THE DANCE OF SALOME

L’Apparition (Gustave Moreau 1874-1876) 

OF THE LEFT HAND PATH WORKING

While the Star of Azazel and our lodge Salome are for uniting the hands of the paths, to make one’s spiritual development both deep and healthy, holistic and integrated, the emphasis of this working is often on the Left Hand Path. But what is the difference between the two spiritual paths? It might be a good idea to remind ourselves about some of these distinctions.

In the orthodox forms of different religions, it is both customary and natural to make a narrative where there is one immutable good  and one as immutable evil principle. In this narrative, or myth, bad things happen to saintly people because demonic forces in the world like nothing better than to torment the righteous. This thought is so etched into our monotheistic thought on religions that most of us barely notice the fact that there are much more depth into religions and spirituality. The so-called Right Hand Path view, often conformistic and constricted, is only one side of the tremendous story of any a myth.

For the Left Hand Path is not – should be not – about choosing from a collection of aesthetics, or morals, a set tailored to be most pleasing to one’s temperamental needs. The Left Hand Path is a different approach to the myths we know from all the different religions; it is an esoterically emphasized way of seeing a secret, veiled truth and beauty also in the forms that on the surface seem to be – or have traditionally interpreted to be – sinister. This word itself comes from the Latin word meaning the left side.

SALOME is a known Biblical figure, an archetypical alluress, who by the dance of her beauty, by the lust of the king and the manipulation of the queen, causes the righteous prophet to be decapitated. This myth, in which we will come back many times in the writings of the lodge, can be found from the Gospel of Matthew 14:4-12. As I have interpreted in Argarizim (chapter Haeretici), this dance is, however, not actually malevolent, but beneficent: for we are dealing with an allegory of tantra, coming back to the more integrated sacredness of nature. For as it is said in the Emerald Tablet: 

“Its power is complete, when it has been cast on to earth.”

This “casting on to earth” is done by the dance of Salome, the fascinating glamour of the astral world, delicate yet intense, impossible to conquer by a one-sided strength, like any Right Hand Path aspirant will come to see at some or other point of one’s journey.

Lodge Salome is to honour, elevate and follow this dance. Not blindly nor in every claimed manifestation, but – as the philosophy and practice of the Star of Azazel demands – by careful attention and purification.

For such is our Great Work. To unite the hands, to unite the lithe step of a prostitute princess to the steady love of an austerious saint. True occultism is always the union between the Right and the Left, the Above and Below, the imaginative and the traditional, individual and following in the footsteps of the forerunner adepts.

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