True Will

Last updated

True Will is a term found within the mystical system of Thelema. It is defined[ where? ] either as a person's grand destiny in life or as a moment-to-moment path of action that operates in perfect harmony with nature. True Will does not spring from conscious intent, but from the interplay between the deepest self and the entire universe. Thelemites in touch with their True Will are said to have eliminated or bypassed their false desires, conflicts, and habits, and accessed their connection with the divine. Theoretically, at this point, the Thelemite acts in alignment with nature, just as a stream flows downhill, with neither resistance nor "lust of result".

Contents

Crowley's ideas on the subject partly originated with the teachings of Eliphas Levi, whose magical books emphasize the magician finding their magical identity his or her 'true self', which Levi referred to as the "True Will".[ citation needed ]

Explication

According to Crowley, every individual has a True Will, to be distinguished from the ordinary wants and desires of the ego. The True Will is essentially one's "calling" or "purpose" in life. "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law" [1] for Crowley refers not to hedonism, fulfilling everyday desires, but to acting in response to that calling. According to Lon Milo DuQuette, a Thelemite is anyone who bases their actions on striving to discover and accomplish their true will, [2] when a person does their True Will, it is like an orbit, their niche in the universal order, and the universe assists them: [3]

But the Magician knows that the pure Will of every man and every woman is already in perfect harmony with the divine Will; in fact they are one and the same. [3]

In The Book of the Law Crowley wrote "Do what thou wilt." [4] True Will directs the individual towards destiny and forces them into the joy of accomplishing what they were meant to accomplish without "lust of result" (outside motivations). [5] In order for the individual to be able to follow their True Will, the everyday self's socially-instilled inhibitions may have to be overcome via deconditioning. [6] [7]

Crowley believed that in order to discover the True Will, one had to free the desires of the subconscious mind from the control of the conscious mind, especially the restrictions placed on sexual expression, which he associated with the power of divine creation. [8] He identified the True Will of each individual with the Holy Guardian Angel, a daimon unique to each individual. [9] The spiritual quest to find what you are meant to do and do it is also known in Thelema as the Great Work. [10]

In Crowley's writings

In Crowley's essay The Secret Conference (written under the pseudonym "Gerald Aumont", and prefaced to The Heart of the Master), he suggests that a technique must be devised by which a child's True Will may be discovered at birth, or as early as possible in life, in order to permit the correct ordering of society.[ citation needed ]

In Crowley's ethical treatise Duty, he identifies True Will with the Nature of the individual. This capitalized "Nature" may be compared with the "Perfect Nature" of earlier Gnostic systems, which was another term for the personal daimon or augoeides,[ citation needed ] usually referenced by Crowley as the Holy Guardian Angel.

The Message of the Master Therion (Liber II]) is a document that attempts to delineate the doctrine of True Will. By reference to Liber Thisharb, Liber II suggests a theory of metempsychosis, whereby the individual True Will is the result of a person's prior incarnations. But here as elsewhere, Crowley stops short of asserting objective validity for memories of past lives. He recommends developing "the magical memory" as a means to an end, and connecting the aspirant's abilities and remembered past with some purpose. By definition, the aspirant's True Will must fit the aspirant's nature.

In De Lege Libellum (Liber CL), Crowley defines True Will as the will which "does not rest content with things partial and transitory, but...proceed[s] firmly to the End", and in the same passage he identifies that "end" as the destruction of oneself in Love.[ citation needed ]

See also

Related Research Articles

Aleister Crowley English occultist (1875–1947)

Aleister Crowley was an English occultist, ceremonial magician, poet, painter, novelist, and mountaineer. He founded the religion of Thelema, identifying himself as the prophet entrusted with guiding humanity into the Æon of Horus in the early 20th century. A prolific writer, he published widely over the course of his life.

Thelema New religious movement founded by Aleister Crowley

Thelema is a Western esoteric and occult social or spiritual philosophy and new religious movement founded in the early 1900s by Aleister Crowley (1875–1947), an English writer, mystic, occultist, and ceremonial magician. The word thelema is the English transliteration of the Koine Greek noun θέλημα, "will," from the verb θέλω : "to will, wish, want or purpose."

<i>The Book of the Law</i> Central sacred text of Thelema

Liber AL vel Legis, commonly known as The Book of the Law, is the central sacred text of Thelema. Aleister Crowley said that it was dictated to him by a beyond-human being who called himself 'Aiwass'. Rose Edith Kelly, Crowley's wife, wrote two phrases in the manuscript. The three chapters of the book are spoken by the deities Nuit, Hadit, and Ra-Hoor-Khuit.

The Holy Books of Thelema is an anthology of 15 works by Aleister Crowley, the founder of Thelema, originally published in 1909 by Crowley under the title Θελημα, and later republished in 1983, together with a number of additional texts, under the new title, The Holy Books of Thelema, by Ordo Templi Orientis under the direction of Hymenaeus Alpha.

A∴A∴ Initiatory magical order

The A∴A∴ is a magical organization described in 1907 by occultist Aleister Crowley. Its members are dedicated to the advancement of humanity by perfection of the individual on every plane through a graded series of universal initiations. Its initiations are syncretic, unifying the essence of Theravada Buddhism with Vedantic yoga and ceremonial magic. The A∴A∴ applies what it describes as mystical and magical methods of spiritual attainment under the structure of the Qabalistic Tree of Life, and aims to research, practise, and teach "scientific illuminism". A∴A∴ is often held to stand for Argenteum Astrum, which is Latin for Silver Star, however, see section on Name below.

Choronzon is a demon that originated in writing with the 16th-century occultists Edward Kelley and John Dee within the latter's occult system of Enochian magic. In the 20th century he became an important element within the mystical system of Thelema, founded by Aleister Crowley, where he is the "dweller in the abyss", believed to be the last great obstacle between the adept and enlightenment. Thelemites believe that if he is met with proper preparation, then his function is to destroy the ego, which allows the adept to move beyond the abyss of occult cosmology.

Abrahadabra is a word that first publicly appeared in The Book of the Law (1904), the central sacred text of Thelema. Its author, Aleister Crowley, described it as "the Word of the Aeon, which signifieth The Great Work accomplished." This is in reference to his belief that the writing of Liber Legis heralded a new Aeon for mankind that was ruled by the god Ra-Hoor-Khuit. Abrahadabra is, therefore, the "magical formula" of this new age. It is not to be confused with the Word of the Law of the Aeon, which is Thelema, meaning "Will".

William Breeze, also known by his neo-Gnostic bishop title of Tau Silenus is an American author and publisher on magick and philosophy. He is the Sovereign Patriarch, or supreme governing cleric, of Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica (E.G.C.), the liturgical arm of Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.), of which he is the current Outer Head of the Order (OHO), also known as Frater Superior, as well as caliph, the order's international leader. In this capacity he is a leading editor of the occult works of Aleister Crowley, the founder of the philosophy and religion of Thelema, who is regarded as its prophet.

Lon Milo DuQuette American writer, lecturer, musician, and occultist

Lon Milo DuQuette, also known as Rabbi Lamed Ben Clifford and by his neo-Gnostic bishop title of Tau Lamed, is an American writer, lecturer, musician, and occultist, best known as an author who applies humor in the field of Western Hermeticism.

In Thelema, the Abyss is the great gulf or void between the phenomenal world of manifestation and its noumenal source.

Aeon (Thelema) Concept of the religion of Thelema

In the religion of Thelema, it is believed that the history of humanity can be divided into a series of aeons, each of which was accompanied by its own forms of "magical and religious expression". The first of these was the Aeon of Isis, which Thelemites believed occurred during prehistory and which saw mankind worshipping a Great Goddess, symbolised by the ancient Egyptian deity Isis. In Thelemite beliefs, this was followed by the Aeon of Osiris, a period that took place in the classical and mediaeval centuries, when humanity worshipped a singular male god, symbolised by the Egyptian god Osiris, and was therefore dominated by patriarchal values. The third aeon is the Aeon of Horus, controlled by the child god, symbolised by Horus. In it, Thelemites believe, humanity shall enter a time of self-realization and self-actualization.

Within Thelema, the Great Work is generally defined as those spiritual practices leading to the accomplishment of the True Will of one's Self in mystical union with the All. Its founder, author and occultist Aleister Crowley, based this path of mystical attainment or enlightenment on his studies in Hermetic alchemy and the Hermetic Qabalah, particularly as they were expounded by Eliphas Levi in the 19th century and later by various members in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, an occult society of which had Crowley had been a member.

<i>The Book of Thoth</i> (Crowley)

The Book of Thoth: A Short Essay on the Tarot of the Egyptians is the title of The Equinox, volume III, number 5, by English author and occultist Aleister Crowley. The publication date is recorded as the vernal equinox of 1944 and was originally published in an edition limited to 200 numbered and signed copies.

Lesser banishing ritual of the pentagram

The Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram is a ceremonial magic ritual devised and used by the original order of the Golden Dawn that has become a mainstay in modern occultism. This ritual is considered by many to be a basic preliminary to any other magical work, so much that it was the only ritual, besides initiation rituals, taught to members of the Golden Dawn before they advanced to the Inner Order.

<i>The Blue Equinox</i>

The Blue Equinox, officially known as The Equinox: Volume III, Number I, is a book written by the English occultist Aleister Crowley, the founder of Thelema. First published in 1919, it details the principles and aims of the secret society O.T.O. and its ally the A∴A∴, both of which were under Crowley's control at the time. It includes such topics as The Law of Liberty, The Gnostic Mass, and Crowley's "Hymn to Pan".

Richard Kaczynski is an American writer and lecturer in the fields of social psychology, metaphysical beliefs and new religious movements. He is known for his biography of the occultist Aleister Crowley, Perdurabo: The Life of Aleister Crowley, described by The Times Literary Supplement as "the major biography to date", and by the Norwegian daily Aftenposten as the best biography of Crowley.

"Liber OZ" is a single page by English author and occultist Aleister Crowley purporting to declare mankind's basic and intrinsic rights according to Crowley's philosophy of Thelema. Written in 1941, the work consists of five succinct and concise paragraphs, being one of the last and shortest of Crowley's many "libri," or books.

Therion is a deity found in the mystical system of Thelema, which was established in 1904 with Aleister Crowley's writing of The Book of the Law. Therion's female counterpart is Babalon, another Thelemic deity. Therion, as a Thelemic personage, evolved from that of "The Beast" from the Book of Revelation, whom Crowley identified himself with since childhood, because his mother called him that name. Indeed, throughout his life he occasionally referred to himself as “Master Therion” or sometimes “The Beast 666”. He wrote:

Before I touched my teens, I was already aware that I was THE BEAST whose number is 666. I did not understand in the least what that implied; it was a passionately ecstatic sense of identity.

James Wasserman American writer

James Wasserman was an American author and occultist. A member of Ordo Templi Orientis since 1976 and a book designer by trade, he wrote extensively on spiritual and political liberty.

References

Citations

Works cited