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Books, Candle and Globe – Mary Tomaino

It has been a little while since I have updated the library of the Scarlet Temple. I’ve had many things to share but, life being what it is, I haven’t had time. Now that I have finally gotten around to doing so, I’d like to bring your attention to some of the very interesting and wonderful items I have made available to you on the Essays page of this site.

First, we have a wonderful booklet by Aleisterion called Babalon Speaks! A Tribute to Leah Hersig. This is an outstanding document about a woman who was arguably the greatest of all of Aleister Crowley’s Scarlet Women. This book includes excerpts from her letters and diaries, photos of Soror Alostrael and places she lived and frequented and more! It is a fantastic book and well worth the time for those who are interested in learning more about this intriguing time in Thelemic history.

The next piece continues the study of Babalon and Leah Hersig. This essay, written by Gordan Djurdjevic, is entitled Our Lady Babalon and Her Cup of Fornications: Approaches to a Thelemic Goddess. This is an outstanding presentation of the role of Babalon in Thelemic cosmology with regards to The Book of the Law and The Vision and the Voice and Her role as a goddess. He then gives an in depth history of the relationship between Aleister Crowley and Leah Hersig, including lots of information on their time together in the Abbey of Thelema. This is an excellent companion piece to Babalon Speaks! and a very illuminating article.

Our next essay is a Master’s Thesis submitted by Ellen P. Randolph to Florida International University entitled Gnosticism, Transformation, and the Role of the Feminine in the Gnostic Mass of the Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica (E.G.C.). In our Essay section, I have shortened the title to simply Feminism in the Gnostic Mass. The book length essay goes into great detail on all aspects of the Gnostic Mass (Liber XV) including an excellent history of the rite, a review of much of the existing literature on the subject including writings on sex magick, the Queer Mass, and a great deal on the role of Priestess in the ritual. Ms. Randolph’s research is very thorough and in depth and is one of the best studies of the central ritual of the O.T.O. yet written. She worked together with Bishops in the E.G.C. and participated in the Mass herself in order to understand its mysteries. While not a lite read, I would highly recommend this piece for anyone seeking to understand the Gnostic Mass, whether as a congregant or as a Deacon, Priest or Priestess.

The next two inclusions are from Joel Biraco’s excellent publication Kaos. Mr. Biraco has done a great deal to bring forth and help explain the 156 Current to those who gravitate towards Babalon/Kaos. Kaos #14 includes many wonderful articles on the various manifestations of this Current, as well as illuminating conversations between Joel and Satyr, the author of the supplemental publication The Black Lodge of Santa Cruz. This booklet gives an interesting alternative account of the early days of the Caliphate, along with some very exciting tales of the practice of Enochian magick with some of the foremost names in that field. Many current members of the O.T.O. have taken issue with Biraco and Satyr and the publication of this material but it is very much worth reading for those with an open mind. The discussions of Enochian magick alone make these two publications extremely valuable.

The final piece in our recent addition is quite fun! Jet Propulsion: A Play About John Whiteside Parsons is a Master’s Thesis written by Peter Jon Bakely and submitted to the University of Missouri – Kansas City. This delightful little piece of theater is done in vaudevillian fashion, narrated by none other than L. Ron Hubbard! It gives a rather silly account of Jack Parsons and his involvement with the O.T.O., Hubbard and the Babalon Working, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and leads up to his eventual death in an explosion in Pasadena, California. While certainly not being overly scholarly in its presentation (it is, after all, a vaudevillian play!), it is a fun and interesting read and well worth an hour or two of your time!

I hope you enjoy these latest additions to the Holy Books of Babalon. Remember, we are always looking for submissions! If you have anything – essays, rituals, art, photography – that you would like to share on these pages, please contact me! Thank you for supporting this effort to bring the love and gnosis of Our Lady to the world!

In nomine Babalon!

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