KAOS 14 and its Supplement were first published in a hardback limited edition of 156 signed copies in April 2002; the edition was fully subscribed and was distributed among some of the world's foremost occultists. While a few are very well known, many have succeeded in remaining in relative obscurity in the world of red dust. Subsequently, following this brief private circulation, the work was made freely available on the world wide web in July 2002 in PDF format. A couple of things were changed, such as the cover. As few people have seen it I thought I would publish below the cover of the actual limited edition. This cover was created as a hand-pull serigraph (silk-screen print) with goldleaf later carefully applied for the central "æthyr". The PDF edition with its alternative colour scheme is still available for download from this site. The relationship between the colours in the two editions is deliberate, being based on Joel Biroco's theory of colour magick published in 1998 under the pseudonym of Laszlo Sanduliac (Chromatic Assonance in Æthyreal Transport. Bangalore: The Sandman Press, 1998. 172pp).
Sanduliac's text was written employing a simple scheme of cryptography easy enough to crack with a basic understanding of Book III of the Steganographia of Trithemius. It was hoped that the fundamental secret could also be revealed graphically by the dual KAOS cover concept. However, as some readers have had difficulty comprehending the actual words of KAOS, many of them being quite long, it is now thought that this was a forlorn hope. But enough of arcane matters...
A selection of the comments
flooding my email
You really couldn't have hoped for a better outcome. A memoir becomes a cause célèbre – normal service seems to have been resumed! I look forward to developments with interest.
You realise, of course, that the action you face from the Thelemites is actually their capitulation. May the Lords of Light aid and assist you in your holy task.
[Ed's note – "Jac Partit" is the pseudonym of a high-ranking esoteric freemason who in 10 years time will be in a position of considerable power and influence in the occult world. By "normal service seems to have been resumed!" it is likely Partit means to allude to the "good old days" of KAOS.]
I love that "Suppression" page! There is something about this idea of quickly-put-up-as-the-ideas-come-to-you pages that is exciting. Makes you feel you are in touch with something that is alive. Can't wait to see what kind of other stuff this medium inspires you to do.
If you could do a site that really had a lot of OTO material, and maybe more stuff from ex members, and then put it somewhere that they couldn't get to it that would be so . . . provocative!!! Fun!! how did you manage to get their grade material, and you said it was signed? Does that mean signed to verify that it is authentic? And there are satirical versions? That sounds like highly effective magic! I bet that would really put an insect up somebody's ass. It would be interesting to include anti-Scientology stuff also, and would get more mainstream attention.
If you could get it started using the Russian servers maybe it would get attention and enough people would come forward that you could get space at Sealand.
all the best
: ) hell, you have
[Ed's note – Steve has sent a further email: "But, oh you rascal, you put my email on your page without asking my permission!!!! Oh, the horror! The horror! My reputation is ruined! I may have to write a 69-page exposé and put it on a British Twaticom web-page somewhere, and ..."]
That's great, looks like Satyr stirred some real shit, but the Real Shit is the power that one person has to bring a site down uninvestigated. Though for me its only peripheral, I'm glad to be part of an outlaw band taking refuge in Russia, pretty much the freest place in the inter-world right now.
Oh, wow! That must make this document really important. 156, man!
We found the document to be profoundly moving, and would only understand an objection to its net-publication in a case where the author & copyright holder of the document was insisting upon its removal from your site. If that's the case, then you have no case, otherwise you're most likely in the clear.
[A response to the above point from the author of the Supplement]
So glad you enjoyed it, if that's the right word. The publisher had my consent to distribute the document in any fashion they chose, so that is not an issue. Unless, of course, the complaint was made falsely using my identity. At this point, no one knows but BT, and they aren't telling.
Heh, heh, what larks...
The Scientologists have a lot to answer for as far as these bullying tactics go, it's obviously an effective ploy a lot of the time and other people are learning the trick. No surprise seeing BT's tactics either, I expect they really don't have a clue regarding any of these kind of issues. Some dickhead IT worker has a brief flick through their "rules" then sends you a warning, like getting a legal decision from a call centre. I bet they don't even have a lawyer at hand that they can consult over decisions like this. Your NUJ membership seems extremely useful, I'm looking forward to further developments.
[Ed's note – In the rush of spontaneity I put up John's email without first asking him, when I mentioned it and asked whether that was okay, he wrote:
Check out John's Lovecraft art and a very interesting use of an image of the demon Pazuzu on a CD cover: http://www.atelier.abelgratis.co.uk ]
I recently read the amazing "Black Lodge" piece and printed out a copy (thank god) and was appalled, upon looking at it online today (in order to forward it to a friend) to see the thing about its removal. What the hell is up with that? Did the OTO itself have it removed? You sorta implied that that was the case; anyway, if so, it disgusts me. I have been happy to've been in the OTO for the past 3 years, and yet...organizations seem, tragically, to take this course, sometimes, to...become dictatorial, to brook no criticism (e.g. Scientology). I hope it was some disgruntled individual behind it, as opposed to it being an Official Action, blah blah.
Anyway, it was terrific and I hope you can get it online somewhere again immediately.
Thanks for your thoughts. Well, the main point is that I don't know who complained about the material, that's the entire point. Past history suggests the culprit, or someone acting under their instruction, but could just as easily be someone else. This is why I want to force the issue and get the ISP to reveal this info, by setting legal precedent too if the NUJ are up to a test case on this matter, otherwise it is just ridiculous.
It is on a mirror server. It can be server-hopped indefinitely to mirrors, so whoever complained has only shot themselves in the foot and now presumably realise their identity is in danger of being revealed.
It's the best thing that could have happened frankly. As a correspondent wrote to me this evening: "A memoir becomes a cause célèbre." That's magick for you.
All the best
note – The following email was also distributed to a few OTO bigwigs,
I counted at least three people named in "The Black Lodge of Santa
Here are the links this rant pertains to:
I wish at this point to leave you with a few quotes to think about in relation to this issue.
Hey, I love you quoting Ultimate Spider-Man and Silver Surfer alongside Liber Oz (always surprising how much some Thelemites are willing to act in contravention of this document) – thanks very much for your support.
I might note that David R Jones, one of the recipients of the above email and one of the main participants in "The Black Lodge of Santa Cruz", has responded by straightforwardly saying: "I had nothing to do with the suppression, but again I am not here to judge the actions of others." Indeed I believe him since I noticed he was flitting all over the place publicising the work on Thelemic mailing lists and groups. I wonder whether the other recipients of the email will be so bold as to say that they also were not responsible... perhaps there will be one name left over who does not respond at all.... I wonder who that might be. In this respect, the selection of recipients was very wisely chosen, whether intentional or not, since our chief suspect is among them. "The net is closing in" as I think Kojak or someone used to say. Who loves ya, baby.
Satyr has just written to me:
One point needs to be emphasised about Satyr's account of the activities of Thelema Lodge in the late 80s/early 90s, and that is that it is based substantially on the extensive journals he kept at the time, not on mere memory, which has a habit of glossing over the past to live up to our expectations of what it should have been like.
Have read the "Censorship shit" email several times now, and it brings a bittersweet memory to mind, of a time when Susan and I were just two young lovers, who didn't even know if the Caliphate really existed. I had read Wilson and Shea's Illuminatus! trilogy, in which I was first exposed to Liber Oz, Crowley's declaration of the rights of man. That brief text spoke to me like no other document, so much so that I printed it up in large type at my university's computer lab, signing it "The Newly Reformed Children of the Beast". We made a stack of copies; I took half, she took the other, and we put them on walls and bulletin boards all across the campus. We had no way of knowing this is how that particular document was officially used in the OTO. We did it because it moved us personally; it just felt like the right thing to do.
After our little exercise in social rebellion, Susan walked over to the school of engineering, to meet me after my last class. Just inside the entrance of the Mechanical and Aerospace building, she saw a copy of Liber Oz I'd posted earlier that day, crumpled into a ball and thrown to the floor. So close to America's Bible belt, and in the days of Reagan and the Campus Crusade for Christ, this particular response was hardly surprising. But as we left the building a short time later, we found that same copy, carefully smoothed-out and taped back up again, right where I'd originally put it.
I can't really say how I felt at that moment, staring at that ratty piece of paper in disbelief, knowing that somewhere in my environment, some unknown soul thought that message of freedom deserved to be read. But I can say that while reading this email in defense of my right to publish, I experienced that same thrill of kinship once more. That Brother, whomever he is, reminded me just why I joined the Caliphate, that after we've cut through all the bullshit, there remains a fundamental principle I cared about, and still care deeply about today. To learn of another who feels this same way is very welcome indeed.
[Ed's note – You can email Satyr by clicking here.]
A conspiracy of.... er... one?
There has been a
bit of a flurry of discussion on more Thelemic newsgroups, mailing lists,
and live journals than I ever cared to know existed. Here's a round-up
of some of the more interesting bits and pieces. David R Jones, "hero"
of "The Black Lodge of Santa Cruz", has been on a whirlwind
tour implying all over the place that he knows who was responsible for
attempting to suppress the KAOS Supplement. One of the few people from
that period who is still in the Caliphate OTO, he has taken to signing
his posts "Brother Jones (not speaking for O.T.O.)" while all
the more looking like the only person from (c)OTO to be making any kind
of comment from an informed perspective at all. Who needs "internet
Fjell when you have Brother Jones? (Fjell revealed on the Aiwaz-Thelema
yahoo group on Sept 1, 2002, that William Breeze [aka Hymenaeus Beta or
HB to his friends] had views: "As for Biroco, he does not know HB
personally. Never has, and considering HB's views on him, never will.")
Jones was content to make vague noises at first, but in an email to the wyrdglow list on August 31, 2002, wrote the following, his boldest statement so far without actually naming the culprit, made in response to an email by Alobar Greywalker, who I will mention more about in a minute since it seems he himself featured in KAOS 13 under another name:
Interesting that Jones seems to agree with the party line that only the Caliphate OTO can legitimately use (perform) and publish Crowley materials, and it is not a contravention of Liber Oz because it is copyrighted material. Ordinarily, that would be a good argument, until one looks into the morass of the Crowley copyrights. Still, every organisation has its dogma, and here it is self-rationalizing legal dogma to justify tyranny and profiteering. But this is old news and very very boring. And is irrelevant to the attempted suppression of the KAOS Supplement, although perhaps a near-official denial that it was the Caliphate OTO. Taking Jones at his word, and I think we can assume that this is not a mere elaborate cover story since he mentions that others besides himself were approached with the intent to conspire to complain to my ISP, then the likely culprits can be counted on the fingers of one hand of a man who has lost several fingers (and doubtless will lose more). I might note also that he states that the perp is male. I believe his identity is quite obvious now and no more needs to be said. Save perhaps what he thinks in retrospect about his actions, given that he has succeeded in popularising and publicising the work to a degree I could not have easily achieved, and anyone with an ounce of intelligence knows who he is and what exactly he was so offended by. The truth often hurts, particularly when it doesn't sit easily with the public persona we have so carefully crafted.
Alobar Greywalker (left) is the current name of Bill Siebert, who got hold of my original email to the NUJ about ISP censorship after Dave Evans posted it to the wyrdglow list. Alobar published it in his live journal here, and subsequently it has attracted a lot of comment from those with an axe to grind, most surprisingly David R Jones (or someone pretending to be him) who on Sept 5, 2002, under the title "Let's examine Alobar's lies", attacked the words of my original NUJ email "Censorship by ISP" under the mistaken impression that Alobar had written them, in the process revealing a rather festering grudge against the chap that couldn't have been put better by the Caliphate mandarins themselves. Either that or a lesson not to post to newsgroups when blind drunk. Ironically, he signs his post "Jones (not speaking for O.T.O.)". Jones is without doubt an interesting individual, but I confess to finding some of his movements on all these lists and groups rather jerky, as you might expect of a puppet on a string. Doubtless he is in an invidious position, on the one hand he has been praising KAOS and saying that "Black Lodge" is substantially an accurate portrayal of what happened, e.g.:
on the other hand he has taken on the role of defending the OTO over entirely mundane and bureaucratic matters, like an office clerk under instruction. (There may be something in his assertion that the Caliphate only use legal intervention over copyrighted material, and not original work that is critical of them – if anyone knows different let me know. Although this does not get away from the fact that their claim to the Crowley copyrights, though legally enshrined to some extent, and their actions in regard to enforcement, remain both legally dubious and ethically reprehensible in relation to "The Great Work".)
But back to Alobar Greywalker. Alobar runs his very own OTO called the Chthonic/Auranian OTO. Back in 1988-89 we corresponded for a little while, when he was Bill Siebert. He revealed a few interesting things about his time in Kenneth Grant's Typhonian OTO and described himself to me as "a wild-eyed child of chaos". He was also a member of the Caliphate OTO at one time and fell foul of that as well. I was rather critical of him and his OTO in KAOS 13, but in retrospect much of that was my antipathy towards the very need of some people to belong to a magical Order, particularly if it had the letters O, T, and O in its name. This was just before I said "Fuck it!" to the world of the occult and slammed the door on it entirely.
Keith Schürholtz, who's mentioned in "The Black Lodge of Santa Cruz", also has a live journal. On Sept 5, 2002, David Jones posted to the alt.magick newsgroup a new thread entitled "Soror TQ Interviews Keith" about his reaction to the publication of this "Bay Area OTO exposé". The interview originally appeared in Keith's live journal on Wednesday, August 14, 2002, and can be read here, along with a collection of comments from others. Satyr responded to the post on alt.magick. Schürholtz mentions in his live journal entry of Sept 5, 2002 – under the title "The Enemy of my Enemy ... ?" in which he takes a crack at Alobar Greywalker's live journal entries on KAOS 14 – that he himself certainly didn't attempt to get the publication suppressed, in fact he even sent a copy of "Black Lodge" to his dad as a proud son getting mentioned in dispatches.
I'm essentially recording these details just to keep track of background material relating to the publication of KAOS, but frankly my interest in this controversy and the "personalities" of the occult world diminishes day by day. I am left sensing the transient meaninglessness that many occultists have embedded their lives in. I pointed out to someone critical of me recently that the only vow I have ever taken to a spiritual tradition is the Bodhisattva vow. I can only think my reason for "return" is something to do with that, cos it sure as hell ain't anything to do with any great interest in the activities of occult Orders. May you at least find it enlightening.
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