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A PEAK INSIDE OTO PART 2.2

CONTINUED FROM PREVIOUS ENTRY

U.S. National Grand Master General

Sabazius X°

OTO U.S.A.

POB 32

Riverside CA 92502-0032

Most Holy, Most Illuminated and Most Worshipful Father, and Dear Brother David,

A Petition to His Most Sacred Majesty the Supreme and Holy King ruling in the

United States of America that is in the Sanctuary of the Gnosis,

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

This is my annual activity report for 2003 e.v.  It has been an extremely active and

productive year, with all OTO Prison Ministry mail processed up to date at the end of the

calendar year. I traveled about 10,000 miles in pursuit of OTO business, having performed

the first Rose Croix initiation ever performed in the Southeastern U.S. and shuttling back

and forth between Atlanta and Birmingham in efforts to organize Hagia Sophia Chapter

under its newest charter as an Atlanta-based Southeastern Chapter of Rose Croix.

A brief comment about the OTO Prison Ministry mail:  In reviewing my magical diary, in

some months I noted the number of pieces of mail processed, but overall it is worth noting

that it was by far the largest volume I have yet dealt with. In January, for instance, there

were 60 pieces of mail processed.  In the late Summer I received 100 pieces of mail per

month, and I processed perhaps 800 pieces of mail for the Ministry in the course of the

calendar year.  Later in the year I received several offers of help.  Most of this help has

consisted of my giving volunteers a copy of the initial contact letter you approved, along

with a list of prisoners sending initial letters.  The volunteer then sends the initial letter with

my letterhead, and if the inmate then responds further, it comes to me.  This is more helpful

to me than it probably sounds.  I might add that my summary here does not include mail to

and from The Eucharist, or the correspondence of several volunteers who I have previously

farmed out responsibility for keeping in touch with corresponding associates on a long-term

basis.  The non prison mail remains at a relatively modest volume.  One other point: The

number of volunteers remains very small, but I make considerable effort individually to

make sure that all know the score on prison mail, and are qualified to handle it.

In January, 2003, in anticipation of the change-over in the Chapter charter and in

expectation of performing our first initiation with a new team, I began working closely with

S. and D. D. and John Crow, assembling a checklist of V° ritual needs, and taking inventory

of Chapter property send by Sister C. to us.  I also began daily rehearsal of the initiation.

We also began searching for a suitable site.  My immediate previous annual report was also

submitted to you in January. 

I attended the Mass at Dove and Serpent Oasis and counseled with Brother Nance on

suggestions for improving the local performance of the Mass team he was busily

assembling, having taken over leadership from John C. (The work here has prospered

during the year.)  I also attended an informal reception for visiting members from the

Boston area, sponsored by the local body.

In February, I was unexpectedly called upon to Deacon at the local Mass on very short

notice.  This worked out just fine.  In general, during this period, Brother Nance was

depending upon my advice and assistance, in contrast to the much more self assured

Brother Crow during his tenure, but Nance seemed to be coming along nicely and I helped

where I could with an eye to not being too much in the foreground with the local MoE

body.  I went to Birmingham and performed with a crew of “virgin” officers the first Rose

Croix initiations in the region, with S. D. deputized as High Priestess, with L.’s – and your

– approval.  It all went remarkably well, and I felt we now had the minimum number of

initiates necessary living in region to become a Southeastern-based chapter.  At this point, I

was still assuming we would be dividing the Chapter (in effect) with an Oklahoma City

chapter also chartered for our more “westerly” members. From the first days in Dallas, we

have now performed some 18 Chapter initiations.

I was a bit puzzled by a note from you asking for a brief summary of my self- assessment of

my progress as a VII°.  I took the degree at your home, Soror H. assisting, nearly six years

before, have since then attended the initiation of (most) others since, and my views on

sexual magick (which have not much changed) were presented to you – quite deliberately –

on the evening before my own initiation.  So, I responded to you in the only way that made

sense to me, with a brief but fairly thorough account of my learning experience as a

working S.G.I.G.  In light of our discussion later in the year (see below), I intend to follow

up with an essay that deals more specifically with the mystery of the degree.

Towards the end of the month Soror K. gave me a surprise invitation to make introductory

remarks at the NOTOCON upcoming.  I had been told earlier that accepting the difficult

role of chairing the speaker selection committee precluded my being a speaker as such.

Now, the convention organizers seemed to be going out of their way to see to it that I had

the opportunity to address the assembled, and I was both surprised and grateful, to say

nothing of flattered. I accepted with enthusiasm.

In March, through arduous effort, I was able to arrange to attend the OTO events scheduled

for Austin the following month.  I understood that other members of Hagia Sophia Chapter

would be attending the EC meeting as guests, and I felt this would also give the SGC an

opportunity to see the proposed new chapter configuration as a group in deliberating on the

proposal I intended to make regarding moving the charter and change in officers.  At

month’s end I attended Minervals and a reception afterwards at Dove and Serpent.

In April, I went to Austin, attending the first SGIG/EC meeting, and attended the SGC

meeting, presenting, with the assistance of Scott C. (who had been Chapter Grand Marshall

from our inception), the case for the transfer of the Hagia Sophia Chapter to Atlanta.  I also

dealt with extensive questions concerning Sister S. as proposed High Priestess, and the

proposals were approved.  We also reviewed the proposal for inducting Emma Britten into

the Order of the Eagle, based largely on my essay, which was also approved.  As I had

planned, I found occasion to have a rather frank discussion with you on my frustrations

concerning my lack of a role in the SGC and, more particularly, the half dozen years which

had passed since my advancement in the Order.  I listened carefully to your assessment and

took careful stock of your advice.

In May S. and I received the new Charter for Hagia Sophia Chapter, leaving me the only

original officer of the Chapter, and formally fulfilling one of the great project goals set

during the Eulis Oasis period in the 1980s. I spent a good part of the month working on a

new book manuscript and web site updates.

In June John Crow showed me the mock-up for the first issue of Agape to appear under his

editorship, and I told him I thought it was very good work indeed.  I was happy to see your

kind mention of my efforts on behalf of Emma Britten’s nomination.  The first formal

meeting of Hagia Sophia Chapter under its third charter and leadership was held at John

Crow’s home, with a mainly business discussion and assessment of what we needed to do

to best serve the Order in this new setting and new “cast of characters”.

In July, with your permission, I gave John Crow his KRE initiation.  I got my tickets for

Portland, and read the draft of my introductory remarks to Brother Crow for constructive

feedback. Crow having been appointed Chapter Treasurer and (temporary) secretary, I

reviewed his first meeting notes, to be posted on the Hagia Sophia Site.

In August I heard of the Greater Feast of Helen Smith.  Having flown to NOTOCON, I was

plunged into several days of stimulating and varied discussion, delivered my introductory

remarks which drew surprisingly strong positive comments (it was, after all, just an

introduction).  Thanks to your mention, I got several volunteers for Prison Ministry work

both on the spot and later via email.  I talked to M. and D. and others about the Prison

Ministry in Oregon (as I had indicated to you I would do) and made the assessment that the

local work was in good hands.  This was also the beginning of the period of a couple of

months where the prison mail exceeded 100 pieces per month.

In September the heavy volume continued, and I experimented with farming out some

initial prisoner contacts to newer volunteers, which proved to be promising.  I also went to

Alabama for a meeting of Hagia Sophia Chapter, which all active Southeastern Chapter

members attended.  Brother S. B. hosted.  Our Committee of Four was selected and

formally activated, and long-range Chapter plans were discussed.

In October I flew to Southern CA to attend the various events, attending the SGC/SGIG

meeting, the joint meeting with the EC, the NOTOCON Standing Committee meeting, GT

and participated in the VII° initiations.  A scheduling conflict precluded my attending the

VI° initiations, but I was able to arrange for S.’s KRE and participated by phone on the

radio program arranged by Frater Hrumachis who somehow managed to be in two places at

once. I also began research on the history of the VII° catechism.  After months of research,

I began work on a detailed essay on Hargarve Jennings, after consulting briefly with you on

the subject.

The November Chapter meeting was held in Atlanta, for the first time at a nonresidential

facility, the Dove and Serpent Temple space, by arrangement with the Oasis Master.  All

active SE members once again were in attendance.  The meeting was largely devoted to

planning for our co sponsorship of the Spring leadership workshop, and, though we have

been alternating between Birmingham and Atlanta, the Alabama crew requested we hold

the January 2004 meeting in Atlanta, which was approved.

In December I was contacted by Boston OTO, who, on short notice, requested me to give a

workshop on the Hermetic Brotherhood of Light.  While I had to scramble to get a coherent

presentation together, it proved to be a most stimulating evening, thanks largely to the host

body, which arranged a phone hookup and to have a well-informed group of attendees.

To come up to date, I just signed on to do Minervals for Dove and Serpent in February.  As

I write, Hagia Sophia again met several days ago at the D&S facility, and we fleshed out

plans for the future, contemplated initiations possibly late in the current calendar year, a

commemoration of Liber AL’s 100th anniversary,  and holding a feast at our next gathering. 

Logistical problems were solved, Brother Crow passed the secretarial duties, remaining as

treasurer, all active members were again present, a lingering problem with transfer of the

treasury was reported out and resolved.  

 

 

Love is the law, love under will.

Fraternally,

 

T Allen Greenfield

SGIG OTO

 

U.S. National Grand Master General

Sabazius X°

OTO U.S.A.

POB 32

Riverside CA 92502-0032

 

Most Holy, Most Illuminated and Most Worshipful Father, and Dear Brother David,

A Petition to His Most Sacred Majesty the Supreme and Holy King ruling in the

United States of America that is in the Sanctuary of the Gnosis,

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

This is my annual activity report for 2004 e.v.  As indicated to you earlier, I have

delayed and extended this account into the beginning of the new profane year, in

order to include an event overlapping from the previous year of some moment.

(1)   In January, 2004, I completed and brought up to date the increasingly heavy

volume of prison mail, assisted by several volunteers.  All mail to the

Correspondence Secretary was up to date.  Hagia Sophia Chapter met in

Atlanta, using the facilities of Dove and Serpent Oasis, Soror S. D. presiding.

Discussion was largely focused on the upcoming OTO leadership conference

to be held in Atlanta, which the Chapter had agreed to cosponsor. 

(2)   In February, 2004 I performed three Minerval initiations at the request of the

body master of Dove and Serpent Oasis, at their facility.

(3)   In March I presided over the Chapter meeting, and also attended Baptisms,

Confirmations and the Mass at D&S.  As I monitored their progress, I

became convinced that this body was now performing at the level of a lodge

by every informal measure I am aware of.  In March I also met with Frater

John Nance to go over temple procedures and technical details in anticipation

of performing IV° and P.I. initiations later in the year.

(4)   In April, preparations for the Kaaba and routine prison and introductory

mail and activities took up the month, and then some.

(5)   In May I attended the reception for our honored guests for the Kaaba, and

solicited feedback from both the presenters and participants in the event.  My

impression is that it was most productive.  For the first time, Hagia Sophia

Chapter successfully held an on line business meeting, using the facilities of

our Yahoo site.  Due consideration was given to the level of security on line.

(6)   June was once again taken up by a nearly overwhelming volume of prison

mail.  I began to think in terms of any new strategies that might facilitate

what seemed to be a trend towards becoming an overwhelming task, which I

hoped to come up with before approaching you with regard to passing the

torch to someone else. I was also working with assisting officers to coordinate

the round of IV° and P.I.s scheduled for the following month.

(7)   In July, I performed in due form three IV°, followed by three P.I. initiations

in Atlanta.  It went splendidly. 

(8)   In August, I presided over the Hagia Sophia meeting, followed by a Mass held

under the D&S Oasis auspices, with Chapter members attending.  I began to

think business meetings would be better held on a quarterly basis, and this

was discussed. Brother Crow, upon his return from the monastic community

in Taiwan, stepped down from activities within the Chapter, in an orderly

fashion. 

(9)   By September I was wrestling with a logistical crisis, which continued into the

Fall.  Brother Crow essentially ceased active OTO work.  I was aware that

things were not looking good from my own vantage point.  John Crow had

been my principle protégé for some ten years, and I had been grooming him

as my recommended successor as Chapter MWS.  Subsequent events are

known to you.  My informal opinion is that no specific “cause” was involved

in Crow’s change of life course; it reminded me of watching B. P.’s slow

disengagement a decade earlier.  The “early warning” was his decision to step

down as Oasis Master about two years earlier.  Unfortunately, as events

progressed, friction arose between Frater Crow and Frater S. B., who was my

strong “second choice” as my recommendation for successor to the office of

MWS.  I have long held to a “five year rule” for myself, that is, not to hold an

executive administrative office longer than five years so as not to “burn out”

in office.  The events beginning in July and continuing for some months

persuaded me that I needed to pass the torch of the prison ministry ASAP,

and actively look for a successor as Chapter Sovereign. At this point neither

Crow nor S. B. were interested in the job.  (But, see below.)

(10)  Only upon Brother Crow’s insistence that I subscribe to Live Journal, in

October as I recall, did I become aware of the intensity of both his feelings

and the direction of his attitudes, which resembled and were doubtless

influenced by Brother K.S.’s approach and critique rather than my own.  I

had a long dinner meeting with Crow and explained to him the essentials of

this difference, and he seemed genuinely shocked.  After digesting the new

rules and regulations in EGC, I held the first of two workshops for all clergy

(including novices) under my direct or indirect supervision on the EGC

manual.  The event was well attended and a thorough discussion took place at

the four hour workshop.  Attended the D&S Mass the following weekend.

(11)  In November I resigned from the Prison Ministry job after seven and a half

years.  I was concerned that a replacement would be difficult to find, and was

delighted that this turned out not to be the case.  I gave Frater A. some

pointers and have been forwarding prison-related mail to him ever since.  I

assume he has made provisions for the Ministry while on active military duty.

After speaking with him about it, I encouraged Brother Nance to preside at

the “make up” EGC rules & regs workshop, with my assistance, attended by

clergy from Alabama.  He did a fine job.  As far as I am aware, only one

novice presently under my supervision has not yet been given the workshop,

due to distance.  We have attempted to do this via phone, but to date it has

not happened. Brother Nance was invited to take initiation at Hagia Sophia

by his sponsors, the D’s.  The Chapter held another on-line meeting

successfully.

(12)  In December, after consultation with you, I performed two KEW initiations

with Brother Nance assisting.  At a solstice mass, at their request, I ordained

the two new KEWs Priest and Priestess, respectively.

(13)  After the first of the secular year, the Chapter went into high gear with

rehearsals in anticipation of initiation of Brother Nance.  After being stalled

by an unseasonable ice storm, we performed the initiation in due form,

followed by a festive dinner at a Middle Eastern restaurant.

 

Postscript – After due consideration, Brother S. B. indicated to me that he felt that he

was  receptive to the idea of becoming my successor as Chapter Sovereign.  While

there are logistical problems, and some matter to review carefully, his secular

credentials are among the best amongst the brethren, and he has served the OTO well

in a number of capacities.  I intend to remain on until I am satisfied I can pass the

torch here in both an orderly and successful process.

 

Love is the law, love under will.

Fraternally,

 

T Allen Greenfield

 

T Allen Greenfield

SGIG OTO

References Cited

http://www.hermetic.com/sabazius/britten.htm

http://www.hermetic.com/sabazius/randolph.htm

http://lib.oto-usa.org/agape/agape.1.2.c.pdf

http://oto-usa.org/agape/agape.5.1.pdf

http://oto-usa.org/agape/agape.5.3-4.pdf

 Now the king told the boogie men
You have to let that raga drop
The oil down the desert way
Has been shakin to the top
The sheik he drove his cadillac
He went a cruisnin down the ville
The muezzin was a standing
On the radiator grille

Chorus
The shareef dont like it
Rockin the casbah
Rock the casbah
The shareef dont like it
Rockin the casbah
Rock the casbah

By order of the prophet
We ban that boogie sound
Degenerate the faithful
With that crazy casbah sound
But the bedouin they brought out
The electric camel drum
The local guitar picker
Got his guitar picking thumb
As soon as the shareef
Had cleared the square
They began to wail

Chorus

Now over at the temple
Oh! they really pack em in
The in crowd say its cool
To dig this chanting thing
But as the wind changed direction
The temple band took five
The crowd caught a wiff
Of that crazy casbah jive

Chorus

The king called up his jet fighters
He said you better earn your pay
Drop your bombs between the minarets
Down the casbah way

As soon as the shareef was
Chauffeured outta there
The jet pilots tuned to
The cockpit radio blare

As soon as the shareef was
Outta their hair
The jet pilots wailed

Chorus

He thinks its not kosher
Fundamentally he cant take it.
You know he really hates it.

 


 

 

 



 

Comments

imb
Dec. 21st, 2006 04:55 pm (UTC)
Re: The drug war has produced MANY
I must really be worse in English than I imagined. I do believe people can change. I believe they do every day sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse.

Are you familiar with the concept 'residiv'? it is the percentage of criminals returning to the same kind of crime within two years after their release. These numbers are public in Denmark and if they are as well in the US I recommend you take a look. To mention one example paedophiles have a 96% recidiv - and this means 4% has changed at least within the two year period. Other crimes have other recidiv numbers. Do I find these numbers relevant together with my experiences - of cause I do.

As for how society treats ex-prisoners I do believe my statements further up are rather clear?

Why do you make me out to be a nazi?
I don't understand your last sentence?
(Deleted comment)
eyeconoplastic
Dec. 21st, 2006 11:15 pm (UTC)
Re: The drug war has produced MANY
"I think the OTO has failed its mission to promulgate the Law of Thelema. I believe they are looking for the easiest ways to do that so they don't have to expect too much from themselves or their members."

The OTO has not failed in its mission because the OTO is not Grand Lodge, the Supremely Holey King or Hymenaeus Bush. The OTO is the rightfully initiated members of whose spirit forms the living portion of the egregore, that force of light unique and immortal to the Order.

The LEADERS have failed in the mission. The LEADERS have failed the OTO.

WE, the OTO, continue the mission with or without them.
tausirhasirim
Dec. 21st, 2006 11:47 pm (UTC)
Re: The drug war has produced MANY
"The OTO is the rightfully initiated members of whose spirit forms the living portion of the egregore, that force of light unique and immortal to the Order.
"The LEADERS have failed in the mission. The LEADERS have failed the OTO.
"WE, the OTO, continue the mission with or without them."

Well said -- when members fully realize this, they'll stop sending their cash to these hack managers, and stop thinking of them as highly initiated. The little man behind the curtain is the wizard of oz, and I am proud to be Toto the dog of unreason and pull the curtain aside, though I think Mr. Wizard is gonna call the dog catcher.

I mean the fair and just Inquisition.

(Deleted comment)
eyeconoplastic
Dec. 22nd, 2006 01:39 am (UTC)
Re: The drug war has produced MANY
Just not in McOTO(TM), mon frere.

Groove is in the Heart.
tausirhasirim
Dec. 21st, 2006 11:42 pm (UTC)
Re: The drug war has produced MANY
Excellent post, brother. And you get to the heart of the matter under discussion - about criminality, and get back to the *intended* subject of my post - insight into what "doing the OTO right" is like from the inside. Let me quote you

"I think the OTO has failed its mission to promulgate the Law of Thelema. I believe they are looking for the easiest ways to do that so they don't have to expect too much from themselves or their members. But the one thing they have done right was the prison ministry. That was real hardcore, grass-roots, in the trenches work."

Well said, well said.

I found it very unpleasant work. I am more comfortable in combat. But it was the one thing David did right - and that with Bill, I think, not liking it. For the first couple of years, I got the distinct impression from David that I was to keep the ministry as a low profile in order not to piss off Bill, lest he shut it down.
(Deleted comment)

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