Magick (Book 4)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Magick, Liber ABA, Book 4 is widely considered to be the magnum opus of 20th-century occultist Aleister Crowley, the founder of Thelema. It is a lengthy treatise on Magick, his system of Western occult practice, synthesised from many sources, including Eastern Yoga, Hermeticism, medieval grimoires, contemporary magical theories from writers like Eliphas Levi and Helena Blavatsky, and his own original contributions. It consists of four parts: Mysticism, Magick (Elementary Theory), Magick in Theory and Practice, and ΘΕΛΗΜΑ—the Law (The Equinox of The Gods). It also includes numerous appendices presenting many rituals and explicatory papers.

In November 1911, Crowley carried out a ritual during which he reports being commanded to write Book 4 by a discarnate entity named "Abuldiz" (sometimes spelled "Ab-ul-diz" in Crowley's incomplete record of the working). This was duly accomplished at a villa in Posillipo near Naples, Italy, and was published in the winter of 1912–3. Abuldiz appeared in Mary Deste Sturges visions (as Crowley's seer) as an old man with a long white beard wearing a ring which contasined a white feather.

Liber ABA refers to this work being a part of Crowley's system of libri. In most systems where letters are given numerical value, ABA adds up to 4 (thus the name Book 4).

Much of the book was dictated to several of Crowley's students, who would also ask questions to get clarification. The principal collaborators were Mary Deste Sturges (Soror Virakam, mother of Preston Sturges), Leila Waddell (also known as Laylah), and Mary Butts, all of whom were given coauthorship credit.

See also

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