Hermetic Library Newsletter - Issue #34 (Too spicy? Too salty?)

Hermetic Library Newsletter - Issue #34 (Too spicy? Too salty?)
By John Bell the Librarian • Issue #65 • View online
This week I’ve got a diastem, a TST and OTO hot take, a Venn diagram, Postal Exchange, a butcher job, implying existence, propaganda, reminders, updates, quotes, reviews, mail call, and more!
And, as always, I worked on various other things on website, blog, and more … Enjoy!

System and Diastem
Toward the end of my Masters program in Whole Systems Design, I started to think about the idea of “field thinking” as an answer to some of the holes I started to feel existed in the field of “systems thinking”. Unfortunately, a lot of what I was thinking about that got lost in time as I scrambled to finish my degree, and then got caught up in other things. But, I come back to thinking about it sometimes.
The other day I was randomly thinking about how the terms systole and diastole imply there might for system be also diastem. Instead of σύν (sun, ‘together’) it’s διά (diá, ‘apart’), perhaps parts or members that do not cohere but are still a whole, heterogeneous and separate, but together in some way, functioning distinctly apart, alone together.
Also idly I wonder if this will be a useful way for thinking about fields as opposed to and larger than systems thinking, or parts not included in systems but there natheless.
Also, perhaps useful as a way to talk about “diastem"of people who play MMOs alone?!
In particular, this, for me, could be an important term to describe the rest of everything that’s left out of the map provided by the description of a system, and represented on that map, however useful that map may be, which I don’t recall having heard before or an alternative.
TST and OTO Hot Take
Whatever you think of The Satanic Temple, they’ve done more to advance the cause of liberty in the last 10 years than Ordo Templi Orientis has in the last 100.
When I say “whatever you think”, I mean to recognize, of course, that there’s plenty of criticism one might have for TST. Is what it does more about grandstanding for attention? Does it have more effect on policy than just raising awareness? And, so on.
I also am here clear to say OTO not Thelema, as I’m comparing organization to organization, not organization to movement.
But, here’s the thing: What has OTO actually done in the world in the last 100 years to raise awareness or effect policy that isn’t self-serving and self-dealing administration? Suing or threatening to sue others over copyrights? Suing people with money or to consolidate power and threatening to sue or leveraging copyright ownership over people they want to silence or to suppress documents?
There’s been some publishing efforts that have happened, but there’s a lot that hasn’t been published. Of course, I’d be remiss to not point out that Hermetic Library has been included in blame for publishers not wanting to publish Crowley material, because much of it is available online. But, the entire publishing industry has been groping for someone to blame for its decline, and isn’t a reliable narrator about that. Also, there’s plenty of unpublished material that could be. Also, what about new material?
But, since I mentioned Thelema: one might ask if people influenced by Thelema have changed things they wouldn’t have? Or did they encounter Thelema because they were inclined toward that already happening cultural shift and would have anyway? Probably the latter, if one is being honest.
To say that anyone who’s heard of Thelema or “Do what thou wilt” does what they go on to do because of that is a post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy. It’s also the same argument used by anyone blaming video games for violence, & c. Also, it’s cherry picking examples. &c.
Frankly, hypothetically, I doubt there’s much that happened after encountering Thelema that wouldn’t have without it, some other way, tbh. Are people following their own purpose or not?
But that’s a possibly interesting hot take to consider, take it or leave it.
Too spicy?
Venn diagram
I wonder about the Venn diagram of people who think their sacrosanct freedom means they can do what they want without consideration of others and those who think “Do what thou wilt” is a Satanic license to do whatever taboo one wants without it being a two edged sword.
I’m not the first to say something like that the “freedom” crowd is a cargo cult. But, they seem to wave the word around without thinking much about it other than the ascribe to the latter what they hide behind the former, and they seems themselves to do what they condemn in others.
Postal exchange
This week I put together Hermetic Library Postal Exchange for Patrons through September!
This one includes sending out giveaways of a stack of Bulgakov’s The Master & Margarita and the awesome Century Guild poster from the special offer collaboration.
When I got to the post office, there was also something that had arrived, so I sent something back then and there, as I happened to have extra stuff prepared and with me. (I even sent a replacement for the promo sticker used to seal the envelope!)
Butcher job
I’ve seen stuff like this happen before, and I’ve seen worse, tbh, like the person that took one poster and started sell t-shirts of it (which made me wonder aloud how many of their other designs were stolen as well). But, most often I see people post posters without any credit or link back, which isn’t so bad, except when they get more likes and retweets posting my posters than I do. That does sting a little.
But I am surprised. Obviously they liked the poster enough, but either didn’t understand the joke or hate Hermetic Library itself so much they had to modify it. I suspect the colour change is because they wanted to wipe out the “hermetic.com” watermark but couldn’t figure out how to do it well. And, they didn’t even have enough basic photo editing talent or whatever to make their own, or to do a good job editing it. Just look at that. What did they use? MS Paint?!
Honestly, I expect this kind of thing, and I’m not really all that mad or salty about it happening, except that to note how lame it is in passing.
But what I am really salty about is the mutual on social media that posted it so it showed up in my feed. I mean, what the hell. Like, I’m right here, mutual!
It was a low quality account that posted it, and only ever posted something interesting rarely; so, to heck with them anyway, eh?
Too salty?
Implying existence
Lilith Saintcrow implies the existence of Bigith Saintcrow, probably related to someone mentioned in Life of Brian.
Aleister Crowley implies the existence of B-lister Crowley who’s not quite so famous or infamous.
Israel Regardie implies the existence of Isfantasy Regardie, caught in a landside, no escape from reality, open your eyes, look up to the skies and see.
Valerie Herron implies the existence of Salverie Kthxbyen. Valerie Herron implies the existence of Hillrie Thereon.
Call for submissions to Magick, Music, and Ritual for 2021
Pitch an Idea
Send something for the Zine
Brimstone Apparel 100% off special offer collaboration
Things at Hermetic Library to check out
And on the blog
Treasure Hunters
Also, elsewhere
Mail call
Look what arrived at the Reading Room for mail call, sealed with one of the promo sticker for Shira Chess’ book she sent out, let’s open this up and see what is inside! And since they sent me something, I sent something back! (Including a replacement sticker, haha!)
Did you enjoy this issue?
John Bell the Librarian
By John Bell the Librarian

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