Thelema Community Calendar for June 2004 e.v.

Thelema Community Calendar for June 2004 e.v. Abbreviated web edition.

Volume I, Number 3: The Alchemy Issue

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, 2004 e.v.

Internal Sexual Alchemy
Western Ceremonial Magick and Indian Tantra

By Sesheta 156

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

The image of the Kundalini as fire serpent is depicted in both Western ceremonial magick and Indian tantra.

1.I am the Heart; and the Snake is entwined
About the invisible core of the mind.
Rise, O my snake! It is now is the hour
Of the hooded and holy ineffable flower.
Rise, O my snake, into brilliance of bloom
On the corpse of Osiris afloat in the tomb!
O heart of my mother, my sister, mine own,
Thou art given to Nile, to the terror Typhon!
Ah me! but the glory of ravening storm
Enswathes thee and wraps thee in frenzy of form.
Be still, O my soul! that the spell may dissolve
As the wands are upraised, and the aeons revolve.
Behold! in my beauty how joyous Thou art,
O Snake that caresses the crown of mine heart!
Behold! we are one, and the tempest of years
Goes down to the dusk, and the Beetle appears.
O Beetle! the drone of Thy dolorous note
Be ever the trance of this tremulous throat!
I await the awaking! The summons on high
From the Lord Adonai, from the Lord Adonai!
--- Liber Cordis Cincti Serpente vel LXV, Chapter I

The image of the caduceus is archetypal of the rising of the evolutionary consciousness within the adept. The adept's practice of internal sexual alchemy is a high art of special significance to the magician. It may be said that some practices of Western ceremonial magick draw upon techniques also known in Indian tantra by cultivating a special elixir or vital fluid necessary to life. An understanding of the physical anatomy of the human being is essential to grasp how and where this vital fluid is accumulated.

The Magick Three:
Alchemical Principles, Gunas and Mother Letters

Essential to an understanding of alchemy, of course, is knowledge of the three alchemical agents which can be corresponded to the three gunas and the three mother letters thus:

Sulphur (fiery principle or the expansive force in nature) = Rajas (guna) = Shin (Hebrew mother letter)

Mercury (airy principle or the integrative force, interweaving and balancing that of the salt and sulphur) = Sattvas (guna) = Aleph (Hebrew mother letter)

Salt (the earthly principle, the contractive force in nature) = Tamas (guna) = Mem (Hebrew mother letter)

These have their relationship to parts of the human body which might be correlated thus: sulphur = bio-electric force; mercury = air and sub-participles of breath and respiration; salt = physical biological tissue of our blood, bones, and body.

The Physical and Alchemical Anatomy of the Human Being

Western ceremonial magick in its use of the Hermetic tree of life and the Indian tantra system both depict the rise of the Kundalini as an uncoiling "fire serpent" along the channels of the spine and the nervous system, where the Kundalini is said to reside. Areas of significance, where large clusters of nerves cross and/or terminate, are called "chakras," a Sanskrit word simply meaning "wheels." An overlapping of the seven chakra Indian system with the middle pillar sephiroth from the tree of life1 can loosely be mapped thus:

Sahasrara chakra (crown chakra) located at the top of the head = Kether.
Ajna chakra (third eye) located between the eyebrows.
Vishuddha chakra (throat chakra) located at the center of the throat = Daath.
Anahata chakra (heart chakra) located at the center of the chest, encompassing the lungs = Tiphareth.
Manipura chakra (stomach chakra) located at the diaphragm, slightly below the rib-cage.
Svadishthana chakra (genital chakra) located near the pubis, including the genitalia and reproductive organs including testes and ovaries = Yesod.
Muladhara chakra (root chakra) located at the base of the spine or perineum = Malkuth (extending down to the feet).

These energy centers, or chakras, are powerful zones of electromagnetic force within the body. As virtual freeway intersections of crisscrossing nerves, these areas generate tremendous charge. The nervous system is responsible for communicating the bio-electric signals from the brain to the body. These impulses are set in motion by a complex set of chemical responses involving biofeedback with the brain. Electric charges are sent along the nervous system, propelled by a fast-moving chemical reaction along each nerve. In truth, every human being generates enough electricity to light a light-bulb. Anyone ever walking across a nylon carpet and zapping their finger on a metal surface or doorknob can attest to their own personal conductivity. This simple fact is what gives rise to an understanding of the electrical potential within the human being and the fire element or Rajas principle.
The air element or Sattvas principle can be easily understood as the very "fluid" of sky, imbibed with the charge of "prana," the Sanskrit word for life-force --- the invisible bio-energy or vital energy that keeps the body alive and maintains a state of good health, composed of certain molecules that feed our bodies with necessary chemical nutrients.
The earthly element or Tamas principle can be understood simply by viewing the physical form of the body and meditating upon the relationship of its smaller, vital parts to the larger whole, including supporting tissues, bone, water, and fluids within the body, as well as microscopic cells.
These, the Magick Three, combine in dynamic force to continue the operation of our bodies so that our life is possible within them.
Which brings us to our fundamental question: what is the purpose of human life? Does the human being exist simply to procreate and beget more life of its own understanding? At a certain base level of design, yes. And it is from this knowledge and understanding of the most basic and foundational principle for the why of our existence that we come to a greater understanding of how to manipulate this causality to further our own evolutionary process.
In possessing the most basic knowledge of the human psyche and consciousness, one is able to see that human thought and mental perception is largely dependent upon certain chemical interactions between the brain and the body. Our very field of understanding and perception is the result of brain processes. If we seek to know, and with that, to increase our knowledge of self and the universe, we necessarily must also seek an understanding of how certain chemical interactions affect our mental perceptions. Throughout time, shamans have been doing exactly this with their research into ecstatic rites involving plant hallucinogens. And even more widely-spread in America during the '60s, this very same experimentation with so-called "mind-altering" substances propelled thousands of people into expansive (sometimes destructive) views of themselves and the cosmos, with little more than a few drops of a sublime liquid. Yet, today, the magician is most concerned with cultivating an internal elixir, the dew-drop of immortality, which brings about a thoroughly expansive and, some say, permanently heightened state of consciousness. The task of producing this "vital fluid" has not been an entirely recent endeavor, but rather the Great Work of many occult practitioners over thousands of years of practice.
In researching both exoteric and esoteric understandings of the vital fluid, the magician has at arm's length many sources that can give an inkling as to its procurement. According to Liber AL, III:24, "The best blood is of the moon, monthly." This might be interpreted as saying that the blood issuing forth from the woman's womb during menses is the best. It may be said to be "best" because it contains the most potent life force or pranic energy available in the female human, designed to nourish the future life which might be impregnated within the womb. This blood carries all three of the alchemical agents: Rajas, in the form of pure pranic energy, life-force, and bio-electric charge (to feed the future life); Sattvas, in the form of oxygen brought to the blood by vessels circulating through the lungs and then carried to its repository in the womb; Tamas in the form of the tissues themselves. If one can truly understand the holiness of this particular vital fluid, that its sole purpose is to feed life, one has certainly made a great leap past the savage cultures that would shame a woman for her timely bleeding. Certain tantric rites of the left-hand (or averse) path consider copulation or specific rituals with the bleeding woman to be the most sacred, specifically opposed to the dominant paradigm that would strongly prohibit --- even punish --- such activities. The seed of the male likewise carries the progenerative form of life itself, imbued with the Magick Three.

The Cultivation of Amrit, the Elixir of Immortality

Besides cultivation of vital fluids containing the Magick Three (which may be used in sacramental undertakings), the magician is also concerned with shaping his or her own reality and consciousness and, to this end, works towards creating the ultimate of elixirs, the dew-drop of immortality.
In Liber AL, Nuit charges the Aspirant to do exactly thus:

Put on the wings, and arouse the coiled splendour within you: come unto me! (I:61)

Hadit, the complement of Nu, says:

I am the flame that burns in every heart of man, and in the core of every star. I am Life, and the giver of Life, yet therefore is the knowledge of me the knowledge of death. (II:6)

I am the Snake that giveth Knowledge & Delight and bright glory, and stir the hearts of men with drunkenness. (II:22)

This is no ordinary dew-drop. No small dose of clear liquid upon a small piece of paper. The science and art of where, when, and how this dew-drop may be cultivated, obtained, or created is a subject of long-standing occult research. It is this writer's opinion that the biochemical changes that are brought about in the aspirant with intense yogic concentration upon the sexual centers during prolonged meditation, focused intention, and magical ritual, combined with sexual activity, lead to an excitation of the nervous system and charge of the Kundalini that provide the ultimate rush to the brain, resulting in its own terminal point of self-induced ecstasy. The changes in neuro-chemicals present in the brain as a result of prolonged exercise in these domains (concentration, sexual excitement, breath-work), cause the production of this elixir. Since the human organism is one coherent whole, these neuro-chemical changes within the brain also cause changes in the fluids and hormones of the reproductive area, as well as changes in the chemical constituents of the breath as air is circulated, gathering prana from the inhalation as well as nutrients from the blood vessels in the lungs, thus also effecting the quality and components of the exhalation. If the supreme elixir be attained above, so it will be below.

In tantra, the rising Kundalini, or increase in bio-electric charge in the body as a result of these practices, is illustrated by the uncoiling of the "snakes" from the Muladhara chakra upward in the body, terminating in the back of the head or the hypothalamus.2 Just above the hypothalamus is the occipital region of the brain, which is responsible for the display of visual information --- the "movie screen" of the mind. Is it any wonder, then, that yogis and yoginis throughout the ages have seen "lights" when their Kundalini has become fully aroused? This same shooting upward of electricity along the spine (said to travel along the Sushumna or "central channel" with Ida and Pingala, the negative and positive currents, at either side, represented by the two entwining snakes) thus terminates --- at the moment of orgasm --- with a resultant explosive force in the brain causing a wild array of neuro-chemical responses, if enough voltage is achieved with prolonged Kundalini arousal and magical effort. The light produced within the brain at this juncture is symbolized by the solar disk mounted upon the caduceus, with its outstretched wings representing the effulgent consciousness of the adept having achieved this holy summit.

The Alchemy of Sex

The practice of Internal Sexual Alchemy is a pursuit which requires the advanced practice of meditation and concentration, as well as enthusiasm for detail in observing subtle responses in the body, including changes in perspiration, rapidity of breath, and pupil dilation, which can be early signals of a rising Kundalini. Learning how to cultivate deep, prolonged orgasm "without lust for result" is a technical skill of great aid and support to the working. One need not be an expert in either yoga or biochemistry to effect these changes, but a healthy attitude towards sex and a magical understanding of the body's mechanisms seems paramount. While a range of techniques may build the adept's skill and fortify her or his practice over time, the ultimate test is complete union, love under will. During certain magical rites, the ejaculatory fluids can be collected and used for occult purposes.

Love is the law, love under will.

1. Each of these seven chakras is assigned one of the seven classical planets as well as one of the seven alchemical metals, according to 777.
2. The hypothalamus is the reptilian portion of the brain that governs the desire for sex and food, and regulates the reproductive centers within the human "beast."

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A Look at Liber Pyramidos

Brother Gregory Peters

I remember a certain holy day in the dusk of the Year, in the dusk of the Equinox of Osiris, when I first beheld thee visibly; when first the dreadful issue was fought out; when the Ibis-headed one charmed away the strife. I remember they first kiss, even as a maiden should. Nor in the dark byways was there another: thy kisses abide.
--- Liber Lapidis Lazuli, VII:3.

Oh, how soft is the air, and how serene the sky, to one who has passed through the black rule of Apophis! How infinitely musical are the voices of Nature, those that are heard and those that are not heard! What Understanding of the Universe, what Love is the prize of him that hath performed all things and endured all things!
--- Aleister Crowley, John St John

And the Angel sayeth: Verily is the Pyramid a Temple of Initiation. Verily also is it a tomb.
--- Liber 418, 14th Aethyr

The Words against the Sons of Night
Tahuti speaketh in the Light.
Knowledge & Power, twin warriors, shake
The Invisible; they roll asunder
The Darkness; matter shines, a snake.
Sebek is smitten by thy thunder ---
The Light breaks forth from Under.
O Thou, the Apex of the Plane,
With Ibis head & Phoenix Wand
And Wings of Night! Whose serpents strain
Their bodies, bounding the Beyond.
Thou in the Light & in the Night
Art One, above their moving might!
--- Liber DCLXXI vel Pyramidos

In the city of Paris in late 1908 e.v., Aleister Crowley undertook a thirteen day "Great Magical Retirement." The record of this event was published as John St John in the special supplement to The Equinox volume I, number 1. The record documents the journey of Crowley's climactic 7 = 4 workings which resulted in his initial reception as an 8 = 3, or Magister Templi.
Commencing on the last day of September, Crowley robed as an Adeptus Exemptus, 7 = 4 of A A, in his violet robe and secret ring, taking the almond wand of Abramelin and his Tibetan bell of electrum magicum. He cut the circular tonsure on his head as symbolic of infinity, and a cross on his breast to symbolize the equilibrium and slaying of his body, and gave the signs of the grades from 0 = 0 to 7 = 4. He then spoke the words of the Great Obligation:

I.I, O.M. &c., a member of the Body of God, hereby bind myself on behalf of the whole Universe, even as we are now physically bound unto the cross of suffering:
II.that I will lead a pure life, as a devoted servant of the Order:
III.that I will understand all things:
IV.that I will love all things:
V.that I will perform all things and endure all things:
VI.that I will continue in the Knowledge and Conversation of My Holy Guardian Angel:
VII.that I will work without attachment:
VIII.that I will work in truth:
IX.that I will rely only upon myself:
X.that I will interpret every phenomenon as a particular dealing of God with my soul. And if I fail herein, may my pyramid be profaned, and the Eye be closed upon me!

Thus did the master forever seal his fate. For having sworn the Oath of the Abyss, he was now irreversibly drawn towards the ordeal of the crossing, and would ultimately reside as a Magister Templi in the City of Pyramids, or would fail the ordeal and be cast out as a Black Brother. The rest, as they say, is now history.

The fruits of Crowley's successful Greater Magical Retirement are found throughout the record of John St John. For example, on the morning of the third day we find the much celebrated coffee invocation of Adonai:

O coffee! By the mighty Name of Power do I invoke thee, consecrating thee to the Service of the Magic of Light. Let the pulsations of my heart be strong and regular and slow! Let my brain be wakeful and active in its supreme task of self-control! That my desired end may be effected through Thy strength, Adonai, unto Whom be the Glory for ever! Amen without lie, and Amen, and Amen of Amen.

This is followed just a few hours later at lunch with the glorious oyster adoration:

O oysters! be ye unto me strength that I formulate the 12 rays of the Crown of HVA! I conjure ye, and very potently command. Even by Him who ruleth Life from the Throne of Tahuti unto the Abyss of Amennti, even by Ptah the swathed one, that unwrappeth the mortal from the immortal, even by Amoun the giver of Life, and by Khem the mighty, whose Phallus is like the Pillar in Karnak! Even by myself and my male power do I conjure ye. Amen.

Needless to say, the oysters were duly eaten in a "Yogin and ceremonial manner."

Clearly this retirement was a period of remarkable inspiration and insight for Crowley, giving his heirs many formulae to work with in their own practice. It was also from this retirement that Crowley was able to write out the "ritual of self-initiation based upon the formula of the Neophyte" --- Liber Pyramidos. Given the number 671 (the spelling of Adonai, "the Lord," in full), the ritual is worked out in detail in John St John as Crowley writes and illuminates the manuscript. Crowley gives a detailed explanation and outline of the temple version of the ritual in John St John --- see in particular pages 36 - 39 of the special supplement where he goes through the rite point by point.
Pyramidos is in fact the solitary version of the A A 1 = 10 temple initiation ritual, Liber ThROA. As an official initiation ritual of A A, Liber ThROA has not officially been published and will not be discussed in this paper, however, Liber Pyramidos has seen publication several times, and the illuminated manuscript used in John St John has in fact been published in full color in The Equinox IV:1, taken from Crowley's "Northwest Notebook." Readers are encouraged to view the publication in The Equinox, as the colorful illuminations by Crowley's hand are a must-see, and add to the subtle imagery of the ritual.
Pyramidos consists of a ritual opening ("Building of the Pyramid"), the initiation ritual proper, and a formal closing ("Sealing of the Pyramid") with a eucharistic celebration. Closely following the Golden Dawn "Neophyte Formula," the ritual of initiation takes the inert, unpurified and unconsecrated first matter (the candidate for initiation), and ceremonially prepares him for the descent of the ineffable light of his initiation, symbolic of the true Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel. Chapter VI of Magick in Theory and Practice (Liber ABA, Part III), "The Formula of the Neophyte," gives an excellent description of this formula, and thus of the underlying process that Liber Pyramidos embodies. Similarly, the Golden Dawn book Z-2 gives an account of the original formula from which Crowley adapted his ritual.
The "Building" and "Sealing of the Pyramid" are referenced in other rituals as suitable means of opening and closing a temple for ritual work, and the magician may find in practice that these rites of opening and closing are easily adaptable to a wide variety of ceremonial work.
It will be seen that the formula of IAO is central to the ritual. As a divine name associated with Tiphareth, the Sun, and the Holy Guardian Angel, IAO represents the divine solar hexagram. As the recurring, serpentine formula of light, darkness, and rebirth, it represents the three-fold pattern of the Great Work. This pattern is reflected in the primary magical weapons, temple layout and the ritual of initiation.
The primary weapons of the rite are the scourge, dagger and chain. These are associated with the alchemical principals of sulphur, mercury and salt respectively, and these in turn to the three gunas of Hindu philosophy --- Rajas, Sattvas, and Tamas. As Crowley writes in chapter IV of Liber ABA, Part II:

The Scourge is Sulphur: its application excites our sluggish natures; and it may further be used as an instrument of correction, to castigate rebellious volitions. It is applied to the Nephesh, the Animal Soul, the natural desires.
The Dagger is Mercury: it is used to calm too great heat, by the letting of blood; and it is this weapon which is plunged into the side or heart of the Magician to fill the Holy Cup. Those faculties which come between the appetites and the reason are thus dealt with.
The Chain is Salt: it serves to bind the wandering thoughts; and for this reason is placed about the neck of the Magician, where Daath is situated. [...]
The Scourge keeps the aspiration keen: the Dagger expresses the determination to sacrifice all; and the Chain restricts any wandering.

These items, when not being used, are placed on the altar in a triangular formation, with the bell and holy oil in the center (see Liber ABA, Part II for an illustration).
The scourge is composed of an iron handle with a lash of nine strands of copper wire, "in each of which are twisted small pieces of lead." The iron is associated with Mars, while copper is attributed to Venus and lead to Saturn. The nine strands represent Yesod and the nephesh. The weapon is applied liberally to the buttocks of the magician for the exciting, constraining, and directing of the nephesh.
The dagger is "made of steel inlaid with gold; and the hilt is also golden." The dagger is the weapon of air, the ruach or rational faculties. It is applied to the breast (Tiphareth, the seat of the ruach) to cut the crosses of blood; an offering of the ruach to the higher genius or the intuitive faculties of the neshamah.
The chain is composed of three hundred and thirty three links of soft iron. Wrapped around the magician's head and tightened, it represents the binding of "that mighty devil" Choronzon (Restriction unto his name!) and the focus of the mind against distraction.
The layout of the temple is again triangular, with the god Thoth in the East as representing the Hebrew mother letter Aleph, Asi (Isis) in the Southwest representing Maim, and Hoor in the Northwest vibrating to Shin. The god-forms represent the Word, Nature or Life, and Death. This forms the base of an equilateral three-sided pyramid, the human triangle in the greater hexagram formed with the invocation and descent of the divine, the spiritual descending triangle.
An interesting aspect of the opening is the "banishing spiral dance." Widdershins about the temple, the magician indeed banishes so thoroughly that the resulting vacuum or void may be seen as an invocation of Nuit, the naught, the sunyata or primordial radiance of nothingness. This is in particular seen in the words at the closing:

So Life takes Fire from Death, & runs
Whirling amid the Suns.
Now let mine hands unloose the sweet
And shining girdle of Nuit!

Of particular interest is the initiation rite proper. The "gates of hell" are opened with the words which are traditionally said to open consciousness to the abyss: SAZAZ SAZAZ ADANATASAN SAZAZ (note that this phrase is given in reverse here and in the text of the ritual, so as not to inadverdantly open the gates). The phrase appears in the vision of the 10th Aeythr from The Vision & The Voice and are uttered by the devil Choronzon. Crowley says of this phrase "These words are from some vision of old time; by them Adam was said to have opened the gates of Hell. These are the traditional words which open the Abyss." It should be noted that this phrase enumerated in Hebrew is 406, which is the same value as the Hebrew letter Tav spelled in full; Tav is associated with the 32nd path on the tree of life, connecting Malkuth with Yesod. The rubric of the ritual simply reads "Pronounce this backwards. But it is very dangerous. It opens the Gates of Hell."
At the altar the "negative confession" occurs. It will be seen that each of the twenty two confessions is based upon one letter of the Hebrew alphabet, beginning with Aleph and working in order, exemplifying the negative or "qliphotic" manifestation of each letter. Thus unto the letter Aleph, attributed to air and Atu 0 is associated the line "I am a fool, a flutterer!" To Beth, associated with Mercury and Atu I, is "I am a liar and a sorcerer!" and so forth. After each negative confession the answering light from the Angel is perceived with the at first pleading, then the more forceful, and finally ecstatic cries of "I am under the Shadow of the Wings!" As in alchemy, a gentle heat is applied, with increasing vigor until it reaches the melting point.
The two signs employed in the ritual are those of Horus ("The Sign of Attack"), and of Hoor-paar-kraat ("The Sign of Protection"). The inner nature of these signs is given in the words said as the magician forms them:

Sign of the Attack:
Attack! I eat up the strong Lions. I!
Fear is on Seb, on them that dwell therein;
Behold the radiant Vigour of the Lord!
Sign of Protection:
My fear on Nile, Asar that held not in!
Behold my radiant Peace, ye things abhorred.

Given together, the two signs illustrate a manner of invocation that consists of an active, penetrating, fiery aspiration and devotion, answered from "on high" by a silent, protective, passive and absorbing meditation. This pattern is found throughout magical practice in general; see for example the First and Second Enochian Calls or Keys, attributed to spirit; as well as sections F through G of Liber Samekh. This is a primal form of invocation, exemplified in the Signs of Typhon-Apophis (the trident) and Mulier or Babalon, the cup, making a complete formula of initiation.
Twelve points of light are traced on the magician's body while laying in the Sign of the Hanged Man (Atu XII). As a symbol of release to the True Will, and the conscious binding to it, this represents the willed crucifixion of the candidate as an offering to his Holy Guardian Angel. This position and accompanying visualization is given by Crowley in other places as a suitable means of aspiration towards the Angel.
The inner sense of this ritual may be experienced in meditation MMM of Liber HHH sub figura CCCXLI. This meditation practice is a type of guided visualization which takes the magician through the symbolic landscape of the pyramid. Done properly, certain interior landmarks are passed with resulting changes in the consciousness of the traveler. This ritual is best performed after the actual ritual of the pyramid has been built up into consciousness either through repeated practice of Pyramidos, or through formal passage through Liber ThROA.
Of interest is the description Crowley gives of the alchemical process in Magick in Theory and Practice, chapter V:

The Alchemists themselves taught this same truth. The "First Matter" of the work was base and primitive, though "natural." After passing through various stages the "Black Dragon" appeared; but from this arose the pure and perfect gold.

Short and concise, this process of alchemical "redemption" mirrors the process of the neophyte formula which is encoded into the ritual of the Pyramid. The alchemical process is emblematic of the neophyte formula, and vice versa. The alchemical gold of the philosophers is that which may be found in the true heart of the master, within. Crowley writes of this with more detail in chapter XX of Magick in Theory and Practice, "Of the Eucharist and the of Art of Alchemy":

[The reports of alchemists] all begin with a substance in nature which is described as existing almost everywhere, and as universally esteemed of no value. The alchemist is in all cases to take this substance, and subject it to a series of operations. By so doing, he obtains his product. This product, however named or described, is always a substance which represents the truth or perfection of the original "First Matter"; and its qualities are invariably such as pertain to a living being, not to an inanimate mass. In a word, the alchemist is to take a dead thing, impure, valueless, and powerless, and transform it into a live thing, active, invaluable and thaumaturgic.
The reader of this book will surely find in this a most striking analogy with what we have already said of the processes of Magick. What, by our definition, is initiation? The First Matter is a man, that is to say, a perishable parasite, bred of the earth's crust, crawling irritably upon it for a span, and at last returning to the dirt whence he sprang. The process of initiation consists in removing his impurities, and finding in his true self an immortal intelligence to whom matter is no more than the means of manifestation. The initiate is eternally individual; he is ineffable, incorruptible, immune from everything. He possesses infinite wisdom and infinite power in himself.
[...] as the formula of any Work effects the extraction and visualization of the Truth from any "First Matter," the "Stone" or "Elixir" which results from our labours will be the pure and perfect Individual originally inherent in the substance chosen, and nothing else.

It is by the discovery of the lapis philosophorum that the true eucharist is found, for in the production of the Stone is the regenerative, golden, radiant fire of eucharistic light forged. The Ritual of the Pyramid is illustrative of this entire process, and in fact gives the keys whereby the inner secret of the alchemists may be produced and unleashed.
The alchemical mysteries have always been veiled in allegory and symbolism, and for this reason they are appropriately masked under the protective shadow of the Sphinx. That enigmatic beast speaks truth in silence for those that are ready to hear:

As to make Gold thou must have Gold (it is the Word of the Alchemists) so to become the Sphinx thou must first be a Sphinx.
--- Liber Aleph, chapter

Let it not be forgotten that in Liber Aleph, Crowley gives the spelling of Sphinx as enumerating to 666. And herein lies a most sacred mystery of the last oracle, being TRINC that is TRI-NU, restored by the Master and given unto his "Little Children of the Light" for their celebrations of Love under Will.

Trinc, trinc; by Bacchus let us tope,
And tope again; for now I hope
To see some brawny, juicy rump,
And tickle't with my carnal stump.
E'er long, my friends, I shall be wedded,
Sure as my trap-stick has a red head;
And my sweet wife shall hold the combat,
Long as my baws can on her mum beat.
O what a battle of ass fighting
Will there be! which I much delight in!
What pleasing pains then shall I take
To keep myself and spouse awake!
All heart and juice, I'll up and ride,
And make a duchess of my bride.
Sing Io paean! loudly sing
To Hymen, who all joys will bring.
Well, friar John, I'll take my oath,
This oracle is full of troth;
Intelligible truth it bears,
More certain than the sieve and shears.
--- Rabeleis1

1. Gargantua and Pantagruel, tr. Urquhart and Motteux, bk. I, ch. xlv.

Panopolis and the Alchemical Thread

by Michael Sanborn

When the great Persian philosopher and mystic Shihab al-Din al-Suhrawardi arrived in the Syrian town of Aleppo in 1183 e.v., he stayed at the Madrasa Halawiya, a religious school built over the ruins of a Byzantine cathedral founded --- according to legend --- by St Helena, the mother of Constantine. When Suhrawardi first attended class there, the head professor noted the contrast between the newcomer's great wisdom and his rough dervish robes. This professor sent his son to present Suhrawardi with a gift of fine clothes and an invitation to attend classes as a member of the faculty. When Suhrawardi heard this, he said nothing for a time. He then handed the boy a ruby the size of a chicken egg --- the largest anyone had ever seen --- and told him to bring it to the market place and get a price for it, but not to sell it without checking with him first. The professor's son went, and then returned to tell Suhrawardi that he had been offered 30,000 silver coins for the gem. Hearing this, the sage took another rock, and smashed the ruby to shards. He returned the garments to the boy, and asked him to kiss his father's hand and tell him, "If I had wanted clothing, I would not have been prevented from getting it."1 In this way, Suhrawardi acquired a reputation as a powerful alchemist.

Suhrawardi claimed to be the inheritor of an ancient lineage of initiated wisdom, which he termed "the leaven of the Pythagoreans." One of the earliest figures of the lineage that he described was the Sicilian philosopher-magician Empedocles.2 One of the last was the pivotal Sufi and Hermeticist, Dhu'l-Nun al-Misri. There is a thread that connects these two adepts, running unbroken for at least eight hundred years through the upper Egyptian city of Panopolis, and it is the thread of alchemy.


Ancient Egypt was famous for its funereal practices, and continued to be so in Roman times. Around 100 e.v., a burial was conducted in Panopolis involving papyrus folded into a crown and covered in copper. This crown was rediscovered in 1904 (interestingly enough), and the papyrus fragments extracted and stored away in the Imperial Library in Strasbourg. In the early 1990s, the fragments were finally recognized. They were the longest excerpt ever discovered from the writings of a Pre-Socratic philosopher, specifically, a previously unknown passage from the poem of Empedocles known as On Physics.
This was unexpected, to say the least. How did the work of an Italian philosopher (c. 492 - 432 b.c.e.) wind up in an Egyptian burial offering over five hundred years later? The most engaging scenario was put forth by Peter Kingsley, former Fellow of the Warburg Institute. In his Ancient Philosophy, Mystery, and Magic: Empedocles and Pythagorean Tradition,3 Kinsley points out that our historical image of Empedocles has been thoroughly distorted by our over-reliance on the accounts of Aristotle. For Aristotle, all previous philosophers were of value only to the extent that they led up to the system of philosophical classification which Aristotle himself outlined. Aristotle dismissed Empedocles for the most part as a showman who attempted to be philosophical but failed.
Through a careful examination of the historical evidence, Kingsley restores the image of Empedocles as he was known in the ancient world: Empedocles the magician, the shaman, the messenger from the gods. With his later books, In the Dark Places of Wisdom4 and Reality,5 Kingsley goes further, joining the ranks of Henry Corbin and Louis Massignon as a historian-turned-visionary. He traces a tradition of esoteric teachings from Empedocles and his near-contemporary Parmenides, going back to the region of Phocaea in Asia Minor, and through Persia tied to the shamanic practices of Central Asia. He asserts that this Phocaean tradition (marked particularly by the practice of incubation, or divination through dreams) is at or near the roots of Pythagoreanism, Orphism, and the more speculative of the Platonic doctrines. The teachings of Empedocles, in particular, are seen as informing Hermeticism, Gnosticism, and especially alchemy.
Empedocles, after all, is credited with the formulation of the idea of the four roots: earth, air, water, and fire. He further claimed that all things are combinations of these four roots, constantly being transformed by two forces: love and strife.

The might of aithêr chases it into the sea, sea spits it out onto solid ground, earth spits it up into rays of the radiant sun and sun hurls it into the whirlpools of aithêr. One receives it from another, then another from another, and they all hate it. This is the way that I too am now going, an exile from the gods and a wanderer, placing my trust in mad Strife.6

Alchemists, both Christian and Muslim, believed Empedocles to have been the originator of their central doctrine of the fire in the center of the earth. Kingsley demonstrates that the surviving fragments of Empedocles' work fully support this traditional attribution, emerging as they do from the religious culture of Sicily, the area around the volcanic Mt Etna.
The crown discovered in upper Egypt, then, was not filled with the speculations of some academic philosopher, but with the profound utterances of a divinely inspired magician (reminiscent of the burial practices of the Orphics). This marks the earliest evidence of the initiated tradition at Panopolis.


Some 200 years later lived one of the earliest alchemists of whom we have a sure historical record, Zosimos of Panopolis. Although little is known about his life, enough of his writings have survived to present a general idea of his teachings. He described alchemy as the "Mithraic Mysteries," and in one place outlines a series of seven grades of spiritual purification, much as is found in Mithraism. He was greatly influenced by Hermeticism, mentioning by name two of the Hermetic tracts that are still known to us, Poimandres and Krater.7 In his treatise, The Final Quittance, he made clear that the purpose of alchemy is the purification of the soul, and not merely the preparation of metals.
There are two facets of his work that are especially interesting in this context. The first is that he made frequent use of visionary dreams for guidance, just as the magicians of Phocaea and southern Italy were known to do. And the second is that he made reference to "the place of punishments" (which to Greek-speakers of the time was thought of as being below the surface of the earth) as a realm of transforming fire, a notion that has obvious parallels to the writings of Empedocles.


In the next few centuries after Zosimos, the Pachomian monks of upper Egypt and the "philosophers" of Panopolis engaged in a noted feud. Yet it was those same monks, or ones closely related, who concealed the Gnostic library at Nag Hammadi, preserving it for rediscovery in 1945. Nag Hammadi lies close to Panopolis. In fact, the Berlin Codex 8502, dated around 400 e.v. and published alongside the thirteen codices found at Nag Hammadi, was discovered at Panopolis (modern-day Akhmim). The relationship between the teachings of Empedocles and that of the Gnostics is still under investigation, but Kingsley observes that a

meaningful parallel to Empedocles' idea of all water as the tears of Persephone is provided by the Gnostic image of "all watery substance"
() as the tears shed by Sophia: a parallel which assumes additional significance when we bear in mind the extensive resemblances between Empedocles and Gnostic ideas. The Gnostics had their fall of the soul into an alien and frightening world, their lived ideal of the magician-liberator, their cosmic mixture, separation and "roots," and their mythological traditions of oriental origin.8

Islamic Legends
Hermes was a frequent figure of fascination for early Islamic philosophers and historians. According to Abu Mashar, there had been many individuals called Hermes. The first was known as Enoch to the Hebrews and Idris to the Arabs, and lived before the time of Noah's flood. Hermes was the first poet, the first astrologer, the first practitioner of magic, and the first to build temples. In particular, he foresaw the coming flood, and in order to prevent the destruction of all human knowledge, he created the great temple at Panopolis, on the walls of which he inscribed all of the secrets of the sciences and the arts. This temple was described in detail by several Arab geographers, and two of the pillars of the Kaabah at Mecca9 are said to have been taken from the Temple of Hermes at Panopolis around 780 e.v.

Dhu'l-Nun al-Misri

This brings us to the other of Suhrawardi's influences, mentioned earlier. Dhu'l-Nun al-Misri (c. 791-860 e.v.) is believed to be the first to present Sufism in a systematic way, founding the sect known as "The Builders," considered to be one inspiration for the Freemasons. The name "al-Misri" (related to "Mizraim") means "the Egyptian," and indeed Dhu'l-Nun is thought to have been an ethnic Egyptian, rather than one of the Greek or Arab immigrants common at the time. More particularly, he was from Panopolis. His name has been associated with Hermeticism and alchemy since at least the ninth century, and although some commentators have dismissed such claims, Kingsley asserts that "their historical nature can be --- and since the start of this century has been --- established."10
Doubt has also been cast on the legend that Dhu'l-Nun could read Egyptian hieroglyphs. But earlier this year, egyptologist Okasha El Daly verified that a manuscript of Dhu'l-Nun's shows him to be partially correct in translating hieroglyphs, many centuries after knowledge of them was thought to have died out.11
Dhu'l-Nun provided the original definition of gnosis within Islamic mysticism, describing gnostics as "those who exist in God and contemplate His face within their hearts, so that He reveals Himself to them in a way not accorded to others." He is also credited with being the first within Sufism to speak of the stages of the soul's path to God, depicting seven steps reminiscent of the seven steps of Zosimos. The origin of the notion of the Qtub, the mystic guide of humanity considered as the pole of the heavens, is popularly ascribed to Dhu'l-Nun. He is also believed to have been the editor of the commentary on the Koran written by Ja‘far al-Sadiq, the sixth Imam, himself rumored to have been involved with Hermeticism and alchemy.
Suhrawardi mentions one other individual from whom the "leaven of the Pythagoreans" proceeded to the Islamic world: Sahl al-Tustari, another crucial figure in the history of Sufism. He is not known to have been involved in alchemy. But he was the student of Dhu'l-Nun. He taught a doctrine of the four elements. And he was the teacher of the noted Sufi martyr, Hallaj.

Uthman Ibn Suwaid

A generation after Dhu'l-Nun, Ibn Suwaid wrote the Mushaf al-jamaa ("Tome of the Gathering"). Mere fragments exist of the original, but a Latin translation not only exists in full, it is famous as one of the central documents of Western alchemy: the Turba Philosophorum ("Gathering of the Philosophers"). In it, Empedocles plays a prominent role, comparing the Earth to an egg. Elemental earth itself is the egg-shell, water is the egg-white, the fire underneath the water is the egg-yolk, and the sun is the chick, the point at the middle of the yolk. Kingsley points out that this Arabic depiction of the doctrines of Empedocles turns out to have accorded far more accurately with the historical record than the Aristotelian philosophical histories of the West.
And that is not all. Ibn Suwaid, the Arabic author of the epochal Western alchemical tract, lived in Panopolis. A list of his published works includes the "Book of Refutation of the Accusation Against Dhu'l-Nun al-Misri."

Shihab al-Din al-Suhrawardi

The lineage of Suhrawardi, then, reveals great mysteries. The more historical evidence is gathered, the more his claims of an unbroken tradition with the wisdom of the ancients are supported. But who was he? What use did he make of the alchemical thread running through Panopolis? Suhrawardi was the founder of the Illuminationist school of Islamic mysticism, and arguably the greatest of the Persian philosophers. He claimed to have united the streams of the initiated traditions of the East and West, so convincingly that the Zoroastrians partially reinvented their own history to conform to his doctrines. His philosophy remains influential in Iran and India to this day.
Illuminationism is centered upon the idea of knowledge by presence. That which is present gains direct knowledge of the sensible though the senses, and gains direct knowledge of the supersensible through intuition, in both cases without the mediation of reason or thought. Everything is derived from light. Multiplicity is due to the creative expression of the Light of Lights, or God, and darkness (which includes all corporeal bodies) is an accident deriving from the multiplicity of lights. It can be inferred that presence and light, for the Illuminationists, are co-emergent. The Illuminationist work is enlightenment through the soul's exposure to the divine lights. Suhrawardi developed a sophisticated emanationist metaphysics to this end, and a streamlined reformation of Aristotelian logic to support it.
Besides his association with alchemy due to the story of his mysterious ruby, Suhrawardi also practiced astrology and Arabic letter-magic. But to the modern initiate, the most interesting aspect of Suhrawardi's writings concerns a doctrine found in Arabic Hermeticism.

Do not imagine that the lord of a species is a body or bodily or that it has a head or two feet. You have found that Hermes said, "A spiritual essence gave me knowledge, so I asked it, 'Who are you?' It replied, 'I am your Perfect Nature.'"12

What Suhrawardi means by Perfect Nature can be explained through a passage from the Ghayat al-Hakim (translated into Latin as the Picatrix):

The first thing you have to do in relation to yourself, is to meditate attentively on the spiritual entity (ruhaniyato-ka, "your angel") which rules you and which is associated with your star --- namely, your Perfect Nature ... 13

In his psalm to Perfect Nature, Suhrawardi indicates, as beautifully as anyone before or since, the shape of what the Pythagorean leaven gives rise to:

Thou, my lord and prince, my most holy angel, my precious spiritual being, Thou art the Spirit who gave birth to me, and Thou art the Child to whom my spirit gives birth... Thou who art clothed in the most brilliant of divine Lights... may Thou manifest Thyself to me in the most beautiful (or in the highest) of epiphanies, show me the light of Thy dazzling face, be for me the mediator... lift the veils of darkness from my heart... 14

While we may never know whether there could have been any connection between Suhrawardi's teachings and the Holy Guardian Angel of Abramelin magick, the recollection that Abramelin himself was a resident of Egypt suggests that they may have both been tributaries of the initiated tradition of Panopolis.

1. Ibn Abi Usaybia, 'Uyun al-Anba' fi Tabaqat al-Atibba, ed. A. Müller. Königsberg (1884), 2:168 - 169,

cited by John Walbridge, The Leaven of the Ancients (Albany: SUNY Press, 2000), p. 52 - 53.
2. The fifth-century b.c.e. Empedocles was considered by Islamic historians of the middle ages to have
been a predecessor of Pythagoras (sixth century b.c.e.). Walbridge, op. cit., p. 45.
3. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1995.
4. Inverness, CA: Golden Sufi Center, 1999.
5. Inverness, CA: Golden Sufi Center, 2004.
6. Kingsley (2004), pp. 430 - 431.
7. Garth Fowden hints that the Hermetica may well have been written in Panopolis, see The Egyptian
Hermes (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993), pp. 173 - 175.
8. Kingsley (1995), p. 355.
9. Described by Richard Burton as "one red granite column, and one of fine-grained red porphyry,"
Pilgrimage to Al-Madinah and Meccah, appendix II.
10. Kingsley (1995), p. 389.
11. Reuters, "Scholar: Muslims had insights into hieroglyphs" (22 February 2004).
12. Shihab al-Din al-Suhrawardi, Mashari, para. 193, in Majmua, vol. 1:463 - 64, cited by Walbridge,
The Wisdom of the Mystic East (Albany: SUNY Press, 2001), p. 49.
13. Pseudo-Majriti, Das Ziel des Weisen [Ghayat al-Hakim], ed. Helmut Ritter, Studien der Bibliothek
Warburg, XII (Leipzig, 1933), p. 193, cited by Henry Corbin, The Man of Light in Iranian
Sufism, tr. Nancy Pearson (Boulder: Shambhala, 1978), p. 17.
14. Henry Corbin, En Islam iranien, vol. 2, Sohravardi et les Platoniciens de Perse (Paris: Gallimard,
1971 - 72), bk. II, ch. III, cited by Corbin (1978), p. 21.

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On the Ancient Wisdom of the Haight

by Hymenaeus Alpha 777

"Blessed is he who sits in the middle,
for he shall double-toke."
--- Ancient Wisdom of the Haight

It is a curious anomaly that the national defense of these United States rests on the hard won expertise of the survivors of the Haight. And yes, I did say survivors. The Haight was a war like any war, and after it was over looked just as bombed out (as a veteran of six foreign campaigns, I know a battlefield when I see one), only for artillery they used lightning. Acid. LSD. Zain = 7 = Sword = line 17, column XIV (the Pharmacopoeia, 777) = Gemini (line 17, column VII) = Atu VI, The Lovers (line 17, column XIV) which is why they called the Gemini card "the Acid Card" in the Haight. Crowley did not have clinical LSD in his day so he put ergot there instead (the raw material from which lysergic acid diethylamide is derived by the use of current state-of-the-art chemical laboratory equipment --- would the Alchemists had had such!).
The amount of genius level IQ displayed by many of those young chemists in their very early twenties was incredible. And completely unrecognized by the general public. If acid were legal, many of those kids would be candidates for the Nobel Laureate today. But of course it isn't, so we must work with the records of the past.
[essay fragment, circa summer 1979 e.v.]

Saints' Quote of the Month

--- William Blake

You're already in the Holy Land.
Might as well volunteer.

Call (510) 601-9393 to find out how you can help.

Thelema Lodge, O.T.O.

An Invocation to Lord Hermes

By Majnun

[A preliminary ritual, adapted from G.R.S. Mead, Thrice Greatest Hermes
(London, 1906), I. 60.]

First breathe deeply and evenly while seated with a straight back, for at least a few minutes.
1.Come unto me, Lord Hermes, even as into women's wombs come babes!
2.Come unto me, Lord Hermes, who dost collect the food of gods and men!
3.Lord Hermes, come to me, and give me grace, and food, and victory, and health and happiness, and cheerful countenance, beauty and powers in sight of all!
4.I know thy Name that shineth forth in heaven; I know thy forms as well;
Visualize the forms of Hermes in the quarters: an ibis in the east, a jackal in the south, an ape in the west, and a serpent in the north.

I know thy tree, I know thy wood as well.
The tree of Hermes is the terebinth.1 His wood is ebony.
5.I know thee, Hermes, who thou art, and whence thou art, and what thy city is.
6.I know thy names in the barbarous tongue, and thy true name as it is written on the holy tablet in the holy place at Hermes' city, where thou dost have thy birth.
7.I know thee, Hermes, and thou knowest me; and I am thou, and thou art I.
8.Come unto me; fulfill all that I crave; be favorable to me with Agathodaimon.

Then visualize a small Hermes Trismegistus (possibly as depicted on the floor of the Siena Cathedral, above right) seated on your head.

As you vibrate "I" (e), visualize that a crimson Alchemical Sulphur (sulphur) appears on Hermes' forehead, and then transfers to your forehead, along with all of the energy of Hermes.
As you vibrate "A" (a), visualize that a yellow Alchemical Mercury (mercury) appears at Hermes' heart, and then transfers to your heart, along with all of the knowledge of Hermes.
As you vibrate "O" (o), visualize that a dark blue Alchemical Salt (salt) appears at Hermes' abdomen, and then transfers to your abdomen, along with all of the vastness of Hermes.
As you vibrate "E" (a), visualize that Hermes dissolves above your head, that you absorb him, and that your identity merges with his.


1. Mead has "turpentine palm." Many trees have sap that can be used
to make turpentine, and many trees are palms, but no trees are
both. The turpentine of the terebinth, or turpentine tree (right),
was used by ancient Egyptians to coat the skulls of mummies,
and is most likely what is meant.

Classes and Events

Friday, June 4 8:00PM: Air Meeting.* The Air Meetings focus on planning: deciding on long-range goals, public relations, scanning for relevant trends outside the community and in the future, and analyzing whether current practices are consistent with our objectives.

Friday, June 11 8:15PM: Meditation Class. An evening of meditation practice with Michael Sanborn, to be followed by a Friday night out.

Saturday, June 12 3:00PM: The Rites of Eleusis Planning Meeting. Held at Sirius Oasis in Berkeley. Everyone who wants to help with the Rites is welcome. Bring your plans, venues, and ideas! Please call Caitlin (Herder of Cats, um, RitesMistress) at (510) 652-9986 for directions/more information. The Rites begin July 17th, and Mars needs Women! (Actually, all the Godforms could use volunteers. Of both sexes. Thanks!)

Monday, June 14 8:00PM: Double Current Enochian. Angels! Chanting! Noetic reciprocity! Quirky alternative kabbalahs! We've got it all. This session, we'll be working with the Earth of Air sub-quadrant. Keywords: Space and Flowing.

Friday, June 18 8:00PM: Fire and Earth Meeting.* The Fire and Earth meetings have two parts. In the first (Earth), the focus is on the day-to-day operation of Masses, classes, events, publications, the library, etc. In the second (Fire), the focus is on scheduling and synergy between areas of operation.

Saturday, June 19 8:00PM: Gemini Birthday Bash. Good things come in twos, so let's get together in honor of our Geminis. Remember, there'll be cake. Mmm... cake.

Sunday, June 20 4:00PM: Summer Solstice Ritual and Pot-luck. Come celebrate the longest day, and the shortest night, of the year with us. Bring something to share --- we'll have an impromptu feast after the rite and still have time to walk it off before Mass!

Wednesday, June 23 8:00PM: Water Meeting.* The Water meetings focus on connection: sharing, relationship, feelings, warmth, and coziness.

Friday, June 25 7:30PM: The Great Work --- Fun and Games with Your H. G. A. The group continues its exploration of the Great Work with the inspired facilitation of Marium Lange. This month, we'll be discussing personal experiences and practical tips, while continuing to develop a collective vision for future classes.

Saturday, June 26 11:00AM: O.T.O. Meeting. For initiates only. Call (510)-601-9393 to attend.

Monday, June 28 8:00PM: Double Current Enochian. (See entry for June 14.) "Then I would suggest that yonder yellow submarine is ourselves going backwards in time!" --- John Lennon. Featuring the Fire of Earth sub-quadrant. Keywords: Trials and Opening.

* One of three monthly organizational meetings. Pick the one or two that most interest you, or come to all three.

Greater Feast

by Marlene Cornelius

[An open letter dated May 31, 2004 e.v.]

Cara Fraters et Sorors,

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

Today our dearly loved Soror Meral, Phyllis Seckler, has Celebrated her Greater Feast. She was sleeping peacefully within the arms of her Beloved Angel and passed easily through the Veils at 4:34 pm.

"I give unimaginable joys on earth: certainty, not faith, while in life, upon death; peace unutterable, rest ecstasy; nor do I demand aught in sacrifice."

Celebrate her Glorious Life and the well-earned Freedom she has finally won!

Love is the law, love under will.

The letters O.T.O. stand for ORDO TEMPLI ORIENTIS --the Order of Oriental Templars, or Order of the Temple of the East. The O.T.O. is dedicated to securing the Liberty of the Individual, and his or her advancement in Light, Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge, and Power. This is accomplished through Beauty, Courage, and Wit, on the Foundation of Universal Brotherhood. The O.T.O. is in sympathy with the traditional ideals of Freemasonry, and was the first of the Old Aeon orders to accept The Book of the Law.

Many aspirants to the Great Work have a genuine need for information, guidance, fellowship, or the opportunity to assist their fellow aspirants and serve humanity. Such aspirants will find welcome in the O.T.O.
The structure of the O.T.O., like that of Freemasonry and the ancient mystery schools, is based on a graded series of initiations, or Degrees. In these Degrees, the O.T.O. seeks to instruct the individual by allegory and symbol in the profound mysteries of Existence, and thereby to assist each to discover his or her own true Nature.
Every man and woman of full age, free, and of good report, has an indefeasible right to the introductory Degrees of the O.T.O.
The O.T.O. also includes the Gnostic Catholic Church (Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica), whose central public and private rite is "Liber XV," the Gnostic Mass.

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

Thelema Lodge--the oldest continuously

operating lodge of the O.T.O.--has been

regularly performing "Liber XV," the

Gnostic Mass, in the San Francisco Bay

Area since 1977 e.v. Friends and guests

are invited to join us any Sunday evening

by 8:00 pm for the celebration, which

begins shortly after nightfall. If attending

for the first time, please call ahead and

speak with the lodgemaster for additional

information and directions to the temple.

Love is the law, love under will.

6/2/04Full Moon in Sagittarius 9:21 PM
6/4/04Air Meeting -- Planning 8:00PM(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/5/04OTO Initiations (call to attend)(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/6/04Gnostic Mass 8:00PM in Horus Temple(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/11/04Meditation Class with Michael 9:00PM(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/12/04Rites of Eleusis Planning 3:00PMSirius Camp
6/13/04Gnostic Mass 8:00PM in Horus Temple(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/14/04Double Current Enochian
with Michael 8:00PM
(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/17/04New Moon in Gemini 1:28 PM
6/18/04Fire and Earth Meeting
Operating & Scheduling
Open to All 8:00PM
(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/19/04Gemini Birthday Party 8:PM(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/20/04Sun enters Leo 4:37 PM
6/20/04Summer Solstice Ritual & Pot-luck
(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/20/04Gnostic Mass 8:00PM in Horus Temple(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/23/04Water Meeting -- Harmonizing 8:00PM(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/25/04The Great Work with Marium 7:30PM(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/26/04OTO Meeting 11:00AM Initiates Only
(Call to Attend)
(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/27/04Gnostic Mass 8:00PM in Horus Temple(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.
6/28/04Double Current Enochian
with Michael 8:00PM
(510) 652-3171Thelema Ldg.

The viewpoints and opinions expressed herein are the responsibility of the contributing authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of OTO or its officers.

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

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