As a teenager I looked for a path that skimmed the edge between conscious and unconscious, assuming that the deep mind held all things.
And in those days or possibly forever.. the pathways described were ostensibly open to all genders...and yet? and yet I got the distinct impression that the classic gender roles of hot and dry, intellectual male versus wet and intuitive female created a barrier; not so much in Western magik - because the union of opposites within the self requires assimilation of all gendered roles within the personality - but in 'Eastern' inner alchemical where a practice of union is sexual, usually in the imagination alone, but not always...
In short, no matter how far I looked, read and explored I did not find instructions for women...
A lot of what has become Western magik derives from 'Eastern Tantrik' practice. The source was Allan Bennet via Alister Crowley....Before he took to Teravadan Buddhism, Bennet and Crowley studied Shaivism. After I'd received an education I could see behind Crowley's imagery a curiously re-wrought version of what I had studied in a more original form.
But before I'd got an education, Crowley was the best I could find; and to take the role of Babalon's daughter - The Scarlet Woman was my highest ambition.
I did not succeed..
In all my life I have met one person ever who could have understood
Perhaps people who have read Crowley are all over the place now.
They didn't used to be is all I can say.
Or perhaps it was my fault?
I absolutely did not say it out loud.
I expected to be found and recognized, or not.
Because this is not an idea to be played at.
It isn't role play...
As always I kept a foot in both forms of truth. I did not believe that I was Babalon's daughter. I did not believe in an entity called Babalon. I believed that I could be a Scarlet Woman because I'd uprooted so many ideas and realities by the age of sixteen that I was prepared to be proved wrong about everything.
How else could I ever learn the truth?
And I wanted someone to prove to me Babalon existed.
I wanted to embody Her for him...
There just didn't seem to be a better path.
The sacred feminine is integral for male 'enlightenment'. I understood that from Crowley and I came across it again and again, latter on. I sought freedom from myself. I wanted union with the divine and no one I had ever read described how women are supposed to go about this...Thy will be done as a spell to open the gates of Heaven on earth; submission to someone else's will seemed as much as I could ask for.
But I'm missing out the deeply sad origins of this apparent elevation of the feminine principal. The location of the sacred is absolutely within the imaginary female in religions created by monastic males who cannot afford to let women get down from their pedestal.
A reincarnated lama is separated from his mother while he is still quite young. He sees her, but only at certain times. He yearns for her, misses her, remembers her love and turns this yearning outwards, seeing all beings as having once been his mother.
The word lama means high-mother. Meaning that a lama personifies the care and love and non-violence stereo-typically ascribed to women.
Likewise feminine principals appear eternal and maternal: the dharmakaya, the layer of the mind from whence all things spring into existence is regarded as feminine because it gives birth.
This feminine principal is so other and so powerful because it was so lost to the little boy. Ordinary sex with this imaginary being is out of the question and yet the electric flow of sexual desire the feminine evokes is required to transform material seed into sublime compassion, and absorbed rather than released to maintain life-force.
Crowley could be justifiably accused of turning this sacred view upside down in his treatment of his Scarlet Women.
But in his mind...Babalon's daughter is Persephone, the Kore.
She is like a child of twelve years old. She has very deep eyelids, and long lashes. Her eyes are closed, or nearly closed. It is impossible to say anything about her. She is naked; her whole body is covered with fine gold hairs, that are the electric flames which are the spears of mighty and terrible Angels whose breastplates are the scales of her skin. And the hair of her head, that flows down to her feet, is the very light of God himself. Of all the glories beheld by the Seer in the Aethyrs, there is not one which is worthy to be compared with her littlest finger-nail. For although he may not partake of the Aethyr, without the ceremonial preparations, even the beholding of this Aethyr from afar is like the par taking of all the former Aethyrs.
It was tough being Crowley's Scarlet Woman as this list shows ~link.
Failed from respectability...from indecision, from jealousy...
- Rose Edith Crowley nee Kelly, Crowley's first wife. —Put me in touch with Aiwas; see Equinox 1, 7, "The Temple of Solomon the King." Failed as elsewhere is on record.
- Mary d'Este Sturges nee Dempsey. —Put me in touch with Abuldiz; hence helped with Book 4. Failed from personal jealousies.
- Jeanne Robert Foster nee Oliver. —Bore the "child" to whom this Book refers later. Failed from respectability.
- Roddie Minor —Brought me in touch with Amalantrah. Failed from indifference to the Work.
- Marie Rohling nee Lavroff. —Helped to inspire Liber CXI. Failed from indecision.
- Bertha Almira Prykryl nee Bruce. —Delayed assumption of duties, hence made way for No. 7.
- Leah Hirsig —Assisted me in actual initiation; still at my side, An XVII, Sol in Sagittarius.
“What really pulled me from the pit was the courage, wisdom, understanding and divine enlightenment of the Ape herself. Over and over again, she smote into my soul that I must understand the way of the gods… We must not look to the dead past, or gamble with the unformed future; we must live wholly in the present, wholly absorbed in the Great Work, 'unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result'. Only so could will be pure and perfect.”
Crowley writing about Leah Hirsig.