If you’ve seen the word Boulema come up in the past few post titles and have yet to read them, or perhaps you’ve read them and may be wondering still what Boulema is exactly, I figured I’d explain in more detail. For me, and what I offer to you, is that it is a mystical view without any dogma, or adherence to a particular sect’s writings – it will take Zen Buddhism, Mystical Christianity, Thelema, whatever it wants to look at and play with, whatever we wish to, we are free to, as we know they are all looking at the same realization, all pointing to the same moon. At the core of Boulema, it is non-duality, and the gematria and various other interesting tidbits which make for its aesthetic wrapping were revealed to me through various synchronicities which compounded as they were most welcomed in the past few years that I fought against the (93) current (ha) of the Thelemic system. As much as I’d love to outright denounce Aleister Crowley based on the man’s lesser actions, I could not do that in good spirit as his mind produced a plethora of mystical writings and poetry that cannot be denied for their beauty, and I could never put the writings and books down and say that I’m done with it entirely, as I’d be a hypocrite when I write about something he penned in the future. However, I don’t want anything to do with Thelema itself, as the organizations are in my opinion (which I’d gladly go into, and have on great occasion) inadequate, and are, in my opinion, outright embarrassing, showing little understanding of his materials, and filled with toxic people who ensure that it is doing the opposite of what his work was made to do, which is enlighten people en masse, “The Law is for All”.
To get a quick recap on this Thelema and Boulema comparisons, check out these three articles which I had titled “Killing Thelema”:
What I most love about Zen Buddhism is its attention on the ‘right now’, the present, and our responsibility to enter into samadhi by releasing ourselves from what prevents it, which can be done immediately, as Zen is the “sudden enlightenment” school. Thelema has the same message, which is often overlooked by those prone to procrastination, as Crowley wrote, “Look, brother, we are free!“, the Book of the Law echoes this with “Yea! deem not of change: ye shall be as ye are, & not other.” Yet, there’s no current Thelemic organization which encompasses this, there’s only quasi-masonic groups with years and years of following convolution, various ‘book clubs’ for lack of a better label, and scattered assemblies. Boulema is perfect for being the resolution to this. Thelema requires us to “find our pure will” (or true will), whereas Boulema is what is manifest irregardless of our internal coherence of the outward manifestations, it is what is happening, it is what is sudden. As stated by Lloyd J. Ogilvie in Enjoying God, “Thelema means the desire of God which, to be fully appropriated, requires the cooperation of the human spirit. Boulema is the immutable, irrevocable will of God. It will be accomplished whether or not we cooperate.”
Boulema cannot be stopped, as stated by Bill Johnson in God is Good: He’s Better Than You Think: “There are two different words used in the original language of the New Testament for the word will, referring in this case to the will of God. One is the word, boulema, and the other is thelema. Boulema refers to that which is established and fixed in the will of God. That is the will of God which will happen regardless of who believes it, or who opposes it.” Finally, clarifying once more on the difference between these words, Bob Mumford in The King and You says of Boulema, “Here it is primarily designated as the eternal counsels of God. These are unfolding through the ages and do not depend upon man’s cooperation or obedience. Example: James 1:18 “Of his own will [boulema purpose] begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.” Thelema, this indicates God’s wish or desire. It depends upon the response of each individual for fulfillment.”
Using the Gematria of Boulema, and the coincidence of Love and Will (Filia and Boulema) sharing Gematria values of 551, as in Thelema where Love and Will (Agape and Thelema) are 93, and where Filia is derived etymologically from Filius (Latin for “son”), Boulema will adopt Christ as in Zen which adopts Buddha. We’ll look at this in future posts for ritual and a way to better organize a metaphysical structure to compare with the Five Dhyani Buddhas of Zen, where Cosmic Space emptiness is in the center of the four elements, and in Zen is represented by Vairocana (whose name means “He Who Is Like the Sun”, or “The Radiant One”). In Boulema, the four elements will have Cosmic Space represented by Christ in the center, which is a way of saying Christ on the Cross. On the most common image of the Crucifix, the letters INRI are found inscribed upon it, which is said to represent ‘Jesus Nazarenus Rex Judaeorum‘, but is in esoteric circles a formula for the four elements, Iam (Water), Nour (Fire), Ruach (Air), Iabeshah (Earth) in Hebrew.
In Zen, the core is realizing “Mind is Buddha” (emptiness, cosmic space). A common phrase is “This very body is the Buddha”. The whole of Zen is holding Buddha’s non-dual realization, which is realizing the emptiness of form, and that form is emptiness, form is form and emptiness is emptiness, and then remaining in this non-dual playful samadhi for what one encounters in the world. This is very closely paralleled in Crowley’s writings where he talks of events as “plays of Nuit” and instructs to allow yourself to be changed by each moment, to always be in change, as change is love. This Zen teaches too, life is like a river, constantly flowing and changing, it’s our clinging and resisting change whereby comes hurt. Mind, is of course not just “mental”, as in Chinese the character for Mind is both ‘heart’ and ‘mind’, so this ‘mind is Buddha’ saying encompasses a larger meaning when put in to practice. Similarly, there’s the Christian platitude of “What Would Jesus Do?”, which, if such a question is in the mind, one is disconnected from being what Jesus would do, from being a direct manifestation of the Pure Will. Jesus says in the Bible, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Crowley, in his Essays Towards Truth says, “Truth is our Path, and Truth is our Goal; ay! there shall came to all a moment of great Light when the Path is seen to be itself the Goal; and in that hour every one of us shall exclaim: ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life!'”
Let’s make that moment now, let’s have our realization be sudden. What is there to wait for? Behind is a long trail through the desert, the next step can pass through the abyss. Crowley instructs of Thelemites to “Die Daily” (practice Samadhi daily!)
From the Discourses of Master Po Shan:
The Masters of ancient times said:
Bravely let go
On the edge of the cliff.
Throw yourself into the Abyss
With decision and courage.
You only revive after death.
Verily, this is the Truth!