Sparks of the Intimate Fire
"The fool readeth this Book of the Law, and its comment; & he understandeth
it not. Let him come through the first ordeal, & it will be to him as silver. Through the second, gold. Through the third,
stones of precious water. Through the fourth, ultimate sparks of the intimate fire. Yet to all it shall seem beautiful. Its
enemies who say not so, are mere liars." Liber AL vel Legis 3:63-68
There are many layers to the Book of the Law. The fool in Verse 63 might represent the man or woman
that happens upon this book, scans its pages, and finds no understanding in its words.
The fool, according to Crowley, is also The Great Fool, Harpocrates, the Babe in the Egg. He understands
this book is Not, the secret name of Nuit. He is the uninitiated man who seeks to pass through four ordeals to be made perfect. Crowley believed the ordeals involved a personal ascent on the Tree of Life, or the ten spheres described in
The aspirant is thus born into the Earth. His goal is to understand his roots are in the Earth,
his body is his temple, and that he stands on the first level, or Foundation. Foundation's number is 9. Crowley wrote that
the secret truth on this level "is that stability is identical with change; of this we are reminded by the fact that any multiple
of 9 has 9 for the sum of its digits."
He said the initiate now sees this book as "pure, white and shining, the mirror of his own being
that this ordeal has purged of its complexes. To reach this sphere he has to pass through a path of darkness where the four
elements seem to him to be the universe entire. For how should he know that they are no more than the last of the 22 segments
of the Snake that is twined on the Tree?" The first ordeal, then, is one of terror and darkness.
The second sphere is Beauty, numbered 6. It points to the heart, the sun and to gold. The secret
truth on this level is that God is man. When he obtains this understanding, the initiate now bears the title of adept. Crowley
wrote that he learns "that the heart is the center of light. It is not dark, mysterious, hollow, obscure even to himself,
but his soul is to dwell there, radiating light on the six spheres which surround it; these represent the various powers of
his mind. The Book now appears to him as gold; it is the perfect metal, the symbol of the Sun itself. He sees God everywhere
The next level is called the Crown. Its number is one. It represents the God Ra-Hoor-Khuit in man.
Crowley said: "Its secret truth is that earth is heaven as heaven is earth, and shows the aspirant to himself as being a star.
All that seems to him reality is not even to be deemed illusion, but all one light infusing star and star. The many, each
of them, are the One." Crowley reasoned that the light of this Book, thus, is like "stones of precious water" because "its
light is not the borrowed light of gold, but is shed through the Book itself, clear sparkling, flashed from its facets."
Crowley said there was no way to describe the fourth ordeal because it involves "going beyond even
his star, finding therein the core thereof Hadit, and losing it also in the Body of Nuit. Here is no Path that he may tread,
for all is equally everywhere; nor is there any Sphere to attain, for measure is now no more." But for the few who reach this
level, the reward is "ultimate sparks" from the words. They become "the infinite fire of Hadit! He shall see the Book as it
is, as a shower of the seed of stars!"
Even without an understanding, the words of the Book will seem beautiful to the literary mind. There
is poetry here. And what man or woman hasn't secretly yearned to shake loose the yokes of bondage and follow the call of Nuit
when she declares: "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law?"
The angelic-driven Christians will denounce this book. They will say it is blasphemy. Indeed, to
them it is. But even they know, subconsciously, that they are wrong.
Copyright - James Donahue