Need help finding guest for show on Aleister Crowley

Discussion in 'Skeptiko Shows' started by Alex, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. Alex

    Alex New

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    I'm not a big fan of Crowley and find the fascination many have with him to be symptomatic of the larger problem of coming to grips with the reality of extended consciousness realms. i.e. flipping from going total retard on materialism to going total retard on magic (or magik as Crowley liked to say).

    Anyway, I think there's a lot to mine out of this vein, but I can't find a guest... any ideas?
     
  2. Alex

    Alex New

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  3. I recall there are some who might be considered Crowley scholars who've been interviewed on Rune Soup?

    Honestly Gordon White might be the best person to ask as IIRC he has a pretty decent, fair take on Crowley and the rest of that ilk.
     
  4. Alex

    Alex New

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    all the scholars look like Crowley-philes... let me know if you see otherwise.
     
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  5. K9!

    K9! New

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  6. The writer Warren Ellis might be the guy...he has some thoughts on philosophy of mind as well...
     
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  7. Pollux

    Pollux New

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    Here are some that have been interviewed on the topic of Aleister Crowley that might be of interest.

    Professor Richard Spence, Ph.D.



    Mark Passio





    John Crow
    http://outthereradio.net/episode-43-aleister-crowley/



    I haven't listened to either of the interviews so I cant judge if they are good or bad.
     
  8. Alex

    Alex New

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  9. Alex

    Alex New

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    do you have any link? I could not find him on youtube.
     
  10. Quin

    Quin Member

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    If you're looking for someone with quite a bit of knowledge about Crowley-- and magic in general-- but who is distinctly unimpressed by Crowley, Greer is a good fit. Especially if you're looking for a practicing magician with impeccable credentials. Greer actually was the editor of the most recent edition of Israel Regardie's "The Golden Dawn", the book that leaked all of the magical practices of Crowley's first and most influential magical group and rebooted the modern western occult movement. That said, I'm not sure whether Greer would want to spend an hour talking about Crowley, who he's pretty dismissive of, but if the idea was to use that as just a springboard to, say, talk about blinkered paths that people both within and without the occult community often stumble into-- spiritually, logically, and otherwise-- I think there's a fair chance he'd be game.
     
  11. Quin

    Quin Member

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    Uh, that'd be previous Skeptiko guest John Michael Greer, just to clarify.
     
  12. Alex

    Alex New

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    Hi Quin... thx for this suggestion. Can you tell me a little bit more about JMG's position re Crowley? and/or post some links.
     
  13. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

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    Passio did some stuff on him, but I skimmed through the video of Crowley is someone who doesn't interest me. Passio said he had some good information, but fell off the path and natural law had caught up to him and that's why his life ended it the way it did.

    His name seems to come up quite often lately so I guess I will research him
     
  14. Ah yeah he's not exactly in the same circle as the esoteric folk, he's a fiction writer but he has a lot of essays on the subjects around this board:

    http://www.warrenellis.com/

    Honestly I'm curious how these sorts of people feel about the bleed of esoterics and alternate models of consciousness into pop culture. Heck Alan Moore, if anyone could reach him, would be another interesting guy as he knows about Crowley and those folk as well - Aeon even wrote an article about Moore's idea of Time.
     
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  15. Vortex

    Vortex Member

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    Lon Milo DuQuette is a prime hardcore Thelema magick practitioner with a lot of lore of Crowley, his life and his path nowadays, as far as I know. I didn't find his e-mail, but here is his Facebook page - maybe it can be used to contact him.

    He also, if my memeory serves me well, was a friend of Timothy Leary and Robert Anton Wilson... So, he would be able to tell something about them as well - and his acquintance with these luminarieis may itself serve as a kind of indirect recommendation.

    What do you think?
     
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  16. David Eire

    David Eire New

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    Co-incidentally I was listening to an mp3 of this Crowley bio earlier today
    I hope you can find someone who has a deep knowledge of the esoteric traditions and magic etc, and is not a fan of Crowley

     
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  17. Baccarat

    Baccarat New

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    Crowley is an enigma I guess, personally by looking at his pictures I get a bad vibe
     
  18. Quin

    Quin Member

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    Sure, Alex. I've heard JMG get asked a few times in interviews about Crowley, as it's apparently one of the few names related to the occult that people outside of occult circles have even heard of. I can't easily provide links there, as unfortunately most podcasts are not as diligent about putting out transcripts as Skeptiko is. But generally his response is similar to what you suggested in the most recent Gordon White episode-- that the outcome of Crowley's life really speaks the most about the quality, or lack thereof, of his magical and mystical approach. By the way, it is clear through hearing JMG speak that he's actually read Crowley closely.

    As far as JMG Crowley links go, here's what Google turned up:

    It turns out that JMG actually wrote the entry on Crowley at Llewellyn's Encyclopedia page. As far as encyclopedia entries go, it's pretty scathing: "self-proclaimed messiah of the New Aeon", "There Crowley went through an experience that, in his opinion, marked his ascent to the grade of Ipsissimus, the highest level of magical attainment...", etc. I'm pretty sure it's lifted straight from JMG's Llewellyn-published "New Encyclopedia of the Occult".

    In a post on his blog The Well of Galabes entitled "How Not to Learn Magic", he briefly talks about Crowley for a couple of paragraphs, pairing him with Julius Evola as two cases of people who tried to create their own magical systems without doing sufficient work on their own personal imbalances first-- resulting in less than stellar outcomes. Later, in the comments under the article, JMG writes: "...one of the things about serious magical practice is that you can't afford to let the personality spin further and further out along the lines of its existing imbalances. Do that and you end up like Crowley. He started life rich, talented, handsome, intelligent, and charismatic, and ended it a burnt-out drug addict in a small town flophouse with an estate worth fourteen shillings and a name that he'd personally made a laughingstock on three continents. Not an example to follow!" And then later: "Crowley's such a perfect object lesson in how not to practice magic!"

    Also perhaps worth a glance is the part of a Galabes post called "A Plea For Occult Philosophy", in which among other things, JMG writes about the (modern) origins of Wicca: "Gerald Gardner, who was one of Crowley’s students, tried to take over from Crowley as titular head of the Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO), the magical order-slash-sex club that Crowley had more or less hijacked from its founder Theodor Reuss, but found out very quickly that Crowley had left such a bad taste in the mouth of the English occult scene—and yes, you can read that any way you wish—that nobody was interested." (And so shortly after, Gardner created his own order to lead, and Wicca was born.)

    Finally, from the comments section of a post on The Archdruid Report from a few years back called "Magical Thinking" from a few years back, JMG wrote "He was actually a very minor figure in his own time; his posthumous popularity is almost entirely a product of the fact that he appealed to the Sixties mentality, which saw him as a sort of proto-hippie."

    More generally, based on the kinds of spiritual questions you've been asking guests lately, I'd really love to hear you in that kind of conversation with JMG. Many of the questions you've been asking lately-- about the sheer variety and differences between mystical experiences, about good and evil and morality mean, and so on-- are ones he's addressed insightfully from various directions in the past, and I think you might get a lot out of such a conversation with him.
     
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  19. David Eire

    David Eire New

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    I think John Michael Greer would be a fascinating interview - ideally interviews
    He has a lot to say and seems to know the esoteric traditions well
     
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  20. Alex

    Alex New

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    Merry Christmas everyone :)
     
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