Luminist Archives

(1875 – 1947)

Aleister Crowley (1875 - 1947)

Aleister Crowley (1875–1947) was a true forefather of the psychedelic counter-culture. He achieved renown early in life as a mountain climber and adventurer, and as a brilliant and prolific writer. His works include poetry, philosophy, psychology, theology, translations of classic Oriental spiritual texts, essays on politics and society, literary criticism, plays, novels and short stories. He was one of the world’s foremost authorities on the Western occult tradition.

Crowley’s formal education commenced at Trinity College in Cambridge, England, in 1895. Three years later his first poetry was published, and the same year he entered the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, a fraternal order that taught the traditional lore of the Western occult tradition, including Qabalah, alchemy and ceremonial magic. He traveled throughout the world, studying the spiritual traditions of many cultures. These disparate spiritual and philosophical threads were eventually woven together into the “Scientific Illuminism” which he propounded through his self-published encyclopedic periodical, The Equinox, between 1909 and 1913.

In 1925 Crowley assumed leadership of Ordo Templi Orientis, a fraternal initiate order that teaches a synthesis of Western occult and Tantric spiritual traditions. The modern OTO is a resource for further Crowley information.

For more information on Crowley’s life, see his autobiographical reminiscences in The Equinox of the Gods, and his lengthy “autohagiography,” The Confessions of Aleister Crowley.

Aleister Crowley in the Luminist Archives:


Liber AL: The Book of the Law

Liber LXV: The Heart Girt with a Serpent


The Psychology of Hashish


Absinthe: The Green Goddess

The Soul of the Desert


Book Four

Liber E

Liber O


Hymn to Pan

Pan to Artemis

The Interpreter

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