Thelema Lodge Calendar for April 1996 e.v.

Thelema Lodge Calendar

for April 1996 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.

Copyright © O.T.O. and the Individual Authors, 1996 e.v.

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

April 1996 e.v. at Thelema Lodge

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

Announcements from
Lodge Members and Officers

Liber AL - a Feast for the Three Days

      "Aiwass, uttering the word Thelema (with all its implications), destroys completely the formula of the Dying God."
      This month the local community of Thelema celebrates a Feast for the Three Days of the Writing of the Book of the Law, meeting to read Liber AL together on each of the three days of the ninety-second anniversary of its original transcription. Join us at Oz House on Monday evening 8th April for chapter one, "the manifestation of Nuit" -- phone ahead at (510) 654-3580 for to Oz. The following evening we will be at the Ancient Ways store for chapter two, "the hiding of Hadit" -- come to 4075 Telegraph Avenue (at 41st Street) or call the store at (510) 653-3244. For "the reward of Ra Hoor Khuit" on Wednesday evening 10th April, chapter three will be read at Rosslyn Camp in Hayward, which is located at 1471 "B" Street (an easy walk from BART) -- call (510) 886- 9642 for details. The readings will each begin at 8:00, with attendance open to all; please bring contributions of bread, cheese, wine, fruit, or other informal foods to be shared afterwards.
      "The Book of the Law reconciles an impersonal and infinite interpretation of the cosmos with an egocentric and practical viewpoint, so it makes 'infinite space' speak in the language of a goddess and deals with the details of eating and drinking."

Merry Pranks of Tyl Ulenspiegl

      Celebrate the flowing of the sap this spring with Tyl Ulenspiegl on Sunday 7th April (known to fertile thumpers and egg-hunters alike as "Beaster" Sunday). Meet at Oz House before noon to pool transportation up into the Berkeley hills for the ritual of "Tyl Ulenspiegl at the Easter of the Sap," adapted by our brother Lew from the nineteenth-century Flemish folk-novel by Charles de Coster. Bring your contributions for our great picnic feast, packed to be carried a short distance on foot to the secret site, and bring outdoor costumes for taking part in the thousands of supporting roles available in this production. (Elemental and spring-time themes are suggested, but you can't go wrong as a well-armed bug, according to the script.) We'll give the King of Spring his golden axe and his naked Queen, and see if we can't bring sad silly Tyl and his sweet country maiden Nele safely together. Call Lew at Oz during the preceding week for specific details.
      Also on the subject of spring-time holidays, we look forward at the beginning of next month to a great weekend of Beltane, with the sun going 15° Taurus just before midnight on Saturday evening 4th May. Contact the lodge or Oz House to assist in planning a bonfire on the beach that evening, with feasting and music.

Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica

      Join the members of Thelema Lodge at Hours Temple in Oakland any Sunday evening at 8:00 to participate in our weekly celebration of the Gnostic Mass, which presents in concentrated symbolic form not only the essential secrets of initiation, but also the basic laws of physics and biology. The mass not only functions socially as a joyous gathering of the community, but also lays the foundations for magical training and the wisdom of Thelema in those who communicate together. For visitors to Thelema Lodge, one of the best opportunities to meet the members and see our temple and library facilities is to attend mass here some Sunday evening. If you have not attended recently, please check in ahead of time by calling (510) 652-3171 for directions and information. For members wishing to serve as officers in future masses, the lodgemaster can assist mass teams to arrange their dates on the temple schedule, and will recommend the further guidance of one of our local Gnostic Bishops if requested.

      Thelema Lodge recently hosted a Gnostic Mass performance that was videotaped for broadcast on television in Chile. The Saturday morning mass on 24th February featured Casey Cummings as Priestess, with Michael Sanborn as Priest and Frater Maeldinas Emrys as Deacon. It was surprisingly well attended (for a morning event), especially considering that we also had good turnouts for the mass at Oz the previous evening, and the regular public mass the following day. Patrice (Pato) Livingstone of Luna Calipso Film & Television brought the video crew (Alessandra, Raul, and Miguel) to this specially arranged mass after having attended a regular Sunday evening service about a month earlier. Although the presence of a roving videocamera in the temple was certainly unusual, they were most respectful, and managed to achieve a high degree of intimacy without interfering. The novelty of the situation seemed to make it enjoyable for everyone, with the crew even passing their big camera back and forth so that they could each communicate at the end. The mass was followed by a video interview with the priest and then a late breakfast for the crew. Their footage is scheduled to appear in a Chilean news report about contemporary religious diversity sometime this autumn.


      Thelema Lodge will be holding initiations for advancement in Ordo Templi Orientis this month on Saturday 27th April, through the afternoon and into the evening, with a feast to follow. Members are asked to contact the lodge for details of time and degree; in order to attend please speak with one of the lodge officers ahead of time. The Order accepts applications for initiation, which may be turned over to the lodgemaster for forwarding to the O.T.O. Initiation Secretary. It takes a minimum of forty days to schedule initiation, so candidates should confer with the lodge as soon as they determine on advancement, and should keep in touch thereafter.

Classes and Events

      Bill Heidrick's Tarot series open this month, meeting in San Anselmo on Wednesday evening 17th April, beginning at 7:30. The first meeting will give an introduction to Tarot and explore the European and other antecedents of the mysteries.

      The Section Two reading group will be looking this month at the last and greatest achievement of the medieval romance tradition of Arthur, the archetypal King of Britain, as collected and translated in the mid-fifteenth century by Sir Thomas Malory. Join Caitlin at Oz House on Monday evening 22nd April at 8:00 for a discussion of the myth and magic of the Arthurian world, with selected readings from one of the greatest early masters of narrative prose in our language. Collecting most of his stories from the elaborate French prose romances of Arthur's knights, Malory concentrated on their essential elements, organizing them in dynamic progressions (as in a novel) instead of interweaving brief incidents in the tapestry fashion of the romances. Although his view of the supernatural tends to skepticism, his presentation of the magical aspects of the story is intensified by the direct precise details of the marvels he does recount. Malory's Works, written during many years of imprisonment following a career of violent outlawry, do not make a single unified Arthuriad, but a sequence of tales, unified in style and manner rather than in design and structure. The splendors of chivalric fraternity which he presents are among the core values of western civilization, but he recounts them with a haunting undertone of elegy, a sense of approaching ruin and of the fall of princes, which reminds us often of the proximity of chaos.

Previous Section Two                   Next Section Two

      The John Dee reading group meets with Clay Holden on Monday evening 15th April at 8:00 in the library at Thelema Lodge. The April meeting will be devoted to a review of the construction of the Sigillum Dei ímeth as described in Liber Mysteriorum Secundus over the past few months of our reading. From data gathered in their spiritual experiments of March 1582, Dee and Kelly worked out the design of this new universal talisman, a sigillum dei or basic magical tool in the Solomonic ars notoria tradition which Kelly seems to have studied. Its essential shape was adapted from a heptagonal and pentagonal seal in Dee's manuscript copy of Liber Juratus, a Solomonic catalogue of spiritual names and powers. Dee was one of the greatest masters of geometric construction of his time, as well as the leading English collector of wax seals and authority on the design of seals, so that he was able to construct the most complex and comprehensive sigillum dei known to the Renaissance. In Dee's hands, the rough and clumsy tradition of grimoire figures developed into a precise mathematical instrument for organizing and manipulating the names and virtues of the discarnate praeterhuman intelligences of the spiritual universe. The John Dee Society has produced some outstandingly clear computer-generated representations of Dee's sigil, and will have blank outlines of the figure available to be filled in according to the angelic directions we have been studying.

      Join Grace on Friday evening 26th April for the Thelema Lodge Astrological Cycles workshop as we turn our attention to the influence of Luna. The powerful pull of the Moon on the fluid balance of personality, and its involvement with memory and imagination, make it one of the most meaningful of the celestial cycles. Indeed the lunar cycle is so basic to human experience that it is usually cited as the best evidence for astrological influence on our lives. Bring your natal chart (or birth data so that one can be cast for you), and we will examine the meaning of Luna in the horoscope in all its contexts. Beginning at 7:00, the discussion will be open to all, and will be held at Grace's Palace of Astrology in Berkeley. All who attend are asked to speak first with Grace; either let her know ahead of time that you plan to be there, or call her at (510) 843-STAR before setting forth.

      The "Angelmas" Enochian liturgy group has no activity on the schedule for April, but those interested or involved in this enterprise are urged to contact Michael Sanborn at (510) 601-9393 to confer regarding activities in May. Further work on scrying technique with Susan is being planned, along with rehearsal and celebration of the "Angelmas" liturgy.

      Library nights at Thelema Lodge are Thursday evening 4th April and Tuesday evening 23rd April at 8:00; please call ahead to confirm the library schedule, which can often be changed by request. The lodge luncheon meeting will be Sunday afternoon 21st April from 12:30 until 2:30. Please call ahead, then join us for lunch at the lodge.

      Sirius Oasis will meet in northern Berkeley on Monday evening 29th April at 8:00. Call for directions to the master's home at (510) 525-2855. Plans are being laid this spring for the Rites of Eleusis, for a Sirius Oasis celebration of the Gnostic Mass, and for the Ancient Ways Festival at Harbin Hot Springs early in June.

Crowley Classics

      This essay was completed on 28th August 1914 e.v. and intended for publication as a foreword to Crowley's volume of poems The Giant's Thumb during the following year. Set in type in London by the Ballantyne Press, the book was corrected in proof by the author, but with mobilization for World War I the publication plans were delayed and Crowley departed for America. There were negotiations to bring out The Giant's Thumb in New York the following year with the publishing firm of Mitchell Kennerley, but again the project was withdrawn, and Crowley never saw the book appear. Parts of this essay were excerpted fifteen years later in The Legend of Aleister Crowley by P. R. Stevensen, but the piece seems never to have been published in full in this country. It is here edited to incorporate the additions which Crowley made to the text when reviewing it in the 1920s e.v. We present it in two parts, beginning in this issue and concluding next month. © Copyright O.T.O.

The Vindication of Nietzsche

by Aleister Crowley

All delicate days and pleasant, all spirits and sorrows are cast
Far out with the foam of the present that sweeps to the surf of the past:
Where beyond the extreme sea-wall, and between the remote sea-gates,
Waste water washes, and tall ships founder, and deep death waits:
Where, mighty with deepening sides, clad about with the seas as with wings,
And impelled of invisible tides, and fulfilled of unspeakable things,
White-eyed and poisonous-finned, shark-toothed and serpentine-curled,
Rolls, under the whitening wind of the future, the wave of the world.

IT IS eleven of the clock on the night of August 28, in the 1914th year of the Christian Era, and the news of the annihilation of the British Army has not yet reached London. It will come.1
      The cause is cant and hypocrisy, and the cause of the War was cant and hypocrisy, the strange, the pathetic, the craven determination to admit no fact for truth which all the men of science and all the poets of the reign of Queen Victoria did so little to shake. The demonstrations of Darwin and the sonorities of Swinburne reached only the thinking classes, if one may use so plural a noun for the remnant that refused to bow the knee to the Baal of Respectability and the Golden Calf of Commercialism.
      Entrenched in the morass of bibliolatry, crouching in the bastions of Fort Grundy, the Old Guard of Victorianism died and did not surrender. But as the Old Testament God fell before Paine and Ingersoll, as the sanguine and sacrificial Christ was emasculated by Renan and Edward Arnold, the ruin of orthodoxy left even the manhood of Puritanism eunuch. Havelock with his bloody sword blowing 14,000 Sepoy prisoners from the muzzles of his guns in a morning became no longer thinkable. Hypocrisy surpasses itself, denounced its own virtues for vices. As the Goddess Reason once presided in Paris over panic, so the neuter deity Progress was worshipped by all those whom sloth, ease, security, prosperity had rotted. And the attendant demon-in-chief, Broken-Reed-in-Waiting to Its Majesty, was Humanitarianism.
      We had Progressed. Lady Pyjama Noisette had a headache to the tune of a paragraph -- 10 lines. Sandsugar v. Sandsugar and Pintpot -- a column. A piddling little quack doctor poisons his bitch of a wife and runs off with his fool of a typist -- the business of the world is suspended until he is cinematographically hanged.
      A prominent writer calls attention to himself by the device of calling attention to the pangs of slaughtered oxen; another affirms his brotherhood with the Chicago Pig. Countless thousands turn Vegetarian, and then quarrel as to whether it is or is not True Vegetarianism to eat eggs. The war between the Fruitarians and the Nut-foodists nearly came to a cross word! I knew a "man" who refused to eat bread because it was a fermented drink! A friend of mine knew an Anarchist who refused cocoa because it excited his animal passions! "And all the while the shark in southern seas!" as the authoress of The Placid Pug so tragically counters.
      For there were one or two reprobates who happened to have read History, and to have observed Humanity.
      Of these Nietzsche was the chief. But even in England, independently of him, and ignorant of his teaching, was found a man who actually endeavoured -- and is still endeavouring2 -- to found a New Religion on such texts as these:

      "For these fools of men and their woes care not thou at all! They feel little; what is, is balanced by weak joys; but ye are my chosen ones."
      "But to love me is better than all things: if under the night-stars in the desert thou presently burnest mine incense before me, invoking me with a pure heart, and the serpent flame therein, thou shalt come a little to lie in my bosom. For one kiss wilt thou then be willing to give all; but whoso gives one particle of dust shall lose all in that hour. Ye shall gather goods and store of women and spices; ye shall wear rich jewels; ye shall exceed the nations of {the} earth in splendour and pride; but always in the love of me, and so shall ye come to my joy. I charge you earnestly to come before me in a single robe, and covered with a rich head-dress. I love you! I yearn to you! Pale or purple, veiled or voluptuous, I who am all pleasure and purple, and drunkenness of the innermost sense, desire you. Put on the wings, and arouse the coiled splendour within you: come unto me!
      "At all my meetings with you shall the priestess say -- and her eyes shall burn with desire as she stands bare and rejoicing in my secret temple -- To me! To me! calling forth the flame of the hearts of all in her love-chant.
      "Sing the rapturous love-song unto me! Burn to me perfumes! Wear to me jewels! Drink to me, for I love you! I love you!
      "I am the blue-lidded daughter of Sunset; I am the naked brilliance of the voluptuous night-sky.
      "To me! To me!"

      "These are dead, these fellows; they feel not. We are not for the poor and for the {sic} sad; the lords of the earth are our kinsfolk.
      "Is a God to live in a dog? No! but the highest are of us. They shall rejoice, our chosen: who sorroweth is not of us. "Beauty and strength, leaping laughter and delicious languor, force and fire, are of us.
      "We have nothing with the outcast and the unfit: let them die in their misery. For they feel not. Compassion is the vice of kings: stamp down the wretched and the weak: this is the law of the strong: this is our law and the joy of the world. Think not, O king, upon that lie: That Thou Must Die: verily thou shalt not die, but live. Now let it be understood: if {sic} the body of the King dissolve, he shall remain in pure ecstasy for ever. Nuit! Hadit! Ra-Hoor-Khuit! The Sun, Strength and Sight, Light; these are for the servants of the Star and the Snake.
      "I am the Snake that giveth Knowledge and Delight and bright glory, and stir the hearts of men with drunkenness. To worship me take wine and strange drugs whereof I will tell my prophet, and be drunk thereof! They shall not harm ye at all. It is a lie, this folly against self. The exposure of innocence is a lie. Be strong, Man! {sic} lust, enjoy all things of sense and rapture: fear not that any God shall deny thee for this."

      "Ye are against the people, O my chosen!
      "If Will stops and cries Why, invoking Because, then Will stops and does nought.
      "If Power asks Why, then is Power weakness."
      "Pity not the fallen! I never knew them. I am not for them. I console not: I hate the consoled and the consoler."
      "There is a veil; that veil is black. It is the veil of the modest woman; it is the veil of sorrow, and the pall of death: this is none of me. Tear down that lying spectre of the centuries: veil not your vices in virtuous words: these vices are my service; ye do well, and I will reward you here and hereafter."

      "Beware therefore! Love all, lest perchance is a King concealed! Say you so? Fool! If he be a King, thou canst not hurt him.
      "Therefore strike hard and low, and to hell with them, master!"

      "Now let it be first understood that I am a god of War and of Vengeance. I shall deal hardly with them.
      "Choose ye an island!
      "Fortify it!
      "Dung it about with enginery of war!
      "I will give you a war-engine.
      "With it ye shall smite the peoples; and none shall stand before you. "

      "Worship me with fire and blood; worship me with swords and with spears. Let the woman be girt with a sword before me: let blood flow to my name. Trample down the Heathen: be upon them, O warrior, I will give you of their flesh to eat!"
      "Mercy let be off: damn them who pity! Kill and torture; spare not; be upon them!
      "Them that seek to entrap thee, to overthrow thee, them attack without pity or quarter; and destroy them utterly. Swift as a trodden serpent turn and strike! Be thou yet deadlier than he! Drag down their souls to awful torment: laugh at their fear: spit upon them!"

      "I am in a secret fourfold word, the blasphemy against all gods of men.
      "Curse them! Curse them! Curse them!
      "With my Hawk's head I peck at the eyes of Jesus as he hangs upon the cross.
      "I flap my wings in the face of Mohammed and blind him.
      "With my claws I tear out the flesh of the Indian and the Buddhist, Mongol and Din. "Bahlasti! Ompehda! I spit on your crapulous creeds.
      "Let Mary inviolate be torn upon wheels: for her sake let all chaste women be utterly despised among you!
      "Also for beauty's sake and love's!
      "Despise also all cowards; professional soldiers who dare not fight, but play: all fools despise!
      "But the keen and the proud, the royal and the lofty: ye are brothers!
      "As brothers fight ye!"

      "There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt."

      This is plain speaking; this is "blasphemy" and "immorality" if ever such were spoken.
      I quote it in preference to Nietzsche, not only because Nietzsche has penetrated from Prussia to Pimlico, and is quoted in Streatham as in Stuttgart, but also because it is simpler than Nietzsche, because there is no possibility of misinterpreting the doctrine (were I dowered with a double portion of the Spirit of Escobar), because it is not German or Slavonic but universal, the battle-cry of what may yet become a new and terrible theocracy. Its adherents have hitherto been secret; today they surely lift their heads; tomorrow they may reap the reward of having thought ten years ago what England thinks this year.
      It is only two months since even the saner sections of the people were disputing hotly as to whether boxing is "brutal"; and this month no man of sense but admits that little children may lawfully be pitched into blazing cottages before their mothers' eyes. And that is play to what may come. Will not human flesh be bought and sold in the markets before the war and its attendant revolutions are over? Is there any man bold enough to call such things "impossible," to invoke those fallen fishy gods "Progress" and "Civilization" and "The Higher Awakening of the Ethical Instincts of Man?"

1. P.S. It came; and was censored. But England will yet find out.
     P.P.S. It was not until after Victory had been proclaimed that men
      began to realize that it was Defeat. For the corruption of Christianity made
      them cowards even in conquest, refusing to assume the responsibility of
2 P.S. Dec. 1923 e.v. He has perdured with dogged dauntlessness through
      distress and disaster of every kind: and his Truth is subtly infiltrating the
      whole Body of the World's Thought. Every year marks an advance -- inscrutable
      and automatic -- towards acceptance. The quotations are from Liber AL the
      "Book of the Law". Vide The Equinox I vii & x et al.

Previous Crowley Classics                   To be Continued

from the Grady Project:

The Black Osiris

Dread Virgin, Mother, Harlot, Crone
Thy dusky beauty sears my dreams
Direct my quest to Thee alone
Dissolve this world in all it seems
KALI! Mother of Horror

Transmitter of the Secret Seed
Thyself untouched and undefiled
Bend down and bless us in our need
Pure black perfection that has smiled
KALI! Mother of Horror

Deep black Abyss that is the mind
Eternal Worm that cannot die
Save by Your grace to humankind:
Relieve us in our agony
KALI! Mother of Horror

Dark Virgin pregnant with The Child
The Dragon's Head is raised for Thee
To tred upon. The bruise is mild
But he explodes in ecstasy
KALI! Mother of Horror

-- Grady L. McMurtry

Originally published in Grady McMurtry, Poems (London, England & Bergen, Norway: O.T.O., 1986), then in The Grady Project 4 (Berkeley: O.T.O., December 1988).

Previous Grady Project                   Next Grady Project

An Introduction to Qabalah

Part XIV -- Confused worlds & temple initiations..

Derived from a lecture series in 1977 e.v. by Bill Heidrick
Copyright © Bill Heidrick

      Last month's discussion used an allegory related to traditional human families, but there are those who try to employ that allegory as a way of representing the four worlds of the Qabalah on the Tree of Life. The Golden Dawn attempted that. They said that the fourth world was Malkut, the third world was made up of the six Sephirot from Yesod through Chesed, the first and second worlds were the Mother at Binah and the Father at Chokmah, while Keter was beyond all the four worlds. That approach mixes one explanation with another. Here's what may have led to the confusion. The system described last month, with the countenances and the grouping of the Sephirot, is often related to the letters of the name Jehovah put on the Tree. The little dot of the tip of the letter Yod, the first letter of YHVH, belongs to Keter. The Yod is for Chokmah, the first Hay is Binah, Vau takes care of the intervening six Sephirot, and the last Hay w. Mp. is down in Malkut. These same letters were called Father, Mother, Son and Daughter in a traditional analysis of the name YHVH. Since there are four worlds that match those letters, and since those letters are also used for this system of explanation, it's a simple thing to make a mistake and assume that they represent the same idea. This is not so. Yod has the number value of Ten. Hay has the value of five. Ten plus five make fifteen. Fifteen can be reduced by adding its digits as 1 + 5 = 6, and six is the number value of Vau. The Father, Yod, and the Mother, Hay, joined together produce the Son which is Vau. That's an example of how that association can be made on number significance, not simply the fact that these letters can also match the four worlds. Here's a different system that allocates the four worlds to the Tree of Life: First Yod, then Yod-Hay, next Yod-Hay-Vau, and finally Yod-Hay-Vau-Hay w. Mp.. Arranged in a triangle, this depicts a tetractys:

Hay Yod
Vau Hay Yod
Hay w. Mp. Vau Hay Yod

Track this pattern down the Tree of Life. The first Yod goes to Keter (1). The Yod-Hay goes to Chokmah (2) and Binah (3), in order. The Yod-Hay-Vau goes in order to Chesed (4), Geburah (5) and Tipheret (6). Finally, each letter of Yod-Hay-Vau-Hay is attributed to the remaining four Sephirot in Order, from Netzach to Malkut. Taking the four rows from this tetractys as the four worlds: Keter is Atzilut, Chokmah and Binah are Briah, Yetzriah is Chesed with Geburah and Tipharet, while Assiah combines all the last four Sephirot. This procedure also produces the elemental qualities of the pillars. The right hand pillar is of fire because it has all Yod's in it. The left hand pillar is of water because it has all Hay's in it. Fire is emotion in the sense of rising up and generating power. Water in Qabalah is more a thing of thinking, since the flowing of thought is steadier and slower than the leaping of the emotions. In the middle pillar we see the Vau of Air predominating between Fire at the top and Earth at the bottom. All of these different things are workable patterns to help explain the structure of the Tree of Life.
      There is a pattern involved in the Tree of Life that can be useful for initiation. The Order of the Golden Dawn designed temple initiations to make use of this, but they made a few changes in the way the Jewish Kabbalah dealt with the Tree. Here's an example. The Order of the Golden Dawn placed the veil (Paroket) just below Tipheret. It doesn't belong there but in the Abyss in the old Jewish systems, as the Veil of the Temple. The Abyss is the gap between the outer Temple and the inner Temple, the Holy of Hollies. In the Temple of Solomon there was a double veil and a person had to zig-zag between the two sections. That zig-zag was a moment of preparation before going into the holiest place, a time of passage through the abyss between worlds. The Golden Dawn placed it differently to emphasize their preferred use of the Tree of Life as an initiation pattern. New members or Neophytes were down Malkut. They were taken through formal lodge initiations where the rooms would be decorated with symbols of the Sephirot. An initiation for Yesod would start in a part of the room that symbolized Malkut. There were paths or portals to the left (Shin), center (Taw), and right (Qof). The candidate would be turned back from the left path by an officer with a symbol of fire, since that was the path of Shin, and likewise from the right path with an appropriate symbol for Qof. Finally the candidate would be permitted to enter the path of Tau into Yesod. The last of these outer initiations in the Order of the Golden Dawn was into the Sephirot Tipharet. As the inner sanctum or vault of the Adepts, that place needed a special division from the mundane side of things and the temple veil was used for that bit of symbolism. Such lodge initiations have certain advantages, particularly in that someone checks the progress and a fairly systematic approach enables the candidate to share the experiences of others.

Previous Introduction to Qabalah, Part XIII                   Next: Self-initiation.


Midnight Resh in the
Temple of the Sun

In a secret cavern
I meet you at midnight
In the Temple of the Sun.

Bright stars glimmer...
The blood red moon eclipses
Above the pyramids.

Your fingers whirl the stars
Into compressed space...

I stand in awe...
Thy bark passes
Through the coal black sky...

Tahuti, Ra Hoor...
I watch in wonder
Until I dissolve in ecstasy...
Angelic presence renewed...

-- Firebird 397

Previous Firebird Poem                   Next Poem by Firebird


      Last month in the essay "Absinthe -- The Green Goddess" which appeared in our "Crowley Classics" section we appended a translation of "La Legende de l'Absinthe," the French sonnet which is quoted in full by Crowley in that article, and which he may himself have authored anonymously. (At least no other pedigree for the poem has been discovered.) Further study of this poem, in consultation with several lodge members, has improved our reading of the sonnet so much that a revised translation is here offered. This should be compared with the French text given in our March issue.

The Legend of Absinthe

Apollo, who mourned at Hyacinthe's demise,
Refused to concede this victory to Death.
Much better that the soul, adept in flight,
Had in its beauty found a holier alchemy.
Thus with his heavenly hand he drained and crushed
The subtlest harvest of the garden goddess,
The broken bodies of the herbs yielding a golden essence
From which we measure out the drop -- of Absinthe!

In lowly hovels and in glittering courts,
Alone, in pairs, drink up this fluid of attraction!
For it is a magical operation -- as one might say --
When the pale opal wine interrupts all misery,
The product of beauty's intimate sanctuary --
Enchant my heart, and captivate my soul!


Quotations Related to Symbolic, Philosophic,
and Historic Doctrines of Ancient
and Accepted Freemasonry,
selected by Frater Drax

"At the time of the '[Boston] Tea Party,' St. Andrew's Lodge was meeting regularly in what was called the 'Long Room' of Freemasons Hall, formerly the 'Green Dragon' tavern. The Lodge shared this room, and much of its membership, with a burgeoning number of politically-oriented secret societies and quasi-masonic clandestine fraternities dedicated to opposing British fiscal legislation . . . Another even more militant organization was the 'Sons of Liberty' and its inner nucleus, the so-called 'Loyal Nine,' who advocated violence and had been fomenting riots, demonstrations, and other forms of civil disobedience since 1765 . . . At least three of the 'Loyal Nine' were also freemasonic brethren of St. Andrew's.
      "The 'Tea Party' moreover, could not have occurred without the active collusion of two detachments of colonial militia who were supposed to be guarding the Dartmouth's cargo. Of these men, the captain of the first detachment, Edward Proctor, had been a member of St. Andrew's Lodge since 1663. Three of his men -- Stephen Bruce, Thomas Knox, and Paul Revere, were also members of the Lodge . . . Altogether, nineteen members out of forty- eight in the two militia detachments are known to have collaborated in dumping the Dartmouth's tea. Of these nineteen, six including the detachment commander were members of St. Andrew's and three more were members of the 'Loyal Nine.'"

-- Michael Baigent &
Richard Leigh, The Temple
and the Lodge
(New York:
Arcade Publishing, 1989),

"Men of vision realized that another step must be taken if the weak confederation of American States was to become a strong, unified nation. Again Freemasonry set the pattern in ideology and form, since the Masonic federal system of organization was the only pattern for effective organization operating in each of the thirteen colonies, it was natural that patriotic brethren intent on strengthening the fledgling nation should turn to the organizational base of the Craft for a model. Regardless of other forces that affected the formation of the Constitution during the Constitutional Convention in 1787, the fact remains that the federalism established in the civil government the Constitution created is identical to the federation of the Grand Lodge system of masonic government created in Anderson's Constitutions of 1723."

-- H. C. Clausen, Masons Who
      Helped  Shape  Our  Nation

      (Washington, DC: Wash-
      ington Press, 1976), 82.

Previous Cornerstone


The Primary Sources column will return next month. Space did not allow it this time.

From the Outbasket

      Here are the annual demographics of the O.T.O. from Agape Grand Lodge. These membership totals have been obtained from Grand Lodge accounts at the end of February 1996 e.v.: 3,074 all, 2,684 of which are initiates. The International O.T.O. financial statement for fiscal year 1995-1996 e.v. will be available toward the end of April. For a copy, enclose an SASE and write to: O.T.O. Annual Financial Statement, Ordo Templi Orientis, P.O.Box 430, Fairfax, CA 94978 USA

      Total figures are c. 10% inflated owing to a late dues billing cycle.

ADV 104
Associates 286
Minervals 889
Ist Degrees 700
IInd Degrees 441
IIIrd Degrees 296
IVth Degrees 204
Vth Degrees 113
Higher Degrees 41


      In the list which follows, all data is drawn from the Grand Lodge mailing list. Accordingly, the actual membership total here is less than the total count, owing to changing and lost addresses.

      Known OTO member addresses by regions at end February 1996 e.v.
(Associates and initiates both) Total: 2,623 in 40 countries.


Alabama 8 Missouri 34
Arizona 62 Montana 2
Arkansas 4 Nebraska 16
California 326 Nevada 20
    (North Cal: 181) New Hampshire 5
    (South Cal: 145) New Jersey 31
Colorado 13 New Mexico 12
Connecticut 9 New York 138
Delaware 1 North Carolina 9
Dist. of Columbia 3 Ohio 25
Florida 46 Oklahoma 25
Georgia 76 Oregon 97
Hawaii 7 Pennsylvania 42
Idaho 6 Puerto Rico 1
Illinois 32 Rhode Island 4
Indiana 39 South Carolina 2
Iowa 5 South Dakota 1
Kansas 17 Tennessee 14
Kentucky 4 Texas 115
Louisiana 18 Utah 23
Maryland 25 Vermont 3
Massachusetts 26 Virginia 20
Michigan 25 Washington 56
Minnesota 22 West Virginia 5
Mississippi 5 Wisconsin 16
Wyoming 1




Alberta 37 New Brunswick 1
British Columbia 50 Ontario 36
Manitoba 1 Quebec 22







Previous years:


Detail of February 1995 e.v. Demographics (last year)

-- TG (Bill Heidrick)

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Events Calendar for April 1996 e.v.

4/4/96Thelema Lodge Library night 8PM
(call to attend)
Thelema Ldg.
4/7/96"Tyl Ulenspiegl" Noon meeting at OZ
4/7/96Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/8/96Feast of Liber AL, Chapter I
8PM at Oz House
4/9/96Feast of Liber AL, Chapter II
8PM at Ancient Ways store
Sirius Oasis
4/10/96Feast of Liber AL, Chapter III
8PM at Rosslyn Camp (Hayward)
Rosslyn Camp
4/14/96Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/15/96John Dee reading group 8PM w/Clay
Sigillum Dei Aemeth wrkshp
Thelema Ldg.
4/17/96Tarot (new series starts) 7:30 PM
with Bill Heidrick in San Anselmo
at 5 Suffield Ave.
Thelema Ldg.
4/21/96Lodge Luncheon meeting 12:30 PMThelema Ldg.
4/21/96Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/22/96Section 2 reading group w/Catlin
Thomas Malory's "Le Morte d'Arthur"
8PM at Oz house
Thelema Ldg.
4/23/96Thelema Lodge Library night 8PM
(call to attend)
Thelema Ldg.
4/26/96Astrological Cycles workship 7PM
with Grace in Berkeley
Thelema Ldg.
4/27/96OTO Initiations 2:PM
Call to attend.
Thelema Ldg.
4/28/96Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/29/96Sirius Oasis Meeting 8PM BerkeleySirius Oasis

      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.

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

Phone: (510) 652-3171 (for events info and contact to Lodge)

Production and Circulation:
P.O.Box 430
Fairfax, CA 94978 USA

Internet: (Submissions and circulation only)

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