Sacred texts  Thelema 

The Cry of the 28th Aethyr,
Which is Called BAG

There cometh an Angel into the stone with opalescent2 shining garments like a wheel3 of fire on every side of him, and in his hand is a long flail of scarlet lightning4; his face is black5, and his eyes white without any pupil or iris6. The face is very terrible indeed to look upon. Now in front of him is a wheel7, with many spokes, and many tyres; it is like a fence8 in front of him.

And he cries: O man, who art thou that wouldst penetrate the Mystery9? for it is hidden unto the End of Time10.

And I answer him: Time11 is not, save in the darkness of Her womb by whom evil came.

And now the wheel breaks away, and I see him as he is. His garment is black beneath the opal veils, but it is lined with white, and he has the shining belly of a fish, and enormous wings of black and white feathers, and innumerable little legs and claws like a centipede, and a long tail like a scorpion. The breasts are human, but they are all scored with blood; and he cries: O thou who hast broken down the veil, knowest thou not that who cometh where I am must be scarred by many sorrows12?

And I answer him: Sorrow13 is not, save in the darkness of the womb of Her by whom came evil.

I pierce the Mystery13 of his breast13, and therein is a jewel13. It is a sapphire as great as an ostrich egg{13SUP:2}, and thereon is graven this sigil:

[Figure: This is in the form of two "U" shapes, very elongated in the risers. The one to the right is lower than the first, and its left riser extends 2/3's of the way up inside the center of the one to the left. The left "U" turns back down to the far left, ending 1/5th the way down in a tiny circle. The right bends abruptly horizontally left across the other and also ends there in a tiny circle.]

But there is also much writing on the stone, very minute characters carved. I cannot read them. He points with his flail to the sapphire, which is now outside him and bigger than himself14; and he cries: Hail! warden of the Gates of Eternity who knowest not15 thy right hand from thy left16; for in the aeon of my Father is a god with clasped hands wherein he holdeth the universe, crushing17 it into the dust that ye call stars.

Hail unto thee who knowest not thy right eye16 from thy left; for in the aeon of my Father there is but one light.

Hail unto thee who knowest not thy right nostril16 from thy left; for in the aeon of my Father there is neither life nor death.

Hail unto thee who knowest not thy right ear16 from thy left; for in the aeon of my Father there is neither sound nor silence.

Whoso hath power to break open this sapphire stone shall find therein four elephants having tusks of mother-of-pearl, and upon whose backs are castles, those castles which ye call the watch-towers of the Universe18.

Let me dwell in peace within the breast of the Angel that is warden of the aethyr. Let not the shame of my Mother be unveiled. Let not her be put to shame that lieth among the lilies that are beyond the stars.

O man, that must ever be opening, when wilt thou learn to seal up the mysteries of the creation? to fold thyself over thyself as a rose in the embrace of night? But thou must play the wanton to the sun, and the wind must tear thy petals from thee, and the bee must rob thee of thy honey, and thou must fall into the dusk of things. Amen and Amen.

Verily the light is hidden, therefore he who hideth himself is like unto the light; but thou openest thyself; thou art like unto the darkness that bindeth the belly of the great goddess19.


And the voice of the aeon cried: Return, return, return! the time sickeneth, and the space gapeth, and the voice of him that is, was and shall be crowned rattles in the throat of the mighty dragon of eld21. Thou canst not pass by me, except thou have the mystery of the word of the abyss.

Now the angel putteth back the sapphire stone into his breast; and I spake unto him and said, I will fight with thee and overcome thee, except thou expound unto me the word of the abyss.

Now he makes as if to fight with me. (It is very horrible, all the tentacles moving and the flail flashing, and the fierce eyeless face, strained and swollen.) And with the Magic sword I pierce through his armour to his breast. He fell back, saying: Each of these my scars was thus made, for I am the warden of the aethyr. And he would have said more; but I cut him short, saying: expound the word of the Abyss. And he said22: Discipline is sorrowful and ploughing is laborious and age is weariness.

Thou shalt be vexed by dispersion23.

But now, if the sun arise24{SUP:1}, fold thou thine arms24; then shall God smite thee into a pillar of salt25.

Look not so deeply into words and letters; for this Mystery hath been hidden by the Alchemists. Compose the sevenfold into a fourfold regimen26; and when thou hast understood thou mayest make symbols27; but by playing child's games with symbols thou shalt never understand28. Thou hast the signs; thou hast the words; but there are many things that are not in my power, who am but the warden of the 28th Aethyr.

Now my name thou shalt obtain in this wise. Of the three angels of the Aethyr, thou shalt write the names from right to left and from left to right and from right to left, and these are the holy letters:

The first 1, the fifth 2, the sixth 3, the eleventh 4, the seventh 5, the twelfth 6, the seventeenth 7.

Thus hast thou my name29 who am above these three, but the angels of the 30th Aethyr are indeed four, and they have none above them; wherefore dispersion and disorder30.

Now cometh from every side at once a voice, terribly great, crying: Close the veil; the great blasphemy hath been uttered; the face of my Mother31 is scarred by the nails of the devil. Shut the book, destroy the breaker of the seal!

And I answered: Had he not been destroyed he had not come hither, for I am not save in the darkness in the womb of Her32 by whom came evil into the world.

And this darkness swallows everything up33, and the angel is -------------------- gone from the stone34; and there is no light therein, save only the light of the Rose and of the Cross35.

Aumale, Algeria. November 23, 1909, between 8 and 9 p.m.

  1. {Aries}{Taurus}{Cancer} = {HEB:Heh} + {HEB:Vau} + {HEB:Chet} = 19. {HEB:Heh}{HEB:Vau}{HEB:Chet} = Eve = to manifest, to shew forth.
  2. Opal = rainbow = {Sagittarius}
  3. XIX = The Wheel of the Sun, symbolic of universally radiating energy; and 19 is the glyph of the circle.
  4. 19 = Angel L.T.D. Of {Sagittarius}
  5. 19 = {HEB:Heh}{HEB:Yod}{HEB:Dalet} was black.
  6. References to Binah.
  7. See above, note 3.
  8. {HEB:Chet} = Fence.
  9. Binah = Eve. 19 is the Great Glyph of the Feminine.
  10. Same as above.
  11. {HEB:Taw} Time = {Saturn} = Binah.
  12. i.e. must attain to 8x = 3{square x}
  13. All are references to Binah.
  14. Binah absorbs all.
  15. Binah destroys knowledge.
  16. Hands: {Mercury}: for Hand is Iod, Virgo. Also the two hands are the Twin Serpents. Eyes {Sun} & {Moon} The Positive and Negative. Executive currents of the Logos. Nostrils {Mars} & {Venus} The mouth attributed the Mercury in the usual system, cannot be used in this phrase; for the Ears {Jupiter} & {Saturn} Mouth is One, not Two, being the Logos itself. And the Lodgos is essentially an Unity, although manifested through Vibration. It is therefore not destroyed with the other objects of Knowledge, though its dual modes of expression, the hands, are no longer known apart.
  17. See Liber AL, III, v. 72.
  18. The Elements are hidden in Binah.
  19. In the light of the cry ofLOE, this passage seems to mean precisely the opposite of its apparent meaning. The whole cry, from "Let me dwell ..." is an Invocation of Binah. It is a foreshadowing of the Mysteries of the Crossing of the Abyss.
  20. The translation of this is in my private copy (white and gold binding). Possibly also in the Cefalu set which was copied from that (?) by Estai. (?).
  21. Binah or Nuit = Draco, the Dragon.
  22. See the 14th and 13th Aethyr.
  23. See the 10th Aethyr. These statements are prophetic.
  24. Tiphereth; and the sign of Osiris risen in 5x = 6{square x}.
  25. Prophetic of the 8x = 3{square x} attainment; the pillar is phallic, and salt is {Salt}, of Binah, the Great Sea. Cf. Lib. LXV, Cap. V, vv. 5, 23, 25.
  26. The completed system which is made by the 7x = 4{square x}.
  27. The 8x = 3{square x} may devise a new Qabalah.
  28. One cannot become 8x = 3{square x} by intellectual manipulations.
  29. This would appear to be: PXINBAL <---? FCCISNI>C = LIXIPSP = {Cancer}{Sagittarius}{Spirit} {Sagittarius} {Leo}{Gemini}{Leo} ={HEB:Chet}{HEB:Samekh}{HEB:Taw}{HEB:Samekh} {HEB:Tet} {HEB:Zain} {HEB:Tet} = 553 = RAPOLXD <---Y {HEB:Lamed}{HEB:Vau}{HEB:Dalet}{HEB:Gemel}{HEB:Heh}{HEB:Yod} {HEB:Nun}{HEB:Ta w}="Draco" Magnus, the Mighty Dragon. This is the symbol of Nuit or Binah. The whole symbolism of this Angel is therefore exactly confirmed through a Qabalistic equation of which the Seer had no idea at the time. N.B. He is above the dispersion and disorder just as Binah is above the Abyss of Choronzon.
  30. The four elements unharmonized break up into Choronzon.
  31. Further reference to Binah.
  32. Binah.
  33. Typical gesture of Binah.
  34. The general attribution of this Aethyr is to Atu XVII.
  35. Binah being gone, the seer descends to his normal place in Tiphereth.