ON the Rights of Man, 
A Commentary on Liber OZ 
by Frater Orpheus (2019)

  This book, which is approximately 148 pages long, details the history behind a one-page piece written by Aleister Crowley titled Liber OZ. For the average person who knows little about this liber, Orpheus’ book is good. It shows a lot of pictures of the different early editions. It details how many copies were printed of each and who received them. On this level it is very good and worthy of purchasing. Outside of a lot of historical fluff which doesn’t directly relate to Liber OZ, I really enjoyed it. However, I found it lacking in one specific area of which the reader should be aware. ON the Rights of Man is not the definitive say on this liber. I can understand why Frater Orpheus avoids telling his reader the truth about Liber OZ, seeing that he probably wants his book to be distributed amongst O.T.O. Initiates with the blessings of this Order’s leaders, whom he name-drops like water in the Acknowledgements. Basically, the author doesn’t want to make waves, but there are ways of informing people about the facts without revealing O.T.O. secrets. As I see it, the chapter titled “The Nativity of OZ” on the origin of this liber is outright misleading. It leaves the reader with the notion that this liber, known as The Book of Strength, was written at the beginning of World War II—but this is hardly the case. It would have been better to simply inform the reader that “Crowley first wrote this book, albeit with minor differences, about twenty-four years earlier, around 1919, but he never published it” and then state that “Crowley later took it, did slight rewrites in 1941 and released it.” Simple enough; it’s brief and not revealing any secrets. But Orpheus instead distorted the facts.

  The closest the book comes to revealing the truth about Liber Oz’s origin appears in an article supplied by Frater Sabazius titled “Observations on Liber OZ” (p.189). In this piece Sabazius refers to this liber as a “degree lesson … written around 1916.” It was not, unless by “degree lesson” he’s referring to it as being part of the initiation ritual itself, which it is. It was also not written around 1916, but rather three years later. As an example indicating when it was written, Frater Achad would acknowledge in a letter to his old friend Wilfred T. Smith dated November 12th, 1918 – “There is a possibility that the rituals may have to be revised, and the Words of the first Two Degrees correctly given, and the Masonic connection made less in evidence.” Crowley admits that he completed the rewrites to Minerval through III° in the early months of the following year. In the II° initiation ritual Crowley included a section titled “the declaration of the Rights of Man,” which Saladin reads aloud, and everyone in the Temple, with right hand raised, repeats what was said. Saladin then informs the candidate – “This you will sign in triplicate with your full name and address; one copy we retain; the others are to be affixed publicly to edifices symbolizing the civil and religious authority.” To this day the Rights of Man are still used in the O.T.O. initiation ritual which is probably why Frater Orpheus excluded it from his book. To repeat, the declaration of the Rights of Man very closely resembles what Crowley would later release as Liber OZ

  Furthermore, in his original manuscript [i.e. Commentaries] titled Extenuation of the Book of the Law, which was written at Cefalu (1920-5), Crowley refers to his “Declaration of the RIGHTS OF MAN” in his commentary to Chapter III v.60, and he actually lists these rights, one after another. The list is identical to the Rights of Man listed in the initiation ritual. Israel Regardie gives the Rights in full after III:60 in The Law is for All (1975), whereas, when Kenneth Grant and Marcelleo Motta published Crowley’s Commentaries, they simply included Liber OZ elsewhere in their books while removing the list from verse 60. 

  It was during the Second World War that this section was extrapolated from the II° ritual and the Commentaries, slighted edited and released. Frater Orpheus begins his book with this information about World War II while totally ignoring the earlier origins of this work. Crowley writes in his diary on November 5th, 1941 – “Oh for a title for my War Aims! Can’t use ‘Rights of Man’. I want to keep monosyllabic.” The final title of Liber OZ was decided on November 6th where he writes – “Decided on OZ; recopied the whole beastly thing.” The press proofs were ready on November 18th, and the first mass mailing took place on December 22nd, 1941. Historically we know that the II° Initiation ritual was never performed until April 15th, 1942. This was when Jack Parsons and his wife Helen were initiated into the Degree. The confusion as to when or why Liber OZ was first written might come from around this period, but we shouldn’t ignore when Crowley had actually written the II° ritual, or 1919. 

  All this babbling aside, again let me repeat, I enjoyed the book and, in truth, I understand why the author avoided telling the reader the entire story. Perhaps he didn’t know it? But then again, if he did, in this Thelemic world of hostility its best not to rock the boat; if the O.T.O. wants you to avoid writing about something, so be it. Keep your mouth shut and skip over the section in Liber OZ which states “Man has the right … to write what he will.” However, it’s simply silly to keep this information quiet. It is a well-known fact that candidates in II° O.T.O. will sign three copies of Liber OZ. This information was first published in Francis King’s The Secret Rituals of the O.T.O. (1973) almost forty-seven years ago—the cat has long been out of the bag! 

  J. Edward Cornelius
  Written in Berkeley, CA
  Wednesday, January 15th, 2020 e.v.

Freeform Magick: 
Richard T. Cole and the New Aeon
(A Review of The Inauguration of Aleister Crowley’s New Aeon of Horus by Richard T. Cole, 2019)

      Thanksgiving Day, 2019. The scent of cooking ham perfumes our little apartment. Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade clamors on our television—the best in commercialist tradition.

    Today I heard some news—one day late. Just yesterday a scandal broke loose here in California, United States of America. The media cried aloud that the California Department of Motor Vehicles made $51 million last year selling its citizen’s private information—without our knowledge or permission. It just so happens that 51 is the enumeration of the English phrase “I AM” (in Qabalistic tradition, a phrase of Kether-1). That synchronicity pretty well augurs the genius of Richard Cole’s limited-edition booklet The Inauguration of Aleister Crowley’s New Aeon of Horus

     Since his childhood, one way or another, Cole has earnestly engaged with this weird phenomenon of Aleister Crowley. What is he all about? What is IT all about? With this 2019 booklet, Cole marks a culmination of his lifetime of exploration of the New Aeon. 

        Many of Cole’s books have delighted and intrigued me over the years. They scintillate his quirky outlook, coalesce his incisive, obsessive spirit of inquiry regarding Thelema, and flaunt his warped sense of humor. The Inauguration of Aleister Crowley’s New Aeon of Horus is my favorite to date.

        Cole illuminates the essence of the New Aeon: reality’s operating system has undergone a complete upgrade. “Abrograte are all rituals, all ordeals, all words and signs” (Liber AL vel Legis I:49). Cole explains just what this means. In a nutshell, all the stuff people needed for magick and spiritual attainment in previous Aeons—throw it in the bin. You don’t need any of it. Now, under the new operating system, there is an immediate, immensely simple way of tapping directly into divine creative potential. He cites its Qabalistic basis.

        The utter highlight of Cole’s booklet is his clear, illustrated explanation of how “Do what thou wilt” magick actually works. In many ways, the virtuosic Cole reminds me of a Carl Jung except with a wacky and perverse sense of humor.

        A particularly brilliant section comprises Cole’s discussion of the Internet as a “physical reflection of Homo sapiens’ potential for organic interconnectivity.” Cole reveals the internet-fueled melt-down of the old Aeon’s most revered social and political institutions as a harbinger of a to-be-hoped-for spiritualized realization. He shines when he describes conflicts waged across the internet as, quite literally, external reflections of real-but-invisible battles fought within our collective psyche. Cole “gets” it. 

        By contrast, the sections on New-Aeonic gender and sex magick strike me as slightly off the mark, but never completely off target. For instance, Cole quotes from the script of The Wolf of Wall Street where one male character strenuously advises another male to “jerk off” at least twice a day to balance the mental work and “keep the rhythm below the belt.” Cole writes, “This brief and jocular exchange includes ALL the theory and practice anyone will ever need to know about the mysteries of old and New Aeon Magick – simple as that!” Male-bodied individuals inclined to realize their True Will should pause before taking these sex-magick instructions literally. Read literally anything on tantras regarding the basis of my concern for males—ironically not for females. But if you are male, I suppose try it yourself and take notes. I have no personal experience on this one; I only know what I hear from my extremely experienced male teachers and colleagues. Yet, even this section, if taken more metaphorically, is spot-on. 

      To take another example where I can personally weigh in, Cole describes how the LGBTQ+ communities have expanded the binary pink / blue gender / sexuality system into a rainbow of possibilities and actualities. “The children of [the new Aeon] display all colours, reflecting their infinite diversity and absolutely right to express it.” The diversity isn’t new, but the “overt individuality” and insistence on our right to express ourselves is new. So far, beautiful. But since this section occurs just before Cole’s apparent claim that “jerking off” a lot is all you need to know about sex magick (for whom?), I wish he would have clarified where he was going with this. 

        I worry that external LGBTQ+ phenomena are being mistaken for internal / vertical reality because back in the Qabalistic sections, Cole writes that in previous Aeons we have explored the female mysteries, followed by the male, and then he announces, “Now, we have a third in the fledgling and mushrooming culture of gender-fluid, non-binary entities.” A third set of mysteries? No. He’s on to something uniquely new-Aeonic here, but neither the female nor the male mysteries were based in culture, and 99.9% of people on the currently exploding rainbow of infinite varieties of gender and sexual expression are still boring old male or female, based only on how their bodies move energy, not on how they identify or express their individuality. The same old mysteries still apply, except in a new relationship. I will explain what I mean and how I know.

        As a gender-fluid pansexual myself, I fly the rainbow flag. Of particular interest here, I have been a practicing Western tantric (keeping records) for nineteen years, fourteen of which I took testosterone, grew a full beard, changed my legal name, and lived and worked in as masculine as a mode as I could muster. As it turned out, despite my male-typical hormone composition, my body stubbornly moved energy in the female way, not the male way, and not in some unidentified “third” way. Nope. Regardless of my masculine / gender-blended expression, the same old female mysteries applied. Now, during the last five years, I have embraced the female mysteries as my own, with the result I have blossomed creatively beyond my wildest dreams. The fact that I have stopped taking testosterone and started grooming myself to appear feminine is emblematic but, I suspect, only an enhancement on a technical level. The fact is, for sex-magical purposes, it doesn’t matter what exciting new color of gender or sexuality you embrace. All that matters is which of two forms your gonads are in. That is what I learned from long-term, practical experience. 

        Rather, Cole’s example of LGBTQ+ liberation exactly parallels his brilliant example of the internet. Just as the internet is quite literally the “physical reflection of Homo sapiens’ potential for organic interconnectivity,” the explosion of people coming out of the closet and expressing our gender and sexuality in gorgeous new ways actually augurs the revival and reincarnation of the recently-repressed feminine mysteries in cooperation, balance, and ecstatic UNION with the male. Why do I say that the upsurge in people’s insistence on expressing their uniqueness is a resurgence of the feminine mysteries—for males as well as females? It’s because the “feminine” in magick has nothing to do with its cultural expressions. Zero. Rather, the “feminine” mysteries concern form, Yin, restriction, Saturn, Binah, Law, boundaries, Prakriti. To value the feminine in magick is to insist, “That form which makes me uniquely me IS ALSO divine. It is not incidental.” In the New Aeon it’s no longer good enough to insist on the truth that we are all one and the same in Christ. That also is still true, but now our real, innate, individual differences (not ones accidentally acquired in the process of surviving) are seen to also reflect Divinity, to also express our unique Law. Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law

        There is no new third category of titillating people. If anything, the external phenomena of gender-crossing, gender queering, gender-blending, etc. reflects the dawning realization that if our gonads are female, we can productively embrace our unmanifested Self as masculine, and vice versa. No rules even here, but the point is, insofar as we bring our manifested and Angelic selves into complete balance, we neutralize gender. In the new Aeon we are bipolar gender-wise, and we aim for that Zero point, that cancelling out of inner with outer. Maybe I can bring this discussion back into alignment with Cole’s way of speaking by saying, we are all potentially gender-neutral, but that gender neutrality is a specific achievement in dynamically balancing inner and outer, not a natural fact. Unlike in the last Aeon, we can no longer remain fixated on the surface of things. As Aleister Crowley showed us, even while in the flesh we really can cross the Abyss to the realm of pure potential where the opposites are ONE. And on that much I am certain Cole is clear.

        Finally, if I may gush, Cole ends the book on a delicious cliff hanger. He discusses a machine he created that can generate synchronicity, including a fascinating mishap that proves its effectiveness. No spoilers here; I’ll say only it’s an amazing story, of which I have no doubt that it happened. I heard whispers of this magick-making machine from Cole some years back and have been an enthusiastic supporter ever since. At the end of this book, he promises he will soon be releasing descriptions and schematics of said machine in forthcoming volumes called The Paranormal Decided666, Sex, and the New Aeon of Horus; and The Governing Dynamics of Thelema. More, he announces that one or more of the new books will reveal the synchronicity machine’s underlying principle, “an elementary technique, the utilization of which ‘opens a paranormal portal.’” Based on what I’ve read in this book, I believe it, and I can hardly wait to read more.

To pick up a copy of Mr. Cole's new book, click HERE.

Erica M Cornelius
Berkeley, California, U.S.A.
Anno Vv, Sun in 6 Sagittarius, Luna in 4 Capricorn

One Truth,” Filled with Lies

          It is useless to continually point out the outright lies and distortions being vomited by Gunther-Breeze’s A.'.A.'. lineage in their ongoing quest to attack Grady McMurtry’s branch. You can spend a lifetime playing the game of Whack-a-Mole with these mutators. I’ve been documenting their stories since the early 1990s, hundreds of pages worth. As I see it, every time they poke their little heads up out of some hole and are caught in statements bathed in obvious falsities, they quickly disappear for a while only to reappear later with a new and improved version of supposed facts. Keith Readdy’s book One Truth, One Spirit (2018) is just the latest in a string of examples. He claims that he’s not a member of the Gunther-Breeze A.'.A.'., but if he’s just an historian, he’s a lousy one. He avoids researching anything which might prove the Gunther-Breeze historical theorems implausible. Why? He is either an unbelievably biased researcher and/or he has a hidden agenda. That agenda seems to be elevating one particular branch of the A.'.A.'. above all others. Personally, if their branch would spend less time attacking the legitimacy of others and focus more energy on assisting humanity in learning and living by the principles of Thelema, which is the goal of the S.S. (Silver Star), then they might actually become something worthwhile. However, they believe in eliminating any and all contenders to some imaginary throne—pure Restrictionism, this being the only sin mentioned in Liber AL vel Legis. To me, all they are really achieving with their psycho-babbling is forcing others, like Grady McMurtry’s A.'.A.'. lineage, to defend themselves against a constant barrage of bullshit. 

        One person in Gunther-Breeze’s lineage, upon hearing that I was going to review Readdy’s book, commented that he’s “looking forward to reading [my] review. Hopefully it will be a substantial criticism that aims a bit higher on the hierarchy of critique than contradiction.” It made me laugh. Readdy wrote an historical book littered with supposed facts [cough cough], but this person does not want me to dispute them or contradict them. Another person wrote how he wished I did less “rants about factionalism.” I guess what these people want me to review is Readdy’s concept known as ‘Duplexity,’ which is the over-all theme of the book. It implies the relationship that is shared between the outer Order known as the O.T.O. and the inner Order of the A.'.A.'. in its goal to promote Thelema. 

Sounds fair enough, no? 

        But where this book fails lies in its inability to stay focused. Had Readdy simply stated the laws of Duplexity mean that the OTO is now being guided by an Inner School run by Guntherites, it would have been a worthy read. But rather than leave the concept of A.'.A.'. lineages out of the book, which is a controversial and never-to-be-resolved topic, he takes sides. A true historian would never do that if there were obvious issues that needed to be explored in a fair and balanced exposé on the subject. Instead, he opened the can of worms by attacking other lineages. But I guess I’m supposed to ignore the guy behind the curtain whispering lies and distortions in Readdy’s ears and simply tell my readers whether or not I liked the concept of ‘Duplexity.’ OK, I don’t disagree with the theory; fair enough? I lived through the period when Gunther’s A.'.A.'. lineage, under Bill Breeze’s dictatorship, seized power and became the new Inner School guiding the OTO. 

People who disagree with this need to get over it. 

        Do I really care if Grady McMurtry’s A.'.A.'. branch has no say in guiding the OTO? Yes and no! But in truth, we moved on. But am I supposed to simply stay quiet and ignore the continual attacks against Grady Louis McMurtry, myself and our lineage? Their spreading of lies and distortions have been a constant thorn in our side since the early 1990s. One of the most obvious flaws in his book is that there was a lot of very eloquent and sincere rhetoric being thrown around amongst outright fabrications, lies and bullshit, but sadly, most people will have no clear understanding of what constitutes the bullshit or what functions it serves. Most, more or less, will simply accept Readdy’s volume as being a good book. The philosopher Harry G. Frankfurt wrote a classic volume titled On Bullshit (2005) where he attempted to study the significance behind the word while pointing out how bullshit, although it begins innocently enough, eventually undermines the practitioner’s capacity to tell the truth if he or she uses it excessively. This is a major problem with members in Gunther-Breeze’s A.'.A.'. lineage—their inability to think for themselves and distinguish fact from fantasy. Most, especially if they’ve been a member for years, are incapable of admitting they’ve been taken in by bullshit. 

        Let me give you an example of the bullshit in Readdy’s book. He writes his version about my taking VIII° OTO and 8=3 A.'.A.'.: 

        However, some years later, Gerald Edward (Jerry) Cornelius of Brocken Mountain Lodge in Connecticut pressed Grady for the IX°. Grady instead decided to advance him to VIII°, making it a condition that Cornelius swear the “Oath of the Abyss.” (p. 254)

        LIES! LIES! LIES! For the record, Readdy never once contacted me to get my side of the story. He even has my books where these events are mentioned in detail, but he chooses to ignore the facts and push a version of the event as told by people in Gunther’s A.'.A.'. who were not there. This should make the reader ask why. For the record, I never solicited Grady for IX°; that is a well-known fact. In truth, eight months after I assumed VIII° was when Grady approached me, not the other way around, to write a paper on IX° to see if I understood what he had been teaching me in regards to VII° & VIII° OTO secrets over the previous three years. Bill Heidrick knew this, which is why he wrote about knowing, quote, “special instructions he [i.e. Grady] used to send [me].” In fact, my paper on IX° should be in the Grand Lodge files if they have Grady McMurtry’s archive. 

        In defense of Readdy, one of their members claims my Memoirs of an A.'.A.'. Initiate (2018) is unclear about my own degrees, and list snippets from my book totally out of context as if to assume the specific conclusion that it’s my fault that Readdy, a trained academic, misinterpreted my words. She writes:

        From the phraseology of the book and your own words I can see easily how the author would form the view he did. If your own expression of what happened is incomplete or incorrect then perhaps this should be corrected in a later edition of the book or perhaps you should have been more clear in the first place when publishing your work. 

        However, Readdy’s comments detailing mine and Grady’s degrees are not a mistake. They are almost verbatim of the arguments made by Gutherites since the early 1990s—which pre-date Memoirs of an A.'.A.'. Initiate (2018) by at least twenty-five years. This clearly implies that Readdy was influenced by the interpretations of Guntherites rather than being confused by anything I recently wrote.  

        And then Readdy asks a question as to why Grady gave me both OTO and A.'.A.'. Oaths on the same day, writing:

        Was [Grady] confusing VIII° O.T.O. with 8=3 A.'.A.'.? (p. 254)

        This is another old, tired story Breeze, Wasserman and others have been pushing for twenty-five plus years—despite knowing the truth. First, the two oaths were sworn on the same day out of convenience, seeing that Grady rarely came to the East Coast and his health was failing. I was informed that this might be his last visit for quite a few years. 

         Second, and more important, Grady never gave me VIII° with a condition that I swear the Oath of the Abyss. That is an outright LIE if not a deliberate attempt to twist the facts in order to degrade the incident. In truth, Gunther’s A.'.A.'. needs you to believe this in order to hide the real reason why I was solicited go take VIII°. Did Readdy bother to read Chapter 30 of RED FLAME, A Thelemic Research Journal No.13, In the Name of the Beast: A Biography of Grady Louis McMurtry, Disciple of Aleister Edward Crowley Vol. Two, 1962–1985 (2005) where it mentions me be given VIII°? Obviously not! If you haven’t read this book, the real reason was not kind to Breeze, Wasserman and others who tried to force Grady into becoming a Hidden Master so they could abscond with running the OTO by creating the Electoral College behind his back. They prematurely tried to seize power before his death! Let me quote from the Chapter:

Grady believed that if I took the degree then I would be the only official Eighth Degree in the Order and I could, in effect, institute the council known as the Areopagus at his command. He explained that as head of the Order, he’d simply pull his rank as dictator in case of emergency and tell everyone that he appointed me to this position. End of subject. With that in mind, according to the OTO Constitution, he could appeal any decision which was made in any other Council to the Areopagus, meaning me, in order that I could then override whatever these people threw at him. It seemed logical at the time. He ranted that since they were plotting to overthrow him by using the OTO Constitution, then he would have, quote, an “ace up his sleeve.” If I took Eighth from him then I could be there, just waiting for the proper moment, to act in his favor, if and when the need ever arose.

        Of course, whether Grady’s beliefs and action held any validity or not is immaterial. He was in charge of the OTO back then and what he believed held merit in the same way which Breeze wields that power today. 

        And finally, on another whole level, and unrelated, since I had risen degree by degree as Grady’s personal student up to Adeptus Minor 5=6, I leaped from the sphere of Tiphereth, and swore the Oath of the Abyss in front of him. Wake up people, if there is any “confusing” Grady’s beliefs about the OTO and A'.A.'. it with the Guntherieites. The reader should beware: Readdy has a great way of asking pointed questions and sounding as if he’s a concerned historian, but any astute individual will easily recognize the fact that he is merely backhandedly planting seeds of confusion, being a tool of the Black Brother, hoping you will be swayed to his way of thinking. As another example, he writes:

        However, the case for Grady’s involvement in the A.'.A.'. is, frankly, baffling. Did he misunderstand some key differences between the O.T.O. and the A.'.A.'.? For example, his Charter to Thelema Lodge in Berkeley, California, in 1977 reads, “Let all Thelemites know that I, Hymenaeus Alpha, 777, IX° O.T.O., 9=2, Caliph of Ordo Templi Orientis of Aleister Crowley, Baphomet 666 do hereby Charter Thelema Lodge as Grand Lodge of O.T.O.” Was Grady here claiming the A.'.A.'. grade of Magus, or did he simply equate “9=2” to the IX° of O.T.O.? (p. 253)

      This is another tired story vomited by Gunther’s A.'.A.'. for the past twenty-five years or more. For the record, Grady knew exactly what he was doing and what he was signing. He clearly understood the distinction between the two Orders; I even told Breeze this back in the early 1990s. But again, Gunther’s A.'.A.'. cannot allow you to accept this because it implies that Grady had not only been a Magister Templi 8=3 since 1970, but he assumed the next grade of Magus 9=2 in 1977. Again, Readdy had my biography on Grady McMurtry, but he chooses to ignore this statement:

        As planned, on October 12th 1977, just as the Sun passed the peak of an eclipse on the birthday of Aleister Crowley, a Charter was signed in Berkeley, California by Frater Hymenaeus Alpha IX 777 using Crowley’s special Seal Ring of Ankh-af-na-Khonsu. Grady signed the Charter as a Magus 9=2. More importantly, after months of deep contemplation, Grady felt he finally knew his Magickal Word, which would create the Universe for which his entire life had prepared him. He uttered three letters – OTO (Vol. II, Chapter 26, p. 140)

        But here is truth: Grady McMurtry’s personal Word as a Magus was so powerful that it created a universe and reactivated the OTO, which has since spread worldwide. That is the power of a Magus! The only way Readdy or others can dispute his claim, at least in their mind, is to try to kick the legitimacy out from under us by creating distortions as to original magickal intent of an Adept. This is why Readdy states another worn out story of how Phyllis Seckler “expelled” Grady McMurtry in 1979 when he was just a Probationer. Indirectly, he is trying to “sell you a bridge” hoping that you’ll buy it and ignore the real story. As an example, Readdy quotes Phyllis:

        He never did the work of the probationer. Never […] I threw him out of the A.'.A.'.. He has no A.'.A.'. background. None. However, he went around pretending that he did have, and telling people he was such-and-such a Grade. And then, of course, […] Oh God, he made trouble for other people […] Grady had no right to say he was A.'.A.'. after I threw him out. He had no right to initiate anybody because he had never done the Probationer work. (p. 252)

        Readdy forgets that Phyllis accepted Grady as an A.'.A.'. initiate right up until 1979! So what happened in 1979 which made her bitterly strike out against him? Readdy ignores the fact that Phyllis later admitted that her original letter, expelling him, was simply her being angry at him because he divorced her in 1979 for another woman. However, she has acknowledged that he took the Oath of the Abyss on April 24th, 1970. She even gave me further information about Grady taking this oath for the biography that I was writing about him. But she denied his Magister Templi degree, claiming he was only a Probationer in her eyes. The hard question to ask is:

"Who has the right to disavow another person's claim 
at having taken the Oath of the Abyss and thus becoming a Magister Templi?"

Phyllis, Gunther, Breeze, Wasserman? 

        Phyllis and I talked about this in-depth. She could not fathom the fact that when she threw Grady out of the A.'.A.'. he was actually beyond her grasp in the Third Order as a Magus. In other words, even if she could expel him, she had no authority to do so. He was a higher degree than she, which is why he ignored her. As an example, could Aleister Crowley deny Frater Achad (Charles Stansfeld Jones) swearing the Oath? No! In fact, in 1916 he sent a letter to Achad in which he writes – “Note, that on the 8=3 matter I have no right to cross-examine. You claim it, and there is an end of the matter.” Readdy’s book proves he’s either really stupid in regards to A.'.A.'. policies about the S.S. or, again, he has an agenda. 

        So why are Gunther’s people denying Grady’s claim? The truth is, they cannot acknowledge it because it occurred years before Gunther even joined Motta’s A.'.A.'., and if Motta lost his right to govern the Order according to The Tunis Comment in 1975, then shouldn’t the Order have turned over to one of the highest ranking members of the Order [i.e. Grady], one who had already joined the Secret Chiefs by crossing the Abyss? This is why they can never publicly acknowledge Grady’s true degrees. It kicks the very foundation out from under Gunther’s claims of inheriting the Order from Motta or, in an alternative version of the story, making his own connection with the Secret Chiefs. Regardless if Grady was a good, bad or successful Magister Templi in Phyllis’ eyes, he STILL took the Oath, which made him one of the highest-ranking members in the world in 1975. 

        To appreciate Grady’s true A.'.A.'. degree I would like to point out that Jim Wasserman wrote In the Center of the Fire (2012) that he took Neophyte under Grady (p.139). Parenthetically, this mention was first time that I ever heard this, and you think Grady would have mentioned it to me, knowing how close we were, but none-the-less, I won’t dispute it. However, I was taught that the A.'.A.'. knocks but once. We know that Wasserman was denied access to the A.'.A.'. by his “receiving Brother” (i.e. Marcelo Motta) because he was a failed Probationer (The Equinox Vol. V, No, 4, 1981), but at the time Grady had no way of knowing this unless he was told. Regardless, I personally accept Wasserman as a fellow brother. I believe the point he is trying to make is that there is only one A.'.A.'., and if Motta failed as a teacher, then he could go to Grady instead because obviously there are no such things as lineages; everyone is in the same A.'.A.'. which, of course, according to Wasserman, is now run by Gunther. But notice what else this story implies: if Grady wasn’t higher than a Probationer as Phyllis claims, how could he accept Wasserman as a Neophyte, which then begs the question, “What degree did Grady hold?” History has shown that he claimed Magus 9=2. Again, if Grady was the highest-ranking initiate, shouldn’t he have been running the A.'.A.'. if Motta failed? Readdy choses to ignore these obvious facts; academia is not his strong suit. 

        Furthermore, and more important, Motta started openly discussing his personal Commentaries to Liber AL vel Legis and sharing them with others back in the mid-1960s, even discussing the possibility of publishing them in the late-1960s. Let’s say for the sake of argument that The Tunis Comment is correct, and that Motta lost his authority for violating it. If so, didn’t he lose his authority years and years earlier than 1975? With that bit of info, it now begs a more serious question: “What did Gunther, Breeze and Wasserman really join and inherit, if Motta had already fallen into the Black Brotherhood before they met him?” The bottom line, our lineage believes that if Gunther is claiming to have made contact with the Secret Chiefs back in 1973, that is his business; it’s between him and the Gods. But to claim that he’s now cornered the market on the teachings coming out of the S.S. is absolutely ludicrous. Crowley did not create the Third Order; it always existed. For Gunther, or any mortal, to claim that their “One Truth” must be followed above all others proves beyond a shred of a doubt that someone’s ego is screaming from the Black Brotherhood. Read Crowley! 

        Anyway, I could go on listing numerous, and I do mean numerous, inaccuracies in Readdy’s book, but I think you get the picture. However, in all fairness, I should point out that the entire book is far from worthless. There is a lot of very interesting data found within its pages and worthy of reading, but how is the novice to determine what is real and what is propaganda? These snippets of attacks on other lineages are a distraction in an otherwise good book and, in a way, they expose the book as merely being a propaganda tool, so buyer beware. In my view his book should be renamed One Truth, Filled with Lies. With that I should mention his original Master’s thesis, by the same name, which he published back on December 12th, 2016 using the alias Frater Tέλειος, was so bad and also filled with inaccuracies. Did anyone really expect a longer version to be any different, especially seeing that it was edited and published by Jim Wasserman’s Ibis Press? In the end, I think people within their lineage will most likely praise the book, and it is their right to do so. They all seem to live by a simple premise which states – “What is history but a fable agreed upon?” and, with that, they hope if everyone agrees with their version of the facts, then they must be true. However, their interpretation of A.'.A.'. history is so fraudulent at times that Godzilla could walk through the holes unnoticed. My final thoughts: the paper is too coarse to be used in the bathroom and so the book sits on my bookshelf. 

However, the only real truth is that, rather than reading Readdy’s book, 
you’d be better off curling up in front of a fire and reading Harry Potter. 

by J. Edward Cornelius
January 2019

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