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k4n3
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It has been a couple of weeks since the last post in this thread but I believe I will add a little bit to the already proposed contemporary examples of Exempt Adept theses.
The infamous "Sword of Horus" by G.M.Kelly (frater Keallach) might be considered as such. In his "An Account of the Crossing of the Abyss" he writes:

"As to the thesis which must be written and published by the Adeptus Exemptus, this he did, instinctively, almost unconsciously, with The Newaeon Newsletter.  All that is required of such a thesis is to be found in this publication, from Volume I, Number 1, all the way up to this last number of Volume III.  It has been argued that a thesis must have a certain form, such as a college thesis, but this is not so.  Was not the thesis that Therion published naught but his translation of THE KEY OF THE MYSTERIES by Eliphas Levi, a former incarnation of his?"

Also: "Frater K did indeed abandon, instinctively, all Magick and Meditation during this time, and did devote himself to Logic and the use of Logic, supressing Intuition, Aspiration and Emotion.  For example:  The Sword of Horus was written employing Reason and Logic.  Whatever was based upon Intuition was not used unless it could be explained by Reason and Logic.  Pure Intuition was supressed.  In his writing of The Sword he was perfectly objective, neither hating nor loving, simply doing his job of presenting the facts not yet presented for the benefit of students everywhere.  He showed no Emotion, but did his job dispassionately and indifferently.  As for Aspiration, it has already been illustrated how he did not aspire.  Frater K merely went about his Work, doing his Will, lusting not for result, taking pleasure only in the Going."


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Sounds like my second marriage. Can I join the club?


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Shiva
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"k4n3" wrote:
As quoted: "It has been argued that a thesis must have a certain form, such as a college thesis, but this is not so."

That's right. Nothing describes the form or format of the thesis except that The Adept must prepare and publish a thesis setting forth His knowledge of the Universe, and his proposals for its welfare and progress.

A Thesis is "a proposition stated or put forward for consideration, especially one to be discussed and proved or to be maintained against objections." ... and ... "A dissertation advancing an original point of view as a result of research, especially as a requirement for an academic degree." ... or ... "A hypothetical proposition, especially one put forth without proof."

I even know of a recently published 7[sup:1lczp2yt]o[/sup:1lczp2yt]=4[sup:1lczp2yt]□[/sup:1lczp2yt] thesis that is a series of spiritual/shamanic paintings that were produced over a 28-year stretch of time, accompanied by a brief, written description of each artwork.


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 Anonymous
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I have greatly enjoyed this thread. Predictably I have a couple questions. There are a couple descriptions of the Thesis:

The Adept must prepare and publish a thesis setting forth His knowledge of the Universe, and his proposals for its welfare and progress.

The Exempt Adept will present a thesis of his own, as a general Epitome of his own Attainment as reflected in the sphere of the Mind.

Does anyone feel they are mutually self-exclusive, or do they compliment each other? Also, of all the books that might be theses, no one mentioned Initiation in the Aeon of the Child, by Daniel Gunther. Is it universally reviled, or is it just not anyone's favorite book? It's my understanding that it was supposed to actually be an Adeptus Exemptus Thesis, because he heads the A.'.A.'. lineage linked to by the OTO website; and so he rather needed to have a thesis published. (Personally I haven't read it yet. it's on my to-do list.)

Thanks in advance for any replies.


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Azidonis
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"Wanderer-Exile" wrote:
no one mentioned Initiation in the Aeon of the Child, by Daniel Gunther.

That's because it's terrible.

"Wanderer-Exile" wrote:
It's my understanding that it was supposed to actually be an Adeptus Exemptus Thesis,

Maybe so, but it proved to function better as a paper weight.


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Candide
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"Wanderer-Exile" wrote:
I have greatly enjoyed this thread. Predictably I have a couple questions. There are a couple descriptions of the Thesis:

The Adept must prepare and publish a thesis setting forth His knowledge of the Universe, and his proposals for its welfare and progress.

The Exempt Adept will present a thesis of his own, as a general Epitome of his own Attainment as reflected in the sphere of the Mind.

Does anyone feel they are mutually self-exclusive, or do they compliment each other? Also, of all the books that might be theses, no one mentioned Initiation in the Aeon of the Child, by Daniel Gunther. Is it universally reviled, or is it just not anyone's favorite book? It's my understanding that it was supposed to actually be an Adeptus Exemptus Thesis, because he heads the A.'.A.'. lineage linked to by the OTO website; and so he rather needed to have a thesis published. (Personally I haven't read it yet. it's on my to-do list.)

Thanks in advance for any replies.

I read Gunthers book once, it was interesting in itself but I can't say it had any particular impact on me, it was kind of like that Dickens novel 'reat expectations' except that it didn't live up to them despite the hype. I can't say I felt the need to read it again, let alone buy a copy.


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William Thirteen
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found Gunther's book an enjoyable & interesting read, if rather recondite. I suspect the journey of writing it might have been revealing for him, while for the reader it functions more as travelogue...


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Shiva
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"WilliamThirteen" wrote:
... enjoyable & interesting read, if rather recondite.

The question is/was it (the book) an Exempt Adept's thesis? Did it establish Gunther as "a leader of a school of thought?" From what I've seen so far (of the brief reviews given above), this does not appear to be the case.


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Candide
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"Shiva" wrote:
"WilliamThirteen" wrote:
... enjoyable & interesting read, if rather recondite.

The question is/was it (the book) an Exempt Adept's thesis? Did it establish Gunther as "a leader of a school of thought?" From what I've seen so far (of the brief reviews given above), this does not appear to be the case.

Well it was hardly groundbreaking work, and it was only recondite if you don't read Jung. I'm not sure if he ever directly claimed that the book was his Thesis, but if it was then I would have thought that it would have broken into new ground a bit more.

To be fair I found it interesting as things go, but it seemed somewhat disconnected, almost rambling. The only thing that stood out for me was his exposition on the L.P.D. formula, which was quite a nice bit of writing.


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 Anonymous
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I have another question, for anyone who considers GM Kelly's "Sword of Horus" equivalent to an Adeptus Exemptus Thesis. Was it serialized in the The Newaeon Newsletter? If so, are the chapters gathered together all on one webpage (I find his site horribly hard to maneuver through). Or do you just consider one chapter, “An Account of Crossing the Abyss”, to be his Thesis?

Thanks in advance.


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 Anonymous
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It's been suggested that I add Magikal (sic) Essence of Aleister Crowley, by J. Edward Cornelius, and essays on Typhonian theology to my list of titles (derived from reading this thread) to read. Any other suggestions?


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Azidonis
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"Wanderer-Exile" wrote:
Any other suggestions?

Just write your own.


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 Anonymous
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Actually it's in 2nd proofreading; but that doesn't mean I don't think I have something to learn by reading other essays in the same field.


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jamie barter
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"Wanderer-Exile" wrote:
Actually it's in 2nd proofreading; but that doesn't mean I don't think I have something to learn by reading other essays in the same field.

"And that told him!"

Regards,
N. Joy


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Anonymous
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"asicath" wrote:
One Star in Sight states:
The [Exempt] Adept must prepare and publish a thesis setting forth His knowledge of the Universe, and his proposals for its welfare and progress. He will thus be known as the leader of a school of thought.

(Eliphas Levi's Clef des Grands Mysteres, the works of Swedenborg, von Eckarshausen, Robert Fludd, Paracelsus, Newton, Bolyai, Hinton, Berkeley, Loyola, etc., etc., are examples of such essays.)

Does anybody know of any contemporary works of this type? Theoretically with all the A.'.A.'. groups out there one of them must have produced a 8°=3[sup:2n8zi4b6]▫[/sup:2n8zi4b6] at some point in time, and that person surely must have published their thesis in accord with One Star in Sight. Or have there been no new Masters of the Temple after V.V.V.V.V.?

Y'know I was actually considering some of the works by Timothy Leary may fall into that category.  His "word"?  SM12LE , then again that's five words hah! 


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jamie barter
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"david" wrote:
Y'know I was actually considering some of the works by Timothy Leary may fall into that category.

Sorry David old flower, but you seem to have been pipped at the post on that one, if you care to (re-)read the following:

Reply #62 from belmurru on February 16, 2013, 12:58:48 pm:

I'm sorry I forgot the psychedelic authors, like Terence McKenna. Among them (in addition to Castaneda), I'd include Huxley, The Doors of Perception, and Tim Leary, for his oeuvre overall and the SMI(2)LE formula.

"david" wrote:
His "word"?

His “Word”?  Quite leaving aside any of the Exempt Adept considerations, nobody is making any claim, as far as I know, for Tim to have been a Magus!  Also, that’s not a word so much as an abbreviation (“SMIILE” or SMI[sup:28k0u127]2[/sup:28k0u127]LE = Space Migration, Increased Intelligence and Life Extension, for those 'newies' not in the know.)

"david" wrote:
SM12LE , then again that's five words hah!

And furthermore it’s not five words, it’s five letters – arguably six, of course, or five with a number!

Nit pickin’ Hair splittin’ Lipsmackin’ Thirstquenchin’ Acetastin’ Motivatin’ Goodbuzzin’ Cooltalkin’ Highwalkin’ Fastlivin’ Evergivin’ Coolfizzin’ Fault findin’ Toss arguin’ ’nJoy


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 Anonymous
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Karl Germer was an 8=3. Anyone know whether he wrote an Exempt Adept thesis?

I know he wrote "Protective Prisoner No. 303" (unpublished) about his experience in Nazi prison camps but, based on the prospectus available online, it doesn't seem like it would qualify as an EA thesis.


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Shiva
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"aleks356" wrote:
Karl Germer was an 8=3.

Where is this 8=3 grade documented?


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 Anonymous
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"Shiva" wrote:
"aleks356" wrote:
Karl Germer was an 8=3.

Where is this 8=3 grade documented?

On this web page: http://thelema.org/aa/legacy_of_jane_wolfe.html

I remember reading he took the name Frater Saturnus upon achieving the grade 8=3.


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Shiva
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The linked page states: "Germer was appointed to be Crowley's direct administrative successor in several areas. It is well documented that Crowley appointed Germer to be his "caliph" (literally, "successor") as head of O.T.O., and also to succeed Crowley as head of the lesser known Order of Thelemites (not to be confused with the still-lesser known Order of Thelema). There is no record that he, or anyone else, was appointed as head of the A∴A∴. However, he was a Master of the Temple, 8=3."

Somebody is simply making this stuff up. The term "caliph" was never used in connection with Germer (it was McMurtry). The simple statement "However, he was a Master of the Temple, 8=3" is possibly wishful thinking. He certainly had a "Saturnian" influence on Thelema in general; Saturn (in a certain sense) is destruction. Germer did everything possible to destroy the Order(s): He closed OTO "for ten years," then never re-opened it. He failed to designate an "heir."

The lineage to which I belonged (based on scattered members of Agape Lodge) considered Germer to be "Black." Which is of course the color of Saturn. Who really knows? Not I. But I am personally hesitant to affirm Germer's 8=3 status ... so I won't  😮


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Markus
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I always had the feeling that Germer was an armchair magician. Recently, I had the chance to read the correspondence between Germer and Metzger, and have since taken rather a disliking to him: he was small-minded, antisemitic, hair-splitting and seemed to have little to do other than slag others off (particularly the Grants and Gregorius).

Markus


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michaelclarke18
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he was small-minded, antisemitic, hair-splitting and seemed to have little to do other than slag others off

They didn't call him Frater Saturnus for nothing...


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William Thirteen
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There is no mistaking that Germer was difficult person to work with (much like his teacher) but it is also inarguable that he was devoted to AC and Thelema (if not to the OTO).  I can't imagine how difficult it must have been to try to keep order in that kindergarten class of the 1950's & 60's.…

indeed, as the Solar Lodge had issues with Germer they were only too happy to pay a visit to Sascha once her husband was out of the way.


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Shiva
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"WilliamThirteen" wrote:
indeed, as the Solar Lodge had issues with Germer they were only too happy to pay a visit to Sascha once her husband was out of the way.

Actually, there was no Solar Lodge in Saturnus' time. The first "unauthorized" initiation took place about five days after Germer's death (with nobody involved knowing about his passing on). Solar Lodge didn't come into play for about two years after that death/initiation.

One thing that was left unsaid in the Inside Solar Lodge books, was that Soror Capricornus and Frater Sol visited Sacha just after their return from Europe/Egypt/Cephalu in 1966 (It was also rumored that they also visited Switzerland OTO on this journey, but I never heard about it from them).

Sacha ran them off in '66, and this rebuff apparently led to Capricornus' decision to send in the Marines the following year.


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William Thirteen
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send in the Marines

not quite the metaphor i would use...


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Azidonis
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So, refresh me... what wasn't stolen from Sasha went where?


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Shiva
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"Azidonis" wrote:
So, refresh me... what wasn't stolen from Sasha went where?

Why it (eventually) went to McMurtry/OTO Inc - where more was stolen (from a storage bunker) and then more was stolen (by OTO members) when McMurtry died, and what was left over went to the OTO of Hymenaeus Beta, where it (the remainder) resides today.

As to the OP: There does not seem to be a Thesis penned by Germer. Also note that throughout the world and its long history, many people have made it to the equivalent of 8=3 without writing a Thesis, AND that A.'.A.'. rules allow for (even) a Neophyte to claim the grade of 8=3 without going through the bothersome technicalities of the lower-grade curriculum - including the Thesis requirement. Not that there's even any evidence that Germer claimed such a self-promotion.


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 Anonymous
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"Shiva" wrote:
As to the OP: There does not seem to be a Thesis penned by Germer. Also note that throughout the world and its long history, many people have made it to the equivalent of 8=3 without writing a Thesis, AND that A.'.A.'. rules allow for (even) a Neophyte to claim the grade of 8=3 without going through the bothersome technicalities of the lower-grade curriculum - including the Thesis requirement. Not that there's even any evidence that Germer claimed such a self-promotion.

I agree. But since reading that Germer had previously attained his 5=6, I figured he may have taken the "conventional" AA curriculum route. But it may just be that he took his MT's Oath as a 5=6 (or even 6=5).


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Shiva
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"aleks356" wrote:
But since reading that Germer had previously attained his 5=6, I figured he may have taken the "conventional" AA curriculum route. But it may just be that he took his MT's Oath as a 5=6 (or even 6=5).

Please indicate where you read about this supposed 5=6 for Germer. I'm not sure there are any documented A.'.A.'. grades for Germer at all, nor even OTO grades. Granted, he was designated OTO Grand Treasurer General (which is a title or a "position", not a grade), and I might be wrong about all this, but it seems like he was simply AC's financial consultant/donor and designated acting custodian of OTO stuff (yes, "stuff") after AC's death.

He essentially administered the "winding down" of Agape Lodge and acted as its executioner. Any A.'.A.'. activity was hearsay, rumor or non-existent except for the confused accounts of Motta and an occasional comment via personal letters to Seckler. No official claims or documents seem to exist in regard to the continuation of any lineage of any Order.


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threefold31
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"Shiva" wrote:
. No official claims or documents seem to exist in regard to the continuation of any lineage of any Order.

Dwtw

Is  there a  chance that, if there were any such documents, they disappeared during one of the many 'permanent borrowings' that went on? It would seem the whole Germer story is a bit of a mess, and I wonder how much of that is due to lost paperwork. Or was it only the A.C. stuff that made the rounds of various people?

Litlluw
RLG


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 Anonymous
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"Shiva" wrote:
Please indicate where you read about this supposed 5=6 for Germer. I'm not sure there are any documented A.'.A.'. grades for Germer at all, nor even OTO grades. Granted, he was designated OTO Grand Treasurer General (which is a title or a "position", not a grade), and I might be wrong about all this, but it seems like he was simply AC's financial consultant/donor and designated acting custodian of OTO stuff (yes, "stuff") after AC's death.

He essentially administered the "winding down" of Agape Lodge and acted as its executioner. Any A.'.A.'. activity was hearsay, rumor or non-existent except for the confused accounts of Motta and an occasional comment via personal letters to Seckler. No official claims or documents seem to exist in regard to the continuation of any lineage of any Order.

I don't recall where I read it. But I remember it mentioning that, while in a Nazi prison camp, he had achieved the K&C of the HGA when repeatedly reciting to himself the Holy Books of Thelema by memory.

On another note, here is a link to a Crowley letter stating that Germer is to be chief in AA and OTO matters: http://www.castletower.org/chief.html

One could argue that Crowley would only designate an 8=3 for such a role in the AA.


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jamie barter
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Although more concerned with the O.T.O., the following extract may cast some further light upon Germer’s position of legitimacy from within the structure of the A.’. A.’. too (for further information & its full context please consult the appropriate Blog here on Lashtal entitled "Chapter Twelve: The O.T.O. - Its Relevance Today"):

[…] If nothing else, Germer at least lived up to Saturn's magical notoriety as "the old ruler who devoured his children".  One might profitably question the logic not only of whether Frater Saturnus was the right person to be left in charge, but the precise reasons why.  Germer's particular psychology and hence, partly, Crowley's choice of him as successor is intriguing. […]
Although revered by Motta as an 8[sup:1f0g7dri]o[/sup:1f0g7dri] = 3[sup:1f0g7dri]□[/sup:1f0g7dri] Magister Templi, Germer does not seem to have written any work of magical or literary value apart from an autobiography and miscellaneous letters; certainly nothing so important as a magical textbook or Adeptus Exemptus thesis on his knowledge of the universe and proposals for its welfare and progress, as prescribed in Crowley's One Star in Sight. Another letter written to Jane Wolfe from 1954 even made the perhaps belated and astonishing declaration:

[...] I have never done systematic work on "777" and Magick. I lack the imagination to do the studying myself. What I want is a teacher to help me take the first steps. […] I have never done the ritual of the Pentagram (nor Hexagram) [...]

Possibly this may have been a cause of some of his troubles particularly as Liber Aleph, Crowley’s extended epistle to his heir, emphasised he must “Neglect not the Performance of the Ritual of the Pentagram.”  Far from being the new cutting-edge of Thelema, the Beast's successor was instead a strangely displaced human relic cast adrift in time and space: an either lapsed or never-was German mason, and a military man from the “old school" of the last century.  It seems fantastic that, as an improbable throwback to the Old Æon, in 1962 Germer was nominally still the leader of an Order charged with declaring the Law of Love, Light, Liberty and Life just three years before the full-blown emergence of the vanguard of the "hippie" counterculture in California. The manner of his death - allegedly not peaceful, but with him screaming in agony in the aftermath of a botched operation to alleviate prostate cancer - was regarded by some (McMurtry for example) as karmic retribution for his miserable failure to carry through Crowley's wishes to further the O.T.O. [and A.’. A.’.] and so betraying his vision.  But did he?  Such a lack of foresight concerning the apparently woeful outcome of Germer's incumbency would not sit very adroitly with the insight and perspective of a Master, far less the vision of an Ipsissimus: therefore it seems highly unlikely that Crowley would have appointed the otherwise plainly unsuitable Germer to be his successor just out of gratitude for services rendered over the years, without first at least anticipating that some sort of reactive turbulence would occur later on.  In other words, as with creating John Symonds to be his literary executor, a sublimely hidden ulterior motive was involved: with Germer selected to also be his "fall guy".  (However, in order to prevent a possibly imbalanced view of Germer's capabilities and qualities, there is a letter from Crowley to Jack Parsons dated 19th October, 1943 which states:)

You blame me for selecting Karl.  There was nobody else to choose from. Apparently you didn't get on very well with Karl when you saw him in New York, and I can very readily understand this although he says, no doubt most sincerely, that he and his wife laid themselves out to be particularly nice to you.  But in this respect Karl is extraordinarily difficult; after all these years I don't in the least know how to take him.  If I suggest sitting down to a game of chess he is quite likely to feel himself ill-used. His thought is so pure, so concentrated, so unified, that he is liable to regard almost any remark as a malicious interference.  You have to make allowance for this.  Of course, at other times he is quite a normal, good fellow, but you never know.  This, however, is merely a technical question; the first point in any man is his integrity and I have never known any human being in the same street as he is in this respect. [my bold emphasis here - j.b.]

[sup:1f0g7dri]'N[/sup:1f0g7dri]Jo[sub:1f0g7dri]Y[/sub:1f0g7dri]


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Michael Staley
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"aleks356" wrote:
"Shiva" wrote:
Please indicate where you read about this supposed 5=6 for Germer. I'm not sure there are any documented A.'.A.'. grades for Germer at all, nor even OTO grades. Granted, he was designated OTO Grand Treasurer General (which is a title or a "position", not a grade), and I might be wrong about all this, but it seems like he was simply AC's financial consultant/donor and designated acting custodian of OTO stuff (yes, "stuff") after AC's death.

He essentially administered the "winding down" of Agape Lodge and acted as its executioner. Any A.'.A.'. activity was hearsay, rumor or non-existent except for the confused accounts of Motta and an occasional comment via personal letters to Seckler. No official claims or documents seem to exist in regard to the continuation of any lineage of any Order.

I don't recall where I read it. But I remember it mentioning that, while in a Nazi prison camp, he had achieved the K&C of the HGA when repeatedly reciting to himself the Holy Books of Thelema by memory.

On another note, here is a link to a Crowley letter stating that Germer is to be chief in AA and OTO matters: http://www.castletower.org/chief.html

One could argue that Crowley would only designate an 8=3 for such a role in the AA.

Yes, one could, but what is the basis for this contention? One could also argue that Crowley wished to designate a successor, and that Germer was the only feasible option in his eyes, his grades in the Orders notwithstanding. Germer is on record, in a letter to Kenneth Grant of 18th January 1952, as stating that he had not been through the O.T.O. grades. The relevant excerpt was published in Starfire issues 2 and 5, but here it is again:

"Karl Germer" wrote:
I hate more than anything is to sail under false pretences. I repeat what I've said before: I have never gone through an O.T.O. initiation or graduation; I've never been present at a Gnostic Mass performance ... I do not know the password, grips etc. of even the lower degrees of the O.T.O. Briefly: A.C. appointed me to the highest grade and responsability without coaching me for the job.

The same may well be true of the A∴ A∴ Germer was essentially a mystic, and didn't pretend otherwise, as the above extract shows. Crowley had a high regard for what he believed to be Germer's high spiritual attainment, but whether he mapped it to a specific grade in the  A∴ A∴ I don't know.

Personally I think that people take this stuff (yes, "stuff") about grades rather too seriously. People appear to have attained over thousands of years, across a multitude of traditions, without having heard of such terms as the Cup of Babalon, the Knowledge and Conversation, being a little pile of dust in the city of the pyramids, and all the rest of it. I wonder how seriously Crowley took grades, when you consider examples such as him making Louis Wilkinson a IX∘ for the sole purpose of assisting in the initiation of David Curwen into the grade, even though it was readily apparent to Curwen that Wilkinson knew nothing about the "Secret".

Germer appears to have been a sincere man, but a poor choice as successor.


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jamie barter
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
[One could argue that Crowley would only designate an 8=3 for such a role in the AA.] Yes, one could, but what is the basis for this contention? One could also argue that Crowley wished to designate a successor, and that Germer was the only feasible option in his eyes, his grades in the Orders notwithstanding. [...]
Germer appears to have been a sincere man, but a poor choice as successor.

As A.C. remarked in 1943 (for 1941), apparently “There was nobody else to choose from”.  (And, even though once nominated to succeed in him in both the O.T.O. and A.'. A.'. himself, the prospect of Charles S. Jones to follow was considered beyond the pale & clearly out of the running...)

Although I agree that

"Michael Staley" wrote:
Personally I think that people take this stuff (yes, "stuff") about grades rather too seriously. People appear to have attained over thousands of years, across a multitude of traditions, without having heard of such terms as the Cup of Babalon, the Knowledge and Conversation, being a little pile of dust in the city of the pyramids, and all the rest of it.  I wonder how seriously Crowley took grades

rightly or wrongly A.C. does seem to have given this (unimportant matter to some) a fairly high degree of attention and significance (e.g., his lengthily detailed One Star In Sight, to give one prominent instance known to "us" all)...

"Michael Staley" wrote:
when you consider examples such as him making Louis Wilkinson a IX∘ for the sole purpose of assisting in the initiation of David Curwen into the grade, even though it was readily apparent to Curwen that Wilkinson knew nothing about the "Secret".

I don’t see how this follows through though, in the sense that nobody else is needed to assist in IX[sup:1zhxcgx6]o[/sup:1zhxcgx6] "initiations", in that there is no formal ritual or ceremony involved.  (Talking of assistance, wasn't John Symonds - of all people - also described as an IX[sup:1zhxcgx6]o[/sup:1zhxcgx6] in his capacity as an Assistant Treasurer to Karl Germer, however?!)

Accounts do differ of what actually is entailed - from a putative candidate letting A.C. know that one “knows” what it is that’s involved and his then agreeing with the fact, to either some sort of documentation being signed, or their having to copy out IX[sup:1zhxcgx6]o[/sup:1zhxcgx6] Emblems and Modes of Use by hand, etc.  But it is totally unprecedented for someone being required to go through the whole gamut of O.T.O. grades from O[sup:1zhxcgx6]o[/sup:1zhxcgx6] to VIII[sup:1zhxcgx6]o[/sup:1zhxcgx6] first, though...  Perhaps some considerate spokesperson from the Order could kindly contribute a posting, to illuminate the position as seen from their privileged perspective?

...“He ironically asked, in somewhat of a rhetorical fashion…”  ??? :-X :-  ;D ::) 😉
N Joy


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Los
 Los
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
Personally I think that people take this stuff (yes, "stuff") about grades rather too seriously. People appear to have attained over thousands of years, across a multitude of traditions, without having heard of such terms as the Cup of Babalon, the Knowledge and Conversation, being a little pile of dust in the city of the pyramids, and all the rest of it.

This is one of those rare occasions where Michael and I are in complete agreement. Break out the party hats.

"Michael Staley" wrote:
I wonder how seriously Crowley took grades

Again, I agree with you. As you point out, Crowley handed out IXth degrees like candy. Additionally, there’s that provision in One Star in Sight that allows anyone to jump immediately to 8=3 simply by taking the oath.

As he put it in Confessions:

"Aleister Crowley" wrote:
I began to see that one might become a Master of the Temple without necessarily knowing any technical Magick or mysticism at all. It is merely a matter of convenience to be able to represent any expression as x + Y = 0. The equation may be solved without words. Many people may go through the ordeals and attain the degrees of the A.'. A.'. without ever hearing that such an Order exists. The universe is, in fact, busy with nothing else, for the relation of the Order to it is that of the man of science to his subject. He writes CaCl2 + H2SO4 = CaSO4 + 2HCl for his own convenience and that of others, but the operation was always in progress independently.
"Michael Staley" wrote:
Germer is on record, in a letter to Kenneth Grant of 18th January 1952, as stating that he had not been through the O.T.O. grades.

Grady McMurtry’s (unintentionally) hilarious essay “Karl’s Karma” implies that Germer had taken the Minerval Oath. ( http://www.luminist.org/archives/karls_karma.htm)

I’m not really up on the history of the OTO. Did Germer take the oath but not go through the ceremony? Or was McMurtry simply misinformed? Just curious, if anyone should happen to know.


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Shiva
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"jamie barter" wrote:
"Michael Staley" wrote:
Personally I think that people take this stuff (yes, "stuff") about grades rather too seriously. People appear to have attained over thousands of years ...

But it is totally unprecedented for someone being required to go through the whole gamut of O.T.O. grades from O to VIII ...

It is all part of "The Spiritual Con" (the confidence game).
(^) This statement does not deny that some/many people set up spiritual systems in a very serious and sincere manner, but it includes the concept that they are "conning" themselves first. (Unless they do it on purpose for power, sex or money - then they are merely fraudsters)  😮

The various "practices" in the various systems do have some value in that they are often able to assist a person in gaining a certain amount of control over themselves and their emotions and their bodies, and even their mental faculties - and thus they are (sometimes) able to avoid or curtail some forms of pain and discomfort in daily life.

But the assignment of grades, especially when the rules for "attaining" or "earning" such grades are arbitrarily overlooked in order to grant a high-level degree for simply being "liked" or for some minor service, describes the term "cronyism."

crony = "a close friend of someone;
especially a friend of someone powerful (such as a politician)
who is unfairly given special treatment or favors."[/align:26nhenyh]

Such affairs are part of human history. A warlord may give a crony a dukedom or an army and set him up in a position of real power in the hard reality of the material world. Then that unworthy may send his army to collect your taxes in order to benefit his lifestyle (at your expense).

When this power structure intrudes into considerations of "the spiritual path" (pay your dues and do what I say), and we buy into it, then we all are lost. We are poor little sheep who have lost our way ... Baa, baa, baa!


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Azidonis
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Germer was one of Crowley's "rich man from the West".

Just say he bought stock shares in A:.A:. and O.T.O., and imagine Crowley laughing all the way to his pharmacist.


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Michael Staley
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"Azidonis" wrote:
Germer was one of Crowley's "rich man from the West".

Just say he bought stock shares in A:.A:. and O.T.O., and imagine Crowley laughing all the way to his pharmacist.

Ah, our resident cynic; where would we be without you?


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Shiva
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"Azidonis" wrote:
Germer was one of Crowley's "rich man from the West".

In my mind (wherever that may be), Germer was the Rich Man from the West. He did have access to money (I believe he married into it ... twice) and did supply funds to AC. Other members at Agape Lodge also sent funds (and chocolates), but these were lesser amounts as none of them were "rich."  Yet ... there was no "gold" poured upon him (AC), and there is no evidence that "from gold" he "forged steel."


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Azidonis
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
"Azidonis" wrote:
Germer was one of Crowley's "rich man from the West".

Just say he bought stock shares in A:.A:. and O.T.O., and imagine Crowley laughing all the way to his pharmacist.

Ah, our resident cynic; where would we be without you?

Okay, why did Germer give Crowley so much money? What did he get in return?


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Michael Staley
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MANIO - it's all in the egg
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My remark re "our resident cynic" was simply an observation on the tenor of many of your pithy, aphoristic barbs. I have no evidence as to precisely why Germer supported Crowley financially, but in my opinion it was simply that he was expressing a commitment to Crowley's work. Perhaps he didn't want anything in return; not everybody operates on the basis of "what's in it for me", the fashionable cynicism of yourself and others notwithstanding.


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Azidonis
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"Michael Staley" wrote:
My remark re "our resident cynic" was simply an observation on the tenor of many of your pithy, aphoristic barbs. I have no evidence as to precisely why Germer supported Crowley financially, but in my opinion it was simply that he was expressing a commitment to Crowley's work. Perhaps he didn't want anything in return; not everybody operates on the basis of "what's in it for me", the fashionable cynicism of yourself and others notwithstanding.

Altruism does not exist. The question remains, what did Germer get out of his interaction with Crowley? Why would he send the man thousands of dollars? If he were neither high ranking A:.A:. nor O.T.O., what was he doing as executor of those legal entities?

Did Germer, in effect, buy the A:.A:. and O.T.O. rights from Crowley, over the years, making him the only suitable executor/"heir"? Not that this was thought of consciously by either Crowley or Germer, but it seems pretty obvious, does it not?

What does this say about those who claim a lineage connection through Germer, re: nearly all of the mainstream A:.A:. branches, if it says anything?

You can call me a cynic if you want to, but I see nothing wrong about asking such questions.


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newneubergOuch2
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I think we need a Germer thread.


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William Thirteen
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i second that. the man deserves his own thread!


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Azidonis
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3rd


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Shiva
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"newneubergOuch2" wrote:
I think we need a Germer thread.

Excuse me, but it seems like we are all gathered here on a "Germer thread." True, the OP asked about Germer's Thesis, but that question (being answered "none known") has evolved into Germerland.


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Azidonis
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So just how many theses are there from when Crowley was alive?

In comparison, how many 7=4 and 8=3s are there from when Crowley was alive?

And, do dairies/journals count? Do words of wisdom on Post-It notes count? Does it have to be published by a big name publishing company?

Legend has it that Lao Tzu was leaving the city, and was told that in order to leave he had to write down everything he knew, and he sat down and wrote the Tao Teh Ching. It certainly exceeds the qualifications of a 7=4 Thesis.

Do we need to know the history of the book in order to somehow authenticate it, or does having the book itself suffice? Is the quality judged by its passage through time and into history, or by its own merits (ie. quality)?


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Shiva
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An indication that a "Thesis" has been "prepared and published" is that the author comes to be known as "a leader of a school of thought." Or so it sez in One Star in Sight. An author cannot be known as "a leader of a school of thought" unless some people (or at least someone) acknowledges that author as his/her "leader" and thus becomes a follower (or hopefully, followers). Although Germer had some people who did what he said ("close Agape Lodge"), I know of no one who was a follower of his "school of thought," which he seems to have never published or even circulated on post-it notes.

Crowley's definition of a Thesis pretty much follows the style of the philosophers of Europe and the academia of western civilization. That definition ("a written document") would certainly apply to Lao Tze, but not necessarily to Siddhartha, who seems to have talked a lot, but apparently never got around to writing a book, but assuredly became the leader of a school of thought.

Mao Tze-Tung (or ZeDong as they now spell it) wrote his little red book, and by golly he was the leader of a school of thought, but Papa Oo-Mau-Mau never wrote a book, yet he also was a leader of a school of thought ("kill the white people").

Perhaps the concept of a Thesis isn't really important or necessary?


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Markus
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The problem, to my mind, is that people take Crowley literally on this subject. Like many other great minds, he spent a lot of time in an ivory tower - his definition of an Exempt Adept may be excellent, but it is hardly generally applicable, unless one throws Thelema over board and simply becomes a Crowleynite, i.e a dogmatic. This is the real problem in the Thelemic community: there are more followers of Crowley the Prophet than there are people simply doing their Will. If you truly do naught but your Will, thus being a true Thelemite (AL I:42b-44), then you will invariably, at some turn come to realise: sod Crowley. Unfortunately this is often not the case, and Thelema is turning more and more into an organised religion. It has to be said: The Old Goat is lucky he was cremated, otherwise he'd be turning in his grave.

Markus


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anarchistbanjo
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If I may put in a couple pennies here  ::) Around twenty five years ago I wrote down my own understanding of the universe (we all should have one, by the way  😉 ) In my case I shared it with Bill Heidrick thinking to win some nod of recognition. Without even blinking he wrote back that now I needed to resolve all the antimonies between my system and that of the Kabbalah which was the dominant system recognized. I spent several years doing that and reconciled it with other magickal systems as well. (with a lot of magickal conflict I might add.) Then at some point I realized that it was all BS anyway! It was my system and would not do any one else any real good. I was reminded of the "tell others the truth that they might be deceived by it" bit. (I don't remember the exact quote.)  You can share your truth with others but it will never be their truth! Each person needs to create their own truth!

The fact remains that when you make something sacred you raise it above yourself, push it away from you and make it unattainable. You can't make Crowley a god or OHO and still be the god of your own system! You will never be recognized. The entire hierarchy thing is a con! In voodoo a highpriest/priestess becomes one when others recognize him/her. There is no formal diploma or cert from your local institution that is worth the paper it is printed on.

You can recognize the attainment of another without bowing down to him/her. I might offer Julius Evola as a possible example of someone that has a lot of followers these days. Chuckle.

-joe


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