This blog post can make you rich.
I'm not kidding.
The success of Dan Brown's rather silly novel The DaVinci Code
proves that a large public hungers for late-breaking news about Our Lord's wee-wee and the manifold uses thereof. In popular imagination, Mary Magdalene has become God's main squeeze. If you want your book to become a surefire seller, put "Mary Magdalene" in the title: Cooking with Mary Magdalene
, Lose Weight the Mary Magdalene Way
, Mary Magdalene's Guide to Southwest Vacation Spots
, Mary Magdalene and the Goblet of Fire
With all the recent literature capitalizing on the popularity of the MM+JC relationship, you may think that this lowly blog could offer no new
revelations. Not true. The most shocking part of the story is -- you should pardon the expression -- coming.
A rotten pun, yes, but it contains more meaning than you can guess.
If you jump to the next page, I shall give you the foundation of your own
bestseller, should you choose to write it. This is the Sacred Penis story to end 'em all. As Richard Burton says at the beginning of Hammersmith is Out
: "Listen to me: I shall make you rich and strong, strong and rich..."Hit PERMALINK for the Big Damn Secret of Sex MagicIn The DaVinci Code, Brown -- who is to scholarship as a molecule is to the Matterhorn -- offers a few observations about sex magic, most of which were cribbed from Clive Prince. But anyone who has studied the various sex magick traditions could instantly see that Brown was bluffing.
Why do I use the Olden Tymes spelling "magick"? Because such was the preference of Aleister Crowley, the foremost sex magician of the modern era. He argued that the K stands for kteis, Greek for "vagina."
Contrary to what Brown tells you, sex magick is not simply a matter of 'really feeling it' and respecting your partner and all that other New Agey claptrap. A specific physical practice is involved.
Grade 9 from inner space
Crowley headed, but did not originate, an occult group called the O.T.O. -- Ordo Templi Orientis. Membership within that group now numbers between 2,000 and 3,000. I used to date a fairly high-ranking member of the order, which is one of the reasons I know what I know. (Although I never joined, she was the blabby type.)
(Actually, the O.T.O is not just one organization, due to incessant schisms. Those squabbles need not concern us.)
The Order is a hierarchical organization, in which members slowly climb from grades one through nine. The tenth level is held by the leadership.
The Big Damn Secret of Sex Magick is supposed to be revealed only to those who make it to the Ninth Degree, when one becomes an Initiate of the Sanctuary of the Gnosis -- although nowadays, even the lowliest members usually get advance word of what is to come. Various publications have also given the game away. Crowley's diaries have been published.
Of course, few things are truly secret in the information age. If you want to read the text of the Ninth initiation, you could search out Francis King's ultra-rare volume The Secret Rituals of the O.T.O -- or you could just go here. At the other end of that link, you will find the text of the incantation -- which you won't comprehend unless you know the Big Damn Secret.
Before we get to that, let us first note a few things about this text. You will note that Crowley -- widely reviled as a Satanist -- makes some surprising references to Jesus:
O thou on whom the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ hath fallen!
Hence is Jesus Christ Alpha and Omega, the symbol of the union of GOD and manNot what you might expect from Crowley, eh wot? You don't hear this sort of diabolical dialog recited during the "black mass" scenes in those old Hammer horror films. The text traces the Secret back to Jesus, because
Our Lord Jesus Christ established it through the mouth of the Beloved Disciple.If you think that "Beloved Disciple" is a reference to John, think again.
A Wagnerian side-trip
Another point of interest is the text's reference to Richard Wagner, said to be an adept of The Secret. This claim requires some explanation.
The head of the O.T.O. before Crowley was a German named Theodore Reuss. He was a fascinating footnote figure -- an occultist, an author, a Socialist, a spy for Bismarck, and an opera singer. Although he once played Donner in Das Reingold, his musical career did not prosper. Even so, he managed to meet Wagner himself in 1873, at the age of 18 -- and in later years, the two men became fast friends. (Or so Ruess claimed; I've seen no confirmation by any Wagner biographer.)
Reuss later bragged that he sang in the premiere performance of Wagner's last and most mysterious opera, Parsifal. Alas, he is not listed in the cast, although he may have been in the chorus. Crowley, in his book on tarot, offhandedly asserts that Reuss provided Wagner with the entire thematic basis for Parsifal.
What on earth did he mean by that?
Ruess himself explained what he considered to be the hidden meaning of Parsifal in an ultra-secret, hush-hush document that is supposed to be made available only to ranking members of the O.T.O. And here it is.
The piece is long and abstruse. Here's the gist: Reuss believes that the opera Parsifal (which was really his idea, dammit!) has embedded within it a coded version of the Big Damn Secret of Sex Magick, which is "the true secret of the Graal, to serve the sexually mature and courageous development of the German people."
Oh dear. Yes, I fear that Reuss went veering off into that territory.
I know Parsifal well, as most O.T.O.-ers do not. (Best recordings: Knapperstbusch '62, Von Karajan '80, and Armin Jordan's version for the Syberberg film.) In my opinion, Reuss' essay doesn't do much to explain the actual mysteries within Wagner's text, which allows for multiple interpretations. Nevertheless, you may want to study Reuss while listening to the "transformation" music in Act I.
Man, I love those bells. But I have never played that CD during lovemaking. That would be a weird trip even for me.
Herr Reuss meets Mr. Crowley
As a young man irresponsibly blowing his inheritance, Aleister Crowley joined many occult societies. In those days, occultists routinely joined each others' cults "on paper," a formality akin to businessmen exchanging cards. After a brief period of dabbling, Crowley usually lost interest in the tiny sects in which he held ostensible membership.
One such organization was the O.T.O.
You can imagine Crowley's surprise when, one fine evening in 1910, Theodore Reuss came knocking at his door in order to lodge a serious complaint: Crowley, in one of his recent writings, had given away the Big Damn Secret! That was a very naughty thing for a low-level initiate to do.
This news surprised Crowley, who had almost forgotten his O.T.O initiation. He replied that he had learned about sex magic on his own, while traveling in the East.
The offending Crowleyan text was Psalm 69 of The Book of Lies (Falsely So-Called), titled "How to Succeed."
If this title confuses you, then perhaps I should note that my former ladyfriend -- the O.T.O. adept -- had read this text and knew very well how to succeed. BOY HOWDY did she know how to succeed. So successful was she that I have now withdrawn from the world to devote myself to peaceful and pure contemplation of the universe.
Reuss made AC a high-level initiate, in order to seal him to secrecy and stop him from giving away the whole store.
How did AC really learn the Secret? One theory holds that he received it from sages belonging to ancient mystical orders that have covertly survived throughout the ages in far-off Eastern lands. The other theory holds that he found it in the library.
It's there, if you know where to look.
(Incidentally: In Jacques Tourneur's classic film Night of the Demon, a character obviously modeled on Crowley is seen hanging out at the library of the British Museum, where the real AC probably learned the Big Damn Secret.)
Back to Jesus
What was the book that came to AC's attention? I believe that he encountered a copy of the Medicine Chest Against Heresies written by Epiphanius of Salamis. He was born around the year 310, and died circa 403. At one time, you had to visit a large library to locate this book. At present, the only online translations are partial.
In that work, Epiphanius references a now-lost work called The Gospel of the Greater Questions of Mary. Scholars believe that this text is not the same thing as the now-familiar Gospel of Mary Magdalene, which has come to us by way of the Berlin codex, and in even more fragmentary versions. (We can't be absolutely certain that we're dealing with two separate books, since pages are missing -- torn out? -- of the Berlin codex.)
The Greater Questions must have been one heck of a read. Epiphanius shocks his readers with an X-rated summary. (WARNING: If you are easily offended, find some other web site RIGHT NOW.) In essence (so to speak):
The Greater Questions portrays Jesus as taking Mary up to "the mountain." Jesus prays with her.
Then he reaches into his side and disgorges a full-grown woman. Just like that.
Then he begins to "mingle fluids" with the woman. That means fucking.
Oh, but it gets worse...
After Jesus ejaculates into the woman, he sucks out the semen -- now thoroughly admixed with the vaginal fluids -- and consumes the concoction. Then he turns to Mary and says the only logical thing to say:
"We must act thus, so that we might live."
Now Mary (according to longstanding report) is a girl who has been around. Not easily shocked, or so you would think.
However, this tableau stuns her so much that she faints dead away.
Jesus awakens her, raises her up, and announces: "O person of little faith, why did you doubt?"
I'm not sure that doubt is what made her pass out, but the text reads the way the text reads and I cannot change it. I have no idea as to what happened to Jesus' sex partner; presumably, she disappears into a wormhole in space.
Note that our beloved Magdalene plays only an observational role in all of this. We have no indication that she and JC went on to "act thus."
Epiphanius says that the Greater Questions was a text used within a certain notorious Christian cult of his day, whose female members had several times tried to seduce him into undergoing an, er, initiation. Fortunately, the sage of Salamis resisted those hussies.
And that, folks, is the Big Damn Secret: Felching.
If you don't know what the verb "to felch" means, ask your mother.
According to Crowley, the Pure and Concentrated Thought held in the minds of both parties during mutual orgasm will invariably become manifest in the material world, if the resultant co-mingled fluids are consumed by both parties. If you want a new pair of roller skates, just concentrate, copulate, felch and gobble. The skates will soon come sailing at you out of the clear blue sky.
(Or so runs the theory. I've not made the experiment. According to his diaries, Crowley often did this when the rent came due.)
The most propitious time for this ritual is during the woman's menses. As the O.T.O.-ers like to say: "First 'e loves 'er, then elixer!"
Of course, it is very difficult for most people to concentrate on something other than orgasm during orgasm. That's the tricky part.
(Jackie Kennedy always struck me as the type who could do it easily. "Oh, those curtains have got to go...")
If you're gay, you can still get in on the magick. Crowley teaches a cognate technique in his ultra-ultra secret Eleventh Degree of initiation, which I should have told you about before but didn't, and which is purely voluntary and only for those who are into that sort of thing. In this form of magick, the participants...
...oh, why bother? I'm sure you get the picture by now. As the immortal Robert Williams says, "It's a retrieval system!"
Back to Epiphanius. What stuns me about his report is that he is not the only person who informs us that ancient texts ascribe this practice to Jesus.
A number of old documents claim that the Carpocratians were also given to such practices. They were another group of naughty early Christians, said to have held their wives in common and to have eaten aborted fetuses in order to prevent the "divine essence" from escaping. (Rumor also held that they possessed a portrait of Jesus painted by Pilate himself.) The Carpocratians are said to have possessed the so-called Secret Gospel of Mark, in which Jesus engages in what some consider a gay sex magick ritual. (This is the origin of the "back to Jesus" movement.) Unfortunately, that document may well be an elaborate hoax by Morton Smith; the jury remains sequestered.
The Romans formed the impression that all Christians went in for this sort of "fine dining," which is one reason the early church was so brutally persecuted, even by the otherwise-decent Marcus Aurelius. The Christian communion bread was thought to contain semen and menstrual blood.
The proto-Orthodox church insisted that they were innocent, that all such vile rituals were a purely Gnostic thing.
As you probably know, Gnostics were mystical Christians opposed by the proto-Orthodox party. There were many different Gnostic communities. A few appear to have done the deeds described in this article, but the majority considered such practices as shocking as you surely do. (Contrary to the impression Dan Brown gives you, most Gnostics lived ascetic lives.)
In a Gnostic text called the Pistis Sophia, we read:
Thomas said: "We have heard that there are some on the earth who take the male seed and the female monthly blood, and make it into a lentil porridge and eat it, saying: 'We have faith in Esau and Jacob.' Is this then seemly or not?"Poor Aleister!
Jesus was wroth with the world in that hour and said unto Thomas: "Amēn, I say: This sin is more heinous than all sins and iniquities. Such men will straightway be taken into the outer darkness and not be cast back anew into the sphere, but they shall perish, be destroyed in the outer darkness in a region where there is neither pity nor light, but howling and grinding of teeth.
Of course, no canonical Scripture suggests that Jesus had an opinion of this practice one way or the other.
Even so, I invite the reader to consider the chronology. The Pistis Sophia -- which, at the very least, proves that "elixer" consumption was a hot topic of debate in early Christian communities -- was written around the year 200. (Or so scholars guess; the date might have been later. Some say much earlier.) Epiphanius encountered those hussies in the middle of the Fourth century. Conclusion: For at least a hundred years, many people associated Jesus with the Big Damn Secret of Sex Magick.
And some people still do.
Furthermore, the Secret seems to have found a home in other religions as well. See this page, which (warning!) opens with a graphic that surprised even this jaded observer.
Think ye upon these things as you plan out your shocking, sensationalized bestseller.
And Happy Easter.
(Jen will never forgive me for this post. I think I've lost my last friend.)