OTO membership is confidential. The fact that someone comments here, or in other fora, is not proof that they are an OTO member. If someone chooses to be open about their membership, that is their choice; but there are members who choose not to do so, and their reasons for not doing so are their business. Intentionally violating another member’s membership confidentiality in order to “expose” them is an extremely unfraternal act.
Today we have a guest blog post from the Office of the U.S.G.L. Historian.
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
Hi everyone! I am currently gathering the (largely anachronous) materials listed below. I hope you can help.
Local Body Study Guides
Before the availability of official degree study guides, several local bodies developed their own study guides to be given to new initiates. These varied from a basic study program, typically based on Liber MCLI (more details below), to elaborate and ambitious book-length stacks of documents, speculations, and recommendations.
Please do not send copies of Liber MCLI itself, but rather study guides and programs written specifically for local or regional use- even if they are simply re-worded and locally branded derivatives of MCLI.
Local Body Supplementary Study Guides
When official study guides were issued throughout the 1990s, local body study guides became less common. Instead, some LBs would supplement the official guides with additional materials in the form of symbolism papers, excerpts from books or encyclopedias, further study recommendations, and other materials.
What I am specifically looking for are supplementals that were given out by a local body to every initiate as a part of the degree study materials as opposed to general papers or presentations on degree symbolism.
Official O.T.O. Study Guides (1992) and USGL O.T.O. Study Guides (1998)
The above dates are when these guides were issued, internally they may include earlier dates of composition. I do not need study guide revisions from 2002 forward. I have seen a few examples of LBs altering these guides – removing some pages and adding others in, if this is the case please include the local body name, location, and reason for the alteration (if known).
Tests and Exams
Written in the late 70s, Liber MCLI became the standard study program and examination criteria for the Order under Caliph Grady McMurtry. Some local bodies used MCLI as a basis to develop local and regional examination forms and tests. (And other LBs took it much further, greatly embellishing on that program – resulting in high standards that looked hardcore on paper but were rarely enforced.) By 1986, MCLI was no longer required, but still encouraged. It continued to be widely used until the mid to late 1990s.
I am looking for any LB or regional degree test and examination forms either based on or inspired by MCLI or developed locally.
Please do not send any documents with personal information on them. Ideally, I am looking for clean pages without additional notes when possible. I am looking for materials used within the U.S. before and after the formation of the U.S. Grand Lodge. Currently, my focus is on MOE materials, but I will happily accept materials up to the degree of KRE.
For 1,2 & 4 please include as much of the following as possible: Local Body name, date written or assembled, years of use, author or compiler, and any other information available.
The U.S.G.L. Kaaba Colloquium team would like to invite all female identifying initiates to join us in celebrating the power of female leadership in The Scarlet Tent!
What is the Scarlet Tent?
The Scarlet Tent is a limited tour of regional retreats that brings together female identifying members of O.T.O. together to learn, share, celebrate and find the joy in communion with each other. It will be a two day workshop held at a local body near you.
Events for the weekend will include workshops held by regional Sisters on topics that are predetermined by the local Sisters as topics in need for leadership as women in O.T.O.
Who Can Attend?
You must be an active current member with O.T.O. to attend.
Registration for all six of our tour dates are opening TODAY. Our date in Dallas sold out in THREE days, so register now! You are welcome to register for more than one date as long as you actively plan to attend.
Format and Schedule
Each event’s schedule will be as follows:
Friday Evening: Opening reception open to all members locally
Saturday Day: Workshops and open discussions, breakfast and lunch included.
Saturday Evening: Reception for attendees only
Sunday Day: Workshops and open discussions, breakfast and lunch included.
Sunday Evening: Reception for attendees only (for most locations)
Tour Schedule and Registration
Registration is $40.00 per person and all monies support the local body in providing meals for the weekend.
Today’s post is about the work that members of U.S.G.L. are doing to help establish O.T.O. in Mexico.
All names and images are being used with permission.
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
Marco lived in Mexico until immigrating to the United States when he was a teen. When he joined the Order and beginning his initiatory journey, he knew Mexico was ripe for Thelema but trying to figure out the logistics was hard. And these were early internet days. (No, there was no Facebook!) So he spent time corresponding with people but over time, they fell away.
In August of 2009, he met Gerardo Braham at NOTOCON in Seattle. Br Gerardo was a 1st° initiate, (initiated in Arizona), but was a Mexican national living in Mexico City. He had been looking for Br Marco because he’d heard that Marco had obtained his International Headquarters Initiation Charter for this purpose. Gerardo told Marco that he had a lot of people in Mexico City interested in initiation.
Gerardo and Marco stayed in contact and planed various things. Marco found a sister, Sophia (current New Orleans Bodymaster at Alombrados Oasis) willing to help with initiations. Gerardo limited the number of applications to 12 and on September 20, 2014 Marco conducted 11 Minerval initiations (one last minute cancellation) in Mexico City with Gerardo assisting in those initiations and Sr Sophia providing boundless support. These were almost certainly the first ever OTO initiations on Mexican soil.
In late 2015, Marco returned with Sister Amber from Denver to help with mentoring the new initiates in their quest to start the first ever OTO body in Mexico. Marco felt confident that they were ready and he and others assisted them with their application for Camp status.
On May 20, 2016, the Ordo Templi Orientis Frater Superior, H.B. signed and approved the charter for that first ever OTO body in Mexico, “Campamento Ciudad de Las Piramides” (City of the Pyramids Camp.)
In 2017, Marco returned again with Sister Nena from Las Vegas to provide the nascent Camp with support and counsel. During that visit, the local body expressed interest in holding Minerval and first degree initiations and the Gnostic Mass. In July of that year, they did just that.
After that visit, there was one 1st°, 12 Minerval degrees and one 3rd° (moved to Mexico City from Norway) before this trip. And there were 6 active members, total.
Fast forward to 2018 and Ciudad de las Pirámides indicated they had 18 Minerval applications and four 1st°applications. Marco could not do this alone or even with a small number of helpers. He needed a big team. An effective team! Basically teams of OTO bad asses who could get things done.
“I had a squad of 14 people travel with me. They came from my local body Star Sapphire in Los Angeles, from Khonsu Camp in Las Vegas, Oregon, Florida, New Orleans and North Carolina”, Marco said.
The local body did not have much equipment and United States Grand Lodge brethren brought some equipment and then initiates in Mexico built two Mass temples, one 1st° temple and one Minerval temple to serve the two days of intense ritual.
The Seneshal team put together an amazing Middle Eastern feast for dozens of people.
6 people interested in initiation came from Jalapa, Veracruz (about 4 hours by car) and that group may start a local body soon. Br Marco is actively mentoring them with that project now. Others came from Acapulco, Puerto Vallarta, Toluca, Mexico City and possibly even more places. Many had been Thelemites for a long time, but it’s very tough for them to travel for initiations. One of our most brilliant and sharpest new Minervals was deported from the USA as a teen, so she could never come return to the USA for initiation or any other reason.
Numerous non-Spanish speaking Brethren memorized initiation officer roles and the mass in Spanish. Some of the rituals used a mix of English and Spanish (the first mass, the Deacon spoke Spanish and the Priest and Priestess spoke in English.) The 2nd mass in that trip, was all Spanish.
Giant thanks to Vahe Yaymayan (New Orleans), Sophia Vera (New Orleans), Ruben Ruiz Marron (probably the first Deacon ever ordained in Mexico and from Mexico City), Nena Cunningham (Las Vegas), Rafael Aguilar (Los Angeles), Bjorn Furuknap, Felipe Bustos (Xalapa, Veracruz), Michael (Los Angeles), Shelley M. (Florida), Deborah Woody (North Carolina), Bill Woody (North Carolina), Abbi Habdas (Las Vegas), Will Habdas (Las Vegas), Vanessa McCulloch (Los Angeles), Gerardo Braham (Mexico City), Soror Miyan (Oregon), and a very special shout out to Marco Rodriguez (Los Angeles) whose vision and work has been the driving force behind this.
There are others whose work was critical to these events who do not wish to be named. But you know who you are and this great work could not have happened without you!
The Electoral College took the following actions online on January 26th:
Passed the Mastership of Dove & Serpent Oasis (Atlanta, GA) from Sr. Rebekah S. to Br. Bobby C.
Passed the Mastership of Lapis Lazuli Oasis (Phoenix, AZ) from Br. Scott P. to Soror Prunikos
Passed the Mastership of Star of Babalon Camp (Raleigh, NC) from Soror Crystal Lal to Frater Temujin
Passed the Mastership of Tahuti Lodge (New York City, NY) from Soror Alecto to Soror Constance
Extended the tenure limits of the masters of Anabasis Camp, Azul Nox Oasis, Black Sun Lodge, Hidden Spring Oasis, NOXULUXON Camp, Roar of Rapture Camp, Sekhet Bast Ra Oasis, Song of Freedom Oasis, and Star Sapphire Lodge for a period of one year.
The Electoral College took the following actions in New Orleans on October 20th:
1. Passed the Mastership of Coph Nia Lodge from Sr. Kate J. to Sr. Darla S.
2. Rechartered Azul Nox Camp as Azul Nox Oasis under Fr. Sin Rabe.
3. Closed Lifted Lance Camp at the request of the Master.
4. Confirmed Nena Cunningham as Master of Khonsu Camp.
5. Passed the Mastership of Horizon Lodge from Br. Noah O. to Br. Kellen B.
It is with much excitement and pride that we announce the U.S.G.L. sanctioned mentoring group Sister2Sister. Historically, women were not given a chance to enter into formal, professional mentorships in our culture. However, we have been informally supporting, mentoring, and educating each other in our lives since the beginning of time.
In the Order our family is far-flung and busy at the work, but we recognize the need to foster the growth and development of our female membership, and the need for intimate one-on-one relationships with similarly minded peers and role models.
To that end, Sr. Eliza McBryde (Kaaba) and Sr. Hattie Quinn (Electoral College) have come together to provide a venue and mechanism to enable the formation of these relationships, especially for female-identifying members of the Man of Earth. These sisters who would like to engage in a mentor relationship should contact Sister Hattie at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please use Sister2Sister as the subject line.