"Ljuben je zakon" or "ljubav pod voljom"?
In the absence of any other evidence, it is fairly safe to assume that Thelema was introduced to
what was then Yugoslavia by one Robert Nemecek, who was then a musician in a well-known (in
Yugoslavia) band called 'Rock Machine'. Today Nemecek has a senior position at one of the largest
Yugoslav television stations.|
Emir Salihovic [see below] in an email dated November 2000: "I heard about Robert Nemecek, but I doubt he introduced Thelema to socialist Yugoslavia. I think there's more evidence that Zivorad Mihajlovic-Slavinski from Belgrad did that. He published his first book in 1973, I think, and he was already mentioning Golden Dawn, Crowley etc. In 1976 he published his book "Psychonauts of interior worlds", where he devoted a whole chapter to Crowley, OTO, sex magic etc. In the same book he wrote extensively about Kenneth Grant also. It is well known that Oliver Legradic, and his predecessor (I forgot his name), were members of Slavinski's "Psychotronics Society" and learned about Crowley from him. It was simply that those people later contacted Caliphate, became members, and brought OTO to Yugoslavia."Before the series of civil wars that ravaged the region, there were proportionally more 'Thelemites' per head of the population in Yugoslavia than in any other country (with the possible exception of the USA). Many members of the various Yugoslav O.T.O. groups became refugees as a result of the dire domestic situation, and it is therefore impossible to give any coherent description of the current Thelemic landscape in the former Yugoslavia. Hence this short article confines itself to developments between 1980 and 1994; the activities of the Yugoslavian 'Abrahadabra' branch of the 'Caliphate' are described merely to give a general impression of events.
It was Oliver Legradic (Khonsu) who introduced the 'Caliphate' to Yugoslavia, at Ljubljana in Slovenia, in 1982. The founder of the 'Caliphate', Grady McMurtry, eventually paid a visit to the country in 1983, and some fifteen groups under 'Caliphate' obedience were created there, comprising about 200 members in all. The 'Abrahadabra Camp' (see below) was founded around 1985 in Belgrade by Goran Dordevic (Persifal), who led the group until 1989. (There was actually another person called Goran Dordevic in this group). Apparently, many members of this group underwent a lot of disturbing sex and drug experiences, which merely served to confuse them; one individual who did the 'Caliphate' initiations was sporting an old Nazi swastika badge (actually a tie-pin) on his robe. One witness recalled of this:
"That memory sticks [to] me painfully. My family has jewish ancestors ... Nazis and fascists scare me and anger me very much. The OTO has an uncomfortable relationship with this."
In 1988, a Yugoslav 'Caliphate' member called Vladimir Madic founded a firm called 'Esotheria' in Belgrade for the purpose of publishing editions of Crowley's writings. He was expelled from the 'Caliphate' in 1993, apparently because he was not paying them sufficient 'royalties' (see below).
The Abrahadabra Camp
Goran Dordevic founded the 'Abrahadabra Camp' in about 1985 with an initial membership of ten people. After February 1988, they celebrated the Crowleyan 'Gnostic Mass' on a regular basis. Here is a chronology of their activities:
March 16th and 26th 1988: 0° and I° initiations conducted by Legradic at Vladimir Madic's house near Belgrade. Madic was made a 0°.
Between March and April 1988 the group engaged in simple group activities, particularly Yoga exercises. In June that year, they performed Crowley's verse-dramas 'The Rites of Eleusis' in private. They managed to do these things despite being faced with the problem common to all new occult groups of having no proper temple — so the rites and initiations were done in the cramped confines of members' homes and flats.
By July 1988, the group were meeting every Wednesday to practice the Pentagram and Hexagram rituals, as well as doing meditations, working Liber Samekh, and studying Crowley's Liber AL (the 'Book of the Law') and Liber Israfel. Instructional lessons were given on the Tarot and the magical correspondances of colour.
On July 2nd and 3rd that year, a seminar on Yoga was held.
On July 25th 1988, all the members met to celebrate what was described as a 'Gnostic Baptism' — in fact, a ritual made up of extracts from the Gnostic Mass and Liber Al. It was intended to be a group initiation into the 'Caliphate' version of the Gnostic Catholic Church. This unusual rescension of the Gnostic Mass finished with a group-sex session between (among others) 'Persifal', 'Sr. Venus' and 'Sr. Aqvarius', which scandalised the other members present.
On August 12th that year, the group gave its first public performance of the Gnostic Mass. Another public performance followed on september 24th, with a cast-list of Oliver Legradic as the priest, 'Sr. Venus' as the priestess, and Goran Dordevic as the deacon. 'Sr. Venus' was at that time Camp Master Dordevic's girlfriend; when Legradic became Oasis Master she promptly transferred her affections to him.
Emir Salihovic [see below] in an email dated November 2000: "At that time I was meeting those people. I was interested in joining Caliphate officially, but Legradic rejected me on the grounds that I was a friend with Julijan Naskov, whom he disliked. Anyway, as the bishop of OTO EGC, Legradic baptised me into EGC, with several more people. In March of 1989 I even did one Mass with them, acting as the Priest. I almost regularly attended these Masses. But the bastards didn't call me to join when they had that group-sex session :)) Oh, yes, I was really hot about Sr. Venus, as everybody else... :) "Between October and December of 1988, the group continued a programme of regular Pentagram and Hexagram rituals, and lectures on the Tarot and astral projection.
December 10th 1988: The leaders of the Camp celebrated the Enochian Ritual of Opening the Watch Towers, as well as Liber Samekh and Liber Reguli.
December 20th 1988: Legradic conducted 0° and I° initiations.
December 22nd 1988: Readings from Liber AL and Liber Cordis Cincti Serpente.
January 5th 1989: A Camp meeting was held to discuss financial problems, and how the publications were going. A members-only Gnostic Mass was celebrated.
January 14th 1989: Public performance of the Gnostic Mass.
Vladimir Madic and Maja Mandic had a general impression of the Belgrade group as friendly and creative, although the magic wasn't of the highest quality; this was before Legradic took control.
The Abrahadabra Oasis
On the orders of the 'Caliph' William Breeze, Abrahadabra Camp was elevated to the status of an 'Oasis', with Legradic as its Master. In point of fact, Legradic had fallen for Soror Venus's charms, and had moved from Ljubljana to Belgrade.
January 16th 1989: Formal opening of the Oasis and performance of the rituals of the Pentagram, Hexagram, Star Ruby, and Liber Reguli. Then the O.T.O.'s 'Manifesto' was read out, and events concluded with a study of the Tarot trumps.
On January 26th, the former offices of the now-defunct Camp were dissolved, before still more study of Tarot trumps.
At the February 1st meeting, Legradic announced his wish to run a seminar on the Gnostic Catholic Church, before the Tarot trumps studying resumed.
February 10th saw performances of the Pentagram and Hexagram rituals, that of the Star Ruby, and a reading of Chapter Seven of Liber Ararita — these "on the occasion of the death of Fr. Marcur". They went on to study the M.M.M. part of Liber IV (otherwise called 'ABA'), and did an 0° ritual. Some of the brethren from Novi Sad had presented the Oasis with the gift of a home-made magic wand.
February 18th: Legradic and others made comments on Liber CLXI and studied the 0° ritual.
The following day on February 19th, a number of Abrahadabra's members were holding their own workings independent of the 'Caliphate' in Frater 'Artur's' flat. It is notable that everyone present at this gathering was later expelled from the 'Caliphate': Dordevic, 'Artur', 'B.', 'Sr. Felis' amongst others.
March 1st: Legradic expounded the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram.
March 7th: At a meeting held in Belgrade's Youth Centre, Legradic, 'Fr. M.' and Ziorad Mihajlovic Slawinski discussed Crowley's Liber IV (otherwise called 'ABA').
8th of March: an Oasis meeting.
March 15th: Legradic gave a talk on the Star Ruby, before a general discussion about 'Fr. E.A.O.A.'s' Liber XXV.
March 22nd: The Æon of Horus was honoured with a special celebration of the Gnostic Mass.
Then on April 2nd, Legradic announced that the Oasis would soon be closed down, as the Abrahadabra group was about to be raised to the dignity of a fully-fledged 'Caliphate' O.T.O. Lodge; membership fees were to be increased, and all future meetings should be audiotaped, he said.
The Abrahadabra Lodge
On April 9th 1989, William Breeze, during the course of a trip through Europe, elevated Legradic to the V°, and installed the Abrahadabra Lodge.
The following day, and again on April 30th, the Lodge celebrated Gnostic Masses.
Then on June 13th, regular public meetings were instituted at a restaurant; non-members were allowed to attend.
June 15th saw the expulsion of Frater 'Artur', one of the group's longest-standing members, by Legradic; this was supposedly because 'Artur' had been stirring up trouble by gossiping about Legradic and his girl-friend.
Gnostic Masses were then performed regularly, on June 17th and 28th, on July 23rd, and on August 8th. It was at this time according to Vladimir Madic, that 'Khonsu' started experimenting with sniffing glue — Madic was woken up in the middle of the night by Legradic's incoherent phone-calls.
September 10th: Legradic led both 0° and I° initiation-ceremonies.
September 12th, 13th, and 14th saw more Gnostic Masses.
On September 21st, trouble reared its head again: Legradic had been borrowing money from a member called Frater 'Prvoslav', and had apparently not been repaying his loans. Angrily, 'Prvoslav' showed him the door at a Lodge meeting — and Legradic had to do as he was told — unfortunately for him the meeting was being held in 'Prvoslav's' flat. In revenge, Legradic expelled 'Fr. Prvoslav'.
Emir Salihovic [see below] in an email dated November 2000: "Prvoslav later left OTO anyway. He even moved from Belgrade. He was nice man, but I think that he suffered from some kind of light mental disorder. I was living in his flat for about a month."September 28th was the 'Feast of the Equinox', at which the Pentagrams, Star Ruby, and Liber Reguli were duly performed. Legradic asked the I-Ching for the 'Word of the Equinox' (a new password for the Lodge's next six months). Then meditations were held on passages chosen at random from Liber AL; but all was not sweetness and light, as a certain Soror 'Felix' announced that she was resigning from the 'Caliphate' because of Legradic's "intolerable and unfair behaviour".
October 4th: Pentagrams, Star Ruby, and a lecture on the NUIT chapter of Liber AL. Members expressed a wish for more entertaining activities (presumably encouraged by the 'lucky dip' meditations on September 28th), as well as a need for more English lessons (one assumes to study Crowley). Then there was a members-only Gnostic Mass.
October 12th: A public performance of the Gnostic Mass, as well as a baptism.
At this time, Frater 'V' had started painting facsimiles of Aleister Crowley's 'Stélé of Revealing', which cause a quarrel between Vladimir Madic and Legradic; Legradic insisted that Frater 'V' had got his facsimiles wrong, and that the figure of Horus on them should have an ankh in its left hand, and predicted that Madic would end up in a lunatic asylum.
October 18th: Legradic gave a talk on the 'Mass of the Phoenix'. According to a number of witnesses, Legradic gave his lecture still spotted with the glue he had just been sniffing, and continued his quarrel with Madic over the Stélés in public. Eventually Legradic banned Madic from any further initiations.
On October 30th, Abrahadabra raised its public profile still further at the International Book Exhibition in Belgrade, where it had a stand staffed by members selling Crowley books.
November 8th: Pentagrams and Star Ruby as usual. Legradic and the members present then had a discussion where they resolved to hold a number of seminars in future: there would be a Gnostic seminar, one on Aleister Crowley's 'Holy Books', and another on magical theory, amongst others. Legradic then held forth on the égrégore (or group-spirit) of the O.T.O., and discussed McGregor Mathers, Kenneth Grant and Michael P. Bertiaux. He concluded with the surprising revelation that the O.T.O. had originated in Egypt, and traces of its influence could also be found in the Greek Mysteries. In order to distance himself from Grant and Bertiaux, Legradic declared that the lost continents of Lemuria, Atlantis and Mu (from which Grant's spirit LAM came) were all complete fiction.
On a meeting held on November 9th, it seems that Dordevic, Legradic and 'Fr. Ekanath' had a dispute about some newspaper articles that had been appearing on the Lodge. Legradic opened proceedings by announcing that his mistress Soror Venus was now second-in-command at the Lodge.
December 1st: 0°-III° initiations.
December 7th: The 'Gnostic Seminar' took place.
January 18th 1990: Legradic sold his Enochian Seal.
January 22nd: Another Gnostic Seminar, during which discussions were held about the exact recipe for the 'Cakes of Light' used in the Gnostic Mass. There was also a Thelema seminar, it seems, as there dicussions were held on Liber B vel Magi.
During the Gnostic Mass held on January 27th, a facsimile Stélé was used for the first time. Baptisms.
February 3rd: Goran Dordevic was expelled from the 'Caliphate' on the "official grounds" that he had broken his III° oath. Some of the members now believed that Legradic was acting like a sort of vampire, as he sucked out the membership's vital energy.
On February 6th and 8th the members knuckled down to more practice, with the Pentagram and the Star Ruby, but extended their repertiore with Liber Resh vel Helios, a Mars Hexagram, and Liber Liberi vel Lapidis Lazuli.
By February 19th, Legradic seems to have brought at least one errant spirit back under his control, having been able to convince one Soror 'Alfa Crucis' that it was in fact the expelled Dordevic who was the vampire sapping her energy.
On February 22nd, Legradic and Soror Venus accused Madic's girlfriend Maja Mandic of trying to seduce Legradic.
March 5th's meeting saw Legradic expelling Frater 'B' (another long-standing member) because he thought that 'B' was too close to having Christian ideas.
On March 13th, the expelled members ('Artur', 'B.', and Dordevic) and eight of those still in the Lodge had a showdown with Legradic, as they all thought the situation had become intolerable. In the end, fifteen signatures were appended to an open letter explaining difficulties, which was addressed to Breeze as 'Caliph'.
March 15th: Gnostic Mass.
March 20th: Gnostic Mass. Because a certain Frater 'M' thought that Legradic was due to be travelling out of Yugoslavia for a year, it turned out that the letter to Breeze was not sent.
April 8th-10th: Gnostic Masses.
May 24th: Legradic rescinded Dordevic's expulsion.
Between May 1990 and the outbreak of war in the summer of 1991, nothing dramatic seems to have happened; Legradic then closed the Belgrade Lodge and moved to Slovenia. The war split the Yugoslavian 'Caliphate' into four factions; the Slovenian and Serbian groups were able to carry on working uninterrupted, while the Croatian and Bosnian groups suffered greatly. There is now an alleged policy in place that no further initiations will be held until 2001.
Two other people not yet mentioned were important for the development of the 'Caliphate' in Yugoslavia; one was Milan V. from Vrsac, the other was 'Joca' from Novi Sad. They were devoted to the cause for several years, but were later sidelined apparently because of their "strange" behaviour.
Confronted by the terrible war situation in 1993, William Breeze's conscience was pricked enough for him to found a so-called "Balkan War Fund" to help the beleaguered 'Caliphate' members there. Part of the money collected from 'Caliphate' members elsewhere in the world was forwarded to the organisation's representative in Ljubljana, who had Bosnian refugees staying in his house; another portion was reserved to pay for medical tests for Bosnian refugees — while the remainder was allegedly sent to people in "the South Slavic States".
Five Bosnian members (together with one couple's child) were able to leave Bosnia and go to live in a safer area; this was some time in 1996. The official 'Caliphate' magazine "The Magical Link" claimed that the majority of their Yugoslav members left the new Bosnian territories after the "peace"; but actual witnesses to these events state that it was apparent that the membership was largely Serbian and came from wealthy backgrounds.
In 1999 a television journalist Sasa Damnjanovic reported more recent 'Caliphate' goings-on:
"Now you have the new kids in town — but it is a small country, and a small organisation. There is little money to spare (for the Great Work), and maybe still some fear; so it is like it was under the 'Caliph' — bad work. You know the sort of thing: do a little Pentagram ritual and you are a magician of the IX°!"
At the same time that Breeze founded the Balkan War Fund, he expelled Vladimir Madic and his allies in April 1993; it seems that Breeze thought that Madic & Cº, having started 'Esotheria', hadn't come up with enough 'royalty' payments to the 'Caliphate' for publishing Crowley material during the Balkan war. In fact, in the absence of any other resources, Madic had paid Legradic in the form of books (worth the equivalent of 5,000 US dollars), even though Legradic himself hadn't lifted a finger to help with publication. Madic was a witness to the fact that all the Yugoslavian 'Caliphate' funds (whether from membership fees or elsewhere) had been embezzled by Legradic for himself.|
In May 1997, Breeze again tried use a lawyer to threaten these "unfaithful" ex-members into giving him money, but since then a Serbo-Croat translation of Crowley's O.T.O. rituals has been published, which Breeze completely failed to block.
Before the break-up of Yugoslavia under the Tito régime, it was difficult to write openly about
occult or esoteric subjects; so a lot of groups would add a few Marxist lines to their texts to
avoid accusations or arrest. Only with the fall of Communism in the country, was it possible to
speak or write freely.|
Unhappily, with this freedom there came penalties; ever since 1994 a number of newspapers in the former Yugoslavia have mimicked their European brethren by describing the O.T.O. as Satanists. In 1998 the Yugoslav parliament (under Milosevic) debated a new law — which has yet to go on the statute-books — which would control the activities of religious bodies. One clause in this law would prohibit all 'Satanic' and 'Gnostic' sects as harmful; the O.T.O. would undoubtedly fall under this definition of 'Satanic', since several of its members have been interrogated on more than one occasion by the Yugoslav secret police (more correctly called the 'National Security'). The authorities obviously suspected that 'Esotheria' and Madic's local radio programme 'Terra Mistica' were a front for the O.T.O., and were used to recruit members.
But to date O.T.O. groups in the former Yugoslavia have escaped being listed in parliamentary reports, either because they are simply too small to attract official attention, or because control of religious minorities is seen mainly as a political tool only).
Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2004 Subject: O.T.O. in YU 93! (I hold a widely spread opinion that this is a greeting that expresses most deep respect to a person adressed) I am a person mentioned in a some letters from people that were involved in YU O.T.O. called Artur, which should be fra. ARTHuR, actually. After a many years of occasinal reading of the interesing materials on your site, which I beleive read only a small percent, I have to give you some more precise data. It concerns a very few details, but it is obvious that some of the people have their own misconceptions which should be, for the sake of truth, cleared. 1. Concerning the expulsion of the members of ABRAHADABRA lodge from Caliphate, we were only expelled from the lodge by fra. Khonsu under the obvious influence of spirit, glue and his late wife, sorror Venus. I checked the facts personally with O.T.O. HQ. Me and other fratres et sorrores are still member, though not active. The only person expelled was Mr. Madic (fra Ekanath) for reasons that are correctly shown in the letters that you quote. 2. The famous group sex orgy after a Gnostic mass, held at Mr. Madic's place was not an orgy at all. What happened is that some six members of the camp (it was still a camp then) spontaneously started to provoke each other into some mild petting which culminated in pseudolesbian petting exhibition involving two sorrors, Venus & Aquarius. Both of them were classical examples of sexual provocatresses, psychologicaly troubled, but it is not mine to explain. Most of us were provoked by them many times, since we all were actually friends, and a rather good ones. They undressed their blouses, showing breasts, and actually fighting for a title of a alpha-female in the group. They did not realise that the third one already established her status, which later on came obvious, and she was a most often a priesstes, and a most desired one by all of us who acted as a priests. It was Vlada Madic's girlfriend, Maja, who even nowadays is a well known person in Belgrad occult circles. This event, which 6 persons attended, and I was not interested, since I was in the other room with another girl, ;))) and only came in once to tell them that I was busy, so they proclaimed me a Black Guard, and asked me to make sure that nobody came in. There were still some of the people in the flat, after a mass. Present were s. Venus, s. Aquarius, Maja Mandic, f. B., f. Parsifal, and Vlada Madic. All of the involved, including me, later on had trouble with fra. Khonsu, when he married sorror Venus. We were, among the rest of stupid accusations, blamed for inventing and spreading the rumour about s. Venus having an orgy with all of us. Rubbish. Nobody ever gave any importance to this event, but it obviouslu ment something to late s. Venus. It seems that Legradic never really realised that this childish fun took place in reality. I personally feel sorry for a poor girl although she gave me a lot of trouble with no reason at all. But it was her life and she did with it what she felt she should. 3. B., V. Madic and me received some night calls from Legradic that we were expelled from an order, so I imediatelly called Bill Heidrick an asked him about that, he had no knowledge or any document about it. After some 10 years, when I left country for some time for bussines reasons, I had an email contact with him when he assured me that if only I started to pay my fees, I would agan be a member in "good standing". Since I was not involved in any Caliphate works, I prefered to stay silent. So did others. 4. The first book published in Serbia by O.T.O. members was Book 4. The printing was financed by fra. Parsifal and me, and in the redaction Legradic was also involved, and so was formally Vlada Madic, although he did almost nothing, but he was learning how to do it, and later on started his own publishing company, Esotheria. Fra P. and I dod almost all the work, and translations were done by ex-members of the Abrahadanra camp, which by the time started their own camp in Zavidovici, B&H. They are the members mantioned in a part about fleeing from the country, and now they live in Canada. What happened is that fra. Khonsu took all of the print to distribute it arround the country, to members and the other interested in Theleme. The book was sold in few months, and we never got any money from it. Only when it became obvious, fra P. took almost by force last few dosens of copies from Legradic, and in that way, selling these last ones we succeeded to get back only the money we put into it. Since I borrowed money for that, I was actually in minus, and also since I beleived that I will get some money from it, I did not work for some moths, so the whole thing came as a rather bitter wakeup. When I publicly asked Legradic about what actually happened, and whether there is any money, he took a drop of Abramelin oil (well, actually, a mixture, a drop diluted in lots of olive oil ;))) on a thumb and "ritually" pressed it on my forehead, thereby banishing me from a Lodge. The reason he gave was my undermining his authority as a Lodge master. I did not reply, it was below any conception I ever had about honour. Which was more important, I did not care anymore, since I already saw what he was doing. The only thing I regreted at that time was the certainty that if I adressed any of the senior officers in HQ, it was my word against his. And I knew that other Lodge members would not back me up. Later when it came to writing a letter to Caliph, most of them acrually turned yellow. I knew it earlier. Fra. Parsifal, probably the person that deserves most credits for O.T.O. popularity in Serbia, and even more, in ex YU, took the rest of the books from f. Khonsu to save our investment, and since he did not obey masters order to work against me, he was accused for breaking an oath of. III deegree, which is a classic abuse of power on behalf of that bastard. This word I do not use emotionaly, since I am not interested anymore, I am just trying to use the proper expresion for this semihuman creature which obsessed the whole of YU O.T.O. He never grew up from an adolescensy, and after I lost him from sight he only sunk deeper. After he lost his wife, Venus, maybe something changed, but I have no idea. Evenmore, it is not my bussines. 5. The group that gathered working in my flat, as it is said in a passage on Abrahadabra Oasis, from 19th of February was not a adhoc gathering of unsatisfied members of the Oasis and later Lodge. It was our old magic group from which actually the O.T.O. in Belgrade emanated. In summer 1984 us 5 member of "Psychotronic society" that was founded by Zivorad Mihajlovic Slavinski, started experimenting with ceremonial magick, not knowing much about Thelema, but very soon we learned about and studied it passionately. The group was fuonded in my appartment by one who later on became fra. Parsifal, then one Dusan Licina, also a brother later on, who died heroicaly in Bosnia as a medic. He was married to a sorror Aquarius. Also there were two friends from a nearby municipality of Pancevo, who never joined O.T.O. but stayed in E.G.A. of Slavinsky, and there was of course me. This group flourished through years, involving many people from Belgrade, some of them now famous in art circles, we had guests from all the parts of the world, contacts with all kinds of traditions. For instance, when we were deeply involved in O.T.O. in 87, and 88, before Oliver Legradic came to Bg. we had as a regular guest John Myrdhin Reynolds, Tipetan mystic, teacher and translator, who also is a friend of Caliph. ;) We all attended his and Namkhai Norbu's Dzog Chen seminars, we studied Yoga, Tantra and who knows what. On the Yoga seminar mentioned in Madic's account I introduced to the rest od brothers an modern alternative technique of Rebirthing by Leonard Orr, and so on. The group kept working on even after the collapse of O.T.O. in Belgrade. Not to forget that a prominent member was one B. who is also mentioned. He was actually a leader at a time. I took on when he left. But in the beginning there was no leader. We all just did our Will. And so is today, though we do not meet officially, but we are still friends, all of us, with an exception of one sister. 6. Frater Prvoslav is in a way not fairly described by Emir, who happens to be a friend to. ;))) Prvoslav is simply not a fool. Thats all, he doesn't care for politenes and he was really ready to beat the bastard Legradic at the time. Some brothers stopped him. Later on he turned a genuine mystic, lived in a cottage by some lake, and now works with wood, carving religious motives. He actually lives Thelema more than a lot of others, although his art is motivated by ortodox christian icons. 7. Milan V. and Joca, that are also mentioned are respectively, Oliver Legradic's Best man, and a first boyfriend of s. Venus. They both strayed into mental disorder of some kind. 8. All of the reports of Zivorad Mihajlovic Slavinsky are not really accurate, except the mere facts, but that is another story. Suffice to say that he was a pioneer of psychic journeys in ex YU, and he still works a lot. He has two sides, and it can be an interesting story. If you want to know, I can supply facts, but it is a damanding work. He is the best partner when it comes to practical work, and a dangerous enemy when it comes to money and power. I hope these lines will help to clarify some things, and if you need more, I am ready to give further info. But, when I try to get some more detailed idea from your site, it gives me headache, considering the mere size of the material.... ;) Yours sincerely, Nebojša Mirèetoviæ, fra. ARTHuR
The Typhonian O.T.O.
Zivorad Mihajlovic-Slavinski was born in Belgrade on December 4th, 1937; he was a clinical psychologist by profession. From 1970 onwards, he published a series of books on esoteric and occult subjects:
Yoga: Psychic Training The Keys of Psychic Magic Hermetic Symbols Encyclopedia of Parapsychology and Hermeticism Psychonauts of Inner Worlds Psychotronics: A Theory and Practice of Parapsychology Translations of Aleister Crowley's Liber Al and Liber Aleph The Course of Gnostic Occultism (published by Vladimir Madic) Excalibur In 2003/04 he published his first novel called "The Dawn of Aiwaz" ("Praskozorje Ajvaza").
"I have 23 published books. Some of them are translated into English (take a look at Amazon), Italian, Turkish, Portuguese, Slovenian and Russian." [Slavinski in an email, February 2008]
While acquiring a manor-house for his community in Belgrade, Mihajlovic became a bishop in Michael P. Bertiaux's Ordo Templi Orientis Antiqua, and an X° in Kenneth Grant's 'Typhonian' O.T.O. in 1990. He founded what he called his 'Psychotronics Association', and is usually considered something of a spiritual pioneer in the former Yugoslavia; 'Ecclesia Gnostica Alba' (EGA) once had over a hundred members. See the main page on the 'Typhonian' O.T.O..
[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]
Members of the EGA claimed to have achieved spontaneous consciousness of Aiwass, the tutelary spirit of Thelema, through their rites, which also enabled them to 'receive' something called the "Algolian language", which they then learnt to speak. The Algol in 'Algolian' does not refer to the Arabic star-name Algol, but "a dimension on the borderland of the transplutonic Isis" — Isis being the name of an as yet undiscovered planet in Grant's mythology. [Unfortunately, 'Algol' is also the name of an early computer programming language]. The vocabulary of Algolian was mainly 'received' by Milena Jovanovic (a member of Slavinski's Gnostic Church) and Alda Meuna, his wife; Philip, his 13-year old son also helped in their 'researches'. Aiwass explained that he was trying to influence the science of Planet Earth through the person of Nikola Tesla (the eccentric electrical genius). The words 'Aiwass' and 'Aiwaz' (the mystical and magical spellings respectively) seemed to play a very important rôle in the language; it was asserted that 'Aivaz' was a common surname in the Lika province of Bosnia, where many Serbians lived. Slavinski thought that "Aivaz and LAM are the same Intelligence, ... the Aivaz energy-stream materialises as Lam when emerging through human awareness." This was in the same vein as Kenneth Grant's remeniscence: "In 1945, Crowley proffered his portfolio and made me choose any picture I liked ... I drew out the portrait of LAM, and, as I did so, Crowley muttered — sotto voce — Aiwass!." [Some say for possibly "Eyewash!"]
Here is the opinion from a source in the former Yugoslavia:
Date: Fri, 28 Jan 2000 From: 'Kreshimir Markovich' Subject: Croatian caliphate You can quote me as 'Vilenjak'. That means, roughly, 'Faery' and that is my nickname on occult-related Internet discussions. You had been falsely informed that Croatian caliphate OTO is not functioning. If you are interested in that part of OTO history, see www.iridis.hr/theba or www.pubwww.hr/cro_oto links. Croatian OTO is alive and kicking — with active bodies in Zagreb, Split and Ivanicgrad (town near Zagreb). Only Bosnian BABALON 149 Oasis in Zavidovici (city near Tuzla) was destroyed on material plane during the War. Roughly in Autumn of 1992, when Serbians smashed Croatian defences in North Bosnia and attacked Tuzla Muslim enclave from the back... but I will ask for better information. OTO body (Mirrah lodge) in Zagreb have public EGC mass every week, Babalon ritual and Baphomet mass (also public) every month. Zagreb has Mirrah lodge, and members of that body had rented small apartment for masses and communion. Mirrah is name of a quasar. Every Saturday we have EGC mass (with public invitation, very liberaly granted), on full moon Babalon ritual and Baphomet mass on new moon. After group rituals we usually have a party. Master of Mirrah lodge is Ranko Blazekovic. I will collect other information in next week or two. OTO in whole of Croatia have about 100 members. But I will send you more detailed information soon. Ivanijgrad have LA-AL camp and Ra-Hoor-Khuit camp. People there are very active, and besides EGC mass for initiated members they do invocation of Heru-Ha-Ra monthly. Split have Theba Oasis and Baphomet Oasis. Theba has great web pages on www.iridis.hr/theba which will be translated into English soon. I apologize because of sending you incorrect link two times. Correct address is pubwww.srce.hr/cro_oto." *** Zivorad Mihailovic Slavinski is known in the former Yugoslavia as a publicist and the author of books of dubious quality. I know of people who developed serious problems by doing the exercises written in his book 'Training of the Indian Yogi and Fakir'. He also translated the texts of the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram (Golden Dawn version, incomplete and with mistakes) and of the Middle Pillar (this had serious mistakes) and published them as the 'Secret of Psychic Magic'. He had a lot of members in the Ecclesia Gnostica Alba. But in that organisation he was only teaching techniques pirated from Charles Berner ('Direct Enlightenment'), and the 'Excalibur' books, Ramana Maharshi's 'Vicara', Sedona and Scientology — all sold at extravagant prices (at least by standards in the former Yugoslavia. What they did, in fact, were the so called "Enlightenment Intensives"."I never said nor wrote that in Bosnia there are Serbs with name Aivaz. It is extemely stupid to involme me in such statement.
I never translated Book of the Law, NEITHER ANY OTHER Thelemic or OTO text into Serbian." [Slavinski in an email, February 2008]
Appendix February 2008
Zivorad Slavinski formed a group called "Omega" in Belgrade, a sort of closed group engaged in experiments using techniques of what he calls "Spiritual Technology". This group gathers members from China to Brazil.
(N.B. During the seventies he had paid for the treatments and processes of Scientology like other people, even W. S. Burroughs. But he had never been part of the organisation so there is no direct link. Furthermore he always stated that the techniques of Scientology were interesting but the organisa-tion itself fascist in nature.)
Apart from his group “Spiritual Technology” there is his Ecclesia Gnostica Alba as a separate entity. The EGA is a registered church in Slovenia. In 1996, Slavinski dismissed most of its members, so today  it is a somewhat small "elitist" organization, the members of which allegedly consist of doctors of the sciences, Ph.D's and similar university graduates. Even an ambassador is said to be one of its initiated members.
From: "Vranic Predrag" Subject: On Aiwass surname in Bosnia Date: Sat, 3 Jan 2004 Had to inform you that Ajvaz (Aiwass) is a real surname in both Serbia and Bosnia.If you need any kind of proof, the easiest one is to check mailing boxes and residents info at the building where OTPOR ( one of the main organized acters in so called "October Revolution" that pulled-off the Milosevic's regime) has its headquarters in the street called 'Knez Mihailova', Belgrade, Serbia.The more obvious proof couldn't be managed at this moment. Still, it bothers me that certain people uses false arguments fro m esotheric resources as a weapon for their low aims in campaign against one nation, in this case, Serbian nation.
The Gnostic Light Movement
On February 22nd 1980 Israel Regardie (once Crowley's secretary, and a prime mover in the Golden Dawn revival) told Julijan Naskov that he should contact the O.T.O.'s "European representative" — a person he called "our good friend" Hermann Joseph Metzger. Eventually, Naskov visited Metzger's Swiss Abbey of Thelema.
"In January 1982, Metzger told me that his O.T.O. was masonic. Since there was no active Masonry in Yugoslavia at that moment I could not become his representative. He also believed that any Yugoslavian O.T.O. would be monitored by the local police" as Naskov later recalled. When Metzger and Naskov started discussing the vexed question of who was OHO of the O.T.O., Naskov mentioned Marcelo Ramos Motta, which caused Metzger to get abusive, and ask Naskov to leave. When Naskov reported this to the very surprised Regardie, they decided that Naskov should contact another O.T.O. group — the 'Caliphate'. Having received a copy of the 'Caliphate's' usual form-letter expounding their whitewashed version of O.T.O. history as a result, Naskov lost interest. Likewise, a brief contact with Motta came to an abrupt end in 1983 with Motta's complaint that Naskov was using the wrong 'Thelemic greeting' to open his letters.
On November 11th 1980 Naskov believed he had already contacted Aiwaz, Crowley's Holy Guardian Angel; the same entity who earlier supposedly had an influence on Michael P. Bertiaux. Now, in September 1983, Naskov contacted the entity caled LAM, which resulted in an intense correspondence with Michael Bertiaux since the latter viewed LAM as the "subterranean burgeoning of Lucifer-Gnosis". Bertiaux wrote:
"Just as Gnostic metaphysics conditions the intellect to accept the political idealism of Plato and subsequent Greek metaphysics, so the field of esoteric logic brings about a special inclination towards an ideal order or collectivity of logical beings, whose main purpose seems to be the establishment of a system of definitions, useful for the reconstruction of the political world. These definitions are magical beings or occult spirits who inhabit the interconnected space-time network of esoteric and Gnostic logic. By means of magical meta-methodologies, the Gnostic agent draws these beings forth from the esoteric and Gnostic world tissues and concretizes them as metaphysical beings. This process of induction culminates in the intuition of space and time as metaphysical forms of Aiwaz and Lam, the twin pathways for the underground swelling of Luciferian-magnetic Gnosis, which is the form of the ideal ontology of the political order ... AIWAZ and LAM are the natural modes OF HUMAN EVOLUTION IN THE PRESENT AEON ... As humanity evolves, the Aiwaz energy complex goes through a metamorphosis and separates itself from the realm of Lam."
Bertiaux thought that AIWAZ was the master of beneficial powers and sex-magic, while Choronzon (Crowley's name for the 'Thelemic Devil') was the negative 'King of the Vampires': "So we have simply to tell the negative powers that we are one with their King and they will become our slaves." On January 29th AIWAZ informed Bertiaux that Julijan Naskov was to write a book about "non-Euclidian Sex Magick".
Emir Salihovic [see below] in an email dated November 2000: "In the very beginning, Naskov called his magical system "The Red Gnostic Alliance", later on he changed the name to "Gnostic Light Movement". [...] The basis of Naskov's system was expounded in the so-called "Book of Gnosis", a manual comprising seven magical rituals/meditations, based on Thelemic symbols. Each one of those rituals had its sexomagical version. Gnostic Light Movement was considered as an outer order. I met Naskov for the first time in May of 1985. He claimed that he channeled the structure of these magical orders in March or April same year. In July we did some magical workings together, for the first time. A man from Zagreb joined us. It was a kind of two day magical retirement. We did a number of magical rituals, invocations and meditations, including the invocation of Lam. As far as I am concerned, that work was fruitful for me: I had a lot of insights, interesting experiences... Very strange physical phenomena occurred during the invocation of Lam, I must say. I was only seventeen years old at that time. It was a kind of real magical initiation for me."
[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]
In 1988 Naskov contacted Manuel C. Lamparter ("LAM-parter" naturally), OHO of the OTOA in Spain and a protagonist in the latter-day affairs of Arnoldo Krumm-Heller's 'Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antiqua'.
In 1989, Bertiaux, Lamparter and Courtney Willis gave Naskov permission to open a Yugoslavian OTOA Lodge and a branch of Bertiaux's Voodoo Order "La Couleuvre Noire".
In July 1990 there was a meeting of those interested in the Æon of Maat in London; those present included Maggie Ingalls ('Nema', who later wrote the 'Macedonian Lectures'), Michael Staley, Julijan Naskov, Ian Fries, and the editors of the English magazine Nuit-Isis.
The exigencies of the Balkan War and the media persecution of Thelemites there forced Naskov to establish his 'Gnostic Light Movement' otherwise known as the 'Zen-Gnostic Monastery' as a kind of umbrella organisation for his various Gnostic groupings. He apparently had to 'flee' from Banja Luka to Ljubljana, and then from there to Sarajevo, thence to Belgrade, then Rijeka and finally to Skopje. After 1992 he was succeeded as head of the Belgrade OTOA Lodge was Emir Salihovic (born 1968) who contributed a chapter the present writer's book on Holy Guardian Angels, Abramelin & Co. (1994).
Emir Salihovic in an email dated November 2000: "In fact, before the war in Bosnia started, Naskov gave me a charter authorizing me to be the Master of whole OTOA in Yugoslavia. Also, he gave me a charter which authorized me to head Gnostic Light Movement, but under his supervision. In 1994 I published a book called "Gnostic Light Movement". Several people expressed their interest to join that magical group after they read the book. But, 70-80% of material in that book was my own magical work: insights, constructions etc. Maybe that was the reason why Naskov never used that book as the official GLM manual, although he used it to promote his work. For years we didn't have any kind of magical work together. Naskov formed a small group in Skopje, Macedonia, and as far as I understood, they didn't work on the lines of "old" GLM. Eventually, I decided to distance myself from GLM as an official organization (although it never reached the level of organization) and continue my work individually. I also formed my own group in Belgrade, and we were practicing ritual magick, studied magical formulae, did some "Maat magick" etc. At that time I got very much involved with Bertiaux system, and did a lot of Voodoo magick and sex magick of "8th degree". I performed self-initiations into degrees of Lave-tete, Canzo and Houngan, using official La Couleuvre Noire rituals which I got from Lamparter. I also wrote a new scheme for working OTOA degrees. In a letter, Courtney Willis approved me to work that way. But, I never initiated anybody into OTOA or LCN. It was the same period when I got a charter to run QBLH Alchemist Church and Ordo Astrum Argentum in Yugoslavia. I think Bertiaux mode of work is too difficult, obscure and confusing for the majority of people. I found new ways to work it in a way which is more acceptable, but as I said, I still didn't give any kind of "initiations". One of the reasons is that I should have Monastery of the Seven Rays material translated into Bosnian, and it's a lot of material and I have no time to do it. And I'm not rich enough to pay professional translator. I started to work on a new book, called "The Grimoire of the Star and the Snake". I have no clue when I am going to finish it."Despite all the upheavals on the mundane level, Naskov still received further communications with AIWAZ between January 1993 and the end of 1994:
1. I am the AIWASS current 418 that emanates through you. 2. Take my knowledge thus as I give it in full consciousness. 3. I have already spoken to you about it back in the 80's in my month. 4. Now you want to say that you hate the hand and the pen but I am stronger. 5. Yes, your prophet is curious about my being a woman, but I am NUIT. Yes, I am Nuit. 6. It is Me who talks to you not AIWASS. 7. Creative power of your being invoked me and I want to send you a message. 8. Work with me is very powerful and you must support/bear it. (Etc.)In common with other post-1904 communications from Aiwass — such as 'The Book of Perfection' (1977) or 'Liber Vel Oviz' (1981) — Aiwass appears to have lost some of his expressive and prophetic gifts in the interim.
Editorial Note: Julijan Naskov's entire archive of documents was sent to the present author at the outbreak of the Balkan war in 1991. Whatever else may be said about it, there is no doubt that his group was incredibly active; the interested reader will find some beautiful and revealing drawings by them in my "Der OTOA-Reader" pp. 120-128. Naskov visited me in 1992, having obtained a visa due to his work for an international chemical firm, and returned to Belgrade afterwards. He now lives in Skopje in Macedonia. On 3rd January 2001 he sent below corrections:
"Metzger never asked me to leave when I mentioned Motta to him. We talked for about two hours, about OTO and occultism in general. When I was about to leave, I asked Metzger if he knew about a gossip, spread around by Motta, that he substituted the name Nuit in Liber AL with the name Mary. He told me that's not true, he was angry and showed me a copy of Liber AL in which it was written Nuit, not Mary. It was interesting that during our conversation Metzger never answered a question before he consulted somebody by phone. He phoned five times during our conversation, and the only words I understood were OTO, Regardie, Naskov etc.
Emir Salihovic in an email dated November 2000: "Actually, the drawings published in "Der OTOA-Reader" (Male Chakram) are from Bertiaux system. I don't know who did the drawing of male genitals (good work, anyway), but it was I who marked 16 occult centers, according to the secret papers of Bertiaux's Monastery of the Seven Rays magical system. Those 16 genital chakras correspond with 16 "exoteric" chakras of the whole body, and are used as centers for focusing ojas or magical power during magical rites. There are also certain interesting methods of magical massage of those centers, for purpose of evoking those energies, which are described in the papers for the initiates of the 4th year of study of the Monastery of the Seven Rays course of lessons. Interested readers can consult "The Voudoun Gnostic Workbook" by Michael Bertiaux. Those centers are described in the papers entitled "The Magical System", in the first section of the "Workbook" — "Voodoo Energies"."
This is an outline of an article originally published in the German magazine "Abrahadabra" in April 1993, with additional material from my German book "Der OTOA-Reader" (1994), and "Abramelin & Co." (1995)
Adapted translation by Mark Parry-Maddocks
To the main page of Photographs and Documents
To the Collection of Re-Collections
More about all this in: Andreas Huettl and Peter-R. Koenig: Satan — Jünger, Jäger und Justiz
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