Office of Daimonic Vespers

T Polyphilus, Ep. Gn.

When you have gone and there is no eye,
whose eyesight you have created
In order not to be compelled to look at your[self as]
the sole one of creation,
You are in my heart.
There is no other who knows you,
Only your son Nefer-kheperu-Ra Sole-one-of-Ra,
Whom you have taught your ways and your might.

--From the “Great Hymn to Aten”


Vespers is a prayer service held at the onset of the evening, in the magical hour of BERON, when the Sun has entered the Sixth House of the heavens. Crowley notes in The General Principles of Astrology that the Sixth House “has also a very secret and peculiar reference to the occult development of [the astrological native’s] Ego,” and Frater Superior Hymenaeus Beta cites further writing by Crowley which ties the 6th house to personal prowess in Magick:

It is for him to link his lower to his higher Will, to set the latter to drive the former ruthlessly forward, and as soon as this resolution becomes operative the concatenation of circumstance will bring unexpected success. (p. 57)
In this ritual, the devotional emphasis is on union with the individual genius or Holy Guardian Angel. Although such union is individual, incommensurable, and incommunicable, the service provides a group (or solo) ceremony to express the aspiration to and fulfillment of this cardinal attainment.

This ceremony is especially suitable for sunset on the shortest and longest nights of the year, i.e. the Solstices.

Principal source texts for this ritual include Liber LXV, Liber XV, Liber VIII, Liber Samekh, “The Athanor” (from The Temple of the Holy Ghost), and Anna Kingsford’s Book of the Mysteries of God.


If the service is held in temple with an eastern shrine, then it should be open throughout, and the High Altar should be decked with fresh lilies. (See “Sic Transeat ---,” chapter 65 of The Book of Lies.) The super-altar should exalt a descending red triangle enclosing a golden utchat. There are eleven candles in the shrine: five just beneath the triangle, and three on each side of the lilies.

All further references in the rubric to “the altar” refer to a central double cube altar. On the top of the altar is a stationary three-legged censer, flanked by two burning tapers or pillar candles. There is also an open casket or dish of incense (four parts frankincense, two parts myrrh, one part sandal).

The OFFICIANT may be any competent member of the Church. She or he wears a plain white robe with a black cincture, and a black stole on which are represented a dove in blue and a serpent in gold. (Alternatively, the OFFICIANT may wear the robe of a Neophyte of A\A\) The head of the OFFICIANT is bare. This office may also be performed as an individual devotion, by one adherent taking the parts of both OFFICIANT and CONGREGATION.


I. ADORATIONS, CONFESSION AND APPREHENSION

The OFFICIANT, opening the door of the Temple, admits the Congregation.

The OFFICIANT stands in the West, and serves as the imam, leading the congregation in making the Sign of Shu and reciting the Adoration of the Sun:

ALL: Hail unto Thee who art Tum in Thy setting, even unto Thee who art Tum in Thy joy,
who travellest over the Heavens in Thy bark at the Down-going of the Sun.
Tahuti standeth in His splendour at the prow, and Ra-Hoor abideth at the helm.
Hail unto Thee from the Abodes of Day!

And then the Adorations from Liber Legis:

ALL:Unity uttermost showed!
I adore the might of Thy breath,
Supreme and terrible God,
Who makest the gods and death
To tremble before Thee: --
I, I adore thee!

Appear on the throne of Ra!
Open the ways of the Khu!
Lighten the ways of the Ka!
The ways of the Khabs run through
To stir me or still me!
Aum! let it fill me!

The OFFICIANT moves to the east of the altar, and faces East in an attitude of resurrection. He turns West and spreads his arms in the form of a great cross.
OFFICIANT: Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law. I proclaim the Law of Light, Life, Love, and Liberty, in the name of ADONAI.

CONGREGATION: Love is the law, love under will.

The OFFICIANT goes to the west of the altar, faces East, and gives the step and sign of a Man and a Brother. All imitate the step and sign.
ALL: I believe in one secret and ineffable LORD; and in one Star in the Company of Stars of whose fire we are created, and to which we shall return; and in one Father of Life, Mystery of Mystery, in His name CHAOS the sole viceregent of the Sun upon the Earth; and in one Air the nourisher of all that breathes.

And I believe in one Earth, the Mother of us all, and in one Womb wherein all men are begotten, and wherein they shall rest, Mystery of Mystery, in Her name BABALON.

And I believe in the Serpent and the Lion, Mystery of Mystery, in His name BAPHOMET.

And I believe in one Gnostic and Catholic Church of Light, Life, Love and Liberty, the Word of whose Law is THELEMA.

And I believe in the communion of Saints.

And, forasmuch as meat and drink are transmuted in us daily into spiritual substance, I believe in the Miracle of the Mass.

And I confess one Baptism of Wisdom whereby we accomplish the Miracle of Incarnation.

And I confess my life one, individual, and eternal that was, and is, and is to come.

AUMGN. AUMGN. AUMGN.

OFFICIANT: “Thou hast no right but to do thy will. Do that, and no other shall say nay.” “Every man and every woman is a star.”

CONGREGATION: There is no god but man.

OFFICIANT: Within thee, O man, is the universe; the thrones of all the Gods are in thy temple. I have said unto men, Ye are Gods; ye are all in the image of the Most High. No man can know God unless he first understand himself. God is nothing that man is not. What man is, that God is likewise. As God is at the heart of the outer world, so also is God at the heart of the world within thee. When the God within thee shall be wholly united to the God without, then shalt thou be one with the Most High. Thy will shall be God's will, and the Son shall be as the Father.

Thou art ruler of a world, O man; thy name is legion; thou hast many under thee. Thou sayest to this one, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to another, Do this, and he doeth it. What thou knowest is told thee from within; what thou workest is worked from within. When thou prayest thou invokest the God within thee; and from the God within thee thou receivest thy good things. Thy manifestations are inward; and the spirits which speak unto thee are of thine own kingdom. And the spirit which is greatest in thy kingdom, the same is thy Master and thy Lord.

The Congregation sit.

The OFFICIANT adds incense to the censer, with these words:

OFFICIANT: Sub umbra alarum tuarum ADONAI quies et felicitas.
(The OFFICIANT imagines a great pylon enclosing the altar.)


II. ELEVEN INJUNCTIONS

At the end of each injunction, the OFFICIANT makes the Sign of Osiris Risen to prompt the response of the CONGREGATION.

Light

OFFICIANT: Unknowable enigma of revelation, thou limit who art not, invisible Magician whose illusions reveal the truth, devouring us and eating us up with blindness; mayst thou stream from perfection to perfection in the hidden life of all.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

Heaven

OFFICIANT: Vast continuum of worlds, grand system of galaxies of stars in the blanket of Night, vault of the body of the luminous firmament, at whom we marvel in thy parts, and whose whole we may never comprehend; may we fall without cessation into the bosom of thine infinity, receiving thy glory into our hearts.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

Earth and Sea

OFFICIANT: Thou Body of the world, with thy mountains and plains, forests and deserts, caverns and canyons; and thou Blood of the world, with thy shallows and depths, waves and tides, calms and storms; afford ye shelter and nourishment to life, and serve as the palace of the court of incarnation.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

Sun and Moon

OFFICIANT: Thou Lord of the Day, whose perpetual energies sustain all life, and thou Lady of Night, whose silent beams draw our attention to the heavens; mark ye the times and seasons; and witness our labors of creation, preservation, and destruction.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

Fish and Fowl

OFFICIANT: Creatures of scale and feather, servitors and symbols of the Gate of Life and Love, fill ye the water and air with the abundance of the spirit.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

Beasts

OFFICIANT: Creatures that crawl and gallop, that pace and climb, servitors and symbols of the Lord Most Secret, thrive ye upon the face of the earth in the hunger and thirst of the spirit.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

Humanity

OFFICIANT: Mingled soul of God and Beast, the fire of whose nature reveals itself in matter and spirit, may you ever pursue your Will, the Great Work, the Summum Bonum, may you penetrate the Undiscovered Country, and find a home in the starry abodes.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

Aspiration

OFFICIANT: Dear and Divine Liberty, may our embrace and exercise of thee advance us in Light, Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge and Power, through Beauty, Courage, and Wit, on the Foundation of Universal Brotherhood.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

The Great Initiates

OFFICIANT: Lady of Knowledge, who art the mother of Mind at the heart of the coils of the serpent, and the sister of Love in the savor of the milk of the stars, distinguishing life and joy in human congress, thou celebrated by us in beds of purple, and fields of war, on thrones of the mighty, and in the festival riot, in the oratory of the magician, and the laboratory of the alchemist, as in the speech of our mouths and the works of our hands, we worthily commemorate them worthy that did of old keep thy secrets and communicate them duly: among whom are (each name receives its own distinct breath) Isis, Enoch, and Tahuti; Semiramis, Ankh-f-n-khonsu, Solomon, and Balkis; Iacchus, Ariadne, Cybele, and Pasiphae, with Orpheus, Rhea Silvia, Sappho, and Pythagoras; and also Helena of Tyre, Simon Magus, Lucius Apuleius, and Hypatia of Alexandria; Velleda, Hassan-i-Sabah, Marguerite Porete, Jacques deMolay, and Jeanne d’Arc; with these also, Frater Francesco Colonna, Giordano Bruno the Nolan, Cagliostro, Sir Francis Dashwood, Paschal Beverly Randolph, Anna Kingsford, Madame Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Emma Hardinge Britten, Ida Craddock, and Aleister Crowley. May their words inspire us, and their acts encourage us, in the perfection of our feasts.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

The Constraints

OFFICIANT: By the brand and the sword, the chain and the scourge, may our aspiration succeed through organization and discipline. And restriction be unto Choronzon in the name of BABALON!

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

The Genius

OFFICIANT: May the one who invoketh often behold the Formless Fire, with trembling and bewilderment; and in the lengthening of that meditation, resolve it into coherent and intelligible symbols, and hear the articulate utterance of that Fire, interpret the thunder thereof as a still small voice in the heart. And may the Fire reveal to the eyes the aspirant's own image in its own true glory; and speak in the ears the Mystery that is the adept’s own right Name.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.


III. CANTICLE

The OFFICIANT leads the Congregation in singing the Invocation of the Heart Girt with a Serpent—-or sings it as a solo. The proper tune is “Slaine.”
ALL (sing): I am the Heart; and the Snake is entwined
About the invisible core of the mind.
Rise, O my snake! It is now is the hour
Of the hooded and holy ineffable flower.

Rise, O my snake, into brilliance of bloom
On the corpse of Osiris afloat in the tomb!
O heart of my mother, my sister, mine own,
Thou art given to Nile, to the terror Typhon!

Ah me! but the glory of ravening storm
Enswathes thee and wraps thee in frenzy of form.
Be still, O my soul! that the spell may dissolve
As the wands are upraised, and the aeons revolve.

Behold! in my beauty how joyous Thou art,
O Snake that caresses the crown of mine heart!
Behold! we are one, and the tempest of years
Goes down to the dusk, and the Beetle appears.

O Beetle! the drone of Thy dolorous note
Be ever the trance of this tremulous throat!
I await the awaking! The summons on high
From the Lord Adonai, from the Lord Adonai!


IV. VERSICLE

The OFFICIANT moves to the east of the altar, facing West, and adds incense to the censer, with these words:
OFFICIANT: Sub umbra alarum tuarum ADONAI quies et felicitas.
(The OFFICIANT imagines a serpent uncoiling up through the smoke of the incense.)

The CONGREGATION rise.

OFFICIANT: Adonai spake and said: “Thou shalt be ever the heart, and I the serpent will coil about thee. My coils shall never relax throughout the aeons. Neither change nor sorrow nor unsubstantiality shall have thee; for thou art passed beyond these. Even as the diamond shall glow red for the rose, and green for the rose-leaf; so shalt thou abide apart from the Impressions. I am thou.”

CONGREGATION (with hailing sign): “And the Pillar is ’stablished in the void.”

OFFICIANT: “Also thou art beyond the stabilities of Being and of Consciousness and of Bliss; for I am thou.”

CONGREGATION (with hailing sign): “And the Pillar is ’stablished in the void.”

OFFICIANT: “Also thou shalt discourse of these things unto the man that writeth them, and he shall partake of them as a sacrament; for I who am thou am he.”

CONGREGATION (with hailing sign): “And the Pillar is ’stablished in the void.”

OFFICIANT: “Now is the Pillar established in the Void; now is Asi fulfilled of Asar; now is Hoor let down into the Animal Soul of Things like a fiery star that falleth upon the darkness of the earth.”


V. LITANY

The OFFICIANT turns towards the East.
OFFICIANT: Adonai, thou inmost fire,
Self-glittering image of my soul,
Strong lover to thy Bride’s desire,
Call me and claim me and control!
All kneel.

OFFICIANT: Myself Made Perfect truly named thou art!
Whom none hath seen entire or in thy parts!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: Identical point and centermost one!
O soul of myself, interior sun!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O Truth in Matter, Truth in Motion too!
O savior clad in gossamer and dew!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O self-determined, self-create, most high!
O greater than the all-embracing sky!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O bride and sister of the sovereign ON!
Eleven, none and perfect one alone!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O lovely goddess calling from the sea!
Inflaming Satan’s monstrous lust for Thee!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O angel of my spiritual desire!
Passionate rose of infinite white fire!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O shining force of vivifying breath!
O lion-serpent drawing me to death!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O luminous master of the silver feet!
O cross of sacrifice made bitter-sweet!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O brows half-seen, O visionary star
Beyond the fragrant breezes of the East!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O lover of my love, O avatar
Of the All-One, O mystical High Priest!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O thou before whose eyes my weak eyes fail!
Wonderful warden of the Holy Grail!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O guardian of the pallid hours of night!
O tireless watcher of the smitten noon!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O mighty with the majesty of light!
O girded with the glory of the moon!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: Angel of absolute splendour! Link of mine
Old weary spirit with the All-Divine!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: Mine Angel! Mine Initiator! Thou
The Sixfold Star forever just as now!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: Thou Goat exalted upon Earth in Lust!
Thou Snake extended upon Earth in Life!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: O seed most wise concealed within the dust!
O holy spirit beyond peace and strife!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: Innocent babe! Inviolate maid!
Hot terror that lurks in the cool of the glade!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

OFFICIANT: Burning red frost upon frozen white coals!
O Word of all Words! O Soul of all Souls!

CONGREGATION(whispers): Thee, Thee I invoke!

All rise. OFFICIANT makes the sign of Apophis and Typhon.

OFFICIANT: Rise! Move! Appear! Let Thou and I together,
Enter the solemn passionless profound,
Enter the darkness and the thrilling weather,
Enter the silence louder than all sound,
Enter the vast implacable inane!
Come let us journey thither once again!

The OFFICIANT turns to face West, and adds incense to the censer with these words:
OFFICIANT: Sub umbra alarum tuarum ADONAI quies et felicitas.
(The OFFICIANT imagines a phallus extending upwards from the altar.)


VI. CONCLUDING PRAYER AND BENEDICTION

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

CONGREGATION: Love is the law, love under will.

OFFICIANT: The light is come to the darkness, and the darkness is made light. Then is light married with light, and the child of their love is that other darkness, wherein they abide that have lost name and form. There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.

ALL: AUMGN. AUMGN. AUMGN.

The OFFICIANT raises his open palms forward overhead and makes the closing benediction:

OFFICIANT: May your minds span from world to world in holy ecstasy.
May your hearts shed brilliance in the darkness of the abyss.
May your bodies drink deeply of the passion of life.

The OFFICIANT makes the Sign of Osiris Risen.

CONGREGATION: So mote it be.

OFFICIANT: Go forth to do your pleasure, and INVOKE OFTEN.

All depart.


Occasional Sacraments
Vigorous Food & Divine Madness