Every culture has a base desire for propagation. Without this desire populations would die. There is however an aberration where desire expands beyond the need of love and compassion, into control, power and self-pleasure. Commonly in the Western World, spiritual teachers will tell you that fulfilling these desires is a good thing. These desires, they say are can even benefit the spiritual practice.
Consider the great occultist Aleister Crowley and his use of sex and drugs with spiritual practice. While Crowley certainly did have some amazing insight and spiritual inspiration, he also had a mind enslaved to the flesh. Like most people he had desires. He had been an addict to Cocaine, as well as Heroin. His passion for pleasures of the flesh was also well documented. I don’t believe it is possible to explore the spiritual through the flesh.
When the flesh is excited the mind draws away from the expanded senses, into the flesh. All those chemicals rushing through the body pull the mind back to it. Just as eating a heavy meal pulls the mind back to the body, so too does the pleasures of drugs and sex. One can not experience the Self (or the Divine) in flesh. The result is always ego, not inner truth as the ego is a product of the brain, not the mind.
Only by my kisses…
In Liber LXV there is a passage that alluded me for quite some time. It is in Chapter 2, verse 10, “But she stirred not; only by my kisses I defiled her so that she turned to blackness before me.” Today I had a realization of what that means for me. As this is a personal interpretation, consider it as my personal bias.
But she stirred not; only by my kisses I defiled her so that she turned to blackness before me.Liber LXV 3:10
The “she” in this quote is Asi, but who is that? The way it is described is as a beautiful figure wrapped in gold. This has a spiritual connotation. I thought perhaps a goddess, but now I think it is a reference to his own inner being.
His kisses defiled her… in other words his desire defiled the spiritual self, so that it turned to blackness before him. Desires corrupt the connection to the spiritual. The spiritual Self isn’t harmed, but the mind can no longer appreciate or commune with it. It is as though the Spiritual becomes blackness before us.
This is where the ego asserts itself and pretends to be the Higher Self. It answers your questions, as though it is the Divine, the Higher and gives advice this most often the worst advice for the spiritual aspirant.
Everything Turns to Blackness
Another way to consider this passage is to consider that those things of the flesh that bring us pleasure, those things always decay. That person you have sex with today, is really a future corpse. That image of a sexy person in sexy clothing, is a future skeleton. The money you desire, is a future waste (as money depreciates with time.) Everything of this carnal world is either decaying or will be lost – or we will lose it when we, ourselves, perish.
The Solution is in the Blackness
The corruption, that blackness (when understood) is our way out of the problem. We can see that it is our ego uplifted, and not the humility of flesh. To be humble (the humility of flesh) is to open to the greater. When we feel our spiritual connection turn dark, then we can realize the need for a change.