Book of Bhaktic Science

by nigris (333)


Through the course of decades it has fallen to me to elucidate the strict bhaktic exploration underlying the foment of tradition insofar as the traditions, being so well-developed and articulated in their expanse, have little presented i can find relating to a complete reconstruction of their artifice.

Below please find a dialectic, I., which discloses my scholarly and experiential basis for the devotional life, completed as a delineation of practice in II., managing a full survey of its paradigmatic markers.



{TT} I used to talk with GLK quite often about his repeated expressive challenge "No gods are detected." We came to an arrangement. GLK would exclaim that he detected no gods and i would explain how he could go about detecting some. Then he didn't follow that out, so i knew he wasn't serious. He was tilting against theists.

{RB} Yeah it's like saying "I detect no motorcycles. ... What? You mean I have to go to a motorcycle shop?"

{TT} RB, It's a bit more complicated than that, but yes.

{RM} RB, I've been to the god shop. No gods there either.

{TT} RM, There are procedures.

{BT} RM, There is a god shop?

{TT} BT/RM, We might consider this (a god shop) to be the temple, the church, or the ritual center of any kind. This is where deities may be at least invited to engage one if one is sincerely interested.

{RM} TT, I don't suppose that there are any procedures that don't involve having to believe in order to believe?

{TT} RM, I've done it and can recommend some, yes. No belief required. It takes honest interest.

{RM} TT, Ok. I'm game. Let's have one.

{TT} What i did coming from an agnostic background regarding science highly was to ignore the negations offered to me by atheists and begin my study with the following disciplines. I will mention them, and then go into the methods.

{Preliminary Study}

{TT} 1) Anthropology -- to get a sense of the human condition and its religious aspects

{TT} 2) Sociology of religion -- to get a feel for the terrain and its general dispersal of variation and content

{RM} TT, Not quite sure what that means. You mean how many believers and where?

{TT} RM, I mean how religious behave in groups primarily and what they're doing. I included this because there was some important overlapping between anthropology and explanatory power in approaching things on the ground, and in large, some theorists like Durkheim and others straddling the batch. Learning what people were doing, how many, what their ideas are about it, and where it comes from, how it might fit into politics or streams of behaviour was my main point there.

{TT} 3) Psychology of Consciousness -- To begin to formulate some hypotheses about what might be taking place without the necessity of agreeing with the believers.

{RM} TT, A particular interest of mine.


{TT} Granted those things as baselines, i then began a regimen of participation in worship with them, all kinds, no agreements or disagreements with their arguments or ideas. I just sought to explore the experience of worship and tried to get at a peripheral understanding and possible engagement of gods.

{TT} I sought to infer what gods were while trying to have relations to them in connection with a variety of religious peoples.

{TT} Varying my methods a bit as regards that worship and connection, i was successful in beginning a relationship with a god. I did not have to believe in it, or in fact give that god anything, though i became familiar and fell in love with Her. This method led me to the conclusion that it is possible to have relationships with deities that don't include belief. I simply refrain from belief on the matter.

{TT} From there i generated a number of hypotheses about what gods were, and of course found most of those offered up by religious believers to be unfounded glorifications. I also began to understand the romantic or poetic aspects of that attribution.

{TT} So when GLK claimed "no gods detected" i began to explain to him how he might go in search. I realize that one might needs be properly constituted so as to succeed in this regard.

{CW} I find it baffling that there are still people who think it's reasonable to believe in gods. Like, c'mon!

{TT} CW, I know what you mean, particularly if they have no actual connection or relation to them.

{RM} TT, When I was younger I sincerely thought that intelligent believers must take christianity in a poetic sense. But I never managed to ever find one that did. So that theory got trashed.

{RM} TT, Ritual for the sake of ritual is a good thing. One may profitably invest meaning into the rituals one creates.

{TT} RM, Ritual for the sake of ritual -- interesting. I agree, and where GLK was concerned i was mostly trying to establish a kind of helpful context for the exploration of "finding a way to have a relationship with a god."

{RM} TT, Probably more coherently stated by Wicca adherents: 'Ritual for the sake of ritual is good. Because we are ritualistic animals by nature. Feel free to create your own rituals that have meaning.'

{TT} RM, That doesn't entirely focus on the methodology i am trying to portray, but it does allow for one's motivation to explore on one's own. I was mostly trying to give the sense of "doing whatever people who have relationships with deities do" and then actively attempting to start one oneself. After that, the 'engine' of such a relationship having been started on one's own or in one's own life, then i can attest as to the value of pursuing it individually.

{TT} When someone asks me "why do you like to worship by throwing yourself bodily before the statue of your God" i say "It feels really really good." and that usually resolves the discussion aside from outside conjecture.

{TT} There's no "I have to do it cuz my priest says so." or something similar that's part of it. And there's no belief needed. I think this approximates what some religious people say when they're talking about faith, too. That is, belief isn't a part of their faith, confidence or reliance is. The whole shebang is what is valuable to them, and this is fortified or supported by belief in some but not everybody.

{BT} My beliefs satisfy my current psychological needs and feelings of well being. My beliefs give me hope.

{TT} BT, Keen.

{TT} RM, Think also "The Varieties of Religious Experience"; "The Varieties of Mystical Experience"; the rudiments of rite and appeal; bodily kinesis and psychological tack. It made a huge difference to me that i was able to have interaction with my God. I didn't understand others for whom it was some kind of abstraction. Hare Krishnas and Neopagans were some bridging contacts. They explained and participated in immanence of the divine and i got the sense of that, tried to distinguish it from schizophrenia and serious psychiatric maladies. I did so, i think, at least in the long term.

{RM} TT, I've read The Varieties of Religious Experience. What's "The Varieties of Mystical Experience"? Not by James as well, is it?

{TT} No, by another who was inspired by James, Paul Tillich. Not as good, but worth a looksee.

{RM} I shall have to hunt that down.

{TT} The point like with Charles Tart is to examine the terrain, and that was helpful to me in suspending disbelief. I.e. this notion of suspending disbelief is also key.

{HK} suspending disbelief?

{TT} Yes, subjectively resisting one's own conditioning to see what one is doing as futile because of the explanations offered by others who were doing it.

{RM} Hmm. Do you suspend belief in equal measure?

{TT} RM, NO. I suspend belief as much as possible. :D I don't find it helpful, but that doesn't preclude having a relationship with gods.

{TT} I think of disbelief as a type or vector of belief. It just sets against things.

{HK} can you suspend belief in the suspension of belief?

{TT} :) Pragmatism allows all. So, sure. It's "If it works, do it." kind of an approach. Or in this case, "If you want it, there are ways of making it happen without doing it the same way others did." By joining in with them in what they're doing but without mind-wiping or strict conditioning. Trying things out to see what happens.

{RM} TT, Very interesting. I am struck by how similar the paths are that we've taken. Let me give you an idea of where I'm at. I'm curious if you'll think we're in a similar place.

{RM} TT, To be perfectly honest, what I walked away with from that is that gods are a side-effect of the not very good reasoning system that we use. And I'm inclined to think that belief in gods is an unhealthy thing. But that's aside.....

{RM} TT, What I also walked away with from all of that is that a sense of the mystical is pretty much universal among humans. It's deeply embedded in our lizard brains in the same way that love is. And given that love is one of thse things that makes no sense from a rational point of view, but is so deeply embedded that it would be ridiculous not to embrace it, I decided to take the same approach to the mystical.

{RM} TT, Yes, completely irrational, but central to the lizard-brain concept of joy and happiness. So, I'm not much enamored of gods. But the buddhist concept of nirvana -- dissolution of sense self, powerful sense of connectedness, effortlessness when it comes to doing right things... that one resonated powerfully.

{TT} I can understand that, yes.

{RM} TT, And it's an altered state of consciousness that I have considerable experience with, since it occurs spontaneously when you play jazz.

{HK} RM, Or, I'm told, LSD. They say that really boosts the ASoC.

{TT} Psychoactives are unreliable for it.

{RM} Love every one. I get that one. That one's a work in progress. But I'm very much walking that path.

{TT} I can relate, RM, i'm unsure it's the same, but it is similar in what i would call "intuitive rationality", following out what is pleasurable in a rational way and with deliberateness. I was describing the means by which one might come into relationship with a deity. I can see the value of pursuing mysticism and do so myself in similar character, yes. Sinetar described it helpfully in "Ordinary People as Monks and Mystics".

{TT} My experience with psychedelics led me away from them, primarily because they were allies of reorientation. I'd contrast that with allies of subsumption or disintegration: alcohol, nicotine, marijuana. Particularly cocaine and heavier things also.

{RM} The goal here is to let the lizard brain be your guide (at least the obviously non-destructive parts of the lizard brain).

{HK} RM, but lizards are really stupid, and nasty.

{RM} HK, Sure, and love is really stupid too. But you leave something dramatic and important on the table if you don't it.

{TT} RM, The key term i'd connect with the intersection of our methods is what i've called 'intuition'; connecting will to it incites mysticism. For me that reproduces particular types of experience: euphoric, ecstatic.

{RM} TT, That's a decent insight. Thank you.

{TT} Yw. I can recommend Merton's "Silent Life" and Shunryu Suzuki's "Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind" as possible links beyond Sinetar. They were inspirational to me in connecting those dots, after a study of Psychology of Consciousness inclusive of Tart, Ornstein, and others.

{Challenges By Scientific Sorts and Coping Strategies}

{CW} Theism fails every possible challenge you can present to it.

{TT} What types of challenges do you mean?

{CW} 1. What are the gods composed of?

{TT} CW, This indicates that they are composed. I don't think that's a helpful analysis for something experiential. It's too much like asking what substance make up emotions.

{BR} God is spirit, he has no corporeal existence or corporeal composition. God is omnipresent, and both immanent and transcendent and knowing God is easy, just accept he is real and ask him, with a sincere heart and a contrite attitude, to come into your life.

{TT} BR, The matter/spirit dualism i think i figured out a while back as a misunderstanding of consciousness, then reasoned that that's where deities intersect with humans: in mind. Your catechism about how to meet deities is excellent, and i tried it in a way and it worked. Agreed. It seems to be the case for more than one god in fact.

{CW} 2. Where do the gods live/exist?

{TT} CW, I would put that on hold indefinitely as including the premise that "the gods live/exist"; i was not ready to grant that and simply tried to have a relationship regardless of living or existing.

{CW} 3. How did you acquire knowledge of these gods?

{TT} CW, THIS is what i was asking repeatedly, ongoing, and suspended anything other than theorizing at times when i wasn't experiencing whatever was being experienced during worship alongside the faithful. I was gleaning it by proximity myself and then, when i established contact with a god, directly.

{CW} 4. Why do these gods care about meaningless beings on Earth?

{TT} CW, I thought this was way too invested, carried too many premises along with it. I decided to ask the gods this when i had established a relationship. My God loves me. Why She cares? That's kinda like asking why anyone cares about anything.


The discursants above (including Troll Towelhead (TT), the Grand Mufti of Satanism) were all participants in the Dalnet channel, #christiandebate.


0 -- The Scope of the Work

Engaging a directional sounding or a personified spirit guide; as a sonar-like orientation (sounding) i have called it 'intuition'. I connected with this abstractly at first, via divination devices (Tarot) and have pursued it resolutely ever since.

Below please find a spectra of engagement and analysis. The character of the focal object of mysticism, along with the tactic taken to engage it varies tremendously and very very few exercise scrutiny or a survey view of the whole. Understandably they are taken with their own trajectory and the net outcome, like someone using magic for their own particular life rather than studying it and becoming well-rounded, cognizant of the whole. People get in and get what they want, and this is a very common phenomenon which i don't share with them, and so i pursue a more philosophic evaluation of the alternatives in preparation for action.

1 -- The Spectrum of Engagement

One dimension extends, on one side (A), from an ABSTRACT fluid or thing or internal principle or psychological facet (distinct or unified to the person), to the other side (B) as a BIFURCATED but personal intelligence, agency, or entity; distantly telegraphing via signs, omens, portents, or divination; or manifesting in consciousness as an autonomous (/autonomic) person(a).

2 -- The Spectrum of Analysis

Another dimension extends, on one side (C), from a CHOREOGRAPHED and monitored ensconsement within a program of inculcation or education monitored and adjusted (if one is fortunate) by a superior and bereft of analysis by the participant in any capacity, to the other side (D) as a DELIBERATE and, some might say, artificiality of construct less informed by faith or belief in their character.

3 -- Examples of Spectra Extremes Choreographed Examples (C)

Abstracted and bifurcated choreographed (AC/BC) experiences abound in recorded attestation: these inform the vast panoply of monastic/mystical reflection and personal diary. Most people undergoing it do not know until their revelation or achievement that it is a lattice of common aspiration and education. They are emergent into the paradigm of the mystical terrain and just learning the ropes. Descriptions of this domain by their coaches or masters are few and far between, reserved for expert dissemination and esoteric groups with highly technical language, difficult to precisely map into that of other traditions comparable (though some do describe the whole as 'scientific' on account of their appreciation for the precision of their attention to its detail and re-appearance of its facets as they guide others through the hurdles of their techniques).

Deliberate Examples (D)

Deliberate abstraction makes up the second most common mystical reflection, typically setting the stage a new exploration of techniques language, and experiential relationship. This was the value of surveys such as "The Varieties of Religious Experience" by William James, and explains why some mystics struck out in new directions (their constitution or attitude was such that what existed around them was insufficient to accommodate their individualistic tendencies).

That the vast number of these records reach out for an abstraction or internal experience as adventure (AD) is completely understandable, since one's subjective terrain is immediately apparent to manipulation and observation by turns. Saint John of the Cross and Saint Teresa of Avila were some of those who wrote about mysticism from within a Christian perspective in a way that emphasized encounter, yet without abjectly personalizing the divine. Their heart-centered and/or erotically-centered perspective caused something of a stir on account of their departure from abstraction and engagement of the divine in emotion and sense. The methodologies engaged by these individuals are sometimes apprehendible by suffusement in their writings.

The most controversial and thus occulted view on mystical experience is the deliberately bhaktic, dualistic yet not ensconced in a traditional lineage from which one might be forgiven, by dint of delusion or possession, for concretizing the entity enjoined (BD). I'm making reference to the whole of the terrain because this particular, last, category is what i am noticing is explored by the most scientific (not requiring consensus in a social sense) and transgressive individual (proto-Satanic through LHP-centered). The specific document within proto-Satanism i have found which evaluates this is "Liber Astarte vel Berylli" by Aleister Crowley, and it has been my own methodology prior to ever having encountered this arcane text, inspired in part by using the Harris-Crowley Thoth Deck to purpose.

The reason that this is a helpful (and not fully-instructive) text for purpose is that its aim of "uniting himself to a particular deity by devotion" participates in a unifocal dogmatism which is not specifically helpful to the bhaktic yogi (excepting one transitioning to monism and out of the bifurcative bhaktic modes). However, its analytical and scientific approach to the position shares aspects which are deconstructive and deliberate in some manner comparable to what is called in traditional and therefore corrupted mode 'Chaos Magick'.

For example, that the choice of deity

"is of no import, sobeit that thou choose one suited to thine own highest nature. ... not so suitable for gods austere as Saturn, or intellectual as Thoth. But for such deities as in themselves partake in anywise of love it is a perfect mode."
sets out a pragmatic parameter of recommendation as to the components of deliberation. What is not stated here is that one may oneself in short order, and if one is suited to the task and sufficiently self-aware, discover the proper divinity for the task by a thorough exploration of global devotional imagery. This has become feasible as publishing and globalization have suffused and interwoven religious culture and artistic expression.

The balance of parameters being fairly material and secondary, all that remains in apprehending the Beast's instructional directive is to ignore his inculcation to the restraint on cultural norms and his unifocal, transcendentalist dogmatism. In fact, it might be considered compromising to some constitutions to retain such jnanic standards in the face of the bhaktic enterprise. Subordinating all competing yogic trajectory to a singular choice is only of assistance to those who specialize in one of them.


REF (See below)


by Aleister Crowley

0. This is the Book of Uniting Himself to a particular Deity by devotion.

1. Considerations before the Threshold: ---
First concerning the choice of a particular Deity. This matter is of no import, sobeit that thou choose one suited to thine own highest nature. Howsoever, this method is not so suitable for gods austere as Saturn, or intellectual as Thoth. But for such deities as in themselves partake in anywise of love it is a perfect mode.

2. Concerning the prime method of this Magick Art: ---
Let the devotee consider well that although Christ and Osiris be one, yet the former is to be worshipped with Christian, and the latter with Egyptian, rites. And this, although the rites themselves are ceremonially equivalent. There should, however, be one symbol declaring the transcending of such limitations; and with regard to the Deity also, there should be some one affirmation of his identity both with all other similar gods of other nations, and with the Supreme of whom all are but partial reflections.

3. Concerning the chief place of devotion: ---
This is the Heart of the Devotee, and should be symbolically represented by that room or spot which he loves best. And the dearest spot therein shall be the shrine of his temple. It is most convenient if this shrine and altar should be sequestered in woods, or in a private grove, or garden. But let it be protected from the profane.

4. Concerning the Image of the Deity: ---
Let there be an image of the Deity; first because in meditation there is mindfulness induced thereby; and second because a certain power enters and inhabits it by virtue of the ceremonies; or so it is said, and We deny it not. Let this image be the most beautiful and perfect which the devotee is able to procure; or if he be able to paint or to carve the same, it is all the better. As for Deities with whose nature no Image is compatible, let them be worshipped in an empty shrine. Such are Brahma, and Allah. Also some postcaptivity conceptions of Jehovah.

5. Further concerning the shrine. ---
Let this shrine be furnished appropriately as to its ornaments, according to the book 777. With ivy and pine-cones, that is to say, for Bacchus, and let lay before him both grapes and wine. So also for Ceres let there be corn, and cakes; or for Diana moon- wort and pale herbs, and pure water. Further it is well to support the shrine with talismans of the planets, signs and elements appropriate. But these should be made according to the right Ingenium of the Philosophus by the light of the book 777 during the course of his Devotion. It is also well, nevertheless, if a magick circle with the right signs and names be made beforehand.

6. Concerning the Ceremonies: ---
Let the Philosophus prepare a powerful Invocation of the particular Deity according to his Ingenium. But let it consist of these several parts: ---
First, an Imprecation, as of a slave unto his Lord.
Second, an Oath, as of a vassal to his Liege.
Third, a Memorial, as of a child to his Parent.
Fourth, an Orison, as of a Priest unto his God.
Fifth, a Colloquy, as of a Brother with his Brother.
Sixth, a Conjuration, as to a Friend with his Friend.
Seventh, a Madrigal, as of a Lover to his Mistress.
And mark well that the first should be of awe, the second of fealty, the third of dependence, the fourth of adoration, the fifth of confidence, the sixth of comradeship, the seventh of passion.

7. Further concerning the ceremonies. ---
Let then this Invocation be the principal part of an ordered ceremony. And in this ceremony let the Philosophus in no wise neglect the service of a menial. Let him sweep and garnish the place, sprinkling it with water or with wine as is appropriate to the particular Deity, and consecrating it with oil, and with such ritual as may seem him best. And let all be done with intensity and minuteness.

8. Concerning the period of devotion, and the hours thereof: ---
Let a fixed period be set for the worship; and it is said that the least time is nine days by seven, and the greatest seven years by nine. And concerning the hours, let the Ceremony be performed every day thrice, or at least once, and let the sleep of the Philosophus be broken for some purpose of devotion at least once in every night.

Now to some it may seem best to appoint fixed hours for the ceremony. To others it may seem that the ceremony should be performed as the spirit moves them so to do; for this there is no rule.

9. Concerning the Robes and Instruments: ---
The Wand and Cup are to be chosen for this Art; never the Sword or Dagger, never the Pantacle, unless that Pantacle chance to be of a nature harmonious. But even so it is best to keep to the Wand and the Cup, and if one must choose, the Cup.

For the Robes, that of a Philosophus, or that of an Adept Within is most suitable; or the robe best fitted for the service of thy particular Deity, as a bassara for Bacchus, a white robe for Vesta. So also for Vesta, one might use for instrument the Lamp; or the sickle, for Chronos.

10. Concerning the Incense and Libations. ---
The incense should follow the nature of the particular Deity, as, mastic for Mercury, dittany for Persephone. Also the libations, as, a decoction of nightshade for Melancholia, or of Indian hemp for Uranus.

11. Concerning the harmony of the ceremonies: ---
Let all these things be rightly considered, and at length, in language of the utmost beauty at the command of the Philosophus, accompanied, if he has skill, by music, and interwoven, if the particular Deity be jocund, with dancing. And all being carefully prepared and rehearsed let it be practised daily until it be wholly rhythmical with his aspirations, and as it were, a part of his being.

12. Concerning the variety of the ceremonies. ---
Now, seeing that every man differeth essentially from every other man, albeit in essence he is identical, let also these ceremonies assert their identity by their diversity. For this reason do we leave much herein to the right Ingenium of the Philosophus.

13. Concerning the life of the devotee. ---
First let his way of life be such as is pleasing to the particular Deity. Thus to invoke Neptune, let him go a-fishing; but if Hades, let him not approach the water that is hateful to Him.

14. Further, concerning the life of the devotee: ---
Let him cut away from his life any act, word or thought, that is hateful to the particular Deity; as, unchastity in the case of Artemis, evasions in the case of Ares. Besides this, he should avoid all harshness or unkindness of any kind in thought, word, or deed, seeing that above the particular Deity is One in whom all is One. Yet also he may deliberately practise cruelties, where the particular Deity manifests His Love in that manner, as in the case of Kali, and of Pan. And therefore, before the beginning of his periods of devotion, let him practise according to the rules of Liber Jugorum.

15. Further concerning the life of the devotee: ---
Now, as many are fully occupied with their affairs, let it be known that this method is adaptable to the necessities of all.

And We bear witness that this which followeth is the Crux and Quintessence of the whole Method.

First, if he have no Image, let him take anything soever, and consecrate it as an Image of his God. Likewise with his robes and instruments, his suffumigations and libations; for his Robe hath he not a nightdress; for his instrument a walking stick; for his suffumigation a burning match; for his libation a glass of water?

But let him consecrate each thing that he useth to the service of that particular Deity, and not profane the same to any other use.

16. Continuation. ---
Next, concerning his time if it be short. Let him labour mentally with his Invocation, concentrating it, and let him perform this Invocation in his heart whenever he hath the leisure. And let him seize eagerly upon every opportunity for this.

17. Continuation. ---
Third, even if he have leisure and preparation, let him seek ever to bring inward the symbols, so that even in his well ordered shrine the whole ceremony revolve inwardly in his heart, that is to say in the temple of his body, of which the outer temple is but an image.

For in the brain is the shrine, and there is no Image therein; and the breath of man is the incense and the libation.

18. Continuation. ---
Further concerning occupation. Let the devotee transmute within the alembic of his heart every thought, or word, or act into the spiritual gold of his devotion.

As thus: eating. Let him say,

"I eat this food in gratitude to my Deity that hath sent it to me,
in order to gain strength for my devotion to Him."

Or: sleeping. Let him say,

"I lie down to sleep, giving thanks for this blessing from my Deity,
in order that I may be refreshed for new devotion to Him."

Or: reading. Let him say:

"I read this book that I may study the nature of my Deity,
that further knowledge of Him may inspire me with deeper devotion to Him."

Or: working. Let him say:

"I drive my spade into the earth
that fresh flowers (fruit, or what not) may spring up to His glory,
and that I, purified by toil, may give better devotion to Him."

Or: whatever it may be that he is doing, let him reason it out in his mind, drawing it through circumstance and circumstance to that one end and conclusion of the matter. And let him not perform the act until he hath done this.

As it is written: Liber VII, Cap. 5. ---
22. "Every breath, every word, every thought is an act of love with thee.
23. "The beat of my heart is the pendulum of love.
24. "The songs of me are the soft sighs.
25. "The thoughts of me are very rapture.
26. "And my deeds are the myriads of Thy Children, the stars and the atoms."

And Remember Well, that if thou wert in truth a lover, all this wouldst thou do of thine own nature without the slightest flaw or failure in the minutest part thereof.

19. Concerning the Lections. ---
Let the Philosophus read solely in his copies of the holy books of Thelema, during the whole period of his devotion. But if he weary, then let him read books which have no part whatever in love, as for recreation.

But let him copy out each verse of Thelema which bears upon this matter, and ponder them, and comment thereupon. For therein is a wisdom and a magick too deep to utter in any other wise.

20. Concerning the Meditations. ---
Herein is the most potent method of attaining unto the End, for him who is thoroughly prepared, being purified by the practice of the Transmutation of deed into devotion, and consecrated by the right performance of the holy ceremonies. Yet herein is danger, for that the Mind is fluid as quicksilver, and bordereth upon the Abyss, and is beset by many sirens and devils that seduce and attack it to destroy it. Therefore let the devotee beware, and precise accurately his meditations, even as a man should build a canal from sea to sea.

21. Continuation. ---
Let then the Philosophus meditate upon all love that hath ever stirred him. There is the love of David and of Jonathan, and the love of Abraham and Isaac, and the love of Lear and Cordelia, and the love of Damon and Pythias, and the love of Sappho and Atthis, and the love of Romeo and Juliet, and the love of Dante and Beatrice, and the love of Paolo and Francesca, and the love of Caesar and Lucrezia Borgia, and the love of Aucassin and Nicolette, and the love of Daphnis and Chloe, and the love of Cornelia and Caius Gracchus, and the love of Bacchus and Ariadne, and the love of Cupid and Psyche, and the love of Endymion and Artemis, and the love of Demeter and Persephone, and the love of Venus and Adonis, and the love of Lakshmi and Vishnu, and the love of Siva and Bhavani and the love of Buddha and Ananda, and the love of Jesus and John, and many more.

Also there is the love of many saints for their particular deity, as of St. Francis of Assisi for Christ, of Sri Sabhapaty Swami for Maheswara, of Abdullah Haji Shirazi for Allah, of St. Ignatius Loyola for Mary, and many more.

Now do thou take one such story every night, and enact it in thy mind, grasping each identity with infinite care and zest, and do thou figure thyself as one of the lovers and thy Deity as the other. Thus do thou pass through all adventures of love, not omitting one; and to each do thou conclude: How pale a reflection is this of my love for this Deity!

Yet from each shalt thou draw some knowledge of love, some intimacy with love, that shall aid thee to perfect thy love. Thus learn the humility of love from one, its obedience from another, its intensity from a third, its purity from a fourth, its peace from yet a fifth.

So then thy love being made perfect, it shall be worthy of that perfect love of His.

22. Further concerning meditation. ---
Moreover let the Philosophus imagine to himself that he hath indeed succeeded in his devotion, and that his Lord hath appeared to him, and that they converse as may be fitting.

23. Concerning the Mysterious Triangle. ---
Now as three cords separately may be broken by a child, while those same cords duly twisted may bind a giant, let the Philosophus learn to entwine these three methods of Magick into a Spell.

To this end let him understand that as they are One, because the end is One, so are they One because the method is One, even the method of turning the mind toward the particular Deity by love in every act.

And lest thy twine slip, here is a little cord that wrappeth tightly round and round all, even the Mantram or Continuous Prayer.

24. Concerning the Mantram or Continuous Prayer. ---
Let the Philosophus weave the Name of the particular Deity into a sentence short and rhythmical, as, for Artemis: epeljon, epeljon, Artemiv; or, for Shiva: Namo Shivaya namaha Aum; or, for Mary; Ave Maria; or for Pan, Xaire Swthr Kosmou, Iw Pan, Iw Pan; or, for Allah, Hua Allahu alazi lailaha illa Hua.

Let him repeat this day and night without cessation mechanically in his brain, which is thus made ready for the advent of that Lord, and armed against all other.

25. Concerning the Active and the Passive. ---
Let the Philosophus change from the active love of his particular deity to a state of passive waiting, even almost a repulsion, the repulsion not of distaste, but of sublime modesty.

As it is written, Liber LXV. ii,

59. "I have called unto thee, and I have journeyed with thee, and it availed me not."
60. "I waited patiently, and Thou wast with me from the beginning."

Then let him change back to the Active, until a veritable rhythm is established between the states, as it were the swinging of a pendulum. But let him reflect that a vast intelligence is required for this; for he must stand as it were almost without himself to watch those phases of himself, And to do this is an high Art, and pertaineth not altogether to the grade of Philosophus. Neither is it of itself helpful, but rather the reverse in this especial practice.

26. Concerning silence. ---
Now there may come a time in the course of this practice when the outward symbols of devotion cease, when the soul is as it were dumb in the presence of its God. Mark that this is not a cessation but a transmutation of the barren seed of prayer into the green shoot of yearning. This yearning is spontaneous, and it shall be left to grow, whether it be sweet or bitter. For often times it is as the torment of hell in which the soul burns and writhes unceasingly. Yet it ends, and at its end continue openly thy Method.

27. Concerning Dryness. ---
Another state wherein at times the soul may fall is this dark night. And this is indeed purifying, in such depths that the soul cannot fathom it. It is less like pain than like death. But it is the necessary death that comes before the rising of a body glorified.

This state must be endured with fortitude; and no means of alleviating it may be employed. It may be broken up by the breaking up of the whole Method, and a return to the world without. This cowardice not only destroys the value of all that has gone before, but destroys the value of the Oath of Fealty that thou hast sworn, and makes thy Will a mockery to man and gods.

28. Concerning the Deceptions of the Devil. ---
Note well that in this state of dryness a thousand seductions will lure thee away; also a thousand means of breaking thine oath in spirit without breaking it in letter. Against this thou mayst repeat the words of thine oath aloud again and again until the temptation be overcome.

Also the devil will represent to thee that it were much better for this operation that thou do thus and thus, and seek to affright thee by fears for thy health or thy reason.

Or he may send against thee visions worse than madness.

Against all this there is but one remedy, the Discipline of thine Oath. So then thou shalt go through ceremonies meaningless and hideous to thee, and blaspheme shalt thou against thy Deity and curse Him. And this mattereth little. for it is not thou, so be that thou adhere to the Letter of thine Obligation. For thy Spiritual Sight is closed, and to trust it is to be led into the precipice, and hurled therefrom.

29. Further of this matter. ---
Now also subtler than all these terrors are the Illusions of Success. But one instant's self-satisfaction or Expansion of thy Spirit, especially in this state of dryness, and thou art lost. For thou mayst attain the False Union with the Demon himself. Beware also of even the pride which rises from having resisted the temptations.

But so many and so subtle are the wiles of Choronzon that the whole world could not contain their enumeration.

The answer to one and all is the persistence in the literal fulfilment of the routine. Beware, then, last, of that devil who shall whisper in thine ear that the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life, and answer: Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground, and die, it abideth alone, but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.

Yet shalt thou also beware of disputation with the devil and pride in the cleverness of thine answers to him. Therefore, if thou hast not lost the power of silence, let it be first and last employed against him.

30. Concerning the Enflaming of the Heart. ---
Now learn that thy methods are dry, one and all. Intellectual exercises, moral exercises, they are not Love. Yet as a man, rubbing two dry sticks together for long, suddenly found a spark, so also from time to time will true Love leap unasked into thy mediation. Yet this shall die and be reborn again and again. It may be that thou hast no tinder near.

In the end shall come suddenly a great flame and devouring, and burn thee utterly.

Now of these sparks, and of these splutterings of flame, and of these beginnings of the Infinite Fire, thou shalt thus be aware. For the sparks thy heart shall leap up, and thy ceremony or meditation or toil shall seem of a sudden to go of its own will; and for the little flames this shall be increased in volume and intensity; and for the beginnings of the Infinite Fire thy ceremony shall be caught up unto ravishing song, and thy meditation shall be ecstasy, and thy toil shall be a delight exceeding all pleasure thou hast ever known.

And of the Great Flame that answereth thee it may not be spoken; for therein is the End of this Magick Art of Devotion.

31. Considerations with regard to the use of symbols. It is to be noted that persons of powerful imagination, will, and intelligence have no need of these material symbols. There have been certain saints who are capable of love for an idea as such without it being otherwise than degraded by idolising it, to use this word in its true sense. Thus one may be impassioned of beauty, without even the need of so small a concretion of it as "The beauty of Apollo", the "beauty of roses", the "beauty of Attis". Such persons are rare; it may be doubted whether Plato himself attained to any vision of absolute beauty without attaching to it material objects in the first place. A second class is able to contemplate ideals through this veil; a third class need a double veil, and cannot think of the beauty of a rose without a rose before them. For such, is this Method of most use; yet let them know that there is this danger therein, that they may mistake the gross body of the symbol for the idea made concrete hereby.

32. Considerations of further danger to those not purged of material thought. ---
Let it be remembered that in the nature of the love itself is danger. The lust of the satyr for the nymph is indeed of the same nature as the affinity of quicklime for water on the one hand, and of love of Ab for Ama on the other; so also is the triad Osiris, Isis, Horus like that of a horse, mare, foal, and of red, blue, purple. And this is the foundation of Correspondences.

But it were false to say "Horus is a foal" or "Horus is purple". One may say: "Horus resembles a foal in this respect that he is the offspring of two complementary beings".

33. Further of this matter. ---
So also many have said truly that since earth is that One, and ocean is that One, therefore earth is ocean. Unto Him good is illusion, and evil is illusion; therefore good is evil. By this fallacy of logic are many men destroyed.

Moreover, there are those who take the image for the God; as who should say, my heart is in Tiphereth, and Adeptus is in Tiphereth; I am therefore an adept.

And in this practice the worst danger is this, that the love which is its weapon should fail in one of two ways.

First, if the love lack any quality of love, so long is it not ideal love. For it is written of the Perfected One: "There is no member of my body which is not the member of some god." Therefore let not the Philosophus despise any form of love, but harmonise all. As it is written: Liber LXV,

32. "So therefore Perfection abideth not in the Pinnacles or in the Foundation,
but in the harmony of One with all."

Second, if any part of this love exceed, there is disease therein. As, in the love of Othello for Desdemona, love's jealousy overcame love's tenderness, so may it be in this love of a particular Deity. And this is more likely, since in this divine love no element may be omitted.

It is by virtue of this completeness that no human love may in any way attain to more than to foreshadow a little part thereof.

34. Concerning Mortifications. ---
These are not necessary to this method. On the contrary, they may destroy the concentration, as counter-irritants to, and so alleviations of, the supreme mortification which is the Absence of the Deity invoked.

Yet as in mortal love arises a distaste for food, or a pleasure in things naturally painful, this perversion should be endured and allowed to take its course. Yet not to the interference with natural bodily health, whereby the instrument of the soul might be impaired.

And concerning sacrifices for love's sake, they are natural to this Method, and right.

But concerning voluntary privations and tortures, without use save as against the devotee, they are generally not natural to healthy natures, and wrong. For they are selfish. To scourge one's self serves not one's master; yet to deny one's self bread that one's child may have cake is the act of a true mother.

35. Further concerning Mortifications. ---
If thy body, on which thou ridest, be so disobedient a beast that by no means will he travel in the desired direction, or if thy mind be baulkish and eloquent as Balaam's fabled Ass, then let the practice be abandoned. Let the shrine be covered in sackcloth, and do thou put on habits of lamentation, and abide alone. And do thou return most austerely to the practice of Liber Jugorum, testing thyself by a standard higher than that hitherto accomplished, and punishing effractions with a heavier goad. Nor do thou return to thy devotion until that body and mind are tamed and trained to all manner of peaceable going.

36. Concerning minor adjuvant in the ceremonies. ---
I. Rising on the planes. ---
By this method mayst thou assist the imagination at the time of concluding thine Invocation. Act as taught in Liber O, by the light of Liber 777.

37. Concerning minor methods adjuvant in the ceremonies. ---
II. Talismanic Magic. ---
Having made by thine Ingenium a talisman or pantacle to represent the particular Deity, and consecrated it with infinite love and care, do thou burn it ceremonially before the shrine, as if thereby giving up the shadow for the substance. But it is useless to do this unless thou do really in thine heart value the talisman beyond all else that thou hast.

38. Concerning minor methods adjuvant in the ceremonies. ---
III. Rehearsal. ---
It may assist if the traditional history of the particular Deity be rehearsed before him; perhaps this is best done in dramatic form. This method is the main one recommended in the "Exercitios Espirituales" of St. Ignatius, whose work may be taken as a model. Let the Philosophus work out the legend of his own particular Deity, and apportioning days to events, live that life in imagination, exercising the five senses in turn, as occasion arises.

39. Concerning minor matters adjuvant in the ceremonies. ---
IV. Duresse. ---
This method consists in cursing a deity recalcitrant; as, threatening ceremonially "to burn the blood of Osiris, and to grind down his bones to power." This method is altogether contrary to the spirit of love unless the particular Deity be himself savage and relentless; as Jehovah or Kali. In such a case the desire to perform constraint and cursing may be the sign of the assimilation of the spirit of the devotee with that of his God, and so an advance to the Union with HIm.

40. Concerning the value of this particular form of Union or Samadhi: ---
All Samadhi is defined as the ecstatic union of a subject and object in consciousness, with the result that a third thing arises which partakes in no way of the nature of the two.

It would seem at first sight that it is of no importance whatever to choose an object of meditation. For example, the Samadhi called Atmadarshana might arise from simple concentration of the thought on an imagined triangle or on the heart.

But as the union of two bodies in chemistry may be endothermic or exothermic, the combination of Oxygen with Nitrogen is gentle, while that of Oxygen with Hydrogen is explosive; and as it is found that the most heat is disengaged as a rule by the union of bodies most opposite in character, and that the compound resulting from such is most stable, so it seems reasonable to suggest that the most important and enduring Samadhi results from the contemplation of the Object most opposite to the devotee.

On other planes, it has been suggested that the most opposed types make the best marriages and produce the healthiest children. The greatest pictures and operas are those in which violent extremes are blended, and so generally in every field of activity. Even in mathematics, the greatest parallelogram is formed if the lines composing it are set at right angles.

41. Conclusions from the foregoing. ---
It may then be suggested to the Philosophus, that although his work will be harder his reward will be greater if he choose a Deity most remote from his own nature. This method is harder and higher than that of Liber E. For a simple object as there suggested is of the same nature as the commonest things of life, while even the meanest Deity is beyond uninitiated human understanding. On the same plane, too, Venus is nearer to man than Aphrodite, Aphrodite than Isis, Isis than Babalon, Babalon than Nuit.

Let him decide therefore according to his discretion on the one hand and his aspiration on the other; and let not one overrun his fellow.

42. Further concerning the value of this Method. ---
Certain objections arise. Firstly, in the nature of all human love is illusion, and a certain blindness. Nor is there any true love below the Veil of the Abyss. For this reason we give this method to the Philosophus, as the reflection of the Exempt Adept, who reflects the Magister Templi and the Magus. Let then the Philosophus attain this Method as a foundation of the higher Methods to be given to him when he attains those higher grades.

Another objection lies in the partiality of this Method. This is equally a defect characteristic of the Grade.

43. Concerning a notable danger of Success. ---
It may occur that owing to the tremendous power of the Samadhi, overcoming all other memories as it should and does do, that the mind of the devotee may be obsessed, so that he declare his particular Deity to be sole God and Lord. This error has been the foundation of all dogmatic religions, and so the cause of more misery than all other errors combined.

The Philosophus is peculiarly liable to this because from the nature of the Method he cannot remain sceptical; he must for the time believe in his particular Deity. But let him (1) consider that this belief is only a weapon in his hands, and (2) affirm sufficiently that his Deity is but an emanation or reflection or eidolon of a Being beyond him, as was said in Paragraph 2. For if he fail therein, since man cannot remain permanently in Samadhi, the memorised Image in his mind will be degraded, and replaced by the corresponding Demon, to his utter ruin.

Therefore, after Success, let him not delight overmuch in his Deity, but rather busy himself with his other work, not permitting that which is but a step to become a goal. As it is written, Liber CLXXXV:

"remembering that Philosophy is the Equilibrium of him that is in the House of Love."

44. Concerning the secrecy and the rites of Blood. ---
During this practice it is most wise that the Philosophus utter no word concerning his working, as if it were a Forbidden Love that consumeth him. But let him answer fools according to their folly; for since he cannot conceal his love from his fellows, he must speak to them as they may understand.

And as many Deities demand sacrifice, one of men, another of cattle, a third of doves, let these sacrifices be replaced by the true sacrifices in thine own heart. Yet if thou must symbolise them outwardly for the hardness of thine heart, let thine own blood and no other's be spilt before that altar. {Note 1: The exception to this rule pertain either to this practice, nor to this grade. N. Fra. A: A:."} Nevertheless, forget not that this practice is dangerous, and may cause the manifestation of evil things, hostile and malicious, to thy great hurt.

45. Concerning a further sacrifice. ---
Of this it shall be understood that nothing is to be spoken; nor need anything be spoken to him that hath wisdom to comprehend the number of the paragraph. And this sacrifice is fatal beyond all, unless it be a sacrificium indeed. Yet there are those who have dared and achieved thereby.

46. Concerning yet a further sacrifice. ---
Here it is spoken of actual mutilation. Such acts are abominable; and while they may bring success in this Method, form an absolute bar to all further progress.

And they are in any case more likely to lead to madness than to Samadhi. He indeed who purposeth them is already mad.

47. Concerning human affection. ---
During this practice thou shalt in no wise withdraw thyself from human relations, only figuring to thyself that thy father or thy brother or thy wife is as it were an image of thy particular Deity. Thus shall they gain, and not lose, by thy working. Only in the case of thy wife this is difficult, since she is more to thee than all others, and in this case thou mayst act with temperance, lest her personality overcome and destroy that of thy Deity.

48. Concerning the Holy Guardian Angel. ---
Do thou in no wise confuse this invocation with that.

49. The Benediction. ---
And so may the love that passeth all Understanding keep your hearts and minds through IAW ADONAI SABAW and through BABALON of the City of the Pyramids, and through Astarte, the Starry One green-girdled, in the name ARARITA. Amen.