L. Ron Hubbard the Magickian?

We are examining the relationship between L. Ron Hubbard and the Ordo Templi Orientis. Alex Gibney spotlighted the connection in the documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief. L. Ron Hubbard and the O.T.O. retold the juicy Hollywood story of Hubbard’s relationship with Jack Parsons, involving sex, magick and betrayal. The question remains, what did Hubbard take from Parsons besides money and a working partner? How did Hubbard stack up as a magician? Did anything he learned have... Read more

L. Ron Hubbard and the O.T.O.

Last night was thrilling for Scientology watchers with the first broadcast screening of Alex Gibney’s documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief on HBO. I’ve long been a fan of Tony Ortega’s blog The Underground Bunker and have read many accounts by ex-members. The documentary did not disappoint, it was a great opportunity to listen to the stories first hand and hear the emotion behind them. The documentary is based on Lawrence Wright’s book Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood,... Read more

Are demons real?

What are demons? This question comes up for me because of my birthday Tarot reading. Every year I consult the cards to get a hint of the themes the year will bring. This year the cards reassured me that I am balanced in the powers of air, fire, water, and earth, I know who I am and have the strength to face the circumstances life throws at me. Then the cards told me that I would be facing every unresolved... Read more

Is “Do What Thou Wilt” a moral code?

Thelemites live by the Law of Freedom, “Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” Is this a moral code? For comparison there is the Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Witches, Wiccans and Pagans can draw on the Rede, “An it harm none do what ye will.” Do these codes serve the same function? The Golden Rule is instantly recognizable as a rule of thumb for human conduct. A... Read more

Magicians and climate change

This article is a part of the Public Square 2014 Summer Series: Conversations on Religious Trends. Read other perspectives from the Pagan community here. When I first woke up to how desperate our situation has become I became suicidal. It was the one-two-three punch of climate change plus exhaustion of oil plus big corporations controlling the world. The corporate entities, machines without souls, hungry ghosts are literally eating the planet. The byproducts of the industrial process, exhaustion and contamination, are... Read more

Thelema and Witchcraft, Part Two: Aleister Crowley, Witch?

People entering the magical communities can choose from many paths. Some check out both Thelema and Witchcraft before deciding which path to follow. As an initiated Witch and Thelemite I walk in both worlds. This series will clear up rumors, point out connections, and analyze similarities and differences – take down walls and build bridges! O.T.O. initiate Richard Kaczynski minutely surveys Crowley’s life in Perdurabo, while initiated Gardnerian Phillip Heselton traces Gerald Gardner’s life in Gerald Gardner and the Cauldron... Read more

Sex Positive Thelema

I’ve always been sex positive. From my earliest physical stirrings I’ve believed that the power flowing in my body is sacred and enjoying that power is normal. I’ve never understood why people feel “dirty” when engaging in sex. As a teen I hated that words describing genitals are used as curse words. I looked for terms that reflected the beauty of the body, jade stalk, jade gate, flower, rose. I don’t understand sexual jealousy. There are lots of forms of... Read more

Thelema and Witchcraft: was Gerald Gardner head of the O.T.O.?

People entering the magical communities can choose from many paths. Some check out both Thelema and Witchcraft before deciding which path to follow. As an initiated Witch and Thelemite I walk in both worlds. This series will clear up rumors, point out connections, and analyze similarities and differences – take down walls and build bridges! Many Witches are unaware how deeply involved Gerald Gardner was with Ordo Templi Orientis. How Gardner came to think of himself of head of the... Read more

Five False Rumors About Aleister Crowley

Aleister Crowley was an English gentleman of the Edwardian era, a magician, and the prophet of a new religion. Some revere him, some admire him, some excuse his every flaw; others revile him; a few, not content to work with the facts of his life, slander him. There are legitimate critiques that can be leveled against his actions and work – these are not among them! 1. He engaged in human sacrifice Aleister Crowley never sacrificed a human being! He... Read more

The Divine Sun

I was raised Catholic and lost my faith at fifteen. I spent an uncomfortable year exploring other forms of Christianity and Buddhism without finding a good fit. One day as I walked down the road puzzling mightily on the foundational truths of the universe, I looked up at the sun, and it struck me with a blaze of light. There! I said to myself. There is a universal principle worth worshiping! I was crushed to discover this was not an... Read more
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