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Paulo Coelho: The Dark Side of the Author of The Alchemist

Brazilian journalist Fernando Morais has published a voluminous biography about the popular self-help book writer Paulo Coelho. It reveals the dark side of the author of The Alchemist, who confesses to having been a Satanist. The Magician (distributed by Planet) tells of his obsession since he was a child to organize secret sects, how he tries to commit suicide with gas and slams a goat in a ritual for not having met who he calls ′ the angel of death ′. Three times he is admitted by his parents to an insane asylum, after almost fatally hitting a young man and then running away. Her multiple simultaneous brides reveal her sadistic laughter, putting out cigarettes on her legs, or inducing the suicide of one of them. Coelho confesses in the book to have been a drug addict, to practice homosexuality and magic, being a faithful follower of the mandates of satanist Aleister Crowley, to the point of having a young slave. There is no doubt that he now declares himself ′ Catholic, practitioner and sinner ′, but what was the satanism of his youth?

Article by José de Segovia from Madrid on Friday, January 3rd 2020 ·.·★ Reading takes 11 minutes or 2137 words.

Most people don′t really understand what Satanism is, starting with the Christians themselves, who sometimes have strange ideas about the occultism. Since Satanists do not worship Satan, but as they often say, ′in Satanism everyone is their own god.′ This is something that shocks us, especially since the name of Satan is omnipresent in Satanism, but we must realize that they understand it. ′more as a symbol, than as a supernatural entity′. As far as philosophically, we could consider Satanism epicurean, as it claims ′enjoy life in the most intense way possible and turn the will into the only law′.

That nihilistic aspect of Satanism is what Julio Caro Baroja observes in people attending black masses in the Basque Country: ′They are in general people up to a point sophisticated, with a small or large tendency to hypertrophy of the self and a morbid curiosity for certain psychopathies, sexual especially ′. They are people, for the anthropologist, who′ in short has little to do from all points of view with the peasant witches of medieval Europe and from the 16th and 17th centuries. ′



Satanism today is a relatively recent birth movement, but before its last outbreak in California in the 1960s, it has its origin in an enigmatic English character named Aleister Crowley (1875-1947), who became the black beast of Victorian society, for his continuous provocations against religion and morals. Raised in an evangelical family, linked to the Closer Brother Assemblies, he read the Bible every day, and he was fascinated by the prophetic passages, becoming identified with the figure of the Antichrist, announced in the Apocalypse. His father dies of cancer when He was eleven years old, and his complicated psychology seems dominated by a hatred of his mother and his faith, which leads him to totally irrational actions. Suffer mostly a sickly sexual perversion, to which he tries to give a magical sense.

Crowley studied at Cambridge, where he makes a poetry of satanic aesthetics. Baudelaire style, increasingly pornographic. ′My purpose is not simply scandalize, but brutally tear away the sense of sin, ′he says. In 1898 he joins the well-known Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, founded in 1887. His system It came from a book found by its founder, Mathers, in a library in Paris. He had no ritual, only lists of angels and demons to invoke, and talismans to consecrate and obtain all kinds of powers. Since although it is always said that there are two schools of magic, the white and the black, these are easily intermingle. That′s why Crowley in London had two rooms he used as temples, one for white magic and one for black.

After breaking up with Mathers, Crowley marries and in Egypt spends a night in the Great Pyramid, invoking the ibis-headed god who represents wisdom. His wife receives a message from Horus there, whose statue they saw that he had in a museum number 666. So they contact his Guardian Angel: Aiwass, a messenger from Set, destroyer god, which some call Satan. Estele dictates The Book of the Law, whose maxim is that ′there is no other law beyond Do what you want.′ His mission now is to teach that God is within us (there is no God) and that the soul or center of man is the True Will. In the book he presents a parody of the sacrament, which will become a sexual ritual in the society that originates modern satanism: the Ordo Templi Orientalis.


The O.T.O. It had been founded by German freemasons in 1902, and advocated a magical sexuality, worshiping an androgynous idol, Baphomet, supposedly related  With the Templars. Its founder, Reuss, had been the socialist executive with Marx′s daughter, until he was expelled for his fondness for cabaret. Among them was  Rudolf Steiner, the general secretary of the Theosophical Society, who would later found Anthroposophy. The purpose of his magic was not to seek sexual pleasure, but  a priestly power, which also materialized in money. Since Crowley related the success of these rituals with the arrival of the donations that maintained the  sect


Crowley spent years in New York, where he has a lot of influence. There he makes German propaganda, until at the end of the war he forms a commune in Sicily. But after the death of two of its members, he is expelled by Mussolini, to die as a heroinomano in England. His last words, trembling Between tears, they were: ′I am perplexed.′ According to the sympathetic biography that John Symonds has made, every five minutes someone believed himself different. Use hundreds of names and personalities, in relation to his visions of previous reincarnations, and thinks he can control reality by magical thinking. That is why in Berlin it is believed invisible in a cafeteria, or walking among people. In that sense Satanism has some pathological phenomenon.

In his sick mind, Crowley finds justification for everything. Although sometimes he took refuge in the idea that he was in the hands of a demon like Aiwass. He never admitted any mistake, although he writes that he felt guilty in his heart. He had a life of total indulgence with everything he believed God hated (magic, sex and drugs), coming to offer to the Russian revolutionary authorities to help destroy Christianity. But at the end of his life, during one of the bombing of London, he repeated the words of Psalm 23, seeking the protection of that God he had known as a child.


The myth of Crowley is intimately linked to all that the youth counterculture of the sixties and seventies means. His face appears on the cover of Beatles album Sergeant Pepper. But he will be the guitarist of the group Led Zeppelin, Jimmy Page, the main person in charge of the crowleymanía of the seventies. Page He read Magic in theory and practice with only eleven years. Collect your manucristos, first editions, paintings, tunics, hats, canes and tarot cards. In  1970 buys the Boleskine house, next to Loch Ness, which Crowley acquired for certain magical rituals. Page hires a satanist to decorate her with  murals that return it to its original condition. Five years later he finances an occultist bookstore in London, which his astrologer takes, reissuing the works of  Crowley And he inscribed on the vinyl of his third album, Crowley′s motto: Do ​​what you want.


Film director Kenneth Anger was a disciple of Crowley. He asked Page and the Rolling Stones to participate in his film The Lucifer Rebellion, for which Jagger composes the Invocation of my Demon Brother. Bowie also refers to Crowley in his album The Man Who Sold the World. As well as Bruce Dickinson of the Iron Maiden group, who even wrote a book about Crowley. Richard Ramírez is the bassist of the musician best known today for his provocations to religion, Marilyn Manson. He thus defines Satanism: ′It is a mental process of being yourself, of self-preservation. It does not imply necessarily worship the devil. The word satan symbolizes maximum rebellion. ′This reaction takes a violent character in the case of Deicide, a group of Florida persecuted by animal protection associations for the sacrifices they make at concerts, which have even caused attacks against them. Singer Glen Benton has threatened preacher Bob Larson, to whom he dedicates his song Kill the Christian, for his continued attacks on rock.


Anton Szandor LaVey was born in Chicago in 1930, although he lived most of his life in San Francisco, where he was a lion tamer, event photographer and professional organist, before founding in 1966 the Church of Satan, being known by his followers as the black pope. ′On Saturday nights - remember LaVey- you could see a lot of men watching with lust those half-naked girls who danced at the fair. When the next day, by the tomorrow, he played the organ in the Sunday service of the evangelists, he saw those same men, now become parents, accompanied along with their wives and children. I discovered then that the Christian church is based on hypocrisy. ′

LaVey wrote a Satanic Bible in 1969. In recent years he made some records, but became more famous for his appearance in the Polanski movie, The seed of the devil, which because of its difficult relationship with rock, which he did not consider very useful for his purposes. LaVey′s daughter, Karla, is a high priestess of  church. At his grave, his father ′only regrets the times he has been too kind.′


The Temple of Set begins after the separation of Michael Aquino from the LaVey group in 1975. The Nazi symbology identifies this sect. Today there are many others that They are generally divisions of the previous ones, but they have more relation to each other than it seems. Most are in Europe and the US, grouped under the Ancient Star Order Mystical-Kindi, which includes other groups such as the Ordo Templi Astarte or Church of Hermetic Science born in 1970, or the Luciferian Light Group.


The devil has been saying from the beginning that we will get rid of evil, if we surrender ourselves to him, but in reality what he does is to anaesthetize our conscience. His words sound good, and they continue to attract everyone who feels desperate, discovering how Crowley, who cannot master his passions. That is why Satanism is born from the Church, and not from the atheist world, because it is an expression of apostasy, not ignorance. It is the subversion of Christian morals, calling self-control, sin, and abandonment, redemption. And as in Eden, it leads us to moral disintegration, madness, and even early death.

′What I understand about Crowley′s system,′ says musician Jimmy Page, ′is that repression is the greatest work of sin.′ That′s why he was perhaps known for wearing a collection of whips in his luggage to humiliate his followers, with the same pleasure his teacher showed. ′Crowley didn′t have a great opinion of the woman, ′said the guitarist of Led Zeppelin,′ and I think he was not wrong. ′Satanism is based on the search for an′ authentic will ′, which leaves the instincts free of all moral restraint. Drugs, alcohol or sexual rituals, are in this sense means to achieve an awareness of self-liberation.

Man thus takes the place of God. He believes that he is not subject to anyone and self-realizes by obedience to his sovereign will (′there is no more law that does what you want ′). But what Satanism calls′ true will ′is nothing but the authentic′ message of redemption ′of the serpent in Eden (Genesis 3), by the that ′being like God′, we will be beyond good and evil. The true Gospel, however, brings us a message of victory against evil, so Christ has done on the cross. It is not therefore about accepting evil, but about getting rid of its power and guilt, by faith in his death and resurrection. So ′woe to those who say good to evil, and good to evil; who make darkness light, and light darkness′ (Isaiah 5:20). But Jesus says: ′the   it will set you free ′(John 8:32).

This is an short translation of the original article published in Spanish by Entrelíneas: Revista de Arte as Paulo Coelho y el lado oscuro del autor de El Alquimista

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