DIALOGUE BETWEEN ADEPT AND PUPIL
MASTER; There is a dangerous trap for any Adept or near-Adept: the thing that bites your brains when you realise that you have learned too much or what you have learned was not what you bargained for.
There has got be something that is bigger than the Adept. It does not matter whether it is something you create or a situation you put yourself into or allow yourself to slide into, but it has got be a very big mental serpent. Because you are an Adept, if this thing does not exist, you do not have anything at all with which to compare and judge. You need that one thing that is a constant threat to you to retain your relationship or relevance day to day at all. You need something that occupies a good part of your mind nearly all the time because if that which you have created, although dangerous in its own right, is occupying your mind or a great part of it, nothing else can, to any real extent. So it is a protective device.
Either Crowley lost control of the thing that he created to concentrate on, or he never created one, or things that he could not handle filled his mind. There is a perilous dualism. It can be anything you like, as long as it takes a lot of handling. A series of extremely complex relationships or a very hazardous commission. You become the central character in what is, in effect, a massive balancing act. Everything in the universe is a question of balance. If, in an unguarded moment, you lose your temper over something, if suddenly you let things go… imagine what would happen if it were a real animal, hungry, inside you head. Only you and it in the room and it is going to tear you to pieces because the balance has been neglected. It only takes one link in the animal’s chain to break. If you do not control it, it will devour you. Taking a stance gives an animal quite a different complexion, more power. There is no need for that.
PUPIL: I don’t understand what this thing can be. When you said it could be a dangerous commission, I thought at first that you were referring to a very important project which you are intending to fulfil in a few years’ time. Then I realised it could not be that project, because that is finite; it will be completed. So could it be a dangerous commission only if it is something that you will not survive?
MASTER: It would not be too helpful to go into specifics here, but I think a few readers will have an idea of what I am describing. But I must give a warning. I refer to Crowley again because he is one of the best-known Occultists, so my meaning will be apparent. Crowley and others, I think, went too far too fast. Crowley seriously believed he could do anything, withstand, control, conjure everything. I think he did that before he learned to own himself so this do-all be-all became a very powerful person inside his own head. And that disturbed the balance This is why I say always create something bigger, better, cleverer than you. Otherwise you have no perspective. Maria Callas, the great opera singer, once said that she believed she became a great artiste purely because of a balancing act. She was constantly striving for balance between two halves of her brain, one half totally rational and lucid, the other half quite the opposite, and, out of this perpetual balancing act, came this immense talent.
You can use ritual to represent the balancing if you need to see it displayed graphically.
PUPIL: Before one gets to the stage where this balancing factor is needed, is it a foreshadowing of that experience that Occultists usually have a specific goal in mind – something to be achieved before they can go on to further abilities. That is not finite unless they decide to stop somewhere along the way, in which case they will never need to create such a thing as you were talking about. But it is an all-absorbing something that has to be done, and, if one is truly concentrating on achieving that ability – the control of one’s subconscious, to take an example – one does not get distracted from it into doing other things, even if those other things might be a lot more fun. Is that a lower level of the balancing factor?
MASTER: It is, if you are using it properly. But now you are trying to get a definition again. To say that one example of it is a certain thing would not be helpful because it is different to every person who experiences it. This has to be so, because all Adepts are different. What word for one would probably not work for another.
PUPIL: How many Adepts are there in the world at the present time?
MASTER: As many as are necessary.
PUPIL: Do you know who they are?
MASTER: That is not necessary.
PUPIL: But, if you met one, you would know. And would he or she also recognise you?
PUPIL: But you never get together. Why not? Supposing all the Adepts combined their powers – I know that would be taking a stance, but wouldn’t it be worth it? You could literally save the world – you could make bombs cease to exist, patch up the ozone layer, make forests grow again, revive extinct species -
MASTER: As you just said, you understand quite well why we will not do it. Even if such acts were carried out, it would alter nothing on the cosmic time-scale. If the bomb was disinvented, someone would re-invent it tomorrow.
PUPIL: Yes, I see. If the damage to Earth was repaired, the whole process would start all over again, because people would not have changed. So is the Earth going to be destroyed, or is it going to destroy its inhabitants?
MASTER: At this time, it would be of no use to you to know the answers to that or to the other usual question of how to prevent either eventuality.
PUPIL: Yet it’s a question which so many people have asked. Maybe we are seeking reassurance – though how could the answer be reassuring? So are you saying that the world will not be saved by Magick?
MASTER: It is known that Earth will not exist for ever. A things starts dying as soon as the energy which goes into its creation ceases. Regarding Occult intervention, I have explained why this cannot take place. An Adept relies on himself first and his Magick second. A non-Adept tries to solve everything with Magick. This is illustrated by the old legend of the sorcerer’s apprentice, who was told by his Master to clean the house, but thought that this task was beneath him. He did not have the wisdom so see that it does no-one any harm to clean a house.
PUPIL: We have been asked if the LHP has any traditions relating to the millennium or the end of the world.
MASTER: You cannot conceive a millennium tradition until you can perceive how big the time band is.
The apocalypse, like truth and beauty, is very much in the eye of the beholder. Many people would consider total nuclear war as apocalyptic. If Earth is left a glowing, radioactive cinder, who does it really affect?
PUPIL: The people who had died – do you mean there would be no effect because there would be no-one to react to what had happened?
MASTER: Survivors would mourn their loss, so why didn’t they properly appreciate it when they had it? The future only becomes important when extinction is near; an example of humanity’s childishness. It is one of the curses of humankind that they have to be on the verge of losing something before they appreciate it.
PUPIL: Are scientists going to continue to invent more powerful weapons?
MASTER: An archer at Hastings could not conceive of a more powerful weapon than his bow and arrows. In the same way, a private in a missile battery cannot imagine a more effective weapon than the one that he guards. Yet there are worse weapons to come, to be invented.
PUPIL: Will those weapons be used?
MASTER: As I have often said, the future is fluid. Actions today begin to shape that future. If one course of action is taken, nuclear war results and all other options would cease to be; that does not mean that they were not there. Whatever you do today, for one reason or another, will preclude something else in the future.
PUPIL: Will someone do something that precludes nuclear war?
MASTER: That is something which you do not yet have to know. You may have an opinion, based on humanity’s mental stature and rate of growth in that respect. What would you call someone who said ‘enjoy the war, you don’t know what the peace is going to be like?’
PUPIL: I would think he was a pragmatist, a realist.
MASTER: It is sometimes better to lose a war than to win one, but it takes great courage and intelligence to admit it. People who can think are a danger to society.
PUPIL: If the future is fluid, but you know what is going to happen, how fluid is fluid?
MASTER: It refers to events which humanity can affect. Nothing is going to alter the fact that in X million years’ time the Sun will burn itself out. Humanity has the power to decide whether or not to burn itself out a lot sooner than that.
PUPIL: I wonder why that question of Earth’s survival seems so important, because, even if you told us what is going to happen, we could not change it. Should we try to stop caring?
MASTER: You must not suppress or control your emotions; they are a part of you and you must accept that. They must be allowed to exist, but they must not be allowed to affect you.
It is always the people with strong emotions, even to the point of manic-depression, who achieve great things. This is the chief argument against cloning; as only stable people would be cloned, the vital inspiration would be lacking. Also, if genetic engineers eradicate the gene which causes depression or other mood fluctuation, none of the created people, the clones, will have any special qualities.
PUPIL: But depression is something which most people try to overcome. Is it something which must exist in the first place?
MASTER: It is a necessary experience, but many people are unable to deal with it or choose the wrong method. For instance, it is no use trying to change your situation by moving to another area, even another country. The thing that you are running away from will follow you there. It will always be with you, for it is your own self. Gauguin’s self-exile in Tahiti was a form of suicide, cutting himself off from all previous associations. But he could not isolate himself from his chief difficulty, himself.
PUPIL: Yes, I take the point, having moved a number of times myself. Nowhere has been any better than the previous town. Is depression caused by external circumstances or is a tendency to depression inherent in some individuals and not in others?
MASTER: Everything within you is brought about by that mixture of “cells” – the word I used in DL2 to describe the process by which each newly-born baby is constructed.
PUPIL: You said that everything in the universe is available to us through our subconscious. Because of the different construction of each human being, does that mean that some people would not be able to utilise that power?
MASTER: No, it means that most people will not try. They will write it off as unbelievable or impossible, and go and play football or watch television instead. A few will not accept that anything is impossible. Leonardo da Vinci designed a helicopter but the technology was not available to bring it into being. He identified in his own personality that one cell that came from someone somewhere where such things were in tangible form.
PUPIL: Does that mean in the future?
MASTER: The future is the past tomorrow. You cannot think of anything that is not. If you can imagine it, it is. The moment you think of it, it is possible. This is not to say that it will exist, but it has the potentiality for existence. But we will have trouble when, somewhere in the universe, we encounter a race which thinks in a different way, where perhaps everything is reversed.
PUPIL: Are there such beings?
MASTER: This is another question to which, at this stage, you do not need an answer. It is sufficient that you accept the possibility of their existence. I strike a match and in that spark a universe could have been created.
PUPIL: That implies there could have been universes created in every match that has ever been struck.
MASTER: Who do you know that had no happened?
Dialogue continued in DL7
From the Dark Lily Journal No 6, Society of Dark Lily (London 1988).