Temple of Set Ref
5.0 The Organization
5.1 Membership in the Temple
Joining the Temple of Set is a serious decision. Anyone who is attracted
to the Temple of Set through the things you see and hear should investigate
thoroughly before applying for membership.
- On April 14, 1996, Balanone posted the following response to a
question on Xepera-l:
> ... After correspondence with Adept Jay (thanx) I joined
this list for a better understanding of the angle and activity
links, but am still unsure what joining in the middle of the city
of San Francisco, CA would mean for me!?!?!? ie the style and
benefits of involvement, formally, in such a group- as opposed
to continuing solitarily---
>especially considering that a degree of "dogmatic symbols"
have been developed andmembership in any "society" should
be taken seriously, but I am unsure how to do so until I know
I'd say the best way to find out about the (in)compatibilities
that might arise by formal affiliation would be to discuss them
with local Setian(s).
Send a letter to the Executive Director, with a brief introduction
like you had in your post, and ask to be put into contact with
a local Priest of Set in your area. You'll then be able to explore
the possible benefits and problems of affiliation with someone
who knows the local Setian scene as well as the larger picture,
and who's able to give you solid information by which you can
judge whether affiliation might be beneficial or harmful for your
Application to the Temple of Set may be made to the Executive Director
or to any Priest of Set. Information about this procedure is provided
in the introductory letter.
- Assuming you're approved for membership (the Executive Director
has indicated that the majority of applicants are denied), you as
a I° Setian you will receive 1) the current edition of the
Crystal Tablet of Set, which includes all of the basic philosophical,
magical, and initiatory material any Setian would need to begin
and accomplish his initiation to the II°, 2) a I° Pentagram
of Set medallion, and 3) a year's subscription to the Scroll
of Set newsletter.
- You will have two years in which to achieve the II°, using
the information and inspiration provided by the Crystal Tablet,
by correspondence and other contact with Setians, and through your
own work towards Initiation.
- Following from our choice to avoid all practices that would create
a barrier between us and our self-created divinity, the Setian can
not in good faith hold membership in any other religious organization
after he has become an Adept. Membership in organizations that advocate
illegal action are likewise incompatible with Setian affiliation.
One cannot be for one's own Xeper, and be working to restrict the
Xeper of another.
- The application and its approval.
Though some applications are approved and acted upon quickly,
other applications for membership in the Temple of Set seem to
take a very long time. Our "staff" are all volunteers,
and their administrative activities within the Temple of Set are
given appropriate priorities, behind personal initiation,
family, and career. Therefore, be prepared for some delay in the
processing of your application. If the delay seems overly long,
it's always helpful to send a friendly query to the Executive
Director asking about its status.
One applicant asked on Xepera-l: "I sent off my letter of application
about three weeks ago now- and I still haven't heard a word. Any
idea how long it takes to get a response?"
- Adept Foster answered:
Once you've submitted your letter of application, it can
take anywhere from one to three months before you hear anything.
I know it sucks to have to wait that long without knowing,
but these things take time- especially when you consider exactly
HOW BUSY the Temple's Executive Director is (and that being
the E.D. is a full time job, ON TOP of a normal, *paying*
full time job- and then add in some time for family, other
official Temple matters and their own personal Initiatory
work!) All told, I'm surprised it happens as quickly as it
Just consider this a lesson in patience, and enjoy the anticipation.
- My answer was:
It's highly variable, depending on how busy our volunteer
Executive Director is, and how busy her staff is, and how
much difficulty she has finding an available Priest for the
interview process. Then the question becomes how busy that
Priest is, whether he has email capabilities, etc.
You can send a quick email to her at email@example.com
and verify that she at least received your letter of application.
- Base of Set echo, From: Balanone, To: Zbigniew Nitecki, 27 Mar
93 12:59:18, Subj: Re: Setian Application
ZN> I've been quite interested
ZN> in joining the Temple of Set for a while now and I have
ZN> application. The only problem is that the letter, essay
ZN> requested has me a bit scared. ...
ZN> I feel quite intimidated by the other Setians
ZN> and have this awful feeling that if I mail in my application
ZN> going to get a big laugh, say "Hell No" and stamp
a big "REJECTED"
ZN> across it. Its not the fact that I can't write, I'm just
ZN> Lack of knowledge on the subject is the primary reason.
I have more
ZN> of a scientific background.
I'm probably one of those that scare you. I've been in the Temple
of Set for well over a decade, and feel qualified to call myself
an accomplished Adept.
When I joined the Temple of Set in 1977 I didn't even know how
to spell magick. :-)
The introductory letter is intentionally aimed at directing novices
who might join this organization or that organization or the other
one to look elsewhere instead of the Temple of Set, since we simply
don't have much in the way of resources for helping entry-level
magicians learn their way around. All of us, at all levels, are
busy doing our own thing, and while we do help each other somewhat,
our time and abilities are limited.
Therefore, a novice who applies to the Temple of Set needs to
be prepared to work intensively on their own, with minimal guidance,
and to become Adept magicians through their own efforts, within
the 2-year time limit.
If you can do this, and if the philosophies of the Temple of
Set are aligned with your own philosophies, then hell yes, send
in your application!
- Base of Set echo, From: Balanone, To: Paladin, 02 May 93 13:23:53,
Subj: Re: More questions
On 01 May 93 17:42:00, Paladin posted a message to Balanone concerning
P> What is so effective about Setian techniques that the Setian
P> initiate can achieve a level self awareness & self consciousness
P> as little as two years? What test or task is given to verify
P> new level of consciousness? Are these "tests"
objective or purely
Effective? Who ever said our techniques were effective? Our techniques
depend very strongly upon the interest, dedication, and activity
of the individual initiates. Quite a few people who look at our
techniques don't find them effective at all, and they never achieve
the II* within the Temple of Set. (I've been very happy with the
results of these techniques, but then I'm thought to be an excessively
perfectionist, self-starting and self-motivated, swelled-headed
egotist, who almost lives up to his own expectations.)
How do you classify "this new level of consciousness"?
A new level of consciousness great enough to cause the world to
bow down at your feet is *not* a requirement for II* Recognition.
Rather, the II* Recognition is a statement that the initiate has
shown the dedication to his/her own Xeper, and the initiative,
and the ability to achieve such self awareness and self consciousness
through their own work.
Yes, I believe that Setian Adepti are more "awake"
than the great majority of humanity, but it's like getting out
of bed when the alarm has just gone off. You're up and about,
but you're not yet quite AWAKE.
The "test ... given to verify this new level of consciousness"
is the process of II* Recognition, whereby a Priest of Set (III*)
Recognizes that a Setian has become Adept (II*). There is no written
or similarly "objective" test, but rather a fairly extensive
set of criteria in various areas which indicate the Adept's qualifications
for that Grade. (They are fairly well described in an article
concerning Initiation and Recognition in the _Crystal Tablet of
But is this test "only" subjective? Ordinarily you
might say so, since it revolves around one person's opinion (that
of a single Priest of Set), but in general there is universal
agreement concerning an Adept's Recognition once that Adept gets
to be known to others throughout the Temple, and so something
in the process seems to imply something more than "*mere*"
Is the process perfect? No, but neither are supposedly objective
tests one can fill out and grade by computer.
P> Why is two years considered by some such a short time to
P> this? Just what is/are the course parameters, areas, fields
P> etc. for the neophyte?
As I said, this is covered fairly well in a _Crystal Tablet_
article, which I won't quote in depth there. A quick (and partial)
list might include:
1) Knowledge of Setian philosophy
2) Agreement with and dedication to Setian philosophy
3) Knowledge of and ability to use Setian symbolism (everything
from specific words such as Xeper, Remanifestation, and Runa to
symbolism concerning the Pentagram of Set and the images of the
Egyptian neteru), the ideas of Plato's Forms, the Golden Ratio,
basic Crowleyana, etc.
4) Demonstration of actual Xeper (progress toward an awakened
and empowered state of being).
5) Demonstration of actual xeper (improved control over the initiate's
life in general, and especially the initiate's mundane situations).
6) Knowledge of lesser black magic (psychological tools of manipulation)
and a) the ability to determine when such are being applied to
you and to avoid their effects, b) the ability to determine when
such are warranted for the manipulation of others, and c) the
ability to successfully do so.
7) Knowledge of greater black magic (the manipulation of reality
through magical means).
8) Demonstration of ability in greater black magic.
9) Demonstration of the ability to work with others in joint magical
10) Demonstration of the ability to work with others in mutual
benefit along any of the above goals.
11) Dedication to one's own personal Xeper.
12) Dedication to the Temple of Set and our fellow initiates as
long as it remains a viable and useful tool for the furtherance
of all of the above. (Not blind devotion, since initiates are
encouraged to speak up if they disagree with things being done
or the reasons for same, but rather an agreement to band together
against forces designed to weaken or destroy this organization
which benefits us.)
- Lewis Cawthorne asked on Xepera-l, Date: Fri, 18 Dec 1998, Subject:
TOS & Recognition
Not to put the cart before the horse, but I do have
one minor concern, how would an Initiate in a small town in North
Carolina with some resources at his disposal for traveling to
other places for contact with other Setians but probably without
adequate resources to be able to make it to a normal pylon meeting
should one be within a reasonable distance of his location (which
there probably isn't) ever manage to have enough contact with
a Priest of the temple to be reconized as an Adept?
From: "Koyote", Date: Fri, 18 Dec 1998
(All of this is from the p.o.v. of a first degree Setian
with little face to face contact due to where I am and my job
hours- I work most on weekends.)
Recognition, you should remember, is just that- Recognition.
The work must be done by you. Communicating that can take many
forms other than direct F2F. Publishing articles in the various
newsletters, communicating with other Initiates via direct email,
phone conversations, and attending larger gatherings (which
occur in the continental US many times each year) are all adequate.
From: "fun fear", Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998,
As an isolated Setian, I had similiar concerns, but
I must agree with Koyote. The Internet is a wonderful tool for
contacting Priests and Priestesses, and as Koyote suggested, writing
articles for _The Scroll of Set_ is equally rewarding. Also, there
are several correspondence Pylons available.
Beyond this, I have realized that one should _embrace_ one's
isolation. Just look to Set as an example: the apotheosis of
the different and isolate! You have _two years_ to get Recognized--plenty
of time to explore, make contacts with the Priesthood, and,
if worthy, become Recognized. You don't need a group to hold
your hand to do it, I hope! Embrace the isolation, ebrace the
From: Balanone <Balanone@geocities.com>, Date: Sun, 20
It's a challenge. That hypothetical Initiate would
have to Work at it -- corresponding with as many Setians as possible
at the I* and II* levels (for breadth of perspective) and with
several members of the Priesthood. He would have to take responsibility
for maintaining correspondences, for establishing new ones to
replace old ones that move on, and for demonstrating to the Priesthood
his level of knowledge, his activity and study, and his advancement,
along Setian lines.
It's a job. It's not easy. Magister L. was the only Setian
in Finland, and he had to work to overcome the difficulties
inherent in demonstrating his Xeper into the II*. Magister W.
faced the same challenges in Germany some years earlier. Magister
K and Magister A in the British Isles had it almost as bad,
but at least English was their native language (though they
had to deal with many curve balls tossed by our writing most
Setian materials in American English rather than British English).
It's not easy, as Priestess N, Adept B, Priest C, Adept D,
Magistra H, Priest R, Priest W, and several others can report
(several were the only Setians in their state, and a couple
were the only Setians in their country).
It's not easy, but it can be done, as these have shown. Only
you can tell whether you're up to the task.
From: Christopher Merwin, Date: Sat, 19 Dec 1998
As a Temple Initiate from a small town in North Carolina
I think perhaps I can help you with some of your queries. Due
to the widespread distribution of Temple members many Pylons are
organized based around correspondence, with email and Pylon newsletters
as the primary form of communication. In fact, due to the highly
private and individualistic nature of most Setians this is our
prefered means of communication. ... The ability for you to meet
face to face with other Initiates is left completely up to you
and the other Initiates involved. The largest obstacle to being
a Setian in the Carolinas is the local attitudes toward other
non-christian religions, which any intelligent and sensitive individual
should be more than capable of handeling.
You may choose to resign from the Temple of Set at any time for
any reason. The great majority of people who leave the Temple of Set
do so simply by not paying their annual dues, and letting their memberships
expire. Many others send a simple and courteous resignation letter
to the Executive Director or any Priest.
A few members are automatically expelled upon the completion of two
years of membership during which they did not achieve the II°.
There are surprisingly few of these to my mind, probably because the
Executive Director and Priesthood do such a good job of screening
Fewer members resign because they encounter something within the
Temple of Set which they don't like, and fewer still are expelled
because they prove to be incompatible with Setian philosophy or life.
Despite the claims of a few who state otherwise, the Temple of Set
does not pursue those who leave the Temple of Set. Whether that separation
was friendly, unfriendly, or automatic and impersonal, we feel anyone
and everyone should be allowed to go their own way, as long as they
don't interfere with our Xeper or the organization.
A few people who leave the Temple of Set do apply to rejoin the Temple.
Setians who have left the Temple of their own accord may be allowed
to rejoin on a case-by-case basis. The Temple is not designed as a
revolving door, but we do realize that may not have entered the Temple
at a time conducive to their development. Those that left impersonally
or on an amicable basis are usually welcomed back without hesitation.
Those who caused problems during their earlier membership or after
their departure are carefully examined before they are welcomed back
into the Temple of Set.
- How long does the application process to the ToS usually take?
The application process time is highly variable, depending strongly
- whether there are any delays in the mail (especially for overseas
- the time availability of our volunteer staff (expect longer delays
during conclaves and gatherings)
- whether your application is sponsored by a member of the Priesthood
(which generally speeds up the process greatly)
- whether there is a local Priest readily available to contact you
for an interview
- whether there are copies of the Crystal Tablet available to be
mailed out immediately or whether they need to be printed first
- whether you are accepted or rejected (rejections tend to process
faster than acceptances)
Though some membership applications are processed in as little as
two weeks, it's not uncommon for incidental delays to extend the process
to two months. If you are concerned about the delay, you may send
a polite email or postal mail query to the Executive Director, who
should be able to tell you how far the application process has gone.
As James F Foster wrote on Xepera-l:
General rule of thumb- before complaining about something,
ask yourself: "What am I doing to fix it?" If you
aren't doing much on your behalf, why would anyone else?
Second general rule of thumb: Before complaining about someone else's
(lack of) performance, ask if there's a problem with the paperwork
and if there's anything you can do to help.
5.2 Relations with Other Organizations
- By its bylaws, the Temple of Set as an organization can have no formal
relationships or ties with any other organization. Individual Setians,
however, can work with or have dealings with other organizations and
its members. There are two limitations: 1) an Adept II° of the
Temple of Set cannot also be a member of another religious organization,
and 2) no Setian may be a member of an organization which condones or
takes part in the violation of society's laws to the detriment of society.
That first limitation has often been a subject for discussion by
people who don't understand it or who want clarification. One clarification
I posted to alt.pagan in 1996 was,
"The Temple of Set wouldn't care if a Setian chooses to participate
in a Buddhist retreat, an Indian sweat lodge, a Thelemic Gnostic Mass,
a Passover Seder, a Pagan circle, or whatever. Part of being an Adept
Magician is being able to see and mesh with whatever magic is taking
place, understanding the causes of the ceremony and participating
in those causes as appropriate to our own Will.
"However, if someone claimed to seriously believe in the wheel
of karma, and that Xeper is valueless because until we can learn to
avoid all participation in this world we're doomed to ride that wheel
cycle after cycle, then yes, that religious belief would be opposed
to the Setian principles of Xeper, and that person would not be able
to remain a member of the Temple of Set. The two philosophies are
- CAW: The Church of All Worlds is a NeoPagan religious body
whose history includes what might be called persecution of Satanists
and Setians. Several articles condemnatory of the LHP have appeared
in their commercially sold newsletter The Green Egg, and their
founder, Oberon Zell (previously known as Otter Zell and other similar
names) has published a booklet called Witchcraft, Satanism, and Occult
Crime: Who's Who and What's What which very clearly targets Satanists,
encouraging law officials and Christians to "get them, not us."
Needless to say, relations between some Satanists, Setians, and some
members of CAW are strained. On the other hand, there are many members
of CAW and many Satanists and Setians who know nothing about the booklet,
and nothing about the history of conflict, and so those relations
aren't affected by these at all. Such relations between members of
CAW and Setians can be quite friendly and productive.
There was a group of people, Setians, Satanists, CAW members, and
other Pagans and magicians, working to revise that booklet to correct
its misinformation and hateful slant, but as of June, 1997, while
much had been accomplished to improve communications between these
people, the booklet itself had not yet been changed or revised. I'm
sorry to report that as of Sept. 1999, the attempts to change that
booklet seem to have failed.
- OTO: The Ordo Templar Orientalis maintains the Order of Horus
as declared by Aleister Crowley. Though the OTO considers itself to
be a religious organization, and carries tax exemption as such, the
Temple of Set sees it as an Initiatory school and not a religion. There
are several Setians who have and maintain active memberships in both
organizations at various levels of Initiation. (See the Sep 21 '94 post
by Hsi Wang Mu (Tyagi) on alt.magick, Subj : "Re: Religion VS Magick
TOS OTO!", which includes a quote from Dr. Aquino.
- AMER: The Alliance for Magical and Earth
Religions (AMER) is an organization for members of magical and/or Earth-centered
religious traditions, working together for freedom of religion for all
Americans. They have sometimes been attacked by various Pagans and folk
who should know better because they admit Setians and Satanists as members.
(Example: alt.pagan, Sep 04 '95, 04:31, From : SL500000@brownvm.brown.edu,
Subj : Re: Alliance for Magical & Earth Religions, quotes such comments
from D. Kirkpatrick, firstname.lastname@example.org, in article email@example.com.)
AMER is a civil rights organization. As such, many Setians contribute
to AMER in various ways to support the civil rights of all magical
and Earth-centered people. At one point Magistra Aquino of the Temple
of Set worked for a short period on AMER's board of directors, and
there are usually one or two Setians on AMER's advisory board.
AMER's statement of purpose:
- AMER will defend the right of every American to practice his or
her own religion, insofar as that religion's practices do not directly
harm anyone. In particular, AMER will actively campaign for tolerance
for magical and Earth-Centered religions.
- AMER will work to promote a positive image for magical and Earth-centered
religions, and to counter negative propaganda about such groups.
- AMER will promote cooperation among the various magical and Earth-centered
- AMER will serve as a source of accurate information on magical
and Earth-centered religions and practices.
In my view, anyone who castigates AMER or others who work to increase
the civil liberties of today's Pagans deserves no support or respect
As of September, 1999, I'm no longer able to find a web site for
AMER. If anybody knows of an updated web site, please let me know.
5.3 Why the Temple of Set?
- alt.satanism, Nov 25 '94, 09:34, From : Balanone, Subj: What does
the Temple of Set have to offer?
On Nov 22, 1994, Mr.Azazel wrote to All re: Re: What does the Temple
of Set have to offer?
MA> "Mr. Scratch" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>loyalty. Just to clarify things a bit--I and II degree
are not required
>to beleive in Set's literal existence. The priesthood, however,
>chosen from among those who do.
MA> Why would anyone who did NOT believe in Set join an
MA> organization that is operated by those who DO believe in
MA> Set? I personally believe that science will eventually
MA> explain a great deal that people attribute to the gods and
MA> would not trust that science t
MA> o people who still believed in primitive superstitions.
Grin, why would any Satanist join any organization? Because she gets
some benefit from it. And those who join the Temple of Set, regardless
of their belief in Set, generally do get benefit from it, and seem
to appreciate the time they spend working within the organization,
whether it be a short or a long affiliation.
5.4 Our Reputation(s)
- Lupo the Butcher, in his "alt.satanism
FAQ file", states/stated: "The most vocal of groups which
border upon Satanism, is the Temple of Set of Michael Aquino and friends,
which splintered away from the Church of Satan in a disagreement over
monetary policy. They have a number of nasty habits, including the public
publishing of names, addresses and workplaces of former members as a
harassment tactic, disinformation regarding Satanic and occult groups,
including their own, and a good deal of "we are the one true way"
- See the section on Satanism
for a summary of the schism with the Church of Satan.
- We do not normally publish the name, addresses, or any other information
concerning former members. We do not harass former members. Thousands
of exmembers have left the Temple of Set for many different reasons,
without any activity such as Lupo complains about.
- A few ex-members not only leave the Temple of Set for whatever
reason, but they then pursue a campaign of hatred and harassment
concerning the Temple of Set. We believe in defending ourselves
against such tactics. We believe that anyone who makes such public
statements about others should be required to stand by those statements,
and so some of us will occasionally mention the names of those who
harass us, and the circumstances behind their campaigns.
- alt.pagan, Sat Jun 15, '95, 14:22, From : email@example.com,
Subj : Re: Org Satanism/Christianity (was Re: Shared Mythos (was
Re: ...)), in response to comments I made in an earlier post:
>here are quite a few ex-members of the ToS floating around
>cyberspace who can provide assurances that we do not use coercion
>to keep anyone as a member, nor bother them if they quit.
>we take particular pains to harm those who are disappointed
>their time with us and "turn against" us. (There
are a few
>examples of people who actively fight to harm our organization
>and our members who we will fight against, but I don't think
>anyone is suggesting a Satanist give up self-defense.)
I am an ex-Setian who can attest to the veracity of your words,
at least in my own case. After I left the Temple about five years
ago, I was simply ignored by them. When I encountered Setians
on the Net, dealings were always cordial. Even when I started
to actively attack the Temple and its members, the reaction was
less than violent. (For those unaware of it, I have recently had
cause to reconsider my stance and to issue an apology to all concerned
in this issue -- an apology which has, in almost all cases, been
5.5 Pylons and Orders
5.5.1 Pylons of the Temple of Set
Setians who live in the same area sometimes organize a local pylon in
which they can meet together regularly for discussions, study, ritual
work, and other activities. See http://www.xeper.org/pub/tos/pylons/pylons.htm
for a good discussion of local pylons within the Temple of Set.
In addition to local pylons, there are correspondence pylons which support
the Xeper of Setians who wish to participate in group discussions and
activities by correspondence.
5.5.2 Orders of the Temple of Set
- IV° Setians, Masters of the Temple, may found Orders within the
Temple of Set. If you were to think of the Temple of Set as a college
of higher learning, the Orders could be seen as departments within the
school, each concentrating on specific flavors of exploration. They
are places for the Adept to specialize in pursuit of the specialized
tools for their personal achievement. Some Orders, like the Order of
the Vampyre or the Order of the Trapezoid, are well known beyond the
boundaries of the Temple walls, while others have lower profiles.
- The Order of the Trapezoid has been the subject of many questions,
largely due to its visibility, to Magus Flowers' activity in it, Dr.
Aquino's founding of it, etc. In answer to some of those questions,
I posted: alt.satanism, 10 Jun 94 10:19:21, From: Balanone, in response
to firstname.lastname@example.org, Subj: Re: Temple Of Set - the view in
PA> Within the Temple of Set there are different orders who all
PA> practise black magic. The temple's inner circel is called The
PA> The Trapezoid.
Yes, there are different orders. Since we call our magic "black
magic" (meaning individual- oriented magic, as opposed to "white"
self-less magic, along with other distinctions), all of these orders
practice our black magic.
Yes, one order is the Order of the Trapezoid, but I wouldn't call
it an "inner circle" -- Dr. Aquino founded this Order, but
neither the Chairman of the Council of Nine nor the Executive Director
of the ToS belong to this order (one order among many). (Neither of
the two previous Chairmen of the Council of Nine belong to the Order
of the Trapezoid either. The Treasurer does. The O.T. is one of the
three largest Orders within the Temple of Set.)
PA> This order is trying to make use of the german magical
PA> traditions and connect to the occult use that was used within
PA> parts of the SS during the Third Reich. In autumn 1984 Michael
PA> visited the order-castle Wewelsburg in germany, where SS earlier
PA> gathered for their secret rituals. In the castles nothern tower,
PA> Walhalla, did Michael Aquino preform blackmagic rituals.
The Order of the Trapezoid does much else also, working heavily with
Runes, angular functions of all sorts of activities and environments,
technological magics, etc. The German angle does seem to get more
publicity than the rest for some reason.
mo> This Order is trying to fulfill the germanic magical
mo> traditions and binds it to the occult use which was practised
mo> parts of the SS during the Third Reich.
No, the Order of the Trapezoid is not bound or limited to the occult
studies of the Third Reich, nor even to Germanic occultism. Germanic
occultism is one of their specialties and concentrations, but their
studies go much further than that.
5.6 The High Priest
- The High Priest of the Temple of Set at this time is Ipsissimus Michael Aquino.
- The High Priest is chosen by the Chairman of the Council of Nine,
and serves indefinitely until he vacates the position or is removed
from office by the Chairman.
- The High Priest serves as the President of the corporation.
- Xepera-l, From Setnakt@aol.com, Tue Nov 26, '96, 06:45 [during then-Magus
Webb's term of office as High Priest], in response to Tigger, Subj :
>If I have understood correctly, Mr Don Webb is the man "in
>charge" (what do you call it?) of the word Xeper. But what
>that mean? And how did that happen? And why did the word pass
>from one person to another?
My job is to expand Xeper into new Realms. If you want a quick difference
between Michael Aquino's slice of the Xeper pie and my own, I would
say that Michael Aquino's Word is best rendered as "Become"
a command that awoke the Aeon of Set. My own Word, is "I Have
Come Into Being." Both are fine translations of the verb Xeper.
The Work I hope to make people aware is how to find power in the choices
they've already made in their lives -- how to use their experience
as a lever for their further Becoming. I can point out horizons, but
I'm not "in charge" of Xeper The human who says that Word
truthfully, marveling at his own awakened divinity, but also humble
because they realize they have so far to go is "in charge."
I can make any number of policy decision in the Temple, subject to
the folks I work for -- the Council of Nine --, but I can't effect
anyone's Xeper. That treasure is mine and mine alone.
Crowley said that a Magus should have a Book, a Law, and a Word.
Let us look at each of these ideas in turn.
The purpose of a Book is to inflame the hearts of Kings. The "books"
of the Magi are not the books of the world. They aren't meant to reach
a mass audience; although the Magus himself may need to do so. The
Book is some or all of the Magus' writings, at it center should be
a concise articulation of the Magus' philosophy. The test of the Book
is not how well written it is; although a Magus must be a master of
words. The test is in its effect upon Kings. An inferior sort of person
will not understand the Book at all, the philosopher -king will rend
his garments filled with such a burning desire to change his kingdom.
The Book is never received in a lukewarm fashion, and its effect can
be measured in the objective universe. It will serve as a guide for
the Magus in his Task as well for those Masters of the Realm that
are touched by it. Those Masters will begin, under the influence of
the Book, seeking their own Words. These Words are not the Words of
the Magi, but are watchwords by which the King rules his kingdom and
himself. It is the duty of each Master to find such a watchword in
order to communicate the fire he has seen when he read the Book. It
is in the nature of the Book that it will survive the Magus, and that
it will retain its power to inflame the hearts of Kings. It is the
right of nay Master to seek the wisdom of his or her fellow to ask
if their Watchword might be a V* Word, and there is no difference
among us form those who have found Word and those who have found Watchwords
for the Dwellers in the City of Pyramids stand as peers united by
our commitment to refine the tool called the Temple as our lifework.
The Law is the simplest form of the philosophy. It must be too general,
for it will fail to serve as a guide. It must not be too narrow. because
then it will lead to the Right Hand Path. The Law, unlike the Book,
is for all. It should be something that can be explained in a few
words to persons of average intelligence and background. The Magus
need never be prodded into talking about his Law, indeed there is
very little less than he will talk about. If one can contemplate not
talking about the Law, one is not ready to take on the Curse. My law
is "I Have Come Into Being, and by the Process of my Coming Into
Being, the Process of Coming Into Being is Established."
The Word is a magical link to the world of the Magus' Creation. It
has the power of inducing a certain mind-set in a trained (i.e. Initiated)
individual. It has the following five properties. Firstly ,it came
into existence to correct an imbalance. That is to say, there wasn't
enough of the Word in the world at the moment of its Utterance. My
Word differs form Michael Aquino's in that his corrected the imbalance
of purposelessness that the Word Indulgence has had unleashed; my
Word is uttered a single star amid the explosive sophistication unleashed
by Michael Aquino's Utterance, as modified by James Lewis, and in
the light of possibilities offered us S. Edred Flowers. Each Magus
will be able to speak on the ill his Word cures, as well as the Doorway
it opens. Secondly, it must suggest a certain action. The words of
Magi, are not watchwords by which actions can be tested -- this is
the realm of the words of the Masters. They suggest something that
must be done. The Art of the Magus is causing change, this Art is
accomplished through the Word. Thirdly the Word must by expanded by
its audience. If after a lecture on Xeper or Runa or Essent -- the
audience can say nothing more than what they have heard, then these
are not Words. The students of the Word are the proof of its power.
One doesn't judge a Magus by his rhetoric, but by his students. Fourthly
the Word must not be in conflict with other Words of its living system.
Now Crowley would limit us to Aeonic and Aeon-enhancing Words - -
a model that has a great deal of his own world view as Savior. I have
argued against this model in the past; however here I will say that
a Word must live in accordance with the place it has been sown. "Agape"
is a Word, but not one that would likely live in a Setian field. Fifthly,
the Word must stand out from all that has come before it. It therefore
brings the possibility of failure. Words come from the interaction
of the Master breaking with his own Understanding and seeking a fresh
audience with the Prince of Darkness. Words are humbling since the
Master truly grasps how insignificant he is in comparison to What
May Be. Words bring great woe to those who Utter them, because the
forces that created the imbalance in the first place aren't likely
to roll over and play dead. Words take many years to be born, there
is a great difference between outward reception of the Word (such
as Crowley had in 1904) and standing forth to give to others as it
was given to you (Such as Crowley did in 1911). Some Words take life
times to be Reborn on this Earth.
The word "Magus" is ultimately a Persian word, its the
same word we get "Magic" from. It has the same root as the
Sanskrit word "Maya." It means illusionist. As we all know
the simplest magic is that of Visualization. We make the picture,
we Will, we Work and we work, and the desired result comes into Being.
The Magus creates a picture for many to use. He must use all his talents.
He must write. He must speak. If he can paint, or carve stone, or
dance -- he must do these things. When he has entered into the state
of the Fifth Degree, he has lost his mundane choices. This is the
nature of the Task. The Task can not be turned on one day and off
- Setian Discussions echo, Sun Feb 09, 19:33, From : Balanone, To :
DarkWolf, Subj : Dr. Aquino Steps Down?
D@p> Is it true that Dr. Michael Aquino stepped down as head of
D@p> Temple of Set a few months ago and that Don Webb (who's _Seven
D@p> Faces of Darkness_ I purchased from Runa-Raven recently) is
D@p> running the order? If so, what changes are ahead for the Temple
D@p> Set, if any?
Yes, it's true. Dr. Aquino chose to resign from the High Priesthood,
among other reasons so he could concentrate on personal projects within
the Temple of Set rather than on its leadership. He felt free to do
so because there were a number of suitable candidates to succeed him
as High Priest, Magus Don Webb being one of those.
Magus Webb was chosen as new High Priest by the Chairman of the Council
of Nine, and confirmed by other members of the Council of Nine as
the bylaws require, and he has served as High Priest now for about
half a year.
All sorts of changes are ahead for the Temple of Set, most of which
are unpredictable. But then, that would have been the case even if
Dr. Aquino hadn't stepped down...
[May, 2003:] And in time, Magus Webb chose to step down from the office of High Priest, and did so.
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