Chapter I

Chapter I

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

Oasis of Nefta – Tunisia – Hotel du Djérid.
An. Xix Sol in 26½° Libra, Luna conjunct Uranus in 14° Pisces

1. Nuit defined. Nuit is all that may be, and is shewn by means of any one that is.

2. Pantheism of AL. The Book of the Law shows forth all things as God.

3-4. Virtues of the Soul All things are able to know all; all are alike in this, at the end of all.

5. Mission of Aleister Crowley, the Beast 666. I The Beast, the Man Aleister Crowley whose number is 666, help to show forth this truth to men.

6. 666 as Artist. I am the Point of View (as of the artist) from which Nuit may be seen by all; for I am Her inmost thought, her sense, and her Voice.

7. Mine H.G.A. Aiwass: His Nature and Office, AL his Word. Mine Angel sayeth Her song into mine ear. He is Aiwass, who is the Word of the Law as also its mode of action. He serveth Silence through his speech, which stilleth evil sounds, not known nor fused into one tune.

8-9. Nature of Mankind. The essence of a Man and Woman – each being a Star or sovereign God poised in Space by its own act – is clothed in thoughts and deeds as is its Nature, hidden by them. This essence is all-worthy; adore it, and the light of all that may be shall be shed upon you.

10. Masters of Mankind defined. Those who adore and love all things alike, for that they are of Truth, are yet but few, and are not known of men. Yet being free of fear and lust their power controls the many whose souls are subject to limit, the limit of knowledge, which is always two, and can be counted.

11. The Secret of Government. Men adore Naught, although they deem Naught God and Man; thus the Pure Fool rules them, and saves them from base knowledge which is false.

12. The Nature of an Act: its virtue. All acts are in truth acts of Love. Fulfil all Loves that may be, to the full. Be this in Light, before all Stars, that all may see and rejoice.

13. Nuit expressed in an Eidolon. Nuit is formed into an Image of a Woman, that She may be the symbol of all ways of going in Love.

Her relation to Mankind. She is our Goal and our own heart's essence of Will.

Her Mother-Joy as Nature. She is Nature, who is glad of the birth of all that cometh forth.

14. The Secret of Joy. The Soul of Man flameth forth in Love unto the utmost Spaces of the Stars, and hath his joy of all of them.

All events are children of Nuit. Every event doth fulfil some Love, and each is thenceforth of the Body of Nuit, which is event as Her Soul is Lust to bring forth, and the chance so to do.

15. Mission of 666 and his woman. Her Nature & Office. She is the Scarlet Woman, Η ΚΟΚΚΙΝΑ ΓΥΝΗ, 667, as he is ΤΟ ΜΕΓΑ ΘΗΡΙΟΝ, The Great Wild Beast 666. I, The Beast 666, am called to shew this worship and send it forth into the world; by my Woman called the Scarlet Woman, who is any woman that receives and transmits my Solar Word and Being, is this My Work achieved; for without Woman man hath no power. By Us let all men learn that all that may be is their Way of Joy for them to go; and that all souls are of the Soul of True Light.

16. Our Function shewn in a Figure. I am a Sun, giving out Light and Life; but she is their guide in darkness, making them pure, single of heart, awake to the Highest.

Our Powers. I have the power to kindle in my mind the Essence of the Abstract Soul; she that of taking all that may be dear and near and clear to men and women, that so they all may find their joy in all.

17. 666 and 667 set apart for this Work. I and my woman alone are chosen for this work; all others are best and truest as they seek Nuit in their own Way.

18. The Divine Ideas revealed in this Book. AL invoked upon 666 and 667. The Royal Snake of Wisdom bearing the might and right of Life and Death, the endless energy of Magick, burns on our brows.

19. On us the Soul of Space is bent, so that to all alike we may show all things as the Way of Joy.

20. The Key of the Magick of the New Aeon of Heru-Ra-Ha. The Mode of Magick is explained in the Word Abrahadabra, whose power I declare and whose secret I expound in other writings.

21. Nuit further defined Her relation to Gods, Men, Heaven, Earth, to Her Lord Hadit. Nuit is not beheld of any God or Man; for they are fixed Event, they are Facts, and while She is the ever-to-be. She therefore is to be held worthy, she and that Self which may enjoy her Love; seek not those joys which, being actual, cease to exhale rapture.

22. Her Name: 666 is taught a name more sacred yet. Nuit is the name by which this Starlight Yearning is to be known of men; to me the Beast she hath given a secret Name in that Great Night wherein I came to perfect Oneness with All things that might be ever.

Nuit further defined. Reality and illusion: the None, the One, Many & the All, identified through Her. Nuit is Space beyond the idea of Limit or Measure; She is also All Points of the View no less than All Vistas seen therefrom. Bind nothing, for all things alike pertain to her, and her Nature is to compose All in One and Naught. One thing is in the end like all the rest; the seeming not alike comes as a dream from choosing images after one's own heart to worship them; thus each, though true as one of the All, is false if thought of as one apart from the rest.

23. Understanding of this Mystery the Key to Chieftainship. He is the chief of all who is not tricked into this trap of setting limits to things, by which he blasphemes each, and makes all false.

24. Nuit: in Her Name are hidden secrets of Truth. Nuit is known by the Word of a Riddle of Letter and Number: this also will I make plain in other writings.

25-6. Nuit proves to Aleister Crowley that he is in truth 666 by means of a riddle and a Sign. I, asking Nuit: Who am I? and: What shall be the sign? (that I am who I am) was told by means of a Riddle, so that I might be sure that the answer came from Her and not from mind own mind, that I was 666. Also the sign was shewn me in a Riddle, as well as in the English of the Text. These matters will I set forth elsewhere.

27. 666 asks Nuit to reveal Herself to Men. I called Her “O Nuit, continuous one of Heaven” – which is a marvel of the Inmost Nature of Number as I shew in my other Comment – and prayed that men might come to think of Her not as One, which implies the idea of Limit, but as None which is beyond bound.

28-9. Nuit is that which is equally 0 & 2. This Equation 0=2 the Master-Key of the Understanding of Nature of the Universe. She answered: None and Two. This also is a marvel of number, and is the Truth of the Essence of Nature of all Things, the Root of the Tree of Thought, as I shall the shew elsewhere.

30. Nuit shews the object of creating the Illusion of Duality. She said: The world exists as two, for only so can there be known the Joy of Love, whereby are Two made One. Aught that is One is alone, and has little pain in making itself two, that it may know itself, and love itself, and rejoice therein.

31. Mankind in general not worthy of attention. Heed not the petty woes of men, trifles, with petty joys to square the account. These are but dreams within dreams, and those to whom I speak the Word of Nuit are chosen of Her to pass beyond these phantoms into the world of real joy and Sorrow – which also is Joy, and the Key and Force thereof.

32. Mankind to obey 666, to follow his method of attainment to the knowledge of Nuit and the Benefits thereof. True nature of 666. Let all men obey me, The Beast, the Prophet of Nuit! For my number is 666, the Number of the Sun. That is, I am the Light and Centre of their system of Stars; and my Word is as a ray to them who are of Earth. Let them obey the light, and Impulse of that which I am in Truth, although I lie deep hidden in a body of flesh. Seek ye to know Nuit! Seek to enjoy all that may be, although ye loathe it in your souls. This is your ordeal, which ye must pass in order to be free and whole; to know all things alike, to try, to do, to love and to rejoice in all.

33. Nuit asked by 666 for full instructions in writing. I asked Nuit to write the rituals, the ordeals, and the law.

34. She replies. She bade me know that the ordeals may not be written, since each man must go through a furnace of his own kindling. The Rituals: some were fitted for all men: some are fitted to one person, each making his own; and also there are those whose virtue lies in the silence wherewith they are begirt.

34-5. The Book AL is the Law for All Mankind. The Book AL, Liber AL vel Legis, which I wrote down as I heard the Voice of Aiwass mine Holy Guardian Angel, in the City of Cairo in the Spring (April 8, 9, & 10) of the year 1904 of the Vulgar Era, is the Law. This Law is the Law for all men alike.

36. 666 identified with Ankh-f-n-Khonsu. I am in some way, One and the same Man and Ankh-f-n-Khonsu, whose Stélè helped to bring about the writing of that Book.

AL: The MS. the sole authentic text: 666 to abstain from editing it. I am not to change it in one letter; for not only was mine ear at the service of Aiwass, but also mine hand. The effect of this is made plain elsewhere.

666 to comment on AL to guard against false interpretations. I comment on this Book, lest there be folly; for many are the Secret Sayings and obscure in the text thereof. It would be easy for the clever and the crafty to distort the true meaning of Aiwass so as to suit their own conceits, as hath been seen of old time in the cases of the Words of the Masters, the Q'uran, and the so-called Scriptures of the Christians.

666: His Curse upon any that should seek to distort the Book, or His comment. Thus as a safeguard against such, I, by the wisdom of Ra-Hoor-Khuit, do now foresee and guard against all fraud and false ways of reading the Book in simple and plain language. And I lift up my voice and curse with the Great Curse of a Magus of Power him that shall seek to turn my Word from its Truth.

37. 666: His task as Teacher. I am also bidden to learn and teach the way of doing Magick by means of saying over many times certain Sacred texts, of writing words, symbols, figures, numbers and names of Power; – Magic by Speech, by secret Light of Darkness, by Deeds, by Acts which create Things or destroy them, and so forth, as I define and expound in other writings.

38. 666: His duty as Teacher. I am bound by mine Oath of service to Mankind – for am I not myself a Man but also the Sun, and the Son of the Sun? – to accept all that may come to me for Wisdom. But it is my right to test their fitness in all such ways, howso severe, as I deem fit.

39. Θελημα the Word of the Law. The word of the Law is Θελημα. That is, this word is defined in minute detail by the secret value of the letters, numbers, sounds, virtues in Nature, and all other functions of this Greek name for Will.

40. Thelemites defined: the three Degrees of Attainment. We who accept this Law may rightly be called Thelemites, if this word be defined in terms of its secret values, as in the case of the word Thelema itself. There are three real Grades in the Order, as distinct from the formal Grades of the A∴A∴, and these Three Grades are described in my Book called The Vision and the Voice, and elsewhere.

The Law stated and explained. Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law – That is: the Law of a man's Nature is to fulfil the purpose for which he is truly fitted.

41. Sin defined. The Nature of Freedom. Sin is defined as Restriction: that is; the setting of limits, or the desire to set limits, to any thing that is, seeing that as above set forth the true Nature of all things is to fulfil themselves in all Ways. Yet though all things be thus lawful in themselves, it is often Restriction to act, and Freedom to refrain. For that Freedom is worth the other, and each case must be judged by its own Nature.

Duty of a Thelemite towards others. Seek not to control the will of any other in the matter of Love, setting Limits either to the Will to Love or the Will to seek elsewhere the Goal of Will. For Love itself is the sole bond; all others set up strains against the Nature of Things: whereby cometh at last the ruin of all.

42-3. The Right of Man. This case may be taken as a guide to other problems of ethics. The rule is in truth single, the same in essence for all matters of conduct. Each has the perfect right to do his Will, that for which he is fit; all other use of power is an abuse.

44. Will: its possible defects. Purpose takes the edge off pure will; for it implies conscious thought, which should not replace what Nature intends. Work is done best when the mind does not know of it, either to urge or check its course. The lust of result also spoils work; one must not distract one's forces from their task by thoughts of the profit of success.

45-8. A Riddle concerning “Perfect.” The Nuit is moved by the word “perfect” to announce a Riddle wherein the Mystery “Nothing is Perfect” is proved by means of the Secret Wisdom of Letters and Numbers: which Riddle I will expound in other writings.

49. The New Aeon: All previous formulæ now obsolete. The New Initiation-Ritual indicated. All secret keys of the former Magick of the Aeon of the Dying God are now useless, since the Lord of this New Aeon of which I am the prophet is the Crowned and Conquering Child. Asar, the Man who suffers, is no longer the type of Godhead to which Man must aspire. He needs no more to die and rise again: His great Work is now to come to know Himself as the Child ever-living. sinless, perfect, the all-shining Sun.

50. Nuit instructs 666 in his duties as Hierophant. Nuit instructs me now in my Work of training men to become Masters and Adepts by putting them through ordeals. I am to purge their brute souls by fire – to burn out their grossness by kindling the Lust of the Spirit within them. Their minds are to be tested by trials of mind; and those rare souls marked from the hour of birth to attain the lofty summits to the Mountain of Magick must be made perfect by ordeals suited to their natures. Yet by my wit I am bidden to devise such means as may attain all three objects in a single Test, in the manner explained elsewhere.

Three types of Ordeal for three parts of the Soul. Regulations of the Order of A∴A∴. Stars – that is, men whose souls shed Light – must not be grouped at random in the Order, but each must have his own proper place and orbit. Sometimes it may be wise to form a system of stars as are by Nature fit to work in groups: but even so, keep each unit intent on its own proper Going, let it not know, more than needs must, the Way of other Stars and Systems, lest falling from its own Way, it follow after others, or jostle them, and confuse thus the Order of Heaven.

51. The Sanctuary described in a Figure: also its approaches. The Palace of Wisdom has four gates, which the man who I take to train for kingship may enter singly or all at once. That is, there are four ways to attain; some may find it best to take them one at a time, others all at once. The gates or ways are described in secret symbols; these I explain elsewhere.

Adepts: are they still in danger of falling away? It is then asked: can one who has come to Wisdom fall therefrom?

Many means of Grace. Thelemites to live beautifully and joyously. The answer is that there are many means of safety. I warn you against fear. Being once free, refuse to admit that any course of conduct can destroy you. I urge you to beware of the pride of the spirit, of the thought of anything as evil or unclean. Make all things serve you in your Magick as weapons. Therefore, be goodly, not humble, base, timid, or frail. Dress like a dandy: eat like a gourmet: drink port and champagne as do the hunting squires and young men about Town.

Love: its law is complete Freedom. Also as to Love: be wholly free to make the best of your gifts in all respects, fearless and shameless.

All acts to be understood as Acts of Worship of Nuit. Yet all these acts must not be done for their results in success or pleasure, and the like; for they are holy and to be performed strictly as acts of Love under Will in worship of Nuit; that is, to fulfil all that may be and your own whole Nature by so doing.

52. Danger of error in this matter. This command is enforced, like that as to Restriction above, with a great Curse. The only thing that can do harm is to set limits to That which is by Nature Free and without Bounds. Thus, to find in any special love a distinct joy apart from other loves, or to think that the event of any love, a fixed dead ash of the past, is a living joy, is to fall into the Power of the Lords of Matter, to have to obey the Laws of Death, to lose all Freedom, and so suffer the Burden of Bondage.

53. Earth to enter upon a higher stage by use of this formula. This way of Freedom – to do all things yet be bound by none of them – shall bring new life to Earth.

Nuit: Her private word to 666. Follows a message to me, which I need not explain in this place.

54. Nuit repeats that 666 must respect the MS. of AL. I am bidden once more not to tamper with the text of the MS. of Liber AL on the the ground that it contains secrets beyond my knowledge.

55-6. A “child” of 666 to behold those secrets which are hidden from 666. Nature and Office of this Child. in AL I am promised: “the child of thy bowels … shall behold them.” This involves the future, and demands special comment elsewhere. The coming of that child is defined in such terms that when he arrives he may be surely known.

Prophets and Scriptures of the past party true: AL contains the whole truth of Conscious, and some of Unconscious Thought. Nuit admits that all the prophets of the Past have spoken, and the sacred scriptures before given by the Masters to men contain, some truth. But they have applied to local conditions, and those of time; thus all are partly false. Liber AL has no such limits, so it is true for all. I have learnt all the secrets of all the old cults, purged them of partial trend, and balanced them: this is my knowledge of them complete so far as the Reason is concerned; I have also some, though not all, Truth of the Inmost Order. (Through this Book AL has it been given unto me to perfect almost wholly this Utmost of Truth.) 57. Nuit: duty of mankind to invoke Her. Nuit commands mankind to invoke Her, that is, to fulfil their utmost Selfhood, under Her stars, that is, by the study of all other Points of View beside one's own.

The method of Magick: Love the mode in which Will operates. The method of Magick in this – and in all – Work is: “love under will.” The word love (Agaph in Greek) has the value of 93, like that of Θελημα, will. This implies that love and will are in truth one and the same, two phases of one theme. Love is thus shown as the means by which will may be brought to success.

Love: its two main types: its possible defects. Men are warned against error in this matter of love. There are two main modes of love, the symbol of one being the dove, of the other the serpent. These symbols and their meanings in ethics, with their bearing on “the law of the fortress, and the great mystery of the House of God” are explained by me fully elsewhere.

Aiwass: a proof of His Knowledge beyond that of any man: a problem which had always baffled human wisdom solved rightly in a phrase. The ancient wisdom of the Tarot otherwise correct in all points. The sublime Knowledge, more than that of any living man, possessed by Aiwass, is now shewn by giving the correct value of one of the Tarot Trumps (unknown till that time) which perfects their balance as had baffled the wit of all men to do. We are also warned against any “folly” of trying to improve upon the ancient and well-tried and trusty values - save at this one point where they were shewn weak.

59. Nuit: Her cult. Nuit declares the fit form of Her cult as a Rite. Her incense is of `resinous woods and gums' – sacred to Her as scented, fluid, and vital. There is no blood therein; for Her worship involves neither life nor death; it is a Growth in all ways, the primal mode of Being. Her hair: this phrase is to be studied side by side with my account of my Visions of Her: it will be clear to those who may attain thereto.

60. Nuit: Her symbolic Figure. Nuit declares her Nature in a Riddle of Number and Colour and Form: this also is elsewhere explained being a matter of Magick and Wisdom proper to vowed Students rather than to the profane.

61. Nuit: to love Her the Supreme Wisdom. Love being the law of all Life, to love Nuit is to love the Essence itself of the sum of all objects of Love in the figure of one single Image of Beauty: it thus the Drawing-to-a-Point of the Will, which might else seem diverse; thus it is “better than all things.”

Nuit: the Mode of Union with Her. Follows a Method whereby to unite the Soul with Her; to me, Alastor the Spirit of Solitude, the command is plain; and to be taken at the letter, as I have done, and now am doing, even at this hour, as I write this “under the night-stars in the desert” in the Oasis of Nefta in Tunisia. Yet also there is a hidden meaning, so that the dwellers in cities may invoke Nuit: and this will I set forth, not only as in Liber XI but in simple and easy words; in a fit time and place.

Nuit: ways of worship. This verse contains very many marvels in other matters also: in concerns the Crossing of the Abyss, as I have described in The Vision and the Voice: also, such ways of worship are prescribed as define Her inmost Nature: this also I shall write elsewhere. Note most of all that She, the Sum and Essence of All Things that may be, fulfils Herself as these are all fulfilled by each Star in any Event. Indeed, she is not whole while aught remain latent, a phantom of desire; thus doth each act of Love under Will not only perfect him that doeth it, but also Her of whom it is one jewel.

62-3. Nuit: Her public Cult. Now lastly she ordains her public cult. Her image, she being All-Desired, shall be a living Woman, calling to her that Spirit which shall make her perfect in Event. Of all this Rite I have written in another place.

64-5. Nuit: Her final shewing-forth of Herself in an Outburst of lyric Rapture. Now in one lyric blaze of music Nuit declares Herself the daughter of Sunset and the Shining Truth Night, calling all Souls to their supreme Goal of Joy to Fulfil Themselves in Her.

66. Nuit Her veil again fallen upon Her. And thus she ends in Silence.

Djeridensis Comment | Chapter I | Chapter II | Chapter III