AL I:22

Now, therefore, I am known to ye by my name Nuit, and to him by a secret name which I will give him when at last he knoweth me. Since I am Infinite Space, and the Infinite Stars thereof, do ye also thus. Bind nothing! Let there be no difference made among you between any one thing & any other thing; for thereby there cometh hurt.

In the first sentence, Nuit promises the revelation of her secret name. Crowley says that this name was given to him in his vision of the 12th Aethyr as recorded in LIBER 418, this name is [BABALON]. This seems trivial and therefore unlikely that this is the secret name for Nuit for several reasons. First we have previously been told that the Scarlet Woman has the power of Nuit, not that she actually is Nuit, just that she has the power of the Stooping Starlight. In the context of her partner The Beast, it is pretty obvious that this references βαβυλων from the Revelation of John, not very secret.

I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast, full of blasphemous names, having seven heads and ten horns. The woman was clothed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a gold cup full of abominations and of the unclean things of her immorality, and on her forehead a name was written, a mystery, “BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.”

Perhaps Crowley believed that the secret part of this name is the specific spelling given in his vision, the hebrew rendering of this greek name: ןעלאבאב. This spelling isn’t original to Crowley, the enochian calls use this spelling twice, once as BABALON in the first call and once as BABALOND in the 19th call which Crowley used to receive that vision. Second, since in the phrasing of this promise Nuit claims she will give it to him instead of thou or you we must consider that this name was not ever to be given to Crowley. Though perhaps we could consider that Nuit is talking to Aiwass talking about Crowley.

As for the last two sentences, not much can actually be conveyed by words, the meanings of these have changed many times for myself. One must answer “What is Hurt?” “On what planes are the differences which we are told not to make?”

For the present I consider Hurt to be the lack of the experience of the omnipresence of Nuit’s body. In samadhi, one begins to attain to the experience of no-difference and the eternal ecstasy is found, the binding of the nothing into a shape consumable by this body. As for the second question, one must resolve differences on all planes until the state of each is seen as necessary and whole rather than random and fractured. Then the planes must be resolved with one another until they are seen arising from within one another naturally.


AL I:21

With the God & the Adorer I am nothing: they do not see me. They are as upon the earth; I am Heaven, and there is no other God than me, and my lord Hadit.

Nuit makes clear that she and Hadit are of the Macrocosm (Heaven) and that those who are focused on the microcosm (Earth) cannot behold her. This seems to be an elaboration upon AL I:11.

Compare to AL II:23 where Hadit says I am alone: there is no God where I am. Is this really Hadit? It seems to contradict Nuit’s previous statement. Perhaps it is said by Hadit-drooping-his-head-down, Hadit in union with the earth, when he becomes the God in the first sentence of AL I:21. In this state he has lost site of Nuit, she becomes “none”. The question that remains is the identity of the Adorer.


AL I:20

The key of the rituals is in the secret word which I have given unto him.

Crowley claims that this word is ABRAHADABRA, there are several reasons why this doesn’t really fit the text. First he hasn’t received the word yet. If we are to believe that this is Nuit or Aiwass speaking to Crowley, it will be two more days until he is “given” the word. This verse would imply that the word has previously been given. Second the word “him” is used. In other verses Crowley is addressed directly as “you” or “thou”, so unless these is some mystery in the changes of tense and point of view, “him” refers to a third party. Third, ABRAHADABRA isn’t exactly secret as it occurs three times in chapter three. In III:39 we are told “a reproduction of this ink and paper for ever-for in it is the word secret & not only in the English” as if to imply that the word is hidden in the handwritten Liber AL.

One possible identity for this person could be John Dee, as we still don’t understand the proper use of the first of the 18 calls he and Kelly received. The G.D. made up some rules to use these calls, but there is no support for these rules within the diaries of the workings.

Using the previously defined methods, this verse corresponds to Yod, the Hermit card, the keeper of secrets.


AL I:19

O azure-lidded woman, bend upon them!

An obvious reference to Nuit from I:14 She bends in ecstasy, reinforcing the link to the Scarlet Woman from I:16.

Azure-lidded is from a popular stanza from Keats The Eve of St. Agnes (1820). In this poem a young woman performs a rite that she has been told will give her dreams of her future husband. Mean while, Porphyro, has been informed by a servant that she is attempting to perform this rite, which he regards as a superstition. He secretly hides himself away in her room, intending on waking her up after she has gone to sleep, in the hopes that she will think it her dream and accept him as her husband. The following passage occurs as he leaves the closet and prepares to wake her:
And still she slept an azure-lidded sleep,
In blanched linen, smooth, and lavender’d

With the union of Nuit, whose body contain all the sun of the universe, and the Serpent upon the brow, we get the image of the Khepresh. The Khepresh is an ancient Egyptian crown that features a Uraeus wrapped around a blue mitre painted with many small gold suns (The Starry Blue of I:14). It is also known as the war crown, as it is often depicted atop the head of a Pharaoh engaged in battle.


AL I:18

Burn upon their brows, o splendrous serpent!

The Ajna is the chakra, that when opened, burns upon the forehead. In some systems this is said to be the end point of the of the channels that begin in the muladhara, the path that the serpent that is kundalini follows as it rises through the body. As per the previous verse, this inner flame is from or of The Beast.

This could also be related to Wadjet often seen on the crowns of Pharaohs as a symbol of power. It is also a form of protection as Wadjet was also known as Lady of Flame, who is said to be able to send fire onto those who might attack, just as the cobra spits poison into the eyes of its enemies.

So we have our two male lords of Thelema, The Beast as the Sun and Hadit as the flaming serpent. Together the Sun and the Snake form the Uraeus Crown that is seen atop the heads of many deities, including Horus and Bast.


AL I:17

But ye are not so chosen.

The Beast and the Scarlet Woman are chosen by Nuit, they are the sun and the moon, they have been given the winged secret flame and the stooping starlight. The person to whom she is talking has not been chosen in this manner. It is hard to say whether this includes Crowley or not. His interpretation was that he was the Beast and any woman he happened to be with became the Scarlet Woman. This is a poor supposition to base the future of Thelema on. Who now then is the Beast? Who is the Scarlet Woman? Did they come once and now are gone for good? Shall the Beast reincarnate as a person or as several persons as Crowley speculates in Liber 73?

More useful to us is to envision the Beast and the Scarlet Woman as deities that we can interact with or even embody. This allows Thelema to be a living tradition rather than Aleister Crowley worship.


AL I:16

For he is ever a sun, and she a moon. But to him is the winged secret flame, and to her the stooping starlight.

The Beast is identified with the Sun and The Scarlet Women with the Moon, the two great spheres which are the two greatest sources of light to the earth. This is how the Beast and the Scarlet Woman are to the people of the earth. His light is the greatest, her’s is but that of the Beast reflected in varying amounts of fullness. His, blinding, but source of all life upon the earth, her’s soothing and comforting, giving light while his is eclipsed by our own bulk.

In the second sentence their relation to Hadit and Nuit is established, two other sources of light, the secret flame of Hadit is given to The Beast and the distant light of Nuit is given to The Scarlet Woman. This relates the elements of our microcosmic experience of the universe to those macrocosmic beings that are the root of all. You could see the sun as the conscious awareness of man and the inner flame as the silent watching god within, that which is aware of the conscious awareness. The moon is the angel, all that we are not, whether we are aware or not aware of it. The starlight is our vision of ourselves acting in other bodies, our other incarnations the infinite sum of which makes up the body of Nuit.

The winged secret flame could be seen as the kundalini and the stooping starlight as the shakti which awakens it.