Losing My Religion and The Wood Chipper of The Soul

What happens when nothing you do is appreciated? Why are people who are less valuable, fraternal, helpful, and harmonious moving through the organization while I am overlooked?

Dear James,

Si Vales, Valeo

Thank you for your mail.

Does hard work in an Order put you at an advantage over someone who doesn’t work at all?

If you are unable to move through the invitational degrees by working hard, then maybe you don’t understand the organization’s or church’s value system. Or it could be that you are involved in the wrong hierarchy (or job) for you.

I was once involved with a group that hated me because I began to do things which we were supposed to do, and everyone was authorized to do. I am sure that there is a term for being hated for making people feel and look bad for inactivity, but the term escapes me at the moment.

If you are punished for doing your job, or for acting within and promoting the ethos of that organization, then you should speak to your superiors privately to make sure it isn’t your fault. Remember: Crowley saw Kings in rags. But accepting that one is wrong takes a tremendous amount of self-honesty. Humans tend to justify anything to appear blameless. Make sure you don’t do that. Always keep in mind that you are working hard has nothing to do with anyone but you. Especially within an initiatory organization. You may not be noticed, but the Work, if it is real Work, will benefit you in ways that are much more important than external validation.

Also, please understand that being noble for its own sake shouldn’t be the goal. The goal should be service. That should come first, last, and always. Service is what makes one noble. In other words, work for its own sake.

Nobility is almost always developed in circumstances beyond one’s control. Character becomes apparent in difficulty. Just stick with it until your patience runs out, or you no longer need the Order. But make sure to speak with someone first. It is possible they may not know how you are feeling. They may have perfectly valid reasons for not inviting you to the next degree. Always talk before acting.

Regarding the political issue you suspect with the new “power couple.” No group, church or fraternity is immune to the power grab. Some power-grabs may even be encouraged by higher-ups. Never underestimate the power of the good ‘ol boys network. It really does exist. This is what I call “The Wood Chipper of The soul,” and I am only partially joking. I have been through it once.

If you let the actions of elders or officers shatter your illusions of the spirituality you cling on to, then they win. The spirituality exists in spite of their efforts to abuse their position in whatever clique you may be a part of. In other words, for lack of a better way to put it: it isn’t Thelema’s fault if the people representing it are less than ethical people. If what you really love is Thelema, then there is no reason to let a few mislead wannabes spoil the soup for you.

Most importantly, don’t let the adherents of a particular spiritual or philosophical system sour you to the system itself. Don’t let go of your spirituality. Hang on, otherwise, they win. If there is truth and light within the spirit of your teachings, it would be a great and regrettable mistake to walk away from it because the leaders are clueless.

Good Luck.

Pax Profunda