background information


Peter-Robert Koenig

torture of a halo

praemeditatio malorum
"A story has been thought to its conclusion when it has taken its worst possible turn."
Friedrich Duerrenmatt

Organized occultists want their ‘religion’ to be a frozen part of society. This article intends to show how one such organization imposes intellectual conformity on sincere "seekers." As the matter is very complex, I hope that reading it is not like having a cup of tea without water... and just eating the tea leaves.

Ordo Templi Orientis and Gnostic Catholic Church

The Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.) is a German pseudo-masonic organization that was taken over by Aleister Crowley in the mid-1920s. While the O.T.O.'s initiatory system is a sort of Kafkaesque bureaucratic club game, it has a religiously associated section under its obedience, the so-called Gnostic Catholic Church, or 'Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica' (E.G.C). This was originally established by Crowley as the body entitled to perform the 'Gnostic Mass,' a theatrical ritual that he devised as a more public version of the O.T.O’s private rites. The 'Gnostic Mass' is Crowley's own interpretation of the Christian Eucharist. It is, needless to say, thoroughly pagan in tone, and includes symbolism from Wagner's Parsifal.

The American or 'Caliphate' Ordo Templi Orientis founded in 1977 (I exclude here other O.T.O. groups, such as the 'Typhonian' O.T.O. founded more than 10 years earlier in London or the Swiss O.T.O. from the 1950s) has continued to adapt this strand of Crowleyan doctrine within the contemporary E.G.C.. In doing so it imitates Roman Catholic traditions by introducing offices like 'Patriarch,' 'Archbishop,' 'Bishop,' (Novitiate) 'Priest' and 'Priestess,' and 'Deacon.' Nowadays, apart from the 'Mass' itself, they have added services such as a 'Baptism Ceremony for a Child,' a 'Baptism Ceremony for an Adult,' a 'Confirmation Ceremony,' a 'Ceremony for Ordination of a Deacon,' a 'Wedding Ceremony,' a 'Ceremony for a Greater Feast for Death,' a 'Basic Exorcism Rite,' and a 'Ceremony for Visitation and Administration of the Virtues to the Sick'; they even have a 'Saintship' (though it is of note that no women appear in their litany), and 'Animal Benedictions.' Christian prayers are also found in association with 'Caliphate' rituals: 'The Litany of the Holy Name of Jesus,' 'The Litany of St. Joseph' and 'The Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary,' for instance. While it is highly unlikely that Crowley or any of the other founders of the O.T.O. would have countenanced such flirtation with Christian orthodoxy, the 'Caliphate' intends it to be taken as reference to the "Aeonic Magus of the last Aeon, as a reminder that these Great Cycles build each upon the others" also that the True Master Jesus was not at all deserving of the political hatchet job done on Him by St. Paul. These prayers and initiation rituals are accompanied by the music of Mozart, Holst, Strauss, Mahler and the like. Obviously blissfully unaware of the traditional meaning of the expression 'Wandering Bishops' (that is, bishops outside the realm of Christian orthodoxy), some of these Ecclesiatics have chosen to call themselves 'Landed Bishops.'

Thelema and Loss of Identity

Most Crowleyan O.T.O. groups are much preoccupied, even obsessed, with his concept of Thelema: a religious revelation whose key phrases are 'Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law', and 'Love is the Law, Love under Will.' This was Crowley's missionary enterprise that was supposed to sort out History, Religion, Philosophy, Magick and everyday life. That it is largely a straightforward plagiarism and distortion of Augustinus, Rabelais, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche does not appear to worry them; nor that Thelema is based on faith and individual conviction, rather than knowledge and psychology — and is therefore not truly Gnostic in nature. As a doctrine, Thelema (be it called "the new Aeon", "the new religion", the "new magick" or whatever) will generally "pretend" and "claim," but rarely try to prove a thing objectively on the basis of evidence. Therefore it could validly be claimed that Thelema is as much a prejudice as it is a belief-system.

This revisionism calls for Thelemic research so that the elements of all myths may be reduced to a table of cabbalistic correspondences. The step from "finding" to "inventing" becomes methodical and mathematical, by application of the strict rules of the cabbala cloaked in obscurantist terminology that has bored and puzzled many more potential followers than it has attracted. The language of Thelema is an attempt to render rational thought superfluous, and for this pur­pose it uses craftily manipulative phrases to camouflage it: "The method of Science, the aim of Religion", and so on. Thelemites consider 'The Holy Books of Thelema' (especially the central channeled’ text of Liber AL vel Legis aka The Book of the Law) to be their Bible and its exegese a scholar task. They use euphemism, irrelevance, and perversion of meaning to achieve this end: if they speak about "family", "duties", "privileges", or a desire to "make the world a nobler place," why then is Thelema so very preoccupied with things like evoking demons to destroy enemies? Thelema has to disguise itself to hide its true nature which is ‚Spermo-Gnosticism’ [e.g. achieving Godhead through the consumption of sperm].

As the inventor of the doctrine, Crowley is seen as infallible, and the only standard. Discussion of The Book of the Law, is forbidden, maybe because in his diaries, Crowley identified its source of inspiration with "Thee Satan my savior"? Adherence to the Crowleyverse (a strict following of his "teachings," "orders," "ideas" etc.) produces, step-by-step, a state of divorce from reality. Because Crowley's visionary blueprint is overshadowed by his deficient biography, a trend has started among Crowleyites of differentiating between the "man Crowley" and Crowley the "Thelemic prophet." This limits the ability to think objectively or critically, and substitutes activism, beliefs, cultishness, ritualism and myth.

Outside of the occult closet, Crowley is significant at universities when topics for seminars are running short. His world consisting of theoretical self-dissolution, strategies to disjoint personality, identity and action — all of which resulted in experiments on himself alone, and narcissistic idolising of himself alone, support the need for a McDonald hamburger. Crowley is a moderately good product with a strong flavour consumable as quickly and easily as possible. He is easily prepared, and available everywhere for consumption at any time via the Internet. Tamed, he does present society with ideas interpreted through human relationships, and views filtered through the minds of marketing-men and advertisers — he serves as a radical counter-blueprint to the mainstream-culture. Crowley allows a new myth to be lived out: being a fictional creation becomes an integral part of being real; to be one simulation among other simulations. If he was still alive and had busy public relation managers, he'd been exposed as a sort of Ozzy Osbourne on MTV.

Out of the Closets

The occultist views himself as a rebel and a narcissist, who posits him or herself inside, as well as outside, the predominant culture. He understands himself as part of an elite, and endeavors to create himself anew. Lurking on the threshold of History, Thelema wants to communicate its ideas to the world. It evangelizes with the ultimate aim of destroying society's standards. It strives for world dominion and compares itself to the young Christianity that had been hunted by Rome. They say that "If one were to substitute O.T.O. for Army, this would work very well for the Order."

The 'Caliphate' O.T.O. has extended its sphere of activity far beyond that of the suburb of a secret Order. It may be found not just in cities, but also in geographical suburbs and villages, and has blossomed into a considerable Internet presence in recent years. It consists of various branches, with names such as the 'Mysteria Mystica Maxima,' 'The Esoteric Rosicrucians,' 'The Home of the Order of the Oriental Templars,' and the 'Hermetic Science College.' Sometimes the ruling body of the 'Caliphate' tries to borrow high-sounding names from other organizations, like that of the 'Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antiqua,' the 'Illuminaten Orden,' the 'Hermetic Brotherhood of Light,' 'Memphis Misraim,' or 'Academia Masonica.' They have an "Exo-Psychology Guild," "Drama and Thaumaturgy Guild," "Alcoholics Guild of O.T.O.," "Translator's Guild", "Thelemic Writer's Guild," "Psychology Guild of O.T.O.," an "Order of the Lion" giving out "Orders of the Golden Watch" and "Orders of the Eagle." The leaders nevertheless are, of course, aware that such sub-groups make for a rather pathetic organization and who wants to be part of that? Moving Order activity away from homes and bedrooms is the most important challenge facing the current generation today. They encourage everyone to lend an air of seriousness to the Order.

Thelema as preserved and sheltered within the 'Caliphate' O.T.O. claims that it is performing an educational task, with its 'Colleges' of Thelema, its 'Schools of Hermetic Science,' its 'Seminars on Gnosticism,' and through the O.T.O. order structure as well. That's where their reactionary revisionism emerges like the Creature from the Black Lagoon. They want to adapt to Society at large and tame illuminating revolution with a safe mainstream tie-in. Their report on the "First National Conference" in the ballroom of the Hilton in Akron, Ohio boasts: "How many of us, when we joined the O.T.O., imagined over a hundred Initiates dancing and drinking in formal evening-wear beneath two-ton chan­deliers to big-band, disco and rock? The O.T.O. had come of age that evening."

There are fundamental elements in every form of human interaction. One might substitute words referring to Christianity, Christian references or derivatives for words referring to the O.T.O. in this article and still maintain the argument.

Hare Rama Hare Supermarket

Today, in the worldwide circus of the images, occultism is the continuation of fashions, of habits or mannerisms of how to display oneself: pseudo-originality. The occult supermarket is universally plundered and leaves only a completely devalued treasury of total subjectivity. By picking out the pieces that appeal most to him or her out of the debris left after the breakdown of the symbolic order, the occultist's cultural reality ends up consisting of slightly differing arrangements of said pieces into signs of strict hierarchies. Normal activities one might expect in joining such a group, such as experiencing, recording and processing are curbed and one is reduced to subsistence on a diet of already fixed images that work in a consciousness dissolving way. Common occult knowledge is repackaged and sold as a new product; Crowley's Thelema is transformed according to 'Caliphate' methods into a juicy hamburger in a shiny new wrapping that you can buy at the mall. Defanged, neutered and essentially without much nutritional value.

To appeal to consumers, the 'Caliphate' has produced a range of products that resemble a McDonaldized 'illumination through sex-magic'; a McGnosis transported through the iconic figure of Crowley as Ronald McDonald. It is hidden behind a confusing veil of euphemisms, and is preferably practiced on Sundays by means of consuming a 'host' made of sexual secretions and/or blood obtained from the butcher shop (i.e. animal blood) for the public masses and those looking for titillation and codified rebellion.

The 'Caliphate' O.T.O. shows itself to be a post-modern esoteric supermarket with the equivalent and equal importance it vests in a whole range of different things: cabbala, T-shirts, yoga, invocations of demons and angels, sex-magic, calendars, exorcism, drugs, religion, Gnosis, videos, scandal, gossip, postcards, philosophy and pseudo-science. Egyptian mythology is revised to suit Thelemic tastes and all is re­duced to the level of a soap-opera. To the uninformed observer the O.T.O. looks rather like a tiny group of people, similar to a Harry Potter reading circle, rejects from a renaissance fair or heavy metal fans in search of a naked high priestess.

Manufactured Gnosis

The development of (oc)culture is hindered by occult organizations such as the O.T.O. with their modus operandi often consisting solely of "repetitions" of rituals, signs, etc., with little original thought or practice. The individual is expected to "find themselves" in this cultural repetition, which hinders, rather than encourages, creativity.

The supreme visionary, founder of meaning, maker of images, and source of actual occult streams is Crowley. He showed his followers how the needs of lust and the wishes of the body are to be controlled. Particularly strongly, their mastering of body and consciousness is shown in their control of the euphoria of imaging through dogmatically fixed tables of values (eg the Cabbala), and through bringing sexuality as sex magick in a form of ecstatic limitation ["make a wish as you orgasm"].

The 'Caliphate' professes to provide a user-friendly method of handling occult material, abilities, knowledge, rules, and procedures. This O.T.O. has become a sort of perpetuum mobile which never permits it members a true apotheosis; they have to patiently endure a long series of initiations, which are claimed to produce illumination bit by bit. This costs long years of paying membership dues and long delays waiting for the next initiation (although most members never get further than the Third Degree). By only gradually revealing its promised secrets and adventures, this Order (firm) plays with its members' (clients) spiritual yearnings. The organization works as a dealer of the yearning itself and it is careful to rule by decree which occult methods are allowed and which are forbidden. With its efficiently organized supply of formulæ (yoga, sex-magick, 'no drugs,' etc.) the 'Caliphate' appears to offer a permanent flow of instant mini-illuminations which run to an exactly-prescribed timetable — in other words, its hierarchical system of degrees or grades. Each initiatory degree comprises a predictable speciality within the limits of specific symbolisms and techniques. Each stage means conforming to new rules and regulations to enable or 'execute' illumination. Events are interpreted according to the degree of initiation, that is: higher degrees dominate lower degrees. All Thelemites are equal but some are more equal than others, to paraphrase Orwell.

This hierarchy allows precise control over members, and means they are under constant observation so that standardized results are produced. No experimentation is encouraged. The best way to progress has already been discovered and must therefore be followed. These restrictions have turned the 'Caliphate' into an institutionalized group whose ordinary members must follow strict criteria, and pass set examinations. Huge piles of forms have to be filled out, there are tests about occult knowledge, passwords, grips and signs. Individual Illumination happens in a schoolroom.

Of course, it is out of the question for the rank and file to discuss the fees for membership and initiations, the group's interpretation of doctrine, or how the organization is run; the 'Caliphate' is not a democratic body, and its leaders (the 'Caliph' and his inner circle of friends) are not elected democratically.

We are Borg ...

The greater the membership the more likely members will ‚behave’ (as opposed to act or think) and the less likely the group mind will tolerate "bad’ behaviour – behaviour meaning adjustment to the Order's rules. Integration itself proves to be an ideology for disintegration into power groups which exterminate each other. He who integrates is lost. In the equating of quality with quantity, only those who introduce the most new members will rise higher in the Order. A person ceases to be with other people and is completely oriented towards satisfying the higher institutional level. By doing so, this person experiences him/herself as a part of this higher level (management), at the same time, however, relinquishing his or her own individuality.

The striking frequency of the "we"-form ("we think, we want") levels different points of view and perspectives, mixing them together into an indifferent groupthink. The people in the Order must be of one mind (e.g. that of the management) in their attitude to external 'claimants' and critics, and must accept their position and/or grade in the Order. Dynamic group processes create pressures to conform in uniform reactions, verbal stereotypes in passwords and stock phrases ("Love is the Law," "the fundamenta­lists hate us"), and standardized symbolism. Everything has to be consistent — all members of the 'Caliphate's' Fifth Degree are supposed to have a rose tattooed on their upper chest and numerologically 729 always signifies the Crowleyan version of Baphomet — a McBaphomet, in other words. Creativity and original thought are eliminated, because they are 'inefficient' — and not controllable.

Making any change to their strictly limited repertoire of clichés is not a favored activity among many O.T.O. groups. For them, the status quo must be preserved at all costs: unquestioning acceptance of Crowley's omniscience as a prophet, the value of their rituals (such as the daily 'Adoration of the Sun'), the routine of initiation-ceremonies and performing the Gnostic Mass every Sunday, keeping to their codes of behavior, and submitting to the restrictions concerning what is forbidden and permitted. And, of course, the near-mantric repetition of the Thelemic greeting "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law." (Their version of "Hey, how’s it going?") They retreat to the old values of power and consummation in a universe that has been delivered to cults of objects, religious artifacts and meaningless jargon.

All these serve as substitute for rational analysis and experience, encouraging the prejudging of issues and intolerance of external criticism.

... and damaged

The pseudo-masonic nature of the Ordo Templi Orientis has engendered a complex grade structure, which usually takes many years to complete and pay for. It blends simple methods of 'technical psychology' with religious practices, often together with an excessive emphasis on the life and character of its charismatic leader.

Unfraternal behaviour between members, inflated egos, lying, game-playing, subterfuge and hysteria; all these have happened and continue to happen — causing endless in-fighting, divisions and secessions, and even court proceedings. This merely serves to reinforce the dominance of the organizational framework. Belonging to other groups is not permitted — so membership of the 'Caliphate' O.T.O. is not considered compatible with membership of, say, the 'Typhonian O.T.O.' or 'Temple of Set'. This monopolizes the marketplace in a manner very similar to the dominance of Microsoft's operating system in computers. This tendency often results in the expulsion of members who try to abandon (even slightly) Crowleyan dogmas, or legal threats to other groups which dare to use the O.T.O. name.

Unfaithful members not only face censorship but also a kangaroo court that shows plain similarity to the Spanish Inquisition: Anonymous informers, no witnesses, and no counsel for the defense. The Inquisitor is investigator, prosecutor and judge in one person. The defendants publicly have to apologize or risk expulsion.

Franz Kafka's Process

'Caliphate' members live in a deliberate vagueness about the organization's labyrinthian hierarchy; just who is responsible for what — and does the left hand even know what the right one's doing? In this hierarchy's pyramid structure, it is obvious (or should be) that all members can never reach the highest degree. The highest degree exercises omni-potency and omni-competency over the group.

While officials, dignitaries and the famous enjoy only limited rights to privacy and anonymity in a democracy, it is the exact opposite in organized occult niches like the O.T.O.; the higher the O.T.O. official, the less his real name will be known, and the more pseudonymously and ritually will he exercise his power in the group. The 'mundane' names of the leader or his representatives are often kept secret. They cease to be persons to meet in the real world for they lack all the many superfluous detailed characteristics, which make up a real individual. They seem to become "jobholders" in a bureaucratic club, acting on an assumption of omni-competence.

This facelessness and shapelessness has the effect that people also become faceless and shapeless. They live in a Kafkaesque world where the human being only is identified according to his or her function in the Order. As they never know all the rules of their order, they are trapped in an inner world of moods, feelings, and imaginations. This private world gets overemphasized and results in a lack of identity. Nothing remains but a dwindling whimper for attention. Certain conditions of being are defined as biased analysis, moods as programmes, self-perception as cultural attainment, and pure imagination as relevation. These are the new determinations. Dogmatization infantilizes and diminishes the contents, those seeking for directness become enmeshed in a sacredized repertoire of rituals of self-dissolution, without ever effectively overcoming the ego. Coupled with sexuality and aggressivity, this repetitive theme of destructiveness is displayed on the Internet in egroups, newsgroups and chatrooms. Flamewars and name calling abound, but even this sort of juvenile activity serves to reinforce the ‚Caliphate’ dominance.

The Odor of the O.T.O.

Fixation on Crowley, necessarily, equals stagnation. The O.T.O. functions like a piece of demo shareware with all the interesting key features disabled. It runs on a 14 day trial period which just repeats over and over again, even if you pay for the full version. "Do what thou wilt" in Crowley's O.T.O. mirrors this in anti-creativity and in the dogma of mystification; nobody must know of the central Spermo-Gnostic secret — and explicit censorship is enshrined in the statutes. There is an oligarchy (the chief and his inner circle of friends) who 'owns' this knowledge, and seeks to monopolize its interpretation and transmission. Of course, anyone wishing to manipulate the market in this way must be selling the best secrets money can buy. Hence the bizarre spin-doctoring attempts to treat the 'secret' of Spermo-Gnosis in the same way that Coca-Cola jealously guards its 'secret recipe'. It is a 'trade secret' to which any reference must be denied (even when such denials look absurd) because 'commercial confidentiality' must be preserved at all costs.

After all, the 'central secret' was never really a secret anyway; everyone with an interest in the O.T.O. already knows it means Spermo-Gnosis. So why should anyone want to join the O.T.O., if the only ambition of those already in the Order is to reach the next degree, and what would happen if there were no more steps to achieve, if the Order was no longer a dealer of the sacred? What would be the point??

Aura of the O.T.O. Phenomenon

Occulture has become a half-baked reflection of the sort that confines itself to monstrous platitudes which multiply in a void of speculation and vagueness. Silly rumours and snobbery also serve to ornament the gossip and corruption of people who would cloak themselves as arbiters of religious wisdom. Thelemic occulture itself is now bred "in vitro" as product for the publisher's supermarket, or disembowelled at so-called „International congresses,’ where it's given a first-class burial. The cadaver shivers until people are sure that it'll dance again.

When Thelema faces criticism it uses a tactic of 'restricted rationality' where its representatives (the 'Caliph' and his friends) utilize set arguments that have the twin advantages of supporting their doctrines and excluding criticism. This tactic, augmented by the dissemination of disinformation and suppression of facts, only serves to reinforce false self-images and manufacture imaginary bogeymen.

Critics have proved dangerous to these occultists by destroy­ing their aura: the very thing that makes them untouchable in their own eyes. Eventually, the factoids sent into orbit by occultists create a maelstrom of censorship on the Internet where spin doctors turn into pilots who surf their passengers. While they behave as if their ancestors hadn't so much crawled out of the primordial swamp, as taken a cab — they face facts that threaten their regimented happiness and carefully fenced-off security. And so they consciously choose ignorance as their weapon of survival. They promote benightedness, prejudice, superstition and censorship to protect their 'clan' from 'the world', and get stuck in the if-loop of their own labyrinth of 'reality.'


Thanks to the Internet factual concerns shrink to the level of Web 2.0 missives and second-hand opinions; knowledge becomes data hoarding, the linear becomes interactive, and proper friendship disappears in interchangeable cyber-interaction. Occulture turns into a passive audience riven by factions, which fish their pre-digested half-truths out of the limitless digital pool. This kind of McDonaldized occulture is an arena where anything goes, a breeding-ground for conspiracy-theories now classified as scholarly work. Selective attention decides whether information is worthwhile or not; it doesn't matter if that information is right or wrong, or even true or false — only whether it attracts attention and as much as possible.

The O.T.O.'s feuilleton mainly consists of hymnic reviews of their ideologically kindred press, of the endless celebration of Crowley and his disciples and, of course, character assasinations of Thelema’s critics. Pseudo-discourse happens in complete sterility on the Internet in its vicious circle of cen­sorship, spin-doctoring, propaganda and blatant lies. They produce an imitation of real thought-processes and new arrangements of old fantasies. Veteran spin doctors lean out of their virtual cave windows, rotating in the ruins of lust and driven by particles of supposed enlightenment in the terrain of petty bourgeoise in-fighting. It’s all revealed to be so pointless!

The reduction of facts to hallucinatory speculations leaves no room for the influence of truth (whatever that may be), and results in an endless fragmented labyrinth of unlimited choices where 'truth' becomes a matter of prejudice and moods. Any ‚true’ information faces a continuing elasticity in a process of transformation and interactive reconfiguration. In the vast catacombs of the hypertexts it is all too easy to lose a feeling for the whole; in the nebulous atmosphere left by an absence of such an overview, connections and continuity can disappear. Where there is hypertext, there is no context.

Fahrenheit 418

All the concepts mentioned in the foregoing paragraphs are merely instruments serving to distract from and suppress but one vital fact: that the American version of the O.T.O., called the 'Caliphate', exists for the purpose of providing one man's entire income by allowing him to live off the royalties from Aleister Crowley's works. This man is the leader of the ‘Caliphate’ and is called 'His Holy Majesty" 'Lord Knight Caliph,' etc. His strategy is to keep the O.T.O. alive as a money-milking cow – the members follow as sheep, blinded to this most salient fact.

In 1985, a rather uninformed American judge ruled in the favour of the 'Caliphate', thus making way for thousands of dollars from the Crowley copyrights rolling into the bank account of this new O.T.O. group founded in 1977. The 'Caliphate' not only declared itself to be 'the real OTO' from 1985 on, but also openly implemented a scheme of three categories of so-called 'historical truths' into which facts have to fit. This scheme has nothing to do with historical, academic and methodic research but nourishes the bureaucratic levels of this legally introduced hierarchy of 'truths.'

  1. Legally protected historical truths. "The Truth" — the 'Caliphate' is the real O.T.O.-- was defined by a Court. Anyone openly querying or denying this "truth" finds himself in Court — be it a mundane Court when it touches the holy copyrights, or the Inquisition room of the 'Caliphate.'
  2. Officially privileged historical truths. As only a handful of selected and chosen faithful and 'trustworthy' people adhering to 'Caliphate' 'truths' have access to the primary sources in their archives, the public has to rely on their findings.
  3. Ordinary historical truths that are treated as quantité négligeable. 'Other' historical facts without any reference to legally protected or officially privileged historical truths, e.g. what they call distorted facts by enemies or critics.

Threats to the income from royalties on the Crowley copyrights — which is the sole basis for the ‘Caliphate's existence — have resulted in some pretty extreme and bizarre antics, as shown above. The ‘Caliph's supposed omnipotence reveals his impotence at the same time. He drifts into being perceived as a parody of a ruler by the rest of society, with his titles like 'Supreme King.' In the end he acts like a tyrant whose slightest whim must be obeyed, and for whom everything must be sacrificed — including your freedom.

Have you heard of the Thelemic book patrol equipped with flame throwers (i.e. lawyers)? Members who sell 'secret' although published documents are brought before a Kafkaesque inquisition and eventually expelled. The open market (new and secondhand) of published books available through public libraries, manuscripts in research libraries, manuscripts held by private individuals who are not members of the O.T.O. etc., are also controlled by the Chief of the group. Never mind that when you bought the book, the 'Caliphate' was not in existence: this Corporation now retroactively controls your Crowleyana. Should you try to sell this material, you will recieve a cease and desist order as soon as they become aware of your attempts. In this respect the 'Caliphate’ resembles the Church of Scientology’s pursuit of any and all persons who spill their "high level" documents on the Internet and elsewhere, even as these secrets pop up like mushrooms after a morning rain.

In the context of Society, of course, the 'Caliphate' is completely irrelevant. If members disobey their Order's laws, what have they to lose but the mem­bership of the club? Gnosis? Hardly. Fact remains: Members up in arms, fighting the rules have nothing to fear in Society's context (except they have to pay for copyright infringement, but you don't have to be a club member for that), but the 'Caliph' stands to lose everything: his cash-cow.

I am the Brand Name

The 'Caliphate' O.T.O. is little more than a commercial concern that allows its managing director to live off the royalties generated by Aleister Crowley's writings. It isn't really the membership-fees that are carved up as a rich income for the organization's chiefs, but almost entirely these royalties. Thus the 'Caliphate' must continue as a withered legal appendix living parasitically on the body of the publishing. Membership is needed only in order the chief can say, "I have a legal body that owns copyrights." This fact is whitewashed on dozens of 'consciousness-expanding' Internet homepages, which show the over-egged love-and-peace pudding of the 'Caliphate' up for what it is — a McOTO.

© Peter-Robert Koenig 2003

Edited by Richard Metzger for his "Book Of Lies", disinfo

Other contributors: Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, Phil Hine, William S. Burroughs, Erik Davis, Nevill Drury, Anton LaVey, Timothy Leary, Robert Anton Wilson, Vere Chappell, Stephen Flowers and many others
Book of Lies: The Disinformation Guide to Magick and the Occult, Grant Morrison, Hakim Bey, William S. Burroughs, Joe Coleman, Aleister Crowley, Erik Davis, Nevill Drury, Gary Lachman, Paul Laffoley, Anton LaVey, Timothy Leary, Terence McKenna, Michael Moynihan, Daniel Pinchbeck, Genesis P-Orridge, Donald Tyson, Robert Anton Wilson, Richard Metzger

Secrets of the Rosicrucians, Templars and the Illuminati

Secrets of the Rosicrucians, Templars and the Illuminati, Peter-Robert Koenig

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