TABLE OF CONTENTS
by J. Edward Cornelius
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law. –AL 1:40
“Establish at thy Kaaba a clerk-house:
all must be done well and with business way.”
–Liber AL vel Legis III:41
To understand the above verse from The Book of the Law we must first break down and identify some of the words. The most obvious word is Kaaba. This is an Arabic term, more properly called al-Kaʿbah (الكعبة) or “The Cube”. It is a sacred square or cubic building which in Islam is called Bait ul-Ateeq, meaning the Ancient House. It is also known as Bait Ullah; the House of Allah, or the House of God. In Islam the Kaaba is a Black Stone building in Mecca. It is said to be a replica of Heaven. Inside this cube is the ‘Black Stone’ believed to have been given by the angel Gabriel to the prophet Abraham. All Muslims are taught to face toward this Kaaba when they pray to God. Aleister Crowley (1875–1947) had initially hoped that Boleskine, his house in in Scotland, would stay in his Order’s possession forever and that it would become the Kaaba or sacred focal point of all Thelemites. That is, until it was sold. Obviously the Gods had other plans and a mundane building was not amongst them. Besides, the idea that a Thelemite requires anything external to themselves as a focal point is a silly notion, very old-aeonic. The first golden rule of a Thelemite is to realize – “There is no god but man” This by no means is a statement claiming a denial of God but quite to the contrary it acknowledges the first magickal axiom – “As Above, So Below”. The formula is said to have been derived from the words of Hermes Trismegistus – “That which is below is like that which is above, and that which is above is like that which is below, for the performance of the miracles of the One Substance.” In other words, Thelemites do not need an external building to remind us of God. We tend to forget that both men and women were made in the image of God and therefore, in order to find God, we must first make ourselves his double on Earth and live as God. But how do we do this? The second golden rule to remember is simple:
“He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.” – John 4:8
In other words, we must love one another. For is it not written that love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and therefore knows God. To achieve this state of Αγάπη we must build a proper ‘cube’ around our personal ‘Black Stone.’ We must make our bodies a Temple of God. This is achieved by constantly focusing toward our flesh as our Kaaba which is depicted as the square in our magical degree of a circle-squared (0=[square]). In doing so we realize what Crowley meant when he said that the cube or ‘square’ is that aspect of the Serpent (Kundalini) on our Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. We must learn to control the Serpent in each specific Sephiroth on the Tree of Life. The circle informs us where we must allow God to control us in order to receive the Dove. Thus slowly building a proper House of God (AL I:57). But always remember, there is love and there is love, choose carefully. Crowley states that the Adept has only two real obligations; first is to raise their energy up into Tiphereth (תפארת) where they seek the guidance of their daimon who guides them away from their Earthly Wants toward the darkness of Nuit and who, in the process, metaphorically gives them their Black Stone representing their True Will. Some claim this stone is an emblem of Death but in truth, it represents re-birth and redemption. For the second obligation the Adept must cross the Abyss and reside in the ‘black stone’ or Sephira of Binah (בינה) which is also referred to as the Temple of the Holy Grail. Consider this foundational thought in the opening lines in the first Aethyr in The Vision and The Voice (Liber XXX Aervm vel Saecvli, svb figvra CDXVIII, Being of The Angels of the 30 Aethyrs) which is called TEX:
“I AM in a vast crystal cube in the form of the Great God Harpocrates.
This cube is surrounded by a sphere. About me are four archangels in black robes,
their wings and armour lined out in white.”
Realizing that the Kaaba is our body as a spiritual vehicle makes understanding a Clerk House much easier. Whereas one is the Temple where we turn to pray, the other is that part of God which the world sees. The next question to ask is simple – “Why are we told to establish a clerk-house at our Kaaba and what does this imply?”
First, we must identify the word ‘clerk’ since this seems to define the type of house that we are to establish. A clerk is a person who ‘lovingly’ works at doing specific mundane duties without lust of result. We are told to establish this work “well and with business way.” The etymology of ‘business’ is a word derived from the adjective ‘busy.’ It implies having the characteristics of being efficient, practical and realistic without wasting time or energy toward frivolous and distracting daily Wants. The Clerk House is methodically creating a system which is personally valuable and rewarding; directed solely toward the reason why we have incarnated. The type of business the clerk does in their Clerk House is defined by their True Will. Once this is realized pursue it well and in a business way. “Success is thy proof: argue not; convert not; talk not overmuch!” (AL III:42) In other words, a clerk is one who has intellectually achieved the ability to walk the razor’s edge between both Wants and Will, keeping both carefully Balanced. This can only be achieved through Αγάπη.
The other reason for establishing a Clerk House is rooted in the belief that the further up into the branches of the Tree we climb; the more apt we are to lose sight of our reality; lose our footing and fall. Recklessness and insanity are real dangers for the Adept when they’re investigating some of the deeper regions in their mind. Since the Clerk House is the Adept, or Star (AL I:3), their light naturally attracts others to them like moths to the light. This is a blessing, not a curse. Such ‘moths’ or students will naturally force the Adept to turn around toward the valley below and hold their Lantern high in order to guide the student up the mountain trail.
An Adept always sees his students as being two-fold. Not only are they climbing their own Tree for their own sake but they have also been drawn toward the Adept for a specific reason as if a tool in their own further development. The student will naturally force the Adept to review old branches of the Tree from the point-of-view of where they now stand. This is so critical because it is virtually impossible to fulfill everything which a Sephira has to offer. However, the higher up an Adept climbs he should have a clearer picture of the surroundings below, if only he turns around. In examining where he previously stood he’s able to discover and correct unfulfilled aspects of Self.
Furthermore, in One Star in Sight it states – “No attainment soever is officially recognised by the A.’.A.’. unless the immediate inferior of the person in question has been fitted by him to take his place.” These are not idle words and those who see the A.’.A.’. as merely a chain-system to bring in new members sees the Order only from a horizontal or man of Earth grade (AL I:40). They do not understand Αγάπη. Since Crowley was an avid mountain climber, Grady Louis McMurtry (1918–1985) often used this analogy to explain the principle mentioned in One Star in Sight. The Adept should always consider himself lovingly tethered to his students. As he climbs upward, the rope become taut; if he cannot guide the student as to where to place their next step he receives no slack in the rope, he will stagnate and go no further. The secret of an Adept’s success is the realization that he can only move forward equal to the focus on where he’s been. As Above, So Below.
If an Adept is seeking God and Loves God, he loves himself. If he loves himself, he must love other Gods — like his student. It’s a symbiotic relationship rooted in Love. He must make no distinction between one thing and another.
“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 Earth.
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” – Liber AL vel Legis I:40
Understanding Love is the reason why the Clerk House is established in the Lover grade.
To reflect; in the beginning or as a man of Earth, a student was merely required to study and follow the Law of Thelema. Other than that they can read and research any topic they wish, without restrictions and with no obligations being enforced outside of do what thou wilt. Our interpretation of the lowest Hierophantic ordeal (AL I:50) or the task facing the man of Earth is that the “gross must pass through fire.” Crowley believes these are the ‘outer labours.’ This is the only prerequisite we have for membership in our branch of the A.’.A.’. – accept the Law and be prepared to live as a Thelemite. According to Aleister Crowley “The man of Earth is the Adherent.” This implies an individual who is devoted to a particular cause or set of beliefs. In our case it’s the Law of Thelema. This is what the Gnostics known as the Basilideans call the ‘material’ stage of an individual’s personal development. Basilides broke his entire system down into only three grades whose achievements encompassed the ‘Spiritual, Intellectual and Material.’ In The Equinox Vol.I No.7 (p.392) Crowley acknowledges a similar belief – “Our system of initiation is to be triune. For the outer, tests of labour, pain, etc. For the inner, intellectual tests. For the elect of the A.’.A.’., spiritual tests.” This implies that once the man of Earth has been accepted in the Lover grade their pursuits become far more intellectual. They must now define the Laws of their Universe in which their Star is the center. This could take years of study and should be seen as no idle task to manifest the Clerk House properly.
In the old days we gave out Clerk House Charters as soon as an Adept entered the Lover grade, but this has proven disastrous in regards to certain individuals who didn’t have their egos under control and who thought that the Charter gave them independence from the Order to do whatever the hell they Wanted. In reviewing our policies, change was inevitable. Now, once an Adept has created the ‘wires’ between both Inner and Outer Self in the Qabalistic sphere of Tiphereth (תפארת) or the Sun in the center of the Lover grade, we officially ask them to pick a name for their future Clerk House. In Grady Louis McMurtry’s lineage of the A.’.A.’. all names are chosen from Liber AL vel Legis. We are taught to meditate upon this task very carefully. The verse we pick represents the very essence behind our incarnation or Star and the reality that we most desire to manifest. If we have fulfilled the man of Earth Grade, living by and understanding the Law of the New Aeon, this should be a fairly easy task to achieve. The next stage is for the Adept to begin designing their personalized Universal Charter. This document, like the Lamen in Tiphereth, is something which cannot be given; it must be established by the Adeptus Minor. It acknowledges their aspirations to bring the Laws of their Star down upon Earth. This Universal Charter has always been something personal in Grady McMurtry’s lineage, even while he was alive. It can either be in the form of a plaque, a painting, or something which can be displayed but it is wise to study the art of talismans before committing this image into actuality; for the making of a Charter frivolously can unleash dark forces in ways which an Adept might be unprepared to handle. Be that as it may, let your daimon guide you but feel free to ask your superior for advice or feedback on any design that you are considering. The very moment that the Adept has completed their Universal Charter the time should be noted so a birth chart can be cast. They now have, as Grady pointed out, “established yourself” on this plane. From that moment on the Adept can officially proclaim openly their Clerk House.
It must be remembered at all times that the recognition of an Adept’s Clerk House extends only to their Tree of Life on the microcosmic and macrocosmic level. Their body is considered as an earth-like planet circling around their Sun and their Sun only. Although kindred souls may be attracted to it, the primary idea behind the Clerk House is to keep an Adept grounded; offering a personal avenue of expression back into the man of Earth grade. It is a constant reminder that the Adept must still adhere to all natural Laws. They cannot defy the Universal Will of the Gods who have created our Universe and who have given them the right to exist. Once this has been understood, we encourage the individuality of thought, all Knowledge is accepted, and diversity groomed. We believe strongly that every Adept has the undisputed right to ‘do what thou wilt’. A Clerk House should proudly live by and display Liber OZ. However, this comes with an ominous warning. If the beliefs, ideas and philosophy inherently being formed in a Clerk House are justifiable, according to the Adept’s own True Will, then it will survive, otherwise, the Gods are harsh, the ordeals severe and an Adept can expect the direful judgments of Ra Hoor Khuit. (AL I:52) What the Adept has established will fall by the way-side. Remember – Success is the only proof you need.
No Clerk House is under rule or authority of another Clerk House. All mandates over a Clerk House come solely from the Hermetic council. Of course, like any parent, the initial Clerk House to which the Adept belonged will always be there to help in any way. But in the grade of the Lover there is a deeper fraternal bond being groomed wherein all are equal in their quest for the Knowledge of Self. Each being willing to extend Liberty, Love, Life and more important, the Light of their Star to all who have a need.
Finally, a major requirement according to Aleister Crowley is, quote – “Eleven years of service as an Adeptus” before they can be admitted into the next grade or that of the Hermit. Our Prophet has written that lest this be fulfilled the Gods will exact the price one way or the other and, as written elsewhere, if this service is not adhered to – “Self doubt will be one’s curse for the rest of one’s life, like a harsh wind blown in the face of a traveler who dares to venture into the desert.” However, if the Adept feels that they have fulfilled all the obligations of the Lover grade, having achieved the guidance of their daimon and knowing the Laws of their planet and its relationship to their Star (i.e. True Will), having written this out as their Thesis, they may wish to take the Oath of the Abyss at any time and throw themselves as a child in quest of a new incarnation.
“Note, that on the 8=3 matter I have no right to cross-examine.
You claim it, and there is an end of the matter.”
– Aleister Crowley
Written in the City of Berkeley, CA
Monday November 17th 2014 e.v.
Sun in Scorpio, Moon in Libra
Edited November of 2015 e.v.
There is movement, formed by three cry-babies and failures who claim that they can continue advertising their Clerk House despite either quitting the Order or being expelled, which is the silliest of notions. Every aspect of A.’.A.’. in both Rosicrucian and Golden Dawn schools of this fraternity which reside below the Abyss is subject to the Laws of this plane, and being any part of these mundane organizations below the Abyss implies if you can quit or withdraw your membership from an Order then you can be thrown out just as quick; especially if you disparage or disrespect your Superiors or the ways of the Order. And if you leave or are thrown out, this includes your Clerk House! It too is no longer part of the real A.’.A.’..
The reason for this Supplement is to let the weary public know that three co-conspirators, one gone a while ago named Robert Flores, who quit the A.’.A.’. in writing, and two more named Ricardo Flores and Rey DeLupos who were expelled, recently acted like the three assassins in Third Degree OTO rituals who threw stones at their teacher Mansur el-Hallaj hoping to slay him for speaking the Truth about their shenanigans. They have become Black Brothers; ones who corrupt and confuse love and love. Instead of embracing Love for humanity’s sake, they closed themselves up and built a Wall around their ‘new Temple’ (i.e. their Clerk House) which is false in contrast to that Temple taught in the A.’.A.’. and even in IV° O.T.O.. Within the walls of ‘their’ Temple there is no love directed toward God, teachers or Superiors, or any authoritarian figure above ‘themselves’. Love is only extended toward themselves and them alone, or to those from whom they can benefit something. As supposed gurus these three have become the spawn of Choronzon by saying worship me, love me and me alone! Read carefully the ways of the Black Brotherhood in Liber Aleph, The Vision & the Voice and The Commentaries to Liber AL and then make the comparisons yourself.
Since a Clerk House is nothing more than an individual, not an organization, what makes these three gentleman FRAUDS is the fact that they are running their Clerk House as if it were a mundane orgaization contrary to everything Aleister Crowley and Grady Louis McMurtry structured. On this note, anyone who comes into contact with the Ox & None Clerk House (Ricardo Flores aka Koyote the Blind), The Queen of Heaven Clerk House (Rey Delupos) and the Aum Ha Clerk House (Robert Flores) should realize that all three are no longer A.’.A.’. members, and despite what they might claim, they are FRAUDS. If you decide to contact them or join one of their Clerk Houses, then buyer beware, you are NOT joining the true A.’.A.’..
Love is the law, love under will. –AL 1:57