Introduction by the Editor

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law. The first issue of the Journal of Thelemic Studies surpassed all my expectations. The amount of feedback received (both positive and negative) is a testament to the amount of attention this Journal is garnering. The announcement for the first issue of the Journal was carried by various blogs and was even translated into several different languages.

Many Thelemites are attracted to the ideal of a multitude of opinions being openly shared and honestly contemplated with respect. In our mission statement it reads, “The subject matter of the Journal of Thelemic Studies will not be that of a certain ideology within Thelema, but will give equal voice to those of divergent and perhaps even conflicting viewpoints.” Not only have we gathered various threads of the Thelemic community into one tapestry, but a wide array of various groups seemed to take interest from Anarchists to Masons to Discordians (and many who do choose not to identify with a particular group).

One point must be made at the very start of this issue: the editor of the Journal of Thelemic Studies does not necessarily agree with or endorse the ideas espoused in the various authors’ essays. Two essays may even be printed in the same issue containing contradictory views on a single subject. This is because the Journal endeavors to give a voice to the most modern writers and artists in the Thelemic community even if they disagree on certain points. The idea is not to promote rigid fundamentalism or some universal agreement but, instead, a lively process of creation, debate, analysis, and artistry. Being the first academic journal to collect the work of various modern Thelemites into one place, we attempt to give a voice to Thelemites of very diverse backgrounds. The Journal of Thelemic Studies serves to stand as a nonpartisan synthesis of the many diverse manifestations of Thelema, both literally and symbolically, and also to the fact that many, often contradicting, opinions may be harmoniously cultivated and understood together.

One major change that came with the second issue was an overhaul of the website www.ThelemicStudies.com … The Journal of Thelemic Studies now has a website with easier navigation, a news feed detailing current events relating to Thelema, and other interesting features. Go check it out!

In this second issue of the Journal of Thelemic Studies we begin with an essay by Stephen J. Ash tracing the lines of connection from Rabelais to Crowley via the Tudor Hermetic Revival and Francis Dashwood. One concern that was consistently heard from our readers was that the idea of “Thelemic Studies” should not be simply confined to literary essays. This is certainly true, so the Journal of Thelemic Studies made an extra effort in this issue to branch out to both the visual and auditory manifestations of Thelema. The “93 Current” manifests in multifaceted ways… In this regard, we have an amazing collection of three art pieces by Acrylick Alchemical distributed throughout the pages of the Journal. Accompanying this is a short interview with Acrylick Alchemical, discussing various aspects of her art. After this we have a continuation of the “Thelema & Buddhism” series from the previous issue of the Journal of Thelemic Studies, Vol.1 No1., where the concepts of war and conquering are discussed. Next, we have a question & answer session with the elusive and enchanting band IllumineNaughty. After this, we have an essay where John L. Crow, the host of the podcast “Thelema Coast to Coast,” examines certain trends that he sees manifesting in the Thelemic community and offers suggestions to remedy them. Though John and I may clash personally sometimes on various issues, the Journal stands as an explicitly non-partisan collection of Thelemic thought so we include his submission with gratitude and respect. In short, there is once again a wonderful amalgamation of all sorts of interesting flavors!

I would like to express my gratitude to John “Ash” Bowie for his help in creating the new ThelemicStudies.com website; Lynette for her encouragement and many suggestions; the band IllumineNaughty; Marlena for allowing the Journal to print three of her works; Ashley for her help in innumerable endeavors; and all the contributors to the Journal of Thelemic Studies. Without these people, and all of the interested readers, the Journal would never have manifested.

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Love is the law, love under will.

There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.

IAO131