Thelema Lodge Calendar for April 1998 e.v.

Thelema Lodge Calendar

for April 1998 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, 1998 e.v.

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

April 1998 e.v. at Thelema Lodge

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

Announcements from
Lodge Members and Officers

Feast of Liber AL

    Rose Edith Kelly Skerret had been nearly three years a widow and was living unhappily with her parents during the summer of 1903 when her little brother, the portrait artist Gerald Kelly, invited one of his university friends to visit the family home for a few days. This fellow represented himself as Lord Boleskine, but Gerald had known him as Aleister Crowley, seeing quite a bit of him during the preceding winter in Paris, where the two had frequented the same artistic bistro. For Rose their guest turned out to be a fascinating figure; a poet, world traveler, and magician, who enjoyed making radical and shocking pronouncements, and had many accomplishments to which he could allude in conversations with the pale, good-looking, and uncultivated woman. Rose was at this time nearly thirty, and Crowley a year younger.
    The two of them ended up eloping on a sort of lark, and managed to contract a legal marriage, without really making any plans to remain together afterwards. At first they had perhaps intended not even to consummate the marriage, but after the flight from her family Rose had nowhere to go, and back at Boleskine two days later they realized they were on their honeymoon, and in love with each other after all. Crowley described the first eight months of their marriage as "an uninterrupted sexual debauch up to the time of the writing of the Book of the Law."
    He was during this period at the full tide of his wealth, and had nothing much to do beyond his literary endeavors and the sporting life. After a few weeks the couple was off to London, and then to the Continent, first shopping in Paris, then relaxing in Naples, then staying a few days to see the sights in Cairo on the way to spend the winter in Ceylon. It was during this visit that they arranged (no doubt with a fair bribe to the guard) to spend a night together in the King's Chamber of the Great Pyramid. At some point around the end of October they also accomplished the conception of their first child, the ill-fated baby Nuit Lilith (who would be born back in Scotland on 28th July 1904).
    They stayed through January of 1904 in Ceylon, where Crowley hunted game and lived the life of a colonial sporting eccentric. Frustrated at failing to meet Allan Bennett there, they took ship back to Egypt early the following month, arriving at Cairo on 9th February. Here for reasons of which they were themselves not very sure they determined to remain for at least a few weeks. Rather than staying in a hotel as on their earlier visit, they took rooms for themselves on the ground floor of a grand apartment building in the best (and most European) part of the city; their apartment happened to be just around the corner from the Boulak Museum of Egyptian Antiquities.
    Crowley had collected some fine formal Oriental robes and now he began dressing in them, calling himself Chioa Khan and his wife Ouarda. They remained for two months, and there developed a feverish magical intensity to the work they were doing together; so much so that Crowley became worried about Rose's odd focus (though he later decided it was due to the course of her pregnancy, of which she was entering the sixth month). He tried several magical operations to engage her interest, and they led to her summons of him to record the text of Liber AL on three successive days at noon in April 1904 e.v., only a week or two before they took ship back to Europe.
    The account of this pivotal magical operation, which Crowley retold several times, is well known to all Thelemites. From it we date the consummation of the Equinox of the Gods, the pivot of the aeon of Horus the Crowned and Conquering Child, and a new opportunity for mankind to slough off the dead scales of the guilty old ethos of the Dying God. We claim in its place the primacy of the God Within, as discovered through the work of the True Will of each unique individual, fully developed in the world. At all occasions we return to the text generated in that operation 94 years ago, which formulates the potential of the age we work in. Early each spring for many years around Berkeley here in California, Thelemites have been gathering to hear the three chapters of Liber AL read to us, commemorating the time when Aleister Crowley, operating under a magical resolve formulated as Frater Perdurabo, and dressed as Chioa Khan, assisted by Rose under her Arabic name of Ouarda the Seer, also listened to this same text.

    Our feast for the three days of the writing of the Book of the Law gets underway on Wednesday evening 8th April with the first chapter at the Ancient Ways store (corner of Telegraph and 41st Street in Oakland) at 8:00. Our reader will be Chandra, a second-generation Thelemite who grew up with Liber AL, and whose amazing vocal performance was one of the triumphs of our Equinox ritual last month. Next evening we gather at Thelema Lodge for chapter two, which will be read by Jeff in Horus Temple, also beginning at 8:00. Then on Friday evening 10th April we will all pack into Nu Temple at Oz House, where James will be reading chapter three beginning early at 7:00, with a supper to follow.

O.T.O. Initiations

    Initiations into Ordo Templi Orientis are next planned at Thelema Lodge for Saturday 18th April. Attendance at this ritual is restricted to active initiate members of O.T.O., and all must first contact one of the lodge officers in order to be included in our plans for the event. A dinner feast for all involved will follow the initiations. The lodge usually will provide a main dish as part of the ritual, but contributions of drinks, desserts, and auxiliary dishes will be welcomed from attending members. Prospects for dinner contributions are best discussed with the officers in advance, along with the projected time scale for the event.
    Those wishing to be initiated into the O.T.O., or to advance through the degrees of our Order, may obtain application forms from the officers at most lodge events. In special cases the form can be requested by mail, but the candidate will want to meet with members before proceeding, so it makes more sense to apply in person. For those not already involved with the lodge community, the best time to do this is to arrive a little early for the gnostic mass on Sunday evening. Candidates will be required to plan well in advance and to maintain good contact throughout the entire process leading up to their initiation.
    Sponsorship is required for each application, and it is best if this arises out of a conversation between the candidate and an initiate of the degree to which admittance is sought. Candidates should discuss with their sponsors their reasons for contemplating this step, and their expectations concerning the new degree. The officers of the lodge are not usually the best sponsors, because we are like everyone's sponsors anyway (or at least often available to discuss initiation candidacy), so you may only miss an opportunity to form a special initiatory bond with one of your prospective fellows if you turn automatically to the people washing the dishes. Sponsorship should not be automatic and unknowing, nor should it be personal and private, but respectful and fraternal.

College of Hard Talks

    The College of Hard N.O.X. is about education in the sense of the word's original Latin root, educatio, a drawing out of the knowledge and understanding that dwells within the pupil, as opposed to the teacher-centered ritual of absorption and regurgitation more commonly identified with the term "education." Though some have complained that the mandatory tuition fee charged for each class is too high (it's currently set at two cents), the ample opportunities provided to receive a scholarship or student loan make it quite certain that no serious applicant will ever be turned away on account of financial hardship.
    The lessons for April will be held in the lodge library, as usual, at 8 o'clock in the evening on the first and last Wednesdays. Since the first session falls on April Fool's Day the proposed topic will be, in general, Humor and its relation to Religion, and specifically, the manifold tales told of holy fools. The meeting on 29th April will follow up on a discussion that began on 25th March, "What kinds of shared social ethic might be considered most compatible with Thelema?"

Seminar on Liber 777

    Bill Heidrick will be offering a new class this month, dealing at length with the columns of correspondences given in the book 777. We will meet at 7:30 at Bill's home in San Anselmo in Marin County on Wednesday evening 22nd April; call ahead at (415) 454-5176 for directions, or use e-mail to Liber 777 is available in several editions, and beside the well-known Weiser reprint of the revised second edition, Bill will have some copies of the old Thelema Lodge reprint of Jack Parsons' annotated copy of the first edition. There is also a beautifully re-designed edition of the shortened version from Magick in Theory and Practice available in the big new revised edition of Book Four. Slides of the pages of the book will be used in the class.
    Liber 777 distills much of the study, ritual, and insight which Crowley had invested in the teachings of the Golden Dawn. This included not only his brief and unsuccessful association with the original London temple led by W. B. Yeats, but his later personal work in Paris with the Society's deposed mastermind MacGregor Mathers, and even more importantly his extended reworking of the material with Allan Bennett over the next several years in London and Ceylon. Crowley began work around 1906 e.v. editing his notes from these eight years of study into a sort of index in tabular form to the whole system of western magic, and this became Liber 777. The material is so dense that it is hard to predict the pace of our exploration of its data. If there is a collective interest in working more fully through specific columns, this class may be extended into a short series of meetings to suit demand. Our April meeting will provide an overview and introduction, and we will then see just how much more of 777 we want to know about.

Suggestive Literature Circle

    At Oz House on Monday evening 20th April beginning at 8:00 the Thelema Lodge Section Two reading group will be spending an evening with Boccaccio's Decameron. Readers and listeners are welcome to attend, and we plan to share a few of our favorite stories from this "century of tales." Caitlin hosts the group, and can be reached for information and directions to Oz at (510) 654- 3580, or call the lodge.

    Giovanni Boccaccio, the first great European literary prose fiction writer, was also in his own day a celebrated poet and humanist scholar, who lived from 1313 until 1375. He was an established author of several major works in verse and prose when at the age of thirty-five he survived the Black Plague in Florence, and shortly thereafter he began work on the Decameron. (The title in Latinized Greek indicates a "ten days' record" of storytelling). Just as Dante had set the Divine Comedia in his own thirty-fifth year of 1300 and organized in one hundred cantos the whole moral and political culture of his generation, so Boccaccio in a hundred Italian stories organized another sort of great Comedy based upon purely secular explorations of human motivation.
    Crowley omitted mention of Boccaccio on the Section Two reading list, but included him in a later recommendation of "suggestive literature" attached to in Liber Artemis Iota. Crowley himself may well have read Boccaccio in Italian; unlike Dante or Petrarch, most modern Italian readers find the Decameron fairly easy. At least Crowley does not mention any particular translation, but until 1930 there had been only one English version of the Decameron which did not expurgate the sexual details from several of the best stories. This complete version was the work of John Payne, whose translation of the Arabian Nights Crowley recommends on the Section Two list in addition to that of Richard Burton. Payne's Victorian Decameron could not be published commercially, but was distributed in an expensive private edition to subscribers of the Villon Society in 1886.
    Like Burton, Payne's method was to translate the old stories into a strange kind of story-book English, full of Victorian-gothic archaisms and quaint circumlocutions, but at least he stuck very close to the sense of the Italian text. Unfortunately Payne's edition very quickly became extremely rare, and in those bad old days librarians sometimes tore out the indecent pages of their books, making it very hard to consult the only translation of certain critical passages omitted from other editions. When Payne's Decameron was reprinted, the wretched editors of the Modern Library series went back and expurgated it just like the other versions. In 1930 two new complete translations appeared, and in our own day several accurate and readable versions are easily available, so there has been little need for a careful new edition of John Payne's old-fashioned but classic rendering. We offer the following tale as an example.

Putting Back the Devil into Hell

by Giovanni Boccaccio

tenth tale of the third day
from the Decameron

translated in 1886 by John Payne

    Charming ladies, maybe you have never heard tell how one putteth the devil in hell; wherefore, without much departing from the tenor of that whereof you have discoursed all this day, I will e'en tell it you. Belike, having learned it, you may catch the spirit thereof and come to know that, albeit Love sojourneth liefer in jocund palaces and luxurious chambers than in the hovels of the poor, yet none the less doth he whiles make his power felt midmost thick forests and rugged mountains and in desert caverns; whereby it may be understood that all things are subject to his puissance.

    To come, then, to the fact, I say that in the city of Capsa in Barbary there was aforetime a very rich man, who, among his other children, had a fair and winsome young daughter, by name Alibech. She, not being a Christian and hearing many Christians who abode in the town mightily extol the Christian faith and the service of God, one day questioned one of them in what manner one might avail to serve God with the least hindrance. The other answered that they best served God who most strictly eschewed the things of the world, as those did who had betaken them into the solitudes of the deserts of Thebaïs. The girl, who was maybe fourteen years old and very simple, moved by no ordered desire, but by some childish fancy, set off next morning by stealth and all alone, to go to the desert of Thebaïs, without letting any know her intent. After some days, her desire persisting, she won, with no little toil, to the deserts in question and seeing a hut afar off, went thither and found at the door a holy man, who marvelled to see her there and asked her what she sought. She replied that, being inspired of God, she went seeking to enter into His service and was now in quest of one who should teach her how it behoved to serve Him.
    The worthy man, seeing her young and very fair and fearing lest, as he entertained her, the devil should beguile him, commended her pious intent and giving her somewhat to eat of roots of herbs and wild apples and dates and to drink of water, said to her, "Daughter mine, not far hence is a holy man, who is a much better master than I of that which thou goest seeking; do thou betake thyself to him," and put her in the way. However, when she reached the man in question, she had of him the same answer and faring farthur, came to the cell of a young hermit, a very devout and good man, whose name was Rustico and to whom she made the same request as she had done to the others. He, having a mind to make a trial of his own constancy, sent her not away, as the others had done, but received her into his cell, and the night being come, he made her a little bed of palm-fronds and bade her lie down to rest thereon. This done, temptations tarried not to give battle to his powers of resistance and he, finding himself grossly deceived by these latter, turned tail, without awaiting many assaults, and confessed himself beaten; then, laying aside devout thoughts and orisons and mortifications, he fell to revolving in his memory the youth and beauty of the damsel and bethinking himself what course he should take with her, so as to win to that which he desired of her, without her taking him for a debauched fellow.
    Accordingly, having sounded her with sundry questions, he found that she had never known man and was in truth as simple as she seemed; wherefore he bethought him how, under colour of the service of God, he might bring her to his pleasures. In the first place, he showed her with many words how great an enemy the devil was of God the Lord and after gave her to understand that the most acceptable service that could be rendered to God was to put back the devil into hell, whereto He had condemned him. The girl asked him how this might be done; and he, "Thou shalt soon know that; do thou but as thou shalt see me do." So saying, he proceeded to put off the few garments he had and abode stark naked, as likewise did the girl, whereupon he fell to his knees, as he would pray, and caused her abide over against himself.
    Matters standing thus and Rustico being more than ever inflamed in his desires to see her so fair, there came the resurrection of the flesh, which Alibech observing and marvelling, "Rustico," quoth she, "what is that I see on thee which thrusteth forth thus and which I have not?" "Faith, daughter mine," answered he, "this is the devil thereof I bespoke thee; and see now, he giveth me such sore annoy that I can scarce put up with it." Then said the girl, "Now praised be God! I see I fare better than thou, in that I have none of yonder devil." "True," rejoined Rustico; "but thou hast otherwhat that I have not, and thou hast it instead of this." "What is that?" asked Alibech; and he, "Thou hast hell, and I tell thee methinketh God hath sent thee hither for my soul's health, for that, whenas this devil doth me this annoy, an it please thee have so much compassion on me as to suffer me put him back into hell, thou wilt give me the utmost solacement and wilt do God a very great pleasure and service, so indeed thou be come into these parts to do as thou sayst."
    The girl answered in good faith, "Marry, father mine, since I have hell, be it whensoever it pleaseth thee;" whereupon quoth Rustico, "Daughter, blessed be thou; let us go then and put him back there, so he may after leave me in peace." So saying, he laid her on one of their little beds and taught her how she should do to imprison that accursed one of God. The girl, who had never yet put any devil in hell, for the first time felt some little pain; wherefore she said to Rustico, "Certes, father mine, this same devil must be an ill thing and an enemy in very deed of God, for that it irketh hell itself, let be otherwhat, when he is put back therein." "Daughter," answered Rustico, "it will not always happen thus;" and to the end that this should not happen, six times, or ever they stirred from the bed, they put him in hell again, insomuch that for the nonce they so took the conceit out of his head that he willingly abode at peace. But, it returning to him again and again the ensuing days and the obedient girl still lending herself to take it out of him, it befell that the sport began to please her and she said to Rustico, "I see now that those good people in Capsa spoke sooth, when they avouched that it was so sweet a thing to serve God; for, certes, I remember me not to have ever done aught that afforded me such pleasance and delight as putting the devil in hell; wherefore methinketh that whoso applieth himself unto aught other than God His service is a fool."
    Accordingly, she came ofttimes to Rustico and said to him, "Father mine, I came here to serve God and not to abide idle; let us go put the devil in hell." Which doing, she said whiles, "Rustico, I know not why the devil fleeth away from hell; for, an he abode there as willingly as hell receiveth him and holdeth him, he would never come forth thereform." The girl, then, on this wise often inviting Rustico and exhorting him to the service of God, so took the bombast out of his doublet that he felt cold what time another had sweated; wherefore he fell to telling her that the devil was not to be chastised not put into hell, save whenas he should lift up his head for pride; "and we," added he, "by God's grace, have so baffled him that he prayeth our Lord to suffer him abide in peace;" and on this wise he for awhile imposed silence on her. However, when she saw that he required her not of putting the devil into hell, she said to him one day, "Rustico, an thy devil be chastened and give thee no more annoy, my hell letteth me not be; wherefore thou wilt do well to aid me with thy devil in abating the raging of my hell, even as with my hell I have helped thee take the conceit out of thy devil."
    Rustico, who lived on roots and water, could ill avail to answer her calls and told her that it would need overmany devils to appease hell, but he would do what he might thereof. Accordingly he satisfied her betimes, but so seldom it was but casting a bean into the lion's mouth; whereat the girl, herseeming she served not God as diligently as she would fain have done, murmured somewhat. But, whilst this debate was toward between Rustico his devil and Alibech her hell, for overmuch desire on the one part and lack of power on the other, it befell that a fire broke out in Capsa and burnt Alibech's father in his own house, with as many children and other family as he had; by reason whereof she abode heir to all his good. Thereupon, a young man called Neerbale, who had spent all his substance in gallantry, hearing that she was alive, set out in search of her and finding her, before the court had laid hands upon her father's estate, as that of a man dying without heir, to Rustico's great satisfaction, but against her own will, brought her back to Capsa, where he took her to wife and succeeded, in her right, to that ample inheritance of her father.
    There, being asked by the woman at what she served God in the desert, she answered (Neerbale having not yet lain with her) that she served Him at putting the devil in hell and that Neerbale had done a grievous sin in that he had taken her from such service. The ladies asked, "How putteth one the devil in hell?" And the girl, what with words and what with gestures, expounded it to them; whereat they set up so great a laughing that they laugh yet and said, "Give yourself no concern, my child; nay, for that is done here also and Neerbale will serve our Lord full well with thee at this. Thereafter, telling it from one to another throughout the city, they brought it to a common saying there that the most acceptable service one could render to God was to put the devil in hell, which byword, having passed the sea hither, is yet current here. Wherefore do all you young ladies, who have need of God's grace, learn to put the devil in hell, for that this is highly acceptable to Him and pleasing to both parties and much good may grow and ensue thereof.

Previous Section Two                   Next Section Two

Crowley Classics

    This little tale was originally published in the "Juvenilia" section of Snowdrops from a Curate's Garden, Crowley's obscene miscellany, one hundred copies of which he had printed privately (most likely in Paris) in 1904, although they bear the ficticious appellation "1881 A.D., Cosmopoli."
    It is strange to consider that this skillful and funny but rather mean and disgusting piece of pornography may have been one of the first expressions traced by the hand which had just completed transcribing the Book of the Law from the dictation of Aiwass a few days before. H.M.S. Osiris on which this tale is set was the same ship which carried Aleister and Rose Crowley home from Egypt around the middle of April 1904 e.v. Martin Starr, who has traced their passage, records that a fellow passenger was Annie Besant, leader of the Theosophical Society, who seems to have spent most of that year travelling between her many lectures and meetings. Starr, presumably working from Crowley's diaries, records that Crowley even had some extended conversations with Besant, but did not mention the results of the working he had just completed in Cairo.

The Needs of the Navy

by Aleister Crowley

    The air of the room was quite sweet and heavy with the savour of forbidden kisses; a faint moist sense of sweat steamed up in the twilight, and there was a sound of breath that did not dare to breathe, of sighs choked by fear. The midshipman's head silently turned round and his tongue pushed languidly forward to touch the lips of the lieutenant. A sound in the next room; both trembled violently, sprang from the sofa where they had been lying and hastily arranged the disorder their passion had made necessary. The middy took his lover's hand, raised it to his lips, bit it hard with sudden mad desire and whispered, in a voice shuddering with unsatiated lust "Ah God! Ah God! I love you now!" He slipped through the door and left Andrew Clayton to sweet memories and disquieting thought of the future. For Monty Le W-- had never given him his love before. Monty was a dark, languid-eyed boy with jetty hair; there was about him the indefinable air that sexual perverts recognize so quickly, a closer union than masonry can boast. In fact, he had not been on board H.M.S. Osiris a week before the Captain had promoted him to a dignity sufficiently high to excite the envy of the boys who had till then held the proud distinction of favourite catamite. A furious battle between the jealous beauties ended in their growing so excited over the spilt blood and the violent physical pain that the spectators were scandalized by the sight of an impromptu orgie as infuriate as the fight had originally been. The boys were still fast friends, but Monty was first favourite with the Captain and tyrannized over him to the previously-unheard-of extent of demanding reciprocity en affaire d'amour. The Captain on his part only asked fidelity; and indeed Monty had grown to love him so dearly that the thought of an adultery would have been insupportable. One day, however, a sudden desire came upon him towards the most popular of the lieutenants, Andrew Clayton, a man of violent passions not usually associated with fair hair and rather timid grey eyes. Andrew saw the sly looks of the midshipman and one day went into his cabin and, stepping to his side without a word, gave him a fierce kiss, while his hand sought to awake desire in an even more direct manner. But the passing fancy of the boy had gone, and he rudely repulsed the advances of his would-be lover. Andrew, with great self-command, withdrew in silence. Next day, however, they were both called before the Captain, read a long lecture on the sin of paederasty and severely reprimanded. It was evident that Captain Spelton liked his forehead very well as it was, and meant to keep a sharp look-out. Monty in his innocence was terribly indignant and naturally became quite ready to cuckold the Captain if he could. At mess that evening he managed to whisper "you shall have me if you still -" the immediate result of which was considerably embarrassing to Andrew. But all the endeavours they made to meet and steal a kiss occasionally were always frustrated as if by accident, though they now knew it must be of set purpose. Andrew suggested at last that, to allay suspicion, he should choose another middy and pretend to make violent love to him. Monty's jealousy said no, and only after a long time was he persuaded to agree. "Katie" Ambrose, the boy selected for this vicarious duty, was a dirty little fellow of the most vicious type. His favourite fancy, in public, was to lie on his back and to endeavour to catch in his mouth, and swallow, his own emissions, and he was also constantly degrading his rank by licking the genitals, or the feet, of the dirtiest sailors and stokers on the ship. He was only glad from the social status it gave him when Andrew made overtures of love. Monty would have himself preferred this choice, arguing that Andrew would have himself preferred this choice, arguing that Andrew could never be really enamoured of so vicious a boy, but what he saw three weeks after undeceived him. On this wise.
    One night the Captain, being restless, suggested a tour of inspection, and the two lovers stole quietly out of their cabin. They came after a time to where Andrew and Ambrose were, and were lucky enough to catch the former in the very act of sacrificing at the most holy altar, while the boy, turned half round, was gently chewing and licking the armpit of the perspiring lieutenant. One finger of his free hand sought to penetrate the other's shrine, while the hand underneath him titillated his own genitals in unison with the motions of his lover. The act was consummated; gasping, heaving, breathless, they sink lower on the bed. Their tongues mingle lazily; the elder man withdraws slowly; a pleasant sound announces his exit. Hardly a moment and the boy gives his lover a signal. The latter turns over while Ambrose rises and sits over him while the sweet salt offering, spiced now by the god to whom it is offered, trickles daintily into the open mouth of the languorous man. Then the boy slips down into his lover's arms: they share the incense with mingled mouths until the flavour is appeased and they swallow it with the first blush of reawakening desire. "Katie" eagerly reverses his position to prepare for a new embrace; but Monty whispers to the Captain: "Darling, I can bear it no longer; come back!" They never slept at all that night; but I never heard either of them regret the fact. But Monty was terribly disgusted with Andrew, and when little Ambrose struck Monty (who had called him, with naive eloquence, "Suck-shit") the latter knocked him down and kicked him. The lieutenant, who was near, had to interfere, and the dark languorous boy was punished. This mean revenge (as he understood it) irritated Monty still more and he eventually refused to speak to Andrew at all.
    It was the night of a big dinner ashore and Monty Le W-- had gone up to a little sitting-room which was next [to the] billiard-room, to wait for the Captain. Unperceived Andrew had followed him and was now lurking behind the heavy curtain that hung over the door; he listened to the boys' muttered soliloquy, disturbed only by the noisier laughter and curses of the billiard- room. Spelton was long - damned long - coming; no doubt of that. And Monty's desires were getting less controllable every minute. At last he took down his trousers and began to play with himself, hoping to ease a little his discomfort. At this moment Andrew glided forward and whispered "If you speak we are both lost. Your dress . . ." The frightened boy made a movement of agony. He was terribly angry, and yet dared not speak or make the least sound. After the other affair he knew the Captain would never believe his story. The lusty lieutenant took out a weapon fiery and enormous, and began to seek admission. The boy, with all the force of the sphincter, resisted. A sharp tap or two on the coccyx, however, reminded him that he had a bold lover, who would stick at nothing, and he gave way. The whole length of his lover's yard was engulfed in one great push, and, accustomed as he was to the Captain's penis, he could hardly repress a cry of pain. The ravisher was far longer and thicker and cared a great deal less about any pain he might inflict. And he plunged like a mad horse! At last the welcome climax, and a perfect deluge of kisses bitten hard into his olive neck. And then the luxurious confession with which this story began.
    Left to himself, Clayton invented incidentally twenty-three quite new curses, called Le W-- a little bitch, kissed the mark of the little bitch's teeth on his hand, and generally conducted himself as an officer and a gentleman would do, provided he were also a devout Christian. He foresaw trouble. It came pretty quickly. Two days afterwards Clayton had to quit his lover's room in a great hurry, as heavy footsteps trod the passage. The Captain was in his dressing-gown and proved quite Arcadian beneath. He was in bed in a jiffy, and discovered heat and moisture to an extent unwarranted by the climate. "I thought you would never come, love," sighed the charming middy, with resourceful tact, "so I've been whiling away the time." "I'm here now," said his lover, and applied his lips to the dark altar of his desire. That was very moist too, and the Captain's inquisitive tongue soon penetrated its secrecies and became aware of a strong warm taste as of incense recently offered. "I envy you your amusement," he observed, with delicate irony, "you appear to have succeeded at last in following my advice to go and bugger yourself!" He said no more just then, but came round with a sharp knife two days later to both the lovers and said he thought their accomplishments, if unique, were unnatural. But the knife cut both knots at once; he told Lord Cartington at their tête-à-tête dinner the next day that there seemed to be no end to the variety of entrees which had as a basis - oysters.
    "Katie" Ambrose grew in wisdom and stature and in favour with god and man.

Previous Crowley Classics                   Next Crowley Classics

from the Grady Project:

(on giving the OD your GO,as written)

Down upon Pier Seventeen
Relief is few and far between
For those who pace the weathered front,
Or so it was one night when Runt,
The Squirrel, was there upon patrol
And wearing out more G.I. sole:
So when the O.D. came his way,
He stopped to pass the time of day.

-- Sgt. Grady L. McMurtry

Previous Grady Project                   Next Grady Project

Primary Sources

   Why there were so few:
   Oriflamme #2, The Revival of Magick is on its way to dues current members now. Some might wonder why so much goes into these issues and why they are so far apart. Wonder no more! Here's Crowley's reaction to an earlier series number put out by old Agape Lodge. It was only a few pages, a good start on a sort of newsletter. Shall we say that it was not well received by the Beast? Nowadays OTO has many publications out of local bodies, the Equinox, with Constitution, is back at intervals and the Magical Link brings news and information twice a year. No such luck in the decades after this shot at the first attempt to bring the Order to the members in the forties! With a wink to the editor of the new series, here's Crowley's reaction to the old that died aborning.

93 Jermyn Street
London, W.i.
4th May, 1943

Dear Jane,

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

    Thanks for your letter of March 15th. I am glad you liked the "Fun of the Fair" and will feel the same about the "City of God" when you get it. I cannot afford to send it by air.
    About "Oriflamme": I cannot see the point of this at all. It is the most amaturish production I have ever set eyes on. You give absolutely not one word of the information which people expect when they pick up a new magazine. Why don't you print the Constitutions of the O.T.O., perhaps in an abridged form? You have got to shew who you are, what you stand for and what you are doing. You don't even give an address, except a post office box. I cannot imagine any more stupid way of wasting money.
    Then, in case anybody ever should see the thing - which God forbid - you print those verses of Jack's which are not bad in themselves in their way, but you could hardly have found anything in the whole world more objectionable from our point of view. What could have been better calculated to revive the ancient stories about drug-traffic and so on! Incidentally, he not only misquotes the Law, but gives it that very interpretation of all others which we are most anxious not to give. When I saw them I said: "This cannot be plain idiocy, this must be malignant design'. Then when your letter came and said that you were editing the thing I saw that it must have been plain idiocy after all.
    In any case, drop it. Every penny is wanted for getting out unpublished stuff, or at least for advertising the Order and its principles and the work of the Order.
    There is no allusion to the celebration of the Gnostic Mass and if it is not being celebrated, there is no sense whatever in your having a house of the millionaire type which you apparently inhabit. You say nothing about the course of initiation; in other words, I simply cannot imagine what you are after. I can see nothing but distraction, dispersion and waste, and colossal stupidity beyond the power of the human imagination to conceive.
    You ask for help or criticism and this is it. It is much milder than I should like. Anyhow, for the future please print nothing of mine in any such rag-bag of imbecility.
    It is perfectly ridiculous to express a hope that I may sit under your vines and fig-trees when you do nothing whatever to help the work at Headquarters.
    We have now by dint of immense sacrifice got the Tarot book to the point where there will be nothing more to pay until it is ready for delivery and I suppose not very much then. We were obliged to use any cash available to do this because at any moment the government may require the metal used in the setting and the edition must therefore be printed off without a moment's delay.
    This leaves us on the brink of actual ruin and starvation, and you play the fool in Pasadena issuing ridiculous magazines and squabbling. It looks to me as if you were wasted out there - the whole crowd of you. You ought to join the Fighting French.
    I hope that Jack's visit to Germer will do something to straighten out your domestic troubles, but unless you can decide to settle down and work in perfect harmony under instructions from Headquarters, there will be no longer anything to do.
    Karl's suggestion that you should get into close contact with Schneider is admirable. He is simple and loyal. He is absolutely trustworthy and sensible. The greatest mistake you have made out there is in allowing Smith's jealousy to jocky him out of his rightful position.

    Love is the law, love under will.

P.S. In all this you will please understand that I do not in any way lack confidence in you, but I think you have allowed yourself to be deceived and misled. I am sending you enclosed with this a letter which you can hand to Helen when you have thoroughly digested it. It is in answer to hers of the Vernal Equinox. She attacks various people without mentioning who they are, but I fancy you must be one of them. Don't stand any nonsense from any upstarts and interlopers.

Previous Primary Sources                   Next Primary Sources

The Qabalah Series will resume next issue. No room this issue

From the Outbasket

    Here are the annual demographics of the O.T.O. from International Headquarters. These membership totals have been obtained from central accounts at the end of February 1998 e.v.: 3,129 all, 2,818 of which are initiates. The International O.T.O. financial statement for fiscal year 1997-1998 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

ADV 88
Associates 223
Minervals 898
Ist Degrees 727
IInd Degrees 451
IIIrd Degrees 331
IVth Degrees 239
Vth Degrees 118
Higher Degrees 54


    In the list which follows, all data is drawn from the International mailing list. Accordingly, the actual membership total here is less than the total count, owing to changing and lost addresses. A sizable number of members behind in dues were dropped from the active roles in February. That change, coming immediately before the annual report, has depressed the count in some countries

    Known OTO member addresses by regions at end February 1998 e.v.
(Associates and initiates both) Total: 2,859 in 38 countries.


Alabama 13 Mississippi 60
Arizona 60 Missouri 27
Arkansas 4 Nebraska 19
California 371 Nevada 40
(North Cal: 199) New Hampshire 5
(South Cal: 172) New Jersey 35
Colorado 21 New Mexico 14
Connecticut 6 New York 119
Delaware 2 North Carolina 13
Dist. of Columbia 1 Ohio 22
Florida 49 Oklahoma 35
Georgia 63 Oregon 119
Hawaii 3 Pennsylvania 68
Idaho 7 Rhode Island 4
Illinois 32 South Carolina 3
Indiana 47 South Dakota 2
Iowa 3 Tennessee 15
Kansas 26 Texas 159
Kentucky 5 Utah 29
Louisiana 23 Virginia 29
Maryland 28 Washington 73
Massachusetts 34 West Virginia 6
Michigan 29 Wisconsin 12
Minnesota 31




Alberta 27 Ontario 40
British Columbia 54 Quebec 14
Manitoba 1 Saskatchewan 2







Previous years:


Detail of February 1997 e.v. Demographics (last year)

    ---- International OTO Treasurer General (Bill Heidrick)

Previous Outbasket                   Next Outbasket

Events Calendar for April 1998 e.v.

4/1/98College of Hard NOX 8 PM
with Mordecai in the library
Thelema Ldg.
4/2/98Ritual Study Workshop with Cynthia
8:00 PM
Thelema Ldg.
4/5/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/8/98Feast of Liber AL ch.I 8:00PM
At Ancient Ways
4/9/98Feast of Liber AL ch.II 8:00PM
At Horus Temple
Thelema Ldg.
4/10/98Feast of Liber AL ch.III 7:00PM
At Oz House
4/12/98Lodge luncheon meeting 12:30Thelema Ldg.
4/12/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/16/98Ritual Study Workshop with Cynthia
8:00 PM
Thelema Ldg.
4/18/98OTO initiations, call to attendThelema Ldg.
4/19/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/20/98Section II reading group with
Caitlin: Boccaccio's "Decameron"
at Oz house, 8 PM
Thelema Ldg.
4/22/98Class series on Liber 777 begins
7:30 PM with Bill Heidrick at
5 Suffield Ave. in San Anselmo
Thelema Ldg.
4/23/98Ritual Study Workshop with Cynthia
8:00 PM
Thelema Ldg.
4/26/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
4/27/98Sirius Oasis meeting 8:00 PM
in Berkeley
Sirius Oasis
4/29/98College of Hard NOX 8 PM
with Mordecai in the library
Thelema 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.

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)

Home away from Home