death that is life, in the peace that is mother of war, in the darkness that holds light in his hand, as an harlot that plucks a jewel from her nostrils.

She places the broken bread on the paten, and elevates the paten:

Bull and Virgin advance to center table and set down their weapons. Empress turns to the center with the chalice in her right hand and the paten in her left.

Bull and Virgin signal for all to rise. They advance to Empress. Bull takes the paten, Virgin takes the chalice.

Empress raises her hands, palms forward, fingers clawed: I prey upon these sacraments.

Bull offers paten. Empress tears off a small piece of the bread and eats it.

Virgin offers chalice. Empress sips from it.

Empress: Thus I sustain my hunger.

Empress tears off another piece of bread, dips it in the chalice, and feeds it to Bull.

Bull: Thus I sustain my hunger.

Empress tears off another piece of bread, dips it in the chalice, and feeds it to Virgin.

Virgin: Thus I sustain my hunger.

The three officers proceed deosil around the circle, beginning from the altar, with the Empress feeding each of the people in turn with a piece of bread dipped in the chalice. Each responds: Thus I sustain my hunger.

Music may play during the popular eucharist.

The paten is left upon the altar, Bull and Virgin return to the center, Empress to her throne.

Empress salutes the East, West, and South with her chalice: So therefore the beginning is delight, and the end is delight, and delight is in the midst, even as the Indus is water in the cavern of the glacier, and water among the greater hills and the lesser hills and through the ramparts of the hills and through the plains, and water at the mouth thereof when it leaps forth into the mighty sea, yea, into the mighty sea.

She sits, and the ceremony is concluded.


With the Pentagram:
Ton arton emon ton epiousion didou emin to kath' emeran.
"Give us day by day our daily bread."
Luke 11:3

Elevating the Bread:
Ego eimi o artos tes zoes.
"I am that bread of life."
John 6:48

Showing the Broken Bread:
Oti eis artos en soma oi polloi esmen, oi gar pantes ek tou enos artou metekhomen.
"For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread."
I Corinthians 10:17


Feasts of the Cross-Quarters
Occasional Sacraments
Vigorous Food & Divine Madness