Lords of the Left-Hand Path

{N.B. A more accurate and befitting title would have been "Ladies and Lords ..." : in view of the fact that females tend to be more significant than males in Vama-acara Tantra and in Kaula philosophy.}






The First Millennium



Path of S`at.an



Lucifer Unbound



The Occult Revival




The First Millennium


p. 64 logia (sayings) in the Eu-angelia (Gospels)

(Eu-angelion kata Loukas 17:21) "the kingdom of god is within you."

{According to the Apokruphon (Secret Book) of Ioannes (and likewise according to Taoist lore), various deities dwell within the human body and enable its functioning.}

(Eu-angelion kata Ioannes 14:12) "Verily, verily I say unto you, he that believeth ..., the works that I do shall he do also; and greater [works] than these shall he do".

pp. 64-5 rites in the PGM & in the GMP

p. 64

(PGM I:42-195 = GMP, pp. 4-5) "a "falcon will fly down" and drop a stone as a first sign of the manifestation of the spirit in a magician ... so the magician ... "will be worshipped as a god since [he has] a god as his friend.""

(quoted from PGM IV:154-221= GMP, pp. 41-2) "there will be this sign of a divine encounter ... . For a sea falcon flies down and strikes you on the body with its wings, signifying this : that you should ... clothe yourself with white garments and burn ... incense in grains while ...

p. 65

of a godlike nature which is accomplished through this divine encounter."

PGM = Karl Preisendanz (ed.) : Papyri Graecae Magicae : die griechischen Zauberpapyri. 2nd edn. 2 voll. Stuttgart : Teubner, 1973-4.

GMP = Hans Dieter Betz (ed.) : The Greek Magical Papyri. Univ of Chicago Pr, 1986.

p. 65 quoted in Smith 1978 (pp. 125-6), from the PGM

(PGM IV:1018) "I am the one come forth from heaven."

(PGM V:148) "I am the truth".

[cf. infra p. 68 : "I am the ... Truth".]

Smith 1978 = Morton Smith : Jesus the Magician. San Francisco : Harper & Row, 1978.



Path of S`at.an


pp. 77, 85 literature

p. 77

"Three of the most important original sources for Free Spirit thought are

Schwester Katrei,

Marguerite Porete's Mirror of Simple-Souls, and

a tract by an English "Ranter" (a Free Spirit offshoot) called A Single Eye."

p. 85, n. 9

"Concerning these ... Free Spirit works of literature, see Norman Cohn, In Pursuit of the Millennium (Oxford : Oxford University Press, 1961, 2nd ed.), p. 325 ff."

p. 78 (Cohn 1961, pp. 183-5) levels to becoming Adamite/Evite

"Levels four ... for the state of exultation ... -- one is blinded by the light of love,

preparing the way for the recognition of ... the fifth level. This experience of

the immense gulf ... .

{the "Abyss" described by the Golden Dawn}

The will of God becomes {by taking control of} the will of the self.

{described by Aleister Crowley as the will of one's guardian angel becoming [by coming to control] one's own personal will}

At the sixth level one becomes a true Free Spirit --

the soul is annihilated in the Deity

{"fana>", in S.ufi practice}

so that there is nothing but God : God = {i.e., replaceth} Self.

In the seventh and last level the self the rejoices permanently in the divine state of being."

p. 79 mystical theologians

"the ideas underlying the Free Spirit movement were embodied in ... the contemporary German mystical theologians Meister Eckhart, Heinrich Suso and Johannes Tauler." (Blackney 1941; and Eliade 1982, vol. III, pp. 197-216)

Blackney 1941 = Raymond B. Blakney : Meister Eckhart. NY : Harper & Row.

Eliade 1982 = Mircea Eliade : History of Religious Ideas. 3 voll. Univ of Chicago Pr.

pp. 81-3 Dr Faust

p. 81

"The historical {? unlikely! -- more likely, the tale about him is a fanciful novel} Faust was ... born in or near Knittingen in southwestern Germany in 1480 and died there at Staufen in ... 1540. He was born with the first name ... Jorg ... . The name or title "Faust(us)" could be ... from ... that Simon Magus ... went by that title in Latin [Jonas, p. 111] ... In one primary document he also calls himself Sabellicus [Heffner 1954, p. 18]. This could be a ... reference to ... the Sabellians {i.e., 3rd-century ChrE Unitarians in Italy} ... .

p. 82

... From about 1507 to 1513 he lived and taught ... in Heidelberg ... . In 1513 he was active in Erfurt -- where he conjured images of Homeric myth while giving lectures ... . In the 1520s he lived in or near Wittenberg ... . ... In 1534 ... Faust wrote a set of predictions for the German explorer Philipp von Hutten before

a voyage to South America.

{There were German trading-posts in Venezuela prior to the advent of Spaniards there.}

Von Hutten wrote to his brother in 1540 to confirm the predictions."

p. 83

"In the Faust Book the hero .. leads to his ... signing a pact with Mephistopheles ... in the form of a legal contract ... which ... promised his soul in return of ... indulgence ... for a specific period. In most Faust stories this was for 24 years. After the pact is signed Faust ... travels widely ... to go play practical jokes on the Pope in Rome and the sultan in Constantinople. ... But Faust soon ... summons Helen of Troy -- and spends years indulging in sexual excesses. ... But on his last night Faust is indeed taken to Hell by a hoard {sic : read "horde"} of evil spirits."

"The poet {playwright} Christopher Marlow (1554-1593) began his drama The Tragicall History : the Life and Death of Doctor Faustus as early as 1588 ... -- but it was not printed until 1604. ... In The Tragicall History ... Faustus sells his soul ... to become an earthly god through magic and to be able to direct worldly politics by influencing the Pope and Holy Roman Emperor."

"There are a number of manuscripts referred to a Faustian grimoires -- supposedly ... written by him. Most are in German, though some are in Latin. These were collected as early as 1846 in J. Scheible's series Das Kloster. [p. 85, n. 34 : Stuttgart, 1846. "Faust grimoires in vol II, pp. 807-930; vol V, pp. 1059-1195.] They bear titles such as ... (Dr. Faust's Conjuration of Hell) or ...

(D[r.] J[ohann] Faust's Black Raven)."]

{any relation to Edgar Allen Poe's poe:m The Raven?}

Jonas = Hans Jonas : The Gnostic Religion. Boston : Beacon.

Heffner 1954 = R-M. S. Heffner et al. (edd.) : Goethe's Faust. Lexington (MA) : Heath.



Lucifer Unbound


p. 91 the Hell-Fire Club

(Blackett-Ord 1982, pp. 44 sq) ""Hell Fire Club" ... founded by Philip the Sixth Duke of Wharton in 1719 ... called itself by that name. ... They named the Devil himself as their president ... . This association ... was banned and disbanded (in 1721) ... .

(Towers 1986, pp. 130-1) Philip went on to found the "Schemers" -- a sort of society of rakes who occasionally got together for sexual escapades in the company of

women who were customarily masked."

{"Masked prostitutes would engage in the most reckless games of eroticism" in Venice ("HVM").} {Cf. also the "veiled prostitutes" (EBE, p. 143) of Cairo.}

Blackett-Ord 1982 = Mark Blackett-Ord : Hell-Fire Duke. Windsor Forest : K"ensal Pr.

Towers 1986 = Eric Towers : Dashwood. Wellingborough : Crucible.

"HVM" = "History of Venetian Masks". http://www.masksofvenice.co.uk/history_of_venetian_masks.html

EBE = Trevor Mostyn : Egypt's Belle Epoque. Quartet Bks Ltd, 1989. http://books.google.com/books?id=9bIrz3kkQxoC&pg=PA143&lpg=PA143&dq=

pp. 91-2 another club, sometimes erroneously designated "Hell Fire Club"

p. 91

(Towers 1986, p. 148) Sir Francis Dashwood's (1708-1781) "Friars of St. Francis ... is ... erroneously referred to as the "Hell Fire Club" in popular literature. ...

Another curiosity in the history of magic is reflected in the inscription Dashwood had placed over the entrance to the Abb[e]y : Fay ce que voudras, Do what you will {thou wilt}. This was lifted directly from a reference to the "Abb[e]y of Thelema" in Rabelais' work Gargantua and Panturel {sic : read "Pantagruel"}. [Towers 1986, p. 146]

pp. 91-2

This was, of course, again taken up by the English magician Aleister Crowley."

pp. 93-4 denunciations of Christianity, and glorification of the Devil, by the Marquis de Sade

p. 93

According to "Dontien Aphonse Franc,ois Marquis de Sade (1740-1814)", "The God of the Bible and Church is manifestly wicked and villainous."

p. 94

[quoted from "Philosophy in the Bedroom", in de Sade 1966, pp. 211-12 :] "A horrible God, this God of yours a monster! ...

More powerful than this villainous God, a being still in possession of his power ..., the Devil incessantly succeeds ... ."

de Sade 1966 = The Marquis de Sade (transl. by R. Seaver & A. Wainhouse) : The Complete Justine, Philosophy in the Bedroom, and Other Writings. NY : Grove.

pp. 96-7 "Faust : Eine Trago:die by Johann Wolfgang Goethe (1749-1832)"

p. 96

"Goethe's Faust begins with a "Prolog in Heaven" ... based on the beginning of the biblical book of Job. ...

p. 97

After this Faust and Mephisto set out on many adventures. ... These include the seduction ... of an innocent milkmaid named Margaret ... . ... Part I ends with Margaret ... for ... her illegitimate child by Faust.

Part II is so fantastic in scope that it has only rarely been staged. Central to this half of the tragedy is Faust's conjuration of, and union with [cf. supra, p. 83], Helen of Troy".

pp. 103-4 Oeuvre de la Misericorde & Rose-Croix Catholique

p. 103

"In August of 1839 Eugene Vintras ... in Tilly-sur-Seule in Normandy, France, had a vision of

the Arch-Angel Michael ... .

{patron-angel of the prophet Mikah}

From these experiences he founded his own sect, the "Work of Mercy" (Oeuvre de la Misericorde). ... The sect was declared heretical by the Pope in 1848 ... . Vintras now became the Pope of his own movement with his own priests. Women were also admitted to the priesthood {priestesshood, for them}. The sect soon spread to England, Italy and Spain. ...

Vintras died in December of 1875 and one of his controversial priests, Abbe Boullan ..., declared himself his successor." (Webb 1974, p. 156)

"in the late 19th century ... two principal occultists ... active in France ... were Josephin Pe'ladan (1858-1918) and Stanislas de Guaita (1860-1898). ... Pe'ladan was the son of a school-master who edited a ... Catholic paper (Le Chatiment) ... about "the sixth

wound of Christ" (made on his shoulder by the cross when he fell on the way to Golgotha) ... . ...

{With "Khristos" (or more accurately, Simon of Kurene), wounded while carrying the heavy stauros, cf. Haides wounded in "his heavy shoulder" (Iliad 5:382 sq -- "H&H").}

Pe'ladan ... In 1884 ... published his major work La vice supreme. ...

De Guaita ... published La muse noire in 1882. ...

p. 104

It seems to be Baudelaire's use of drugs which most influenced de Guaita, who used morphine, cocaine, as well as hashish in his "occult" experiments. De Guaita ... slept by day, only went out at night, his apartment was draped in red and he usually dressed in robes of that color as well. [Webb 1974, pp. 173-4] ...

In 1890 Pe'ladan ... founded his own independent Rose-Croix Catholique ... . Pe'ladan adopted the Assyrian title and name "S[`]ar Merodack" -- King Marduk."

Webb 1974 = James Webb : The Occult Underground. LaSalle (IL) : Open Court.

"H&H" = "Haides and Herakles". http://www.theoi.com/Khthonios/Haides.html#Herakles

p. 105 Jogand-Pages

"Gabriel Jogand-Pages ... wrote under the name Leo Taxil (as well as Dr. Bataille). Jogand was born in 1854 ... . ... 1878 saw his move to Paris where he founded radical journals of tremendous popularity."

pp. 110, 113 sexual orgies in Russia

p. 110

"the Khlysti ("whippers") ... practiced a libertine form of mysticism which involved flagellation and sexual orgies."

p. 113

(Fu:lo:p-Miller 1927, pp. 265-6) "In Pravda a female ideologue, Smidovich ... wrote that the more primitive ("animalistic") the rules of conduct for sexual life are, the more Communistic they are. ... No female should refuse the sexual advances of a male ... . In the Komsomol itself orgies, called "African Nights"[,] were organized in which there were approximately 70 per cent men and 30 per cent women."

Fu:lo:p-Miller 1927 : The Face and Mind of Bolshevism. London : Putnam.



The Occult Revival


pp. 133-6 Helena Petrovna Blavatsky

p. 133

"Helena Petrovna Blavatsky (ne'e von Hahn) ... was born in the Ukraine in 1831 ... . ... Helena's mother wrote novels under the pseudonym

Zenaida R-Va."

{ZENobia + AI:DA -- queens of Palmyra and of Abyssinia}

"In 1847, just before she turned 17, she was married by arrangment to Nikifor Blavatsky who was then 40. Blavatsky was to be the vice-governor of Yerivan in Armenia.

But after only a brief time Helena abandoned Nikifor and made her way to Constantinople.

{Praesumably, this and subsequent travel by her was with Nikifor's approval : if not, she would not have retained his surname.}

p. 134

For about the next 25 years ... for ... [H.P.] Blavatsky's life ... Bruce Campbell [1980, pp. 4-6] has assigned ... characteristics :

1) She is known to have traveled throughout Europe, the Middle East and North America.

2) She was involved with spiritualism and knew Paulus Metamon in Cairo and

D. D. Holm {sic! read "Holmes"} in England.

{"D. D. Holmes was known for his ability to levitate and to handle hot coals without being burned." (M"PK")}

3) She ... took drugs (especially hashish), had affairs with several men and perhaps bore as many as two children out of wedlock."

"In 1871 she founded her first organization, the Societe' Spirite in Cairo. ... . ... Henry Steel Olcott, a journalist and occult enthusiast, ... and Blavatsky ... in 1875 founded the Theosophical Society with a number of others ... . HPB ... was the Corresponding Secretary. ... At the very end of 1878 Blavatsky and Olcott set sail for India. In February of 1879 the headquarters of the TS were moved first to Bombey, then to Adyar. ... Over 100 chapters of the Society were opened in India at tha time. ...

p. 135

Blavatsky eventually moved back to England to s[t]ay in 1887."

p. 136

"The "devils" she sees [Secret Doctrine, vol. II, pp. 475 sq] as the true, higher, more spiritual aspects of the gods".

{"Devils" are thus assumed to be aequivalents to "wrathful forms" of Dhyani-buddha-s.}

Campbell 1980 = Bruce F. Campbell : Ancient Wisdom Revived : the History of the Theosophical Movement. Berkeley : Univ of CA Pr.

M"PK" = Mystica "Psychokinesis (PK)". http://www.themystica.com/mystica/articles/p/psychokinesis_pk.html

pp. 142-3 holy guardian angel, according to Crowley

p. 142

"In Crowley's thought the supreme God would be one's own Holy Guardian Angel. ... The discarnate spiritual aspects of incarnate human beings can be true god-forms, if they are invoked often by means of the "spiritual technology" of Magick. In Crowley's magical universe, however, there was {is} also a hierarchy of discarnate entities ... . These were {are} the "Secret Chiefs." Crowley had, of course, assimilated this ... from the [Golden Dawn] (with analogs in the Theosophical Society and other occult groups).

These virtual gods play a pivotal role ... in the world. ...

{The very term 'Pivot' is employed in translations from Taoist occult texts; and the Qut.b in occult >islam is similar.}

p. 143

These are not "gods" per se', they are humans who have become gods ... ."

{"Humans who have become gods" are distinctly a feature of Taoist theology.}

p. 144 asafoetida

[quoted from Crowley : Magick, pp. 418-9] "one ought to practice smelling asafoetida until one likes it".

{Raw hinga (asafoetida) is regularly employed in rites of exorcism, so as to repell ill-luck.}

pp. 145-7 Abyss, according to Crowley

p. 145

"He eventually transits into the "Abyss" ... wherein he may either :

1) ... become an embryonic "Babe of the Abyss" -- or --

2) Remain in the Abyss isolated from the universe and become a Black Brother."

p. 146

"The Black Brothers, or Brothers of the Left-Hand Path, ... refuse to exit the Abyss and remain there, retaining their own gathered powers."

p. 147

"Aquino's analysis is essentially that Crowley was a Black Brother who ... could not clearly see this fact himself."

pp. 147-8 the Fraternitas Saturni & the Ordo Templi Orientis

p. 147

"Fraternitas Saturni tradition holds [Flowers 1990, pp. 1-4] ... going back ... to the Polish magician and mathematician Joseph Maria Hoene-Wronwki (1776-1853), but its direct direct ancestry goes back only as far as the Pansophical Lodge and the O.T.O.

The Pansophical Lodge was headed by Heinrich Tra:nker (Recnartus) ... . ... Tra:nker had derived his Masonic organizational authority from Theodore Reuss (Merlin/Peregrinus) who was the "Outer Head" of the O.T.O. from 1902 to 1922. ...

p. 148

The O.T.O. itself derived its organizational lineage from an English Mason named John Yarker. A ... Mason, Karl Kellner, is said [Flowers 1990, p. 8] to have founded the O.T.O. around 1896 ... . ...

These two ... streams of German occultism came together ... at the so-called Waida Conference in 1925. ... In 1950 Gregorius reorganized the FS ... . After ... 1971 ... the Brotherhood reconstituted itself."

"The cosmological doctrine of the Fraternitas Saturni -- or its Cosmosophy -- is based on ... the theories of ... Han Ho:rbiger (1860-1931) ... a doctrine of cosmic tension between the centripetal and centrifugal forces ".

Flowers 1990 = Stephen E. Flowers : Fire and Ice. St Paul (MN) : Llewellyn.


Stephen E. Flowers : Lords of the Left-Hand Path : a History of Spiritual Dissent. 2nd edn. Ru^na-Raven Pr, Smithville (TX), 1997.