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What We Do

“[W]hat the A.’.A.’. propose to do is to enable such men as are capable of advancement to a higher interpretation of manhood to do so; and the proof of their ability lies in their success, and not in any other irrelevant phenomenon. … The Brothers of the A.’.A.’. will advise simple experiments, and will describe them, by the pens of their chosen delegates, in the simplest available language.”

–Aleister Crowley, “Editorial”, Equinox Vol. 1, No. 1

A.'.A.'., Aleister Crowley’s Thelemic Inner School

The spiritual path of A.’.A.’. is not for everyone. Fraught with danger and laden with great responsibility, it exists simply because some of us are called to it. Ultimately, we “few & secret” (AL, I:10) serve a cosmic design of which the human mind cannot comprehend. Nonetheless, we give of our whole selves.

The A.’.A.’. supports each of its members toward serving as a Divine avatar. Although the aspirant’s Holy Guardian Angel ultimately leads and Teaches, the A.’.A.’. mentor assists as a guide, sounding board, and facilitator upon this perilous journey based upon his or her own hard-won experience.

Our A.'.A.'.’s New-Aeonic Approach to the Work

The McMurtry-Cornelius-Johnson A.’.A.’. traces its bloodline directly back to Aleister Crowley. Our line differs from others in that it adheres to The Book of the Law. There we read:

Who calls us Thelemites will do no wrong, if he look but close into the word. For there are therein Three Grades, the Hermit, and the Lover, and the man of Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law. (I:40)

Accordingly, we have broken from the old-Aeonic ten-grade system first set up by Crowley, and  we govern ourselves according to the new-Aeonic three-grade system. Although we still use the Qabalistic Tree of Life as a filing system “to obtain a coherent conception of the Universe”, we give latitude to aspirant and mentor alike for the uniqueness of each one’s path.

Grade                     Spheres

man of Earth           Malkuth and Yesod

Lover                       Hod, Netzach, and Tiphareth (Outer Adept)

                               Tiphareth, Geburah, and Chesed (Inner Adept)

Hermit                     Binah, Chokmah, and Kether

Before being accepted as a full-fledged member, each applicant must successfully complete a Probationer year, during which the aspirant is to pursue such practices as he or she prefers as well as performing daily Liber Resh and banishment and keeping a magickal diary.

The first three months of the Probationer year comprises the Student period. **The Student has only three months to complete four specific readings and write reports about how each relates to his or her magickal journey.** If the aspirant does not complete these reports on time, his or her Probation year may be terminated. Therefore, please don’t apply if you are not ready to work.

At the end of the year, the Probationer turns in the magickal diary. Based on the diary’s contents and other interactions, the Order decides whether to extend an invitation into the man of Earth degree and thus true A.’.A.’. membership.

Before applying, please read our articles on what distinguishes our A.’.A.’. lineage from others.

SPECIAL NOTE: If you are already working in Tiphareth or higher, do not apply. It is not our function to affiliate with existing Adepts. Rather, we are a training body, with any affiliations springing organically from that “family” relationship. Thank you for understanding.

How to Apply

Too often people applying for membership in A.’.A.’. take a nonchalant attitude and rarely consider that they are inquiring about a college. The word college is taken from the Latin collegium, which in ancient Rome implied a group of people dedicated to studying a common idea or Law. In many European countries a college was known as a secondary school between a High School and a University. In the United States these words are often interchangeable. Regardless how the word is presently being interpreted, in all cases it denotes a serious academic institution.

We are not a horizontal or mundane spiritual school which tends to be lax at entry obligations where sending a mere email asking, “How do I join?” or filling out an application can often guarantee entry. Our College teaches verticality, or the art and science of individual spirituality. Here the ordeals will be severe, the tests vary, and we must determine early on whether or not you understand to what you are applying or if you are simply going to be wasting our time. In this light I’ve been asked to describe clearly the requirements which are similar to what you must submit to any College admission office when applying for entrance. These are known as your Cover Letter and College Essay.

The first question for you to ponder is simple – “How do you tell us about yourself?”

What does that mean?

Like any college entry essay this is your personal statement; it should be a provocative and well written. If it is poorly written you will not get into college; any college for that matter, including the A.’.A.’.. This is primarily because writing will be a requirement throughout your career amongst us. Your essay, besides determining whether or not you can write adequately, is meant for us to know the Foundation Stone that has been laid in your education both academically and spiritually. This is your opportunity to reveal your basic life and what lead you into thinking that you are what we’ve been looking for and that you are ready for a serious academic career. Remember, our Order lives by these words:

“Let my servants be few & secret: they shall rule the many & the known.”
Liber AL vel Legis I:10

This essay should include a brief biographical sketch. We also want to know about your credentials, your schooling, what religious and spiritual Orders you belonged, as well as the books, music and movies that have left you with a lasting impression. Let us know what tortured your soul and shaped your thinking. Inform us of any and all qualities which you think will show the admissions committee how you stand out from amongst other applicants to A.’.A.’..

Remember, the true worth of an individual is often revealed in those glimpses of light which shine forth amidst adversity and darkness. In that light we are looking for individuals who are not only serious academics but spiritually ready and willing to be soldiers in the armies of Freedom. The words in your essay must be based in truth and honesty, informing us that you not only have an understanding of who you are but equally important your words should give us an indication that you are capable of shaping who you will become.

We are not looking for beginners. Simply filling out the Kaaba Clerk House Application, like submitting a resume for a job, is no guarantee that you’ll be accepted–even after your probationary year is up. Gaining entrance is getting harder as more and more applicants are applying for a limited number of Teachers.

How can you improve your chances to being admitted into the A.’.A.’.?

For starters you’ll first be judged by giving us a well-written and stellar Letter of Introduction and an essay as part of your college admissions application. It can mean the difference between acceptance and rejection.

Sell yourself to us …

Also include a recent photo and astrological birth date with your Cover Letter and Essay. Send to: