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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: law of thelema

DEFINITIONS

Law of Thelema: Definition: The basic rule of those following the system of Aleister Crowley: “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” This appeared in Liber Al vel Legis, or The Book of the Law. It has early versions in Rabelais’ book, Gargantua and Pantagruel (where it was the French fay çe que vouldras or “Do what thou wilt”) and in a sermon by St. Augustine’s where he wrote, “Love, and do what you will.”

Some people have made the assumption that “Do what thou wilt” means you are free to do whatever you want. This, however, contradicts Crowley’s intent. Here, the term “wilt” means the will of your higher self, and your higher self is completely in agreement with the will of God. Therefore, the Law of Thelema is saying that a follower is called to do the sometimes long and difficult work that will enable him or her to consciously access their higher self, and then only do what is in the nature of the higher self. Thus, their actions will eventually be in harmony with the will of God.

There is a much older Sanskrit term, Svecchacarya, which means the “path of doing one’s will.” This is a belief and practice followed by some Tantrics. It should be pointed out, however, that karma is also in play. Therefore, a Tantric following this path is free to do whatever he or she wills to do, but is responsible for their actions.


ARTICLES

The History of the Golden Dawn
The story of the Golden Dawn, like that of any human organization, is replete with high points and low points—with human achievements and human failings. There is no need for us to try to whitewash or sugarcoat the faults of some of the individuals ...
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Astrological Houses
Your astrological chart is divided into twelve sections called houses. They are numbered from the left side counterclockwise around the chart. The chart represents the planets against a background of the signs of the zodiac, and these signs rise in ...
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Signs of the Zodiac
The signs of the zodiac are the most widely known part of the astrological system. As mentioned earlier, almost everyone knows your Sun sign. The daily horoscopes in the newspaper are based on the position of the Sun in the zodiac. The zodiac is ...
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How to Have an OBE
Part One: Preparation for Successful OBEs Introduction. In laboratory studies at Athens State University, Dr. Joe H. Slate uncovered the so-called Big Four Prerequisites of successful OBEs:  A peaceful mental state, relevant mental ...
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Transits and Progressions
Just as your birth chart shows where the planets were when you were born, at any moment another chart can be created. The planets in a chart for a particular moment are called transits. As the planets move through the zodiac, they interact with ...
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Meditation
Meditation is: An emptying of the mind of all thoughts and "chatter" often by concentration only on the slow inhalation and exhalation of breath and is characterized by slow alpha and theta waves. It induces relaxation and a "clean slate" ...
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Astral Outsourcing Procedure
Introduction. The purpose of astral outsourcing is to acquire new growth resources through astral plane interactions, often with the aid of discarnates and astral intelligences and guides.  Here is the procedure: Step 1. Outsourcing ...
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Aura Reading
Clairvoyant "reading" of the aura to determine the health, character and spiritual development of the person (or animal) by the colors seen. The main factors to consider are: The various fields about the body reflecting the etheric, astral, ...
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Aura Reading & Interpretation
Introduction. Seeing the Aura is one step, but without the ability to read and Interpret is an “empty” skill. To analyze and interpret observations is a key step to success in nearly any endeavor. Always we start by organizing the ...
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Psychic Healing
Over the past several years, the idea of spiritual and psychic healing has become very popular. There are three very important laws about healing you should know. Law One: Only a licensed Medical Doctor can legally practice medicine. Law Two: Only ...
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Name one religion or type of spiritual system that doesn't incorporate music into its worship services in some way. It's not easy, is it? From singing hymns to beating drums, and from the rhythmic chanting of prayers to the soaring organ fugues of Bach, music is a spiritual tool that connects mind and body to the divine spirit. While country... read this article
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