Where to Start?

Questions directed to the Star of Azazel.
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wayfareangel
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Where to Start?

Postby wayfareangel » Tue Jan 21, 2014 12:09 am

Hi, I'm Kara. I'm new, obviously. I recently became aware of The Azazel Star, and was curious about it because I had no idea what it was. I began reading the tenants and I felt... I can only describe it as a resonance. I've been Wiccan for years, but for a while been aware of my beliefs evolving, though it was hard to pin-point. Honestly, I'm a little scared, change always is scary. When faced with this new way of thinking I feel...

I feel like I've been in a small room for a very long time, and I've open the door, and found a vast space in front of me. Does that make sense? I feel exposed, but I want to step forward. I've always said that you have to follow whichever path works best for you until it no longer works any more, then pause, examine, and find a new path. Well, it seems it's time to put up or shut up.

Naturally I don't want to go through this change alone, one of the reasons I signed up for this forum. Secondly, I have questions, and considering I'm not trolling or being aggressively ignorant, I hope I'll be able to get some answers here.

I'll try to be succinct with my questions, so they don't get lost in my nervous prattle.

Is there a good book to start with? Something simple or the like. I find some of the stuff on the site just goes over my head at the moment, and Fosforos looks reeeeeaally expensive.

What exactly are the sects? And the lodges? And the aspects?

Are there gathering places irl for people who follow the Star of Azazel?

Why Azazel, specifically? Though I think I get it. From the stories I've read, he was a teacher, and this is basically a path about truth.

How exactly does one follow The Star of Azazel? I'm not ready to walk this path yet, but it's a possibility, and I'm curious.

I think that's all for now. I'll probably have more questions later. Thanks so much for indulging me. It really means a lot.
Time for one more daring dream.
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Nefastos
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby Nefastos » Tue Jan 21, 2014 10:50 am

Greetings Kara, great to have you here.
wayfareangel wrote:I feel exposed, but I want to step forward. I've always said that you have to follow whichever path works best for you until it no longer works any more, then pause, examine, and find a new path.


Indeed! And if one is honest to others & true to one's innermost self, isn't that network of chosen paths actually just a one path, straight to the one who has eyes to see with the spirit? I think that the crooked paths are those chosen in fear & dishonesty, but even as one's true path is on the move, it's always the same as long we are motivated by the thirst for truth.

wayfareangel wrote:Is there a good book to start with? Something simple or the like. I find some of the stuff on the site just goes over my head at the moment, and Fosforos looks reeeeeaally expensive.


There has been talk about the need of doing a simpler presentation, but so far there has been no possibility (time) for that. I hope that will change soon; I for one would be motivated to write such an introduction, but sadly there's so much to do.

Hopefully it will help a little that in a few weeks or so (I'm guessing) the book holding the brotherhood's rules & instructions will be put online. It has been translated & is now in editing. It's written to give basic info for the members & would-be members in a compact form, so it's not a blast to read, but might help to get a first picture.

wayfareangel wrote:What exactly are the sects? And the lodges? And the aspects?


I don't think we have sects, but the lodges are geographical centers. Where there are more interested members in the same area, it is possible for them to form a lodge; different lodges focus on different things. Almost all of our lodges are still working in Finland, though.

Aspects are like different archetype emphases available to members. There are seven aspects available, plus the eighth which is neutral ("Grey Aspect"). Half of these are for the outer members ("exotericists") while the other half is for the inner circle members ("esotericists").

For example, the Aspect of Stone focuses on ceremonial & ritual working, and its members are encouraged to practice through prayers & such, while the Aspect of Eye focuses on philosophical & academical study, and the Aspect of Serpent focuses on art.

wayfareangel wrote:Are there gathering places irl for people who follow the Star of Azazel?


As far as I know, no.

wayfareangel wrote:Why Azazel, specifically? Though I think I get it. From the stories I've read, he was a teacher, and this is basically a path about truth.


According to the hermetic Book of Enoch, Azazel was one of the fallen angels, the so-called Watchers. They married human beings & taught them culture & magic, which earned them retribution of the more conformist angelic hosts. Blavatsky treats this allegory in her Secret Doctrine, discussing in length how the spiritual beings, "the fallen angels", became the ancient humankind's inner souls & gave them (that is, us) the power of reason. So, it's one more Lucifer myth: the allegory of the divine spark of light or fire given to men, waking in us the best we have, our ingeniosity.

Later in the Bible, Azazel was the start of the scapegoat practice, while the sins of the people were magically transferred to him by the sacrificial goat that was left to wander the desert. So, Azazel is also a "Left Hand Path Christ", that is, the one doing the vicarious atonement for the people, like another myth tells about Jesus. That makes Azazel like a Satanic messiah, so to say. But these are symbols more than tenets.

wayfareangel wrote:How exactly does one follow The Star of Azazel? I'm not ready to walk this path yet, but it's a possibility, and I'm curious.


In short, we study occultism, the philosophy of oneness.

We try to join together the opposite things rather than giving ourself to excesses of fanaticism. For example, a member with the scientific attitude tries to understand and learn from the fellow members (and other people!) who have more emotional or religious emphasis, and vice versa.

Our foremost instrument is the so-called Triple (or Threefold) Key, which means that every action we take in life should be made in the light of:

1) Striving for the best possible outcome, instead of those which are easiest.
2) Choosing love (empathy, understanding) over selfish emotions.
3) Always being honest & seeking after truth.

wayfareangel wrote:Thanks so much for indulging me. It really means a lot.


Thanks for asking. It's often that other people might be pondering the same things, so it's helpful for all to encourage oneself to ask.
Faust: "Lo contempla. / Ei muove in tortuosa spire / e s'avvicina lento alla nostra volta. / Oh! se non erro, / orme di foco imprime al suol!"
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Heith
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby Heith » Tue Jan 21, 2014 1:24 pm

wayfareangel wrote:Hi, I'm Kara. I'm new, obviously. I recently became aware of The Azazel Star, and was curious about it because I had no idea what it was. I began reading the tenants and I felt... I can only describe it as a resonance. I've been Wiccan for years, but for a while been aware of my beliefs evolving, though it was hard to pin-point. Honestly, I'm a little scared, change always is scary. When faced with this new way of thinking I feel...

I feel like I've been in a small room for a very long time, and I've open the door, and found a vast space in front of me. Does that make sense? I feel exposed, but I want to step forward. I've always said that you have to follow whichever path works best for you until it no longer works any more, then pause, examine, and find a new path. Well, it seems it's time to put up or shut up.

Naturally I don't want to go through this change alone, one of the reasons I signed up for this forum. Secondly, I have questions, and considering I'm not trolling or being aggressively ignorant, I hope I'll be able to get some answers here.

Hi Kara, welcome. I agree with Nefastos, it's really good that you ask these things. I'm sure they'll be helpful to others who browse here. I whole-heartedly encourage asking questions, and questioning :)

Perhaps if you didn't already notice this, it can be helpful to see or Articles- section http://www.azazel.fi/en/article-category/articles/

But I understand it's nicer to be in touch with people on the forum- it feels a little more personal and specific this way.

I can understand some of the feeling of being scared. There is some rather negative ideas one instantly connects to Satanism, though this doesn't need to be so. I always felt a little off the box (coming from the asatru / shamanic) where ever I was. My ideas were often frowned upon and condemned as something like "heresy", because I sought my own path and my view of the deities, for example, differed from the general view especially rampant in the US asatru. From my experience with the Wiccan (and here I speak as someone who has not practiced said religion, but only met and corresponded with others who are or have) is that they can react rather strongly to Satanism, finding it to be very negative, even if Wiccan religion certainly has some very strong LHP influence in it. I'm not saying all wiccans are like this, as absolutely they're not. Merely, I can understand some of the fear of change in a way.
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wayfareangel
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby wayfareangel » Tue Jan 21, 2014 6:25 pm

I actually found a lot of similarities between SOA and Wicca. Both are love based, at the core. I've always been very eclectic, though, and I had a small knowledge about Satanism. I actually found out about SOA through the comments of a new VICE video on Satanism. I met lot of lovely people there.

Thanks for the help, both of you ^_^ Are there any good articles to start with? I've been browsing.

The Aspects page listed Stone, Eye, and Serpent as the sects, and the others as aspects.

What is asatru? I've never heard of that before.

I'm glad to hear the text will be available online soon. That will make things far simpler ^_^

I've noticed people mentioning studies. What do they study and how do they study it?

What IS the Left Hand Path? And for that matter, what is a Right Hand Path?

Where can I learn more about the ceremonies and rituals? I imagine they're much like Wicca, where they vary from person to person and are personal.

So the lodges are the gathering places? Sadly, I'm in Canada. My mother is in Denmark at the moment, working with a swim team, and some future Olympians.

What is a philosophy of oneness?

I'm actually all ready having interesting thoughts that hadn't occurred to me before. For example, the idea of someone else being able to pay for your sins, if such things exist, is ludicrous. One cannot gain atonement externally.

Thanks again, guys. I really appreciate it. I'd glad if other people get use out of this thread too. I'm really enjoying myself so far.
Time for one more daring dream.
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Heith
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby Heith » Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:24 am

I will answer some of your questions, but not all- as to some I feel that my brothers and sisters are able to give an answer better formulated. Also my time is a little short today.
wayfareangel wrote:What is asatru? I've never heard of that before.
Asatru is a religion that bases around the ancient Scandinavian pantheon, the Aesir (gods) and Asynjur (Goddesses). The most well known of these are Thor and Odin. The asatruar sometimes wear a Mjöllnir (Thor's Hammer) as a sign of their faith, a little like the protective Wiccan pentagram. Some asatru folk also worship the Vanir, a more earth-based set of ancient deities. Of these you might be familiar with the name of Freyja.

In Iceland, asatru is a religion recognised by the state. So far this is not the case in other nordic countries. Many asatruar (such as myself) study the Runes, a old "alphabet" of the vikings, and before. The most important writings for the Asatru movement are Snorri Sturluson's Eddas, where sagas of gods and heroes are gathered. If this subject of Norse mythology interests you, we have a thread here on the forum about the subject- although it might be a little difficult to grasp from time to time if one is not familiar with the terms.

If you want to read more of the Norse mythology, wikipedia has quite a lot of mostly correct information on the subject.
wayfareangel wrote:I've noticed people mentioning studies. What do they study and how do they study it?
Everyone has their own, individual goals that they are reaching towards. I can only speak here a little bit of my path.

As mentioned above, I study the Runes. I do this, because I have in the Runes found a system that resonates with me on some deep level, and I believe that the Runes are a key to unlock the secrets of the universe. That is, if one understands them fully. So far I have not, but one still has to try. :)

As a thumb rule, I guess you could say that we are all trying to reach the truth, but everyone's approach is a little different. I do this via my artistic means, someone else might find this from a more scientific point of view.
wayfareangel wrote:So the lodges are the gathering places? Sadly, I'm in Canada. My mother is in Denmark at the moment, working with a swim team, and some future Olympians.
Lodges are not physical gathering places, such as a specific house somewhere. Rather, they are geographical "light houses"- invisible sources for energy. A lodge consists of a group of people who belong to it, therefore tapping into the energies of said lodge. So I guess you could describe it as a club of somewhat like-minded individuals.
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Heith
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby Heith » Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:37 am

Could you link this VICE documentary to me please?
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wayfareangel
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby wayfareangel » Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:53 am

Heith wrote:Could you link this VICE documentary to me please?
Oh! Of course! I'll link below. They don't mention Star of Azazel, but someone mentioned in the comments it would have been more interesting if they did. I didn't know what Star of Azazel was, so I googled it, and here I am! The documentary is still rather interesting. VICE at least tries to do right by the information.

And thank you, again. For your answers. Loki is actually another patron of mine. He has a tendency to show up in my dreams to help me with pain, and it always works for a bit. I like to think it's really him.

Here's the documentary! You can see my fingerprints in the comments. Just a short segment of video this time, sadly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FmFCLZbdvAk
Time for one more daring dream.
Tulihenki
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby Tulihenki » Wed Jan 22, 2014 5:35 pm

At first is important to admit to itself that while hunger for knowledge can be tremendous; there's no way that answers and understanding comes easily. I have been reading for years brotherhood's writings and there's lots of things that I just don't (yet) understand.

Asking is also important, especially when there is an opportunity to get great answers like you have had in here. Still occasionally there's moments, when you (all of us generally) need to ponder and meditate questions alone; knocking on heaven's door, so to speak.

My keywords to occult studies are balance and mercy.
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wayfareangel
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby wayfareangel » Thu Jan 23, 2014 5:17 pm

Tulihenki wrote:At first is important to admit to itself that while hunger for knowledge can be tremendous; there's no way that answers and understanding comes easily. I have been reading for years brotherhood's writings and there's lots of things that I just don't (yet) understand.

Asking is also important, especially when there is an opportunity to get great answers like you have had in here. Still occasionally there's moments, when you (all of us generally) need to ponder and meditate questions alone; knocking on heaven's door, so to speak.

My keywords to occult studies are balance and mercy.
Quite honestly, I find the questions without answers much, much more fun. Those can be saved for later, however, while I get the basics down. I spend a lot of time thinking about cause and effect in relation to how humans grow and change as people. We are acted upon, and that effects us. I view it as almost a great big chain of events that could not of happened any other way. Then again, because things could not have happened any other way, there is no point on dwelling on said chain too much and just get on living.

But another question for the list! Why does the Catechism of Lucifer talk so much about hate? I was looking at the books on the wed pages, wanting to buy one, and the Catechism of Lucifer just talks so much about hate on the sample pages. Is this normal for the book? Or is it like how the Catholics use Fear to mean Respect? I could see it being used instead of Reject... maybe I'm over thinking. It may just be that Fosforos is the better book for me to start with.

I do want to say that these books are beautiful. It's so... nice that they even look like religious texts. I would say that it's odd for so much comfort to come from symbols, but it really isn't.

One last question for today, how does one go about becoming a member of the Star of Azazel? I'm fairly certain I've got a ways to go before I'm ready for such a thing, but I am more and more sure that this is a path I want to follow, and some road signs would be nice.

Again, I want to thank everyone for being so kind and patient with me. I'm 25, and as a result of certain circumstances, I haven't had the opportunity to live much. I always feel so small compared to others. I'm not afraid of this new desire for knowledge, and I attribute that to you guys.

Really, again, thank you so much.
Time for one more daring dream.
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Nefastos
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Re: Where to Start?

Postby Nefastos » Thu Jan 23, 2014 7:31 pm

wayfareangel wrote:But another question for the list! Why does the Catechism of Lucifer talk so much about hate?


Answered under another topic.

wayfareangel wrote:One last question for today, how does one go about becoming a member of the Star of Azazel?


Send a free-form letter of application (suggested length about two to three pages) to our postal address:

STAR OF AZAZEL
P.O. BOX 209
33101 TAMPERE
FINLAND

Tell about yourself, why you'd like to join, do you agree with the three theosophical principles, and how do you feel about our ethical basis. Also tell us a bit about your history in religion or occult (or the lack of it), and if you are a member of any organization or group along these lines. Remember to add date, place, your full name, age, & contact info. An old article about the application is here.

A little later, we will add a form to be filled out also, but right now the application letter is free-form.

When we have received your letter, we will soon make contact via e-mail (if you receive no response within reasonable time, please make us know: in that case the letter is most likely lost in mail). Applicants are usually asked a couple of questions, which can be answered by e-mail. After that, the aspect guides will vote whether or not the applicant will be received.

EDIT: Postal address changed to the new one.
Faust: "Lo contempla. / Ei muove in tortuosa spire / e s'avvicina lento alla nostra volta. / Oh! se non erro, / orme di foco imprime al suol!"

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