The Rite of Jupiter by Sor. H.P., 2001
Jupiter. Toga picta.
Sphinx. Habited as a Nun.
Hermanubis. Doctoral scholar robes with hood, etc.
Typhon. Rags or prison uniform.
Probationers. As many as will.
Center stage (in round) is a triangular column whose three faces are hung with backdrop of faux stone.
The face toward Typhon has a barred window;
that toward Hermanubis, a bookshelf;
that toward Sphinx, a crucifix.
Around the perimeter of the stage is a heavy rope or cable.
Audience members, on entering, are bound to the cable by Probationers. Lights low.
Typhon stands in an attitude of defiance;
Hermanubis holding out a rolled scroll;
Sphinx in rapt contemplation; all facing outward from the center.
Jupiter is concealed within the column, and delivers his lines by means of (ideally)
wireless amplification, so that his voice comes from nowhere specific.
A recording of a voice, signal-processed to be deep and mechanical, recites repressive commands
at a constant low level throughout.
The Rite of Jupiter
Three Probationers, in black clothing and hoods, enter and work each one simultaneously —
one puts Typhon in chains;
one hands Sphinx a broom;
one takes the scroll from Hermanubis and very deliberately rips it in several pieces,
putting the pieces back in his hand.
The Probationers retire and change into brighter clothes to be subsequently
Jupiter's minions (along with any other Probationers as might be available).
Hermanubis, Typhon, and Sphinx share recitation of the Pisces Section from Liber DCCCCLXIII as follows, each according to their own particular attitude:
I adore thee by the Twelve Bewilderments and by the Unity thereof.
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou snow-browed storm that art whirled up in clouds of flame? O Thou red sword of the thunder! Thou great blue river of ever-flowing Brightness, over whose breasts creep the star-bannered vessels of night! O how can I plunge within Thine inscrutable depths, and yet with open eye be lost in the pearly foam of Thine Oblivion?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou eternal incarnating immortal One? O Thou welder of life and death! Thou whose breasts are as the full breasts of a mother, yet in Thy hand Thou carriest the sword of destruction! O how can I cleave the shield of Thy might as a little wanton child may burst a floating bubble with the breast-feather of a dove?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou mighty worker laden with the dust of toil? O Thou little ant of the earth! Thou great monster who infuriatest the seas, and by their vigour wearest down the strength of the cliffs! O how can I bind Thee in a spider's web of song, and yet remain one and unconsumed before the raging of Thy nostrils?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou forked tongue of the purple-throated thunder? O Thou silver sword of lightning! Thou who rippest out the fire-bolt from the storm-cloud, as a sorcerer teareth the heart from a black kid! O how can I possess Thee as the dome of the skies, so that I may fix the keystone of my reason in the arch of Thy forehead?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou amber-scal'd one whose eyes are set on columns? O Thou sightless seer of all things! Thou spearless warrior who urgest on Thy steeds and blindest the outer edge of darkness with Thy Glory! O how can I grasp the whirling wheels of Thy splendour, and yet be not smitten into death by the hurtling fury of Thy chariot?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou red fire-fang that gnawest the blue limbs of night? O Thou devouring breath of flame! Thou illimitable ocean of frenzied air, in whom all is one, a plume cast into a furnace! O how can I dare to approach and stand before Thee, for I am but as a withered leaf whirled away by the anger of the storm?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou almighty worker ungirded of slumber? O Thou Unicorn of the Stars! Thou tongue of flame burning above the firmament, as a lily that blossometh in the drear desert! O how can I pluck Thee from the dark bed of Thy birth, and revel like a wine-drenched faun in the banqueting-house of Thy Seigniory?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou dazzler of the deep obscurity of day? O Thou golden breast of beauty! Thou shrivelled udder of the storm-blasted mountains, who no longer sucklest the babe-clouds of wind-swept night! O how can I gaze upon Thy countenance of eld, and yet be not blinded by the black fury of Thy dethroned Majesty?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou seraph-venom of witch-vengeance enchaunted? O Thou coiled wizardry of stars! Thou one Lord of life triumphant over death, Thou red rose of love nailed to the cross of golden light! O how can I die in Thee as sea-foam in the clouds, and yet possess Thee as a frail white mist possesses the stripped limbs of the Sun?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou soft pearl set in a bow of effulgent light? O Thou drop of shimmering dew! Thou surging river of bewildering beauty who speedest as a blue arrow of fire beyond, beyond! O how can I measure the poisons of Thy limbeck, and yet be for ever transmuted in the athanor of Thine understanding?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou disrober of the darkness of the Abyss? O Thou veil'd eye of creation! Thou soundless voice who, for ever misunderstood, rollest on through the dark abysms of infinity! O how can I learn to sing the music of Thy name, as a quivering silence above the thundering discord of the tempest?
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou teeming desert of the abundance of night? O Thou river of unquench'd thirst! Thou tongueless one who lickest up the dust of death and casteth it forth as the rolling ocean of life! O how can I possess the still depths of Thy darkness, and yet in Thine embrace fall asleep as a child in a bower of lilies?
All (including Jupiter)
O what art Thou, O God my God, Thou shrouded one veiled in a dazzling effulgence? O Thou centreless whorl of Time! Thou illimitable abysm of Righteousness, the lashes of whose eye are as showers of molten suns! O how can I reflect the light of Thine unity, and melt into Thy Glory as a cloudy chaplet of chalcedony moons?
O Glory be unto Thee through all Time and through all Space: Glory, and Glory upon Glory, Everlastingly. Amen, and Amen, and Amen.
During the "Glory be ... Amen", the three subside,
Sphinx into an attitude of weary prayer,
Hermanubis into an attitude of study (seated),
Typhon into an attitude of despair (the posture of the Angel as depicted by Wm. Blake in America).
Freedom! I fought to defend you; now they have taken you from me — day after day, this prison lies on my heart like a lead weight. How now, O Hero? Thought you could save the world, did you, Hero? Thought you could set every heart on fire just like yours with your fervor? Fat lot of saving you'll do from in here. What the hell was I thinking? How have I come to this? When did my rage at the tyrant turn inward? Once, I believed in myself and the cause — I craved to be martyred. When did it change? My God! how I hate what I have become now! Passion that used to sustain me, why have you left me forsaken?
(whistling in the dark)
Truth! How I hunted for you through the tailings of words and ideas, setting aside first one, then the next of the coals that I found there. You came at last to my hand, just as pure and as hard as a diamond. When I reveal you to them now, no one is paying attention! How dare they mock and refuse what I plainly have shown in my data! One day these unthinking morons all will be sorry they scorned this; I'll have the last laugh, see if I don't! I am right and I know it! I'll show them all! I will! I will! Hell. I'm fooling no one. Maybe there's nothing there, really. Maybe what I found was nothing.
(exhausted and uncertain)
Lord! I live only to see you, know you, be as one with you; living in your house, vowed as a bride to my heavenly bridegroom wrapt in sublime contemplation at all times, striving to reach you. Yet the bell rings and calls me away to these menial duties; how then can I get closer to you when they keep me distracted? Prayer and silence, these are sublime and the way to you, surely; why must I bend to this Rule that keeps me even as certainly from you? Every day here I grow further away from you; why did I come here? Lord, are you here at all? Is there anyone out there to hear me?
How long have I been here? What was it like to be living a free man? Was my decision the right one? Was my sacrifice worth it? Does anybody remember me? Is there a cause? Was there ever? There is no power, no love, no point in my trying to fight this barren inertia more bitter than all of their tortures together. Let this cup pass from me; I no longer have strength to endure it.
Still I am further from knowing for certain than I ever have been; I was so sure! Was I only deluding myself that I had it? Certainty spurred me on like an intoxicant; was I indeed drunk? Almost I wish I still were, if so; at least then there was no one thought me a madman, or worse, a charlatan out to defraud them. I thought my words had power to move them. Would I still thought that.
Once I had vision, sensation, I heard the voices of angels raised in unending praise and I wished I could join them with my voice. Where are those voices? I have lost all my power to hear them over the clamor commanding I work and obey without question. Now I hear only the blood that sings in my ears in the silence; now I see only the gathering might of a darkness unending.
O that the Banquet of Jupiter might begin!
Gradually, through this and the next section, Jupiter's minions slip thru the audience, laying down a pillow here, a carpet there, steadily but as unobtrusively as possible transforming the space into the banqueting hall.
12 ...behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow,
which is done unto me, wherewith the LORD hath afflicted me in
the day of his fierce anger.
13 From above hath he sent fire into my bones, and it prevaileth against them: he hath spread a net for my feet, he hath turned me back: he hath made me desolate and faint all the day.
14 ... he hath made my strength to fall, the LORD hath delivered me into their hands, from whom I am not able to rise up. [Lamentations 1]
21 They have heard that I sigh: there is none to comfort me:
all mine enemies have heard of my trouble; they are glad that
thou hast done it: thou wilt bring the day that thou hast called,
and they shall be like unto me.
22 Let all their wickedness come before thee; and do unto them, as thou hast done unto me for all my transgressions: for my sighs are many, and my heart is faint. [Lamentations 1]
1 As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my
soul after thee, O God.
2 My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?
3 My tears have been my meat day and night, while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God?
4 When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me: for I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.
5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance. [Psalm 42]
9 I will say unto God my rock, Why hast thou forgotten me?
why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?
10 As with a sword in my bones, mine enemies reproach me; while they say daily unto me, Where is thy God?
11 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God. [Psalm 42]
2 Oh that I were as in months past, as in the days when God preserved me;
3 When his candle shined upon my head, and when by his light I walked through darkness;
11 When the ear heard me, then it blessed me; and when the eye saw me, it gave witness to me:
14 I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem.
21 Unto me men gave ear, and waited, and kept silence at my counsel.
22 After my words they spake not again; and my speech dropped upon them. [Job 29]
5 I rose up to open to my beloved; and my hands dropped with
myrrh, and my fingers with sweet smelling myrrh, upon the handles of the lock.
6 I opened to my beloved; but my beloved had withdrawn himself, and was gone: my soul failed when he spake: I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.
7 The watchmen that went about the city found me, they smote me, they wounded me; the keepers of the walls took away my veil from me. [Song of Songs 5]
Nor by memory, nor by imagination, nor by prayer, nor by fasting, nor by scourging, nor by drugs, nor by ritual, nor by meditation; only by passive love shall he avail.
He shall await the sword of the Beloved and bare his throat for the stroke. [Liber VII, V:46-7]
The body is weary and the soul is sore weary and sleep weighs down their eyelids; yet ever abides the sure consciousness of ecstacy, unknown, yet known in that its being is certain. O Lord, be my helper, and bring me to the bliss of the Beloved! [Liber LXV, IV:29]
Ascend in the flame of the pyre, O my soul! Thy God is like the cold emptiness of the utmost heaven, into which thou radiatest thy little light.
When Thou shall know me, O empty God, my flame shall utterly expire in Thy great N.O.X. [Liber VII I:39-40]
Ah! messenger of the beloved One, let Thy shadow be over me!
Thy name is Death, it may be, or Shame, or Love. So thou bringest me tidings of the Beloved One, I shall not ask thy name. [Liber LXV, II:33-4]
Let not the failure and the pain turn aside the worshippers. The foundations of the pyramid were hewn in the living rock ere sunset; did the king weep at dawn that the crown of the pyramid was yet unquarried in the distant land? [Liber LXV, V:51]
But Thou art Eternity and Space; Thou art Matter and Motion; and Thou art the negation of all these things.
For there is no Symbol of Thee. [Liber LXV, III:25-6]
I await Thee in sleeping, in waking. I invoke Thee no more, for Thou art in me, O Thou who hast made me a beautiful instrument tuned to Thy rapture. [Liber VII, VII:13]
O that the Banquet of Jupiter might begin!
During this section, finally, Jupiter's probationers come through and free everyone from the cable, then they take it and all remaining Saturn stuff offstage.
It was during those long and lonely years that my hunger for the freedom of my own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. A man who takes away another man's freedom is a prisoner of hatred, he is locked behind the bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. I am not truly free if I am taking away someone else's freedom, just as surely as I am not free when my freedom is taken from me. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity. [Mandela]
The future is dark, uncertain. But we can see part of the way leading to it and can tread it with firm steps, remembering that nothing that can happen is likely to overcome the spirit of man which has survived so many perils. Remembering also that life, for all its ills, has joy and beauty, and we can always wander, if we know how to, in the enchanted woods of nature. [Nehru]
Walls are dangerous companions; they may occasionally protect from outside evil and keep out an unwelcome intruder. But they also make you a prisoner and a slave, and you purchase your so-called purity and immunity at the cost of freedom. And the most terrible of walls are the walls that grow up in the mind which prevent you from discarding an evil tradition simply because it is old, and from accepting a new thought because it is novel. [Nehru]
The earth has the external shape of dust, but inside are the luminous Attributes of God. Its outward has fallen into war with its inward; its inward is like a pearl and its outward a stone. Its outward says, "I am this and no more." Its inward says, "Look well, before and behind!" Its outward denies, saying, "The inward is nothing." The inward says, "We will show you. Wait!" [Rumi]
Others before me have overcome this to continue their great work; somehow their message got out there, and so my message must, likewise. These walls have been my prison; now I will make them my fortress. As for these stones, I will steal away strength from them to be my strength. Let them enchain me; men cannot touch my mind and my spirit.
I have made words as a weapon, and others have turned it against me. Thoughts that I built as a tower to shield my truth have but served to keep away those who most needed to find it. Busy mind, hush now. Heart of me, you must carry the truth to the ones who will hear it. Let there be silence. Speech, have done with me yet for awhile now.
Shall I not find my Lord in the kitchen, sweet among spice jars? Shall I not feel him, warm in my hands in the earth of the garden? Shall I not hear him whisp'ring to me in the sound of my sweeping? Yea, I will love you, worship you there in your temple of each heart, you, looking out of each eye, touching me in each hand that I touch now. All of my living is prayer to you, every thought, every action.
O that the Banquet of Jupiter might begin!
The backdrops on the center column fall, revealing mirrors behind them. The recorded voice stops abruptly, though the music continues.
Who is this person, revealed as my cell dissolves all around me — shining and fearless, beautiful, strong, like an angel of justice? Speak to me stranger, or if you won't, at least let me touch you... God! my heart leaps up, seeing that loveliness reach to me also; can you be yearning to me as well, Shining One? As I approach you, surely I stand on holy ground, surely my God is before me; loving entirely, passionate, powerful, constant and perfect — how can it be then that I come to look upon God and see my face?
Walls are dissolving; words are dissolving; worlds are dissolving. Who is this person that looks at me out of my eyes and yet not mine, silent, contemplative, full of compassion, an angel of wisdom? God! what a depth of knowledge is burning there — how may I grasp it? Seeming to hold out something to me even as I reach toward it, surely my God is before me, truth around him like a mantle, in understanding, wisdom, and teaching, utterly perfect — I look on God and see nobody else's face but my own there.
Somehow I know who this Person is, though I don't know how I know it — perfect in peace and serenity, resonance, certainty. Joyous, active, devoted, and mighty in work, like an angel of mercy. I know this Person is God, whom I've sought to see face-to-face always; now that I look on that face, I see mine and I don't know its meaning. God looks like me, and yet each of you say that God has your own face. I want to see what you see, know your God, share mine with you two. Let us look out of each window in turn and see all that we may see.
The three circle around the central pillar pausing before each mirror in turn as each one speaks (so they move one mirror leftwards between speeches)
I see the scholar's God — wearing my face as did my God before this; was it in me that he saw that deep understanding he spoke of?
Lover and gnostic — both of their windows show me my own self. Do I have all that emotion and spirit they told me they saw there?
Passion and strength, wisdom and power, I've seen them in me; each of us sees self wholly perfected, through other eyes, brightly.
O living flame of love that tenderly wounds my soul in its deepest center! Since now you are not oppressive, now Consummate! if it be your will: tear through the veil of this sweet encounter.
O sweet cautery! O delightful wound! O gentle hand! O delicate touch that tastes of eternal life and pays every debt! In killing, you changed death to life.
O lamps of fire! In whose splendors the deep caverns of feeling, once obscure and blind, now give forth so rarely, so exquisitely, both warmth and light to their Beloved.
How gently and lovingly you wake in my heart, where in secret you dwell alone; and by your sweet breathing, filled with good and glory, how tenderly you swell my heart with love! [Juan de la Cruz]
There's a strange frenzy in my head, of birds flying, each particle circulating on its own. Is the one I love everywhere? [Rumi]
Ibn al-'Arabi tells us that the recipient of a divine Self-revelation sees nothing other than his own form in the mirror of the Reality. He does not see the Reality Itself, which is not possible, although he knows he may see only his true form in It. As in the case of a mirror and the beholder, he sees the form in it, but does not see the mirror itself, despite his knowledge that he sees only his own and other images by means of it.
I saw our Lord God as a lord in his own house, who has called all his friends to a splendid feast. Then I did not see him seated anywhere in his own house; but I saw him reign in his house as a king and fill it all full of joy and mirth, gladdening and consoling his dear friends with himself, very familiarly and courteously, with wonderful melody in endless love in his own fair blissful countenance, which glorious countenance fills all heaven full of the joy and bliss of the divinity. [Julian of Norwich]
All pictured forms are reflections in the water of the stream; when you rub your eyes, indeed, all are He. [Rumi]
The mirrors fall likewise to reveal Jupiter as he addresses each one.
For I am divided for love's sake, for the chance of union. [AL I:29]
One mounteth unto the Crown by the moon and by the Sun, and by the arrow, and by the Foundation, and by the dark home of the stars from the black earth. [Liber LXV I:9]
Thou wast long seeking Me; thou didst run forward so fast that I was unable to come up with thee. O thou darling fool! what bitterness thou didst crown thy days withal.
Now I am with thee; I will never leave thy being. [Liber LXV I:25-6]
I am he, I am he, I am he who is highest. I am he whom you love. I am he in whom you delight. I am he whom you serve. I am he for whom you long. I am he whom you desire. I am he whom you intend. I am he who is all. [Julian of Norwich]
Let the Banquet of Jupiter begin!
And so it does!
During the course of the feast, the roast pig is brought in, as in Trimalchio's Dinner,
with a freedman's cap on its head, and stuff proceeds as in the Cena —
except that everyone ends up getting such a cap (to take away!)
Along about winding-down time, we should call for the larva convivialis, at which point ...
The world is all grey before mine eyes; it is like an old worn wine-skin.
All the wine of it is on these lips. [Liber VII III:49-50]
We saw the walls fall away to reveal God dwelling within us; we saw the Self fall likewise and show us a still higher Presence. What might we see, if that were to fall away too — something higher? Is this the ultimate? Could we not unveil and see what's beyond this?
How could you possibly want any more than I offer you right now? Have I not given enough? Are you not yet full unto bursting? What does it take to satisfy you? Only ask, and I'll give it — give even unto my spending myself entirely empty.
That is my point — you are limited, even you have to admit it. If you can spend yourself out, then there must be something beyond you, limitless and inexhaustible; that is what I want to find now.
I am shed out like spilt blood upon the mountains; the Ravens of Dispersion have borne me utterly away. [Liber LXV III:47]
Playing with the larva ...
Hai! the vine-girt Roarer with eyes afire leads no more the riotous maenads' revel; Bacchus grew old, and he became Silenus, palsied with drinking.
In the morning after the nights' carousing, aching head and belly in full rebellion, even Epicurus thought to forswear his life of indulgence.
Sober heads inevitably prevailing over wine-soaked lovers' ecstatic excess; jolly old Anacreon, mournful, sighing, upends his kalyx.
Must men beat their sickles to swords forever? Reap a harvest bitterer than the vineyards'? Death is stayed no more by the weapon's edges than the amphora.
Father Liber gives ye indeed a freedom, caring not who chooses new bondage after; he may always turn to his cup for solace, though it be bitter.
Saturn he throws down ever and forever, stops the wheel from turning, however briefly; in his draught of mantic intoxication offers his gnosis.
But be done with Bacchus and all his number! Be unbound from Jupiter as from Saturn! Spurn the chain that ye have beheld depending from the old wineskin.
Onward, then, to greater illumination; aye, go on in strength and let none forestall you. Seek the dove, but do not forget the serpent, saith Dionysos.
What, do you wish to know your Lord's meaning in this thing? Love was his meaning. Who reveals it to you? Love. What did he reveal to you? Love. Why does he reveal it to you? For love. Remain in this, and you will know more of the same. [Julian of Norwich]
(rising, standing in a ring, turned outward)
May the benefit of this act, and all acts, be dedicated unto the complete liberation and supreme enlightenment of all beings everywhere, pervading space and time, so mote it be.
May the benefits of practice, ours and others, come to fruition ultimately and immediately, and we remain in the state of presence. Ah.
Crowley quotes are copyright © O.T.O.; otherwise uncredited poetry © 2001 L.A. Hussey.