The First Matter has many names, among them, "Venus". I had made a mistake in trying to interpret my experience with Venus by looking at the Sephira Netzach. Of course, that was essential, but I should have been looking more closely at the path corresponding to Venus - Daleth - Door. The tarot card is The Empress, Atu III. How incredibly stupid I was. The Fool. God I was so confused and desperate for any type of answers at all. I have persisted in foolishness.
I am so incredibly humbled, because this was the most real thing to ever happen in my life, and has brought me to the realization of who I am meant to be. I think of the preternatural howling of the dead. How they are tortured by their decisions in life. What they would give to live again, now knowing what they know. And I, yet living, now know. I have purpose. As mundane as this world seems, as boring as day to day life can be, we are here not by accident.
The fourth Path of Daleth is the axis between the Spheres Chokmah - Wisdom - Universal Self-Consciousness, and Binah - Understanding - Universal Subconscious. This is the foundation of the Supernal Triad. Crowley summed up Atu III by saying it was the Gateway to Heaven. I never got near the Door. The Threshold of Initiation is below the Supernals. It is the Abyss. Carl Jung once said that the Work could not begin without first experiencing the Shadow. Agrippa describes the alchemical process of Nigredo as a "melancholic state so powerful that, according to scientists and doctors, it can attract demons to the body, even to such an extent that one can get into mental confusion or get visions". He describes it perfectly. I could easily see a person with lesser mental fortitude going insane. I'm sure there are those who believe I am insane. Far from it.
There is no mistaking my experience as anything but that which was terrifying and infernal. In the very least, extremely Chthonic a matter... I approached the Threshold, and found it guarded. By what I did not know. The Devil. Set. Anubis. Lucifer. Amaymon. The Faceless God. Perhaps names aren't particularly important. The point is that it was a face to face encounter with a terrifying black goat-head atop my mother's body, which spoke to me the words "They are all liars". But there too was a woman, sickly. Wearing a wig, bald, something wrong with her eye. I believe now that Venus, or her attendant, or my Anima - again names aren't helpful here - she was helpful to me. She embraced me, gave me advice, made me aware that time with my mother, who has dementia, is very important, and that I will regret it very much if I did not act, from love, now.
What Hermetic, Alchemical and Jungian wisdom tells me that Goat was, was my own Shadow. But he was so much more than a psychological term. No. A better term is the Evil Genius. My Evil Genius. It so turns out, being myself a Capricorn, he is also the Universal Symbol for THE Evil Genius.
Frater Parzival, if you are reading this - you were right. What was preventing me from listening to you or anyone else, was the power my own Evil Genius had over me. I believed him.
If the Evil Genius is real. If he can stand before me, a void horror, and speak with a voice, then I know too, the Holy Guardian Angel is more real. I will forever be grateful to Anael, to Aphrodite, to Venus Calva. Reader, go carefully over Crowley's own commentary to Liber LXV. Within it, after all my desperate attempts down multitudinous rabbit holes, I have found understanding and wisdom. Too, the last I saw Goat, he was in the form of a quadrupedal black goat with beautiful peacock wings slowly, shyly, backing up into a cavern. Reading some of DuQuesne's commentary on the Pyramid Texts, Goat isn't just an Evil Genius to be cast out or exorcised or something. Goat gave me a face to face encounter that I can never forget. I cannot but be in awe as well as horror. And I know that his influence is not gone.