It is written that "Love is the law, love under will." Herein is an Arcanum concealed, for in the Greek Language Αγαπη,
Love, is of the same numerical value as Θελημα,
Will. By this we understand that the Universal Will is of the nature of Love.
Now Love is the enkindling in ecstacy of Two that will to become One. It is thus an Universal formula of High Magick. For see now how all things, being in sorrow caused by dividuality, must of necessity will Oneness as their medicine.
Here also is Nature monitor to them that seek Wisdom at her breast: for in the uniting of elements of opposite polarities is there a glory of heat, of light, and of electricity. Thus also in mankind do we behold the spiritual fruit of poetry and all genius, arising from the seed of what is but an animal gesture, in the estimation of such as are schooled in Philosophy. And it is to be noted strongly that the most violent and divine passions are those between people of utterly unharmonious natures.
But now I would have you to know that in the mind are no such limitations in respect of species as prevent a man falling in love with an inanimate object, or an idea. For to him that is in any wise advanced upon the Way of Meditation it appears that all objects save the One Object are distasteful, even as appeared formerly in respect of his chance wishes to the Will. So therefore all objects must be grasped by the mind, and heated in the sevenfold furnace of Love, until with explosion of ecstacy they unite, and disappear, for they, being imperfect, are destroyed utterly in the creation of the Perfection of Union, even as the persons of the Lover and the Beloved are fused into the spiritual gold of Love, which knoweth no person, but comprehendeth all.
Yet since each star is but one star, and the coming together of any two is but one partial rapture, so must the aspirant to our holy Science and Art increase constantly by this method of assimilating ideas, that in the end, become capable of apprehending the Universe in one thought, he may leap forth upon It with the massed violence of his Self, and destroying both these, become that Unity whose name is No Thing. Seek ye all therefore constantly to unite yourselves in rapture with each and every thing that is, and that by utmost passion and lust of Union. To this end take chiefly all such things as are naturally repulsive. For what is pleasant is assimilated easily and without ecstasy: it is in the transfiguration of the loathsome and abhorred into The Beloved that the Self is shaken to the root in Love.
Thus in human love also we see that mediocrities among men mate with null women: but History teacheth us that the supreme masters of the world seek ever the vilest and most horrible creatures for their concubines, overstepping even the limiting laws of sex and species in their necessity to transcend normality. It is not enough in such natures to excite lust or passion: the imagination itself must be enflamed by every means.
For us, then, emancipated from all base law, what shall we do to satisfy our Will to Unity? No less a mistress than the Universe: no lupanar
more cramped than Infinite Space: no night of rape that is not co-eval with Eternity!
Consider that as Love is mighty to bring forth all Ecstasy, so absence of Love is the greatest craving. Whoso is balked in Love suffereth indeed, but he that hath not actively that passion in his heart towards some object is weary with the ache of craving. And this state is called mystically "Dryness." For this there is, as I believe, no cure but patient persistence in a Rule of life.
But this Dryness hath its virtue, in that thereby the soul is purged of those things that impeach the Will: for when the drouth is altogether perfect, then is it certain that by no means can the Soul be satisfied, save by the Accomplishment of the Great Work. And this is in strong souls a stimulus to the Will. It is the Furnace of Thirst that burneth up all dross within us.
But to each act of Will is a particular Dryness corresponding: and as Love increaseth within you, so doth the torment of His absence. Be this also unto you for a consolation in the ordeal! Moreover, the more fierce the plague of impotence, the more swiftly and suddenly is it wont to abate.
Here is the method of Love in Meditation. Let the Aspirant first practice and then discipline himself in the Art of fixing the attention upon any thing whatsoever at will, without permitting the least imaginable distraction.
Let him also practice the art of the Analysis of Ideas, and that of refusing to allow the mind its natural reaction to them, pleasant or unpleasant, thus fixing himself in Simplicity and Indifference. These things being achieved in their ripe season, be it known to you that all ideas will have become equal to your apprehension, since each is simple and each indifferent: any one of them remaining in the mind at Will without stirring or striving, or tending to pass on to any other. But each idea will possess one special quality common to all: this, that no one of any of them is The Self, inasmuch as it is perceived by The Self as Something Opposite.
When this is thorough and profound in the impact of its realization, then is the moment for the aspirant to direct his Will to Love upon it, so that his whole consciousness findeth focus upon that One Idea. And at the first it may be fixed and dead, or lightly held. This may then pass into dryness, or into repulsion. Then at last by pure persistence in that Act of Will to Love, shall Love himself arise, as a bird, as a flame, as a song, and the whole Soul shall wing a fiery path of music unto the Ultimate Heaven of Possession.
Now in this method there are many roads and ways, some simple and direct, some hidden and mysterious, even as it is with human love whereof no man hath made so much as the first sketches for a Map: for Love is infinite in diversity even as are the Stars. For this cause do I leave Love himself master in the heart of every one of you: for he shall teach you rightly if you but serve him with diligence and devotion even to abandonment.
Nor shall you take umbrage or surprise at the strange pranks that he shall play: for He is a wayward boy and wanton, wise in the Wiles of Aphrodite Our Lady His sweet Mother: and all His jests and cruelties are spices in a confection cunning as no art may match.
Rejoice therefore in all His play, not remitting in any wise your own ardour, but glowing with the sting of His whips, and making of Laughter itself a sacrament adjuvant to Love, even as in the Wine of Rheims is sparkle and bite, like as they were ministers to the High Priest of its Intoxication.
It is also fit that I write to you of the importance of Purity in Love. Now this matter concerneth not in any wise the object or the method of the practice: the one thing essential is that no alien element should intrude. And this is of most particular pertinence to the aspirant in that primary and mundane aspect of his work wherein he establisheth himself in the method through his natural affections.
For know, that all things are masks or symbols of the One Truth, and nature serveth alway to point out the higher perfection under the veil of the lower perfection. So then all the Art and Craft of human love shall serve you as an hieroglyphic: for it is written that That which is above is like that which is below: and That which is below is like that which is above.
Therefore also doth it behoove you to take well heed lest in any manner you fail in this business of purity. For though each act is to be complete on its own plane, and no influence of any other plane is to be brought in for interference or admixture, for that such is all impurity, yet each act should in itself be so complete and perfect that it is a mirror of the perfection of every other plane, and thereby becometh partaker of the pure Light of the highest. Also, since all acts are to be acts of Will in Freedom on every plane, all planes are in reality but one: and thus the lowest expression of any function of that Will is to be at the same time an expression of the highest Will, or only true Will, which is that already implied in the acceptance of the Law.
Be it also well understood of you that it is not necessary or right to shut off natural activity of any kind, as certain false folk, eunuchs of the spirit, most foully teach, to the destruction of many. For in every thing soever inhereth its own perfection proper to it, and to neglect the full operation and function of any one part bringeth distortion and degeneration to the whole. Act therefore in all ways, but transforming the effect of all these ways to the One Way of the Will. And this is possible, because all ways are in actual Truth One Way, the Universe being itself One and One Only, and its appearance as Multiplicity that cardinal illusion which it is the very object of Love to dissipate.
In the achievement of Love are two principles, that of mastering and that of yielding. But the nature of these is hard to explain, for they are subtle, and are best taught by Love Himself in the course of the Operations. But it is to be said generally that the choice of one formula or the other is automatic, being the work of that inmost Will which is alive within you. Seek not then to determine consciously this decision, for herein true instinct is not liable to err.
But now I end, without further words: for in our Holy Books are written many details of the actual practices of Love. And those are the best and truest which are most subtly written in symbol and image, especially in Tragedy and Comedy, for the whole nature of these things is in this kind, Life itself being but the fruit of the flower of Love.
It is then of Life that I must needs now write to you, seeing that by every act of Will in Love you are creating it, a quintessence more mysterious and joyous than you deem, for this which men call life is but a shadow of that true Life, your birthright, and the gift of the Law of Thelema.