The conceptions of the Left Hand and Right Hand paths within Western occultism are based on misunderstanding. This arises from the West’s incorporation into its collective unconscious of the Zoroastrian/Judaeo-Christian belief in moral dualism : two opposing forces of good and evil.
This dualism has created a split not only in the collective unconscious of the West, but within the individual. The pagan cultures were not encumbered with this dualism: they lived attuned to nature as totality.
Western occultists have dualized the Left Hand and Right Hand paths, making the former representative of evil (in the moral sense) and the latter representative of humanity as "good and spiritual." The original meanings of the two paths are:
Left Hand Path: Anima/Yin, the feminine principle in the universe, intuitive, receptive, dark.
Right Hand Path: Animus/Yang, the male principle, logic, active, light.
As they are symbolic of how nature operates they are not moral dualities, but interacting polarities. When nature, the individual, or the collective unconscious of a culture incorporate both the anima and animus as a totality rather than as conflicting opposites, there is balance.
In the East, Taoism illustrated this interaction by the Yin/Yang symbol [which shows each containing the seed of its polarity. Jung adopted this concept of anima and animus into his analytical psychology. The aim is to unite the polarities within the individual rather than repressing one, to create a whole being, a balanced person: this is called individuation and is comparable to the occultist’s aim of Adeptship.
The Gnostics had a deity which unified the polarities within itself. Jung wrote of this deity Abraxas, thus:
"Abraxas is the sun, and at the same time the eternally sucking gorge of the void... The power of Abraxas is two-fold; but ye see it not, because for your eyes the warring opposites of this power are extinguished.
What the sun-god speaketh is life. What the devil speaketh is death. But Abraxas speaketh that hallowed and accursed word which is life and death at the same time.
Abraxas begetteth truth and lying, good and evil, light and darkness, in the same word and in the same act. Wherefore Abraxas is terrible. It is splendid as the lion in the same instant it striketh down its victim. It is beautiful as a day in spring. It is the abundance which seeks a union with emptiness. It is love and love’s murder. It is the saint and his betrayer. It is the brightest light of day, and the darkest of madness.
God dwelleth behind the sun, the devil behind the night. What god bringeth forth out of the light the devil sucketh into the night. But Abraxas is the world, its becoming and its passing. Upon every gift that cometh from the sun-god the devil layeth his curse. Everything that yea entreat from the sun-god begetteth a deed from the devil. Everything that ye create with the sun-god, giveth effective power to the devil.
That is terrible Abraxas. It is the delight of the earth, and the cruelty of the heavens. Before it there is no question and no reply."
The Sinister Way recognises the need to restore balance through opposition (heresy); to create through destruction.
The archetype of opposition to stasis and conformity best known in the West is Satan. It is from Hebrew word meaning "adversary and accuser." It is an archetype that exists probably in all cultures as a reflection of the universe itself.
The universe is in a constant state of flux. So far from it being an orderly, predictable ‘cosmos’, it functions chaotically. This is the basis of evolution; what physics calls entropy. It is symbolized in many cultures throughout the world by the world serpent eating its own tail. It is the All-Creator and the All-Destroyer.
The Tantrics in the East express this entropic idea in the goddess Kali. She is the energizing force of the universe. The god Shiva represents the cosmos. Tantra states: "Shiva without Shakti (Kali) is a corpse."
In the Germanic cosmology Loki, Fenrir, Surt, Garm and the World Serpent are the entropic forces which destroy the old order at the battle of Ragnarok. The cataclysm results in a new pantheon, a new earth and a new humanity. Thus the sinister forces are the catalyst for change, without which there would be stasis and death.
The poet William Blake wrote:
"Without contraries there would be no progression. Attraction and repulsion, reason and energy, love and hate, are necessary to human existence. From these contraries spring what the religious call good and evil. Good is the passive that obeys reason. Evil is the active springing from energy."
The philosopher Paul Carus stated it this way:
"Satan produces unrest in society, which in spite of many inconveniences, makes the world move onward and forward. He is the patron of progress, investigation and invention.
Galileo and other men of science were regarded as his offspring and persecuted on his account by the Church.
The devil is the father of all misunderstood geniuses. It is he who begets originality of thought and deed. He is the spirit of discontent that embitters our hearts, but in the end often leads to a better arrangement of affairs."
Sinister from Latin translates as "on the left". It was regarded as symbolizing that which goes against the norm, the conventional. The O.L.H.P. uses the expression "on the left" to indicate the recognition of entropy as the energizing factor in the universe, as opposed to stasis, while incorporating both the Left and Right Hand path - anima and animus - within that context.
The Sinister way is that which sets itself in opposition to the stagnant, and the decay that results. It favours that which renews and revitalizes. It is the accuser of that which stifles evolution through moral, religious and political dogma. In a word, it is : heresy.
The symbol of the O.S.V. is the two-points up pentagram containing the head of a goat, surrounded by the self-devouring world serpent.
This pentagram containing the goat represents the carnality of humankind: Man as animal, as a part of nature, subject to its laws, rather than separated from nature as the spiritual religions believe.
The goat itself is an apt symbol, a creature which is individualistic rather than herd-like. Even the Christians use it to symbolize the parting of humanity with the flock of Christian sheep separated on the right, and the non-conformist goats on the left. It is also symbolic of the Greek god Pan, the All-Destroyer, All-Creator, half-man, half-goat god.
Anti-nature dogmas such as Judaeo-Christianity state that man is separate from nature. Satanism holds that man is part of nature, an animal whose motivations are genetically based as are all animals. This, the modern sciences of genetics, ethology and sociobiology verify. The instinct is still paramount, whatever level of man’s rationality and however hard he may try to over-ride his instinctual drives through religion, etc. The intellect is a subordinate tool of the instinct, which is inherited and primal. At the base of human nature is still the limbic brain, the most primitive part of the cerebral organ, which may be called the ‘serpent brain’. It is the limbic which modern science affirms is responsible for the choices an individual makes. Thus the Satanic conception of human behaviour are predominantly genetically-based. Therefore the individual can be no more than what he is genetically-endowed with. However, he can be less than his genetic potential if repressed by influences which are not in accord with his true nature (True Will or Higher Self), by religious dogmas for example. The result is neurosis or worse.
Satanism unfolds the real nature - Will - of the individual; what the ancient Greeks called physis, and what the satanic philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche called Self-Overcoming.
The Satanist frees himself from the bondage of dogma; he unfolds that which he IS. Man the animal, with the Life-force flowing freely through him, is the antithesis of the self-destructive nihilist pseudo-satanists claim themselves to be, as rationalization for their own inherent weaknesses.
What animal consumes drugs and alcohol to the point of self-destruction? What animal deliberately poisons itself? Only man does this, with his so-called 'higher consciousness', over-riding the healthy instinct of his animal self.
What is evil? That which weakens. What is good? That which strengthens, the individual, to paraphrase Nietzsche.
What of the Satanist’s code of conduct? To hear the pseudo-satanists one would say, the Satanist has no code of conduct other than to do whatever one likes, regardless of consequences; i.e. sociopathology. We say, on the contrary, the Satanist has a personal code of honour, arising from inward conviction. Again, at the base is the instinct - genetics. A recidivist will always remain criminal no matter what ‘rehabilitation’ efforts are made to change his inner nature. The dullard will always remain unintelligent despite the money that could be lavished on his ‘education’. An inwardly honourable person will react to a situation on the basis of his instinct. The Satanist does not need the fear of God, the worry of rewards and punishments dispensed by a deity to act honourably; his conduct is governed from within, not from without.
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