Saturday, 8 August 2020

Short Meditations: Does God Exist, Plastic Jesus, Empathic Narcissist, Join a Cult and more

 

Plastic Jesus

The tame and impotent god smiles a cheery and toothless grin. This god gets on with everyone; he welcomed the merchants back into the temple and invited the Pharisees to the best seats in the synagogue. 

No righteous anger from this one, what a nice chap he is. Not like the last one, we didn't like him. Such a nasty fellow, a troublemaker who always upset people and didn't know his place. Totally different from our new Plastic Jesus, we like him. 

And doesn't he get on well with his mate Concrete Jesus from the orthodox churches. A bit severe but so unchanging and rock solid faith, such a lot to admire. Just like Christians used to be, takes you right back.


Does God Exist

Does God exist or not? There's a definitive answer but a lot of you won't like it. Here's the answer: Does God exist or not? You can never know. 

Any experience of God must be psychological and therefore, short of miracles, there can't be any objective proof. So it cannot be proven, ever. And even with a miracle you can't prove there isn't a non-miraculous explanation. So you just can't ever prove the existence of God. If God did exist, having created reality in the  way it exists now, we could never prove they existed. So we'd have to stop worrying about that question.


However, the human animal has been gifted by evolution the capacity to connect with and experience what the mystics call the divine and the religious call God and the unbeliever mocks. So it's not a question of believing or not believing, it's a question of using the faculties of your mind or not.

I don't believe in the supernatural, I merely believe that the natural is more super than we give it credit for.


Empathic Narcissist

I identify as a narcissist. I'm an empathic narcissist though, the only valid kind of narcissist. I love other people but I love me too and I think about myself a lot. I think everyone does and you're allowed to, and you're allowed to have a positive opinion about yourself and stand up for yourself. In order to know yourself, to resolve your own trauma, and to understand the world which has shaped you, you have to think about yourself a lot. So it's not something anyone can ever criticise you for.

But I definitely love myself, there's no-one quite like me in my eyes.

As a narcissist I'm happiest when I'm at the centre, preferably amazing and delighting people. I don't mind serving so long as my part is noticed and acknowledged. Without that I get sad or angry. 

Unfulfilled narcissists can be selfish, bitter and manipulative. 

My theory of psychological pathology and inner healing: every pathology has a fulfilled aspect.


Fasting

Whilst living in the cult as a true believer I fasted from all food for seven days. I did this once a year for a few years. I did it as a religious devotion, an exercise in discipline, and as a form of self denial to seek God.

I'd only feel hungry for the first day or two and then it was a kind of freedom and a slight edge to all of life. That first meal was always so eagerly anticipated, and because of the expectations such a disappointment. I'd fast from Tuesday dinner to Tuesday dinner. This was the cult Tuesday roast dinner, which we always had for our compulsory love feast called the agape meal where for the first few years we *always got shouted at in the second half by the senior apostolic leader of the cult with whom I lived.


Join a Cult

Bored, aimless and lacking purpose? Want to meet new and exciting people, most of whom probably aren't crazy? Join one our cults. 

We have a fine selection of cults, all of which participate in some way in The Great Work. The goal is, of course, world domination. Taking over the world by sending all the evil world leaders and the military industrial complex mad through their belief that we're doing black magic which is sending them mad.

To make a beginning of it we're practising on a particular church. One guilty of some heinous crimes over many years I would add. Apparently there are already some people having breakdowns.

The Great Work is begun!

We use the determined believers of the slave religions as insanity amplifiers. They want to believe in black magic and all manner of awful evil. The sensible ones stop believing, clearly it's bullshit and why would anyone drive themselves mad over it!? That's a nice side effect of the approach.

It turns the slave religion mindset directly against the host, as the mindset will insist the host goes mad in order to prove it is true. A sensible host abandons the mindset. Unless there are too many strong sources of insanity around them of course, then it's very hard not to believe because you can see it's true. By then it's too late.

Of course, the obvious way to convince someone you're doing black magic that is sending them mad is by doing black magic to send them mad. The cults have been busy. The black hoods of the Satanic fellowship bid you good day.


Dislike

People using disliking you as a social tool for conformity, to stop you saying things they don't like. It's intellectually dishonest and morally repugnant. They'll usually say it's not what you're saying, it's the way that you say it. They don't listen to you because they don't like you. Nasty people. Social exclusion is a great evil. Love is the law, love under will. We choose to love.

Saying things you know people won't like you for, if they're true and need to be said, is a character quality worthy of admiration.


Discipline

If you give in to your children's demands because you can't bear to see them unhappy you're teaching them that emotional manipulation works. If you don't care about their emotions you're cruel. 

So sometimes you have to make your children unhappy and still feel their unhappiness. Hardening your emotions to not feel it is bad for you, and means you're no longer connected to your child's emotions. Never letting them confront and learn to deal with difficult emotions produces childish and emotionally stunted adults. Balance.


Hell

The hell law of Principia Discordia:

The Hell Law says that Hell is reserved exclusively for them that believe in it. Further, the lowest Rung in Hell is reserved for them that believe in it on the supposition that they'll go there if they don't.

My hell law:

No hell but what they make.


"There's a lot of power in not reading things. Sometimes. Like messages or replies to comments. Just saying what you have to say and walking away."

Wednesday, 29 July 2020

Essays on Satanism and Lucifer

Show me how you live and I'll work out what you believe

Satanism

The beauty of Satanism, as a religion or philosophy, is that it defies definition and it means something unique to everyone who claims it as theirs. This is true of all religions and philosophies, but never more obvious than in Satanism.

The ones who believe in a literal Satan, the personification of evil, tend to be Christians and have a history of being the worst kinds of people. Satanism has arisen in stark contrast, and typically stands against, the slave religion from which it borrows language, symbols and traditions. Alongside all the other philosophies and traditions that Satanists take inspiration from. 

Satanists are both atheist and theistic, although the modern variants charting a beginning in Laveyism tend towards the philosophically atheist. As with all religions in the resurgent its adherents, now most prominently of the TST (The Satanic Temple) variety thanks to the huge and well deserved success of Hail Satan!, tend to think that they are the only true Satanists. Modern rational theistic Luciferians like myself tend to smile at this. There is nothing new under the sun. 
Nonetheless, a unifying strand amongst all the many flavours of Satanism seems to be a rejection of the control of conventionality and the slave religions and a determined individuality of consciousness. Jung called this individuation and the highest goal of religion and philosophy. The transmutation and the phoenix, the philosopher's stone of the ancient alchemy. 

In my personal Satanism Lucifer represents that rejection of control from the outside, by others. Lucifer is the sacred self and the self archetype to use more of Jung's language. Your individuality is sacred and holy.

My personal Satanism is utterly and irredeemably selfish. It recognises that I is an inherently selfish perspective. We all see and understand life from our own perspective, inescapably so. Not only this but our first sacred duty and responsibility is to survive, and then to thrive. You're allowed to care about yourself, to love yourself. Indeed this is the wellspring from which love for all beings springs. Put your own oxygen mask on before attempting to assist others.

You're allowed to think about yourself a lot, everyone does. You're allowed to have a good opinion of yourself. In order to know yourself, to resolve your own trauma, and to understand the world which has shaped you, you have to think about yourself a lot. So it's not something anyone can ever criticise you for. The rest of the world makes up half your life, so it deserves about half your attention. You have an absolute right to explore and find your own true will for yourself, and no-one has any right to stop you.

Further more it seems reasonable that how people treat me personally is how they treat people like me. I love people like me, so if people treat me badly there's a good chance they're an enemy of my people. By that measure I judge people substantially by how they treat me. 
People using disliking you as a social tool for conformity, to stop you saying things they don't like. It's intellectually dishonest and morally repugnant. They'll usually say it's not what you're saying, it's the way that you say it. They don't listen to you because they don't like you. Nasty people. Social exclusion is a great evil. Love is the law, love under will. We choose to love. Saying things you know people won't like you for, if they're true and need to be said, is a character quality worthy of admiration.

Being willing to be enemy, Satan, is a core tenet of my Satanism. That which art love I will trust it completely. That which art the enemy I will fight, even though I am scared I will fight. I am willing to stand up for what I believe in and be me against all opposition. 

And yet my selfishness prompts me towards generosity of spirit, for I know this is the best I can be and my selfishness would have me be the best that I can be. My selfishness sees that I can make the most of my life, and make the most difference in this life, if I am and become all that I am capable of being.

Altruism is another gift from evolution, granting a survival advantage to the group even to the detriment of the individual. Compassion is the deepest pleasure, so the wisest and most self-interested of hedonists pursues compassion with all their heart.

Hail Satan, hail you!


My Personal Satanism

My personal Satanism stands as enemy, Satan and Ahriman the spirit of destructive opposition, to the evil gods of the slave religions and conventionality who are identified with the super-ego. The id, the primal urge and surge, is represented with Leviathan that ancient enemy who dwells in the ocean. I'm a rational theistic Luciferian. Lucifer is the light-bringer, bright morning star, the sacred self and the self archetype. 

The endless, the limitless, the boundless, the infinite. Lucifer is. Guardian of the numinous and holder of the keys to the abyss. Lord of the infernal and of the supernal, dweller on the threshold.

The twin of Lucifer, the evening star, is the goddess worshipped as Asherah and Ashteroth and Ishtar and Astarte. Asherah who was declared a demon goddess and her priestesses persecuted by the Hebrews, along with Baal and Moloch the blind who is industry, whom according to legends the Kings of Judah sacrificed their own children at the Valley of the Children of Hinnom, also known as Gehenna and Sheol and which was cursed by the prophet Jeremiah. Baal who is Ba'al Zəbûl, first amongst Baals, Lord of the Heavenly Dwelling and a Prince of Hell called Lord of the Flies by the Hebrews as an insult.

The precepts I uphold within my Satanism are the precepts of Thelema:
Love is the law, love under will.
Do as you will shall be the whole of the law.
Along with: No hell but what they make.

And my personal moral law which I call the Aslan rule: what other people do is Narnia business.

The culture of these precepts is Radical Inclusion.

You can bridge the rational and the irrational. Once you accept that both are merely the product of the mind there is no need to fear either. And most of our power is in the non-rational, strength resides with Leviathan.

Most people give over their imaginations to television and their minds to banality. And they see no gods or goddesses, neither demon nor angel, and they are pleased with themselves for the failure of their imagination. "What a clever person I am, so much cleverer than those who came before" they say to themselves as they close their mind's eye and change the channel.

93% of our experience is in the rational, 93% of our power resides with the non-rational. This is the 93/93 rule of my Satanism.

Lucifer

I'm a rational theistic Luciferian. The human animal has been gifted by evolution the capacity to connect to the divine, and we either shut that down or we live to the greatest extent using all of our mental faculties.

In my Satanism, religion and philosophy, Lucifer represents the sacred self and the self archetype, but let's look a little bit at what "Lucifer" means mythologically.

In modern Christian traditions, which have informed the popular perception and portrayal of Lucifer, Lucifer is conflated with Satan and is the personification of evil. Lucifer is a fallen archangel, a serpent and a dragon, the worship leader of the angelic host become demon and chief amongst demons. Tempter of the faithful and infernal liar.

The word itself "Lucifer" is old English, but comes from the Latin meaning "bright morning star", Venus in the morning aspect. Venus has been worshipped as a deity for all time. In her evening aspect she is the goddess, appearing even in the Christian traditions as Ishtar and Ashtoreth and Astarte and Asherah the demon goddess whose priestesses were persecuted by the Hebrews.
Lucifer in the Latin was only loosely associated with deities by the Romans until around 400AD when it appeared in the Vulgate, the Latin translation of the Bible which was the predominant form of the Bible from around 400AD-1100AD. The word Lucifer is used for the archangel in Isaiah 14:12. The word Lucifer first appearing itself directly in the King James translation of the Bible in 1611. 

This is the rendering of the Hebrew word הֵילֵל‎ (transliteration: hêylêl; pronunciation: hay-lale) meaning "shining one", rendered in the Septuagint as heōsphoros, "bringer of dawn", the Ancient Greek name for the morning star. Modern religious doctrines of Lucifer are all based on that one verse and that's where the name comes from.

So Lucifer is Venus, the bright morning star. Son of the morning and of the evening. Worshipped in her evening aspect of the goddess. This title, bright morning star, is claimed by The Christ in the Apocalypse of John, chapter 22 and verse 16. Our dark Lord Lucifer died for our sins. As with all the gods they are worshipped under many different names. Worship and veneration of Venus, Lucifer, is older than Christianity, the Greek venerated the god Phosphorus, bright morning star, son of the morning and of the evening.

To the extent that the divine is perceived by our connection with the whole, the choice is not between philosophical atheism or theism but a practical choice between a deeper connection and understanding of life itself or not. The only theory worth a damn is the theory of the practise. A praxis.


"Films use references to other movies and aspects of culture to create meaning. In understanding mythology and sacred texts we find meaning partly through correspondences in them with other mythology and sacred texts."

Friday, 3 July 2020

A Hasty Primer on Intersectional Feminism and Knowing Your Privilege

A Hasty Primer on Intersectional Feminism

A friend asked for a simple summary of Intersectional Feminism. Here's what I wrote, which is longer than it should be but not half as long as it ought to be.

A difficult thing with any social movement or idea is that lots of people contribute to it and shape it and everyone involved (or not involved) has a different idea of what it means or what it is. Definitions are hard and people argue about them. So I'll give you the definitions I use, which come from what I've learned and seen and thought. They're not absolute definitions, just my ideas based on other people's ideas.

Feminism as I learned it, mostly from the feminists in the geek community, is about equality.

Feminism sees that due to a history where men were in charge we have an unbalanced society where women are disadvantaged in things like jobs and suffer sexual harassment, domestic violence etc. You can measure this kind of prejudice and demonstrate that there are quite a few ways where life is harder for women. The standard gender roles for men and women, which are fading, are unhealthy and unhelpful. Men have repressed emotions and women suffer excessively from mental health issues like anxiety.

So the goal of feminism is an equal society, where men are able to display healthy emotions and women can go out at night without being raped and can get good jobs just like a normal person.

Feminism as a movement originated out of "suffrage", the movement to get women the vote. We call this "first wave feminism". Women like Emily Pankhurst went to prison, and some died, fighting for the right for women to vote.

Following that in the sixties and seventies (I think) there was a strong movement for the social liberation of women building on the foundation of first wave feminism and alongside the social movements of love and sexual liberation of the hippies that also included the charismatic evangelistic revival of that time in the house church movement (less sexual liberation there though). Feminists like Simone de Beauvoir were at the forefront of this and many of the goals of feminism were advanced greatly as society changed and feminism became more mainstream. Women having control over their own body was a big part of that.

Third wave feminism was a new movement from the last decade or two. On top of second wave feminism it adds sex positivity and sex worker positivity, the recognition of trans people and included and welcomed more men into the movement. Second wave feminism discouraged men from identifying as feminists, saying they could only be allies. Third wave feminism is for everyone.

Alongside third wave feminism black feminists, women philosophers, worked on a new feminism. They were involved in activism on race issues and gender issues. They suffered oppression both because they were women and because they were black and they saw that the issues they faced were compounded by the intersection of the different kinds of oppression, that they faced difficulties their white sisters did not. They also noted other intersections, disabled black people, disabled women, gay women and gay black people. So they came up with a new kind of feminism called intersectional feminism that understood and took this into account.

They saw that in life there are many different ways people can be oppressed or advantaged. To be white in this world is an advantage. To be straight is an advantage, because people experience oppression because they are gay. And so on. The advantage they called privilege.

Intersectional feminism is the understanding that many different axes (different kinds) of privilege and oppression intersect (come together) in every life. 

We all have some natural advantages and disadvantages in life. Some people suffer under a lot of oppression. So those who are privileged can empathise with and try to understand the suffering of the oppressed, because we've all experienced some suffering and oppression. It also means we all benefit in some ways, unfortunately, from the suffering of others. If others are naturally disadvantaged when it comes to applying for jobs (for example if you're black or a woman) then just being a man is a slight advantage. You can prove this is true by looking at statistics.

So those of us who have gained unfairly from the suffering of others, lots of the wealth of the west came from the oppression of poorer countries and the use of slaves, have some moral responsibility to help right the wrongs of the past and the present. We don't add to any individual and it's on the conscience of every person as to how they deal with that. But it's true anyway.

It can also help us to understand other people, to understand that they've had different lives to us and hard in ways that we haven't had to deal with. That's helpful for being able to empathise and connect with people and show them understanding and show that we care.

I was drawn to feminism, and started to all myself a feminist, because of the positive things I saw people (particularly women but far from only women) doing, in the name of third wave feminism, within the geek and tech community to include people. Django Girls, PyLadies, Transcode, mentoring, etc . So many beautiful people working so hard to actually include people, to love and support people. It wasn't about arguing it was about doing the work. People actually building a community of love. The practise rather than the theory. It's why one of my proudest achievements is my Python Software Foundation Community Award, recognising my work for the Python community. It's a community I'm so proud of and so proud to be part of.
The only theory worth a damn is the theory of the practise.
My psychotherapist, very active within the queer scene in Brighton and London, says she no longer calls herself a feminist due to the transphobia in British feminism. This is largely second wave feminists, and other FARTs, who refuse to see trans-women as women. Not acknowledging that breaking down the evil gender stereotypes is exactly what feminism has always been about. Deborah calls herself an egalitarian now. I saw and see a lot of beauty in feminism, particularly intersectional feminism, so I still call myself a feminist.

In summary, intersectional feminism is about loving and accepting people and understanding and supporting them. The intersectional part helps us to understand some of the disparate forces that shape and influence lives.

Knowing Your Privilege

Intersectional feminism teaches us that women are disproportionately affected by the plight and emotional and mental health of men. You therefore can't care about all women without caring about men.

Socially isolated and unhappy males cause a great deal of suffering and can become very evil.

An important consequence of intersectional feminism is that there's no blame associated with privilege, and that oppression isn't personal either. Isn't the fault of the disadvantaged. It's all just chance and the circumstances of life. That's a freeing understanding.

If you're aware of your privilege, if you know your privilege and use it then you can have a clean conscience. You didn't cause the suffering personally and you don't owe any individual anything, you've been aware of your privilege and tried to pay it forward when you could - so no-one has any hold on you.

I like to say: pay tax, give to charity, give to the homeless and owe nobody anything and have a clean conscience.

That's why I think intersectional feminism is both useful and beautiful. By viewing the world through that lense, and making a reasonable effort to act on what I see, I'm able to have a clean conscience.

And it also tells me how to deal with any privilege I'm unaware of. I'm only morally responsible for it once I become aware of it, because I only have any opportunity to deal with it once I'm aware of it. It's lovely. I don't have to worry about the past and anything I might have done without being aware of the consequences because I'll deal with things as they come up and make an honest attempt not to make mistakes. I think that's just behaving honourably and it isn't really that new.

I'm a a Jewish, British, Socialist, Feminist, Witch, middle aged, middle class, pansexual, ex-christian, ex-homeless, ex-prisoner, GenX, neurodiverse, cult survivor, body positive, university educated, university dropout, sex positive, switch, gamer, raver, hippie, white, cis, mostly male identifying geek. My life has been marked by many different kinds of privilege and oppression.

I've been beaten up on the streets for being homeless. I've helped setup and run a charity for the homeless and disadvantaged in Northampton and worked there part time for about seven years, longer as a volunteer. I lived without money and personal possessions in a Christian communal cult for ten years, working selling bricks during that time, in order to live for something I believed in. During which time I taught myself to program computers. I was eventually ostracised from that "church movement" (and left) for, amongst things, speaking out vocally on the issue of the role of women and sexuality in particular homosexuality over a long period of time. I've always tried to be generous with what life has provided me.

So I feel like I've tried to be honourable with the privilege I've had and I've worked at resolving the trauma I've suffered. I find privilege a really useful tool for understanding life.
And it's intersectional. Women who are homeless are particularly vulnerable and disadvantaged because of their gender. So you can't care about all women without caring about the homeless. Similarly women with gender identity issues are particularly vulnerable and oppressed because society tries to control women's bodies and women are more subject to sexual harassment. So you can't care about all women without caring about gender identity issues.

Conversely, if I've helped the homeless and worked to helping the homeless then I've helped women. Women who were particularly vulnerable.

So for me it's a freeing theory. It allows me to be an ally to the disadvantaged in a lot of what I do, just by helping people which I like doing. And it means I can address social issues and need without guilt. I rarely feel pressured into helping out of guilt, because I know I've tried. So when I do help someone it isn't obligation, it comes from a genuine heart. That's a much nicer way to help people, free from obligation and guilt.

Sometimes I hear "privilege theory", which is both a part of intersectional feminism and a derogatory reductionism of it, is a cult that people don't want to join.

The cult part is interesting. It's mostly a reflection of not wanting to see another point of view. The new point of view does come with a whole worldview that people don't want to buy into, which is why it looks like a cult.

Unfortunately people do a terrible job of selling that worldview, making it seem nasty. Because they're nasty people. That's a shame. Most people are nasty it seems at times. Which leaves you feeling like you have to be a bit nasty yourself just to stand up for what is right. And then you wonder what the difference is.

A lot of those who "don't want to join the cult" don't realise that they need to leave the cult (restricted worldview) they're in and join the rest of the world. There's a really beautiful world out there to discover. Everyone's lost in their own little cult, their own world, their own way of seeing the world. And so many people are trapped in their own hell.

It's awful, more so because it doesn't have to be like this. It starts by helping those out of a hell that other people make.

And of course feminism cares about men. Caitlin Moran speaks beautifully on the subject.

For every person you meet you have no idea what struggles and oppression and suffering they've experienced, nor who they have loved and helped or where their passion burns.


"90% of our experience is in the rational, 90% of our power is non-rational. The 90-10 rule."

In Praise of Kurzgesagt: String Theory


Quantum mechanics, as I'm sure you know, is the deepest and lowest level exploration of reality that science has any understanding of. It leaves beautiful space for the spiritual. Things exist and don't exist (wave particle duality and uncertainty) and can teleport (quantum teleportation), information can travel faster than the speed of light (quantum entanglement), and everything exists as probability waves (also wave particle duality and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle), and all of empty space is a seething morass of virtual particles that fleet in and out of existence in a dance choreographed by pure chaos (Kasimir effect and Hawking radiation). It seems that none of it exists at all without an observer.

Reality is weird and beautiful and improbable and science explores and affirms this.

Understanding scientific theories as different abstract models of reality is helpful, especially if you know the classic model of physics (Newton) and the relativistic model (Einstein). Similarly the particle physics model of the world and the quantum model.

There is no electron, it's a metaphor. That it is a point charge is a fiction of the particle physics model of the world which makes certain kinds of math easy. The quantum view of the same particle sees it as a fuzzy cloud with different probabilities at each point.

The quantum model is incompatible with the relativistic model so we know there are missing pieces. We can't make gravity work with quantum mechanics and we're still looking for a grand unified theory of everything which is what we hoped string theory would be.

One of the best places I know for getting reliable information about state of the art science, in an approachable way which will still leave your mind thoroughly blown, is the Kurzgesagt video series. If you're interested in particle physics, black holes, aliens or philosophy it's well worth browsing their videos. They're where I first learned about Positive Nihilism from, which is my fallback philosophy and from which I believe you can still derive a living spirituality as the rational conclusion.

This video is on string theory, which we hoped would provide a theory of everything but didn't. It starts with a quick primer on particle physics as a good background. If you're interested in aliens have a look at their videos on the Fermi paradox. Their videos on CRISP-R DNA replication are really good, but the black hole ones are the best.

Fundamental reality is chaos and uncertainty and I love her with all my heart.

We rejoice in the uncertainty for the uncertainty is what makes the best possible.
"Most authority systems are thinly veiled pecking orders. Pecking orders, and disapproval and exclusion, are how the patriarchy and social conventions are enforced socially. Authoritarianism in the micro."

Short Meditations: ACAB, Positive Nihilism, My Personal Satanism, Babylon the Great, The Prophet & Lucifer

Conventionality is an evil god

My Personal Satanism

My personal Satanism stands as enemy, Satan, to the God of the slave religions and conventionality, identified with the super-ego. The id, the primal urge and surge, is represented with Leviathan that ancient enemy who dwells in the ocean. I'm a rational theistic Luciferian. Lucifer is the light-bringer, bright morning star, the sacred self and the self archetype.

The precepts I uphold within my Satanism are the precepts of Thelema:

Love is the law, love under will.
Do as you will shall be the whole of the law.

Along with: No hell but what they make.

And my personal moral law which I call the Aslan rule: what other people do is Narnia business.

The culture of these precepts is Radical Inclusion.

You can bridge the rational and the irrational. Once you accept that both are merely the product of the mind there is no need to fear either. And most of our power is in the non-rational, strength resides with Leviathan.

Most people give over their imaginations to television and their minds to banality. And they see no gods or goddesses, neither demon nor angel, and they are pleased with themselves for the failure of their imagination. "What a clever person I am, so much cleverer than those who came before" they say to themselves as they close their mind's eye and change the channel.

90% of our experience is in the rational, 90% of our power resides with the non-rational. This is the 90-10 rule of my Satanism.


ACAB a Poem

AFAB, AMAB, ACAB, AHAB
TWAW, TMAM
YMMV
YHVH

Trans Women Are Women, Trans Men Are Men

Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee.

Read from right to left the Hebrew letters Alef Chet Alef Bet. אַחְאָב
ACAB
This is the Hebrew spelling for the name of the seventh King of Israel and more evil than all who had come before, Ahab who was husband of Queen Jezebel. Under his reign the Prophet Elijah slaughtered the Prophets of Baal and the Priestesses of Asherah.

In these legends Asherah is a demon goddess; by other traditions she is the consort of Yahweh and she is also known as Ashtoreth, Ishtar and Astarte. Worshipped as the evening star, the twin of the bright morning star who is Lucifer.

It was to Baal, and Moloch the blind who is industry, that the Kings of Judah are said to have sacrificed their own children in The Valley of the Children of Hinnom, also called Gehenna and Sheol and which the Prophet Jeremiah cursed. Baal is Ba'al Zəbûl Lord of the Heavenly Dwelling and a Prince of Hell called Lord of the Flies by the Hebrews as an insult.

It was whilst in hiding from Queen Jezebel, after slaughtering all her prophets, that one of the most important moments of the Old Testament happens. Important from the perspective of Christian mysticism, and as an allegory on the nature of inner truth.

1 Kings 19: 11-12
The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”

Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a still small voice.


Positive Nihilism (again)

Positive Nihilism teaches us the meaning of life.

Positive Nihilism acknowledges that it really looks like the universe came from nothingness, and one day will return to the same place. Therefore there is no inherent meaning or purpose in life.

So, we know that the only meaning and purpose to be found in life is the meaning and purpose that we find, create and invest in life.

But if this meaning is the only possible meaning, then it is complete meaning and purpose. As much meaning and purpose as it is possible to have in this life is within our grasp. All we have to do is do it, to find, create and invest meaning and purpose in our lives together.
And the alternative is to not do that, which would be a shame.

The nice thing is that as you set about finding, creating and investing meaning and purpose in life you discover that humans have been about that task for about as long as there have been humans. And we get to join in.

All ways is the one true way. Abide.


The Prophet

Prophet is a religious title. By popular meaning a prophet is one who prophesies, who can tell parts of the future. The title Prophet is just as likely to be used within a religious organisation to mean patriarch or person with religious authority. Devoid of any genuine spiritual meaning as so much of religion is. 

In the flavour of religions I have tended to favour prophecy is treated slightly differently. Prophecy is one of the spiritual gifts listed in what is considered the main list of spiritual gifts in the New Testament. 

1 Corinthians 12: 4-11
There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.

Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, a and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, who distributes them to each one, just as they determine.
Not only that, but prophecy is considered one of the higher gifts and the office of the prophet is second only to the apostle in the traditional hierarchy ascribed to the early church. Later in that same passage we are exhorted to earnestly desire the higher gifts, of which prophecy is one. 

1 Corinthians 12: 27-31
Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.
An ambitious heart clearly desires the greater gifting for personal gain. My understanding of the act, gifting and office of prophecy is that the prophet is one who is close to the heart of G-d, who knows the heart of G-d. This is why we are to earnestly desire the higher gifts, because those giftings come out of the nature of G-d and out of a closeness to the heart of G-d. The one who is close to the heart and nature of G-d may know more clearly the Christ mind and may speak the heart and mind of G-d, and this is the gift of prophecy. It may speak to the present or the future, but it always speaks to the heart. 

Many come as prophets, Sturgeon's law applies. Almost everyone is a charlatan. The injunction is to test the spirits.

1 John 4: 1
Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 
For a good yardstick to measure the worth of a prophet we can turn to the fifth book of the Hebrew Torah, Deuteronomy, which tells us that a false prophet will prophesy things which do not happen. The measure is truth and reality. 

Deuteronomy 18:22
When a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of them.


Lucifer

The name and title Lucifer, bright morning star which art Venus, is most associated with Satan and the Devil of the Abrahamic religions. 

Satan, Lucifer and the Devil are all different names and ideas and legends with separate but intertwined histories and stories. 

In the Old Testament the name Lucifer comes from the King James Translation, via the Latin Vulgate, and one verse in the book of the Prophet Isaiah:
How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations.
In the New Testament the title of Lucifer, bright morning star, is given to the Christ in the apocalypse of John, chapter 22 and verse 16.
“I, Joshua, have sent my demon to give you this testimony for the cults. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star (Lucifer).”
The myths of Lucifer and the role of both the morning star and the evening star in the legends of the gods is neither limited to the Abrahamic religions and nor are they the earliest references. 

For example, a search on Wikipedia for the Greek god Eosphorus who is Phosphorus the son of Astraeus and Eos you find this gem:
Alternatively, mythologically, the morning and the evening stars are Venus and Sirius, and the frequent error in mistaking one for the other becomes incorporated in various stories across several cultures.

Known as Sopdet in Egypt, as Sotor, Σωτήρ "Savior" in Ancient Greek astrological texts, and as Seth in Babylonian/Jewish astrology, Sirius "the Eastern Star" and its corresponding partner Venus, known as Ishtar, Ester, Asherah, Astarte, become the Christ and the Anti-Christ.
Note also that Ashtoreth (who is Ishtar and Astarte) and Asherah (consort of Yahweh) both appear in the Old Testament as evil Goddesses.

So the erroneous dualism inherent in the practise of Christianity since around 300AD might be said to be down to not realising that the morning and evening stars are the same entity.


Babylon the Great

The Apocalypse of John, the prophecies and visions captained in the book of the Bible called Revelation, have probably driven more people mad than any other writing in history. 

For some reason the descriptions of Babylon and her destruction always reminded me of the excesses of that great temple to consumerism we call America. Maybe the star called Wormwood represents a nuclear warhead on a missile falling from the sky. As a child I thought the boulder thrown into the sea would be the Statue of Liberty which has become a symbol of oppression in the name of liberty, a blasphemy.

Here are some extracts. 
Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great!’
She has become a dwelling for demons
and a haunt for every impure spirit,
a haunt for every unclean bird,
a haunt for every unclean and detestable animal.
For all the nations have drunk
the maddening wine of her adulteries.
The kings of the earth committed adultery with her,
and the merchants of the earth grew rich from her excessive luxuries.”

They will say, ‘The fruit you longed for is gone from you. All your luxury and splendor have vanished, never to be recovered.’ The merchants who sold these things and gained their wealth from her will stand far off, terrified at her torment. They will weep and mourn and cry out. 

Give her as much torment and grief
as the glory and luxury she gave herself.
In her heart she boasts,
‘I sit enthroned as queen.
I am not a widow; 
I will never mourn.’
Therefore in one day her plagues will overtake her:
death, mourning and famine.
She will be consumed by fire,
for mighty is the Lord God who judges her.

"When the kings of the earth who committed adultery with her and shared her luxury see the smoke of her burning, they will weep and mourn over her. Terrified at her torment, they will stand far off and cry. 

Then a mighty angel picked up a boulder the size of a large millstone and threw it into the sea, and said:

“With such violence
the great Babylon will be thrown down,
never to be found again."

The third angel sounded his trumpet, and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water— the name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter.
 

"The idols are the forms of the ego, the archetypes are the gods and goddesses, the angels and demons. Alive within our collective life."

Thursday, 2 July 2020

Wage Theft and Defund the Police

The British Are Coming

In the UK wage theft cost workers and the economy about £2.7 billion a year [1]. Wage theft is where employers steal money from their employees by not paying them for all hours worked or not giving holiday required by law. Those who suffer most are typically amongst the poorest and this is money that would have gone directly back into the economy, as well as feeding hungry children and reducing the burden on benefits. Those affected, if they even know, have recourse to an employment tribunal but it's not something the police are interested in.

Meanwhile, shoplifting in the UK (2016-2017 figures) costs British retailers about £500 million a year [2]. Shoplifting is substantially done by drug addicts which is totally unnecessary and caused by the inhumane and immoral way we treat drug users, who are also substantially comprised of the traumatised and the socially marginalised and disadvantaged.

So wage theft, in terms of disruption to the UK economy, is a massively more serious problem than shoplifting. Shoplifting is done by the poor, wage theft is committed against the poor. Which do we criminalise and set people trained in violence, the police, to deal with?

Meanwhile benefit fraud is estimated to cost the UK about £1.3 billion a year. Tax evasion is estimated to cost the UK around £34 billion a year [3]. How many more police are working on catching benefit fraud than tax evasion, which crime do we criminalise and pursue most vigorously.

A recent report into stop and search use in Northamptonshire found that if you were black you were five and a half times more likely to be stopped and searched by police [4] than if you were white. In response to this Northamptonshire police decided to give all police officers tasers [5].

In 2015 over a million police hours were spent on enforcing the cannabis prohibition [6]. Seizing property, ruining lives, throwing people in prison all at great cost to the economy in lost business and destroyed property and the cost of enforcement. Meanwhile relatives of members of the government make fortunes growing and exporting cannabis [7] whilst denying this medicine to everyone else.

And that's before we talk about things like the 35 000 people working for the police who haven't been vetted or checked [8] and the many complaints of high rates of domestic abuse by the police [9].

These are the sorts of reasons why there are calls to defund the police. They're not working for the majority of people, they're working for the rich.



"There is a great harvest of unwilling believers to be  had" -- Joshua the Christ, apocryphal

Thursday, 18 June 2020

New Atheism


All dogma is wrong, I'm dogmatic about that.

On atheism. 

I consider new atheism defeated and pompous. You can derive a living spirituality from first principles and the nature of consciousness, understanding the role and value of myth and legend in shaping our collective psyche through history. So the metaphors and language and symbols of religion and spirituality have enormous power simply through their psychological reality. And all we can experience of the world comes to us as "psychological reality", so the life that legend and myth and religion and spirituality have within the collective psyche is the same kind of life as our normal experience of life.

So to just pretend it is all meaningless and without value is to grossly misunderstand yourself, your own own personal and psychological history, and to misunderstand the world.

Our subconscious mind forms gods out of the lives we live for none of us are separate from those around us and ideas and concepts are shared and can be bigger and older than any individual. It's a facet of evolution and the way we think together and our minds are formed in relation to one another from what came before. What the conscious rational mind thinks it believes is more or less irrelevant. Such a small part of the totality of who we are. What we call God is simply the way our subconscious connects to and interacts with "everything".

We are all merely the product of history, both psychologically and genetically we were formed out of what came before us. We partake of the nature of the world which has created us.

It has been said: "your holy books are all flawed and all have caused more misery and suffering than they are worth".

Of course they're flawed, they're written by humans. To imagine otherwise is foolish and to imagine they have no beauty because they are merely human is just as foolish. Humans cause wars and they use books as an excuse. Religion is a symptom of the human condition not a cause of it.

To not believe that the sacred and the holy can exist because suffering and evil exist. To refuse to see beauty in order to be right. That's not right, that's ridiculous. 

In my own life and the lives of others I have seen that transcendent experiences are beautiful, especially shared ones. Religions of all kinds seem to chart humanity's attempt to find and honour those experiences in their lives and all have varying degrees of success and sometimes horrible failure in that goal as they are all human constructs and symptoms of the human condition. To disdain them all without second glance, and to dishonour those who seek truth and beauty through them, seems like a sad mistake to my mind.

Proverbs 1:7 The respect of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, but fools despise instruction.


"In this life beware, for not much is true although there is a truth and it matters very much how you lie."

Signs You're in an Emotionally Abusive Relationship

客户是上帝

Signs you're in an emotionally abusive relationship. These are some related but different ways your emotions and experience of life might be invalidated or ignored by the other person in a relationship.
  • Their feelings are regularly your fault, you're responsible for their emotions.
  • When they have an emotional reaction to something the idea that they should do inner work on their character is a great affront and unreasonable.
  • You have to modify your behaviour and character to be acceptable, parts of you they can't cope with are "bad".
  • Their emotions are more important than yours, you don't have real feelings and should look after theirs more.
  • The fact that you're not perfect and have made mistakes in life invalidates your point of view and feelings. You can't have an opinion on yourself or them until you're perfect.
  • Little interest in understanding you as you are, much interest in changing your behaviour to match their expectations and desires.
  • Their understanding of you and your behaviour, and the interpretation of their friends, is more real to them than what you say and think and feel. You're wrong about you and they're right.
  • Any discussion requires you to first accept that their point of view is right and yours is wrong.
  • They won't acknowledge your point of view and can't describe it to you because it's important to them to not really see and understand your point of view to be able to reject it easily. 
  • When their behaviour, over a prolonged period of time, causes emotions like anger or pain or upset then your emotional response is the problem. Their emotions are valid yours are invalid. Caring for other people, unselfishness, means you caring about them and their feelings not the other way round.
  • If there are incompatible desires and needs in the relationship you should drop yours.
  • Their behaviour and feelings are out of their control so you need to modify yours for them to be alright.
  • Any problems of theirs, including abusive behaviour, are due to the past and probably also your fault. You need to change and also to be understanding of them because they can't/don't need to change.
  • Their idea of who you are and who you should be are based on abstract stereotypes, probably gender based.
  • Any feelings of yours they don't like are unacceptable and you have to change. Any feelings of theirs that you don't like are probably your fault and you need to accept them as they are.
  • You should be fully in control of your behaviour and feelings and they can't possibly be expected to do the same.
I've spent a lot of time examining the  question of how responsible for other people's feelings we are in relationship to other people. I have come to a final conclusion that I am happy settles this question once and for all:
We're all inextricably intertwined and the question of how responsible for another person's feelings you are can never be answered satisfactorily.

"To me the gift of hospitality means to give of your best."

Saturday, 13 June 2020

Love is the Law but what is the Law

I'm a will with an imagination, that's what I Am.

I'm a devotee of several religions, one of my favourites is Thelema which I describe like this:
The pursuit of knowing and exercising your true will, in accordance with the great work, understanding that love is the law. Every person is a star. 
The two most important precepts of Thelema are:
  • Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.
  • Love is the law, love under will. We choose to love.
Both of these precepts are to do with will and both are to do with the law. The will is clearly of central importance to Thelema. To do your true will is to be the complete and actualised self, the sacred self. Doing your true will is as much about being all it is possible for you to be, the best and most powerful version of you, as it is about knowing what to do. What you do comes out of who you are and in turn shapes who you will become.

But what is the law of which the precepts speak and particularly what does it mean to say that love is the law? The beauty is that these precepts have an intuitive understanding which requires little explanation. When I first heard these precepts they resonated with me and I knew they were right and to that extent Thelema was true, in the way that religions can be true.

There's a parallel between the law of the precepts and the legal code, the law of the land we are subject to whether we like it or not. The philosophy of law is called Jurisprudence. 

As I grew up I had a quick mind and enjoyed arguing, so I wanted to go to Cambridge university and study law and become a barrister. During my first year at Corpus Christi College Cambridge I studied Criminal law, Tort law, Roman law and British Constitutional law and passed my exams. During that time I was introduced to the teachings of Aleister Crowley and almost immediately thereafter went mad. I was thrown out of the college midway through my second year and became homeless and ended up in prison and after that onto a religious cult where I lived communally for ten years as a true believer without money or personal possessions, selling bricks for a living and devoted to seeking the knowledge of God. During that time I taught myself to program computers and eventually moved out with a wife to start new adventures and a career as a computer programmer. 

Long before all that I was brought up as a good Evanjellyfish. The smell of home baked bread and women in long dresses playing tambourines from the home church movement of the seventies are amongst my earliest memories. The parallel between religious law and what we normally call law was always clear to me. What is the basis of personal moral culpability for your actions? This seemed to be the core question for both religious law and the legal code. Much of the religion I was taught and pursued was concerned with understanding the law of God.

Under the British law criminal liability requires two components; the mens rea (the guilty mind) and the actus reus (the guilty act). There is no liability unless a crime has actually been committed, this is the actus reus although attempt and intent as separate offences (for some crimes only) complicate the situation. For those offences the attempt or the intent to commit an offence is the actus reus. The mens rea requires intent, without the intent (the will you might say) to commit an offence there is no offence. If you trip and hurt someone then it's an accident not assault because there was no intent to injure. This is except for strict liability offences like speeding in a car or being in possession of controlled substances where the burden of proof is reversed and there is no presumption of innocence and you have to explain yourself. Intent is key under the law.

To live in any modern society is to live subject to the law of the land, to live under the law and under the rule of law. The law is dominant by recourse to great strength and even armies and calls for your submission. To follow the law is to be upstanding and lawful. To break the law is to be criminal and subject to the weight and force of the law. The law is over us. The law is the expression of rulership and defines the bounds and parameters of that rulership and conveys legitimacy to it. The law also confers legitimacy to force and even violence which can be used to enforce the rule of law and the will of the law. The rule of law is backed by the rule of force. Some might fail to see a distinction between the rule of law and the rule of force, especially where the law is cruel and unjust. However, the rule of law may give way to the rule of love for just as the rule of force enables the rule of law so the rule of law may enable the rule of love.

Crowley, the founder of Thelema, came from a religious society and had a religious upbringing and Thelema sprung out from that well. The Book of the Law and the law itself are ideas that have been explored through religion and mysticism spanning the aeons and epochs, the stretch and the gape, of human history. Moral law or religious law might be good descriptions of what the law is when we say "love is the law", but what we are grasping at is a universal law for life. A natural law like the law of gravity. The law by which the spiritual person operates and functions, flowing in harmony within and transcending the bounds of circumstance. By living in accordance with the operation of this law, or by earnestly seeking to do so with an honest heart that is determined to rid itself of inner guile and self deception, we can be reconciled to ourselves and to one another and to the world we find ourselves in and the worlds and possible worlds we collectively create together. The kingdom will be found amongst us and within us: the place where love rules and love is the law. If this law has any meaning that is. I know this law by another name: radical inclusion. Love is the law, if you cannot love you will not remain although grace abounds. The kingdom of heaven, Kether in Malkuth.

Christianity and Judaism share some of their holy texts with the first five books of the Bible, the books of the law, making up the Torah. Torah means Instruction, or Law, also called the Pentateuch. The defining symbol of humanity receiving the law from G-d, in these religions, is Moses being given the ten commandments on stone tablets on Mount Sinai after receiving the name of God in the wilderness from the burning bush, the fire which burns but does not consume, and then defeating the magic of the Egyptians and leading the Israelites out of Egypt and into the wilderness. 

This happens in the book of Exodus. God makes a covenant with his chosen people, the children of God, that if they obey his law they will be his people and he will be their God and God will defeat their enemies and lead them into the promised land.

This is a fairly long passage, skip over the part beginning "Be careful not to make a treaty..." all the way up to "The the Lord said to Moses..." near the end. The middle bit is the law being given and it doesn't make much sense from the perspective of about 4000 years away.

Exodus 34: 8-28
Moses bowed to the ground at once and worshiped. “Lord,” he said, “if I have found favor in your eyes, then let the Lord go with us. Although this is a stiff-necked people, forgive our wickedness and our sin, and take us as your inheritance.”

Then the Lord said: “I am making a covenant with you. Before all your people I will do wonders never before done in any nation in all the world. The people you live among will see how awesome is the work that I, the Lord, will do for you. Obey what I command you today. I will drive out before you the Amorites, Canaanites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. Be careful not to make a treaty with those who live in the land where you are going, or they will be a snare among you. Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones and cut down their Asherah poles. a Do not worship any other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.

“Be careful not to make a treaty with those who live in the land; for when they prostitute themselves to their gods and sacrifice to them, they will invite you and you will eat their sacrifices. And when you choose some of their daughters as wives for your sons and those daughters prostitute themselves to their gods, they will lead your sons to do the same.

“Do not make any idols.
“Celebrate the Festival of Unleavened Bread. For seven days eat bread made without yeast, as I commanded you. Do this at the appointed time in the month of Aviv, for in that month you came out of Egypt.
“The first offspring of every womb belongs to me, including all the firstborn males of your livestock, whether from herd or flock. Redeem the firstborn donkey with a lamb, but if you do not redeem it, break its neck. Redeem all your firstborn sons.
“No one is to appear before me empty-handed.
“Six days you shall labor, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during the plowing season and harvest you must rest.
“Celebrate the Festival of Weeks with the firstfruits of the wheat harvest, and the Festival of Ingathering at the turn of the year. Three times a year all your men are to appear before the Sovereign Lord, the God of Israel. I will drive out nations before you and enlarge your territory, and no one will covet your land when you go up three times each year to appear before the Lord your God.
“Do not offer the blood of a sacrifice to me along with anything containing yeast, and do not let any of the sacrifice from the Passover Festival remain until morning.
“Bring the best of the firstfruits of your soil to the house of the Lord your God.
“Do not cook a young goat in its mother’s milk.”

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Write down these words, for in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel.” Moses was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Commandments.
Notice how the writer couldn't resist including a dig against the goddess Asherah, who is also known as Ishtar, Ashtoreth and Astarte and associated with the morning star and by some traditions she was a consort to Yahweh. To the Hebrews she was a demon goddess. 

The law is a series of rules to follow for life. The Hebrews of this time didn't believe in life after death, so there was no heaven nor any threat of eternal damnation or hell at this time. Notice what a low opinion Moses, and by extension God, already has of his people in this telling of the myth and how the words of the covenant written on the tablets are the words of the law, the commandments.

Huge chunks of the Old Testament are devoted to more of the law, various rules about living about slaves about menstruating and crime and punishment and about festivals and the temple. Every aspect of life and religion seems to be covered in a confusing and contradictory collection of arbitrary rules which are mostly nonsensical from the perspective of the twentieth century unless you squint real hard.

The set of rules, the law, rapidly grew. Breaking the law, sin, required a blood sacrifice to God for atonement because the life is in the blood. The Jews were also forbidden from eating the blood of animals.

Leviticus 17: 11-12:
For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one’s life. Therefore I say to the Israelites, “None of you may eat blood, nor may any foreigner residing among you eat blood.”
So unless we are to permit universal and ultimate truth to the exoteric understanding of the rules laid out in Leviticus and Numbers we may only find value in these stories through an alternative understanding. The Jewish tradition is that the Torah was written by Moses. This seems unlikely as it includes the account of his death and beyond. Scholars I favour favour the idea that the books of the law were the collected Rabbinical teachings of the centuries, compiled after the tribes of Benjamin and Judah returned from exile in Babylon and rebuilt the temple starting the second temple era. This was done by Zerubbabel, one of my favourite names from the bible to say Zee-rubba-bel, and the Prophet Joshua and supported by the Persian King Cyrus. The books of the law were probably compiled by Ezra and the laws were never all in force at one time, indeed you can't follow them all. Some, like the laws and rules around the year of jubilee when slaves were to be freed and land returned to its original owner, there is no evidence they were ever put into practise.

The Jews were looking to understand the law of God, the set of rules they could understand to live by and be in covenant with God and receive the promise that comes with that. What we see in the books of the law is the story of their attempt at that understanding. 

Some of the laws, particularly around the keeping of slaves, seem abhorrent to us today and indeed objectively as we define objective morality they are. Yet there are extant similar legal codes from which the Hebraic ones undoubtedly derived and build on. They add new provisions and add some legal protection for slaves. Objectively immoral law which clearly has no relevance other than historical for today, a curse on those morons who seek to apply Old Testament law to justify their hate, but it was as far as humanity as manifested in those cultures had evolved socially at that point. We see the social evolution of humanity and a record of the moral philosophy of the time as flawed as it is and awful in consequence too.

The mess of the Old Testament law points us to a truth about the nature of law, both as religious law and legal code. Any rule applied diligently will create new injustices on either side of the law. Some will be treated too harshly and some too leniently. To rectify this the law can be more nuanced, more law. So it is in the nature of any legal code based on rules to grow as it creates new injustices requiring the remedy of new rules which themselves create new injustices.

The Old Testament also points to something new, something that will be better and the relationship of the people of God to the law will be different. The law will be written in their hearts and minds, no longer something that needs to be learned or studied but innate and indwelling. The law will be written on their hearts and minds.

Jeremiah 31: 33-34
“This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel
after that time,” declares the Lord.
“I will put my law in their minds
and write it on their hearts.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.

No longer will they teach their neighbor,
or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’
because they will all know me,
from the least of them to the greatest,”
We see a parallel prophecy from the prophet Joel in a prophecy referred to as The Day of the Lord. "I will pour out my spirit on all flesh" is said to herald the New Age.

Joel 2:28-30
And afterward,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your old men will dream dreams,
your young men will see visions.

Even on my servants, both men and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days.
I will show wonders in the heavens
and on the earth,
blood and fire and billows of smoke.
So far we have only looked at the understanding of religious law from the Old Testament and the myth of the incarnation of the Christ archetype, for which the New Testament are the holy texts and in which the Christ archetype is given the title Lucifer in the apocalypse of John chapter 22 verse 16, are concerned about the law very much.

The arc of books of the Old Testament, for the word Bible has as its root the Latin word Biblia and is related to the French word bibliothèque meaning library, is the story of the creation and fall and then God giving the law and calling a chosen people and the law stubbornly refusing to redeem those people. We suspect the authors of the Bible didn't really like people very much and we read the legends with that in mind, but there are further legends of the man I will refer to as Joshua the Christ for reasons described in footnote 1 [1]. The question of the historicity [2] of these legends and teachings are as relevant as they are for the historicity of Crowley to his legends and teachings.

We can see the myth of the Christ as being the fulfilment of the law, as the fulfilment of the blood price for suffering. The old law is swept away and a new covenant and a new perfected law comes in. In the incarnation, in the Christ, God is fully human and human is fully God and the barrier between heaven and earth and God and man is no more and no intermediary or priest is needed to have the knowledge of God.

In various scriptures we see the understanding that the law is a curse, for only through knowing the law can we know we have broken the law. It is the law that creates the opportunity for transgression. We can see this  as the old law, the letter of the law. To rely on the law for righteousness requires the keeping of every bit of the law, every jot and tittle, or we become transgressors. The law can only condemn.

Romans 3:20
Because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.
Romans 7:7
What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet. 
Galatians 3:10
For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse, as it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.”
We see a new understanding brought in, all of the law and the prophets have a simpler solution. Indeed love is said to be the fulfilment of the law. Here we find teaching that sounds identical to the precepts of Thelema we revere.

Matthew 22:34-40
Hearing that Joshua had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

Joshua replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Galatians 5:14
For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself."
Romans 13:8-10
Let no obligation remain, except the continuing obligation to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
And yet there exists a tension for the teachings also teach that the law remains and does not pass away.

Matthew 5:17–18
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished.”
What is the mystical element and act of the myth of the Christ archetype that wrought this change?

The blood sacrifice of the Christ fulfilling the requirement of blood for sin. In the Hebrew temple a heavy curtain, the veil separates the holy of holies from the part of the temple the people may enter. The presence and glory of Adonai, the Lord, may fall on the holy of holies and the priest therein but not onto the people. The priest ministers the presence and word of God to the people and there is a divide between God and humanity. 

At the point the Christ dies that veil is torn in two. 

Matthew 27:51
At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split.
The metaphor of the cross is that the gap between God and the people is removed. No priest, no intermediary is required to know God although the office and role of Priest is still to minister the sacred and the holy to the people. Also at the point of death.

John 19:30
So when Joshua had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.
It is finished! The great work is both complete and begun. 

The key point of this transition and change of perspective, backed by the force of legend, is that law is no longer contained or constrained by a list of rules. Now love is the law. There is no objective, inhuman, condemning standard to be measured against. Instead the measure and the rule is love. The fulfilment of the law means the end to rule based law. There is no set of rules by which the law can be laid out other than "love is the law".

Understanding the nature of the law is not enough to fully understand "love is the law", in order to understand in fullness we must also perceive the nature of love. Love is not weak, love is fierce. Love needs no defence she comes in like a lion. Love carries the power of rulership. 

Here I turn to some religious poetry on the law and the nature of love:
Righteousness does not come from following the law, because you can't. Instead love has fulfilled and perfected the law, and love is the law. And by grace, we can love. When we love we fulfil the law, and righteousness is made complete in us for love is perfect and without blemish.

For the fruits of the spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. Against such, there is no law.

The spirit is the spirit of love, both the essence and the substance of love.

Grace is not given that we might follow the law, for we are no longer slaves to the law. Grace is given that we might love for when we love we fulfil the law. Righteousness, being made right, comes through grace as we are perfected by love.

What then is sin? Sin is the opposite of righteousness and since righteousness comes through love, sin is the failure to love. And that's it, that's the full list. If we fulfil the law we do not sin.

Where we do not love we dwell in darkness, for love is the light. Love is both the path and the means to find the path, both the freedom and the being made free.
1 Corinthians 10:23 All things are permitted.
Titus 1:15 To the pure all things are pure.
So what does it mean to say that love is the law? It means that love is law by which we may operate in harmony and may be reconciled to ourselves. Like the law of gravity it is the law of nature. It also means that the right operation and exercise and function of love is to rule. Love under will, we choose to love. It means that love rules.

Other holy texts teach and confirm that love is the law. The record of the Old Testament shows us the nature of humanity's search to know the law of God and speaks of an age to come and the New Testament teaches on the new law and the new covenant that comes with it. An understanding of the teaching of the Christ to mean that the kingdom of heaven is now and is found in shared lives. That love is the law, that the rule of love is now and is also the age to come. 


[1] The name Jesus came from corrupted men translating the gospels from Greek into Latin so that normal people couldn't read them. That name is an Anglicisation of the Latin translation of the Greek variant of the Hebrew name Yeshua. The Hebrew name is closest to, and a late Bible variant of, the English name Joshua. Joshua the Christ, quite a different character from the plastic and concrete and so very white Jesus.

[2] From Wikipedia on the historicity of Joshua the Christ:
Non-Christian sources used to study and establish the historicity of Jesus include the first century Jewish historian Josephus and Roman historian Tacitus. These sources are compared to Christian sources, such as the Pauline letters and synoptic gospels, and are usually independent of each other; that is, the Jewish sources do not draw upon the Roman sources. Similarities and differences between these sources are used in the authentication process
There's no evidence at all to the accuracy of the gospels. All it's possible to know from the evidence and the spread of the early church is this: something the fuck happened. Yet still this magic, spread at the point of a Roman sword, conquered the globe. The rotting remains of the unholy alliance of sword and religion in that name remain to this day and is ruled from the Vatican. Meanwhile other prophets of the one holy divine name appear and reaffirm that love is the law.


"But the greatest people," says King Lamus, "are those that refuse to be treated like squalling children, who insist on facing reality in every form, and tear off ruthlessly the bandages from their own wounds.” -- Diary of a Drug Fiend

I think love is simply divine, just heavenly.

George William Curry and Pathfinder Squadron 627



A 627 Squadron Mosquito

I went to visit my Dad today and spent about an hour talking to him before he got too tired. He's dying of cancer but as always he was in a cheerful mood. He told me a bit more of the story about his Dad who he never knew. His Mum hardly ever talked about him so what he knows comes from some of Granny's papers and my Dad's investigation after she died. He found a whole new branch of his family including Aunts and cousins and a Great Aunt Olive.

Before joining the RAF George William Curry worked for an insurance company called UKAPIAN. The only remnant of UKAPIAN now is one page on the website of Axa who ended up buying them, but they started life as a motor insurance company run by a temperance society. Teetotalers are good customers for a motor insurance company but there wasn't enough of them and UKAPIAN had to branch out. At any rate my Dad has George's beer tankard. My Dad's middle name is George, as is my brother David's middle name and my son Benjamin's.

At the start of the second world war the standard deviation, the average distance of a bomb from where it was supposed to go, was about five miles. A chap called Leonard Cheshire who flew Lancaster bombers had the idea of dive bombing to a few hundred feet and dropping coloured incendiaries on the targets. This proved to be a great idea, except that the Lancaster bombers were made of metal and at a few hundred feet above ground could be hit by rifle and small arms fire and chewed to pieces.

Leonard switched to the De Havilland Mosquito fighter-bomber plane which was faster and more manoeuvrable. It was also a wooden plane and you could merrily punch holes in it with gay abandon and so long as you didn't hit a control wire it would keep on flying. The wooden structure made it virtually invisible to radar. A single Pathfinder could drop flares on multiple targets, so a squadron of Pathfinders could support a whole group of squadrons of bombers.

After the introduction of the Pathfinders the standard deviation for the British bombs dropped to 1 mile.

George was already a pilot in the RAF when the second world war started and he was part of the Battle of Britain. He joined the newly formed Pathfinder Squadron 627. George was an acting Wing Commander during the war but left at the lower rank of Squadron Leader.  55 000 people from Bomber Command died during the war and vacancies were frequent. Although the lifespan of a Pathfinder was normally days George survived the war and was one of only a handful of pilots to  receive both Distinguished Service Order (DSO) and  Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) medals twice. DSO with bar and DFC with bar, four medals.

Left to Right: LAC Harding, ground crew; the navigator Flight Sergeant Ranshaw and the pilot Flight Sergeant Marshallsay; groundcrew, LAC James Wookey and LAC Kingscott.

The London Gazette of October 1944 remarks:
Fourth Supplement to the London Gazette of Friday the 13th of October 1944 - Tuesday 17 October 1944

Distinguished Service Order

Acting Wing Commander George William CURRY DFC. (86389), RAFVR, 627 Sqn.

Since assuming command of his squadron, Wing Commander Curry has taken part in a number of operations against a variety of enemy targets. His great determination and capable leadership have resulted in many successful operations. On several occasions his aircraft has been damaged by anti-aircraft fire. The exceptional energy and initiative which this officer has displayed, together with his outstanding keenness and cheerful personality, have had a most marked effect upon the morale and efficiency of his squadron. He has set a worthy example.
And then in February 1945:
Fourth Supplement to the London Gazette of Friday the 23rd of February, 1945 - TUESDAY, 27 FEBRUARY, 1945

Air Ministry, 27th February, 1945.

The KING has been graciously pleased to approve
the following awards in recognition of gallantry and
devotion to duty in the execution of air operations: 

Bar to Distinguished Service Order.
Acting Wing Commander George William CURRY, DSO, DFC (86389), RAFVR, 627 Sqn.

Wing Commander Curry has completed a second tour of operational duty during which he has completed many notable sorties. On one occasion he took part in an attack which resulted in the breaching of the Dortmund-Ems Canal. On another occasion, Wing Commander Curry led the squadron on a target far into enemy territory. Whilst over the target considerable anti-aircraft fire was encountered. Every aircraft was hit. Nevertheless, the operation was completed successfully. Munchen-Gladbach, Stuttgart, Brunswick and Bremerhaven have been among the various targets Wing Commander Curry has attacked. This gallant and resourceful squadron commander has set a splendid example to all.
After the war George remained in the RAF and flew Venom jets. Every year he would take part in the Battle of Britain celebrations. In September 1948, out of practise flying the wooden Mosquitos, on the day before the celebration George crashed attempting a low roll with him and Flight Lieutenant on board. Both of them died. One of the few things that Granny told Dad was that the Flight Lieutenant was the pilot and George was the co-pilot, but my Dad doesn't think a Flight Lieutenant would have been the pilot. George is laid to rest in Coningsby cemetery military graves section. 

My Dad has no memory of his father but he has his log books and he remembers the rationing that was still in place after the war. Because George died on duty Granny got a decent sized pension. She went on to marry Peter John Foord who I knew as Grandpa and who raised my father as a son and whose name I bear twice.