The following excerpt can be read in context by consulting the readily available 777 and Other Qabalistic Writings at any reputable bookstore including Amazon.com and Powell’s City of Books. More suggested books here.
Atheists are of three kinds.
There is a fourth kind of atheist, not really an atheist at all. He is but a traveller in the Land of No God, and knows that it is but a stage on his journey—and a stage, moreover, not far from the goal. Daath is not on the Tree of Life; and in Daath there is no God as there is in the Sephiroth, for Daath cannot understand unity at all. If he thinks of it, it is only to hate it, as the one thing which he is most certainly not (see Liber 418, 10th Æthyr. I may remark in passing that this book is the best known to me on Advanced Qabalah, and of course it is only intelligibile to Advanced Students).
This atheist, not in-being but in-passing, is a very apt subject for initiation. He has done with the illusions of dogma. From a Knight of the Royal Mystery he has risen to understand with the members of the Sovereign Sanctuary that all is symbolic; all, if you will, the Jugglery of the Magician. He is tired of theories and systems of theology and all such toys; and being weary and anhungered and athirst seeks a seat at the Table of Adepts, and a portion of the Bread of Spiritual Experience, and a draught of the wine of Ecstasy.
After seeing “Contact” for the (at least) fourth time, i have once again to admit what deapht it has.
It possesses Mystery in the true sense of the word.
The movie is after Carl Sagans story and stars Jodie Foster as Dr Arroway.
More Americans dies from being fat in one year than the highest estimates of all the Witch Trials in Europe and America for over 250 years.
Siege of Antioch by Jean Colombe
Atheists like to scream at the top of their lungs about the atrocities due to “religion”.
Not only are very few of those atrocities actually a result of religion or belief as some isolated phenomena (since reality is actually complicated).
But like other fundamentalists with a pet beliefsystem the modern atheist picks their favorite factoids and present them in a “convincing” manner to underline their outrage at those who do not agree.
As a “theist” (in lack of a better term) who happens to agree with that “You can be good without God(s)” i still cant help feeling that a lot of this anger is more applicable to American society and Abrahamic religion.
Living in Sweden is a lot more of a secular environment.
We dont have the same “religous right” influncing everything.
In fact i would bet that most Swedes couldnt care less about what their neighbour belive.
My “religion” (again, terms) has little to do with faith (it is orthoprax), nothing to do with proselytazion and does not (generally) see atheism as less valid, moral or any other such poppycock.
I see my mythology as mythology, NOT history.
I do NOT think that my religion has a place in politics, courts, education, medicine or any other secular instance.
As a matter of fact i am often angry about the exact same things as the ones described here ( as a matter of fact, i agree with every statement here, and i´m still a polytheist).
My problem is that to me it feels like the same invasion whether it is a Christian or an Atheist trying to “save” me.
I´m leaving other people alone to believe as they do (and consider their beliefs equally “valid” to mine ) and have no interest in “saving” them (since i dont think they need saving).
Is it ok if i have my customs and beliefs in my privacy?
A very good talk though!
She is articulate, charming, funny and fair!
However….considering Nazi death camps and Communist millions of dead we should probably abandon politics and ideology as well (continuing the logic).
I just saw a comment that an atheist is under no obligation to study or understand anything about religion to critisize it unless a theist proves the existence of Deity.
And on that note i will now write a detailed article critisizing Quantumphysics .
I dont know more than any other person about it, but i dont have to until a physisist proves an entire theory.
To use science in a discussion on philosophy is like using chemistry to explain the music of Mozart….
Secular religion is a term used to describe ideas, theories or philosophies which involve no spiritual component yet possess qualities similar to those of a religion. Such qualities include such things as dogma, a system of indoctrination, the prescription of an absolute code of conduct, an ideologically tailored creation story and end-times narrative, designated enemies, and unquestioning devotion to a higher authority. The secular religion operates in a secular society by filling a role which would be satisfied by a church or another religious authority. Social philosopher Raymond Aron notably uses the term to refer to Communism.Likewise, philosopher of science Michael Ruse has made use of the term in discussing evolution theory. Similarly Thomas Frank suggests that the free market has become a secular religion in the United States.
Secular religion is a term used to describe ideas, theories or philosophies which involve no spiritual component yet possess qualities similar to those of a religion. Such qualities include such things as dogma, a system of indoctrination, the prescription of an absolute code of conduct, an ideologically tailored creation story and end-times narrative, designated enemies, and unquestioning devotion to a higher authority. The secular religion operates in a secular society by filling a role which would be satisfied by a church or another religious authority.
Social philosopher Raymond Aron notably uses the term to refer to Communism.Likewise, philosopher of science Michael Ruse has made use of the term in discussing evolution theory. Similarly Thomas Frank suggests that the free market has become a secular religion in the United States.
“Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law”
In an answer on Tumblr it was stated that “Thelema is atheistic”.
I do not think this is entirely correct.
First of all we have to distinguish between atheism, nontheism, apatheism and so on. Atheism is a statement that one does not belive in the existence of Deity.
Several religions dont have a central God but this leaves them either nontheistic or transtheistic Crowley mentions that we dont know wether God(s) exist or not (and it is not relevant to the great work any more than faith is ).
Buddhism and Taoism are fundamentally and originally nontheistic, or in short, religions without a central or creating Deity.
Later versions ,syncretized with local polytheistic cults have made them rather transtheistic. Meaning that there is no ultimate God. Ultimate truth is not a sentient being or “God” but a “state” (actually not even that term suffices….since no term does). Their Gods are in a sense like man (though on a “higher” level), on the way to the same goal, the same union or henotheosis with the ultimate.monadic truth.
Similar thoughts could be found in ancient Greece among several philosophers.
Terms like Kether (Kabbalah), Bythos (Gnosticism), Monad (Neoplatonism) and in the east Moksha, Nirvana and so on being this first emanation without duality (and thus obviously without a “personality” too).
To categorally say that all Thelemites are atheists is simply wrong ( i am not an atheist and i have been a “devout” Thelemite for over 20 years ).
Among fellow Thelemites there are differing ideas on Deity, cosmology, objective reality and even wether Thelema is a religion or not (Crowley makes statements to both ).
Defining Deity is a problem within comparative religion and philosophy of religion that one encounters rather soon.
Anthropologuists have the same problems with “Religion, Magic, Good, Evil” and many other “Christocentric” concepts that doesent nessecarly apply to another culture or philosophy.
Besides, the argument is made that the only “Divinity” in Thelema is “the universe”. That would make it Pantheistic, not Atheistic.
In some cases there is not only cultural or philosophical differences to the concept of “Gods” but also demi Gods, daemones, angels, lwas / orixas and other supernatural beings to wich there are different opinions to wether they are “Gods” or not.
Clear is that Crowley did think of supernatural beings influencing the lives of man (in one way or another). I´m thinking of (some of ) “The Secret Chiefs” that seems to be more than human.
If Awass, why not Michael? If Michael, why not Thor?
There is also a statement that Satanists do not generally worship Satan or think of him a a literal Deity.
This is correct for LaVeyan Satanism (wich actually states that it is,literally, atheistic) and other “philosophical Satanism”.
There are however several (and quite diverse ) forms of Theistic Satanisms.
Both Gnostic such, “inverted Christianity” and others.
Just like entire ontologies, cosmologies and epistemologies of different religions differ, so does their concepts of “God(s)”.
The Greek “Theoi”, Roman “Dei”, Norse “Aesir” and Egyptian “Netjeru” are not understood exactly the same, even if Christian ethnocentrics call them all by the Germanic term “God”.
God is not even viewed the same way throughout Christendom (with rather big differences like unitarian, trinitarian and even monolatric views of him as a physical being ).
Complex philosophical systems focused on the individual such as Thelema will obviously render diverse thoughts on the concept too.
One Liber Al quote that is supose to disprove the existence of anything supernatural is: “Infinite Space, and the Infinite Stars thereof.” And, the text states that “there is no other God than me.” .
To ME it clearly says “there is no OTHER God than me”
If you now look at “Every man and every woman is a star”
“The Khabs is in the Khu, not the Khu in the Khabs.”
Hadit being a point of view (a center, a “star” or “khab”), Nuit being the starry sky, the circumference / sum of all possabilities, each star being a Hadit from it´s own point of view that statement makes perfect sense (and in a sense also proves your own divinity ).
In short, if Jehova literally exists, his “center” would also be Hadit and he to a “star”.
This would be equally true for Santa Claus though.
Liber Al II: 23 says : “I am alone: there is no God where I am.”
This being Hadit, too makes sense. Like the Thelemic Hermit (who is not alone at all in the traditional sense ) he says that he is “alone”. Being the center of the center of the center ad infinitum, ofcourse he is alone. Hence “center”. There can only be one absolute middle.
The quote “There is no God but man” is also presented in the answer, given with a clear “only truth” interpretation despite the fact that this can be seen in a number of philosophical ways, including Gnostic ones, solipsistic ones and a bunch of others (and some of them combinable ).
The question is not “Is Thelema Theistic in any sense of the word”, but “Is this Thelemite Theistic in any sense of the word?”.
“Love is the law, love under will”
In this lecture, the Hebrew Bible is understood against the background of Ancient Near Eastern culture. Drawing from and critiquing the work of Yehezkel Kaufmann, the lecture compares the religion of the Hebrew Bible with the cultures of the Ancient Near East. Two models of development are discussed: an evolutionary model of development in which the Hebrew Bible is continuous with Ancient Near Eastern culture and a revolutionary model of development in which the Israelite religion is radically discontinuous with Ancient Near Eastern culture. At stake in this debate is whether the religion of the Hebrew Bible is really the religion of ancient Israel.
One difference between them is that where Ditheism suggests two opposing forces (Gods) like Ahura - Mazda / Ahriman or the Christian God / Devil, Bitheism sees it as two forces complimenting eachother, in Wicca´s case the Goddess / Horned God.
I´m aware that the symbol is of the eastern mysteries. Its just too good to ignore.