Why do you choose to follow the LHP and what does it mean to you? | Forum

Why do you choose to follow the LHP and what does it mean to you?

Dark Enlightenment
To answer with a platitude, "the LHP chose to follow me",  but really that was something put together  in retrospect once It clicked as a personality type. 

To pull a parable out my ass: 

Three people are walking and they come to the Land-O-Frost. The path diverges. There are two signs. 

Path One: At the end of this path you will be rewarded for following the directions along the way. Until that point you will be given all the luxuries you need, so long as you play ball. There will be adversity, just know if you believe in the reward and directions you will get though it. Be Warned for those who stray. 

Path Two: You're on your own. 

They all look at each other. 

Person One says: I don't mind the guidance, and I like the prospect of reward and support. I choose path one.

Person Two says: Both paths look the same and go in the same direction. For all we know it is the same, so I am risking it and taking Path Two. It seems more free and might end up at the same party. 

Person Three says:  Ok, fuck you! I want to know what is down path one and why it is so fucking great.  I am not going to be your little bitch to find out either. I don't like being told I have to follow to take this path. Fuck the sign, I'm going down path one with you, Churchy. 

The End.

The Forum post is edited by Dark Enlightenment Jan 2
AK Jan 3
LHP can best be described as a buzz-word like "Web 2.0". It also shares many of the same issues in specificity that "Web 2.0" has; no one's exactly sure what it means in and of itself (or if it really means anything at all). Those that are exactly sure of what it means seldom agree with others who are just as certain they know what it means. Because of this, the question of even if I follow LHP at all is met with a shrug. 

Flowers' book Lords Of the Left Hand Path - the most definitive survey on the subject as a whole that I know of - paints a fairly accurate picture of a nebulous fugue of disparate religious practices, philosophies, and people that share certain traits, but no real cohesion to be found between them. Like "Web 2.0", it's just jargon - an umbrella term for all kinds of unrelated things.

There's the generic and almost vacuous "RHP is seeking unity with God, LHP is becoming God yourself" as is what you'll see in with Thomas Karlsson's take on it in his Qabalah, Qliphoth and Goetic Magic (a book I was more impressed with its sources than the work itself). This is also the party-line Luciferians tend toe in the world of e-Satanism. Hearing this, I'm inclined to ask "what do you mean by 'God'?" 

You'll also hear the word "antinomian" bandied about a lot, but that word has a very specific meaning: namely, and ironically enough, that by Grace alone is one saved. Adherence to the Torah is not necessary. Only recently has it come to be accepted to mean what amounts to symptoms of antisocial personality disorder. There's also notions of transgression and pushing past one's boundaries that comes up; but you're going to get those things in literally anything at all that mandates a standard of excellence, such as in sports, in a gang, or in the military - all of which operate by their own set of laws.

Where I first encountered the term "Left Hand Path" was in the Satanic Bible. It's only mentioned once with any amount of clue as to what he might mean by this term:

"Satanism is not a white light religion; it is a religion of the flesh, the mundane, the carnal - all of which are ruled by Satan, the personification of the Left Hand Path. "

The phrase Left Hand path is mentioned elsewhere but only to say that a black candle represents the left hand path, or that others are comrades of the left hand path. It's actually not a lot to go-on. It leaves much open to the imagination.

Further, in the Satanic Rituals, what is meant by Left Hand Path is shed more light on in "The Ceremony of the stiffling air"

- "The original Templars' rite of the Fifth degree symbolically guided the candidate through the Devil's Pass in the

mountains separating the East from the West (the Yezidi

domain). At the fork of the trail the candidate would make

an important decision: either to retain his present identity, or

strike out on the Left-Hand Path to Schamballah, where he

might dwell in Satan's household, having rejected the foibles

and hypocrisies of the everyday world."

- Aleister Crowley's magic curriculum provided an interesting

comparison in its Seventh degree (Adeptus speculation. Exemptus). In

that rite, the alternative to taking the Left-Hand Path was

to become a Babe of the Abyss, which is not as contradictory

and confusing as it sounds, if one considers Crowley's ofttimes

Machiavellian modus operandi. Crowley, nobody's fool, simply

set up a magical maze so that students whose consciences

would only allow them to tread the Right-Hand Path would

nevertheless wind up on the Left. 

Even here the guy doesn't exactly spoon-feed. He seems to just assume his readership is already familiar with Crowley. This may have been a reasonable assumption back when the book was published, but not so much nowadays. That he often offhandedly dismisses the guy doesn't help matters, either.

*I disagree with LaVey's conjecture on Crowley's modus operandi unless he was not clear that there is a distinct difference between a "black adpet" and a "black brother". Whatever the case, Crowley spells out exactly what he means by the left hand path, and the "black brother" who take that route in "Magic Without Tears" and elsewhere. It is also worth mentioning what "Becoming a babe of the Abyss" entails, which can be found by found scouring various OTO and A.'.A.'. publications. 

The Left-hand Path is a totally different matter.  Let us start at the beginning.
The about-to-be-Black Brother constantly restricts himself; he is satisfied with a very limited ideal; he is afraid of losing his individuality—reminds one of the "Nordic" twaddle about "race-pollution."

Whatever the case, we can see LaVey was referring to Crowley, and Crowley in-turn got it from Blavatsky who purportedly got it from India though her usage of the term left hand path is miles off from the source "Vamachara" - a term which is purported to mean "Left Hand Path", but even this is matter of some dispute. Namely that "vama" can also mean "woman" rather than "left".

This brings to mind ideas such as the root of "matter" is "mater" meaning "mother". Chaos, too, being archetypically feminine: the primordial sea from which life and order arose and to which it will return. Things also nodded-at by LaVey's usage of nude altars. All is not lost entirely if it is later found that we were incorrect in assuming the word's etymology.

I could, by extension, make the case that that his "left hand path" stands on the opposite side of the dualism than that of the sterile immaculate-conception manner of the thinking of "Christians" - often represented by a fish as it once believed that fish exclusively reproduced asexually. The opposite end of the dualism. Make of that what you will. 

The more one plays around with these symbols, the more one realizes the reasons why we use symbols in the first place. "A picture's worth a thousand words" and so-on, provided one knows (or at least thinks they know) what they're looking at. 

Two things: 
1) Not a lot is really known about the tantric religion and its practices. Certainly not written in English. So I'm pretty skeptical when some internet experts and book peddlers come about. There's exceptions: Bhattacharya, for example. Hitebeitel's another good one. But these authors really know their stuff, and know it well enough to say right-out "there's a lot we really just don't know. A ton of works that haven't been translated, and of the ones that have been, their meanings are occult". One can draw parallels, of course, going by that human beings have similarities despite their cultural differences. How far that'll get you though, is questionable. 
2) And this may be a minor one issue or a major issue - it's hard to tell because LaVey really didn't do much by way of spoon-feeding. If we are to take Satanism as a rejection of the spiritual: one that emphasizes man's corporeal or carnal nature, rooted in the self, individualism, and trappings of the ego, it should be understood that the end-game of tantric practices still seeks unification with the divine, just by alternate means than the sanctimonious and ascetic approach one finds in, say, gnosticism. The two approaches may come-full circle, but this is never made explicit. 

I don't necessarily "follow the LHP". It's just a vague term for what one would characterize whichever route I happen to be taking to achieve some effect or other. Leave it for them to make the characterizations. It's otherwise just a way of looking at and participating in the world that has its uses. It's definitely not the whole of my identity by any stretch of the imagination, and I don't really think one way or another of how one chooses to characterize their path.  

That's all I got on LHP, presently. A lot of this is things I've repeated elsewhere. Still, it's always fun to revisit. No doubt I'll revisit the topic and how it all ties together as newer insights emerge from the various resources I cannibalize in the continual processes of making sense of the world - as one should. 

The Forum post is edited by AK Jan 3
I See. So it appears the LHP is subjective. I expected for a more commonly shared definition, under the devotion to the carnal and emotional "sins" that lead to progress in the emotional, physical, and financial areas. Well it is nice to know about the history of the LHP. I had no idea that it could be seen as generic. I guess what it is for all of us, is a path which we have decided to go on; regarding our goals and values. As well as something we are clear on and choose to be pursuing. 
Troll Member
Troll Jan 3

I choose to forge the LHP because it is individual-centered and compensatory against bureaucratic conformity-centered modus operandi. It serves both personal egotism and public freedom.

What the Left-Hand Path means to me is the construction and symbolical and practical embrace of controversial, taboo-based, and transgressive materials and rites which re-embed accusatory and demonizing propaganda targetting personal freedoms and diversity in society.

AK Jan 3
@OP "I See. So it appears the LHP is subjective."

More of an umbrella-term. A buzz-word. Often used by those who are tired of debating what true Satanism is, or just want to distance themselves from its connotations - presumably to reach a wider audience or market-base; depending on what their motives are.

@OP "I expected for a more commonly shared definition"

Left hand path does imply that. Left is 1/2 of a dichotomy. Paths are generally narrow, and a bit of misnomer. It's more tributary-like than anything. Just the same, you'll find no shortage of people out there who share that expectation...

"under the devotion to the carnal and emotional "sins" that lead to progress in the emotional, physical, and financial areas."

... and are willing to die on the hill of their definition being the correct one. 

'Saves trouble to start with something definite and classify it as LHP or RHP if doing so is useful for purposes of discussion or marketing. 

"___ is a type-of LHP practice because it meets the criteria of X, Y, Z" 

There's no real unity in it, though; both due to emphasis on self / ego / individuality, and that it's more like the term "Sport":

-"Football is a type of sport" (and there's ambiguity in the word football itself) 

-"Satanism is a type of Left Hand Path practice" (and there's also ambiguity in the word Satanism itself)

-"Bowling is a type of sport" (highly debatable) 

-"Luciferianism is a type of Left Hand Path practice" (also highly debatable) 

The above analogy extends in ways I've no doubt you can run-with without me having to spell-out.

The Forum post is edited by AK Jan 3
I see, I agree with everything that has been discussed so far. 
AK Jan 3


im dead lol funny as F
I never understood why she had a cross

AK Jan 3
She probably doesn't, either. But "Goth"___ as-in more-than-just-the-hot-topic-shopper-type Goth flirts pretty heavily with some seriously dark and even elegant aspects of early Christianity. Arianism, for example. Interesting stuff. 

Sure, "love thy neighbor" "do unto others" "turn the other cheek" all palatable to today's vapid sensibilities, but the gruesome deaths of the martyrs that underpins all that, on the other hand, is a pretty heavy trip.

The Forum post is edited by AK Jan 3
really? The only in depth knowledge I knew on the Arians, was that they were given the credit for being the tribe of people, that conquered various kingdoms in early Asia and Europe. This is why the Europeans considered themselves to be breed of a mighty bloodline. Religiously I would have thought they were probably Pagan. 
AK Jan 5
I should have clarified: followers of the teachings of Arius. A heretical sect of Christianity.
Seeker Jun 13

Quote from Thetruthisrare666 Why do you choose to follow the LHP and what does it mean to you?

You don't follow the left hand path. You walk the left hand path...

The LHP means to me that I seek knowledge to power, to discover my own godhood and become independent.

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