After finding it difficult to find quality copies of Aleister Crowley's two great novels: Moonchild & Diary of a Drug Fiend, occult enthusiast Elizabeth Ledbetter teamed up with Mockingbird Press to create this attractive and professionally formatted volume containing both original works. Avoid the bootleg editions and get both of Crowley's great novels for your bookshelf today.
Aleister Crowley is best known for his work in the occult, his writings on Magick, and creating the religion of Thelema. He was a giant of his time with many talents and, some argue, many flaws as well. Of all his gifts, his writing was the vehicle that drove his genius. His Book of the Law and other mystical works are widely read by students of occult philosophy. Few, however, are familiar with his more artistic endeavors, including his two literary novels: Diary of a Drug Fiend & Moonchild.
For whatever reason, stories help readers integrate and understand larger themes and ideas present in the narrative. Perhaps that is why people look to allegories like Cain and Abel when trying to understand the nature of murder, or recite The Boy Who Cried Wolf when teaching their children not to lie. The truths appearing in fiction take no intellectual effort to grasp; they work subtly on the reader’s mind in a way that is easier to digest than the cold, hard philosopher’s stone.
His two novels carry the message of Thelema. The characters and themes in the books were imagined and created to dramatize and illustrate its practice. “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law; Love is the law, love under will.” A short phrase with monumental import. In Diary of a Drug Fiend, Crowley shows its power to bring two hopeless addicts out of a pit of hell. In Moonchild, he demonstrates the fate of those who would misinterpret its meaning and be seduced by the temptations of Black Magick. Whether intended or not, The Two Novels of Aleister Crowley provide a more compelling case for his new religion than his other works ever could.
Crowley has had many successful works, including his Book of Shadows, Book of the Law (or Liber al vel Legis), Magick Without Tears, Magick in Theory and Practice, and The Confessions of Aleister Crowley. Despite the success of these works, he was widely criticized and labeled the ‘Wickedest Man in the World’ by the publications of his day. He was a Renaissance man whose life can be traced through fantastic events. His epic mountaineering attempts, scandalous love affairs, political espionage, and prolific career as a poet, writer and painter cemented his legacy as a figure that was larger than life. His primary interest was the occult, and he carried out his studies with unquenchable energy. He claimed to be aided in his efforts by Aiwass, his so-called guardian angel who first spoke to him when he visited the ancient land of Egypt. He was prolific writer and insatiable researcher: producing volumes of work throughout his life filled with forgotten symbols, imagery and ritual. His texts on divination made him well known to modern illuminati conspiracy theorists; but those who have taken the time to read his texts could hardly believe he would associate with any group aiming to control another’s will. Diary of a Drug Fiend & Moonchild are quintessential works for anyone wanting to fully understand his ideas. Crowley’s life and work will continue to influence those interested in the alternative side of spirituality
|Publisher:||Mockingbird Press LLC|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.14(d)|
About the Author
Born to a wealthy Plymouth Brethren family in Royal Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, Crowley rejected his fundamentalist Christian faith to pursue an interest in Western esotericism. He was educated at the University of Cambridge, where some biographers allege he was recruited into the British intelligence agency. In 1898 he joined the esoteric Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and was trained in ceremonial magic by Samuel Liddell MacGregor Mathers and Allan Bennett. After moving to Boleskine House by Loch Ness in Scotland, he went mountaineering in Mexico with Oscar Eckenstein, before studying Hindu and Buddhist practices in India. He married Rose Edith Kelly, and in 1904 they honeymooned in Cairo, Egypt, where Crowley claimed to have been contacted by a supernatural entity named Aiwass, who provided him with The Book of the Law, a sacred text that served as the basis for Thelema. Announcing the start of the Æon of Horus, The Book declared that its followers should adhere to the code of "Do what thou wilt" and seek to align themselves with their Will through the practice of magick.
After an unsuccessful attempt to climb Kanchenjunga and a visit to India and China, Crowley returned to Britain, where he attracted attention as a prolific author of poetry, novels, and occult literature. In 1907, he and George Cecil Jones co-founded a Thelemite order, the A∴A∴, through which they propagated their religion. After spending time in Algeria, in 1912 he was initiated into another esoteric order, the German-based Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.), rising to become the leader of its British branch, which he reformulated in accordance with his Thelemite beliefs. Through the O.T.O., Thelemite groups were established in Britain, Australia, and North America.
Crowley spent the First World War in the United States, where he took up painting and campaigned for the German war effort against Britain, later revealing that he had infiltrated the pro-German movement to assist the British intelligence services. In 1920, he established the Abbey of Thelema, a religious commune in Cefalù, Sicily where he lived with various followers. His libertine lifestyle led to denunciations in the British press, and expulsion by the Mussolini in 1923. He divided the following two decades between France, Germany, and England, and continued to promote Thelema until his death in 1947.
Crowley gained widespread notoriety during his lifetime, being a recreational drug experimenter, bisexual and an individualist social critic. He was denounced in the popular press as "the wickedest man in the world" and a Satanist. Crowley has remained a highly influential figure over Western esotericism and the counter-culture, and continues to be considered a prophet in Thelema.
Elizabeth Ledbetter is a researcher and writer focusing on the history, philosophy and structure of alternative religions. Her interest in this area stems from her traditional Catholic upbringing, which exposed her to the colorful world of angels and saints-along with their more hellish counterparts. After lapsing from the Church, her spiritual nature asserted itself and led her on a search for a replacement to the religion she left behind. Her journey has been fulfilling; she has encountered and studied a number of diverse faiths and beliefs from the New Age and Occult communities. She has had the pleasure of meeting and learning from the independent and intriguing people who find themselves on the outside of mainstream religion. She enjoys searching out ancient or forgotten texts for her studies and bringing them to new audiences in modern formats. She holds a history degree from a large public university in the South and lives in Tennessee with her husband and two dogs.