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A response to Nancy

Aug 22, 1994 08:40 PM
by Gerald Schueler

A Response to Nancy:

<Jerry S.  - Would you mind resending your article to me via e-mail
as I lost the last part of it when I copied it to disk.> I will
try, but I am very inexperienced with Internet.  The only address I
have is the one at the beginning of your message and it doesn't
mention Internet.  I use Wincim on Compuserve, which has a message
reply button.  If it doesn't work let me know and I'll put it out
onto Theos-L again.

<Regarding Crowley, One of my correspondence course students has
been studying Crowley in jail and is quite taken with him and
insists he teaches many of the same principles as HPB.  >

True.  Crowley considered HPB to be a very high initiate (of
course, he considered himself a step higher! In fact, he self-
proclaimed his entry to the 10th, and highest, degree).  Having
studied both for years, I can say that the real difference between
Crowley and Blavatsky is one of tone and emphasis (which in occult
terminology is referred to as the current - a theosophical current
as opposed to a draconian or thelemic current) rather than
substance.  HPB wanted to give the world a new religion and
emphasized universal brotherhood.  Crowley wanted to give the world
a new magical schema that would be used and bear fruit only by the
few who were ready for such teaching.  Thus HPB's writings tend to
emphasize compassion while AC's writings tend to emphasize the will
and how to use it effectively.  Both claimed to be messengers from
the Lodge (i.e., the great spiritual organization whose chief
headquarters is located on the Causal Plane directly beneath the
Abyss) and both claimed to have started a new era (HPB began the
Age of Aquarius while AC began the Age of Horus).  Both were very
opposed to Christianity and taught that it must die before their
new age could truly begin (indications are that Christianity is, in
fact, dying, but is not out for the count just yet).  Actually,
Crowley's doctrine or body of teachings is very much in line with
those of the Golden Dawn, into which he had been initiated and
whose founders knew and respected HPB.  He had a lot of personality
conflicts with both the GD and the TSs - the root of this being
that he found no-one in either camp who truly KNEW (i.e., no-one
who had, in fact, crossed the Abyss) and thus he felt that they
were, to some extent, all charlatans.  While this was probably true
for the GD, except for its founders whom AC respected, it was
probably not a fair accusation to lay at the TS's whose leaders
have never made any personal claims to GNOSIS as such, but rather
have put that onus on the founding Masters.

Anyway, the atmosphere or tone behind/between the lines of HPB's
and AC's writings are quite different owing to their respective
currents - in short, their messages are similar but their styles
differ in order to appeal to their respectively intended audiences.
Personally, I can bask in the currents of both, and enjoy.  But I
am not recommending that you read Crowley.

<He has read Crowley's commentary on the Voice, but not the
original book by HPB.  I tried to get a copy of Crowley's
commentary but the only place I could find it published was in a
very expensive book called Gems from the Equinox I think.  Do you
know of any other place this was published? Pamphlet? Magazine?
Etc.  I wish to be better informed.>

Afraid not.  The only place that I have it myself is in the Gems
that you speak of.  Gems cost me about $40 some 20 years ago, which
was a lot of money for me in those days (come to think of it, now
that I have retired, it is still a lot of money for me).  It was
published in hard binding by Llewellyn, but has long been out of
print.  It may be available as a separate pamphlet from one of the
many small 93 Publishing groups that exist around the country, but
I don't know.

<Along the lines of ethics, morality, amorality etc.  etc.  I am
concerned about how easy it is to feel special and beyond the need
for ethical guidelines.  >

Here you hit the nail on the other side of its coin, so to speak.
Everything is double-edged.  Some people (probably most) are so
wrapped up in being ethical that they can't progress past it, while
others think that they have, when they really haven't (and even one
of these is too many).  The thought that "I no longer need to be
ethical" is just as insidious and just as mischievous as the
thought that "I will be ethical and will thereby improve my karma
for the future." Both thoughts are devilish and both lead to ego
inflation.  The true Adept would doubtless answer either thought by
the rebuke "Get thee behind me Satan," or something to that effect.

<Malraux (spelling?) was talking about artists but could have been
writing about spiritual seekers when he wrote that <paraphrasing> A
great artist will give free rein to his instincts but only after he
has mastered them.>

I agree.  Of course, once the instincts have been well and truly
mastered, giving them free rein no longer amounts to much, but I
agree with the intent of your quote - that instincts are OK as long
as they don't overwhelm you and you are still in conscious control.

<Maybe our discussion on ethics could profit from a discussion of
about mastering our habits/instincts etc.>

These absolutely must be mastered.  Probably introspection and
quite meditation are useful techniques.  Also, forcing yourself to
be nice to others (a technique) is one step toward someday being
spontaneously compassionate (our goal).

                                   Jerry S.

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