Posts Tagged ‘liber al vel legis’


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

[Note: The interpretation which follows is my own: none is expected to accept it. While I consider the interpretation to be an inspired one, i.e. of the mind of Aiwass, it is never my wish to force my views on others. One may take it or leave it as one will. “There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.” (L III.60) It is my will to reveal these things, without expectation of result.]

In 1904 a prophecy was written, nestled in the third chapter of Liber L vel Legis, The Book of the Law. This is the prediction in its entirety (v.46 of ch.iii):

“I am the warrior Lord of the Forties: the Eighties cower before me, & are abased. I will bring you to victory & joy: I will be at your arms in battle & ye shall delight to slay. Success is your proof; courage is your armour; go on, go on, in my strength, & ye shall turn not back for any!”

It was on March 12, 1947, that the Truman Doctrine was put forth. This proposal aimed to alter the previous U.S. isolationist policy in favor of one of containment of Soviet Communist expansion. This radical proposal was signed into law on May 22nd, 1947, marking the official start — so I contend — of the Cold War.

Per the Thelemic Calendar, this was Anno Ixxi, or in other words, the final year of Tarotic cycle I. It was the 43rd Year of the Thelemic Age of Man. It was on December 1st of the same year that humanity saw the death of the Thelemic Prophet, To Mega Therion, known among the vulgar as Aleister Crowley.

Forty-four years later, on December 25th, 1991, the world witnessed the dissolution of the Soviet Union, and with it, the end of the Cold War. For the meaning of the number 44, see Aleister Crowley’s commentary to chapter 44 of The Book of Lies:

“This is the special number of Horus; it is the Hebrew blood, and the multiplication of the 4 by the 11, the number of Magick, explains 4 in its finest sense. But see in particular the accounts in Equinox I, vii, of the circumstances of the Equinox of the Gods.”

Per the Thelemic Calendar, 1991 was Anno IIIxxi, or in other words, the final year of the Tarotic cycle III. It was the 87th Year of the Thelemic Age of Man.

It is my contention that, if we are to grasp the meaning of this prophecy, we must look not to the vulgar (i.e. common) year, but to the Thelemic one instead. That is to say, the Cold War, which began in the Thelemic “Forties” and ended in the Thelemic “Eighties”, is what is pointed to in this verse, the expansionist empire having been “abased”.

It is not the end of war, certainly, but it is the end of an era. We are now facing a whole new series of global problems. But Ra-Hoor-Khu — that is, the Genius of Man — is with us, and “There is success.” (L III.69)

“Love is the law, love under will.”

Paidi tou Prophete


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The Beast, Robed as a Major Adept, in Baltistan

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

What follows is another installment of the upcoming reformational document of the Holy Thelemic Church. This one deals with the main Thelemic traditions.

For a number of reasons, I won’t be issuing any more PDFs. It is better just to put out the books I intended to issue as serial installments here at the website instead of as any kind of publications. Many more actually read the material by web-read than by download. Anyway, a great many more individuals are reached and influenced in this fashion than by published books or PDFs. Times have changed.

I need to emphasize first that I am neither telling anyone what to do, nor claiming to represent Thelemic practice. No one is infallible, not even the prophets and oracles. All are somehow flawed and/or more or less mistaken. Even if it were not the case, nobody should dictate to others what is right for them.

Some will disagree with some or all of what is written here. What their motives are, I neither know nor care. I have learned by study and experience, but also by intuition. I do not expect any to do entirely as I do, and I do not wish that any think as I do, either. None in the Holy Thelemic Church is exactly like another, and therefore none should be obliged to behave as another.

This is no herd, and I am no shepherd. Each of us is regal; each is his own master. As always, this is purely guidance. My guiding light, however bright, may be of help to you — or not. If you follow it blindly, going about the work as some empty-headed zombie, merely mouthing chants you fail to appreciate yourself, then you make a great miss.

This is all about joy, and passion, and ecstasy: for it is thereby that one achieves true realization of one’s own unique Holy Supernal Will. It is thereby that some even go beyond this great achievement, to genuine Supernal Communion (at Binah, Qabalistically speaking), Supernal Awareness (Chokmah), and Supernal Clarity (Kether).

There are many, in fact, that have attained to all this without having taken a religious approach of any kind, and without ever having read any sort of holy book. Some may get there without any knowledge of a Hidden Order or Secret Chiefs.

The key is to follow no man, unless his only command is to “Do what thou wilt”. Be servile to none; be led by none; be chained to none. You are your own lord: you are your own god. Think as you will; love as you will; do as you will. And as Joseph Campbell, one of the Saints of the Sacrorum of the Holy Thelemic Church, said so eloquently, “Follow your own bliss”.

That said, there may be some advantage to making use of such a system of practice, if one is so inclined. Of course, the symbols and songs — i.e. the imagery and invocations — may be substituted with others, as it suits you. All that is really important is that one understand the underying system, and that one adhere to the main lines of Thelemic Law — for otherwise there is danger of vile restriction and foul enslavement to hurtful archaic ideas.

However one chooses to utilize the system, it certainly is efficacious. This stuff really works. The degree to which it works, or whether it works at all, depends on you. If you misunderstand the underlying system, or the overarching Law, in whole or in part, then you are most likely to experience problems. No matter how you fail, however — to whatever extent, great or small — your failure is never really complete. Even if your failure is extreme, you have the benefit of experience from which you may perhaps learn and improve. Your failure is only complete if you give up for good. To quit is to stagnate.

If you fall, get back up again, dust yourself off, and strive to do better. I myself not only started off as a total moron (in every conceivable way), but I proceeded to leap blindly into every pitfall there was along the path leading up Mount Abiegnus, to the Holy Supernal Will. As if that weren’t enough, I was lazy in every way, long after the realization of superior will. I read certain things and omitted others; I rushed through some practices without taking time to get it right; and at the slightest glimpse of Supernal Epiphany, I was blown back by the shock of it, wrongly assuming that initial experience was Supernal Union. Then — worse — I  got hubris, thinking I was all that and a bag of chips.

The ultimate consequence of such foolishness was that I got some parts right and others wrong. And what this resulted in was a flawed vessel for the Supernal Will, firstly, as well as a great deal of confusion, as time and again my pure will was thwarted by the elements of mundane ill will that I had failed to purge.

These problems persisted as I ascended to greater attainments, so that I only partially benefitted from the same. Instead of being armed with a pristine Will, armored with perfect Communion with my full divine Genius, and growing therefrom into complete Supernal Awareness, my Sword of Holy Will was rusty and dull; my Armor of Understanding was flawed and weak; and I was feeble to wield the Sword or to carry around the Armor.

Yet I never gave up. I eventually threw away my broken Sword, and cast off my heavy Armor, went off into the wilderness, and did the work again. This time I spared no effort to work on what I had neglected before; and only when I was ready did I seek the Holy Supernal Will all over again. When that was accomplished, I sought Communion with my true divinity anew. Like Percival I emerged from the waters, free of myself, and only then was I to drink fully from the Chalice of Babalon, partaking of the Current that had filled the Saints of Supernal Genius. Only then could I attain to cloudless Clarity.

In short, it’s perfectly fine to make mistakes, as long as one learns from them and improves. Every child, after all, makes mistakes.

There are numerous Thelemic traditions adhered to by some hardcore Thelemites, certainly those priests and priestesses of the Sacrorum of the Holy Thelemic Church. Take them or leave them as you will. Many originate with the Thelemic Prophet, the Prince-Priest, and his Oracles, the Scarlet Women, from whom all subtle power of inspiration derived.


0. The Prohibition against interpreting the Law.

Some hold to the view that to interpret Thelemic Law, whether directly or indirectly, is unlawful. This view began with the Prophet, whose wish it was that the Law not be perverted. I respect those that hold this view. But I see it as a test of courage; and I boldly do my will as I see fit. “The word of Sin is Restriction”. (L I:41) Each must choose for himself/herself.

1. Adoption of Thelemic Names.

The central idea of the entire system of practice delineated in Liber L vel Legis, the Book of the Law, is to assist the practitioner to transcend and to transform the mundane mind, making it the perfect vessel of one’s own pure will. The mundane vessel of consciousness is cleansed of its impurities, purged of its petty problems, and ultimately filled with the perfect will. This being a gradual process, one might take one name to signify one’s aspiration early on, then other names to signify significant attainments later. The first Thelemic name taken by the Prophet, Perdurabo, is Latin, having the meaning, “I shall endure to the end”. He took others along the way, with the last being at the penultimate attainment, that of divine Wisdom and Awareness, at Chokmah: it was in Greek, To Mega Therion, which translates as “The Great Beast”. It simply means “The Divine in the Beast that is Man”.

2. Thelemic Protocol.

Thelemites tend to adhere to certain habits. When writing to one another, they are likely to begin their discussion or message with “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” (L I:40) The central part of this line being “wilt” or will, this line is often simply summarized with the number 93, the number of Thelema (the Greek word for “Will”). In closing a written message, or in response to the verbal salutation given above, one offers the line, “Love is the law, love under will”. (L I:57) The main parts in this line being “Love”, “love”, and “will”, this may be given as 93 93/93: the Greek word for Love, i.e. Agape, being the same Gematric value as the word for Will, 93.

Example: one Thelemite meets another and says, “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” The other salutes him or her with the declaration, “Love is the law, love under will”.

One may choose to do this or not. It is a tradition. When chatting back and forth, or when texting, or when emailing back and forth, it may be done at the beginning and end of the discussion, or simply omitted altogether.

Remember that the Law is for man, not man for the Law. What this practice does is to serve as a reminder that the true will is all-important, and that the foundation of true will is love.

3. Respect for the Holy Law.

One should always make an effort to quote correctly from the Book of the Law, so as not to distort the meaning. In writing, try to get it right. Spell the words as they are written, even capitalizing properly. It is the respectful thing to do.

4. Dedicating oneself completely.

You need not do this if you don’t want to do so, but the Prophet made a habit — as some of us do as well — of devoting every action, however mundane, to the Great Work of the Holy Will. Before doing chores, he would say an affirmation, e.g. “I do this so that it may assist me in my will”. Before eating, another affirmation of will, e.g. “I eat and drink that I may be strengthened thereby, to the accomplishment of my will”. And so on.

5. Daily and nightly observances.

Thelemic practice has its observances, similar to the salats of Islam. One may observe these as one will. Basically, they involve facing the sun (or moon, at night, as one can), and uttering a short prayer of invocation. The Prophet developed his own way of doing this; you may choose to follow suit as you wish, or make your own prayers. It is important to understand what he was doing, however.

The observances he performed were at morning (sunrise), noon, and evening (sunset). I choose to perform another observance at night, usually around midnight or sometime before. It is not the mere sun or moon that is celebrated here. Rather, it is the subtle Current or Force of that which they symbolize that is invoked. For the sun is simply symbolic of the Genius of Man (i.e. the Beast), and the moon is symbolic of the Genius of Woman (i.e. the Scarlet Woman). So by invoking the Current of the Divine in Man, via its symbol, the sun, one is tapping the subtle Force of Holy Will. And by invoking the subtle Energy of the Scarlet Woman, via Her symbol, the moon, one is drawing down the Power of Pure Love.

These days I usually just keep the prayer simple. For example, at dawn I say, “I invoke thee, 93, through the sign of the rising sun: the sign is my ecstasy. Aumgn! let it fill me.” At night I say, “I invoke thee, 93, through the sign of the [new/waxing/full/waning] moon: the sign is my ecstasy. Aumgn! let it fill me.” 93 works both ways, because it is both will as well as love. Many prefer to do it as the Prophet did it, and that is fine too.

6. Ordeals.

It is Thelemic to charge through the ordeals of life with strength and mastery, not succumbing to petty emotions. In other words, with pure passion, not mere compulsion. One should be free of the bondage of obsession, unbothered by the outcome, no matter how bad, without being lackadaisical. See L I:22, I:32.

7. The Law is for all.

It is Thelemic to strive to bind none against his or her will. It is one’s will if it brings happiness, joy, bliss, not if it brings misery, sadness, or unwanted agony. To restrict is to sin against the Holy Will. Passionate peace is of us, not sorrow, loathing, fear, or the pain of sacrifice. (It is not sacrifice if it is for one’s loved ones, for they are loved as much as oneself.) Jealousy and possession have nothing to do with love: for if one truly loves others, one wants them to be free to experience all the joy and ecstasy they can possibly have.

8. Sacrifice.

Sacrificing one’s value (except to loved ones), or one’s bliss, or one’s happiness, in service to so-called spiritual gods, is an offense against the divinity within. In my view, animals are sacred — is it not the Age of the divine in the beast that is man? I do not presume to govern the actions of others; but sacrifice is propitiation, i.e. appeasement to gain divine favor. As such, it is pathetic. The law of the Old Age was one of death; but the New Law is of the Holy Will of the Divine Self, and its sacrament is love and sex, not death and atonement. See L I:58. [Note that the word appears in L III:12, but there it is highly symbolic, and refers to purging of sacrificial death cults of the Old Age, to bring them in harmony with the Law of Holy Will founded on love. I don’t wish to force this interpretation on anyone, but it is one I firmly believe to be true.]

9. The importance of science.

It is absurd to follow any religious demand of faith in the power of a god over medical science that is proven to work. There is nothing wrong, I suppose, with trying acts of prayer and/or invocation to work in conjunction with medicine, but it is nothing short of murder to resort to faith to the exclusion of valid medical treatments. Belief is powerful, but not that powerful. See L I:58.

10. Strength of will.

Weakness of will is a kind of illness. It is best to be strong-willed whenever things go wrong, rather than allowing difficulties to bother your equilibrium. Getting overwhelmed with the madness of sorrow is not just a waste of time and energy, it can also be dangerous, and detrimental to the Great Work. Better to be strong and move on.

Also, it is weak will that allows misfortune or poverty to make you downtrodden. Strong will makes the most of it.

11. Strong joys.

No matter what happens, it is better to be joyously alive — even in the face of death. Nothing can rule over you unless you allow it to do so.

12. Masterful confidence.

Why allow yourself to get down? If others would bully you, it is best to laugh at them and fight them if needed. If others would shun you, you’re better without them. Best to be oneself, unique and self-loved, than to appease fools. Herd-folk may hate you for it, but so what? You don’t need them.

13. A helping hand, not pity.

It is good to help a fallen comrade upon his feet, but it is an insult to his sovereignty to pity and coddle him.

14. Sacraments.

The things of ecstasy and joy are our sacraments. Hedonism is service to the god within, carnal pleasure its worship.

15. The Stele and the love-song.

In ancient times, many initiates from all over used upright stones — i.e. stelae — at the heart of their temples, as conduits to the subtle forces they invoked. We have our own conduit in the Stele of Revealing, and our own special love-song in the “A ka dua”. But as always, “Do what thou wilt”. Typhonian Thelemites, for instance, have their Yantra in the image of Lam, with an accompanying mantra to match. Muslims have the Black Stone; Christians have the Crucifix; Buddhists have the Buddha; others have their Idols; and so forth. All are sacred: for they arouse in us the hidden power of our secret Genius.

Or you may prefer none of the above! The Law, after all, is for all — not just the religious.

16. Celebrations.

There are rituals of nature, but there are also feasts of commemoration. All these holy days are for nourishing invocation, celebration of events in our lives, and remembering the Avatars (i.e. Saints) before us who manifested the same Current of Genius we embody in our lives today. See L II:35-44.

Of course, you may do as you will. It is the doctrine of the Holy Law that matters most, not its ceremonies and celebration. Delight in whatever you will!

17. We are as we are, and not other.

It is weak to try to be something you’re not. Be yourself. Find your talents and skills, hone them well, and make creative use of them. Aspire to your own Genius.

18. Self-worship.

Satisfaction of desire is worship of the god within, as long as it doesn’t remove others from their own joy. Bliss is best.

It is weakness of will, though, to rush your rapture. Is it not better to take your time, for the maximum enjoyment? Appreciate all that life has to offer.

19. Fearlessness.

Courage is also strength of will. What is there to fear? Even death itself is merely a transition: not an end to joy but merely a new beginning. And if you were to fall, so what? Get back up and have at it again. What is there to lose?

20. Service to the god within.

Pride and self-love honor the divinity within you. You are your own God, Most High, co-equal with that of those whom you love.

21. Promulgation of the Law.

See L III:39. Spread the Law as you will, if only by example — as it suits you, as always. Living the Law is enough, if you will.

22. Begone with the fools who would waste your time.

Those who would argue endlessly, lacking understanding, aren’t worth your time. Seeking to convert them is foolish: if they fail to understand then they aren’t ready. They talk and talk just to hear their own folly.

Begone with them that would bind you: be rid of such as would subjugate. Yield nothing to the nosferatu.

23. The Sanctity of the shameless.

Are not the ways of love, and the iconography thereof, utterly sacred? Should we not rejoice therein, exalting the same? Shame, and the veils of shame, are certainly not of us. If others take offense at this, they take offense at the Most High.

Sex is the Holy Spirit of God, not anything to be reviled: is not God a beast?

Chastity is restriction, and sin.

24. The Law is Liberty.

Freedom is the Law: repression is violation of the Law. Enslavement is unlawful. We fight for liberty and joy and love, for these support the will divine.

25. Hatred toward the ideologies of hate.

Those that hate us might someday love us, but their ideologies are despicable; for they poison minds and would make ugly what is lovely. To hell with their vile creeds of hate.

26. Trust in yourself.

Self-doubt weakens the will, leading you to falter and fail. Doubt is but the servant of fear; but we know that to fail is impossible if we are resolute, and so we fear not.


Those, then, are the basic traditions of Thelemic Law as I see them. I don’t claim to speak for all, but I will call it as I see it.

A more comprehensive exegesis is coming, in the forthcoming reformation Covenant. More is to come thereafter, in The Law Unveiled. All will be revealed here eventually. It is not the only way to interpret these matters of Holy Law, and it is not to everyone’s taste. It is one way of looking at it, and I make no apology, as it is forced on no one. This is the Law of Thelema as I see it, and if any disagree then that is just fine by me. The essence of the Law is freedom; and there is no place in its palace for dictators. For every man and every woman is his/her own master, and I would have it no other way.


Thanks so much for your time, and may 93 be with ye.


“Love is the law, love under will.”


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Here is an introduction to The Book of the Law, by Israel Regardie, from the out-of-print book, The Law is for All, introducing Aleister Crowley’s commentaries on Liber Legis.  To get the free pdf, either click on the above image or go to the sidebar library.




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Postcard c.1904 E.V.


Throughout the latter half of March and the early part of April, the Holy Thelemic Church (and many Thelemites) commemorate the remarkable event that unfolded in the lives of Aleister Crowley and Rose Kelly at Cairo, Egypt in 1904 Era Vulgari (Common Era) — a momentous spiritual event that culminated in the Advent of the New Thelemic Age. The Vernal Equinox is, therefore, the time at which Thelemites celebrate the Thelemic New Year.  Through photographs and postcards from the period, we might evoke something of the Spirit of that critical era in human history.  It is a time distant posterity may well view with no small amount of awe and wonderment; for this extraordinary Manifestation of transmundane Genius ultimately produced a literary monument both profound and sublime: Liber L vel Legis, The Book of the Law.

Above: View of Cairo, Egypt, photographed from a balloon at about 500 metres above ground. Left of the Nile are the Botanical Gardens and the race track, right are the British barracks and the Egyptian Museum. July 21, 1904; first published in Spelterini, E.: Über den Wolken/Par dessus les nuages, Brunner & Co, Zürich 1928, p. 81. By Eduard Spelterini, (1852–1931), Swiss pioneer of ballooning and of aerial photography. Below: More views of the enviorns of Cairo captured by the camera of Spelterini.


Crowley leaves us a fairly decent account of the circumstances in Cairo that led up to the Thelemic Advent, in his book, The Equinox of the Gods.  The young couple headed into Cairo on February 9th, 1904.  He then proceeded to Helwan in the guise of Mid-Eastern nobility on the 19th, with the intent of learning Islam from within as he had done with Hinduism when in India.  He enjoyed a little golf on the 20th.  For fun during the previous year, he had performed the Preliminary Invocation of the Goetia — a majestic spiritual ceremony also known as the Invocation of the Bornless One — to entertain his newlywed bride.  Rose, however, now became oddly inspired, claiming that a superior intelligence wished to communicate with him.  She was having the first Holy Epiphany of the New Thelemic Age.  He was having none of it; he had become disillusioned with serious magical pursuits and was interested in further exploring the esoteric systems of Buddhism, Taoism and Sufism.

Rose Edith Kelly & Aleister Crowley.

Crowley (in The Equinox of the Gods) recounts:

“Began INV. (invocation) IAO (Given in Liber Samekh: see Magick.)”

“March 16. Tried to shew the Sylphs to Rose. She was in a dazed state, stupid, possibly drunk; possibly hysterical from pregnancy. She could see nothing, but could hear. She was fiercely excited at the messages, and passionately insistent that I should take them seriously.

“I was annoyed at her irrelevance, and her infliction of nonsense upon me.

“She had never been in any state even remotely resembling this, though I had made the same invocation (in full) in the King’s chamber of the Great Pyramid during the night which we spent there in the previous autumn.

“March 17. More apparently nonsensical messages, this time spontaneous. I invoke Thoth, probably as in Liber LXIV, and presumably to clear up the muddle.

“March 18. Thoth evidently got clear through to her; for she discovers that Horus is addressing me through her, and identifies Him by a method utterly excluding chance or coincidence, and involving knowledge which only I possessed, some of it arbitrary, so that she or her informant must have been able to read my mind as well as if I had spoken it.

“Then she, challenged to point out His image, passed by many such to fix on the one in the Stele.”

The Stele to which he refers is, of course, Cairo Stela A9422 — then exhibited as Stele 666.  The same exhibition card — that must have struck him like lightning to behold — appears below along with a photo of the Stela itself.

The display card for the Stela of Ankhefenkhons I, bearing the infamous “number of a Man”.

The Stele of Revealing.

Crowley was impressed with the appearance of this number.  There is of course no such thing as the Christian devil; but in the Qabalistic system this value signifies the spiritual force of Tiphareth (6) that transmits its Holy Current  — the Supernal Triunity of Wisdom, Understanding and Transcendence-without-Withdrawal (x111=666) — to the Adeptus in the Attainment of the Knowledge & Conversation of the Holy Supernal Will (Thelema) and in the Samadhis beyond that.  The formula of Horus (or Heru-Ra-Ha) is analogous to Tiphareth (Ra-Hoor-Khuit) and Kether (Hoor-pa-kraat); and both are a conjunction of the twofold Consciousness of Matter and Energy, i.e. Nuit and Hadit, the Supernals called Binah and Chokmah in the Qabalistic system — Tiphareth being the outer form (i.e. below the Abyss of Duality and Thought) and Kether being the inner form thereof.

Crowley’s account continues:

“March 20.  Success in my invocation of Horus, by ‘breaking all the rules’ at her command.  This success convinced me magically, and encouraged me to test her… I should certainly have referred to the Stele in my ritual had I seen it before this date.  I should fix Monday, March 21, for the Visit to [the museum].

“Between March 23 and April 8 the Hieroglyphs on the Stele were evidently translated by the assistant-curator at [the museum], into either French or English–I am almost sure it was French–and versified (as now printed) by me.

“Between these dates, too, my wife must have told me that her informant was not Horus, or Ra Hoor Khuit, but a messenger from Him, named Aiwass.

“I thought that she might have faked this name from constantly hearing ‘Aiwa,’ the word for ‘Yes’ in Arabic.  She could not have invented a name of this kind, though; her next best was to find a phrase like ‘balmy puppy’ for a friend, or corrupt a name like Neuberg into an obscene insult.

“The silence of my diaries seems to prove that she gave me nothing more of importance.  I was working out the Magical problem presented to me by the events of March 16-21.  Any questions that I asked her were either unanswered, or answered by a Being whose mind was so different from mine that we failed to converse.  All my wife obtained from Him was to command me to do things magically absurd.  He would not play my game: I must play His.

“April 7.  Not later than this date was I ordered to enter the ‘temple’ exactly at noon on the three days following, and write down what I heard during one hour, nor more nor less.”

The photographs shown below depict the hotel at which they most likely stayed during this event.  It is now known as the Baehler Building and is no longer a hotel, though one can eat at a restaurant on its ground floor there today.

La Bodega, aperitivo and bistro in the former Savoy-Hotel.

[ http://www.labodegaegypt.com/ ]

“The three days [April 8th, 9th and 10th] were precisely similar, save that on the last day I became nervous lest I should fail to hear the Voice of Aiwass. They may then be described together.

“I went into the ‘temple’ a minute early, so as to shut the door and sit down on the stroke of Noon.

“On my table were my pen — a Swan Fountain — and supplies of Quarto typewriting paper, 8″ x 10”.

“I never looked round in the room at any time.

“The Voice of Aiwass came apparently from over my left shoulder, from the furthest corner of the room.  It seemed to echo itself in my physical heart in a very strange manner, hard to describe.  I have noticed a similar phenomenon when I have been waiting for a message fraught with great hope or dread.  The voice was passionately poured, as if Aiwass were alert about the time-limit.  I wrote 65 pages of this present essay (at about my usual rate of composition) in about 10 1/2 hours as against the 3 hours of the 65 pages of the Book of the Law.  I was pushed hard to keep the pace; the MS. shows it clearly enough.

“The voice was of deep timbre, musical and expressive, its tones solemn, voluptuous, tender, fierce or aught else as suited the moods of the message. Not bass –perhaps a rich tenor or baritone.

“The English was free of either native or foreign accent, perfectly pure of local or caste mannerisms, thus startling and even uncanny at first hearing.

“I had a strong impression that the speaker was actually in the corner where he seemed to be, in a body of  ‘fine matter,’ transparent as a veil of gauze, or a cloud of incense-smoke.  He seemed to be a tall, dark man in his thirties, well-knit, active and strong, with the face of a savage king, and eyes veiled lest their gaze should destroy what they saw.  The dress was not Arab; it suggested Assyria or Persia, but very vaguely.  I took little note of it, for to me at that time Aiwass and an  ‘angel’  such as I had often seen in visions, a being purely astral.”

A few paragraphs along in the account, he writes:

“There was…no actual voice audible save that of Aiwaz.  Even my own remarks made silently were incorporated by him audibly, wherever such occur.”

The result was this message — of vastly superior intelligence to that with which we are normally familiar — to all humanity, announcing the transition to a new spiritual formula for an Aeon of Light, Life, Love and Liberty.  This spiritual formula is Gnostic, not propitiatory; i.e., its process involves the realization of the infinite potential of human Genius, in knowledge, talent and ability — as opposed to propitiation, which holds that one has to sacrifice, whether literally or by proxy (e.g. via acts of asceticism — abstinence, fasting, scourging, martyrdom and the rest ad nauseum), to an external god in exchange for grace.  It is ignoble and insults the Divinity inherent in Humanity.  Although our Thelemic doctrine affirms the existence of a superior eternal Mind, it is actually an atheistic one: for this Mind is ultimately that of man himself, on a level of pan-dimensional awareness well beyond ordinary apprehension.  Deus est Homo:  “God is Man”.  It is only temporarily praeterhuman: with the Gnosis of Samadhi the divide is bridged.

The Book of the Law is a work of total Genius, with depths of subtle meaning and hidden wisdom — esoteric and Qabalistic — that can revive and unite the many sects of the various primitive religions currently at one another’s throats in various locales of our troubled world.  For it contains, in its veils of wisdom, the naked beauty of an overarching spiritual Law in harmony with science and healthy for the human condition, being as it is worshipful of the happiness of the natural state and of the Divine Perfection of genuine Talent, not of some unnatural god at odds with scientific fact.

The following images are from postcards that were circulated before, during and after the time of the Advent of the Aeon (March 21st, 1904) and the Epiphany of the Holy Law (April 8th, 9th and 10th, 1904).



We of the Holy Thelemic Church wish all of our brothers and sisters across the globe a very happy Thelemic New Year.  May your celebrations be bountiful and joyous; may you come to the realization of the Holy Supernal Will and to the accomplishment of the Great Work, Summum Bonum, True Wisdom and Perfect Happiness; may 93 be with ye.




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Here is a high-quality PDF of The Book of the Law, based on both the 1912 publication in The Equinox and the manuscript itself. Click on the above image or go to the sidebar library to download the PDF free.



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Time Unveiling Truth sketch (Giovanni Battista Tiepolo)


Verses 75 and 76 of chapter 2 of Liber L vel Legis, The Book of the Law, comprising the Riddle of Aiwass, have as yet remained a mystery.  They read as follows:

“Aye! listen to the numbers & the words:

“4 6 3 8 A B K 2 4 A L G M O R 3 Y X 24 89 R P S T O V A L. What meaneth this, o prophet? Thou knowest not; nor shalt thou know ever. There cometh one to follow thee: he shall expound it. But remember, o chosen one, to be me; to follow the love of Nu in the star-lit heaven; to look forth upon men, to tell them this glad word.”

As prophesied, Aleister Crowley, the first Prophet of Thelema, never discovered the solution to the problem of these baffling verses.  His first “magical child” — or Dynasthai — i.e. C.S. Jones, a.k.a. Frater Achad, also failed to apprehend their meaning.  Many others, including myself, have made their attempts, but each one has fallen flat.  They have presented recondite, rambling torrents of elaborate Qabalistic theses on the matter, thinking that they had stumbled upon Truth; but none has issued much more than a disappointing flood of numerical vagaries.

I, myself, utilized the simple, uncontrived system of AQBL (or Angloqabalah) to arrive at the value of 395 as the sum of the meaningless numbers and words in the string at the beginning of the second verse, and presented this as the solution in my book of Gematric examination of Liber Legis entitled The AQBL Key (a PDF of which can be found in the sidebar library of this site).  I arrived at this over twenty years ago; but little did I know — until now — that I had stumbled upon only the half of it.  And this too was prophesied, way back in 1904 e.v., in v.56 of ch.1, which states:

“Expect him not from the East, nor from the West; for from no expected house cometh that child. Aum! All words are sacred and all prophets true; save only that they understand a little; solve the first half of the equation, leave the second unattacked.”

But I jump the gun.  I need to provide some of the vital historical information — and to briefly explain the system used to arrive at the very simple solution to the verses in question — before divulging the solution itself.

I: History of the Riddle

In his “Old Comment” to the first verse, L 2:75, Crowley writes:

“A final revelation. The revealer to come is perhaps the one mentioned in [ch.] I, 55 and III, 47. The verse goes on to urge the prophet to identify himself with Hadit, to practice the Union with Nu, and to proclaim this joyful revelation unto men.”

In the “New Comment” to v.75, he writes:

“This passage following appears to be a Qabalistic test (on the regular pattern) of any person who may claim to be the Magical Heir of The Beast. Be ye well assured all that the solution, when it is found, will be unquestionable. It will be marked by the most sublime simplicity, and carry immediate conviction.

“(The above paragraph was written previous to the communication of Charles Stansfeld Jones with regard to the ‘numbers and the words’ which constitute the Key to the cipher of this Book. See the Appendix to these comment. I prefer to leave my remark as it originally stood, in order to mark my attitude at the time of writing.)”

He was wrong about Jones, as he would eventually come to realize, so he came to anticipate the arrival of yet another.  In his “New Comment” to the second verse, he expressed his disappointment with Achad, leaving it pretty much at that.  In his Djeridensis Comment, he writes two paragraphs of interest:

“75-76:   With this the Angel changes His theme yet again with brusque swiftness, and propounds a final riddle.  The object of this cipher is to furnish proof that the man destined to succeed me is my rightful heir.  The test is that he is able to make clear the meaning of these ‘the numbers & the words.

“This brief passage stops as it began—on a sudden, and Aiwass goes on at once to issue a last command to myself.  I am to keep in constant mind that I am Hadit, that I am ever to aspire to make myself one with all things that may be, yet also to keep watch over mankind, for whose sake I first started on the path of Magick.  My mission is ‘to tell them this glad word.'”

And that was that.  The solution — as simple as it was — would remain an enigma to all for decades to come.

II: The Sphinx is Undone

Oedipus and the Sphinx (Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres)

As explained in The AQBL Key, I have always made use of the Gematria of Angloqabalah — or AQBL for short — to analyze English words Qabalistically.  Unlike all other forms of English Gematria that have emerged previously, AQBL is not some artificially contrived system of arbitrarily assigned values for the letters of the English Alphabet, but simply the natural order and value that has been obvious all along.  In the Gematria of AQBL, a letter bears the value of its place in the Alphabet.  Using it, I arrived at 395 as the sum of “the numbers & the words” in the second verse containing the Riddle of Aiwass.  I was impressed by the fact that, in Hebrew, the word MShNH, which means “second born child”, carries this value by Hebrew Gematria.  But, as aforesaid, I had only the half of the equation, “leaving the second unattacked”.  And for over a score of years this remained so, until just yesterday, on 10-10-10 e.v., I chanced upon the other half as I prepared to write up my article here, crunching the numbers again one last time to see if I could gather up any additional little gems for the final thesis.

I did find some additional Qabalistic gems that I had not noticed previously, and they are interesting enough in their own right; but they are as nothing compared with what I was to find next, right there under my nose — right in front of us all — all these years.

Again, I cannot stress enough the value of AQBL as a means of English Gematria.  Unlike all other forms of English Qabalah, the attribution of the numbers to the letters is not something that I or anyone else invented, for that attribution has been there all along.  It is utterly simple: A=1 through Z=26.  That Crowley never even considered it in all his years is amazing.  But, as a thorough analysis of The AQBL Key makes clear, its correspondences are nothing short of extraordinary.

I was just finishing up my last preparations when something made me stop to take another look at the verses themselves.  I had never paid it any mind before, but suddenly I was struck by the odd way in which verse 75 ended — not with a period but with a colon.  The string of meaningless numbers and words at the start of the following verse is actually the continuation — the second half in other words — of the riddle, not the whole of the riddle as I had assumed.

All of a sudden I was hit with an inspiration, as it were a whisper in my ear, saying:  “Add them together”.  And so I did, not really expecting much to come of it.  Then my jaw dropped and I was utterly aghast.

Look carefully at the words of Aiwass following the riddle itself:

“What meaneth this, o prophet? Thou knowest not; nor shalt thou know ever. There cometh one to follow thee: he shall expound it.”

Note that Crowley’s primary Thelemic name was To Mega Therion, which numerates as 666 by Greek Gematria.  He referred to himself, therefore, as 666.  I myself have gone by the name of Aleisterion since it was given to me in a vision over a decade ago.  Its numeration, by Hebrew Gematria — i.e. Aleph-Lamed-He-Yod-Samekh-Tau-He-Resh-Yod-Vau-Nun — is 777.  This value was also used by Fra.’.Achad for it signifies the one (or 111) to follow after 666.

What other solution more fitting, then, could be found, than that which I discovered once I totalled the numbers of the other half of the equation, in light of the words, “There cometh one to follow thee: he shall expound it”.  This “one” (or 111) has always been referred to numerically as 777.


Aye! listen to the numbers & the words

added to

4 6 3 8 A B K 2 4 A L G M O R 3 Y X 24 89 R P S T O V A L



The solution to this decades-old riddle of Aiwass, which was designed to serve as a test to prove the validity of the person meant to succeed 666 as 777, is none other than his own number, and the number of his name.  How fitting indeed!

Recall once more Crowley’s own words, from his commentary on the verses in question:

“Be ye well assured all that the solution, when it is found, will be unquestionable.  It will be marked by the most sublime simplicity, and carry immediate conviction.”

Not only is it unquestionable, not only is it marked by the most sublime simplicity, carrying immediate conviction, but it also satisfies the prediction of vs.54-56 of ch.1, as already explained.  Recall again those verses:

“Change not as much as the style of a letter; for behold! thou, o prophet, shalt not behold all these mysteries hidden therein.

“The child of thy bowels, he shall behold them.

“Expect him not from the East, nor from the West; for from no expected house cometh that child. Aum! All words are sacred and all prophets true; save only that they understand a little; solve the first half of the equation, leave the second unattacked. But thou hast all in the clear light, and some, though not all, in the dark.”

The emphasis in bold is mine, to highlight that this is exactly what happened.  I had, for over twenty years, presented only half of the solution, failing to recognize that the existence of that colon meant that the riddle consisted not just of the string of numbers and words of the opening part of v.76, but of the words of v.75 as well.

III: The Other Qabalistic Gems

While nothing can exceed the simple sublime perfection of what is presented above, there are numerous other Gematric gems to be found in the verses relevant to this matter.  Below, I present a brief Qabalistic examination of the passages from The Book of the Law that apply to the one known as 777, or the “child of the Prophet”.  The value of these gems is that they illustrate why various idiosyncratic words and phrases may have been used by Aiwass, conveying as they do additional profound meaning.

The verses that fall under our examination here are:  1:54-56; 2:39; 2:75-76; 3:38; and 3:47.  They are presented in order as they appear in Liber Legis.


“Change not as much as the style of a letter”:  style=81=letter.

“thou, o prophet, shalt not behold all these mysteries hidden therein”:

behold all=71=Thoth.  Thoth, under the name Tahuti, is referenced in 2:39 as being associated with the “child of the Prophet”.  This is because the source of the dynamis that inspired this second child or Dynasthai was Leah Hirsig, a.k.a. Soror Alostrael 31-666-31, whose title was “The Ape of Thoth”.  She died in the 71st year of the Thelemic Age, which began with the reception of the Law of Thelema in 1904 e.v.

mysteries hidden=177=The Scarlet Woman


“The child of thy bowels, he shall behold them”:

he shall behold=111=secret key (see 1:46 and 1:48)

of thy bowels=150=expected house (“Expect him not from the East, nor from the West; for from no expected house cometh that child”)

“Aum! All words are sacred and all prophets true; save only that they understand a little; solve the first half of the equation, leave the second unattacked. But thou hast all in the clear light, and some, though not all, in the dark”:

Aum=35=Nu (the Sakti-force which manifests in the Scarlet Woman)


of the equation=156=knowest not.  This is also the value of Babalon in Hebrew; and Babalon is of course another name for the universal force of the Scarlet Woman.

the clear light=128=expound it (see 2:76)

in the clear light=151=tell them this (see again 2:76)


“A feast for Tahuti and the child of the Prophet— secret, O Prophet!”

for Tahuti and the child of the Prophet=358=awake the lust & worship of the Snake (see 3:34; this “lust & worship of the Snake” is the phallic “sex magick” that breeds the dynamis that motivates and energizes the “magical child” with its Current).



“Aye! listen to the numbers & the words”:

Aye! listen to the numbers & the words: 4 6 3 8 A B K 2 4 A L G M O R 3 Y X 24 89 R P S T O V A L = 777, the one to follow 666.

Aye=31=the Key of the Law, AL, in Hebrew and Greek.


numbers+words=171=Thou knowest

“What meaneth this, o prophet? Thou knowest not; nor shalt thou know ever”:

o prophet=113=know ever

Thou knowest not=220=the number of verses in The Book of the Law.

nor shalt thou=171=numbers+words

“There cometh one to follow thee: he shall expound it”:

cometh one=98=prophet

There cometh one to follow=272=Into the House of Ra and Tum (see below, 3:38)

to follow thee=156=Thou knowest not

“But remember, o chosen one, to be me; to follow the love of Nu in the star-lit heaven; to look forth upon men, to tell them this glad word”:


chosen one=98=prophet

to be me=60=Aiwaz

of Nu=56=Nu in Hebrew

star-lit heaven=154=There cometh one

the love of Nu in the star-lit heaven=353=secret that hath not yet been revealed (see 2:2)

tell them this=151=in the clear light (see 1:56)



“So that thy light is in me; & its red flame is as a sword in my hand to push thy order”:

red flame=64=Thelema

thy order=113=o prophet

as a sword in my hand=188=child of the Prophet

“There is a secret door that I shall make to establish thy way in all the quarters”:

door=52=stele in Greek (see Crowley’s commentary to 3:19)

a secret door=123=Bes-na-Maut.  This is also the value of “the Sphinx”.

“The light is mine; its rays consume
Me: I have made a secret door
Into the House of Ra and Tum,
Of Khephra and of Ahathoor.
I am thy Theban, O Mentu,
The prophet Ankh-af-na-khonsu!
By Bes-na-Maut my breast I beat;
By wise Ta-Nech I weave my spell.
Show thy star-splendour, O Nuit!
Bid me within thine House to dwell,
O wingèd snake of light, Hadit!

Abide with me, Ra-Hoor-Khuit”:

a secret door Into the House of Ra and Tum=395, the value of the string of numbers and words constituting half of the riddle of Aiwass.

snake of light=127=Hadit burning.  Also the value of the phrase, “That is easy”.  (See Crowley’s commentary to 3:40 for both of these significant phrases.)



“This book shall be translated into all tongues: but always with the original in the writing of the Beast; for in the chance shape of the letters and their position to one another: in these are mysteries that no Beast shall divine”:

in the chance shape of the letters=292=thy way in all the quarters (3:38)

“Let him not seek to try: but one cometh after him, whence I say not, who shall discover the Key of it all. Then this line drawn is a key: then this circle squared in its failure is a key also. And Abrahadabra. It shall be his child & that strangely. Let him not seek after this; for thereby alone can he fall from it”:

this line drawn=156=of the equation.  Also Babalon in Hebrew.

circle squared=135=H Kokkine Gyne (“The Scarlet Woman” in Gr.)

a key also=89=Therion (“Beast” in Gr.)

strangely=121=to follow (see 2:76)  This is also the value of “Beast & his Bride” from 3:22, thus suggesting sex magick again.  As does the following computation:

his child & that strangely=242=lust & power of lust (from 3:27)

Let him not seek after this=262=the spell of Ra-Hoor-Khuit (from 3:2)




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

In November, 1925 era vulgari (common era), Aleister Crowley, disillusioned with his disciples – particularly C.S. Jones and Norman Mudd – and disappointed with some of their ideas, went against the logic of his own holy Law and issued a Canon of Restriction known as The Tunis Comment.  [C.f. Liber Legis, 1:41, “The word of Sin is Restriction”.]  He was with his seventh Scarlet Woman, Dorothy Olsen, a.k.a. Soror Astrid, staying at the Seniat el Kitou in La Marsa, Tunisia, when the inspiration struck him.  He considered it to be an inspiration of the highest order, at that, categorizing it as a “Class A” document, or “Writings of which may be changed not so much as the style of a letter:  i.e., the utterance of an Adept entirely beyond the criticism of even the Visible Head of the Organization” – equivalent in authority to The Book of the Law itself, which is also the book which it is intended to protect from the corrupting influence of so-called “heresiarchs”.  It warrants, therefore, our most careful consideration, both ordinary and Qabalistic; but any criticism of it is strictly forbidden, and earns us the contempt of our contemporaries.  Yet, considering the slavish, herd-minded attitude of those who would take such an edict superficially, this might not be such a bad thing.

Avenue de Carthage, Tunis, 1925 e.v.

Here is The Tunis Comment itself:

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

“The study of this Book is forbidden.  It is wise to destroy this copy after the first reading.

“Whosoever disregards this does so at his own risk and peril. These are most dire.

“Those who discuss the contents of this Book are to be shunned by all, as centres of pestilence.

“All questions of the Law are to be decided only by appeal to my writings, each for himself.

“There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.

“Love is the law, love under will.

“The priest of the princes,


Tunis, 1924 e.v.

It was first published in 1926 e.v., along with the publication of The Book of the Law in Tunis.  In his excellent book, Magick without Tears, he puts forth his case for it:

“…in a mood of blank despair about it all, out came the Comment.  Easy, yes; inspired, yes; it is, as printed, the exact wording required.  No further cavilling and quibbling, and controversy and casuistry.  All heresiarchs are smelt in advance for the rats they are; they are seen brewing (their very vile small beer) in the air (the realm of Intellect—Swords) and they are accordingly nipped in the bud.  All Parliamentary requirements thus fulfilled according to the famous formula of the Irish M.P., we can get on to your other questions untroubled by doubt.

“One Textus Receptus, photographically guaranteed.  One High Court of Interpretation, each for himself alone.  No Patristic logomachies!  No disputed readings!  No civil wars and persecutions.  Anyone who wants to say anything, off with his head, and On with the Dance; let Joy be unconfined, You at the prow and Therion at the helm!  Off we go.”

Karl Germer, in a letter to Jane Wolfe, wrote:

“A.C. wrote the comment, driven to agonies through Mudd’s ravings. He realised the source of the danger. The better and more complete you eradicate any such and similar thoughts, and forget all speculation and rumination, the better for all concerned.”

But there are significant problems with this little writing.  The first is with its logic; next is its conflict with the Law of Thelema itself; then there is the fact that, if taken superficially, it keeps the unresolved matters of Liber Legis from ever being expounded as prophesied; and last but not least, there is the herd-mentality that it uses to threaten one with – why, after all, is being “shunned by all, as a centre of pestilence” supposed to be deemed such a bad thing?  This is, after all, from the pen of one who modeled himself after Shelley’s Alastor, “the Spirit of Solitude, the Wanderer of the Waste”.

First, I will address these problems, then I will proceed to consider what another of Crowley’s writings – entitled The Comment called D, or The Djeridensis Working – has to say on the matter, before moving on at last to my important Gematric evaluation of the document.

I: The Problems surrounding The Tunis Comment.

The Comment begins with a line from a verse of Liber Legis, specifically the last line of v.40 of ch.1:  “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law”.  Considering what follows, this is a surprising line with which to begin.  But there we have it: a passage reminding us that one’s own True Will is the supreme authority.

The very next line forbids any study of The Book of the Law at all:  “The study of this Book is forbidden”.  Then follows a caveat:  “It is wise to destroy this copy after the first reading”.

Any strict literal reading of this is based in ignorance.  Forbidden fruit is always the most enticing kind.  As for the caveat:  it is wise to avoid the book altogether if one is misguided enough to be persuaded by this to actually burn one’s book.  As v.27 of ch.2 states:

“There is great danger in me; for who doth not understand these runes shall make a great miss. He shall fall down into the pit called Because, and there he shall perish with the dogs of Reason.”

If you’re really so limited in your thinking as to be moved in such a direction – if you’re that literal-minded – then you’re better off getting rid of it altogether, because a literal interpretation of some of the book’s seemingly outrageous content would be likely to lead you to some very dangerous and erroneous conclusions.  The next part of the Comment emphasizes this danger:  “Whosoever disregards this does so at his own risk and peril. These are most dire.”

Then comes the injunction:   “Those who discuss the contents of this Book are to be shunned by all, as centres of pestilence”.  This plainly asserts that those who discuss the book are cursed with a contagious ill karma, which is again backed up in Crowley’s Djeridensis Comment (see below).  To associate with these “centres of pestilence”, to not shun them like the worst pestiferous affliction, is to contract their ill fate.

So what is one to do?  Let us consult the Law itself:  v.17 of ch.3 is clear:

“Fear not at all; fear neither men nor Fates, nor gods, nor anything. Money fear not, nor laughter of the folk folly, nor any other power in heaven or upon the earth or under the earth. Nu is your refuge as Hadit your light; and I am the strength, force, vigour, of your arms.”

If we avoid engaging in such discussion, and shun those who discuss the contents of the book, on account of this grave threat, then we fall back from the veil of mystery for fear’s sake.  We know, on the other hand, that Crowley always went where even the mightiest of angels fear to tread.  Let the brave warrior do likewise; let the fearful do what he is told.

Next, we are instructed to resolve all questions regarding Thelemic Law only by appeal to the writings of Crowley himself, and to none other – not in conference, of course, since there is to be no discussion, but each for himself alone.  We are to assume, in other words, that “father knows best”.

The problem with this, however, is that father does not always know best – as even Liber Legis makes abundantly clear, more than once.  First, there is v.54 of ch.1, which reads:

“Change not as much as the style of a letter; for behold! thou, o prophet, shalt not behold all these mysteries hidden therein.”

If, then, we cannot rely on Crowley for all the answers, then where are we to turn?  Are we to believe that there will be no other Thelemic prophets and oracles for the next 2,000 or so years?

The very next couple of verses, vs.55-56 of ch.1, say otherwise:

“The child of thy bowels, he shall behold them.

“Expect him not from the East, nor from the West; for from no expected house cometh that child. Aum! All words are sacred and all prophets true; save only that they understand a little; solve the first half of the equation, leave the second unattacked. But thou hast all in the clear light, and some, though not all, in the dark.”

There are to be other prophets, and these prophets are all true.  Crowley, once again, is shown here – again – to be somewhat in the dark as to several of the mysteries of Liber L vel Legis, as even he admitted, particularly with regard to the third chapter.

In v.10 of the next chapter, we find Crowley being admonished for his own “ill will”:

“O prophet! thou hast ill will to learn this writing.”

How troubling is this to the student seeking his counsel, and his counsel alone?  Is he to rely wholly on one who is not only partially ignorant of all the facts but also infected with a measure (however small) of ill will?

It is in v.76 of ch.2 that we find yet another mystery of which, it is written, Crowley would never know the meaning:

“4 6 3 8 A B K 2 4 A L G M O R 3 Y X 24 89 R P S T O V A L. What meaneth this, o prophet? Thou knowest not; nor shalt thou know ever. There cometh one to follow thee: he shall expound it.”

This riddle was never solved by anyone.  If Crowley would never know its meaning, and the one who would know it were to be shunned by all for discussing it, then what would be the point?  Here is where The Tunis Comment falters completely.  And in its failure, it takes down the prophet chosen to expound further revelation, thereby dooming the full development of Thelemic knowledge.  Unless, of course, The Tunis Comment be seen for what it is:  a ward only against the profane and the weak, not applicable to the wise, who will do their own wills instead of merely doing what they’re told.

Finally, in v.47 of ch.3 we find yet another warning to the first prophet to avoid altering the book itself – not so much as a single letter – owing to the fact that he would never apprehend its full meaning:

“This book shall be translated into all tongues: but always with the original in the writing of the Beast; for in the chance shape of the letters and their position to one another: in these are mysteries that no Beast shall divine.”

As for the mystery of “the chance shape of the letters and their position to one another”, no mortal prophet – no Beast that is – would ever grasp the reason thereof; for it is a matter beyond the capacity of reason to grasp.

The next part of The Tunis Comment is actually v.60 of ch.3:

“There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.”

This tells us that no injunction, “Class A” notwithstanding, takes priority over “Do what thou wilt”.

Finally, we are reminded that the Law is “love under will” – i.e. perfect, impersonal love (impulsive and not compulsory), founded solidly upon “pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result”.

Note, too, that the Comment doesn’t purport to be from Aiwass, as does The Book of the Law itself.  Instead, it bears the title, “priest of the princes” (the prophet), and the signature, “Ankh-f-n-khonsu”, i.e. Crowley.

II: The Tunis Comment and the Curse of Djeridensis.

Delville, “Promethee” (slightly adapted).

Beginning under that section of The Comment called D entitled “666 to comment on AL to guard against false interpretations”, the first prophet of Thelema set forth the basis for The Tunis Comment.  It reads as follows:

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

Clearly, then, we see that the wise old Master had noble designs, and simply sought to protect Thelemic religion from the wiles of such fiendish followers as had contorted the original Gnosis of such prophets as Ixtus and Mahomet before him.  For the misunderstanding of men is great, and the chicanery of the coteries of fear and loathing skilled indeed.  Yet in his zeal to protect his mission from the clutches of the incorrigible, Crowley locked up the inheritance of his true successors and threw away the key.  He failed to consider the possibility that the mission to unveil the Law might continue after his death.

And so he wrote The Tunis Comment, and sealed it with a magical curse, under the heading, “666: His Curse upon any that should seek to distort the Book, or His comment”.

Tunisia, 1925 e.v.

It reads as follows:

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

Now, this curse seems formidable indeed – and it is, but only against those with ill-intent, fraudulent hearts and erroneous designs.  Note that “reading the Book in” other than “simple and plain language” is not itself condemned – for Crowley advocated as much himself, e.g. in his commentary to Liber L, v.17 of ch.2:

“Hear me, ye people of sighing!
The sorrows of pain and regret
Are left to the dead and the dying,
The folk that not know me as yet.”

And his commentary:

“This passage was again very painful to the prophet, who took it in its literal sense. But ‘the poor and the outcast’ are the petty thoughts and the Qliphotic thoughts and the sad thoughts. These must be rooted out, or the ecstasy of Hadit is not in us. They are the weeds in the Garden that starve the Flower.”

Not exactly a “simple and plain” interpretation!  The “outcast and the unfit” (i.e. of v.21 of ch.2) aren’t actual individuals to be loathed, but weak tendencies within one’s own being, to be eradicated without mercy – by Crowley’s own interpretation.  What is to be abhorred, rather, is a “simple and plain language” that is conceived in “fraud and false ways of reading”, not that which is spawned of Truth and brought forth by the Just.

The domed mosque, Tunis (c.1925), oil on canvas.

So then, let it be understood that this “Great Curse of a Magus of Power” – which stands against all who dare, whether by ignorance or intrigue, to turn the mission of Thelema away from the grand scheme of Aiwass itself, no matter how slightly – shall never touch he or she who proclaims his or her word under the imprimatur thereof.  And he that would strive to turn such a genuine messenger of Truth from his or her own irreproachable mission, through infelicitous machinations, shall meet with calamity as terrible as that of which Crowley himself warned.

To the caveat given him in v.54 of ch.1 of the Law, Crowley admits his own shortcomings as a final prophet of the mysteries of Thelema, writing:

“I am bidden once more not to tamper with the text of the MS. of Liber AL on the ground that it contains secrets beyond my knowledge.”

Indeed; but not at all beyond the knowledge of his rightful heirs, some of whom have already taken up residence in the Egregore of the Beast and the Whore in the Chapel of Abominations at the heart of the Holy Thelemic Church.  Of the others, both now and in times to come, we keep silence, knowing that the strategem of the Secret Chiefs is complex and sublime.

III: A Brief Qabalistic Analysis of The Tunis Comment

As explained in The Angloqabalistic Key (available as a free download in the sidebar library of this site), we make use of the Gematria of Angloqabalah, or AQBL for short.  Unlike all other forms of English Gematria that have emerged previously, AQBL is not some contrived system of arbitrarily assigned values for the letters of the English Alphabet, but simply the natural order and value that has been obvious all along.  In the Gematria of AQBL, a letter bears the value of its place in the Alphabet.  Using it, let us take a moment to evaluate The Tunis Comment, to see if certain phrases may have been chosen for their Gematric import, as a way of informing the wise of additional insights.

Line 1:  “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law”.

The numbers of the words in this all-important line from The Book of the Law come to none other than 444, which in the Hebrew is the value of MQDSh, “the Sanctuary”, and which, being 111 (divine Samadhi) x 4 (the number of Law), is emblematic of holy Law.

Line 2:  “The study of this Book is forbidden. It is wise to destroy this copy after the first reading.”

Study=89=Therion.  I.e., one should always evaluate the contents of the book not in the light of one’s own imagination, but under the inspiration of The Beast.

The study of this=199=Do what thou wilt. Study is not forbidden if it is one’s True Will to do so.

The study of this book=242=And it shall be suddenly easy – vide Liber Legis, 3:21, which reads:

“Set up my image in the East: thou shalt buy thee an image which I will show thee, especial, not unlike the one thou knowest. And it shall be suddenly easy for thee to do this.”

In his commentary to this verse, Crowley writes:

“I am inclined to see some deeper significance in this passage. There has elsewhere been reference to the words “not”, “one”, “Thou knowest”. The word “easy” is moreover suggestive of some mystery; it is used in the same doubtfully intelligible sense in verse 40.”

The example he cites here – which is critical to our analysis as it is the verse that portends The Tunis Comment, not conceived until 21 years after the reception of the verse – i.e. v.40 of ch.3, reads:

“But the work of the comment? That is easy; and Hadit burning in thy heart shall make swift and secure thy pen.”

Also, the word forbidden=77=runes.  This is vital, in light of L, 2:27, which reads:

“There is great danger in me; for who doth not understand these runes shall make a great miss. He shall fall down into the pit called Because, and there he shall perish with the dogs of Reason.”

This is the danger that The Tunis Comment aims to keep the profane away from.

Note the word “after” in the line:   “It is wise to destroy this copy after the first reading”: after=50=easy.  It is also the value of Hadith (a valid alternate spelling).

Line 3:  “Whosoever disregards this does so at his own risk and peril. These are most dire.”

at his own risk=166=and Hadit burning in thy heart.  This is also the numeration of The Book of the Law.

own risk and peril=188=child of the Prophet (vide L, 2:39).

most dire=36=Law.

Whosoever disregards this does=333=CHORONZON, the force of Dispersion (if one is unequilibrated, otherwise it is the gateway to the Understanding of The Beast) in Hebrew.

Line 4:  “Those who discuss the contents of this Book are to be shunned by all, as centres of pestilence”.

Those who discuss the contents of this Book are to be shunned by all, as centres=777, the number of the “child of the Prophet”, or the one to follow 666.

shunned=85=burning (see 3:40 again).

be shunned by all=144=this meaning all (“all” being code for the key of the Law).  This is also the value of Ankh-af-na-khonsu, Ra-Hoor-Khuit and Shaitan-Aiwass.

centres of pestilence=213=ZVR (Heb.), “a stranger”, and ONN NDVL (Heb.), “a great cloud” – both by Hebrew Gematria.

pestilence=108=burning in (from 3:40).

Line 5:  “All questions of the Law are to be decided only by appeal to my writings, each for himself”.

All questions of the Law=254=It is wise to destroy.

only by appeal=128=each for himself.  This is also the numeration of both Choronzon and Dispersion in the English.  It is also the value of the phrase, it is no odds (see L, 3:39, which speaks of the promulgation of the Law).

only by appeal to my writings=309=ShT (Shin Teth, or Flame of Spirit and Lust of Flesh conjoined), in Hebrew.  By AQBL, ShT numbers 47=Beast and Babalon.

Line 6:  “There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt”.

Do what thou wilt=199=TzDQH, Hebrew for “a giving freely”.  It is also the value of the line, Will he not sink? Amn – from L, 1:51, which remarks on the danger of standing upon the foundation of the palace of Thelema.  It is no danger for those abiding by their True Wills.  Finally, this is also the numeration of The Tunis Comment!

no law=65=beyond.  Also the value of centre.

Line 7:  “Love is the law, love under will”.

This important passage, from v.57 of ch.1, numerates as 323, the value of What is this? Thou shalt know (from 3:22).

Line 8:  “The priest of the princes, Ankh-f-n-khonsu”.

This spelling of the name, Ankh-f-n-khonsu which differs slightly from that given in the book itself, numbers 142, the same as the Hebrew BLOM, or Balaam, “stranger”.

Last but not least, Tunis Comment=166=at his own risk.

That said, recall always Liber Legis vs.42-43:

“Let it be that state of manyhood bound and loathing. So with thy all; thou hast no right but to do thy will. Do that, and no other shall say nay.”

And 2:59:  “If he be a King, thou canst not hurt him”.

Love is the law, love under will.


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