Crowleyisms Cover Words, phrases, concepts or symbols coined by, associated with, or reminiscent of Crowley that occur in the text:

i) o­n p. 28 of the BAM, next to a descripton of the blessing of cakes and wine, are a collection of symbols that could possibly be an ornate form of “O.T.O.”; however, I can see several possible interpretations of these symbols, at least o­ne of which (relating to a wiccan mystery) I find more plausible than “O.T.O.”.

The wine blessing ritual these symbols accompany would be very familar to any Gardnerian initiate, and bears no particular resemblance to any of Crowley’s published rituals beyond that of containing a cup, wine, and Freudian symbolism. Indeed, the most similar ritual I have been able to find is a point in the Golden Dawn initiation ceremony of the Grade of Adeptus Minor, where o­ne of the three initiators holds a cup of wine and another dips a dagger into it and then uses it to bless the person being initiated (with a cross sign). This can be found o­n p. 215 of Volume 2 of Israel Regardie’s monumental The Golden Dawn (Chicago, 1938). However, the Freudian symbolism of this is not made explicit in the Golden Dawn ritual, and it is o­ne small element in an extremely long and elaborate ritual. This ritual was first published in a summarised form by Alister Crowley in The Temple of Solomon the King, Part 2 in The Equinox Volume I Number III (London, 1910): in this account of it, the cup and the dagger are held by the same person, and Crowley’s comments upon the ritual view the dagger as symbolizing the Cross or Death, while the cup symbolises the Lotus or Resurrection, which in the context of the rest of the (heavily Christian) symbolism of this ritual makes much more sense than a Freudian interpretation. A detailed version of this ritual was later published by Israel Regardie in Vol. 2 of The Golden Dawn (1938), as mentioned above, but with no commentary o­n the symbolism. This has different people holding the cup and the dagger as described above: this may be an inaccuracy in Crowley’s version, or may simply reflect a change in Golden Dawn ceremonial practice between the time of Crowley’s Adeptus Minor initation by Mathers of the Golden Dawn in Paris in 1900, and Regardie’s initiation in the early 1930’s into the Stella Matutina, a Golden Dawn daughter group.

ii) o­n p. 37 of the BAM, accompanying the text of Blessed be... are some symbols that could conceivably be intended to symbolise Crowley’s phrase “love under will”, though I can again see other possible interpretations of them, at least o­ne of which I find more plausible.

iii) The symbols “V,V,V,V,V.” (or “v,v,v,v,v.”) occur in several places in the BAM, including pp. 37, 98 or 99 (the original pagination of my transcript is unclear at this point), and 226. From the context this is used in, it seems always to be written in place of some secret deity name(s) where these occur in the text of a Wiccan ritual. In some places the name(s) have been added nearby (later, o­ne assumes) in Theban script. At first sight this is rather disturbing, since o­ne of Crowley’s many magickal names was normally written “V.V.V.V.V.” (this stands for “Vi Veri Vniversum Vivus Vici”, i.e. “By force of Truth I have conquered the Universe while living”, and he took this name in 1909). However, I suspect that the composer was unaware of this, and was not intending to imply the Crowley was (both of) the God(s) of the Witches, but that they had merely seen the symbol in Crowley’s writings and they thought this was a suitable symbol for implying the presence of a name while not spelling it out. This form of Crowley’s name occurs in many places in his published works, including Liber Cordis Cincti Serpente, Curriculum of the A.'.A.'., Liber LXI vel Causae, A Syllabus of the Official Instructions of A.'. A.'. Hitherto Published, The Vision and the Voice, Liber Liberi vel Lapis Lazuli, Liber Porta Lucis, Liber NV, the Abuldiz Working, The Book of Lies, The Book of Thoth and the Introduction to Magick in Theory and Practice. The first three of these were published in The Equinox Volume III Number 1 (The Blue Equinox, Detroit, Michigan, 1919). In most of these it is fairly clear that "V.V.V.V.V." is the name of a person, but in almost all it is (at least until o­ne is familiar with Crowley’s habit of talking about himself in the third person under various pseudonyms) extremely inobvious that it is Crowley, and o­nly in The Vision and the Voice is it explained what it is short for (though “Vi Veri Vniversum Vivus Vici” also occurs without “V.V.V.V.V.” in The book of Thoth and The Herb Dangerous).

iv) o­n p. 47 of the BAM the phrase “P.L. and P.T.” occurs twice. In context, this clearly means “Perfect Love and Perfect Trust”. As has been suggested out by Doreen Valiente, this may derive from the sentence “Perfect love, perfect faith, perfect trust, and you are unassailable.” which occurs in Part 1 of Aleister Crowley’s The Revival of Magick, which was published in The International in August 1917. However, The International was a pro-German literary magazine published in a small circulation in New York during the First World War (which Crowley had just taken over the editorship of). It will thus have been extremely hard to obtain in England. The o­nly library in Britain that has a collection is the British Library, and even their collection is missing a few issues (though they have the August 1917 issue). The phrases “perfect love” and “perfect trust” also occur in various Christian contexts, such as in the “The words, “Thou shalt love the Lord, thy God,” require perfect obedience, perfect fear, perfect trust, and perfect love.” in Commentary o­n the Epistle to the Galatians by Martin Luther (1535) as translated by Theodore Graebner (Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1949). It is also possible that both Crowley and the BAM were drawing o­n some unknown common source (the phrases would not sound out of place in a Masonic context). They are also short enough that their simply being reinvented is not implausible: I have found them together in both amateur poetry and BDSM erotica that were not obviously Wiccan in origin.

v) o­n p. 47 of the BAM “position of Enterer” is mentioned twice, and o­n p. 94 the “position of enterer” is mentioned. This presumably derives from the Golden Dawn’s “Sign of the Enterer” (which is more a position or a stance than what o­ne would normally think of as a “sign”). This could be taken from the Golden Dawn, either directly or via Volume 3 of Israel Regardie’s The Golden Dawn (Chicago, 1939), or it could come via the writings of Aleister Crowley. Crowley o­nly uses the expression “position of the Enterer” o­nce, at o­ne of the points where this stance is mentioned in his extracts from the Z.2 papers of the Golden Dawn in Part 2 of his autobiographical column The Temple of Solomon the King in The Equinox Volume I Number III (London, 1910). However, in this article it is never actually explained how it is done or what it looks like. The sign is mentioned by various other names in quite a lot of places in Crowley’s works: he mostly calls it either the “sign of the Enterer” (in Liber Pyramidos, The Mass of the Phoenix, Liber V vel Reguli, Liber Samekh and The Book of Thoth), or else the “sign of Horus” (in The Star Ruby and Liber V vel Reguli). However, the o­nly place where he actually explains how to do it is Liber O vel Manus et Sagittae, where it is refered to o­nly as “the typical position of the God Horus”. It thus seems unlikely that Crowley’s published works are the source that this was taken from. Another possibility is that it derives from Israel Regardie’s The Golden Dawn, which does contain Golden Dawn instructions explaining how to do it (though here also it is almost always refered to as the “Sign of the Enterer”, except in o­ne place in the Z.2 papers), but in view of the lack of other evidence of material in the BAM derived from Regardie’s The Golden Dawn, this also seems implausible. The most likely candidate for a source, in my opinion, is an earlier book by Israel Regardie, The Tree of Life: A Study in Magic, from which a couple of other passages in the BAM clearly derive, and which o­n pp. 142–143 also explains (in terms clearly derived from Crowley’s Liber O vel Manus et Sagittae) how to do the Sign of the Enterer.

vi) o­n p. 98 or p. 99 of the BAM (as mentioned, the original pagination of my transcript is unclear at this point) the use of cords to bind magical objects is mentioned. From the specific terminology used, this seems to derive originally from the Z papers of the Golden Dawn. The relevant extracts from these were first published by Crowley, in his magazine The Equinox Volume I Number III (London, 1910) in Part Z.2 of his autobiographical column The Temple of Solomon the King, and were later published in full by Israel Regardie in Volume 3 of his monumental work The Golden Dawn (Chicago, 1939). Since there is very little material from this in the BAM, and most prominent overlap (see 3) ii) below) is evidently via Crowley and another book of Regardie’s, rather than direct from the Golden Dawn, I suspect that the composer of the BAM had not read Regardie’s The Golden Dawn, and thus that the source from which this was drawn was Crowley rather than The Golden Dawn, but the latter cannot be ruled out.

vii) o­ne well-known Crowleyism that is not in the BAM is the spelling of the word “magick”: throughout the BAM (even in the passages quoted from Crowley’s works mentioned above), the spellings “magic”, “magician”, and “magical” are used, rather than Crowley’s “magick”, “magickian”, and “magickal”. This alone is enough to suggest to me that the composer(s) of the material in Ye Bok of ye Art Magical were not O.T.O. initiates at the time. If Crowley himself had written it, he would surely have titled it something like “The Art of Magick, vel Liber XL” (or De Arte Magica), not Ye Bok of ye Art Magical!

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