A number of people have suggested I discuss the difference, as I understand it, of the current Western model of the LHP and earlier models found in Tantra, Indigenous pagan and heathen traditions and so forth. The current model of the LHP found in the west has been overwhelmingly influenced by the philosophical approach of the Temple of Set. Even non members tend to follow their understanding as though it is the only one. The key characteristics of the Temple of Set were outlined by Dr.Aquino and include the duality of the objective and subjective universe, the subjective universe as the realm of magic and Set as the Lord of the Subjective universe. No one has any objection to such a model within the free market of ideas, however when it is promoted as the sole model of the LHP it becomes problem-some.
The division between the objective and subjective universes is an intriguing one. While supposedly LHP it has more in common with early Christian dualism and later the Cartesian dualism of the body and the mind. The philosophical legacy of the ToS while having connections to the Greeks is nearly totally modern and western. It suggests that the complete objective universe includes all matter as well as RHP spiritual goals such as heaven and hell or union with the divine or ancestors. The subjective universe exists within our minds and due to the Gift of Set and under the influence of Set can be transformed into immortal substance.
There are immediate philosophical problems with this model, it creates a dichotomy between the body and mind and the material world. While most western LHP practitioners have a positive attitude towards sex and are environmentally conscious it does not change the duality inherent within this model. While many systems use dualism temporarily to achieve a goal such as The Fourth Way this position is a permanent characteristic of this path. This dichotomy brings with it an over emphasis on subjectivism and a devaluing of Tradition which promotes syncretism. If we work within the subjective universe and each of our subjective universes is different then a vast plethora of ego driven so called masters are produced, something quite obvious in the Western Mystery Tradition in general with its sacred books, texts, documents, livers and more and in the case of the ToS vast numbers of formulae and Words of the Masters of the Temple. There is no quality control in terms of Tradition since the approach is subjective and syncretic and the only real limits are placed by the guardians of an administrative structure, who accept or reject your revelation. Of course if rejected you will run away and form your own club.
Since Set (who is also identified as Odin) is the Lord of the subjective universe there is a great deal of reductionism, all dark Gods are reduced to one and a form of Neo Satanic monotheism is promulgated. To sustain such a position a link with the early Church of Satan is maintained claiming that Anton LaVey also held such a belief, an extremely unlikely state of affairs.
Let’s compare this to non modern LHP philosophy. As Julius Evola notes within the Vedas and Tantra there was the path of the Moon or Earth and that of the Sun or Sky, they were complimentary not in conflict. The lunar path was for the general populace, they followed the customs, made the sacrifices, undertook the rites and their collective essence returned as their descendants. In China it was beautifully expressed in the Yin Yang symbol. The solar path was for the Vira or hero who grasped immortality through the unique LHP practices within their Tradition, syncretism was to be avoided at all costs. Such a model was found reflected in the Tripartite system where the third function and general military (part of second function) achieved immortality through their ancestors. While those of the Mannerbund (other part of second function) and Rune Masters (Yogis, Shamans etc) as Priest Warriors may protect the population and assist as required but worked towards individual immortality (first function). The Chieftain was also in this first function.
There is no conflict between body and mind nor matter and spirit, the universe is saturated with life it is simply applied in different ways. Polytheism is a natural expression of such a model and the restrictive administrative model of western magical orders or temples is avoided. Within this approach time rolls on endlessly through innumerable cycles, the most common being that of the four ages. At the end of the Kali Yuga the Gods and Heroes (Priest Warriors) withdraw into inaction and then are reborn with new masks or personas. This model is a far more healthy approach to the LHP, it avoids dualism, subjectivism and reductionism, is based squarely on Tradition and accepts the roles of both the RHP and LHP within a dynamic rather than divided cosmos.