Despair - A Blessing of Satan

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Nefastos
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby Nefastos » Sat Jan 13, 2018 2:21 pm

Thank you dear brethren, I have taken your words into my heart. Such insights & skilful hints form a map, more precious than any treasure, through the night-blackened swamp.

A few stray comments along the way:

Smaragd wrote:”But if we can actually reach the spiritual world, its sentient powers will notice that as clearly as we notice a match ignited in the dark. This ignited flame in the spiritual levels will need fuel to live on however, and concerning this the mystic parables should be studied from the 25th chapter of the gospel of Matthew.”

Placing the story on the back of my mind I've come back to it every now and then and found the symbol of rock very much related. Rock is the foundation or the cast by which the whole structure is defined. The ideal structure leads the way from ethics to day-to-day patterns of supporting needs, making way for the burning liquid to stream without obstruction where it needs to.


I am happy to hear this, for the Matthew 25 is very important for a certain kind of occult working, and I have often thought of you in that aspect work. The similarity of what you had realized from that double "flame" & "rock" foundation encourages me to share with the brotherhood members a recent practice about these very same things. I will send it later today, if possible.

obnoxion wrote:I consider despair in a pantheistic way as a form of presence. Even the absence of God is the presence of the absence of God – if you know what I mean.


We have this idiom of "shining one's absence" (to be conspicuosly absent), and I think this shining absence of God is His presence as Satan.

As long as we are on this side of the river, our God is Satan, His seeming vacuum in this seeming tangibility of matter. From matter we can at every moment deduct and even directly see (mentally the telos that is) God, but to meet the hand of God would easily mean to miss the heart of God. To search for the heart of God is, like you said, to assume the black form of those Venerian bees, to fly when the evening star falls. Despair is another form of rapture, for it tells of our already blossomed longing. But, what a terrible mystery, excruciating... At the final stage, even creating a poem would be to block one's vision of God with that poem. The ultimate song is left unsung.

There has also been some talk about what actually is meant by despair. think that despair and hopelessness are like a dynamic and passive forms of the same thing. In hopelessness there is something lazy, something wrong, because it claims to believe that there is not even a theoretical possibility for hope, but still the person making such a claim does not simply die. That would happen instantly, should we lose all our spirit. It is there, ergo, there is hope, and ergo, we must struggle with all our strength onwards, onwards, upwards.

The deepest recess of despair is the point where one's already hardened Will chooses the final hopelessness for his despair's crown jewel, and starts the process of grand implosion. That too is a form of Ouroboros, taking its own tail into its mouth, for such a failed aspirant has united his sins (lastly, despair & sloth) into a perpetuum mobile. With which I do not say we could always blame him. Sometimes such a state is reached because the ardent struggle has been so great that there simply is no spiritual force of will left to renounce the fall; it's a burnout for the soul. But still, "despair" is yet something active, something that can achieve results by burning away veils, but "hopelessness" is just falling. Into a bottomless pit, with no merciful death waiting at the fall's end. For even from avici, new ill flowers will always grow. Thus hopelessness is a form of spiritual laziness, making the circle vicious.
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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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby Mimesis » Thu Apr 05, 2018 12:34 am

I was struggling with the decision of whether to post something regarding the following in this thread, or the 'Adoration of Suffering' thread.

However, I came across the following quote again, which I found to be so relatable that the decision was made for me. Although, with that said, this could sit equally appropriately within the latter mentioned thread, I think.
Mera wrote:
In satanism does it mean, practitioners don't actually go out committing acts of suffering but rather seek to understand them?
I am currently reading a book written by George Steiner, called ‘The Death of Tragedy’. It is essentially a work of literary criticism, within which the author explores the depth of meaning and nature of Greek tragedy, and how it has been lost in essence in everything that has followed, apart from perhaps some of the work by neo-classical writers - Racine, I think, as the greatest example.

The books proposal, very crudely speaking, is that the essence of tragic drama and its transference has been lost. Instead of the proposition of deep, inescapable and essentially eternal questions in favour of understanding, the simplicity of choice has been given precedent.
The tragic drama and poetry of the Greeks, in its fate of inescapable suffering, aimed at an understanding of unity, compassion and humility.
Since, tragic drama has been turned into this dichotomy where human nature is flawed in its choices rather than in its inescapable essence.

Using this example, Satan is to me the author of Greek tragedy. The blessing given in suffering is not in its wish or its choice, but its inevitability, and our ability to seek and maintain compassion, unity and humility even in the understanding of that.

The dichotomy of suffering being a choice that can be avoided but is made nonetheless by the flaw in man’s nature is masochistic, and to me is the opposite of what Satan presents in suffering.

Satan’s question in suffering is understanding - and essentially acceptance - not choice.

Racine said that “....tragic drama is pure, significant and an image of what life might be like if it were lived at all times on a plane of high decorum and if it were at all instants fully responsive to the obligations of nobility.”
"We are such stuff. As dreams are made on, and our little life. Is rounded with a sleep."
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby obnoxion » Sat May 26, 2018 8:58 pm

Omoksha wrote:
Mera wrote:
In satanism does it mean, practitioners don't actually go out committing acts of suffering but rather seek to understand them?
I am currently reading a book written by George Steiner, called ‘The Death of Tragedy’. It is essentially a work of literary criticism, within which the author explores the depth of meaning and nature of Greek tragedy, and how it has been lost in essence in everything that has followed, apart from perhaps some of the work by neo-classical writers - Racine, I think, as the greatest example.

The books proposal, very crudely speaking, is that the essence of tragic drama and its transference has been lost. Instead of the proposition of deep, inescapable and essentially eternal questions in favour of understanding, the simplicity of choice has been given precedent.
The tragic drama and poetry of the Greeks, in its fate of inescapable suffering, aimed at an understanding of unity, compassion and humility.
Since, tragic drama has been turned into this dichotomy where human nature is flawed in its choices rather than in its inescapable essence.

Using this example, Satan is to me the author of Greek tragedy. The blessing given in suffering is not in its wish or its choice, but its inevitability, and our ability to seek and maintain compassion, unity and humility even in the understanding of that.

The dichotomy of suffering being a choice that can be avoided but is made nonetheless by the flaw in man’s nature is masochistic, and to me is the opposite of what Satan presents in suffering.

Satan’s question in suffering is understanding - and essentially acceptance - not choice.

Racine said that “....tragic drama is pure, significant and an image of what life might be like if it were lived at all times on a plane of high decorum and if it were at all instants fully responsive to the obligations of nobility.”
I think the answer was already present in the Mera's question. But you brought so much more to it by introducing George Steiner's thoughts to us. I really haven't got much to add, except that I was so impressed that I bought Steiner's book "Real Presence", where he argues that there cannot be a truly great piece of poetry, painting or music, without a dimension of transcendence - without the presence of God. I have only read a couple of pages, but I am already impressed. Perhaps there is a correspondencd to Tillich's idea of religion as the dimension of depth...
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby Kavi » Sun May 27, 2018 1:31 am

What? This George Steiner's argument of art and transcendence is something very similar how I feel it and yet explaining it to even religious people is sometimes out of option.

It sounds masochistic from narrow point of view that tragedy can give born to some kind of will or to expression.
One who hasn't loved and experienced forlorn hasn't truly lived, although this statement sounds quite blatant, at least this has been one of the key moments in my life.

But to return towards the topic. For me the despair has been quite hard to grasp on as I emotionally tend to still have hope in my pseudo-despair. Maybe it's acceptance also; you might get a stone from the King or a jewel but they both teach us something. Sometimes and more often the stone can be more precious and valuable. And how Obnoxion put it, this is also the bitter gift, yas-e man.

I am not sure of which parts of old testament, but there is always some kind of soaring or call unto God in the midst of despair. Psalm 143 is somehow the kind of text I need read and to cry and from the tears form up the hope.
I tend not to understand despair at all, but spiritual laziness is quite usual visitor in my life.
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby obnoxion » Sun May 27, 2018 8:35 am

Kavi wrote:What? This George Steiner's argument of art and transcendence is something very similar how I feel it and yet explaining it to even religious people is sometimes out of option.
It might also be a difficult topic in the modern art scene, although much of those artists who are considered modern masters were highly inspired by religion and spirituality, and often with their works criticized modernity. For example, Rothko took some of his ideas straight from the Zohar, and Pollock was much critizised for his Jungianism. These influences tend to be played down because many people find these topics embarrassing. But I suppose the time is a-coming when people will realize that these attitudes betray a problematic stance towards minority spiritualities, and then these influences will perhaps be celebrated.

One of the things that first got me back to bible, was a teaching that everything in it should be contemplation of God. So even individual words and letters, but also the gruesome stories, all manifest qualities within God. This practice is, I later found, not unlike the Tantric teaching to bathe religious texts in the nondual awareness.

I am not prone to desperation or suicidal thoughts, though I have known bouts of despair. I tend to be an optimist, and I often find it difficult to remember any negative things from my past (I don't mean it in a dissociative way).
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby Cerastes » Sun May 27, 2018 11:02 am

Nefastos wrote:I find accurate & ingenious the old model of cardinal sins, where the eighth one besides wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony was despair.

Can good things come from despair?
… just some random thoughts on this interesting topic.
In my opinion every intense emotion can be turned into something "good". Emotions are power and power wants to act. There is no reason to run away from negative emotions or to drown them. Despair is however a very radical and clear emotion that can be used to tear down every wall. Even if one is afraid of something the despair might be stronger than the fear.
So, yes. Good things can come from despair.
But the definition of „good“ is depending on whatever stands above so if there is no devotion to a bigger value of some kind there cannot be a „good“. (→ good for what?)
“Granny Weatherwax was not lost. She wasn't the kind of person who ever became lost. It was just that, at the moment, while she knew exactly where SHE was, she didn't know the position of anywhere else.”
(Terry Pratchett, Wyrd Sisters)
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby Heith » Mon May 28, 2018 12:19 am

Red Bird wrote: So, yes. Good things can come from despair.
But the definition of „good“ is depending on whatever stands above so if there is no devotion to a bigger value of some kind there cannot be a „good“. (→ good for what?)
I've been contemplating despair lately, and the ways it manifests and what good (/beneficial, or a similar kind of word meaning positive growth) can come from it, or does come from it, if any. Personally I'm not sure anymore if despair is necessary or even recommendable for any good "lessons". Can one not learn them without what seems to be just plain torture and lasting damage to nerves?

The worst kinds of despair can really do damage that can not be repaired. This can be physical, mental, spiritual, or all of them. If existing is a large percentage of the time nearly intolerable regardless of what one tries, that's not a very constructive way of existing. But then I'm not sure if the purpose is somehow to go that deep that only a fraction of what one was, or could be, is what is left. Because if despair goes that way, there is nothing one can really build after that.

If I've to find a positive of despair is that then if one gets out of it, even for a day or two, life really feels immensely light and good. But could one feel that way anyway, without the suffering?

Ah, occultism, you great destroyer!
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby obnoxion » Mon May 28, 2018 10:03 am

Heith wrote: Ah, occultism, you great destroyer!
What a magnificent sentence!
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby Cerastes » Mon May 28, 2018 11:27 am

Heith wrote:
Red Bird wrote: So, yes. Good things can come from despair.
But the definition of „good“ is depending on whatever stands above so if there is no devotion to a bigger value of some kind there cannot be a „good“. (→ good for what?)
I've been contemplating despair lately, and the ways it manifests and what good (/beneficial, or a similar kind of word meaning positive growth) can come from it, or does come from it, if any. Personally I'm not sure anymore if despair is necessary or even recommendable for any good "lessons". Can one not learn them without what seems to be just plain torture and lasting damage to nerves?

The worst kinds of despair can really do damage that can not be repaired. This can be physical, mental, spiritual, or all of them. If existing is a large percentage of the time nearly intolerable regardless of what one tries, that's not a very constructive way of existing. But then I'm not sure if the purpose is somehow to go that deep that only a fraction of what one was, or could be, is what is left. Because if despair goes that way, there is nothing one can really build after that.

If I've to find a positive of despair is that then if one gets out of it, even for a day or two, life really feels immensely light and good. But could one feel that way anyway, without the suffering?

Ah, occultism, you great destroyer!
I can only give you my personal experience on this. It might depend on the individual and I tend to be a little radical on those things.
Whatever part dies because of an intense emotion was not worth being kept alive. I’m not speaking about damage, I’m speaking about death. One can spend his whole life trying to repair damaged goods and they will determine his life from this point. I prefer to tear it all down in the most relentless way possible. So I would most likely let the despair grow until it is unbearable and destroys whatever should be destroyed. As you said destruction is an essence of occultism. After doing this for a decade my relationship to emotions has become more distant. They are nothing more like a tool that can be used. So a strong emotion would be a powerful tool and not something to run away from.
“Granny Weatherwax was not lost. She wasn't the kind of person who ever became lost. It was just that, at the moment, while she knew exactly where SHE was, she didn't know the position of anywhere else.”
(Terry Pratchett, Wyrd Sisters)
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Re: Despair - A Blessing of Satan

Postby Heith » Mon May 28, 2018 5:08 pm

Red Bird wrote:
I can only give you my personal experience on this. It might depend on the individual and I tend to be a little radical on those things.
Whatever part dies because of an intense emotion was not worth being kept alive. I’m not speaking about damage, I’m speaking about death. One can spend his whole life trying to repair damaged goods and they will determine his life from this point. I prefer to tear it all down in the most relentless way possible. So I would most likely let the despair grow until it is unbearable and destroys whatever should be destroyed. As you said destruction is an essence of occultism. After doing this for a decade my relationship to emotions has become more distant. They are nothing more like a tool that can be used. So a strong emotion would be a powerful tool and not something to run away from.
I'm not entirely on the same lines with you, if I understand you correctly. While I do absolutely agree that one must seek to remove negative, damaging / hindering parts which stand on the way of one's spiritual growth -by undertaking them in one way or another, by growing through those experiences- there are ways to do things which are not damaging. There is ways to let things die which happen without the somewhat violent nature of despair.

If my above text read as that I recommend running away from emotions, that was not at all what I meant. I was simply pondering if despair is a necessary tool at all or could it be replaced with something else that would get the same job done. So one can go through a stone with a drill, or let water carve its course. Both alter the stone but the rhythm and nature of these is quite different.

This can of course depend greatly of how one lives their life. For example to me emotions are a complete necessity and being in touch with them is something that must be in check always, because without this sensitive contact I can not hope for any kind of satisfactory result in my line of work (artist).

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