This email exchange went on for several months, I have organized the questions and answers the best way I could.
Them: Why do you feel there is right action at all? Liber AL doesn’t say “Do the Right Thing shall be the whole of the Law”. That’d be an appeal to some sort of dubious outside authority.
Me: But Liber AL does say: “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” And “Do that an no other shall say nay.” To me this implies a morality via the adherence of The Law. In terms of outside authority, if one is ignorant of their own Will, then that outside authority is the HGA. Right thought leads to right action. Then there is Duty.
Them: Nowhere that I’m aware of does Crowley entertain the notion of an objective, common “The Universe” as you’re suggesting. You’ve mentioned “Duty” as support, but I don’t see anything in either of those that would lead one to entertain such a notion. Quite the contrary.
Me: Maybe I don’t understand the argument, and maybe I am wrong (I am always willing to be wrong), but Duty seems to me to be more than simply “rights.” It (if only by accident) alludes to how Thelemites might live together. It provides a social construct of sorts, where overlapping universes can exists. Isn’t it possible for one star to alter the course of another? Isn’t that what occurs with love? Couldn’t that alteration ultimately be a part of both of their True Wills?
Them: But there is no law except “Do what thou wilt.” And I don’t view this (or the HGA, particularly) as being “external.”
Me: But then this implies that going against ones true nature is impossible. I don’t think it is. Again, I am willing to be wrong, but I am a keen observer. As to the HGA not being external: if one has K&C, then sure, I agree. But without the K&C the assumption that the HGA is an internal creature is only an assumption. Not true gnosis. Simply assuming it does not further our goals, but may actually hamper them. The problem I see Thelemites struggle with most is the idea that a purely intellectual “knowledge” of this phenomena is satisfactory to the point of ignoring the actual experience.
Them: Well, Duty suggests how I might live together with those objects in my universe that refer to themselves as “Thelemites.” I don’t see the slightest necessity of “overlapping universes.”
Me: And here is another problem that I see Thelemites struggling with. Looking at the universe in the way you describe is perhaps the reason that there have been so few Thelemic cooperatives in terms of business ventures. If you perceive people as “objects” in your universe, and you recognize them as fellow stars, then you must also recognize that their universe is overlapping yours when you are involved in some interaction with them. The vesica is a symbol which I think describes the phenomena best.
Them: and Crowley seems to specifically deny such a thing. Each being is, exactly as you are, the sole center of a Universe in no wise identical with, or even assimilable to, your own. If it’s not assimilable to my own, it can’t very well “overlap.”
Me: I don’t think those statements cancel out the fact that two people interacting together do so in a form of consensus. Each sephirah on the ToL is a universe of its own accord. The middle pillar illustrates the interaction of the two universes on either side. The fact that they overlap to create a unique experience does not negate the supreme autonomy of each sephiroth. When you put two things together you get a third, different thing. Call it Baphomet if you like.
Them: “Internal” and “external”, “subjective” and “objective” are pleasant fictions in which we like to indulge. This entire discussion is deeply mired in the quick-setting cement of duality, I’m afraid.
Me: I am afraid that is true. It seems, in this universe, the only way to tell one thing from another is to compare it against its opposite. Duality is an inescapable eventuality.
Them: Each sephirah on the tree, to quote Crowley, “may or may not exist…students are most earnestly warned against attributing objective reality or philosophical validity to any of them”.
Me: But they do exist. I am looking at them right now. Watch that step right before Da’ath. It’s a doozy.