Thelema Lodge Calendar for August 1992 e.v.

Thelema Lodge Calendar

for August 1992 e.v.

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

Copyright © O.T.O. and the Individual Authors, 1992 e.v.

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

August 1992 e.v. at Thelema Lodge

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

Announcements from
Lodge Members and Officers


ANNOUNCEMENT!

Thelema Lodge has moved to its seventh location in fifteen years. Most classes are now held at the Lodge HQ: 544 31st Street in Oakland. This location is a block West of Telegraph, about a dozen blocks South of Ancient Ways Store. Occupying the upper story of a Victorian on a quiet street in the City of the Oak, the new Lodge setting is definitely the best to the eye that this writer can recall. On ascending a flight of stairs at the front of a stately building with stained glass Lamen of the Order in an upper window, the visitor is confronted with a large painting of Baphomet and a turn to a galleried hall the length of the flat. On the walls are attractive displays of Thelemic and tantric art, along with historic documents and photos detailing the life of the Order and it's notables. The secured library and archives is second to none on the West Coast. Access is by librarian call from the catalogue, to protect the documents and rare editions. There are several rooms for residents and classes, all richly and unusually decorated. For large assemblies, arrangements still need to be made to have a hall; but in the mean time the Gnostic Mass continues at 588 63rd Street as before.


August Events

Gnostic Masses every Sunday at 8 PM this month at 63rd Street.
Initiations on the 15th, by prior arrangement only. Call the Lodge Master more than a month ahead to arrange for your own initiation; call nearer the event to attend at the Lodge.
Lodge meeting 8PM on the 3rd. The Lodge Council and LOP meetings at 3:33 PM on the 2nd are limited in attendance to members of appropriate degree and Lodge affiliation.
Minerval and I° study secessions on the 4th and 18th, respectively, are for members in those degrees or higher, at the Lodge.
A birthday party for all Virgos is back at the 63rd Street location on the 23rd, starting at 4:18 PM with Gnostic Mass as usual at 8PM
Jerry's Logorrhea takes place on the 29th at the Lodge at 7:30 PM. It is necessary to reserve a place at this meeting by calling (510) ... ..... The topic is: Familiars, Elementals and Things that Go Bump in the Night.
The Feast of the Beast and His Bride is a Thelemic Holy Day celebration and potluck at the Lodge from 6:30 PM on the 12th. Call to coordinate the potluck.
Grace moves on to Astrological Analysis with two classes this month on the 5th and 26th, 8 PM at the Lodge.
Marlene continues the Book of Thoth study circle at 7:30 PM on the 13th and 27th at the Lodge.
Bill offers meeting #3 on the Tree of Life on the 19th, Lodge, 8 PM.
Lola's Egyptian Hieroglyphs runs on the 6th and 20th, Lodge, 7 PM.
Independent classes on the Chakras with Andrew are offered on the 14th and 21st back on 63rd St. at 7:30 PM, and a dance planning meeting is also independent of the Order for a "Rave" - call (510) 654-6573 for the location.


REMEMBER!
Most events are now at 544 31st Street in Oakland, with only the Gnostic Mass and a very few other events at 588 63rd St.

{Also remember that this was 1992 e.v., the Lodge has moved again since this was published -- Note to Web edition}


Crowley Classics

The reference here to Africa may be to the Boer War, but the sentiment is very fitting for present time Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas. In the year of an American election, what has happened to advance the freedom of mankind both here and abroad? 92 years have passed since Crowley wrote this piece, but the answer sometimes seems to be "not much". Gains have come and gone; but the challenge given below should still give Americans pause, especially now that nations and former city-states first among those to recognize the revolution of 1776 e.v. have fallen again under the shadow -- ED.

EPILOGUE.

TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE

ON THE ANNIVERSARY OF THEIR
INDEPENDENCE.

by Aleister Crowley

THE ship to the breezes is bended;
   The wind whistles off to the lee;
The sun is risen, the splendid!
   The sun on the marvellous sea!
And the feast of your freedom is ended.
       O sons of the free!

Your shouts have gone up to remember
   The day of your oath to the world
Is its flame dwindled down to an ember?
   The flag of your liberty furled?
Your limbs are too strong to dismember -
       In sloth are they curled?

The price of your freedom - I claim it!
   Your aid to make other men free!
Your strength - I defy it to be
   Your peace - I defy it to be
Dishonoured! Arise and proclaim it
       From sea unto sea!

From Ireland the voice of the dying,
   The murdered, the starved, the exiled,
In hope to your freedom is crying
   A dolorous note and a wild:
"Your star-bestrewn banner is flying,
       And ours - is defiled."

From Ind - shall her summons awaken?
   Her voices are those of the dead!
By famine and cholera shaken,
   By taxes and usury bled,
In the hour of her torture forsaken,
       Stones given for bread!

In Africa women are fighting
   Their homes and their freedom to hold.
Young children and graybeards, delighting
   To die for their country of old!
For the ravenous lion is smiting
       A stroke for their gold.

They fall in the shelterless hollow;
   They sleep in the cold and the sun;
They fight, and the Englishmen follow -
   The odds are as twenty to one!
Hide, hide thy bright eyes, O Apollo!
       The murder is done.

The stones should arise to declare it,
   Their terror and tyrannous reign!
The earth be unable to bear it,
   Gape wide, for their motherly pain!
Shalt thou, O Columbia, share it,
       The shame and the stain?

Your stripes are the stripes of dishonour;
   Your stars are cast down from the sky;
While earth has this burden upon her,
   Your eagle unwilling to fly!
Loose, loose the wide wings! For your honour!
       Let tyranny die!

Remember, this day of your glory,
   Your fight for the freedom you own,
Those years - is their memory hoary?
   Your chains - is their memory flown?
Your triumph is famous in story,
       But yours is alone.

In the name of your Freedom I claim it,
   Your power in the cause of the free!
In the name of our God as I name it,
   AMEN! I demand it of ye,
Man's freedom! Arise and proclaim it,
       The song of the sea!

S.S. PENNSYLVANIA,
   July 4, 1900.

From Carmen Saeculare, 1901, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co., Ltd., London pp. 27 - 30. Also published in The Works of Aleister Crowley, Vol. I, 1905.

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Primary Sources

Max Schneider:
The following is from a loose leaf binder of the diary and notes of Max Schneider, member of Agape Lodge from its early days in Southern California. This selection sheds light on the transition in leadership of the Lodge just as Jack Parsons had been appointed Lodge Master and Wilfred Smith had been displaced by Crowley orders. For more on the individuals noted below, please see the July issue of the Thelema Lodge Calendar; in addition, Jane is Jane Wolfe, one time starlet of the silent screen and close associate of Crowley's at the Abbey of Thelema at Cefalu in the 1920s. "1003" refers to the address of the Lodge.
Wilfred Smith had been subjected to a controversial series of complaints to Crowley. Karl Germer and Jane Wolfe were the most influential in getting Crowley to remove Smith, a fact hidden from the members of the Lodge, as will be born out by Brother Schneider's notes. Crowley openly issued Liber CXXXII, in the form of a letter to Smith detailing a required magical retirement, but privately sent letters threatening him with expulsion if he revealed the actual fact of his removal under pressure or if he continued in contact with the Lodge members. The 666 essay noted below is almost certainly Liber Apotheosis, circulated to some of the members of the Lodge with a page missing.
This glimpse into the life of an upper degree OTO member of almost half a century ago affords both an insight into journal keeping and a sense of perspective on the personal challenges of Thelemic society.

June 19, 1943. ---

Went to Santa Monica with Jean, for the weekend. Cloudy and windy, the surf does not look too inviting for a swim. Had dinner at the Belle View with some rather uninteresting acquaintances of Jean's we ran into, and escaped early; but the Abalone was excellent. After, a good walk along the seashore, enlivened by good talk on the G.W. - Having returned to our abode, we enjoyed a bottle of sparkling burgundy together, which turned out to be a very satisfactory brand of a California edition of "wines that foam".
10:30 to 11:30 pm: Mag.Op. : To me! To me! - Jean said later that she had seen herself quite clearly as the Priestess and had experienced no difficulty in mentally reciting the love chant at the proper moment.

Sunday, June 20, 1943. ---

A delightful morning. Later, after a most enjoyable swim, settled down for a good sunbath. Jean took down several letters in shorthand thus combining business with pleasure. In the PM we returned to Hollywood and Georgia asked us to have dinner with her. She was in a very depressed mood; things seem to have gone wrong at 1003 where she had been at the solsticial party. She felt that she had not been very welcome. Mellinger, after going into a huddle with Jane informed her, very emphatically, that Smith "was not out". Mellinger avoided her and was rather curt. Apparently, Karl telling us one thing and Jane another is causing confusion and is not going to make things any easier. - Georgia met Joe Miller, and said that he wanted to see me and an appointment has been arranged. Georgia, in order to avoid further misunderstanding, told Jane that Miller's visit with me is in no way intended to estrange Miller from 1003. Jane's brusque "hell is paved with good intentions" seemed a little uncalled for. A. C.'s words of praise as to my integrity seem to have made little impression on Jane, who still reflects Smith's influence.

Tuesday, June 22, 1943. ---

In the evening went over to Pasadena to sit in on a "class". There were about 10 members present. Lodge was opened in the 1st degree. Jack is doing very well as Master, he has poise and dignity. We soon adjourned to the living room where it was cooler. At Jack's request various members expressed their reactions to the party and Betty as Treasurer, gave a concise financial report. Jack introduced me very cordially to the Lodge and spoke of high esteem in which I am said to be held by the Grand Lodge and he suggested that the members come to me with their problems and in connection with their studies.
This class is supposed to concern itself with practical experiments in Asana, Pranayama, Astral journeys etc., to be made at home during the week with a reading and discussion of the records at the following meeting. I do not think much of group work in such matters which really belong to the AA system. But I do not want to interfere at this juncture; no doubt activities can be directed into sounder channels later on. - It seems that Jack wants me to take on the job of teaching --- I proposed to Jack that Jean and I come over for the next weekend to which he gladly agrees.

Saturday, June 26, 1943. ---

Jean and I drove over to 1003 in the PM. Jane assigned Smith's comfortable quarters to us, which was a bit of a surprise. Dinner was very pleasant. I note that Jean is quite spontaneous in her behavior and that she has the faculty of making everybody feel at ease. Later, she helped wash the dishes and baked a cake for tomorrow night's party.
11:00 PM retire and banished by the Star Ruby. Mag. Op. --- object --- purification of 1003. Concentrated on spell "Pure Will" etc.,

Sunday, June 27, 1943. ---

Arose comparatively late after a good night's sleep, bathed and did 15 minutes easy Pranayama in Dragon Asana. The veranda facing east is admirably suited to work in the nude with sunshine and plenty of fresh air, yet sheltered. After a stroll in garden where Jane was already digging potatoes and after picking some ripe kumquats I returned to the house. Found Jean just finishing her 20 minutes of Pranayama which she was doing with the poise and rhythm of an experienced Yogini. At breakfast upon invitation, I said "Will" with Jane. There was pleasant and harmonious conversation at the table. With the exception of Jack, who suffers from a bad cold and Jane who was already tired out everybody was lively and cheerful.

Friday evening, July 2nd, '43. ---

In the evening, met Jean in Glendale and after a somewhat hasty supper we drove to the summit of Mt. Wilson. The scenery was gorgeous, although there was quite a haze obscuring the valleys; 6000 feet is not very high, yet the purity of the atmosphere is decidedly exhilarating and the peace of the mountains is balm to my soul. This is Jean's first visit to this beauty spot and she is profoundly moved. A very enjoyable walk under the deodars in the starlight - Venus shines brighter than ever - and we find ourselves back in our cottage. Later, Mag. Op.: "I am uplifted in thine heart; and the kisses of the stars rain hard upon thy body".

Saturday, July 3rd, '43. ---

Arose in time to greet Ra; a glorious sunrise! This mountain air, with its perfume of pines, is marvellous. - Oh, for a mountain lodge, to which one could retire frequently, and get away from the noise and bustle of the city, and from the problems of Agape Lodge! - Spent a quiet day, and after putting the Sun to bed from Sunset View, we proceeded to the eastern end of the summit, Echo Point, and on this promontory invoked Tahuti, which great intensity. The idea was to prepare ourselves toward doing a good job with all the correspondence to be tackled the day following. After returning to the cottage: Mag. Op. : TAHUTI.

Sunday, July 4th, '43.

Beautiful day; the deer and the little fawns are lovely, and so tame; there are all sorts of brightly coloured birds the name of which I do not know; also an occasional humming-bird.
Dictated letters and notes to Jean who took them down in shorthand and then typed them. Forgot to bring an eraser and it annoys Jean that some necessary corrections do not look very neat. - Recess for lunch and a walk for exercise. Resumed correspondence later.

Monday, July 5th, '43.

Left Mt. Wilson at noon and returned to Glendale and Hollywood. - Found short letter from Karl waiting for me with a copy of part of an essay by 666, based on Smith's alleged powers of inspiration. How romantic! But will he swallow this bait? - Finished and mailed letters to A.C., Karl and Joe Miller.

Tuesday, July 6th, '43.

Roy arrived in the evening and I was very glad to see him. --- His cordiality and sense of humor are refreshing. After dinner he drove Georgia and myself to Pasadena and on the way I acquainted him with recent developments at 1003. ---
In Lodge, Jack introduced Roy very nicely to the younger members and Roy answered in his usual humorous vein. The class that followed turned out to be a lively one, with everyone participating. Jack gave me an opportunity to point out that group discussions of a very limited experiments {sic} in Asana and Pranayama by beginners is not very desirable and that it would be proper for those whose will it is to go in for these practices in a serious manner to become probationers of AA and as such enable themselves to work systematically. ...

Thursday, July 8, '43

I think that it is correct to say that one of the important objects of magical training is to attain to a complete reliance on one's own powers, based on one's own experience - and not to rely on belief. ("Do not say there is a God before you have experienced God", or words to that effect; and "Be ye lamps unto yourselves; betake ye not to any external refuge." - Not to forget the broken bottle incident in "KIM". It was exactly Kim's ability to rely upon his own faculties of observation and his firmness in refusing hypnotic suggestion, that qualified him for the task for which he was being tested.)

All of the evidence of the last 10 years, based on the observation of scores of people, makes it clear that Wilfred is a failure as a leader, a bungler as an organizer, a meddler and martinet in his relations with his fellows whom he treated as his subordinates and whose initiative he sought to suppress, and a wet blanket when performing the office of priest. - Now comes Mellinger's testimony, entirely uncorroborated, that W. often became inspired and had great power. Worse yet, other reports being disseminated by or through Mellinger, have been found incorrect and unreliable; Mel. may otherwise be a fine fellow, but his powers of discernment seem to be of questionable value. Everybody else seems to agree that W. as priest was definitely uninspiring and inept. It seems therefore a bit ludicrous that on such a flimsy basis we are being asked to accept W. as the coming Priest and Prophet par excellence. Ye gods and little fishes! It reminds one of Annie Besant asking a following of gullible Toshochists to accept Krishnamurti as the world teacher.
Now if someone had suggested, reasoning from the sorry spectacle of W.'s inaptitude in all matters external, that perchance he was a frustrated Mystic who had mistaken himself for something he isn't and had got lost in the labyrinth of mundane affairs, caught in the coils of power politics, something like the unhappy example of the "Grey Eminence" ...... then I might lend a sympathetic ear. But what evidence can we discover that will encourage us in the pursuit of this forlorn hope?
A man who proclaims that the Tao is so difficult to understand, whose byword is "misty mysticism" for most ideas that are beyond his literal- mindedness; who becomes annoyed when anyone offers a mystical interpretation, who has no sense of the beautiful - can one call that a promising candidate for the office of inspired Priest and God-illuminated Prophet?
"Success is thy proof",
If W. could really go through with the enormous task of purging his soul of his egotism and lust of power and all the rest; if he could get rid of the silly idea that he is the "Little beast" of revelations and an imitation of A.C.; if he could overcome all the handicaps that stand in the way of his becoming a presentable, devoted and holy Priest; if he could cancel out all the karma of his many "errors" during the past decade; if he now would turn to Laotse and actually would tread the path of the Tao; if he were really able to understand the profundities of Liber Aleph and present us with an illuminated comment thereon; if he were then to rejoin us with the simplicity of the Pure Fool as his garment - that would be a miracle indeed, and I WOULD BE THE FIRST ONE TO WELCOME HIM AS JOYOUSLY AS I DO THE FLOWERS IN SPRING.
Meanwhile all this remains a pipe-dream and a wish-phantasm, and a very dangerous snare for a man with W.'s psychological background. When this devoutly to be wished for consummation becomes an actuality, it will be time enough to take it more seriously.
Also, there is much work to be done. Agape Lodge must be cleansed of many false ideas; it needs a better understanding of its proper function and of the principles of the Book of the Law which its members have sworn to defend.

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from the Grady Project:

Notes On A City (damn near any city)

Along the street the eddy whirls
With frowsy dames and sloppy girls
And somber men and brazon boys
Who stomp or trot; and it annoys (Period)

The crusty shops that cringe at sight
And droop beside each other, quite
As though their misery alone
Would be too much; they would atone.

My reason tells me that it must
Be true; the thoughtless crowds, the dust,
The grimy walks, the littered streets;
The facades pass for scrawny teats.

And yet I know it can not be;
There is no grass, there is no tree,
But only sound that rolls and beats
And sanctioned murder in the streets.

While in his nest each merchant waits,
As patiently his net he baits
And views his neighbor with contempt,
Though finding he is not exempt

From hatreds that swell from the needs
Of human want; within the seeds
Of lassez faire there are the germs
That hold decay, and then the worms

Of avarice and greed and hate
Sprout forth; they bore, they eat, they sate
Their hunger on the scabs of men:
I sit and watch. I sit and grin.

-- Grady L. McMurtry      
2/11/41     

Previously published in The Grady Project #1 (October 1987 e.v.).

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Qabalah

The View From Tipheret

(Part III)

by Bill Heidrick

[Adapted from Appendix A of The Road to the Sun: A Record of Self Initiation to Tipheret, an unpublished MS, Copyright © by Bill Heidrick]

In this installment, we will conclude a brief trek over the traditional Tree of Life. The next installment in this series will take up dynamic variation of the paths.

23 ........ The path of Mem (The Hanged Man in Tarot) elevates the lower reason

of Hod to the higher rationality of Geburah. Hod reasons with the things of the Earth, of Malkut. Hod is an examining consciousness, a mentality that sets things into order only through observation of their manifestations. Geburah is a state of mind that plans without concern for details. Hod knows the detailed workings of the physical world. Geburah knows the purpose of the World. The path of Mem connects the precise but fundamentally purposeless organizing activities of Hod with the purposeful but indefinite organizing will of Geburah. The Tarot card shows a man hung upside down by one foot. This is the symbolic state of one who has possessed all but understood nothing. Such a person, gifted with the powers of Hod, soon comes to boredom. His worldly consciousness gives no purpose to his world. To control is not to understand. Such a person comes finally to be hung upon the gibbet of his worldly power. Nothing has meaning. All things obey, but to no purpose. Perfect skill without a purpose is maddening. In that inversion of consciousness an openness occurs. The mind yearns for another mind, an inward guidance. When this yearning is crowned with success, Geburah has been touched along the path of Men. Down this path floods inspiration and purpose in life. Tipheret can view all of life and know its course, but Geburah directs life. Tipheret responds to Geburah's plan. Hod is the working out of that plan in detail.

22 ........ The path of Lamed (Justice in Tarot) elevates the life view of Tipheret to the life purpose of Geburah. The card of Justice depicts a woman with scales and sword. This is the mediatrix of mind, weighing out the proper measure of all things and fending off excess. The mentality of Tipheret is examined along the path of Lamed to produce the guiding will of Geburah. This is a rational process much like that which occurred between Yesod and Hod and between Malkut and Hod. The difference is found in the object. To build Hod, the chief concern is in how and why things work mechanically. In the reaching of Geburah, the concern is in how and why things work morally. Hod seeks and develops skill in the doing of things. Geburah seeks and develops skill in discerning and directing the purpose of life. Along the path of Lamed, the mind rises by examination of its motives until such motives are justified with each other. This justification gives a personal morality to the soul. All older, fragmentary moralities are forgotten in the one, consuming morality of Geburah. This is not necessarily a good thing. The morality so evolved may be a hateful and repressive one. In that case, mind will not progress beyond Geburah. Only when mind is ready to love and to bestow all good things on all who need, will evolution continue. Once Geburah is reached in this way, the path of Lamed becomes a channel for change in all aspects of life. Before reaching Geburah, life is locked in by many vague restrictions. Once Geburah has been fully attained, all the shackles are dropped away; and life is free to follow its willed course. The attainment of Geburah is marked by a freedom from all sense of guilt and unhappy restraint, but not abandonment of duty. When this state is reached before the mind is ready for such responsibility and freedom, great physical danger results.

5 ......... Geburah (Severity). This is the place of consciousness of the proper course of life. This is the guiding will that sets all limits and releases all restrictions. When Geburah is fully attained, conscience ceases to plague, for the dictates of the conscience become consistent and welcome. Geburah is the master of the house of life that is situated in Tipheret. Geburah is obedience to the Will of God in all ways understood. Geburah, once attained, means an end to hesitations. When this Sephira is fully active, the mind is rendered capable of immediate response and proper action in any situation no matter how complex. The working of the body depends on the lower Sephiroth. When all the Sephiroth up to and including Geburah are perfectly developed in a person, that person is capable of anything in mental and in physical action. Nothing can oppose such an one. Such a major adept is perfectly a demigod to rule the world of his life. In practice, the Sephiroth are fully developed for some things and lacking where others are concerned. Repeated passage over the Tree of Life increases the development of the Sephiroth and bestows more power on each attainment of Geburah. At some times, great development is accomplished in the Sephiroth and great freedom to change is obtained. Such a time may be considered a mark of initiation, but not mastery of Geburah. Total attainment and mastery of the Sephiroth is never found in a mortal man. It is man's purpose to increase his attainments toward an ever advancing ideal. To reach perfection is to become one with God and therefore to become useless to one's brothers and sisters in the world. Touch union with God, but return quickly to the place of the crying children. Union with God is not the sole purpose of Being, it is a pleasantness that gives strength in time of need. The purpose of Being is found in being in all ways. Geburah is the master who selects the ways. Tipheret is the place of the mustering of the ways. Netzach is the place of the brightening of the ways. Hod is the place of the ordering of the ways. Yesod is the staging place from which the ways reach the physical. Malkut is the place of the action of the ways.

21 ........ The path of Kaf (The Wheel of Fortune in Tarot) elevates the emotional complex of Netzach to the emotional idealism of Chesed. The card depicts a wheel surrounded by symbolic creatures. This is a representation of the many cycles of the emotions that are experienced in Netzach. When one emotion is found to underlay all others and to pass without change through all the cycles that change all other emotions, the Sephira of Chesed is touched. The one underlying emotion serves to build a basis for the emotional perfection of Chesed.

20 ........ The path of Yod (The Hermit in Tarot) elevates the emotional part

of the life summation of Tipheret to the emotional union of Chesed. The card shows an old man with staff and lantern on the summit of a snow capped mountain. This is an image of the purified mind searching for vitality and love in the life experience. The emotional aspects of Tipheret are received along the path of Yod to build the emotional perfection of Chesed. When Chesed is reached, the path of Yod becomes a channel for a vitalizing flow of purified feeling from Chesed into Tipheret.

19 ........ The path of Tet (Strength in Tarot) elevates the purposeful will of Geburah to the motivating emotional state of Chesed. The Tarot card shows a Woman opening the jaws of a Lion. This is a representation of purified emotion (Chesed and the Woman) uniting with forceful will (Geburah and the Lion) to invigorate the World. Geburah is filled with purpose, but lacks consistent desire. Without powerful motivation, the highest purpose may go unrealized. The mentality of Geburah knows what to do in life, has the power to do it, but lacks the desire to consistently labor. The path of Tet draws forth from Geburah its systematic, purposeful action and compares it with the desire that supports existence, through Chesed. If the Geburah purpose is unworthy of the Chesed desire, attainment of Chesed is not complete. Only when Geburah's purpose is a perfect match to Chesed's desire will the path of Tet be fully opened. When that happens, the life of the person experiencing this consciousness of Chesed will become totally active. Geburah supplies the direction of life, but Chesed supplies the motivation to live. Geburah is the master and Chesed is the mistress of the house of life in Tipheret.

4 ......... Chesed (Mercy). This is the place of consciousness of motivation in life. Chesed is the consciousness of all-encompassing desire for being. All the Sephiroth below Chesed lack the vigor to fulfill their promise until they are joined to Chesed. When Chesed is fully developed and the lower seven Sephiroth are functioning with force and power, the time has come to face the Great Abyss that divides the lower seven from the higher three. Chesed reverses its vitalizing force and the whole lower Tree is filled with yearning to pass up toward the infinite. This is only desirable in that it compliments the attachment to the physical world. Above Chesed are levels of thought too distant to easily effect the physical world. They must be explored and drawn toward the union of consciousness that occurs in Tipheret. It is pointless to climb the Tree of Life just to attain union with pure spirit in Keter. That results in rebirth back into the same course. It is best to develop the whole Tree in such a manner that the tendency to fall down into the darkness of matter is exactly balanced by the tendency to ascend into the light of spirit. As was said before, the middle place is the best place for human consciousness. Neither the physical nor the spiritual should be ignored. Both must be dynamically united.

18 ........ The path of Chet (The Chariot in Tarot) elevates the rationality of purpose in Geburah to the level of pure abstraction in Binah. The Tarot card depicts a crowned figure in a Chariot (the Merkabah of Qabalah and the Royal Arch of Freemasonry) drawn by two sphinxes. This image represents contained force, in the sense of thought contained in the body. The rational elements of Geburah are themselves subjected to reason and the methods of thinking are discovered. These methods of rational thought are preserved as laws of reason in the consciousness level called Binah. After they have been isolated from particular applications by passage along the path of Chet, these archetypal patterns of thought descend at need to furnish tools for individual reasonings in Geburah and Hod. Binah is the crown of the left hand pillar of the Tree. This left hand pillar is called the pillar of severity, owing to the purgative nature of reason.

17 ........ The path of Zain (The Lovers in Tarot) elevates the rational part of

Tipheret to the level of pure reason in Binah. All the passage and complexity of life is examined by the mind to abstract from it the application of reason in the course of living. This set of perfected techniques is added to Binah to round out the tools of the mind. The card corresponding to this path shows two lovers under two trees being united by an angel. The meaning is that the mind (the angel) differentiates between aspects of creation (man and woman) to learn the means of uniting and dividing them. When this path is complete, Binah is attained.

3 ......... Binah (Understanding). This is the place of consciousness of the methods and laws of thought. Binah is a state of mind that has little direct touch with the physical. In Binah only abstract thought exists. That thought is solely devoted to the rational techniques. Mathematics in its purest sense belongs to Binah, also logic and mathematical physics. Things like mathematical physics are not organized experiences of sensation (proper to Hod), but they are idealized abstractions of the physical. They are attempt to produce patterns that could be followed in the creation of a physical universe, but not necessarily this particular Physical Universe. Binah is the storehouse of archetypal patterns for the lower Sephiroth. Binah is a library for Geburah and a pantry for Chesed.

16 ........ The path of Vau (The Hierophant in Tarot) elevates the unified emotional consciousness of Chesed to the level of pure emotional force. All the consciousness of Chesed is involved in a single drive toward some particular fulfillment. This drive is separated from its particular goal in the rise from Chesed to Chokmah along the path of Vau. In Chokmah there is only force: drive and desire without object. This is like a vague but intense unrest that animates a person who knows that something is needed, but who does not know what that thing is. Chokmah is pure force, the source of all energies. The Tarot card of the Hierophant shows a teacher of wisdom ministering to two priests. The meaning of this image is found in the nature of the force that binds and creates. All things must be desired and willed. Before anything can be, there must be the blessing that is the desire force, the energy toward manifestation. The real essence behind all things is desire for existence.

15 ........ The path of Hay (The Emperor in Tarot. var. Star --- see July Issue on # 28) elevates the life consciousness of Tipheret, in its emotional part, to the level of pure energy in Chokmah. The Tarot card depicts an Emperor in marital armor sitting upon a stone cube by a river. This is the absolute master of mind sitting on a symbol of the universe and ruling over the flow of consciousness. The path of Vau draws up desire elements from the living consciousness of Tipheret to bring them into union with the absolute and undirected force that resides in Chokmah. This desire force is the true master of all that exists; for, without it, nothing has meaning.

14 ........ The path of Dalet (The Empress in Tarot) elevates the absolute reason of Binah to the absolute desire of Chokmah. Binah contains all the tools that go into the making of the universe. These tools are worthless without an energy to make them work. All the power to make plans and carry them out is implicit in Binah. This power is separated from such abstract works and drawn up to complete the formation of Chokmah. Chokmah is the vitality that underlies all else. After Chokmah is reached, the paths from it supply force to all that is below. The Tarot card of the Empress shows an Empress on a bench in a garden. This is a depiction of the process whereby the desire force in Chokmah is joined with the capacity to multiply and embody that force in Binah. The Empress is the mother (Binah) who receives the seed of passion from the father (Chokmah) and who gives birth to all that exists (the things in the garden).

2 ......... Chokmah (Wisdom). This is the place of consciousness of absolute desire. Chokmah is desire without object, desire strong enough to create a world. Chokmah is the summit of emotion, a vast whirling of energy. This Sephira is the crown of the right hand pillar of the Tree of Life. The right hand pillar is called that of mercy, owing to the clement nature of uncomplicated emotion.

13 ........ The path of Gimel (The High Priestess in Tarot) elevates the totality of living consciousness at Tipheret to ultimate dissolution in the Absolute consciousness of Being that is found in Keter. The card depicts a pythoness between two pillars and before a veil. This veil is the last concealment of the Absolute. The pythoness is the last voice before the silence that is the ultimate voice of God. This path is the connection between pure Existence without modification in Keter and living existence with all its various forms in Tipheret.

Da'at ..... Midway on the path of Gimel it is the fashion of Qabalists to depict an eleventh Sephiroth called Da'at (Knowledge). This is a symbolic filling of the Great Abyss with the lost knowledge that makes one thing of all creation. It is said that when Da'at is restored, all of the Tree of Life will be one thing and that the Tree will bloom and bear fruit. This means that there is a way to join the abstract Sephiroth above the Great Abyss with the seven Sephiroth below it. When this joining is complete, the Tree is made symmetrical and perfect. Until this joining is made there can be no true mastery of the Tree of Life, or full living in all ways of the mind. The examples which follow this traditional exposition suggest a general way in which this joining may be represented. From the representation, the experience may in time be found. A few more details remain in the traditional example.

12 ........ The path of Bet (The Magician in Tarot) elevates pure, abstract reasoning processes to dissolution in the Absolute unity of Keter. The card depicts a Magician in a garden with his ritual tools upon a table. The meaning of this image is found in the relationship that exists between pure Being (The force that passes through the Magician to work wonders) and the tools whereby that state of Being is incorporated into particular forms (the tools and actions of the Magician).

11 ........ The path of Aleph (The Fool in Tarot) elevates desire force in Chokmah to dissolution in the Absolute Being of Keter. The card depicts a carefree person walking toward the edge of a cliff. This image represents total absence of anything to limit or condition. This is the path of Aleph. To the Fool, there is no restriction. The Fool is free.

1 ......... Keter (Crown). This is the place of unconditional existence which may be identified with the highest state of consciousness. In Keter, all is one. Keter is the highest of the four Sephiroth that form the middle pillar of the Tree of Life. This middle pillar is a series of graduated levels of balanced consciousness reaching from the purely physical to the purely spiritual. The two pillars to the right and left contain unbalanced states of consciousness which display either too much emotion or too much rationality. Only the middle pillar is a comfortable place to reside.

This concludes the first of the examples. Those which follow in later installments represent unconventional reorganizations of the paths of the Tree of Life. In each of the next three examples exactly twenty-two paths will be retained to link the Sephiroth of the Tree. These paths are rearranged to form traditional patterns of five and six pointed stars (pentagrams and hexagrams). Through such speculation, new insights into the interrelationships between the Sephiroth may be obtained.

Previous View from Tipheret, Part II                   Next View from Tipheret, Part IV


From the Outbasket

Here are answers to questions recently raised in correspondence with Grand Lodge, edited for publication:

MWE of CA asked for some reaction to statements by Cavendish in his Encyclopedia of the Uexplained ..., article about the Golden Dawn. Here is an excerpt from the response:

Speculations about the GD descending from an undiscovered German "Goldene Dammerung" are unreliable. It is interesting to read in Jacob Katz's Jews and Freemasons in Europe, 1723-1939, Harvard University Press, 1970, that there was a Masonic organization called Morgenröthe (Dawn, or "Morning Redness") in Germany in the early 19th Century. This organization had a major correspondence and reciprocal relations with many formal Masonic Lodges at that time. Given the dates, and the allegations about the age of Fraulein Sprengel at the time the Golden Dawn flourished, I would strongly suspect that the real pre-cursor of the Golden Dawn was this Morgenröthe society. The Morgenröthe had Jewish members and was a major influence in bringing Chesedic and Qabalah influences into Masonry. Antisemitism and the lack of a legitimate authorization might have prompted the founders of the Golden Dawn to conceal the real name of this pre-cursor under a synonym.

JD of CA asked about changes in ritual directions below the Equator:

Regarding the orientation of lodge officers and implements below the Equator, the main consideration is North and South. Those directions are reversed with regard to the path of the Sun. There is also a consideration in regard to the Zodiac, of a similar nature. The situation with the Lesser Pentagram Banishing ritual and some similar rituals is more complex. There are several versions of allocation of the elements and Archangels to the quarters, and one of the most popular uses the prevailing winds to make the allocation. That is the form of the ritual that is widely published. In it the assumption is made that the ritual is performed in the Northern Hemisphere and in a West Coastal region of a large land mass. Under such conditions, the wind from the West is temperate and moist (Elemental Water) from the East dry and temperate (Elemental Air), from the North cold and dry (Elemental Earth) and from the South hot and dry (Elemental Fire). All this changes not only when one goes below the Equator but also when the Ocean is in any direction but the West.

MK of NY asked about Crowley's remark; "Tahuti is not quite Thoth." from p. 23 of Magick without Tears:

The context has Crowley explaining that the correspondences in Liber 777 are not the same things as identities across different columns. He also remarks that Hermes and Mercury are not quite the same either. This follows in part for the gods from the fact that different cultures and times have different conceptions of them. In addition, the different cultures actually worship different deities to some extent. A Greek tourist could mispronounce the name "Tahuti" as "Thoth" and come home with a tourist's conception of the religion of the Egyptians. Hermes was probably a bit similar in some ways, but the differences would be partly perceived too. Thus, the Greeks had ideas of the Egyptian Tahuti that they called Thoth. The various moderns have various distorted conceptions. "Similar but not identical" is the point. In the ancient world, this difficulty was well known and easily got around. The ancients considered all these to be reincarnations or manifestations of the same deities. They usually added a second name to distinguish a particular type or a place where that incarnated deity was worshiped in a certain manner. Dionysus Zagres, etc. See The Book of Thoth, and Flavius Arrianus' The Life of Alexander the Great - this latter is a Roman period biography based on the memoirs of the Generals of Alexander, giving an account among other matters of why Alexander went off to India - in part to locate the holy places of the incarnations of Hercules.

-- TSG (Bill Heidrick)

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Thelema Lodge Events Calendar for August 1992 e.v.

8/2/92Lodge Council & LOP 3:33 PM
at: 544 31st St.
Thelema Ldg
8/2/92Gnostic Mass 8 PM
at: 588 63rd St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/3/92Thelema Lodge meeting 8 PM
at: 544 31st St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/4/92Minerval study program 7PM w/Jerry
at: 544 31st St. Minerval & above only.
Thelema Ldg.
8/5/92Astrological Analysis w/Grace 8PM
at: 544 31st St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/6/92Egyptian Hieroglyphs w/Lola 7PM
at: 544 31st St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/9/92Gnostic Mass 8 PM
at: 588 63rd St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/12/92Feast of the Beast & His Bride 6:30PM
at: 588 63rd St. Potluck, call ahead.
Thelema Ldg.
8/13/92Book of Thoth Study Circle w/Marlene
at: 544 31st St. 7:30PM
Thelema Ldg.
8/14/92Chakras Discussion with Andrew
at: 588 63rd St. (Manipura) 7:30 PM
Independant
8/15/92Thelema Lodge initiations
Call to attend
Thelema Ldg.
8/16/92Gnostic Mass 8 PM
at: 588 63rd St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/18/92Ist Deg. study program 7PM w/Jerry
at: 544 31st St. Ist Deg. & above only.
Thelema Ldg.
8/19/92Class on the Sephiroth & the Tree
of Life with Bill, 8:00 PM
at: 544 31st St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/20/92Egyptian Hieroglyphs w/Lola 7PM
at: 544 31st St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/21/92Chakras Discussion with Andrew
at: 588 63rd St. (Anahata) 7:30 PM
Independant
8/22/92Rave (dance) planning meeting
(Call for location and to attend)
Independant
8/23/92Virgo Birthday Party 4:18 PM
at: 588 63rd St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/23/92Gnostic Mass 8 PM
at: 588 63rd St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/26/92Astrological Analysis w/Grace 8PM
at: 544 31st St.
Thelema Ldg.
8/27/92Book of Thoth Study Circle w/Marlene
at: 544 31st St. 7:30PM
Thelema Ldg.
8/29/92Jerry's Logorrhea, CALL TO ATTEND.
Featuring: Familiars, Elementals &
Things that go Bump in the Night.
at: 544 31st St. 7:30PM
Thelema Ldg.
8/30/92Gnostic Mass 8 PM
at: 588 63rd St.
Thelema Ldg.

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

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