[These pages are reserved for Official Pronouncements by the Chancellor of the A∴ A∴]

Persons wishing for information, assistance, further interpretation, etc., are requested to communicate with

THE CHANCELLOR OF THE A ∴ A ∴

c/o THE EQUINOX,
33 Avenue Studios,
76 Fulham Road,
South Kensington, S.W.

Telephone: 2632 KENSINGTON,

or to call at that address by appointment. A representative will be there to meet them.


THE Chancellor of the A ∴ A ∴ wishes to warn readers of THE EQUINOX against accepting instruction in his name from an ex-Probationer, Captain J. F. C. Fuller, whose motto was "Per Ardua." This person never advanced beyond the Degree of Probationer, never sent in a record, and has presumably neither performed practices nor obtained results. He has not, and never has had, authority to give instructions in the name of the A ∴ A ∴.


THE Chancellor of the A ∴ A ∴ considers it desirable to make a brief statement of the financial position, as the time has now arrived to make an effort to spread the knowledge to the ends of the earth. The expenses of the propaganda are roughly estimated as follows ---

          Maintenance of Temple, and service .   .   200 p.a.
          Publications    .    .    .    .   .   .   200 p.a.
          Advertising, electrical expenses, etc. .   200 p.a.
          Maintenance of an Hermitage where poor
            Brethren may make retirements    .   .   200 p.a.
                                                     800 p.a.
                                                     

{ii}

As in the past, the persons responsible for the movement will give the whole of their time and energy, as well as their worldly wealth, to the service of the A ∴ A ∴

Unfortunately, the sums at their disposal do not at present suffice for the contemplated advance, and the Chancellor consequently appeals for assistance to those who have found in the instructions of the A ∴ A ∴ a sure means to the end they sought. All moneys received will be applied solely for the purpose of aiding those who have not yet entered the circle of the light.

The Chancellor wishes to express his gratitude to those who have so generously come forward with assistance. The full amount is, however, not yet guaranteed, and he hopes that those interested will make a special effort without delay.


Owing to the unnecessary strain thrown upon Neophytes by unprepared persons totally ignorant of the groundwork taking the Oath of a Probationer, the Imperator of A ∴ A ∴, under the seal and by the authority of V.V.V.V.V., ordains that every person wishing to become a Probationer of A ∴ A ∴ must first pass three months as a Student of the Mysteries.

He must possess the following books: ---

  1. THE EQUINOX, from No. 1 to the current number.
  2. "Raja Yoga," by Swami Vivekananda.
  3. "The Shiva Sanhita," or "The Hathayoga Pradipika."
  4. "Konx Om Pax."
  5. "The Spiritual Guide," by Miguel de Molinos.
  6. "777."
  7. "Rituel et Dogme de la haute Magie," par Eliphaz Levi, or its translation, by A. E. Waite.
  8. "The Goetia of the Lemegeton of Solomon the King." {iii}
  9. "Tannhauser," by A. Crowley.
  10. "The Sword of Song," by A. Crowley.
  11. "Time," by A. Crowley.
  12. "Eleusis," by A. Crowley. [These four last times are to be found in his Collected Works.]
  13. "The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abra-melin the Mage."
  14. The Tao Teh King and the Writings of Kwang Tzu (Sacred Books of the East, Vols. XXXIX, XL).

An examination in these books will be made. The Student is expected to show a thorough acquaintance with them, but not necessarily to understand them in any deeper sense. On passing the examination he may be admitted to the grade of Probationer.


With the publication of No. X of THE EQUINOX the Official Pronouncements of the A.'. A.'. will cease, according to the Rule of the Order, which prescribes Five Years of Silence alternating with Five Years of Speech. This Silence was maintained from the year 0 to the year IV of this era. Speech followed, from the year V to the year IX. Silence will, therefore, be maintained from the year X to the year XIV. There will, therefore, be no further open publications made by the Executive until March 1918 O.S.

{iv}

I.N.R.I. BRITISH SECTION OF THE

ORDER OF ORIENTAL TEMPLARS O.T.O.

M ∴ M ∴ M ∴

[The Premonstrator of the A ∴ A ∴ permits it to be known that there is not at present any necessary incompatibility between the A ∴ A ∴ and the O. T. O. and M ∴ M ∴ M ∴, and allows membership of the same as a valuable preliminary training.]

[This Order in no way conflicts with, or infringes the just privileges of, the United Grand Lodge of England.]

{v}

ORDER OF ORIENTAL TEMPLARS

MYSTERIA MYSTICA MAXIMA

PREAMBLE

DURING the last twenty-five years, constantly increasing numbers of earnest people and seekers after truth have been turning their attention to the study of the hidden laws of Nature.

The growth of interest in these matters has been simply marvellous. Numberless societies, associations, orders, groups, etc., etc., have been founded in all parts of the civilized world, all and each following some line of occult study.

While all these newly organized associations do some good in preparing the minds of thoughtful people for their eventually becoming genuine disciples of the One Truth, yet there is but ONE ancient organization of Mystics which shows to the student a Royal Road to discover the One Truth. This organization has permitted the formation of the body known as the "ANCIENT ORDER OF ORIENTAL TEMPLARS." It is a modern School of Magi. Like the ancient Schools of Magi it derived its knowledge from Egypt and Chaldea. This knowledge is never revealed to {vii} the profane, for it gives immense power for either good or evil to its possessors.

It is recorded in symbol, parable and allegory, requiring a Key for its interpretation.

The symbols of Freemasonry were originally derived from the more ancient mysteries, as all who have travelled the burning sands know. The ritual and ceremonies, signs and passwords have been preserved with great fidelity: but the Real Key has been long lost to the crowds who have been initiated, advanced and raised in Masonry.

The KEY to this knowledge can, however, be placed within the reach of all those who unselfishly desire, study and work for its possession.

The Symbols of Ancient Masonry, the Sacred Art of the Ancient Chemi (Egyptians), and Homer's Golden Chain are but different aspects of the One Great Mystery. They represent but different degrees of initiation. By the Right Use of the "Key" alone the "Master Word" can be found.

In order to afford genuine seekers after Hermetic Truth some information on the aims of the Ancient Order of Oriental Templars, we now print the preliminary instruction issued by the Fratres of this Order.

FIRST INSTRUCTION

To all whom it may concern ---

Let it be known that there exists, unknown to the great crowd, a very ancient order of sages, whose object is the amelioration and spiritual elevation of mankind, by means of {viii} conquering error, and aiding men and women in their efforts of attaining the power of recognizing the truth. This order has existed already in the most remote and prehistoric times; and it has manifested its activity secretly and openly in the world under different names and in various forms; it has caused social and political revolutions, and proved to be the rock of salvation in times of danger and misfortune. It has always upheld the banner of freedom against tyranny, in whatever shape this appeared, whether as clerical or political, or social despotism or oppression of any kind. To this secret order every wise and spiritually enlightened person belongs by right of his or her nature; because they all, even if they are personally unknown to each other, are one in their purpose and object, and they all work under the guidance of the one light of truth. Into this sacred society no one can be admitted by another, unless he has the power to enter it himself by virtue of his own interior illumination; neither can any one, after he has once entered, be expelled, unless he should expel himself by becoming unfaithful to his principles, and forget again the truths which he has learned by his own experience.

All this is known to every enlightened person; but it is known only to few that there exists also an external, visible organization of such men and women who, having themselves found the path to real self-knowledge, are willing to give to others, desirous of entering that path, the benefit of their experience and to act as spiritual guides to those who are willing to be guided. As a matter of course, those persons who are already sufficiently spiritually developed to enter into conscious communion with the great spiritual brotherhood {ix} will be taught directly by the spirit of wisdom; but those who still need external advice and support will find this in the external organization of that society. In regard to the spiritual aspect of this secret order, one of the Brothers says ---

"Our community has existed ever since the first day of creation when the gods spoke the divine command: 'Let there be light!' and it will continue to exist till the end of time. It is the Society of the Children of Light, who live in the light and have attained immortality therein. In our school we are instructed directly by Divine Wisdom, the Celestial Bride, whose will is free and who selects as her disciples those who are devoted to her. The mysteries which we are taught embrace everything that can possibly be known in regard to God, Nature and Man. Every sage that ever existed in the world has graduated at our school; for without wisdom no man can be wise. We all study only one book, the Book of Nature, in which the keys to all secrets are contained, and we follow the only possible method in studying it, that of experience. Our place of meeting is the Temple of the Holy Spirit pervading the universe; easily to be found by the elect, but for ever hidden from the eyes of the vulgar. Our secrets cannot be sold for money, but we give them free to every one capable to receive them."

As to the external organization of that society, it will be necessary to give a glance at its history, which has been one and the same in all. Whenever that spiritual society manifested itself on the outward plane and appeared in the world, it consisted at its beginning of a few able and enlightened people, forming a nucleus around which others were {x} attracted. But invariably, the more such a society grew in numbers, the more became attracted to its elements, such as were not able to understand or follow its principles; people who joined it for the purpose of gratifying their own ambition or for making the society serve their own ends obtained the majority over those that were pure. Thereupon the healthy portion of it retired from the field and continued their benevolent work in secrecy, while the remaining portion became diseased and disrupted, and sooner or later died disgraced and profaned. For the Spirit had departed from them.

For this reason the external organization of which we speak has resolved not to reveal its name or place to the vulgar. Furthermore, for the same reason, the names of the teachers and members of this society shall remain unknown, except to such as are intimately associated with them in their common work. If it is said that in this way the society will gain only few members, it may be answered that our society has a spiritual head, and that those who are worthy of being admitted will be guided to it by means of their intuition; while those who have no intuition are not ripe for it and not needed. It is better to have only a comparatively small number of capable members than a great many useless ones.

From the above it will be clear that the first and most necessary acquirement of the new disciple is that he will keep silent in regard to all that concerns the society to which he is admitted. Not that there is anything in that Society which needs to be afraid of being known to the virtuous and good; but it is not necessary that things which are elevated and {xi} sacred should be exposed to the gaze of the vulgar, and be bespattered by them with mud. This would only impede the society in its work.

Another necessary requirement is mutual confidence between the teacher and the disciple; because a disciple who has no faith in his master cannot be taught or guided by him. There may be things which will appear strange, and for which no reasons can be given to the beginner; but when the disciple has attained to a certain state of development all will be clear to him or her. The confidence which is required will also be of little service if it is only of a short duration. The way of development of the soul, which leads to the awakening of the inner senses, is slow, and without patience and fortitude nothing will be accomplished.

From all this it follows as a matter of course that the next requisite is obedience. The purpose of the disciple is to obtain the mastery over his own lower self, and for this reason he must not submit himself to the will of his lower nature, but follow the will of that higher nature, which he does not yet know, but which he desires to find. In obeying the will of the master, instead of following the one which he believes to be his own, but which is in reality only that of his lower nature, he obeys the will of his own higher nature with which his master is associated for the purpose of aiding the disciple in attaining the conquest over himself. The conquest of the higher self over the lower self means the victory of the divine consciousness in man over that which in him is earthly and animal. Its object is a realization of true manhood and womanhood, and the attainment of conscious immortality in the realization of the highest state of existence in perfection. {xii}

These few preliminary remarks may be sufficient for those who desire information concerning our order; to those who feel themselves capable to apply for admission, further instructions will be given.

Address all communications to The Grand Secretary General, M ∴ M ∴ M ∴, c/o THE EQUINOX, 33 Avenue Studios, 76 Fulham Road, South Kensington, S.W.


THE FOLLOWING

DISCOURSE

(Translated from the original French)

Was lately pronounced at Brunswick (Lower Saxony) where PRINCE .......................... is GRAND MASTER of M., by COUNT T., at the Initiation of his Son.

"I congratulate you on your admission into the most ancient, and perhaps the most respectable, society in the universe. To you the mysteries of M. are about to be revealed, and so bright a sun never shed lustre on your eyes. In this awful moment, when prostrate at this holy altar, do you not shudder at every crime, and have you not confidence in every virtue? May this reflection inspire you with noble sentiments; may you be penetrated with a religious abhorrence of every vice that degrades human nature; and may you feel the elevation of soul which scorns a dishonourable action, and ever invites to the practice of piety and virtue.

"These are the wishes of a father and a brother conjoined. Of you the greatest hopes are raised; let not our {xiii} expectations be deceived. You are the son of a M. who glories in the profession; and for your zeal and attachment, your silence and good conduct, your father has already pledged his honour.

"You are now, as a member of this illustrious order, introduced a subject of a new country, whose extent is boundless. Pictures are opened to your view, wherein true patriotism is exemplified in glowing colours, and a series of transactions recorded, which the rude hand of Time can never erase. The obligations which influenced the first Brutus and Manilus to sacrifice their children to the love of their country are not more sacred than those which bind me to support the honour and reputation of this venerable order.

"This moment, my son, you owe to me a second birth; should your conduct in life correspond with the principles of M., my remaining years will pass away with pleasure and satisfaction. Observe the great example of our ancient masters, peruse our history and our constitutions. The best, the most humane, the bravest, and most civilized of men have been our patrons. Though the vulgar are strangers to our works, the greatest geniuses have sprung from our order. The most illustrious characters on earth have laid the foundation of their most amiable qualities in M. The wisest of princes, SOLOMON, planned our institution by raising a temple to the Eternal and Supreme Ruler of the Universe.

"Swear, my son, that you will be a true and faithful M. Know, from this moment, that I centre the affection of a parent in the name of a brother and a friend. May your heart be susceptible of love and esteem, and may you burn with the same zeal your father possesses. Convince the {xiv} world, by your new allegiance, you are deserving our favours, and never forget the ties which bind you to honour and to justice.

"View not with indifference the extensive connections you have formed, but let universal benevolence regulate your conduct. Exert your abilities in the service of your king and your country, and deem the knowledge you have this day attained the happiest acquisition of your life.

"Recall to memory the ceremony of your initiation; learn to bridle your tongue and to govern your passions: and ere long you will have occasion to say: 'In becoming a M., I truly became the man; and while I breathe will never disgrace a jewel that kings may prize.'

"If I live, my son, to reap the fruits of this day's labour, my happiness will be complete. I will meet death without terror, close my eyes in peace, and expire without a groan, in the arms of a virtuous and worthy M."

{xv}

IN MEMORIAM --- JOHN YARKER

{xvii}

IN MEMORIAM --- JOHN YARKER

WE deeply regret to have to record that the Most Illustrious Brother John Yarker, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 97 Degree, Sovereign Grand Master General of the Antient and Primitive Rite of Masonry in and for Great Britain and Ireland, Honorary Member of the Sovereign Sanctuaries in and and for the German Empire, France, Spain, America, Cuba, etc., died on March 20, 1913, E.V. at Manchester. Requiescat in Pace!

We are obliged to the Universal Freemason for the following Memorial Article:

In the death of Brother John Yarker, of Didsbury, Manchester, England, whom the Great Architect of the Universe called from Labour in March last, Masonry has lost her greatest living authority on high grades, of all of which Brother Yarker was a Past Master, an ardent devotee, and on which he was a voluminous writer. We had the honour of Brother Yarker's acquaintance nearly three decades ago, he having been a contributor to the "Scottish Freemason" when we edited that journal. The following leading events in Brother Yarker's Masonic career we quote from the Co-Mason, of London, England:

It was in Manchester that Brother Yarker entered on his Masonic career and took up those studies which were to make him famous throughout the world in his after-life. He was initiated at the age of 21 in the Lodge of Integrity, No. 189, Manchester, on the 25th day of October, 1854, and after an interval of three months was duly Passed and Raised. The year after saw him occupying the Senior Warden's Chair of the Lodge of Fidelity, No. 623{dagger symbol}, and in 1857 he was elected Master of this Lodge. He still retained his membership of his Mother Lodge and served as Secretary in 1856; other offices were offered, but he resigned in 1862. He entered Mark Masonry at Mottram in 1855, and took also the Ark and Link degrees, and became the first Worshipful Master of the Fidelity Lodge of Mark Masters, No. 31.

In 1856 he was exalted to the degree of a Royal Arch Mason in the Industry Chapter, No. 466{double dagger symbol}, and became P.Z. of the Chapter of Fidelity in 1858, and occupied the same office in the Industry Chapter for two years: 1861, 1862. {xix}

When he was 23 years of age he was installed a Knight Templar in the Jerusalem Conclave on the 11th of July, 1856.

In 1861 he was elected Commander of the Love and Friendship Preceptory, Stockport, and in 1863, succeeding Brother William Romaine Callendar, M.P., D.L, he became the Commander of the Jerusalem Conclave. Further honours fell to his share, and he was elected Grand Vice-Chancellor of the Province under Brother William Courtenay Cruttenden, P.G.C., and in 1864 was appointed Grand Constable of England. In the same year he was called abroad on commercial business and travelled extensively in America, the West Indies and Cuba. Before he left England he revived the old York degrees of Heredom-Kadosh, formerly worked under the Duke of Sussex, being helped in this important work by old members who had been admitted in 1823 and 1833. In 1869 he was admitted into L'Ordre du Temple, the continuation of the Knights Templars in Paris. This body claims an uninterrupted succession of Grand Masters from the time of Jacques de Molay, who, it is said, invested as Grand Master Marc Larmenius in 1307, when the Order was first impugned, before he himself perished at the stake. Later, Admiral Sir Sidney Smith, and several scions of the French Royal Family, were Grand Masters.

It was a time of much activity, a Masonic Renaissance, in which the Very Illustrious Brother John Yarker played an important role, and many other old Rites were rescued from the oblivion into which they had fallen --- such were the Rite of Mizraim, the degree of Ark Mariners, the Red Cross of Constantine, Babylon, Palestine, Philippi, etc., and, the most notable of all, the Ancient and Primitive Rite which was established by him in Manchester in 1871.

Very properly, therefore, we find that in 1870 the Royal Grand Council of Ancient Rites appointed him Royal Grand Superintendent of Lancashire of these and other old Orders. For his Masonic scholarship and literary work, he was elected a member of the Masonic Archaeological Institute at its establishment in 1862. The same year he was created a Sovereign Prince Rose Croix of the Palatine Chapter of the A. and A. Rite by Brother Cruttenden, M. W., but as their claims conflicted with the old Templar grades he ceased attending. It would be impossible to enumerate all the offices he held and all the honours that were bestowed upon him; here, however, is a short list of the more important:

Royal Grand Commander of the Rose Croix and Kadosh, 1868 to 1874.

Scottish Rite of 33 Degree (and received certificate dating from 1811), January 27th, 1871

Admitted 33 Degree of Cerneau Rite and honorary member in New York, August 21st, 1871 .

Installed Grand Master 96 Degree of Ancient and Primitive Rite at Freemasons' Hall, London, October 8th, 1872. {xx}

Absolute Sovereign Grand Master, Rite of Mizraim, 90 Degree, from 1871 down to the present time.

Received over twelve patents of 33 Degree of the Supreme Council in various parts of the world.

Past Senior Grand Warden of Greece by patent, July 1st, 1874.

Hon. Member of Lodge 227, Dublin, 1872, and of various foreign bodies, 1881-3. Among these he received the "Crown of Kether," admitting to the 5 Degree of the Grand Lamaistique Order of Light.

In 1882-3 he acted as General Guiseppe Garibaldi's Grand Chancellor of the Confederated Rites, which he arranged throughout the world.

Hon. Grand Master of the Sovereign Grand Council of Iberico, October 5th, 1889.

Rite of Swedenborg: In 1876 he was appointed Supreme Grand Master for the United Kingdom under the Charter of T. G. Harrington, P.G. Master of Craft Grand Lodge of Canada; Colonel W. Bury M'Leod Moore, Grand Master of Templars, 33 Degree; and Geo. C. Longley, 33 Degree.

Elected Imperial Grand Hierophant, 97 Degree, in Ancient and Primitive Rite, November 11th, 1902.

Grand Representative of the Grand Lodge of Germany, 1902-6.

Hon. Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Cuba (by patent), January 5th, 1907.

Hon. Grand Master and{sic} vitam of the United Sup. Grand Council of Italy at Firenze, and of the Society Alchemica, etc. etc., 1910-12.

He also was interested in many of the concordant orders, and held office in several. He was appointed President of Sat Bhai of Prag, and was co-sponsor from 1871 to 1912.

Head of the rite of Ishmael in England in succession to Dr. Mackenzie and Major F. G. Irwin.

Chief of the Red Branch of Eri in succession to Major F. G. Irwin.

High Priest of the 7th degree of Knight Templar Priests, Manchester, revived from 1868 to 1875.

In addition, he received many civil decorations from foreign countries as a testimony of appreciation for his notable work. It would fill pages to give a detailed list, but these are a few of those best known in this country:

Constantinian Order of St. George, granted 1874 by H.H. Demetrius Rhodacanakis, Hereditary Grand Master and Prince of Rhodes, descendant of the Emperors Constantine and the Paleologi, actual heir of the Byzantine Empire.

Star of Merit of H.H. Sir Sourindro Mohun Tajore, Rajah of Calcutta, granted April 30th, 1886. (The Melusinia of Honour, Princedom of Lusignians tendered at the same time.) {xxi}

Honorary Fellow of The Society of Science, Letters, and Arts, 1882. Served five years on the Council. Gold medal granted 1887 (Sir Henry Valentine Gould, Baronet, President).

Docteur en Science Hermetiques. Conferred October 10th, 1899, by the Free University of Paris.

Nischal al Iftikhar, or Order of Glory. Founded in one Class by Sultan Mahmoud II in 1831. Granted by Sultan Abdul Hamid, June 13th, 1905.

Honorary Fellow of the Theosophical Society 1879 --- presented with a complimentary Jewel of the Society.

Early in his career V.'. .'. Illust.'. .'. Br..'. .'. John Yarker turned his attention to literature. He was a prolific writer on many subjects other than Masonic. In 1869 he compiled "Notes on the Temple and Hospital, and the Jerusalem Encampment, Manchester" --- the Provincial Grand Conclave appreciated this work and complimented the author. Two years later saw an interesting work from his pen. Notes on the Scientific and Religious Mysteries of Antiquity; the Gnosis and Secret Schools of the Middle Ages, Modern Rosicrucianism; and the various Rites and Degrees of Free and Accepted Masonry, a book which has been exceedingly well reviewed. A little later, but about the same date, the "Egyptian Ritual of the Book of the Dead," another paper on the Old Rosicrucian Doctrines and one on Astrology, made their appearance. All this time articles were being written for the Masonic perodicals, and from 1855 up to the present time the best journals considered it an honour to publish his writings. These therefore can be found in the Freemason's Magazine, Freemason, Freemason's Chronicle, Kneph (which he edited from 1885), the Transactions of Quatuor Coronati Research Lodge, and latterly in this magazine. Being much interested in Heraldry and Genealogical studies, he complied in 1881 a book on the pedigree of the House of Yarker, containing much interesting information in regard to the origin, name and allied families in York, Westmorland and Lancashire.

In 1909 the Arcane Schools, an epoch-making book, was produced. It is the flower of his devotion to the Craft, and the crown of all his labours, so in accord with his family motto, "the end crowns the work!" The data for this book took years to collect, and the result is monumental --- an immense array of facts, systematically arranged, which form a valuable reference book. In it he traces the sources of the teaching of the philosophy and rites of the Craft, right back into the night of time --- before the Aryan civilization. The mystery tradition was the sole survivor in the West, and in the Operative Guilds a genuine mystery tradition was preserved and handed down to modern times. This splendid book carries conviction in every line, and all brethren who take a serious interest in Masonry should study it. {xxii}

[This Manifesto following has been issued by order of the new M.I. Sovereign Grand Master General for G. B. and I.]

To all Sovereign Sanctuaries, Supreme Councils and Masonic Bodies in friendship with the Sovereign Sanctuary of the Antient and Primitive Rite of Masonry in and for Great Britain and Ireland.

WE, Grand Secretary General of the Sovereign Sanctuary of the Antient and Primitive Rite of Masonry in and for Great Britain and Ireland, hereby give due Notice to all Sovereign Sanctuaries, Supreme Councils and Masonic Bodies in friendship with the Sovereign Sanctuary in and for Great Britain and Ireland, and to all Members of the said Rite, that the lamented Most Illustrious Bro. John Yarker, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 97 Degree, Sovereign Grand Master General of the Antient and Primitive Rite, departed this earthly life and was called to the Grand East on March 20th, 1913, E.V., and that a Convocation of Prince Patriarch Grand Conservators of the said Rite on June 30th, 1913, E.V. held in London, unanimously elected the Very Illustrious Bro. Henry Meyer, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 96 Degree, henceforth to be Sovereign Grand Master General in and for Great Britain and Ireland.

With fraternal greetings,

Yours in the Bonds of the Order,

Leon Engers-Kennedy, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 95 Degree,

Grand Secretary General.

Follows a copy of the Minutes of the Special Convocation of the Supreme Sanctuary of the Antient and Primitive Rite of Masonry held at 33 Avenue Studios, 76 Fulham Road, South Kensington, London, S.W., on Monday, June 30, 1913, at five o'clock of the afternoon. {xxiii}

The brethren present having proved their right to sit, speak and vote, Brother Quilliam called the Convocation to order, and called upon Brother Crowley to read the summons, a copy of which is here appended. This was done.

Brother Crowley remarked that no written protest against the present Convocation had been received from any Prince Patriarch, and that it might therefore be taken that no question could hereafter be raised as to the legality of the Convocation.

Brother Crowley proposed, and Bro. Theodor Reuss seconded, that Bro. Henry Meyer take the chair. This was unanimously agreed to.

Brother Meyer having done so, Brother Quilliam moved that a letter of condolence should be sent to the widow of the late Sovereign Grand Master General. This was agreed to.

Brother Meyer then called upon Brother Crowley to read his report of the proceedings at Manchester. Brother Crowley complied.

The report of the proceedings at Manchester was approved and adopted and ordered to be recorded in the Minutes of the Convocation. Follows a copy of aforesaid report.

The election of the Sovereign Grand Master General was then duly held.

RECORD OF THE ELECTION OF THE SOVEREIGN GRAND MASTER GENERAL

THE Members of the Sovereign Sanctuary having produced their certificates and all other documents requisite for the purpose of establishing their right to be present and vote in this Convocation of Prince Patriarch Grand Conservators, and the same having been examined and found to be legal and {xxiv} in due order, Bro. W. Henry Quilliam, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 96 Degree, called the convocation to order, and called upon Brother Crowley, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 95 Degree, to read the summons calling this Convocation. This was duly done, and a copy of such summons so there read is set out in extenso in the minutes hereinafter written.

On the motion of Bro. W. Henry Quilliam, seconded by Bro. Aleister Crowley, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 95 Degree, the Very Illustrious Prince Patriarch Grand Conservator, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 95 Degree, Bro. Henry Meyer, of 25 Longton Grove, Sydenham, S.E., County of Kent, was unanimously elected Sovereign Grand Master General of the Antient and Primitive Rite of Masonry in and for Great Britain and Ireland. The Most Illustrious Sovereign Grand Master General then took the chair and after returning thanks for the election, closed this Special Convocation. Done in our Sanctuary in the Valley of London, this thirtieth day of June, Nineteen hundred and thirteen, E.V.

      .HENRY MEYER, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 96 Degree,
      :       Sovereign Grand Master General.
      :SAINT EDWARD ALEISTER CROWLEY, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 96 Degree,
      :       Patriarch Grand Administrator General.
      :WM. HY. QUILLIAM, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 96 Degree,
      :       Patriarch Grand Keeper General of the
Signed:         Golden Gook.
      :LEON ENGERS-KENNEDY, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 95 Degree,
      :       Patriarch Grand Secretary General.
      :THEODOR REUSS, 33 Degree, 90 Degree, 96 Degree,
      :       Sovereign Grand Master General ad Vitam
      :         for the German Empire and Grand
      .         Inspector General. {xxv}
 

The Most Illustrious Sovereign Grand Master General then opened the Convocation as a Supreme Grand Council of Sovereign Grand Inspectors General of 33 Degree and last degree of the Antient and Accepted Scottish Rite, and he was duly elected Most Puissant Sovereign Grand Commander.

He then opened the meeting as an Absolute Grand Sovereign of the 90 Degree and last degree of the Oriental Rite of Mizraim, and was duly elected as its Patriarch.

The Sovereign Grand Master returned thanks in an eloquent speech for his election, and conferred the degree of Prince Patriarch Grand Conservator of the Rite on Bros. Robert Ahmed Quilliam, 32 Degree - 94 Degree, Leon Engers-Kennedy, 30 Degree - 90 Degree, and Bro. F. B. Gibson, 32 Degree - 94 Degree.

He further made the following appointments:

Brother Crowley --- Patriarch Grand Administrator General.

Brother Quilliam --- Patriarch Grand Keeper General of the Golden Book.

Bro. Frederick B. Gibson --- Patriarch Grand Master General of Ceremonies.

Brother Kennedy --- Patriarch Grand Secretary General.

He also expressed his wish to confirm Brother Higham in his appointment as Grand Chancellor General, which he has so long and so illustriously filled.

The Sovereign Grand Master General appointed 33 Avenue Studios, 76 Fulham Road, South Kensington, London, S.W., as the head-quarters of the Rite.

The Convocation was then close in Antient and Primitive form. {xxvi}

REPORT OF THE PROCEEDINGS AT MANCHESTER, WITH A NOTE ON THE CIRCUMSTANCES WHICH LED UP TO THEM.

ALTHOUGH the Sovereign Grand Master General departed this life on March 20, 1913, no official notice of the fact was sent out by the senior active officer, the Grand Chancellor General; but a few days after he had received the summons issued in default of such action by the Acting Sovereign Grand Master General, he sent another summons couched in similar terms, calling a special Convocation at Manchester for 4 p.m., June 28, 1913. This was illegal for two reasons: First, because Article XI of the Constitution provides that twenty days' notice must be given; secondly, because by Article II the Grand Administrator General or his substitute had not fulfilled the conditions there imposed upon him, and because notices were not issued to all the Prince Patriarch Grand Conservators of the Rite. Brother Crowley, however, attended in order to protest against the illegalities. He further found a person claiming admission whose status he knew to be doubtful.

The proceedings therefore began and ended with the following speech:

Very Illustrious Prince Patriarch Grand Conservators of the Sovereign Sanctuary of the Antient and Primitive Rite,

Although I rise to protest against the illegality of the present Convocation, it is not in order to quibble over the letter of our Constitution that I have left my peaceful encampment in the Valley of Paris.

When I see illegality, I ask myself, What has prompted it? {xxvii} and in this case, the Chancellery fortunately reposing in the trained legal hands of Very Illustrious Brother Higham, it is certain that no inadvertence has been committed.

I pass over therefore the breach of Article II and Article XI, which render this Convocation powerless to proceed to the business for which it purports to have been summoned, and I ask at whose instigation these illegalities have been committed?

There is not one of you who is ignorant of the answer. The age and infirmity of our lamented Grand Hierophant allowed him to yield to improper persuasion, to be deceived by an intrigue no wilier than those he had so often defeated in his prime, and to relax the strict rules of our Constitution.

Even to this exalted Sanctuary there has been admitted, in flagrant violation of Article VI of our Constitution, a man who is not and never was a member of a lodge in good standing working under a Grand lodge of Free and Accepted Masons. The Sanctuary must be purged.

But it is not for this that I have left my very pleasant encampment in the Valley of Paris. Were the man of whom I speak a man free and of good report, I should perhaps have held my peace. I am not here to stickle even for the fundamentals of our Rite. But he is not even a free man, but the hired tool of a woman. Do you wonder if I protest that a woman --- and women are excluded even from symbolic Masonry --- should seek the usurpation of our Sovereignty? And yet this alone would not have induced me to exchange the amenities of my encampment in the Valley of Paris for the sterner and gloomier grandeurs of the Valley of Manchester.

Who is the woman of whom I speak? What are her antecedents? Is it a Blavatsky or a Joan of Arc that seeks to {xxviii} don the armour of a Knight? It it were so, perhaps it might be hard to say her nay. But it is none of these. This woman --- pollution to that pure word! --- comes to us from the nauseous fraud by which she made herself the real if not the nominal mistress of the T.S., the fraud which did not shrink from profaning the death-bed of that master-fool of the movement, who was at least unquestionably honest.

Is it then to defeat her intrigues that I am come to this Valley of Manchester from my peaceful encampment in the Valley of Paris? No, a thousand times No! Let our Rite, the heir of all secular glory, be soiled and degraded by this creature as she will; I for one will not lower visor or lay lance in rest.

What is it then that has brought me hot-foot to this illegal Convocation? What but that last infamy which has roused even the holy calm of our Most Illustrious Sovereign G.M. General in Austria to hurl the lightnings of his excommunication against its perpetrators?

Very Illustrious P.P., I am no prude. But I am a stickler for the value of words: and I deem that the French slang "Petit Jesus" is being taken too seriously when a senile sex-maniac like Leadbeater proclaims his catamites as Coming Christs.

It is this, Very Illustrious P.P. Grand Conservators of our sublime Rite, which brings me here to-day. This is the hand which moves the wooden-headed pawn Wedgwood, hardly a man, certainly no Mason, and of what freedom and good report his present intrigue is the best evidence.

This is why our Masonic Polonius has been interred hugger-mugger!

This is the secret object of the attempt to hold the election {xxix} of S.G.M.G. without due notice, to drag our holy Rite into the mire, to chain it to the chariot wheels of a Krishnamurti, to make us pandars to the antique and impotent uncleanness of a senile sodomite.

Shall we allow the Antient and P. Rite to be dragged at the heels of this filthy and ridiculous movement? Shall we be beslavered by these blasphemous bestialities; we, the Conservators of a Rite hallowed alike by its own nature and by the glory with which antiquity surrounds it; we, generation after generation of whose ancestors, even beyond the ages of history, have handed it down to us, spotless and radiant, veiled only ever and evermore by the blinding light of its own glories, unsullied by even the shadow of disgrace?

No, Very Illustrious Prince Patriarchs, if it is to be done at all, let it be done properly. Let us elect Lord Alfred Douglas S.G.M.G., and replace the name of Grand Architect of the Universe by that of Oscar Wilde!

That would at least be honest, if not clean. I have no concern with the morals of Mr. Wedgwood or Mr. Leadbeater: it is one of the many fovours which my daily thanksgiving recites before the Father of us all that I have no concern with them; but that the latter should impose his boy-mistress, imbecile from abuse, upon us for the Incarnation of the Logos --- that is a thing for which I find no name.

V.I.P.P.s, I have unveiled Medusa, and she has no glance to make me quail. Let us but set our heels once firmly upon the worm, let us rid ourselves once and for ever of the pestilence!

All those who will not do so stand self-confessed advocates and partisans of this blasphemous elaboration of sodomy. {xxx}

I invite not merely every Very Illustrious P.P., but every decent man, to sustain my protest by following me from this illegally and treacherously convoked assembly.

The Convocation was then adjourned sine die by unanimous consent.

To this speech we attach an account of the legal proceedings on which it is based:

IN THE COURT OF THE DISTRICT JUDGE OF
CHINGLEPUT

O.S. No. 47 of 1912


J. NARAYANIAH --- Plaintiff
Versus
MRS. ANNIE BESANT --- Defandant

THE WRITTEN STATEMENT OF THE PLAINTIFF

1. J. NARAYANIAH, the plaintiff above, is a Government Pensioner living at 118 Big Street, Triplicane, Madras.

His address or service of all notices and processes, through his Vakil at Madras, care of Mr. P. N. Anantana Chariar, B.A., B.L., High Court Vakil, Chingleput.

2. Mrs. Annie Besant is the President of the Theosophical Society and has her permanent place of residence at Adyar, near Madras, at the Head-quarters of the said Society.

3. The plaintiff, who had been a member of the Theosophical Society prior to his retirement, was, at the beginning of 1909, invited by the defendant to take up his residence {xxxi} at Adyar and do the work of Assistant Correspondence Secretary of the Esoteric Section. The plaintiff had at the time very great respect and veneration for the defendant, whom he regarded as his spiritual preceptress and whom he credited with more than human attributes, and he agreed to serve her as the Assistant Correspondence Secretary without receiving from her any remuneration whatever. The plaintiff accordingly took up his abode at Adyar along with his second and third sons, J. Krishnamurti and J. Nityananda, who are respectively aged 17 and 14. The boys were receiving their education in the Penathoor Subramanyam High School at Mylapore, Madras. But as Mr. R. B. Clarke an Mr. C. W. Leadbeater of the Theosophical Society undertook their education, and as the boys were not making much progress in their studies, the plaintiff stopped them from school and put them under their charge at Adyar. In or about December 1909 the defendant, who is frequently on tour in connection with her theosophical work, returned to India and promised to help undertake the future education of the boys. Accordingly the plaintiff stopped the boys from school altogether and kept them with himself at Adyar.

4. About the beginning of 1910 the defendant requested the plaintiff to give a letter constituting her the guardian of the boys; and after some persuasion both on the part of the defendant and Sir S. Subramania Iyer, for whom the plaintiff had great respect, the plaintiff gave such letter, especially as the defendant had assured the plaintiff that the only reason for asking the letter was that after the plaintiff's lifetime his relations might give trouble to the {xxxii} defendant but for such a letter. The boys, however, continued to live with the plaintiff.

5. In or about the later part of March 1910 the plaintiff discovered that his son J. Krishnamurti was being let into improper habits by C. W. Leadbeater, who held a very high position in the Theosophical Society; and on one occasion the plaintiff himself saw Leadbeater committing an unnatural offence with the first minor. A few days after, the plaintiff strongly remonstrated with Mr. Leadbeater, and made preparations for leaving Adyar with his sons, but on the persuasion of Sir Subramania Iyer, the Vice-President of the Theosophical Society, to stay on until the return of the defendant, who was then on tour, and in deference to the request of the defendant by wire, the plaintiff did not carry out his intentions. On her return, the plaintiff complained to the defendant about the conduct of Leadbeater, and she promised to keep the boys away from him, and immediately ordered the shifting of their bathrooms and residential rooms from the down-floor to the first-floor; and later on, when C. W. Leadbeater shifted his own room upstairs, the defendant arranged to take away the boys to Benares, and assured the plaintiff that they would have nothing to do with Leadbeater. In spite of this, they were again being allowed to associate with the said Leadbeater, and it was about this time that he heard from other Theosophist friends that one Luxman, a personal attendant, had seen C. W. Leadbeater and J. Krishnamurti in the defendant's room engaged in committing an unnatural offence.

On a further remonstrance by the plaintiff, the defendant promised to take the boys away to England, and accordingly {xxxii} she left India for England about the end of March 1911 and returned to India only in the beginning of October 1911, during which time, so far as the plaintiff was aware, the boys were kept away from associating with the said Mr. Leadbeater.

6. In or about November 1911 the defendant told the plaintiff that the boys were making rapid spiritual progress and were approaching initiation by the Masters (a set of superhuman gurus living on the eastern slopes of the Himalayas) believed in by the Theosophists. She therefore proposed to keep the boys with Mr. Leadbeater at Ootacamund preparatory to their initiation. On the plaintiff's objection the boys were not sent to Ootacamund. The plaintiff met the defendant in Benares in December 1911 and insisted on an absolute separation of the boys from Mr. Leadbeater. But for the first time, to the plaintiff's great surprise, the defendant refused to adopt any such course, and alleged that the boys and Leadbeater had lived together for several lives past, and the Leadbeater was an Arhat or Saint, "who is on the verge of divinity." The plaintiff stated that he could not accept any such position, and that unless the separation took place he would take action in the matter.

7. The plaintiff returned from Benares to Adyar, and there, on or about January 19, 1912, the defendant, in presence of certain members of the Theosophical Society, sent for the plaintiff and asked him what he wanted to be done in respect of the boys. The plaintiff only demanded that there should be absolute separation from the said Leadbeater. She agreed to this, and asked the plaintiff whether he had any objection to the boys being taken to England. The plaintiff assented, as the defendant had alleged that she would be returning to {xxxiv} India in April or May. In spite of her undertaking to keep the boys separated from Leadbeater, the plaintiff has reason to believe that after reaching England she took the boys to Leadbeater in Italy and stayed with him for some weeks, thus breaking her promises. The plaintiff submits that, having regard to the filthy and unnatural habits, character and antecedents of the said Leadbeater, it is extremely undesirable that the boys should be allowed to associate with him, or that he should be allowed to have access to them.

8. The defendant started for England about February 1912, but before she started she endeavoured to obtain evidence that Leadbeater was not guilty of the act complained of, and had a statement from her attendant, Luxman, recorded to that effect, and sent a copy of the same to the plaintiff. The plaintiff, on perusing this, wrote two letters to the defendant on the 7th and 15th of February 1912, pointing out that even according to the statement aforesaid it was clear that Mr. Leadbeater was seen half dressed in her room with Krishnamurti. Before these letters reached the defendant she wrote a letter to the plaintiff on February 7, 1912, from on board steamer, in which for the first time she set up that plaintiff has been ill-treating and starving his children. The plaintiff submits that this is an impudent and malicious lie trumped up by the defendant in view to further legal proceedings, and would be seen from the fact that the plaintiff was all along one of the trusted members of the Theosophical society and the Assistant Correspondence Secretary of the Esoteric Section thereof, and was paying for the mess of the boys wherever they were until November 1911. The defendant in that letter also threatened that she would keep the boys in {xxxv} England until they attained their majority. The defendant also wanted the plaintiff to remove from Adyar, which he has accordingly done. The defendant has now returned to India, and has purposely refrained from bringing the boys with her to India in order to hamper the plaintiff in his efforts to recover the boys.

9. The plaintiff states that all along the defendant has been aware of the practices of Leadbeater, and that after she reached England she took the boys again to Mr. Leadbeater in Italy. The plaintiff submits that the conduct of the defendant as aforesaid renders her totally unfit to be in charge of the boys. The plaintiff further submits that the defendant has been stating that the first boy, who is named Alcyone, is, or is going to be, the Lord Christ, and sometimes that he is Lord Maitreya, and she has induced a number of persons to believe in this theory, with the result that the boy is deified, and that a number of respectable persons prostrate before him and show other signs of worship. It is also given out that the elder boy wrote a book called At the Feet of the Master, which the plaintiff has reasons to believe to be a compilation made by Leadbeater. In any case, the boy who is not able to write a decent English letter is absolutely incapable of producing such a work. The plaintiff submits that this course of conduct is calculated to warp the moral nature of the boys and to make them moral degenerates. The defendant, beyond putting forward divine claims on behalf of the boys, has not been taking proper care of their education. The first boy has not picked up the rudiments of the English language in spite of three years of alleged tuition by English tutors. The plaintiff submits that he, {xxxvi} as the father of the boys, is entitled to act as their guardian and is entitled to their custody, and further submits that the letter referred to in paragraph 4 cannot have the effect of depriving him of the same; even assuming that it could, under the circumstances above detailed the defendant has proved herself totally unfit to be in charge of the boys, and the boys ought to be removed from her charge. When the said letter was given, the plaintiff believed the defendant to be superhuman and was completely under her influence and control, and he took her to be his preceptress who should be obeyed implicitly and make any sacrifice demanded, and the contract, if any, made under such circumstances, is voidable on the ground of undue influence. In any case, if the defendant is unfit to be entrusted with the guardianship of the minors, the plaintiff's natural right as the guardian will again arise, inasmuch as the letter, if valid in law, was only a surrender of the rights in favour of the defendant alone. The plaintiff's delay in taking action against the defendant has been due only to the faith which until recently he shared with many other persons that the defendant was semi-divine, and that the plaintiff was exceptionally fortunate in getting the defendant to take charge of the boys. The plaintiff was also led to believe that the boy Krishnamurti was also possessed of divine attributes, and the plaintiff had to change his belief only on discovery of the circumstances connected with Leadbeater's connection with the boys on the confession of boy himself that the book At the Feet of the Master was not written by Krishnamurti, and on the discovery of the present imperfect state of their education. These circumstances came to light only during the latter part {xxxvii} of 1912, and it was only on receipt of the letter dated February 7, 1912, that the plaintiff realized fully how malicious and mendacious the defendant was and how totally unfit she was to be the guardian of the boys.

10. The plaintiff submits that as the guardian of the boys he is entitled to their custody, and even otherwise, in the interest of the boys and their moral welfare, the defendant ought to be compelled to give them up to the plaintiff or to such other person as the Court may think fit. The plaintiff sent a notice on the 11th July demanding that the boys should be brought back to India and replaced under the guardianship and custody of the plaintiff. The plaintiff submits that he had no authority and could not have delegated his parental rights to the defendant. Even assuming, however, that he could do so he was at liberty to revoke it at any time, especially with a view to promote the moral welfare of the boys, and that after the receipt of the said letter the defendant had no authority to keep the boys with herself. In answer to the plaintiff's notice the defendant merely acknowledged its receipt and did nothing more, and the plaintiff believes that she has left the boys in England.

11. The cause of the action arose partly at Adyar in the years 1910, 1911 and 1912, when the plaintiff discovered the various matters referred to above in relation to the bringing up of the boys, and lastly on or about July 11, 1912, when the plaintiff sent a registered notice demanding delivery of the minors.

12. The value of the relief for the purposes of jurisdiction is Rs. 3000.

13. The plaintiff prays for judgment: {xxxviii}

(a) Declaring that the plaintiff is entitled to the guardianship and custody of his minor boys, J. Krishnamurti and J. Nityananda.

(b) Declaring, if necessary, that the defendant is not entitled to, or in any case fit to be in charge and guardianship of, the said boys.

(c) Directing the defendant to hand over the boys to the plaintiff or to such other person as this honourable Court may seem meet.

(d) For costs of the suit and for such further or other relief as to this honourable Court may seem meet.

I, Narayaniah, the plaintiff above named, do hereby declare that all the facts stated above, except portions of paragraph 7 and 9, are true to my knowledge, and the above said portions are based on information and belief. (Signed) J. NARAYANIAH. October, 24, 1912.

On this judgment was given in favour of the plaintiff.

{xxxix}