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Gerald Gardner, Wicca, Witchcraft and Aleister Crowley


Falcon
(@falcon)
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Gerald Gardner was an interesting chap wasn't he. 
 
 
The Founder of modern day Wicca/Witchcraft in Britain, knew To Mega Therion, was influenced by Thelema and O.T.O., took part in the famous New Forest Coven ritual during WWII, and was an enthusiast for Naturism/Nudism among other things...
 
 
From Wiki:
 
 
"On May Day 1947, Gardner's friend Arnold Crowther introduced him to Aleister Crowley, the ceremonial magician who had founded the religion of Thelema in 1904. Shortly before his death, Crowley elevated Gardner to the IV° of Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.) and issued a charter decreeing that Gardner could admit people into its Minerval degree. The charter itself was written in Gardner's handwriting and only signed by Crowley".
 
 
An interesting BBC documentary here...
 

Witchcraft: The Truth Behind The World's Fastest Growing Religion

 
 
 
 
The Man Who Made Witchcraft (Pagan Documentary) | Timeline
 
 
YOUTUBE.COM
The Man Who Made Witchcraft (Pagan Documentary) | Timeline

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Shiva
(@shiva)
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Posted by: @falcon

Crowley elevated Gardner to the IV° of Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.) and issued a charter decreeing that Gardner could admit people into its Minerval degree.

He was being rather stingy. III* traditionally confers authority to admit Minervals, and roman numerals up to the III* itself. As long as you have a written Charter signed by the G.'.M.'. BafometR. So Bapho trusted Gard enough to give him the IV*, but only with authority to initiate Minnies. Perhaps Gard had little or no actual experience in any of these degrees. Maybe AC wanted to dole it out slowly (the authority), which is not his style - his historical style involved handing over the IX* as field promotions.

Anyway, it adds a new note of linkage between AC and another magician.


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SatansAdvocaat
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It is doubtful that Gardner had any practical idea of what to do with his O.T.O. Charter and never activated it, which is where a young man called Kenneth Grant stepped in to get things going in the UK, and the rest as we say, is controversial history.


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Shiva
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Posted by: @satansadvocaat

... and the rest as we say, is controversial history.

Both Garden-er and Grant got into controversy in different ways and in different ways in different people's heads.

So Gardner had a charter and Grant had a IX* - both suitable in their day to move things along. But nobody with a charter, a ninth degree, or any other flimsy excuse for claiming X* or OHO, cannot stand before the legal line that connects these dolts dots ...

1. BafometR (and Saturnus).

2. Grady McM (H.A.) - He had a note from BafometR.

3. BB (H.B.) - He was elected.

I write in QBL code mode, but we know who the three dots are. Gardner didn't make a legal claim (he was so involved in Wicca).

There's really nothing controversial here; The Lodge was seized, 1-2-3, through circumstances beyond anyone's control.

I think everyone should knock off trying to ride on Crowley's coat-tails and just open their own Order under its own unique name, and under their own authority - that's what Gardner did, and he avoided all the bickering over who gets to be OHO.

These opinions have not been evaluated by the FDA or the OTO, so apply them at your own risk.

 


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Michael Staley
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@shiva 

"So Gardner had a charter and Grant had a IXº"

Kenneth Grant had a charter too, from Germer in 1951. Germer withdrew that charter, and expelled Grant, in 1955 after Grant refused to withdraw or revise his Manifesto of New Isis Lodge.

"Crowley's coat-tails"

Grant regarded himself as Crowley's successor; he never wavered from that. A few years before his death, he changed the name of the Order, to Ordo Typhonis, The Typhonian Order, and we move forward on that basis.

I don't think he ever rode on Crowley's coat-tails. He had a very high opinion of Crowley and his work, but had no compunction in discarding those elements which he did not consider useful. It's my own opinion that Spare was a greater influence on him than Crowley. At the heart of Grant's work - again in my opinion - is a fusion of Imagination with Advaita which is breathtaking and inspiring.


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kidneyhawk
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Posted by: @michael-staley

I don't think he ever rode on Crowley's coat-tails. He had a very high opinion of Crowley and his work, but had no compunction in discarding those elements which he did not consider useful. It's my own opinion that Spare was a greater influence on him than Crowley. At the heart of Grant's work - again in my opinion - is a fusion of Imagination with Advaita which is breathtaking and inspiring.

If one would simply read Grant, they would see that this is true. All the degrees and appointments and related nonsense fade before "that which remains." In Grant's case, this was a body of written work which went far beyond the expository. Dylan Thomas would have never wished for a codified "membership." But he WOULD have hoped for a resonance in the hearts of humanity. Likewise, Grant gave us his writing. This ripples out far beyond temporal groups. His is a poetic work and "success" shall be the "proof."  


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Shiva
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Posted by: @michael-staley

Kenneth Grant had a charter too, from Germer in 1951. Germer withdrew that charter, and expelled Grant, in 1955 after Grant refused to withdraw or revise his Manifesto of New Isis Lodge.

Yes, now that you mention that, I remember it (the historical fact[s]). But here's the funny thing ... back in those days, everybody pretty much agreed that a IX*, as the "personal representative of The Supreme and Most Holy King," BafometR, or his descendant, had the right/authority to found Lodges and to Initiate candidates. Crowley said he gave Grant the IX* so that somebody could carry on the work in England, in case he got hit by a buzz-bomb or something. Since this was accepted procedure back then, Grant shouldn't have even needed a Charter from Saturn.

But none of this "authority" (of any IX*) is written anywhere, so the new Caliph simply said, "No, you need a written Charter from me or mine to be legal." So all this is just my opinion, and who am I to decide anything so big?

Posted by: @michael-staley

I don't think he ever rode on Crowley's coat-tails.

It was not in my mind that Grant was a Crowley tail-rider. He merely (legally in my opinion) used the name of the Order. His work sometimes refered to AL, but mostly it was his own experiences. He also did not employ the Crowley OTO Initiation Rites nor the all powerful Constitution of 1917 (or other anni).

No, not Grant. The coat-tailers claim (often fraudulently) to carry some authority by virtue of association with AC, or they pretend to explain Crowley to us.

Posted by: @kidneyhawk

If one would simply read Grant, they would see that this is true.

Right. Anyone can see that by reading. Grant was his own man.


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hadgigegenraum
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This may be of interest....a review Gardnerian Book of Shadows by a fellow, Geoffrey Basil Smith,  who claims to have inherited Gardner's  OTO charter...

https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/R2T3NQ64N30CG4?ref=pf_vv_at_pdctrvw_srp


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EpsilonPiEta
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@hadgigegenraum

This may be of interest....a review Gardnerian Book of Shadows by a fellow, Geoffrey Basil Smith,  who claims to have inherited Gardner's  OTO charter...

smith dark knights solar cross

This is drifting off topic, but Geoffrey Basil Smith seems to have written some interesting books himself... 


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hadgigegenraum
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I had that years ago....a sort of bizarre curiosity that has a copy of the charter from AC to Gardener and had some interesting history, an goes in on discussing Blavatsky and Beasant and seems to attack Grant if I recall....and posits some connection to MAAT through proclamation, but details are hazy...

I am sure others know more.

Perhaps I can find the stapled paper pamphlet bearing the OTO Lamen if my memory is correct.


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