Wednesday, August 29, 2007

on Death...

My husband's grandmother is dying. She's in the hospital, Intensive Care Unit. They are unable to tell exactly what is wrong with her, but all they know is that she's fading fast. I guess that's what happens when you're 86.

I try not to think about death in a terrified or horrible way. It's natural. It's a part of life. Being a practicing Thelemite, I have found some comfort in the knowledge of death, and I will share it here, since I can't share it with my Mormon in-laws.


I am the flame that burns in every heart of man, and in the core of every star. I am Life, and the giver of Life, yet therefore is the knowledge of me the knowledge of death.

I am the Magician and the Exorcist. I am the axle of the wheel, and the cube in the circle. "Come unto me" is a foolish word: for it is I that go.

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

Remember all ye that existence is pure joy; that all the sorrows are but as shadows; they pass & are done; but there is that which remains.

...

But ye, o my people, rise up & awake!

Let the rituals be rightly performed with joy & beauty!

There are rituals of the elements and feasts of the times.

A feast for the first night of the Prophet and his Bride!

A feast for the three days of the writing of the Book of the Law.

A feast for Tahuti and the child of the Prophet--secret, O Prophet!

A feast for the Supreme Ritual, and a feast for the Equinox of the Gods.

A feast for fire and a feast for water; a feast for life and a greater feast for death!

A feast every day in your hearts in the joy of my rapture!

A feast every night unto Nu, and the pleasure of uttermost delight!

Aye! feast! rejoice! there is no dread hereafter. There is the dissolution, and eternal ecstasy in the kisses of Nu.

...

There is a veil: that veil is black. It is the veil of the modest woman; it is the veil of sorrow, & the pall of death: this is none of me. Tear down that lying spectre of the centuries: veil not your vices in virtuous words: these vices are my service; ye do well, & I will reward you here and hereafter.

--The Book of the Law

I think that The Book of the Law is the most beautiful, and most intelligent piece of literature written in the 20th century. Why fear death? It's just the shedding of our gross, earthly bodies, and the next step in the path we take to fulfill our true Will.

I will also post a piece called "Concerning Death" which is beautiful, full of hope, and perhaps will make those of you out there who fear its coming, rest a little more easily.

AN EPISTLE OF BAPHOMET to the Illustrious Dame Anna Wright, Companion of the Holy Graal, shining like the moon, concerning Death, that she and her sisters may bring comfort to all them that are nigh death, and unto such as love them.

Beloved Daughter and Sister,

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

Let it be thy will and the will of all them that tend upon the sick, to comfort and to fortify them with these words following.

I

IT IS WRITTEN in The Book of the Law: Every man and every woman is a Star. It is Our Lady of the Stars that speaketh to thee, O thou that art a star, a member of the Body of Nuith! Listen, for thine ears become dulled to the mean noises of the earth; the infinite silence of the Stars woos thee with subtile musick. Behold her bending down above thee, a flame of blue, all-touching, all-penetrant, her lovely hands upon the black earth, and her lithe body arched for love, and her soft feet not hurting the little flowers, and think that all thy grossness shall presently fall from thee as thou leapest to her embrace, caught up into her love as a dewdrop into the kisses of the sunrise. Is not the ecstasy of Nuit the consciousness of the continuity of existence, the omnipresence of her body? All that hath hurt thee was that thou knewest it not, and as that fadeth from thee thou shalt know as never yet how all is one. Again She saith: I give unimaginable joys upon earth, certainty, not faith, while in life, upon death. This thou hast known. Time that eateth his children hath not power on them that would not be children of Time. To them that think themselves immortal, that dwell alway in eternity, conscious of Nuit, throned upon the chariot of the sun, there is no death that men call death. In all the universe darkness is only to be found in the shadow of a gross and opaque planet, as it were for a moment; the universe itself is a flood of light eternal. So also death is but through accident; thou hast hidden thyself in the shadow of thy gross body, and taking it for reality, thou hast trembled. But the orb revolveth anon; the shadow passeth away from thee. There is the dissolution, and the eternal ecstasy in the kisses of Nu! For inasmuch as thou hast made the Law of Freedom thine, as thou hast lived in Light and Liberty and Love, thou hast become a Free-man of the City of the Stars.

II

LISTEN AGAIN to thine own voice within thee. Is not Hadit the flame that burns in every heart of man, and in the core of every star? Is not He Life, and the giver of Life? And is not therefore the knowledge of Him the knowledge of Death? For it hath been shown unto thee in many other places how Death and Love be twins. Now art thou the hunter, and Death rideth beside thee with his horse and spear as thou chasest thy Will through the forests of Eternity, whose trees are the hair of Nuit thy mistress! Thrill with the joy of life and death! Know, hunter mighty and swift, the quarry turns to bay! Thou hast but to make one sharp thrust, and thou hast won. The Virgin of Eternity lies supine at thy mercy, and thou art Pan! Thy death shall be the seal of the promise of our agelong love. Hast thou not striven to the inmost in thee? Death is the crown of all. Harden! Hold up thyself! Lift thine head! breathe not so deep--die!

III

OR ART THOU STILL ENTANGLED with the thorny plaits of wild briar rose that thou hast woven in thy magick dance on earth? Art not thine eyes strong enough to bear the starlight? Must thou linger yet awhile in the valley? Must thou dally with the shadows in the dusk? Then if it be Thy Will, thou hast no right but to do Thy Will! Love still these phantoms of the earth; thou hast made thyself a King; if it please thee to play with toys of matter, were they not made to serve thy pleasure? Then follow in thy mind the wondrous word of the Steele of Revealing itself. Return if thou wilt from the abode of the Stars; dwell with mortality, and feast thereon. For thou art this day Lord of Heaven and of Earth.

``The dead man Ankh-f-na-Khonsu
Saith with his voice of truth and calm:
O thou that hast a single arm!
O thou that glitterest in the moon!
I weave thee in the spinning charm
I lure thee with the billowy tune.

The dead man Ankh-f-na-Khonsu
Hath parted from the darkling crowds
Hath joined the dwellers of the light
Opening Duant, the star-abodes,
Their keys receiving.
The dead man Ankh-f-na-Khonsu
Hath made his passage into night
His pleasure on the earth to do
Among the living.''

Love is the law, love under will.

The Benediction of the All-Begetter, All-Devourer be upon thee.

Baphomet X° O.T.O.

Given under Our hand and seal this day of An XII the Sun our Father being in Leo, and the Moon in Pisces, from the throne of Ireland, Iona and all the Britains that is in the Sanctuary of the Gnosis.

There is very little comment I need to add to this, except that there is no need for you to fear the inevitable.


EDIT Monday, September 3rd, 2007 (Labor Day): Early this morning, Rocena died. Cry not that she is gone, but rejoice that she had lived!

11 comments:

Opheliac said...

Hey. I suppose I could log onto dA, but I'm already here, so, I'm replying to your note the only way I know how. (Have I just been blind, or is there no way to reply to comments left on your pages? Not sure I like that.)

Anyway. Okay, I'm pretty sure I'm suffering from a malfunctioning thyroid, and one symptom of such is this complete brain fog that makes thinking difficult, word-retreival impossible, and memory a joke.
So, forgive me, but: Who is Cecil? I only know one Cecil, and I can't think how you'd know him. Are you referring to a Cecil I don't know? How am I supposed to contact him?
I am so terribly confused.

So, I'm contacting you.
Ummm, normally, technically, I have a commitment Tuesday nights, but I am really getting sick of commitments, honestly, *having* to be somewhere that's supposed to be my choice, but I feel a slave to my "choice".
Also, I'd probably need to crash at someone's place, because getting home after that would really suck.
Also, I don't have money for club/alcohol, because all of it needs to go to paying overdue bills.

So, I'm not saying, no, I don't want to hang out, I just want to chat about it more, I guess. Or something.
Let's continue to talk about it.

Opheliac said...

Okay, that is so weird. Just having two of my worlds collide like that was really weird.
(He hangs out with you and not me? What a loser! I'll have to yell at him.)

Anyway, this weekend probably won't work, but I'll call you sometime in the next couple days about next weekend.
I'm really feeling frazzled, I need to do something. So I'll chat with you soon.

Thanks.

Opheliac said...

Hey. sorry about your last note . . . I haven't been on-line since writing up the blog.
I actually spent most of Saturday and Sunday sleeping, I was so exhausted. And I'm likely to do the same today, as I've been "given the day off" from work . . . until we open, there are varying amounts of things to do each day, and today was apparently a low-amount-of-things-to-do day. It was nice. I got to sleep in.
Do you have my phone number? I just have a feeling that I'll either forget (either accidentally, or on purpose due to a crappy mood) to call you, or I'll be in a crappy mood, and call and say I'd rather just sleep.
Ask Cecil, I do it all the time.

So, I totally called Cecil yesterday, and he was like, Oh, I'm at work, can I call you back later? And of course he didn't.
Blah.

Anyway. Chat with you later.

Opheliac said...

Hey, thanks for saying I'm hot. Strangely enough, I'm less weirded out by chicks telling me I'm hot than by guys.
lol

Anyway. I have a fair amount of self-confidence, but it's kinda like this cup, and I use it when I need it and when it's gone, it's gone for a while. It's not like a well, with a constant source adding more.
So, when it's gone, I feel things more, like the fact that I'm way different from the "ideal" beauty. Or that I'm fucking clumsy. Or that I say really stupid shit sometimes, and I worry that people might think I'm stupid.
I don't know. I'm okay, I've just been feeling a bit off.

Opheliac said...

I'd take you up on the offer of helping me with the dreads, but I'd need longer hair than I have now, wouldn't I? (It's a bit more than an inch long)

But if I decide to grow it, I'll definitely take you up on that offer.

Opheliac said...

Hey, honey. Thanks for the commentations on my not-happy post. I appreciate it.
And I'm being an absolute loser, too, because I do want to hang out sometime, but I just hole up in my private little sanctuary (Cancer).

Ummm, so let's plan something. I'll send you my cell # via dA Notes, so you have it, and can call me, because I'm crappy at this calling and setting things up shit. You know?

Opheliac said...

Hey, I vote YES for 100% complete honesty.
And I know. I know (probably not as well as you) that babies are a huge responsibility, and I'm (interested as I am in how people work) actually kind of terrified of the prospect of raising a human being. So I'm hoping that that prospect will keep the cravings at bay until I either find someone to share baby-raising responsibilities with, or until I go crazy and decide it's now or never with the baby-making.

Opheliac said...

Hey! I totally tried calling you just now, because you said Saturday, which might be the in-two-days Saturday, in which case I decided I wanted to know, sooner rather than later. Because my costume's not completely finished. Fortunately, I don't have to work tomorrow, but I really don't think I'm going to have a corset by Hallowe'en (I was going to make it).
Either way. I would love to go to a Hallowe'en party, especially because I don't have anywhere else to wear my costume to (I can't wear it to work, and I haven't been invited to do anything else for Hallowe'en, and planning something myself is a bit difficult, with my situation).
Send me an email (notyourchambermaiden@gmail.com), send me a dA Note, or call me (I sent you a dA Note with my phone number, I believe) and let me know the details, like which Saturday, and what time and stuff. Okay? Okay!
Chat with you soon.

Opheliac said...

Hey, I like your new picture.
Also, thanks!!

Opheliac said...

Hey. Sorry I didn't say anything about the Gnostic Mass (which I would sorta like to go to sometime, at least once, mostly because I'm writing a book, and one of the characters is a CM, and Thelema is the only thing in that general category I know anything about ... thanks to your husband. So I kinda want to get a feel for how it works, etc.), but I haven't been on-line a whole lot lately, so I got the note tonight.

But thanks for the invite, and keep sending them to me. I'm bound to get one before the event sometime ...
^_^

Opheliac said...

I'm working on asking for help, don't worry ... and figuring out what I need.
^_^