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Gérard Aumont

OTO US Grand Lodge - Fri, 13/04/2018 - 13:05

Frater Superior Hymenaus Beta has published an important biographical essay on Gérard Aumont.  Read here.

Water as a Symbolic Thing in Religion

ModernGnosis - Tue, 03/04/2018 - 16:22

Water is a basic commodity which comes in handy for many reasons it depends on the cultural and spiritual affiliations. It is a tool which in the literature which has many definitions. Some of them include

Purity
Water is a tool in which shows that you are pure both at heart and physical attractiveness. It is a parameter in the literature which shows that you are free and pure.

Life
Can you work without water? In fact, this is just a basic commodity which is a must-hay. In religion, it is used to prove the existence of life. If you want to show that something is still of value and of existence then water is the symbol for it.

Motion
Where do you find water? Of course in water bodies which means that this is a commodity in movement. In religion, water is used to show that something is in existence and also has a life at the same time it is in motion.

Renewal
In spiritual matters, we use water for baptism to show a sign of renewal. We also use water to show that we have a renewed spirit in all aspects of life. If you even want to have a tool which means that you want to bury something once and for all then you can use water as a sign.

Blessing
When you want to show a sign that you want a blessing then water is a tool for that kind of symbol. That is why we use water to show some form of prosperity in every aspect of life. It is a tool which the spiritual leaders have a chance to handle all manner of spiritual and physical blessing.

Intuition
Water is also a symbol of rational thinking reasoning and a deep understanding.

Reflection
Water is such a precious commodity which makes you have a deep understanding of your life. It is not just a liquid but the power of the minerals and their components makes it the best symbol for reflection.

Subconscious Fertilization
Even reptiles leave in water, they have the ability to fertilize. In a mammal, the fetus is covered with water which is a sign of fertilization. This is procreation.

Transformation
When you want to change things from one form to the other then water is the best thing to use to represent this.

In religion, the context in which you use “water” will give you a meaning in which you intend to use it. It is clear and evident that water has numerous meanings. It is upon you to make a wise decision as a linguistic on how to use the word in literal meanings. At the same time, you can also handle it with other factors to avoid any confusion when it comes to comprehensive meaning. If you want to value water more at home with all these symbolism of water, check it out here!

Categories: Blogs, Multimedia

How Different Religions Use Water in Their Activities

ModernGnosis - Mon, 26/03/2018 - 13:33


If there is a discipline that has varied use of water when handling their activities then it is the religion. You will find that the Catholics, Christians, Muslims, and Hindus look at water from a different angle. In fact, within the religion, we also have denominations which also use the precious commodity differently.

Using water as a symbolic thing in different activities, different religions have to be conscious of the water suppliers and the manufacturer of water tanks they will use. They will most likely be conscious whether this manufacturer or that is reliable to ensure its quality.

Let us look at baptism in the Catholic church, do not just use ordinary water but they have to use their bishops or priests to bless it and finally call it holy water which they can use for baptisms. At the beginning of the mass, they have to sprinkle holy water to all their followers as an act of giving a blessing. The Protestant, on the other hand, believes in an immersion in the water of their people as a form of baptism. Each religion has a way in which they look at that water according to their belief. Muslims, on the other hand, do not have a big significance when it comes to using water.

While taking the holy communion, they also have a difference in culture. The Catholics do not use it at all While the Protestant churches believe in handwashing and foot washing. In the Seventh Day Adventist church, it is even different and unique from the rest of the Christians. To them, they have to literally wash their feet and hands just like they believe that Jesus did it It is a sign in which they make themselves poor. This is an exercise that is done by just the people who have been baptized by full immersion of water and not just sprinkling of water. At the entrance of the Catholic church, you will get a bowl full of water which people dip their hands and sprinkle on themselves as a sign in which they maintain purity or just make themselves clean and holy.

All these exercises have been in existence since time immemorial. It is just a continuation of a culture such that even the generations to come still follow the same. A change of any of the activities is something that is done like a referendum and all the stakeholders in the religion must give consent.
Water and religion are inseparable entities. It is believed to be a sign of purity in handling all the activities. The similarity in all of them is that before that water is used for any religious activities, there should be a ceremony in which they place a hand on the water as a sign in which you make them pure for use.

The activity along with using water is a culture that is cultivated over time and you have to go through some form of teachings as young as five years to have a deep understanding of the meaning, such that when you now use them you fully understand the significance. Matters of religious is something you have to deal with seriously since you are dealing with people’s beliefs.

Categories: Blogs, Multimedia

Refusal of Initiation

OTO US Grand Lodge - Sun, 25/03/2018 - 20:19

Reminder to U.S. local bodies: The criteria for sponsorship of candidates and for eligibility for initiation are established by USGL, not by local masters. Local masters are not permitted to impose their own criteria on sponsorship or on eligibility for local initiation, beyond those established by USGL.

Further, “Whenever an individual is refused initiation on any grounds, the local master must make a written report to the Executive on said refusal and the reasons for it within 30 days. Such information may be included in the Initiation Report. Individual candidates have the right to appeal directly to the Executive.” (COLMH IV.D.5)

Changes to Minerval Application Procedure

OTO US Grand Lodge - Sun, 18/03/2018 - 20:39

The Executive has adopted a revised Preliminary Pledge Form and Application For Admission (Minerval Application Form). There are two changes to the form:

  1. Applicants will now be asked if they have ever been refused initiation at any location.  Details are requested if the answer is affirmative.
  2. The sponsors’ attestation has been modified to affirm that the sponsors have actually met with the applicant in person before deciding to vouch for them.

Thelema Now! Guest: Carl Abrahamsson (58 minutes)

Thelema NOW! - Fri, 16/03/2018 - 21:01

Have a sense of humor, people!  That's what one of Thelema Now's fav guests - Carl Abrahamsson - would tell us. 

Carl talks to Harper Feist about humor, magick, and why Americans are so great.  (He really said that!)  He also discusses his latest book Occulture: The Unseen Forces That Drive Culture Forward

To find more about Carl, visit his carlabrahamsson.com!

Thelema Now! Guest: Lita-Luise Chappell (50 minutes)

Thelema NOW! - Thu, 15/02/2018 - 22:31

Harper Feist talks to Sister Lita-Luise Chappell latest books are The Collioure Concealment & Murder of the Mystras Nun, and the third part of the trilogy will be coming soon. She talks about her writing process and finding inspiration.

Lita has been writing poetry, short stories, mysteries, plays, lyrics, rituals, cookbooks, investigative articles, and travelogues for almost fifty years. She has a master's degree in Psychology, and a doctorate in Human Sexuality. She has had several careers: in food service as a chef and caterer, in electronics, in the music industry, in the publishing business, and as a sex therapist. She has also traveled extensively to Western Europe, the Netherlands, the British Isles, the Far East, southeastern Asia, northern Africa, Canada, Mexico, other U.S. territories and Australia. She has been a student of the occult as a priestess in ancient Egyptian, Eleusinian Greek, Italian Strega, British Celtic, Northumbrian Faerye, Hawaiian Huna, and Thelema. Through it all, she has written as she went along, commenting on different cultures, human behavior, politics, love, sex, wisdom and magick.

 

 

Site hosting change

OTO US Grand Lodge - Thu, 15/02/2018 - 00:36

We have just finished moving several U.S. Grand Lodge websites, including the main public site, to a new hosting provider. Any such move carries the risk of breaking site content and functions. We have already found and fixed several such problems, and more may be lurking. If you encounter difficulties with any U.S.G.L. website, please report the problem via email to webmaster@oto-usa.org, providing as much detail as possible.

Site navigation update

OTO US Grand Lodge - Thu, 18/01/2018 - 23:57

The U.S. Grand Lodge public website (oto-usa.org) has recently been updated in a number of ways. Most notably, site navigation from mobile devices should now be significantly easier (and look better as well). Any change of this magnitude involves the risk of breaking things on various browsers and devices. If you run into any difficulties using the site, please report them to webmaster@oto-usa.org as soon as possible. The more specific information you can provide, the better.

Thelema Now! Guest: Eric Stedman (36 minutes)

Thelema NOW! - Wed, 17/01/2018 - 21:40

Wow!  Check this out and have your mind BLOWN!  Eric Stedman, who specializes is film restoration, discusses with Frater Puck the Mysteries of Myra film series that was tied to our very own Uncle Al Crowley. How you ask? Give a listen and find out!

You can find out more about Eric and his work at these websites: 

mysteriesofmyra.com

ericstedman.com

serialsquadron.com

Amended Vision and Values Statements

OTO US Grand Lodge - Mon, 15/01/2018 - 04:08

Last September, we made an announcement about the commencement of a new Strategic Planning cycle. To help lay the conceptual foundation for the new planning cycle, the Executive has voted to amend U.S.G.L.’s Vision and Values Statements to formally incorporate principles voiced in last August’s “Statement from the Supreme Grand Council.” The amendments are as follows:

• Paragraph 6 has been added to the Vision Statement:

6. We will manifest a culture that is comfortable with myriad expressions of the Self and rejects fear; attracting and retaining a diverse membership at every level and welcoming the participation of Thelemites of all sexes, genders, orientations, “races,” ethnicities, and cultural backgrounds.

• Paragraph 6 has been added to the Values Statement:

6. We believe that a membership free from unfair discrimination is essential to accomplishing our Mission, and reject doctrines that promote bigotry, prejudice, and intolerance.

The full statements can be viewed on our Mission and Planning Page.

Cannabis Policy

OTO US Grand Lodge - Thu, 04/01/2018 - 16:59

U.S. Grand Lodge fully supports the legalization of Cannabis for use by adults throughout the United States for any purpose they choose, and is encouraged by the increasing number of states removing state prohibitions on Cannabis sales and use. However, the U.S. Justice Department under Attorney General Sessions is reversing a past policy directive against enforcement of federal Cannabis prohibitions in states where Cannabis is legal. Therefore, Cannabis must still be considered an illegal substance throughout the United States, subject to enforcement by federal officials, even in states where it is legal according to state law. Consequently, despite recent changes in state laws pertaining to Cannabis, there will be NO CHANGE in U.S. O.T.O.’s prohibition of Cannabis at official events and venues, as described in detail in the COLMH. This policy will be re-evaluated if and when federal restrictions on Cannabis are formally lifted, or the Justice Department’s non-interference directive is reinstated.

Thelema Now! Guest: Lon Milo DuQuette 2017 (36 mins)

Thelema NOW! - Fri, 29/12/2017 - 19:30

Check it!  Frater Puck talks to Thelema Now's fav guest, Lon Milo.  Listen and learn something you didn't know about magick, tarot, and life in general. 

Order of the Lion and Order of the Eagle

OTO US Grand Lodge - Sat, 21/10/2017 - 23:11

The materials for the Order of the Lion and Order of the Eagle have been transferred from the Invisible Basilica to the U.S. Grand Lodge public website.  They can be found here:

Orders of the Lion and Eagle

Revolutionary

OTO US Grand Lodge - Sat, 21/10/2017 - 23:02

Congratulations to MUOPS on their appointment by the Electoral College as Revolutionary.

Thelema Now! Guest: Tracey Rollin

Thelema NOW! - Fri, 06/10/2017 - 21:12

Tracy Rollin talks to Thelema Now's Harper Feist about her book, Santa Muerte – the History, Rituals and Magic of Our Lady of the Holy Death. 

The book takes a look at Santa Muerte, the famous folk saint widely associated with the Day of the Dead. Credited with wielding vast influence in the lives of her devotees, she is the central figure of the fastest-growing new religious movement in the world today.

This book surveys Santa Muerte as an aspect of the dark feminine, the bringer of death that Is crucial to all life. This perspective is surveyed through the lens of Santa Muerte’s European and Aztec roots, including the Catholic beliefs and practices that helped shape them.

To find out more, visit Tracey's website traceyrollin.com 

Welding For Spiritual Activities

ModernGnosis - Sun, 01/10/2017 - 08:00

Religion has been in a steady decline ever since scientific discoveries started debunking many of the theories proposed by religion. Fewer and fewer people today in the developed world bother to partake in religious activities such as going to the church. Many have even turned to atheism, believing with certainty that God does not exist. Others remain on the fence about the existence of God or simply don’t care. While religiosity has been in steady decline, spirituality has been given more focus. After denouncing religion, many people need something to fill the void in their lives with and need to feel a connection a higher power. Spirituality plays this role.

The great thing about spirituality, as compared to religion, is that it is much looser in its demands and requirements. You don’t need to follow a book or attend church every Sunday to be spiritual. Spirituality is brought about by an awakening within. After a spiritual realization, a person can use their newfound knowledge and wisdom of the world in a number of ways. There are a number of activities that one can participate in to enhance their spiritual enlightenment. Welding is one such activity.

The act of welding requires a great deal of concentration and steady hands to carry out. To weld effectively, one needs to channel their thoughts and energy into thinking about how the two metals are being joined together. As you can imagine, this is a pretty spiritual exercise.

Welding cannot be performed without proper gear. Even spirituality can’t protect a person from the health hazards of welding. Only sturdy and well-built protective materials can accomplish this. As such it’s important to deck yourself out with proper protection before picking up the welding torch. The most important piece of protection is the welding helmet. It protects every part of the welder’s face from multiple harms. The helmet shields the face and neck from the sparks and heat produced by the welding torch. Most importantly, it guards the eyes against energetic UV radiations produced by the oxyacetylene or oxyhydrogen flame of the torch. The helmet accomplishes this by using a special tinted material for the visor. The problem with this, though, is that it can be so dark that looking at anything other than the flame may be impossible. Hence, a welder would need to take the helmet on and off when working. To circumvent this issue, there are now helmets with visors available which can change their intensity. These auto darkening helmets (bestweldinghelmet.review) employ a special type of material for the lens of the visor which can vary the amount of light they allow to enter depending on how bright what you’re looking at is.

One of the most prominent brands in the field of welding helmets is Hobart. All of their helmets are sturdy, reliable and dependable. What differs from model to model in the line-up is the features and specialties of the helmets. For example, cheaper helmets don’t have auto darkening lenses while the expensive ones do. The more expensive helmets usually have larger visors which allow you to see more and have a larger field of viewing when wearing the helmet. You can read Hobart’s helmet reviews here:https://bestweldinghelmet.review/hobart/ find out which model is the best suited towards delivering your needs.

In conclusion, spirituality and welding go hand in hand. Both activities complement each other well and require some common skills to excel. Being spiritual automatically makes you a better welder and vice-versa.

Categories: Blogs, Multimedia

Application Forms for Non-Initiate E.G.C. Baptism and Confirmation

OTO US Grand Lodge - Fri, 22/09/2017 - 18:36

Baptism and Confirmation in E.G.C. have long been available to those who have not (yet) taken Minerval initiation. Effective immediately, candidates for non-initiate E.G.C. baptism and/or confirmation must complete and submit an application form/questionnaire prior to scheduling of the ceremony. These forms are available from either the E.G.C. Secretary, the Grand Secretary General, or the Document Control Officer. Approval is tacit unless the candidate has been convicted of a felony. For further information, local body officers and E.G.C. clergy may contact the E.G.C. Secretary or the Grand Secretary General.

New Strategic Planning Cycle

OTO US Grand Lodge - Sun, 10/09/2017 - 18:20

In 2005-2006 e.v., the National Grand Master General formed a Strategic Planning Group for the purpose of outlining the vision and goals of our Order in the United States. These Brothers and Sisters undertook the complex task of setting goals Order-wide. Some of the results of this effort can be found in the “Mission & Planning” section here on the USGL website. Many of these goals of the original strategic plan have been accomplished, but some remain aspirational. We thank the members of the group for their service.

In this new strategic planning cycle, we face challenges that call for a more streamlined and “agile” process than the deliberative process used previously. To that end, we are pleased to announce that on August 22nd, 2017 e.v., the Executive established the office of the USGL Strategic Planning Secretary, and appointed Sr. Melissa Holm to that office for a renewable term of five years.

The Strategic Planning Secretary will act as a consultant and facilitator to the governing bodies and leaders of USGL in the formulation of strategic plans in their areas of focus, ensuring that these plans are in alignment with USGL stated goals and priorities, and tracking incremental project progress toward the fulfillment of these goals.

Sr. Melissa’s plan is to implement the planning process over time, in quarterly increments–contacting USGL officers each in their turn to initiate the goal setting process. The first steps are already underway. The membership will be able to follow along with the progress of the strategic planning process via regular reports here and in Agapé.

Leagues and Collectives

OTO US Grand Lodge - Sat, 09/09/2017 - 20:41

In keeping with a tentative announcement made by the National Grand Master General in his NOTOCON X address about “National Guilds,” the Executive has now established a program of member interest groups to be supervised and managed by the Supreme Grand Council, effective immediately. Membership in these groups is limited to O.T.O. initiate members in good standing. These groups will be divided into two classes as follows:

1. “Leagues” are trade, craft, or professional groups within U.S.G.L. corresponding to Guilds as defined in the Blue Equinox; but operating with the approval of, and responsible to, the Supreme Grand Council of U.S.G.L. Applications for League status require the signatures of at least five initiate members in good standing who are currently resident within the geographical jurisdiction of U.S.G.L.; must include draft Bylaws and Standing Rules; and are to be submitted to the GSG for approval by the Supreme Grand Council. Leagues are expected to report their membership and activities annually to the GSG in February for the previous calendar year. Any League can be closed at any time and for any reason by the Executive.

2. “Collectives” are informal special interest groups operating with the approval of, and responsible to, the Supreme Grand Council. Collectives operate under guidelines issued by the Executive. Collectives may be formed for study, discussion, and practice of a variety of topics and disciplines of interest to OTO members; such as art, music, history, philosophy, poetry, alchemy, astrology, tarot, various systems of divination and ceremonial magick, etc. Applications for Collective status require the signatures of at least seven initiate members in good standing who are currently resident within the geographical jurisdiction of U.S.G.L., and are to be submitted to the GSG for approval by the Supreme Grand Council. Bylaws and standing rules are optional for Collectives, but if developed, they must be submitted to the GSG for approval by the Supreme Grand Council. Collectives are expected to report their membership and activities annually to the GSG in February for the previous calendar year. Any Collective can be closed at any time and for any reason by the Executive.

 

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