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Re: Jeremiah 7:18 and the Stele of Revealing

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  • Ahn Eun Song
    ... face of ... of ... Surely you mean, no /serious/ Christian would worry about false gods? ... and ... from ... Christianity . the Beast and Babylon qualify
    Message 1 of 21 , Jun 25, 2005
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      --- In thelema93-l@yahoogroups.com, "marqswinkels"
      <marqswinkels@y...> wrote:
      > > The author of TBOTL chose the mythological archenemies of
      > > Christianity as the featured heroes in TBOTL as a slap in the
      face of
      > > Christianity, and for no other reason.
      >
      > Silly line of logic, since the 'Egyptian Bunch' are at best a bunch
      of
      > Demigods or false Gods to the Christians and really not anything any
      > christian would worry about.


      Surely you mean, no /serious/ Christian would worry about false gods?

      > Worshipping them would be somewhat wrong
      > and would be regarded as silly, but not more silly than any of the
      > others of thousands of 'False Gods.' There's no satan, no lucifer
      and
      > no Lilith in TBOTL so I don't see where on earth you get the idea
      from
      > that TBOTL feautures 'the mythological archenemies of
      Christianity'.

      the Beast and Babylon qualify as arch enemies. They figure quite
      prominently in Revelations where they are both painted in starkly
      negative and frightful terms. Maybe you haven't yet read this missive?


      >
      > There are enough things annoying about TBOTL as it stands. One thing
      > is the blatant specieism that permuates it. <snip>
      > Why else
      > would the line not have been 'Every being is a star'?

      Yeah, specieism, that's frightfully scary! I'm shakin' in my boots!

      >
      > I also don't really get the point of dragging 2000 year old deities
      > out of the closet to start a 'new religion'.

      Good. Don't make anything (like 'new religion'), and you won't have
      anything to fret about.

      <snip>

      AES
    • mike marduk
      ... 93 Do you actually think that Liber AL should have been (or was) directed at all life on this planet? Even algae? I hardly think they would have
      Message 2 of 21 , Jun 25, 2005
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        --- marqswinkels <marqswinkels@...> wrote:
        >
        > There are enough things annoying about TBOTL as it
        > stands. One thing
        > is the blatant specieism that permuates it.
        > Specieism, in my opinion,
        > is a worse problem than racism - a more common
        > problem too.

        93

        Do you actually think that Liber AL should have
        been (or was) directed at all life on this planet?
        Even algae? I hardly think they would have
        understood.

        But more to the point, if there are still some
        segments of humanity under the old Aeon, how much
        more so for other species. It seems kind of
        "specio-centric" to assume that salamanders and blue
        jays must be under the same Aeon as humans. Should we
        begin enforcing Thelemic Law in the animal kingdom?
        We sure would have our hands full. Vegetarianism
        would be manditory, as the only alternative would be
        a kind of cannibalism.

        Besides which, Man is a microcosm. Any creature
        which is also a microcosm (complete) is also Man,
        even if the form of a dolphin or chimp is worn.
        However, I doubt that many species on this planet
        have reached that level of development, if any.
        True, they have basic rights - Crowley himself wrote
        in Book 4 in favor of what we would call
        "cruelty-free" products. I think free-range meat is
        the most Thelemic - but that isn't quite the same as
        granting a chicken the status of a God. They are
        partial beings, their soul being that of an
        elemental.

        Of course, it is said to be possible for an
        elemental to ensoul a human body - so that in a sense
        they are only animals with human forms, not Stars. I
        think I might know a few:), but that seems a can best
        left un-opened. I prefer to go on the assumption that
        all humans are Mankind - even if some aren't, they
        have the potential to develope to be.

        93

        rockout

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      • marqswinkels
        ... I fail to see the significance of the distinction. Moreover, I do not think any sort of believer, nor unbeliever for that matter, is ever worried about
        Message 3 of 21 , Jun 26, 2005
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          --- In thelema93-l@yahoogroups.com, "Ahn Eun Song" <ahn.unsong@g...>
          wrote:

          > > Silly line of logic, since the 'Egyptian Bunch' are at best a bunch
          > of
          > > Demigods or false Gods to the Christians and really not anything any
          > > christian would worry about.
          >
          > Surely you mean, no /serious/ Christian would worry about false gods?

          I fail to see the significance of the distinction. Moreover, I do not
          think any sort of believer, nor unbeliever for that matter, is ever
          worried about false gods, because that's always the god of the other
          blokes.


          > the Beast and Babylon qualify as arch enemies. They figure quite
          > prominently in Revelations where they are both painted in starkly
          > negative and frightful terms. Maybe you haven't yet read this missive?

          I have read it but it must have made quite less impression on me than
          it did on Crowley. I thought it was boring, because there's no serious
          character development. Just an abstract description that could mean
          anything, really. A horror movie fails to be scary when there's
          serious lack of character development or intelligence in the script.

          As to the 'archenemy' bit, ok, I can see now where one could get that
          idea. The same can be said of disney's 'Beauty and the Beast',
          however, which probably would excite me more since they at least put
          some effort into character development.


          > > There are enough things annoying about TBOTL as it stands. One thing
          > > is the blatant specieism that permuates it. <snip>
          > > Why else
          > > would the line not have been 'Every being is a star'?
          >
          > Yeah, specieism, that's frightfully scary! I'm shakin' in my boots!

          Racism isn't scary either, merely annoying. But so are you and your
          flat, unintelligent commentry.

          Marq
        • marqswinkels
          ... That s a giant misnomer, since Liber Al, even if it is directed at humanity in particular, need not have incorrect information for that reason. As it
          Message 4 of 21 , Jun 26, 2005
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            --- In thelema93-l@yahoogroups.com, mike marduk <rockout93@y...> wrote:

            > Do you actually think that Liber AL should have
            > been (or was) directed at all life on this planet?
            > Even algae? I hardly think they would have
            > understood.

            That's a giant misnomer, since Liber Al, even if it is directed at
            humanity in particular, need not have incorrect information for that
            reason. As it stands, it presents humanity as the highest good, and
            excludes all other forms of life as inessential. There is no real
            excuse for that. To claim that the text is 'just meant for humanity'
            is particulary silly, since animals can't read in the first place. Why
            must human kind always believe they're highest on the food chain?

            > It seems kind of
            > "specio-centric" to assume that salamanders and blue
            > jays must be under the same Aeon as humans.

            I don't believe in Aeons, I think Aeons are projection.

            Besides which, Man is a microcosm. Any creature
            > which is also a microcosm (complete) is also Man,
            > even if the form of a dolphin or chimp is worn.

            That's the biggest crock of shite I have ever read.
            Apologism often makes the most ridicilous arguments, but you
            easily crown the cuckoo cabinet.

            > They are
            > partial beings, their soul being that of an
            > elemental.

            I really hate this sort of quack philosophy.
            It borders on the insane. So now we have creatures
            with 'full souls' and with 'partial souls'.

            This is just Apartheid with a spiritual sauce.

            Marq
          • eyeofhoor
            ... The nosedive taken by Crowley into the mire of religion is reflected in his recommended reading list. ... Those documents not only reflect Crowley s
            Message 5 of 21 , Jun 28, 2005
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              "Ahn Eun Song" <ahn.unsong@g...> wrote:
              > i accept this business about the role of Christian devils in
              > Thelema as reasonable and likely, if not true. does it lessen the
              > force of the idea that thelema is perhaps indebted to this partner-
              > in-crime? i don't think so. remember, it is Saint Augustine who
              > first said 'do what thou wilt.' He said it in latin
              > though: 'Dilige, et quod vis fac.' Many (Judeo-)Christian writers
              > in fact are recommended reading in the AA, for instance:
              > 1. The spiritual guide of Miguel de Molinos
              > 2. Kabbala Denudata, von Rosenroth
              > 3. The Writings of William O'Neill (Blake)
              > 4. The Bible, by various authors unknown

              The nosedive taken by Crowley into the mire of religion is
              reflected in his recommended reading list.

              >
              > Ever read Liber Agape? Looks influenced by Christianity to me. Ever
              > read the Gnostic Mass? Looks influenced by the Roman Catholic Mass
              > to me.

              Those documents not only reflect Crowley's interest in religion,
              but also reflect his intent on synthesizing a new religion by
              marrying Thelema with religious practices.

              > Though first said in Latin (by Augustine) and then in French (by
              > Rabelais), it does not make 'Do what thou wilt' an original phrase
              > for Aleister Crowley.

              Indeed--and that is the precise point overlooked both by
              Crowleyites and by the those that would drag Thelema down by piling
              on to it the baggage that belongs to Biblical religions.

              The roots of Thelema are not found in the origin of the word ThELHMA,
              or in the origin of the phrase *Do what thou wilt*, but rather in the
              common core ideology of exponents of Thelema.

              Francois Rabelais--

              Rabelais was exposed to a rigorous Christian discipline at an early
              age, having joined two different sects of monks before abandoning his
              religious training to become a physician and author. The only
              connection that can be made between Augustine and Rabelais is in the
              rules of the monasteries where Rabelais studied--they were based upon
              Augustine's ideas and teachings.

              Rabelais' writings reflect his deep interest in Humanism, which
              during his life was considered an affront to religion by the status
              quo. Although he had to be subtle and sometimes cryptic when doing
              it, Rabelais went out of his way to insult the church and to incite
              its anger. The use by Rabelais of Christian religious elements such
              as a monasterial setting and the term ThELHMA constitute deliberate
              mockery and blasphemy on his part. Like Aleister Crowley, Rabelais
              was branded a heretic by the church and lived in fear of arrest and
              persecution.

              To summarize, the invention of Thelema by Rabelais was not inspired
              by the teachings of Augustine, but instead consists of a rebellious
              reaction to Augustinian teachings. Humanism lies at the core of
              Rabelaisian Thelema.

              Sir Francis Dashwood & the Monks of Medmenham--

              Dashwood was a wealthy and powerful English politician inspired by
              Rabelais' fictional account of the Abbey of Theleme. The Abbey of
              Medmenham was located on property that was alleged to have been used
              for pagan rituals in ancient times, complete with a network of caves
              and an abandoned church. With *Do what thou wilt* inscribed above the
              doorway, and a sexually-suggestive statue of Venus bent over naked
              adorning the entrance, sexual orgies and the worship of pagan gods
              were alleged to have taken place. The worship of pagan gods during
              that era would have to be seen as deliberate acts of blasphemy
              directed at the religious establishment, and also demonstrating the
              Thelema of Dashwood as identical to that of Rabelais.

              One of the most fascinating aspects of the Abbey Medmenham was the
              presence of a statue of Harpocrates, which probably constitutes the
              earliest link between Thelema and the Egyptian gods. It has also been
              reported that Dashwood had the old church on the property renovated
              and converted into an Egyptian temple. What is really odd is Dashwood
              lived and died before the Rosetta stone was ever discovered or
              deciphered, showing he had little knowledge of the Egyptian gods he
              was worshiping. The realization brings to mind a verse in TBOTL:

              "Who worshipped Heru-pa-kraath hath worshipped me; ill, for I am the
              worshipper."

              Aiwass & the Book of the Law--

              Whereas Rabelais had to be subtle in his rebelliousness, and Dashwood
              secretive in his, Aiwass engages in open blasphemy by waging an all-
              out assault on Biblical religion and encouraging extreme humanism.
              Aiwass' use of religious elements and statements similar to verses in
              the Bible conforms to the pattern first started by Rabelais of using
              religious concepts for the purpose of advocating a blasphemous
              stance. One would have to be blind not to see that Thelema is not a
              religion at all, but is in truth the antireligion.

              "I am in a secret fourfold word, the blasphemy of all gods of men."
              "Curse them! Curse them! Curse them!" -- Aiwass


              Prophet of L
            • 333
              50050827 ix om Ahn Eun Song : # i accept this business about the role of Christian devils in # Thelema as reasonable and likely, if not
              Message 6 of 21 , Aug 27, 2005
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                50050827 ix om

                "Ahn Eun Song" <ahn.unsong@g...>:
                # > i accept this business about the role of Christian devils in
                # > Thelema as reasonable and likely, if not true. does it lessen the
                # > force of the idea that thelema is perhaps indebted to this partner-
                # > in-crime? i don't think so. remember, it is Saint Augustine who
                # > first said 'do what thou wilt.' He said it in latin
                # > though: 'Dilige, et quod vis fac.'

                what, 'Love and do as you will'?

                # > Many (Judeo-)Christian writers
                # > in fact are recommended reading in the AA, for instance:
                # > 1. The spiritual guide of Miguel de Molinos
                # > 2. Kabbala Denudata, von Rosenroth
                # > 3. The Writings of William O'Neill (Blake)
                # > 4. The Bible, by various authors unknown

                "eyeofhoor" [my favourite Thelemic prophet!] <eyeofhoor@...>:
                # The nosedive taken by Crowley into the mire of religion is
                # reflected in his recommended reading list.

                completely agreed. his coverage of philosophy could have been
                far more complete.

                # > Ever read Liber Agape? Looks influenced by Christianity to me. Ever
                # > read the Gnostic Mass? Looks influenced by the Roman Catholic Mass
                # > to me.
                #
                # Those documents not only reflect Crowley's interest in religion,
                # but also reflect his intent on synthesizing a new religion by
                # marrying Thelema with religious practices.

                an excellent point. we could also compare the church constructed
                by Leadbeater resident inside of his orgs/orders with the EGC.
                there's mimicry of form all over the place if one looks carefully.
                is it really anti-religious if they're also *duplicating religion*?
                let's not forget how the Black Masses and Sabbats were turned from
                Christian nightmares into ostensive religiomagical "Traditions".

                # > Though first said in Latin (by Augustine) and then in French (by
                # > Rabelais), it does not make 'Do what thou wilt' an original phrase
                # > for Aleister Crowley.
                #
                # Indeed--and that is the precise point overlooked both by
                # Crowleyites and by the those that would drag Thelema down by piling
                # on to it the baggage that belongs to Biblical religions.

                missing the trees for the forest.

                # The roots of Thelema are not found in the origin of the word ThELHMA,
                # or in the origin of the phrase *Do what thou wilt*, but rather in the
                # common core ideology of exponents of Thelema.

                and the principles exemplified by these, yes.

                # Francois Rabelais--

                <snip excellent bio>

                # To summarize, the invention of Thelema by Rabelais was not inspired
                # by the teachings of Augustine, but instead consists of a rebellious
                # reaction to Augustinian teachings. Humanism lies at the core of
                # Rabelaisian Thelema.

                at least anti-Augustinian or inverso-Augustinian principles.
                analysis of any specifics for these would be helpful, and
                yet Rabelais is more about implication than content, no?


                # Sir Francis Dashwood & the Monks of Medmenham--

                <snip excellent bio>

                # and an abandoned church. With *Do what thou wilt* inscribed above the
                # doorway, and a sexually-suggestive statue of Venus bent over naked
                # adorning the entrance, sexual orgies and the worship of pagan gods
                # were alleged to have taken place. The worship of pagan gods during
                # that era would have to be seen as deliberate acts of blasphemy
                # directed at the religious establishment, and also demonstrating the
                # Thelema of Dashwood as identical to that of Rabelais.

                "identical" may be a stretch, but some of its trajectory is
                quite comparable.

                # presence of a statue of Harpocrates, which probably constitutes
                # the earliest link between Thelema and the Egyptian gods.
                # It has also been reported that Dashwood had the old church
                # on the property renovated and converted into an Egyptian temple.

                what is the value of Egyptian gods to Thelema? why should their
                connection be maintained *aside* as a bid for outdoing Jews,
                Christians, and Muslims? for what reason is Egypt given focus?

                # ...Dashwood
                # lived and died before the Rosetta stone was ever discovered or
                # deciphered, showing he had little knowledge of the Egyptian gods he
                # was worshiping....

                the problems of Crowley's understanding of same have been mentioned.

                # Aiwass & the Book of the Law--

                <snip>

                # Whereas Rabelais had to be subtle in his rebelliousness, and Dashwood
                # secretive in his, Aiwass engages in open blasphemy by waging an all-
                # out assault on Biblical religion and encouraging extreme humanism.

                didn't Crowley act in manners contrary to this through his interests
                in fomenting a cult in his wake? how does this serve humanism?

                # Aiwass' use of religious elements and statements similar to verses in
                # the Bible conforms to the pattern first started by Rabelais of using
                # religious concepts for the purpose of advocating a blasphemous
                # stance.

                the anti-religious stance is obvious.

                # One would have to be blind not to see that Thelema is not a
                # religion at all, but is in truth the antireligion.

                it certainly has elements. pockets of anti-Christianity have
                been breaking out ever since it allied itself with Rome.
                are all anti-Christians the same or allied behind one banner?
                I don't think so. one might say that their reactionary tack
                orients them in opposition to that which they respond, but
                their rudiments may remain concealed in ambiguous dust of
                the religions that they oppose. presumably license is the
                Trump of Release for all the Willful.

                333
              • eyeofhoor
                ... The reversal or inversion of Christian principles at the fictional Abbey of Theleme are both specific and implied. Counter-Augustinian principles are
                Message 7 of 21 , Aug 28, 2005
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                  333 <nagasiva@l...> wrote:

                  > at least anti-Augustinian or inverso-Augustinian principles.
                  > analysis of any specifics for these would be helpful, and
                  > yet Rabelais is more about implication than content, no?

                  The reversal or inversion of Christian principles at the fictional
                  Abbey of Theleme are both specific and implied. Counter-Augustinian
                  principles are specified as the principles embraced at Theleme due to
                  the prevalence of Augustine's teachings as the core ideals enforced
                  at Christian monasteries, and the desire of the Monk in the story to
                  have his Abbey operate in a manner opposite of other monasteries.

                  The attempts at marrying Augustine and Christianity with Thelema
                  blindly ignore elements in Rabelais stories that establish the Abbey
                  of Theleme as an anti-religious, anti-Christian community. One of the
                  first policies outlined in the practices embraced at the Abbey of
                  Theleme is the habit of cleaning a room after any person belonging to
                  a religious order has set foot in it, a policy designed to be the
                  reverse of that in Christian monasteries where a room would be
                  cleansed after a woman had set foot in it, presumably due to women
                  being perceived as unclean, or to eradicate the room of the sexual
                  presence of a woman. The policy observed at the Abbey of Theleme is
                  overtly anti-religious.

                  Due to the times Rabelais lived in, he had to walk a fine line
                  between blasphemy and self-preservation in order to express his
                  ideals and not be killed for doing so. If Rabelais had had more
                  freedom to express his ideas truthfully, he may very well have
                  produced extreme anti-Christian literature similar to the Book of the
                  Law. Nonetheless, he does implement a few symbolic features in the
                  Abbey of Theleme that indicates a willingness to go to other side in
                  the same way Crowley chose to. The description of the Abbey of
                  Theleme is of a structure with six sides, six towers, and six stories-
                  -the number of the Beast of Revelations. I have no doubt this was
                  intentional on the part of Rabelais, and that it was his subtle way
                  of expressing a complete rejection of Christian ideas within the
                  Abbey. Another related detail is the first item mentioned as the
                  selected clothing for the women of the Abbey, stockings of a scarlet
                  or purple color, the same as colors of the Scarlet Woman and the
                  Scarlet Beast of Revelations.

                  One other detail that speaks volumes about the inspiration for the
                  Abbey of Theleme is a reference to the *woods of Theleme*, which are
                  mentioned (as I recall) in regard to the gathering of fowl and game
                  for food. My impression is that Theleme is a geographical area, hence
                  the name Abbey of Theleme, an Abbey located at Theleme. If it can be
                  established that an area in France named Theleme exists or existed,
                  it would cast serious doubt on the name *theleme* being taken
                  directly from the Greek New Testament by Rabelais. On the other hand,
                  the use of Greek terminology of any sort would have been weighed as
                  heretical on the part of Christian authorities, as the study of Greek
                  was forbidden and viewed as a path to heresy. In that case, the use
                  of a Greek term by Rabelais can be seen as another subtle element of
                  blasphemy on his part, as opposed to an effort at linking the Abbey
                  of Theleme with Christianity.


                  Prophet of L
                • Alamantra
                  ... From: eyeofhoor To: Sent: Sunday, August 28, 2005 12:01 PM Subject: [t93] Anti-religiosity at the Abbey
                  Message 8 of 21 , Aug 28, 2005
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                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: "eyeofhoor" <owner@...>
                    To: <thelema93-l@yahoogroups.com>
                    Sent: Sunday, August 28, 2005 12:01 PM
                    Subject: [t93] Anti-religiosity at the Abbey of Theleme


                    > One other detail that speaks volumes about the inspiration for the
                    > Abbey of Theleme is a reference to the *woods of Theleme*, which are
                    > mentioned (as I recall) in regard to the gathering of fowl and game
                    > for food. My impression is that Theleme is a geographical area, hence
                    > the name Abbey of Theleme, an Abbey located at Theleme. If it can be
                    > established that an area in France named Theleme exists or existed,
                    > it would cast serious doubt on the name *theleme* being taken
                    > directly from the Greek New Testament by Rabelais.

                    Actually there is an area of France called Theleme ...http://www.theleme.net/
                    It is the area of Cannes, Le Cannet, Mandelieu-La Napoule, Théoule sur
                    Mer, Mougins etc.
                    Rabelais was making a double entendre in the naming of his
                    "thelemites" which added a great deal of depth to his satire,
                    especially for those people who were familiar with the customs and
                    history of the area.

                    >Due to the times Rabelais lived in, he had to walk a fine line
                    >between blasphemy and self-preservation in order to express his
                    >ideals and not be killed for doing so. If Rabelais had had more
                    >freedom to express his ideas truthfully, he may very well have
                    >produced extreme anti-Christian literature similar to the Book of the
                    >Law.

                    This is doubtful. Rabelais was a member of the circle and enjoyed the
                    sponsorship of Marguerite of Navarre. If one looks at that circle,
                    they can glean that it was a hotbed for reform, but they were all
                    still striving to remain, basically, "good" Catholics. Marguerite was
                    the older sister of King Francis who outwardly promoted the Catholic
                    church's agenda ...more as a matter of politics than piousness... and
                    inwardly promoted the enlightenment ...as the last benefactor of
                    Leonardo Da Vinci as well as Erasmus, Rabelais, Nostradamus etc. more
                    usually through Marguerite. Marguerite published the 'Mirror of the
                    Sinful Soul' which is perhaps the first piece of distinctly 'feminist'
                    literature. (It was translated into English by a young Elizabeth as a
                    gift to her new step mother) For publishing "Mirror", Marguerite was
                    condemned as a heretic by the Sorbonne, and in this instance Francis
                    overtly acted against the course of the church by making sure that
                    those who had mocked big sister caught some real hell. Generally
                    though, Francis upheld the wishes of the church and they
                    ...sometimes... upheld his rights to certain territories and royal
                    claims. Marguerite was a mystical Christian and, as I said, a profound
                    influence on Rabelais. I get the sense that these people really more
                    opposed the dogma, and the greed ...the manifest lower qualities of
                    human nature... that were so prevalent within the clergy, and that
                    they were actually very spiritually, and very individually devout.
                    They most certainly were not "Satanists" or in any sense of the word
                    "anti-Christian" but strove instead to be exemplary Christians
                    ...followers of the teachings in preference to and in spite of the
                    dogma of the organized religion.
                    Of course, there is no reason to suppose that they held only one
                    religious doctrine, and in fact, Maguerite's circle also seems to have
                    been a haven for the Cult of the Black Virgin, which venerated Isis in
                    the form of Mary ('who SHALL give birth to God' ...rather 'than who
                    has given birth to God.'')
                    Of course, in Crowley's "Thelema" the Black Virgin has been co-opted
                    into Nuit/Laylah (Night.)

                    Bliss:
                    Alamantra
                  • eyeofhoor
                    ... Outstanding, thanks for the confirmation. ... How can you tell whether they were *striving* or *pretending* to be good Catholics? They really had no choice
                    Message 9 of 21 , Aug 31, 2005
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                      Alamantra <alamantra@g...> wrote:

                      >
                      > Actually there is an area of France called
                      > Theleme ...http://www.theleme.net/It is the area of Cannes, Le
                      > Cannet, Mandelieu-La Napoule, Théoule sur Mer, Mougins etc.
                      > Rabelais was making a double entendre in the naming of his
                      > "thelemites" which added a great deal of depth to his satire,
                      > especially for those people who were familiar with the customs and
                      > history of the area.

                      Outstanding, thanks for the confirmation.


                      Prophet of L:

                      > >Due to the times Rabelais lived in, he had to walk a fine line
                      > >between blasphemy and self-preservation in order to express his
                      > >ideals and not be killed for doing so. If Rabelais had had more
                      > >freedom to express his ideas truthfully, he may very well have
                      > >produced extreme anti-Christian literature similar to the Book of
                      > >the Law.
                      >
                      > This is doubtful. Rabelais was a member of the circle and enjoyed
                      > the sponsorship of Marguerite of Navarre. If one looks at that
                      > circle, they can glean that it was a hotbed for reform, but they
                      > were all still striving to remain, basically, "good" Catholics.

                      How can you tell whether they were *striving* or *pretending* to be
                      good Catholics? They really had no choice but to embrace religion
                      whether they liked it or not. It seems inconceivable that a sincere
                      Catholic could have created the concept of the Abbey of Theleme
                      without being a rebel to the core.

                      > Marguerite was the older sister of King Francis who outwardly
                      > promoted the Catholic church's agenda ...more as a matter of
                      > politics than piousness...

                      So in other words she was pretending to be a good Catholic. ;-)

                      > and inwardly promoted the enlightenment...as the last benefactor of
                      > Leonardo Da Vinci as well as Erasmus, Rabelais, Nostradamus etc.
                      > more usually through Marguerite. Marguerite published the 'Mirror
                      > of the Sinful Soul' which is perhaps the first piece of
                      > distinctly 'feminist'literature.

                      That doesn't sound like the act of a "good" Catholic to me. :-)

                      > (It was translated into English by a young Elizabeth as a
                      > gift to her new step mother) For publishing "Mirror", Marguerite was
                      > condemned as a heretic by the Sorbonne, and in this instance Francis
                      > overtly acted against the course of the church by making sure that
                      > those who had mocked big sister caught some real hell. Generally
                      > though, Francis upheld the wishes of the church and they
                      > ...sometimes... upheld his rights to certain territories and royal
                      > claims.

                      Royalty has always been ethusiastic of, if not responsible for
                      religion, as it makes the perfect device for monitoring and
                      controlling the kingdom, but says little of the true convictions of
                      royalty.

                      > Marguerite was a mystical Christian and, as I said, a profound
                      > influence on Rabelais. I get the sense that these people really more
                      > opposed the dogma, and the greed ...the manifest lower qualities of
                      > human nature... that were so prevalent within the clergy, and that
                      > they were actually very spiritually, and very individually devout.

                      I agree. The focus on good health, fine dress, fair-mindedness, and
                      non-interference are some of the exemplary spiritual qualities of
                      Rabelaisian Thelemites.

                      > They most certainly were not "Satanists" or in any sense of the word
                      > "anti-Christian" but strove instead to be exemplary Christians
                      > ...followers of the teachings in preference to and in spite of the
                      > dogma of the organized religion.

                      Crowley was not a Satanist either, at least not by any conventional
                      meaning of the term. His modus operandi was to simply ignore standard
                      definitions and reinvent or modify things to suit himself, as in the
                      case of the Satan-Shaitan-Saturn-Set connection he formulated. It
                      sounds like Rabelais and company were doing *at least* the same
                      thing.

                      > Of course, there is no reason to suppose that they held only one
                      > religious doctrine,

                      If they were "good" Catholics they would have.

                      > and in fact, Maguerite's circle also seems to have been a haven for
                      > the Cult of the Black Virgin, which venerated Isis in the form of
                      > Mary ('who SHALL give birth to God' ...rather 'than who has given
                      > birth to God.'')

                      Sounds like another interest that made the royal sister something
                      contrary to a "good" Catholic.

                      > Of course, in Crowley's "Thelema" the Black Virgin has been co-
                      > opted into Nuit/Laylah (Night.)

                      If the Cult of the Black Virgin and the concept of Nuit as
                      portrayed in TBOTL are essentially the same, would it not make
                      Rabelais and the royal sister the same sort of rebel as Crowley?


                      Prophet of L

                      http://www.hakela.com
                    • Alamantra
                      ... These people were brought up within a religion. The context of its symbolism informed them to the core of their being. One can have dissent and desire
                      Message 10 of 21 , Sep 18, 2005
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                        eyeofhoor" <owner@...> wrote:

                        >How can you tell whether they were *striving* or *pretending* to be
                        >good Catholics? They really had no choice but to embrace religion
                        >whether they liked it or not. It seems inconceivable that a sincere
                        >Catholic could have created the concept of the Abbey of Theleme
                        >without being a rebel to the core.


                        These people were brought up within a religion. The context of its symbolism
                        informed them to the core of their being. One can have dissent and desire
                        change within a paradigm and still be loyal to it, still wish to remain
                        within it. In fact, many would say that such dissent and desire is a very
                        pragmatic form of loyalty since the universe is constant change and
                        therefore an institution must change and adapt if it is to survive at all.
                        Although Erasmus had strong feelings on the subject and felt there was
                        corruption and misdirection among the clergy, when he was asked to support a
                        complete break from the church he felt that its unity had to be maintained.
                        So he was quite definite about where his loyalty was.
                        Rabelais was even more on the fringe of the paradigm, but all paradigms
                        have their edge, and he never really departed from that edge, at least
                        overtly. His essential view seemed to be that humans were creatures of folly
                        and their piousness was pretension and essentially meaningless. (just like
                        Erasmus) Still, this doesn't prohibit him from holding spiritual values or
                        using the language of Christianity to express them.
                        In many ways he was the Kurt Vonnegut of his day, but if a person has read
                        any of Kurt's most recent work, they would be hard-pressed to say that he is
                        not (at least in some ways) a Christian, since he is pointing out modern
                        society's emphasis on 'old testament' values and the lack of emphasis on the
                        teachings of Jesus. He holds that there is a supreme creative intelligence
                        that brought all of this into being and it may have a very perverse sense of
                        humor.
                        By way of example he points out the fierce debate over the right to post the
                        Ten Commandments. Kurt wants to know why this debate isn't over putting the
                        Beatitudes in public places... So although he finds himself in a general
                        objection, his symbols are informed by the general Christian paradigm.
                        ...Same with Rabelais ...Hell, same with Paracelsus in spite of the fact
                        that he often found his life in danger from clergy. The compassion that
                        directs Christianity (as put forth by Jesus) motivated him toward healing
                        others and working to better the lot of humanity.
                        We could go further and look at someone like Frederick II who was
                        excommunicated twice... He was such a "good catholic" that one
                        excommunication wasn't enough to get rid of him.
                        Although it is difficult not to do, I think that in terms of the kind of
                        research and discussions that we are frequently engaged in, it behooves us
                        to realize that there is no one 'entity' called the Catholic Church with any
                        type of historic cohesiveness. What it meant to be a 'good catholic' changes
                        from pope to pope ...from administration to administration, from kingdom to
                        kingdom, from day to day. We generally can only understand it in terms of
                        our own times, but the church itself was much different in the times of
                        Marguerite, Rabelais etc... It didn't have as much established cohesiveness
                        as it enjoys today and its policies actually varied from one locale to
                        another depending on the synergistic relationship that papal authority had
                        with the rulers of any given area. As we know this changed from month to
                        month, from war to war. One day these people would be bitter enemies, and
                        another, they would be the best of friends. Look at the relationship between
                        Francis I and Henry VIII for example.
                        And speaking of Henry, he broke off from the Catholic church, but other
                        than being the first king in Euro-Christian times to declare himself both
                        the temporal and spiritual ruler of his people, he didn't really change the
                        rituals or observances.
                        Going back to Marguerite who I was calling a "good catholic" (mostly as a
                        double entendre considering that Catholic means "universal" ...and often
                        times 'liberal') ...Her court was extremely supporting of the various
                        reformists of her time... She gave comfort to the emerging Huguenots, gave
                        ear to the Lutheran reformation and was encouraged by all of this. Yet when
                        she was asked to go all the way against the papal authority, she wouldn't
                        consider it. After publishing Mirror of the Sinful Soul she was condemned as
                        a heretic by the Sorbonne. Plays were made making her into a devil and an
                        effigy of her was thrown in the river... This was put down quickly by her
                        brother, the King of France; but still in spite of this, she didn't go
                        against the Catholic Church and her work even found later acceptance within
                        'respectable' sections of that church. If one reads her work, they will even
                        see that this is some of the first inclinations toward Quietism to emerge.
                        Think of it in terms of being an "American" ...There are many Americans
                        today who voice dissent and seek a great change in the system of which they
                        are a part. There are other Americans who oppose their views and demonize
                        them. Yet these dissenting Americans hardly see themselves as acting against
                        America or as Unamerican. Rather, like those who oppose them, they see
                        themselves as "good americans."

                        On the various "conspiracy" sites one sees much about the evil satanic plot
                        called "Freemasonry" ...One sees the infernal intentions of people like Pike
                        and we are told lurid interpretations of the murder of Capt. Morgan and so
                        on and so on and so on. Still, like the Catholic church, it is a mistake to
                        see the entire historic timeline of Masonry as representing one agenda, one
                        interest etc... The generation of Masons that included people like
                        Washington was not the same group as the people who abducted Morgan. It is a
                        fallacy to try to stain previous generations with the crimes of their
                        descendents and its the same with the Catholic Church ...or with
                        Christianity for that matter. The Friends (Quakers) are 'Christian ...but
                        they don't have a whole lot in common with Pat Robertson who also claims
                        that 'label.' There are 'Christian's who promote the philosophy of the
                        character known as Jesus: "Love thy neighbor as thyself" "Love each other as
                        I have loved you." and then there are 'Christian's who are screaming for
                        their friggin 'apocalypse'. These are not the same, and its this way within
                        what it means to be 'catholic' as well. Even if one looks at a particular
                        sect, in this example, the Methodists, they will find that there are two
                        completely different agendas, and though they share some of the same outward
                        appearances ...rely on prayer and communion for instance, they are
                        internally very, very different in their mission.

                        I found the following passage from Gordon R Taylor's "Sex In History" to be
                        very insightful in contemplating how often and how radically the clergy
                        (especially as figures of authority) would change disposition or direction.
                        This being the case, it is really hard for me to see the Catholic church, in
                        a historic light, as one cohesive social directive:

                        "Only one farther point need be made: The Curia was not above and beyond
                        these trends, but was fully involved in them. Popes such as Nicholas V,
                        Julius II and Leo X display the matrist trend. They were humanists,
                        collectors and patrons of art, kindly and far-sighted men, fond of pleasure,
                        permissive in morality (Leo X, for instance, attended the wedding of a man
                        with his concubine of many years' standing), but not ruthless and
                        conscienceless. Very different were men such as John XXIII, accused of a
                        catalogue of crimes as diverse as the Malatesta's, or Alexander VI, who,
                        with his son, Cesare Borgias carried perfidy further than it had ever been
                        carried before.

                        The court of this Pope was the scene of license which could scarcely be
                        credited, if it were not recorded in the annals of the papal historian
                        Burchard, whose evidence is unimpeachable. He tells how, one evening in
                        October 1501, the Pope ordered fifty prostitutes to be sent to his chambers.
                        After supper, and in the presence of his twenty-five year old son, Cesare,
                        and his twenty-one year old daughter, Lucrezia, they danced with the
                        servitors and others who were present, at first clothed but before long
                        naked. Then lighted candles in candlesticks were placed on the floor and
                        chestnuts were thrown among them, and the women were ordered to crawl
                        between the candlesticks on their hands and knees and to try to pick up the
                        chestnuts. Finally a number of prizes were produced, and it was announced
                        that they would be given to those men who, in the opinion of the spectators,
                        "should have carnal knowledge of the greatest number of the said
                        prostitutes" - "qui pluries dictos meretrices carnaliter agnoscerent".

                        The same was true of the Cardinalate, from whom the popes were normally
                        selected, and the whole Curia. Here, too, the trend is found at least as
                        early as the eleventh century, when Cardinal Pierleone had children by his
                        sister, and regularly took with him a concubine on his journeys - actions
                        which did not debar him from being considered for the Papal throne. By the
                        sixteenth century the higher echelons of the church display all the signs of
                        moral anarchy, epitomized in the carnal assault on the Bishop of Fano by
                        Pierluigi Farnese, son of Paul III. And once anarchy has become general,
                        even those who model themselves upon their parents by so doing merely
                        perpetuate anarchy as an ideal.

                        The matrist popes, on the other hand, while abstaining from violence, were
                        theologically pagan. John Bale's story that the Pope once said to Bembo:
                        "All ages can testifye enough how profitable that fable of Christ hath been
                        to us and our compagnie" may be apocryphal, but it was certainly Leo X who,
                        after considering the question of an after-life, decided: "Redit in nihilum,
                        quod ante fuit nihil." In such circumstances the old pagan matrist
                        conceptions of religion, in which fertility was the supreme miracle, rapidly
                        reasserted themselves. Mantovano's eighth eclogue, addressed to the Virgin -
                        or rather, by a significant modification, to the Madonna - treats her as the
                        protector of agricultural interests. In the time of Leo X, a bull was
                        sacrificed with pagan rites in the Forum itself. The beginning of Lent was
                        marked by a festival resembling the Roman Saturnalia, but more violent."

                        http://www.ourcivilisation.com/smartboard/shop/taylorgr/sxnhst/chap7.htm

                        So one could say that the examples given by Rabelais in the Abbey of Theleme
                        weren't so much meant to encourage people to LEAVE the catholic church, but
                        as an example of and a call to reform in the church. It was a call to treat
                        women with equality, and to address the problems of corruption among the
                        clergy. He was spoofing human qualites as portrayed within a human
                        institution, but this is not the same as seeking to overthrow that
                        institution. (Although he may have very well secretly advocated such... My
                        main feeling is that the data is too inconclusive to support the
                        assumption.)

                        Bliss:
                        Alamantra
                        www.alamantra.com
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