Finite and Infinite Will

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

Finite and Infinite Will

The central goal of Thelema is the discovery and accomplishment of one’s will. It can be said that there are two aspects of the will which must be discovered, the finite will and the infinite will, and both are necessary. Aleister Crowley writes in “De Lege Libellum,”

“The great bond of all bonds is ignorance. How shall a man be free to act if he know not his own purpose? You must therefore first of all discover which star of all the stars you are, your relation to the other stars about you, and your relation to, and identity with, the Whole. In our Holy Books are given sundry means of making this discovery, and each must make it for himself, attaining absolute conviction by direct experience, not merely reasoning and calculating what is probable. And to each will come the knowledge of his finite will, whereby one is a poet, one prophet, one worker in steel, another in jade. But also to each be the knowledge of his infinite Will, his destiny to perform the Great Work, the realization of his True Self.”

The infinite will is therefore tied up with the Great Work, in going beyond the Nephesh (body) and Ruach (mind) to reach the Secret Self in the Supernal Triangle (Neshamah-Chiah-Yechidah). It is entirely removed from one’s earthly position, proclivities, and ambitions and the perception of this Truth is open to all people. It is the goal of Yoga – complete dissolution in the Infinite, in the Beloved – and it is also the end of all true Magick, being directed towards Knowledge & Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel.

Whereas the infinite will unites us with that identity which one in essence and diverse in expression in each star, the finite will defines us as a particular star in relation with other stars and the entire expanse of Space. Crowley writes in “Liber ThIShARB” which is a book dedicated to the practice of magical memory, “This book is not intended to lead to the supreme attainment. On the contrary, its results define the separate being of the Exempt Adept from the rest of the Universe, and discover his relation to that Universe.” Fresh Fever From the Skies: The Collected Writings of IAO131The finite will therefore refers to the karma of the particular individual – their specific point in space & time – where each person has their own different, unique will to follow out. This is the aspect of oneself where one discovers if poet, prophet, steel worker, or anything else.

To find our will completely we must then both perform the Great Work of coming to know our True Selves beyond all manifestation along with understanding our particular star’s manifestation. To become truly One, we must become both None and Two.

Love is the law, love under will.

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4 comments

  1. This is a good post. I think if more people recognized the difference between becoming all that you are (finite will) and all that you are not (infinite will) a lot of the mischief that we see in our community would go away.

    To name but one technical aspect: the infinite will explains why we can take oaths to define our will. We incarnate in this nature not juist to become all that we are, but also to evolve, that is become that which we are not.

  2. great post,It is important for us to understand the importance of detachment, being able to let go of what is unnecessary, if we focus on only one aspect of self, it becomes obsession and obsession can become hindrance in self expansion..

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