Karl Germer: Selected Letters 1928-1962 | Liber-AL.com

Karl J Germer (Author), David Shoemaker (Editor), Andrew Ferrell (Editor), Stefan Voss (Editor)

International College of Thelema , 2016. Paperback. 408 pages. Brand new print on demand. Ships from USA.

Karl Germer (1885-1962) was Aleister Crowley’s successor as head of the magical order A.’.A.’. and Outer Head of Ordo Templi Orientis. His legacy, however, is mostly known through the work of his students and confidantes. Little has been published about the life, teachings, and spiritual experiences of this most dedicated Thelemite. In an effort to shed some light upon Germer’s life’s work, the International College of Thelema now makes available this selection from a lifetime of correspondence.

Selected Letters 1928-1962 includes letters exchanged between Karl Germer and such Thelemic luminaries as Jane Wolfe, Phyllis Seckler, Jack Parsons, Wilfred Talbot Smith, and others. The discussions range from the mundane to the mystical, including the politics and intrigues surrounding Agape Lodge of O.T.O., the publishing of various works of Aleister Crowley, the philosophy of Thelema, and the administration of A.’.A.’.. Scholars, historians, and students of Thelema alike should find much of interest in this collection as it begins to fill a significant gap within the history of Thelema.

Source: Karl Germer: Selected Letters 1928-1962 – Liber-AL.com

6 comments on “Karl Germer: Selected Letters 1928-1962 | Liber-AL.com

  1. William Thirteen

    Initial impressions from the Kindle edition; primarily KG’s correspondence with the Californians in the 40s/50s/60s. I found none of the German correspondence with Hopfer, Küntzel, Metzger, Lekve, Petersen, etc or anything before 1928. The notes are quite basic, mainly a reference of the persons named in the correspondence. The design is negligible – pretty much just a dump of the PDF. Perhaps a useful reference for some, definitely a cheap thrill but not something you’d take home to meet the parents.

  2. ptoner

    From Jerry Edward Cornelius on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/jerry.e.cornelius?fref=nf&pnref=story

    My copy of ‘Karl Germer: Selected Letters 1928-1962’ arrived. I was looking forward to reading this book but within a few days I came to the conclusion that I cannot recommend it. Although it’s nice to have some of the Germer Letters in a book format, after all, something is better than nothing, I see the over-all book as being utterly useless for academics, serious magician, scholars or even historians in general. Harsh? Perhaps but it is neither indexed nor footnoted adequately. The approximate two page bio trying to explain who Karl Germer was and why I should read his letters is amateurish at best, bordering on being a lame High School paper. I’d give it a ‘C’.
    Then the very first letter in the book is address to “Jane” but in the first paragraph Germer mentions her in the third person by name, i.e. ‘Jane Wolfe’ which is then footnoted to explain who ‘Jane Wolfe’ is but this leads us to assume that the Jane to whom the letter is written and the Jane mentioned in the first paragraph are two different people. They’re not. The footnote is simply inappropriately placed. The book also tries to identify others mentioned in the letters in the footnotes throughout the book but right on page one the letter mentions “Dorothy” but who is she? They don’t identify her. I knew who she was, she was Crowley’s mistress but I fear the average reader will be lost. Throughout the book you’ll be scratching your head wondering who is who.
    Worst of all, it’s not indexed! As one reads though its pages you’ll find gems from page to page but you’re supposed to remember where you read them in a 389 page book or you’ll never be able to find them again. Be forewarned, you have to create your own Index as you go along or you’ll be lost.
    There is so much more wrong with this book but I think you get the picture. It is simply an ‘unfinished manuscript’ rushed into press and not carefully thought through by a descent editor. In my opinion any simpleton can enter letters into a computer but if you can’t put them into a user friendly format, why bother? Still, it was a fun book to read and yes error slip into all books and mistakes are made because, after all, we’re only human … but what is this over-all book saying about the magickal image and teachings of the College of (cough cough) or rather the High School of Thelema?

  3. Michael Staley

    I’d love to read a good ‘Selected Correspondence’ of at least a representative sample of Germer’s letters over the years. There are many sets of correspondence about. For instance, a batch of letters to Ithell Colquhoun was on the market about ten years ago. Whist researchiing the Jones-Yorke correspondence of 1948 and 1949 I came across several letters from Germer to Jones which were, to say the least, extremely interesting. I certainly agree with Jerry Cornelius that it’s a shame that there is no index.

    Does anyone know if the letters from Germer to Crowley are extant? I have seen a pdf of Crowley’s letters to Germer, but not Germer’s to Crowley.

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