Why they became member of the O.T.O. 23 I started reading about Aleister Crowley when I was 18
To: "Peter Koenig"
Subject: one answer and one question...
Date: Fri, 26 Jun 1998
>may i ask why you left the "caliphate"?
Finally you ask me something! But my answer can't be as simple as the
question. I'll try to resume my answer, but there are many other
I entered the caliphate 8 years ago, as I said before, because I
thought they were the true and only OTO, that followed Crowley who was
the natural OHO (how young was I!), and I wanted someone to talk to. I
was a convict Thelemite then. So, I entered there as an associate. I
wanted to become a true member and get the Minerval grade, but it was
difficult to schedule anything with Albion Lodge.
Anyhow, my first enthusiasm was dying out the more I knew Crowley. He
was a brilliant thinker, with a compelling writing style, but when I
read some of his biographies (King, Symonds) I got very aprehensive!
So, two years after I became a member, I was not sure if I wanted to
live in "The Magical World of Aleister Crowley"! But it is difficult to
get away of the Great Beast. Every now and then I picked up one of his
books (such as the Book of Lies) and I was completely overwhelmed with
it. It was in those periods that I paid my dues to the "caliphate"!
Then the Internet came, and it fastened the comunications. Other
Crowleyites I met on the net were very freaky persons, their pages and
their "other interests" were all around dark music, heavy metal,
satanism, etc. I clearly didn't belong to that world. Also it was your
site! I couldn't believe the things I read there. After a lot of
careful thinking, I decided to definitely quit. You were, I'm afraid,
the final cause!
I left the "caliphate" OTO, but I could not leave Crowley. I'm not a
Thelemite, at least not in the way Crowley wanted one to be, but I do
my best to discover and to do my True Will!
To: "Peter Koenig"
Subject: some more OTO questions
Date: Sun, 7 Jun 1998
>What do you understand by "the OTO"? The "Caliphate" or Grant's OTO or
>Metzger's OTO or Motta's OTO or Reuss' OTO or Germer's OTO or what?
I meant, naturally, a "legal battle" between Grant's OTO and the
Caliphate. Do you think we are going to assist to another one of those?
I want to clarify one thing. My point of view towards all these things.
I think that the study of the history of a secret society is a very
fascinating subject, but by main interest in the OTO is not for the
order in itself, it's for one of it's members - Crowley. I think he was
one of the most brilliant persons in this century. His thinking is
clear and some of his writings are among the best ones ever written in
the occult field. I do not consider myself a Thelemite, at least in the
sense Crowley thought one should be, but I admire his writings and his
Concerning the OTO and it's "spermo gnosticism", personally, I'm not at
all interested in sex magic. I am (as I told you before) an associate
member of the caliphate OTO. Mostly because, at the time (8 years ago),
I thought there was only one OTO (!), and because I wanted to be closer
to other persons that I thought shared my ideas.
My position concerning the 1001 OTOs available is this one. The
original OTO (non Thelemite), to me has no interest whatsoever. Their
philosophy is not original and has not done anything of merit. Crowley,
in spite of being expelled by Reuss, he gathered some followers and
transformed a semi-masonic society in something much more deep and
interesting (just compare Crowleys rituals (as published by Francis
King) to the ones existing att Reuss's time (in your web site)). So, I
don't care who is the real OHO, or which one is the true OTO. They
stand for their merits as initiation organizations. I would like to
hear from you concerning this point.
Just one more thing. whatever can be the truth concerning the
caliphate, it's undeniable that they have done a fantastic job in
publishing Crowley's works. The edition of Liber 4 is a proof of that.
Rarely I've seen such an editorial effort in publishing *any* kind of
book. For that, Mr Breeze is to be congratulated. So, if the Caliphate
OTO is not "legally" the one and only OTO, at least one should give
them credit for being the best Crowley's editors of our time. Again, I
would like to hear your opinion concerning this.
To: "Peter-R. Koenig"
Subject: ...a bedtime story
Date: Wed, 23 Sep 1998
For some time, I wanted to tell you the story of my "initiation" into
the IX* degree. If you want to know about it, read on. It's the
experience of one seeker, that truly wanted knowledge.
I started reading about Crowley when I was 18. I already had read lots
of other authors, namely, Fulcanelli, Canseliet, Levi, Papus,
Saint-Yves, and others of Alchemistic and Martinist influences. My
library, by then, was about 200 volumes (if I remember correctly). That
first Crowley book really impressed me. It was the Dover edition of
'Magick'. I began compulsively buying other Crowley's books. I truly
liked his style, and the things he was talking about. It was a
completely diferent universe. I always disregarded other authors
talking about Crowley, because I wanted to know the source of things, I
wanted to know the man first, and after that, read what other people
had to say about him. One exception must be done to Regardie, which I
always liked very much (due to that magnificent book "The Golden
Dawn"); "The Eye in the Triangle" is a particularly good book that I
took as a reference to Crowley's personality.
But one other book was the begining of it all. "The Book of Lies". I
saw it in a bookstore here in L*** and there I read the story of how
Reuss met Crowley, and the so told story that the central secret of the
OTO was buried somewhere in those 93 chapters. I must say that I, at
the time was not a member of the "Caliphate", and hadn't the foggiest
idea to what that secret was. So I began to search for it. Firstly I
read the book 2 or 3 times. No way. Then, I picked up all the
references concerning the secret in all the Crowley books I had (about
12 or more, at that time). with all those notes, it was obvious the
sexual nature of the secret. But I didn't know exacly what it was. So I
restarted the "book of lies" sistematically, reading every chapter, and
every verse, very, very carefully. I selected about 20 possible
chapters, and commented profusely upon it. So to say, to me, "The Book
of Lies" is one of the very few books in the world in which you can do
that, because the way the symbolism is intertwined in it. It's possible
to find new puns and meanings each time you read it. Sometimes I was
sure I knew it, but then... I could never know. I meditated long time
in some chapters, and it was a sort of a voyage to the inside of
myself. I practically dissolved in the metaphors and meanings of the
This process took more than 2 years. In that period of time I filiated
in the Caliphate, and corresponded with Clive Harper of the Albion
Lodge to get the Minerval Grade. But as I was a university student, I
had no money to go to England, and so it was impossible to do it
properly. In my last year as a student, I got myself on a train with a
cousin to do the Inter-Rail. We went to Berlin, Paris and London. I
sent some leters to Clive, but it was impossible to schedule an
Inititiation during the period I was there.
But It was in London that it happened. I was furiously looking for a
copy of King's Book "The Secret Rituals of the OTO", I naturally landed
in the Atlantis Bookshop and I asked for it; They didn't have it. It
was a very sought off book, and very expensive. (If it was expensive I
didn't want to buy it, I just wanted to peek inside and read "the
secret"!) But they had another one that mentioned a lot the OTO, and
was also rare, it was "Sexuality, Magic and Perversion" I picked it up,
started reading. Yes, it was there. I paid the book (35 pounds! Ouch!),
and started reading as soon as I exited Atlantis. When I read about it,
it was like a lightning stroke. Everything stoped. Now lot's of things
started making sense. I wandered about London for many hours thinking
about everything. I swear you, I was like in a transe. I walked, I
moved, talked and heared, but everything was different.
To me it was a sort of an initiation. The way things unfolded before me
when I knew it, is undescribable. I must say, that all my guesses to
where the secret was in the "Book of Lies" were all wrong, but
sometimes I was very near its meaning on chapters 15 and 21, if I
From then on, I guess you know the rest of the story. I must add that I
only got a copy (in photocopies) of the "secret rituals of the OTO"
just 3 years ago.
I cannot call myself an initiate of the IX* (whatever is the meaning of
it), but I can tell you that the revelation of the 'secret' can be a
very meaningful event, so I think that in a very very personal way I am
a IX* and a proper initiation would make no difference.
To me, Initiation, must be something we live, wheter by ritual or by
personal experience. I will never trust charters or papers or anything,
but I can know an Initiate, when I meet one!