(Artwork by DCCLXXVII)
“Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.”
There are several vital matters to discuss in connection with the Sacerdotal Offices of our Holy Thelemic Church. It has to be noted, before proceeding any further, that the Church — being as it is a fellowship established by self-trained, self-initiated, praeternaturally guided, dedicated initiates of the Holy Order, of which Aiwass is the final Authority — was, is, and ever shall be, loosely based on the Great Work of Aleister Crowley in his own manifestation of the Great Order, as given in the document titled One Star in Sight. This Holy Order of Crowley’s, which was (and continues to be) a direct link with the Supernal Intelligences of the New Aeon (but not the only one), bound its members with certain rules, by which we ourselves abide. These are rules, however, that are not unjust or unnatural, and as they serve the best interests of the Holy Order Itself, they are therefore also in the best interests of all members of that Holy Order, who are the agents, ministers, apostles and oracles of the Holy Thelemic Mission (vide L, III.39). And while we — the Apostolic Ministry of the Church — cannot represent that particular Order (i.e. the A.’.A.’.) established by Crowley, and would never presume to do so, being that we are self-trained, and have no legal position with regard to making use of the same name and images, intellectual property such as writings, etc., it is afforded to all members of the Great Order Itself — or the one that presides over all temporal manifestations thereof, including Crowley’s own — that they may form their own such nexuses of the Current of that most August Assembly, so long as they follow the main lines and develop a means by which the central Crises of the Church, namely the Knowledge & Conversation of the divine Genius and the Crossing of the noumenal “Abyss” (so to speak) to a gradually-unfolding Epiphany of union therewith, may be realized. Third Order members are indeed given this freedom, to form their own unique nexuses of the same Current of Superior Awareness that guides and informs the one that Crowley founded, and Blavatsky before that. See One Star in Sight, which reads (of Third Order members):
“Members of the Order are each entitled to found Orders dependent on themselves on the lines of the R.C. [Rose Cross] and G.D. [Golden Dawn] orders, to cover types of emancipation and illumination not contemplated by the original (or main) system. All such orders must, however, be constituted in harmony with the A.’.A.’. as regards the essential principles.”
It is contended, however, by many in the actual A.’.A.’. tradition of one kind or another, that membership in that Order cannot be attained without obtaining contact with one or another branch of lineage leading back to Crowley. This may be the case in the tradition of some of the A.’.A.’. branches today, it is certainly not true of the Supernal Third Order governing all the manifestations thereof on earth, for that Supernal Fellowship precedes Crowley, and held Authority over Crowley, a fact he occasionally resented (vide L, II.11). And Crowley made it very clear that it is possible so to do, by his mention of The Equinox as a sort of Rosetta Stone by which posterity, rising from out of the ashes of civilization following some global catastrophe perhaps, might regain contact with and guidance from the same Supernal Minds that find their Head in Aiwass, Minister of Hoor-pa-kraat (Silence) and Messenger of Ra-Hoor-Khuit (Strength). He held that it is possible, in his view at least, to achieve the Knowledge and Enlightenment of the Supernal Genius of the New Aeon, and thus, membership in the Fellowship of the Vessels of That Genius, if worthy and so chosen, by aspiration and dedicated effort alone. Also, in The Confessions of Aleister Crowley, his autohagiography, he makes it clear that anyone may achieve the same enlightenment without having ever done so much as a single A.’.A.’. ritual:
“Many people may go through the ordeals and attain the degrees of the A.’.A.’. without ever hearing that such an Order exists.” (Confessions, p.657.) This passage is, doubtless, rather problematic for those who make the case for direct, physically-transmitted lineage as requisite to Attainment in the Order. Crowley, knowing that the Order could manifest anywhere It so willed — see, for instance, vss.II.24 and II.58, of Liber L — possibly realized the importance of stressing that one might come from “no expected house” and still be of us, when he dictated this passage to Leah Hirsig.
Crowley did, elsewhere, elaborate on this matter, contending that anyone may make any claim to any Attainment (except for one) in the Great Order, save only that if he did so, he should abide by that claim, and act accordingly. Gross violations of the Law of pure Will and impersonal Love invalidate exalted claims.
The Holy Thelemic Church is such an institution, with its primary aim being to enable its members to reach unfathomed depths of self-knowledge and unrealized heights of empyreal talent; and it does honor the main principles of the Order as laid down by Crowley. That is to say, it provides a system by which its Sacerdotal students may achieve initiated Enlightenment, the Gnosis and Communion of their Holy Augoeides (Greek for Self-Shining One, i.e. the Greater Self of True Will, Thelema), and ultimately — under ideal execution and development therefrom — the superior Understanding, Wisdom, and Most Exalted Awareness, of Third Order Supernal Mind. While this Third Order Supernal Mind, though praeterhuman (i.e. beyond the human condition) initially, that is, in his uninitiated, unenlightened frame of mind, it becomes accessible further along the long, arduous path of initiation and self-transformation. The formula of the Third Order is threefold: rebirth (at 8=3), maturation into the Greater Self of divine Genius (at 9=2), and the dissolution in the Eternal Not-Self, or the complete realization of impersonal Being (at 10=1), as the crown of All. It is, in other words, a process of apotheosis — except that it is to be understood, especially at the level of the crown, that this is a knowledge of, and union with, an attainment of impersonal divinity, an apotheosis of atheosis leading to self-transformation, ultimately for the better — if of course the process is executed properly, with full measure of caution and highest respect for the guidance of the Great Order as given through Its enlightened messengers, oracles and prophets, but most importantly, through the clear light of one’s own loftier Genius, unclouded by the ill will and turmoil of thought mired in the moment of the profane mind.
It should not be thought that insistence on adherence to the main principles of the original system, as developed by the New Aeon Prophet, is a form of oppressive restriction. For, really, these principles are critically important to the welfare of the manifestations of the Great Order in the long run. As an example, the members of the Sacerdotal Offices of the Church are not to charge money for spiritual services. They may receive donations, obviously, as Crowley himself was the recipient of countless donations throughout his life; but they are not to solicit compensation for services rendered in their Sacerdotal function. This is for good reason. Capitalizing these matters turns the Great Work into a mere racket in the eyes of profane seekers after Truth. Is there any doubt that evangelists have, in their pathetic knee-scraping after every penny they can get their greedy hands on, diminished their reputation among the educated? Ours is no mere racket; and we do not beg for or even expect your money. That is not the reason we go to all this trouble of promulgation and teaching.
Members of the Church are expected to accept, and live their lives by, the Law of Thelema as propounded by Aiwass through (a) the minds that received Its Word and (b) the hands that were moved by Its Will, i.e., Aleister Crowley and Rose Edith Kelly, both of whom, by the way, were the recipients of the Knowledge & Conversation of Aiwass in 1904 E.V. In fact, it was Rose — whose Thelemic name was Ouarda (Arabic for Rose) — who first obtained the Great Revelation, through whatever form of intimate communion it was that led to her being guided by Aiwass, with the main object of getting a recalcitrant Aleister to take the direction seriously and prepare for the dictation of an all-important message for all humanity. It was no easy task for her, as he considered her to be profane and ignorant of such matters as this. She was, after all, a purely social creature, with perfectly mundane interests and aspirations, hardly one whom one would expect to serve as the catalyst for a monumental spiritual Revelation. Crowley was not merely skeptical, he was totally dismissive. Yet she eventually did her job as Oracle of the New Aeon very well, for he was, after many tests and examinations, finally appreciative of the great significance of the words and signs she was exhibiting at the motivation of this mysterious Entity to which she referred as Aiwass, so much so that he was in short order completely won over, to the extent that he did more or less as instructed — to the best of his ability anyway — and together with Rose (who to some extent actually co-authored The Book of the Law, at least in the mundane sense of writing words on paper), successfully received and transmitted the Law of the Genius of Man for the New Age of the Holy Will of all mankind.
The Law, however, was made for man, not man for the Law. It is, in other words, not an absolute rule, the transgression of which, in other religious approaches, might lead to some sort of mundane retribution (e.g. stoning or scourging or what not) or spiritual punishment (there is in our Law no dogma of a hell to punish the unrighteous). It is nothing like that. It is rather a guide — akin to a sign by the side of the road that suggests, for instance, that a road is closed ahead, or that a pitfall is in the way, or that it might be better to take this way or that towards the palace of perfection. Yet — and this is important — it is very clearly not a new religion unto itself, but rather an overarching religious Law that applies to all religious approaches. As it is written therein: “the Law is for all”. This is of course a doctrine unique to the Holy Thelemic Church: that as long as its Law — the Law itself, not necessarily the symbols — is applied to any religious approach, such an approach — with all its spangles and celebrations left intact — is Lawful and leads to Truth. “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” Thus we might have brothers and sisters in our membership who love the Christian religion; others who love the Islamic religion; and still others who love no religion at all. Again, “Do what thou wilt”. The Law may be applied to all.
The rites and celebrations given by the Apostolic Ministry of our Church are, it is to be understood, given merely as a guide. They are based heavily on the ideas of Aleister Crowley, obviously, as he served as the primary Prophet of the New Aeon. Yet, as Crowley himself admitted, his view was clouded slightly — just a little — by the fact that he was born not in the New Aeon but in the Old. His view was close enough, all things considered; though it did suffer a bit, as the systems of initiation he adapted from previous traditions retained the outworn symbolism of death and resurrection rather than, as it should be in light of the Revelation of the Law of Thelema, of love and apotheosis. There is no dogma of infallibility surrounding any prophet or oracle or saint of our Holy Order. There is none that knows all. Nonetheless, it is given us, in the Law itself, to “obey” the Prophet. So how does such an injunction square with the versicle which reads: “There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt”? The answer is to be found — indirectly — in the caveat of L, II:27, which reads:
“There is great danger in me; for who doth not understand these runes shall make a great miss. He shall fall down into the pit called Because, and there he shall perish with the dogs of Reason.”
That is to say, we are charged to look carefully into the words, as the message of the Masterful Will is multifaceted at many points, as well as extraordinarily profound and sublime. It is not always quite as it might appear at first reading, especially if rashly considered in the fog of profane thought. In the case of the verse in question, in my attempt to understand the injunction, I do as always by starting with etymology. For the roots of a given word may well — and often do indeed — lead to further insights. In this particular point of Thelemic doctrine, it is the word obey on which we must focus if we are to get at the heart of the meaning.
The word obey comes from the French, obeir, “to do one’s duty”. This, however, derives from the older Latin obedire, “listen to”. It could also conceivably mean “be subject to” or “submit to”, but this would be a superficial and weak interpretation in this case, given that the Law of Thelema posits every man and every woman as regal. Obedire comes from ob + audire, and from audire comes our word audience. This is not insignificant, in light of the Hebrew phrase Abraha Deber, which means “Voice of the Chief Seer”, to which we must listen attentively if we are to absorb and fully understand the subtle meaning of Aiwass, whose Voice is transmitted through the mouth of the Chief Seer, the Prophet, To Mega Therion (the highest Thelemic name of Aleister Crowley, Greek for The Great Beast). And Abrahadabra is, of course, the Word of the Aeon, i.e., it conceals the formula of the Aeon — also in its earlier form, the older Ablanathalba, which has a form of the name Nuit (“nath”) at its middle, as its complement has Had (Hadit). It is the key of the rituals as AL (Hebrew for God) is the key of the Law (for apotheosis is the goal of the Law for all mankind).
We are, in other words, enjoined not to slavishly follow the cult of personality surrounding the man Aleister Crowley — nor that of any other man or woman, for that matter — as one who kneels and adores, but rather, we have simply to listen to his wisdom, heed well his counsel, and then think for ourselves, sparing no effort to consider all possible aspects of the Law, then proceeding from there — with great caution and careful analysis before each and every conclusion and consequent action — to do our will, however we will.
Yet even a literal interpretation of the word obey, here in this consideration of a critical matter of Holy Law, need not be too far off the mark, so long as it is borne ever in mind that the highest commandment given by the Prophet is “Do what thou wilt”.
The main rites of the Church — of dedication and consecration, of invocation and commemoration — will continue to be offered as they appear in our Brevarium. Again, though, they are merely a guide, one possible way among any number of ways one might adopt for one’s own Holy Thelemic temple. It is only necessary that one fully understand the symbols and ideas in an initiated light, with Supernal Gnosis (i.e., that of the Third Order Itself), before actually throwing together rituals. There is much to learn; even more difficult is the understanding of what one learns; and if the ego gets in the way, and opts to err owing to impatience and inferior aspiration, then the path may lead, not to True Wisdom and Perfect Happiness, but to False Assumption and Grave Consequence. The change in our Sacerdotal system is mainly in the degree structure, which shall be eleven in number, and in the fact that accompanying each degree will be a corresponding rite of solitary service, designed around the complete formulae of the New Aeon, i.e. Leo and Aquarius, or Beast and Scarlet Woman, which is to say, the divine in the primal Genius of Man and Woman.
The rituals, however, will be revised slightly in the new edition of the Brevarium, which will appear as a free PDF here in the library of this forum when done. As previously stated elsewhere, an effort will be made to make the rites correspond more closely to Liber Legis with regard to the symbols and devices. This change will not, at any rate, be too drastic, but another object will be to simplify the rites somewhat. It need not matter, of course, being as the system is, one that may be replaced with any other, or with one of one’s own devising. All that is required is that one assimilate the entire body of our knowledge — Qabalistic, doctrinal, and Sacerdotal — and achieve Understanding, before attempting to devise his own rite, for otherwise there is likely to be great error. It is for this reason, however, that our Church accepts anyone from any and every form of belief, provided only that they come to appreciate the whole of the Law so that they might fit their approach to the Law of Thelema, each as he so will.
For example, there is no form of sacrifice that is of value to the initiate of our Church, as the Law explains in v.58 of ch.I, which states:
“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.”
Sacrifice is service to an external deity; but it is a blasphemy to the God of Self, which regards sanctified indulgence, not servile sacrifice, as the highest sacrament of the divinity inherent in man. Verse 22 of chapter II of Liber Legis gives more on this:
“I am the Snake that giveth Knowledge & Delight and bright glory, and stir the hearts of men with drunkenness. To worship me take wine and strange drugs whereof I will tell my prophet, & be drunk thereof! They shall not harm ye at all. It is a lie, this folly against self. The exposure of innocence is a lie. Be strong, o man! lust, enjoy all things of sense and rapture: fear not that any God shall deny thee for this.”
And, returning again to the first chapter, we find the following on the first page:
“I am above you and in you. My ecstasy is in yours. My joy is to see your joy.”
There is no call for sacrifice anywhere in the Law. The “sacrifice” appearing in v.12 of ch.III is obviously a cipher, not to be taken literally at all. It is against the logic of the Law of the divinity of Self to make any kind of sacrifice, which is an ignorant and servile act that leads to pain and loss. It runs contrary to the Law of Man to corrupt one’s ritual with this archaic device of Sacerdotal practice that stems from the error of externalizing and being subservient to personal gods, which are in reality mere hollow idols, for there is no god beyond the Genius of man.
There is a call, based on the injunctions of the Law and the Prophet’s word thereon, to acknowledge the Will of the Beast and Scarlet Woman as Most High; yet this refers not to their personal vehicles as men and women, but to the Supreme Masculine in the one and the Supreme Feminine in the other, and so this extends to all, as the Beast (Hadit, or the secret omnipresent Self) and Babalon (Nuit, or the omnipotent All) are both to some extent in all, and one or the other is usually more heavily manifest in each, whether one is heterosexual, homosexual, lesbian, or bisexual. It is not a charge to accept the personal will of any man or woman as superior to one’s own, which in our doctrine is blasphemy of the worst kind, being restriction of Self — and of course, “The word of Sin is Restriction.” (L, I.41.)
It is not necessary, in any position of the Church, whether it be in the laity or in the clergy, to work actively in the Propaganda Ministry. It is given to all, in the view of the Apostolic Ministry, to give the Law of Liberty to all with whom one shares feast, but there is no rule as to how this should be done, and each is free to give the Law as he will, in whatever way he is gifted so to do; and his means may be subtle, not overt, unless it is one’s will to serve in the Propaganda Ministry, and to proclaim openly the Law to all, but for those that do so, there is this one caveat: that one must learn the doctrine well, and get the essential points right, for if there is any grievous error in the representation of the Church, it will likely lead to grave consequences of one kind or another, that will in turn lead to damage to the reputation of the whole Church, which is obviously not in its best interest, as it harms its overall Thelemic Mission, i.e. the establishment of the liberational Law of Thelema over all the nations of the earth (per L, I.61). There is, in our Church, no place for the reckless or the weak-minded: if reckless, get discipline; if weak-minded, learn and develop, taking your time — for the more you rush it, the tougher will be your ordeals, and the more difficult it will be to win your way through them. We insist on nothing less than excellence in our members, especially those serving, in whatever capacity and to whatever degree, in the Sacerdotal Offices of the Church.
After being dedicated, confirmed, and self-initiated into the Outer Sanctuary of the Church, the Sacerdotal Minister then takes it upon himself to perform the rites of the Church, or his own rites, if he will — in line with Holy Will through perfection of logic in the application of ceremony illuminated by solid foundation of doctrine. He does these as he will, as delights him to do. But he should find a way to partake of some form of eucharist once per day, if possible; he should endeavor to apply the Law to every aspect of his life, if only in subtle ways, hence the saying of will at meals, and the salutation of will in greeting fellow brothers and sisters with the 93s and/or the traditional quotes from the Law: “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law”, upon meeting, and “Love is the law, love under will”, upon parting company; he should learn the Hebrew alphabet and its symbolism in the Hebrew Qabalah, as well as the right use of Gematria, Hebrew, Greek, and English (Angloqabalistic, our own unique system, wherein A=1 through Z=26), i.e., not superstitiously or obsessively, but to appreciate otherwise unseen insights, as well as to utilize certain phrases or verses of the Law in the proper manner, for the greater empowerment of consecrations and the like; he should learn meditation, to still and discipline body and mind, and to make a fitting seat for the eventual indwelling of the Genius of the Greater Will, which it is not befitting to enshrine in an ill-ordered house; one should learn the Tarot (and in this regard it is essential to read and fully comprehend Aleister Crowley’s glorious masterpiece, The Book of Thoth), not as a mere device of fortune-telling, but as a symbolic book of doctrine that works in many subtle ways on the subconscious mind as it is meditated on and assimilated thereby; he should try to commemorate the Thelemic Saints and the Geniuses of the Aeons, observing their lesser and greater feast-day commemorations (i.e. the lesser feast referring to birth and the greater feast referring to death), not so as to worship them, but to honor their Great Work on this earth, to appreciate their contribution to the Mission, and to celebrate their great talents; he should take care to invoke the force of the Beast (Masculine Force) at dawn and at noon, before the sun if possible, and to invoke the power of the Scarlet Woman (Feminine Power) at sunset and midnight, before the moon if possible; he should endeavor to learn all he can from the teachings of the Thelemic Saints; he should perform a brief Stele Rite daily, using an image (abstruction) of the Stele of Revealing along with its paraphrase as given by the Prophet (for there is of course none better); and he should read daily in Liber L vel Legis, The Book of the Law, for in this, without question, is the ultimate virtue. As always, of course, one need not make use of the ceremonies devised by the Apostolic Ministry: and if one is not yet competent to devise ones to one’s own liking, then one may feel free to make use of those devised or adapted by Crowley. As always, “Do what thou wilt”.
There is, per tradition, no set ritual for the attainment of the Gnosis and Communion of the Holy Will (at the level of Tiphareth on the Qabalistic Tree of Life), which inducts the Sacerdotal Minister of the Outer Sanctuary into the Inner, joining him to the highly esteemed company of the Adepti of the Interior Sanctuary of the Church. We have, however, as a general guide, that given by Crowley in The Bornless One Ritual, or the Preliminary Invocation of the Goetia. The second edition of the Brevarium gives new, simplified versions of the rites of initiation, but again, strictly as a guide and not as a rule to follow.
As for the work of the Exempt Adept, at the pinnacle of the Interior Sanctuary of the Church, that is ultimately accomplished through use of the Enochian invocation of the 30 Aethyrs or Aires, similar to the way that the Prophet did it when he achieved that exalted task, in 1909 E.V. The system used may of course be that which Crowley used or it may be the one presented in the Brevarium. Remember, though, that the revised Sigillum Dei Aemeth exhibited in that book is incorrect: the correct one is available at this blog (search for it and ye shall find).
All the Oaths given in the Brevarium are applicable. Alternatively, one may use the ones Crowley devised.
The list of Thelemic Saints has been modified. None of the former Saints has been expunged; but those who did not serve in Sacerdotal Office, i.e. as overt Thelemic disciples, oracles or prophets, get moved to the category of Geniuses of the Aeons. They are not removed — at the direct Order of the Oracle of the Church — but are rather relocated to their own secular category. It makes them no less great, of course. But it provides a special place for those who actually worked directly with the Current of Aiwass and the Elect of the Great Order. Their feast days are now celebrated as high feasts, i.e. warranting great celebration. The feasts of the others may still be celebrated as such, if it so pleases, naturally, but as they are low feasts they need not be excessively celebrated if it is inconvenient. The ultimate rule, as in everything, is “Do what thou wilt”. It is your temple, your rules; all that we ask is that you follow the Law and behave as befits a king: be strong of will, violating not your sacred oaths, veering not away from the Holy Mission to which the fellowship is dedicated, the establishment of the Law of Liberty across all the nations; be not a mere savage, but refined instead, for that leads to the mastery of self-discipline, and to much more impressive representation of the Church; be devoted to the fellowship as to oneself, giving of your time and energy to learning and developing through gradual assimilation of its Current of Wisdom; in love, be attentive to your partner; be always joyous, no matter the ordeals, for only the slaves of the moment are mired hopelessly therein; and in all your joy, let there be subtlety. Such is the manner befitting the regal of will, as it is written (L, II.70):
“There is help & hope in other spells. Wisdom says: be strong! Then canst thou bear more joy. Be not animal; refine thy rapture! If thou drink, drink by the eight and ninety rules of art: if thou love, exceed by delicacy; and if thou do aught joyous, let there be subtlety therein!”
One significant change is in the tantric work of the Sacerdotal Offices. The system has been much simplified: these particular Offices are now to be divided into the three degrees of the Interior Sanctuary: the V degree (corresponding to Tiphareth); the VIth degree; and the VIIth degree. More on this will come in time, with the release of the eleven parts of volume I of the Acta Apostolicae.
The tantric work of these degrees, which is in addition to their other respective lines of work, follows the formula veiled in the Stele of Revealing itself, as its girders of ritual, with only the slightest variation in the approach, to conform the formula of Ankh-af-na-khonsu — who was after all rooted solidly in the Old Aeon formula of death and resurrection — to that of the New. For instance, in the ritual, the formula of “let it kill me” and “self-slain” becomes instead “let it fill me” (as it is given in original version of The Book of the Law authorized by the Prophet) and “self-begotten”. Only for the ritual, of course: we would never suggest altering the Holy Book, which clearly instructs otherwise, giving the very same caveat in each of its three chapters.
It simply cannot be stressed enough, that if one vows to do the work of the Sacerdotal Offices, it is expected that he will exceed in working. If one cannot do so, owing to a career or other activity that precludes one from doing the work with complete devotion, to excess, then perhaps one should wait to commit until such time in the future when more free time is to be had. There is no rush: those who move hastily tend to have accidents; and with time, anyway, comes maturity, common sense, and greater stability of mind. One can also gain much from merely being in the laity and learning and growing in the Current of our Holy Wisdom. We do not need you in the clergy if you cannot be fully devoted to it, with sweeping passion in the doing. When I worked in the Outer and Inner Sanctuaries, in the 1980s and ’90s, I was dedicating 10 or more hours a day to the work, keeping a journal of my practices as instructed in The Equinox (vide A Master of the Temple, Equinox, Volume III, Number 1); and when I was not working I was reading. And even when I slept I worked, as my dream life then was replete with visions and such, undoubtedly owing to the effect all the daily work was having on the mind. All that hard work, and yet it still took me over ten years thereafter to begin to approach the quality of mind, and strength of talent, that I exhibit today as a direct consequence of improvement provided by the system. As Soror Alostrael wrote in her diary of 1924 E.V.: “There is really only one answer for all the questions. WORK! WORK without lust of result!” (Nov. 23, 1924) Excessive working in these important matters of transformative self-enlightenment, no matter if it is error-free or not, leads to the House of Holy Genius; pay no heed to the bumps along the way, and never give up: for it is only if you surrender your will to succeed that you can fail once and for all.
We want only dedicated, hard-working, active officers in the Sacerdotal Offices of the Church — nothing less. We need not see your private journals, nor meddle in your private affairs: that is your business. But, as an officer of the clergy, it will be your responsibility to do the work — as you see fit to do, ever following your bliss — and to email the Grand Ministry (or the Apostolic Ministry, if the Grand Minister is unavailable) if and when you ever have questions, need guidance, or simply wish to report in and keep us abreast of your workings, along with any progress therein, if any. It is up to you to keep a journal — and do so if you can, as it will help you later on — recording your practices (sans silly speculations or idle thoughts); to assist the Ministries as necessary, as one will; and to serve the whole Church in whatever capacity you feel gifted to do, as you will do, in order to contribute in whatever way you are so talented to do, whether it be donating art or articles, sharing the Law and the message of our Church at a blog, or on social media — whatever is best-suited to your own unique will.
I know from firsthand experience that anyone with half a brain (for I started out with slightly less than that, myself) will be able — given only a little time and serious effort, with a logical, unemotionally-charged yet passionate mind — to advance himself mentally and spiritually by this branch of the Great Order. All it takes is hard work and a frame of mind that allows one to avoid the pitfall of emotional compulsion, or that other stumbling-block, limited reasoning. One must be open to possibilities that defy logic, at times; yet one must also remain grounded, and not leap towards every crazy whim, as if thrown about from one moment to the next on whirlwinds of madness. This work, the Great Work, really will progress your thought and/or talent to levels of near-genius or even to Genius itself. It is up to you whether or not you make the most of it or fall by the wayside when the going gets rough and the seas start to appear threatening.
The core of our doctrine, however, began not with the few of us who started it all a scant number of years ago, but many decades ago, with the extraordinary insights of Alostrael, who went unheard and uncared-for back then, and now we may appreciate those insights from the diaries we are so very fortunate to possess. And those insights — remarkable for one of her time, prior to the advent of such advanced notions — strike at the heart of the Law. They shine such light on otherwise mysterious versicles of the Law. Such as we see in these critical passages:
“The key of the rituals is in the secret word which I have given unto him.
“With the God & the Adorer I am nothing: they do not see me. They are as upon the earth; I am Heaven, and there is no other God than me, and my lord Hadit.” (vss.20-21, ch.I)
“…Bind nothing! Let there be no difference made among you between any one thing & any other thing; for thereby there cometh hurt.
“But whoso availeth in this, let him be the chief of all!” (vss.22-23, ch.I)
“The Perfect and the Perfect are one Perfect and not two; nay, are none!
“Nothing is a secret key of this law…” (vss.45-46, ch.I)
“If this be not aright; if ye confound the space-marks, saying: They are one; or saying, They are many; if the ritual be not ever unto me: then expect the direful judgments…” (v.52, ch.I)
“Now let there be a veiling of this shrine: now let the light devour men and eat them up with blindness!
“For I am perfect, being Not…” (vss.14-15, ch.II)
“I am alone: there is no God where I am.” (v.23, ch.II)
There are more; but these effectively stab at the heart of this important matter. What is extraordinary is that it was Hirsig, decades after the Revelation was penned by Aleister and Rose, who — at the height of despair at the departure of her “Big Lion” (as she affectionately called him) — penned such brilliant interpretations and insights in letters as well as in her diaries. We are indeed privileged to be able to have these ideas preserved and handed down to us. I do wish that we had more such contributions from the other Scarlet Women or Oracles of Aiwass; but at least we have this from one of the greatest of them, one of the few — if not the only one — to have achieved entry into Third Order level of Realization.
It was on October 26th, 1924 E.V., when Leah scribbled down these words in a letter to Crowley, after he had left her:
“I object to the term ‘The Gods’ — it should be ‘Gods’ which means Thelemites. We need to break away from all old superstitions, etc. etc., and work in the clear light of Ra-Hoor-Khuit.”
I highlighted these words in bold, as they are the very foundation of our whole interpretation of the Law, on which our Temple of Atheosis is built. External deities do not exist: what one encounters in any epiphany is not an encounter with an objective deity, as it seems to inferior perception, but an encounter with Oneself — one’s own Greater Genius of Eternal Will. The “clear light of Ra-Hoor-Khuit” is, of course, the brilliant union of atheism and theism, to create not a religion dedicated to the service of imaginary Others, to the detriment of a physical world deemed inferior to That, but instead, an overarching religious Law focused on raising up the mind of man to its own unlimited potential, bringing the lowest to the level of the Most High, setting up an “Abomination of Desolation” upon the altars of the temples of empty theistic superstition, with the Great Whore of Whores — glorified for her strength and liberation, expressing divine love and ecstasy on earth — seated thereupon. It is, in other words, a way to unite the basest man and the highest divine Awareness outside yet encompassing all points in space and time simultaneously: for it brings the Spirit of God down into every beast, sanctifying and uplifting man, extending his reach beyond the heights of heaven itself, to the All and None.
There is much, much more on which to elaborate on the matters of the Sacerdotal Offices of the Holy Thelemic Church. This is, however, a useful little introduction to our school of thought, on which this fellowship of the few and secret is based. There will be more to come in the forthcoming Acta Apostolicae PDFs.
The Holy Thelemic Church seeks no converts: if you disagree with these ideas, then we ask that you go politely on your way. We care nothing for insults or arguments; just go away and mind your business and we will go on minding ours. We have the right to free expression, no matter how outlandish our views may seem to your perspective. We disagree with theistic extremists, yet you do not see us going about to disrupt their activities. The inspired Voice is the greatest power in this world, vested as it is with the power to sway billions over time; and that power is wielded in the iron fist of our fellowship, which shall grow from the most frail-looking weed to the most majestic Tree of the Gods, out of which shall emerge the fruit that restores man from miserable wretchedness and enslavement to the raging madnesss of the moment, unto glorious Genius and the passionate peace enjoyed by the Masterful of Will.
Emailing the Grand Ministry is the usual way to process applications for membership, but when the Grand Minister is unavailable — as is the case now, with the sudden, unexpected retirement of Grand Minister 121 — one may easily notify the Apostolic Ministry, addressing either Sor.’.Alania (the Oracle of the Church) or Fra.’.Aleisterion, at any of the social media we have set up (Twitter, Facebook), or one may email a lengthier message to their email account at:
Simply give whatever information you think pertinent, along with your full name, your chosen Thelemic name (traditionally Hebrew, Greek, Latin, but as always, “Do what thou wilt”), and the email account to which you wish us to send our correspondence — as you wish. Alternatively, you may choose to communicate solely through the social media. We do not expect the Church to skyrocket to any height of mundane success for a considerable time — Rome was not built in a day — but we are confident that, someday, our hard work will find reward, and that our message will get out. It is merely a matter of time.
The Church will be accepting applications for membership only at the Equinoxes and Solstices, when dedicated aspirants will be confirmed by the Apostolic Ministry. You must affirm that you are of legal age (18 in the United States), and that you are of sound mind and body. The work of the Sacerdotal Offices can be strenuous, and could pose a problem for those with poor health or instability of mind. Get healthy first, before going where angels fear to tread!
Love is the foundation of our will: love for humanity, whose condition we wish to improve, even as ours has been improved, through the breaking-forth of the clear light of Ra-Hoor-Khuit at the coming of the Scarlet Dawn, putting an end at last to the long night of ignorance and extremist fundamentalist superstition.
93 be with ye all.
“Love is the law, love under will.”
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