Karl Germer to Frederic Mellinger, September 15, 1951

                                    New York, Sept. 15, 1951
 Dear Frederic,
       Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
 I'm trying out this new typewriter, I'll probably make a lot of
 mistakes. Lucy arrived a few days ago, after a rough passage, with
 everybody severely seasick. She brought the typewriter safely.
 Thanks [sic] you for your interesting letter. There are lots of things
 I've to to say. In the first place I'm glad you met Lekve, and that you
 were satisfied with the meeting. He, too, wrote me an enthusiastic
 letter. - I also liked the letter you wrote Paragranus. It will be up
 to him now to decide whether he wants to visit you or not. On the whole
 nothing is better than a personal meeting. Many types of men cannot
 convey their true nature by letters. In fact, they might be misleading.
 I'll be interested to hear further about this.
 Now I'll come to the O!T!O. [sic] and your questions. I think you know
 that I am not familiar with O!T!O! [sic] ritual nor with many of the
 rules. In fact I have the rituals here, and yet have never studied
 them. I am not boasting the fact. It i sonly that ritual never appealed
 to me; I believe I even have an aversion to it.
 A.C. knew this. He initiated me into the IX as long ago as 1925 or
 1926, to be more correct. I never went through any lower degrees -
 probably to my great loss! - I am really waiting for somebody to give
 me the idea back of the system and the structure of the whole by
 conversation, some day. But here is the vital point: A.C. long ago
 discareded the strict progress from grade to grade when he had personal
 contact and considered the candidate worthy.
 No: there was no test involved! I meant it as simply as I'm writing now
 at greater leisure. Lekve is worthy. He has proved it by his work in
 hundreds of ways. We must look at essentials, not at formalism. As to
 the IXth itself, may-be he might divine the ultimate secret himself if
 he were a little prepared for it. A.C. in many cases led candidates
 toward it, and when he found that they had grasped it he took from them
 the pledge or oath as per various vv. in Al, 220, such as I,51, "but
 always unto me". So, my suggestion - it is nothing but that! - still
 stands. If you should meet L. again, go as far as you see fit, and
 there is no limit. The question is only: is this Work in the line of
 L.'s T.W.? That is what he'd have to decide for himself. (You will find
 references to this point in Liber Aleph.) Nor would you need a formal
 Charter from me. The object is progress of the Work. This can only be
 done if you can utilise your presence in Germany. Once you should have
 left, the chance is passed. Ergo: these remarks refer to Metzger too. I
 do hope he will come and visit you.
 One word about Lekve and his girl friend Ruth. While I go very far in
 respect to L., I'd suggest caution with regard to Ruth. You can go to
 the III° in any case, and then leave it to L. to give her further
 I'll send you two copies of Liber Legis again: I was sure I had sent
 you some two weeks ago. - It is a pity that you have not received
 further instructions in the O.T.O. from WTS or Jane. Jane has just
 recently used her own judgment, amounting to inspiration, and prepared
 one of her students for the III° by going through the rituals and then
 putting up the formal ceremony at WTS's home, which came off splendidly
 with deep magical impact. That is really a side which should appeal to
 you: to do such ceremonies of initiation with real magical effect.
 A.C. always insisted on this: the ceremony must be well prepared; each
 officer must know his part absolutely by heart; there must be genuine
 drama and deep meaning in it so that the ritual can operate as a
 r[illegible] initiation. It is in Jane's line, that's why she likes it,
 and se[illegible] to have been the only one whose cooperation in an
 initiation works. WTS must be very good at it too, because he knows how
 to do it.
 I do not have the passwords for the rituals. Jane wrote up for me years
 ago the various gestures, passwords, grips, etc. for the grades up to,
 I think the IV°; i have been looking for them, and just can not put my
 hands on them at the moment.
 If you were here in the USA it would, of course, be the best thing
 [illegible] it could be managed that you could go to California, stay
 there for [a] while and with W.T.S. and Jane, and some others, would be
 passed that th[illegible] the grades as far as possible and learn all
 the tricks of the trade from them. A.C. at some occasions though that
 this type of work: Initiation through Ritual might be obsolete, or at
 least, not be the fit form for this present period of Life, and that I
 might want to [illegible] some entirely new method. Well, I don't know.
 At present I would [illegible] know. In any case I would not want the
 tradition to be lost.
 Metzger: He must be the heir of a genuine tradition, deriving directly
 from Reuss. So we can't judge him so easily. And I have reasons to
 believe that he is being led directly to us. If you feel, on meeting
 him, that he is allright, give him our Rituals. (He has the rituals,
 the German form from Reuss' follower.) I can't accept Lekve's judgment.
 It is not always reliable. Besides, Metzger is young.
 Yorke wrote that Birven (Dr. Henri Birven, Berlin) "is running a week
 lecture on A.C. I send you a prospectus. I expet it is mostly rot". If
 you hear about this, let me know. I also heard that Grosche (Eugen
 Grosche, Riesa-Berlin) has started O!T.O. [sic]-Lodge activities again.
 I do not know from whom he can claim authority: perhaps from Traenker.
 Metzger should know more about this.
 Now about yourself: I think, personally, that it would be foolish to
 lose your U.S. citicenship. You would have a year's solid work of
 putting all of the material in order. There is lots that you have never
 dreamt of. At this moment I can't help financially: we are all broke.
 But: as I told you, I have started a new business and it looks
 promising, it is very likely that I may be making several thousand
 dollars per month beginning January. If so, finance would be no
 problem (In addition to that there is this California gift, of which I
 have a half share transferred to me, worth $15,000. But it takes time
 to dis[illegible] of it, and then people don't pay cash in full. Things
 for the Work seems to be looking up.) Tell me by return: what your Will
 is in this matter of return; what your problems are; what we can do;
 what the deadline is; etc. If it is true that you'd have to return
 before Dec 1, we have to hurry. - As seen from here, the war is
 inevitable; its outbreak may be retarded till 1952 or 1953, but it is
 bound to come. I do not say that the U!S. [sic] is a safe country then.
 But the material happens to be here, and must be listed, catalogued,
 many things copied and distributed to other places. And the time is
 I'll close now. I am overworked, and tired. Write me soon.
              Love is the law, lover under will.

➔ To the online documents.

See also the Biography of Frederic Mellinger, the Biography of Frederic Lekve and the Song of the Whitewash.
Context of Mellinger's report on Metzger: Thelema in Appenzell?
Of a similar nature: "Collections of Re-Collections" where 36 thelemites recall 'how they became member' or remember other experiences with HOOR, the Society O.T.O., the F.R.A., the 'Caliphate', the OTOF, etc.

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