First published London: E.J. Wieland, 1913.
Second edition with commentary
Ilfracombe: Haydn Press, 1952

This electronic edition issued by Celephaïs Press
from somewhere beyond the Tanarian Hills
and manifested in the waking world
in Leeds, Yorkshire, England.

Original key entry by Frater E.A.D.N.
Formatting and further proofreading
by Frater Lege Iudica Atque Ride
Last revised 17.07.2004.

(c) Ordo Templi Orientis
JAF Box 7666
New York
NY 10116


(Aleister Crowley)


with an additional commentary to each chapter.

“Break, break, break
At the foot of thy stones, O Sea !
And I would that I could utter
The thoughts that arise in me!”

Celephaïs Press
Ulthar - Sarkomand - Inquanok - Leeds


The number of the book is 333, as implying dispersion, so as to
correspond with the title, “Breaks” and “Lies”.
However, the “one thought is itself untrue”, and therefore its
falsifications are relatively true.
This book therefore consists of statements as nearly true as is
possible to human language.
The verse from Tennyson is inserted partly because of the pun on the
word “break”; partly because of the reference to the meaning of this
title page, as explained above; partly because it is intensely amusing for
Crowley to quote Tennyson.
There is no joke or subtle meaning in the publisher’s imprint.

Publication in Classes C and D
Official for the Grade of Babe of the Abyss




I utter The Word.

I hear The Word.
The Word is broken up.
There is Knowledge.
Knowledge is Relation.
These fragments are Creation.
The broken manifests Light.2
GOD the Father and Mother is concealed in Genera-
GOD is concealed in the whirling energy of Nature.
GOD is manifest in gathering: harmony: considera-
tion: the Mirror of the Sun and of the Heart.
Bearing: preparing.
Wavering: flowing: flashing.
Stability: begetting.
The world.


COMMENTARY (The Chapter that is not a Chapter)

This chapter, numbered 0, corresponds to the Negative, which is
before Kether in the Qabalistic system.
The notes of interrogation and exclamation on the previous pages
are the other two veils.
The meaning of these symbols is fully explained in The Soldier
and the Hunchback.
This chapter begins by the letter O, followed by a mark of
exclamation; its reference to the theogony of Liber Legis is
explained in the note, but it also refers to KTEIS PHALLOS and
SPERMA, and is the exclamation of wonder or ecstasy, which is the
ultimate nature of things.

(1) Silence. Nuit, O; Hadit; Ra-Hoor-Khuit, I.

COMMENTARY (The Ante Primal Triad)

This is the negative Trinity; its three statements are, in an
ultimate sense, identical. They harmonise Being, Becoming, Not-
Being, the three possible modes of conceiving the universe.
The statement, Nothing is Not, technically equivalent to
Something Is, is fully explained in the essay called Berashith.
The rest of the chapter follows the Sephirotic system of the
Qabalah, and constitutes a sort of quintessential comment upon that
Those familiar with that system will recognise Kether, Chokmah,
Binah, in the First Triad; Daath, in the Abyss; Chesed, Geburah,
Tiphareth, in the Second Triad; Netzach, Hod and Yesod in the
Third Triad, and Malkuth in the Tenth Emanation.
It will be noticed that this cosmogony is very complete; the
manifestation even of God does not appear until Tiphareth; and the
universe itself not until Malkuth.
The chapter many therefore be considered as the most complete
treatise on existence ever written.

(2) The Unbroken, absorbing all, is called Darkness.





O! the heart of N.O.X. the Night of Pan.
PAN: Duality: Energy: Death.
Death: Begetting: the supporters of O!
To beget is to die; to die is to beget.
Cast the Seed into the Field of Night.
Life and Death are two names of A.
Kill thyself.
Neither of these alone is enough.



The shape of the figure I suggests the Phallus; this chapter
is therefore called the Sabbath of the Goat, the Witches’
Sabbath, in which the Phallus is adored.
The chapter begins with a repetition of O! referred to in the
previous chapter. It is explained that this triad lives in Night,
the Night of Pan, which is mystically called N.O.X., and this O
is identified with the O in this word. N is the Tarot symbol,
Death; and the X or Cross is the sign of the Phallus. For a
fuller com-mentary on Nox, see Liber VII, Chapter I.
Nox adds to 210, which symbolises the reduction of duality
to unity, and thence to negativity, and is thus a hieroglyph of
the Great Work.
The word Pan is then explained, P, the letter of Mars, is a
hieroglyph of two pillars, and therefore suggest duality; A, by
its shape, is the pentagram, energy, and N, by its Tarot
attribution, is death.
Nox is then further explained, and it is shown that the
ultimate Trinity, O!, is supported, or fed, by the process of
death and begetting, which are the laws of the universe.
The identity of these two is then explained.
The Student is then charged to understand the spiritual
importance of this physical procession in line 5.
It is then asserted that the ultimate letter A has two names,
or phases, Life and Death.
Line 7 balances line 5. It will be notice that the
phraseology of these two lines is so conceived that the one
contains the other more than itself.
Line 8 emphasises the importance of performing both.





Hoor hath a secret fourfold name: it is Do What
Thou Wilt.3
Four Words: Naught—One—Many—All.
Thy Name is holy.
Thy Kingdom is come.
Thy Will is done.
Here is the Bread.
Here is the Blood.
Bring us through Temptation!
Deliver us from Good and Evil!
That Mine as Thine be the Crown of the Kingdom,
even now.
These ten words are four, the Name of the One.



The Hawk referred to is Horus.
The chapter begins with a comment on Liber Legis III, 49.
Those four words, Do What Thou Wilt, are also identified
with the four possible modes of conceiving the universe;
Horus unites these.
Follows a version of the Lord's Prayer, suitable to Horus.
Compare this with the version in Chapter 44. There are ten
sections in this prayer, and, as the prayer is attributed to
Horus, they are called four, as above explained; but it is only
the name of Horus which is fourfold; He himself is One.
This may be compared with the Qabalistic doctrine of the
Ten Sephiroth as an expression of Tetra- grammaton (1 plus 2
plus 3 plus 4 = 10).
It is now seen that this Hawk is not Solar, but Mercurial;
hence the words, the Cry of the Hawk, the essential part of
Mercury being his Voice; and the number of the chapter, B,
which is Beth the letter of Mercury, the Magus of the Tarot,
who has four weapons, and it must be remembered that this
card is numbered 1, again connecting all these symbols with
the Phallus.
The essential weapon of Mercury is the Caduceus.

(3) Fourteen letters. Quid Voles Illud Fac. Q.V.I.F.
196 = 142.





The Brothers of A A are one with the Mother of
the Child.4
The Many is as adorable to the One as the One is to
the Many. This is the Love of These; creation-
parturition is the Bliss of the One; coition-
dissolution is the Bliss of the Many.
The All, thus interwoven of These, is Bliss.
Naught is beyond Bliss.
The Man delights in uniting with the Woman; the
Woman in parting from the Child.
The Brothers of A A are Women: the Aspirants to
A A are Men.



Gimel is the High Priestess of the Tarot. This chapter gives
the initiated feminine point of view; it is therefore called the
Oyster, a symbol of the Yoni. In Equinox X, The Temple of
Solomon the King, it is explained how Masters of the Temple,
or Brothers of AA have changed the formula of their
progress. These two formulae, Solve et Coagula, are now
explained, and the universe is exhibited as the interplay
between these two. This also explains the statement in Liber
Legis I, 28-30.

(4) They cause all men to worship it.





Soft and hollow, how thou dost overcome the hard
and full!
It dies, it gives itself; to Thee is the fruit!
Be thou the Bride; thou shalt be the Mother here-
To all impressions thus. Let them not overcome
thee; yet let them breed within thee. The least of
the impressions, come to its perfection, is Pan.
Receive a thousand lovers; thou shalt bear but One
This child shall be the heir of Fate the Father.



Daleth is the Empress of the Tarot, the letter of Venus, and
the title, Peaches, again refers to the Yoni. The chapter is a
counsel to accept all impressions; it is the formula of the
Scarlet woman; but no impression must be allowed to
dominate you, only to fructify you; just as the artist, seeing an
object, does not worship it, but breeds a masterpiece from it.
This process is exhibited as one aspect of the Great Work.
The last two paragraphs may have some reference to the 13th
Aethyr (see The Vision and The Voice).





That is not which is.
The only Word is Silence.
The only Meaning of that Word is not.
Thoughts are false.
Fatherhood is unity disguised as duality.
Peace implies war.
Power implies war.
Harmony implies war.
Victory implies war.
Glory implies war.
Foundation implies war.
Alas! for the Kingdom wherein all these are at war.



He is the letter of Aries, a Martial sign; while the title
suggests war. The ants are chosen as small busy objects.
Yet He, being a holy letter, raises the beginning of the
chapter to a contemplation of the Pentagram, considered as a
glyph of the ultimate.
In line 1, Being is identified with Not-Being.
In line 2, Speech with Silence.
In line 3, the Logos is declared as the Negative.
Line 4 is another phrasing of the familiar Hindu statement,
that that which can be thought is not true.
In line 5, we come to an important statement, an
adumbration of the most daring thesis in this book—Father
and Son are not really two, but one; their unity being the Holy
Ghost, the semen; the human form is a non-essential accretion
of this quintessence.
So far the chapter has followed the Sephiroth from Kether
to Chesed, and Chesed is united to the Supernal Triad by
virtue of its Phallic nature; for not only is Amoun a Phallic
God, and Jupiter the Father of All, but 4 is Daleth, Venus, and
Chesed refers to water, from which Venus sprang, and which
is the symbol of the Mother in the Tetragrammaton. See
Chapter 0, God the Father and Mother is concealed in
But Chesed, in the lower sense, is conjoined to
Microprosopus. It is the true link between the greater and
lesser countenances, whereas Daath is the false. Compare
the doctrine of the higher and lower Manas in Theosophy.
The rest of the chapter therefore points out the duality, and
therefore the imperfection, of all the lower Sephiroth in their





The Word was uttered: the One exploded into one
thousand million worlds.
Each world contained a thousand million spheres.
Each sphere contained a thousand million planes.
Each plane contained a thousand million stars.
Each star contained a many thousand million things.
Of these the reasoner took six, and, preening, said:
This is the One and the All.
These six the Adept harmonised, and said: This is
the Heart of the One and the All.
These six were destroyed by the Master of the
Temple; and he spake not.
The Ash thereof was burnt up by the Magus into
The Word.
Of all this did the Ipsissimus know Nothing.



This chapter is presumably called Caviar because that
substance is composed of many spheres.
The account given of Creation is the same as that familiar
to students of the Christian tradition, the Logos transforming
the unity into the many.
We then see what different classes of people do with the
The Rationalist takes the six Sephiroth of Microprosopus in
a crude state, and declares them to be the universe. This folly
is due to the pride of reason.
The Adept concentrates the Microcosm in Tiphareth,
recognising an Unity, even in the microcosm, but, qua Adept,
he can go no further.
The Master of the Temple destroys all these illusions, but
remains silent. See the description of his functions in the
Equinox, Liber 418 and elsewhere.
In the next grade, the Word is re-formulated, for the Magus
in Chokmah, the Dyad, the Logos.
The Ipsissimus, in the highest grade of the AA, is totally
unconscious of this process, or, it might be better to say, he
recognises it as Nothing, in that positive sense of the word,
which is only intelligible in Samasamadhi.





None are They whose number is Six:5 else were they
six indeed.
Seven6 are these Six that live not in the City of the
Pyramids, under the Night of Pan.
There was Lao-tzu.
There was Siddartha.
There was Krishna.
There was Tahuti.
There was Mosheh.
There was Dionysus.7
There was Mahmud.
But the Seventh men called PERDURABO; for
enduring unto The End, at The End was Naught
to endure.8



This chapter gives a list of those special messengers of the
Infinite who initiate periods. They are called Dinosaurs
because of their seeming to be terrible devouring creatures.
They are Masters of the Temple, for their number is 6 (1 plus 2
plus 3), the mystic number of Binah; but they are called
None, because they have attained. If it were not so, they
would be called six in its bad sense of mere intellect.
They are called Seven, although they are Eight, because
Lao-tzu counts as nought, owing to the nature of his doctrine.
The reference to their living not is to be found in Liber 418.
The word Perdurabo means I will endure unto the end.
The allusion is explained in the note.
Siddartha, or Gotama, was the name of the last Buddha.
Krishna was the principal incarnation of the Indian Vishnu,
the preserver, the principal expounder of Vedantism.
Tahuti, or Thoth, the Egyptian God of Wisdom.
Mosheh, Moses, the founder of the Hebrew system.
Dionysus, probably an ecstatic from the East.
Mahmud, Mohammed.
All these were men; their Godhead is the result of

(5) Masters of the Temple, whose grade has the mystic
number 6 (= 1 + 2 + 3).
(6) These are not eight, as apparent; for Lao-tzu counts as
(7) The legend of Christ is only a corruption and
perversion of other legends. Especially of Dionysus: compare
the account of Christ before Herod/Pilate in the gospels, and
of Dionysus before Pentheus in The Bacchæ.
(8) O, the last letter of Perdurabo, is Naught.





Mind is a disease of semen.
All that a man is or may be is hidden therein.
Bodily functions are parts of the machine; silent,
unless in dis-ease.
But mind, never at ease, creaketh “I.”
This I persisteth not, posteth not through genera-
tions, changeth momently, finally is dead.
Therefore is man only himself when lost to himself
in The Charioting.



Cheth is the Chariot in the Tarot. The Charioteer is the
bearer of the Holy Grail. All this should be studied in Liber
418, the 12th Aethyr.
The chapter is called Steeped Horsehair because of the
mediaeval tradition that by steeping horsehair a snake is
produced, and the snake is the hieroplyphic representation of
semen, particularly in Gnostic and Egyptian emblems.
The meaning of the chapter is quite clear; the whole race-
consciousness, that which is omnipotent, omniscient,
omnipresent, is hidden therein.
Therefore, except in the case of an Adept, man only rises to
a glimmer of the universal consciousness, while, in the
orgasm, the mind is blotted out.





Being is the Noun; Form is the adjective.
Matter is the Noun; Motion is the Verb.
Wherefore hath Being clothed itself with Form?
Wherefore hath Matter manifested itself in Motion?
Answer not, O silent one! For THERE is no “where-
fore”, no “because.”
The name of THAT is not known; the Pronoun
interprets, that is, misinterprets, It.
Time and Space are Adverbs.
Duality begat the Conjunction.
The Conditioned is Father of the Preposition.
The Article also marketh Division; but the Inter-
jection is the sound that endeth in the Silence.
Destroy therefore the Eight Parts of Speech; the
Ninth is nigh unto Truth.
This also must be destroyed before thou enterest
into The Silence.



Teth is the Tarot trump, Strength, in which a woman is
represented closing the mouth of a lion.
This chapter is called The Branks, an even more powerful
symbol, for it is the Scottish, and only known, apparatus for
closing the mouth of a woman.
The chapter is formally an attack upon the parts of speech,
the interjection, the meaningless utterance of ecstasy, being
the only thing worth saying; yet even this is to be regarded as
a lapse.
Aum represents the entering into the silence, as will
observed upon pronouncing it.





The Abyss of Hallucinations has Law and Reason;
but in Truth there is no bond between the Toys
of the Gods.
This Reason and Law is the Bond of the Great Lie.
Truth! Truth! Truth! crieth the Lord of the Abyss of
There is no silence in that Abyss: for all that men call
Silence is Its Speech.
This Abyss is also called “Hell”, and “The Many.”
Its name is “Consciousness”, and “The Universe”,
among men.
But THAT which neither is silent, nor speaks, re-
joices therein.



There is no apparent connection between the number of this
chapter and its subject.
It does, however, refer to the key of the Tarot called The
Hermit, which represents him as cloaked.
Jod is the concealed Phallus as opposed to Tau, the
extended Phallus. This chapter should be studied in the light
of what is said in Aha! and in the Temple of Solomon the
King about the reason.
The universe is insane, the law of cause and effect is an
illusion, or so it appears in the Abyss, which is thus identified
with consciousness, the many, and both; but within this is a
secret unity which rejoices; this unity being far beyond any


Concerning the Holy Three-in-Naught.
Nuit, Hadit, Ra-Hoor-Khuit, are only to be understood by
the Master of the Temple.
They are above The Abyss, and contain all con-tradiction
in themselves.
Below them is a seeming duality of Chaos and Babalon;
these are called Father and Mother, but it is not so.
They are called Brother and Sister, but it is not so.
They are called Husband and Wife, but it is not so.
The reflection of All is Pan: the Night of Pan is the
Annihilation of the All.
Cast down through The Abyss is the Light, the Rosy Cross,
the rapture of Union that destroys, that is The Way.
The Rosy Cross is the Ambassador of Pan.
How infinite is the distance form This to That! Yet All is
Here and Now. Nor is there any there or Then; for all
that is, what is it but a manifestation, that is, a part,
that is, a falsehood, of THAT which is not?
Yet THAT which is not neither is nor is not That which is!
Identity is perfect; therefore the Law of Identity is but a lie.
For there is no subject, and there is no predicate; nor is
there the contradictory of either of these things.
Holy, Holy, Holy are these Truths that I utter, knowing
them to be but falsehoods, broken mirrors, troubled
waters; hide me, O our Lady, in Thy Womb! for I may
not endure the rapture.
In this utterance of falsehood upon falsehood, whose
contradictories are also false, it seems as if That which I
uttered not were true.
Blessed, unutterably blessed, is this last of the illusions; let
me play the man, and thrust it from me! Amen.



The Glow-Worm may perhaps be translated as a little
light in the darkness, though there may be a subtle reference
to the nature of that light.
Eleven is the great number of Magick, and this chapter
indicates a supreme magical method; but it is really called
eleven, because of Liber Legis, I, 60.
The first part of the chapter describes the universe in its
highest sense, down to Tiphareth; it is the new and perfect
cosmogony of Liber Legis.
Chaos and Babalon are Chokmah and Binah, but they are
really one; the essential unity of the supernal Triad is here
insisted upon.
Pan is a generic name, including this whole system of its
manifested side. Those which are above the Abyss are
therefore said to live in the Night of Pan; they are only
reached by the annihilation of the All.
Thus, the Master of the Temple lives in the Night of Pan.
Now, below the Abyss, the manifested part of the Master of
the temple, also reaches Samadhi, as the way of Annihilation.
Paragraph 7 begins by a reflection produced by the
preceding exposition. This reflection is immediately
contradicted, the author being a Master of the Temple. He
thereupon enters into his Samadhi, and he piles contradiction
upon contradiction, and thus a higher degree of rapture, with
ever sentence, until his armoury is exhausted, and, with the
word Amen, he enters the supreme state.





IO is the cry of the lower as OI of the higher.
In figures they are 1001;9 in letters they are Joy.10
For when all is equilibrated, when all is beheld from
without all, there is joy, joy, joy that is but one
facet of a diamond, every other facet whereof is
more joyful than joy itself.



The Dragon-Flies were chosen as symbols of joy, because
of the author's observation as a naturalist.
Paragraph 1 mere repeats Chapter 4 in quintessence; 1001,
being 11 × S (1-13), is a symbol of the complete unity
manifested as the many, for S (113) gives the whole course
of numbers from the simple unity of 1 to the complex unity of
13, impregnated by the magical 11.
I may add a further comment on the number 91. 13 (1 plus
3) is a higher form of 4. 4 is Amoun, the God of generation,
and 13 is 1, the Phallic unity. Daleth is the Yoni. And 91 is
AMN (Amen), a form of the Phallus made complete through
the intervention of the Yoni. This again connects with the IO
and OI of paragraph 1, and of course IO is the rapture-cry of
the Greeks.
The whole chapter is, again, a comment on Liber Legis,
1, 28-30.

(9) 1001 = 11 × S(113). The Petals of the Sahasrara-
(10) JOY = 101, the Egg of Spirit in equilibrium between
the Pillars of the Temple.





O thou that settest out upon The Path, false is the
Phantom that thou seekest. When thou hast it
hou shalt know all bitterness, thy teeth fixed in
the Sodom-Apple.
Thus hast thou been lured along That Path, whose
terror else had driven thee far away.
O thou that stridest upon the middle of The Path, no
phantoms mock thee. For the stride’s sake thou
Thus art thou lured along That Path, whose fascina-
tion else had driven thee far away.
O thou that drawest toward the End of The Path,
effort is no more. Faster and faster dos thou fall;
thy weariness is changed into Ineffable Rest.
For there is not Thou upon That Path: thou hast
become The Way.



This chapter is perfectly clear to anyone who has studied
the career of an Adept.
The Sodom-Apple is an uneatable fruit found in the desert.





The Universe is the Practical Joke of the General at
the Expense of the Particular, quoth FRATER
PERDURABO, and laughed.
But those disciples nearest to him wept, seeing the
Universal Sorrow.
Those next to them laughed, seeing the Universal
Below these certain disciples wept.
Then certain laughed.
Others next wept.
Others next laughed.
Next others wept.
Next others laughed.
Last came those that wept because they could not see
the Joke, and those that laughed lest they should
be thought not to see the Joke, and thought it safe
But though FRATER PERDURABO laughed openly,
He also at the same time wept secretly; and in
Himself He neither laughed nor wept.
Nor did He mean what He said.



The title, Onion-Peelings, refers to the well-known
incident in Peer Gynt.
The chapter resembles strongly Dupin's account of how he
was able to win at the game of guessing odd or even. (See
Poe's tale of The Purloined Letter.”)
But this is a more serious piece of psychology. In one’s
advance towards a comprehension of the universe, one
changes radically one's point of view; nearly always it
amounts to a reversal.
This is the cause of most religious controversies.
Paragraph 1, however, is Frater Perdurabo's formula-tion
of his perception of the Universal Joke, also described in
Chapter 34. All individual existence is tragic. Perception of
this fact is the essence of comedy. Household Gods is an
attempt to write pure comedy. The Bacchae of Euripides is
At the end of the chapter it is, however, seen that to the
Master of the Temple the opposite perception occurs
simultaneously, and that he himself is beyond both of these.
And in the last paragraph it is shown that he realises the
truth as beyond any statement of it.





Mighty and erect is this Will of mine, this Pyramid of
fire whose summit is lost in Heaven. Upon it
have I burned the corpse of my desires.
Mighty and erect is this ΦΑΛΛΟΣ of my Will. The
seed thereof is That which I have borne within
me from Eternity; and it is lost within the Body of
Our Lady of the Stars.
I am not I; I am but an hollow tube to bring down
Fire from Heaven.
Mighty and marvellous is this Weakness, this
Heaven which draweth me into Her Womb, this
Dome which hideth, which absorbeth, Me.
This is The Night wherein I am lost, the Love
through which I am no longer I.



The card 15 in the Tarot is The Devil, the mediaeval blind
for Pan.
The title of the chapter refers to the Phallus, which is here
identified with the will. The Greek word Πυραµις has the
same number as Φαλλος.
This chapter is quite clear, but one my remark in the last
paragraph a reference to the nature of Samadhi.
As man loses his personality in physical love, so does the
magician annihilate his divine personality in that which is
The formula of Samadhi is the same, from the lowest to the
highest. The Rosy-Cross is the Universal Key. But, as one
proceeds, the Cross becomes greater, until it is the Ace, the
Rose, until it is the Word.





Death implies change and individuality if thou be
THAT which hath no person, which is beyond
the changing, even beyond changelessness, what
hast thou to do with death?
The bird of individuality is ecstasy; so also is its
In love the individuality is slain; who loves not love?
Love death therefore, and long eagerly for it.
Die Daily.



This seems a comment on the previous chapter; the Stag-
Beetle is a reference the Kheph-ra, the Egyptian God of
Midnight, who bears the Sun through the Underworld; but it
is called the Stag-Beetle to emphasise his horns. Horns are
the universal hieroglyph of energy, particularly of Phallic
The 16th key of the Tarot is The Blasted Tower. In this
chapter death is regarded as a form of marriage. Modern
Greek peasants, in many cases, cling to Pagan belief, and
suppose that in death they are united to the Deity which they
have cultivated during life. This is a consummation devoutly
to be wished (Shakespeare).
In the last paragraph the Master urges his pupils to
practise Samadhi every day.





There is a Swan whose name is Ecstasy: it wingeth
from the Deserts of the North; it wingeth through
the blue; it wingeth over the fields of rice; at its
coming they push forth the green.
In all the Universe this Swan alone is motionless; it
seems to move, as the Sun seems to move; such is
the weakness of our sight.
O fool! criest thou?
Amen. Motion is relative: there is Nothing that is
Against this Swan I shot an arrow; the white breast
poured forth blood. Men smote me; then, per-
ceiving that I was but a Pure Fool, they let me
Thus and not otherwise I came to the Temple of the



This Swan is Aum. The chapter is inspired by Frater P.'s
memory of the wild swans he shot in the Tali-Fu.
In paragraphs 3 and 4 it is, however, recognised that even
Aum is impermanent. There is no meaning in the word,
stillness, so long as motion exists.
In a boundless universe, one can always take any one point,
however mobile, and postulate it a a point at rest, calculating
the motions of all other points relatively to it.
The penultimate paragraph shows the relations of the Adept
to mankind. Their hate and contempt are necessary steps to
his acquisition of sovereignty over them.
The story of the Gospel, and that of Parsifal, will occur to
the mind.

(11) This chapter must be read in connection with Wagner’s





Verily, love is death, and death is life to come.
Man returneth not again; the stream floweth not
uphill; the old life is no more; there is a new life
that is not his.
Yet that life is of his very essence; it is more He than
all that he calls He.
In the silence of a dewdrop is every tendency of his
soul, and of his mind, and of his body; it is the
Quintessence and the Elixir of his being. Therein
are the forces that made him and his father and
his father’s father before him.
This is the Dew of Immortality.
Let this go free, even as It will; thou art not its master,
but the vehicle of It.



The 18th key of the Tarot refers to the Moon, which was
supposed to shed dew. The appropriateness of the chapter
title is obvious.
The chapter must be read in connection with Chapters 1
and 16.
In the penultimate paragraph, Vindu is identified with
Amrita, and in the last paragraph the disciple is charged to let
it have its own way. It has a will of its own, which is more in
accordance with the Cosmic Will, than that of the man who is
its guardian and servant.





The spots of the leopard are the sunlight in the glade;
pursue thou the deer stealthily at thy pleasure.
The dappling of the deer is the sunlight in the glade;
concealed from the leopard do thou feed at thy
Resemble all that surroundeth thee; yet be Thyself—
and take thy pleasure among the living.
This is that which is written—Lurk!—in The Book of
The Law.



19 is the Tarot Trump, The Sun, which is the
representative of God in the Macrocosm, as the Phallus is in
the Microcosm.
There is a certain universality and adaptability among its
secret power. The chapter is taken from Rudyard Kipling’s
Just So Stories.
The Master urges his disciples to a certain holy stealth, a
concealment of the real purpose of their lives; in this way
making the best of both worlds. This counsels a course of
action hardly distinguishable from hypocrisy; but the
distinction is obvious to any clear thinker, though not
altogether so the Frater P.





The Universe is in equilibrium; therefore He that is
without it, though his force be but a feather, can
overturn the Universe.
Be not caught within that web, O child of Freedom!
Be not entangled in the universal lie, O child of



Samson, the Hebrew Hercules, is said in the legend to have
pulled down the walls of a music-hall where he was engaged,
to make sport for the Philistines, destroying them and
himself. Milton founds a poem on this fable.
The first paragraph is a corollary of Newtons First Law of
Motion. The key to infinite power is to reach the Bornless





It is not necessary to understand; it is enough to
The god may be of clay: adore him; he becomes GOD.
We ignore what created us; we adore what we create.
Let us create nothing but GOD!
That which causes us to create is our true father and
mother; we create in our own image, which is
Let us create therefore without fear; for we can create
nothing that is not GOD.



The 21st key of the Tarot is called The Universe, and
refers to the letter Tau, the Phallus in manifestation; hence
the title, The Blind Webster.
The universe is conceived as Buddhists, on the one hand,
and Rationalists, on the other, would have us do; fatal, and
without intelligence. Even so, it may be delightful to the
The moral of this chapter is, therefore, an exposition of the
last paragraph of Chapter 18.
It is the critical spirit which is the Devil, and gives rise to
the appearance of evil.





The waiters of the best eating-houses mock the whole
world; they estimate every client at his proper
This I know certainly, because they always treat me
with profound respect. Thus they have flattered
me into praising them thus publicly.
Yet it is true; and they have this insight because they
serve, and because they can have no personal
interest in the affairs of those whom they serve.
An absolute monarch would be absolutely wise and
But no man is strong enough to have no interest.
Therefore the best king would be Pure Chance.
It is Pure Chance that rules the Universe; therefore,
and only therefore, life is good.



Comment would only mar the supreme simplicity of this





What man is at ease in his Inn?
Get out.
Wide is the world and cold.
Get out.
Thou hast become an in-itiate.
Get out.
But thou canst not get out by the way thou camest in.
The Way out is THE WAY.
Get out.
For OUT is Love and Wisdom and Power.12
Get OUT.
If thou hast T already, first get UT.13
Then get O.
And so at last get OUT.



Both “23” and Skidoo are American words meaning Get
out. This chapter describes the Great Work under the figure
of a man ridding himself of all his accidents.
He first leaves the life of comfort; then the world at large;
and, lastly, even the initiates.
In the fourth section is shown that there is no return for one
that has started on this path.
The word OUT is then analysed, and treated as a noun.
Besides the explanation in the note, O is the Yoni; T, the
Lingam; and U, the Hierophant; the 5th card of the Tarot, the
Pentagram. It is thus practically identical with IAO.
The rest of the chapter is clear, from the note.

(12) O = j, The Devil of the Sabbath. U = b, the
Hierophant or Redeemer. T = Strength, the Lion.
(13) T, manhood, the sign of the cross or phallus. UT, the
Holy Guardian Angel; UT, the first syllable of Udgita, see the
Upanishads. O, Nothing or Nuit.





This book would translate Beyond-Reason into the
words of Reason.
Explain thou snow to them of Andaman.
The slaves of reason call this book Abuse-of-
Language: they are right.
Language was made for men to eat and drink, make
love, do barter, die. The wealth of a language
consists in its Abstracts; the poorest tongues have
wealth of Concretes.
Therefore have Adepts praised silence; at least it does
not mislead as speech does.
Also, Speech is a symptom of Thought.
Yet, silence is but the negative side of Truth; the
positive side is beyond even silence.
Nevertheless, One True God crieth hriliu!
And the laughter of the Death-rattle is akin.



The Hawk is the symbol of sight; the Blindworm, of
blindness. Those who are under the dominion of reason are
called blind.
In the last paragraph is reasserted the doctrine of Chapters
1, 8, 16 and 18.
For the meaning of the word hriliu consult Liber 418.



Facing East, in the centre, draw deep deep deep thy
breath, closing thy mouth with thy right
forefinger prest against thy lower lip. Then
dashing down the hand with a great sweep back
and out, expelling forcibly thy breath, cry: ΑΠΟ
With the same forefinger touch thy forehead, and say
ΣΟΙ, thy member, and say Ω ΦΑΛΛΕ,14 thy right
shoulder, and say ΙΣΧΥΡΟΣ, thy left shoulder,
and say ΕΥΧΑΡΙΣΤΟΣ; then clasp thine hands,
locking the fingers, and cry ΙΑΩ.
Advance to the East. Imagine strongly a Pentagram.
aright, in thy forehead. Drawing the hands to the
eyes, fling it forth, making the sign of Horus, and
roar ΧΑΟΣ. Retire thine hand in the sign of Hoor
pa kraat.
Go round to the North and repeat; but scream
Go round to the West and repeat; but say ΕΡΩΣ.
Go round to the South and repeat; but bellow ΨΥΧΗ.
Completing the circle widdershins, retire to the
centre, and raise thy voice in the Paian, with these
words ΙΩ ΠΑΝ with the signs of N.O.X.
Extend the arms in the form of a Tau, and say low
Repeat the Cross Qabalistic, as above, and end as
thou didst begin.



25 is the square of 5, and the Pentagram has the red colour
of Geburah.
The chapter is a new and more elaborate version of the
Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram.
It would be improper to comment further upon an official
ritual of the A∴A∴

(14) The secret sense of these words is to be sought in the
numberation thereof.





The Absolute and the Conditioned together make
The One Absolute.
The Second, who is the Fourth, the Demiurge, whom
all nations of Men call The First, is a lie grafted
upon a lie, a lie multiplied by a lie.
Fourfold is He, the Elephant upon whom the
Universe is poised: but the carapace of the
Tortoise supports and covers all.
This Tortoise is sixfold, the Holy Hexagram.15
These six and four are ten, 10, the One manifested
that returns into the Naught unmanifest.
The All-Mighty, the All-Ruler, the All-Knower, the
All-Father, adored by all men and by me
abhorred, be thou accursed, be thou abolished, be
thou annihilated, Amen!



The title of the chapter refers to the Hindu legend.
The first paragraph should be read in connection with our
previous remarks upon the number 91.
The number of the chapter, 26, is that of Tetragrammaton,
the manifest creator, Jehovah.
He is called the Second in relation to that which is above
the Abyss, comprehended under the title of the First.
But the vulgarians conceive of nothing beyond the creator,
and therefore call him The First.
He is really the Fourth, being in Chesed, and of course his
nature is fourfold. This Four is conceived of as the Dyad
multiplied by the Dyad; falsehood confirming falsehood.
Paragraph 3 introduces a new conception; that of the
square within the hexagram, the universe enclosed in the law
of Lingam-Yoni.
The penultimate paragraph shows the redemption of the
universe by this law.
The figure 10, like the work IO, again suggest Lingam-Yoni,
besides the exclamation given in the text.
The last paragraph curses the universe thus unredeemed.
The eleven initial A’s in the last sentence are Magick
Pentagrams, emphasising this curse.

(15) In nature the Tortoise has 6 members at angles of 60°.





A Sorcerer by the power of his magick had subdued
all things to himself.
Would he travel? He could fly through space more
swiftly than the stars.
Would he eat, drink, and take his pleasure? there was
none that did not instantly obey his bidding.
In the whole system of ten million times ten million
spheres upon the two and twenty million planes
he had his desire.
And with all this he was but himself.



This chapter gives the reverse of the medal; it is the
contrast to Chapter 15.
The Sorcerer is to be identified with The Brother of the Left
Hand Path.





Love is all virtue, since the pleasure of love is but
love, and the pain of love is but love.
Love taketh no heed of that which is not and of that
which is.
Absence exalteth love, and presence exalteth love.
Love moveth ever from height to height of ecstasy
and faileth never.
The wings of love droop not with time, nor slacken
for life or for death.
Love destroyeth self, uniting self with that which is
not-self, so that Love breedeth All and None in
Is it not so? . . . No? . . .
Then thou art not lost in love; speak not of love.
Love Alway Yieldeth: Love Alway Hardeneth.
. . . . . . . . . . May be: I write it but to write Her name.



This now introduces the principal character of this book,
Laylah, who is the ultimate feminine symbol, to be interpreted
on all planes.
But in this chapter, little hint is given of anything beyond
physical love. It is called the Pole-Star, because Laylah is the
one object of devotion to which the author ever turns.
Note the introduction of the name of the Beloved in acrostic
in line 15.





Love, I love you! Night, night, cover us! Thou art
night, O my love; and there are no stars but thine
Dark night, sweet night, so warm and yet so fresh, so
scented yet so holy, cover me, cover me!
Let me be no more! Let me be Thine; let me be Thou;
let me be neither Thou nor I; let there be love in
night and night in love.
N.O.X. the night of Pan; and Laylah, the night before
His threshold!



Chapter 29 continues Chapter 28.
Note that the word Laylah is the Arabic for Night.
The author begins to identify the Beloved with the N.O.X.
previously spoken of.
The chapter is called The Southern Cross”, because, on
the physical plane, Laylah is an Australian.





Dreams are imperfections of sleep; even so is con-
sciousness the imperfection of waking.
Dreams are impurities in the circulation of the blood;
even so is consciousness a disorder of life.
Dreams are without proportion, without good sense,
without truth; so also is consciousness.
Awake from dream, the truth is known:16 awake
from waking, the Truth is—The Unknown.



This chapter is to read in connection with Chapter 8, and
also with those previous chapters in which the reason is
The allusion in the title is obvious.
This sum in proportion, dream: waking: : waking: Samadhi
is a favourite analogy with Frater P., wh frequently employs it
in his holy discourse.

(16) I.e. the truth that he hath slept.





IT moves from motion into rest, and rests from rest
into motion. These IT does alway, for time is not.
So that IT does neither of these things. IT does
THAT one thing which we must express by two
things neither of which possesses any rational
Yet ITS doing, which is no-doing, is simple and yet
complex, is neither free nor necessary.
For all these ideas express Relation; and IT, com-
prehending all Relation in ITS simplicity, is out of
all Relation even with ITSELF.
All this is true and false; and it is true and false to say
that it is true and false.
Strain forth thine Intelligence, O man, O worthy one,
O chosen of IT, to apprehend the discourse of
THE MASTER; for thus thy reason shall at last
break down, as the fetter is struck from a slave’s



The number 31 refers to the Hebrew word LA, which means
A new character is now introduce under the title of IT, I
being the secret, and T being the manifested, phallus.
This is, however, only one aspect of IT, which may perhaps
be defined as the Ultimate Reality.
IT is apparently a more exalted thing than THAT.
This chapter should be compared with Chapter 11; that
method of destroying the reason by formulating
contradictions is definitely inculcated.
The reason is situated in Daath, which corresponds the the
throat in human anatomy. Hence the title of the chapter, The
The idea is that, by forcing the mind to follow, and as far as
possible to realise, the language of Beyond the Abyss, the
student will succeed in bringing his reason under control.
As soon as the reason is vanquished, the garotte is
removed; then the influence of the supernals (Kether,
Chokmah, Binah), no longer inhibited by Daath, can descend
upon Tiphareth, where the human will is situated, and flood it
with the ineffable light.





Consciousness is a symptom of disease.
All that moves well moves without will.
All skillfulness, all strain, all intention is contrary to
Practise a thousand times, and it becomes difficult; a
thousand thousand, and it becomes easy; a
thousand thousand times a thousand thousand,
and it is no longer Thou that doeth it, but It that
doeth itself through thee. Not until then is that
which is done well done.
Thus spoke FRATER PERDURABO as he leapt from
rock to rock of the moraine without ever casting
his eyes upon the ground.



This title is a mere reference to the metaphor of the last
paragraph of the chapter.
Frater P., as is well known, is a mountaineer.
This chapter should be read in conjunction with Chapters 8
and 30.
It is a practical instruction, the gist of which is easily to be
apprehended by comparatively short practice of Mantra-
A mantra is not being properly said as long as the man
knows he is saying it. The same applies to all other forms of





A black two-headed Eagle is GOD; even a Black
Triangle is He. In His claws He beareth a sword;
yea, a sharp sword is held therein.
This Eagle is burnt up in the Great Fire; yet not a
feather is scorched. This Eagle is swallowed up
in the Great Sea; yet not a feather is wetted. so
flieth He in the air, and lighteth upon the earth at
His pleasure.
Grand Master of the Temple; and of the GOD that
is Ass-headed did he dare not speak.



33 is the number of the Last Degree of Masonry, which was
conferred upon Frater P. in the year 1900 of the vulgar era by
Don Jesus de Medina-Sidonia in the City of Mexico.
Baphomet is the mysterious name of the God of the
The Eagle described in paragraph 1 is that of the Templars.
This Masonic symbol is, however, identified by Frater P.
with a bird, which is master of the four elements, and
therefore of the name Tetragrammaton.
Jacobus Burgundus Molensis suffered martyrdom in the
City of Paris in the year 1314 of the vulgar era.
The secrets of his order were, however, not lost, and are
still being communicated to the worthy by his successors, as is
intimated by the last paragraph, which implies knowledge of a
secret worship, of which the Grand Master did not speak.
The Eagle may be identified, though not too closely, with
the Hawk previously spoken of.
It is perhaps the Sun, the exoteric object of worship of all
sensible cults; it is not to be confused with other objects of the
mystic aviary, such as the swan, phoenix, pelican, dove and so

(17) His initials I.B.M. are the initials of the Three Pillars
of the Temple, and add to 52, 13x4, BN, the Son.





Each act of man is the twist and double of an hare.
Love and death are the greyhounds that course him.
God bred the hounds and taketh His pleasure in the
This is the Comedy of Pan, that man should think he
hunteth, while those hounds hunt him.
This is the Tragedy of Man when facing Love and
Death he turns to bay. He is no more hare, but
There are no other comedies or tragedies.
Cease then to be the mockery of God; in savagery of
love and death live thou and die!
Thus shall His laughter be thrilled through with



The title is explained in the note.
The chapter needs no explanation; it is a definite point of
view of life, and recommends a course of action calculated to
rob the creator of his cruel sport.

(18) This chapter was written to clarify κεφ-ιδ, of which it
was the origin. FRATER PERDURABO perceived this truth,
or rather the first half of it, comedy, at breakfast at Au Chien
qui Fume.





Life is as ugly and necessary as the female body.
Death is as beautiful and necessary as the male body.
The soul is beyond male and female as it is beyond
Life and Death.
Even as the Lingam and the Yoni are but diverse
developments of One Organ, so also are Life and
Death but two phases of One State. So also the
Absolute and the Conditioned are but forms of
What do I love? There is no form, no being, to which
I do not give myself wholly up.
Take me, who will!



This chapter must be read in connection with Chapters 1, 3,
4, 8, 15, 16, 18, 24, 28, 29.
The last sentence of paragraph 4 also connects with the
first paragraph of Chapter 26.
The title Venus of Milo is an argument in support of
paragraphs 1 and 2, it being evident from this statement that
the female body becomes beautiful in so far as it approximates
to the male.
The female is to be regarded as having been separated from
the male, in order to reproduce the male in a superior form,
the absolute, and the conditions forming the one absolute.
In the last two paragraphs there is a justification of a
practice which might be called sacred prostitution.
In the common practice of meditation the idea is to reject
all impressions, but here is an opposite practice, very much
more difficult, in which all are accepted.
This cannot be done at all unless one is capable of making
Dhyana at least on any conceivable thing, at a seconds
notice; otherwise, the practice would only be ordinary mind-



Let the Adept be armed with his Magick Rood [and
provided with his Mystic Rose].
In the centre, let him give the L. V. X. signs; or if he
know them, if he will and dare do them, and can
keep silent about them, the signs of N. O. X. being
the signs of Puer, Vir, Puella, Mulier. Omit the
sign I.R.
Then let him advance to the East, and make the Holy
Hexagram, saying: PATER ET MATER UNUS
Let him go round to the South, make the Holy
Hexagram, and say: MATER ET FILIUS UNUS
Let him go round to the West, make the Holy
Hexagram, and say: FILIUS ET FILIA UNUS
Let him go round to the North, make the Holy
Hexagram, and then say: FILIA ET PATER UNUS
Let him return to the Centre, and so The Centre of All
[making the ROSY CROSS as he may know how]
[In this the Signs shall be those of Set Triumphant
and of Baphomet. Also shall Set appear in the
Circle. Let him drink of the Sacrament and let
him communicate the same.]
Then let him say: OMNIA IN DUOS: DUO IN


Let him then repeat the signs of L. V. X. but not the
signs of N. O. X.: for it is not he that shall arise in
the Sign of Isis Rejoicing.


The Star Sapphire corresponds with the Star-Ruby of
Chapter 25; 36 being the square of 6, as 25 is of 5.
This chapter gives the real and perfect Ritual of the
It would be improper to comment further upon an official
ritual of the AA





Thought is the shadow of the eclipse of Luna.
Samadhi is the shadow of the eclipse of Sol.
The moon and the earth are the non-ego and the ego:
the Sun is THAT.
Both eclipses are darkness; both are exceeding rare;
the Universe itself is Light.



Dragons are in the East supposed to cause eclipses by
devouring the luminaries.
There may be some significance in the chapter number,
which is that of Jechidah the highest unity of the soul.
In this chapter, the idea is given that all limitation and evil
is an exceedingly rare accident; there can be no night in the
whole of the Solar System, except in rare spots, where the
shadow of a planet is cast by itself.
It is a serious misfortune that we happen to live in a tiny
corner of the system, where the darkness reaches such a high
figure as 50 per cent.
The same is true of moral and spiritual conditions.





Cowan, skidoo!
Swear to hele all.
This is the mystery.
Mind is the traitor.
Slay mind.
Let the corpse of mind lie unburied on the edge of
the Great Sea!
This is the mystery.
Cowan, skidoo!



This chapter will be readily intelligible to E.A. Freemasons,
and it cannot be explained to others.





Only loobies find excellence in these words.
It is thinkable that A is not-A; to reverse this is but to
revert to the normal.
Yet by forcing the brain to accept propositions of
which one set is absurdity, the other truism, a
new function of brain is established.
Vague and mysterious and all indefinite are the
contents of this new consciousness; yet they are
somehow vital. by use they become luminous.
Unreason becomes Experience.
This lifts the leaden-footed soul to the Experience of
THAT of which Reason is the blasphemy.
But without the Experience these words are the Lies
of a Looby.
Yet a Looby to thee, and a Booby to me, a Balassius
Ruby to GOD, may be!



The word Looby occurs in folklore, and was supposed by
the author, at the time of writing this book, which he did when
he was far from any standard works of reference, to connote
partly booby, partly lout.
It would thus be a similar word to Parsifal.
Paragraphs 2-6 explain the method that was given in
Chapters 11 and 31. This method, however, occurs throughout
the book on numerous occasions, and even in the chapter
itself it is employed in the last paragraphs.





A red rose absorbs all colours but red; red is
therefore the one colour that it is not.
This Law, Reason, Time, Space, all Limitation blinds
us to the Truth.
All that we know of Man, Nature, God, is just that
which they are not; it is that which they throw off
as repungnant.
The HIMOG is only visible in so far as He is
Then are they all glorious who seem not to be
glorious, as the HIMOG is All-glorious Within?
It may be so.
How then distinguish the inglorious and perfect
HIMOG from the inglorious man of earth?
Distinguish not!
But thyself Ex-tinguish: HIMOG art thou, and
HIMOG shalt thou be.



Paragraph 1 is, of course, a well-known scientific fact.
In paragraph 2 it is suggested analogically that all
thinkable things are similarly blinds for the Unthinkable
Classing in this manner all things as illusions, the question
arises as to the distinguishing between illusions; how are we
to tell whether a Holy Illuminated Man of God is really so,
since we can see nothing of him but his imperfections. It
may be yonder beggar is a King.
But these considerations are not to trouble such mind as the
Chela may possess; let him occupy himself, rather, with the
task of getting rid of his personality; this, and not criticism of
his holy Guru, should be the occupation of his days and

(19) HIMOG is a Notariqon of the words Holy Illuminated
Man of God.





In V.V.V.V.V. is the Great Work perfect.
Therefore none is that pertaineth not to V.V.V.V.V.
In any may he manifest; yet in one hath he chosen to
manifest; and this one hath given His ring as a
Seal of Authority to the Work of the A∴A∴
through the colleagues of FRATER PER-
But this concerns themselves and their administra-
tion; it concerneth none below the grade of
Exempt Adept, and such an one only by com-
Also, since below the Abyss Reason is Lord, let men
seek by experiment, and not by Questionings.



The title is only partially explained in the note; it means
that the statements in this chapter are to be understood in the
most ordinary and commonplace way, without any mystical
V.V.V.V.V. is the motto of a Master of the Temple (or so
much He disclosed to the Exempt Adepts), referred to in Liber
LXI. It is he who is responsible for the whole of the
development of the A∴A∴ movement which has been
associated with the publication of THE EQUINOX; and His
utterance is enshrined in the sacred writings.
It is useless to enquire into His nature; to do so leads to
certain disaster. Authority from him is exhibited, when
necessary, to the proper persons, though in no case to anyone
below the grade of Exempt Adept. The person enquiring into
such matters is politely requested to work, and not to ask
questions about matters which in no way concern him.
The number 41 is that of the Barren Mother.

(20) I.e. food suitable for Americans.





In the wind of the mind arises the turbulence called I.
It breaks; down shower the barren thoughts.
All life is choked.
This desert is the Abyss wherein the Universe. The
Stars are but thistles in that waste.
Yet this desert is but one spot accursed in a world of
Now and again Travellers cross the desert; they come
from the Great Sea, and to the Great Sea they go.
As they go they spill water; one day they will irrigate
the desert, till it flower.
See! five footprints of a Camel! V.V.V.V.V.



This number 42 is the Great Number of the Curse. See Liber 418,
Liber 500, and the essay on the Qabalah in the Temple of Solomon
the King. This number is said to be all hotch-potch and accursed.
The chapter should be read most carefully in connection with the
10th Aethyr. It is to that dramatic experience that it refers. The
mind is called wind”, because of its nature; as has been frequently
explained, the ideas and words are identical.
In this free-flowing, centreless material arises an eddy; a spiral
close-coiled upon itself.
The theory of the formation of the Ego is that of the Hindus,
whose Ahamkara is itself a function of the mind, whose ego it
creates. This Ego is entirely divine.
Zoroaster describes God as having the head of the Hawk, and a
spiral force. It will be difficult to understand this chapter without
some experience in the transvaluation of values, which occurs
throughout the whole of this book, in nearly every other sentence.
Transvaluation of values is only the moral aspect of the method of
The word turbulence is applied to the Ego to suggest the
French tourbillion”, whirlwind, the false Ego or dust-devil.
True life, the life which has no consciousness of I”, is said to be
choked by this false ego, or rather by the thoughts which its
explosions produce. In paragraph 4 this is expanded to a
macrocosmic plane.
The Masters of the Temple are now introduced; they are
inhabitants, not of this desert; their abode is not this universe.
They come from the Great Sea, Binah, the City of the Pyramids.
V.V.V.V.V. is indicated as one of these travellers; He is described
as a camel, not because of the connotation of the French form of this
word, but because camel is in Hebrew Gimel, and Gimel is the
path leading from Tiphareth to Kether, uniting Microprosopus and
Macroprosopus, i.e. performing the Great Work.
The card Gimel in the Tarot is the High Priestess, the Lady of
Initiation; one might even say, the Holy Guardian Angel.





Black blood upon the altar! and the rustle of angel
wings above!
Black blood of the sweet fruit, the bruised, the
violated bloom—that setteth The Wheel a-
spinning in the spire.
Death is the veil of Life, and Life of Death; for both
are Gods.
This is that which is written: “A feast for Life, and a
greater feast for Death!” in THE BOOK OF THE
The blood is the life of the individual: offer then



The title of this chapter refers to a Hebrew legend, that of
the prophet who heard a going in the mulberry tops”; and to
Brownings phrase, “a bruised, black-blooded mulberry.”
In the Worlds Tragedy, Household Gods, The Scorpion,
and also The God-Eater, the reader may study the efficacy of
rape, and the sacrifice of blood, as magical forumulæ. Blood
and virginity have always been the most acceptable offerings
to all the gods, but especially the Christian God.
In the last paragraph, the reason of this is explained; it is
because such sacrifices come under the Great Law of the Rosy
Cross, the giving-up of the individuality, as has been
explained ad nauseam in previous chapters. We shall
frequently return to this subject.
By the wheel spinning in the spireis meant the
manifestation of the magical force, the spermatozoon in the
conical phallus. For wheels, see Chapter 78.




The Magician, his breast bare, stands before an altar on
which are his Burin, Bell, Thurible, and two of the
Cakes of Light. In the Sign of the Enterer he reaches
West across the Altar, and cries:
Hail Ra, that goest in Thy bark
Into the Caverns of the Dark!
He gives the sign of Silence, and takes the Bell, and Fire, in
his hands.
East of the Altar see me stand
With Light and Musick in mine hand!
He strikes Eleven times upon the Bell 3 3 35 5 5 5 5
3 3 3 and places the Fire in the Thurible.
I strike the Bell: I light the flame:
I utter the mysterious Name.
He strikes Eleven times upon the Bell.
Now I begin to pray: Thou Child,
Holy Thy name and undefiled!
Thy reign is come: Thy will is done.
Here is the Bread; here is the Blood.
Bring me from midnight to the Sun!
Save me from Evil and from Good!
That Thy one crown of all the Ten
Even now and here be mine. AMEN.
He puts the first Cake on the Fire of the Thurible.
I burn the Incense-cake, proclaim
These adorations of Thy name.


He makes them as in Liber Legis, and strikes again Eleven
times upon the Bell. With the Burnin he then makes
upon his breast the proper sign.
Behold this bleeding breast of mine
Gashed with the sacramental sign!
He puts the second Cake to the wound.
I staunch the blood; the wafer soaks
It up, and the high priest invokes!
He eats the second Cake.
This Bread I eat. This Oath I swear
As I enflame myself with prayer:
“There is no grace: there is no guilt:
This is the Law: DO WHAT THOU WILT!”
He strikes Eleven times upon the Bell, and cries
I entered in with woe; with mirth

I now go forth, and with thanksgiving,
To do my pleasure on the earth

Among the legions of the living.

He goeth forth.

This is the special number of Horus; is is the Hebrew blood,
and the multiplication of the 4 by the 11, the number of
Magick, explains 4 in its finest sense. But see in particular the
accounts in Equinox I, vii, of the circumstances of the Equinox
of the Gods.
The word Phœnix may be taken as including the idea of
Pelican,” the bird which is fabled to feed its young from the
blood of its own breast. Yet the two ideas, though cognate,
are not identical, and Phœnix is the more accurate symbol.
This chapter is explained in Chapter 62.
It would be improper to comment further upon a ritual
which has been accepted as official by the AA





“Explain this happening!”

“It must have a ‘natural’ cause.”
“It must have a ‘supernatural’ cause.” }
these two asses be set to grind corn.
May, might, must, should, probably, may be, we may
safely assume, ought, it is hardly questionable,
almost certainly—poor hacks! let them be turned
out to grass!
Proof is only possible in mathematics, and mathe-
matics is only a matter of arbitrary conventions.
And yet doubt is a good servant but a bad master; a
perfect mistress, but a nagging wife.
“White is white” is the lash of the overseer: “white is
black” is the watchword of the slave. The Master
takes no heed.
The Chinese cannot help thinking that the octave has
5 notes.
The more necessary anything appears to my mind,
the more certain it is that I only assert a
I slept with Faith, and found a corpse in my arms on
awaking; I drank and danced all night with
Doubt, and found her a virgin in the morning.



The title of this chapter is drawn from paragraph 7.
We now, for the first time, attack the question of doubt.
The Soldier and the Hunchback should be carefully
studied in this connection. The attitude recommended is
scepticism, but a scepticism under control.
Doubt inhibits action, as much as faith binds it. All the best
Popes have been Atheists, but perhaps the greatest of them
once remarked, “Quantum nobis prodest haec fabula
The ruler asserts facts as they are; the slave has therefore
no option but to deny them passionately, in order to express
his discontent. Hence such absurdities as Liberté, Egalité,
Fraternité”, In God we trust, and the like. Similarly we find
people asserting today that woman is superior to man, and
that all men are born equal.
The Master (in technical language, the Magus) does not
concern himself with facts; he does not care whether a thing
is true or not: he uses truth and falsehood indiscriminately, to
serve his ends. Slaves consider him immoral, and preach
against him in Hyde Park.
In paragraphs 7 and 8 we find a most important statement,
a practical aspect of the fact that all truth is relative, and in
the last paragraph we see how scepticism keeps the mind
fresh, whereas faith dies in the very sleep that it induces.





The cause of sorrow is the desire of the One to the
Many, or of the Many to the One. This also is the
cause of joy.
But the desire of one to another is all of sorrow; its
birth is hunger, and its death satiety.
The desire of the moth for the star at least saves him
Hunger thou, O man, for the infinite: be insatiable
even for the finite; thus at The End shalt thou
devour the finite, and become the infinite.
Be thou more greedy that the shark, more full of
yearning than the wind among the pines.
The weary pilgrim struggles on; the satiated pilgrim
The road winds uphill: all law, all nature must be
Do this by virtue of THAT in thyself before which
law and nature are but shadows.



The title of this chapter is best explained by a reference to
Mistinguette and Mayol.
It would be hard to decide, and it is fortunately un-
necessary even to discuss, whether the distinction of their art
is the cause, result, or concomitant of their private
The fact remains that in vice, as in everything else, some
things satiate, others refresh. Any game in which perfection is
easily attained soon ceases to amuse, although in the
beginning its fascination is so violent.
Witness the tremendous, but transitory, vogue of ping-pong
and diabolo. Those games in which perfection is impossible
never cease to attract.
The lesson of the chapter is thus always to rise hungry from
a meal, always to violate ones own nature. Keep on
acquiring a taste for what is naturally repugnant; this is an
unfailing source of pleasure, and it has a real further
advantage, in destroying the Sankharas, which, however
good in themselves, relatively to other Sankharas, are yet
barriers upon the Path; they are modifications of the Ego, and
therefore those things which bar it from the absolute.





Asana gets rid of Anatomy-con-
Pranayama gets rid of Physiology- } Involuntary
Yama and Niyama get rid of Ethical
} Voluntary
Pratyhara gets rid of the Objective.
Dharana gets rid of the Subjective.
Dhyana gets rid of the Ego.
Samadhi gets rid of the Soul Impersonal.

Asana destroys the static body (Nama).
Pranayama destroys the dynamic body (Rupa).
Yama destroys the emotions.
} (Vedana)
Niyama destroys the passions.
Dharana destroys the perceptions (Sañña).
Dhyana destroys the tendencies (Sankhara).
Samadhi destroys the consciousness (Viññanam).
Homard à la Thermidor destroys the digestion.
The last of these facts is the one of which I am most



The allusion in the title is not quite clear, though it may be
connected with the penultimate paragraph.
The chapter consists of two points of view from which to
regard Yoga, two odes upon a distant prospect of the Temple
of Madura, two Elegies on a mat of Kusha-grass.
The penultimate paragraph is introduced by way of repose.
Cynicism is a great cure for over-study.
There is a great deal of cynicism in this book, in one place
and another. It should be regarded as Angostura Bitters, to
brighten the flavour of a discourse which were else too sweet.
It prevents one from slopping over into sentimentality.





The early bird catches the worm; and the twelve-
year-old prostitute attracts the ambassador.
Neglect not the dawn-meditation!

The first plovers’ eggs fetch the highest prices; the
flower of virginity is esteemed by the pandar.
Neglect not the dawn-meditation!

Early to be and early to rise
Makes a man healthy and wealthy and wise:
But late to watch and early to pray
Brings him across the Abyss, they say.
Neglect not the dawn-meditation!



This chapter is perfectly simple, and needs no comment

(22) “The môme raths outgrabe”—Lewis Caroll.
But mômeis Parisian slang for a young girl, and rathe
O.E. for early.The rathe primrose”—Milton.



Seven are the veils of the dancing-girl in the harem of
Seven are the names, and seven are the lamps beside
Her bed.
Seven eunuchs guard Her with drawn sword; No
Man may come nigh unto Her.
In Her wine-cup are seven streams of the blood of the
Seven Spirits of God.
Seven are the heads of THE BEAST whereon she
The head of an Angel: the head of a Saint: the head of
Poet: the head of An Adulturous Woman: the
head of a Man of Valour: the head of a Satyr: and
the head of a Lion-Serpent.
Seven letters hath Her holiest name; and it is
This is the Seal upon the Ring that is on the Fore-
finger of IT: and it is the Seal upon the Tombs of
them whom She hath slain.
He is Wisdom. Let Him that hath Understanding
count the Number of Our Lady; for it is the
Number of a Woman; and Her Number is

An Hundred and Fifty and Six.



49 is the square of 7.
7 is the passive and feminine number.
The chapter should be read in connection with Chapter 31, for
IT now reappears.
The chapter heading, the Waratah, is a voluptuous scarlet
flower, common in Australia, and this connects the chapter with
Chapters 28 and 29; but this is only an allusion, for the subject of
the chapter is OUR LADY BABALON, who is conceived as the
feminine counterpart of IT.
This does not agree very well with the common or orthodox
theogony of Chapter 11; but it is to be explained by the
dithyrambic nature of the chapter.
In paragraph 3 NO MAN is of course NEMO, the Master of
the Temple. Liber 418 will explain most of the allusions in this
In paragraphs 5 and 6 the author frankly identifies himself
with the BEAST referred to in this book, and in the Apocalypse,
and in LIBER LEGIS. In paragraph 6 the word angel may
refer to his mission, and the word lion-serpentto the sigil of
his ascending decan. (Teth = Snake = spermatozoon and Leo in
the Zodiac, which like Teth itself has the snake-form. Θ first
written ! = Lingam-Yoni and Sol.)
Paragraph 7 explains the theological difficulty referred to
above. There is only one symbol, but this symbol has many
names: of these names BABALON is the holiest. It is the name
referred to in Liber Legis, 1, 22.
It will be noticed that the figure, or sigil, of BABALON is a
seal upon a ring, and this ring is upon the forefinger of IT. This
identifies further the symbol with itself.
It will be noticed that this seal, except for the absence of a
border, is the official seal of the AA. Compare Chapter 3.
It is also said to be the seal upon the tombs of them that she
hath slain, that is, of the Masters of the Temple.
In connection with the number 49, see Liber 418, the 22nd
Æthyr, as well as the usual authorities.





In the forest God met the Stag-beetle. “Hold! Wor-
ship me!” quoth God. “For I am All-Great, All-
Good, All Wise . . . . The stars are but sparks from
the forges of My smiths . . . .”
“Yea, verily and Amen,” said the Stag-beetle, “all this
do I believe, and that devoutly.”
“Then why do you not worship Me?”
“Because I am real and your are only imaginary.”
But the leaves of the forest rustled with the laughter
of the wind.
Said Wind and Wood: “They neither of them know



St. Hubert appears to have been a saint who saw a stag of a
mystical or sacred nature.
The Stag-beetle must not be identified with the one in
Chapter 16. It is a merely literary touch.
The chapter is a resolution of the universe into
Tetragrammaton; God the macrocosm and the microcosm
beetle. Both imagine themselves to exist; both say you and
I, and discuss their relative reality.
The things which really exist, the things which have no Ego,
and speak only in the third person, regard these as ignorant,
on account of their assumption of Knowledge.





Doubt thyself.
Doubt even if thou doubtest thyself.
Doubt all.
Doubt even if thou doubtest all.
It seems sometimes as if beneath all conscious doubt
there lay some deepest certainty. O kill it! Slay
the snake!
The horn of the Doubt-Goat be exalted!
Dive deeper, ever deeper, into the Abyss of Mind,
until thou unearth the fox THAT. On, hounds!
Yoicks! Tally-ho! Bring THAT to bay!
Then, wind the Mort!



The number 51 means failure and pain, and its subject is
appropriately doubt.
The title of the chapter is borrowed from the health-giving
and fascinating sport of fox-hunting, which Frater Perdurabo
followed in his youth.
This chapter should be read in connection with The
Solider and the Hunchback of which it is in some sort an
Its meaning is sufficiently clear, but in paragraphs 6 and 7
it will be notices that the identification of the Soldier with the
Hunchback has reached such a pitch that the symbols are
interchanged, enthusiasm being represented as the sinuous
snake, scepticism as the Goat of the Sabbath. In other words,
a state is reached in which destruction is as much joy as
creation. (Compare Chapter 46.)
Beyond this is a still deeper state of mind, which is THAT.





Fourscore and eleven books wrote I; in each did I
expound THE GREAT WORK fully, from The
beginning even unto The End thereof.
Then at last came certain men unto me, saying: O
Master! Expound thou THE GREAT WORK unto
us, O Master!
And I held my peace.
O generation of gossipers! who shall deliver you
from the Wrath that is fallen upon you?
O Babblers, Prattlers, Talkers, Loquacious Ones,
Tatlers, Chewers of the Red Rag that inflameth
Apis the Redeemer to fury, learn first what is
Work! and THE GREAT WORK is not so far



52 is BN, the number of the Son, Osiris-Apis, the Redeemer,
with whom the Master (Fra. P.) identifies himself. he permits
himself for a moment the pleasure of feeling his wounds; and,
turning upon his generation, gores it with his horns.
The fourscore-and-eleven books do not, we think, refer to
the ninety-one chapters of this little masterpiece, or even to
the numerous volumes he has penned, but rather to the fact
that 91 is the number of Amen, implying the completeness of
his work.
In the last paragraph is a paranomasia. To chew the red
rag is a phrase for to talk aimlessly and persistently, while it
is notorious that a red cloth will excite the rage of a bull.





Once round the meadow. Brother, does the hazel
twig dip?
Twice round the orchard. Brother, does the hazel
twig dip?
Thrice round the paddock, Highly, lowly, wily, holy,
dip, dip, dip!
Then neighed the horse in the paddock—and lo! its
For whoso findeth the SPRING beneath the earth
maketh the treaders-of-earth to course the
This SPRING is threefold; of water, but also of steel,
and of the seasons.
Also this PADDOCK is the Toad that hath the jewel
between his eyes—Aum Mani Padmen Hum!
(Keep us from Evil!)



A dowser is one who practises divination, usually with the
object of finding water or minerals, by means of the vibrations
of a hazel twig.
The meadow represents the flower of life; the orchard its
The paddock, being reserved for animals, represents life
itself. That is to say, the secret spring of life is found in the
place of life, with the result that the horse, who represents
ordinary animal life, becomes the divine horse Pegasus.
In paragraph 6 we see this spring identified with the
phallus, for it is not only a source of water, but highly elastic,
while the reference to the seasons alludes to the well-known
lines of the late Lord Tennyson:
In the spring a livelier iris changes on the burnished dove,
In the Spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts
of love.
–Locksley Hall.
In paragraph 7 the place of life, the universe of animal
souls, is identified with the toad, which
Ugly and venomous,
Wears yet a precious jewel in his head
—Romeo and Juliet—

this jewel being the divine spark in man, and indeed in all that
lives and moves and has its being. Note this phrase, which
is highly significant; the word lives excluding the mineral
kingdom, the word moves the vegetable kingdom, and the
phrase has its being the lower animals, including woman.
This toad and jewel are further identified with the
Lotus and jewel of the well-known Buddhist phrase and this
seems to suggest that this toad is the Yoni; the suggestion is
further strengthened by the concluding phrase in brackets,
Keep us from evil”, since, although it is the place of life, the
means of grace, it may be ruinous.





Five and forty apprentice masons out of work!
Fifteen fellow-craftsmen out of work!
Three Master Masons out of work!
All these sat on their haunches waiting The Report of
the Sojourner; for THE WORD was lost.
This is the Report of the Sojourners: THE WORD was
LOVE;23 and its number is An Hundred and
Then said each AMO;24 for its number is An Hundred
and Eleven.
Each took the Trowel from his LAP,25 whose number
is An Hundred and Eleven.
Each called moreover on the Goddess NINA,26 for
Her number is An Hundred and Eleven.
Yet with all this went The Work awry; for THE



The title of this chapter refers to the duty of the Tyler in a
blue lodge of Freemasons.
The numbers in paragraphs 1 to 3 are significant; each
Master-Mason is attended by 5 Fellow-Crafts, and each
Fellow-Craft by 3 Apprentices, as if the Masters were sitting
in pentagrams, and the Fellow-Craftsmen in triangles. This
may refer to the number of manual signs in each of these
The moral of the chapter is apparently that the mother-
letter a is an inadequate solution of the Great Problem. a is
identified with the Yoni, for all the symbols connected with it
in this place are feminine, but a is also a number of Samadhi
and mysticism, and the doctrine is therefore that Magick, in
that highest sense explained in the Book of the Law, is the
truer key.

(23) L=30, O=70, V=6, E=5=111.
(24) A=1, M=40, O=70=111.
(25) The trowel is shaped like a diamond or Yoni.
L=30, A=1, P=80=111
(26) N=50, I=10, N=50, A=1=111.





The One Thought vanished; all my mind was torn to
rags: —— nay! nay! my head was mashed into
wood pulp, and thereon the Daily Newspaper
was printed.
Thus wrote I, since my One Love was torn from me. I
cannot work: I cannot think: I seek distraction
here: I seek distraction there: but this is all my
truth, that I who love have lost; and how may I
I must have money to get to America.
O Mage! Sage! Gauge thy Wage, or in the Page of
Thine Age is written Rage!
O my darling! We should not have spent Ninety
Pounds in that Three Weeks in Paris! . . . Slash the
Breaks on thine arm with a pole-axe!



The number 55 refers to Malkuth, the Bride; it should then
be read in connection with Chapters 28, 29, 49.
The drooping sunflower is the heart, which needs the
divine light.
Since Jivatma was separated from Paramatma, as in
paragraph 2, not only is the Divine Unity destroyed but
Daath, instead of being the Child of Chokmah and Binah,
becomes the Abyss, and the Qliphoth arise. The only sense
which abides is that of loss, and the craving to retrieve it. In
paragraph 3 it is seen that this is impossible, owing
(paragraph 4) to his not having made proper arrangements to
recover the original position previous to making the divisions.
In paragraph 5 it is shown that this is because of allowing
enjoyment to cause forgetfulness of the really important thing.
Those who allow themselves to wallow in Samadhi are sorry
for it afterwards.
The last paragraph indicaed the precautions to be taken to
avoid this.
The number 90 is the last paragraph is not merely fact, but
symbolism; 90 being the number of Tzaddi, the Star, looked at
in its exoteric sense, as a naked woman, playing by a stream,
surrounded by birds and butterflies. The pole-axe is
recommended instead of the usual razor, as a more vigorous
weapon. One cannot be too severe in checking any faltering
in the work, any digression from the Path.





Holy, holy, holy, unto Five Hundred and Fifty Five
times holy be OUR LADY of the STARS!
Holy, holy, holy, unto One Hundred and Fifty Six
times holy be OUR LADY that rideth upon THE
Holy, holy, holy, unto the Number of Time
Necessary and Appropriate be OUR LADY Isis in
Her Millions-of-Names, All-Mother, Genetrix-
Yet holier than all These to me is LAYLAH, night and
death; for Her do I blaspheme alike the finite and
the The Infinite.
So wrote not FRATER PERDURABO, but the Imp
Crowley in his Name.
For forgery let him suffer Penal Servitude for Seven
Years; or at least let him do Pranayama all the
way home—home? nay! but to the house of the
harlot whom he loveth not. For it is LAYLAH
that he loveth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
And yet who knoweth which is Crowley, and which



The number of the chapter refers to Liber Legis I, 24, for
paragraph 1 refers to Nuit. The twins in the title are those
mentioned in paragraph 5.
555 is HADIT, HAD spelt in full. 156 is BABALON.
In paragraph 4 is the gist of the chapter, Laylah being
again introduced, as in Chapters 28, 29, 49 and 55.
The exoteric blasphemy, it is hinted in the last paragraph,
may be an esoteric arcanum, for the Master of the Temple is
interested in Malkuth, as Malkuth is in Binah; also Malkuth
is in Kether, and Kether in Malkuth”; and, to the Ipsissimus,
dissolution in the body of Nuit and a visit to a brothel may be





Dirt is matter in the wrong place.
Thought is mind in the wrong place.
Matter is mind; so thought is dirt.
Thus argued he, the Wise One, not mindful that all
place is wrong.
For not until the PLACE is perfected by a T saith he
The Rose uncrucified droppeth its petals; without the
Rose the Cross is a dry stick.
Worship then the Rosy Cross, and the Mystery of
And worship Him that swore by His holy T that One
should not be One except in so far as it is Two.
I am glad that LAYLAH is afar; no doubt clouds love.



The title of the chapter suggest the two in one, since the
ornithorhynchus is both bird and beast; it is also an
Australian animal, like Laylah herself, and was doubtless
chosen for this reason.
This chapter is an apology for the universe.
Paragraphs 1-3 repeat the familiar arguments against
reason in an epigrammatic form.
Paragraph 4 alludes to Liber Legis I, 52; place implies
space; denies homogeneity to space; but when place is
perfected by t—as it were, Yoni by Lingam—we get the
word placet”, meaning it pleases.
Paragraphs 6 and 7 explain this further; it is necessary to
separate things, in order that they might rejoice in uniting.
See Liber Legis I, 28-30, which is paraphrased in the
penultimate paragraph.
In the last paragraph this doctrine is interpreted in common
life by a paraphrase of the familiar and beautiful proverb,
Absence makes the heart grow fonder. (PS. I seem to get a
subtle after-taste of bitterness.)
(It is to be observed that the philosopher having first
committed the syllogistic error quaternis terminorum, in
attempting to reduce the terms to three, staggers into non
distributia medii. It is possible that considerations with Sir
Wm. Hamiltons qualification (or quantification (?)) of the
predicate may be taken as intervening, but to do so would
render the humour of the chapter too subtle for the average
reader in Oshkosh for whom this book is evidently written.)





Haggard am I, an hyaena; I hunger and howl. Men
think it laughter—ha! ha! ha!
There is nothing moveable or immovable under the
firmament of heaven on which I may write the
symbols of the secret of my soul.
Yea, though I were lowered by ropes into the utmost
Caverns and Vaults of Eternity, there is no word
to express even the first whisper of the Initiator in
mine ear: yea, I abhor birth, ululating
lamentations of Night!
Agony! Agony! the Light within me breeds veils; the
song within me dumbness.
God! in what prism may any man analyse my Light?
Immortal are the adepts; and yet They die—They die
of SHAME unspeakable; They die as the Gods
die, for SORROW.
Wilt Thou endure unto The End, O FRATER
PERDURABO, O Lamp in The Abyss? Thou hast
the Keystone of the Royal Arch; yet the
Apprentices, instead of making bricks, put the
straws in their hair, and think they are Jesus
O sublime tragedy and comedy of THE GREAT



Haggai, a notorious Hebrew prophet, is a Second Officer in
a Chapter of the Royal Arch Masons.
In this chapter the author, in a sort of raging eloquence,
bewails his impotence to express himself, or to induce others
to follow him to the light. In paragraph 1 he explains the
sardonic laughter, for which he is justly celebrated, as being
in reality the expression of this feeling.
Paragraph 2 is a reference to the Obligation of an Entered
Apprentice Mason.
Paragraph 3 refers to the Ceremony of Exaltation in Royal
Arch Masonry. The Initiate will be able to discover the most
formidable secret of that degree concealed in the paragraph.
Paragraphs 4-6 express an anguish to which that of
Gethsemane and Golgotha must appear like whitlows.
In paragraph 7 the agony is broken up by the sardonic or
cynical laughter to which we have previously alluded.
And the final paragraph, in the words of the noblest
simplicity, praises the Great Work; rejoices in its sublimity, in
the supreme Art, in the intensity of the passion and ecstasy
which it brings forth. (Note that the words passion and
ecstasy may be taken as symbolical of Yoni and Lingam.)





There is no help—but hotch potch!—in the skies
When Astacus sees Crab and Lobster rise.
Man that has spine, and hopes of heaven-to-be,
Lacks the Amoeba’s immortality.
What protoplasm gains in mobile mirth
Is loss of the stability of earth.
Matter and sense and mind have had their day:
Nature presents the bill, and all must pay.
If, as I am not, I were free to choose,
How Buddhahood would battle with The Booze!
My certainty that destiny is “good”
Rests on its picking me for Buddhahood.
Were I a drunkard, I should think I had
Good evidence that fate was “bloody bad.”



The title is a euphemism for homo sapiens.
The crab and the lobster are higher types of crustacae than
the crayfish.
The chapter is a short essay in poetic form on Determinism.
It hymns the great law of Equilibrium and Compensation, but
cynically criticises all philosophers, hinting that their view of
the universe depends on their own circumstances. The
sufferer from toothache does not agree with Doctor Pangloss,
that all is for the best in the best of all possible worlds. Nor
does the wealthiest of our Dukes complain to his cronies that
Times is cruel ard.





The Self-mastery of Percivale became the Self-
masturbatery of the Bourgeois.
Vir-tus has become “virture.”
The qualities which have made a man, a race, a city, a
caste, must be thrown off; death is the penalty of
failure. As it is written: In the hour of success
sacrifice that which is dearest to thee unto the
Infernal Gods!
The Englishman lives upon the excrement of his
All moral codes are worthless in themselves; yet in
every new code there is hope. Provided always
that the code is not changed because it is too
hard, but because if is fulfilled.
The dead dog floats with the stream; in puritan
France the best women are harlots; in vicious
England the best women are virgins.
If only the Archbishop of Canterbury were to go
make in the streets and beg his bread!
The new Christ, like the old, it the friend of publicans
and sinners; because his nature is ascetic.
O if everyman did No Matter What, provided that it
is the one thing that he will not and cannot do!



The title is explained in the note. The number of the
chapter may refer to the letter Samech (s), Temperence, in the
In paragraph 1 the real chastity of Percivale or Parsifal, a
chastity which did not prevent his dipping the point of the
sacred lance into the Holy Grail, is distinguished from its
misinterpretation by modern crapulence. The priests of the
gods were carefully chosen, and carefully trained to fulfill the
sacrament of fatherhood; the shame of sex consists in the
usurpation of its function by the unworthy. Sex is a
The word virtus means the quality of manhood.”
Modern virtue is the negation of all such qualities.
In paragraph 3, however, we see the penalty of
conservatism; children must be weaned.
In the penultimate paragraph the words the new Christ
alluded to the author.
In the last paragraph we reach the sublime mystic doctrine
that whatever you have must be abandoned. Obviously, that
which differentiates your consciousness from the absolute is
part of the content of that consciousness.

(27) Chapter so called because Amfortas was wounded by
his own spear, the spear that had made him king.





O Fool! begetter of both I and Naught, resolve this
Naught-y Knot!
O! Ay! this I and O—IO!—IAO! For I owe “I” aye to
Nibbana's Oe.28
I Pay—Pe, the dissolution of the House of God—for
Pe comes after O—after Ayin that triumphs over
Aleph in Ain, that is O.29
OP-us, the Work! the OP-ening of THE EYE!30
Thou Naughty Boy, thou openest THE EYE OF
HORUS to the Blind Eye that weeps!31 The Up-
right One in thine Uprightness rejoiceth—Death
to all Fishes!32


The number of this chapter refers to the Hebrew word Ain, the negative and Ani, 61.
The fool is the Fool of the Tarot, whose number is 0, but refers to the letter Aleph, 1.
A fools knot is a kind of knot which, although it has the appearance of a knot, is not really
a knot, but pulls out immediately.
The chapter consists of a series of complicated puns on 1 and I, with regard to their shape,
sound, and that of the figures which resemble them in shape.
Paragraph 1 calls upon the Fool of the Tarot, who is to be referred to Ipsissimus, to the
pure fool, Parsifal, to resolve this problem.
The word Naught-y suggests not only that the problem is sexual, but does not really exist.
Paragraph 2 shows the Lingam and Yoni as, in conjunction, the foundation of ecstasy
(IO!), and of the complete symbol I A O.
The latter sentence of the paragraph unites the two meanings of giving up the Lingam to
the Yoni, and the Ego to the Absolute. This idea, I must give up”, I owe, is naturally
completed by I pay, and the sound of the word pay suggest the Hebrew letter Pe (see Liber
XVI), which represents the final dissolution in Shivadarshana.
In Hebrew, the letter which follows O is P; it therefore follows Ayin, the Devil of the Tarot.
AYIN is spelt O I N, thus replacing the A in A I N by an O, the letter of the Devil, or Pan,
the phallic God.
Now AIN means nothing, and thus the replacing of AIN by OIN means the completion of
the Yoni by the Lingam, which is followed by the complete dissolution symbolised in the letter
These letters, O P, are then seen to be the root of opus, the Latin word for work”, in this
case, the Great Work. And they also begin the word opening. In Hindu philosophy, it is
said that Shiva, the Destroyer, is asleep, and that when he opens his eye the universe is
destroyed—another synonym, therefore, for the accomplishment of the Great Work. But the
eye of Shiva is also his Lingam. Shiva is himself the Mahalingam, which unites these
symbolisms. The opening of the eye, the ejaculation of the lingam, the destruction of the
universe, the accomplishment of the Great Work—all these are different ways of saying the
same thing.
The last paragraph is even obscurer to those unfamiliar to the masterpiece referred to in
the note (for the eye of Horus see 777, Col. XXI, line 10, the blind eye that weeps is a poetic
Arab name for the lingam).
The doctrine is that the Great Work should be accomplished without creating new Karma,
for the letter N, the fish, the vesica, the womb, breeds, whereas the Eye of Horus does not; or,
if it does so, breeds, according to Turkish tradition, a Messiah.
Death implies resurrection; the illusion is reborn, as the Scythe of Death in the Tarot has
a crosspiece. This is in connection with the Hindu doctrine, expressed in their injunction,
Fry your seeds. Act so as to balance your past Karma, and create no new, so that, as it
were, the books are balanced. While you have either a credit or a debit, you are still in
account with the universe.
(N.B. Frater P. wrote this chapter—61—while dining with friends, in about a minute and a
half. That is how you must know the Qabalah.)

(28) Oe = Island, a common symbol of Nibbana.
(29) }ya Ain. }yu Ayin.
(30) Scil. of Shiva.
(31) Cf. Bagh-i-Muattar for all this symbolism.
(32) Death = Nun, the letter before O, means a fish, a symbol of Christ, and also by its
shape the Female principle





The Phoenix hat a Bell for Sound; Fire for Sight; a
Knife for Touch; two cakes, one for taste, the
other for smell.
He standeth before the Altar of the Universe at
Sunset, when Earth-life fades.
He summons the Universe, and crowns it with
MAGICK Light to replace the sun of natural light.
He prays unto, and give homage to, Ra-Hoor-Khuit;
to Him he then sacrifices.
The first cake, burnt, illustrates the profit drawn from
the scheme of incarnation.
The second, mixt with his life's blood and eaten,
illustrates the use of the lower life to feed the
higher life.
He then takes the Oath and becomes free—un-
conditioned—the Absolute.
Burning up in the Flame of his Prayer, and born
again—the Phoenix!



This chapter is itself a comment on Chapter 44.

(33) Twig? = dost thou understand? Also the Phoenix
takes twigs to kindle the fire in which it burns itself.





I love LAYLAH.
I lack LAYLAH.
“Where is the Mystic Grace?” sayest thou?
Who told thee, man, that LAYLAH is not Nuit, and I
I destroyed all things; they are reborn in other
I gave up all for One; this One hath given up its
Unity for all?
I wrenched DOG backwards to find GOD; now GOD
Think me not fallen because I love LAYLAH, and
lack LAYLAH.
I am the Master of the Universe; then give me a heap
of straw in a hut, and LAYLAH naked! Amen.



This chapter returns to the subject of Laylah, and to the
subject already discussed in Chapters 3 and others,
particularly Chapter 56.
The title of the chapter refers to the old rime:
See-saw, Margery Daw,
Sold her bed to lie upon straw.

Was not she a silly slut

To sell her bed to lie upon dirt?
The word see-saw is significant, almost a comment upon
this chapter. To the Master of the Temple opposite rules
apply. His unity seeks the many, and the many is again
transmuted to the one. Solve et Coagula.





I was discussing oysters with a crony:
GOD sent to me the angels DIN and DONI.
“A man of spunk,” they urged, “would hardly choose
To breakfast every day chez Laperouse.”
“No!” I replied, “he would not do so, BUT
Think of his woe if Laperouse were shut!
“I eat these oysters and I drink this wine
Solely to drown this misery of mine.
“Yet the last height of consolation’s cold:
Its pinnacle is—not to be consoled!
“And though I sleep with Janefore and Eleanor
I feel no better than I did before,
“And Julian only fixes in my mind
Even before feels better than behind.
“You are Mercurial spirits-be so kind
As to enable me to raise the wind.
“Put me in LAYLAH’S arms again: the Accurst,
Leaving me that. elsehow may do his worst.”
DONI and DIN, perceiving me inspired,
Conceived their task was finished: they retired.
I turned upon my friend, and, breaking bounds,
Borrowed a trifle of two hundred pounds.



64 is the number of Mercury, and of the intelligence of that
planet, Din and Doni.
The moral of the chapter is that one wants liberty, although
one may not wish to exercise it: the author would readily die
in defence of the right of Englishmen to play football, or of his
own right not to play it. (As a great poet has expressed it: We
don't want to fight, but, by Jingo, if we do—”) This is his
meaning towards his attitude to complete freedom of speech
and action. He refuses to listen to the ostensible criticism of
the spirits, and explains his own position. Their real mission
was to rouse him to confidence and action.





“At last I lifted up mine eyes, and beheld; and lo! the
flames of violet were become as tendrils of
smoke, as mist at sunset upon the marsh-lands.
“And in the midst of the moon-pool of silver was the
Lily of white and gold. In this Lily is all honey, in
this Lily that flowereth at the midnight. In this
Lily is all perfume; in this Lily is all music. And it
enfolded me.”
Thus the disciples that watched found a dead body
kneeling at the altar. Amen!



65 is the number of Adonai, the Holy Guardian Angel; see
Liber 65, Konx Om Pax, and other works of reference.
The chapter title means, So may he pass away,” the blank
obviously referring to N E M O.
The moon-pool of silver is the Path of Gimel, leading
from Tiphareth to Kether; the flames of violet are the Ajna-
Chakkra; the lily itself is Kether, the lotus of the Sahasrara.
“Lily” is spelt with a capital to connect with Laylah.





“Say: God is One.” This I obeyed: for a thousand and
one times a night for one thousand nights and
one did I affirm the Unity.
But “night” only means LAYLAH;34 and Unity and
GOD are not worth even her blemishes.
Al-lah is only sixty-six; but LAYLAH counteth up to
Seven and Seventy.35
“Yea! the night shall cover all; the night shall cover



66 is the number of Allah; the praying mantis is a
blasphemous grasshopper which caricatures the pious.
The chapter recurs to the subject of Laylah, whom the
author exalts above God, in continuation of the reasonings
given in Chapter 56 and 63. She is identified with N.O.X. by
the quotation from Liber 65.

(34) Laylah is the Arabic for night.
(35) A L L H = 1 + 30 + 30 + 5 = 66. L + A + I + L + A +
H = 77, which also gives MSL, the Influence of the Highest,
OZ, a goat, and so on.





I have bought pleasant trifles, and thus soothed my
lack of LAYLAH.
Light is my wallet, and my heart is also light; and yet
I know that the clouds will gather closer for the
false clearing.
The mirage will fade; then will the desert be thirstier
than before.
O ye who dwell in the Dark Night of the Soul,
beware most of all of every herald of the Dawn!
O ye who dwell in the City of the Pyramids beneath
the Night of PAN, remember that ye shall see no
more light but That of the great fire that shall
consume your dust to ashes!



This chapter means that it is useless to try to abandon the
Great Work. You may occupy yourself for a time with other
things, but you will only increase your bitterness, rivet the
chains still on your feet.
Paragraph 4 is a practical counsel to mystics not to break
up their dryness by relaxing their austerities.
The last paragraph will only be understood by Masters of
the Temple.





At four o’clock there is hardly anybody in Rumpel-
I have my choice of place and service; the babble of
the apes will begin soon enough.
“Pioneers, O Pioneers!”
Sat no Elijah under the Juniper-tree, and wept?
Was not Mohammed forsaken in Mecca, and Jesus in
These prophets were sad at heart; but the chocolate at
Rumpelmayer’s is great, and the Mousse Noix is
like Nepthys for perfection.
Also there are little meringues with cream and
chestnut-pulp, very velvety seductions.
Sail I not toward LAYLAH within seven days?
Be not sad at heart, O prophet; the babble of the apes
will presently begin.
Nay, rejoice exceedingly; for after all the babble of
the apes the Silence of the Night.



Manna was a heavenly cake which, in the legend, fed the
Children of Israel in the Wilderness.
The author laments the failure of his mission to mankind,
but comforts himself with the following reflections:
(1) He enjoys the advantages of solitude. (2) Previous
prophets encountered similar difficulties in convincing their
hearers. (3) Their food was not equal to that obtainable at
Rumpelmayers. (4) In a few days I am going to rejoin
Laylah. (5) My mission will succeed soon enough. (6) Death
will remove the nuisance of success.





This is the Holy Hexagram.
Plunge from the height, O God, and interlock with
Plunge from the height, O Man, and interlock with
The Red Triangle is the desceding tongue of grade;
the Blue Triangle is the ascending tongue of
This Interchange, the Double Gift of Tongues, the
Word of Double Power—ABRAHADABRA!—is
the sign of the GREAT WORK, for the GREAT
WORK is accomplished in Silence. And behold is
not that Word equal to Cheth, that is Cancer,
whose Sigil is d?
This Work also eats up itself, accomplishes its own
end, nourishes the worker, leaves no seed, is
perfect in itself.
Little children, love one another!



The key to the understanding of this chapter is given in the
number and the title, the former being intelligible to all
nations who employ Arabic figures, the latter only to experts
in deciphering English puns.
The chapter alludes to Levi’s drawing of the Hexagram,
and is a criticism of, or improvement upon, it. In the ordinary
Hexagram, the Hexagram of nature, the red triangle is
upwards, like fire, and the blue triangle downwards, like
water. In the magical hexagram this is reversed; the
descending red triangle is that of Horus, a sign specially
revealed by him personally, at the Equinox of the Gods. (It is
the flame descending upon the altar, and licking up the burnt
offering.) The blue triangle represents the aspiration, since
blue is the colour of devotion, and the triangle, kinetically
considered, is the symbol of directed force.
In the first three paragraphs this formation of the hexagram
is explained: it is a symbol of the mutual seperation of the
Holy Guardian Angel and his client. In the interlocking is
indicated the completion of the work.
Paragraph 4 explains in slightly different language what we
have said above, and the scriptural image of tongues is
In paragraph 5 the symbolism of tongues is further
developed. Abrahadabra is our primal example of an
interlocked word. We assume that the reader has thoroughly
studied that word in Liber D, etc. The sigil of Cancer links up
this symbolism with the number of this chapter.
The remaining paragraphs conclude the Gallic symbolism.





FRATER PERDURABO is of the Sanhedrim of the
Sabbath, say men; He is the Old Goat himself, say
Therefore do all adore him; the more they detest him
the more do they adore him.
Ay! let us offer the Obscene Kiss!
Let us seek the Mystery of the Gnarled Oak, and of
the Glacier Torrent!
To Him let us offer our babes! Around Him let us
dance in the mad moonlight!
But FRATER PERDURABO is nothing but AN EYE;
what eye none knoweth.
Skip, witches! Hop, toads! Take your pleasure!—for
the play of the Universe is the pleasure of



70 is the number of the letter Ain, the Devil in the Tarot.
The chapter refers to the Witches Sabbath, the description
of which in Payne Knight should be carefully read before
studying this chapter. All the allusions will then be obvious,
save those which we proceed to note.
Sanhedrim, a body of 70 men. An Eye. Eye in Hebrew is
Oin, 70.
The gnarled oak and the glacier torrent refer to the
confessions made by many witches.
In paragraph 7 is seen the meaning of the chapter; the
obscene and distorted character of much of the universe is a
whim of the Creator.





For mind and body alike there is no purgative like
Pranayama, no purgative like Pranayama.
For mind, for body, for mind and body alike—
alike!—there is, there is, there is no purgative, no
purgative like Pranayama—Pranayama!—Prana-
yama! yea, for mind and body alike there is no
purgative, no purgative, no purgative (for mind
and body alike!) no purgative, purgative,
purgative like Pranayama, no purgative for mind
and body alike, like Pranayama, like Pranayama,
like Prana—Prana—Prana—Prana—Pranayama!



This chapter is a plain statement of fact, put in anthem form
for emphasis.
The title is due to the circumstances of the early piety of
Frater Perdurabo, who was frequently refreshed by hearing
the anthems in this chief of the architectural glories of his
Alma Mater.





Shemhamphorash! all hail, divided Name!
Utter it once, O mortal over-rash!—
The Universe were swallowed up in flame

Nor deem that thou amid the cosmic crash
May find one thing of all those things the same!
The world has gone to everlasting smash.

No! if creation did possess an aim
(It does not.) it were only to make hash
Of that most “high” and that most holy game,



There are three consecutive verses in the Pentateuch, each
containing 72 letters. If these be written beneath each other,
the middle verse bring reversed, i.e. as in English, and
divisions are then made vertically, 72 tri-lateral names are
formed, the sum of which is Tetragrammaton; this is the great
and mysterious Divided Name; by adding the terminations
Yod He, or Aleph Lamed, the names of 72 Angels are formed.
The Hebrews say that by uttering this Name the universe is
destroyed. This statement means the same as that of the
Hindus, that the effective utterance of the name of Shiva
would cause him to awake, and so destroy the universe.
In Egyptian and Gnostic magick we meet with pylons and
Æons, which only open on the utterance of the proper word.
In Mohammedan magick we find a similar doctrine and
practice; and the whole of Mantra-Yoga has been built on this
Thoth, the god of Magick, is the inventor of speech; Christ
is the Logos.
Lines 14 are now clear.
In lines 57 we see the results of Shivadarshana. Do not
imagine that any single ides, however high, however holy (or
even however insignificant!!), can escape the destruction.
The logician may say, But white exists, and if white is
destroyed, it leaves black; yet black exists. So that in that
case at least one known phenomenon of this universe is
identical with one of that. Vain word!
The logician and his logic are alike involved in the
universal ruin.
Lines 811 indicate that this fact is the essential one about
The title is explained by the intentionally blasphemous puns
and colloquialisms of lines 9 and 10.





Death rides the Camel of Initiation.36
Thou humped and stiff-necked one that groanest in
Thine Asana, death will relieve thee!
Bite not, Zelator dear, but bide! Ten days didst thou
go with water in thy belly? Thou shalt go twenty
more with a firebrand at thy rump!
Ay! all thine aspiration is to death: death is the crown
of all thine aspiration. Triple is the cord of silver
moonlight; it shall hang thee, O Holy One, O
Hanged Man, O Camel-Termination-of-the-third-
person-plural for thy multiplicity, thou Ghost of a
Could but Thy mother behold thee, O thou UNT!37
The Infinite Snake Ananta that surroundeth the
Universe is but the Coffin-Worm!



The Hebrew letter Gimel adds up to 73; it means a camel.
The title of the chapter is borrowed from the well-known lines of Rudyard Kipling:
But the commissariat camel, when all is said and done,
Es a devil and an awstridge and an orphan-child in one.
Paragraph 1 may imply a dogma of death as the highest form of initiation.
Initiation is not a simple phenomenon. Any given initiation must take place on
several planes, and is not always conferred on all of these simultaneously.
Intellectual and moral perception of truth often, one might almost say usually,
precedes spiritual and physical perceptions. One would be foolish to claim initiation
unless it were complete on every plane.
Paragraph 2 will easily be understood by those who have practised Asana. There
is perhaps a sardonic reference to rigor mortis, and certainly one conceives the half-
humorous attitude of the expert towards the beginner.
Paragraph 3 is a comment in the same tone of rough good nature. The word
Zelator is used because the Zelator of the A.'.A.'. has to pass an examination in Asana
before he becomes eligible for the grade of Practicus. The ten days allude merely to
the tradition about the camel, that he can go ten days without water.
Paragraph 4 identifies the reward of initiation with death; it is a cessation of all
that we call life, in a way in which what we call death is not. 3, silver, and the moon,
are all correspondences of Gimel, the letter of the Aspiration, since Gimel is the Path
that leads from the Microcosm in Tiphareth to the Macrocosm in Kether.
The epithets are far too complex to explain in detail, but Mem, the Hanged man,
has a close affinity for Gimel, as will be seen by a study of Liber 418.
Unt is not only the Hindustani for Camel, but the usual termination of the third
person plural of the present tense of Latin words of the Third and Fourth
The reason for thus addresing the reader is that he has now transcended the first
and second persons. (Cf. Liber LXV, Chapter III, vv. 21-24, and FitzGerald's Omar
Some talk there was of Thee and Me
There seemed; and then no more of Thee and Me.”)
The third person plural must be used, because he has now perceived himself to be
a bundle of impressions. For this is the point on the Path of Gimel when he is
actually crossing the Abyss; the student must consult the account of this given in The
Temple of Solomon the King.”
The Ego is but the ghost of a non-Ego”, the imaginary focus at which the non-
Ego becomes sensible.
Paragraph 5 expresses the wish of the Guru that his Chela may attain safely to
Binah, the Mother.
Paragraph 6 whispers the ultimate and dread secret of initiation into his ear,
identifying the vastness of the Most Holy with the obscene worm that gnaws the
bowels of the damned.

(36) Death is said by the Arabs to ride a Camel. The Path of Gimel (which
means a Camel) leads from Tiphareth to Kether, and its Tarot trump is the High
(37) UNT, Hindustani for Camel. I.e. Would that BABALON might look on thee
with favour.





When NOTHING became conscious, it made a bad
This consciousness acquired individuality: a worse
The Hermit asked for love; worst bargain of all.
And now he has let his girl go to America, to have
“success” in “life”: blank loss.
Is there no end to this immortal ache
That haunts me, haunts me sleeping or awake?
If I had Laylah, how could I forget
Time, Age, and Death? Insufferable fret!
Were I an hermit, how could I support
The pain of consciousness, the curse of thought?
Even were I THAT, there still were one sore
The Abyss that stretches between THAT and
Still, the first step is not so far away:—
The Mauretania sails on Saturday!



Carey Street is well known to prosperous Hebrews and
poor Englishmen as the seat of the Bankruptcy buildings.
Paragraphs 1-4 are in prose, the downward course, and the
rest of the chapter in poetry, the upward.
The first part shows the fall from Nought in four steps; the
second part, the return.
The details of this Hierarchy have already been indicated in
various chapters. It is quite conventional mysticism.
Step 1, the illumination of Ain as Ain Soph Aour; step 2, the
concentration of Ain Soph Aour in Kether; step 3, duality and
the rest of it down to Malkuth; step 4, the stooping of Malkuth
to the Qliphoth, and the consequent ruin of the Tree of Life.
Part 2 show the impossibility of stopping on the Path of
The final couplet represents the first step upon the Path,
which must be taken even although the aspirant is
intellectually aware of the severity of the whole course. You
must give up the world for love, the material for the moral
idea, before that, in its turn, is surrendered to the spiritual.
And so on. This is a Laylah-chapter, but in it Laylah figures
as the mere woman.





Spring beans and strawberries are in: goodbye to the
If I really knew what I wanted, I could give up
Laylah, or give up everything for Laylah.
But “what I want” varies from hour to hour.
This wavering is the root of all compromise, and so
of all good sense.
With this gift a man can spend his seventy years in
Now is this well or ill?
Emphasise gift, then man, then spend, then seventy
years, and lastly peace, and change the intonations
—each time reverse the meaning!
I would show you how; but—for the moment!
—I prefer to think of Laylah.



The title is explained in the note, but also alludes to
paragraph 1, the plover's egg being often contemporary with
the early strawberry.
Paragraph 1 means that change of diet is pleasant; vanity
pleases the mind; the idée fixe is a sign of insanity. See
paragraphs 4 and 5.
Paragraph 6 puts the question, Then is sanity or insanity
desirable? The oak is weakened by the ivy which clings
around it, but perhaps the ivy keeps it from going mad.
The next paragraph expresses the difficulty of expressing
thought in writing; it seems, on the face of it, absurd that the
the text of this book, composed as it is of English, simple,
austere, and terse, should need a commentary. But it does so,
or my most gifted Chela and myself would hardly have been at
the pains to write one. It was in response to the impassioned
appeals of many most worthy brethren that we have yielded
up that time and thought which gold could not have bought, or
torture wrested.
Laylah is again the mere woman.

(38) These eggs being speckled, resemble the wandering
mind referred to.





Hail! all you spavined, gelded, hamstrung horses!
Ye shall surpass the planets in their courses.
How? Not by speed, nor strength, nor power to stay,
But by the silence that succeeds the Neigh!



Phaeton was the charioteer of the Sun in Greek mythology.
At first sight the prose of this chapter, though there is only one
dissyllable in it, appears difficult; but this is a glamour cast by Maya. It is
a compendium of various systems of philosophy.
No = Nihilism; Yes = Monism, and all dogmatic systems; Perhaps =
Pyrrhonism and Agnosticism; O! = The system of Liber Legis. (See
Chapter 0.)
Eye = Phallicism (cf. Chapters 61 and 70); I = Fichteanism; Hi! =
Transcendentalism; Y? = Scepticism, and the method of science. No denies
all these and closes the argument.
But all this is a glamour cast by Maya; the real meaning of the prose of
this chapter is as follows:
No, some negative conception beyond the IT spoken of in Chapters 31, 49
and elsewhere.
Yes, IT.
Perhaps, the flux of these.
O!, Nuit, Hadit, Ra-Hoor-Khuit.
Eye, the phallus in Kether.
I, the Ego in Chokmah.
Hi!, Binah, the feminine principle fertilised. (He by Yod.)
Y?, the Abyss.
No, the refusal to be content with any of this.
But all this is again only a glamour of Maya, as previously observed in
the text (Chapter 31). All this is true and false, and it is true and false to say
that it is true and false.
The prose of this chapter combines, and of course denies, all these
meanings, both singly and in combination. It is intended to stimulate
thought to the point where it explodes with violence and for ever.
A study of this chapter is probably the best short cut to Nibbana.
The thought of the Master in this chapter is exceptionally lofty.
That this is the true meaning, or rather use, of this chapter, is evident
from the poetry.
The master salutes the previous paragraphs as horses which, although in
themselves worthless animals (without the epithets), carry the Charioteer in
the path of the Sun. The question, How? Not by their own virtues, but by
the silence which results when they are all done with.
The word neigh is a pun on nay”, which refers to the negative
conception already postulated as beyond IT. The suggestion is, that there
may be something falsely described as silence, to represent absence-of-
conception beyond that negative.
It would be possible to interpret this chapter in its entirety as an
adverse criticism of metaphysics as such, and this is doubtless one of its
many sub-meanings.







L. A. L. Y. A. H.


77 is the number of Laylah (LAILAH), to whom this chapter
is wholly devoted.
The first section of the title is an analysis of 77 considered
as a mystic number.
7, the septenary; 11, the magical number; 77, the mani-
festation, therefore, of the septenary.
Through matter, because 77 is written in Hebrew Ayin
Zayin (OZ), an He-Goat, the symbol of matter, Capricornus,
the Devil of the Tarot; which is the picture of the Goat of the
Sabbath upon an altar, worshipped by two other devils, male
and female.
As will be seen from the photogravure inserted opposite this
chapter, Laylah is herself not devoid of Devil”, but, as she
habitually remarks, on being addressed in terms implying this
fact, Its nice to be a devil when you're one like me.
The text need no comment, but it will be noticed that it is
much shorter that the title.
Now, the Devil of the Tarot is the Phallus, the Redeemer,
and Laylah symbolises redemption to Frater P. The number
77, also, interpreted as in the title, is the redeeming force.
The ratio of the length of title and text is the key to the true
meaning of the chapter, which is, that Redemption is really as
simple as it appears complex, that the names (or veils) of truth
are obscure and many, the Truth itself plain and one; but that
the latter must be reached through the former. This chapter is
therefore an apology, were one needed, for the Book of Lies
itself. In these few simple words, it explains the necessity of
the book, and offers it—humbly, yet with confidence—as a
means of redemption to the world of sorrowing men.
The name with full-stops: L.A.Y.L.A.H. represents an
analysis of the name, which may be left to the ingenium of the
advanced practicus (see photograph).





The Great Wheel of Samsara.
The Wheel of the Law [Dhamma].
The Wheel of the Taro.
The Wheel of the Heavens.
The Wheel of Life.
All these Wheels be one; yet of all these the Wheel of
the TARO alone avails thee consciously.
Meditate long and broad and deep, O man, upon this
Wheel, revolving it in thy mind
Be this thy task, to see how each card springs
necessarily from each other card, even in due
order from The Fool unto The Ten of Coins.
Then, when thou know’st the Wheel of Destiny
complete, mayst thou perceive THAT Will which
moved it first. [There is no first or last.}
And lo! thou art past through the Abyss.



The number of this chapter is that of the cards of the Tarot.
The title of this chapter is a pun of the phrase weal and
woe. It means motion and rest. The moral is the
conventional mystic one; stop thought at its source!
Five wheels are mentioned in this chapter; all but the third
refer to the universe as it is; but the wheel of the Tarot is not
only this, but represents equally the Magickal Path.
This practice is therefore given by Frater P. to his pupils;
to treat the sequence of the cards as cause and effect. Thence,
to discover the cause behind all causes. Success in this
practice qualifies for the grade of Master of the Temple.
In the penultimate paragraph the bracketed passage
reminds the student that the universe is not to be contemplated
as a phenomenon in time.





Some men look into their minds into their memories,
and find naught but pain and shame.
These then proclaim “The Good Law” unto mankind.
These preach renunciation, “virtue”, cowardice in
every form.
These whine eternally.
Smug, toothless, hairless Coote, debauch-emascu-
lated Buddha, come ye to me? I have a trick to
make you silent, O ye foamers-at-the mouth!
Nature is wasteful; but how well She can afford it!
Nature is false; but I’m a bit of a liar myself.
Nature is useless; but then how beautiful she is!
Nature is cruel; but I too am a Sadist.
The game goes on; it may have been too rough for
Buddha, but it’s (if anything) too dull for me.
Viens, beau négre! Donne-moi tes levres encore!



The title of this chapter is a place frequented by Frater P.
until it became respectable.
The chapter is a rebuke to those who can see nothing but
sorrow and evil in the universe.
The Buddhist analysis may be true, but not for men of
courage. The plea that love is sorrow, because its ecstasies
are only transitory, is contemptible.
Paragraph 5. Coote is a blackmailer exposed by The
Equinox. The end of the paragraph refers to Catullus, his
famous epigram about the youth who turned his uncle into
Harpocrates. It is a subtle way for Frater P. to insist upon his
virility, since otherwise he could not employ the remedy.
The last paragraph is a quotation. In Paris, Negroes are
much sought after by sportive ladies. This is therefore
presumably intended to assert that even women may enjoy life
The word Sadist is taken from the famous Marquis de
Sade, who gave supreme literary form to the joys of torture.





The price of existence is eternal warfare.39
Speaking as an Irishman, I prefer to say: The price of
eternal warfare is existence.
And melancholy as existence is, the price is well
worth paying.
Is there is a Government? then I’m agin it! To Hell
with the bloody English!
“O FRATER PERDURABO, how unworthy are these
“D’ye want a clip on the jaw?”40



Frater P. continues the subject of Chapter 79.
He pictures himself as a vigorous, reckless, almost rowdy
Irishman. He is no thin-lipped prude, to seek salvation in
unmanly self-abnegation; no Creeping Jesus, to slink through
existence to the tune of the Dead March in Saul; no
Cremerian Callus to warehouse his semen in his cerebellum.
New Thoughtist is only Old Eunuch writ small.
Paragraph 2 gives the very struggle for life, which
disheartens modern thinkers, as a good enough reason for
Paragraph 5 expresses the sorrow of the modern thinker,
and paragraph 6 Frater P.s suggestion for replying to such

(39) ISVD, the foundation scil. of the universe = 80 = P,
the letter of Mars.
(40) P also means a mouth.





I am not an Anarchist in your sense of the word: your
brain is too dense for any known explosive to
affect it.
I am not an Anarchist in your sense of the word:
fancy a Policeman let loose on Society!
While there exists the burgess, the hunting man, or
any man with ideals less than Shelley’s and self-
discipline less than Loyola’s—in short, any man
who falls far short of MYSELF—I am against
Anarchy, and for Feudalism.
Every “emancipator” has enslaved the free.



The title is the name of one of the authors of the affair of
the Haymarket, in Chicago. See Frank Harris,The Bomb.
Paragraph 1 explains that Frater P. sees no use in the
employment of such feeble implements as bombs. Nor does he
agree even with the aim of the Anarchists, since, although
Anarchists themselves need no restraint, not daring to drink
cocoa, lest their animal passions should be aroused (as Olivia
Haddon assures my favourite Chela), yet policemen, unless
most severely repressed, would be dangerous wild beasts.
The last bitter sentence is terribly true; the personal liberty
of the Russian is immensely greater than that of the
Englishman. The latest Radical devices for securing freedom
have turned nine out of ten Englishmen into Slaves, obliged to
report their movements to the government like so many ticket-
of-leave men.
The only solution of the Social Problem is the creation of a
class with the true patriarchal feeling, and the manners and
obligations of chivalry.





Witch-moon that turnest all the streams to blood,
I take this hazel rod, and stand, and swear
An Oath—beneath this blasted Oak and bare
That rears its agony above the flood
Whose swollen mask mutters an atheist’s prayer.
What oath may stand the shock of this offence:
“There is no I, no joy, no permanence”?

Witch-moon of blood, eternal ebb and flow
Of baffled birth, in death still lurks a change;
And all the leopards in thy woods that range,
And all the vampires in their boughs that glow,
Brooding on blood-thirst-these are not so strange
And fierce as life’s unfailing shower. These die,
Yet time rebears them through eternity.

Hear then the Oath, with-moon of blood, dread
Let all thy stryges and thy ghouls attend!
He that endureth even to the end
Hath sworn that Love’s own corpse shall lie at noon
Even in the coffin of its hopes, and spend
All the force won by its old woe and stress
In now annihilating Nothingness.

This chapter is called Imperial Purple
and A Punic War.



The title of this chapter, and its two sub-titles, will need no
explanation to readers of the classics.
This poem, inspired by Jane Cheron, is as simple as it is
The poet asks, in verse 1, How can we baffle the Three
In verse 2, he shows that death is impotent against life.
In verse 3, he offers the solution of the problem.
This is, to accept things as they are, and to turn your whole
energies to progress on the Path.





Many becomes two: two one: one Naught. What
comes to Naught?
What! shall the Adept give up his hermit life, and go
eating and drinking and making merry?
Ay! shall he not do so? he knows that the Many is
Naught; and having Naught, enjoys that Naught
even in the enjoyment of the Many.
For when Naught becomes Absolute Naught, it
becomes again the Many.
Any this Many and this Naught are identical; they
are not correlatives or phases of some one deeper
Absence-of-Idea; they are not aspects of some
further Light: they are They!
Beware, O my brother, lest this chapter deceive thee!



The title of this chapter refers to the Greek number, PG
being Pig without an i.
The subject of the chapter is consequently corollary to
Chapters 79 and 80, the ethics of Adept life.
The Adept has performed the Great Work; He has reduced
the Many to Naught; as a consequence, he is no longer afraid
of the Many.
Paragraph 4. See Berashith.
Paragraph 5, takes things for what they are; give up
interpreting, refining away, analysing. Be simple and lucid
and radiant as Frater P.
Paragraph 6. With this commentary there is no further
danger, and the warning becomes superfluous.

(41) πγ = PG = Pig without an I = Blind Pig.





Only through devotion to FRATER PERDURABO
may this book be understood.
How much more then should He devote Himself to
AIWASS for the understanding of the Holy Books
Yet must he labour underground eternally. The sun
is not for him, nor the flowers, nor the voices of
the birds; for he is past beyond all these. Yea,
verily, oft-times he is weary; it is well that the
weight of the Karma of the Infinite is with him.
Therefore is he glad indeed; for he hath finished THE
WORK; and the reward concerneth him no whit.



This continues the subject of Chapter 83.
The title refers to the mental attitude of the Master; the
avalanche does not fall because it is tired of staying on the
mountain, or in order to crush the Alps below it, or because
that it feels that it needs exercise. Perfectly unconscious,
perfectly indifferent, it obeys the laws of Cohesion and of
It is the sun and its own weight that loosen it.
So, also, is the act of the Adept. Delivered from the lust of
result, he is every way perfect.
Paragraphs 1 and 2. By devotion to Frater Perdurabo is
not meant sycophancy, but intelligent reference and
imaginative sympathy. Put your mind in tune with his;
identify yourself with him as he seeks to identify himself with
the Intelligence that communicates to him the Holy Books.
Paragraphs 3 and 4 are explained by the 13th Aethyr and
the title.





I distrust any thoughts uttered by any man whose
health is not robust.
All other thoughts are surely symptoms of disease.
Yet these are often beautiful, and may be true within
the circle of the conditions of the speaker.
Any yet again! Do we not find that the most robust
of men express no thoughts at all? They eat,
drink, sleep, and copulate in silence.
What better proof of the fact that all thought is dis-
We are Strassburg geese; the tastiness of our talk
comes from the disorder of our bodies.
We like it; this only proves that our tastes also are
depraved and debauched by our disease.



We now return to that series of chapters which started with
Chapter 8 (H).
The chapter is perfectly simple and needs no comment.





Ex nihilo N. I. H. I. L. fit.
N. the Fire that twisteth itself and burneth like a
I. the unsullied ever-flowing water.
H. the interpenetrating Spirit, without and within. Is
not its name ABRAHADABRA?
I. the unsullied ever-flowing air.
L. the green fertile earth.
Fierce are the Fires of the Universe, and on their
daggers they hold aloft the bleeding heart of
Upon the earth lies water, senuous and sleepy.
Above the water hangs air; and above air, but also
below fire—and in all—the fabric of all being
woven on Its invisible design, is


The number 86 refers to Elohim, the name of the elemental forces.
The title is the Sanskrit for That, in its sense of “The Existing.”
This chapter is an attempt to replace Elohim by a more
satisfactory hieroglyph of the elements.
The best attribution of Elohim is Aleph, Air; Lamed, Earth; He,
Spirit; Yod, Fire; Mem, Water. But the order is not good; Lamed is
not satisfactory for Earth, and Yod too spiritualised a form of Fire.
(But see Book 4, part III.)
Paragraphs 1-6. Out of Nothing, Nothing is made. The word
Nihil is taken to affirm that the universe is Nothing, and that is now
to be analysed. The order of the elements is that of Jeheshua. The
elements are taken rather as in Nature; N is easily Fire, since Mars
is the ruler of Scorpio: the virginity of I suits Air and Water,
elements which in Magick are closely interwoven: H, the letter of
breath, is suitable for Spirit; Abrahadabra is called the name of
Spirit, because it is Cheth: L is Earth, green and fertile, because
Venus, the greenness, fertility and earthiness of things is the Lady of
Libra, Lamed.
In paragraph 7 we turn to the so-called Jetziratic attribution of
Pentagrammaton, that followed by Dr. Dee, and by the Hindus,
Tibetans, Chinese and Japanese. Fire is the Foundation, the central
core, of things; above this forms a crust, tormented from below, and
upon this condenses the original steam. Around this flows the air,
created by Earth and Water through the action of vegetation.
Such is the globe; but all this is a mere strain in the æthyr,
AIQHR. Here is a new Pentagrammaton, presumably suitable for
another analysis of the elements; but after a different manner.
Alpha (A) is Air; Rho (P) the Sun; these are the Spirit and the Son of
Christian theology. In the midst is the Father, expressed as Father-
and-Mother, I-H (Yod and He), Eta (H) being used to express the
Mother instead of Epsilon (E), to show that She has been
impregnated by the Spirit; it is the rough breathing and not the soft.
The centre of all is Theta (Q), which was originally written as a
point in a circle (!), the sublime hieroglyph of the Sun in the
Macrocosm, and in the Microcosm of the Lingam in conjunction
with the Yoni.
This word A I Q H R (Æthyr) is therefore a perfect hieroglyph of
the Cosmos in terms of Gnostic Theology.
The reader should consult La Messe et ses Mystères, par Jean
Marie de V . . . . (Paris et Nancy, 1844), for a complete
demonstration of the incorporation of the Solar and Phallic
Mysteries in Christianity.





There is a dish of sharks’ fins and of sea-slug, well set
in birds’ nests . . .oh!
Also there is a soufflé most exquisite of Chow-Chow.
These did I devise.
But I have never tasted anything to match the

which she gave me before She went away.
March 22, 1912. E. V.



This chapter is technically one of the Laylah chapters.
It means that, however great may be ones own
achievements the gifts from on high are still better.
The Sigil is taken from a Gnostic talisman, and refers to the





Teach us Your secret, Master! yap my Yahoos.
Then for the hardness of their hearts, and for the
softness of their heads, I taught them Magick.
But . . . alas!
Teach us Your real secret, Master! how to become
invisible, how to acquire love, and oh! beyond all,
how to make gold.
But how much gold will you give me for the Secret of
Infinite Riches?
Then said the foremost and most foolish; Master, it is
nothing; but here is an hundred thousand
This did I deign to accept, and whispered in his ear
this secret:



The term gold bricks is borrowed from American finance.
The chapter is a setting of an old story.
A man advertises that he could tell anyone how to make
four hundred a year certain, and would do so on receipt of a
shilling. To every sender he dispatched a post-card with these
words: Do as I do.
The word sucker is borrowed from American finance.
The moral of the chapter is, that it is no good trying to
teach people who need to be taught.





I am annoyed about the number 89.
I shall avenge myself by writing nothing in this
That, too, is wise; for since I am annoyed, I could not
write even a reasonably decent lie.



Frater P. had been annoyed by a scurvy doctor, the number
of whose house was 89.
He shows that his mind was completely poisoned in respect
of that number by his allowing himself to be annoyed.
(But note that a good Qabalist cannot err. In Him all is
right. 89 is Body—that which annoys—and the Angel of the
Lord of Despair and Cruelty.
Also Silence and Shut Up.
The four meanings completely describe the chapter.)





Behold! I have lived many years, and I have travelled
in every land that is under the dominion of the
Sun, and I have sailed the seas from pole to pole.
Now do I lift up my voice and testify that all is vanity
on earth, except the love of a good woman, and
that good woman LAYLAH. And I testify that in
heaven all is vanity (for I have journeyed oft, and
sojourned oft, in every heaven), except the love of
OUR LADY BABALON. And I testify that
beyond heaven and earth is the love of OUR
And seeing that I am old and well stricken in years,
and that my natural forces fail, therefore do I rise
up in my throne and call upon THE END.
For I am youth eternal and force infinite.
And at THE END is SHE that was LAYLAH, and
BABALON, and NUIT, being . . .



This chapter is a sort of final Confession of Faith.
It is the unification of all symbols and all planes.
The End is inexpressible.





A. M. E. N.


The Heikle is to be distinguished from the Huckle,
which latter is defined in the late Sir W.S. Gilbert’s Prince
A clear definition of the Heikle might have been obtained
from Mr Oscar Eckenstein, 34 Greencroft Gardens, South
Hampstead, London, N.W. (when this comment was written).
But its general nature is that of a certain minute whiteness,
appearing at the extreme end of great blackness.
It is a good title for the last chapter of this book, and it also
symbolises the eventual coming out into the light of his that
has wandered long in the darkness.
91 is the numberation of Amen.
The chapter consists of an analysis of this word, but gives
no indication as to the result of this analysis, as if to imply
this: The final Mystery is always insoluble.


1. The Sabbath of the Goat.
2. The Cry of the Hawk.
3. The Oyster.
4. Peaches.
5. The Battle of the Ants
6. Caviar.
7. The Dinosaurs.
8. Steeped Horsehair.
9. The Branks.
10. Windlestraws.
11. The Glow-Worm.
12. The Dragon-Flies.
13. Pilgrim-Talk.
14. Onion-Peelings.
15. The Gun-Barrel.
16. The Stag-Beetle.
17. The Swan.
18. Dewdrops.
19. The Leopard and the Deer.
20. Samson.
21. The Blind Webster.
22. The Despot.
23. Skidoo!
24. The Hawk and the Blindworm.
26. The Elephant and the Tortoise.
27. The Sorcerer.
28. The Pole-Star.
29. The Southern Cross.
30. John-a-Dreams.
31. The Garotte.
32. The Mountaineer.


34. The Smoking Dog.
35. Venus of Milo.
37. Dragons.
38. Lambskin.
39. The Looby.
40. The HIMOG.
41. Corn Beef Hash.
42. Dust-Devils.
43. Mulberry Tops.
45. Chinese Music.
46. Buttons and Rosettes.
47. Windmill-Words.
48. Mome Raths.
50. The Vigil of St. Hubert.
51. Terrier Work.
52. The Bull-Baiting.
53. The Dowser.
54. Eaves-Droppings.
55. The Drooping Sunflower.
56. Trouble with Twins.
57. The Duck-Billed Platypus.
58. Haggai-Howlings.
59. The Tailless Monkey.
60. The Wound of Amfortas.
61. The Fool’s Knot.
62. Twig?
63. Margery Daw.
64. Constancy.
65. Sic Transeat ——
66. The Praying Mantis.
67. Sodom-Apples.


68. Manna.
69. The Way to Succeed—and the Way to Suck Eggs!
70. Broomstick-Babblings.
71. King’s College Chapel.
72. Hashed Pheasant.
73. The Devil, the Ostrich, and the Orphan Child.
74. Carey Street.
75. Plover’s Eggs.
76. Phaeton.
78. Wheel and—Woa!
79. The Bal Bullier.
80. Blackthorn.
81. Louis Lingg.
82. Bortsch: also Imperial Purple (and A PUNIC WAR).
83. The Blind Pig.
84. The Avalanche.
85. Borborygmi.
86. TAT.
87. Mandarin-Meals.
88. Gold Bricks.
89. Unprofessional Conduct.
90. Starlight.
91. The Heikle.

*** ***** ***


mentioned in the Commentary

“The Solider and the Hunchback: ? and !” (Liber 148). In Equinox I (1).
“Berashith: an Essay in Ontology, with some remarks on Ceremonial
Magic.” In The Sword of Song and Collected Works, vol. ii.
Liber 418 (The Vision and the Voice). In Equinox I (5), Special
Supplement; reprinted with a commentary in Equinox IV (2).
Liber VII (Liber Liberi vel Lapidis Lazuli). In Equinox III (9), The Holy
Books of Thelema.
Liber Legis (Liber CCXX). In Equinox I (7) (as facsimile MS), I (10), III
(3), III (9), III (10), as The Book of the Law, etc. etc. etc.
The Book of Thoth (The Tarot; being Equinox III (5)); London, 1944;
reprinted York Beach, Maine: Samuel Weiser.
“AHA!” In Equinox I (3).
“The Temple of Solomon the King.” In Equinox I (1-10).
Household Gods. Pallanza, 1912; reprinted Thame, Oxon, 1992.
Liber LXI vel Causæ. In Equinox III (1) and III (9).
Liber D (“Sepher Sephiroth”). In Equinox I (8), special supplement; in The
Qabalah of Aleister Crowley (later 777 and other Qabalistic Writings);
in Godwin’s Cabalistic Encyclopedia (3rd edition).
The World’s Tragedy. Paris, 1910. Reprinted Phoenix, Arizona, 1990.
“The Scorpion.” In Equinox I (6).
The God-Eater. London, 1908. Reprinted in Collected Works, vol. ii.
Liber XVI (Liber Turris vel Domus Dei). In Equinox I (6).
777. London, 1909. Reprint with additions, London, 1955. Latter edition
included in The Qabalah of Aleister Crowley.
Liber LXV (Liber Cordis Cincti Serpente). In Equinox III (1) and III (9);
with commentary in Equinox IV (1).
Liber O (Liber VI). In Equinox I (2) and Magick in Theory and Practice,
app. VII.
Konx Om Pax. London, 1907; reprinted Chicago, 1992.
Book 4, part III. As Magick in Theory and Practice, Paris, 1929; in Magick
Book 4 parts I-IV, York Beach, Maine, 1994.
Bagh-i-Muattar (The Scented Garden of Abdullah the Satirist of Shiraz).
Paris, 1910; reprinted Chicago, 1991.