Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Ten Commandments Attacker Explains Himself

Back in October the Oklahoma City Ten Commandments monument was destroyed by a man named Michael Reed, who rammed the display with his truck and shattered the stone tablets. At the time there was speculation that Reed was somehow involved in the ongoing dispute between the state legislature and The Satanic Temple, which was suing the state to allow a "competing" statue of Eliphas Levi's Baphomet, who is often (incorrectly) identified with Satan.

However, in a letter recently issued to the local press, Reed explained that he suffers from schizo-affective disorder, a serious mental illness, and was under the influence of delusions when he attacked the monument. Also, the attack was not the extent of Reed's bizarre behavior that day.

After watching a movie about the fictional Dracula, Reed states he was convinced to follow Satan. “The voice kept having me do things to show my obedience starting with my hair being shaved to next tearing up my guitar my father gave me,” he wrote.

Reed blamed his missing keys on a theft by an angel and ended up walking to a river to throw in his wallet, phone and shoes. Once getting to his mother’s home, he destroyed all her electronics. His sister was able to calm him. But after she left, he headed to Oklahoma City after withdrawing all his money from a bank. He was convinced he was the reincarnation of British occult leader Aleister Crowley.

Reed states how to ran into the monument, set the cash on fire before running away and drawing a symbol on his forehead to reach Satan’s priestess called Gwyneth Paltrow. As he walked around the grounds, he saw a dinner occurring in a Capitol room and a person waved him away.

“I thought it was the church of Satan awaiting me so I made a gesture of (Crowley’s) to identify myself,” he wrote. “I left and kept thinking I would be taking (sic) up in a UFO and given a new body.”

Reincarnations of Crowley are basically a joke in the Thelemic community, as so many of them have come forward and most have turned out to be suffering from mental illness. It's not clear to me why Crowley is such a magnet for such individuals, but it probably has something to do with his largely exaggerated reputation as "the wickedest man in the world" (he was a contemporary of both Hitler and Stalin) and a Satanist (which he certainly was not in the modern sense, as the Church of Satan was founded decades after his death).

I have to admit I do find it amusing that a "Crowley reincarnation" went ahead and smashed the monument, completely defusing the controversy. It's totally something Crowley himself would have done, so perhaps Reed really was in contact with the man's spirit after all.

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