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The Bowels of the Abyss

Soldiers who dare not fight . . .

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Soldiers who dare not fight . . .

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Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

"Despise also all cowards; professional soldiers who dare not fight, but play; all fools despise!" (AL III:57)

After posting the following five-part comment on 2006-08-08 to the following Original Thread, should I really be surprised that slq merely omitted to un-screen them? Being fairly new to the internet it still surprises me (a little) of just how many people call for an open debate and then ignore or screen certain responses to it. One never is victorious at a debate by turning off their opponents' microphone - as a matter of fact that is taken as proof of your loss.

At the time, I seriously wanted some kind of response to the issues that I brought forth, and most certainly not a vague sweeping "I disagree." It seems that even the best that join OTO are slowly rotted out and corrupted by their membership within it. But really (!!!), what should I expect?

Love is the law, love under will.

Original Posts follow:

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Being one among many who have described Sabazius' ineptitude, I feel that I should reply to your suggestion that this statement is "ludicrous". Thus, the following:

SLQ:"It has come to my attention that there are those who have characterized Sabazius' leadership of U.S. Grand Lodge as "incompetent". I find this assertion to be patently ludicrous. The fact of the matter is that during the last decade, USGL has grown, matured, and flourished under our Grand Master's leadership."

I really think a better way of stating this would be to say that the Order has continued IN SPITE OF the leadership of Sabazius, and I would describe it more as floundering and slowly rotting from within.

SLQ:"Many of the accomplishments of his tenure were detailed in the last issue of Agape. Off the top of my head, they include:
Developing robust, fully-populated and fully-functioning governing bodies (the Electoral College, Grand Tribunal, and Supreme Grand Council) which meet in person every year;"

Again you seem to downplay the functionality of these bodies and merely dwell on the fact that they exist. Granted moving closer (in someone's opinion) toward the implementation of Crowley's vision of a fully functioning structure is a totally different matter than merely instituting or establishing a governing body. If anyone within America's political system were to say that "since the House and the Congress are fully manned and operational, THEREFORE the original ideas of the Founding Fathers are being promulgated" is again losing sight of the forest, 'cause of all them damn trees. Since the current administration's goals seem to be that of merely establishing a fully-populated committee, can anyone really be surprised that the more these governing bodies exercise their newly defined functions, the more the membership at large becomes dissatisfied with the outcome and the more that the most qualified outsiders become disillusioned with the whole concept of an OTO. It is my opinion that the OTO was never intended as an end unto itself, but rather as a means to accomplish a greater planetary goal. Since you yourself seem to be unaware of any of the growing trends towards eliminating the best members of the order (a decades' worth) in exchange for the manipulating compliant majority of arse-kissers, you will also continue to fail to see how these long-term trends will ultimately result in councils of dunces ruling over masses of the ignorant.

SLQ:"Improving standards for local bodies, MMM initiation, and EGC; "

If the recent overhauls of requirements is considered improving standards to you then this would seem to be met, however the methodology in which these bodies have been devolving since the establishment of the U.S. Grand Lodge can hardly be stretched or spun in such a way as to cover up the fact that since the early American days of the Order, the continued amassing of less and less competent candidates, creating a more and more disgruntled and slighted membership is anything BUT an improvement. When people proudly declare that they do everything they can to avoid paying dues, as well as many people stifling (or even feeling that they have the obligation to stifle) their true feelings in order to continue to interact functionally within the Order only demonstrates just how deep-seated the inefficacy of the current leadership has become, resulting in a general undermining of any true feelings of devotion within the membership. If all that the OTO is attempting to accomplish is to create a large body of Yes-men who suck up to whomever is responsible for their next invitations, then indeed the current leadership is being very successful. However, these kind of "gold-bricks" as Grady used to refer to them can hardly be counted upon to enact or preserve the true aims of the Order as set down within the OTO Constitution and its other founding documents.

(continued in Part 2 of 5)

(continued from Part 1 of 5)

For example, I have read elsewhere where the requirements on the local level for the establishment and maintenance of Man Of Earth bodies has been overhauled to merely set up ONE TYPE of body, The Lodge, with the remainder of all local bodies being merely assumed to be preparatory bodies unto that one goal, i.e. becoming a Lodge. This practice has not only stifled the establishment of the creativity of different types of outer structures, but has even acted as a pathetic slap in the face to long-standing members who resigned their efforts to demotion under the current system. I'm fully well aware that this requirement was enacted solely for purposes of legal liability under the laws of the United States rules of incorporation. This being the case clearly indicates that incorporation clearly was not the best option to establish the freedom of expression necessarily inherent within any group of Thelemites whose end goals were stated as the expansion of Thelema, and most certainly NOT its abridgement.

SLQ:"Implementing highly successful national programs such as Notocon, Kaaba Colloquium,. . ."

Again, these types of programs are successful upon exactly what basis? The basis of increased monetary income into the Order's financial structure? A deeper social bond between its members? I can answer from personal experience that these types of events were (for me at least) the exact opposite of these ends. At NOTOCON in particular the financial aspect only flowed in one direction, from out of the hands of the membership into the hands of the administration. Therefore, from an administrative point of view, this would be successful - however, the personal sacrifices made by some of the membership in many cases that came to my attention were hardly beneficial to engendering good will - quite the opposite. As far as social bonding is concerned, again in my personal experience I was gravely disappointed on many incidences due to the increased frequency of position/favour-seeking that always seemed to occur. When this was expanded into a national scope, the intensity of my disgust was also increased.

SLQ:". . .Initiator Training, Pastoral Counseling,. . ."

Again from personal experience I never experienced any improvement in the functionality of the Order through implementation of these programs - again quite to the contrary. The uniformization of the rituals while eliminating the previous problem of everyone being taught different words, signs, grips, etc that previously plagued the Order, also caused less avenue for creative expression of performance. Indeed most of the bodies merely used this new requirement as a way of limiting the participation of the membership at large from the opportunities to develop the initiatory skills. Furthermore, the magickal incompetence of some initiators was never addressed as the incompetent had all the proper papers in order with all the proper signatures, yet little else. Compare this to the American educational system where students attend classes for the sole goal of gaining the degree paper, yet upon their graduation are basically useless to contribute anything of substance to further enhance the understanding of their respective fields. A similar mechanism has been at work concerning understanding of the internal mysteries of the Order.

SLQ:". . .the Prison Ministry,. . ."

One of the stupidest ideas of which I have ever heard, and a TOTAL waste of time and money. This program not only attracts the LEAST desirable candidates towards the order, but also opens the doors wide to the abuse of the order in the same ways that Christianity has enjoyed over the past centuries. Many inmates know full well of the leniency sometimes afforded to someone just for finding religion. This also reminded me of a direct parallel back during the days of the conflicts in former Yugoslavia even before USGL; where many "Thelemites" joined the OTO as a mere vehicle to facilitate their acquisition of U.S. citizenship papers, which seemed to continue completely unrecognized by the administration.

(continued in Part 3 of 5)

(continued from Part 2 of 5)

SLQ:". . .Agape, the Minerval Guide, the Liber AL presentation edition, degree study guides,. . ."

Publications?!!! IF these publications were completed upon a schedule that even compared loosely with that required in the 'Real World' of corporate publications, you MIGHT have a point here. However, on many an occasion the ineptitude of OTO's administration's dealings with publishers AND THEIR DEADLINES has (as you should well know) left much to be desired, and even engendered an overabundance of ill-will by many prominent previous publishers of Thelemic materials (think Weiser, think Falcon, etc). In the old 'Grady'-days, the periodic occurrence of the newsletters and publications, although far from perfect, was at least much more predictable then even today, even with an occassional Missing Link. The major improvement made to internal publications of OTO materials should be attributed to Hymenaeus Beta and NOT to Sabazius, as HB instituted the improvements of publications quality upon the original Heidrick mimeograph-press editions. Along with these new Minerval Guides and degree study guides, has also come the new LACK of independence of curricula that was required back in the days of Liber MCLI. At least the MCLI required some original thought upon the part of the aspiring magicians, which has subsequently been replaced by the "point-and-click" mentality of the present. Compared with the models of higher education, MCLI was much more in tune with the Master's or Doctoral work of stimulating independent research. The new study guides remind one more of an American High School curriculum of - 'buy these books and read them in preparation for your exams'. As Grady pointed out "They want to be Thelemic magicians, well it's time to get them out of Sandbox 1" (quoting from memory of 'The Magickal Link')

SLQ:"Obtaining top-notch legal counsel, insurance,. . ."

Again these requirements of American laws governing incorporation were implemented due to the order's corporate status, and not due to the visions of Sabazius.

SLQ:". . .standardized accounting, online dues payment, car donation, tax exemption,. . ."

HMMMmmmmmmm . . .I think that at the very least you must realize that the implementation of this entire list was due to your own efforts and that of your spousal assistant, and had very little to do with Sabazius. You may enjoy or even feel honoured at giving the credit to Sabazius, however realistically I feel his role herein was negligible.

SLQ:". . .local body legal status and bylaws, and group exemption;"

again the implementation of these particulars was dictated by adherence to US corporate law. Cf. above over my feelings of the creative stifling directly due to these points of incorporation.

SLQ:"Developing the USGL website and e-groups which revolutionized communications within Grand Lodge;"

I seem to recall that the implementation of these points led to more than a few computer disasters and security nightmares due to the totally inept fashion in which they were originally implemented. Indeed for a time all of the upper degree sensitive internet communications were being freely monitored by many outsiders without even the suspicion of Sabazius or indeed any within Grand Lodge. Only as a response to some of these disasters were enough computer-savvy members then called upon to finally establish these internet-based programs even to the lowest standards of computer security protocols as an afterthought - as damage control.

(continued in Part 4 of 5)

(continued from Part 3 of 5)

SLQ:"Creating education, finance, and strategic planning committees -- the latter of which has achieved a great deal of important work including the development of the USGL Mission, Program Synopsis, Vision, and Values statements (published here) not to mention the extensive situation analysis and other work behind the scenes to lay the groundwork for the strategic goals now in development."

I would tend to agree with martialis93 concerning this 'great' effort. Reading through the USGL statements and synopsis makes one aware that VERY LITTLE is included within this documentation that was not already outlined within the earlier Order documents of 1913, etc. Indeed even the thought of getting "10 Thelemites to develop a consensus" is pure parliamentarianism. Since the Order was originally founded as an authoritarian monarchy due to 666's proper understanding of both the ineptitude of democracy and the superiority of the Leadership Principle; (cf. Liber 194: On E.C.) this degradation of the structure of the order towards an American-style governance of democratic incompetence only SHOUTS out his unfitness AS a sovereign. A king counts upon his advisors to SUGGEST possible courses of actions, then He (or She) creates the policy to be adhered to independently, understanding exactly at which points all the best intentions and ideas of his advisors need to be disregarded. This point was demonstrated in the Nordic Eddas when Hönir was sent by the Aesir as 'a king fit to rule'. When it was found out that Mimir was the true source of all of Hönir's wise counsel, and that, independent of Mimir, Hönir was rather dull-witted, this laid the foundation of the ill will between the Vanir and the Aesir which culminates in even the Jotun- and Muspellheimers siding with the Vanir against the Aesir in Ragnarök. Such 'enlightened' policies usually always reap Karma of like quality, as (perhaps a very small point) even I am now an enemy of all OTO's.

SLQ:"More Gnostic Masses and initiations have been performed under Sabazius' tenure than at any other place and time in the Order's history,. . ."

I would disagree with your assessment of this being 'proof' of anything, since quality is never given a lesser merit when compared with bulk quantity.

SLQ:". . .and these include unprecedented growth in all degrees of the Lover Triad."

and yet, it is exactly within the Lovers Triad that most of the new incompetence has crept into the Order. Again, quality has been discarded in favour of quantity!

SLQ:"(By the way, at the recent OTO Women's Conference it was remarked that the proportion of female to male Bishops is the same as the proportion of female to male initiates in the U.S., another testament to his astute skill in advancing worthy initiates.)"

ROFLMAO So democracy-style equal representation is a "testament to his astute skill"!!! LOL I really don't think so! Qualified leadership RARELY represents the same proportionality as the demographics. All this really stands "as a testament to", is that Sabazius would not be un-expected to institute a form of 'Affirmative Action'; this time based upon gender rather than minority racial status. This also helps to explain the larger and larger number of incompetent administrative positions within OTO, (since by your own admission) gender is more important than skill, intelligence, and yes, competence. Try again. ROFL

(continued in Part 5 of 5)

(continued from Part 4 of 5)

SLQ:"Most of the "firsts" for the Order have occurred in U.S. Grand Lodge, and it has served as a model and paved the way to make things much easier for subsequent Grand Lodges."

Of course, this is the kind of hogwash I should expect from Americans. Americans seem to have this psychological complex about they-and-only-them being the 'one true way' for everything. This is also one of the reasons behind why the world is fast becoming a very dangerous place for Americans anywhere. If I actually liked the OTO anymore, this one point would have me livid. As it is, I find this hilarious!!! In the end, you get the governance you deserve. You should really desist from being so defensive when anyone can see that such governance is defective. ROFL

SLQ:"Although many people were instrumental in making them happen, all of these things occurred under Sabazius' leadership, for which he rightly deserves credit. These accomplishments are all the more remarkable given that he is an unpaid volunteer with a full-time job and a family."

Exactly how many officers AREN'T unpaid volunteers? Being an unpaid volunteer is definitely not a powder of projection that magically makes shoddy workmanship suddenly brilliant. Credit should be given where credit is due. Were a TRUE sovereign to have held his position, much more could have been accomplished. In exactly how many years did Alexander the Great conquer the world? Of what great merit IS paper-pushing under a democracy? I think you see my point.

SLQ:"I would never claim that any individual is perfect, or that mistakes shouldn't be pointed out and addressed, but if one deigns to evaluate his performance overall, to ignore this impressive record is to miss the boat entirely."

I'm really not impressed. Although the above addresses each of the specific points that you have made concerning the 'greatness' of Sabazius' reign, I feel that lauding these kinds of improvements are really just ways to distract from the overall picture which has been emerging over the last decade. What makes a sovereign competent or incompetent is his ability to never lose sight of the really important goals (namely the Establishment of the Kingdom of Ra-Hoor-Khuit upon the Earth; and preliminarily the formation of a competent body of magicians to establish a scientifically rigorous Sovereign Sanctuary of the Gnosis to fine-tune the control and efficacy of the applications of the central secret of the IXth degree) and to more importantly be able to understand all the complexities of competent rulership. Due to the current administration of OTO, I have met more and more people who not only are being turned off to Crowley's works, but also to Thelema, Liber AL, Babalon, etc. Indeed if 666 had no official representatives upon the Earth, the spread of the Joy and Beauty of Thelema would be greatly enhanced. OTO as of recent years has brought nothing but disgust, division, schism and rejection to the legacy of Our Lord and Saviour, the Beast 666. The OTO needs Thelema, but Thelema needs no stinking OTO's, especially when their works have been counter productive to the Great Work itself.

Love is the law, love under will.

P.S.: Please don't take this as a personal attack, Mr. Chappelle, as you were one of the few within the Order whose works I saw as mostly beneficial to the aims of Thelema, even despite the fact that many among your surrounding followers were simply jockeying for future positions, all the while seemingly unrecognized by yourself.
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