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Thelema Lodge Calendar/Newsletter

May 1999 e.v. 

Subject: Thelema Lodge Calendar/Newsletter

Mailed free within 100 miles of San Francisco California

Printed edition otherwise: $12 per year North America, $12 per year surface

overseas, $24 per year air mail overseas.

Copyright (c) O.T.O. and the Individual Authors, 1999 e.v.

  Limited license is hereby granted to reproduce this file without fee, with

this message intact.  This license expires May 2000 e.v. unless renewed

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  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

Internet:     (Submissions and circulation only)

America on Line: B Heidrick         "         "       "        "

Compuserve: 72105,1351              "         "       "        "

Calendar events in the San Francisco Bay Area for May 1999 e.v., in

brief.  Always call the contact phone number before attending.  Some are

limited in size, change location and may be subject to other adjustments.

When you call, you don't get lost or disappointed.  Initiations are private.

Donations at all OTO events are welcome.


The viewpoints and opinions expressed herein are the responsibility of the

contributing authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of OTO or its



5/2/99    Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus Temple     (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

5/5/99    Beltaine, picnic at Life Oak Park    (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

          in north Berkeley 6 PM

5/9/99    Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus Temple     (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

5/12/99   College of Hard NOX 8 PM             (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

          with Mordecai in the library

5/13/99   Ouranos Ritual Workshop 8PM          (510) 601-9393    Thelema Ldg.

5/16/99   Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus Temple     (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

5/17/99   Section II reading group with        (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

          Caitlin: the literature of

          Dystopia 8 PM at Oz House

5/19/99   Class on Book 4, Part I with Bill    (415) 454-5176    Thelema Ldg.

          7:30 PM in San Anselmo

5/23/99   Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus Temple     (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

5/26/99   College of Hard NOX 8 PM             (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.

          with Mordecai in the library

5/27/99   Ouranos Ritual Workshop 8PM          (510) 601-9393    Thelema Ldg.

5/29/99   Enoghian Rite of Saturn 8PM          (510) 527-2855    Sirius Oasis

5/30/99   Sirius Oasis Tea, 4:18 PM            (510) 527-2855    Sirius Oasis

5/30/99   Gnostic Mass 8:00PM Horus Temple     (510) 652-3171    Thelema Ldg.


Announcements from

Lodge Members and Officers

                             The Lodge of Thelema

   Members of Thelema Lodge invite participation in a variety of classes,

seminars, reading groups, and ritual circles, many of which are described in

these pages.  Whether as aspirants or experts, those who coordinate and

present these offerings are undertaking to share their studies, their

interests, and their magical pursuits with us all.  For such an enterprise to

succeed, we need to support each other, taking part and working together to

further the projects of others, and directing our own proposals to appeal to

each other as participants.  By putting a bit of advance thought or review

into a subject, by organizing a few ideas or examining established opinions,

participants can do a great deal to add value to the discussion in which they

will be taking part.  Except for O.T.O. initiation events and occasional study

sessions directly connected with the degree rituals, nearly all our lodge

activities are open to friends and guests as well as to initiates.

   Celebration of the gnostic mass of Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica is conducted

every Sunday evening in Horus Temple at Thelema Lodge, beginning shortly after

nightfall.  When visiting the lodge for the first time, this is generally the

best occasion for meeting the members and friends who constitute our ritual

community.  Newcomers should call well ahead to speak with the lodgemaster for

directions to the temple.  All who wish to attend are requested to gather by

8:00 in the lodge library in order to be ready when summoned in by the Deacon

for the mass to begin.  Our mass is a communion ritual, where all present

partake of the consecrated eucharist at the ceremony's culmination.  In our

temple practice -- the oldest continuing ecclesiastical tradition in the

Order, as established by E.G.C. Patriarch Hymenaeus Alpha early in the revival

of O.T.O. -- each of the people in attendance accepts communion directly from

the hands of the mass officers at the altar.  Communion elements consist of a

tiny cinnamon cookie baked especially by the Priestess and known as a "cake of

light," along with a goblet of wine (or a nonalcoholic substitute for those

requesting it of the Deacon beforehand).  The lodgemaster keeps the temple

schedule, and members of the lodge (along with occasional guests) take turns

serving their fellows as officers in the mass.  Speak with one of our gnostic

bishops on Sunday night for advice in learning the roles and putting a mass

team together.

                             Beltane in the Park

   "The most considerable of the Drudical festivals is that of Beltane,"

according to Sir Walter Scott's survey of Celtic magical traditions.  Often

subsumed into the calendrical observation of May Day, Beltane was an occasion

for ritual fires and sacrifice at the mid-point of the spring, when the sun

achieves fifteen degrees of Taurus.  It happens this year on Wednesday

afternoon 5th May at about 5:00.  We will be gathering early that evening for

a barbecue picnic at Live Oak Park in north Berkeley, just beyond the north

end of Shattuck Avenue, to observe the holiday with feasting and fun.  Bring

meat for the grill, and salads to share, and whatever you will want to drink.

The crew at nearby Cheth House has offered to lead us in a circle dance

beneath the great oak trees, with songs for the season and a wreath for every

pole.  Arrive around 6:00 to get the meal going, with festivities continuing

until dark.  For more information call Cheth House ahead of time at (510) 525-


                        Lords of the Groves of Eleusis

   The twentieth northern California cycle of Aleister Crowley's Rites of

Eleusis (Liber DCCCL) will be presented beginning at the end of this month and

continuing through June.  This year we will be performing the Rites according

to the old "Nuit-Urania" system, with the entire cycle offered over the course

of a single lunar month, from full moon at Saturn to full moon at Luna, at

intervals of five days.  This plan represents a considerable acceleration from

the system of twelve-day intervals (over two and a half months) which we have

been using for the past few years.  We will open with the Rite of Saturn on

Saturday 29th May, and continue with the Rite of Jupiter on the following

Thursday (3rd June), with Mars the following Tuesday (8th June), and so on in

descending order through the planetary spheres all the way down to the Rite of

Luna on Monday 28th June.  At the conclusion of Crowley's original cycle, Oz

House will present an original Rite of Earth on Saturday 3rd July to ground

out the entire project.  As the newsletter goes to press, we are hoping to

hold most of the Rites at Sirius Oasis in Berkeley, but this location is not

yet confirmed for all dates.  Keep in contact with the lodge as the Rites

approach in order to hear from this year's god-forms about their developing

plans for the performances.  Many of the Rites will conclude with feasting, to

which all who attend are invited to bring contributions of food and drink.

The June schedule will be especially busy for all involved, so the better we

can coordinate these ritual celebrations together the more each of the Rites

will contribute to a successful cycle without stressing the participants

beyond their optimum level of enthusiasm.  That way we can each take many

parts without completely forgetting where we are in the play.  "Thus shall we

give back its youth to the world, for like tongues of triple flame we shall

brood upon the Great Deep -- Hail unto the Lords of the Groves of Eleusis!"

                         The Whole Path Plain to All

   A seminar will be offered for the lodge by Bill Heidrick in Marin County

this month on Aleister Crowley's instructions in meditation, as contained in

the first part of "Book Four."  Meeting in San Anselmo at 7:30 on Wednesday

evening 19th May, participants will receive an overview and a close reading of

selected passages from this classic work, which is often recommended as one of

the best introductions to any study of Thelemic magick and philosophy.  There

is no need to phone ahead for those who already know the way, but for

directions (or further information) make contact well ahead of time with Bill

by e-mail to .

   When Soror Virakam (Mary d'Este Sturges) had finished her work as Crowley's

co-author and secretary in the preparation of "Book Four, Part One" (which she

transcribed from his dictation during a shared residence in Naples), she

described him as "the most honest of the great religious teachers."  Their

intention for the book had been merely to record "disjointed fragments of his

casual conversation" because Crowley's formal literary style seemed "too

concentrated, too abstruse, too occult, for ordinary minds to apprehend."  The

result was a "few useful 'tips'" offered to "an independent and self-reliant

body of students" who would not be content to "believe" their instructor, but

would prefer to "follow out their own methods of research."  It seemed obvious

that those guides "who have wished men to believe in them were absurd," since

the process of persuasion and authority "is contrary to, and destructive of,

all real religious experience."

   What they produced, in the first part of Crowley's great manual of magick

entitled "Book Four" or Liber ABA, was a simple introduction to the practice

of meditation and yoga.  Since magick is based upon the work of the individual

will, using oneself as the basic tool for accomplishing any object, the

training for this work must be founded in exercises which will enable the

magician to rely with confidence upon the physical body.  Only when a degree

of calm and control has been achieved at the corporal level will it be

efficient to turn one's attention inward to the mind itself, in meditation,

and then at last to the artificial and symbolic tools or "weapons" of magick.

These are the matters which are outlined in the second part of "Book Four."

   Crowley had begun a kind of informal "yoga" training in 1901, using

concentration techniques learned from his mountaineering partner Oscar

Eckenstein in Mexico while they planned their K-2 expedition.  While staying

in Ceylon with Allan Bennett a few months later and still in training for the

Himalayan climb, he began taking instruction from P. Ramathan, the Solicitor-

General of the colonial government there, who taught yoga as Shri Parananda.

At almost the same time another occultist, the Austrian industrialist and

freemason Dr. Carl Kellner, was undertaking his own pioneering investigation

of this same discipline, and was putting together the O.T.O. among a small

group of advanced freemasons by combining yoga and other Oriental traditions

with Western esoteric practices.  When in 1912 Crowley became the British head

of the O.T.O. and published "Book Four, Part One," he was contributing his own

studies to this same effort, which today we are continuing together still.

                             President N.O.X. In

   Thelema Lodge's College of Hard N.O.X. offers twice-monthly training

sessions in the manly art of politeness and the womanly science of

disputation.  The College schedule has been slightly altered this month in

observation of the holiday of Beltane, and May's sessions will be held at 8

o'clock on the evenings of the 12th and 26th.  Though late-comers are welcome,

please try to arrive promptly; otherwise you may end up repeating something

that's already been savagely ridiculed into oblivion (and you wouldn't want

that to happen).

   The topic of discussion for May 12th is: What is the mandate of leadership

in a Thelemic world?  And how can positions of leadership in Thelemic

organizations be defined in a way that is consonant with "Do what "thou"

wilt"?  There is a sameness to organizational politics that seems to transcend

specific customs and ideologies.  We've all known a leader of the openly

megalomaniacal type.  She (or he) is confident of her own infallibility, quick

to judge others and eager to condemn them, jealous of attention and

unremittingly hostile to anyone who can see through her empty vanity.  And yet

there is a certain admirable honesty to her as well; she usually manages to

alienate any of her creditable followers before too long.  Far more dangerous

is the leader whose outer presentation is relatively reasonable and efficient

while in his heart he harbors a vindictive viper's venom.  He talks behind

people's backs, and uses his opportunities as an "adviser" to stir up enmity

and strife between others, all the time appearing to have only "the best

interests of the group" at heart, while on the inside he is laughing at

everyone and their gullibility.  It is the danger of exposure which is this

sort of leader's Achilles' heel.  Whenever his lies becomes apparent they lose

their power to sting, and his fall from power over his followers cannot be far

behind.  Which brings us to a collateral question that will surely be

discussed at this session as well: "How can a Thelemite be a follower?"

   On May 26th we will entertain a topic closely related to the previous one,

"Do Daoist concepts of leadership hold any specific lessons for Thelemites,

and if so, what are they?"  The primary evidence to begin this argument with

consists of two quotations:

   "Bind nothing!  Let there be no difference made among you between any one

thing & any other thing; for thereby there cometh hurt.  But whoso availeth in

this, let him be the chief of all!"

         -- Liber Legis I:22-23.

   "Thus is the Superior Man: he does not act, thus he spoils nothing; he does

not keep, thus he loses nothing; he desires desirelessness; he learns non-

learning.  Thereby he furthers the natural course of things and does not dare

to act."

         -- Dao Deh Jing, chap. 64.

                          Ouranos Ritual Collective

   The Ouranos Collective is an experimental workshop group hosted by Thelema

Lodge twice monthly, comprised of magical practitioners from various Thelemic

traditions who share their techniques and enthusiasms by performing ritual

together on a regular basis.  Beginning this month, the Collective will make a

slight alteration in its meeting schedule, switching to two alternating

Thursday evenings (usually the second and fourth).  To join the group, contact

Cynthia for information, and arrive by 8:00 on the evenings of 13th and 27th

May.  The Ouranos Collective is currently embarked upon an eight-month voyage

through a multi-colored system of magick as outlined by Peter Carroll, and

spring green is the flavor for this month in the rainbow ritual scheme.  The

May workings will thus be directed toward the magick of affection, ardor, and

agape.  The Ouranos beauty formula of "integritas, consonantia, claritas"

(honesty, cooperation, and enlightenment) will be put to the test in the

emerald pastures of Taurus with rituals designed to invoke a few of the many

and various aspects of Venus.

                       Frater Superior is Watching You

   The literature of "dystopia" is one of the characteristic strains of

twentieth century culture, and the Section Two reading group will meet at Oz

House for a discussion of this tradition at 8:00 on Monday evening 17th May.

Social criticism has always been a basic element in speculation about patterns

for the "ideal commonwealth," and long before Thomas More coined the name for

the utopian genre there had been a strong tradition of satire in writings of

this type.  At the end of the nineteenth century, however, when ideas of

planned and perfected communities again took hold of the popular imagination,

they began to assume some sinister new aspects.  In our second session on the

permutations of utopia we will examine this reaction, as the idea of living

according to an efficient formulation of the common good became not a fanciful

adventure in civic planning but a claustrophobic nightmare of oppressive

control.  Bring your favorite examples of fictional societies gone wrong (of

which the literature of our own century provides countless examples) and join

Caitlin for an expedition through the rubble of the rational city.  We will be

sharing some of the most memorable passages from science fiction and from

literary portrayals of totalitarianism, and then generalizing about the role

of the storyteller in warning against social disaster while there might still

be time to alter the course of our "progress."

   The dystopian tradition seems to begin in the very midst of its earliest

examples, with stories that open in the idealist vein of the traditional

utopia, but then become more involved with the threats of this concept than

with its promises.  One of the first is Bulwer Lytton's "The Coming Race"

(1871), where a fantastic species of superior beings living in the hollow

earth seems at first to appeal quite strongly to the visiting storyteller, who

even falls in love with one of them.  As he gets to know them better, however,

the cold rationalism and the advanced scientific mentality of the atomic-

powered "Vril-ya" become more and more threatening, until the danger assumes

evolutionary proportions and we are left wondering whether they might beat out

mankind in a Darwinian competition for world domination.  Crowley appropriated

some of the ideas from this work in his own strange contribution to the

utopian genre, "The Lost Continent, or, Atlantis" (Liber LI).  Likewise in the

writings of H. G. Wells, who was the first widely influential author in

establishing the dystopian tradition, we often see the glittering dream of

future progress in all its clean, automated appeal, only to find the

storyteller becoming disillusioned and paranoid as the tale advances.  "The

Time Machine" (1895), "When the Sleeper Wakes" (1899), and "A Modern Utopia"

(1905) are only the best examples among more than a dozen related works by


   A story by E. M. Forster entitled "The Machine Stops" (1909) captures the

spirit of rebellion against a future world-state which provides complete care

in isolated cells for all mankind, leading to a technological apocalypse more

urgent and prophetic than even the most pervasive tales of "scientism" by

Wells.  Forster's novella ranks with the greatest of the early classics of

the science fiction genre, which is perhaps the archetypal literary mode of

the twentieth century, and it may also be the first unambiguously "dystopic"

literary vision of mankind's destiny.  The earliest great classic of

totalitarian dystopia is the Russian novel "We," by Yevgeny Zamiatin, written

in about 1920 under extreme Stalinist repression and published only abroad.

Readers will recognize in "We" many plot elements of George Orwell's "Nineteen

Eighty-Four" (1949), which is in some ways an English re-telling of Zamiatin's

story.  Perhaps the best known scientific dystopia is Aldous Huxley's "Brave

New World" (1932), where the forces of technology and conditioning contend

against irrepressible primitive vitalism in a rigidly hierarchical future.  We

will be comparing Huxley's stance in this work with his revisions of the

concept of utopia in the later novels "Ape and Essence" (1949) and "Island"

(1962).  From the 1950s onwards, the dystopian concept appears so frequently

in science fiction that no list could comprehend the tradition.  Dystopia

expresses our unwillingness to be trapped within our own achievements, and our

essential dissatisfaction with the limitations of our dreams of order and

control.  In the eternal rebellion of chaos against creation we may find a

uniquely gnostic literary form, to which our reading group hopes to enunciate

a variety of Thelemic perspectives.

                              The Serious Tease

   Sirius Teas are held at 4:18 on the final Sunday afternoon of each month at

Sirius Oasis in north Berkeley.  Join this independent O.T.O. body on 30th May

for an hour or two of invigorating beverages, diminutive sandwiches, fancy

desserts, fine china, and fraternal chat.  Call ahead at (510) 527-2855 for

directions and information.  Discussions this month may include upcoming

initiation plans, arrangements for hosting the Rites of Eleusis, anticipations

of June's Ancient Ways Pan-Pagan Festival, and schemes for precipitating our

friends into the back yard hot tub.  Bake some cookies if you have the chance,

come early to help cut the crusts from the cucumber and cress creations, or

just drop by to check in with the members of this Sirius and secret conclave.


                               Crowley Classics

This third installment in Crowley's account of the K-2 climb is reprinted from

"Vanity Fair" (London: 22 July 1908), pp. 106-107.

                          The Expedition to Chogo Ri

                           Leaves from the Notebook

                             of Aleister Crowley


   As it was, I think we made a great mistake in not doing the whole of the

journey, at least as far as Askoli, with large tents, beds, tables and chairs.

Of course, our transport would have been largely increased.  It was already

beyond the ordinary capacity of the country, and this is no doubt the reason

why Eckenstein did not make such arrangements.  The truth was that a party of

six was too large, especially as at least three of us had no capacity whatever

for aiding the arrangements of valley travel.  Knowles and Eckenstein soon

picked up enough Hindustani to make themselves understood, though I had to do

the interpreting most of the time whenever it came to discussing any question

which meant more than the giving of a simple order.  Of course, Eckenstein

remembered a little Hindustani from his previous journey, which soon came back

to him; Knowles knew none, but he picked it up with wonderful cleverness and

quickness.  The foreigners seemed rather to avoid learning anything.  The

doctor got over the difficulty by addressing the men volubly and at length in

Swiss slang.  Wesseley used to talk German to them, and to lose his temper

when they failed to understand him.

   The next morning we found that ten of our ponies had been carried off by

the shikaris of two English officers who were travelling on the same stages.

The march to Karbu was very long and dull.  I should certainly never have got

there without the pony. When we arrived we found a polo match with musical

accompaniments proceeding in our honour.  Though very tired Eckenstein and

myself sat down for a quarter of an hour, as politeness demanded, and having

distributed backshish proceeded to the dak-bangla.  On the 7th we again rode

on to the appropriately-named Hardas.  The road on this march became

frightfully hilly.  It must have been designed by a mad steeple-jack with

delirium tremens.

   Eckenstein had humorously observed at Matayun that "now it was all down

hill to Skardu except local irregularities," but these local irregularities

varied from 300 to 2,000 feet in height and followed one another rapidly with

only a few yards of comparatively level ground between them.  The whole of the

valley on this side of the Zoji La presented a remarkable difference from that

of the Kashmir valleys.  There was literally no natural vegetation.  The

mountains were vast and shapeless, utterly lacking in colour or beauty of any


   We were received at Hardas by the Rajah, with whom we had a lengthy

conference about nothing.  We eventually got rid of him by a present of some

coloured pocket-handkerchiefs and a tip of five rupees.  In this part of the

country one did not need to be a republican to perceive the absurdity of


   On the 8th we proceeded to Olthingthang, a pretty long march.  The road was

a little more reasonable than the previous day, but a good deal of it was

still very mad and bad.  One stretch of several miles over a pari was

exceptionally trying.  It was broiling hot, and there was not a drop of water

to be had anywhere; while the sun's heat came off the rock until one seemed as

if in a furnace.  But there was a delight to the eye marvellously marked on

this day.  In the midst of the naked hideousness of nature, wherever there had

been a piece of ground sufficiently level, and a supply of water, cultivation

had changed the ugliness of the Creator's design into an unconscious

masterpiece of beauty.  Imagine to yourself the tropical fervour of the heat,

the dull drab of the rocks, the monotonous blue of the sky, and the sullen

ugliness of the Indus with its dirty water running below your feet; then

imagine yourself as if turning a corner and seeing in the midst of a new mass

of rock a village.  Ledge by ledge it would stretch down, clad in a brilliant

and tender green, while cutting the horizontal lines of the irrigation

channels, soared into the sky the magnificent masculine forms of poplars, and

at their feet spread out the feminine and blossoming beauty of apricot trees.

Village after village one passed, and was thrown every time into a fresh

ecstasy of delight.  There is a bitter disappointment, however, in store for

the person who travels on this stage for the first time.  The last pari is

over; one sees a village in front nestling close to the Indus and watered by a

large side stream which comes down in a succession of charming little cascades

through a beautiful and verdant gorge -- but unfortunately it is not the

stage!  Just as one is certain that the weary march is over one finds that

nothing is further from the truth.  One has to ride up again more than a

thousand feet from the valley before one reaches Olthingthang.

   On the 9th we went on to Tarkutta.  The "local irregularities" were again

very severe.  About half an hour from the start one joined the Indus Valley

proper, though the river which we had been so long following was little less

large than the main stream.  The valley was also much grander though still

very desolate.  On the 10th we went on to Khurmang, another long march.  I was

again very ill, and found the air of the valley very filthy and stifling.  The

road was, however, a little more amenable to reason.  At Khurmang is a wood

fort very picturesquely perched on a steep rock.  We were entertained on

arrival by another beastly king.  It was rather an amusing fact, though, that

this king's complexion was a good deal lighter than any of us could boast of.

   Ever since leaving Srinagar I had worn a pagri, which is perhaps the most

comfortable form of headgear in existence, as it is good both against heat and

cold.  It is, of course, no good for rain, which it absorbs rapidly, becoming

very heavy and clumsy; but in these rainless countries it is by far the best

headgear that one could wear.  For the first day or two it seems to afford

little protection to the eyes, but one soon gets used to it.

   The next day we went on to Tolti after defeating the plots of the Rajah's

munshi.  This ingenious person told us that it would be a very difficult

matter to procure 150 coolies; but that if we advanced him five rupees he

would send out messages to the outlying villages.  Eckenstein, however,

instead of doing this, asked the coolies who had come with us if they would go

on another stage.  They jumped at the chance, and made a regular stampede for

the loads, going off that afternoon so as to avoid the heat of the following

mid-day; but as soon as the munshi saw that they were well off he produced his

150 men (whom he had had in waiting all the time) and demanded to be paid on

account of them.  I cannot be sure whether Eckenstein did or did not give him

a small installment of the kicking he deserved, as I was asleep in my tent

during the whole of this commotion; but of course we reported his conduct to

the authorities.

   The road to Tolti was less mad and bad than before, but still very bad and

sad.  We were met by yet another king, and the usual durbar took place.  We

went on to Parkuta.  The road was now pretty good, and there was quite a

length of the valley opening out.  On the 13th we went on to Gol.  The road

was not capital for horses, except in the villages and over one or two pari.

At Parkuta there must be five or six lineal miles of cultivated land, and we

passed through many avenues of trees which afforded very welcome shade.  On

the 14th we finished the first stage of our journey, riding twenty-one miles

into Skardu.  There was a pretty good road nearly all the way and only two

pari of any size to cross.  I got in about noon, and we all settled down in a

dak-bangla as we intended to rest at Skardu three or four days to get

information about the possibility of crossing the Skoro La.  About half an

hour before nightfall a man was brought in who had had his leg cut open by a

falling stone.  The doctor immediately attended to it, but the darkness came

on and the bulk of the operation was done by candle light.  The doctor would

not give an anaesthetic, and expected the boy to faint under the pain; but

this did not by any means happen, though he was suffering as anyone must

suffer under the circumstances.  The leg was cut down to the bone from the

knee to the ankle.  He did not evince any signs of great pain, and only at one

point did he open his lips and ask in the most casual way for some water.

   The next morning we received a visit from the Rajah.  This ruffian had been

stripped of his power for his conspiracies, but he still enjoyed the title and

a certain income.  We got rid of him as soon as possible with one or two

presents.  Eckenstein and I then interviewed the Tehsildar who came to pay his

respects, and to make arrangements for our further journey.  Later a great

wind sprang up and great storms of sand were to be seen in every part of the

valley, some of them 3,000 feet in height.  The valley was here very wide, it

was rather like a great circular opening in the mountains than a valley, for

the widening was not gradual but sudden, and soon closed in again.

   The next day two or three of us went off to fish, but caught nothing of any

size.  All the time, of course, we were overwhelmed with presents of one sort

or another in the eatable line; while big pots of tea prepared in two

different fashions were brought to us at nearly every stage.  The first kind

was made of Yarkand tea, sweetened and highly spiced; it was drinkable and

even pleasant.  The other was a mixture of tea, salt, and butter; and was an

unspeakable abomination, though Eckenstein and Knowles pretended to like it.

In the afternoon three brothers of the Rajah came and worried us.  The next

day nothing happened at all, and was consequently pleasant.  On the 18th I

went off with the Austrians to climb the fortress rock, which we ascended by

the east ridge.  It gave interesting and varied climbing; in the afternoon

Eckenstein and I visited the Tehsildar and made the final arrangements.  On

the 19th we resumed our journey.  About noon we reached Shigar, and made a

delightful bivouac under a big tree.  We were received by yet another Rajah!

I had the bad luck to come in first; and was talking to him and the various

lambadars for some time before the relief party turned up.  In the Shigar

Valley, not far from the village, are three fine carved Buddha-rupas in bas-

relief on a big rock.  After lunch I went off and shot some pigeons, and when

I returned found that a guest was coming to dinner in the shape of the local

missionary.  We had a very pleasant dinner-party, and I entertained my

companions by appearing first in the character of an earnest well-wisher to

missionary work, with a gentle undercurrent which was quite beyond the

comprehension of our friend; and subsequently in assuming the character of a

prophet, demanding his allegiance.  I proved to him my authenticity from the

Scriptures, which, as it happened, I knew pretty well by heart; and put him

down as one of those Scribes and Pharisees whose stiff-neckedness and

generally viperine character prevented them from knowing a really good thing

when they saw it!  This man had been living in Shigar for seven years, and had

not yet got a convert.  Of course the Mohammedan regarded him as a very low

type of idolater, and said so.  He complained a good deal of his hard life;

but as he was living in a most charming valley with a wife and all complete on

a salary of which he could not have earned the fourth part in any honest

employment, I do not quite see what he had got to complain of.  Of course he

laid stress on the absence of white men, but this was worse than no argument,

as the possessor of such mediocre attainments, spiritual and intellectual, was

not likely to receive anything but contempt in an educated community.

   On the 20th we went on to Alchori, a short and pleasant march; I did a

little pigeon shooting on the way.  The Shigar Valley is broad and open, and

the mountains on either side are delightful, though the bases are mostly

uninteresting.  The peaks in many cases have a fine pyramidal formation.  The

whole structure is thus rather of the type of the Wetterhorn seen from

Grindelwald.  One mountain, at the head of the valley, bears a striking

resemblance to Mont Blanc, from Courmayeur.

                              (To be continued.)


                           from the Grady Project:

Probably drafted early in 1946 e.v. after discussions of the project with

Crowley himself, these notes were sent to the aged magus by his young American

student not long after Grady had returned to California from military duty in

World War Two.  In an effort to secure permission for Crowley to emigrate to

California, various plans were discussed around that time by American O.T.O.

members.  It was hoped that the warm dry climate of "Rancho RoyAL," a property

owned in the southern California desert by members of Agape Lodge, would be

beneficial to their leader's declining health, and that his proximity to the

largest functioning group of O.T.O. initiates would inspire the growth of the

Order.  Unfortunately these efforts came too late for the old man, and even if

Crowley had been strong enough to make the journey there were too many

bureaucratic hurdles involved in post-war emigration for the scheme ever to

have had much of a chance.  We now can gather from FBI documents obtained

through the Freedom of Information Act that J. Edgar Hoover's personal

paranoia regarding occult groups would probably have kept Crowley from

obtaining an entrance visa at that time, regardless of how much effort had

gone into the application process.

                        Clear Crowley's Name Campaign

                              by Grady McMurtry

Policy:  To clear Crowley's name of the slander instigated by bigoted

journalists and propagated by the sensational press.

Addendum thereto:  Aleister Crowley has dedicated his life to the alleviation

of the suffering of mankind by the practical application to every day living

of philosophy in its highest concepts.  In order to test his theories it was

necessary for him to experiment.  As many of these experiments, especially in

his early youth, were at the expense of what are commonly considered

"Christian Concepts" he gained considerable notoriety as a "Black Magician"

merely on the basis of the experiments and without regard to the conclusions

reached.  An example:  He conducted research on a scientific basis to

determine the effect of certain narcotics -- a laudable occupation.  His

conclusions have been published and are open for reference.  Did this make any

difference to the sensational press?  Not in the least.  The mere fact that he

had made the experiment provided them with material for reams of Sunday

supplements featuring "That Fiend Crowley," etc.  It is well to bear this in

mind when considering the present effort to bring his teachings to mankind --

this being the ultimate object in clearing his name of stigma.

   Aleister Crowley has brought the world the Law of Thelema.  The Law of

Will.  The concept that no person has the right to do other than his true

Will, and that this law is Love, Love under Will.  This is not the soft,

sentimental love of the romanticist but the virile, brilliant love of humanity

-- the concept that the union of mankind in the brotherhood of Thelema will

bring a new aeon of peace and progress to the world.  That is worth fighting

for.  That is why we must CLEAR CROWLEY'S NAME.

   In order to bring this about a plan of action is necessary.  The following

is such a plan.

I.  Headquarters

     A.  Location -- London or vicinity.

     B.  Type -- business office large enough to accommodate executive in

charge of campaign and several secretaries to handle correspondence, classify

pertinent material and gather information.

II.  Staff

     A.  Executive -- must be a person competent to handle editors, reporters,

publishers, writers and supervise the collection and distribution of material

pertinent to the campaign.

     B.  Executive Secretary -- must be competent to supervise the staff of

secretaries and keep the flow of incoming and outgoing information

coordinated.  May be expected to take over the position of the Executive in an


     C.  Treasurer -- in charge of procuring and disbursing funds for the

campaign.  Should be an accountant.

     D.  Secretarial Staff

          1.  Personnel -- to advise Executive of personnel in the field, new

members, etc.

          2.  Intelligence -- to determine, predict and advise the Executive

on the movements and thought trends of the opposition.

          3.  Planning -- keeping the roster of activities up to date and

coordinating future moves as the campaign progresses.

          4.  Stenographers, typists, and file clerks to keep the subject

material properly classified and readily available.

     E.  Reporters -- to obtain needed information from documents, newspapers,

records, and also to interview writers and men in public life.

                              (To be continued.)


                           One Member's Commentary

                        The Three Grades of Dean Knapp

   The fortieth verse of the first chapter of the Book of the Law says in

part, "Who calls us Thelemites will do no wrong, if he look but close into the

word. For there are therein Three Grades, the Hermit and the Lover and the man

of Earth."  In the "Vision and the Voice," in the 13th Aire, is written "The

man of earth is the adherent. The lover giveth his life unto the work among

men.  The hermit goeth solitary, and giveth only of his light unto men",

Crowley mentions this passage in his "New" Comment to the Book of the Law, and

adds, "Thus we have in the Order, the Mystic, the Magician, and the Devotee".

Clearly this implies that three different approaches to Thelema, to the very

religious experience itself, are possible, perhaps even necessary in the

unfolding of this experience.  Then in chapter 49 of the "Confessions" he

divides religious teachers into three classes: first, the Moses/Mohammed type,

who receives a direct command from God to act as His spokesman, and who does

miracles or at least receives miraculous aid; second, the William Blake/Jacob

Boehme type, who is in direct communication with some sort of spiritual

intelligence, and whose personal revelations may indeed be inspiring to many

others, but who claim no universal spiritual authority for themselves; and

third, the Lao-Tzu/Buddha type, who have attained some state of spiritual

release, and who are able to teach others the method by which they have

themselves realized.  "The wiser they are, the less dogmatic", says Crowley,

"They remain essentially sceptics".  These are just the three kinds of teacher

you'd expect for Devotees, Magicians, and Mystics, respectively.

   Of course if this triform nature of religious experience is truly

archetypal then we should expect to find plentiful evidence of it in places

quite far removed from Aleister Crowley and Thelema, and what better place

than in the work of the late Canadian novelist, playwright, and journalist,

Robertson Davies.  In the last chapter of "A Mixture of Frailties," the final

novel of his "Salterton Trilogy," there are reproduced several sections from a

sermon, the Ida Bridgetower Memorial Sermon, in which the Reverend Jevon

Knapp, Dean of St. Nicholas' Cathedral in Salterton, Ontario, broaches the

subject of education.  His remarks are interspersed with the descriptions of

characters' thoughts and actions, almost as if they were the background of a

motion picture soundtrack, the main body of them are given in three distinct

sections, separated by passages of novelistic storytelling.  Here I reproduce

them without their fictional context in order to highlight the archetypes with

which they deal:

   "Education is learning; and learning is apprehension -- in the old sense of

sympathetic perception.  We cannot all perceive the facts of our experience in

the same way.  As we draw near to the sacred season of Christmas we may fitly

turn our attention to the ways in which the birth of Our Lord was perceived by

those who first knew of it.  Much has been made of the splendour of the vision

of the shepherds, as told by St. Luke.  But so far as I know, little has been

said of the fact that it needed an angel and a multitude of the heavenly host

to call it to the attention of these good men that something out of the

ordinary had happened.  Nothing short of a convulsion of nature (if I may so

call it without irreverence) could impress them, and the Gospel tells us that

they praised God 'for all the things that they had heard and seen'.  There are

many now, as then and always, who learn -- who apprehend -- only by what they

can hear and see, and the range of what they can hear and see is not

extensive.  And, alas, instructive interruptions of the natural order are as

few today as they were two thousand years ago..."

   In the Dean's "shepherds" can we not perceive our "man of Earth"?  As verse

I:50 of the Book of the Law says, "The gross must pass through fire".  Just as

the body sees only by the light of the eyes, the religion of the adherents of

Thelema must be tangible, with its feasts, masses, and ritual weapons.  These

adherents must also serve as the essential social foundation of any long-

lasting Thelemic movement, as they have served in the case of every other

organized religion.  By their loyalty, enthusiasm, and financial support they

make possible the success of the educational and creative efforts of the

Lovers.  Unlike the obedient flocks of earlier religions they are no sheep to

be led about by their pastors, but rather proud men and women who decide for

themselves to whom they will award their allegiance.

   "If the shepherds needed a prodigy to stir them, the Wise Men needed no

more than a hint, a new star amid the host of heaven.  In art, and especially

the Christmas card art which will so soon be with us, that star is usually

represented as a monstrous illumination which a mole might see.  That is so

that the shepherds among us may understand without a painful sense of

insufficiency the legend of the Kings.  For legend it is; the Gospel tells us

but little of these men, but legend has set their number at three, and has

given them melodious names.  The legend calls them Kings, and Kings they were

indeed in the realm of apprehension, of perception, for they were able to read

a great message in a small portent.  We dismiss great legends at our peril,

for they are the riddling voices by means of which great truths buried deep in

the spirit of man offer themselves to the world.  Gaspar, Melchior and

Balthazar stand as models of those -- few, but powerful at any time -- who

have prepared themselves by learning and dedication to know great mysteries

when the time is ripe for them to be apprehended by man..."

   In Dean Knapp's "Wise Men" or "Kings" we can see delineated our Grade of

"Lover"; they are "the fine", "tried in intellect".  It is they who form the

elite corps of the Thelemic "order", providing leadership and training for

those who would follow after and even outpace them.  One who "giveth his life

unto the work among men" cannot expect a life of stability and ease.  She may

be called upon at any time to undertake long journeys bearing her most

precious gifts to offer up in homage to Hoor-pa-kraat.  Luckily she turns out

to love traveling and be quite generous.  This sort of "sacrifice of life and

joy" on the part of the Lovers is necessary to the firm establishment of a

Thelemic culture.

   "A third figure, who perceived Our Lord in his own fashion, is particularly

sympathetic, and presents in one of the most touching stories of the childhood

of Christ another sort of apprehension, and that the rarest. He is the aged

Simeon, who knew Our Lord intuitively (as we should say now) when He was

brought to the Temple on the eighth day for His Circumcision.  Not the

forcible instruction of a band of angels, nor the hard-won knowledge of the

scholars, but the readiness of one who was open to the promptings of the Holy

Ghost was the grace which made Simeon peculiarly blessed.  We see him still as

one of those rare beings, not so much acting as acted upon, not so much living

life as being lived by it, outwardly passive but inwardly illumined by active

grace, through whom much that is noblest and of most worth has been vouchsafed

to the world . . . Oh, trusting, patient Simeon, the first to know, of his own

knowledge, the Holy Face of God!"

   St. Simeon, as the Dean describes him, is a portrait of our "Hermit".  He

is an example of "the lofty chosen ones" who are tried "in the highest".  He

instructs no one.  He neither exhorts nor ponders.  He merely recognizes, and

blesses, and speaks the spontaneous prophecies of the Holy Spirit.  Thus our

Thelemic Hermit "giveth only of his light unto men", and her mystical

attainment expresses itself in the silence of that inner "joy a million times

greater" than any outer experience.

   At this point it may be appropriate to wonder if Davies came upon this

understanding of the three different means of divine experience independently,

or if he was actually influenced by the Book of the Law.  Certainly he was

aware of Crowley and his works; AC even figures in one of his ghost stories

when a character follows his instructions in order to invoke, of all things,

the spirit of Queen Victoria.  In "Tempest Tost," the first volume of the

"Salterton Trilogy," the assistant director of an amateur theatrical

production is sent off to do some research.

   "The Waverly Library, he discovered, was fairly well stocked with books

about magic as anthropologists understand the word, and it could provide him

with plenty of material about medieval sorcery; it also contained books by

Aleister Crowley and the Rev. Montague Summers which assured him feverishly

that there was plenty of magic in the world today."

   So it is therefore possible that Davies was consciously influenced in this

by Thelema.  Still, I think it unlikely.  A more probable explanation for the

"coincidence" is that both these observations are based upon the same simple

fact: human beings do this "religion thing" in three different ways, as a

social experience, as a personal creative experience, and as an impersonal

spiritual experience.  As if to confirm this fact that the truth is ever on

display we also find that the final sentence in Crowley's "New" Comment to

verse I:40 says, "'Three Grades'.  There is a very curious parallel to this

passage in Aldous Huxley's 'Chrome[sic] Yellow' Chap. XXII."  And in fact the

22nd chapter of Huxley's novel "Crome Yellow" does indeed contain an

unexpectedly similar metaphor.

   "The three main species [of Mr. Scogan's utopia, the Rational State] will

be these: the Directing Intelligences, The Men of Faith, and the Herd.  Among

the Intelligences will be found all those capable of thought, those who know

how to attain to a certain degree of freedom -- and, alas, how limited, even

among the most intelligent, that freedom is! -- from the mental bondage of

their time.  A select body of Intelligences, drawn from among those who have

turned their attention to the problems of practical life, will be the

governors of the Rational State.  They will employ as their instruments of

power the second great species of humanity -- the men of Faith, the Madmen, as

I have been calling them, who believe in things unreasonably, with passion,

and are ready to die for their beliefs and their desires.  These wild men,

with their fearful potentialities for good or for mischief, will no longer be

allowed to react casually to a casual environment.  There will be no more

Caesar Borgias, no more Luthers and Mohammeds, no more Joanna Southcotts, no

more Comstocks.  The old-fashioned Man of Faith and Desire, that haphazard

creature of brute circumstance, who might drive men to tears and repentance,

or who might equally well set them on to cutting one another's throats, will

be replaced by a new sort of madman, still externally the same, still bubbling

with a seemingly spontaneous enthusiasm, but, ah, how very different from the

madmen of the past!  For the new Man of Faith will be expending his passion,

his desire, and his enthusiasm in the propagation of some reasonable idea.  He

will be, all unawares, the tool of some superior intelligence.  From their

earliest years, as soon, that is, as the examining psychologists have assigned

them their place in the classified scheme, the Men of Faith, will have had

their special education under the eye of the Intelligences.  Moulded by a long

process of suggestion, they will go out into the world, preaching and

practising with a generous mania the coldly reasonable projects of the

Directors from above.  When these projects are accomplished, or when the ideas

that were useful a decade ago have ceased to be useful, the Intelligences will

inspire a new generation of madmen with a new eternal truth.  The principle

function of the Men of Faith will be to move and direct the Multitude, that

third great species consisting of those countless millions who lack

intelligence and are without valuable enthusiasm.  When any particular effort

is required of the Herd, when it is thought necessary, for the sake of

solidarity, that humanity shall be kindled and united by some single

enthusiastic desire or idea, The Men of Faith, primed with some simple and

satisfying creed, will be sent out on a mission of evangelization.  At

ordinary times, when the high spiritual temperature of a Crusade would be

unhealthy, the Men of Faith will be quietly and earnestly busy with the great

work of education.  In the upbringing of the Herd, humanity's almost boundless

suggestibility will be scientifically exploited.  Systematically, from

earliest infancy, its members will be assured that there is no happiness to be

found except in work and obedience; they will be made to believe that they are

happy, that they are tremendously important beings, and that everything they

do is noble and significant.  For the lower species the earth will be restored

to the centre of the universe and man to pre-eminence on the earth.  Oh, I

envy the lot of the commonalty in the Rational State!  Working their eight

hours a day, obeying their betters, convinced of their own grandeur and

significance and immortality, they will be marvelously happy, happier than any

race of men has ever been.  They will go through life in a rosy state of

intoxication, from which they will never awake.  The Men of Faith will play

the cup-bearers at this lifelong bacchanal, filling and ever filling again

with the warm liquor that the Intelligences, in sad and sober privacy behind

the scenes, will brew for the intoxication of their subjects."

   So here we see once more, projected upon humanity as a whole, the

archetypes of the Devotee, whose watchwords are loyalty and adherence, the

Magician, who causes change, and the Mystic, whose silence conceals

understanding.  Of course we need not see it, as Huxley's character Mr. Scogan

did.  We need not insist upon these attitudes being the basis of a system of

imposed castes; we might instead imagine them as psychological frameworks

within which one may view life.  The fact that the vast majority of

contemporary humanity is content to see the world through the "man of Earth"

window does not mean that specific individuals may not in the course of their

lives also learn to see as "Lover" or as "Hermit", nor does it even mean that

some rare ones may not  appreciate all three perspectives simultaneously.

   Elitist social engineering fantasies, like Huxley's character's "Rational

State" (a Platonic predecessor to the scientific dystopia of "Brave New

World") or Crowley's Blue "Equinox" papers, can be highly entertaining, and

even instructive as cautionary tales, but the real message of such metaphors

is that for any human society (or organization) to remain healthy it must

continue to provide ample and constructive opportunities for all three types

of experience.  They are all necessary to the system; verse I:40 does not say

"the Hermit or the Lover or the man of Earth".  In the handwritten manuscript

of the verse we can see that the commas in Liber CCXX were added by Crowley

later; it's "the Hermit and the Lover and the man of Earth." without

separation.  Still, the word "Grade" comes from the Latin gradus, a step, a

progression.  This could imply that one's freedom to advance, as a Thelemite,

as a human being, is inalienable.  That most do not choose to exercise this

freedom should not therefore be taken as an excuse to oppress them, nor should

the fact that very few now manage to advance all the way necessarily be taken

as the inevitable and eternal condition of humankind.

                               ----Frater P.I.


                      May 1999 e.v. Thelema Lodge Calendar

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