quotes by aleister crowley

Best Quotes by Aleister Crowley

quotes by Aleister Crowley
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Aleister Crowley is considered one of the most controversial figures in modern occultism. He was an influential occultist, writer, and magician born in 1875. Crowley’s teachings introduced a new perspective on the occult, inspiring a generation of practitioners and followers.

He left behind a vast collection of books and quotes that are still widely studied and discussed today. Aleister Crowley’s quotes are powerful, thought-provoking, and challenging. They are relevant to the modern world, and anyone seeking to achieve personal growth, transformation, and spiritual enlightenment will find his teachings impactful.

Crowley’s quotes cover a wide range of subjects, from magick and mysticism to ethics and philosophy. His works inspire individuals to explore their innermost selves and tap into their dormant potentials. Engaging with his quotes can help one to transcend personal limitations and initiate transformation.

In this article, we will delve into some of the most notable quotes by Aleister Crowley. We will explore their meaning, significance, and how they can benefit us in our spiritual journey. By the end of this article, you will have gained a deeper understanding of Crowley’s teachings and their relevance to the modern world.

Aleister Crowley: The Man and His Quotes

Aleister Crowley was an infamous occultist, mystic, poet, and mountaineer born in 1875 in Leamington Spa, England. He was a controversial figure in his time and remains influential in the occult and spiritual practices to this day. Crowley’s prolific writing career spanned over 50 years and encompassed a wide array of topics that ranged from magic and spirituality to drug use and sexuality. In addition to his writing, Crowley was known for his eccentric and flamboyant lifestyle that included indulging in drug use, sexual experimentation, and a passion for mountaineering.

Crowley gained widespread notoriety for his involvement in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, a magical order that was popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He eventually founded his own magical order, the A∴A∴, which was based on the principles of Thelema, a spiritual and philosophical movement that he founded. Thelema’s central tenet is “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law,” which represents an individualistic philosophy that aligns with Crowley’s own personal practices.

Crowley’s writing career began in the late 19th century, and he authored a vast number of books and essays during his lifetime. His first book, “Aceldama; A Place to Bury Strangers In,” was published in 1898, and he continued to publish works throughout his lifetime, including “The Book of Lies,” “Magick in Theory and Practice,” and “The Book of Thoth.” In addition to his books, Crowley was a prolific poet and wrote over 800 poems during his lifetime. His poetry spanned a range of topics, including love, beauty, and spirituality.

Crowley’s quotes are often provocative and controversial. He believed in pushing the boundaries of traditional morality and encouraging people to explore their individuality. Some of his most famous quotes include “The joy of life consists in the exercise of one’s energies, continual growth, constant change, the enjoyment of every new experience. To stop means simply to die” and “I was not content to believe in a personal devil and serve him, in the ordinary sense of the word. I wanted to get hold of him personally and become his chief of staff.”

Crowley was known for his frank and open discussion of subjects that were considered taboo during his time. He believed that individuals should explore their sexuality and that it was an essential part of personal growth. One of his most famous quotes on the subject is “I am a lover of women, of life, and of freedom. I do not believe in taking the narrow path. Body and soul must be freely developed.” He also believed in the use of psychedelic drugs as a tool for spiritual exploration and personal growth.

In conclusion, Aleister Crowley was a complex and controversial figure whose beliefs and practices continue to inspire and intrigue people to this day. His quotes are a reflection of his individualistic philosophy and his desire to push the boundaries of traditional morality and encourage individuals to explore their unique identities.

Spirituality and the Occult

Aleister Crowley was one of the most influential figures in the world of spirituality and the occult during the last century. He operated in a way that was truly unique, combining a deep understanding of spirituality with an individualistic personal philosophy that is still studied and debated to this day.

Throughout his work, Crowley made a variety of insightful comments about spirituality and the occult that are still relevant today. Here are some of his most thought-provoking quotes:

“Magick is not a thing of the past – it has always been present, but we are not attuned to it.”

Crowley believed that spirituality and magick were deeply intertwined, and that the power of magick was always available to us. However, he also believed that we needed to be “attuned” to this power in order to use it effectively. This quote is a reminder that we need to cultivate a deeper understanding of the spiritual world around us if we hope to use it to our advantage.

“The uninitiated see only the outward form of things, and not their inner significance.”

Crowley believed that in order to truly understand the mysteries of the occult, we need to delve deeper than surface-level appearances. We need to look beyond the physical manifestations of the world and focus on the deeper spiritual truths that lie beneath.

“Every man and every woman is a star.”

This often-quoted line from Crowley’s work is a reminder of the individualistic nature of spirituality. Crowley believed that we all have a unique place in the universe, and that we should strive to find and express our own star-like qualities.

“I was not content with simple knowledge of the stars, but always wanted to be able to handle them.”

This quote speaks to Crowley’s deep desire to not just understand the mysteries of the universe, but to actively work with them. Crowley believed firmly in the power of magick to shape the world around us, and he worked tirelessly to explore this power in his own life and in the lives of others.

“Magick is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will.”

This is perhaps Crowley’s most famous quote and encapsulates his central beliefs about magick. Crowley believed that magick was a way to shape the world around us in accordance with our own will. However, he also believed that this required a deep understanding of the spiritual world and a commitment to personal growth and development.

Overall, these quotes from Crowley offer a glimpse into his unique perspective on spirituality and the occult. While some may find his ideas controversial or difficult to understand, there is no denying the power and influence his work has had on the world of spirituality and self-discovery.

The Nature of existence and the Self

In Aleister Crowley’s writings and teachings, he often delves into deep philosophical and spiritual concepts regarding the nature of existence and the self. These ideas are often laced with mystical and esoteric language, but the core message is one of self-discovery and transcendence.

1. “Every man and woman is a star.”

This quote by Crowley speaks to the idea that every individual is unique and possesses their own inner light, or divine nature. It emphasizes the importance of recognizing and embracing one’s own individuality and potential, rather than conforming to societal norms and expectations. By tapping into this inner star, one can achieve their highest potential and connect with the universe at large.

2. “The man who is master of himself can end sorrow as easily as he can invent a pleasure.”

This quote highlights the power of self-mastery and control over one’s own thoughts and emotions. Crowley believed that inner peace and joy were achievable through discipline and self-control, rather than external sources. By mastering our own minds and desires, we can achieve a state of enlightenment and spiritual fulfillment.

3. “The essence of independence has been to think and act according to standards from within, not without.”

This quote speaks to the importance of cultivating our own internal moral compass, rather than relying on external authorities or societal norms. Crowley believed that true independence and freedom required a deep sense of self-awareness and inner guidance. He emphasized the importance of questioning authority and dogma, and forging our own paths in life.

Overall, Crowley’s philosophical and spiritual teachings on the nature of existence and the self encourage individuals to look within themselves for guidance and inspiration. By recognizing our own individuality and embracing our inner divinity, we can achieve a state of transcendence and enlightenment.

Sex, Drugs, and Magick

Aleister Crowley is often associated with indulgence, with many interpreting his beliefs as promoting excess in sex, drugs, and other “vices.” However, looking deeper into Crowley’s teachings reveals a more complex relationship with these indulgences, and their role in magick.

Crowley saw obsession and addiction as being detrimental to spiritual growth, leading to a narrowing of focus and a fixation on one particular aspect of life. In his book “Magick Without Tears,” Crowley wrote that “the addict loses consciousness of everything in the world except his addiction; he sleeps, eats and dreams of little else.” This lack of balance and perspective is counter to the tenets of magick, which aim for a holistic and interconnected view of the universe.

However, Crowley did not believe that abstinence was the solution to these issues. Rather, he advocated for a measured approach to indulgence, where one indulges in a way that enhances their understanding or experience of the world. In “The Book of Lies,” Crowley wrote “the supreme enjoyment is mastery; sex, drugs, and art are simply ways of tricking the self into surrendering its control.” For Crowley, indulgences were a means of transcending the ego and accessing a deeper spiritual truth.

When it came to sex, Crowley believed in the power of sexual energy to aid in magickal practice, but also saw the need for control and discipline. In “Liber Aleph vel CXI: The Book of Wisdom or Folly,” he wrote that “the passions of the body must be controlled and directed, but not destroyed.” In other words, sexual experience and expression was not to be demonized, but rather understood and harnessed for greater spiritual understanding.

Similarly, with drugs, Crowley saw their potential for opening the mind and expanding consciousness. In “The Confessions of Aleister Crowley,” he wrote “cannabis, peyote, and mescaline have given me some of the most profound insights into the nature of existence.” However, he also recognized the dangers of addiction and dependency, cautioning his followers to approach these substances with caution and respect.

Ultimately, Crowley saw indulgence as a tool for spiritual growth, when approached with mindfulness and intention. As he wrote in “The Book of the Law,” “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law,” meaning that with proper understanding and control, any action can be used for magickal purpose.

Thelemic and Magickal Doctrine

Aleister Crowley was a highly influential occultist, writer and ceremonial magician who founded and promoted Thelemic philosophy during the early 20th century. The core of Crowley’s thelemic and magickal doctrine involves the pursuit of personal growth and development – both spiritual and intellectual – through the principles of magick, ritual, meditation and the study of mystical texts. Below are some selected quotes from Crowley’s writings on his religion, Thelema, and the principles and practices of magick.

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

This quote is the central tenet of Crowley’s philosophy and is known as the Law of Thelema. It essentially means that every individual has the right to act in accordance with their true will, without infringing on the rights of others. It is not to be interpreted as a license to behave recklessly or without regard for others, but rather as a call to self-discovery and fulfillment of one’s unique purpose in life.

The word of Sin is Restriction.

According to Crowley, the main factor that inhibits human potential is the tendency to limit oneself through conformity, fear, and societal constraints. By recognizing and transcending these limitations, an individual can achieve their true will and attain a state of personal freedom and enlightenment. In a magickal sense, the removal of restrictions enables one to access greater spiritual power and achieve more effective results in their rituals.

Magick is the Science and Art of causing Change to occur in conformity with Will.

Crowley believed that magick was a tool for affecting change in the world around us, and that it was not a supernatural or mystical phenomenon. Rather, it was a practice that utilized the individual’s innate psychic abilities to manipulate the world around them in accordance with their true will. He emphasized the importance of proper training and practice in magickal techniques, as well as the careful selection and preparation of materials used in rituals.

The true Magickian is a poet.

Crowley believed that poetry was the highest form of art, and that it was the language of magick. The ability to use language in a creative and powerful way was seen as crucial to the effective performance of magickal rituals and the attainment of spiritual insight. He stressed the importance of developing one’s creative abilities through the study of literature and poetry, as well as through the practice of writing and other forms of creative expression.

Love is the law, love under will.

Crowley believed that love was a driving force behind human motivation and was the foundation of all magickal practice. However, he saw love not as a sentimental or emotional attachment, but rather as a dynamic force that drives individuals to pursue their true will. For him, the highest expression of love is the conscious recognition and alignment with the divine will – the will of the universe itself. He encouraged individuals to cultivate compassion and empathy as part of their spiritual practice, as well as to seek out experiences that foster a sense of interconnectedness with all of creation.

Humour, Wit and Wisdom

Aleister Crowley was known for his serious demeanor, but that didn’t mean he was always solemn. He had a wicked sense of humor, a sharp wit, and an impressive knack for wordplay. Here are some of his most amusing quotes that give us a glimpse into his lighter side:

“Every man and every woman is a star.” – This quote is humorous because it’s almost cheesy. Crowley is playing with the idea of every person being unique and shining brightly, but he puts it in a grandiose way that’s slightly absurd.

“I can imagine myself on my death-bed, spent utterly with lust to touch the next world, like a boy asking for his first kiss from a woman.” – This quote is witty because it’s both irreverent and profound. Crowley is describing his desire for spiritual enlightenment in a way that’s both playful and powerful.

“The essence of independence has been to think and act according to standards from within, not without.” – This quote is wise because it speaks to the importance of individuality and self-reliance. Crowley is urging people to trust their own instincts and not be swayed by external pressures.

“I have never grown out of the infantile belief that the universe was made for me to suck.” – This quote is humorous because it’s so blunt and vulgar. Crowley is poking fun at his own egotism and reminding us that we all have a bit of selfishness in us.

“The joy of life consists in the exercise of one’s energies, continual growth, constant change, the enjoyment of every new experience.” – This quote is wise because it’s a reminder to live life to the fullest and embrace new challenges. Crowley is encouraging people to stay curious and open-minded.

“I am a poet, and therefore a liar.” – This quote is both humorous and insightful. Crowley is acknowledging the power of language and the way that poets use words to create their own reality. He’s also hinting at the idea that all of us, to some extent, are storytellers who craft our own narratives.

Aleister Crowley’s quotes show us that he was a complex and multifaceted individual who could be serious, funny, and profound all at once. Whether he was poking fun at his own ego, urging us to live life to the fullest, or reminding us of the power of language, he always had something interesting to say.

FAQ and Conclusions

Quotes by Aleister Crowley have long fascinated and inspired people all over the world. Here, we will answer some of the most common questions related to Crowley and provide some concluding thoughts on his philosophy.


1. Who was Aleister Crowley?

Aleister Crowley was a British occultist, mystic, poet, and mountaineer who lived from 1875 to 1947. He is best known for his writings on magick and his unconventional spiritual beliefs.

2. What is Thelema?

Thelema is the spiritual philosophy and way of life that Crowley developed and promoted. It is based on the idea that every person has a unique true will that they should strive to fulfill. Thelemites aim to live in alignment with their true will, which is often discovered through mystical experiences.

3. Did Crowley really drink blood?

There is no evidence to suggest that Crowley ever drank blood. This is likely a myth based on his reputation as a controversial and unconventional figure.

4. Was Crowley a Satanist?

Crowley did not believe in Satan or any other personal devil figure. However, his writings and practices often involve the invocation of various dark or chaotic forces, which has led some people to associate him with Satanism.

5. Did Crowley believe in black magick?

Crowley did practice what many would consider to be “black magick,” which involves using magickal techniques to cause harm or disruption to others. However, he believed that magick itself is neutral, and that it is the intentions and actions of the magician that determine whether it is black or white.

6. What is the Book of the Law?

The Book of the Law is a central text in Thelema, which Crowley claimed to have received through a communication with a spiritual entity known as Aiwass. It outlines many of the basic principles and practices of Thelema.

7. Was Crowley bisexual?

Crowley was open about his bisexuality and had relationships with both men and women throughout his life.

8. Did Crowley influence any famous people?

Crowley’s influence can be seen in many areas of popular culture, including music, literature, and film. Some well-known figures who have been inspired by Crowley include Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, and William S. Burroughs.

9. What is the significance of the number 666 in Crowley’s work?

The number 666 appears frequently in Crowley’s writings and is often associated with his central philosophy of Thelema. In Crowley’s system of numerology, 666 represents the union of opposing forces, such as the conscious and unconscious mind.

10. What is the legacy of Aleister Crowley?

Crowley’s legacy continues to attract followers and detractors alike. While some people see him as a misunderstood and brilliant innovator in the fields of mysticism and spiritual practice, others see him as a dangerous and immoral figure who promoted dangerous practices.


Aleister Crowley’s life and work continue to fascinate and confound people today. His philosophy of Thelema, with its emphasis on finding and fulfilling one’s true will, has inspired countless individuals to explore their spirituality and personal potential. However, Crowley’s controversial and often shocking practices have made him a figure of suspicion and fear for many as well. Ultimately, whether one sees Crowley as a brilliant innovator or a dangerous charlatan, his place in the history of mysticism and occultism is secure.

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