The Path Material

From Circle Of The Crone

  • Also called the Path of Self or one of the Left Handed paths.

To proponents of this philosophy/faith this world is a false reality, a lie and prison designed to trap souls here and keep them from the true world. Beyond the boundaries of this Lie is the True Reality, a perfect reality fully realized in its potential, and the goal of the followers of the Path Material is to find apotheosis and transcendence beyond this world and into the True Reality.

To this end they partake in some of the most extreme methods possible to remove their ties to this world. While other Paths recommend denial, triumph over desire by sheer willpower, and so on the Path Material exalts the desires, indulgence, and breaking taboo. They reason that if desire ties a soul here, there must be a reason for it. By understanding the desire through the active pursuit of what is desired they will gain enough understanding of it to sate the desires so that it does not trap them any further in this world. Once all desires have been sated, it is possible for the true soul to overcome this Lie and move to the True Reality.

This leads to a common reputation for promiscuity, substance abuse, betrayal, extreme bloodshed and madness among the followers of the Path Material. They are known to pursue all forms of physical excess from sex in all its forms to abuse of the Flower of Demeter to come as close as possible to overdosing on drugs or when driven to kill doing so in as spectacular and grotesque a way as possible. What is not as commonly realized by casual observers is that the Path Material also advocates 'mental excess' or the exploration of taboo subjects of knowledge, action, and spirituality. By example, while selling one's own soul is considered anathema (as it creates yet another tie that has to be severed somehow) it is not surprising to find a follower of this path watching or even helping someone already inclined to sell their soul. Or yet another follower may learn as much about true Demons as possible including how to call them at will. (Though again, the practice is rare as the cost to summon and control a demon usually outweighs the perceived gain to do so.) To followers of the Path Material there is no Good or Evil, there is only the Lie and Truth and so their morality resembles a Cost/Benefit analysis more than an Ethical Ethos.

If the reputation for being excessive (even for Acolytes) weren't upsetting enough, others find their rejection of any form of worship to Gods or Goddesses to be almost heretical. All sentient creatures have a spark of the True Reality within them, the Path teaches, it is why the possibility of transcendence is available. As such, all sentient creatures are effectively 'divine' creatures, tied to the perfect world however distantly and capable of affecting the Lie. But the Gods, creatures of vast power who through inability to move on or choice have remained tied into the Lie, are jealous of their perceived 'divinity' and 'power' to affect the Lie. As such they lead others astray, tying them tighter into bondage to the God and this world, so that their power will never end.

This required servitude at the cost of the advancement of Self renders the worship of any deity, except in blasphemous context, to be repugnant. Again, why would one willingly re-create a tie that has already been broken just to have to break it again? The Path teaches that since all thinking creatures are effectively Divine and can 'create' (which is to say, change the fabric of the Lie) why must some be raised up as 'Gods' and called unique when they are not. A short version, taken from their view of the Liturgy, of the story of the Crone illustrates why they do not give worship to Gods/Goddesses or the Crone.

The Story of the Crone

When the Lie was still new, still young as eternity is measured, there was a mortal woman who discovered she could change the Lie. She was not a supernatural creature - no willworker or werewolf or other such creature. She was simply a woman with good perception and an analytical mind that let her reason things out. She found that she could change the Lie, adjust the fabric of the world to her wishes, by using what others called 'magic' and said was the sole providence of the Gods.

She delighted in her creations and changes until the Gods, jealous of their power and position, noticed her and commanded her to stop. 'If all mortals find they can do these things, if all creatures were to sense the power of their own Self, we would have no more worshippers' they thought. And so they tried to force the woman to stop her magic.

The woman refused, smiling and proclaiming that she was Divine as well. The Gods raged and tried to kill her, but she had changed the Lie enough that she could turn aside their destruction and remain unharmed. The Gods sought to bind her power, but they could not fully remove the spark of the True Reality and so could not fully remove her power. The woman smiled and let them, for she knew some of the secrets of the Lie. The Gods changed the Lie around her, marking her as Outcast so that their followers would not speak to her and learn the secrets she knew. And then they went away, having done all they could do.

The woman knew that there were two things that could not be bound by the Gods. The power of Will Triumphant - the Self within that held the spark of the True Reality and so could always exert itself to make changes to the Lie and thus work magic. And the power of Blood, for Blood is the purest symbol of Life and thus of the Spark of the Divine Within, and so could be used to augment and assist in magic.

The Woman, who is now called the Crone, accepted that she was Outcast and wandered the world Creating and when she found those who did not mind the Mark of the Outcast she taught them her secrets and they in turn taught others and so to this day there are those who see the Truth and understand that this world is a Lie.

Creed of the Path Material

I believe that this world is a Lie, a prison and trap that prevents me from realizing my full potential and separates me from the True Reality which is our home.

I believe there is no Good or Evil, only Lie and Truth. Good and Evil are falsehoods that bind one tighter into the Greater fabric of the Lie. While the terms may be convenient I should not let the appellation of "Good" or "Evil" dissuade me from the Path Material.

I believe in the Self, the inner Truth that burns within the Lie, and from this Self comes the possibility to move beyond the Lie in transcendence.

I believe that the Gods are jealous creatures who fight to keep their followers ignorant so that they will not have their power lessened. And so I reject them and their paths as a trap and unworthy of the Self.

I believe that the Self permits Creation, which changes the Lie, and so Creation is Sacred. Good Creations lessen the fabric of the Lie and allow greater understanding and from greater understanding comes the steps upon the Path to transcendence and Apotheosis.

I believe that Blood is Power because Blood is the essence of Life which always strives to move beyond. Blood should not be wasted on foolish creations but neither should it be horded.

I believe that by fulfilling my desires in a manner consistent with the reasoning of the Self I may cut my ties to those desires and so lessen my ties to the Lie. I must be careful, for some things seem like desires and are only traps along the Path. Trust in the reasoning of Self for Will can make all things clear. When my Path is clear, I will not hesitate to explore the Desires that I feel.

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