February 11th, 2005


Repost: "Most Mysterious Math"

93, all!

I am asked what the mysterious "93's" on my posts here are about; this time I hope I can figure out how to keep this post as a "memory," so it'll still be here the next time someone is curious. :)

The numerical greetings are a sort of shorthand among Thelemites* for the standard Thelemic greetings. Y'see, the Greek numeration for "Will" ("Thelema") and "Love" ("Agape") totals -- in each case -- 93.

So the shorthand for "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law" is "93!" (for Thelema, Will); and for "Love is the law, love under will," it's "93 93/93", with a sort of math joke incorporated (Agape, Thelema/Agape -- "love under will," get it?).

The identical number for both terms is considered significant, too: as though asserting a basic identity between "Love" and one's "True Will."

Aleister Crowley himself came up with the numerical shorthand for these greetings. Lotsa Thelemites, myself included, find it chattier and less formal to toss around 93's, than to begin each post "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law," and end it "Love is the law, love under will."**

Why would one want to use any such formula? Speaking only for myself, it's simultaneously a greeting, a sign-countersign (in speech)***, and a reminder to all and sundry of their natural freedom....and the responsibility that comes with it. :)

Hope that helps! :D

93 93/93 -- AJ

* "Thelemites": adherents to "Thelema," a spiritual-magical teaching, philosophy, and (for some) religion, associated with Edward Alexander "Aleister" Crowley (1875-1947), English mystic, magician, poet and philosopher.

** This was originally written for AOL's Ceremonial Magick boards, where Thelemites used the greetings on their posts. I may be the only person on LJ doing this...but, hey, I'm apparently one of the last surviving Crowleyans, so what else is new? ;)

*** The full and formal version is to greet someone (in person) with "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law"; if they're a Thelemite, they will themselves reply, "Love is the law, love under will." This too can be shortened to "93!", "93!" At large gatherings of Thelemites, one is very grateful for the shorthand version...heh.
AC Pensive

Pieces of April ;)


Magical types reading this are aware what a large role the change of seasons plays in "living the magical life"...and I don't think I've mentioned before, here, how bizarre it is to be constantly "living" in two separate timelines. In the real* world, of course, it's 23 Aquarius, Anno C (11 February 2005 EV), and we have just over another month of winter (the "Season of Change") to go. But I spend many of my waking hours -- and have been for just shy of fifteen years now -- painstakingly recreating a past world; at the moment, 9 April 1973 EV, during the Thelemic High Holy Days of Anno LXIX** ("it was a verrrry good yeeeearrr..."), and well into spring (the "Season of Dominion").

Anyway, long story short, it messes up one's internal "magical" clock something fierce.

Then too, recent deja vu in the news has made this experience even stranger. In my book, President Nixon just ended the draft, and is facing serious investigation by an awakened Congress for alleged criminal activities; in the world, things are (shall we say) rather different.***

So, Happy Second Day of the Writing of -- Oh, hell, wrong again. Condolences, instead, during a particularly long and strange winter, and best wishes for a return of spring to come. Me, I have more digging to do, back up the time stream a ways....

93 93/93 -- AJ

* Hah! ;)
** "69," to the Roman numeral impaired. We is nothing if not generous.
*** Though since the Iranian mullahs have been in bed with the Republican Party for something over a quarter century now, I'd be very surprised if we end up in a shooting war there. Elsewhere could be another matter, of course.