Aleister Crowley

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Milan Hulsing took me to see a movie about Aleister Crowley. It was featured in the Imagine film festival, that also showed ”Magic show”, the animation movie that Milan has made. More about that movie later! (You can always Google some info, if you cannot wait.)
The movie about Aleister Crowley is called ”Chemical wedding”, which is the name of one of the rituals that Aleister Crowley performed during his strange life.
I don’t know too much about Aleister Crowley. I have read some of his own books and some books written about him, but you cannot truly get an idea of a complex man like Crowley through reading what he and others have written about him. I am not interested in any myths; neither that ones that Crowley sent into the world, nor in the many myths that others created. But the fact is that Crowley discovered something that little people know of and that very little people dare to live. He called it a law: ”Do what you want. That is the whole of the law. Love under will”. The idea that we are completely free to do whatever we want, is a hard one to swallow. We are prisoners of our own mind, our own beliefs and assumptions, not of Life. I don’t know if Aleister Crowley really freed himself from his own mind, but he sure tried, and in a way that nobody ever tried it before.
A nice story to illustrate why I think that Aleister Crowley is far more interesting than most people think, is from a book whose title I cannot remember. Crowley was a very good mountain climber and during one expedition he and his team were caught in a storm. They had to stay in a tent for a few days and suffered from cold and hunger. Crowley always took poetry books along whenever he climbed a mountain. In a culture where every gram counts, bringing poetry books along is already a nice habit. But in this situation one of the team members annoyed Crowley by complaining about the hunger. At one moment Crowley shouted to him: if I give you all my food, would you then shut up and let me read in peace?!
Of course, with people like Crowley you never know if he paid somebody to write this, but it is one of the stories that makes him one of my heroes. Not a top ten hero, but nevertheless, enough for a portrait in my little private gallery:

My brother Rudi did the colouring. He also upgraded my portrait of Ouspensky into this:

You can watch the ”Chemical wedding” on line, if you know how to do that. (I don’t.) Here is the trailer and an interview with the man who is responsible for this movie, Bruce Dickinson. He is to some people known as the singer of a heavy metal band. (Sorry, but my private codes forbid me to name heavy metal bands in this blog.) I like the idea that a guy of his stature makes a movie like this. Little people have the guts and the energy for that!