by Frater Bec Pluribus Impar
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
Our beloved brother Lon DuQuette wrote an article entitled “Can a Thelemite be a Liberal?” and treated the subject with his usual sense of humor. I and my colleagues have felt a different question is more pressing in these times: Can a Thelemite be a Conservative?
The question comes on the heels of a lot of public hysteria over the presidency of Donald J. Trump. Conservatives are being lumped into categories with people like Nazis without much thought. It seems there is an equation of Trump = conservatism, and a seething hatred of Trump, that combine together to create a general animosity toward conservatives. I feel like this is especially true within Thelemic circles, although it is nothing new. “Ye are against the people, o my chosen”. But, there can even be a feeling like being a conservative in Thelemic circles means you’re not welcome. We need to speak out against this — the law is for ALL.
Obviously a Thelemite can be a conservative! The Beast spoke: “Man has the right to think what he will: to speak what he will: to write what he will…” Each Thelemite has the right to do their Will, and to believe what they feel is most right for them. We need to stand for our principles and what we see is right, and that means some of us will be liberals and some conservatives. Liberals need to accept that conservative Thelemites will exist, and vice versa, because this is the basis of “Do what thou wilt”. We need to do this without falling prey to the same cruelty that we get from others, otherwise they are right to criticize us. We have to remember the loud idiots don’t represent us, on either side. Just because some loud person on the internet is calling everyone in red clothing a Nazi doesn’t mean all liberals think or act this way. If we start believing this, we are being pulled into another level of society’s endless and pointless Yankees versus Red Sox false dichotomies and rivalries. Do we really want to play into the hands of the Black Brothers of society?
Being a conservative does NOT mean being a racist or being a bigot. It means we believe in conservatism. We believe in continuing the ancient traditions into modern times. We respect the ancient code of the Knights Templar, and the Adepts of the past. We understand the importance and the power of a man and a woman coming together to create the wonder of Life. We don’t believe in false help for the weak, and that people should be rewarded based on merit. We want the OTO to be strong and constitutional, and create a holy hierarchy based in the New Aeon. We want the sanctity of the Gnostic Mass to be preserved. We condemn acts of bigotry like everyone else — of course these are not welcome in Thelemic society, because the Law of Do what thou wilt is for ALL. We want to fight this just like the other forms like Islamic Radicalism and other slave religions that still seek to enslave us. Theocrats do not tend to like occultists much, regardless!
But we have a right to exist. Thelemic conservatives always will exist, as long as Thelema exists. We are here to stay and we may as well work together.
Love is the law, love under will.
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5 thoughts on “Can a Thelemite be a Conservative?”
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.
I must disagree with your civil call for unity between liberal and conservative Thelemites. Against yourself and Lon Milo DuQuette, I take the position that a Thelemite can be neither conservative nor liberal. A Thelemite must be a Thelemite. To be liberal or conservative is to be racist and sexist because that is the nature of the old aeon politics of colonialism. Both the liberals and conservatives fail to see this, which is just another expression of Liberal and neo-liberal colonialist ideology. It is the nature of the blind spot.
The world is full of horrible people who do great things. The saints list of the gnostic mass is a list of men who expressed the worst aspects of their times and places yet still brought forward the light of gnosis. We acknowledge the gifts of text and technique from the past that inform our practice today. At the same time we understand that we need not–must not–reproduce old aeon oppression. One needs no reminder that racism and sexism (which is a form of racism) are pervasive in Thelema today both from conservatives and liberals alike!
Dude, on what planet are the weak helped falsely? Or rewarded for merit? On this one, they are exploited, dehumanized (not very starlike) and impoverished. The Trump presidency, like its liberal antecedents, is illustrative on these points.
But, oddly enough, the world is also full of nice people who do horrible things. Even middle-class white girls in Michigan have to submit to sexual abuse in order to be Olympic athletes. How would you compensate these women for their merit? How is this American democracy essentially different from “Islamic Radicalism” that you feel is the enemy? The enemy is you, my frater. But not just you.
The law is for all. Love is the law. To accept this law, one needs to shed all previous ideas and actions that block love’s movement. One of the ways I accept the law of love under will is to deplore the ever present racism and sexism that produce the “acts of bigotry” you deplore and by magically working their destruction. I use the magician’s traditional toolbox, some of my own devise, and a healthy dose of critical theory. Otherwise, it’s not a very New Aeon.
Love unites the divided regardless of genitals or gender to create the wonder of Magical Conception. Love levels and dissolves what divides: including race, class, gender… The Magician’s aspiration impels their souls upward through the grades to the accomplishment of the True Will. That is holy hierarchy.
I wouldn’t worry too much about other people’s religions, Frater. Help yourself, weak one, to free yourself from the political ideologies that enslave you. I know you didn’t ask for my advice, but I suggest you start with your conservative brothers. Talk about women and see where that leads.
Love is the law, love under will.
Honest to its plan, Thelemic Union has just published an article in defense of “thelemic conservativism”.
And I surely applaud it, because the best way for your opponents to make fool of themselves is just letting them speak and act.
In the article, linked below, we read these gems:
“Being a conservative does NOT mean being a racist or being a bigot. It means we believe in conservatism. We believe in continuing the ancient traditions into modern times.”
Like slavery, segregation, enforced patriarchy?
All of them, like ius primae noctis?
“We respect the ancient code of the Knights Templar, and the Adepts of the past.”
Which code exactly? Which Adepts? Bit vague. Especially given the expansionistic and imperialistic drive of the original Knights Templar.
“We understand the importance and the power of a man and a woman coming together to create the wonder of Life.”
I concur that the fundamental heteronormativity of certain precise alchemical secrets of rejuvenation and transmutation are hard to swallow for a lot of bleeding heart liberals of nowadays. But why then not to expand on it? Because as a blank statement seems rather a dig at the LGBTQ+ communities. You know, like your Daddy Wasserman keeps doing on his demented rants.
“We don’t believe in false help for the weak, and that people should be rewarded based on merit.”
False help for the weak… what about real help for those who need it? Who is going to be the judge of it, on which basis? Also… is the author just a bad writer, or is s/he actually suggesting that people should NOT be rewarded on merit? Maybe it’s me reading that bit wrong, however.
“We want the OTO to be strong and constitutional, and create a holy hierarchy based in the New Aeon. We want the sanctity of the Gnostic Mass to be preserved. We condemn acts of bigotry like everyone else — of course these are not welcome in Thelemic society, because the Law of Do what thou wilt is for ALL. We want to fight this just like the other forms like Islamic Radicalism and other slave religions that still seek to enslave us. Theocrats do not tend to like occultists much, regardless!”
If theocracts don’t like occultists much, why are you advocating for a theocracy? What is the sanctity of the Gnostic Mass that is not being preserved, what are you alluding to exactly? Why naming only Islamic Radicalism, but not touching upon other kinds of radicalism, such as Trump’s beloved Dominionism for instance?
In the end, this article is just spin and nothing else.
Re: the previous comment from Azrael2393…
Thelemites with TDS? I am intolerant of your intolerance.
Telling others what to think, do or feel demonstrates intolerance. Judge each entity as an individual, not as a member of some made up collectivist group. There is no good/evil, just perception. When you meet someone who you disagree with you can simply ignore them, or if they infringe upon your rights, refer to Liber Oz.
It is ridiculous to posit the author was referring to slavery, patriarchy or segregation. When have you met a Thelemite who was a proponent of any of those views? I have never met a female iniate who would stand for “enforced patriarchy” in my 23 years in the OTO. I have never met a male initiate who is a proponent of patriarchy. Nor have I met any initiates who are homophobic. I have met initiates on every degree of the sexuality and gender spectrum. No one in the order I have known has ever been intolerant. Thelemites advocating slavery? Really?
Again, refer to Liber Oz.
I offer no personal opinion on the current political environment other than all participants are individuals with inherent rights that have nothing to do with politics. If those individuals do not follow their own Will, they will reap the consequences.
Please also refer to Crowley…
Every Star has its own Nature, which is ‘Right’ for it. We are not to be missionaries, with ideal standards of dress and morals, and such hard-ideas. We are to do what we will, and leave others to do what they will. We are infinitely tolerant, save of intolerance.
Fr. Lev Zamir
I’m not sure if I’m a thelemite, yet. I think a better question might be can a conservative be a thelemite, or can a liberal be a thelemite.
My experience is that people I relate to most completely, say that they are tolerant of all but intolerance and feel responsible for the effects of their actions. But, there is a difference between what I think I think and how I act. Often, seemingly, people I most relate to say what they think about idealized groups. They feel responsible for the plight of “the poor”. But, when faced with an actual person, they are reactionary and elitist. In my case, I think it is because my social anxiety leads me to behave counter to my ideals, and my ideals haven’t been tested against all contexts.
Similarly, my white racist childhood friend, saw no dissonance in relating to our common black friend. Depend on what the context is, his reaction would be compassionate or condemning. Presumably it’s the same with me.
So, I would hope if someone relates to what they read, that is good enough. Outside of discussion the dissonance between ideals and actions are probably important to resolve.