The Galleons of the Mind…

Celbrating 40 years of Personal Psychedelia….

Yep, It has been the long Trip. Today is the 40th anniversary of my 1st LSD experience in Berkeley Ca in 1966. I have not visited with Vitamin L for a long time, after all, it is the rarest of chemicals, and some say when the seeker is ready (again). 80)

I want to thank Uncle Albert, Tim, Allen G, Aldous and a few others whose words of wisdom and hard, hard work brought this gift of life to me.

Thanks to all of you who were there but not visible to me at the time, who I have had the joy to meet and be with over the years… Fat Harry the Buddha, Will Penna, Mike Crowley, Tomas, Linda, my sister Rebecca, Jim P,Polly, and so many others who were venturing forward at that time.

I want to send my love to those voyagers who I began with and who are now in the western Isles… Roberto Apodaca, Roberto Labanst, Laurie, Ergo, and especially to Larry Pulliam. I wish you could of stayed longer. I miss you all.

For those who are younger and are walking down this path; walk in light and love. We love you as those that went before us love(d) us. This is the long trip back home.

All together now.



The Links:

Civic Lesson for Rummy…. (Thanks to Morgan!)

Salt Lake City Rally Protests the Bush Administration and Congress

Renee Boje Legal Battle Finally Resolved

Helping The Telemarketer… 80)


Look Around You


The Galleons of the Mind… Gwyllm

I had an epiphany yesterday. It was astounding for me, though it may be amusing to you… I was recalling that when Columbus had sailed into his first harbor, the peoples of Turtle Island did not see/recognize the ships sitting at anchor just off the beach. This phenomena was repeated in Mexico, and if memory serves me right, in the Pacific as well when Captain Cook sailed into Hawaii.

When asked later what they saw, the residents of the islands said, “I saw clouds on the water” or some variation on that. This is astounding really, but it points out something that I feel is happening on a constant basis to humans.

Why am I on to this? Yesterday I walked past a ladder for 3 hours without recognizing it. It had been brought into the house where I am working for me, but it didn’t register. In some viewpoints, I was “asleep” to its presence, but wait there is more. It doesn’t look like a regular ladder, it is a ladder and platform hybrid, not at all what I was expecting to be brought in. This one did not fit my expectations. Therefore, to my eyes it was not there.

Now, this is where the epiphany comes in. I am going to throw out a couple of statements about what I understand is common knowledge to those interested in light, and the formation of the universe.

From what I have read and I think understood, humans see only 5% of visible light. The universe is largely composed of something called, “dark matter” which we cannot see or really detect at this point except by devices that measure gravitational effects.

Okay, we are blind as mole rats to the greater part of the universe. We would be denied a drivers’ license for venturing out into “the void”, we would be entitled to a special bus pass, and more than likely, our language is a variation on universal braille.

We are out of touch with one of the basic elements of the universe, only stumbling upon it by accident, when it has been here all the time.

So, using these examples, I posit a few possibilities.

There are Galleons filled with Aliens sailing past us.

We walk past magnicent edifices, buildings, forums, and they are invisible to us being made of dark matter.

There is a vast city stretching to infinity filled with wonders that we are only, only dimly aware of through our dreams, and through our venturing there with meditation, and the use of psychedelics.

All the reports of luminous beings, faeries, spaceships, ufos, cities in the sky are based on something true, when our blinders slipped.

It has been said our blindness is matched by our lack of using our brain. Only 5% seems to used at any one time.

We are submerged and are part of other beings, passing through us, by us. Some of them recognize us, some even take interest in us. Mostly they are benign, some are not. on occasion, they interact with us, using extreme measures to get the blind beings attention. We actually have a fairly wide literature about this, as well as a deep reservoir of atavistic memories across the world… Fairy Tales, Holy Books, Sacred Stories, Ghost Stories, Hauntings all might indeed be the footprints left by voyagers who have come and gone from our dimension.

We are blind, I am blind. There is a raging Universe of Beauty around and within us. There are really no boundaries that delineate us from our world. All these boundaries are artificial. We are consumed by a chimera of conceit, we the “Masters” of our world.

We dimly perceive the distant ships whilst bemushroomed, or in the sea of bliss that we find our selves in whilst trypping… we assure each other that these are only products of our mind, and has no real bearing except in some disjointed, Jungian dream artifice…

So this is what I had come to me, it took but one ladder, and a rainy morning to bring it forth.


Poetry: Psychedelia….

A GLASS OF AYAHUASCA – by Allen Ginsberg

in my hotel room overlooking Desamparados’ Clanging Clock,

with the french balcony doors closed, and luminescent fixture out

“my room took on a near eastern aspect” that is I was reminded of Burroughs

with heart beating—and the blue wall of Polynesian Whorehouse, and

mirror framed in black as if in Black Bamboo-and wooden slated floor

and I in my bed, waiting, and slowly drifting away

but still thinking in my body till my body turned to passive wood

and my soul rocked back & forth preparing to slide out on eternal journey

backwards from my head in the dark

An hour, realizing the possible change in consciousness

that the Soul is independent of the body and its death

and that the Soul is not Me, it is the wholly other “whisper of consciousness”

from Above, Beyond, Afuera—

till I realize it existed in all its splendor in the Ideal or Imaginary

Toward which the me will travel when the body goes to the sands of Chancay

And at last, lying in bed covered my body with a splendid robe of

indian manycolors wool,

I gazed up at the grey gate of Heaven with a foreign eye

and yelled in my mind “Open up, for I am the Prince of eternity

come back to myself after a long journey in chaos,

open the Door of Heaven, My Soul, for I have come back to claim

my Ancient House

Let the Servants come forth to Welcome me and let Silent Harp make music

and bring my apparel of Rainbow and Star show me my shoes of Light and

my Pants of the Universe

Spread forth my meal of myriad lives, My Soul, and Show up thy

Face of Welcome

For I am the one who has dwelled in the secret Temple before,

and I have been man too long

And now I want to Hear Music of Joy beyond Death,

and now I am be who has waited to Welcome myself back Home

The great stranger is Home in his House of Joy.”

or words or thoughts or sensations & images to that effect.

Thus for an instant the Sensation of this Eternal House passed thru my hair

tho I couldn’t liberate my body from the bed to float away—

tho did glimpse the foot of the thought of the gate of Heaven—

Then opened my eyes and Saw the blast of light of the real universe

when I opened the window and looked at the clock on the R R Station

with its halfnaked man & woman with clubs, creators of time and chaos,

and down on the street where pastry venders sold their poor sugar

symbolic of Eternity, to Passerby-and great fat clanking beast of Trolley

with its dumb animal look and croaking screech on the tracks

Powered by electric life,, turned a corner of the Presidential Palace

where Bolivar 200 years ago in time planted a secret everlasting Fig-tree

and a fog from another life crept thru its own dimension

Past the cornice of the hotel and travelled downward in the street

To seek the river-had a bridge with little humans crossing, faraway

—and up in the hills the silver gleam of sunlight on the horizon thru thick fog

—and the Cerro San Christobal—with a cross atop and Casbah of poor

consciousness ratted on its hip—

and overall the vast blue flash & blast of open space

the Sky of Time, empty as a big blue dream

and as everlasting as the many eyes that lived to see it

Time is the God, is the Face of the God,

As in the monstrous image of the Ramondi Chavin Sculptured Stone Monument

A cat head many eyed sharp toothed god face long as Time,

with different eyes some upside down and 16 sets of faces

all have fangs—the structure of one consciousness

that waits upstairs to Devour man and all his universes

—turn the picture upside down—the top eyes see more than the human bottom rows

Indifferent, dopey, smiling, horrible, with Snakes & fangs—

The huge gentle creature of the Cosmic joke

that takes whatever form it can to Signify that it is the one that has come to its Home

where all are invited to Enter in Secret eternally

After they have been killed by the illusion of Impossible Death.

Lima, Peru

May 1960



What is above is below

What is without is within

What is to come is in the past

Tall… deep… tree… green… branching… leaf

Root… above… below… thrusting… coiling

Sky… earth… stem… root

Leaf… green… sap

Soil… air


Soil… visible

Hidden… breathing… sucking

Bud… ooze… sun… damp

Light.. dark… bright… decay… laugh

Tear.. vein.,. rain… mud branch… root

What is above is below

What is without is within

What is to come is in the past

These wooden carvings displayed in her endless shelves


Within each uncut branch—

The carver’s knife



Its rising is not bright

nor its setting dark

Unceasing, continuous

Branching out in roots innumerable

Forever sending forth the serpent coil

of living things

Mysterious as the formless existence

to which it returns

Twisting back

Beyond mind

We say only that it is form from the formless

Life from spiral void

—from Psychedelic Prayers

The More Things Change…

I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.


Raining in Portland… soon to be replaced with heat from what I hear. Helped pick up and deliver a refrigerator for Jules last night, along with Rowan, his friend Nick, John Gunn and Jules dad, John. Lots of fun seeing her family… I got to visit a bit with her dog Moose, who really is the most charming character. (one of Sophies favourites). I am blessed with great friends. I couldn’t ask for better. The time I spend with them is always a pleasure. John and Jules have known Rowan since he was 2 years old! Time flies. I swear they haven’t aged a day when I see them. On the other hand, I don’t recognize that person in the mirror anymore. 8o)

Just to let you know… we are still testing the radio, so please give it a go!

Here are the addresses to connect with the station. You have to paste them into winamp, itunes or what ever player you use.

High End 128k: (DSL- Cable)

Low End 56k: (Dial Up)

Some nice stuff in this edition. A big thanks to Jay Kinney on the Hermes article.

More on the way, stay tuned!




On The Menu:

The Links

On the Trail of the Winged God Hermes and Hermeticism Throughout the Ages

Poetry: Hafiz on Love…

Art: Frederick Arthur Bridgman


The More Things Change, The More They Remain The Same….


The Links:

‘God spot’ researchers see the light in MRI study

Ancient minty painkiller worked, study suggests

Christian zealots destroy ancient Arctic petroglyphs

Somali woman lashed for selling dagga



From Gnosis Magazine…

On the Trail of the Winged God

Hermes and Hermeticism Throughout the Ages

by Stephan A. Hoeller

There are few names to which more diverse persons and disciplines lay claim than the term “Hermetic.” Alchemists ancient and contemporary apply the adjective “Hermetic” to their art, while magicians attach the name to their ceremonies of evocation and invocation. Followers of Meister Eckhart, Raymond Lull, Paracelsus, Jacob Boehme, and most recently Valentin Tomberg are joined by academic scholars of esoterica, all of whom attach the word “Hermetic” to their activities.

Who, then, was Hermes, and what may be said of the philosophy or religion that is connected with him? The early twentieth-century scholar Walter Scott, in his classic edition of the Hermetic texts, writes of a legend preserved by the Renaissance writer Vergicius:

They say that this Hermes left his own country and traveled all over the world…; and that he tried to teach men to revere and worship one God alone, …the demiurgus and genetor [begetter] of all things; …and that he lived a very wise and pious life, occupied in intellectual contemplation…, and giving no heed to the gross things of the material world…; and that having returned to his own country, he wrote at the time many books of mystical theology and philosophy.1

Until relatively recently, no one had a clear picture of either the authorship or the context of the mysterious writings ascribed to Hermes. Descriptions such as the one above are really no more than a summary of the ideal laid down in the “Hermetic” writings. The early Christian Fathers, in time, mostly held that Hermes was a great sage who lived before Moses and that he was a pious and wise man who received revelations from God that were later fully explained by Christianity. None mentioned that he was a Greek god.

The Greek Hermes

The British scholar R.F. Willetts wrote that “in many ways, Hermes is the most sympathetic, the most baffling, the most confusing, the most complex, and therefore the most Greek of all the Olympian gods.”2 If Hermes is the god of the mind, then these qualities appear in an even more meaningful light. For is the mind not the most baffling, confusing, and at the same time the most beguiling, of all the attributes of life?

The name Hermes appears to have originated in the word for “stone heap.” Probably since prehistoric times there existed in Crete and in other Greek regions a custom or erecting a herma or hermaion consisting of an upright stone surrounded at its base by a heap of smaller stones. Such monuments were used to serve as boundaries or as landmarks for wayfarers.

A mythological connection existed between these simple monuments and the deity named Hermes. When Hermes killed the many-eyed monster Argus, he was brought to trial by the gods. They voted for Hermes’ innocence, each casting a vote by throwing a small stone at his feet so that a heap of stones grew up around him.

Hermes became best known as the swift messenger of the gods. Euripides, in his prologue to the play Ion, has Hermes introduce himself as follows:

Atlas, who wears on back of bronze the ancient

Abode of the gods in heaven, had a daughter

Whose name was Maia, born of a goddess:

She lay with Zeus, and bore me, Hermes,

Servant of the immortals.

Hermes is thus of a double origin. His grandfather is Atlas, the demigod who holds up heaven, but Maia, his mother, already has a goddess as her mother, while Hermes’ father, Zeus, is of course the highest of the gods. It is tempting to interpret this as saying that from worldly toil (Atlas), with a heavy infusion of divine inspiration, comes forth consciousness, as symbolized by Hermes.

Versatility and mutability are Hermes’ most prominent characteristics. His specialties are eloquence and invention (he invented the lyre). He is the god of travel and the protector of sacrifices; he is also god of commerce and good luck. The common quality in all of these is again consciousness, the agile movement of mind that goes to and fro, joining humans and gods, assisting the exchange of ideas and commercial goods. Consciousness has a shadow side, however: Hermes is also noted for cunning and for fraud, perjury, and theft.

The association of Hermes with theft become evident in the pseudo-Homeric Hymn to Hermes, which tells in great detail how the young god, barely risen from his cradle, carries off some of Apollo’s prize oxen. The enraged Apollo denounces Hermes to Zeus but is mollified by the gift of the lyre, which the young Hermes has just invented by placing strings across the shell of a tortoise. That the larcenous trickster god is the one who bestows the instrument of poetry upon Apollo may be a point of some significance. Art is bestowed not by prosaic rectitude, but by the freedom of intuition, a function not bound by earthly rules.

While Hermes is regarded as one of the earliest and most primitive gods of the Greeks, he enjoys so much subsequent prominence that he must be recognized as an archetype devoted to mediating between, and unifying, the opposites. This foreshadows his later role as master magician and alchemist, as he was regarded both in Egypt and in Renaissance Europe.

Mediterranean Hermes

One admirable quality of the ancient Greeks was the universality of their theological vision. Unlike their Semitic counterparts, the Greeks claimed no uniqueness for their deities but freely acknowledged that the Olympians often had exact analogues in the gods of other nations.

This was particularly true of Egypt, whose gods the Greeks revered as the prototypes of their own. It was a truth frequently recognized by the cultured elite of Greek society that some of the Egyptian gods, such as Isis, were of such great stature that they united within themselves a host of Greek deities.

The Romans, who were fully aware of the fact that their gods were but rebaptized Greek deities, followed the example of their mentors. As the Roman Empire extended itself to occupy the various Mediterranean lands, including Egypt, the ascendancy of the archetypes of some of the more prominent Egyptian gods became evident. Here we are faced with the controversial phenomenon of syncretism, which plays a vital role in the new manifestation of Hermes in the last centuries before Christ and in the early centuries of the Christian era.

During this period, the Mediterranean world was undergoing a remarkable religious development. The old state religions had lost their hold on many people. In their stead a large number of often-interrelated religions, philosophies, and rites had arisen, facilitated by the political unity imposed by the Roman Empire.

This new ecumenism of the spirit was one that we might justly admire. Though often derided as mere syncretism by later writers, it possessed many features to which various ecumenicists aspire even today. It is by no means impossible that the Mediterranean region of the late Hellenistic period was in fact on its way toward a certain kind of religious unity. The world religion that might conceivably have emerged would have been much more sophisticated than the accusation of syncretism would have us believe. Far from being a patchwork of incompatible elements, this emerging Mediterranean spirituality bore the hallmarks of a profound mysticism, possessing a psychological wisdom still admired in our own day by such figures as C.G. Jung and Mircea Eliade.

An important feature of this era was the rise of a new worship of Hermes. Proceeding from the three principal Egyptian archetypes of divinity, we find three great forms of initiatory religion spreading along the shores of the Mediterranean: the cults of the Mother Goddess Isis, the Victim God Osiris, and the Wisdom God Hermes, all of which appeared under various guises.

Of these three we shall concern ourselves here with Hermes. It was during this period that the swift god of consciousness took his legendary winged sandals and crossed the sea to Egypt in order to become the Greco-Egyptian Thrice-Greatest Hermes.

Hermes of Egypt

The Egyptian god Thoth, or Tehuti, in the form of an ibis. With him is his associate, the ape, proferring the Eye of Horus. From E.A. Wallis Budge’s Gods of the Egyptians.

The Greek Hermes found his analogue in Egypt as the ancient Wisdom God Thoth (sometimes spelled Thouth or Tahuti). This god was worshiped in his principal cult location, Chmun, known also as the “City of the Eight,” called Greek Hermopolis. There is evidence that this location was a center for the worship of this deity at least as early as 3000 B.C.

Thoth played a part in many of the myths of Pharaonic Egypt: he played a role in the creation myth, he was recorder of the gods, and he was the principal pleader for the soul at the judgment of the dead. It was he who invented writing. He wrote all the ancient texts, including the most esoteric ones, including The Book of Breathings, which taught humans how to become gods. He was connected with the moon and thus was considered ruler of the night. Thoth was also the teacher and helper of the ancient Egyptian trinity of Isis, Osiris, and Horus; it was under his instructions that Isis worked her sacred love magic whereby she brought the slain Osiris back to life.

Most importantly, perhaps, for our purposes, Thoth acted as an emissary between the contending armies of Horus and Seth and eventually came to negotiate the peace treaty between these two gods. His role as a mediator between the opposites is thus made evident, perhaps prefiguring the role of the alchemical Mercury as the “medium of the conjunction.”

Thoth’s animal form is that of the ibis, with its long, slightly curved beak: statues of Thoth often portray a majestic human wearing the mask of head of this bird; others simply display the ibis itself.

It was to this powerful god that the Egyptian Hermeticists of the second and third centuries A.D. joined the image and especially the name of the Greek Hermes. From this time onward the name “Hermes” came to denote neither Thoth nor Hermes proper, but a new archetypal figure, Hermes Trismegistus, who combined the features of both.

By the time his Egyptian followers came to establish their highly secretive communities, this Hermes underwent yet another modification, this time from the Jewish tradition. The presence of large numbers of Jews in Egypt in this period, many of whom were oriented toward Hellenistic thought, accounts for this additional element. In many of the Hermetic writings, Hermes appears less as an Egyptian or Greek god and more as a mysterious prophet of the kind one finds in Jewish prophetic literature, notably the Apocalypse of Baruch, 4 Esdras, and 2 Enoch. Still, when all is said and done, the Jewish element in the Hermetic writings is not very pronounced. The Hermes that concerns us is primarily Egyptian, to a lesser degree Greek, and to a very slight extent Jewish in character.

Hermetic Communities

A Renaissance portraite of Hermes Trismegistus, from the floor of the cathedral at Siena, 1488; attributed to Giovanni di Maestro Stefano. The legend beneath the central figure reads “Hermes Mercurius Trismegistus, the contemporary of Moses.”

Who, then, actually wrote the “books of Hermes,” which, since their rediscovery in the fifteenth century, have played such a significant role in our culture? The writings are all anonymous: their mythic author is considered to be Hermes himself. The reasoning behind this pseudonymous approach is simple. Hermes is Wisdom, and thus anything written through the inspiration of true wisdom is in actuality written by Hermes. The human scribe does not matter; certainly his name is of no significance.

Customs of this sort have not been uncommon in mystical literature. The Kabbalistic text known as the Zohar, currently believed to have been written in the medieval period, claims to be the work of Shimon bar Yohai, a rabbi of the second century A.D. Two of the best-known Christian mystical classics, The Cloud of Unknowing and Theologia Germanica, were written anonymously.

The members of the Hermetic communities were people who, brought up in the immemorial Egyptian religious tradition, offered their own version of the religion of gnosis, which others propounded in a manner more appropriate to the psyches of other national backgrounds, notably Hebrew, Syrian, or Mesopotamian. Sir W.M.F. Petrie3 presents us with a study of such Pagan monks and hermits who gathered together in the deserts of Egypt and other lands. He tells us of the monks’ attention to cleanliness, their silence during meals, their seclusion and meditative piety. It would seem that the Hermeticists were recluses of this kind. Unlike the Gnostics, who were mostly living secular lives in cities, the Hermeticists followed a lifestyle similar to the kind Josephus attributes to the Essenes.

When it came to beliefs, it is likely that the Hermeticists and Gnostics were close spiritual relatives. The two schools had a great deal in common, their principal difference being that the Hermeticists looked to the archetypal figure of Hermes as the embodiment of salvific teaching and initiation, while the Gnostics revered the more recent savior figure known as Jesus in a similar manner. Both groups were singularly devoted to gnosis, which they understood to be the experience of liberating interior knowledge; both looked upon embodiment as a limitation that led to unconsciousness, from which only gnosis can liberate the human spirit. Most of the Hermetic teachings closely correspond to fundamental ideas of the Gnostics. There were also some, mostly minor, divergences between the two, to which we shall refer later.

Judging by their writings and by the repute they enjoyed among their contemporaries, the members of the Hermetic communities were inspired persons who firmly believed that they were in touch with the Source of all truth, the very embodiment of divine Wisdom himself.

Indeed there are many passages in the Hermetic writings in which we can still perceive the vibrant inspiration, the exaltation of spirit, in the words whereby they attempt to describe the wonders disclosed to their mystic vision. Like the Gnostics, of whom Jung said that they worked with original, compelling images of the deep unconscious, the Hermeticists experienced powerful and extraordinary insights to which they tried to give expression in their writings. Intense feeling generated by personal spiritual experience pervades most of the Hermetic documents.

The Hermetic Curriculum

Until comparatively recently there was very little information available concerning the method of spiritual progress that the Hermeticists may have followed. The Nag Hammadi Library, discovered in 1945, contains at least one scripture whose content is unmistakably Hermetic. This is Tractate 6 of Codex VI, whose title is usually translated as The Discourse on the Eight and the Ninth. On the basis of this discourse, one of its early translators suggested a scheme of progress that was followed by some of the schools of Hermeticists.4

A Hermetic catechumen would begin with a process of conversion, induced by such activities as reading some of the less technical Hermetic literature or listening to a public discourse. A period of probation, including instruction received in a public setting, was required before progressing to the next stage.

This phase would be characterized by a period of philosophical and catechetical studies based on certain Hermetic works. (The Asclepius and the Kore Kosmou may be examples of such study material.) This instruction was imparted to small groups.

The next step entailed a progress through the Seven Spheres or Hebdomad, conducted in a tutorial format, one student at a time. This seems to have been a process of an experiential nature, aided by inspiring topical discourses. In this progression, the candidate is envisioned as beginning his journey from earth and ascending through the planets to a region of freedom from immediate cosmic influences. (The planets were regarded mostly as influences of restriction, which the ascending spirit must overcome.) One may note a close resemblance of this gradual ascent to similar ascensions outlined in various Gnostic sources, as well as to the later Kabbalistic patchwork on the Tree of Life.

The final step was what may be called the Mystery Liturgy of Hermes Trismegistus, of which The Discourse of the Eighth and the Ninth is often regarded as a good example. Here the Hermeticist is spiritually reborn in a transcendental region beyond the seven planets. His status is now that of a pneumatic, or man of the spirit. (Note once again the similarity with Gnosticism.) This level entails an experience of a very profound, initiatory change of consciousness wherein the initiate becomes one with the deeper self resident in his soul, which is a portion of the essence of God. This experience takes place in a totally private setting. The only persons present are the initiate and the initiator (called “son” and “father” in this text). The liturgy takes the form of a dialogue between these two.

The Hermeticists had their own sacraments as well. These appear to have consisted primarily of a form of baptism with water and an anointing resembling “a baptism and a chrism” as mentioned in the Gnostic Gospel of Philip. The Corpus Hermeticum mentions an anointing with “ambrosial water” and a self-administered baptism in a sacred vessel, the krater, sent down by Hermes from the heavenly realms.

The Hermetic Writings

The original number of Hermetic writings must have been considerable. A good many of these were lost during the systematic destruction of non-Christian literature that took place between the fourth and sixth centuries A.D. Ancient writers often indicate the existence of such works: in the first century A.D., Plutarch refers to Hermes the Thrice-Greatest; the third-century Church Father Clement of Alexandria says that the books of Hermes treat of Egyptian religion;5 and Tertullian, Iamblichus, and Porphyry all seem to be acquainted with Hermetic literature. Scott shows how the ancient Middle Eastern city of Harran harbored both Hermeticists and Hermetic books into the Muslim period.6

A thousand years later, in 1460, the ruler of Florence, Cosimo de’ Medici, acquired several previously lost Hermetic texts that had been found in the Byzantine Empire. These works were thought to be the work of a historical figure named Hermes Trismegistus who was considered to be a contemporary of Moses. Translated by the learned and enthusiastic Marsilio Ficino and others, the Hermetic books soon gained the attention of an intelligentsia that was starved for a more creative approach to spirituality than had been hitherto available.

The most extensive collection of Hermetic writings is the Corpus Hermeticum, a set of about seventeen short Greek texts. Another collection as made by a scholar named John Stobaeus in the firth century A.D. Two other, longer texts stand alone. The first is the Asclepius, preserved in a Latin translation dating probably from the third century A.D. The second takes the form of a dialogue between Isis and Horus and has the unusual title of Kore Kosmou, which means “daughter of the world.”

The reaction of the Christian establishment to these writings was ambivalent. It is true that they were never condemned and were even revered by many prominent ecclesiastics. An authoritative volume of the Hermetic books was printed in Ferrara in 1593, for example. It was edited by one Cardinal Patrizzi, who recommended that these works should replace Aristotle as the basis for Christian philosophy and should be diligently studied in schools and monasteries. The mind boggles at the turn Western culture might have taken had Hermetic teachings replaced Aristotelian theology of Thomas Aquinas as the normative doctrine of the Catholic Church!

Such, however, was not to be. One of the chief propagandists of Hermeticism, the brilliant friar Giordano Bruno, was burnt at the stake as a heretic in 1600, and although others continued with their enthusiasm for the fascinating teachings of the books of Hermes, the suspicions and doubts of the narrow-minded continued to dampen any general ardor.

By the seventeenth century, the Hermetic books had enjoyed intermittent popularity in Europe for some 150 years. The coming of the Protestant Reformation and the ensuing religious strife, however, stimulated a tendency toward rationalistic orthodoxy in all quarter. Another factor was the work of the scholar Isaac Casaubon, who used internal evidence in the texts to prove that they had been written, not by a contemporary of Moses, but early in the Christian era.7

By the eighteenth century, the Hermetic teachings were totally eclipsed, and the new scholarship, which prided itself on its opposition to everything it called “superstition,” took a dim view of this ancient fountainhead of mystical and occult lore. There wasn’t even a critical, academically respectable edition of the Corpus Hermeticum until Walter Scott’s Hermetica appeared in 1924.

If one needs an example of how egregiously academic scholarship can err and then persist in its errors, one need only contemplate the “official” scholarly views of the Hermetic books over the 150-year period up to the middle of the twentieth century. The general view was that these writings were Neoplatonic or anti-Christian forgeries, of no value to the study of religion. By the middle of the nineteenth century, such scholars as Gustave Parthey8 and Louis Menard9 began to raise objections to the forgery theory, but it took another 50 years for their views to gain a hearing.

The Occult Connection and the Hermetic Renaissance

Hermes Trismegistus and the creative fire that unite the polarities. D. Stolcius vn Stolcenbeerg, Viridarium chymicum, Frankfurt, 1624

Although the Hermetic system has undeniably influenced much of the best of Christian thought, the most abiding impact of Hermeticism on Western culture came about by way of the heterodox mystical, or occult, tradition. Renaissance occultism, with its alchemy, astrology, ceremonial magic, and occult medicine, became saturated with the teachings of the Hermetic books. This content has remained a permanent part of the occult transmissions of the West, and, along with Gnosticism and Neoplatonism, represents the foundation of all the major Western occult currents. Hermetic elements are demonstrably present in the school of Jacob Boehme and in the Rosicrucian and Masonic movements, for example.

It was not long before this tradition, wedded to secret orders of initiates and their arcane truths, gave way to a more public transmission of their teachings. This occurred initially by way of the work of H.P. Blavatsky and her Theosophical Society in the late nineteenth century.

G.R.S. Mead, a young, educated English Theosophist who became a close associate of Mme. Blavatsky in the last years of her life, was the main agent of the revival of Gnostic and Hermetic wisdom among the late nineteenth and early twentieth-century occultists. Mead first became known for his translation of the great Gnostic work Pistis Sophia, which appeared in 1890-91. In 1906 he published the three volumes of Thrice Greatest Hermes, in which he collected all the then-available Hermetic documents while adding insightful commentaries of his own.10 This volume was followed by other, smaller works of a similar order. Mead’s impact on the renewal of interest in Hermeticism and Gnosticism in our century should not be underestimated.

A half-century later, we find another seminal figure who effectively bridged the gap between the occult and the academic. The British scholar Dame Frances A. Yates may be considered the true inaugurator of the modern Hermetic renaissance. Beginning with a work on Giordano Bruno and continuing with a number of others, Yates not only proved the immense influence of Hermeticism on the medieval Renaissance but showed the connections between Hermetic currents and later developments, including the Rosicrucian Enlightenment – itself the title of one of her books.

While some decades ago it might have appeared that the line of transmission extending from Greco-Egyptian wisdom might come to an end, today the picture appears more hopeful. The discovery and translation of the Nag Hammadi Library generated a great interest in matters Gnostic that does not seem to have abated with the passage of time. Because of the close affinity of the Hermetic writings to the Gnostic ones, the present interest in Gnosticism extends to Hermeticism as well. Most collections of Gnostic scriptures published today include some Hermetic material.

Gnosticism and Hermeticism flourished in the same period; they are equally concerned with personal knowledge of God and the soul, and equally emphatic that the soul can only escape from its bondage to material existence if it attains to true ecstatic understanding (gnosis). It was once fashionable to characterize Hermeticism as “optimistic” in contract to Gnostic “pessimism,” but such differences are currently being stressed less than they had been. The Nag Hammadi scriptures have brought to light a side of Gnosticism that joins it more closely to Hermeticism than many would have thought possible.

There are apparent contradictions, not only between Hermetic and Gnostic writings, but within the Hermetic materials themselves. Such contradictions loom large when one contemplates these systems from the outside, but they can be much more easily reconciled by one who steps inside the systems and views them from within. One possible key to such paradoxes is the likelihood that the words in these scriptures were the results of transcendental states of consciousness experienced by their writers. Such words were never meant to define supernatural matters, but only to intimate their impact upon experience.

From a contemporary view, the figure of Hermes, both in its Greek and its Egyptian manifestations, stands as an archetype of transformation through reconciliation of the opposites. (Certainly Jung and other archetypally oriented psychologists viewed Hermes in this light.) If we are inclined to this view, we should rejoice over the renewed interest in Hermes and his timeless gnosis. If we conjure up the famed image of the swift god, replete with winged helmet, sandals, and caduceus, we might still be able to ask him to reconcile the divisions and contradictions of this lower realm in the embrace of enlightened consciousness. And since, like all gods, he is immortal, he might be able to fulfill our request as he did for his devotees of old!

The article first appeared in Gnosis: A Journal of Western Inner Traditions (Vol. 40, Summer 1996).


1. Walter Scott, ed., Hermetica: The Ancient Greek and Latin Writings Which Contain Religious and Philosophical Teachings Ascribed to Hermes Trismegistus (Boston: Shambhala, 1985 [1924]), vol. 1, p. 33. The demiurgus mentioned here is clearly of the Platonic rather than the Gnostic kind.

2. R.F. Willetts, “Hermes,” entry in Richard Cavendish, ed., Man, Myth and Magic: An Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Supernatural (New York: Marshall Cavendish Corp., 1970), p. 1289.

3. Sir W.M. Flinders Petrie, Personal Religion in Egypt before Christianity (London: Rider & Co., 1900) pp. 50-65.

4. L.S. Keizer, ed. And trans., The Eighth Reveals the Ninth: A New Hermetic Initiation Discourse (Seaside, Calif.: Academy of Arts & Humanities, 1974), pp. 54-63.

5. Clement of Alexandria, Stromata 6:14.

6. Scott, vol. 1, p. 97.

7. Ibid., vol. 1, p. 42.

8. Gustav Parthey, Hermetis Trismegisti Poemander (Berlin, 1854).

9. Louis Menard, Étude sur l’origine des livres hermetiques et translations d’Hermès Trismegistus (Paris, 1866).

10. G.R.S. Mead, Thrice Greatest Hermes: Studies in Hellenistic Theosophy and Gnosis (York Beach, Maine: Samuel Weiser, 1992 [1906]).


Poetry: Hafiz on Love…

From the Large Jug, Drink

From the large jug, drink the wine of Unity,

So that from your heart you can wash away the futility of life’s grief.

But like this large jug, still keep the heart expansive.

Why would you want to keep the heart captive, like an unopened bottle

of wine?

With your mouth full of wine, you are selfless

And will never boast of your own abilities again.

Be like the humble stone at your feet rather than striving to be like a

Sublime cloud: the more you mix colors of deceit, the more colorless

your ragged wet coat will get.

Connect the heart to the wine, so that it has body,

Then cut off the neck of hypocrisy and piety of this new man.

Be like Hafiz: Get up and make an effort. Don’t lie around like a bum.

He who throws himself at the Beloved’s feet is like a workhorse and will

be rewarded with boundless pastures and eternal rest.

No More Leaving


Some point

Your relationship

With God


Become like this:

Next time you meet Him in the forest

Or on a crowded city street

There won’t be anymore


That is,

God will climb into

Your pocket.

You will simply just take



I Know The Way You Can Get

I know the way you can get

When you have not had a drink of Love:

Your face hardens,

Your sweet muscles cramp.

Children become concerned

About a strange look that appears in your eyes

Which even begins to worry your own mirror

And nose.

Squirrels and birds sense your sadness

And call an important conference in a tall tree.

They decide which secret code to chant

To help your mind and soul.

Even angels fear that brand of madness

That arrays itself against the world

And throws sharp stones and spears into

The innocent

And into one’s self.

O I know the way you can get

If you have not been drinking Love:

You might rip apart

Every sentence your friends and teachers say,

Looking for hidden clauses.

You might weigh every word on a scale

Like a dead fish.

You might pull out a ruler to measure

From every angle in your darkness

The beautiful dimensions of a heart you once


I know the way you can get

If you have not had a drink from Love’s


That is why all the Great Ones speak of

The vital need

To keep remembering God,

So you will come to know and see Him

As being so Playful

And Wanting,

Just Wanting to help.

That is why Hafiz says:

Bring your cup near me.

For all I care about

Is quenching your thirst for freedom!

All a Sane man can ever care about

Is giving Love!

The Humming of the Earth…

On The Menu:

Wickerman Festival In Scotland…

The Eleusinian Mysteries: Healing and Transformation

Poetry: Hafiz on Love….

Art: The Oriental School…

Talk Later… Must Run. More on the way!



Record numbers attend Wickerman

The Wickerman festival in Dumfries and Galloway has attracted record numbers, organisers have announced.

Almost 16,000 music fans flocked to Kirkcudbright for the fourth annual event on 21-22 July, billed as Scotland’s alternative music festival.

Bands headlining included Marky Ramone, System 7, Sandi Thom and local favourites, Dangleberries.

The event featured a nine metre high wickerman made out of willow, which was set on fire at midnight.

The festival, which is inspired by the 1972 horror film of the same name, has grown in popularity since it was first staged in 2002.

It aims to provide an alternative to large-scale music events such as T in the Park.

Attendance figures were up 5,000 on last year, and up more than 9,000 on 2004.


The Eleusinian Mysteries: Healing and Transformation

Stations of the Eleusinian Mysteries

These activities represent the “stations” through which the Mystai were required to pass on their initiatory travels to Eleusis. Although there is some dispute from text to text as to the order of their occurrence in the nine day journey to Eleusis, authors seem to agree upon the nature and symbolism of the stations (or events) themselves.

1. Agrymos Assembly: Fifteenth (some say the nineteenth) day of Boedromion

2. Purification-attended to by the “Hydranos” Priest of Purification: Journey to the Sea (Rhetoi-place favored by the Eleusinians here it was said that salt water flowed to the sea) the 16th. day of Boedromion

3. Sacrifices: Offerings for Demeter as the Sorrowing One, (a sow, barley, fish (mullet) . Prayers for women and children.

4. Solemn procession in honor of Asklepios, god of healing on the eighteenth day of Boedromion. Libation (trygetos)offered to Dionysius and to other gods. Preparation of the Kykeon. Carrying of sacred baskets, chest of sesame, carded wool, salt, pomegranates , poppies, a serpent, boughs of ivy and cakes.

5. Day of Iacchus (Dionysos’ alter-ego), Divine child of Zeus (Hades) and Demeter (Persephone). Revelry – procession by sacred fig tree. Day of Torches. Bridge of Jests. Through ‘mystical entrance’ to Eleusis. Dance with the fifty daughters of Ocean, stars and moon. Games are celebrated. Tying of Kroke on the right hand and left foot. Myrtle branches. Women carry the Kykeon.

6. Day of Rest: Sacrifice and Purification preparation.

7 & 8. Initiation Ritual: Dromena [things Done]; Legomena [Things Said]; Deicymena [Things Shown]. Vision of ineffable things [a golden serpent, an egg, and the phallus and Persephone [Queen of the Dead]. Those who entered the Telestarion for the Vision [Epoptai] fasted for nine days, drank the Kykeon – fermented barley and mint drink probably containing ‘Ergot’ (the mold which grows on wheat that is the base for LSD).

Divine Marriage enacted by Heirophant and Priestess.

The vision of the ‘great fire’. Birth in fire by Brimo of Brimos.

Elevation of a single grain of wheat.

Libations to the dead.

9. Plemochoai: the ‘pourings of plenty’. Hye – Kye. “Flow – Conceive”.

We have endeavored to maintain the nature and symbolism in each of the events in order to convey the appropriate mythological, psychological and philosophical essence. We will celebrate them as follows:

0. Prior to Retreat – Agrymos

1. Tying of Cord of Aspirations/taking of a new (mythic) name

Bridge of Jests / Drinking of The Kykeon

Silence & Fasting

2. Pilgrimage to the Sacred Way (awake with prayers for women an children)

Honoring Asclepius as the God of Healing

Grieving with Demeter:

Sacrifice (‘blood’ of anger) to Raging Demeter Erinys

The Kallichoron -(‘salt’ of sorrow) to Sorrowing Demeter

Purification – Alade! to the sea

Sacrifice (pig)

The Night of Speaking with the dead

3. Synthema and Rite of Kroke

Trusting Ariadne – The Labyrinth

Oracle of the Earth

Trance Dance

The Telestarion/The Vision of Ineffable Things


Poetry: Hafiz on Love…

Like The Morning Breeze

Like the morning breeze, if you bring to the morning good deeds,

The rose of our desire will open and bloom.

Go forward, and make advances down this road of love;

In forward motion, the pain is great.

To beg at the door of the Winehouse is a wonderful alchemy.

If you practice this, soon you will be converting dust into gold.

O heart, if only once you experience the light of purity,

Like a laughing candle, you can abandon the life you live in your head.

But if you are still yearning for cheap wine and a beautiful face,

Don’t go out looking for an enlightened job.

Hafiz, if you are listening to this good advice,

The road of Love and its enrichment are right around the curve.


Laughing At the Word Two


That Illumined


Who keeps

Seducing the formless into form

Had the charm to win my


Only a Perfect One

Who is always

Laughing at the word


Can make you know




All the Hemispheres

Leave the familiar for a while.

Let your senses and bodies stretch out

Like a welcomed season

Onto the meadows and shores and hills.

Open up to the Roof.

Make a new water-mark on your excitement

And love.

Like a blooming night flower,

Bestow your vital fragrance of happiness

And giving

Upon our intimate assembly.

Change rooms in your mind for a day.

All the hemispheres in existence

Lie beside an equator

In your heart.

Greet Yourself

In your thousand other forms

As you mount the hidden tide and travel

Back home.

All the hemispheres in heaven

Are sitting around a fire


While stitching themselves together

Into the Great Circle inside of



Like The Morning Breeze

Like the morning breeze, if you bring to the morning good deeds,

The rose of our desire will open and bloom.

Go forward, and make advances down this road of love;

In forward motion, the pain is great.

To beg at the door of the Winehouse is a wonderful alchemy.

If you practice this, soon you will be converting dust into gold.

O heart, if only once you experience the light of purity,

Like a laughing candle, you can abandon the life you live in your head.

But if you are still yearning for cheap wine and a beautiful face,

Don’t go out looking for an enlightened job.

Hafiz, if you are listening to this good advice,

The road of Love and its enrichment are right around the curve.

Wallace Stevens and his Poetry…


Monday… and heating up again. Some relief tomorrow. Out of here in a minute or two, supplies for customers and all that. The Radio is hopping along, and we are uploading new music as I type. We have a spoken word channel coming on in the next day or so, so stay tuned.

Here are the addresses to connect with the station. You have to paste them into winamp, itunes or what ever player you use.

High End 128k: (DSL- Cable)

Low End 56k: (Dial Up)


I find myself very happy with all of this, and it would not be possible without Doug’s help in London. A big tip of the hat to him. It would not be possible at all if our listeners hadn’t come through with Donations to expedite this change. Again, a big Thank You to all who helped out!

Heading north on the 2nd of September to see family. The blog will continue, but without the daily update.

Have a good day,


The Links

Britannia rules the raves again

Poetry Of Wallace Stevens….

(A big thanks to Erik Davis)

Art: Francois Schlesser


Revealed: world’s oldest computer

Some Ancient Caves Designed for Comfort

Dig unearths round table evidence at Windsor Castle

A meeting of civilisations: The mystery of China’s celtic mummies


Britannia rules the raves again

Partying like it’s 1989? These days, as rave veteran Sarah Champion discovers, the kids are as young as 12, the drug is laughing gas, the venues are forest glades and the music is harder and faster. One thing hasn’t changed, though – trying to keep one step ahead of the police…

Is this it? We pass a Little Chef and turn off the A road into a shadowy lay-by. It’s the second to last Saturday in August, yet as dark as November with a steady drizzle. Our beams illuminate a chain of parked cars. One flashes in welcome, as if to say, ‘Yes, you’re here.’ We take a slot near the rear of the convoy. A figure in a rain jacket moves along the line, urgently barking: ‘The police have blocked the road, we’ve got to go now.’ A 100 or so shapes emerge from steamed-up vehicles, bass blasting from each. The buzz is infectious, everyone primed for action.

This is the culmination of a day’s frantic texting and posting on internet forums. I had to find out for myself whether there was any truth behind the headlines declaring a rave revival this summer. Their eyes on the drinking mayhem in our cities, the police appear to have been caught off guard in the past three months by a series of well-organised raves that arrived out of nowhere. In May Cornwall police broke up a party of 2,000 in Davidstow, seizing £3,000 in cash, drugs worth £40,000 and 12 lorries loaded with sound equipment. More raves followed. Was this another summer of love? Or a bunch of old clubbers who never went away, joined by bumper crowds due to July’s heat wave? As a veteran of the 80s scene – both as a clubber and dance music journalist – I was curious.

With tomorrow’s bank holiday signalling the last blast of the hedonist season, police have been warning of giant illegal parties kicking off. One local paper printed an appeal for anyone who has ‘seen large numbers of vehicles gathering near woods or rural car parks, fliers advertising raves, or broken padlocks on access gates’ to report it immediately. Hoping to stay one step ahead, the organisers of a gathering in Kent moved it forward to last weekend.

All we know, as we cruise through the Blackwall Tunnel at 10.30pm, is that Kent’s ‘big one’ is to happen in a forest between Canterbury and Dover. Our driver is a Lydd Airport party veteran, our photographer was at World Dance, and I grew up on raves. So we’re sceptical about what we’ll find. At 11pm a text directs us to the lay-by near Maidstone.

There a voice yells, ‘Go, go, go!’ as if we’re leaping from the trenches into battle. In clusters of five we sprint across the wet Tarmac and jump the central barrier, unnerved by blinding beams of oncoming traffic. Someone’s pointing to a gap in the undergrowth, ‘Down there, over the barbed wire.’ We scramble down a muddy bank and suddenly we’re in a cornfield, and I’m excited and laughing. Yeah, this really is something like the old days.

The night has flashbacks to the cat-and-mouse games in pursuit of ‘orbital’ acid house parties in 1988. Personally, I experienced the dawn of the movement indoors. At the Hacienda in 1989 I danced in a haze of dry ice and lasers to Chicago house tunes and the British music inspired by it (then called ‘acid house’, the term ‘rave’ not coined until the Nineties). After closing time at 2am word would spread of warehouse parties in Lancashire industrial estates or in derelict mills on the outskirts of the city (later they’d all become designer apartments).

At 14 I’d fallen for the punk and indie bands my hometown of Manchester was famed for, but my life was transformed by these events. I didn’t listen to another rock record for 10 years. I followed the party to London and out to the fields where I would find myself dancing to early trance and techno on wasteland near Dagenham or hillsides in Sussex.

A decade on and it’s suddenly like being back there. There’s a stile, a hill, more barbed wire and then we’re in verdant woodland, emerging into the most perfect party spot I’ve ever seen: a lush green hollow surrounded by trees.

It’s a gem of a location for Kent’s biggest illegal outdoor shindig of the summer. Typically parties attract 100 to 300 but this aims for 1,000 ravers. It’s to feature five or six sound systems led by local psytrance legends Section 63, Beatz & Freakz and Maidstone’s electro-house crew Rebel Beat Faction. A party called Little Green Man at this site two years ago drew 2,000.

But tonight something’s wrong. Sound rigs are erected around the clearing but they’re all ominously silent. Then we see the police. We’ve been beaten to it. We’re gutted.

‘We had an incredible line-up with eight or more name DJs and live visual mixing but it was scuppered by the Old Bill,’ says Matt, aka Morebuck$, Rebel Beat Faction’s VJ. ‘The reason we were doing this party was to take it back to the underground and away from commercial clubs where what you’re wearing is more important than the music.’

In the centre of the field a policewoman is besieged by teenagers. ‘Don’t stop the music,’ they beg. ‘We’re stuck out here till morning.’ The crowd is pushing and shoving. I’m bumped from behind and fly into her. She spins round with her pepper spray. The police are tired and irritated. One is overheard saying: ‘Right, I’m sick of this – let’s nick the dreadlock.’ In the end there are no arrests and the crowd disperses peacefully. Later I learn they terminated the rave at the landowner’s request. A police spokesman tells me raves are ‘not a problem’ in mid-Kent.

That contradicts the picture emerging of a low-key but determined revival of rave culture right across the South, pioneered by a new generation. What’s different this time is that the kids possess their own ‘rigs’ – portable sound systems with amplifiers, speakers and turntables. They take them out to woods, quarries, fields and beaches with a small group of friends and dance all night at often nameless events. It’s free, anti-corporate and anti-fashion.

The culture’s guerrilla nature – remote locations, publicity by word-of-mouth only – has kept its propagation, from Cornwall to Norfolk, fairly invisible. The raves hitting the headlines this summer have been those where these small crews have come together to create giant ‘multi-rig’ events.

Many of these party organisers were still at primary school when acid house first made ‘shock horror’ headlines. Some were not even born. ‘This is my first rave, and it’s not going to happen,’ a disappointed 12-year-old tells us. His elder sister, 15, says she’s been going to raves for two years but this was going to be the biggest. Most of the crowd are in their late teens or early twenties, an eclectic mix of dreadlocked middle-class sixth-formers, party-crazy university students, twentysomethings with office jobs and teenagers in baseball caps and sneakers.

Tom, a 20-year-old who has hosted parties near Canterbury, says the new rave generation is ‘coming out of lots of little towns. In East Kent there’s 500 to 600 of us wanting to party every weekend. It’s a family, we look after each other.’

The comeback is a triumph for a subculture almost exterminated by the last Conservative government after ravers connected with the hippie/squatter circuit in the early Nineties. If the authorities disliked acid house, this scared them even more. The battle between the state and those wanting freedom to travel and/or dance outdoors finally came to a head at Castlemorton, a traveller camp on common land in May 1992 that became a week-long rave attended by upwards of 25,000. This led to the Criminal Justice Bill’s clauses banning gatherings of more than 10 people listening to ‘music characterised by a succession of repetitive beats’. Zero-tolerance policing and the new measures drove many of its proponents, such as Spiral Tribe, to the continent.

With the travellers long since driven off the road, the new wave of free raves is being led by ordinary teenagers, students and day-jobbers from small towns who simply want an alternative to commercial entertainment options. It’s not (as yet) a political statement but more simply a rejection of the current, bland, drink-dominated pub and club culture.

Kelly, 25, a customer service adviser who’s a veteran of the free party scene around Bristol and Plymouth, says: ‘Even I feel old at some of the parties. It is the next generation who are coming up and getting into it like my 16-year-old sister and her friends.’ The appeal is simple: ‘The atmosphere in clubs is bad. People are there to drink and pull but at free parties everyone is there for the music.’

Darragh Poynter, 23, who runs a property maintenance firm and hosts free parties around Exeter, says the partygoers ‘range from managers to people running their own businesses to people who are doing monotonous day jobs, who really let go on weekends.’

The secret of holding a party that isn’t busted is getting the numbers right – not so many that you attract attention but having enough people at the site before the police arrive. Tom, 19, from Faversham, says: ‘If they figure it’s organised, peaceful and far away enough from houses, they might as well let it run.’

The official police view is that they are prepared to use all laws available to stop raves going ahead. Sergeant Alan Mobbs of Devon and Cornwall Police tells me they can call on the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act, the Anti Social Behaviour Act of 2003 and recent changes in the licensing laws. However, the choice of remote locations is making it harder for the police to stop events. ‘There are some raves that we only know about two or three days later because they’re in such a remote spot that no one has complained. Action is determined on a case by case basis. If it’s small and out of the way, we’re not always quick enough to stop other people arriving. Then it’s difficult to stop it – but that doesn’t stop us arresting the organisers as they leave. That’s the time we look at seizing equipment.

‘If the landowner has consented and it’s not causing a nuisance that’s fine, but there are other considerations, like health and safety – things like no fire precautions – that are a danger with parties that suddenly appear from nowhere.’

Back in the Kent lay-by, rumour is spreading that the six sound systems will be setting up in different locations. One is close to the original site. This is not the end of the night but the beginning. We follow the motorcade down a narrow lane until we reach a pub car park with 20 or so cars, people milling around but no music. We’re wondering whether to call it a night when … boom! The beats begin in a nearby field. The DJ is spinning house and techno; they’ve got disco lights and a little marquee. This suits me fine as one of the older generation who likes tunes with uplifting piano breaks and grooves, music with its roots in black America. The kids aren’t impressed. The anthems I danced to – the ones that created those visions of an entire dancefloor thrusting hands skywards and a life-affirming feeling in your chest that stays with you for ever (I’m thinking classics like A Guy Called Gerald’s ‘Voodoo Ray’, 808 State’s ‘Pacific State’, ‘Ride on Time’ by Black Box) – feel so slow and lightweight to this crowd, they might as well be the Bee Gees. They want their music hard, loud and fast. And then harder and faster and trippier still.

For the new rave generation, hard techno, acid techno and psytrance are where it’s at. The unrelenting sound of psytrance evolved in the mid-Nineties on Goa beaches and at Brixton squat parties and has become one of the most global and enduring dance cultures with scenes from Israel to Estonia to Brazil. It’s the utilitarian soundtrack for a journey from the dark into the daylight, reaching its menacing peak in the dead of night then becoming lighter as the sun creeps above the horizon. ‘You’ll never hear this in the mainstream,’ says Darragh.

If acid house was a rebellion against Eighties blandness, what’s happening now is a reaction to the equally banal corporate chain-pub culture with its bouncers, mainstream music and drunken violence. There are few takers for the budget French beer and alcopops being sold from a car boot. Clearly much Ecstasy has been ingested, and the biggest queue is for an entrepreneurial pair with giant tanks of nitrous oxide (laughing gas) at £1 to £2 a balloon. It’s not currently an offence to ingest the dental anaesthetic once likened to the ‘air of heaven’. Many have come prepared with their own supply of gas in whipped-cream dispensers and metal propellant pods. If there’s a ‘new’ drug accompanying this chapter of the rave movement, this is it.

‘The party’s not here,’ someone says. ‘The party’s in Hoo. At a mansion.’

More texts, circling of roundabouts in Thames Estuary suburbia, and at 3.30am we find the Isle of Grain ‘mansion’. Down a remote track in a power station’s shadow is an abandoned nursing home, now a squatter encampment and regular weekend party venue. In the yard a green laser lights up the dancers while many sprawl on straw bales, skinning up. The DJ, whose soundsystem has also relocated from the first party, plays a slouching funky house that they complain is too ‘chill-out’. ‘The party’s not here either,’ people tell us, even as we arrive. We resume the chase again in a seven-car convoy. We career, lost, around Kent. The destination is finally located deep in a forest near Tunbridge Wells.

Here, and seemingly unnoticed by police, it’s finally ‘going off’. As sunbeams penetrate the foliage, 200-300 kids dance into a fresh day to the banging psytrance they’ve sought all night. The mission is over. It’s not the ‘big one’. But, they assure me, there’s always next week.

· Are you involved in the rave renaissance, or does the idea fill you with dread? Join the debate and share your eighties memories here.

· Sarah Champion has edited a number of drug-culture fiction anthologies, including Disco Biscuits (Sceptre) and Fortune Hotel (Penguin)

(The Eternal Mandala)


Poetry Of Wallace Stevens….

(A big thanks to Erik Davis)


Metaphors of a Magnifico

Twenty men crossing a bridge,

Into a village,

Are twenty men crossing twenty bridges,

Into twenty villages,

Or one man

Crossing a single bridge into a village.

This is old song

That will not declare itself . . .

Twenty men crossing a bridge,

Into a village,


Twenty men crossing a bridge

Into a village.

That will not declare itself

Yet is certain as meaning . . .

The boots of the men clump

On the boards of the bridge.

The first white wall of the village

Rises through fruit-trees.

Of what was it I was thinking?

So the meaning escapes.

The first white wall of the village…

The fruit-trees…


Continual Conversation With A Silent Man

The old brown hen and the old blue sky,

Between the two we live and die–

The broken cartwheel on the hill.

As if, in the presence of the sea,

We dried our nets and mended sail

And talked of never-ending things,

Of the never-ending storm of will,

One will and many wills, and the wind,

Of many meanings in the leaves,

Brought down to one below the eaves,

Link, of that tempest, to the farm,

The chain of the turquoise hen and sky

And the wheel that broke as the cart went by.

It is not a voice that is under the eaves.

It is not speech, the sound we hear

In this conversation, but the sound

Of things and their motion: the other man,

A turquoise monster moving round.


Looking Across the Fields and Watching the Birds Fly

Among the more irritating minor ideas

Of Mr. Homburg during his visits home

To Concord, at the edge of things, was this:

To think away the grass, the trees, the clouds,

Not to transform them into other things,

Is only what the sun does every day,

Until we say to ourselves that there may be

A pensive nature, a mechanical

And slightly detestable operandum, free

From man’s ghost, larger and yet a little like,

Without his literature and without his gods . . .

No doubt we live beyond ourselves in air,

In an element that does not do for us,

so well, that which we do for ourselves, too big,

A thing not planned for imagery or belief,

Not one of the masculine myths we used to make,

A transparency through which the swallow weaves,

Without any form or any sense of form,

What we know in what we see, what we feel in what

We hear, what we are, beyond mystic disputation,

In the tumult of integrations out of the sky,

And what we think, a breathing like the wind,

A moving part of a motion, a discovery

Part of a discovery, a change part of a change,

A sharing of color and being part of it.

The afternoon is visibly a source,

Too wide, too irised, to be more than calm,

Too much like thinking to be less than thought,

Obscurest parent, obscurest patriarch,

A daily majesty of meditation,

That comes and goes in silences of its own.

We think, then as the sun shines or does not.

We think as wind skitters on a pond in a field

Or we put mantles on our words because

The same wind, rising and rising, makes a sound

Like the last muting of winter as it ends.

A new scholar replacing an older one reflects

A moment on this fantasia. He seeks

For a human that can be accounted for.

The spirit comes from the body of the world,

Or so Mr. Homburg thought: the body of a world

Whose blunt laws make an affectation of mind,

The mannerism of nature caught in a glass

And there become a spirit’s mannerism,

A glass aswarm with things going as far as they can.


Nomad Exquisite

As the immense dew of Florida

Brings forth

The big-finned palm

And green vine angering for life,

As the immense dew of Florida

Brings forth hymn and hymn

From the beholder,

Beholding all these green sides

And gold sides of green sides,

And blessed mornings,

Meet for the eye of the young alligator,

And lightning colors

So, in me, comes flinging

Forms, flames, and the flakes of flames.


Stevens was born in Reading, Pennsylvania and attended Harvard, after which he moved to New York City and briefly worked as a journalist. He then attended New York Law School, graduating in 1903. On a trip back to Reading in 1904 Stevens met Elsie Kachel Moll; after a long courtship, he married her in 1909. In 1913, the young couple rented a New York City apartment from sculptor Adolph A. Weinman, who made a bust of Elsie. (Her striking profile was later used on Weinman’s 1916-1945 Mercury dime design and possibly for the head of the Walking Liberty Half Dollar.) The marriage reputedly turned cold and distant, but the Stevenses never divorced. A daughter, Holly, was born in 1924. She later edited her father’s letters and a collection of his poems.

After working for several New York law firms from 1904 to 1907, Stevens was hired in 1908 as a bonding lawyer for an insurance firm. By 1914 he had become the vice-president of the New York Office of the Equitable Surety Company of St. Louis, Missouri. When this job was abolished as a result of mergers in 1916, he joined the home office of Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company and left New York City to live in Hartford, where he would remain the rest of his life. By 1934, he had been named vice-president of the company.

In the 1930s and 1940s, he was welcomed as a member of the exclusive set centered on the artistic and literary devotees Barbara and Henry Church. Stevens died in 1955 at the age of seventy-six.

Stevens is a rare example of a poet whose main output came at a fairly advanced age. Many of his canonical works were written well after he turned fifty. According to the literary critic Harold Bloom, no Western writer since Sophocles has had such a late flowering of artistic genius. The Auroras of Autumn, arguably his finest book of poems, was not published until after his seventieth year. His first major publication (“Sunday Morning”) was written at the age of thirty-eight, although as an undergraduate at Harvard he had written poetry and exchanged sonnets with George Santayana, with whom he was close through much of his life. (from Wikipedia)


Radio Free EarthRites…. Beta Testing

The world is now far too dangerous for anything less than Utopia.—Buckminster Fuller

We are Beta Testing from our new European location.

Pretty excited about it here, and hope you will give it a listen!

Here are the addresses to connect with the station. You have to paste them into winamp, itunes or what ever player you use.

High End 128k: (DSL- Cable)

Low End 56k: (Dial Up)

Please give it a go, and remember it is still in test mode. More Coming.

Off to work soon, finishing up a project around the corner. Hot here in Portland, but the leaves are starting to turn.

One Love,


On the Menu

The Links

The Quotes

Peter Eglington: Visionary Artist of Byron Bay

Zen Tales…Stingy in Teaching

Poetry: Nick Drake


The Links:

Hook It Up To Wifi and you can listen to Earthrites Radio!

A Law Unto Herself

The Numbers Crop Circle

Seniors thought pot plant was ‘attractive weed’


The Quotes:

“There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.”

“An expert is a person who avoids small error as he sweeps on to the grand fallacy.”

“Oh, come on. If you can’t laugh at the walking dead, who can you laugh at?”

“Most conversations are simply monologues delivered in the presence of witnesses.”


Peter Eglington: Visionary Artist of Byron Bay


Stingy in Teaching

A young physician in Tokyo named Kusuda met a college friend who had been studying Zen. The young doctor asked him what Zen was.

“I cannot tell you what it is,” the friend replied, “but one thing is certain. If you understand Zen, you will not be afraid to die.”

“That’s fine,” said Kusuda. “I will try it. Where can I find a teacher?”

“Go to the master Nan-in,” the friend told him.

So Kusuda went to call on Nan-in. He carried a dagger nine and a half inches long to determine whether or not the teacher was afraid to die.

When Nan-in saw Kusuda he exclaimed: “Hello, friend. How are you? We haven’t seen each other for a long time!”

This perplexed Kusuda, who replied: “We have never met before.”

“That’s right,” answered Nan-in. “I mistook you for another physician who is receiving instruction here.”

With such a begining, Kusuda lost his chance to test the master, so reluctantly he asked if he might receive instruction.

Nan-in said: “Zen is not a difficult task. If you are a physician, treat your patients with kindness. That is Zen.”

Kusuda visited Nan-in three times. Each time Nan-in told him the samething. “A physician should not waste time around here. Go home and take care of your patients.”

It was not clear to Kusuda how such teaching could remove the fear of death. So on the forth visit he complained: “My friend told me that when one learns Zen one loses his fear of death. Each time I come here you tell me to take care of my patients. I know that much. If that is your so-called Zen, I am not going to visit you anymore.”

Nan-in smiled and patted the doctor. “I have been too strict with you. Let me give you a koan.” He presented Kusuda with Joshu’s Mu to workover, which is the first mind-enlightening problem in the book called ‘The Gateless Gate’.

Kusuda pondered this problem of Mu (No-Thing) for two years. At length he thought he had reached certainty of mind. But his teacher commented: “You are not in yet.”

Kusuda continued in concentration for another yet and a half. His mind became placid. Problems dissolved. No-Thing became the truth. He served his patients well and, without even knowing it, he was free from concern of life and death.

Then he visited Nan-in, his old teacher just smiled.


Nick Drake Lyrics~Poetry

I have listened to Nick Drakes works for over 30 years. I still come back to them, and find something new. Like a deep well, his depths are mysterious and haunting. If you have his music. you already know what I am on about. We will be playing him on Radio Free EarthRites, but you might want his albums….

Time Of No Reply

Summer was gone and the heat died down

And Autumn reached for her golden crown

I looked behind as I heard a sigh

But this was the time of no reply.

The sun went down and the crowd went home

I was left by the roadside all alone

I turned to speak as they went by

But this was the time of no reply.

The time of no reply is calling me to stay

There is no hello and no goodbye

To leave there is no way.

The trees on the hill had nothing to say

They would keep their dreams till another day

So they stood and thought and wondered why

For this was the time of no reply.

Time goes by from year to year

And no one asks why I am standing here

But I have my answer as I look to the sky

This is the time of no reply.

The time of no reply is calling me to stay

There`s no hello and no goodbye

To leave there is no way.


Northern Sky

I never felt magic crazy as this

I never saw moons knew the meaning of the sea

I never held emotion in the palm of my hand

Or felt sweet breezes in the top of a tree

But now you’re here

Brighten my northern sky.

It’s been a long time that I’m waiting

Been a long time that I’m blown

been a long time that I’ve wandered

Through the people I have known

Oh, if you would and you could

Straighten my new mind’s eye.

Would you love me for my money

Would you love me for my head

Would you love me through the winter

Would you love me ’til I’m dead

Oh, if you would and you could

Come blow your horn on high.

I never felt magic crazy as this

I never saw moons knew the meaning of the sea

I never held emotion in the palm of my hand

Or felt sweet breezes in the top of a tree

But now you’re here

Brighten my northern sky.


When The Day Is Done

When the day is done

Down to earth then sinks the sun

Along with everything that was lost and won

When the day is done.

When the day is done

Hope so much your race will be all run

Then you find you jumped the gun

Have to go back where you began

When the day is done.

When the night is cold

Some get by but some get old

Just to show life’s not made of gold

When the night is cold.

When the bird has flown

Got no-one to call your own

Got no place to call your home

When the bird has flown.

When the game’s been fought

Newspapers blow across the court

Lost matches sooner than you would have thought

Now the game’s been fought.

When the part is through

Seems so very sad for you

Didn’t do the things you meant to do

Now there’s no time to start anew

Now the part is through.

When the day is done

Down to earth then sinks the sun

Along with everything that was lost and won

When the day is done.


Three Hours

Three hours from sundown

Jeremy flies

Hoping to keep

The sun from his eyes

East from the city

And down to the cave

In search of a master

In search of a slave.

Three hours from London

Jacomo’s free

Taking his woes

Down to the sea

In search of a lifetime

To tell when he’s home

In search of a story

That’s never been known.

Three hours from speaking

Everyone’s flown

Not wanting to be

Seen on their own

Three hours is needed

To leave from them all

Three hours to wonder

And three hours to fall.

Three hours from sundown

Jeremy flies

Hoping to keep

The sun from his eyes

East from the city

And down to the cave

In search of a master

In search of a slave.

Nicholas Rodney Drake (June 19, 1948 – November 25, 1974) was an English singer/songwriter known for his gentle, autumnal songs, his innovative guitar tunings and his virtuoso right-hand fingerpicking guitar technique. Between 1969 and 1972, he recorded three haunting albums, which though they failed to find a wide audience during his lifetime, have steadily grown in stature since, to the extent that he is now widely considered to be one of the most influential acoustic songwriters of the last 40 years.

Drake battled with depression, insomnia and acute shyness through out his life, and the topics would often appear as the subject of his lyrics. He was increasingly frustrated by the lack of recognition given to his music, and upon completion of his third album, 1972′s Pink Moon, he drew back from both live performance and recording, retreating to his parent’s home in Tanworth-in-Arden, where he became increasingly introverted and distant from those close to him. On November 25, 1974, Nick Drake died from an overdose of antidepressants, at the age of 26.

In the years since his death, Drake’s profile and popularity has grown, initially through word of mouth, latterly exponentially. His posthumous popularity has led many fans consider the lyrics to “Fruit Tree”, a song from Five Leaves Left, to be prophetic:

“Fame is but a fruit tree / So very unsound.

It can never flourish / Till its stock is in the ground.

So men of fame / Can never find a way

Till time has flown / Far from their dying day.”

The Skies Are Burning…

A new portrait of Albert done by Roberto Venosa!

Will be on exhibit at:

Entheon Village

Burning Man, Nevada,


Planet Earth…..

Tis’ Saturday… and for some reason I am off to work again… hmmmmm. Anyway, a gift for today…



The Links…

This Speaks For Itself…

Poetry: John Wilmot


The Links:

Asia Grace…

Preacher Hoss…!

Your Tax Dollars At Work: Operation Acoustic Kitty

Tajik Buzkashi


This Speaks For Itself…


Poetry: Lord John Wilmot

A Woman’s Honour: A Song

Love bade me hope, and I obeyed;

Phyllis continued still unkind:

Then you may e’en despair, he said,

In vain I strive to change her mind.

Honour’s got in, and keeps her heart,

Durst he but venture once abroad,

In my own right I’d take your part,

And show myself the mightier God.

This huffing Honour domineers

In breasts alone where he has place:

But if true generous Love apppears,

The hector dares not show his face.

Let me still languish and complain,

Be most unhumanly denied:

I have some pleasure in my pain,

She can have none with all her pride.

I fall a sacrifice to Love,

She lives a wretch for Honour’s sake;

Whose tyrant does most cruel prove,

The difference is not hard to make.

Consider real Honour then,

You’ll find hers cannot be the same;

‘Tis noble confidence in men,

In women, mean, mistrustful shame.



Were I (who to my cost already am

One of those strange prodigious Creatures Man)

A Spirit free, to choose for my own share,

What Case of Flesh, and Blood, I pleas’d to weare,

I’d be a Dog, a Monkey, or a Bear,

Or any thing but that vain Animal,

Who is so proud of being rational.

The senses are too gross, and he’ll contrive

A Sixth, to contradict the other Five;

And before certain instinct, will preferr

Reason, which Fifty times for one does err.

Reason, an Ignis fatuus, in the Mind,

Which leaving light of Nature, sense behind;

Pathless and dang’rous wandring ways it takes,

Through errors Fenny — Boggs, and Thorny Brakes;

Whilst the misguided follower, climbs with pain,

Mountains of Whimseys, heap’d in his own Brain:

Stumbling from thought to thought, falls headlong down,

Into doubts boundless Sea, where like to drown,

Books bear him up awhile, and make him try,

To swim with Bladders of Philosophy;

In hopes still t’oretake th’escaping light,

The Vapour dances in his dazling sight,

Till spent, it leaves him to eternal Night.

Then Old Age, and experience, hand in hand,

Lead him to death, and make him understand,

After a search so painful, and so long,

That all his Life he has been in the wrong;

Hudled in dirt, the reas’ning Engine lyes,

Who was so proud, so witty, and so wise.

Pride drew him in, as Cheats, their Bubbles catch,

And makes him venture, to be made a Wretch.

His wisdom did his happiness destroy,

Aiming to know that World he shou’d enjoy;

And Wit, was his vain frivolous pretence,

Of pleasing others, at his own expence.

For Witts are treated just like common Whores,

First they’re enjoy’d, and then kickt out of Doores:

The pleasure past, a threatning doubt remains,

That frights th’enjoyer, with succeeding pains:

Women and Men of Wit, are dang’rous Tools,

And ever fatal to admiring Fools.

Pleasure allures, and when the Fopps escape,

‘Tis not that they’re belov’d, but fortunate,

And therefore what they fear, at heart they hate.

But now methinks some formal Band, and Beard,

Takes me to task, come on Sir I’m prepar’d.

Then by your favour, any thing that’s writ

Against this gibeing jingling knack call’d Wit,

Likes me abundantly, but you take care,

Upon this point, not to be too severe.

Perhaps my Muse, were fitter for this part,

For I profess, I can be very smart

On Wit, which I abhor with all my heart:

I long to lash it in some sharp Essay,

But your grand indiscretion bids me stay,

And turns my Tide of Ink another way.

What rage ferments in your degen’rate mind,

To make you rail at Reason, and Mankind?

Blest glorious Man! to whom alone kind Heav’n,

An everlasting Soul has freely giv’n;

Whom his great Maker took such care to make,

That from himself he did the Image take;

And this fair frame, in shining Reason drest,

To dignifie his Nature, above Beast.

Reason, by whose aspiring influence,

We take a flight beyond material sense,

Dive into Mysteries, then soaring pierce,

The flaming limits of the Universe,

Search Heav’n and Hell, find out what’s acted there,

And give the World true grounds of hope and fear.

Hold mighty Man, I cry, all this we know,

From the Pathetique Pen of Ingello;

From Patricks Pilgrim, Stilling fleets replyes,

And ’tis this very reason I despise.

This supernatural gift, that makes a Myte — ,

Think he’s the Image of the Infinite:

Comparing his short life, void of all rest,

To the Eternal, and the ever blest.

This busie, puzling, stirrer up of doubt,

That frames deep Mysteries, then finds ‘em out;

Filling with Frantick Crowds of thinking Fools,

Those Reverend Bedlams, Colledges, and Schools;

Borne on whose Wings, each heavy Sot can pierce,

The limits of the boundless Universe.

So charming Oyntments, make an Old Witch flie,

And bear a Crippled Carcass through the Skie.

‘Tis this exalted Pow’r, whose bus’ness lies,

In Nonsense, and impossibilities.

This made a Whimsical Philosopher,

Before the spacious World, his Tub prefer,

And we have modern Cloysterd Coxcombs, who

Retire to think, cause they have naught to do.

But thoughts, are giv’n, for Actions government,

Where Action ceases, thoughts impertinent:

Our Sphere of Action, is lifes happiness,

And he who thinks Beyond, thinks like an Ass.

Thus, whilst against false reas’ning I inveigh,

I own right Reason, which I wou’d obey:

That Reason that distinguishes by sense,

And gives us Rules, of good, and ill from thence:

That bounds desires, with a reforming Will,

To keep ‘em more in vigour, not to kill.

Your Reason hinders, mine helps t’enjoy,

Renewing Appetites, yours wou’d destroy.

My Reason is my Friend, yours is a Cheat,

Hunger call’s out, my Reason bids me eat;

Perversly yours, your Appetite does mock,

This asks for Food, that answers what’s a Clock?

This plain distinction Sir your doubt secures,

‘Tis not true Reason I despise but yours.

Thus I think Reason righted, but for Man,

I’le nere recant defend him if you can.

For all his Pride, and his Philosophy,

‘Tis evident, Beasts are in their degree,

As wise at least, and better far than he.

Those Creatures, are the wisest who attain,

By surest means, the ends at which they aim.

If therefore Jowler, finds, and Kills his Hares,

Better than Meres, supplyes Committee Chairs;

Though one’s a States-man, th’other but a Hound,

Jowler, in Justice, wou’d be wiser found.

You see how far Mans wisedom here extends,

Look next, if humane Nature makes amends;

Whose Principles, most gen’rous are, and just,

And to whose Moralls, you wou’d sooner trust.

Be judge your self, I’le bring it to the test,

Which is the basest Creature Man, or Beast?

Birds, feed on Birds, Beasts, on each other prey,

But Savage Man alone, does Man, betray:

Prest by necessity, they Kill for Food,

Man, undoes Man, to do himself no good.

With Teeth, and Claws, by Nature arm’d they hunt,

Natures allowance, to supply their want.

But Man, with smiles, embraces, Friendships, praise,

Unhumanely his Fellows life betrays;

With voluntary pains, works his distress,

Not through necessity, but wantonness.

For hunger, or for Love, they fight, or tear,

Whilst wretched Man, is still in Arms for fear;

For fear he armes, and is of Armes afraid,

By fear, to fear, successively betray’d.

Base fear, the source whence his best passion came,

His boasted Honor, and his dear bought Fame.

That lust of Pow’r, to which he’s such a Slave,

And for the which alone he dares be brave:

To which his various Projects are design’d,

Which makes him gen’rous, affable, and kind.

For which he takes such pains to be thought wise,

And screws his actions, in a forc’d disguise:

Leading a tedious life in Misery,

Under laborious, mean Hypocrisie.

Look to the bottom, of his vast design,

Wherein Mans Wisdom, Pow’r, and Glory joyn;

The good he acts, the ill he does endure,

‘Tis all for fear, to make himself secure.

Meerly for safety, after Fame we thirst,

For all Men, wou’d be Cowards if they durst.

And honesty’s against all common sense,

Men must be Knaves, ’tis in their own defence.

Mankind’s dishonest, if you think it fair,

Amongst known Cheats, to play upon the square,

You’le be undone –

Nor can weak truth, your reputation save,

The Knaves, will all agree to call you Knave.

Wrong’d shall he live, insulted o’re, opprest,

Who dares be less a Villain, than the rest.

Thus Sir you see what humane Nature craves,

Most Men are Cowards, all Men shou’d be Knaves:

The diff’rence lyes (as far as I can see)

Not in the thing it self, but the degree;

And all the subject matter of debate,

Is only who’s a Knave, of the first Rate?

All this with indignation have I hurl’d,

At the pretending part of the proud World,

Who swolne with selfish vanity, devise,

False freedomes, holy Cheats, and formal Lyes

Over their fellow Slaves to tyrannize.

But if in Court, so just a Man there be,

(In Court, a just Man, yet unknown to me)

Who does his needful flattery direct,

Not to oppress, and ruine, but protect;

Since flattery, which way so ever laid,

Is still a Tax on that unhappy Trade.

If so upright a States-Man, you can find,

Whose passions bend to his unbyass’d Mind;

Who does his Arts, and Pollicies apply,

To raise his Country, not his Family;

Nor while his Pride own’d Avarice withstands,

Receives close Bribes, from Friends corrupted hands.

Is there a Church-Man who on God relyes?

Whose Life, his Faith, and Doctrine Justifies?

Not one blown up, with vain Prelatique Pride,

Who for reproof of Sins, does Man deride:

Whose envious heart makes preaching a pretence

With his obstrep’rous sawcy Eloquence,

To chide at Kings, and raile at Men of sense.

Who from his Pulpit, vents more peevish Lyes,

More bitter railings, scandals, Calumnies,

Than at a Gossipping, are thrown about,

When the good Wives, get drunk, and then fall out.

None of that sensual Tribe, whose Tallents lye,

In Avarice, Pride, Sloth, and Gluttony.

Who hunt good Livings, but abhor good Lives,

Whose Lust exalted, to that height arrives,

They act Adultery with their own Wives.

And e’re a score of Years compleated be,

Can from the lofty Pulpit proudly see,

Half a large Parish, their own Progeny.

Nor doating Bishop who wou’d be ador’d,

For domineering at the Councel Board;

A greater Fop, in business at Fourscore,

Fonder of serious Toyes, affected more,

Than the gay glitt’ring Fool, at Twenty proves,

With all his noise, his tawdrey Cloths, and Loves.

But a meek humble Man, of honest sense,

Who Preaching peace, does practice continence;

Whose pious life’s a proof he does believe,

Misterious truths, which no Man can conceive.

If upon Earth there dwell such God-like Men,

I’le here recant my Paradox to them,

Adore those Shrines of Virtue, Homage pay,

And with the Rabble World, their Laws obey.

If such there are, yet grant me this at least,

Man differs more from Man, than Man from Beast.


Elizabeth Malet…

A Letter from Artemesia in the Town to Chloe in the Country


In verse by your command I write.

Shortly you’ll bid me ride astride, and fight:

These talents better with our sex agree

Than lofty flights of dangerous poetry.

Amongst the men, I mean the men of wit

(At least they passed for such before they writ),

How many bold adventurers for the bays,

Proudly designing large returns of praise,

Who durst that stormy, pathless world explore,

Were soon dashed back, and wrecked on the dull shore,

Broke of that little stock they had before!

How would a woman’s tottering bark be tossed

Where stoutest ships, the men of wit, are lost?

When I reflect on this, I straight grow wise,

And my own self thus gravely I advise:

Dear Artemesia, poetry’s a snare;

Bedlam has many mansions; have a care.

Your muse diverts you, makes the reader sad:

Consider, too, ’twill be discreetly done

To make yourself the fiddle of the town,

To find th’ ill-humored pleasure at their need,

Cursed if you fail, and scorned though you succeed!

Thus, like an errant woman as I am,

No sooner well convinced writing’s a shame,

That whore is scarce a more reproachful name

Than poetess-

Like men that marry, or like maids that woo,

‘Cause ’tis the very worst thing they can do,

Pleased with the contradiction and the sin,

Methinks I stand n thorns till I begin.

Y’ expect at least to hear what loves have passed

In this lewd town, since you and I met last;

What change has happened of intrigues, and whether

The old ones last, and who and who’s together.

But how, my dearest Chloe, shall I set

My pet to write what I would fain forget?

Or name that lost thing, love, without a tear,

Since so debauched by ill-bred customs here?

Love, the most generous passion of the mind,

The softest refuge innocence can find,

The safe director of unguided youth,

Fraught with kind wishes, and secured by truth;

That cordial drop heaven in our cup has thrown

To make the nauseous draught of life go down;

On which one only blessing; God might raise

In lands of atheists, subsidies of praise,

For none did e’er so dull and stupid prove

But felt a god, and blessed his power in love –

This only joy for which poor we were made

Is grown, like play, to be an arrant trade.

The rooks creep in, and it has got of late

As many little cheats and tricks as that.

But what yet more a woman’s heart would vex,

‘Tis chiefly carrried on by our own sex;

Our silly sex! who, born like monarchs free,

turn gypsies for a meaner liberty,

And hate restraint, though but from infamy.

They call whatever is not common, nice,

And deaf to nature’s rule, or love’s advice,

Forsake the pleasure to pursue the vice.

To an exact perfection they have wrought

The action, love; the passion is forgot.

‘Tis below wit, they tell you, to admire,

And ev’n without approving, they desire.

Their private wish obeys the public vice;

‘Twixt good and bad, whimsey decides, not choice.

Fashions grow up for taste; at forms they strike;

They know what they would have, not what they like.

Bovey’s a beauty, of some few agree

To call him so; the rest to that degree

Affected are, that with their ears they see.

Where I was visiting the other night

Comes a fine lady, with her humble knight,

Who had prevailed on her, through her own skill,

At his request, thought much against his will,

To come to London.

As the coach stopped, we heard her voice, more loud

Than a great-bellied woman’s in a crowd,

Telling the knight that her affairs require

He, for some hours, obsequiously retire.

I think she was ashamed to have him seen:

Hard fate of husbands! The gallant had been,

Though a diseased, ill-favored fool, brought in.

“Dispatch,” says she, “that business you pretend,

Your beastly visit to your drunken friend!

A bottle ever makes you look so fine;

Methinks I long to smell you stink of wine!

Your country drinking breath’s enough to kill:

Sour ale corrected with a lemon peel.

Prithee, farewell! We’ll meet again anon.”

The necessary thing bows, and is gone.

She flies upstairs, and all the haste does show

That fifty antic postures will allow,

And then bursts out: “Dear madam, am not I

The altered’st creature breathing? Let me die,

I find myself ridiculously grown,

Embarassee with being out of town,

Rude and untaught like any Indian queen:

My country nakedness is strangely seen.

“How is love governed, love that rules the state,

And pray, who are the men most worn of late?

When I was married, fools were a la mode.

The men of wit were then held incommode,

Slow of belief, and fickle in desire,

Who, ere they’ll be persuaded, must inquire

As if they came to spy, not to admire.

With searching wisdom, fatal to their ease,

They still find out why what may, should not please;

Nay, take themselves for injured when we dare

Make ‘em think better of us than we are,

And if we hide our frailties from their sights,

Call us deceitful jilts and hypocrites.

They little guess, who at our arts are grieved,

The perfect joy of being well deceived;

Inquisitive as jealous cuckolds grow:

Rather than not be knowing, they will know

What, being known, creates their certain woe.

Women should these, of all mankind avoid,

For wonder by clear knowledge is destroyed.

Woman, who is an arrant bird of knight,

Bold in the dusk before a fool’s dull sight,

Should fly when reason brings the glaring light.

“But the kind, easy fool, apt to admire

Himself, trusts us; his follies all conspire

To flatter his, and favor our desire.

Vain of his proper merit, he with ease

Believes we love him best who best can please.

On him our gross, dull, common flatteries pass,

Ever most joyful when most made an ass.

Heavy to apprehend, though all mankind

Perceive us false, the fop concerned is blind,

Who, doting on himself,

Thinks everyone that sees him of his mind.

These are true women’s men.”

Here forced to cease

Through want of breath, not will to hold her peace,

She to the window runs, where she had spied

Her much esteemed dear friend, the monkey, tied.

With forty smiles, as many antic bows,

As if ‘t had been the lady of the house,

The dirty, chattering monster she embraced,

And made it this fine, tender speech at last:

“Kiss me, thou curious miniature of man!

How odd thou art! how pretty! how japan!

Oh, I could live and die with thee!” Then on

For half an hour in compliment she run.

I took this time to think what nature meant

When this mixed thing into the world she sent,

So very wise, yet so impertinent:

One who knew everything; who, God thought fit,

Should be an ass through choice, not want of wit;

Whose foppery, without the help of sense,

Could ne’er have rose to such an excellence.

Nature’s as lame in making a true fop

As a philosopher; the very top

And dignity of folly we attain

By studious search, and labor of the brain,

By observation, counsel, and deep thought:

God never made a coxcomb worth a groat.

We owe that name to industry and arts:

An eminent fool must be a fool of parts.

And such a one was she, who had turned o’er

As many books as men; loved much, read more;

Had a discerning wit; to her was known

Everyone’s fault and merit, but her own.

All the good qualities that ever blessed

A woman so distinguished from the rest,

Except discretion only, she possessed.

But now, “Mon cher dear Pug,” she cries, “adieu!”

And the discourse broke off does thus renew:

“You smile to see me, whom the world perchance

Mistakes to have some wit, so far advance

The interest of fools, that I approve

Their merit, more than men’s of wit, in love.

But, in our sex, too many proofs there are

Of such whom wits undo, and fools repair.

This, in my time, was so observed a rule

Hardly a wench in town but had her fool.

The meanest common slut, who long was grown

The jest and scorn of every pit buffoon,

Had yet left charms enough to have subdued

Some fop or other, fond to be thought lewd.

Foster could make an Irish lord a Nokes,

And Betty Morris had her City cokes.

A woman’s ne’er so ruined but she can

Be still revenged on her undoer, man;

How lost so’er, she’ll find some lover, more

A lewd, abandoned fool than she a whore.

“That wretched thing Corinna, who had run

Through all the several ways of being undone,

Cozened at first by love, and living then

By turning the too dear-bought trick on men –

Gay were the hours, and winged with joys they flew,

When first the town her early beauties knew;

Courted, admired, and loved, with presents fed;

Youth in her looks, and pleasure in her bed;

Till fate, or her ill angel, thought it fit

To make her dote upon a man of wit,

Who found ’twas dull to love above a day;

Made his ill-natured jest, and went away.

Now scorned by all, forsaken, and oppressed,

She’s a momento mori to the rest;

Diseased, decayed, to take up half a crown

Must mortgage her long scarf and manteau gown.

Poor creature! who, unheard of as a fly,

In some dark hole must all the winter lie,

And want and dirt endure a while half year

That for one month she tawdry may appear.

“In Easter Term she gets her a new gown,

When my young master’s worship comes to town,

From pedagogue and mother just set free,

The heir and hopes of a great family;

Which, with strong ale and beef, the country rules,

And ever since the Conquest have been fools.

And now, with careful prospect to maintain

The character, lest crossing of the strain

Should mend the booby breed, his friends provide

A cousin of his own to be his bride.

And thus set out

With an estate, no wit, and a young wife

(The solid comforts of a coxcomb’s life),

Dunghill and pease forsook, he comes to town,

Turns spark, learns to be lewd, and is undone.

Nothing suits worse with vice than want of sense:

Fools are still wicked at their own expense.

“This o’ergrown schoolboy lost Corinna wins,

And at first dash to make an ass begins:

Pretends to like a man who has not known

The vanities nor vices of the town;

Fresh in his youth, and faithful in his love;

Eager of joys which he does seldom prove;

Healthful and strong, he does no pains endure

But what the fair one he adores can cure;

Grateful for favors, does the sex esteem,

And libels none for being kind to him;

Then of the lewdness of the times complains:

Rails at the wits and atheists, and maintains

‘Tis better than good sense, than power or wealth,

To have a love untainted, youth, and health.

“The unbred puppy, who had never seen

A creature look so gay, or talk so fine,

Believes, then falls in love, and then in debt;

Mortgages all, ev’n to the ancient seat,

To buy this mistress a new house for life;

To give her plate and jewels, robs his wife.

And when th’ height of fondness he is grown,

‘Tis time to poison him, and all’s her own.

Thus meeting in her common arms his fate,

He leaves her bastard heir to his estate,

And, as the race of such an owl deserves,

His own dull lawful progeny he starves.

“Nature, who never made a thing in vain,

But does each insect to some end ordain,

Wisely contrived kind keeping fools, no doubt,

To patch up vices men of wit wear out.”

Thus she ran on two hours, some grains of sense

Still mixed with volleys of impertinence.

But now ’tis time I should some pity show

To Chloe, since I cannot choose but know

Readers must reap the dullness writers sow.

But the next post such stories I will tell

As, joined with these, shall to a volume swell,

As true as heaven, more infamous than hell.

But you are tired, and so am I.



A Song…

To this moment a rebel I throw down my arms,

Great Love, at first sight of Olinda’s bright charms.

Make proud and secure by such forces as these,

You may now play the tyrant as soon as you please.

When Innocence, Beauty, and Wit do conspire

To betray, and engage, and inflame my Desire,

Why should I decline what I cannot avoid?

And let pleasing Hope by base Fear be destroyed?

Her innocence cannot contrive to undo me,

Her beauty’s inclined, or why should it pursue me?

And Wit has to Pleasure been ever a friend,

Then what room for Despair, since Delight is Love’s end?

There can be no danger in sweetness and youth,

Where Love is secured by good nature and truth;

On her beauty I’ll gaze and of pleasure complain

While every kind look adds a link to my chain.

‘Tis more to maintain than it was to surprise,

But her Wit leads in triumpth the slave of her eyes;

I beheld, with the loss of my freedom before,

But hearing, forever must serve and adore.

Too bright is my Goddess, her temple too weak:

Retire, divine image! I feel my heart break.

Help, Love! I dissolve in a rapture of charms

At the thought of those joys I should meet in her arms.


John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester (April 1, 1647 – July 26, 1680) was an English nobleman, a friend of King Charles II, and the writer of much satirical and bawdy poetry.

Rochester was born in Ditchley, Oxfordshire, and educated at Wadham College, Oxford. Having carried out the Grand Tour, he became the toast of the Restoration court and a patron of the arts. He married an heiress, Elizabeth Malet, but had many mistresses, including the actress Elizabeth Barry. Shortly before his death, he had a theistic change of heart, largely thanks to the influence of Bishop Gilbert Burnet.

Rochester’s most famous verse concerned King Charles II, his great friend. In reply to his jest that:

“He never said a foolish thing, nor ever did a wise one”,

Charles is reputed to have said:

“That is true — for my words are my own, but my actions are those of my ministers.”

Rochester’s mother was a Parliamentarian by descent and inclined to Puritanism for possibly expedient reasons. His father Henry Wilmot, a hard-drinking Royalist from Anglo-Irish stock, had been created Earl of Rochester in 1652 for military services to Charles II during his exile under the Commonwealth; he died abroad in 1658, two years before the restoration of the monarchy in England.

At twelve Rochester matriculated at Wadham College, Oxford, and there, it is said, “grew debauched”. At fourteen he was conferred with the degree of M.A. by the Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon, who was Chancellor to the University and Rochester’s uncle. After a tour of France and Italy, Rochester returned to London, where he was to grace the Restoration Court. Courage in sea-battle against the Dutch made him a hero.

In 1667 he married Elizabeth Malet, a witty heiress whom he had attempted to abduct two years earlier. Pepys describes the event in his diary, 28 May 1665: “Thence to my Lady Sandwich’s, where, to my shame, I had not been a great while before. Here, upon my telling her a story of my Lord Rochester’s running away on Friday night last with Mrs Mallet, the great beauty and fortune of the North, who had supped at Whitehall with Mrs Stewart, and was going home to her lodgings with her grandfather, my Lord Haly, by coach; and was at Charing Cross seized on by both horse and footmen, and forcibly taken from him, and put into a coach with six horses, and two women provided to receive her, and carried away. Upon immediate pursuit, my Lord of Rochester (for whom the King had spoke to the lady often, but with no success) was taken at Uxbridge; but the lady is not yet heard of, and the King mighty angry and the Lord sent to the Tower.”

Rochester’s life is divided between domesticity in the country and a riotous existence at Court, where he was renowned for drunkenness, vivacious conversation, and “extravagant frolics” as part of the Merry Gang (as Andrew Marvell called them) who flourished for about fifteen years after 1665. As well as Wilmot they included Henry Jermyn, Charles Sackville, Earl of Dorset , John Sheffield, Earl of Mulgrave, Henry Killigrew, Sir Charles Sedley, the playwrights William Wycherley and George Etherege, and George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham.

In banishment from Court for a scurrilous lampoon on Charles II, Rochester set up as “Doctor Bendo”, a physician skilled in treating barrenness; his practice was, it is said, “not without success”. He was deeply involved with the theatre and was himself the model for the witty and poetry-reciting rake Dorimant in Etherege’s The Man of Mode (1676). According to an often repeated anecdote, his coaching of his mistress Elizabeth Barry began her career as the greatest actress of the Restoration stage. Modern scholars, however, have little faith in this story, which was first told much later.

At the age of thirty-three, as Rochester lay dying — from syphilis, it is assumed — his mother had him attended by her religious associates; a deathbed renunciation of atheism was published and promulgated as the conversion of a prodigal. This became legendary, reappearing in numerous pious tracts over the next two centuries.

Rochester’s own writings were at once admired and infamous. Posthumous printings of his play Sodom, or the Quintessence of Debauchery gave rise to prosecutions for obscenity, and were destroyed. On 16 December 2004 a copy of Sodom (characterized as the world’s first known piece of printed pornography) was sold by Sotheby’s for £45,600. During his lifetime, his songs and satires were known mainly from anonymous broadsheets and manuscript circulation; most of Rochester’s poetry was not published under his name until after his death.

Rochester has not lacked distinguished admirers. Defoe quoted him widely and often. Tennyson would recite from him with fervour. Voltaire admired Rochester’s satire for ‘energy and fire’ and translated some lines into French to ‘display the shining imagination his lordship only could boast’. Goethe could quote Rochester in English, and cited his lines to epitomise the intensely ‘mournful region’ he encountered in English poetry. William Hazlitt judged that ‘his verses cut and sparkle like diamonds’, while ‘his contempt for everything that others respect almost amounts to sublimity’.

A Cafe In Cairo…

(Un Café au Caire)

Well… it looks like Friday is looming, and the month is zooming towards closure. Soon people will be heading to Burning Man, kids back to school and the fall migrations will start. The Equinox is just around the corner folks, in less than a month! Yikes!

I am looking for articles this year on Burning Man, and the changes that people see happening there, and with themselves in relationship to the festival.

More On The Way…

One Love,



The Links

The Quotes

Swami Calls For An Up-Wising – Wise Up, Everybody The Evolution Has Begun

Poetry Of Cairo

Art: Jean-Léon Gérôme


The Links:



EU tunnel crossing ends in farce

Pluto loses status as a planet

Marijuana Plant Growth Time Lapse – Harvest Season Soon?


The Quotes:

Happiness is an imaginary condition, formerly attributed by the living to the dead, now usually attributed by adults to children, and by children to adults.”

“I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when you looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated.”

“I don’t necessarily agree with everything I say.”

“Not only is the universe stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine.”

“As I know more of mankind I expect less of them, and am ready now to call a man a good man upon easier terms than I was formerly.”


(Bain Maure)


Swami Calls For An Up-Wising – Wise Up, Everybody The Evolution Has Begun

By Swami Beyondananda


For years now, we’ve been hearing “shift happens,” and wondering when, where and how. Now finally, it looks as if the shift is about to hit the fan. This is good news for all those shift fans who’ve been wondering if the new age will arrive before old age does. Of course, if you’re looking for signs in the news, you won’t find them. At least, not yet. The news might as well be called the “olds,” because the world still seems stuck in greedlock, ruled by fossilized fools fueled by fossil fuels. But I have been receiving encouraging intelligence reports that say indeed, humans are becoming more intelligent. Yes, people everywhere are wising up. And that’s great, because we could sure use an up-wising!

The evolution has begun. But before we see changes in the old needy-greedy, we humans must change our consciousness — and the first step is becoming conscious of how unconscious we’ve been. As the saying goes, the truth shall upset you free, and last year saw lots of disillusionment. But what better to free us from the far more dangerous condition of illusionment? If we want to stop the abuse of power, the first step is to disabuse ourselves. So, here’s some good news: Despite a massive media impropaganda machine that feeds the public “babblum” (strained bullshit made digestible for a simple child’s mind), more and more Americans are reading between the lyins’ and peering behind the Irony Curtain.

In 2005, Americans had to face the sad realization that the Bush Administration’s “pro-life” stance appears to be limited to the unborn and the brain-dead. Despite being panned by critics everywhere, the Iraqi Horror Picture Show continued its run, as thousands and thousands of born fetuses – ours and theirs — lost their right to life. While we may or may not have saved our face by staying there, we have most definitely lost our ass. And we’ve been assured we’ll be stuck in that morass until — well, until there’s no more ass to lose. Meanwhile, more and more Americans reached another sad conclusion: We’re not in Iraq to keep the peace, we’re there to keep the pieces.

The signs of up-wising are everywhere. Even the most unpleasant stories are beginning to break through the soundless barrier and defy the President’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy: “You promise not to ask us what we’re doing, and we promise not to tell you.” Although we’ve been inundated with “fear-gnomes” and ominously warned we have to protect ourselves in this dogma-eat-dogma world, a majority of Americans are no longer comfortable with the notion that the only way to defeat the “evil-doers” in the world is to out evil-do them. Although our President has assured us that “we don’t torture,” it is now common knowledge that we simply send detainees to countries that do torture when we want them to “testify under oaf.”

As for those progressives who’ve been whining that the President “never listens” to them, well it turns out he’s been listening all along. And thanks to the so-called Patriot Act (which, I understand, is about to be renamed the Eternal Insecurity Act), it looks like he’ll be able to listen in even more — all in the name of making us safe. But now even some Republicans are beginning to see that there’s a difference between protection and the “protection racket.” And with the recent revelations about Tom DeLay, Jack Abramoff and other gold collar criminals, some of the more devout conservatives have come to realize that the “family values” they voted for bear an uncanny resemblance to Soprano Family values.

If there was any warm feeling in 2005, chalk it up to climate change. Katrina hit, and in the government’s response we saw a future when at last all Americans will be equal — where everyone regardless of race or creed will be treated like Black folks.

Alarming Policies Have Awakened Millions!

Fortunately, this is the State of the Universe Address, and from a universal perspective, things are humming along quite nicely. It turns out that the Earth is the talk of the Universe these days. In fact, the odds-makers at the Intergalactic Enquirer say the odds are actually in our favor: “We’re betting on the human race to reach critical mass before they get to critical massacre.” And we could beat the odds, if we finally gave up our addiction to getting even and got odd instead. It stands to reason. If each of us used our unique oddness to improve the odds for everyone, there would be no need for getting even.

Yes, the up-wising has begun, and intergalactic observers are saying that we have none other than George W. Bush to thank. How is that, you may ask? Well, I am reminded of a story my guru Harry Cohen Baba used to tell. A well-known minister died and arrived at the Pearly Gates at the same time as a cab-driver from New York. The cabbie was ushered in, but the clergyman was left waiting outside. After waiting and waiting and waiting, he finally called over the attending angel. “Excuse me, but I’m a renowned minister. How come you let that cab-driver in, and I’m left waiting out here?” “Well,” the angel said, “when you preached, everyone slept. But when he drove, everyone prayed.”

For millennia, spiritual teachers have been calling on us to go for the highest common denominator, but we’ve always seemed to end up with the lowest common dominator instead. And now, George W. Bush has done what preachers, teachers and other far-sighted visionaries have failed to do up until now: His policies have been so alarming, that he has awakened a slumbering body politic that slept through all previous alarms. Where others have failed, he has people all across the world praying, “God help us!” And instead of waiting for an intervention from above — after all, we cannot expect to be fed intervenously forever — people are beginning to help themselves, and even more importantly, help each other.

Sure, there are still plenty of Not-Sees out there who insist on not seeing that we humans are all in the same boat. The good news is, more and more Americans are getting that sinking feeling that there’s only one Earthship, and ignoring a leak because it’s “on the other side of the boat,” is a mistake of titanic proportions.

We Are the Leaders We’ve Been Waiting For

America, the world’s only super-power, doesn’t need a revolution. We’ve already had one, thank you. What is needed now — and what has already begun — is the American Evolution where enough of us wake up and see that those two political parties have been partying on our dime, and we the people haven’t been invited. Time to go beyond choosing the lesser of two weasels. If we want to evolve the dream of our Founding Fathers — instead of devolve into the nightmare of Big Brother — we must become the leaders we’ve been waiting for. I’ve said it before. The only force more powerful than a super-power is a Super-Duper Power — the power of the people plus the power of love. And anyone who doesn’t believe we are a Super-Duper Power, well they have been super-duped!

It’s true, many people still feel that the affairs of the world should be left to the bolder and badder among us. But look what that leaves us with: Are you satisfied choosing between Saddam Hussein and George Who’s-Not-Sane? Now I know those “God, guns and guts” Old Testament Christians might have forgotten, but Jesus did say that the meek shall inherit the earth. In all undue immodesty, maybe it’s time for us meek folks to boldly step forth and accept our inheritance.

For just as 2000 years ago Jesus stood up to a class that placed the rule of gold above the Golden Rule, today we face the modern version of the Pharisees — the Phallusees, I think they are called. They cynically cloak themselves in religious robes, but the only power they trust is the power of the stick. Well, there’s another old saying: It doesn’t matter how big your stick is, if you stick your stick where it doesn’t belong, you’re stuck.

Another sign of the up-wising and coming evolution is that people are growing dissatisfied with the positionality of “my side vs. your side,” and are seeing the whole issue of sides from a new angle: Maybe we’re all on the same side. For example, this argument between creationism and evolution is just another way for dueling dualities to steal our energy. I believe in both. I believe the Creator created us to evolve, otherwise Jesus would have said, “Now don’t do a thing till I return.” I have it on good authority that the Creator is pulling for us: “Come on, you children of God. Time to grow up and become adults of God instead.”

Time to Overgrow the System From the Grassroots Up

The time for revolution and overthrowing has past. Now we need an evolution where we “overgrow” the current dysfunctional system from the grassroots up. You are probably familiar with the story of the Native American grandfather who tells his grandson that there are two wolves fighting inside all of us: The wolf of fear and anger, and the wolf of love and peace.

“Which wolf will win?” asks the young boy.

“Whichever one we feed,” replies the grandfather.

And so when people ask me to predict what will happen, I tell them the only thing I can predict with certainty is the uncertainty of any prediction. The future’s just too unpredictable these days. This is a Universe of infinite possibilities, so it all depends on which futures we invest in.

There is something far more empowerful than predictions, and that is Tell-A-Vision. If you’re fed up with the current programming, my advice is turn off your TV and tell a vision instead. That way, we will have healing and functional visions to step into — and that beats what we’ve been stepping into. So I will tell my vision for 2006: This is the year of the American Evolution, where all those who prefer the Golden Rule to the rule of gold get past left and right, and come front and center.

I see Americans of all political stripes, plaids and polka dots (not to mention solids), choosing to face the music and dance together. Sure, we’ll have to learn some new steps, but it’s time for a new dance – A-Bun-Dance. That is where we get up off our assets, move our buns, and dance together in rhythm and flow. And what better way to turn the funk into function, and leave the junk at the junction?

I see us in a new reality show — Extreme Planetary Makeover — where everyone can play and everyone can win. Just think. Something more compelling than reality TV … it’s called reality!

I know, I know. Only a crazy person would dare to propose anything that sane. But maybe it’s time to declare the current institutionalized insanity illegally insane, and set about building a sane asylum big enough for all six and a half billion of us. As my guru Harry Cohen Baba has said, “Life is like a good deli. Even if something isn’t on the menu, if enough people order it they have to make it.” So what kind of new world order are we ordering up? Do we feed the wolf of fear and buy into the “it’s every man for himself” story? Or do we nourish the wolf of love and evolve into the “we’re all in it together” story?

If we’re going to be a Super-Duper Power, we have to be super-duper powerful in activating the power of love, and cultivating the power of joy. So laugh more. Why not? We all know there’s something funny going on. The wall of lies cannot withstand the vibration of laughter. All seriousness aside, only a farce field that combines truth and laughter can bring down the Irony Curtain once and for all.

Release the old story — been there, done that — and speak the new story into the world. Dare to imagine what we could be doing if we weren’t spending so much of our livelihood on weapons of deadlihood. Think about it … think tanks where they think about something other than tanks. Young people living for their country instead of dying for it. Health and education fully funded, and the Air Force having to run a bake sale so they can buy a new bomber.

Can we change the course of history? Can we shift our karma into surpassing gear? I cannot say for sure, but if we choose to give up that old Dodge and trade it in for an Evolvo, that’s a good first step. So … let the Evolution begin. We don’t have to wait until the first Big Shot is fired. If we create a powerful enough field, the Big Shots will end up firing themselves.

May the FARCE — as always — be with us.


Poetry Of Cairo

A Rose for the Last Days – Rana al-Tonsi

On one foot

like a humiliated beggar I limp

past all the swinging doors

and the flags that are taken down from their masts . . .

The sidewalk was never my friend

but it embraced me those times

when the crying was tough and bitter

In my country

soldiers go to a war

where they never fight

In every coffeehouse or square

under the feet of the sick, the sad and insane

you can glimpse the trace of a rose

thrown into the arms of nurses

in lonely rooms inhabited by wailing,

a rose drawn in blood.

I cannot believe the car has yet to stop

that I fell out of it

like a scream

I know the lift attendant

never jumps off the fences

and that rocks keep wounding me

even though I’ve roamed for too long.

On one foot

death will come

and raise its head

Facing it, I will embrace this man strongly

and strangle all the poems in his hands

I will crush my bones under his hot breaths

My lungs are becoming two tubes

my feet like a battlefield

my heart a noose.

Am I really dead?

Only a while ago

I was smelling that homeland.


In those empty streets

even dogs are afraid to cross

You will cross


with a shadow that doesn’t accompany you

and a backbreaking love

You will talk about your parents

the shock of sudden death

and the added light

which never lessens loneliness

When my eyes well up

and my pants are wet

as I stand before you

you will take a newspaper from your chest

and a mirror from your eyes

so that I may look into them

and know

that now I can go out.


Into one of those swamps

left by an old flood

the kind that drowns entire villages

I will jump like a bird

with broken wings –

a bird’s looking for a merciful killing

The bird which loved the behinds of every hen

can no longer fly

or spit

as is his wont every time he mounts

his eyes can neither close in sleep

nor let a tear fall

But all the birds agree

he does shut them every now and then

although no one knows for sure

if he does it out of pleasure or out of pain

for a sad bird like him

can only dream

of a long darkness


Every time I think of my own death

someone else dies

and the poem keeps

writing itself


I embrace no one

my steps pass without me

the hand of the house burns me

The one who sleeps in my history

never wakes

his steps crush me at night

In the morning

I wake up scared, on his chest

He tells me

what I was not

He smokes his cigarette

like a returnee from war

He knows the precise number of its victims

and I, between stolen looks

and the sounds of his breathing,

know there was a lost letter from him.

Translated by Sinan Antoon

from the author’s collection

Warda lil-Ayam al-Akhira [A Rose for the Last Days], Merit, 2003


Rana al-Tonsi

was born in Cairo in 1981. She graduated from the American University in Cairo with a degree in Arab Studies and is currently teaching at the British School in Cairo. She has published three collections of poetry: That House from which the Music Comes (Cairo, 1999), A Rose for the Last Days (Merit, Cairo 2003) and A Country Called Desire (Merit, Cairo, 2005).


It’s Night – Zahra Yusri

it’s night

it’s half light

it’s trees at a distance

nature throwing you on its shores

you stretch your legs, looking at the horizon

it’s the stars

the moon

the chemistry of the body

it’s an illusion

a delusion

the jungles of a forest

bare walls

warm rooms

it’s the mud

the bed

warm walls

cold rooms

it’s the cosmos


and nothing

is this enough to make you hold my face in your hands?

can we summon up some opening phrases,

can we look at the moon,

(how beautiful it is tonight!)

and lean against a tree, paying no attention to its rough trunk,

pretending that what scrapes our backbone is desire?

we can climb a mountain and then descend it, wondering

how the earth rose up all of a sudden like that

how we have become all alone with no families

hanging by our toes like pendulums

as if we have never been here before

as if born yesterday

we stand facing each other

you holding my face in your hands

me looking into your eyes like an old she-wolf deserting her pack

do you know what an old she-wolf does?

how mountain goats lock horns in the mating season?

have you ever seen a flower opening up for a butterfly’s legs?

it’s night

don’t close your eyes

night’s half light is enough to delude

our senses

Translated by Waiel Ashry


Zahra Yusri was born in Cairo in 1974. She studied Arabic literature and language. Since 1997 she has published three collections of poetry and the fourth Hayat Iftiradhiya [Virtual life], is in print with Dar Sharqiyat, Cairo


(Cléopâtre et César)

Beastly Two…

It is Thursday here, and the clouds are socked in… Fallish here already it feels, supposedly we are to heat up soon. Couldn’t tell it with this morning…

We are finishing up on our Crowley installment, and back to other matters tomorrow. Do try and check the article out, excellent. I always found RAW’s take on Crowley refreshing.

Strange, I am almost tongue tied today, so I will take that as a sign…

Gotta Hop,



The Stoned Links

Part II: “The Great Beast – Aleister Crowley” – Robert Anton Wilson

Poetry:Aleister Crowley

Art: Alain Margotton


Stoned Links….

Character from ‘Weeds’ Opens Pro-Pot Temple on Hollywood Blvd. – Temple 420 to Be a Hit!

Israeli stoners against Hizbullah

5 Top TV Appearances of Stoners…

Nevada Conservatives Against the War on Drugs


Part II: “The Great Beast – Aleister Crowley” – Robert Anton Wilson

Originally published in:Paul Krassner’s The Realist Issues 91-B, C, 92-A, B (1971-2)

But meanwhile came the Chinese Mindfuck.

IX — The Hermit

Wander alone; bearing the Light and thy Staff. – The Book of Thoth

One day in Rangoon, in 1905, Crowley happened to mention to a man named Thornton that there is no necessary connection between the separate quanta of sense-impression. Philosophy-buffs are aware that this has been observed by David Hume, among others, and Thornton replied with another truism, pointing out that there is no necessary connection between the successive states of the ego, either.

The beast, naturlich, was aware that the Buddha had spotted that disturbing fact a long time ago, but suddenly the full import of it hit home to him on an emotional level.

Chew on it: he could not absolutely prove that there was an external world to Aleister Crowley, but merely that there appeared to be a tendency for sense-impressions to organize themselves to suggest such a world, Lord help us; and he could not absolutely demonstrate that there was an “Aleister Crowley” doing this organizing but only that there seems to be a tendency to aggregate internal impressions in such a way as to suggest such an entity. (Get the Librium, mother). All intelligent people have noticed that at one time or another – and quickly brushed it aside, to carry on in the only way that seems pragmatically justified, assuming the reality of the World and the Self.

The Beast, after the workings of his Magick, the experience of his dhyana (in which Self, indeed, had vanished for a time) and his encounter with the ever-lovin’ Aiwass, was not satisfied to rest in assuming anything.

There was no absolute proof that he had ever achieved dhyana, for instance, but only a tendency to organize some impressions into a category called “memory and to assume that they corresponded to “real” events in a time called the “past.” Nor could reason alone prove that he had seen a “miracle” in “Cairo,” or performed “Magick” in “London,” or suffered in a “school” run by “Plymouth Brethren,” or had a “biological” “relationship” “with” “beings” know as “Father” and “Mother.”

“About now,” he scribbled in his diary on November 19, “I may count my Speculative Criticism of the Reason as not only proved and understood, but realized. The misery of this is simply sickening – I can write no more.”

He started on a walking journey across China with his wife and daughter, or his earth-body did; his mind was on a far weirder trip. “He had become insane,” writes unsympathetic biographer John Symonds in The Great Beast; “If this happened to any of us,” adds sympathetic biographer Israel Regardie in The Eye in the Triangle, “we too might feel we had become insane.” Of course, lately it has happened to a lot of us, thanks to the free enterprise pharmacopia of the streets, and we know with bitter memory what the suffering Beast was going through.

And it wasn’t six or ten hours in his case; it lasted four solid months, while China drifted by like the eye in the triangle. We’ve been there, and some of us did the Steve Brodie out the window (the triangle?) and never came back and some of us found weird clues in songs like “Helter Skelter” – what triangle? – Rocky Raccoon went up to his room and Sharon Tate must die – doesn’t it? – Because John Lennon wouldn’t lie to us when a man is crashing out like American life bomb went authoritarian (what eye?) – So we’ll write PIG on the wall and they’ll blame it on the spades, see? Oh, yes, Charlie, I see – Sixty-four thousand, nine hundred twenty-eight, because 7-Up Commercials and we start from Void and anything we manufacture is necessarily composed of the elements of Void even when you call it your Self or your World – And then there was the strawberries…

Manson, hell; you could turn into Nixon that way.

X – Fortune

The axle moveth not; attain thou that. – The Book of Thoth

The Beast described this 120-Days-of-Bedlam in a poem called Aha!:

The sense of all I hear is drowned;

Tap, tap, tap and nothing matters!

Senseless hallucinations roll

Across the curtain of the soul.

Each ripple on the river seems

The madness of a maniac’s dreams!

So in the self no memory-chain

Or casual wisp to bind the straws!

The Self disrupted! Blind, insane,

Both of existence and of laws,

The Ego and the Universe

Fall to one black chaotic curse…

As I trod the trackless way

Through sunless gorges of Cathay,

I became a little child!

“The are waiting for you,” Rose, in a trance, had said, a year earlier. “It’s about the Child.”

When Crowley returned to England, after becoming “a little child,” he received a letter from chemist George Cecil Jones, a friend in the Golden Dawn. Jones, who recognized what happened, wrote: “How long have you been in the Great Order, and why did I not know? Is the invisibility of the A.A. to lower grades so complete?”

Israel Regardie, a biographer sympathetic to Crowley, but dubious about the existence of the A.A. (the Third Order, or Great White Brotherhood, behind the Rose of Ruby and Cross of Gold) comments thoughtfully, “I do not wholly understand this.”

Herman Hess, who described the Third Order very clearly in Journey to the East, gives the formula for initiation in Steppenwolf:


XI – Lust

Mitigate Energy with Love; but let Love devour all things. – The Book of Thoth

One act remained in the drama of initiation: the achievement of the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel. This most difficult of all magical operations had been started anew even before Crowley left China, and, for all of his previous failures, he was determined to complete it successfully this time. As mentioned earlier, this invocation takes six months and requires a rather full battery of magical and mystical techniques.

Sometime after his return to England, the Beast arranged to have George Cecil Jones “crucify” him (I am not totally sure what this means, but suspension on a cross, even via ropes, gets quite painful in a very short while) and, while hanging on the cross, he swore an oath as follows: “I,Purdurabo, a member of the Body of Christ, do hereby solemnly obligate myself… and will entirely devote my life so as to raise myself to the knowledge of my higher and Divine Genius that I shall be He.”

In Chapter 9, “The Redemption of Frank Bennett,” in The Magick of Aleister Crowley, John Symonds tells how with a few words Crowley brought a species of Samadhi or Satori to Frank Bennett, a magician who had been striving unsuccessfully for that achievement over many decades.

The words wore, in effect, that the Real Self or Holy Guardian Angel is nothing else but the integration that occurs when the conscious and subconscious are no longer segregated by repression and inhibition. It is only fair to warn seekers after either-or answers that in Magick Without Tears Crowley flatly denies this and asserts that the Angel is a separate “Being… of angelic order… more than a man…”

After the Crucifixion, the King of Depravity went on plowing his way through the required 180 days (the essence of the Abra-Melin operation is “Invoke Often”) and adding other various techniques.

On October 9, 1906 The Beast recorded in his Magical Diary:

“Tested new ritual and behold it was very good… I did get rid of everything but the Holy Exalted One, and must have held Him for a minute or two. I did. I am sure I did.”

On October 10, he added: “I am still drunk with Samadhi all day.” And a few days later, “Once again I nearly got there – all went brilliance – but not quite.” By the end of the month, there was no longer any doubt. Eight years after commencing the practice of Magick, Aleister Crowley had achieved the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel.

XII — The Hanged Man

And, being come to the shore, plant thou the Vine and rejoice without shame. – The Book of Thoth

The Beast lived on for 41 more years, and did work many wonders and quite a few blunders in the world of men and women. In 1912, he became the English head of the Ordo Templi Orientis, a secret Masonic group tracing direct decent from Knights Templar. In 1915, he achieved a vision of the total explanation of the universe, but afterwards was only able to record, “Nothing, with twinkles – but WHAT twinkles.”

In 1919, he founded the Abbey of Theleme in Sicily – but was quickly expelled by a moralist named Benito Mussolini after English newspapers exposed the scandalous sex-and-dope orgies that allegedly went on there.

Somewhere along the line, he became the Master of the A.A. or Great White Brotherhood (assuming it ever existed outside his own head, which some biographers doubt) and began teaching other Magicians all over the world.

He married, and divorced, and married, and divorced.

He wrote The Book of Thoth, in which, within the framework of a guide to divination by Tarot cards, he synthesized virtually all the important mystical teachings of East and West; we have used it for our chapter-heads.

He landed on Bedloes Island one day, representing the IRA, and proclaimed the Irish Republic, repudiating his English citizenship.

He wrote The Book of Lies, a collection of mind-benders that would flabbergast a Zen Master, including the pregnant question, “Which is Frater Perdurabo and which is the Imp Crowley?” He got hooked on heroin; kicked it; got hooked again; kicked again; got hooked again…

He died, and his friends buried him with a Gnostic Catholic Mass which the newspapers called Black.

But he is best remembered for writing in 1928 in Magick in Theory and Practice that the most potent invocation involves human sacrifice, that the ideal victim is “a male child of perfect innocence and high intelligence,” and that he had performed this rite an average of 150 times per year since 1912.

XIII – Death

… all Acts of Love contain Pure Joy. Die daily. – The Book of Thoth

Crowley’s admirers, of course, claim that he was engaged in one of his manic jokes when he boasted of performing human sacrifice 150 times a year; he was not joking at all, as we shall see.

Even his bitterest critics (except Rev. Montague Sumners, who was capable of believing anything) admit that it’s unlikely that a man whose every move was watched by newspapers and police could polish off 150 victims a year without getting caught; but they are, most of them, not above adding that this ghastly jest indicates the perversity of his mind, and, after all (summoning those great and reliable witnesses, Rumor and Slander) there was some talk about Sicilian infants disappearing mysteriously when he was running his Abbey of Thelema there…

We have got to come to a definitive conclusion about this matter or we will never grasp the meaning of his life, the value of his Magick, the cause of his vilification, or the true meaning of the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel.

XIV – Art

… make manifest the Virtue of that Pearl. – The Book of Thoth

In 1912, we said, the Beast became English head of the Ordo Templi Orientis. This occurred in a quite interesting manner: Theodore Reuss, Head of that Order in Germany, had come to him and implored him to stop publishing their occult secrets in his magazine, Equinox.

The Beast (who had been publishing some of the secrets of the English Rosicrucians – but this wasn’t one of them) protested that he didn’t know anything about the O.T.O. and its mysteries. Reuss then proclaimed that the Beast did know, even if he had discovered it independently, and that he must accept membership in the 9th degree with the accompanying pledges and responsibilities.

The Beast, who was already a 33-degree Freemason, thanks to a friend in Mexico City, accepted – and found that his “new ritual” to invoke the Holy Guardian Angel in 1906 was the most closely-guarded secret of the Ordo Templi Orientis.

“Now the O.T.O. is in possession of one supreme secret,” the Beast writes in his Confessions. “The whole of its systems… was directed towards communicating to its members, by progressively plain hints, this all-important instruction. I personally believe that if this secret, which is a scientific secret, were perfectly understood, as it is not even by me after more than twelve years’ almost constant study and experiment, there would be nothing which the human imagination can conceive that could not be realized in practice.”

Israel Regardie, the Beast’s most perceptive biographer, comes close to revealing the secret in a book called The Tree of Life. However, he remarks that the method in question is “so liable to indiscriminate abuse and use in Black Magic” that it is not safe to reveal it directly; he therefore employs a symbolism which, like a Zen riddle, can be decoded only after one had achieved certain spiritual insights.

Charlie Manson understands at least part of this Arcanum of Arcanums; his misuse of it is a classic example of the danger warned of by Crowley in Liber O: “he will be the slave of illusion and the prey of madness… His Ego will expand unchecked, till he seem to himself to have heaven at his feet…”

The secret, of course, is the formula of the Rose and Cross which, as Frazier demonstrated in The Golden Bough, is the magic foundation under all forms of religion.

XV — The Devil

With thy right Eye create all for thyself… – The Book of Thoth

A word about Evil; the Beast’s frequent injunctions to “explore every possibility of the Self” and realize your True Will etc. have often been misunderstood, especially when quoted out of context, in which case he sounds battier than those armchair enthusiasts of mayhem and murder, Stirner and Nietzsche and Sorel.

But the Beast was not an armchair philosopher, but rather an explorer, mountain-climber and big-game hunter who knew violence and sudden death well enough to call by their first names; he did not romanticize them. Her are his actual instructions about Evil from Liber V, an instruction manual of the A.A.:

“The Magician should devise for himself a definite technique for destroying “evil.” The essence of such practice will consist in training the mind and body to confront things which cause fear, pain, disgust, shame and the like. He must learn to endure them, then to become indifferent to them, then to become indifferent to them, then to analyze them until they give pleasure and instruction, and finally to appreciate them for their own sake, as aspects of Truth. When this has been done, he should abandon them if they are really harmful in relation to health or comfort…

“Again, one might have a liaison with an ugly old woman until one beheld and love the star which she is; it would be too dangerous to overcome this distaste for dishonesty by forcing oneself to pick pockets. Acts which are essentially dishonorable must not be done; they should be justified only by calm contemplation of their correctness in abstract cases.”

Digest carefully that last sentence. These shrewd and pragmatic counsels are not those of a bloody-minded fool.

XVI – The Tower

Break down the fortress of thine Individual Self that thy Truth may spring free from the ruins. – The Book of Thoth

Now, The Morning of the Magicians by Pauwels and Bergier was a best-seller, especially in the hip neighborhoods, so I can assume that many of my readers are aware of the strange evolution of some forms of Rosicrucianism and Illuminism in 19th Century Germany. Such Readers are aware that there is certain evidence – not a little evidence, but a great deal of it – indicating that Adolph Hitler joined something called the Thule Society in Munich in 1923, and then later obtained admission to its inner circle, the Illuminated Lodge, and that it was here he acquired certain ideas about the value of human sacrifice.

It is, in fact, not only possible but probable that the attempted extermination of European Jewry was not only the act of insane racism but a religious offering to gods who demanded rivers of human blood.

The same psychology possessed by the Aztecs toward the end. The omens, the oracles, the astrological skryings all pointed to doom, and the blood sacrifices correspondingly multiplied exponentially, hysterically, incredibly… and south in Yucatan much earlier, the Mayans, who always tired to restrict the blood sacrifice to one or two a year, deserted their cities for an unknown reason and fled back to the jungle; they shared the same astrological beliefs as the Aztecs, and it is plausible to suggest that they ran away from a similar oracle telling them that only more blood could preserve the empire.

In fact – I note this only for the benefit of future students of paranoia – a similar theory about our own glorious rulers has sometimes crossed my own mind. Why not? Every time an S-M club is raided by the fuzz, the newspapers mutter vaguely that among the clientele were “prominent” and “high-placed” individuals; and don’t ever tell me, Clyde, that those birds actually believe the milk-water “liberal” Judeo-Christian faith that they mouth in their public speeches.

Is this the answer to the question we all keep asking – year after unbelievable year, with growing disgust and despair and dementia – Why are we in Vietnam? “Many gods demand blood” the Beast once commented sardonically – “especially the Christian god.”

XVII – The Star

…burn up thy thought as the Phoenix. – The Book of Thoth

And, yes, there is a link between Crowley and Hitler. Douglas Hunt, the Beast’s most hysterically unfair critic said so in his Exploring the Occult, and he was closer to the bullseye than the Beast’s admirers. There is a link, but it is relationship of reciprocity, for Hitler and Crowley are the reverse of each other. Thus (and now we plunge to the heart of the riddle) here are the mind-bending, gut-turning words from Chapter XII, “Of the Bloody Sacrifice and Matters Cognate,” in Magick in Theory and Practice:

“In any case it was the theory of ancient Magicians that any living being is a storehouse of energy varying in quantity according to the size and health of the animal and in quality according to its mental and moral character. At the death of the animal this energy is liberated suddenly.

“For the highest spiritual working one must accordingly choose that victim which contains the greatest and purest force. A male child of perfect innocence and high intelligence is the must satisfactory and suitable victim.”

A footnote is appended here, not at the end of this sentence but attached to the word “intelligence.” This footnote is perhaps the most famous sentence the Beast ever wrote:

“It appears from the Magical Records of Frater Perdurabo (i.e., Crowley himself) that He made this particular sacrifice on an average about 150 times every year between 1912 e.v. and 1928 e.v.”

This certainly seems clear, and horrible, enough, but the chapter concludes with the following further remarks:

“You are also likely to get in trouble over this chapter unless you truly comprehend its meaning…

“The whole idea of the word Sacrifice, as commonly understood, rests upon an error and superstition, and is unscientific. Let the young Magician reflect upon the conservation of Matter and of Energy…

“There is a traditional saying that whenever an Adept seems to have made a straightforward, comprehensible statement, then it is most certain that He means something entirely different…

“The radical error of all uninitiates is that they define “self” as irreconcilably opposed to “not-self.” Each element of oneself is, on the contrary, sterile and without meaning, until it fulfils itself, by “love under will,” in its counterpart in the Macrocosm. To separate oneself from others is to lose that self – its sense of separateness – in the other.”

The chapter, let us remember, is called “Of the Bloody Sacrifice: and Matters Cognate,” and the Beast was a precise, almost pathologically sensitive, stylist. If the whole discussion was about the “bloody sacrifice,” where the duce are the “matters cognate”? And why does the footnote modify “male child of perfect innocence and high intelligence” instead of the last word in the sentence, “victim”?

Let us review: The Beast originally failed in the invocation of the Holy Guardian Angel; his final success came after:

(a) his success in both the physical and mental disciplines of yoga.

(b) the achievement of accomplished skill in astral voyaging, and

(c) the death of the mind in China, after which he himself became “a little child;” the new ritual which successfully invoked the Angel in 1906 was the same which the Ordo Templi Orientis had kept as a secret for unknown centuries – presumably, other occult groups here and there, like the Beast, have also discovered it independently; because of his oath as a 9th degree member of the O.T.O., the Beast could not disclose it publicly; due to his love of both poetry and cabalism, we can be sure that the code in which he hints at it – the language of bloody sacrifice – would have some innate and existential (not merely accidental) correspondence with the true secret. Finally, the ritual seems somehow connected with “love under will” and losing (the) self – its sense of separateness – in the other.”

But some readers already know the secret and others have guessed…

XVIII – The Moon

Let the Illusion of the world pass over thee, unheeded. – The Book of Thoth

Ezra Pound has remarked somewhere that Frazer’s Golden Bough, all 12 fat volumes, can be condensed into a single sentence, to wit: All religions are either based on the idea that copulation is good for the crops or one the idea that copulation is bad for the crops.

In fact, one can generalize that even the highest forms of mysticism are similarly bifurcate, some going back to ideas derived from the orgy and some to ideas derived from the ritual murder.

Leo Frobenius, in a series of heavy Germanic treatises on anthropology still untranslated from the Deutsch, has demonstrated, or attempted to demonstrate, a periodic oscillation between these two systems of magick, which he calls Matriarchal and Patriarchal. Two spin-offs from the Frobenius thesis in English are Joseph Campbell’s The Masks of God and Rattray Taylor’s Sex In History.

The Beast himself (aided by the handy revelations of friend Aiwass) suggests that magicko-religious history, at least in the Occident, has passed through The Age of Isis(primitive matriarchy), the Age of Osiris or the Dying God (civilized patriarchy, including Christianity) and is presently entering The Age of Horus, the Crowned and Conquering Child, in which woman will appear” no longer the mere vehicle of the male counterpart, but armored and militant.”

How’s that for a prophecy of Women’s Lib?

Thus, if the orgy is the sacrament of The Age of Isis, as Frazer indicates, the dying god – or the dying population – is the sacrament of the Age of Osiris. The link between ritual sex and ritual murder is not merely historical or sequential: they are the same sacrament in two different forms.

And the latter becomes magically necessary whenever the former is no longer functionally possible [unreadable] chenever. That is, orgasm is no longer a true [although temporary] “death” and becomes only the “sneeze of the genitals” which all forms of psychotherapy are admittedly or overtly trying to alleviate.

It is a truism that, on the psychological plane, repressed or unsatisfied sex seeks relief in sadism or masochism: it is more true on the astral or magical plane (whatever that is) that is the spiritual spasm cannot be found through love, it must be sought in violence.

And so we see that human sacrifice is the characteristic sacrament of such peoples as the Aztecs (read any history of Mexico to find out how much male chauvinism, prudery and Nixonian macho they wallowed in), the Holy Inquisitors of the middle ages, the Nazis, and some power elites closer to home; while matriarchal cultures such as the Danubians of pre-historic Europe, the pre-Chou folk of China, the first dwellers in the fertile crescent, etc have left behind clear evidence of an equal and opposite ritualized eroticism, some of which has survived via the Taoists in china, The Tantrists in India, the “Old Religion” or witch cult in Europe…

But the Beast was not trying to reinstate the Age of Isis, like these; his magick, he tells us again and again, is preparation for the Age of Horus.

XIX – The Sun

Make Speech and Silence, Energy and Stillness, twin forms of thy play. – The Book of Thoth

Even outside the Manson Family, there is a lot of religious balling going on these days by people who have rediscovered part of the ritual of Isis; what the Beast was teaching was nothing as facile as this. The following words from Chapter VII, “The Formula of the Holy Graal,” in Magick are meant with dreadful literalness:

“The Cup is said to be full of the Blood of the Saints; that is, every ‘saint’ or magician must give the last drop of his life’s blood to that cup (in) the true Bridal of the Rosy Cross…

“It is a woman whose Cup must be filled. It is…the sacrifice of the Man, who transfers life to his descendents…For it is his whole life that the Magus offers to Our Lady. The Cross is both Death and Generation, and it is on the Cross that the Rose blooms…”

The sacrifice must be a real death, a true Rosy Crucifixion, if it is to replace the more violent magic of the Osirian Age. I forbear further quotation, for the secret is concealed beneath many a veil throughout the Beast’s works, but it involves at least: a mastery of pranayama, allowing the postponement of orgasm until the magick working is performed at length and in properly exalted enthusiasm; skill in astral voyaging, so the astral body may be busy in its own plane also; perfection in dharana, so that one ray of the mind remains in perfect coordination on the symbol of the Holy Guardian Angel.

What happens, then, can be considered either the true, natural oceanic orgasm which the Patriarchal Age has tended to destroy – or a new and artificial creation produced by this complicated yoga. It’s the same debate we hear endlessly about acid: does it restore our “natural” form of perception, or does it “artificially” create a new form?

And, thus, we can understand Horus, the Crowned and Conquering Child, who is being created. He is “the Child” that Rose’s Cairo vision invoked; the “little child” that the Beast became after his bad trip to China; “the male child of perfect innocence and high intelligence” who was sacrificed an hundred and fifty times a year after 1912; the Beast himself; and also Aiwass, the Holy Guardian Angel, both an internal aspect of Crowley’s mind and a separate “Being…of angelic order…more than a man,” for the question posed by the materialist (“Inside or outside? Subjective or objective?”) loses meaning in that trance of Samadhi where all the opposites are transcended into a unity that is also a void.

XX – The Aeon

Be every Act an Act of Love and Worship. – The Book of Thoth

In an early issue of his magazine Equinox, the Beast wrote with uncharacteristic solemnity:

I. The world progresses by virtue of the appearance of Christs (geniuses).

II. Christs (geniuses) are men with super-consciousness of the highest order.

III. Super-consciousness of the highest order is obtainable by known methods.

Therefore, by employing the quintessence of known methods we cause the world to progress.

In the first issue, in a more characteristic vein, he wrote:

We place no reliance

On Virgin or Pigeon

Our method is Science

Our aim is Religion

He did his work seriously and humorously, stubbornly and flexibly, wisely and sometimes unwisely, synthesizing – from High Magick and from yoga, from Cabalism and the Koran, from experiments with hashish and peyote and nitrous oxide to years of study of the Tarot and comparative religion, slowly extracting “the quintessence of known methods.”

After him came Wilhelm Reich, who discovered the same quintessence independently, and was also hounded, vilified and slandered. And after Reich was Timothy, who finally let the djinn out of the bottle and in a decade changed the face of the world by a century’s worth.

But the Beast started the Revolution, and some of us now see that it is the essential Revolution, far more important than that of economics, and that he and his good buddy Aiwass defined it better than Marx or even better than the frontal-lobe anarchists, when they (he?) wrote in The Book of the Law:

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law…

To worship me take wine and strange drugs whereof I will tell my prophet, & be drunk thereof!…

There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt…

It is a lie, this folly against self…

I am alone: there is no God where I am…

Every man and every woman is a Star…

The word of Sin is restriction…

Remember all ye that existence is pure joy;

that all the sorrows are but shadows; they pass

and are done; but there is that which remains…

Love is the law, love under will…

For the Age of the Child is upon us; and those who seek to preserve the Aeon of Osiris and death are themselves only dying dinosaurs.

XXI – The Universe

And blessing and worship to the prophet of the lovely Star. – The Book of Thoth

And yet – and yet – Manson reminds us, our brothers and sisters in the Movement remind us, sometimes our own unexpected behavior reminds us: there have been such millennial voices often in the past and they have been heralds not of a Golden Dawn but only of a false dawn.

If there is on central lesson to be learned from the Beast, it is not really Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law, which has been around since Rabelais; not even the more profound and gnomic Every man and every woman is a Star; not even the formula of the Perfect Orgasm for which Norman has been searching so loudly and forlornly lo! these many years; it is rather his humor, his skepticism, his irony that reveled in the title of Beast and, even, at times, Ass; the rationality that warned against becoming “the prey of madness” by trusting one’s visions too quickly, and the common sense which said that, even if good and evil are identical on the Absolute plane, a man operating on the relative plane simply doesn’t enjoy a toothache or invent rationalizations to pick a brother’s pocket; the solemn warning that the sacrament is not completed until the Magician offers “the last drop of his life’s blood” to the Cup, and dies; but, above all these, the simple historical record which reveals that with all the ardor, all the dedication, all the passion he possessed, it still took eight years (including four months’ madness) before he broke down the wall that separates Ego from the true Self and that Self from the Universe.



Poetry: Aleister Crowley

Ave Adonai

[Dedicated to G. M. Marston]

Pale as the night that pales

In the dawn’s pearl-pure pavillion,

I wait for thee, with my dove’s breast

Shuddering, a god its bitter guest-

Have I not gilded my nails

And painted my lips with vermillion ?

Am I not wholly stript

Of the deeds and thoughts that obscure thee?

I wait for thee, my soul distraught

With aching for some nameless naught

In its most arcane crypt-

Am I not fit to endure thee?

Girded about the paps

With a golden girdle of glory,

Dost thou wait me, thy slave who am,

As a wolf lurks for a strayed white lamb?

The chain of the stars snaps,

And the deep of night is hoary!

Thou whose mouth is a flame

With its seven-edged sword proceeding,

Come ! I am writhing with despair

Like a snake taken in a snare,

Moaning thy mystical name

Till my tongue is torn and bleeding!

Have I not gilded my nails

And painted my lips with vermillion?

Yea ! thou art I; the deed awakes,

Thy lightening strikes; thy thunder breaks

Wild as the bride that wails

In the bridegroom’s plumed pavillion!


Pan to Artemis

Uncharmable charmer

Of Bacchus and Mars

In the sounding rebounding

Abyss of the stars!

O virgin in armour,

Thine arrows unsling

In the brilliant resilient

First rays of the spring!

By the force of the fashion

Of love, when I broke

Through the shroud, through the cloud,

Through the storm, through the smoke,

To the mountain of passion

Volcanic that woke —

By the rage of the mage

I invoke, I invoke!

By the midnight of madness: –

The lone-lying sea,

The swoon of the moon,

Your swoon into me,

The sentinel sadness

Of cliff-clinging pine,

That night of delight

You were mine, you were mine!

You were mine, O my saint,

My maiden, my mate,

By the might of the right

Of the night of our fate.

Though I fall, though I faint,

Though I char, though I choke,

By the hour of our power

I invoke, I invoke!

By the mystical union

Of fairy and faun,

Unspoken, unbroken –

The dust to the dawn! –

A secret communion

Unmeasured, unsung,

The listless, resistless,

Tumultuous tongue! –

O virgin in armour,

Thine arrows unsling,

In the brilliant resilient

First rays of the spring!

No Godhead could charm her,

But manhood awoke –

O fiery Valkyrie,

I invoke, I invoke!


The Neophyte

To-night I tread the unsubstantial way

That looms before me, as the thundering night

Falls on the ocean: I must stop, and pray

One little prayer, and then – what bitter fight

Flames at the end beyond the darkling goal?

These are my passions that my feet must read;

This is my sword, the fervour of my soul;

This is my Will, the crown upon my head.

For see! the darkness beckons: I have gone,

Before this terrible hour, towards the gloom,

Braved the wild dragon, called the tiger on

With whirling cries of pride, sought out the tomb

Where lurking vampires battened, and my steel

Has wrought its splendour through the gates of death

My courage did not falter: now I feel

My heart beat wave-wise, and my throat catch breath

As if I choked; some horror creeps between

The spirit of my will and its desire,

Some just reluctance to the Great Unseen

That coils its nameless terrors, and its dire

Fear round my heart; a devil cold as ice

Breathes somewhere, for I feel his shudder take

My veins: some deadlier asp or cockatrice

Slimes in my senses: I am half awake,

Half automatic, as I move along

Wrapped in a cloud of blackness deep as hell,

Hearing afar some half-forgotten song

As of disruption; yet strange glories dwell

Above my head, as if a sword of light,

Rayed of the very Dawn, would strike within

The limitations of this deadly night

That folds me for the sign of death and sin –

O Light! descend! My feet move vaguely on

In this amazing darkness, in the gloom

That I can touch with trembling sense. There shone

Once, in my misty memory, in the womb

Of some unformulated thought, the flame

And smoke of mighty pillars; yet my mind

Is clouded with the horror of this same

Path of the wise men: for my soul is blind

Yet: and the foemen I have never feared

I could not see (if such should cross the way),

And therefore I am strange: my soul is seared

With desolation of the blinding day

I have come out from: yes, that fearful light

Was not the Sun: my life has been the death,

This death may be the life: my spirit sight

Knows that at last, at least. My doubtful breath

Is breathing in a nobler air; I know,

I know it in my soul, despite of this,

The clinging darkness of the Long Ago,

Cruel as death, and closer than a kiss,

This horror of great darkness. I am come

Into this darkness to attain the light:

To gain my voice I make myself as dumb:

That I may see I close my outer sight:

So, I am here. My brows are bent in prayer:

I kneel already in the Gates of Dawn;

And I am come, albeit unaware,

To the deep sanctuary: my hope is drawn

From wells profounder than the very sea.

Yea, I am come, where least I guessed it so,

Into the very Presence of the Three

That Are beyond all Gods. And now I know

What spiritual Light is drawing me

Up to its stooping splendour. In my soul

I feel the Spring, the all-devouring Dawn,

Rush with my Rising. There, beyond the goal,

The Veil is rent!

Yes: let the veil be drawn.

All Things Beastly…

(Well of Daylight The Snow – Jean-Marie Poumeyrol)

Tis a Beastly affair for Wednesday… On to one of my favourite subjects…

On The Menu:

The Links

Part I of “The Great Beast – Aleister Crowley” – Robert Anton Wilson

Poetry: Aleister Crowley

Art: Jean-Marie Poumeyrol

Hope today finds you well.




The Links:

Aegean’s ritual prehistory..

Straight out of ‘Alien’: Giant nests perplex experts

Indians rush to temples to feed “thirsty” idols

Uh, what kind of gods are these again?


Part I: “The Great Beast – Aleister Crowley” – Robert Anton Wilson

Originally published in:Paul Krassner’s The Realist Issues 91-B, C, 92-A, B (1971-2)

O – The Fool

All ways are lawful to innocence. Pure folly is the key to initiation. – The Book of Thoth

Crowley: Pronounced with a crow so it rhymes with holy: Edward Alexander Crowley, b. 1875 d. 1947, known as Aleister Crowley, known also as Sir Aleister Crowley, Saint Aleister Crowley (of the Gnostic Catholic Church), Frater Perdurabo, Frater Ou Mh, To Mega Therion, Count McGregor, Count Vladimir Svareff, Chao Khan, Mahatma Guru Sri Paramahansa Shivaji, Baphomet, and Ipsissimus; obviously, a case of the ontological fidgets – couldn’t make up his mind who he really was; chiefly known as The Beast 666 or The Great Beast; friends and disciples celebrated his funeral with a Black Mass: or so the newspapers said.

Actually it was a Gnostic Catholic Mass (even John Symonds, Crowley’s most hostile biographer, admits that at most it could be called a Grey Mass, not a Black Mass – observe the racist and Christian-chauvinist implications in this terminology, but it was certainly not an orthodox R.C. or Anglican mass, I mean, cripes, the priestess took off her clothes in one part of it, buck naked, and they call that a Mass, gloriosky!

So the town council had a meeting – this was the Ridge, in Hastings, England, 1947, not 1347 – and they passed an ordinance that no such heathen rites would ever be tolerated in any funeral services in their town, not never; I sort of picture them in the kitch Alpine-Balkan garb of Universal Studios’ classic monster epics, and I see Aleister himself, in his coffin, wearing nothing less spectacular than the old black cape of Bela Lugosi: fangs showing beneath his sensual lips: but his eyes closed in deep and divine Samadhi.

Because that’s the sort of images that come to mind when Aleister Crowley is mentioned: this damnable man who identified himself with the Great Beast in St. John’s Revelations in an age when the supernatural is umbilically connected with Universal Studios, Hearst Sunday Supplement I-walked-with-a-zombie-in-my-maidenform-bra gushings and, God’s socks, Today’s Astrology (“Listen, Scoorpio: This month you must look before you leap and remember that prudence is wiser than rashness: Don’t trust that Taurus female in you office” – I repeat: God’s socks and spats); this divine man who became the Logos when Logos was just a word to pencil into Double-Crostics on rainy Sundays; this damnable and divine paradox of a Crowley!

Listen, some critic (I forgot who) wrote of Lugosi “acting with total sincerity and a kind of demented cornball poetry” and the words, like the old crimson-lined black cape, seem tailored equally well for the shoulders of Master Therion, To Mega Therion, the Great Beast, Aleister Crowley. This is the final degradation: this avatar of anarchy, this epitome of rebellion, this incarnation of inconsistency, this man Crowley whom his contemporaries called “The King of Depravity,” The Wickedest Man in the World,” “A Cannibal at Large,” “A Man We’d Like to Hang,” “A Human Beast”; and, with some anti-climax, “A Pro-German and Revolutionary.”

Now, to us, he is quaint. Worse: he is Camp. Worse yet: he is corny.

We don’t even believe his boast that he performed human sacrifice 150 times a year, starting in 1912.

None of these cordial titles was invented by myself. All were used, in Crowley’s life-time, by the newspaper John Bull, in it’s heroic and nigh-interminable campaign to save England from the Beast’s pernicious influence. See P.R. Stephenson, The Legend of Aleister Crowley.

I — The Magician

The True Self is the meaning of the True Will: know Thyself through Thy Way. – The Book of Thoth

For there is no clear way, even on the most superficial level of the gross external data, to say what Edward Alexander Crowley (who called himself Aleister: and other names) really was trying to do with his life and communicate to his fellows.

Witness: here is an Englishman (never forget that: an Englishman, and bloody English at times he could be) who in the stodgiest year, of the dreariest decade of the age we call Victoria, commits technical High Treason, joins the Carlists, accepts a knighthood from Don Carlos himself, denounces as illegitimate all the knighthoods granted by “the Hanoverian usurper” (he also called her a “dumpy German hausfrau” – poor Vicky), yes, and then for years and decades afterward continues, with owl-like obstinacy, with superlative stubbornness, with ham heroism, with promethean pigheadedness, to sign himself “Sir Aleister” – a red flag in the face of John Bull.

But more: the same romantic reactionary, the same very parfet bogus knight, hears that the French authorities, scandalized by the heroic size of the genital on Epstein’s statue of Oscar Wilde, have covered it with a butterfly – and, bien bueno, you guessed it, there he is, at twilight with hammer and chisel, sworn enemy of the Philistines, removing the butterfly and restoring the statue to its pristine purity – but why by all the pot-bellied gods in China, why did he turn that gesture into a joke by walking, the same night, into London’s stuffiest restaurant, wearing the same butterfly over the crotch of his own trousers?

A Harlequin, then, we might pronounce him, ultimately: the archetypal Batty Bard superimposed upon the classic Eccentric Englishman? And with a touch of the Sardonic Sodomist – for didn’t he smuggle homosexual jokes (hidden in puns, codes, acrostics and notarikons) into his various volumes of mystical poetry?

Didn’t it even turn out that his great literary “discovery” the Bagh-I-Muattar [The Scented Garden] was not a discovery at all but an invention – all of it, all, all! from the pious but pederastic Persian original, through the ingenious but innocent English major who translated it (and died heroically in the Boer War), up to the high Anglican clergyman who wrote the Introduction saluting its sanctity but shivering at its salacity – all, all from his own cunning and creative cranium?

Yes: and he even published one volume, White Stains (Krafft-Ebing in verse) with a poker-faced prologue pronouncing that “The Editor hopes the Mental Pathologists, for whose eyes alone this treatise is destined, will spare no precaution to prevent it falling into other hands” – and, hot damn, arranged that the author’s name on the title-page would be given as “George Archibald,” a pious uncle whom he detested.

Sophomore pranks? Yes, but in 1912, at the age of 37, he was still at the same game: that was the year he managed to sell Hail Mary, a volume of versatile verses celebrating the Virgin, to London’s leading Catholic publishers, Burns and Oates: and he even waited until it was favorably reviewed in the Catholic press (“a plenteous and varied feast for the lovers of tuneful verse,” enthused the Catholic Times) before revealing that the real author was not a cloistered nun or an uncommonly talented Bishop, but himself, Satan’s Servant, the Great Beast, the Demon Crowley.

But grok in its fullness this fact: he really did it. You or I might conceive such a jest, but he carried it out: writing the pious verses with just the proper tone of sugary sanctimoniousness to actually sell to a Papist publisher and get cordial reviews in the Romish press – as if Baudelaire had forced himself to write a whole volume of Edgar Guest: And just for the sake of a horse-laugh?

To understand this conundrum of a Crowley we will have to Dig.

II — The High Priestess

Purity is to live only to the Highest: and the Highest is All; be thou as Artemis to Pan. – The Book of Thoth

These jokes sometimes seem to have an obscure point, and one is uneasily suspicious that there might be Hamlet-like method in this madness. Even the alternate identities can be considered more than games: They might be Zen counter-games. Here’s the Beast’s own explanation of the time he became Count Vladimir Svareff, from The Confessions of Aleister Crowley: An Autohagiography.

“I wanted to increase my knowledge of mankind. I knew how people treated a young man from Cambridge. I had thoroughly appreciated the servility of tradesmen, although I was too generous and too ignorant to realize the extent of their dishonesty and rapacity. Now I wanted to see how people would behave to a Russian nobleman. I must say here that I repeatedly used this method of disguise – it has been amazingly useful in multiplying my points of view about humanity. Even the most broad-minded people are necessarily narrow in this one respect. They may know how all sorts of people treat them, but they cannot know, except at second hand, how those same people treat others.”

And the Hail Mary caper has its own sane-insane raison d’etre:

“I must not be thought exactly insincere, though I had certainly no shadow of belief in any of the Christian dogmas… I simply wanted to see the world through the eyes of a devout Catholic, very much as I had done with the decadent poet of White Stains, the Persian mystic of Bagh-i-Muattar, and so on… I did not see why I should be confined to one life. How can one hope to understand the world if one persists in regarding it from the conning tower of ones own “personality?”

Just so: the procedure is even scientific these days (Role-Playing, you know) and is a central part of Psychodrama and Group Dynamics. “You have to go out of your mind before you can come to your senses,” as Tim Leary (or Fritz Perls) once said. Sure: you can even become Jesus and Satan at the same time: Ask Charles the Son of Man.

For Artemis, the goddess of nature, is eternally virgin: she only surrended once, and then to Pan: and this is a clue to the Beast’s purpose in his bloody sacrifices.

III — The Empress

This is the Harmony of the Universe, that Love unites the Will to create with the Understanding of that Creation. – The Book of Thoth

The infant Gargantua was sent to a school run by the Plymouth Brethren, the narrowly Fundamentalist sect to which his parents belonged. He commends the school in these cordial words from his essay “A Boyhood in Hell”:

“May the maiden that passes it be barren and the pregnant woman that beholdeth it abort! May the birds of the air refuse to fly over it! May it stand as a curse, as a fear, as a hate, among men. May the wicked dwell therein! May the light of the sun be withheld therefrom and the light of the moon not lighten it! May it become the home of the shells of the dead and may the demons of the pit inhabit it! May it be accursed, accursed – accursed for ever and ever.’

One gathers that the boy Alick was not happy there. In fact, the climax of his miseries came when somebody told the Headmasters that he had seen young Crowley drunk on hard liquor. Our anti-hero was put on a diet of bread and waters and placed in coventry (i.e., nobody, student or teacher, was allowed to talk to him), without being told what offense he committed; this Christian punishment (for his own good, of course) lasted one full year – at which point his health collapsed and a relative not totally committed to Plymouth Brethren theology insisted that he be removed from that environment before it killed him.

This incident is a favorite with the Beast’s unsympathetic critics; they harp on it gleefully, to convey that they are not the sort of religious bigots who would torture a child in this fashion; and they also use it to explain his subsequent antipathy to anything bearing the names or coming under the auspices, of “Jesus” or “Christ.”

It was this school, they say, which warped his mind and turned him to the service of the devil; a nice theory for parlor analysts or term papers, but it has the defect of not being quite true. The King of Depravity never did embrace Satan, as we shall see, and he kept a very nice mind full of delicate distinctions and discriminations; of this experience he himself says, “I did not hate Jesus and God; I hated the Jesus and God of the people I hated.”

But now we jump ahead, past adolescence (skipping the time he seduced a housemaid on his mother’s bed; sorry, Freudians), past Cambridge (missing a nice 1890-style student riot) and past mountain-climbing (by 1901, he and his favorite fellow-climber, Oscar Eckenstein, held most of the climbing records in the world between them – all but one to be exact); we came now to the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn; caveat lector; we enter the realm of Mystery, Vision – and Hallucination; the reader is the only judge of what can be believed from here on.

IV — The Emperor

Find thyself in every Star. Achieve thou every possibility. – The Book of Thoth

It seems that the Golden Dawn was founded by Robert Wentworth Little, a high Freemason, based on papers he rescued from a hidden drawn in London’s Freemason Hall during a fire. No: it wasn’t Little at all, but Wynn Wescott, a Rosicrucian, acting on behalf of a mysterious Fraulein Sprenger in Germany, who herself probably represented the original Illuminati of Adam Weishaupt.

No: not so either: behind the Golden Dawn was actually a second Order, the Rose of Ruby and Cross of Gold – i.e. the original medieval Rosicrucians still in business at the old stand; and behind them was the Third Order, the Great White Brotherhood – i.e., the Nine Unknown Men of Hindu lore – the true rulers of earth, one can only say, if the last theory be true, that the Great White Brotherhood are Great White Fuckups.

The true true story of the Illuminati, Rosicrucians etc. – or another damned lie – is given in Illuminatus: or Laughing Buddha Jesus Phallus Inc., by Robert J. Shea and this writer, to be published by Dell this year, unless the Nine Unknown Men suppress it.

Well anyway, whenever the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn came from, there it was almost practicing in the open in London in the 1890′s, with such illustrious members as Florence Farr (the actress), Arthur Machen (the horror-story writer: you must have read his Great God Pan?), George Cecil Jones (a respectable chemist by day and a clandestine alchemist by night) and William Butler Yeats (a poet who thought his verse was superior to Crowley’s, he is described in Autohagiography as “a disheveled demonologist who could have given much more care to his appearance without being accused of dandyism.”).

In 1898, the King of Depravity was admitted to the Order: Crowley took the new name Frater Perdurabo which means Brother I-Will-Endure-To-The-End; he later changed it to Frater OuMh or Brother Not Yet – and began acquiring great proficiency in such arts as the invocation of angels and demons, making himself invisible, journeying in the astral body and such-like Wonders of the Occult.

In one critical operation of magick the Wickedest Man in the World failed abjectly in those early days; and this was the most important work of all. It consisted in achieving the Knowledge and Conversation of one’s Holy Guardian Angel – what, precisely, that may mean will be discussed later.

The usual operation, as found in The Book of Sacred Magick of Abra-Melin the Mage, requires six months’ hard work and is somewhat more grueling than holding the Ibis position of Hatha Yoga for that interlude, or working out pi to the thousandth place in you head without using paper or pencil. The beast’s critics like to proclaim that he couldn’t manage this because he was incapable of obeying Abra-Melin’s commandment of chastity for the necessary 180 days. We will later learn how true that claim actually is.

Invisibility, by the way, isn’t as hard as Lamont Cranston’s Tibetan teachers implied. After only a few months practice, guided by the Beast’s training manuals, I have achieved limited success twice already; and my cats, Simon and Garfunkel, do it constantly. There is no need to look for mysteries when the truth is often right out in the light of day.

V — The Hierophant

Be thou athlete with the eight limbs of Yoga; for without these thou art not disciplined for any fight. – The Book of Thoth

Early in February, 1901, in Guadalajara, Mexico, the Beast began seriously working on dharana, the yoga of concentration. The method was that long used in India: holding one single image in the mind – a red triangle – and banishing all other words or pictures. This is in no wise any easy task, and I, for one would have much more respect for Aleister’s critics and slanderers if there were any shred of evidence that they ever attempted such self-discipline, and, attempting it, managed to stay with it until they achieved results.

For instance, after three weeks of daily practice, the Beast recorded in his diary that he had concentrated that day for 59 minutes with exactly 25 “breaks” or wanderings from the triangle: 25 breaks may not sound so great to those who haven’t tried this; a single hour, however, will convince them that 3600 breaks, or one per second is close to average for a beginner.

Toward the end of April, the Beast logged 23 minutes with 9 breaks; on May 6th, 32 minutes and 10 breaks. I repeat: anyone who think Acid or Jesus or Scientology has remade his or her life ought to attempt a few weeks of this; it is the clearest and most humiliating revelation of the compulsive neurosis of the “normal” ego.

On August 6 the Beast arrived in Ceylon, still working on daily dharana – oh yes, in Honolulu he’d had an affair with a married woman, later celebrated in his sonnet sequence Alice: An Adultery, published under the auspices of his fictitious “Society for the Propagation of Religious Truth”: his critics always mention that, to prove that he wasn’t sincere; one sometimes gets the cynical notion that these critics are either eunuchs or hypocrites.

Under the guidance of Sri Parananda and an old friend, Allan Bennett, now the Buddhist monk Maitreya Ananda, he plunged into the other “seven limbs” of yoga. I say that his mountain-climbing involved less self-discipline. I will not argue; I will give a hint only. Here are the first two steps in beginning to do pranayama:

1. Learn to breathe through your two nostrils alternately. When this becomes easy, practice exhaling through the right nozzle for no less than 15 seconds and then inhaling through the left orifice for a like time. Practice until you can do this without strain for 20 or 30 minutes.

2. Now begin retention of breath between inhalation and exhalation. Increase the period of retention until you can inhale for 10 seconds, retain for 30 second and exhale for 20 seconds. This proportion is important: if you inhale for as long as, or longer than, the exhalation, you are screwing up. Practice until you can do this – comfortably – for an hour.

Got it? Good; now you are ready to start doing the real exercises of pranayama. For instance, you can add the “third limb,” asana, which consists of sitting like a rock, no muscle moving anywhere; the Hindus recommend starting with a contortion that seems to have been devised by Sacher-Masoch himself, but choose a position that seems comfortable at first, if you want – it will turn into Hell soon enough.

All this has a point, of course; when pranayama and asana mastered, you can begin to do dharana without constant humiliating failures. Congratulations: now you can add the other “five limbs.” Of course, the temptation (especially after your foot is no longer merely asleep but has progressed to a state gruesomely reminiscent of rigor mortis) is to decide that “There isn’t anything in yoga after all” or “I just can’t do it” and maybe there’s something in Christian Science or the Process or probably another acid trip would really get you over the hump.+

Footnote: +Oh yes, brethren and sistern, we have known people capable of much rationalization. Back in 1901, even, the Beast discovered that some of the “lesser yogis,” as he called them, used hashish to fuel the last gallop from dharana to dhyana; and he later recommended this to his own disciples – but always with the provision that the results so obtained should be regarded as an indication and foreshadowing of what was sought, not as a substitute for true attainment. The Beast achieved dhyana, the non-ego trance, on October 2, 1901, less than 8 months after beginning serious dharana in Guadalajara.

VI — The Lovers

…rest in Simplicity, and listen in the Silence. – The Book of Thoth

This may be getting heavy, but it has to be endured for a while before the band starts playing again. Specifically, we should have some understanding of what we mean by dhyana and what the Beast has accomplished in those 8 months. The best analysis is probably that given by the Wickedest Man in the World himself in his Confessions:

“The problem is how to stop thinking; for the theory is that the mind is a mechanism for dealing symbolically with impressions; its construction is such that one is tempted to take these symbols for reality. “That is, we manufacture units such as the inch, the chair, the self, etc., in order to organize our sense-impressions into coherent wholes, but the mind which performs this kind service is so built that it cannot then escape its own constructs. Having imagined inches and chairs and selves, the mind then perceives them “out there” in the physical world and finds it hard to credit that they exist only in the mind’s own sorting machinery. “Conscious thought, therefore, is fundamentally false and prevents one from perceiving reality. The numerous practices of yoga are simply dodges to help one acquire the knack of slowing down the current of thought and ultimately stopping it altogether.”

The mind’s self-hypnosis, of course, arises anew as soon as one comes out of dhyana. One never retains the ego-less and world-less essence of dhyana; one retains an impression thereof polluted by the mind’s pet theories and most resonant images. The Beast calls this adulterated after-effect of dhyana “mixing the planes” and regards it as the chief cause of the horrors perpetrated by religious nuts on the rest of us throughout history:

“Mohammed’s conviction that his visions were of imperative importance to “salvation” made him a fanatic… The spiritual energy derived from the high trances makes the seer a formidable force; and unless he be aware that interpretation is due only to the exaggeration of his own tendencies of thought, he will seek to impose it on others, and so delude his disciples, Pervert their minds and prevent their development… “In my system the pupil is taught to analyze all ideas and abolish them by philosophical skepticism before he is allowed to undertake the exercises that lead to dhyana.”

By 1904, the Beast had come to the conclusion that all he had seen and performed, among the Magicians and among the yogis, could be explained by combining the known psychology with the emerging beginnings of psycho-chemistry. He had pushed mysticism as far as one can, and retained his Victorian Rationalism.

Then came the cataclysm of Cairo.

VII — The Chariot

The Issue of the Vulture, Two-in-One, conveyed; this is the Chariot of Power. – The Book of Thoth

Ever since his initiation into the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in 1898, the Beast has been practicing astral voyaging almost daily. This is considerably easier than pranayama, asana, dharana, and it’s good clean fun even from the beginning.

If you are an aspirant, or a dupe, merely sit in a comfortable chair, in a room where you won’t be interrupted, close you eyes, and slowly envision your “astral body,” whatever the blazes that is, standing before you. Make every detail clear and precise; any fuzziness can get you into trouble later.

Now transfer your consciousness to this second body – I don’t know why, but some people stick at this point – and rise upward, through the ceiling, through the other rooms in the building, through the stratosphere, until you have left the physical universe entirely – to hell with it, Nixon and his astronauts are taking it over anyway – and find yourself in the astral realm, where NASA isn’t likely to follow with their flags and other tribal totems.

Approach any astral figures you see and question them closely, especially about any matters of which you wish knowledge not ordinarily available to you.

Return to the earth-body, awake, and record carefully that which has transpired. The diary of such astral journeys, carefully transcribed, is the key to all progress in High Magick, once the student learns to decipher his own visions.

The skeptical reader, if there are any skeptics left in this gullible generation, might point out that this process begins as an exercise of imagination and that there is no reason to think it ever crosses the line to reality. Quite so: but that objection does not diminish the value of the visions obtained.

The Beast has been at some pains to write a little book called “777″ which is a copious catalog, in convenient table form, of the 32 major “astral planes” and their typical scenery, events and inhabitants. Using one’s own Magical Diary and the tables in “777″ together with a few standard reference works on comparative religion, one can quickly discover where one has been, who has been there before and what major religions were founded on the basis of some earlier visitor’s account of what he had seen there.

One need not hold any occult hypothesis about these visions; you can even say that you have been exploring Carl Jung’s “Collective Unconscious” – or, more fashionably, that you have been deciphering the ethological record of the DNA code (Tim Leary’s favorite theory about LSD voyages, which fits these astral trips just as neatly). The important discipline is to avoid “mixing the planes” and confusing your explanation with the actual vision itself; or, as the Beast says in Liber O:

“In this book it is spoken of the Sephioth, and the Paths, of Spirits and Conjurations; of Gods, Spheres, Planes and many other things which may or may not exist.

“It is immaterial whether they exist or not. By doing certain things certain results follow; students are most earnestly warned against attributing objective reality or philosophical validity to any of them…

“The Student, if he attains any success in the following practices, will find himself confronted by things (ideas or beings) too glorious or too dreadful to be described. It is essential that he remain the master of all that he beholds, hears, or conceives; otherwise he will be the slave of the illusion and the prey of madness…

“The Magician may go a long time being fooled and flattered by the Astrals that he has himself modified or manufactured… He will become increasingly interested in himself, imagine himself to be attaining one initiation after another. His Ego will expand unchecked, till he seems to himself to have heaven at his feet…”

The teachers of Zen have the proper tactics against this danger of grandiosity: Crowley’s independent discovery of this strategy led to those behaviors – the jokes, the “blasphemies,” the shifts in name and identity – which led to his reputation as a kook, a Satanist, and the Wickedest Man in the World.

Having watched the decline into dogmatism and self-aggrandizement of various heroes of the New Wave of dope and occultism, some of us are maybe ready to see that the Beast’s incessant profane mockery against himself and his Gods was a necessary defense against this occupational hazard of the visionary life.

But then came the Mystification of Cairo – and beyond it, the Mindfuck in China… and the discovery of the value of human sacrifice.

VIII – Adjustment

Balance against each thought its exact opposite. For the Marriage of these is the Annihilation of Illusion. – The Book of Thoth

In March, 1904, the Beast and his first wife, Rose, were in Cairo, and he was trying to teach her some Magick, a subject which bored her profoundly. And now this is the part we warned you about, take it or leave it, this is what seems to have happened – Rose went into a kind of trance and began murmuring various disjointed phrases, including “It’s about the Child” and “They are waiting for you.”

It soon developed that some god or other was trying to communicate; Crowley asked 12 questions to determine which god and, gulp, her answers were correct, consistent and revealed a knowledge of Egyptology which in her conscious mind she did not possess.

Like: “What are his moral qualities?” “Force and fire.” “What opposes him?” “Deep blue” – until one god emerged that fit the box just as sure as Clark Kent fits the phone booth at the Daily Planet; Ra-Hoor-Khuit, or Horus in his War God aspect.

The Beast then took Rose to the Boulak Museum and asked her to pick out the god in question. She walked past several statues of Horus – which The King of Depravity observed stolidly, although, he says, “with silent glee” – and then (shiver!) she stopped before Stele 666, Ra-Hoor-Khuit. “This is him,” she said.

Sorry about that, fellow rationalists.

And, of course, alas and goddam it, 666 – the Number of the Beast in St. John’s Revelations – was Crowley’s own magick number and had been for years.

Those who want to invoke the word “coincidence” to cover the rags of their ignorance are welcome to do so. Some of us have a new word lately, synchronicity, coined by no less than psychologist Carl Jung and physicist Wolfgang Pauli – and I’ve read their books and must admit I came out as confused as I went in; as far as this brain can comprehend, coincidence is meaning-less correspondence, and synchronicity is meaning-ful correspondence, and if that makes you feel superior to the custard-headed clods who still say coincidence, you’re welcome to it.

And there’s more: when the Beast acknowledged Ra-Hoor-Khuit on the other side of the astral phone hook-up, he was turned over to an underling, one Aiwass, an angel, who told him among other things that the true Word of Power isn’t abra-ca-dabra but abra-ha-dabra and the letter adds up to 418, which was the number of Crowley’s home on Loch Ness in Scotland; and Aiwass’s own name adds up to 98, which is also the number of love and will, the two chief words in his total communication, which is known as The Book of the Law – But enough; the proofs, mathematical and cabalistic and coincidental (if you must) run on for pages.

In summary, the Beast had been playing a Game against himself for six years, since 1898, invoking the miraculous and the proving after the fact that it was “only” his mind.

Now he had to begin considering that he had made himself the center of an “astral” field effect, having the qualities of an intelligence greater than his, and signifying same by multi-lingual and numerological correspondences coming not from “inside” but from “outside”: Rose’s mind, the “independent” decisions of the curators of the Boulak Museum and, then, a certain Samuel bar Aiwass.

For, in 1918, Crowley had adopted the name To Mega Therion, which means The Great Beast in Greek, and adds to 666, and, in an article in The International, he asked if any of his readers could find a word or phrase of similar meaning, in Hebrew, which would also add to 666.

He was himself no mean cabalist and had tried all sorts of Hebrew synonyms for “beast” but none of them added to anything like 666; yet the answer came in the mail – Tau, Resh, Yod, Vau, Nun, equal 666 – and it was signed Samuel bar Aiwas.

Aiwas is the Hebrew equivalent of Aiwass, and also adds to 93, the number of his Holy Guardian Angel.

—- Continued Tomorrow—-


Poetry: Aleister Crowley (1875-1947)


Here, in the coppice, oak and pine

And mystic yew and elm are found,

Sweeping the skies, that grew divine

With the dark wind’s despairing sound,

The wind that roars from the profound,

And smites the mountain-tops, and calls

Mute spirits to black festivals,

And feasts in valleys iron-bound,

Desolate crags, and barren ground;–

There in the strong storm-shaken grove

Swings the pale censer-fire for love.

The foursquare altar, roughly hewn,

And overlaid with beaten gold,

Stands in the gloom; the stealthy tune

Of singing maidens overbold

Desires mad mysteries untold,

With strange eyes kindling, as the fleet

Implacable untiring feet

Weave mystic figures manifold

That draw down angels to behold

The moving music, and the fire

Of their intolerable desire.

For, maddening to fiercer thought,

The fiery limbs requicken, wheel

In formless furies, subtly wrought

Of swifter melodies than steel

That flashes in the fight: the peal

Of amorous laughters choking sense,

And madness kissing violence,

Ring like dead horsemen; bodies reel

Drunken with motion; spirits feel

The strange constraint of gods that clip

From Heaven to mingle lip and lip.

The gods descend to dance; the noise

Of hungry kissings, as a swoon,

Faints for excess of its own joys,

And mystic beams assail the moon,

With flames of their infernal noon;

While the smooth incense, without breath,

Spreads like some scented flower of death,

Over the grove; the lover’s boon

Of sleep shall steal upon them soon,

And lovers’ lips, from lips withdrawn,

Seek dimmer bosoms till the dawn.

Yet on the central altar lies

The sacrament of kneaded bread,

With blood made one, the sacrifice

To those, the living, who are dead–

Strange gods and goddesses, that shed

Monstrous desires of secret things

Upon their worshippers, from wings

One lucent web of light, from head

One labyrinthine passion-fed

Palace of love, from breathing rife

With secrets of forbidden life.

But not the sunlight, nor the stars,

Nor any light but theirs alone,

Nor iron masteries of Mars,

Nor Saturn’s misconceiving zone,

Nor any planet’s may be shown,

Within the circle of the grove,

Where burn the sanctities of love:

Nor may the foot of man be known,

Nor evil eyes of mothers thrown

On maidens that desire the kiss

Only of maiden Artemis.

But horned and huntress from the skies,

She bends her lips upon the breeze,

And pure and perfect in her eyes,

Burn magical virginity’s

Sweet intermittent sorceries.

When the slow wind from her sweet word

In all their conchéd ears is heard.

And like the slumber of the seas,

There murmur through the holy trees

The kisses of the goddess keen,

And sighs and laughters caught between.

For, swooning at the fervid lips

Of Artemis, the maiden kisses

Sobs and the languid body slips

Down to enamelled wildernesses.

Fallen and loose the shaken tresses;

Fallen the sandal and girdling gold,

Fallen the music manifold

Of moving limbs and strange caresses,

And deadly passion that possesses

The magic ecstasy of these

Mad maidens, tender as blue seas.

Night spreads her yearning pinions,

The baffled day sinks blind to sleep;

The evening breeze outswoons the sun’s

Dead kisses to the swooning deep.

Upsoars the moon; the flashing steep

Of Heaven is fragrant for her feet;

The perfume of the grove is sweet

As slumbering women furtive creep

To bosoms where small kisses weep,

And find in fervent dreams the kiss

Most memoried of Artemis.

Impenetrable pleasure dies

Beneath the madness of new dreams;

The slow sweet breath is turned to sighs

More musical than many streams

Under the moving silver beams,

Fretted with stars, thrice woven across.

White limbs in amorous slumber toss,

Like sleeping foam, whose silver gleams

On motionless dark seas; it seems

As if some gentle spirit stirred,

Their lazy brows with some swift word.

So, in the secret of the shrine,

Night keeps them nestled, so the gloom

Laps them in waves as smooth as wine,

As glowing as the fiery womb

Of some young tigress, dark as doom,

And swift as sunrise. Love’s content

Builds its own monument,

And carves above its vaulted tomb

The Phoenix on her fiery plume,

To their own souls to testify

Their kisses’ immortality.



Turn back from safety, in my love abide,

Whose lips are warm as when, a virgin bride

I clung to thee ashamed and very glad,

Whose breasts are lordlier for the pain they had,

Whose arms cleave closer than thy spouse’s own!

Thy spouse–O lover, kiss me, and atone!

All my veins burst for love, my ripe breasts beat

And lay their bleeding blossoms at thy feet!

Spurn me no more! O bid these strangers go;

Turn to my lips till their cup overflow;

Hurt me with kisses, kill me with desire,

Consume me and destroy me with the fire

Of blasting passion straining at the heart,

Touched to the core by sweetness, that smart

Bitten by fiery snakes, whose poisonous breath

Swoons in the midnight, and dissolves to death!


Turn to me, touch me, mix thy very breath

With mine to mingle floods of fiery dew

With flames of purple, like the sea shot through

With golden glances of a fiercer star.

Turn to me, bend above me; you may char

These olive shoulders with an old-time kiss,

And fix thy mouth upon me for such bliss

Of sudden rage rekindled. Turn again,

And make delight the minister of pain,

And pain the father of a new delight,

And light a lamp of torture for the night

Too grievous to be borne without a cry

To rend the very bowels of the sky

And make the archangel gasp–a sudden pang,

Most like a traveller stricken by the fang

Of the black adder whose squat head springs up,

A flash of death, beneath a cactus cup.

Ah turn, my bosom for thy love is cold;

My arms are empty, and my lips can hold

No converse with thee far away like this.

O for that communing pregnant with a kiss

That is reborn when lips are set together

To link our souls in one desirous tether,

And weld our very bodies into one.


The first cool kiss, within the water cold

That draws its music from some bubbling well,

Looks long, looks deadly, looks desirable,

The touch that fires, the next kiss, and the whole

Body embracing, symbol of the soul,

And all the perfect passion of an hour.

Turn to me, pluck that amaranthine flower,

And leave the doubtful blossoms of the sky!

You dare not kiss me! dare not draw you nigh

Lest I should lure you to remain! nor speak

Lest you should catch the blood within your cheek

Mantling. You dared enough–so long ago!–

When to my blossom body clean as snow

You pressed your bosom till desire was pain,

And–then–that midnight! you did dare remain

Though all my limbs were bloody with your mouth

That tore their flesh to satiate its drouth,

That was not thereby satisfied! And now

A pallid coward, with sly, skulking brow,

You must leave Sodom for your spouse’s sake.

Coward and coward and coward; who would take

The best flower of my life and leave me so,

Still loving you–Ah! weak–and turn to go

For fear of such a God! O blind! O fool!

To heed these strangers and to be the tool

Of their smooth lies and monstrous miracles.

O break this bondage and cast off their spells!

Five righteous! Thou a righteous man! A jest!

A righteous man–you always loved me best,

And even when lured by lips of wanton girls

Would turn away and sigh and touch my curls,

And slip half-conscious to the old embrace.

And now you will not let me see your face

Or hear your voice or touch you. Ah! the hour!

He moves. Come back, come back, my life’s one flower!

Come back. One kiss before you leave me. So!

Stop–turn–one little kiss before you go;

It is my right–you must. Oh no! Oh no!

(Well of Daylight In a Fort Jean-Marie Poumeyrol)

On the Road to Mysteries…


Well here we are on Tuesday. I am happy to share Jofra with you if you have never seen his artwork. He is a favourite here at Caer Llwydd. Truly wonderful stuff.

Our Poet today is Joumana Haddad. She is a resident of Beirut, talented and gifted I would say.

We are moving further down the line with our excursion into the Autumn mysteries of Eleusis… more coming on that end.

Spent the evening talking to Rowan. It was enjoyable. He is moving along at leaps and bounds, and making connections that I didn’t until my 30′s. Other times he is every bit a teen ager going through the changes. I read him a chapter out of Pinchbecks’ “Breaking Open The Head”…. dealing with the transistion from the mythic that Shakespeare was recording in his plays. The family shares a passion for Midsummers’ Night Dream, and Mr. Pinchbecks’ take on the subject was a novel new twist on the situation.

Rowan is starting to work on his understanding of the Tarot. We discuss a card a night after he has investigated and noted down his impressions. Not ready to do readings yet, but we will get there…

More Later, Wood to chop, Water to carry.




On The Menu:

The Links

Article: The Eleusinian Mysteries: Healing and Transformation

Poetry: Joumana Haddad

Art: Franciscus Johannes GIjsbertus Van Den Berg: Johfra

Johfra Bosschart was born in Rotterdam, Holland on December 15, 1919, and died in Fleurac, France on November 6, 1998 at the age of 78. He signed his works “Johfra,” an acrostic of his full name Franciscus Johannes Gijsbertus Van Den Berg. He sometimes added his mother’s maiden name, “Bosschart,” to his paintings as well. The founder of the now defunct “Meta-Realist” group, he described his own works as “Surrealism based on studies of psychology, religion, the Bible, astrology, antiquity, magic, witchcraft, mythology and occultism.” An autobiography of Johfra Bosschart, “Symphony Fantastique,” ISBN: 90 804422016 (de Verbeelding/Woerden) has been available since 1998.


The Links

Thee Sigil Garden…

The drugs did work

Greenland’s glaciers have been shrinking for 100 years: study

Decimals and Logarithms in the Works?

Oliver the Humanzee?


(Pan Woodland God)


The Eleusinian Mysteries: Healing and Transformation

Major Events of the Myth

+Kore (in her pubescent state) is picking flowers with the other *Virgins including Artemis and the daughters of Ocean on the Nysian Plain.

+Hades makes a deal with Zeus and carries her off in his golden chariot,

+Hecate in her cave and Helios [the Sun} hear her cries.

+Demeter, searching for her.

+Hecate, flame in hand, tells Demeter she heard a cry.

+Helios reveals to Demeter that Zeus gave Kore to Hades.

+Demeter, hearing of her fate, tears the veil from her divine hair, throws a black cloak (the mantle of death) over herself.

+Demeter, carrying blazing torches, searches the earth for nine days, refusing ambrosia, nectar and the bath.

+Demeter, disguised, avoids the gods, dwells with mortals.

+Demeter, inconsolable, by the Virgin’s Well (Well of *Beautiful Dances ), is invited to the Palace by Celeus’ four daughters.

+Demeter claims to be a Cretan, has escaped from pirates.

+Daughters and Metaneira invite her to Celeus’ Palace to nurse the infant boy Demophoon.

+Entering Temple, Demeter refuses Throne.

+Demeter mourns on a ram’s fleece stool. Iambe/ Baubo induces laughter by the bawdy display of her pudenda.

+Demeter refuses wine, asks for barley water with glechon.

+Demeter nurses Demophoon on ambrosia and burns him in the fire [but he isn’t harmed].

+Discovered by Metaneira, Demeter throws child to the floor, reveals herself as the Goddess, letting down her hair.

+Demeter establishes battle games for Celeus’ kingdom.

+Demeter demands a Temple to institute her rites which, when performed, will conciliate her wrath.

+Celeus builds a Temple.

+Demeter mourns Persephone for a year at the Temple.

+Demeter declares a year of famine.

+Gods, lacking offerings, protest. Demeter demands Persephone’s return.

+Zeus sends Hermes to the Underworld for Persephone.

+Hades releases Persephone. Because she’s eaten a pomegranate seed, she must return to Hades.

+Zeus promises to honor Demeter and guarantees that Persephone will be with her 2/3 of the year.

+Demeter demonstrates the performance of her rites, teaches the Mysteries and gives the gift of grain to Triptolemus


(The Reconciliation Of Titania And Oberon)


Poetry: Joumana Haddad

Wildcats shall meet with hyenas;

goat-demons shall call to each other.

There too Lilith shall repose,

and find a place to rest.

Isaiah 34:14

I am Lilith, returned from her exile.

I am Lilith, returned from the prison of white oblivion, lioness of the master and goddess of the twin moons. I gather in a cup what cannot be gathered, and I drink it, for I am the priestess and the temple. I leave no drop for no one, lest they think I have had enough. I copulate and multiply by myself to make a people from my own, and then kill my lovers to make way for those who did not know me.

I am Lilith, the forest woman. I did not know a hopeful wait but I have known lions and true beasts. I impregnate all parts in me to weave the tale; I gather voices in my womb to complete the number of slaves. I eat my body so I am not accused of hunger and I drink my water so I am not thirsty. My tresses are long for the winter and my bags have no ceiling. Nothing quenches me and nothing fills me, and I return to be the lioness of the lost on earth.

Long are my tresses


And long

Like a smile fading away in the rain

Slumber after pleasure reached.

My shivers are scars of shadows sometimes

And gleams of the blade, at all times.

I am the guardian of the well, the sum of contrasts. Kisses on my body are the scars of those who tried. From the flute between the thighs my song rises and from my song flows the curse, water on the earth.

I am the two moons Lilith. The hand of every maiden, the window of every virgin. The angel of the fall and the conscience of light slumber. Daughter of Delilah, Magdalena and the seven fairies. From my lust mountains rise and rivers break. I return to injure the wisp of virtue with my water and rub the ointment of sin on the wounds of deprivation.

I am the curse of past curses

The enticer of boats so the storm will not abate

My names bejewel your tongues when thirsty you

Follow me as the touch follows the kiss

And take me like the night on his mother’s breast.

I am Lilith the secret of fingers that insist. I open the road and uncover dreams and lay bare the cities of manhood for my deluge. I do not gather two from each kind but I become them so the species will be pure from any virtue.

The dreams are all open to me

I am the conscience of light slumber

I wear and shed the dream

entice the boats away and don’t guide the storm

I scatter the sky with the cunning of a cloud

So no one gets my honey

I have no home and no pillow

I am the naked

Who gives nudity the flower of its meaning.

I am Lilith the cup and the server

I came to say:

More than one cup for me

I came to say:

The server is blind

I came to say:

Adam, Adam, you are busy with many matters but the need is one.

Gather me

The need is one

Come gather me in the rain of your eyes

Stab your mounts in my abyss

Carve your features in the memory of my palms

And breathe the tigress lurking at the drop of the shoulders.

I am Lilith, the verse of apple. Books wrote me even if you did not read me. I am the unbridled pleasure the renegade wife the fulfilment of lust which brings the great destruction. My shirt is a window on madness. Whoever hears me deserves to die and whoever does not hear me will be killed by his remorse.

I am the moon within

Astray is my compass and migration my home

No caller knocks at my door

No house leads to my window

And no window exists but the illusion of a window.

I am not the stubborn steed or the easy ride, rather the shiver of the first seduction.

I am neither the stubborn horse nor the easy steed, rather the debacle of the final regret.

I am Lilith the destiny woman

Salome’s last dance and the fading of the light

I climb your night stone by stone every time the sun of absence bleeds the horizon

I climb to set a dream to the table

I delve into your vagabond mind

I make room for my head in your sleep.

For my blazes I climb up the stairways of the night

And for your dreams

I seek not certainty but obsession

Not arriving but the pleasure of not arriving.

Your night is my ladder to me

And my hand to beneath the imaginary.

I am the two genders Lilith. I am the desired gender. I take and am not given. I bring back to Adam his truth, and to Eve her ferocious breast so the logic of creation is appeased.

I am the one who was conceived under the sign of ecstasy

She whose presence rises

She whose tongue is a beehive

She who is a cake, eaten and kept

She who is the crying hunger

And who Limbo preserves.

I am the arrogance of the two breasts

Budding to grow and laugh

To want and be eaten

My breasts are salty

So high that I do not reach them:

Kiss them for me.

Two lamps hint in two lights

Budding so that their mischief may be forgiven.

I am Lilith, the lascivious angel. Adam’s first steed, corrupter of Satan. The shadow of stifled sex and its purest scream. I am the shy maiden of the volcano, the jealous because I am the beautiful whisperer of the wilderness. The first paradise could not stand me. I was pushed out to sow conflict on earth and arrange in beds the matters of my subjects.

My hand is the key to flame and the fierceness of hope

Your bodies are firewood and my hand is the fireplace

My hand is unbridled desire:

With faith

It moves mountains.

I, the goddess of the twin nights, the destiny of the wise. The unity of sleep and wakefulness. I am the foetus poet. I slew myself and found her. I return from my exile to be the bride of the seven days and the destruction of future life.

I am the seducing lioness. I return to slay the prisoners and rule the earth.

I return to mend Adam’s ribs and rid the men from their Eves.

I am Lilith, returned from exile to inherit the death of the mother to whom

I gave birth

Translated by Henry Matthews


I am a woman

Nobody can guess

What I say when I am silent,

Whom I see when I close my eyes,

How I am carried away when I am carried away,

What I search for when I stretch out my hands.

Nobody, nobody knows

When I am hungry, when I take a journey,

When I walk, and when I am lost.

And nobody knows

That my going is a return

And my return is an abstention,

That my weakness is a mask

And my strength is a mask,

And that what is coming is a tempest.

They think they know

So I let them think,

And I happen.

They put me in a cage so that

My freedom may be a gift from them,

And I have to thank them and obey.

But I am free before them, after them,

With them, without them.

I am free in my suppression, in my defeat.

My prison is what I want!

The key to the prison may be their tongue,

But their tongue is twisted around my desire’s fingers,

And my desire they can never command.

I am a woman.

They think they own my freedom.

I let them think so,

And I happen.

(Translated by Issa J. Boullata)


Mere shadows

I pretend that I am myself

But unknown creatures live in me.

Eyes that are not mine see the world for me,

And other bodies walk about with my life.

I pretend that I am myself

But I am the known one, concealed.

Neither my mines have been discovered

Nor my metals polished.

What appears of me

Are mere shadows you cast

And they act for me.

They are mere ideas you invented.

You may think that I live here,

But I have not yet arrived, nor am I about to.

There is no space for me to cross toward you,

No moon to make an appointment with,

No night to descend from to daylight.

I pretend that I am myself

But in my inexistence I wander.

Laziness there continues to be an invitation,

Chaos is still shepherding the seasons.

Time there has not yet become time,

Nor forms have yet become forms.

Lips are lips by nature,

And clouds do not pursue their rains.

Free, I disappear in my mirage.

I have no identity to abstain from,

Nor a belonging to be threatened by.

I multiply until numbers get tired

And I am ignorant of them as is the sea of its names.

No one calls me,

No one knows me.

Only words

Slowly make me.

I pretend that I am with you all

But other creatures live in me.

And if I am not yet born

if my illusion has preceded me to you,

it is because I have preferred to be a little late

Until my moment arrives

And then those other creatures I have been will disappear

And I’ll become myself.

(Translated by Issa J. Boullata)


JOUMANA HADDAD was born in 1970 in Beirut, Lebanon, where she lives and works. A poet and translator, and speaking seven languages, Joumana is chief editor of the cultural pages of the Lebanese daily An-Nahar, for whom she has interviewed many international writers such as Umberto Eco, Wole Soyinka, and Paul Auster. In April 2006 she was awarded the Arab Press Prize in Dubai for her interview with Mario Vargas Llosa. She has five collections of poetry, including Return to Lilith (translated and published in Banipal No 24, Autumn/Winter 2005). She has translated several works of poetry and prose into and from Arabic with selected poems of her own translated into several European languages.


This is the image on my desktop… Have a great day!

(The Vision Of Hermes Trismegistos I)