Aleister Crowley On Cocaine • High Times

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In observance of the anniversary of Aleister Crowley’s death on December 1, we’re republishing a special edition of the erstwhile “Cocaine Confidential” column from the September, 1982 edition of High Times, featuring Crowley’s 1917 essay, “On Cocaine.”


Once upon a time, Aleister Crowley tipped off a zealous decency society in Britain to the “conspicuous signs of prostitution” he’d observed in a tiny Scots town. Considering the source, Crowley himself, to be unimpeachable on such matters, the horrified do-gooders dispatched a morality squad to the spot, at considerable expense. When they presently reported no evidence at all of any such thing, Crowley explained, “It is conspicuous by its absence, fools.”

This is not to say Crowley was entirely sane. After his first wife, whom he called the Ape of Thoth, went wholly crazy, he would hang her by the heels in a closet while he entertained girl friends. He named their first girl-child with a string…

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