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Re: = Oath of the Abyss = What does it mean ? Newcessity ?

Jun 30, 1998 05:45 AM
by Pam Giese

Dallas writes:>>Do you recall in LIGHT ON THE PATH there is a
>> statement made by the writer that for the aspirant a point is
>> reached when the vibration of emotion, of life, seems to come to
>> an end, a stillness.  This is then seemingly an "Abyss."  But
>> once past, the life of the disciple continues (perhaps on a
>> different level of attention) and new vistas open for the
>> aspiring and thinking soul.
Jerry:Could be more of a Dark Night of the Soul than an abyss.
>These are two different things.

I agree with Jerry.  St. John of the Cross describes this as a "dryness"
when the "sweetness" of spirit seems to be withdrawn.  While not pleasant,
it's not the abyss.

Dallas:>> Is the "Abyss" the fear of seeing one's lower self (the animal
>> emotional self linked to the lower mind--or, Kama with
>> Kama-Manas) in its true colors and actuality ?

Jerry:From our side of the Abyss, the fear is spirituality because
>to become aware of our real spiritual self goes with seeing
>the death or end of the personality, and the personality
>rightly fears the Abyss because it means death to it.

This is well put.  The Abyss is much more an intellectual acceptance of
obstacles.  It is more than "confronting the shadow", to borrow a Jungian
term.  It's crossing a barrier where you lose everything to gain everything,
except that at that moment of crossing (or falling into or crawling out of)
you're not that assured of the "gain everything" part.

Most folks avoid the Abyss altogether, out of fear or moderation.  Others
constantly flirt with its boundaries.  Still others find themselves flung
over the edge.

Jerry:  Some knowledge does come from thinking, yes. But spiritual
>knowledge comes when thinking stops. Spiritual knowledge
>or gnosis transcends thinking entirely. Thinking is below
>the Abyss while gnosis is above it.

Yes.  I'd add that not only is gnosis  the way out of the abyss, but being
aware of a  higher level of spiritual being in oneself is probably a sign
that you actually crossed an abyss and not just solved an intellectual
puzzle or survived an emotional crisis.

Back to the Oath.
Jerry writes: "The idea is from the GD and OTO and says that
before crossing the Abyss one must take an oath to
response to every daily event as if it were a direct
communication with God (or one's inner god if you prefer).
It sounds easy but is very hard to follow through. The
main thing is that every aspect of your life becomes

This reminds me of what Robert Anton Wilson calls "living a magical life"
where connectiveness and personal awareness replace the mechanical,
scientific view of the world.  It is also a point that separates for true
occultist from the "armchair" occultist --it's where all the reading of
religious texts and philosophies stop being a hobby and become a vocation, a
way of life.


"Blessed are the cracked, for they shall let in the light..."

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