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OTO and L. Ron Hubbard/Jack Parsons

To: alt.magick
From: (Craig Berry)
Subject: Re: OTO and L. Ron Hubbard/Jack Parsons (9409.parsons.cb)
Date: 499409xx

Quoting: | Bruce Van Horn ( 

|Can anyone confirm this rumour that I've heard that L. Ron Hubbard assisted
|a man called Jack Parsons in an OTO group in Southern California?  I've
|heard that Hubbard made off w/ alot of money and Parsons (a rocket scientist
|or something) blew himself up.  

Jack Parsons will be the central character in the first volume of my history
of Southern California OTO, tentatively titled "It Doesn't Take a Rocket
Scientist..." :)  A common joke here at Baphomet Lodge in L.A. runs:

  Q:  How many craters does Jack Parsons have named after him?
  A:  Two -- one on the Moon, one in Pasadena.

Seriously, Jack Parsons was in fact a rocket fuel chemist, affiliated with
Cal Tech and the nascent Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).  He is honored
for his contributions to the US space program by having a small lunar
crater named after him.  He was also a central member of the old Southern
California Agape' Lodge (not to be confused with the modern Agape' Grand
Lodge), with Wilfred Smith as Master.  The earliest regular performances
of the Gnostic Mass occurred at Agape' Lodge.

Parsons was interested in bringing together the Wiccan and Thelemic
currents, and in directly confronting the dominant Christian worldview
and institutions.  He identified himself at times as Belarion the Antichrist,
and wrote a manifesto under this name which still makes stirring reading.
Parsons is perhaps best known for his "Liber 49", or "Book of Babalon",
a "received" work (similar to Crowley's Class A material) which identifies
itself as a fourth chapter of Liber AL, the Book of the Law.  In 49, Parsons
was instructed to perform specific Enochian workings to invoke a physical
manifestation of Babalon; as near as can be made out from his diaries, he
seriously and unaccountably misunderstood these instructions, and performed
the wrong ritual.  His fortunes declined from then until his death.

L. Ron Hubbard was a latecoming member of the Agape' Lodge community, 
although it appears that he was never formally initiated into OTO.  
Accounts vary widely, but it seems that Hubbard did in fact depart under 
strained circumstances with Parsons' (ex-)girlfriend and a considerable
sum of cash.  Later Hubbard claimed he had been sent into Agape' Lodge
to investigate Parsons on behalf of US Navy Intelligence, who wondered
what a critical cold-war scientist was doing with his spare time.

Parsons died in a mercury fulminate explosion in his home laboratory.  Rumors
persist that this was murder rather than an accident, the most common theory
being that the US Government considered Parsons insane and were afraid of the
security risk he posed.

The OTO issued a collection of Parsons' essays, "Freedom Is A Two-Edged 
Sword", a few years ago.  Many of his diaries and Magickal writings are 
available from various online sources.

Let me know if you would like any additional information.

Craig Berry                    "Any idiot can have the facts.  Having   opinions is an art." -Charles McCabe

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