Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
View your shopping cart Shopping Cart | My Account | Help | Become a Fan on Facebook Become a Fan | Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us | Watch Us on YouTube Watch Us | Subscribe to our RSS Feeds Subscribe
Browse ProductsAuthorsArticlesBlogsEncyclopediaNewslettersAffiliate ProgramContact UsBooksellers
Advanced Search
LLEWELLYN JOURNAL
Article Topics
List of Articles
RSS Data Feeds
Mission Statement
Use of Our Articles
Writers' Guidelines

Email Exclusives
Sign up to receive special offers and promotions from Llewellyn.

Get the Latest Issue of New Worlds

March/April 2015 Issue

New Worlds Catalog

Get the FREE app for your tablet and mobile device. Now available in the iTunes Store and the Google Play Store

Also available as a PDF File.

Click for more information about New Worlds or to receive issues via mail.


The Llewellyn Journal
Print this Article Print this Article

Azathoth: Idiot Flutist or Idiot Genius?

This article was written by T. Allan Bilstad
posted under Magick

According to Lovecraft, at the center of the universe there is a god. This deity, seemingly at the most important place in all of existence, would at first appear to be its raison d’être: the universe’s materialization from thought into reality.

Now imagine a corpulent mass of swirling, chaotic forms and shapes, eerily piping a thin-reeded tune without any melody or rhythm. Around this deity, like a sultan on his throne, are similar beings, lesser in stature but of equal unquiet form and animated matter, each adding to the unwholesome songs with their own twisted and spiny pipes.

This is Azathoth, the insane and formless god, the mad mass of chaos who pipes his unearthly piping, from his beginning until his end.

The reason Azathoth and his courts play their pipes at the center of the universe is unknown, nor is it known for what cause they strive, as everything that comes from Azathoth is seemingly without order or structure. Such is the nature of primordial chaos.

Perhaps Lovecraft made Azathoth a metaphor for the whole universe—that the universe exists because of chaos, and with chaos it still creates. In his stories, Lovecraft mentions that human sorcerers sometimes beseech this insane god with supplications and rituals to curry his favor. These sorcerers, robed in astrological and mystical, symbol-laden imageries, form a society, a priesthood if you will, that attempts to make sense of the senseless. These followers hope their prayers will fall upon sympathetic ears: ears in the center of the universe, ears that can only hear the sounds of their own tunes created on unholy and foul pipes.

Do you see what a man could think if he felt that the world was only the cause of insanity and chaos? Lovecraft did, and this axiom he expressed so carefully and calculatingly in his stories of entertainment.

Azathoth, as with many literary creations, is a symbol of a larger whole, a piece of a puzzle, but perhaps the puzzle has no solutions or meaning.

One would not know if the puzzle does have meaning until one starts to piece it together. And even then, there may be only chaos in the structure.

And insanity.

Insanity makes the world go around . . . and around . . .and around . . .

From The Lovecraft Necronomicon Primer, by T. Allan Bilstad

T. Allan Bilstad
T. Allan Bilstad (Midwest) edited the popular and criticaly acclaimed Donald Tyson books Necronomicon, Alhazred and Grimoire of the Necronomicon, as well as the Necronomicon Tarot....  Read more

RELATED PRODUCTS

Alhazred
Alhazred
Author of the Necronomicon
Donald Tyson
$29.95 US,  $34.95 CAN | Add to Cart
The Lovecraft Necronomicon Primer
The Lovecraft Necronomicon Primer
A Guide to the Cthulhu Mythos
T. Allan Bilstad
$11.95 US,  $13.95 CAN
$8.37 US,  $9.77 CAN On Sale! | Add to Cart
Necronomicon
Necronomicon
The Wanderings of Alhazred
Donald Tyson
$19.99 US,  $22.95 CAN | Add to Cart

Please note that the use of Llewellyn Journal articles
is subject to certain Terms and Conditions

I've written a number of books for Llewellyn over the years—believe it or not, my upcoming release is number eight—but far and away the most popular one was my third, The Goddess Is in the Details. And I have to confess, it was my favorite too. (Shhh…don't tell the other books. They'll cry, and I'll have to give them each a... read this article
Tarot: Let's Talk About Strength
A Week of Psychic Development
The Magic of Stars
Hacking Life, the Universe, and Everything through Afro-Cuban Ifá, Santería’s High Priesthood
Choose Your Thoughts, Choose Your Life

Most recent posts:
Which Interpretation?
As we study the cards, we realize that each card has many meanings. A common question is “how do you know which meaning to use in a...

Tarot Fundamentals
The publishing industry has been changing for a long time now. Publishing can be a very slow behemoth, very conservative. So it was really refreshing...

The Five Minute Tarot
This weekend, at the North Star Tarot conference, Melani Weber presented a workshop. That workshop was the most fun I’d had in a very long time. And...





Evidence of Eternity Evidence of Eternity
Communicating with Spirits for Proof of the Afterlife

By: Mark Anthony
Price: $15.99 US,  $18.50 CAN
Everyday Witchcraft Everyday Witchcraft
Making Time for Spirit in a Too-Busy World

By: Deborah Blake
Price: $16.99 US,  $19.50 CAN
Witch Upon a Star Witch Upon a Star
By: Jennifer Harlow
Price: $14.99 US,  $17.50 CAN
The Oathbreaker's Shadow The Oathbreaker's Shadow
By: Amy McCulloch
Price: $11.99 US,  $13.95 CAN
Crystal Resonance Crystal Resonance
Combining Gemstones, Essential Oils & Flower Essences for Enhanced Well-Being

By: Kerry Nelson Selman
Price: $19.99 US,  $22.95 CAN