A Conversation for Aleister Crowley - Author and Occultist

Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 1

FordsTowel

Okay, a bit of a wierd life this. He traveled some, argued with other groups, wrote some propaganda. He may have killed some animals, behaved in a sexually frisky manner, and partied with controlled substances. Oh, and he defamed an old friend.

But, the entry talks about his being reviled by the popular press of his time as one of the 'wickedest men alive' and 'the great beast'. I thought that the entry would tell us why. Either I am missing something, or the entry is.

It is a very good biography; about the right length and level of detail, nicely written. I just feel left short on the reason he was considered so wicked, when there were so many other ostensibly more wicked people getting about at the time.

smiley - towel

I like the artwork, too. smiley - biggrin


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 2

Apollyon - Grammar Fascist

Crowley was a somewhat bratty kid, and his mother used to call him The Beast. Later, after reading the Book of Revelations, he believed that the Great Beast 666 and the Whore of Babylon, were actually good guys, omens of sexual force or something. Anyway, the title Beast was pretty much one he took on himself.

While he lived in Italy, he ran a sort of commune for other to learn his own brand of magick. One of the rules here was that if anyone other than Crowley referred to themself in the first person, they had to slash their wrist with a razor blade. This was one of the reasons he was deported from Italy.

Crowley was also a Freemason, and he released a lot of info on their secret ceremonies. This was a big no-no, and as a not insignificant number of Freemasons were fairly well connected, quite a few powerful people would have tried to sully his name.

As for the sexual stuff, it was pretty extreme even by Internet porn standards (note - I am only making a comparison here, not suggesting that crowley made Internet porn). There were all kinds of orgies and sadomasichism, and Crowley put his thingy in whatever hole was available. People were much more conservative at the time, and would have frowned upon the idea of non-missionary sex between other than husband and wife for only pleasure.

There's other stuff as well, but that's just what I can remember off the top of my head.


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 3

FordsTowel

I appreciate the additional info, Thanks! smiley - ok

I'm still having problems seeing him as the 'wickedest' man of his time. I'm sure there were murerers, slashers, rapists, cannibals, and all the rest. There must be a couple of specific charges that would have propelled him to that category in the media of the time. I just wish some hint of them had been included in the entry.

smiley - towel


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 4

Serephina

Hiya, it was 'ONE of the wickedest men alive' , I too found this a little overly sensational, but thats the press for you!


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 5

FordsTowel

Thanks, Serephina!

Yes, the 'one of... ' does make a difference. I also rethought the appelation 'wickedest'. It doesn't necessarily denote violence, bloodiness, or evilness, I suppose; just a general disposition to 'no good'.smiley - ok

smiley - towel


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 6

woofti aka groovy gravy

According to a book I read, he did some pretty wicked spiritual things. His malign influence, that is to say, the spiritual forces that he channeled and unleashed, are still around today, apparently; there's an "apostolic succession" in the High Priesthood that he founded, and the spirits go from person to person down the line. It's pretty appalling, if you're a Christian. If you're not, I suppose it won't mean that much.

smiley - smiley


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 7

Apollyon - Grammar Fascist

Are you talking about announcing the Aeon of Horus in 1904, which his son said was actually the Aeon of Maat because Aleister didn't say it properly? Or what?


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 8

FordsTowel

Ah, I must have missed something else! I didn't get the impression that his cult was still active. I may have read it wrong, but I thought it sort of came and went with its founder.

smiley - towel


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 9

Apollyon - Grammar Fascist

Crowley is a big figure in the minds of a lot of mystics and occultists. AFAIK, Thelema is still active, but only has a handful of members.


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 10

LockeWiggin

Here's one of the stranger stories I've recently heard.
When the mother of a guy at my school had a neighbour die, she offered to take away a few boxes of stuff for temporary storage. Almost immediately, everything in the house started to go... wrong. The architecture began falling to pieces, all the plumbing and stuff mucked up, and most people living there fell ill.
A while into this, the mother went up to have a root through the stuff in the boxes. In one box, she found in a big pile of letters. She read through them, and found they were written by Crowley.
She immediately asked the box to be taken away, saying she couldn't have it in the house anymore. And when it had gone, all the bad stuff immediately stopped. Really weird.


Why 'wickedest men alive'?

Post 11

Serephina

Very strange indeed smiley - ok


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Why 'wickedest men alive'?

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