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Tuesday, July 25, 2023

The new RAW book, "Lion of Light'


Hilaritas Press chose Maybe Day on Sunday, the 50th anniversary of the original Maybe Day, to announce the release of Lion of Light, a collection of Robert Anton Wilson's writings about Aleister Crowley.

You can read the official announcement (posted at the to right of this page). I bought the book the first day it was officially available, and here are some of the things I can tell you:

 • It publishes a long essay by Robert Anton Wilson, Do What Thou Wilt,  discovered in the Harvard University library by Martin Wagner, and also collects other pieces about Crowley written by RAW. It's a good-sized collection of Wilson's writings, and none of it has appeared in any of Wilson's previous books.

• While Hilaritas Press usually tries to add useful supplementary material to its Wilson editions, it seems to have taken particular care this time in selecting and adding companion pieces. The edition includes  a foreword by Richard Kaczynski (author of the Crowley biography Perdurabo, currently on sale as a cheap Kindle) and an introduction by Lon Milo DuQuette,  the occult scholar and author of books such as The Magick of Aleister Crowley: A Handbook of the Rituals of Thelema. 

• Also, the book includes pieces by Gregory Arnott and Oz Fritz, two prominent Robert Anton Wilson who have read much of Crowley's writings, much of RAW's writings, and likely all of the available biographies of Crowley.

• And also, there is a good-sized piece by the prominent RAW scholar R. Michael Johnson, "23 Riffs on Robert Anton Wilson, Aleister Crowley, Psychedelics, Intuition and Everyday Metaphysics."

• And in addition to all of that, an "Editor's Note" by Mike Gathers describes how the book was put together by an editorial team of Chad Nelson, Oz Fritz, Michael Johnson and Mike Gathers. a "Publisher's Notes" on that team, and a piece by Richard Rasa on the cover, created by Jimmy Templedweller with use of AI. 

I won't even try to describe the photos the editors found; I'll keep them as a surprise for people who buy the book. 

Lion of Light seems to me to be an important book in the Hilaritas catalog, and I will have more about it soon. 

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