Thelema Lodge Calendar for December 1993 e.v.

Thelema Lodge Calendar

for December 1993 e.v.

   The viewpoints and opinions expressed herein are the responsibility of the contributing authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of OTO or its officers.

   Note to update: the addresses and phone numbers in these issues of the Thelema Lodge Calendars are obsolete since the closing of the Lodge. They are here for historic purposes only and should not be visited or called.

Copyright © O.T.O. and the Individual Authors, 1993 e.v.

Thelema Lodge
Ordo Templi Orientis
P.O.Box 2303
Berkeley, CA 94702 USA

December 1993 e.v. at Thelema Lodge

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Announcements from
Lodge Members and Officers

New Thelema Lodge Facility Now Open in Oakland

    Thelema Lodge has established a new home, with a spacious temple, library facilities, and ample room for rituals, classes, feasts, and initiations. The lodge is now open at 5977 Keith Avenue, in the Rockridge area of north-east Oakland, three blocks from the BART station on College Avenue. The phone number there is (510) 652-3171. We have been occupied with moving in during the past month, and much remains to be done before we will be fully furnished and organized. Presently the library is being unpacked and shelved, and the furniture for the temple refurbished and assembled. An initiation oasis is being designed, which we hope to have functioning within a few weeks. The true work of re-establishing the oldest continuously operating O.T.O. lodge in a new location can only be a communal effort of the membership working together, and a variety of assistance from members who can volunteer a few hours' labor at a time will be especially valuable over the next few months. Work projects, from gardening to data entry to construction and decoration, can be developed with the lodge officers whenever one has the opportunity of using the facility. For December we offer an expanded schedule of open workshops, classes, and feasts, to give all members and friends added invitation to come explore the new shape of our lodge.

    As of the end of November, most Thelema Lodge events are being held at the new location. Please note, however, that some classes will continue to meet at Grace's home in Berkeley, and in Marin County at Bill Heidrick's home. Please call ahead -- or be in touch during the previous week -- when attending any event at Grace's; her number is (510) 843-7827. First time visitors to Bill's place should phone ahead for directions at (415) 454-5176; the address is 5 Suffield Ave. in San Anselmo. The lodge community also supports the independent work of Sirius Oasis, which offers workshops, initiations, and occasional masses at its own facilities in Berkeley. To be included there, contact the Oasis Master at (510) 527-2855. We thank Sirius Oasis especially for their enthusiastic support and cooperation with Thelema Lodge this past season.

    We will re-institute the regular weekly celebration of the Gnostic Mass in Horus Temple this month. Our temple is rather bare as yet, so that extra effort will be demanded from the first mass teams, until the momentum of our on-going celebration gains strength, and the various tools and ornaments find their places.

    The Greater Feast of Baphomet, whose leadership reformed the O.T.O. and brought it into the new aeon, will be observed at Thelema Lodge with a group reading from the Holy Books of Thelema, on Thursday evening 2nd December at 7:30. The lodge will have plenty of library copies available for all to participate.

    Sol enters Capricornus on Tuesday 21st December at 12:26 PM, and the lodge will gather for a Winter Solstice pot-luck feast that evening at 7:30 to revel in the dark corner of the year. As we plan to assemble a complete festive meal, participants should be in touch beforehand with the lodge to coordinate cooking plans.

    Grace leads a class in "The Astrology of Sagittarius" on Friday evening 3rd December, meeting at her house in Berkeley at 7:30. Designed for experienced and beginning astrologers alike, this will be an evening of lore, interpretation, and insight in the meaning of Sagittarius, the philosophical sign. Please call (510) 843-7828 to attend, and come explore the wagers of the Archer on his travels with the Sun.

    On Wednesday evening 8th December, Sirius Oasis will meet to discuss the connections between Thelema and witchcraft. We plan to look at some of the "Witch Songs" of Jack Parsons, and to explore the connection of Gerald Gardner with the O.T.O. and Crowley. If you have information on the subject, please bring copies for the group.

    A literary seminar at Thelema Lodge is organizing to explore selected representations of the character and myth of Aleister Crowley in twentieth- century fiction. Led by Lew and John, the first meeting, on Friday evening 10th December at 7:30, will focus on three works: the classic ghost story "Casting the Runes" by M. R. James (1911), the 1962 novel The Kindly Ones by Anthony Powell, and Ian Fleming's first James Bond book, Casino Royale (1953).

    A class "Especially for Firsts" meets with Michael Sanborn on Tuesday evening 14th December at 7:30. Open to initiates of the I° of O.T.O., this workshop provides an overview of the thelemic magical tradition for the beginner. Topics will include setting up a magical practice, inevitable lapses in discipline, and handling too much success.

    The Magick in Theory and Practice Series with Bill Heidrick holds its fourth meeting on Wednesday evening 15th December at 7:30 in San Anselmo. Bring your study copy of M. T. P. Read chapters VI and VIII in preparation for the presentation. For information call (415) 454-5176.

    Kathy's Burmese Astrology group meets at Grace's in Berkeley on Thursday evening 16th December at 7:30. Phone ahead to attend, either to Kathy at (415) 457-8076, or to Grace at (510) 843-7827.

    The inaugural meeting of the Grady McMurtry Poetry Society at Thelema Lodge will be held on Friday evening 17th December at 8:00. This monthly salon will be devoted to round-robin poetry readings of works either by ourselves or others. Frater P.I., who will facilitate the series, invites all to join in the discussion and witty repartee which are certain to be generated by these verse readings.

    Thelema Lodge Video Night will be a monthly offering, beginning on Friday evening 24th December at 7:30. The presentation will be the comedy classic "Crosses of Light", plus interviews with the Christ's own official spokesman, Benjamin Creme. Frater P.I. will be on hand to prevent the spirit of old-aeon messianism from interfering with our reception of Jolly Saint Nick.

    The Gnostic Mass Seminar with Bishop T Dionysus meets early next month, on Tuesday 4th January at 7:30.

    We are anticipating our first O.T.O. initiations in the new lodge facility late in December, but no date has been set as we go to press. Members are requested to inquire towards the end of the month in order to assist and attend at this event, probably during the week preceding the vulgar new year.

    The Thelema Lodge Meeting will be held on Monday evening 6th December at 7:30, for the first time at the new lodge facility on Keith Avenue. Plans for January events, general policies for conducting the business of the lodge in our new home, and directions for our future work together will be discussed. The following Lodge Meeting is scheduled quite early in the month, on Monday evening 3rd January 1994 e.v., so please plan ahead to attend.

Fund-Raising Appeal

    Thelema Lodge is more in need of community support than ever before. Michael Sanborn is offering private computer tuition at the new Lodge. Topics offered include DOS, Windows, Word Processing, Page Maker, Photo Styler, PostScript Programming, and more. Lessons are $30 an hour, with all proceeds going to Thelema Lodge. Call to arrange times. Members are urged to donate their talents and ideas to the current fund-raising effort. As always, the principal source of financial support for the lodge is taken in by collection at our open events, and it is only through the continuing generous support of all our members that we are able to maintain our facilities.

Thelema Lodge Calendar: Issue #93

    Frater Perfidus has calculated that our current issue marks the ninety- third Thelema Lodge Calendar, numbering from the point when the old monthly calendar page was expanded into a newsletter, in March 1986 e.v. The Calendar issues did not at once attain their present size, and were limited to brief events descriptions until October 1986 e.v., when articles and editorials began to appear. Only once, in March 1990 e.v., has the Calendar failed to appear. It has been primarily through the sustained dedication of Br. Bill Heidrick that our publication has been maintained; each issue is edited, printed, and mailed from his house in Marin. Members are invited to participate in the preparation of the Calendar on a monthly basis, and should co-ordinate their work with Bill or with the Lodge Master.

Crowley Classics

    This essay emerged from a time of chronic Anti-Semitic feeling in the West. Crowley saw in this pervasive oppression an affinity with the troubles to be visited upon Thelemites. He speculated about a union between Thelema and Judaism, as at other times he thought to unite Buddhism, Islam and some forms of Christianity with Thelema. Written long before the horrors of the Holocaust and the subsequent restoration of the State of Israel, this essay may tread too closely on the abyss of pain for modern readers. There is more than one kind of diaspora, as more than one kind of captivity.
    First publication: The English Review 35 (London: July 1922), 28-37. Although this is the text as originally published, Crowley's typescript is substantially longer and contains more extensive Thelemic discussion. At a later time we hope to publish the full version, but two pages of the seventeen page TS have not yet been recovered.

The Jewish Problem Re-Stated

by a Gentile [Aleister Crowley]

    A distinguished article entitled "The Cry of the Modern Pharisee," by the Rev. Joel Blau, of Temple Peni-El, New York City, which recently appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, posed the Jewish problem in new dimensions. In America, where this problem is growing acute, wide interest was aroused. I quote a few passages which are characteristic.

    "It is depressing to see the Jewish problem discussed, even by Jews, from without and not from within, as if its inner aspect did not matter; at all events, as if this were something in which the world at large need take no interest, it being the concern of a few Jewish zealots only. Over against this mistaken position these very Jewish zealots, who are far from obsolete, claim that the only way to solve the Jewish problem is from within. Find the right solution for the internal problem of the Jew, and the external problem, created by the persistence of anti-Semitism, will solve itself."

    ". . . he [the Pharisee] would rather lose the whole world than lose aught of the riches of his soul.
    ". . . As for pride, he admits it, yet holds himself guiltless. For pride is no sin, except when one will not live up to it.
    "It [pride] is compounded of a clear knowledge of one's place, a consciousness of both powers and limitations, and a desire to participate wholeheartedly in the passionate business of living. This pride is the child of reverence, the last summing-up of the sanctities of Individuality.
    "Its presence is the distinguishing sign of divinely stubborn men, 'terribly meek,' who inherit the earth--and heaven, too.
    "Of peoples too, even as of persons, the same holds true; modesty is a sin in any people. The chief duty that a people owes both itself and the world is reverence for its own soul, the mystic centre of its being. . . .
    "Personality spells the mystery of mysteries--the last word of life for which all the worlds and all the ages are in ceaseless travail."

    "The Jew must be led back to the Discovery of the Jewish Soul."

    Despite these utterances, we find elsewhere in the essay that the only practical solution in view is repatriation. A physical Zion is contemplated, and this proposal implies the very materialism which the learned Rabbi deplores as the mark of the modern Sadducee. Now the division between Jew and Gentile dates only from Abraham. The children of uncircumcision no less than those of the Covenant are of the seed of Adam, of mankind. It was by means of the secret tradition of the Hebrews that the leader of the hosts of the new Law obtained "the knowledge and conversation of his Holy Guardian Angel," whose words constitute the whole Law. This Law is the master-key to the Future of Mankind, and the learned Rabbi, being a master in Israel, is able to interpret the Zeitgeist intuitively. Accordingly, he exhibits a profound comprehension of this Law; indeed, he actually expresses some of its corollaries in various phrases. What then is the one weakness of his admirable essay? What is it that compels him to a sceptical conclusion, despite the sublimity of courage, pride, and sadness which informs his thought, and the magistral grasp of the situation? These qualities demand consummate respect; and yet their owner hesitates to articulate an "Everlasting Yea." The difficulty arises from the interference of the learned Rabbi's intellectual perception of the conditions of his environment with the truth of his soul. He must hold fast to this truth if it is to make him free. The Relative must not be applied as a measure of the Absolute, of which it is but one of the infinitely numerous symbolic representations. It is, then, here that the Rev. Joel Blau is tempted to lose touch with the essential truth. He has still to pass through the ordeal of being attacked by phenomena which threaten or allure, seeking to turn him from his spiritual integrity. It is the task of the initiate to learn to ignore these seeming facts, to recognise that these are vapours of the void. Let me say at once that the Jewish spirit cannot be destroyed any more than a grain of sand or an ohm of electrical resistance. The problem is perennial. If every Jew were instantaneously abolished, the Jewish problem1 would remain unaltered.
    The Rev. Joel Blau had himself demonstrated, with admirable clearness, that the "extraversion" of modern Sadducees has merely defiled their honour, and that reliance upon outworn formalism has failed to protect the integrity of the Pharisees.
    When Moses gave His new Law, His was the Word which expressed the spiritual truth fit for that age and that folk. Other Masters have appeared from time to time with other words. Thus the Buddha, proclaiming the absence of Atman, emancipated the East from its time-rotted conditions. Mohammed, with His Word Allah, proclaimed a new aeon in which the diversity of phenomena should be referred to a single ultimate source.
    The solution of the Jewish Question has baffled society completely since the earliest records. It is quite evident that before the Exodus Pharaoh was confronted by precisely the same dilemma as the Tsar of yesterday in Russia and the President of today in America. It is the problem of an endothermic chemical compound. The instability of chloride of nitrogen does not lead us to "blame" either the nitrogen or the chlorine; the elements tend to fly apart with destructive violence because neither of them is satisfying its own true nature to the full. Each has joined the other without enthusiasm because it could find no more suitable element union with which would fulfil to the uttermost its need of a complement. Nitrogen chloride is not formed if the chlorine passes over moist sodium before reaching the ammonia, or if that ammonia has been mixed with nitric acid.
    Jew and Gentile have been forced into contact under innumerable varieties of social condition. Friction has been at a minimum when the Jew has been in contact either with Arabic civilisation or English jurisprudence. These two environments have a common factor: non-interference. English indifference and Moslem self-respect are agreed on the ethical principle: "Mind your own business." This is one of the moral postulates of true Law.
    The incompatibility between Jew and Gentile has been based, superficially indeed, upon prejudice, ignorance, and instinctive antipathy; but this seems hardly more than a disguise for the real motive, which may more probably be the fear of alien aggression. The Jews are charged with many crimes, from ritual murder and usury to lack of patriotism. But all these charges are merely diverse expressions of the feeling that there is an irreconcilable antagonism between two spirits whose juxtaposition is an offence to nature.
    Is it presumptuous to feel sure that so far one may count upon the assent of the learned Rabbi to this analysis? No? Then why not be bold enough to proceed to synthesis? Let us pursue the chemical analogy. In a mixture of sodium chloride and sodium nitrate the atoms of nitrogen and chlorine are intimately mingled; but there is no tendency to explosion. The reason is that both elements have already--in the main matter--fulfilled their own natures. Neither is unsatisfied; neither is under stress.
    Is there no hint here to guide us to a practical proposal? It is useless to tinker with the environment of chloride of nitrogen; the more we meddle with the explosive, the more likely we are to provoke a crisis. We must prevent the formation of the substance altogether; and so long as either element is unsatisfied, so long is there a risk of conditions occurring in which they will combine disastrously with each other. Just as most human beings contract unsuitable marriages, or experiment with unconsecrated unions, rather than suffer the physiological agony of abstention; just as the only secure social system rests on a basis of sexually satisfied individuals; so countries inhabited by heterogeneous races invite civil collision if the inherited instincts of any race are starved or suppressed.
    Now it is the historical fact that from the time of Abraham's discontented departure from his father's pastures, and the dream-drawn journey of Joseph, to the desperate adventure of Moses in search of a "promised land," and the continual craving for a Messiah, the Spirit of the Jew, behind all its expressions, is stamped with the stigma of soul-starvation. The patriotic passion of the Chroniclers, the plaintive cries of the Psalmists, the relentless rage of the Prophets, the acrid agony of Ecclesiastes, each in its own way expresses the fact that the Jew has always wanted Something desperately, has never known precisely what it was, has never fooled himself for very long into fancying that he has found it. When national degradation and religious mummification had reduced the ragged remnant of repatriated refugees to despair, Paul proclaimed his Freudian Phantasm as the Messiah. But in vain did he try to conciliate his people, in vain did he prove that Christ fulfilled the prophecies, in vain did he seek to reconcile circumcision and crucifixion. Israel preferred to die in the dark rather than stumble by the light of corpse-candles into the ditch of self-deception.
    The same spirit stamps the Jew to this day. He has endured every possible persecution; without faith, hope, or love to help him. He has not found himself in wealth, power, or anything else. Neither Spinoza in philosophy, Heine in poetry, nor Einstein in science have found any way of escape from the fiend appointed to scourge Israel. From the most sublime complaints of the musician to the grossest grumblings of the Schnorrer, the same phrase recurs: it is the cry from the Abyss, the shriek of the lost soul. The glories of Solomon did not prevent him from seeing the vanity of all things; nor would repatriation in Palestine delude one single Jew into supposing that his soul could be satisfied by so romantically narcotic a remedy.
    The solution of the Jewish problem is simply this: "Shiloh shall come." The Messiah must arise, and His name shall be called Anti-Christ. And this shall be the sign of the Messiah, Anti-Christ, He who shall lead at last His people Israel into the Holy Mountain, the True Zion: He shall come to understand the Magical Formula of Israel; He shall interpret the history of Israel; He shall declare unto Israel the nature of the spirit of the people; He shall express the true purpose of His people; He shall demonstrate to them the direction of their destiny; He shall formulate their function in the physiology of mankind.
    It may indeed be that this function is such that even its free fulfillment would not satisfy it. He, the Messiah, Anti-Christ, shall know, as others do not, whether it be so. In our own bodies there are principles which never cease to urge us. The secret of the Soul of Israel may be that it is a ferment; the history of humanity shows us this spirit constantly consuming every civilisation with which it has been in contact. Israel has corrupted the world, whether by conquest, by conversion, or by conspiracy. The Jew has eaten his way into everything. The caricature of Semitic thought, Christianity, rotted Roman virtue through introducing the moral subterfuge of vicarious atonement. The Eagles of Caesar degenerated to the draggled buzzards of Constantine. Soon they were no more than hens, dispersed and devoured by the fierce hawks of Mohammed and the savage ravens of the North. Jewish commercial cleverness has created cosmopolitanism. Jewish sympathy with suffering has made the cliffs of caste to crumble. Jewish ethical exclusiveness has created a tyranny of conventional formalities to replace the righteousness of self-respect. The Jew, living so long on sufferance, by subterfuge, servility, and self-effacement, has taught his tricks to the whole world. Civilisation is an organised system of craft, concealment, cunning, camouflage, of cringing cowardice and craven callousness. The world is one great Ghetto. The Jew has failed to realise himself; and, as the learned Rabbi so brilliantly breaks out at the end of the third paragraph of his article, it is in infamy that Gentile and Jew are reconciled at last. Gentile and Jew bend on the same bench of the galley; the same whip drips with blood from the bare backs of the two brothers in bondage. We share the same suffering and shame; we eat the same bitter bread of exile.
    Neither of us has known who he is, dared to be himself, or willed to do his Will. Neither has kept the Silence which alone preserved his soul from profanation. It was far better when ignorance and prejudice prevailed; we had at least faith in our own fetiches. It is better to have something that one is willing to die for, though it be but a lie; to have something to live for, though it be but a dream. Today, Jew and Gentile alike are pursuing despicable objects by dishonourable devices; and, having attained them, there is disillusion, disgust, and despair. We have swept away the superstitions which sustained our self-respect. We have discovered that the sun is only one star of many; and, perceiving our infinitesimal importance, we have lost our own respective stars--our self-esteem.
    We have still to complete analysis by synthesis. Instead of interpreting Democracy as confusion in a common degradation, we must understand that, although each individual is equally an element of existence with every other, each is sublimely itself. Mankind is a republic of aristocrats; our equality is that of the essential organs of the body. The honour of each is to secure the harmony of all. It is the most fatal error of modern thought to interpret the dependence of each of us upon the rest as confounding us all in a common vileness.
    One may appeal to the learned Rabbi then, out of his own mouth, to accept the Law of Thelema2 as the foundation of the future of Israel. One may ask him to agree that the salvation of Israel depends upon understanding the spirit of that people in the light of history, ethnology, and psychology. Having understood its function, and formulated its will in a fixed phrase, it is only necessary to keep its unswerving course, each Jew as his own soul shows him for himself, and for the race, as the soul of the race is shown him, by the spirit of Anti-Christ, the Messiah, who shall arise in Israel for this purpose.
    One word in reconciliation of an apparent antinomy. One must not think of Anti-Christ as opposed to Christ, any more than one thinks of the pleura as opposed to the lungs which it bounds. Woman is not the opposite of man--the difference between them is necessary to their co-operation. Without it, neither could reproduce their common elements in either component. Every star is necessarily different from every other star. The annihilation of one would disturb the equilibrium of all, and destroy the universe. The Jewish spirit is an essential element of humanity. The pitiable tragedies of the past have been the result of failing to understand, to insist upon, to execute, the eternal office of each existing individual idea. The arising of Anti-Christ will make possible the coming of Christ. If Christ came, he was baulked, as He himself is supposed to have said, because no one was ready to receive Him.
    As the first paragraph of "The Cry of the Modern Pharisee" points out, non-resistance defies power. Mechanics presumes opposition. Structuralisation depends upon the co-operation of diverse unities, each of which is stubbornly itself. Evolution is aristocratic. To aim at homogeneity is to revert to nullity. There is then no reason to fear that Anti-Christ, in establishing Israel, will injure Christianity. He will, on the contrary, assist the Christian spirit to cleanse itself from the confused acquiescence in anarchical amiability which it calls "charity," and is really cowardice, really the slave's shame of his own condition, the sense of guilt which he soothes by minimising all misdemeanours.
    Let Anti-Christ arise, let Him announce to Israel its integrity. Let Him make clear the past, purged of all tribal jargon; let Him prove plainly how inevitably event came after event. Let Him gather the past to a point; let Him assign its proper position to the present by showing its relation with the axes of Space and Time. Let Him then calculate what forces are focussed at that point, so that its proper course may be thereby determined. Then let Him speak the Word of Israel's Will, so that all Israel with united energy, disciplined and directed, may move as one man irresistibly to fulfil its Destiny.
    Such action will induce a complementary current in every other racial and religious section of humanity. The Chinaman who has given up politeness, filial reverence, and philosophy for European ideas; the Russian who has bartered mystic melancholy for Marxism; the Mohammedan who has been taught to despise the faith, virtue, virility, and valour of his forebears, and to appreciate cocktails, cocottes, pork, and profanity; all these are hybrids, all these are self-mutilated cowards, garbage of self-surrender. They are monsters bred of the shame of being different to other people. The modern Italian has discarded the noble and beautiful toga for shoddy city clothes. The Mongol's sweeping silken robes are gone; dignified in them, he prefers to look ridiculous in the frock-coat and stove-pipe hat of a Bermondsey bank clerk. The Hindoo, once clean and comfortable in cotton cloths, sweats and stinks in starched shirts and shabby suits in the hope of looking like a Sahib. Mongrels and monsters, all these! Diverse as they are, they are born of one mother, Conventionality, by one father, Shame.
    Let the Jew lead the way! Let the Jew find himself and be sure of himself; let him assert himself without fear of others, or reference to their ideals and standards. They will be forced to respect him. In self-defence, each one will find for himself the formula of his own function. From that moment the friction between the various parts of the human machine will begin to diminish.
    "The earth is the Lord's and the fulness thereof." The social and economical crises of today are not due to over-population, to lack of supplies, or to inefficiency. They are due to the suppression of individuality. Instead of each person and each race doing its own will, the whole of humanity is being thrown into a melting-pot; the only ambition is to get to the top. The earth affords infinite scope for each soul, as the sky affords scope for each star. But instead of each soul seeking the satisfaction proper to itself, it is persuaded by the popular Press, by the pressure of public opinion, and by the contagious delusion of Democracy, that nothing is worth having save wealth in its grossest interpretation, "modern conveniences" in the crudest sense of the term, and social success in its silliest and shallowest shape. Pleasure itself is prescribed, like the diet of a diabetic. Respect is inseparable from envy, since the superiority of one is incompatible with the equivalent superiority of others. Formerly, Virgil and Horace could admire each other's qualities. Today, they must be measured by the balances at their banks. There are not enough automobiles and diamonds to go round, any more than there were in the time of Buddha or Villon. But the ascetic Prince and the starving scholar could each be unique and supreme without struggling for shekels.
    The Jew has no claim to consideration on account of his success in money- getting. Every race in the world can produce rivals in that art. The True Spirit of Israel shines in the splendour of its literature, and in such moral qualities as that rigorous sense of Reality which made him the torch-bearer of Science through the Dark Ages, in the persistent patience which preserved his racial peculiarities through proscription and persecution, in the fidelity to tradition which kept him true to himself until he was assimilated in the American ant-heap, where no animal can live except the aimlessly active insects that swarm in its mould.
    To recapitulate, Israel has not evolved a true consciousness of racial destiny through the ages, for "The word of Sin is Restriction," and the sin of Israel is this, that is has never know itself, or done its will.

Love is the law, love under will.

1. The historical aspect of this doctrine may be elucidated briefly as follows:--In the dawn
            of history we have the Pagan period, when the central object of worship is Isis
            (or similar idea) the Mother. Matriarchy abounds; the function of Man in
            reproduction is not understood. Then comes a period in which the Father is
            the main object of worship. We have Solar-Phallic religions, in which the Sun,
            and Man, must die to live again. Science has now shown that the Sun, and is
            showing that Man, does not "die"; darkness is due to our being in the shadow
            of the earth; death to our being veiled from our Reality by our gross bodies.
            The New Law proclaims the Crowned and Conquering Child as the central idea
            which represents That Which Is.
    This subject is discussed at great length in The Equinox, Vol. I., Nos. I.-X., and
            Vol. III., No. I., in The Book of Lies, in The Star in the West, by Capt. (now Col.)
            J. F. C. Fuller, and elsewhere.
2. This Law may be summarised: Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
    The theory underlying this injunction is that "Every man and every woman is a star."
            Each star is equally inviolable, eternal, individual. It has its own proper course
            through space. This physical fact has its moral parallel in, "There is no law
            beyond do what thou wilt"; that is to say, every individual has his own necessary
            and proper direction, which is called his "true Will."
    Similarly, just as there are certain groups of stars, there are groups of human beings
            which, while preserving the individual integrity of each unit, have a certain common
    It is thus legitimate to calculate the destiny of a race, as the astronomer calculates the
            course of a galaxy.
    It is the first business of every individual to discover what his true Will is, and then
            to occupy himself to doing that and nothing else. But he must also reckon with
            the drift of his race and of humanity as a whole.
    As soon as this Law is properly understood, its truth becomes self-evident. To fail to
            do one's true will is to stultify oneself, to create a conflict in oneself, to become
            morally insane.
    The school of Freud and Jung has rediscovered a part of this thesis by showing that
            self-suppression leads to neurosis. The task of every man is to express himself
            fully, but he must take into consideration his relationship with the community,
            since it is a part of his true Will to be a member thereof; and any act of his which
            conflicts with the true Will of the community, conflicts to that extent with his
            own true Will.
    This Law of Thelema is therefore the complete solution of all ethical problems.
            What is required is a technical apparatus for calculating its practical application
            in any particular case.
    Many persons are already at work to perfect this psychological instrument.

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from the Grady Project:

The Other End of Oblivion

Plug Castle of the atom wars
Is melted at the seam;
Compressed into the glass-ridged slag
And fused across its beam;
Plug Castle of the atom wars
Has heard our children scream.


Dread castle of the mind's decay
Dark crumbling Fort of Night;
Abysmal guardian whose dream
Afrights the anchorite:
The Dove and Serpent intertwined
In archetypal flight.


Triskelion Goddess, healing flames
Sheet-lightning of the soul;
Iron Tower of the Guardian Keeps
Discharge your fiery poll!
The ruined fortress stands agape
Around your casement's bole.



Published in McMurtry: Poems (London & Bergen: O.T.O., 1986 e.v.), and in The Grady Project #3 (March 1988 e.v.).

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Of Myths and Maths

by Frater P.I.

    In the final volume of his classic survey of mythology, The Masks of God (Vol. IV, Creative Mythology), Joseph Campbell writes pointedly, perceptively, and repeatedly, of "the popular mistake of reading mythology as a reference to hard historic fact". Though the results of this mistake can be extremely severe, the fact that this confusion between metaphor and literal truth does indeed take place is not altogether surprising when we consider that, while all words by definition must have an explicit meaning, the very method of metaphor is the use of words in a figurative and implicit rather than literal way. Since it is not the word that one uses but rather the thought which another person understands by it which determines the actual meaning of a communication it is only natural that the understanding of metaphorical communication would require a certain set of life experiences, just as the correct apprehension of any literal definition presupposes some knowledge that is ultimately based upon experience.
    Therefore, with metaphors it is not specific vocabulary, but rather the context, which is all-important. When I tell my beloved that I want to eat her I am not confessing to a weakness for cannibalism. And if I am speaking in the context of a mutual romantic attraction then she is quite unlikely to run away from me in terror (unless she's had remarkably few experiences with the metaphorical use of language). In a completely different context, we have the New Testament story of Mary's virginity at the time of Jesus' birth, which is only the ludicrous lie it appears to be when it is considered as a narrative of fact, while if, on the other hand, we consider Mary (like Cybele or Isis) as a type of the "Great Mother Goddess" of nature, and Jesus (like Attis or Osiris) as a type of the "Dying and Resurrected God" of vegetal and other life, then the biblical story could become an enlightening, even liberating, metaphor of the cyclical processes in humanity's physical and psychological existence (for instance, it is the Holy Spirit which impregnates Mary and fulfills the function in the creation of the Son of Man that semen performs in the creation of a man's son, and it is that same Spirit, when we consciously partake of it, that serves to propagate the rebirth of the Child within us).
    The confusion between the metaphorical and the mundane is especially frequent in the context of religious thought for at least two different reasons. Firstly, most, if not all, significant religious experiences are generally described as ineffable, that is, not expressible in words. When literal description is impossible, and yet one still feels compelled to speak out about one's moments of revelation, then metaphor is the only possible vehicle for verbal communication. Perhaps, on occasion, there will be a few people in some realized one's audience who have had similar (or at least preparatory) experiences, and will recognize (or at least ponder) what is being said, but certainly most people, having no first-hand basis for understanding, will either quickly reject it as utter nonsense or, much worse, credulously accept the metaphor as a literal truth.

To be continued


Empty shrouds
And parted veils
Whirling chaos
Sorrows trails

Melt the silver
Melt the gold ...
Let these visions
Now be told.

Experience this ...
three times three
Behold the light of mystery

-- Firebird        

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    Adapted from the unpublished MS Thirty-Two Emanations --- Revised Copyright © by Bill Heidrick.

The Path of Initiation
Part II

The Path of Mem
Hod to Geburah

    The builder returns to his castle of brass and discovers that he has neglected to ornament the ceilings. The roots of the castle are strong, but they are of earth. The roof of the castle is weak unless it mirrors celestial order. Accordingly, the builder reverses the direction of his thought. Hunting scenes, battles, pastoral gatherings, cities, and ships ornament the walls. The upper vaults, high chambers and towers of this citadel must match the harmony of the spheres, the moral order of things, and those powers that dwell in lightning and beyond.
    Up goes thought along the channel of Mem, a river that flows uphill. Mine seeks the things of mind and turns away from the body. The body shall not perish; so long as its needs are met below.

The Path of Lamed
Tipheret to Geburah

    A shout disturbs the party. It's time to get down to business. Over the year many things have happened. Judgments are needed. Justice must be administrated. Old laws are to be revised and new ones proposed. The affairs of the community must be examined and the best course planned for the coming year.
    Having found itself and rested, mind must prepare itself for future growth. Up to now conduct has been learned by trial and error. Ideals have come haphazardly. It's time to look at purposes and methods; time to set such things in order. The path of Lamed is discipline.

The Sephira Geburah

    Geburah is severity of understanding how.
    A soldier sits in judgment. He listens to the reports of spies. He hears petitions. A man offers advice, and the soldier has him kicked out. This is not the court of a merciful king. A tyrant sits here. His judgments are fire from a mind of ice. This tyrant is setting safeguards about an unprotected city. His will is a whip that makes the dying march until some are saved. This soldier is not wrong. His hardness is like the heat that cooks food. It purifies, it improves, and it should disappear when it's done. Geburah is the place of fully developed and moral understanding. Hod is rational, defensive isolation. Geburah is rational, offensive caution.

The Path of Koph
Netzach to Chesed

    Venus reaches down to the hinge of her shell to check her charts. These are no common maps. They show all the riches of the world. Flights of birds and migrations of fishes are marked for the changes of the seasons. Currents in the sea and air are carefully indicated. An ephemeris lists the doings of the heavens so that Venus may set her course. The turning of every wheel in heaven or on earth is noted somewhere. By learning the cycles of things inside and outside, a soul can navigate the path of Koph toward Jovian riches.

The Path of Yod
Tipheret to Chesed

    An old man leans on his staff and mutters. His beard is filthy. His nose runs. He makes no sense. This old man has no manners. Hermits are away from other people too long. They forget how to behave. Most of the people at the fair ignore him or give a forced smile and quickly go some where else. These people are waiting for Mars to hear their petitions and judge their works. They are polite, even respectful; but they haven't time to listen. Some people aren't so busy. They are ready to hear the story of this ancient when he feels willing to speak. Later they learn that the old one is Mars' father and the master of them all. He leads them to ideas that they never had before. An open mind grows toward Chesed along the path of Yod. A successful person knows when to accept a hand.

The Path of Tet
Geburah to Chesed

    Richard the Lion Hearted battles to protect the Holy City from heathen and godless Saracen. He wonders why he has so little success. Troubled, he prays for guidance and falls asleep. The warrior dreams: A great red lion is striding across Europe and Asia. Everywhere there are jackals. When the lion kills, the jackals steal his prey. He roars at them to stop, but they keep on. The lion grows hungry, then weak. He raises his paw to kill a wild deer; his last dying effort. Before his eyes, the deer becomes Richard's mother. She wears the robes of a Saracen princess. Richard wakes up in a cold sweat. The next day he meets Saladin, learning in the process that Arabs had civilization and knew the Bible when the French and English were still blue-assed barbarians. Richard and Saladin become friends. Truce comes and goes, but honor grows.
    Mars is often blind to the merits of his fellows until wisdom opens his eyes. Moral consciousness needs to turn its hard judgments aside before it exceeds its purpose. Mercy is the wisdom of when to let up.

The Sephira Chesed

    Chesed is the mercy of providence.
    A calm figure sits in oriental splendor. Upon the figure's brow a bright star radiates soothing light. This is Mercy who bestows all needful things. The being is immortal. Death cannot take away what is not held. Those who attain past severity are among the saints. Chesed is a state of great peace. The mysteries of the lower worlds rise up to bow before the initiate of the greater, the path of Koph. Gentle seekers come to the feet of the teacher, the path of Yod. The master of the worlds below becomes a child to enter the presence, the path of Tet. Chesed is a giving up of all anxiety and all plans for changing the world. Such a release grants the power to do anything desired, yet nothing is desired. Only ministering to others holds the sage to this place.

Paroket Zohar, Abadah and Da'at

    At times in a black night sky, a great veil descends. Blue, purple and scarlet lights ripple. Fiery beings walk the sky. This is Aurora, the curtain about the throne of the Most High. Below is the Earth. Beyond is the Abode of greatest mystery.
    Before the Holy of Holies hangs Paroket. This veil is double, hung in two rows. The space before the outer is for ordinary worshipers. The Abyss, Abadah, is between the two rows. Only those possessing Da'at, Knowledge, can pass Abadah. Without Da'at, Paroket is a double linen curtain; and the room beyond remains on earth. With fragments of knowledge, dangerous passage can be made. One did it and died. Another did it and became mad. A third did it and became an atheist. A fourth passed Abadah with great effort and returned to enlighten the Chesidim. A fifth comes and goes at will, but the head of that one is in heaven while the feet are in hell.
    Binah, Chokmah, and Keter are beyond the veil. Vision of them is sometimes granted, but mostly they must be found through lower things.

Previous portion of the Path of Initiation                   To be continued

Primary Sources

   Karl Germer:
    For balance: In our November issue, we presented a letter by Karl Germer, Frater Saturnus, which disclosed the troubles of the Order in the beginning of its dormancy. Lest our readers come to believe that Brother Karl was only a negative influence, here is an excerpt from a letter he wrote to Grady McMurtry on April 16th, 1952 e.v. as Grady went off to the Korean war. This is Crowley's view of the nature and purpose of O.T.O. as understood by his immediate successor. Two other sections from the same letter provide perspective and some solace in the face of persecution, all too well known in recent years. Other parts of the letter briefly discuss Crowley's "The Scientific Solution of the Problem of Government," and touch on many matters of lesser weight.

. . .

"The O.T.O. has for its object to lift humanity up, and is honest about it. It refuses to play the racket game as all other Churches do. We refuse to give Opium to the people to dull their minds and enslave their souls. Every paragraph of the O.T.O. Constitution can be said to be uncompromising concerning the genuine goal. The rituals used, as far as I know, are genuine and will not allow an unworthy man to pay his way into it because he happens to be rich, and is used to buy what he wants, as the Catholic Church does by having the strictest possible rule and dogma against divorce, and yet, if someone is rich enough, gives it to the parties concerned! I cannot conceive of a case where A. C. broke his spiritual integrity."

. . .

"Do not believe for a moment that I close my eyes to the inevitable war which will, possibly soon, be thrust upon us, and upon us as the defenders of the Thelema and The Book of the Law. It will be fought against us with the very dirtiest and sinister means. Can I change this? Should I pussyfoot to avoid it? Should I run away from it?

"I know the ordeals will be such that there will be traitors in our camp. O.K! The silent persecution has begun long ago. They have modern means of killing, or starving undesired Thought. Still, the magical secret force that is in the core of 93 will bring it to fruition in its time; no matter what persecution. (Look at the Mormons!) Besides this thing is in the hand of the Gods."

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From the Outbasket

Here's a response to questions asked of Agape Grand Lodge. Edited for publication.

MK of NY asked about Asana distractions, Pranayama and Ritual:

    On Asana: A feeling of weightlessness and disorientation is normal. After a time of holding the same posture, the nerves of touch quiet down. This has the effect of loss of a sense of pressure from horizontal surfaces, in effect "weightlessness". Disorientation commonly accompanies this if the tactile senses have been excessively used to maintain balance -- for testing that, close your eyes and walk across a room. If you feel a bit dizzy, you may have a minor ailment of the inner ear. Otherwise, this too is normal. Ear plugs are ok, as long as they don't distract more than the noise.
    Pranayama may be taken up at any time, sooner the better. It can make the effect of Asana subjectively more pronounced if taken up before Asana is well learned.
    You don't need to cut yourself in the Mass of the Phoenix and Liber Jugorum. Some like to do that; some don't. Some like to do it a LOT! --- not people I care to have around all that much. One ass did it at a wedding reception attended by non-Thelemites. The technique is valid, but not essential. Crowley has his little jokes...

-- TSG (Bill Heidrick)

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Events Calendar for December 1993 e.v.

12/2/93Baphomet's Greater Feast 7:30PM
readings from the Holy Books
Thelema Ldg.
12/3/93Astrology of Sagittarius with Grace
in Berkeley, call for location
Thelema Ldg.
12/5/93Gnostic Mass 7:30PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
12/6/93Thelema Lodge Meeting 7:30PMThelema Ldg.
12/8/93Sirius Oasis meeting 7:30PM
call for location.
Sirius Oas.
12/10/93Seminar on Crowley in Fiction 7:30PM
with Lew and John. Horus Temple
Thelema Ldg.
12/12/93Gnostic Mass 7:30PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
12/14/93"Especially for Firsts: 7:30PM
with M.Sanborn. Ist and up only
Thelema Ldg.
12/15/93Magick in Theory and Practice 7:30PM
with Bill Heidrick in Marin County
(5 Suffield Ave., San Anselmo)
Thelema Ldg.
12/16/93Burmese Astrology with Kathy 7:30PM
at Grace's in Berkeley (call)
Thelema Ldg.
12/17/93Grady McMurtry Poetry Society 7:30PM
with Fr. P.I. at Horus Temple
Thelema Ldg.
12/19/93Gnostic Mass 7:30PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
12/21/93Winter Solstice pot-luck Feast 7:30PThelema Ldg.
12/24/93Video Night "Crosses of Light" 7:30P
with Fr. P.I.
Thelema Ldg.
12/26/93Gnostic Mass 7:30PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.

    The viewpoints and opinions expressed herein are the responsibility of the contributing authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of OTO or its officers.

   Note to update: the addresses and phone numbers in these issues of the Thelema Lodge Calendars are obsolete since the closing of the Lodge. They are here for historic purposes only and should not be visited or called.

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