You are not bothering me and you have the same questions that a lot of people ask. Many go to church but never investigated the “why” of their faith. So it is good to search. Remember that the bible says “seek and you shall find,” “knock and the door will be opened.”
It also says anyone who trusts in Jesus will not be disappointed. You may ask, how is that possible, what about the Christians fed to the lions (worst case scenario). I suspect they were given an outpouring of grace to go through the experience, something that cannot be explained, only felt.
I’ll try to get you your answers tonight or tomorrow. Just am busy-busy. But happen you dropped in.
Mr. Starr, you are obviously just another hysterical, ignorant reactionary. An individual such as yourself proves once again that
ignorance is not the sole property of the religious fundamentalists.
Rather, irresponsible cranks come from all ends of the political-religious spectrum. I congratulate you, for you have been inducted
into a pantheon of glory that includes people like Pat Robertson,
Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Noam Chomsky, Ward Churchill and Michael Moore. On this forum, you are right up there with Tchamp,
Roger Pearse, and the Johnny-come-lately “MAN”.
Where EXACTLY are you getting your ideas about the supposed
“devil worship” of the Golden Dawn, W.B. Yeats, Blavatasky, the
Theosophical Society….. from the “National enquirer”? I can
ASSURE you and everyone else on this forum that you have
NO IDEA what you are talking about. As a matter of fact, you
really can’t even call the notorious and often indisputably
reprehensible, Aleister Crowley a “devil-worshipper.“Anton
Lavey was probably not even a genuine devil-worshipper.
I have been an armchair occultist, nothing more than an agnostic with a deep and abiding interest in all things unexplained
for much of my life. I must admit that I consider myself somewhat
of an authority on all the subjects you have mentioned here. I
could refute your arguments with ease. However, occultism(especially the “high magick” of the western esoteric tradition)
is quite an arcane and complex subject. It would take many more
words than I am prepared to type at this time to effectively reduce your foolishness to it’s rightful place in the landfill of ideas.You claim to have read Crowley’s works, which ones?
Have you ever read any biographies of his life? Crowley was
an extremely complex character who often wrote and spoke on
many levels all at once. To understand him, you have to willing to
read his writings and grasp them from a mystical, magickal, metaphorical, literal etc….sense all at once and try to formulate
a coherant whole out of them. What exactly led you to belief in
Crowley’s endorsement for human sacrifice. Was it the fact that
he claimed that he sacrificed 150 young male virgins of high intelligence and complete purity during one year, in “Magick in
Theory and Practice.” I really don’t think you’re gulliable enough
to believe that are you? Ever here of TWILIGHT LANGUAGE? Crowley was referring to masturbatory “sex magick”. In his
time, such frank admissions would have probably resulted in
jail sentence and few, if any publishers would be willing to touch
his book. Crowley knew that astute readers would get his meaning
and others who did not would eventually get their questions regarding this apparently shocking ritual ,answered somehow.
In any case, that is about as far as my refutation can and will go
currently. I’ve read enough Crowley and really I have to question whether or not he really believed in anything wholly at all. If you have read “Magick Without Tears” (written very near the end of his life) you can pretty much consider Crowley ultimately an agnostic
who believed in SOMETHING beyond the physical, but he really was
not very conculsive at all regarding the nature of this something.
You can see that as a cop-out if you please. “Think what thou Wilt”, is all I can say about that. Judging from your idiotic and IMO,
unethical ideas about holding all Muslims accountable for the actions of the extremists among them, I expected nothing less
from you. I guess the Vietnamese, Cambodians, Laotians, Latin
Americans etc… should hold all Americans responsible for the actions of our government and military in those and many other
countries? But ofcourse, we were “battling communism” so the
Napalming, bombing, etc… of millions of people in various third world countries is ok. The human rights and enviromental abuses
of many of our corporations and “businesspeople” is all ok too. It’s
simply the cost of a global free-market system right? Oh and it’s just fine to decimate some of the richest biodiversity on the planet
in South American countries in the name of the “war on drugs”. Don’t think it’s not happening?, i’ve been there and seen it with my
own eyes. All of this makes Americans FAR LESS blameworthy than
poor, disenfranchised muslims living in authoritarian, repressive
countries facing violent retaliation against themselves and their
families for speaking/acting out. Americans face no such barriers when speaking out or legally acting out, against the actions of our government and other American groups and individuals. I guess
911 was far more “evil’ than ANYTHING certain elements emanating
from this nation have EVER been responsible for?
With all the problems in the modern world and you are blabbering about “devil- worshippers”??? A man with your obvious
command of history and many other subjects, should really know
better,I guess not. This leads me to believe you have no ability for
critical thinking. While devil-worshippers do exist, they represent less of an overall threat than homeless, mentally ill people. Once
in a blue moon, some bungaling individual or small group will commit a spectacular crime they claim was motivated by “satan”
or “devil-worship”. They are usually unorganized, drug-addled,mentally unbalanced(although some can show flashes of cleverness occasionally, just like many other radical cultists and other extreme individuals). Nevertheless, their bark is far louder than their bite. The “Satanic Panic” is nothing more than a hysterical reaction to the crimes (occasionally hideous ones ) of a tiny minority of individuals(often adolescents) who should be members of the “gang that couldn’t shoot straight”. They usually
know as much about the occult as Beavis and Butthead and often
resemble those venerable figures in more ways than one. Even exceptionally destructive “devil-worshippers” like the infamous
serial killer,Richard Ramirez don’t really stay afloat too long. Most
serial killers don’t give a damn about satan, god or anyone/anything else. The only thing they worship is their own grossly warped image of themselves. In any case,most “devil-worshippers” who commit violent crimes are summarily carted off to prison where they often get their
“devil-worship,” beat and/or, f**ked right out of them.There are many individuals in prison, like the black muslims,who have no truck for “devil-worshippers”.
Sounds like a sinister cabal of highly intelligent diabolical James Bonds to me Mr. Starr. The only other threat these
usually comical buffoons pose is the occasional church vandalism or
other petty nuisance crimes.
If it’s satanists you’re talking about, well I suppose you mean the Laveyian type and all the countless offshoots of the
Church of Satan. Yes, there are a good number of these people
around, probably in the thousands in America alone. The only
thing is, most of them can’t agree on whether it’s better to wear
baphomet boxers or briefs let alone anything else. The infighting
that goes on between these groups and individuals is just as viruelent, mabye even more so, as any other belief system. Many,
if not most, don’t even believe in “Satan” as an actual entity. Many
are pantheists,atheists,agnostics,deists, polytheists, etc….There
are “Satanic communists”, “greens”, “anarchists” and every other
political view from far right to far left. Many openly detest Anton Lavey. In fact, Lavey’s own daughter Zeena, along with her husband Nicholas Schreck, remain in the “Satanic tradition”,
but condemn Lavey as a total poser and have impacted his
reputation among other satanists. This action resulted in their
“ex-communication from Lavey’s “Church”. The whole tawdry
affair would probably not particularily appeal to the real Satan,if
he existed. As wacky as some who only believe in the archetypal,allegorical satan(many are quite sane, rational and decent people though who view the philosophy as nothing more
than a less-cultish Objectivism with a Halloween-style, pseudo-supernatural bite) ACTUAL “devil-worshippers” are totally bonkers
and thankfully, exceedingly rare. They are the mental equivalent
of the snake-handlers of the Appalachians and probably not much more common. Even they do not ALWAYS commit anti-social acts.
As a matter of fact, many are quite placid, believe it or not and sort
have a pseudo-intellectual, hippy-trippy, happy view of the “dark lord”. I’ve seen their loopy sights on the web before. They are probably constructed by a single eccentric, retired, old woman professor of English literature, residing in some cluttered house in the suburbs along with 200 or 300 cats. Yet another monstrous satanic threat that would make Tolkien’s, Lord Sauron pale in comparison!!!!
In other words, all the “devil worshippers” in the world combined
don’t represent the threat of one Al Qaeda cell. I really think you
don’t get out much Mr Starr. You just seem like a puffed-up, pompous, sheltered erudite western ape who likes to find threats
anywhere so long as they don’t emanate from you and your kind.
Blame all the world’s ills on all Muslims and all Christians and “devil worshippers”. But you and your kind, the smug pipe-toking, self-satisfied ,western materialist with your bottomless pit of rationalizations for your way of life are pure as the driven snow
eh? Ask the planet a few hundred years from now. Or mabye
you can ask the billions of dead souls who perished because our
beloved western capitalists couldn’t resist doing business with Communist China (almost Fascist China, these days) This notoriously hostile and aggressive regime has an abysmal
human rights record. Not to mention an environmental record
that would make Union Carbide blush. But western-based companies and investors keep prostituting themselves, just like they did with Hitler’s Germany, something that was obvious to
Winston Churchill, among others. But Americans and other westerners are getting the cheap consumer goods, not to mention
the possible stock portfolio benefits, etc…..Then we proudly announce how much good we are doing for peoples in the developing world. Well, we are certainly doing some,but hyper-urbanization that will lead to pandemics? How about the companies that many of these people work at polluting
the land they must live on. Yes Mr. Starr, you should see
some of cesspools that the Nafta benefactors have left behind
in Mexico, I have and it’s not pretty.
So western business keeps enabling a regime that is showing no sign of socio-political reform. We are providing China with the technology,economy, institutions and infrastructures neccessary to become next nuclear superpower that will eventually be in a position(if they’re not already) to effectively challenge the US.
Even ultra-conservatives at the Hudson Institute are acting like
nervous old hens over this China dilemma and with good reason.
Will we ever really enter into a nuclear exchange with China? I doubt it, but is it a chance we should be taking? All of this is going
on without a peep from the majority of westerners and you have
the unmitigated audacity to criticize oppressed muslim moderates
for their paucity of opposition to the extremists in their midst????
What about the Global sex slave trade that “Global Village Idiot”
brought up on another thread? By your standards, all the families
of the young women and men in the developing world should hold ALL westerners responsible for the kidnapping, rape,torture and murder of HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS, IF NOT MILLIONS of their
loved ones per year. It is, after all mostly western men feeding this
horror. Since westerners do not even remotely face the level of physical threats that result from verbal or even active, resistance to the organized forces of injustice that moderate muslims do, perhaps our accountability is even greater. How many people died
on 911, about 3000 right? How many die EVERY YEAR from ONLY
the western-fuelled global sex slave traffic? Then a clown like yourself comes along and points your disgusting,loathsome
putrifying, self-righteous finger at moderate muslims,many of whom have lived a life your powdered and pampered western
ass couldn’t imagine in your worst nightmares, give us all a break
please Mr. Starr!!!Take your sweet-between-the-hams
hiney back to your armchair and mabye try to convince everyone
that the grateful dead were all “devil-worshippers” too because the roses in the band’s skeleton logo represent the blood of a human sacrifice performed nightly after a show. :evil:
If I thought it would do any good, I would explain to you the symbolism in Baphomet figure. NONE of it has anything to do
with the “Devil”. Just because Anton Lavey and few boneheaded heavy metal bands adopted it for their own purposes doesn’t make it an officially satanic symbol. The nazis did something similiar
with the swastika which was never an exculsively “nordic” symbol.
If you wish to check out an example of a cult that really does atleast come close to worshipping the devil AND does CLAIM to
engage in human sacrifice, then check out the “order of the nine angles”, website. The FBI HAS investigated claims of ritual human
sacrifice and has found NO EVIDENCE that such a thing occurs on
a regular basis, if at all. Are you now going to tell me that:
A). The FBI is in cohoots with the devil worshipppers?!
B). The FBI is being outsmarted by the devil worshippers!
C). Such crimes only commonly occur OUTSIDE the borders of the
USA, funny we never hear about one except the occasional European teenage “black metal fan"commiting some murder
or a silly “vampire” couple from Germany. Such crimes are just
as common(or rather,uncommon in the USA). As a matter of fact,
I have very little about any serious “satanic” crimes in recent years. It seemed a bit more common in the nineties with the
pre-millenial tensions and the novelty(at that time) of “black/death
metal”. I could be wrong though, mabye it’s more common than ever and simply not getting any attention these days.
Again, you have aimed 155mm howitzer at a problem that one
of Zell Miller’s “spitballs” would easily do justice to. You have also unjustly condemned some earnest,intelligent and well-meaning men and women within the “new age”/ occult movement
who may or may not be misguided, but they are certainly far from nefarious. I have found some of the most beautiful visions of ultimate reality and man’s destiny within the hermetic/kabbalistic/western esoteric systems.
Whether true or not, they are infinetly more beautiful than the exoteric Judeo-Christian vision of a cosmic tyrant and an eternal pit
of torture. They are also more beautiful(true or not ) than the cold,empty, pointless nothingness of the scientific materialists.
Then you come along and reduce the whole thing to one of the
most crude,base, profane,self-defeating and stupid practices a
human being could engage in namely; genuine “devil worship”
where the christian satan is venerated and all things evil are good
and all things good are evil. A practice where the person agrees to “sell their eternal soul” to such a being for mere earthly rewards. How many humans even assuming that such a thing
has a basis in reality , would be truly idiotic or insane enough to
enter into such an agreement!!! Surely some, but vast hoardes of
humanity, as you appear to believe, I doubt it Mr. Starr. I am surprised that you as artist, a piano player, do not seem to allow
much room for the untainted,transcendant joy and genuine, ineffable beauty in existence. Rather, you appear to be some sort
of a Phantom of the Opera, skulking about in perpetual fear of Muslims and bloodthristy legions of devil worshippers. What’s it
going to be next Mr. Starr, the Shark threat? Get out sometime
and savor a waterfall, the mountains, a flower-filled meadow.
Beyond your fear-addled brain is a world and universe of unspeakable beauty and limitless mystery. Take it in sometime
and mabye you will find the world isn’t such a fearful place after
all and most people will lend you a hand(and yes, even many Muslims and Satanists) rather than stick a knife in your back.
So get out and enjoy nature sometime atleast. Only avoid national
parks in the desert southwest, that’s where alot of those crazed satanic gangs with dune buggies like to hang out!!!!
Guys….all of you…can you tell me what even attracted you to spend the time to delve so much in issues of the occult or mysticism, or whatever. I can’t even define the difference.
Please… I really don’t want to sound judgemental but with limited time on our hands what makes one go there as opposed to picking up a biology, chemistry,physics, history, anthropology, sociology, or even a cook book. I don’t understand why rational people, which you certainly seem to be, would find anything other than a passing interest in someone else’s claims of revealed truth or meaning in life.
Guys….all of you…can you tell me what even attracted you to spend the time to delve so much in issues of the
occult or mysticism, or whatever. I can’t even define the difference.
Please…I really don’t want to sound judgemental but with limited time on our hands what makes one go there as opposed to picking up a biology, chemistry,physics,history,anthropology,sociology,or even a cook book. I don’t understand why rational people, which you certainly seem to be, would find anything other than a passing
interest in someone else’s claims of revealed truth or meaning in
Well Rod, I will do my best to answer the questions and concerns
you have shared here. Please keep in mind that these are my own personal motivations for my interest in the occult, mysticism and the new age. These three subjects are more or less, the same.
We could probably safely define them as “Alternative” or “Esoteric” spiritualities as opposed to the exoteric,
mainstream, religious teachings. I am fairly certain you are
familiar,as a physician, with atleast the partial definition of the
word “occult” as in, “occult blood”.
Please also understand that I have only an INTEREST in such subjects, I do not claim to wholly believe in, or wholly disbelieve
in, any of them. I was raised in a family of mainly unconcerned,
neutral agnostics. I have been an agnostic all of my life, but a
“black sheep” since I have, unlike most in my family, had a strong
interest in all things unexplained and mysterious since childhood.
Now perhaps this is indicative of a personality disorder or other
mental disorder on my part. One of the diagnostic criteria(as you may, or may not know) for; “Schizotypal Personality Disorder”,according to the DSM IV is the following:
“Odd beliefs or magical thinking that influences behavior and is inconsistant with subcultural norms(e.g.,superstitutiousness,belief
in clairvoyance,telepathy,or “sixth sense”; in children and adolescents,bizarre fantasies or preoccupations)”.
I have undergone three full neuropsychological exams in my lifetime from reputable institutions, like the University of Miami
and the University of Pittsburgh. I have not been diagnosed with
anything beyond mild depression and anxiety and my IQ is above
average according to all these tests. I also have a BS degree in
Marine Science and naturally I have “picked up” more than my
share of books about science, etc….and I still do. However, my
attraction for what I will call from here on out, “the occult” is
motivated by two primary factors. I will detail these in no paticular
order of importance. First of all, from a logical perspective I understand that material science HAS NOT answered all of our
questions about the nature of reality. This is not at all meant
to suggest that all of our answers cannot be found within the
strict boundaries of material science. Mabye they can and mabye
they can’t. I like to look at reality from all angles and the occult
more or less, suggests the “mabye they can’t”. Now even many
occultists would quibble with this,because many will say there is nothing “supernatural” or unscientific about reality. They
will say that anything spiritual is perfectly “natural”, even if it’s
nature cannot be fully or even partially, apprehended by current,
conventional, material science. Again my disclaimer would be that
I don’t believe or disbelieve any of this. So when I am criticized,it
is somewhat akin to shooting the messenger, IMO.
Some of the most intelligent and highly educated people in history, famous or not,(that includes Sam Harris, BTW) have studied occultism,mysticism, etc…I take it with a healthy grain
and some have taken it far more seriously and dogmatically
than I do. These would include people like Issac Newton, Goethe,
rocket scientist Jack Parsons, Rudolf Steiner, Aleister Crowley just
to name a few. Many of these folks were firmly grounded in science
and the scientific method. They applied the scientific method to their occult studies and some (like Crowley) came to the conculsion
that “beings”, not neccessarily based on material structures
do in fact exist. As for the nature of these “beings”, Crowley and others would only speculate. Again, I neither believe or disbelieve
any of their claims. The motto of one of Crowley’s organizations,
the, “AA”(silver star) was; “The methods of science, the aims of religion”. Most occultists that I have a modicum of respect for are
not CULTISTS. That is, they do not ask people to believe as they do. They do not insist and often, are not entirely convinced of their
own beliefs. The late, English, female occultist, Dion Fortune was
one of these. She once said “There is no room for authority in occultism”. Crowley also adopted this attitude, though he was a
highly complex, and often contradictory figure, so it is often hard to
be certain what he believed exactly. He really was not a very “decent” person, to perhaps say the least. So my respect for him is quite limited indeed. He was very eccentric though and unquestionably brilliant. He led an utterly fascinating and larger-than-life existence. I would reccomend that you atleast read his
life story. I would suggest the biography by Lawrence Sutin entitled; “Do What Thou Wilt, The Life of Aleister Crowley” It
is about as good as anything else you can find about Crowley.
It is availiable or can be ordered from just about any bookstore
or online ofcourse. You may also be interested in Crowley’s own
Autobiography, published in the 1920’s I think, “The Confessions of
Aleister Crowley”. This was supposedly Crowley’s jibe at St. Augustine’s “Confessions”. You may have no interest at all in the occult, but his lifestory makes for one hell of read, IMO. He was certainly a vile individual in many respects, but few could surpass him for sheer “color”.
From an emotional/psychological point of view, my interest in occultism is also driven by a certain “spiritual hunger”, for want
of a better term. I share this in common with the modern occultist
and author(who, unlike myself is evidently a true believer)Donald Tyson. Tyson grew up in Canada and was drawn to science early in his childhood by an intense fascination with astronomy. He built
a telescope by hand when he was twelve. He began university
seeking a science degree, but became disillusioned with the “aridity” and “futility” of the mechanistic view of the universe.
He shifted his major then, to English literature and the rest is his
history with the occult and magick. I understand Tyson’s frustrations only too well. This is exactly what motivates my
interest in the occult as well. I simply fail to see the ultimate
worth in a universe and world where billions of innocent people
have suffered the tortures of damned, only to perish into oblivion. While a far smaller number enjoy a relatively pleasant life, but still
only to perish into oblivion after a few given decades. The wholly material universe is one where Hitler and Gandhi, Ted Bundy and
Albert Einstein, all wind up in the oblivious nothingness. There are
no punishments, no rewards and all that we deeply love and value
will be gone forever, including ourselves. What is love in such a universe? It has no objective, ultimate meaning at all, it is merely an illusionary feeling brought about by a neuro-chemical process.
Such a reality is unspeakably awful, in my estimation. I plead with
you, do not try and convince me how I am wrong for finding little
meaning in an empty, lifeless, soulless cosmos and reality. I’ve heard it all before from Nietzche(the real one and the one on this forum) and the existentialists, to every conceivable stripe of
“material absolutist”. The arguments are just not good enough for me,though I will be the last one to deny that the material universe may very well be all that there is. I am well aware that
it very likely may be only my emotions that drive my desire to wish for
another world beyond the strictly material one. I am quite capable of finding a good deal of meaning and joy in a wholly material reality, but this joy and meaning has it’s limitations. So I would not
commit suicide or be entirely miserable, if I found out for CERTAIN
that no other reality beyond the material one exists. Nonetheless, my contentment in life would be significantly reduced. All I do then,
is hope for the best, while fully expecting the worst. The “worst”
obviously would be nothing, if death is really the ending to all things. I just can’t relate to people who think that being seperated forever from all things, including themselves, that they dearly love
and value is just fine and dandy. To me, it is in some ways, as horrible a vision of reality as the christian one of eternal damnation,
for everything from Atheism to Zoroastrianism. I don’t even believe
the worst human being, even Hitler would deserve such an unspeakable fate. That I don’t worry about,because I pretty
much dismissed the whole christian belief system before I got
out of diapers. The materialistic, scientific worldview is ofcourse, far
more plausible, though not much more agreeable, in my opinion. Is there not a third way? That is what I earnestly hope for and have been seeking, without much success, all my life. I have more or less, given up seeking (though I probably will never abandon it entirely)
and simply hope against hope that there is some truth to some of the things found in new age/occult/mystical beliefs. Well, that is my basic position on the entire matter. That has been my overall position as far back as I can remember. Thus far, nothing and no one has altered it one whit. I seriously doubt anything or anyone ever will either. Take care for now and I hope I dealt with your
questions and concerns to your satisfaction, probably over-explained things again and engaged in redundancy.If so, I apologize in advance.
Landulf II, thanks for a straitforward answer to my question and I will definitely not preach or argue your points. Many, including my wife, while not having any particular beliefs insist that there must be something more to all this. I am glad to hear you have a healthy skeptcism of even highly educated authority and their thoughts on the meaning of it all. Steiner’s ideas of alien origins and Newton’s obsession with alchemy leave me with an eyebrow raised, kind of like Pauling’s vitamin C issues.
I guess I just don’t have that particular metaphysical void to explain. The fact that the iron in my blood came from some ancient supernova is awsome enough for me to feel special, and whether we’re alone in the universe or not is fantastic either way. Simply makes me cherish this life even more since it’s the only shot I get.
Think I’ll check into Crowley, I need something new to talk about. You might get Pascal Boyer’s book Religion Explained.
I will check out Boyer’s book when I have the time. Since it’s summer, I try to spend my weekends and much of my free time
outdoors. So my serious reading is somewhat on hold until fall.
But thanks for the suggestion. BTW, I must say i’m not at all
familiar with Rudolph Steiner’s idea about “Alien origins”. I have
not read alot of Steiner, so mabye he did hold this belief. I receive
literature all the time from the “Anthroposophical Society” he
founded many years ago. I have never seen anything in that
material that says anything about “Alien Origins”. He had all
sorts of beliefs about esoteric christianity, reincarnation, astrology,
“spiritual science”(as he called it) Atlantis, homopathy, “bio-dynamic” agriculture, etc….but Alien origins?, that’s news to me.
He certainly wasn’t popular with the nazis. They allegedly burnt
down his “Goethenaum” in the 1920’s. Many nazis, including Himmler and Hilter had their own occult beliefs.
satan doesn’t mind if you enjoy sex and other pleasures. also how many times in the old testament did satan order genocide against gentiles.
satan is just another imagiary charactor, like god and santa claus.