Thelema Lodge Calendar for August 1998 e.v.

Thelema Lodge Calendar

for August 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

August 1998 e.v. at Thelema Lodge

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

Announcements from
Lodge Members and Officers

Unto what God?

Our nineteenth Bay Area cycle of Aleister Crowley's Rites of Eleusis is now underway, continuing through October. Most of the Rites will be held at Sirius Oasis in north Berkeley this year.
For the Rite of Jupiter the best advice is to wear purple and bring wine and fruit (and Maenads if you can find any). It will begin promptly at 8:00 on Thursday evening 6th August at Sirius. For advance information or to coordinate feast contributions call Eric ahead at (510) 428-0870. For contact on the evening of the rite, call Sirius Oasis at (510) 527-2855.
We'll be back in twelve nights for the Rite of Mars at Sirius on Tuesday evening 18th August, beginning at 8:00. It will be the traditional "red against black" in this one, so pick your favorite flavor of thug and come in colors accordingly.
The Rite of Sol is going to be a barbecue, and begins at 12:00 noon Sunday 30th August at Sirius Oasis. Bring roastable chunks of your favorite flesh to throw on the common grill, and picnic-table side-dishes to go with it. (Also remember a towel if you're at all likely to end up in the tub.)
Each evening's presentation is an episode of a larger overarching symbolic drama, presented in seven acts at twelve-day intervals. Next month we will continue with Venus on Friday 11th and Mercury (probably to be held at an undetermined alternate location) on Wednesday 23rd September. Crowley's cycle concluded with The Rite of Luna, which will be on Monday evening 5th October, but this year we will also be "grounding out" the whole production with an original Rite of Earth, to be held in the back yard at Oz House, beginning at 5:00 on Saturday afternoon 17th October.

Jove's Shadow over Lammastide

As our Lord and Father the Sun reaches the midpoint of Leo the lion we observe the height of the summertime this month. Sol goes 15° Leo at about 11:00 on the morning of Friday 7th August, a day which will also be marked with a lunar eclipse at sunset. Since it will be "the morning after" our Rite of Jupiter, and much of the celebration of the season may be already well begun, our formal Lammas observation will be fairly simple. Gather at Thelema Lodge a 7:00 for a local excursion to an outdoor circle and picnic dinner in enjoyment of high summer. Bring dishes wrapped to carry and contact Frater Majnun beforehand at (510) 601-9393.

Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica

Ritually as well as socially, our lodge finds its center in the weekly celebration of the gnostic mass of Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica, which is performed, beginning at nightfall, every Sunday. Open to all whose will it is to participate with the members and friends of the lodge in this pagan eucharist ritual, the mass is an opportunity for newcomers to meet the community here, and for visiting Thelemites to join with local members. All attending should arrive at Horus Temple by 8:00 on Sunday evening to await the Deacon's call for mass to begin. Those who have not attended before should contact the lodgemaster well ahead of time by telephone for directions and information. Call (510) 652-3171 in the evenings, leave a message if necessary, but keep calling back until someone is there to answer you.
Everyone who attends mass here does so as a participant in the magical operation of the gnosis, whether in the role of one of the "officers" or among the "people" in the ritual. At Thelema Lodge we have fervently maintained this realization: that all who are present at mass not only partake but are actively taking part in the working of the ritual. (The knowledge of this may be what keeps us above the kinds of restriction and suspicion which afflict the temples of what are described within the mass as "savage countries," where it is felt that the sacraments of life must be veiled and obscured.)
Once the community of celebration is established and thriving, formal qualifications for participation loose their meaning. As our experience of the mass deepens, a wider variety of approaches to understanding it become available, and the force and majesty of the ritual are internalized collectively. In this spirit, we encourage all who attend at Horus Temple to consider learning the principal roles in order to serve the lodge as officers in the mass. Talk with anyone you see in the temple and consider rehearsing the mass with a third (and perhaps more experienced) communicant who might be able to work with you. When everyone is ready, have a word with one of our gnostic bishops (for a blessing, if you like, and any technical tips you may need), then contact the lodgemaster for a date on the temple calendar. Our church does provide, on an optional basis, for ceremonies of baptism, confirmation, and ordination, and those who wish to pursue formal affiliation in this fashion (as card-carrying members of the mystic body) should consult with their favorite gnostic bishop.

Marin Seminar on Liber XV

A special seminar on the text of Aleister Crowley's Gnostic Mass is being offered this month in Marin County by Bill Heidrick on Wednesday evening 19th August at 7:30. We will be examining the familiar words of our liturgy on this occasion as a literary text as well as a ritual script, with attention to the patterns of language in Liber XV. Our discussion will focus on Liber XV as ceremonial literature, and explore some of the techniques which were used in the flow of the ritual. Please bring a copy of the Liber to the meeting. To attend, if you haven't been by lately, use e-mail to or call ahead of time at (415) 454-5176. Suggestions are invited for future class discussion topics.

Angelic Revival

The Vision and the Voice with Commentary and Other Papers (The Equinox, IV:2) is now available! For the first time, there is a serious edition of Liber 418 to study. The publication of Crowley's marginalia to the "Synopsis" of the Thirty Aethyrs, for instance, is a small gold mine to students of Angelic magick, as is the attribution of the Aethyrs to the Key Scale of Liber 777. Add to that the corrected Yetziratic attributions of the names of the Aethyrs, the Alphabet of Arrows, the Algerian diary of 1909, as well as countless other treasures, and the Enochian magician will gleefully toss his (well-intended but mangled) Regardie/Sangreal edition into the Abyss on his way to the nearest occult bookshop.
In addition to The Vision and the Voice, three of Crowley's other major workings are included here. The Bartzabel Working, originally published in Equinox I:9, is possibly the clearest example of a rite of evocation ever written, and is included, along with the previously unpublished record of its surprising and amusing results. The Ab-ul-Diz Working provides an account of the curious origins of Book 4. And The Paris Working offers up a view of the magical relationship between Crowley and Victor Neuburg, ranging from the sublime to the sordid.
In anticipation of the surge of interest in Enochian magick following the release of Equinox IV:2, Thelema Lodge will host a planning meeting for the formation of an Enochian ritual and study group, on Monday evening 24th August at 8:00. Among other projects, we will consider new ways of staging our annual Vision and the Voice Aethyr readings. All who are interested in learning Enochian and/or jamming in Enochian space are urged to attend.

Less Ping but it still N.O.X.

The purpose of the College of hard N.O.X. is quite unlike that of most other colleges. This college is meant only to promote self-education and self-comprehension. Thus the tests are inherent in your very participation, and the only degrees granted are those which you grant to yourself. No homework is assigned, no one can ever be teacher's pet, no one is sent to sit in the corner for talking out of turn, and no one flunks out except by their own free will. The August classes will be held at the lodge at eight o'clock on the Wednesday evenings of the 5th and the 26th. Though the absolute minimum tuition fee has been set at 2¢ (in order to afford more opportunity to those of modest circumstances), it should be noted that the lodge treasury already contains enough pennies.
The proposed topic of discussion for 5th August is: "religious experience" vs. The Religious Experience; how are they related, if at all? Visions, dreams, trances, altered states, are among those events, witnessed or remembered as describable collections of somatic impressions, which may be termed "religious experiences". The Religious Experience is a much tougher cookie to bake, and then it ends up eating you! The unfettered operation of unbiased reason leads eventually to the recognition that reason is entirely inadequate to answer most of the truly important questions of human life (though it is quite admirably suited to the satisfaction of material needs). The wordless experience which is not an experience, not an event (though the realization of it by an individual may appear as an event to other individuals), this soundless sound, as it has been described in that peculiarly forthright form of poetic contradiction which is native to all the greatest mystics across all boundaries of faith, nation, or era, this dualistic nothingness, is as pointless to talk about as to leave unsaid.
The proposed topic for the 26th of August is a follow-on from last month's heated exchanges over the ramifications of the operations of justice as implied by the set of foundation documents of the O.T.O. collected in Equinox III(10). We will this evening be discussion the following questions: Is a hierarchical structure imperative for Thelemic orders? Is there anything in the various Holy Books which might bear upon the issue? What would a nonhierarchical order of Thelemites look like? Please come and add your unique voice to the general hubbub.

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Finnegans Wake at the Frederick

In the name of Annah the Allmaziful, the Everliving, the Bringer of Plurabilities, haloed be her eve, her singtime sung, her rill be run, unhemmed as it is uneven!
There is more to Celtic magick than dread of snakes and mispronounced Gaelic mottoes. A small group of Thelema Lodge members have been meeting for the past few months to read aloud through one of the most complex and challenging texts ever produced, James Joyce's Finnegans Wake. The readings take place in Eric's apartment at the Frederick, usually on the third Sunday afternoon of the month at 4:18. Our next session will be on 16th August, and those interested in joining the project are welcome to call ahead at (510) 428-0870 for directions.

Further Adventures of the Paladins

Section Two continues its summer session with a second month devoted to the Italian epics of Orlando, on Monday evening 17th August at 8:00. The European tales of the Charlemagne cycle, in some ways preeminent among chivalric adventure collections, include dreamlike and allegorical episodes, alongside passages of old-time epic bluster and intricate lyrical wit. The impossibly exalted standards of prowess and loyalty, together with a sense of the ridiculous and the humane, can keep the reader alert, canto after canto. And these poems are long, too. It's instructive to recall that it was just this sort of reading - these very books, in fact - which drove Don Quixote off his rocker and out into the real world. Join Caitlin for an hour or two in the great forest with the Paladin knights in a last-ditch effort to save western civilization from the heathen hoards of the east - our venue is unconfirmed this month, but we're hoping for Oz.

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Thelema Lodge received the following report from our representative at the X- fest last month, where in parkland outside the town of Brushwood in upstate New York, members of the Church of the Sub-Genius assembled to meet with visiting saviors prophesied to arrive from Planet X at 7:00 on the morning of 5th July 1998 e.v.

Hell on Earth for Normals

With rumors of cyanide laced Kool-aid, mass suicide and complete alien conquest of earth, Xday promised to be eXciting.
Of course you all have probably been wondering, Is Subgenius a true religion? Despite the Kool-aid being purely symbolic and the pleasure saucers (or was that sausages?) never showing up, I would have to say yes it is. Oh sure, Normals might say it was all a big hoax - that J R Bob Dobbs never even took human form - that Connie never met Lingus. But I say: Praise the Messy Sex! I was privileged to meet church elders - yea even to be examined by church doctors - who prescribed strange drugs and atavistic naked hot tub and bonfire rituals for purification. I was initiated into the yeti mysteries of prairie squid fishing . . . At first I refused the sacrament saying that it takes me forever to recover and that it causes inappropriate bonding - the Reverend's mouth began to water - 'inappropriate bonding did you say? You don't want to feel left out do you?'
Half a ticket was enough to ride . . .
Through endless ranting there were Swedish Meatballs, SubGoths and Trannies for all - why there was even a hermaphrodite and a beautiful Puerto Rican chic who auctioned off her panties still red inside from blood wrestling.
Take Aleister Crowley, the Manson Family, Heaven's Gate, Jonestown, add some Necronomiconophilia, a touch of the Church of Satan (didja know Jayne Mansfield was a High Priestess before she was decapitated?) and of course the Branch Davidians of Waco Texas, give 'em a psychedelic potion, take 'em camping and you've got the Xfest. Too bad I met that cult deprogrammer two weeks early - cuz I'm definitely hooked!

-- KaliPele

Crowley Classics

Our item this month is the text of a leaflet which the London offices of The Equinox had printed in September 1910 e.v., just as the members of A A (which at that point had briefly manifested as a membership organization) were rehearsing for the original "public" performance of The Rites of Eleusis at Caxton Hall. The folded single sheet leaflet was doubtless disseminated during that autumn to various journalists, agents, and other contacts who could assist in getting the production noticed. We know that copies were also mailed to A A members -- at least those with whom Crowley was not otherwise in touch -- along with a circular letter dated 29th September 1910. (We quote here the text of this letter from the researches of Keith Richmond, who transcribes Frank Bennett's copy in his "Introduction" to the Mandrake Press edition of the Rites, published in 1990):

Care Frater,
I am enclosing you a pamphlet about the 'Rites of Eleusis' which are to be performed with the idea of interesting the general public, and so enabling the A A to find suitable persons for training.
As a Probationer of the A A you will have a complimentary ticket sent to you, and you are asked to make a point of attending, robed, and assisting the Great Officers in the performance of the Rites.
You are also asked to make the rites known among your friends, and induce them to take tickets. As you know the Equinox has been established by its founders at the cost of all they possess, and no profit is made by its sale, although authors and editorial staff give their work for nothing. It is therefore necessary from time to time to obtain fresh funds, and the present series of ceremonies is designed to provide such.
There will be on Tuesday next, at 11.30 p.m. a private performance of the Rites of Jupiter for Probationers only.

Crowley was acting all at once as author, impresario, producer, director, and principal player in the Rites. Earlier that same month he had run an advertisement in The Occult Review, giving the schedule of performances, along with a rearranged version of the note with which this leaflet concludes. Crowley also contributed to the same magazine an enthusiastic review of one of his own production's private "preview" performances, signed only with his initial "P." (for Perdurabo). There were accounts of the upcoming Rites in several London theatrical magazines, especially The Bystander, which gave Crowley space for at least three promotional articles (in the issues for 12th October and 16th & 23rd November 1910), featuring posed publicity photographs of the ritualists. Other photo plates appeared at the time in The Sketch, and What's On, as well as several daily newspapers.

[promotional leaflet for]

The Rites of Eleusis

by Aleister Crowley

A series of symbolical ceremonies is to be held at Caxton Hall, Westminster, to illustrate the magical methods followed by a mystical society which seeks for illumination by ecstasy. They begin on October 19th, and will be held every following Wednesday for seven successive weeks. They are to be called the Rites of Eleusis.
Nothing so impressive as these ceremonies has been conceived since the days of Ancient Greece. They seem to possess a compelling occult power which calls into play at once the higher emotions of those who are present. Clairvoyants see beautiful pictures of attendant spirits, and the atmosphere is vibrant with religious feeling. At the same time there is nothing to induce outbursts of hysteria, everything is artistic and graceful and impressed with poetic feeling.
The Rites of Eleusis were prepared by a body of occultists of high attainments. One of them is a well-known poet, a man who has travelled all over the world and is steeped in ancient and modern spiritual lore. The titles of the series are taken from the seven planets in the Zodiacal system, which are indicative of the days of the week. This has not been done of necessity or to limit the Rites to a special significance, but because it constitutes an external form and meaning which is familiar to every educated mind, and thus provides a simple and direct introduction to the underlying motive in each instance.
The following is a short analysis of the series. They may be taken as illustrating Humanity - its fate, both good and evil.
Man, unable to solve the Riddle of Existence, takes counsel of Saturn, extreme old age. Such answer as he can get is the one word "Despair."
Is there more home in the dignity and wisdom of Jupiter? No; for the noble senior lacks the vigour of Mars the Warrior. Counsel is in vain without determination to carry it out.
Mars, invoked, is indeed capable of victory, but he has already lost the controlled wisdom of age; in the moment of conquest he wastes the fruits of it, in the arms of luxury.
It is through this weakness that the perfected man, the Sun, is of dual nature, and his evil twin slays him in his glory. So the triumphant Lord of heaven, the beloved of Apollo and the Muses, is brought down into the dust, and who shall mourn him but his Mother Nature, Venus, the lady of love and sorrow? Well is it if she bears within her the Secret of Resurrection!
But even Venus owes all her charm to the swift messenger of the Gods, Mercury, the joyous and ambiguous boy, whose tricks first scandalize and then delight Olympus. But Mercury, too, is found wanting. Not in him alone is the secret cure for all the woe of the human race. Swift as ever he passes, and gives place to the youngest of the Gods, to the Virginal Moon.
Behold her, Madonna-like, throned and crowned, veiled, silent, awaiting the promise of the future. She is Isis and Mary, Istar and Bhavani, Artemis and Diana.
But Artemis is still barren of hope until the spirit of the Infinite All, great Pan, tears asunder the veil and displays the hope of humanity, the Crowned Child of the Future.

The Rites of Eleusis will be celebrated at Caxton Hall, Westminster, as follows:
The Rite of Saturn, 8 p.m. Wed., Oct. 19th.
The Rite of Jupiter, 9 p.m. Wed., Oct. 26th.
The Rite of Mars, 9 p.m. Wed., Nov. 2nd.
The Rite of Sol, 9 p.m. Wed., Nov. 9th.
The Rite of Venus, 9 p.m. Wed., Nov. 16th.
The Rite of Mercury, 9 p.m. Wed., Nov. 23rd.
The Rite of Luna, 9 p.m. Wed., Nov. 30th.

For the Rite of Saturn you are requested, if convenient, to wear black or very dark blue, for Jupiter violet, for Mars scarlet or russet brown, for Sol orange or white, for Venus green or sky-blue, for Mercury shot silk and mixed colours, for Luna white, silver or pale blue. It is not necessary to confine yourself to the colour mentioned, but it should form the keynote of the scheme.

The etiquette to be observed is that of the most solemn religious ceremonies. It should be particularly borne in mind that silence itself is used as a means of obtaining effects.
Tickets will not be sold separately; the rent for the series is Five Guineas. Tickets are, however, transferable. Doors will be opened at 8.30; they will be closed and locked at Nine o'clock precisely. The ceremonies occupy from 1 to 2 hours.
Only one hundred tickets will be issued; early application is therefore desirable.
Application for seats should be made to the Manager, The Equinox, 124, Victoria Street, London, S.W. Telephone: 3210 Victoria; or to any of the recognised agencies.

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from the Grady Project:


The NYA, with printing press
Has left us high and dry unless
We find, and soon, another way
To make the Mason paper pay.
Sez Whitie to the Chief of Staff
Now wouldn't it be quite a laugh
If we resort to mimeograph?

And that's the way of what's been done
To see the Mason paper run,
As regular as we can do
We get the paper out to you.
If only we controlled a mint
We'd spare no effort nor a stint
To see the Guard (this rag) remains in print.

Yours truly,                   
Sgt. Grady L. McMurtry

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Ritual Studies

A Thelemic Variant of the Middle Pillar Ritual

by Fr. Balaam II°

based on an idea by Fr. Balaam and Ebony Anpu;
original middle pillar exercise by Dr. Felkin,
published by Israel Regardie

The middle pillar is formed with the old god names replaced and the addition of the following gestures and visualizations. The initial point of light should descend down the spine and become each of these ideas in turn. The resultant "energy" from this descent (which can sometimes be felt as well as visualized) should then be circulated up and down the spine and throughout the aura in the usual manner.
Sahasara - (spirit)
           god name: Hadit
           sign: rending of the veil
           image: point of light descending from heaven to rest on top of head
Vishuddhi - (air)
           god name: Horus
           sign: Shu
           image: falcon soaring through the air at the level of the throat
Anahata - (fire)
           god name: Ra-Hoor-Khuit
           sign: Thoum
           image: a flaming ball of fire in one's heart
Svadisthana - (water)
           god name: Harpocrates
           sign: Auramoth
           image: a blue human embryo in an egg washed back and forth
           between an endless sea.
           It lies in the womb (women) or testes (men).
Muladhara - (earth)
           god name: Set-Ra
           sign: Set fighting
           image: Assume god-form of Set. As light begins to return up spine
           and circulates, assume god-form of Horus for the remainder of the exercise.
To conclude say: "Through the midnight thou are dropt, O my child, my conqueror, my sword-girt captain, O Hoor! and they shall find thee as a black gnarl'd glittering stone, and they shall worship thee." [liber LXV: V,6]
Comment: This exercise can be used to activate and equilibrate the subtle body. The middle pillar in its classic form uses only five centers in the body, as opposed to the usual seven. Therefore the five elements have been assigned to this sequence. The A A / G D grade signs corresponding to these elements are used at each point to further signify this.
All of the god names used are aspects of the god Horus. As the subtle body is built up, his essence is allowed to infuse it fully. Any concrete manifestation (such as human existence) can be seen as Horus according to one possible understanding of the theogony of Liber AL. Nuit and Hadit are the abstract polar ultimate extremes; the absolute universal and the absolute particular in logical terms. Prakriti and Purusha are analogous in the system of Patangali. Any concrete phenomenon falls "between" these two opposites. The necessary meditation that must occur between them is posited mythologically as the dialectic of (father = Hadit) + (mother = Nuit) = (son = Heru-Ra-Ha). Nuit and Hadit are in a certain sense unmanifest. The "space" between them is filled entirely with Horus, though we normally do not allow this to be uncovered to us within our practices.
To examine the role of each of the god names in turn:
"Hadit" is a corruption of Horus of Behedit. It was at Behedit that Horus took the form of the winged solar disc to destroy the enemies of his father Ra. In the Thelemic system, the God Ra is usually worked with in his form as Ra-Hoor-Khuit. This is Crowley's version of Ra-Horakty, or Ra-Horus of the Two horizons. Horus of Behedit is thus both the son of the sun, and an aspect of the sun itself, which can also be Horus. The particular form of Horus as the winged disc is seen by Thelemites as Hadit, the divine essence of every individual. Thus as Hadit is a guise of the sun, so every individual is also the sun. "Every man and every woman is a star" (AL I, 3). In this version of the middle pillar Hadit is assigned to the element of spirit. The Kether within the Malkuth of a particular individual. That aspect of our being in virtue of which we are the hidden god. But this is not some modification of the physical elements: fire, air, water, or earth. A human being is not essentially a thing. Rather she or he is the spirit throned within, the shin descended into YHVH. We symbolize this in the exercise with the spatial analogy of Hadit descending from its throne in the Sahasara to spend itself over the other chakras, assuming different guises at each station it passes through. One can see this process as akin to that described in the Lurianic system; the descent of the fertilizing Yod into the void, creating the universe.
At the Vishuddhi chakra is located the sephera Da'ath or Knowledge, the (false) crown of the Ruach. The Ruach is assigned to the element of air. This is the vau of Tetragramaton, the son. Here it is the son of Osiris, Horus the younger in his adult form. He wears the crown of upper and lower Egypt. His physical incarnation is the pharaoh, the living god-king. Thus he rules as the "son of Ra," a standard phrase used among the royal titles. But though he is the son of the sun, the pharaoh is also the sun itself in its guise as Ra-Horus (see above). The son is the reflection of the father. In a similar manner we might say that the rational faculty of the Ruach does not exist self sufficiently, (a position which collapses to a Cartesian solipsism) but rather only in virtue of those existential structures which presuppose it. In Thelema, the Egyptian cult of the god king has been democratized. Every individual is recognized as partaking of this "solar phallic" (to use A.C.'s pet term) divinity. As the king is triumphant over chaos in his upholding of Ma'at, Horus is set over the Da'ath center to show the power of this viceroy of the supernals over the Abyss.
Ra (probably pronounced "ray") is the Egyptian god of the sun in its most basic form. As a widespread sovereign deity other competing supreme gods are often combined with It; i.e. Amoun-Ra and Atum-Ra. As already noted, the most important combination for Thelemites working with the pantheon of Liber AL is Ra-Horus of the two horizons as Ra-Hoor-Khuit. The sun is the physical center of the solar system, thus the symbolic center of the outer universe, or macrocosm in its material aspect. It is a point of symbolic balance or equilibrium in the universe. In the same manner the Anahata chakra is the central and balancing point of the subtle body. It is assigned to Tiphareth which assumes an identical role on the tree of life. The sun is the planet assigned to Tiphareth, it is here then also assigned to the Anahata by the use of the name Ra-Hoor-Khuit. The key to the use of this name is that the magician identifies her essence with the sun. Just as the sun simultaneously concentrates the cosmos and radiates out to it, so does one's point of view, as Hadit. This may be experienced more clearly during Knowledge and Conversation. Tiphareth is associated with this attainment. Soror Merel is purported to have once said that until K & C Ra-Hoor-Khuit is the stand in for one's HGA. This makes the assignment of this name to the Tiphareth center in the Anahata appropriate. The elemental attribution of fire here is also clear.
Harpocrates is the name used with the Svadisthana. As the sun is visible Lord in the macrocosm and portrayed as such in Tiphareth, so the Lord in the microcosm is appropriately assigned to Yesod and the Svadisthana:
           "In the name of our Lord the Sun
           and of our Lord ____.
           I say unto thee, Arise!"
Yesod's feminine aspect is shown by the attribution of the moon and water. The generative vital force is focused here in its most concrete form prior to actual manifestation. This is represented by the fertilized and gestating child Harpocrates. Egyptian statues often represent him trampling on crocodiles; symbols of the chaotic aspect of the Nile. This traditional image also links him with the element of water which is often viewed as the generating matrix of creation in Hermeticism. In the Egyptian system this is Nu, the primeval waters of creation. This center should have a definite intuitive of "feminine" aspect, to balance other more "masculine" aspects of the Horus godform. Harpocrates could be seen as the inner feminine form of Horus as opposed to the outer masculine avatar of Ra-Hoor-Khuit. Their two poles would be reconciled in Heru-Ra-Ha.
Set-Ra, if lettered in Hebrew as AlephResh-TawHaySamekh adds to 666. Just as God and beast are combined in 666, so are earth and fire, Yod with He final, heaven with earth, Kether with Malkuth. Ra is the last name spoken, so that just as the energy from Sahasara/Kether reaches the bottom most point of manifestation with Set, it shoots itself back upwards. The idea of Ra allows this returning energy to equilibrate both with the uppermost point as the Yod/fire in Tetragramaton, but also specifically with the Anahata chakra, the balance point of the middle pillar when manifested. The bride Shekinah in Malkuth of Muladhara is this united with the groom Adonai in Tiphareth of Anahata. This particular conjunction is a symbol of knowledge and conversation with the H G A. The compound god Set-Ra also contains the idea of what the alchemists called the nigredo stage of the great work. The degradation of the material into a dark stage (Set), to purify it to the higher grade of being hidden within it (Ra). This dual god can be equated with Khephra, the beetle from Ra takes when passing through the Tuat or underworld as night before being reborn in the morning. Another important feature of Set-Ra is that it contains the idea that the highest and the lowest are really One.
Each god name used is a self contained glyph of the great work. When combined in this manner they form a useful exercise.
           One God, King in heaven
           One conscious Will, Master of my body
           One sun, Ruler of all space
           One unconscious Will, the Lord ____ within
           One Prince of Darkness; my true self apart
                                                   which is but;
           One God, King in heaven . . .

An Introduction to Qabalah

Part XLI - Tracing troubles on the Tree

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

Here are a few more examples of analysis on the Tree of Life diagram.

Imagine that you are sitting on the floor, with your foot twisted a bit and beginning to go numb. After a while you notice that there is a turn in your right ankle. Rather than taking care of this at the moment by shifting posture, think what is happening. A physical thing is a thing of Malkut. A pain in your right foot; why is there a pain in your right foot? Your attention has wandered from the things of your body. This is a flaw in Yesod. The Malkut energy is not particularly out of whack, except obviously from sitting wrong. The key place that the manifesting flaw can be found is in the way Yesod has directed awareness away from the things of the Earth. Perhaps you were talking with someone and that Hod focus distracted you. Enough said, adjust your position to be more comfortable. A person normally doesn't go through such conscious deliberation every time a foot goes to sleep, but there are many situations where a certain amount of examination and thought is needed to address a particular problem.

Suppose you want to go to a party. You are all ready to go, and then you forget about it. That's a more complicated matter. If you want to figure out why, you are going to have to look at a several different levels in your thoughts, several Sephirot on the Tree. Parties are often associated with Tipheret, since they are gatherings of people and such occasions form little worlds in themselves. The failure to go, when everything seems ready, likely comes from the link between Netzach and Tipheret. Hod got you ready. Yesod must have flubbed too or you would have not been distracted from going to the party. Look to Netzach to discover exactly why you didn't want to get there. This would be a case of a conflict of desire in Netzach distracting Yesod and preventing completion of a plan in progress. The opposing desire may be found in origin in Tipheret, even though it takes effect in Netzach. Typically this could be a matter of personal enmity toward someone expected at the party or some other potential social discord.

There are many inward approaches to analysis on the Tree. Not all have to do with external problems. This method is particularly useful for self improvement, seeking enlightenment, and other spiritual attainments. Whenever there is an irregularity or blockage of any kind, the Tree of Life diagram can be helpful in working through. By leaving the state of the complex and unknowable and going to an abstract, dispassionate study, many difficulties can be resolved. This is the idea of Tiquon, raising, perfecting or improving something. Tiquon can also mean improvement of a flaw in health, mental or otherwise. Look at the Tree of Life, and if you earnestly desire something, the form of the desire taken in your actions and the tenor of your thoughts will indicate the Sephira involved. People who try to attain Geburah too hard will typically exhibit anger, not realizing that they have manifested an aspect of that Sephira. Those striving to reach Netzach will commonly display mood swings, not realizing that such emotion is a sign of unstable contact with Netzach. In efforts to attain Netzach, a flowing easy state of changing emotion, feelings of miserable failure in the attempt are likely caused by the path of Peh butting against the Sephira. You are not supposed to intellectualize such a state. The path of Peh may insist on confronting that barrier to reason, going from Hod with logical ideas about Netzach instead of a prepared state of openness to feeling. Netzach responds by breaking up the logic with anguish, since the "throne" is not prepared. In this, the role of Hod is to make ready, not to analyze, along the path of Peh to Netzach.

Try this: Take a diagram of the Tree and meditate for a while on your feelings and immediate goals. Write key words and brief descriptions on the diagram, reflecting your thoughts. Begin with Malkut. Is there anything physically wrong with you? Is your weight what you would like it to be? Any allergies? Vision problems? Anything else in Malkut? Perhaps you would like to change your sleeping habits, get more exercise or do some other physical thing differently. All that's on the list, for number ten. Next, go up to Yesod. What are your dreams and feelings like? Is there something you want but don't have clearly in mind? Those are things to put down for number nine. Continue with Hod. Do you feel you understand what you read? If something breaks, can you fix it? Keep going up the Tree, making notes of weakness and strengths. It helps, with caution, to make comparison with other people in these assessments. If you seem to be able to think a little faster and clearer than people around you, you have a mind that is more rational than people around you. If it takes you a little longer to accomplish things, mark that down. If you seem average in some particular, note that too. If you begin to find that other people around you are in some way negative or bad, you may have a problem with Geburah. Take such notes for each of the Sephira from 4 through 10. Don't worry about Keter, Chokmah and Binah just now; we'll look at those in a little bit. Netzach will look at endurance and emotions. Tipheret is for identity and knowing what you are doing. Chesed is the place for notions like gratitude, kindness and higher emotions generally. Get down into details, little uncertainties. When you are finally done, you may be a tad miserable; but may also have enough to start seeing not only problems but solutions. Cross check between the lists on the different Sephirot to see if any are obviously interrelated. Look for bias coming from one and influencing others. Perhaps a problem in sleep can be addressed, leading to clearer thinking and better follow through on tasks. Perhaps an emotional fixation is disrupting sleep. These all interrelate, and diagraming them on the Tree can lead to solutions.

Previous Introduction to Qabalah -- Part XL                   Next: Working down from the Top.

Primary Sources

K.G.'s Side:
Last issue we provided a somewhat private window into the life of Karl Germer, the divorce of his first wife. That was her side, and this is his. Again, aside from some small comfort and a few lessons for the troubled, the main value if this is history. Here are some details of the life of a former OHO of OTO, a few dates and some notes of place.


KARL J. GERMER, of full age, being duly sworn according to law, upon his oath deposes and says:
1. I am one of the grantees in a deed from Jacob Rich, et al., dated December 19, 1948, and recorded in the Hunterdon Country Clerk's Office in Book 476 of Deeds, page 48, the other grantee in said deed being my wife, Sascha E. Andre Germer, and in said deed the gratees are referred to as husband and wife.
2. Deponent married one Maria Ertl, in Germany, in April of 1921, the said Maria Ertl Germer traveling with deponent in his business, and when we resided at New York she continued to have many affairs with other men, and on the return from a trip to Chicago, by deponent, in the year 1926, deponent ascertained that the said Maria Ertl Germer was having affairs with other men, and confronted her with this information, so that she then left deponent, and was not heard from for many years. During the year 1929 deponent secured a Mexican divorce from Maria Ertl Germer, by proxy. The defendant, Maria Ertl Germer, did not, apparently enter an appearance, since, after inquiry she could not be found. During the year 1935 deponent was arrested and placed in a concentration camp, in Germany, during the Hitler regime, and at said time was confronted by the Gestapo, who had a written statement in the handwriting of Maria Ertl Germer, which stated that she had obtained a divorce in Germany from your deponent, and had married a lawyer, and that she was living in Gera, which is in the Eastern Zone of Germany. The statement signed by Maria Ertl Germer, in addition to the statement of her divorce and re-marriage, contained many damaging remarks about the private lives of deponent and said Maria Ertl Germer, including their friends, and particularly their life at Tunis, all of which was apparently done to effect deponent's confinement in a concentration camp. When deponent was confronted by the Gestapo with the illicit information contained in the letter deponent could not believe how they found such information, and stated that their information, that is oral information, was all a fake, and it was then that the Gestopo brought to deponent the statement signed by his wife, Maria Ertl Germer, which was written in her own handwriting, and which he clearly recognized. After 1935, deponent had a discussion with some friends, whose name or names he cannot recall, who knew Maria Ertl Germer, and was advised by them that she had children by her marriage with this wealthy lawyer.
3. During the year 1929 deponent married one Cora Eaton, who died in July of 1942, who is interred in a cemetery at Ellenville, New York.
4. Deponent then married Sasha E. Andre Germer during the month of September, 1942, and has been living with her ever since.
Deponent makes this affidavit to clarify his marital status for an affidavit to be had in a closing with Jack J. Burke and Jean B. Burke, on the sale of premises to them.

Subscribed and sworn to
before me this Ninth
day of December, 1955.

                                                   Karl J. Germer

Frances E. Lattanzi
Notary Public of New Jersey.

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From the Outbasket

Here are some edited selections from recent email discussion:

S. G. raised a number of questions about Qabalah:

Re: The Golden Dawn Tree of Life based on the Sepher Yetzirah:

Somewhat, it is. Actually the Tree of Life used by the G D comes from Kircher's Oedipus Aegyptiacus, a mid 17th century book. Before that, for a few centuries, it was known in different forms in the Spanish Jewish communities. It is not clear that there is any relationship between the Tree of Life and the Sepher Yetzirah directly, but there is evidence that there is. The correspondences used for the paths on the G D Tree are taken from the SY via Kircher. The Sephirot in the SY are only slightly similar to the Sephirot in the Tree of Life diagram - mainly from lack of many details in the SY that are found in the much later Tree.

Re: The Garden as Earth or the Assiah World:

In Hebrew, Garden in this sense is rendered Eden, Gan Eden or Pardis. Assiah is the Hebrew word for "this dirt" or "thus common physical place" - "earth", if the physical ground beneath our feet is included. It is often generalized to include mystical, elemental earth and through an error made by the early crusaders through ignorance of local dialects, it has become the name for Asia as a large land mass in geography. The crusaders apparently asked a wise-ass peasant where they were, after getting off the boat. The peasant said land or the mainland, not an island, as Assiah. So goes the theory of word origins for Asia.
In Jewish tradition, the eviction from the Garden is usually considered the passage from Briah to Yetzirah. Assiah is where we ended up after wandering further from the gate. Gan Eden is a term for Chokmah. Eden, simply, is a term for Binah. Pardis, which is one with the English word Paradise, is often treated as an acronym or notariqon for the four Qabalistic words, describing the four worlds as points of view (modes of thought) and the ways of interpreting the written or spoken word.

Re: Da'at:

In the older traditions, Da'at is considered the point of hesitation where the fall actually started. Going back up, it is the point where the rise or climb fails - often taken as trying to attain by collection of information or knowledge rather than higher mystical insight.

Re: Loosing the Holy Guardian Angel in the passage of the Abyss:

The HGA is the artifact of a below the Abyss mind personifying the worlds across the Abyss as a voice and form. You have to get past that to get up there. The HGA is one of the last illusions to conquer in passing beyond Da'at.

C.G. asked about Hebrew letter correspondences to parts of the physical body and other things.

Those correspondences first appear in the Sepher Yetzirah, some of them possibly of 3rd century origin. The planetary attributions are different in different versions of the manuscripts, but the Zodiacal and elemental attributions are consistent across the different MSS. The associations to body parts are more consistent in the different manuscripts than those to the planets, but some variation is also present. Key word associations vary significantly in the manuscripts. Double letters all have opposite pairs of key words attributed. The several systems are apparently a relic of a pre- Sepher Yetzirah system, not perfectly understood. There are parallel systems, not the same, in the Zohar for the body associations.

-- TSG (Bill Heidrick)

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Events Calendar for August 1998 e.v.

8/2/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
8/5/98College of Hard NOX 8 PM
with Mordecai in the library
Thelema Ldg.
8/6/98The Rite of Jupiter 8PM at SiriusSirius Oasis
8/7/98Lammas, meet at 7PM
8/9/98Lodge luncheon meeting 12:30Thelema Ldg.
8/9/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
8/13/98Ritual Study Workshop with Cynthia
8:00 PM
Thelema Ldg.
8/16/98"Finnegans Wake reading 4:18 PM
8/16/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
8/17/98Section II reading group with
Caitlin: Ariosto's "Orlando Furioso"
at Oz house, 8 PM
Thelema Ldg.
8/18/98The Rite of Mars 8PM at SiriusSirius Oasis
8/19/98Seminar on Liber XV with Bill
Heidrick at 5 Suffield Ave in
San Anselmo, 7:30PM
Thelema Ldg.
8/20/98Ritual Study Workshop with Cynthia
8:00 PM
Thelema Ldg.
8/23/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
8/24/98Enochian Ritual Planning meeting 8PMThelema Ldg.
8/26/98College of Hard NOX 8 PM
with Mordecai in the library
Thelema Ldg.
8/30/98The Rite of Sol 8PM at SiriusSirius Oasis
8/30/98Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus TempleThelema Ldg.
8/30/98Sirius Oasis meeting 8:00 PM
in Berkeley
Sirius 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.

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