Satanism and Witchcraft – The Occult and the East – Hinduism and Buddhism

Satanism and Witchcraft – The Occult and the East – Hinduism and Buddhism

By: Dr. John Ankerberg, Dr. John Weldon; ©2003
READER CAUTION ADVISED! What is the result when the monastic goals of Hinduism and Buddhism are carried out to their logical end? How do the actions of Charles Manson and his followers relate to this discussion?

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Satanism and Witchcraft: The Occult and the East – Hinduism and Buddhism


In Our Savage God: The Perverse Use of Eastern Thought (1974), Spalding professor of comparative religion at Oxford, R. C. Zaehner, discusses the monistic goals of Hinduism and Buddhism and how certain persons have applied such philosophy to their own ends.[1]

For example, the notorious Satanist Aleister Crowley was influenced by Eastern concepts and experienced an enlightenment undergirded by his belief in the philosophical monism of the East:

Crowley has been condemned as the arch-Satanist, but this is perhaps to do him less than justice, for he belonged to an age-old tradition which saw the Eternal as the ultimate unity in which all the opposites were reconciled, including good and evil. He had lived in the East and was familiar with the scriptures of both the Hindus and Buddhists for whom these ideas were commonplace, but whereas the early Buddhists at least considered that training in good life was a necessary prerequisite for the realization of the Eternal, there were occult sects among both religions who disputed this and practiced what they preached.[2]

Zaehner also discusses Crowley’s achievement of Buddhist “enlightenment,” the results of which were accordingly “revised” by his spirit guide “Aiwass” who, having helped him go beyond the categories of good and evil, now taught him not renunciation but, with the Tantrics, indul­gence:

It may be assumed that in which John Symonds calls his “Buddhist phase,” when, in what is now Vietnam, he attained to one of the higher Buddhist trances (“Neroda-Sammapatti,” more correctly spelt nirodha-samapatti), which corresponds to what we would call the annihilation of the ego, he was tempted to turn his back on the world which, for the Buddhists, is not only full of sorrow and anxiety but actually is sorrow and anxiety, thereby attaining to the unutterable peace of Nirvana. This, however, was not the way of his “Holy Guardian Angel,” Aiwass, who taught him that absolute bliss could only be attained by enjoying the good things of this world to the full—riches, power, and above all sex, the earthly counterpart of the transcendent union of the opposites.[3]

As a result, Crowley began the utilization of sexual rites for ostensibly “spiritual” ends. His “Ordo Templi Orientalis” (Order of the Oriental Temple or O.T.O.) became a branch of Western Tantra; indeed Crowley seems to have been the principal agent responsible for introducing the perversion of Eastern sexual magic to the West.

He developed elaborate rites of sexual “magick.”… OTO… had connections with the left-hand Tantra in India, the adepts of which practiced sexual magic, their purpose being to attain to the Absolute through the union of the opposites, that is, the male and female principles allegedly inherent in the one true God.[4]

Yet strangely, Crowley’s first experience of this “union of opposites” was an act of sodomy. “Be that as it may, the fact remains that it was largely Crowley who was responsible for introduc­ing Indian sexual magic into the West.”[5]

Zaehner proceeds to discuss how Charles Manson also carried Crowley’s philosophy to its logical conclusion: “If God is one, what is bad?”[6]

Manson carried Crowley’s premises to their logical conclusions: if God and the Devil, good and evil, life and death, can really be transcended in an eternal Now, then sadism and sexual profligacy are not enough: you must transcend life and death itself either by killing or being killed. Charles Manson did not shrink from this ultimate “truth.”[7]

Manson, of course, was only convicted of nine murders—brutal and sadistic as they were. He most certainly committed many more. In Helter Shelter, prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi cites a figure of 35 that even Manson boasted of[8]—and some suspect this number is probably too low.

“It was fun,” said Tex Watson after the so-called Tate murders in which five human beings were stabbed and gunned to death, including the actress Sharon Tate, heavy with child and pleading for the new life within her. What a hope! They left her to the last so that she could see the butchery of her friends and then sliced her up in her turn. “It was fun.” Or, in the words of Susan Atkins, the most savage as well as the most devoted of Charlie’s Family: “It felt so good, the first time I stabbed her.” “Charlie was happy.”[9]

Nevertheless, a major justification for such vicious murders was provided by Eastern philoso­phy and texts, a philosophy which is, unfortunately, increasingly permeating Western society:

Charles Manson had claimed to be Jesus Christ, but he was also much influenced by Indian ideas which filtered through to him through such sects as OTO, “The Process,” and “The Fountain of the World.” From these ultimately Indian sources he derived the theory of reincarnation and karma.[10]

So spake the ancient Hindu text; and it spoke rightly, for in eternity there can be no action, but in time each man seems to have his own particular part to play: everyone has his own karma, as Charlie knew, and, for better or for worse, “death was Charlie’s trip.”

This is a great mystery—and the eternal paradox with which the Eastern religions perpetually wrestle. If the ultimate truth, or the “perennial philosophy” as Aldous Huxley called it, is that “All is One” and “One is All,” and that in this One all the opposites, including good and evil, are eternally reconciled, then have we any right to blame Charles Manson? For seen from the point of view of the eternal Now, he did nothing at all.[11]

By achieving an Eastern form of “enlightenment,” Manson apparently believed he had be­come free from all constraints.

Charles Manson had achieved what the Zen Buddhists call enlightenment, the supreme lightning flash of which shatters the time barrier, and through which one is reborn in eternity, where time does not exist and death is an almost laughable impossibility. All things are fused into one…. Lucidly he drew the obvious conclusion which our modern Zen Buddhists do all they can to hush up. Where he had been all things were One and there was “no diversity at all”: he had passed beyond good and evil. At last he was free![12]


↑ R. C. Zaehner, Our Savage God: The Perverse Use of Eastern Thought (New York: Sheed and Ward, 1974), pp. 57-58.
↑ Ibid., p. 41.
↑ Ibid., p. 42.
↑ Ibid., pp. 42-43.
↑ Ibid.
↑ Interview, Rolling Stone, June, 25, 1970.
↑ Zaehner, Our Savage God, p. 43.
↑ Vincent Bugliosi, Helter Skelter (New York: Bantam, 1969), p. 641.
↑ Zaehner, Our Savage God, p. 56.
↑ Ibid., p. 59; cf. Larry Kahaner, Cults That Kill: Probing the Underworld of Occult




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